Friday, February 15, 2013

ELEKSYON 2013: Pinoy artists take election advocacy online

OPM artists, as well as the media, have began using their influence to campaign for an informed election and to call for change in the mindset of some by choosing to vote wisely.

Here are some of the influential videos currently circulating the web and gathering positive remarks.

Video Courtesy: Youtube channel gmanews

Video Courtesy: Youtube channel KAMIKAZEEonTV

Thursday, February 14, 2013

SPOTTED: The Cutest Valentines Surprise

Who's got no date this Valentines? Couldn't this little one make every single woman or girl (and even taken) happy? Watch the video of the cutest Valentine's surprise I've seen online!

Video Courtesy: Youtube user GRNMNGO 

This cute little boy's name is Jacobo, and his plan is to give rose/s to anyone he'd want to give it to. He just wants to make someone happy!

Nokia Lumia 820 Price: P18,990 in Nokia stores

Nokia Lumia 820 smartphone handsets will now be out in the market through select Nokia stores nationwide. With white, red and black colors available, the Lumia 820 units will be priced an SRP of 18,990 Php.

Image Source: PhoneArena

Specifications of the much-awaited smartphone 820 are as follows:

Display size: 4.3”
OS: Windows 8
Processor: Snapdragon™ S4
 - BP-5T
 - 1650 mAh
 - Maximum 3G talk time: 8.1h
 - Maximum 3G standby time: 360h
 - Music playback time: 61h
 -SIM Card: Micro-SIM
 - Bluetooth 3.0
 - Near Field Communication
 - Wi-Fi Channel bonding
 - WLAN IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n
 - Qi Wireless charging
Memory: Built-in memory card, SkyDrive cloud Storage and expandable MicroSD
Camera: 3264 x 2448 pixels , Auto focus with two-stage capture key, 4x digital zoom, Carl Zeiss Tessar lens

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

ELEKSYON 2013: Of campaign styles and approaches

In a few months time, new leaders will be elected in highly contested seats from the municipal and city council members to the Senate and House of Representatives positions. New movers of people, new headers of change, new voices of the majority - they will be, at a defined period of time, here. And you, the public, will be asked of your support.

Amid all the campaigning, what stays in mind in some of us are not the promises (probably because "we're tired of all that..."), but the jingles (music), the campaign paraphernalia, and overall, the campaign styles and strategies that make every campaign period memorable.

Do you still remember one candidate's jingle of "Nakaligo ka na ba sa dagat ng basura?" Do you still find it funny nostalgic whenever you view videos of past senatorial candidates in their united stands and startlingly awesome mnemonics? Well, I do.

Video Courtesy: Youtube user chitetskoy, GMA 7

So starting today, I will be listing down some of the campaign movements I saw whenever I ride from place to place. May I also ask my fellow readers to share your thoughts and the campaign strategies, movements and styles that you've seen our candidates have planned well ahead of time (I hope so).

1. the EPAL (trapo) style  - Well, of course, there hasn't been any positive development yet with all the negative exposure that has been cast on these EPAL politicians who have already started subtle (though very obvious) campaigns a long, long time ago through their "Welcome to __________! Mabuhay!" tarpaulins with their names having fonts bigger than their "inspirational" message and photos largely eating up the space which should have been allotted for more substance.

2. the MMK (drama anthology) style - Some big, wise men of ours began branding themselves to the people by telling their true-to-life stories. There's nothing wrong that I see in it (as long as the story has not been exaggerated nor been faked).

3. the PAGTITIPON style - Usually done at the start of the campaign period, this campaign style has caused so much traffic especially along normally congested highways and passes. Irked and angered by such delay, public vehicle passengers try to calm themselves and sometimes rethink if they should vote for them or not.

4. the FIESTA style - I saw this while I was cruising the polluted lanes of Taft. One camp hired a rondalla band (complete with a majorette) to attract passersby and let them see that someone's sincerely running for a seat with all the sweet music it employs in the air defied by the beeping of jeepneys and buses. Well played.

5. the PA-ISSUE style - Bright and witty running mates do this to attack others while raising up their popularity status by saying that some threats of possible defamation have been discovered and that when asked of any evidences pointing to it, keeps mum . True or not, the performances of both the threatened and the threat-maker (noisy one) make this style very effective.

6. the CELEBRITY DUO style - One thing I learned about ensuring a win in politics, may it be for that reason or for not what you think it is, is to make sure you win the public's heart by falling in love with a cute, like-able personality. Hence, high-profile marriages as the election is approaching are a possibility.

