Month -3-03, Oct

The serenity of Ramadan 1427 transgressed into three-fourth of Oct. Campus activities were at low level in the form of much-less-crowded lectures and hons students show of their projects presentations - prior to their final first sem exams in Nov. Everything sprang into life again when Shawal 1427 arrived, Oct 24 Tue, but then into the vacation mode for the rest of the Oct end - both the schools and the universities.

The Faces of Ramadan

On every eve of Ramadan meat is sold on the road side (similar scene on the eve of Shawal). The picture of "bubur lambuk" in Kg Baru Mosque is invoked. This year, traffic congestion in Sg Merab is phenomenal at about the MPI junction, and is getting into the talk-of-the-time. The drivers are getting more and more 3F (fierce, ferrocious and furious) everyday.

Ramadan markets were put up every where. It operated from ca. 4 pm to the sun-set (iftar time). All sorts of foods were available. All sort of people converged; driven by the empty stomach, they spent on food more than they did during non-Ramadan time. No one left out in maximising the effort to extract the maximum possible amount while the mood is in the mode.

Sleepy children are always highlighted during Ramadan. But the vcd sellers never miss this opportunity - the kind that "whose god is one and only the money". All kinds of drinks were imbibing and dinner choices;

The most intrinsic is the availability of dates which is more and more sophisticated, albeit all of them are advertised as from Iran or Tunisia. More fresh, almost freshly picked from the trees.

Ramadan means different things to different people. All are blessed with what they want, even with some they don't need.

Computer Access Centre - The New Name for the Smart Lab, Cyber Cafe, IT Lab, ICT Lab, Etc, Etc, Etc.

The current Bestari Lab, or Computer Club Lab are allegedly inadequate to support the super-modernised education in the schools, both primary and secondary. The pupil need to do assignments, and needed internet info to accomplish it. Additional Computer-filled Labs are needed. Upgrading the existing labs are insufficient. It didn't say about setting up of the network, and maintaining the network which is more perpetual than supplying the units. The word 'cafe' sound more suitably private. Thus, on the right hand side of the equation is the pupils pay to access the information to get the assignment done to get the school grade. What kind of assignments are they? Nevermind that. Let the teachers worry about the assignment. There are thousands of them to mind it.

But retrospecting the figure is more 'amusing'; the 10,000 schools is only a vehicle. Ten multiply by 10,000 equals 100,000. One unit by LO (pay earliest six months after delivery) is normally 5k including a very small h for the bulk-purchased OS, plus 5h more for optional 5 years limited warranty (otherwise, one year limited warranty) - the similar kind that were 'authorised' even for the universities use. Emm, 550M. The warranty alone is 50M. Currently, a standard unit for cafe use could be acquired at much below 2k, plus a couple of hundreds (or much less for bulk licences) for the genuine OS - but maintenance is quite a bite if they're needed to be running like electricity.

There is thus a plenty for a merrier life for the next five years.

Still Warm After A Quarter Century - And the Warmest Regards

Date: 03/10/06 19:50

It's a pity that I was not able to meet Ruby. She attached a virtual life story (why in English and not Bahasa Malay?), which I have started to read, especially years 1980-1983. It's all truly amazing how you must have made a note of every single name, address, conversation etc as well as retaining photographs. I wouldn't like to try to keep any secrets from you: you also seem to have read my inner thoughts (correctly) on several occasions. The whole thing is a masterpiece and makes truly fascinating reading. Ruby mentioned something about your future retirement. Is this soon and is it compulsory? I imagine that you will wish to retain your university office facilities and carry on in some capacity even it is unpaid. Here, I passed retirement age, but carry on as a research professor, with the help of postdoc(s). However the Vice Chancellor (VC) decided 4 years ago that Dept. of Chemistry must close as must also Chem. Eng., Mechanical eng., civil eng and physics (physics has had reprieve). Actually about 29 UK depts of chemistry have been closed including also Exeter, Swansea, Lancaster, Manchester Metropolitan (new name for MC Polytechnic), Kings College London, Queen Mary College London etc. Here the Cockcroft Building has been altered at enormous expense (2.5 milllion pounds) so as to destroy labs and fume cupboards and to construct palatial corridors, offices (with rubber plants) and labs for some biochem. & biophys. chem previously housed in Peel Building, as well as suites for School' and 'Faculty' administrators. I actually have a better office in Cockcroft now than the one, which you remember. I really cannot supervise any experimental work and in any case would not want the headache of supervising PhD students of dubious scientific and linguistic ability. Times were different in the 70s and 80s. I really don't know if and when we'll be returning to your delightful country. Shirley is keen; in fact she says that we don't take enough holidays' She is right. I'm trying to write a few papers, but I'm not PC-literate enough to do the graphs, Greek symbols etc. My Chinese (also part-time) post doc is. Some time, maybe within a few months ago I think I'll look into the possibility of a short Note by you and me on part of your thesis, namely the change in volumetric swelling with reciprocal temperature.

