Archive for February, 2007

Solution : VisualBasic on Linux / non-Microsoft platform

Wednesday, February 21st, 2007

One of the most asked questions I got from customer, in relation to their planned migration to Linux, is “Will Linux runs our legacy application ?”. And, 90% of the time, that legacy apps will be a VisualBasic 6 application. They feared that it won’t run on Linux, and their business will suffer.

I’ve always told my customers that “technical problems are not a problem“.
I can always help them find a solution for a technical issue. It’s the political ones that’s sometimes proved impossible to deal with :)
For example, once I met with a Canadian consultant, who happily informed me that he has been successful in making legacy apps running in older-than-dinosaur servers to talk with the web-apps on Linux, by creating a wrapper for these oldies. My inner geek bowed and saluted his hacking wizardry, and again my faith in our ability to overcome technical issues is strengthened.

Back to VisualBasic, what I did then is to observe their current situation. Each customer is unique, and a solution won’t always work for each of them. After the fact-finding session, then I usually able to prescribe the best solution for them.

Today I found one other possible solution for this.

Found a discussion on Slashdot, where it was noted that RealBasic is almost 100% compatible with VisualBasic and will run on non-Microsoft platform (even on Mac OS X).
Many will find its price (US$ 500) is way cheaper than to redevelop their corporate application.

Although not the solution for all, but it’s always good to have yet another choice, especially at this medium price range - it’s a clean solution and still affordable.

Just another reminder why I still check Slashdot from time to time — it’s not for the news, but the comments.
You guys rock. Thank you.

And to those looking to develop their corporate application - go web-based guys. Tying yourself to a single, proprietary, platform may prove very costly later.

And always, again, ALWAYS get the source code. Do not deal with a developer which will develop your corporate apps but won’t give you the source. Period.
You will thank me later for this, and when that happens, you may feel like transmitting a huge amount of money to my bank account. Don’t worry, it’s absolutely normal. In that case, just comment in this post, and you shall find my account details in your email in just a few minutes. :D

OK, gotta code !

Solution: USB hard disk on Powerbook G4

Wednesday, February 21st, 2007

I’ve found that my USB external hard disk (2.5 inch) doesn’t work on Powerbook G4. This is because Powerbook actually conforms to USB standard, and only provide 500 mA power to each of its 2 USB port. This, unfortunately, is not enough to power-up the hard disk.

A solution is to buy a powered USB hub; plug it to the Powerbook. Then plug the USB hard disk to the hub.

Another solution is possible though if you have a USB Y-cable. A Y-cable is a USB cable where one end has 2 connectors.
Basically, you plug the end with one connector to the hard disk, and then plug each of the other 2 connectors to Powerbook’s 2 USB port.

I furthered the hack by plugging one of the connector (because it’s not long enough to reach the Powerbook’s other USB port) to an unpowered USB hub, then I plug that hub to the other Powerbook’s USB port.

Since 2 USB port x 500 mA = 1000 mA, now it has enough power for the 2.5 hard disk.

I haven’t tried this trick with standard (3.5 inch) hard drive though.
You may have to use the powered USB hub, or, use the Y-cable and plug one of its connector to a desktop computer. Most desktop computers’ USB ports nowadays have enough juice to power even things that wasn’t supposed to be plugged there (USB-powered fan anyone?)

Anyway, HTH.

Krisis Darah - donor yukk..

Monday, February 19th, 2007

Dapat kabar dari orang tua saya, katanya PMI sedang krisis darah, karena berbagai bencana yang menimpa kita akhir-akhir ini. Terutamanya mungkin berkaitan dengan wabah demam berdarah akhir-akhir ini ya.

STOP PRESS - daftar lokasi acara donor darah :

  1. Setiap hari Kamis, lokasi dekat kantor Republika.
    Belum sempat diverifikasi - ada yang bisa membantu konfirmasi kebenaran kabar ini ?
  2. Jumat, 23 Februari 2007, pkl 10:00 - 13:30. Lokasi: mesjid raya Bintaro.

Jadi teringat rencana saya untuk donor darah di Hangtuah, namun selalu gagal karena acaranya selalu hari Sabtu - kebetulan hari Sabtu itu masih hari kerja bagi saya (Yudi - saya gak menyalahkan Hangtuah lhoo, hehe). Biasanya justru banyak meeting bisa diadakan pada hari itu.