7. the ROAM AROUND CONVOY style - Not the candidates themselves who travel long distances, but hired driver-supporters in various vehicle types with signages of a NUMBER and the party-lists they represent, are what describe this style which provides more time and space to influence the public and make them aware of who they are fighting for and representing.

8. the FLYING BALLOONS style - I have yet to see this one. Balloon-aided tarpaulins asking candidate support should be mainstream.

Do you know of any other campaign strategy? Comment it down below and see it posted here.

ELEKSYON 2013: Are you a registered voter? Verify it here.

Are you a registered voter in the forthcoming 2013 PH general election? Not sure if you are? Find out if you are in the voters list by visiting the Precinct Finder Form.

Upon clicking the link, you will be led to a page showing the image below:

All you need to do is key in your name and birthday details. Then, click on the Search button; a dialogue box will pop out asking you to continue. You will then be directed to another page.

What you see above are the details of your registry as a voter. Problems may arise if you have not printed your voters ID yet, so it's best that you check out the site to see if you could vote in order to avoid any hassle/inconvenience on the day of the Philippine midterm elections, dubbed as Halalan 2013.

Monday, February 11, 2013

SPOTTED: 1 in every 4 PH job vacancies unfilled

A presentation of Prof. Alving Ang, an Economics professor in University of Santo Tomas (UST), during a recently held economic and sustainability oriented forum revealed that 25% or 1 in every 4 jobs in the Philippines cannot be filled due to competency issues.

Most of these competency-related unfilled vacancies are found in Metro Manila at 80% of total vacant positions contributed by the quality of the graduates who enter the labor force.

Ang further discussed how the Philippines can sustain its phenomenal 6.6% growth in 2012 given the rising underemployment rate, which he attributed to competency issues hounding elementary and high school teachers.

The top 12 jobs that have remained unfilled in one year nationwide are:
  1. Transport and Communications Specialist
  2. Mechanical engineers
  3. Doctors
  4. Production and operation managers
  5. Accountants and auditors
  6. Human Resources managers
  7. Production supervisors
  8. Geologists
  9. Electrical engineers
  10. Electronics and Communications engineers
  11. Chemical engineers
  12. Pharmacists
The list of hard-to-fill jobs in Metro Manila is as follows:
  1. Systems Analysts
  2. Accountants
  3. Electrical engineers
  4. Civil engineers
  5. Mechanical engineers
  6. Computer programmers
  7. Human Resources managers
  8. Medical technologists
  9. Architects
  10. Industrial engineers
  11. Geologists

Advice to UK Visa Applicants: Don't submit fake documents.

The embassy of the United Kingdom (UK) in Manila has said it will not tolerate anyone who would attempt to enter the country by using illegal means. 

This is the reason why the British Embassy (Manila) warned all visa applicants against submitting fake documents. Those who will violate the rule can be banned from UK or filed with criminal charges.

Ed Mackie, the Regional Manager of UK Border Agency (UKBA), said, “The use of fraudulent or forged documents should be---there’s absolutely zero tolerance from us on this. If we find people submitting documents that are forged or fraudulent or they haven’t disclosed full facts to us, we will not only refuse their application, they then risk a ban of 10 years from the UK if they make a subsequent application.”

Other consequences of processing fake documents for UK visa applications include:
  • be banned from entering the UK for 10 years
  • be removed from the UK, if you are already here
  • be charged with a crime, which could lead to a prison sentence or a fine
  • receive a permanent record of fraud on the UK Border Agency database
Better comply than never ever get the chance to come to UK ever.

Top 10 Paying Jobs in the Philippines

Based from the last 5-year data it possesses, the Bureau of Local Employment has released the top 10 highest paying jobs in the Philippines. Leading i the top paid employees list are art directors and geologists.

Art directors earned an average of P69,286 per month, while geologists edged closer with P64,889. The other 8 top-paying PH jobs are: aircraft pilot/navigator/flight engineer (P57,789), mining/metallurgical engineer (P55,638), computer programmer (P43,573), systems analyst/designer (P42,112), production supervisor/general foreman (P36,133), actuarian (P35,480), call center representative/customer service associate (P35,424), and statistician (P35,010).

Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said on Friday (February 8) that graduating "high school students, and the seniors following them should realize this early the significance of making wise and excellent career decisions."

