Monday, January 27, 2003

ePLDT ContentDev wins in Sony Ericsson Code-to-Cash competition

ePLDT ContentDev was declared one of the top three winners worldwide of the recent Sony Ericsson Code-to-Cash competition. The contest involved creating the leanest, coolest and most practical application for the new Sony Ericsson P800 Smartphone.

ePLDT's ContentDev's entry was an original interactive fiction game titled "Aramith's Quest: The Summoning." As Aramith, Captain of the Guards of Algeron, the land of the Humans, the player's quest is to solve the murder of the King. "Aramith's Quest" features hand-rendered art, compelling text and dialogue, and multiple puzzles.

"It brings back memories from the good old Infocom [a 1980s US-based gaming studio that specialized in interactive fiction] adventures with a solid storyline and great characters, but also manages to enhance the game experience and add nice-looking graphics," the Sony Ericsson P800 Application Proclamation web site said.

As winner, ePLDT ContentDev will receive a professional development workstation from IBM valued at US$3,000.00. The team will also get US$2000 of development tools and hardware. The application, along with the two other winning entries from Germany and Russia will be featured on Handango, the world's leading publisher of mobile software. Following final quality tests, "Aramith's Quest" will also be in the P800 Application CD included with all commercial P800 phones.

The "Aramith's Quest" team is composed of Elmer Andes, Rick Emerson Ong, Anton Gustilo, Debbie Uy and Leomar Valiao.

"Considering this is our first foray into wireless gaming development, we are quite pleased as this immediately creates global opportunities for the group." Buddy del Rosario, ePLDT ContentDev head said.

One of ePLDT ContentDev group's previously honored projects is the PLDT web site, which AsiaMoney magazine named best corporate web site in 2002. The group specializes in web and wireless applications design and development, among others.

For the Code-to-Cash contest, a panel of product development, engineering, marketing and applications specialists from Sony Ericsson judged all entries on the criteria of innovativeness, practicality, usability and coolness.

The winners were announced on Jan. 10, 2003.

Sunday, January 26, 2003

Earlier, I wrote about UP President Nemenzo's letter to UP. This time, I am quoting an article from an international news site,, featuring the same article and more.

University of Philippines President Boosts Linux
Wednesday January 22, 2003 - [ 08:39 AM GMT ]
Topic - GNU/Linux

- By Robin 'Roblimo' Miller -
In a letter to University of the Philippines (UP) faculty and students posted on the UP Forum Online Web site last December, the university's president, Dr. Francisco Nemenzo, called for an institution-wide move from Windows to Linux. The final paragraph of his letter said, "Let us all join the Linux revolutionary movement. Good-bye, Bill Gates."

President Nemenzo's reasons for advocating the switch are simple: a major budget crunch has collided with high licensing costs for legal copies of Microsoft and other proprietary software, plus a constant call for expensive upgrades. In addition, there is a strong risk of substantial fines if members of the UP community are caught using unlicensed copies of proprietary software.

An article published in the Jan 16, 2003 edition of the weekly Phillipine Collegian student newspaper (not available online) says, "all the College of Engineering laboratories and the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy computer lab have converted to Linux," and mentions other departments that are also in the process of converting entirely to Linux.

The article didn't focus only on Linux's financial benefits to a cash-strapped university, but also quotes Professor Rommel Feria, director of the UP Computer Center, as saying, "Linux has the look and feel of Windows, but with a bonus: Linux is more reliable and stable than the latter."

In the article, standard complaints about Linux were mentioned. Author K. Luiz Alave wrote, "Critics of Linux... maintain that the system is too complex, too geeky for the average user who does not have the time and resources to customize their programs. But Linux advocates have a rebuttal: that's what they used to say about the internet and look what happened now."

The bottom line, though, is that UP simply can't afford 12 million Phillipines Pesos (about $223,300 US) to upgrade from MS Office 97 to Office 2000, and cannot afford to spend 8,000 Phillines Pesos (about $149) per computer to upgrade to the latest version of Windows.

These upgrade cost figures are from President Nemenzo's December letter to students and faculty, which we have not reproduced in full here because, in an email sent January 20, 2003, he told us he'd rather we didn't post the full text of his UP Forum Online letter on NewsForge.

"Although I am a strong supporter of Linux," he wrote, "I do not think it is wise for me to drag UP into the war with Microsoft. Persuading the UP community to shift is the most I can do, but I presume that is already big enough."

Thank you, Raffy Simbol, for the story tip!

Saturday, January 25, 2003

FREE DigitalFilipino Event on February 15, 2003

This coming February 15, will be giving a FREE presentation about its Philippine Outsourcing Industry Report and Philippine IT Manpower Report.

This will be at the Seminar Room A of World Trade Center Gil Puyat Ave. corner Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City during the E-Services Exposition ( 10 to 11 am only.

The presentation will start and finish on time. Should you be interested to attend, please email your confirmation privately to with the following information.

Your Name:
Company Name:
Phone No.:
Fax No.:
Website URL:
Email address:

Thank you.

Friday, January 24, 2003

Veritas Broadens Data Protection With BEWS 9.0

Veritas Software Corporation announced today the next generation of Backup Exec targeted for the growing market of small-to-medium size businesses, its flagship backup software for Windows servers that says is easier to install and 88% faster on backups and restores.