Nah, ternyata hari Rabu, 21 Februari 2007, ada acara donor darah PMI, di Carrefour Lebak Bulus. Mulai dari pukul 10:00 s/d selesai.
Wah ternyata kebetulan itu pas waktu lowong saya, syukurlah !

Bagi yang sedang tidak sempat, atau lokasinya jauh, bisa mencoba salah satu dari berbagai kantor PMI berikut ini : Daftar kantor PMI di seluruh Indonesia.

Anda punya informasi mengenai acara donor darah di lokasi lainnya ? Mohon bantuannya untuk berbagi beritanya dengan berkomentar di posting ini, sehingga kita bisa ramaikan acaranya.

Kapan lagi kita bisa memberikan bantuan yang sedemikian besarnya, tanpa mengeluarkan duit ? :D

Mari menyumbangkan darah — kalaupun Anda sedang tidak bisa, paling tidak sebarkan informasi ini, sehingga jadi ada (syukur-syukur malah banyak) yang menyumbangkan darahnya.

btw; saya akan coba untuk selalu update posting ini dengan informasi acara donor darah terbaru.

1. Blood donor saves lives
2. Daftar kantor PMI di seluruh Indonesia

Nokia E90 Released

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

I’m happily using my Nokia E70 for quite some time now. However, as an ex-user of two Nokia Communicators, I couldn’t help yesterday but wonder if Nokia will release a better version of its Communicator series.

Voila - then I found the news that Nokia E90 has been launched !

E90 camera & speakerNokia E909500, E90, 9300

The Nokia Communicator series has been notorious for being slow and missing common high-end features, and a few other ugliness. I was so pleasantly surprised that E90 will be the first Communicator that won’t be so. Check it out :

  • Slow ? Nope, E90 uses the same processor as N95 & N800, and very speedy ! It’s able to do fullscreen video playback smoothly.
  • Weak / cheap feel ? E90 now sport strong hinges, and feels solid overall.
  • Internal memory ? 128 MB overall, usually leaving 80MB free. This is one problem on E70 - turned out it has small internal memory, so sometimes it’s not able to run more that a few apps simultaneously. No such problem with E90.
  • Connectivity ? it’s worthy of its name - Quadband GSM, bluetooth 2 w/ A2DP support, WiFi, USB 2, GPRS, EGDE, UMTS (3G), HSDPA (3.5G). Very, very nice indeed. No fax though, but you can workaround this for example by subscribing to Internet-based fax service.
  • Camera ? no more weak VGA cam - it’s now a 3.2 MB camera with LED flash plus an internal cam for video calls !
  • Other features ? GPS - finally ! Stereo speakers, 3D, FM radio, now also vibrates (!), updateable firmware via Internet, etc.

E90 is what 9500 should have been. Now it has all the important features, and then some. Very well done Nokia. When I got this, it may very well cause my laptop to gather dust at home.

Looking forward to its launch in Indonesia.

Pengakuan Dosa dan Kabar Gembira

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

Setelah lama merasa tersiksa, akhirnya dengan berat hati saya memutuskan untuk menghapus semua links kategori “Friends” dari blog saya ini. Bukan apa-apa, jauh lebih cepat orang mentaut ke blog saya ini daripada saya mentaut balik dari blog saya. Saya pribadi merasa ini tidak adil, dan sudah lama saya menderita karena ini.

Akhirnya, saya terpaksa memutuskan untuk menghapus semuanya, agar semuanya sama, tidak tercantum di kategori tersebut.

Kabar gembiranya, saya telah memasang plugin DoFollow !
Dengan ini, maka semua komentator (termasuk kawan-kawan saya tadi) di blog ini otomatis akan mendapatkan link / tautan dari blog ini, yang kebetulan saat ini diberi PageRank 5 oleh Google.
Ini juga adalah penghargaan dan rasa terimakasih saya atas semua kontribusi Anda, sehingga blog ini bisa menjadi jauh lebih bermanfaat.

Saya sendirian tidak bisa berbuat banyak. Namun, sharing informasi Anda di komentar di berbagai artikel telah membantu banyak orang, mencerahkan saya, menunjuki para penjelajah Internet ke jalan yang lurus, mengkoreksi kesalahan-kesalahan saya, dan menjadikan blogsphere Indonesia secara keseluruhan menjadi suatu tempat yang sangat menarik.
Pada saat ini hanya inilah yang bisa saya perbuat sebagai wujud terimakasih saya kepada Anda sekalian.