"I also advice them to refrain from choosing courses based on what's in vogue or fashionable, or, to use the popular social lingo of the youth, what's 'trending' and popular," she added.

It could, however, be noted that not all of these high salaries are obtained upon entry level. Most of these take a lot of years of experience before being qualified (e.g. production supervisor and geologist), while others require a big amount of initial investment (e.g. aircraft pilot/flight engineer).

Furthermore, it seems questionable as to why medical (doctor), political (lawyer/judge), entertainment (network talents) and managerial/executive (CEO/VP/CFO) positions did not get into the list of highest paying jobs in the Philippines.

Gotye, Fun lead 55th Grammy Awards winners

The annual 55th Grammy Awards 2013 has now awarded top caliber and highly excellent talents in the international music industry

Gotye took home the Record of the Year award for international hit "Somebody that I Used to Know". Newcomer Fun enjoyed two highly esteemed recognitions, one for bagging the title the Best New Artist and another for bringing in the Song of the Year for "We Are Young".

Getty Images

The list of the winners of the Grammy Awards 2013 are as follows:
  • Record of the Year: "Somebody that I Used to Know" - Gotye
  • Song of the Year: “We Are Young” - Fun featuring Janelle Monáe
  • Best New Artist: Fun
  • Best Pop Solo Performance: “Set Fire to the Rain” (Live) – Adele
  • Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: “Somebody That I Used to Know” - Gotye featuring Kimbra
  • Best Pop Instrumental Album: Impressions – Chris Botti
  • Best Pop Vocal Album: Stronger – Kelly Clarkson
  • Best Dance Recording: “Bangarang” – Skrillex & Sirah
  • Best Dance/Electronica Album: Bangarang – Skrillex
  • Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Kisses on the Bottom – Paul McCartney
  • Best Rock Performance: “Lonely Boy” – The Black Keys
  • Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance: “Love Bites (So Do I)” – Halestorm
  • Best Rock Song: “Lonely Boy” - The Black Keys
  • Best Rock Album: El Camino – The Black Keys
  • Best Alternative Music Album: Making Mirrors – Gotye
  • Best R&B Performance: “Climax” – Usher
  • Best Traditional R&B Performance: “Love on Top” – Beyoncé
  • Best R&B Song: “Adorn” - Miguel Pimentel
  • Best Urban Contemporary Album - Channel Orange – Frank Ocean
  • Best R&B Album: Black Radio – Robert Glasper Experiment
  • Best Rap Performance: “Ni**as in Paris” – Jay-Z & Kanye West
  • Best Rap/Sung Collaboration: “No Church in the Wild” – Jay-Z and Kanye West featuring Frank Ocean & The-Dream
  • Best Rap Song: “Ni**as In Paris”
  • Best Rap Album: Take Care – Drake
  • Best Country Solo Performance: “Blown Away” - Carrie Underwood
  • Best Country Duo/Group Performance: “Pontoon” – Little Big Town
  • Best Country Song: “Blown Away” - Carrie Underwood
  • Best Country Album: Uncaged – Zac Brown Band
  • Best New Age Album: Echoes of Love – Omar Akram
  • Best Improvised Jazz Solo: “Hot House” – Gary Burton & Chick Corea
  • Best Jazz Vocal Album: Radio Music Society – Esperanza Spalding
  • Best Jazz Instrumental Album: Unity Band – Pat Metheny Unity Band
  • Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album: Dear Diz (Every Day I Think of You) – Arturo Sandoval
  • Best Latin Jazz Album: ¡Ritmo! – The Clare Fischer Latin Jazz Big Band
  • Best Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance: “10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)” – Matt Redman
  • Best Gospel Song: “Go Get It” - Mary Mary
  • Best Contemporary Christian Music Song: “10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)” - Matt Redman; “Your Presence Is Heaven” - Israel & New Breed
  • Best Gospel Album: Gravity – Lecrae
  • Best Contemporary Christian Music Album: Eye on It – TobyMac
  • Best Latin Pop Album: MTV Unplugged: Deluxe Edition – Juanes
  • Best Latin Rock Urban or Alternative Album: Imaginaries – Quetzal
  • Best Regional Mexican Album (Including Tejano): Pecados y Milagros – Lila Downs
  • Best Tropical Latin Album: Retro – Marlow Rosado Y La Riqueña
  • Best Americana Album: Slipstream – Bonnie Raitt
  • Best Bluegrass Album: Nobody Knows You – Steep Canyon Rangers
  • Best Blues Album
  • Best Folk Album
  • Best Regional Roots Music Album
  • Best Reggae Album: Rebirth – Jimmy Cliff
  • Best World Music Album: The Living Room Sessions Part 1 – Ravi Shankar
  • Best Children’s Album: Can You Canoe? – The Okee Dokee Brothers