That's all for the moment.

Warmest regards to all the family

Best wishes


Liverpool, UK, 1981 Oct 30 Fri.


I was in deep thinking of writing to you when your mail arrived. I was in it since Ruby was visiting Manchester last May or so. I was hoping she managed to catch you in the Cockroft. She wrote to me again that she was going to Liverpool during about this time (for which I forwarded your home address); only then I thought I would be writing to you to express my million thankyou for seeing my daughter. That was the plan (supposedly contains some element of surprise). Things did not happen as planned. It seems that she is coming home these few days to catch to celebrate the Eid on Oct 24 at home. She has some years more in Nottingham. I believe she will eventually visit you. We are sincerely very sad to hear about Shirley. Please convey our well-wish for her. Ruby told me about it in May that you told her over the phone. We all remember her very well, especially Azizah (my wife) and Malini (#2daughter who went to see you in the Cockroft while she was in Cambridge sometimes after the year 2000). They remembered (perhaps permanently) vividly your visit to our place in Dec 1993; something they incomprehend to explain how and why it happened. Especially the daughters knowing that when they were small, they 've been at your place, eating from your plates, eight thousand miles away. And when they have grown up, they are both, in a brief moment, in England again.

About my pages in the web? Yes, the story was more or less like how we end up writing the paper in 1982 about the permeability units (pubd. in Angew Makromol Chem 1983). It started with a collection of the units for simple consumption, but then seeing something 'shadowy', we tried to trace it to make it to appear real. I built up the pages likewise slowly, from the beginning of the early-html period. ICT nerds can tell it by seeing that some of the pages are written with the old fashion style as early as the late 1980's. In early 1990s the university encouraged lecturers to put up their cv in the server for easy access. I did that. And the Chem Dept asked me to tutor others to do it. They did not respond well. It happened that the Deputy Director of Computer Centre was a friend of mine (Dr Harun, husband of Dr Maimunah) and he told me that out of the space reserved for the lecturers only about 5 % was taken up - and he let me use the unused space as I wish. For some times, like Dr Harun, in post 1990s, I was made to spend much of my time with computer things, not only in the Chem, but larger into the Faculty. Including the updating for the students in the faculty - meaning teaching IT to science students (at one time ca. 650 in my class). I practiced it while teaching. The results is the pages. Doing it with the regalia of well-trained researcher. And I remembered the first thing I wanted to write was about going to England in 1976 and again 1979 because the experience was an off-set.

About my retirement, yes, next year 2007 April 20 when I complete 56. In here lecturers are grouped as Gov servant. They retire at 56. Some lecturers however are 'invited' to continue after that on contract basis. In this regard there so many ways of arrangements, almost all the imaginables; from as simple as continuing the status quo, to as 'complex' as month-to-month basis contract; and accordingly the pay. But there is no such thing as retaining the facility after retirement. Once retired, the university will erase your name and transfer the welfare to the gov pension scheme like ordinary gov workers as alike as the office boy. This is the unconfused difference between the academician in a developed country and the academician in a developing country. Whatever the arrangement is after 56, every body has to stop at 65. Dr Maimunah also retires next year, earlier than me, perhaps March; Dr Harun has retired, since last year 2005. I am really pleased for having this opportunity to have such a close 'discourse' with you again.
Thank you and our warmest regards.

Poplar Court, Salford, UK, 1983 February 7 Mon, a farewell on the eve of PhD viva.

Bangi, Malaysia, 1993, Dec 24 Fri.