Lalu, ada sesuatu yang baru di sidebar blog ini — widget Tunas Cendekia :)
Kini jadi mudah untuk peduli dan selalu up to date dengan perkembangan mereka. Cukup klik disini, lalu paste di blog Anda - voila ! WTC - Widget Tunas Cendekia.

Selamat menikmati.

Open Source Business Intelligence

Monday, February 12th, 2007

To be honest, I never expected to find an Open Source Business Intelligence (BI) application, yet here it is; Pentaho. Amazing.

It encompasses almost the whole spectrum of Business Intelligence concept; Reporting, Analysis, Data Mining, the BI platform, Dashboards/Management tools, and Workflow.

Pentaho, Open Source Business Intelligence

Good stuff. Now I know what to answer when my customers are asking me for an open BI solution.
Well done!

Bahaya Situs (Blog) Gratisan

Sunday, February 11th, 2007

Saya baru saja mendapatkan email bahwa seorang kawan blogger, Luthfi Assadad, blognya dimatikan oleh hosternya,, dengan alasan “melanggar TOS (Terms Of Service)”. Walhasil, isi blognya lenyap semua, dan tidak diketahui apakah akan bisa diselamatkan atau tidak.

Sebetulnya, dimana pun kita hosting blog/situs kita pasti akan selalu ada kemungkinan ini (lenyapnya data). Namun, pada situs/blog gratisan, resikonya jauh lebih besar. Penyebabnya bisa kita baca di isi TOS :

Automattic has the right (though not the obligation) to, in Automattic’s sole discretion (i) refuse or remove any content that, in Automattic’s reasonable opinion, violates any Automattic policy or is in any way harmful or objectionable, or (ii) terminate or deny access to and use of the Website to any individual or entity for any reason, in Automattic’s sole discretion. Automattic will have no obligation to provide a refund of any amounts previously paid.

Dan ini makin diperparah dengan ustomer service nya — karena mungkin ada jutaan blog di pada saat ini, tentu sulit bagi mereka untuk membalas email komplain dari kita - mengapa situs kita tiba-tiba dilenyapkan begitu saja?
Pada hosting berbayar kita masih lebih mungkin mendapatkan penjelasan dari mereka, sehingga kemudian kita bisa memenuhi TOS mereka.

Lalu bagaimana solusinya jika kita sudah terlanjur menggunakan hosting ?
Saya barusan bertanya kepada seorang kawan, menurutnya ada fasilitas Backup di

Nah, dengan memanfaatkan fasilitas tersebut, maka jika tiba-tiba Anda tertimpa bencana ini, data-data di blog Anda sudah aman tersimpan di komputer Anda sendiri.

Mudah-mudahan bermanfaat. Terlampir adalah email selengkapnya dari kawan saya tersebut.

From: Luthfi Assadad
Date: Feb 12, 2007 10:14 AM
Subject: Mohon Bantuan Dari Teman-teman blogger Semuanya

Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuh …
Teman-teman blogger semuanya ….
Pagi ini, ada sesuatu yang lain ketika saya mengakses blog saya ( BLOG SAYA DISUSPEND termasuk akunnya. Untuk akun yang disuspend akhirnya bisa kembali lagi dengan bantuan menu Reset Password (Lost Password). Blog saya disuspend dengan alasan melanggar Term of Service, yang mana saya sendiri gak tahu TOS yang mana yang saya langgar.

Setelah berhasil login (dengan password baru), rupanya blog utama saya tersebut hilang dari list blog2 saya.
Untuk itu, demi persahabatan kita, tolong, kirimkan email ke pihak wordpress melalui menu support dan meminta wordpress agar mengembalikan blog utama saya. Sekalian tanyakan TOS yang mana yang saya langgar.

Yang terakhir, sekalian sebarkan ke yang lain.
Dukungan dari teman-teman blogger wp sangat saya harapkan.
Terima kasih atas perhatian dan dukungannya.

Luthfi Assadad

Protected: Pertemuan Aktivis Linux 20070203

Saturday, February 3rd, 2007

This post is password protected. To view it please enter your password below: Coupon

Saturday, February 3rd, 2007

If you’re looking for’s coupon, here’s the latest one: FEBLOVE MARCHMADNESS

It’s US$ 0.93 discount for each of your purchase. Doesn’t work for renewal though.

Know other coupons ? Share it here !