Gimbal Revolution

I bought a Zhiyun Smooth Q last year, and it now happily occupies a space in my bag. And it stayed there for quite some time now.

It was a great gimbal, don’t get me wrong, especially for its price. But I just don’t enjoy the trouble setting it up with my bulky Samsung Galaxy Note 8 everytime I use it. I’m sure it’s not too bulky a device to use for a planned event or travel, but not for everyday snap here and there.

And just recently, DJI released a new product — the DJI Osmo Pocket, and in time for the Christmas season at that.

And just like that, now I’m hooked.

Using Autosweep RFID in NLEX/SCTEx/CavitEx (Easytrip)

You may have already read it somewhere, that you may now use your Autosweep RFID in NLEX-SCTEX, Cavitex, according to DOTr. It may be a step towards DOTr’s Toll Interoperability Project, but if you look closer, it is still far from the ideal integration.

The Autosweep RFID tag is the tag you use to breeze through the Electronic Toll Collection (ETC) system at South Luzon Expressway (SLEX), Ayala Greenfield Toll Plaza, and Skyway. From this recent development, you may now use your Autosweep RFID tag at NLEX, SCTEX, and Cavitex, provided that you maintain a separate Easytrip account with them.

That means you may use the same tag but you should maintain two different accounts with the two different toll service providers. Two different accounts mean two different funding and monitoring of account balances. Its effect — very little!

This may be a step closer to DOTr’s goal of tollway interoperability, albeit very small. Can’t wait for the day of one tag/one account electronic toll collection between and among these tollway systems. And please, bring ETC to STAR Tollway soon!

The Iloilo Aerial View Story

Helicam Philippines, an Iloilo-based aerial photography and video production company, put up a video that showcases the attractions in Iloilo and Guimaras.

Check out the colorful and eco-friendly environment, and the timeless culture and heritage that is Iloilo in the video that follow:

Check out Helicam Philippines’ Vimeo and Facebook pages to watch more aerial footages of Iloilo.

The Inefficient STAR Tollway Toll Collection System

On the afternoon of June 5, 2016, armed with my Transcend Drivepro DP220, we traversed through Southern Tagalog Arterial Road (STAR Tollway) northbound from Ibaan to Sto. Tomas. At exactly 4:52 pm, just right after we passed the Tanauan exit, we hit the end of the long queue leading to the Sto. Tomas toll barrier.

What followed next was a good 3 kilometers of traffic at crawling speeds for 48 minutes (which translates to an average speed of 3.75 km/h). Finally, at 5:40 pm, we got to pay for our toll fee.

I’ve documented that ordeal in the video that follows. Don’t worry, you don’t have to go through the same 48 minutes to finish the video, as I cramped it to about 2.5 minutes.

Imagine a good 1 hour lost just making our way to pay for our toll due. Perhaps, other people spend more time than that in Metro Manila traffic, but for a much better purpose — to get home or even to get to where they wanted or needed to go. Moviegoers line up to watch their favorite movies. Heck, calamity victims wait in line to get their share of relief goods. Now, isn’t it absurd to line up in such a long time for something that you have to pay for? Continue reading

Fuel Economy Comparison Among Philippine Cars

Topgear.com.ph published the fuel economy test results of various cars in their article, “Department of Energy, Petron release results of 70-vehicle fuel economy run“:

Well, the numbers are finally out. A total 70 different vehicles from 22 car manufacturers took part in the government-sanctioned test, with varying results. Take note: The run was performed on a highway setting. Drivers embarked on the 280km drive from Angeles through SCTEX, TPLEX and back.

Among the vehicles fuel economy numbers, here are some important observations: Continue reading

The Sorry State of Roads in Taysan, Batangas

Have you been to Taysan, Batangas recently? Did you know that because of big trucks plying their roads on a regular basis, a large part of them badly need repairs and more often?

Here’s the video taken on 9 April 2016 to show you the sorry state they are currently in, especially as you traverse the road from Taysan Town Proper to Barangay San Marcelino of the same municipality.

This video was recorded using my Transcend DrivePro 220 dashcam. For more videos from this dashcam, subscribe to my separate Youtube channel.

Waze vs. Google Maps vs. Apple Maps

Thrillist enumerates their reasons ‘Why You Should Ditch Google Maps for Apple Maps‘.

The points mentioned in the article may perhaps be valid if you’re living in U.S. But here in the Philippines, your best bet would be Waze. Why?

  • It offers important data like traffic, accidents, the police, etc. and those are actually crowd-sourced. Google Maps and Apple Maps have no traffic data in the Philippines;
  • Public transportation data is basically non-existent for Google Maps and Apple Maps in the Philippines;
  • Don’t get me started with 3D and/or satellite view of Google Maps and Apple Maps, when they still show our 30-storey office building as plain earth.

Nevertheless, I wish you could use Siri to search for locations via the Waze app.

A church visit to Parish of St. Therese of the Child Jesus in Lipa City, Batangas

The Facade of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Facade of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Parish of St. Therese of the Child Jesus is located in Brgy. Talisay, Lipa City, Batangas. It is adjacent to the property of Mount Malarayat Golf & Country Club. Out the open windows (and/or doors) of the church you can see the beautiful golf course.

The Alter of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Alter of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

Read the Historical Marker 2009 and check out the mass schedules »