Oct 5 Thu - An 'Orphan' Faculty - The 'Elderly' Larger than Life FST

A gathering of 'Titans' of FST, the magnitute of intelectual equivalence that could land a man on the Moon. Bckgrd L-R: Physicist, Food Scientist, Chemist. Foregrd L-R: Microbiologist, Physicist, Physicist, MaterialScientist, MeatTechnologist, Geologist, Chemist, Microbiologist;

The 'contenders' - in alphabet; fifteen altogether, including the tripod: #3#6#7 - #1EngineeringGeophysics, #2Metallurgy, #3FoodSensoryEvaluation, #4MedicalStatistics, #5Petrology, #6MaterialPhysics, #7CoordinationChemistry, #8NaturlProductChemistry, #9EnergeticPhysics, #10AnalyticalChemistry, #11MolecularBiology, #12CondensedMatterPhysics, #13BiochemicalToxicology, #14MedicalRadiationPhysics, #15IndustrialBiotechnology. Some were asked to contend, some obviously asked to be asked to contend. Some jokers of course asked their fellow jokers to contend, and the jokers were deliriously happy. Inevitably, some of those asked to contend would ask to be unasked. Some were irrelevent because of obsoleteness - reason d'etre for the whole phenomenon. Some were just about so. A few are genuinely worth spiritual support. Only a few would actually reach the measurement; and only a few previleged enough would know about this. My intuition is that, whoever he/she is, even the one not in this flock, FST will be defenseless against the devouring of natural entropy.

The first ever Science Faculty meeting - since 1970 - without the Dean; #44 of FST. The acting dean conducted. Incidently all matters were the kind that did not need a debate - only members endorsement that could be acquired by defaulting a statement, like that the deanery used to do to pass the past minutes. In reality it wasn't that critical for the new appointment; to most of them it don't matter because it had not been a matter before without it. Only the new #10 felt that The Science was so crystallative that it needed a multiple careful decision in order to avoid the very first mis-step. UKM once used to be a VC-less for a year 1974-75. One faculty was dean-less for a couple of years in early 1980's. In both cases life went on hitch-less; as would should FST is destined to be dean-less even for the rest of 2006.

A piece of print the next day that made the 'Titans' deliriously out dancing on the street, thinking that it was their sole contributions. They instead proved themselves to be media-illiterate. Notice that this particular media did not even bother to use the picture of the main campus in Bangi, it used conveniently instead the nearby KL campus.

The former #9 flashed a big smile and implicitly expressed a million thanks. But he has to be in truth to who did it which indirectly explained why and how others did not.
I simply do not believe the face value of it, religiously. It simply could not be. Be fair to yourself, do not let your intelligent get corrupted by the lack of literature - you may still remember how your writing was rejected simply because of insufficient info that indicated a belief that your reading background is very poor. As though we have not seen and have not been to the World Universities before, i.e. not only in Britain (New Zealand and Australia included); many of us have been in Japan, Germany, France, Russia, China, Taiwan. Firstly it was THES; then it is BTHEG. Both are on the opposite "coast" of the northern Atlantic. How many universities are there on this planet? There are hundreds in Europe. Another hundreds in North America. Many more hundreds in other parts of the continents. But perhaps there are left only one hundred universities which "speak english" in the non-British oriental land - non left in Europe itself other than in Britain. And these one hundreds are sieved according the Guide. Ironically, there is no mention in this abstract of the universities in India and Pakistan sub-continent. How about in Canada, South America, and non-english Europe. This isthus the "Oriental Ecstacy". Somebody is making us 'high' with the ecstacy, unrealised that we are led to being fooled by ourself. Watching the 'aborigines' dancing to the tune of their own drum bits have been traditionally an ecstacy. For those who used to the "Britishness", this is not a big deal. One may have come across things like "Champion of the Home International", which mean only four teams competing. Some "World Championships" in certain competitions were actually fought between not more than four or five teams - those days South Africa included, and before that, Rhodesia.
In the ironic atmosphere; may be 'pekebunilmu' is right. There are signs of sliding to even worse than secondary - primary school culture;
In the schools at least the pupils had attended the tuition classes; the teachers had organised the xtra classes; there are PIBG who concernced very much about the academic welfare of their members kiddies; - none of these are done at the U before they set foot for the exam.

