Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Pebble watch

I must admit that I am (secretly) an avid fan of wristwatches. I always make it a point to visit amazon for some online purchases every time a relative of mine coming in from the US of A for a vacation here in the Philippines.  Two years ago, I made an online purchase for an Ice watch. The year before that was an ipod nano watch. This time, I specifically had  my sights set on a smart watch, and this being Pebbles smart watch.
Black pebbles smart watch (black model)

What initially caught my attention is the ability of the watch to receive SMS from a Smartphone (in my case, it's an iPhone 4), and also to pick-up calls also from a smartphone. The smartwatch is paired with the iPhone via bluetooth and is controlled by the pebble app. The app is downloadable from itunes, as well as for android from google play.

What I did like about this smartwatch is the abundance of watch faces that can be downloaded for free from the pebble app. However, there are some apps available also that are to be paid in order for some functionality to work.  But for watch faces, I think whatever free and available is already fine.

Pebbles app: sample watch faces
Of course, some applications only work in the USA. It depends upon how the user would like to have, but for me, the watch faces featuring temperature readings are already fine. However, given these functions, the only pitfall I can see is the placeholder for apps in the watch which can only store a capacity of 8 applications. So if you need to add more watch faces, you need to remove some from the placeholder in order to accommodate the new installation.

Size-wise the pebble is quite small for a man's wrist but may be big for a woman's wrist. I am an avid fan of big watches and maybe pebble can have a bigger-sized smart watch. It would also be good if the pebble has a colored resolution apart from the typical black and white screen. Samsung's smart-watches are colored and has the capability to view websites from the wristwatch. But I guess having functionality like this would entail added costs which means higher price. 

Comparisons aside, the pebbles watch already serves its purpose of being a trendy smart watch with acceptable set of basic features. I like the colors (I have the black plastic one). 

I've got mine cheap at US$90 in Best Buy compared to P7,000+ (US$ 160) price here in the Philippines. I have to thank my Uncle for being generous to have given this to me as a gift instead.

...Thanks again, Uncle Lito!  

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Gastronoms: Vikings eat-all-you-can buffet

This is the second time that I ate at Vikings and sadly, I did not really enjoy the experience. The first time was the best since I had no expectations whatsoever with this resto. To me, P1,000++ is already way too much to spend on single dining. Call me frugal but I just feel like it's way too much.

Vikings in MOA by the bay


Anyway, the first time I entered the resto in By the Bay (MOA), I had to admit, I was excited back then. This was during the delayed our celebration of my dad's birthday (because during that time, I was jet-setting) - pardon the social climber peg-ging. :) The first impression upon entry was the ambiance. It was clean, the lighting sets the mood for dinner, the backdrop by the window is Manila Bay which sets-up an exciting, albeit romantic view of the Manila Bay sunset. And sits perfectly as the backdrop for an eat-all-you-can set-up. Going back, there's a huge selection of foods that line up the buffet selection within the area. Name your pick: from chinese dimsums, japanese sushis, korean BBQ, pinoy por lechon, italian pasta, roast-somethings ang a huge-selection of sweets and pastries. Add also the huge line-ups of drinks, sodas, beer and coffee. People of all ages will truly enjoy the foods in Vikings. The first-time I did truly enjoy since as the old-saying goes, "mahal kaya lubusin kasehodang lumobo ang tiyan".

with the family (mom, aunt, me & wifey)

The second-time, which is just this past Chinese New Year and also as a send-off for my uncle and aunt, I did not enjoy it much. Maybe because if your body is getting used to the routines of not eating much and in rationed proportions, seeing an eat-all-you can buffet is no longer THAT appetizing. Not even if very tempting...Am I already a disciplined eater because of my diet?

Going back, as what I had mentioned earlier, Manila Bay Sunset backdrop is amazing sight to behold. I still remember when wife and I had our prenup shots taken in the exact same spot where this pic was taken.

Manila Bay Sunset as backdrop

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Family day in Robinson's Magnolia

The first time I saw this mall was during our visit to the hardware gurus in Gilmore QC to repair our desktop CPU and this laptop, since it was just one street away from Gilmore. At night-time this mall reminds me of somewhat like a mini BGC from the outside, but from the inside, it's mostly high-end shops with the exception of Robinson's department store and Toys R US, bench and penshoppe. I considered Sprinfield and Aeropostale as somewhat mid-pricey for my taste. I instantly loved this mall because there are tons to do inside and outside. Inside there are shops and restos that range from mid-high-end to not-so-highend. In fact right now, there are some shops that are on sale. I happen to have bagged some sale items from springfield and bench. What's good about this mall is that it is not really crowded, and from what I can see, only the residents nearby frequent the restos. I would suggest eating out at the basement restos for much more budget-friendly selections.



This mall somewhat reminds me of Sunway Pyramid in Kuala Lumpur, from the inside with regards to the stores, but from the outside it's totally different.

Outside they have an ice cream shop, coffee shops, pedal go-kart rental (which me and Toby absolutely love), Or you can just sit-down and rest on the staircases or flower pot near the grand fountain. There's also a kid's train that goes-around.


The mall is accessible from the LRT-2. It's basically in-between Gilmore and Betty Go-Belmonte stations. Which is nearer I am not really sure but from Gilmore I just walked going to it as just one street away. I think the street name is hemady, and this is corner Aurora Boulevard where the LRT2 trail is. There is also a condo development within the compound which is owned also by Robinson's, the Robinson's Magnolia. From what I can see it is not yet tenanted.



This mall is also a respite from someone like me who's already used to Greenbelt, Glorietta or even MOA. I would suggest that if you have to go to Gilmore for some techie stuffs, try to pass-by this mall. If you have kids, so much the better since they'll love it. One thing that's nice also is that the guards are courteous and the restrooms are clean.