The explosion of email, dominance of Windows, workforce mobility and the growing regulatory and audit requirements are among the challenges that organizations face today. According to Darric Hor, regional business development manager (Philippines/ Thailand/ Indonesia), the Backup Exec 9.0 offers key enhancements that promises to give solutions for these challenges such as:

· The fast backup and restore of Microsoft Exchange email servers
· The integrated support of Microsoft Windows Server 2003 (.NET)
· The fast and simple installation for Windows data protection
· The “Anywhere Internet” interface, allowing administration to monitor and manage their backup from any Internet-connected computer

"Whether it's a small, growing business or one of the largest companies in the world, the Veritas track record for protecting our customer's critical information is unmatched in the industry," said Gary Bloom, president, chairman, and chief executive officer, Veritas Software. "Today's introduction of Backup Exec 9.0 demonstrates that we are not resting our laurels, but advancing data protection technology in ways that matter most to our customers - providing faster, simpler, and more cost-effective backup and recovery."

The base price for the software is $795, which will cover a single backup server. Veritas claims to own 56% of the Windows backup marketplace, and three-quarters of that figure is made up by Backup Exec.

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

IBM Philippines Brings in the Ur-Guru, Tom Peters

Get better business even during tougher times.
This is the promise of America’s leading management guru Tom Peters to over 500 top-level executives and businessmen all over Asia who are expected to gather together at the Shangri-La Plaza Manila in Makati City on February 11, 2003 for the management event of the decade: Tom Peters Live in Manila, presented by IBM Philippines.

The seminar will take one whole day, starting at 8:50 am and closing at 5:00 pm, and will consist of eight sessions with coffee breaks, lunch and insightful Q&As.

Participants are expected to hear and learn no less than the unconventional views Peters has been known for, as well as inspiring insights on the concerns of today’s executives: Lessons on Leadership, Boss-free Implementation, Brand Power, Design Mindedness, Women and the Web. Peters will also give a report on the “three generations” of In Search of Excellence, the ensational business book he co-authored with Bob Waterman, which revolutionized business practices in America. In Search of Excellence was ranked as the “greatest business book of all time” in a 1992 poll by Britain’s Bloomburry Publishing.

Managers in the U.S. and Singapore are willing to pay as much as US$1,500 per seat to attend Tom Peters’ Seminar, but IBM Philippines is offering Filipino executives the rare privilege of earing Tom Peters speak for reduced Early Bird fees: P 8,977 (US$168) for half a day; P12, 977 (US$ 240) for the whole day; and P27, 977 (US$520) for the whole day inclusive of a CEO Roundtable Luncheon with the eminent speaker.

Salt and Light Ventures, Inc. is the official organizer of Tom Peters Live In Manila, with DHL Philippines, The Philippine Daily Inquirer and BCD Pinpoint Direct Marketing Inc. as the official sponsors.

To reserve seats or for more information, please call the Secretariat at (02) 896-1336 or (02) 890 5012.

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

UP President's Letter

UP President Nemenzo recently issued a letter appealing to the UP community to use Linux and StarOffice 6.0 or 1.0.1 in lieu of using Microsoft products.

I am from UP so I cannot comment on this. Perhaps you can.

Thursday, January 09, 2003


IBM Philippines and its education technology services partner, EduQuest, Incorporated have teamed up with the Philippine Normal University in the upcoming formal launch of the PNU's Masteral Degree Program in Education Technology, side by side with a celebration of the leadership role of Makati City in the field of education technology and teacher professional development.

The Philippine Normal University (PNU), country’s premier state university in teacher education, is set to launch a new graduate program designed to develop “teachers and educational managers in tune with the needs of the 21st century.”

PNU President, Dr. Nilo. L. Rosas, said the course, a Master’s Degree in Educational Technology (MET), has been designed “in line with PNU’s strategic plan to meet the increased demand for educators trained in instructional methodologies and classroom management practices relevant to the learning needs of today’s knowledge-based society.”

Rosas said the PNU’s College of Graduate Studies and Center for Educational Technology and Distance Education “held extensive consultations in developing the graduate course in collaboration with EduQuest Incorporated, IBMPhilippines’ partner in education technology services.”

PNU and EduQuest are set to sign a Memorandum of Agreement for the implementation of the course this coming Thursday, January 16, during a special program dubbed “Collaboration in Education Technology for World- Class Teacher Education” to be held at the Makati City Hall.

Side by side with the launching of the new master’s program for teachers, the event will also be highlighted by a “Celebration of Makati City Leadership in Educational Technology”--- a tribute from PNU and IBM Philippines to the teachers, administrators and students of Makati City’s public elementary and high schools.”

“We feel the launching of PNU’s MET is also the right occasion to give recognition to the leadership position and the successes of Makati’s public schools in adopting educational innovations through the use of technology,” Rosas said.

Makati Mayor Jejomar C. Binay and IBM Philippines General Manager Joaquin M. Quintos IV will deliver keynote messages during the gathering, which will also be attended by the PNU and Makati City academic communities, and school administrators and teachers of various Metro Manila public and private schools.