Oct 09 Mon - The Nuke of the Orient

North Korea put up the Nuke of the Orient. This is a major milestone in the GWB's Long War (refurbished from the "war on terror"). There would likely be a phenomenon within these two years involving the US and the oil nations, the object the US is after all these while. The US will expedite it during these remaining Bush years. North Korea has no oil and had not manaced anybody; it armed itself with a nuke only to prevent US capitalism further invasion at about the Korean War ca. 1950; something the South Korea and Japan had failed miserably. Without a nuke, the oil will flow freely unipolarly from the oil nations. Except Russia, no other oil nations owns a nuke. Everybody then became clearer about the meaning of the GWB's word "terrorist" - i.e. the nuke-less oil nations. North Korea is one of the three GWB's 'evil axis'; the other two are Iraq and Iran, two in the M.E. and one in the Orient - akin to WW2 axis of Germany-Italy-Japan: two in Europe and one in the Orient. In WW2, when the one in the Orient was nuked, the other two flattened and the axis ceased to 'exist'.

Oct 09 Mon - Ifah Returned Home for the Eid 1427

Ifah returned home for the Eid break - accompanying her Umi. She's been to England since Feb 19 Sun, aged nineteen months, to be with her Umi. Eight months more cleverer and more grown-up; spoke more distinctively; she picked up a lot of experience in the UK; forgotten sometimes to recall what she left behind although she instantly remembered PakSu Asri and a few minutes later MokTok. Ridhwan noticed and assured himself that Ifah is not new in the house; and they 'settled down' instantly. It was eight months ago the last time I was in KLIA. I did not see much difference on the Level 4 - or rather I saw the same chorus: travel agent reps with the name placard waiting for the arriving clients, hotels were given almost permanent sites to erect their banner at the 'outlet', and non-Limo runners 'whispering' to any possible potential passengers, even myself, after studying that I was waiting for someone and might need a taxi for the ride away from the airport. But I noticed on the score board that at that mid-day hour, planes landed almost every five minutes, from near and distant places.

A Promise of "Prophecies"

Two "prophecies": The latter surely will be fulfilled; this is the second warm up; the first warm up was in Jun. There are too many "unprophecies" that make the former will surely be unfulfilled. Firstly, there have been too many places, in fact almost all places, which started like this but slowly changing to like that, especially when the RM gets into the equation. Secondly, it does not say what part of the equation, the left side or the right side, which would be so. In fact during the saying, one side is already not so. Presently it is an exception. Then it will become the rule of exception. Finally, the exception will be ruled. This is the mechanics that 'deprophecised' all other places. Thirdly, it go against the nature of trading. For thousands of years man do the trading - and very well verse with the kind of booming trading; and this 'prophecies' will just simply un-boom a trading. The rest will be consequential, does not need a prophecy.

A Next Step Closer

The copy of which I recieved today, Oct 12 Thu. Note the possibilities. The level of professional of the person undertaking the matter with such silly error. The level in clinical equivalent of a patient going for an ear illness but getting the eye medicine - and suffer for the rest of life, and the most he/she would get is "I'm sorry". Those days this kind of thing does not occur, or improbable to occur. These days this is what occurs. The thing is, everybody does not mind when this occurs. Imagine the equivalence in general practising. Or simply a common sense for a going person to accept his/her unusefullness, compared to the incoming staff who has all the possible potentials.

2006 Oct 14 Sat - The Return of Sugar

2006 Oct 14 Sat. Sugar eventually returned on the open shelves in the S-mart visited. Price the same 1.45/kg. Not limited to 2 kg per patron. On time for the Deepavali Oct 21 Sat and Eid 24 Tue. Chinese new year was lucky, as it was not around this time.

The battle was won. But not necessarily the war. The truce was perhaps for the Deepavali and Eid. And perhaps to be extended to the CNY in two months time. Wait for the vicinity of CNY. A new battle flares up. One side does not win all the battles in one war. The winner in one battle normally lose in the next.

