I want to work in an industry where we are not divided by gender or age, where women does NOT have to be more comfortable with women, likewise men to men and kids to kids.
Have you heard of Men group in technology? Why are there special mentions in women or girl groups in technology? Are we really that scarce here in Philippines?
The internet is full of “women are scarce in technology”, “women are being bullied by men in technology” articles and blog posts and that “we need to encourage more participation from this minority”. Back when I started in this industry (2005), I was one of those people who joined women tech group because I felt I would feel more comfortable.
Then, one time I was talking to my senior and brought up this topic and the idea of creating women group in Philippines too. He was just clueless and ask why. That hit me, is it really an issue for me and the others? Have I felt being treated differently? Did it occur to someone I know? Was it more comfortable working with women than men? Do I have the numbers to prove we need help? The answers were all no. What I have learned though, there are too few men and women who were into technology and internet in general. Continue reading →
Croogo, a simple CMS built on top of Cakephp. But for me, it has become my first building block for most cakephp application that I create. Why?
It has the most common features setup already
Less features, less complication
It can be extended without touching the core CMS
Less features to reinvent
I hate reinventing the wheel over and over again. Those includes installing ACL (pain) and recreating commong login functionality such as login, create account, forgot password, reset password and account administration. Comments and captcha are also setup. Most of my apps almost always have these so croogo makes it really easy for me to not to worry about them.
Common features may be setup but it’s not too complicated nor too difficult to use it for your other goals. It is still cakephp and it follows the convention. Unlike other CMS made from cakephp, there aren’t a lot of features. I don’t use them all but I find less time coding by utilizing the features that is already setup in the CMS.
Another factor that makes croogo good as a building block is its plugin and hook system. I rebuilt the app that I created for a couple of months to croogo style in just a week. See their wiki to get a glimpse of what I’m talking about. Using the hooks, you can alter the behavior of the existing pages or features of the app. Using the plugins, you can enable or disable features. Think of wordpress and its plugin, it was built that way.
How to start?
In the next couple of articles, I’ll show you how to utilize the CMS to make you focus on your development to the real core. In the meantime, play around with it, read the wiki and join the google groups.
I had been doing introduction lately via email only and it was a bit awkward because I did not know how to do it. Should I use the formal “please meet name” type introduction or something else? Googling about it did not help. Today, I found this article on how others do it so I just want to share.
Here is an example from the post:
Hope all is well with you! I really enjoyed your last blog post “insert topic here.”
I wanted to introduce you to Bob. Bob is doing “insert startup idea here” and is looking to meet people with expertise in the industry. Naturally, I thought of you since you “insert flattering remark here.”
I have a lot to tell but I was too lazy to write anything. The whole November and first half of December is probably my busiest days in 2009. Only 2 more weeks left and it’s already 2010 so I’m pushing myself a little harder this week.
I went to the Ecommerce Summit last Nov. 12 & 13 to understand the state of ecommerce in our country. According to the CEO of Yehey, the state of the ecommerce is not totally 100% transactional ecommerce but more on social commerce. Social commerce, the way I understand it is adding some social networking features in the whole ecommerce process rather than just buying and selling directly. As a proof, Multiple has dominated the “online store” over ebay because of some social behaviors Filipinos have. Some of the limiting reasons why we can’t have full transactional ecommerce:
lack of trust
limited credit card ownership
limited internet and PC penetration
In my point of view — technology and government support must advance first.
Trust – it is only not our issue, it has been always the biggest issue. But the sad thing is, we have no particular law that provides standards and protocols. We have ecommerce law, but not everybody are aware of it. There are probably less than 1% of the Filipino internet population that has heard of it. That is one of my reasons why I also do not trust doing everything online.
Credit cards – it is hard getting credit card here unless you have 10k and above salary and that’s not even a guarantee. It is also too expensive for a small shop owner to even accept credit cards. Gcash might be a good option but there is still no simple and direct way to use it and connect it to outside applications. I haven’t verified how much but my latest info I have is that one has to pay 100k just to get access. I’d rather use Paypal for all my online transactions.
Limited internet and PC? One can avail a PC for only 10k nowadays. Internet access is the bigger issue here. I visited Hongkong and the difference is too great that I think we need 10 years or more. Their rates is .0 something per call and surf. I went on top of a mountain and the signal was still so strong. I guess our geography also comes into play but the point is, my homeplace is only a few kilometers away from the city and only SmartBro is available with very slow connection. When you go to cafe(s), their per hour rate is already at 100 PHP! That’s way TOO MUCH! The good news is, SM malls have free wifis already and that’s quite a relief. I hope Globe, Smart and Sun expands more and upgrade their facilities even more.
My knowledge is probably still too little to understand everything that is happening but the situation is clear enough for me to understand that we are too far from reaching a certain level of transactional ecommerce (I describe it to some as automated ecommerce) in the country.
I attended the webinar of DigitalFilipino about ecommerce yesterday because I’m curious up to what extent it covers. I’m still in awe even though I read it before because the Philippines actually have ecommerce law! Can you believe that?! LOL
It was a long discussion but I noted a few points from the webinar:
The ecommerce law is a broad regulation for many industries — banks, telco, web
DTI is the gov’t agency responsible for everything electronic.
Debit transactions are considered REAL transactions. May advantage ang may account online just incase a company declared bankruptcy (mahabang kwento).
The law is customizable! Biruin mo un!!! Anyone can create their own rules and in case walang nabanggit ang company or service provider, default value ang Ecommerce Law of the Philippines. Parang configuration yan, may default value!
Walang clear protection for consumers. Kailangan ng total awareness and best practices when dealing transactions electronically. Your safety is in your hands.
Did you know kapag walang acknowledgement from the other party, they can deny the transactions you had kahit complete na or khit nabasa nila? I simple reply in email saying “Yes I read that” is already a form of acknowledgment pero kapag walang ganun, it’s not valid.
I guess the issue I have is that we are too slow in adopting changes in the latest technologies. This just tells me that we are on our own. Too sad.
It took me 8 hours to finally give up and ask assistance from my brother for a problem that I have been struggling to figure out. This story of one of the reasons why using framework isn’t always good
I was recreating a facebook app made from cakephp to a bare php coded version. It is a very simple form that saves the data and then proceeds to step 2 and 3. Nothing complex. When it was time to test it in facebook, the form isn’t submitting! The $_POST variable is always blank. Ofcourse, the first intuition is to check why facebook isn’t saving the data to the global variable. I tried to rewrite the app and use both FBML and IFrame! At the end of my day last Friday, I just gave up and took a nap. Today, I revisited again and tried a new approach – ajax call. When I had to test it locally, the $_POST was still empty no matter what I do. I uploaded it to the dev server and still got the same results. I couldn’t find anything unusual in my code – it is just a simple form. Right at that moment I decided that I already have to bug someone to review my code (I try not to as much as I can). Just a few minutes after, I was told that my form action url must end atleast with a slash (/). Just that, a slash! OMG! (then make batok sa sarili – lol) Since I already got used to cakephp and the HTML and FORM helpers, this hasn’t become a problem.
Moral of the story? Ask earlier, I guess? Hehe. The other one is, not to rely too much on a framework! (but probably I still will)
During the PHP roadshows, I asked this a couple of times to myself. The audience are considered non-technicals so I have probably been too technical for their taste. I think it’s really a tough job and I admire great presenters because they make it look really easy. I googled this just earlier and I found a great resource. I a few steps and I think I found a good starting point for my next presentation. Here are the links: