Thursday, August 02, 2007

IT Geekery and Blogging Awards

After two years in Bangkok there are fewer times that I feel foreign. I mean clearly I am still an outsider: I look different and I only speak a bit of their language so I am often plunged into situations where I have to play charades to make myself understood. But I have got used to the fact that the majority of people around me are speaking a language that in the main, I don't understand, so it feels normal.

Today however I went to buy myself an external hard drive ... oh there I drop it - into the conversation as though I have any idea what it means. Normally I would wait until the weekend and send Husband out to buy it, but I was feeling confident (and wanted it NOW) so I braved the IT Mall. Yes, here in Bangkok we have two malls dedicated to ITy things: one is known as Fortune and the other as Pantip Plaza (affectionately renamed Pantstip by me).

I went to Fortune because it's a bit easier to get to on the MRT (underground) and oh my god, it was horrible. Never have I felt so like I've landed among alien intelligence: these stalls and shops are terrifying, full of gadgets, boxes and wires with names that I don't understand, with words that don't mean anything to me - but that's not because they're in Thai. Those IT words all appear in what you and I would recognise as English so it sounded something like this:

โปรดระวังการติดต่อซื้อขาย password-protected, Web-based project log กับชาวต่างชาติ โดยเฉพาะจากประเทศ Architected Rapid Application Development ทางอัฟริกา ทั้งจากประกาศขายสินค้า Data ที่ราคาถูกกว่าปกติ หรืออีเมล RATs Remote Administration Trojans ที่ติดต่อเข้ามา เพื่อขอซื้อสินค้าEmail ในราคาที่สูงกว่าปกติ เพราะอาจถูกหลอกลวงได้ ท่านสามารถดู Internet Provider ได้จากเว็บ.

Do you get it? Why I was among aliens? It wasn't being surrounded by Thais, it was being surrounded by the computer geeks...

On a more positive note, the lovely JonM has awarded me a 'thoughtful blogger award' for being polite to him at Caroline's launch - my parents will be so proud! Thank you Jon. My five nominations are: a Thoughtful Blogger Award goes to Stray for all the generous and lovely IT geekery she did to promote In Search of Adam for Caroline; Liz Fenwick and Helen each get an Inspirational Blogger Award because they both get on with the job (writing) without all the fannying around that I do; Jen at Spiral Skies gets an Inspirational Blogger Award too, because she makes me laugh while she's fannying around; Carol, at Only In Thailand gets a Charity Blogging Award because although her blog doesn't go on and on about it, she does lots of good work getting volunteers into charities. Now you all need to go here to find out how to get that coveted prize and make your own nominations.


Carol and Chris said...

Thank you so much for nominating me for the Charity Blogging Award (Your absolutely right - I only do it for the wine :-))

Dear God - I read your post and then realised that I had phoned you for IT advice.....We're all doomed!! doomed I tell you!!!

C xx

Helen said...

oooh. How exciting. Am off to check it out now. Thank you! Oh and me inspirational? are you sure?!! I'm beating myself up a lot at the moment for not cracking on with coursework!

Jen said...

Thank you so much! Not sure about inspirational - that's my life you're chortling at!! :)

Am gonna go get me a badge now.

Fanks. Love you! x

Jen said...

PS - Geeks. My live-in geek isn't Thai and I haven't a clue what he's talking about. He is Northern though. Northern/Thai - it's al foreign to me!

Stray said...

Thanks JJ!

Now - as for your harddrive ... this is precisely how I feel when people talk about 'products'. Phrases like 'lash extending' and 'enhancing fruit acid complex proteins' and 'moisturising texture filling base' make me wonder whether I'm in Superdrug or some strange NASA space colony R&D location. (Fortunately the shelves of tampax tend to give it away).

Give me straightforward bits and bytes - by the kilo, mega or giga, with or without RAID Array protection, any day of the week. You know where you are with a bit. Well, you know you're either at 1 or at 0, and that's a hell of a lot more certain than 'fuchsia kiss glossing lip-protector' any way ...

*sigh* ... am I ranting? Sorry!


Carol and Chris said...


I came onto your blog to tell you that I have nominated you for a 'Inspirational Blogger Award' (and not just cause you nominated me!!)

C x

Jon M said...

With you there! I only have to look at a computer and it switches off. I'd love to understand more but I think I enjoy playing on them more!

liz fenwick said...

Thanks JJ. I think I managed to do it all right!!!! I was incredibly touched :-)