Thirty Years Ago, 1976 Oct 21 /1396H Shawal 28 Thu - Today 2006 Oct 21 /1427H Ramadan 28 Sat

..."I reported for duty in Chemistry Department, Second Campus in Section 17, the following day Oct 13 Wed. After a short 'nice to have you back again' to the dept staffs: Nyonya, Maimunah, Salamah, and a long chat via phone to Salmah in the Dean's office in Pantai Campus, we droved off for a two-weeks break in Terengganu. During this period I could not conceal the fact that on Oct 21 Thu 9.30 pm (1396H Shawal 28), I was solemnized in a simple marriage ceremony to a girl who had about a year finished her STP, staying not far from my home, named Azizah who my mother had courted since May 1975 for me which I did not tell its development.

On November 14, I took her to Kuala Lumpur (in a chartered Pak Ya's taxi accompanied by my mother, my youngest brother Jo, Zizah's mother and her two youngest daughter, Murni and Lela); we stayed in a rented house No 7 Jln SS22/15 Damansara Utama (known as Mewah; SS20 as Alpha, and SS21 as Beta), not far from my office in Chemistry Department, at Section 17 PJ, the second campus of UKM. My younger brother Num, who was a technician in Telekom, moved in to stay with us on Nov 10 Wed. I went to work by bus, sometimes lifts by friends; not rarely by taxi when the Sri Jaya bus did not turn up; we moved around at the moment on public transport; and many times on Num's bike." ...

Exactly 30 Gregorian years, 31 less one months on the Lunar. Three things that occured in Oct were put together on this symbol which I had no choice but to 'participate'. The other two were Rubi's Oct 14 Sat b.d., and Eid 1427's Oct 24 Tue. It was all on Malini. Time is just a relative phenomenon, as Einstein had said. Any past day was just like yesterday. Tomorrow is just an elongated today. Today and tomorrow is separated by the night sleep, without which tomorrow is just the ongoing today. Time runs at different speed for different people, just like the sun 'rise' and 'set' at different speed for different hemisphere. Time is percieved to be leaving us while we were passing through it, like the sun is percieved to be rising while the earth is rotating on its axis and revolving around the sun. Thirty years is numerically very short but mechanically very long.

2006 Oct 24 Tue - Eid 1427

It was nasty hazy, smoggy, foggy, misty, itchy, coughy, throughout Ramadan, no one day was missed up to the Shawal. First Shawal 'the sky' was just opened for us to go to the prayer. Second Shawal, the sunshine was rather visible. Stormy and heavy rain in the evening 'opened up' more the sky. Third Shawal, the sky was clear. For the first time for the last forty days we could see the blue background sky and the white foreground clouds. Heavier rain for clearer sky the following days.

The festive mood prevailed, as always, mostly in the schools and U. It started on Oct 18 Wed after school for the SBP to let loose their 'inmates' (and we picked up Alya in Seseri, who 'freed' us for the weekend 14-15; and thus rarely had the feeling of the long weekend). The other schools were a day later, Thu. I guessed the U too. Preceeding was Oct 21 Sat, Deepavali. So it was "Deepa_Raya" for some, in fact many have self-opted since Oct 20 Fri. "Kongsi_Raya" is out of the orbit after the calender realignment last year. Oct 23 Mon was the 'State's welfare' day. Oct 26 Thu supposedly back to normal, but many obviously prolonged it to the weekend, to Oct 30 Mon, and ostensibly in the tsunamic inflow of traffic into KL during the weekend Oct 28-29.

We spent the Eid in Sg Merab, all of us, except Edi who was in UK. This is the fourth time we spent the Eid in our home in Sg Merab since becoming the citizen in 1987 Sep 27 Sun. The first time was in 1989/1409H, May 6 Sat when #5daughter Alyani was 8-days old; the second was in 1992/1412H, April 5 Sun when #6son Syarbini was 37-days old; and the third in 2000/1421H Dec 27 Wed when #8son Asrizalni was 34-days old; and once in BBBangi in 1983/1403H, July 12 Tue when #3son Zidni was 4-days old - our default Eid celebration was always in Terengganu. We thus missed the "fun" of being in the traffic tsunami in both ways. But what was much more missed was the celebration in Trg itself; there is no merrier gathering than among those we knew or we had known, and that we are known to; many of them for sometimes already.

Unlike the previous four times, this one was due to Alya's small time buffer for her SPM after the Eid; due from mid Nov. There was none unexpected when in the Eid in Sg Merab or Bangi. A small difference was that the contact to the outside was via SMS instead of the traditional cards.