  • Best Spoken Word Album: Society's Child: My Autobiography – Janis Ian
  • Best Comedy Album: Blow Your Pants Off – Jimmy Fallon
  • Best Musical Theater Album: Once: A New Musical – Original Broadway Cast Recording
  • Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media: Midnight In Paris – Various Artists
  • Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
  • Best Song Written for Visual Media: “Safe & Sound” (Taylor Swift Featuring The Civil Wars, from the movie ‘The Hunger Games’)
  • Best Instrumental Composition: “Mozart Goes Dancing” - Chick Corea & Gary Burton
  • Best Instrumental Arrangement: “How About You”- Gil Evans Project
  • Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s): “City Of Roses” - Esperanza Spalding
  • Best Recording Package: Biophilia - Björk
  • Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package: Woody At 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Collection - Woody Guthrie
  • Best Album Notes: Singular Genius: The Complete ABC Singles - Ray Charles
  • Best Historical Album: The Smile Sessions (Deluxe Box Set) - The Beach Boys
  • Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical: The Goat Rodeo Sessions - Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer & Chris Thile
  • Producer of the Year, Non-Classical: Dan Auerbach
  • Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical: “Promises” (Skrillex & Nero Remix) - Nero
  • Best Surround Sound Album: Modern Cool - Patricia Barber
  • Best Engineered Album, Classical: Life & Breath - Charles Bruffy & Kansas City Chorale
  • Producer of the Year, Classical: Blanton Alspaugh
  • Best Orchestral Performance: “Adams: Harmonielehre & Short Ride In A Fast Machine” - San Francisco Symphony
  • Best Opera Recording: “Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen” - The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra; The Metropolitan Opera Chorus
  • Best Choral Performance: “Life & Breath – Choral Works By René Clausen” - Matthew Gladden, Lindsey Lang, Rebecca Lloyd, Sarah Tannehill & Pamela Williamson; Kansas City Chorale
  • Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance: “Meanwhile” – Eighth Blackbird
  • Best Classical Instrumental Solo: “Kurtág & Ligeti: Music For Viola” - Kim Kashkashian
  • Best Classical Vocal Solo: “Poèmes” - Alan Gilbert & Seiji Ozawa; Orchestre National De France & Orchestre Philharmonique De Radio France
  • Best Classical Compendium: Penderecki: Fonogrammi; Horn Concerto; Partita; The Awakening Of Jacob; Anaklasis
  • Best Classical Contemporary Composition: “Meanwhile - Incidental Music To Imaginary Puppet Plays” - Eighth Blackbird
  • Best Short Form Music Video: “We Found Love” – Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris
  • Best Long Form Music Video: Big Easy Express - Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe, Magnetic Zeros & Old Crow Medicine Show
Special Merit Awards
  • MusiCares Person of the Year: Bruce Springsteen
  • President’s Merit Award: L.A. Reid
  • Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Grammy Trustees Award
  • Technical Grammy Award
Hosted by LL Cool J for the second time around, the 55th Grammy Awards 2013 was held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 10. It was broadcast live on CBS.

Alert: Bank ATM Scam

PH banks warn all automated teller machine (ATM) users to stay alert and curious every time they withdraw money in ATMs  by inserting their bank cards. The alert has been raised upon discovery that an international syndicate has successfully siphoned money from affected bank accounts through card duplication and pin (personal identification number) capture.

The said "card-skimming" operation, which adapted sophisticated technology, started in 2011 and reached highs in the end of 2012.

"The syndicate surreptitiously installs card readers on ATM machines, just on top of the slot where you (insert) your card. To the untrained eye, you will think this is just part of the machine," BDO Unibank President Nestor Tan said.

"At the same time, they install minute cameras on top which records the client's keystrokes when he enters his PIN. Within a few hours, they can have a duplicate card and withdraw money from your account," he added.

Currently, banks have installed fraud detection inhibitors which appear in the form of green plastic device. These further disallow insertion of card readers.

According to Mike Bernabe, Expressnet VP for Operations, the ATM card scammers are said to have originated from Taiwan, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Bulgaria.