The first sign was the road desertion. Every body tried their best at the eleventh hour; The unmissed meat stall, even the banana leaves, the young coconut leaves, and the ubiquitous boiled (faking smoked) lemang. Even things in the s-marts. All efforts were put up.

Before, during and after. To the end of Oct and Eid break, we had only one visitor: Dr A Wahab Ismail, former UKM Eng staff in mid-80's turned industrialist, Oct 28 Sat to deliver his triple wedding card for Nov 18 Sat. We made only one visit: to Omar in Keramat, Oct 29 Sun.
We went for the Eid prayer in UKM's mosque. Since becoming the Sg Merab citizen, I rarely went to this mosque for the Friday prayer, especially since #6#7sons Syarbini and Ashbihani reached the Friday prayer age. This occasion thus was merely a 'revisit', bypassing the MPI mosque where we normally go for our prayer. The only 'fellows' were Dr S. Othman (ex-UKM SSK), Dr Kamaruzzaman (Math), Utz Ismail Sham, and Utz Idris (Trg) FPI. The rest were 'foreigners' from BBBangi; neither one of us know each other. We went to pray, we performed the prayer, and we went home... From here et seq, is for local consumption ...

Sahlah UKM bukan lagi sebuah U yang berteraskan Keislaman dan Kebumiputraan sebagaimana yang ditegakkan bersama dengan PMUKM pada tahun 1970-an. Jelas sekali konon untuk tidak ketinggalan zaman, atau untuk bersesuaian dengan masa, makanya dua sauh itu dikarai. Khutbah kedua disampaikan dalam b inggeris adalah dalam kuota konon itu. Ia sekadar terjemahan kasar khutbah melayu dengan tutur bacaan lidah asing inggeris sama sekali. Malah entah khatib, yang berkelulusan london, faham atau tidak apa yang dibacanya. Ia tidak menjadi terpandang hebat oleh orang yang dipandang 'antarabangsa' yang kepada merekalah konon bacaan itu hendak diberi faham. Mereka jelas lebih faham logistik perang begini. Ia jelas tidak menjadi dan lebih jelas lagi, kesilapan. Ia tidak memanjatkan UKM, malah menjadi "free wheeling" menuruni lembah. Ia tidak memenuhi apa2 fungsi dan tidak memuaskan sesiapa selain memberi rasa swa-khayalan khatib konon ia terkehadapan. Cerita churchill di parlimen british dibangkitkan, tetapi dengan berkhutbah di khalayak tidak majoriti faham di tanah lapan ribu batu jauhnya dari Britain, bererti churchill telah berjaya langkah pertama: memisahkan jiwa daripada bangsa. Dan ia dipisahkan oleh orang yang berapi2 mengingat2kan akan serangan tersebut. Ini suatu kekalahan psikologi. Dalam keadaan b inggeris bertubi2 memecah-belahkan islam, apalah kuasa penyatuan yang ada pada bahasa tersebut untuk menyatukannya semula. Ia semata-mata untuk menunjuk2 sahaja. Ibarat hendak menjahit luka dengan menggunakan mata pisau yang memotong. Tak kena tempat. Pak Kadok yang menang sabung dengan kampung tergadai. Gagasan pengantarabangsaan telah terkeliru sama sekali, seperti orang terkeliru antara industri berat dengan teknologi tinggi. Semacam ada orang yang mengada2. Hidung tak mancong pipi tersorong2. UKM belum cukup bertamadun untuk menangani pertembungan pengantarabangsaan. Terdapat pertembungan budaya dalaman dalam UKM sendiri.

The Reselient Presario

The inherited ailed Compaq Presario 1700T mulfunctioned on Oct 22, very close to Eid 1427. It began with a non-responding explorer when a Toshiba removable mass storage was usb-ed. After several attempts of restart, it responded with the msg "disk error", "press any key to restart", and it looped endlessly. All efforts were then focused on rescuing the data on the D part of the 2.5" 20G Toshiba HDD2154. Oct 23 Mon the Eid eve through the night, the HDD was usb-ed to a Presario M2000. The objective achieved, and even were burned on two DVD. The HDD2154 in the 1700T was then opened for experimentation.

The Presario was under my 'guardianship' since May 2005, after four years in service since Aug 2001 in the USA. A PIII, 755 MHZ, 20G HDD, DVD/CD-R, 128M RAM. Its two internets ports were already 'patched' with an external PCI iPAQ. A D-Link wireless was fixed to get into the net through Mac airPort base station controlled by a PowerBook. For the rest of 2005, the machine assisted greatly my lectures STPD1113 and STKK1113, and on through the second semester 2005/06.

Once a while in the course the monitor went blank; at home it was supported with an external CRT monitor. A few times, it was in the middle of the lecture; I had to realigned the position so that I could see the display from the overhead LCD the one the students were seeing. Somehow, the blanking of the monitor was self-rectified. It stopped blanking, it didn't even blink. Then rather recently a knocking noise was heard on closing the book. It didn't affect the performance, but the knocking noise kept on annoying. Eventually the source of the sound was revealed: it was the crack on the south-west of the monitor frame. It took me many months to find out that there was a concealed screw that the frame fixed the monitor; and the screw had gone loose. It was too late when I discovered it; the crack had detoriated into a break. I tried to glue it. It was fixed after glued, but broke again on the first opening of the book. It left with one and only alternative: a spring clip. And the life continue in limping.

Then came the fateful day of the mulfunction. With the data secured on DVD, the HDD2154 was to be reinstalled with a fresh Windows from a bootable CD. The Windows was started up, but hanged, never achieved even a single percent of formatting. Letting the formatting to prolong caused a heat built up, so intense that it triggered self-shut down. The sympton persisted; never failed - all day on the last day of Ramadan. The heat built up was solved by carrying out the installation in a food freezer. It worked. It stopped self-shut down; but the formating never moved beyond zero percent, even after it was chilled and full of condensation on the monitor. The risk of condensation inside was not to be compromised. So, further attempt of installation in the freezer was aborted. Iftar time arrived.

The next attempt took all night of the eve of Shawal. It was usb-ed on another Presario: the M2000 run by XP. Several attempts of reformatting were made. Both C and D failed to get responded, even with a quick format. All indications were that it was the HDD which, if so, was a good news because it meant that the Presario could be made alive again. It was the verdict taken at about mid-night. Then we all went to bed for the Eid in the morning. Then public holidays. The next day, Shawal 2 Wed, was a kind of D-day. Impatience visit to Low Yat Plaza ended with a Hitachi 2.5" HDD 40GB 5400 8MB IDE 175RM taking the place of HDD2154. At home on the same night the Presario was not wasting no time: in one hour, WinNT pulled alive the Presario to its s.q. limping state. It took two days more to slowly reinstall all other programs as needed while resuming my 'daily chorus'. It could not be reinstalled continuously, especially the big programmes, under charger power; the heat built up was fast that it triggered auto-shut off before the installation was completed. Installation was carried out per programme on battery power; then recessed to get the battery recharged, to avoid triggering of the low-battery-auto-shut-down.

The Presario 1700T was indeed very resilient, unfortunately not the HDD2154. Albeit, the heat built-up continued with the inefficient dissipation; and the heat building up was especially efficient when the machine was running under a power supplied through the charger. When it was running on the battery, the heat built up was less intense, but risked the self-shut down when the battery was low. It was 'conferred' that, the processor and the heat sink surely needed some physical attention. At least the liquid heat conductor must be replaced. It could have hardened into a rock solid. I hope I could get it done by some one reasonable, who would be kind enough to the ailing and limping Presario 1700T. With that revival, the chorus returned to normal, sans internet due to Mac's wireless port blown (for the second time since installation 2005 Jul) by a billion V thunderbolt, Oct 27 Fri; and this chapter managed to reach its close on time.

The Oct end diffused into the end of Eid break, during which KL was relatively dead as well as other new dwelling towns even like Bangi. The schools reopened on the very last Oct day, Oct 30 Mon - we sent Alya back to the hostel in SESERI in the afternoon the day before, for her last leg, including the SPM; very soon to end the 2006 session in about second half of Nov. But the U continued its quietness, in bracing for the final exam for the first semester 2006 from Nov 6 Mon. The haze apparently disappeared together with Oct, during the last few days of which the blue sky was visible for the first half of the day. It was followed by a torrance of natural thunderous stormy rain. Ramadan-Oct was indeed the cleansing month.

Chapter dated Oct 31 Tue, 2006