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About GeoffH

  • Rank
    Full Member
  • Birthday 11/22/1960

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Maldon, VICTORIA, Australia
  • Interests
    Motorcycle riding, Amateur Radio, Reading.

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  • Blood Type
    Can not Donate

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  • Country Of Birth

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  1. We didn’t Just look at the one vehicle, before we decided upon the Avanza we were going to just buy a small car. We looked at the Wigo, the Eon, the Picanto and later the Vios and the Yaris (as we decided the smaller cars wouldn’t do what we needed). One of the main criteria we checked was safety features. The Kia Picanto has ABS and twin airbags only in the top variant, the Toyota Wigo, the Mitsubishi Mirage and the Suzuki Celario all have ABS and dual airbags in all variants. The Hyundai Eon has only a drivers airbag and the Suzuki Alto has none. That is 4 out of 6 entry level cars with dual airbags and ABS available. We did not look as closely at mid sized cars as we decided if we were spending ‘about a million’ instead of ‘about 600000’ then the Avanza was a better match to our requirements but I’d be surprised if it was much different in that market segment.
  2. From what I saw when looking to buy the Avanza it seems that most new cars sold in the Philippines now come with front air bags, side intrusion bars and most come with ABS. Electronic stability control, side or curtain airbags, lane departure and auto braking seem to be rather uncommon however (at least in or near the price ranges we were looking at).
  3. I bought a new E (mid range) Toyota Avanza 7 seat compact MPV with automatic, a model that is only really sold in countries with 'emerging economies' to carry the family around in, previously the family were using an older Isuzu dual cab truck (or ute as we'd say in Australia) and people used to sit in the payload area which always made me uncomfortable (although it bothers nobody here). Now everyone is inside, even if the car only has front air bags and not curtain airbags like ones sold in most western countries. It is without a doubt safer than the previous transport although rather basic compared to what's sold in Australia and similar 1st world countries. I did look around for a 2nd hand MPV (an earlier Avanza or similar up to say 5 years old) but I couldn't find anything in good condition in northern Mindanao at the time although SWMBO was rather worried about how much I was spending.
  4. I don't fit into trikes very well (too big) and for me at least there were no close public transport options near to the lot. I suspect that 'cars being crazy expensive' is a perception related to what the price of cars actually is in one's home country. Most of the Toyotas we priced were about 20% more expensive than they are in Australia but they're about line ball with New Zealand prices. So I included a car in the budget but YMMV of course.
  5. Expat in Iloilo needs O+

    I have read figures that suggest that O- is 7% in Australia so very similar, I had no idea that it was so rare in SE Asia. It is definitely something that us O- blood types need to be aware of, thanks for the information.
  6. Motor Vehicle Headlights

    One thing I've never understood is how some vehicles have dark tinting all over the front windscreen as well as the side and rear windows or possibly with just a small square removed in front of the driver (at least in some areas of Mindanao). We hired a van a while back for a trip and it came with this 'feature'. Yes it makes daytime driving cooler but at night... scary even with the headlights on.
  7. Expat in Iloilo needs O+

    I'm am type O- and the Red Cross here always seemed happy to get my donation, they tell me that I'm too old to donate now though. This thread is a bit of an eye opener, I'd never thought about access to transfusions whilst in the Philippines. *Best wishes for a good outcome to the person seeking the blood*
  8. Predominantly in Automatic vehicles?

    I managed a bus fleet before I retired and we also had licensed driver trainers for both cars and heavy vehicles. The instructors always made a point of saying during the training that it was bad practice to use your other foot for braking.
  9. Kano prices,who is the blame

    The next white guy comes along and the barber says P100 and then the next the barber says P120.This is why they all think we are rich and maybe so compared to them,forget it I'm shaking my head so much I cant see the keyboard. I understand your original point though and I believe you're correct about paying extra for the same product or service. And I'm not trying to be difficult but if the local price is P60 (for the sake of the discussion) and I offer P120 to jump the line is that ok or not ok? Does that contribute to the problem or not? Is it a different situation because I'm getting priority service? (I must admit to having paid extra not to have to wait to on occasion)
  10. Malaysia

    I have a Malay friend who is a journalist who works there, I haven't lived there but I have visited. If I had to summarize my impressions in a few words it would be that it's got better facilities and infrastructure (in the parts I've been) than the Philippines (in the parts I've been) but that the people (and the society) are not as welcoming. Kuala Lumpur traffic is grid lock in peak hour (think Manila bad) but interestingly if you're in an upmarket car (we were in a Mercedes Benz with my friend) then often the traffic Police will make space for you by stopping the taxis and smaller cars (unless it's a government car or sheiks car coming in which case you wait). The rail transit system uses these blue disks that you load err... load onto and then drop in a gate, it works fairly well. The taxis come in a couple of types, one type that the locals use and a more upmarket version that isn't a lot more expensive but is better size for larger westerners. Ummm that's about all I can think of at the moment. NB It is an Islamic country and whilst in most places it's not extremist that needs to be taken into account when you're speaking and acting. Having said that there are many moderates, I've sat in US style chain restaurants eating cheesy bacon fries and drinking beer with my friend.
  11. Smoking in bars and restaurnts

    Prohibition doesn't normally work, all it does is criminalize the product and allow organized crime to make money from it. In my opinion it is better if the government make tax dollars (which reduces the need for other tax and cross subsidizes medical expenses resulting from the drugs use) than it is to allow criminal gangs control of the industry. NB for full disclosure I'm an ex-smoker (12 years) but I don't find people smoking near me an issue (unless I'm actually eating food).
  12. I'm aware that they've been launched for teaching purposes by universities and for quite some time now by various amateur radio groups and societies around the world and that there were moves to commercialize their use but I'd not heard of that particular application, very interesting. I haven't had anything personally to do with them but every so often there is an article about cube sats in ARRL magazine as I try (and mostly fail) to stay somewhat up to date with what's happening. Thank you for the information .
  13. I live in rural Australia and I have used both 1 way and 2 way satellite connections. Older satellite internet systems (called 1 way sat) beamed a signal from the satellite to a dish mounted on the house for incoming data (mine was 512 kilobit incoming) and used a modem in the house for outgoing data (either a 33 kilobit dial up modem or a 64 kilobit ISDN modem was used). This provided quicker than dial up download speeds but slow uploads. Installs were not that expensive as the dish only needed to receive (like sat TV). More recent satellite internet systems (called 2 way sat) use the dish for both incoming and outcoming data and they're commonly used for communications in remote areas (not just Australia but also some islands in the Pacific use them) but they tend to be very expensive to access. Data charges and install costs are high and speed is still slower than VDSL (although much faster than dial up). The main issue with satellite connections is what is called high latency, the signal takes a long time to go from your computer through the ground station up to the satellite, down to ground and to the destination. Programs that need low latency (like games and remote control and some video apps) don't work well with high latency. The Australian NBN (National Broadband Network) has large geostationary satellites which provide 2 way sat access for business and households in remote areas where people are unable to access other forms of internet and the government provides subsidized installs and reduces access cost by cross subsidizing operating costs by taxing other profitable internet modes on the NBN (about $7 per month per NBN connection I understand). Currently the nominal speeds on offer are 12Mbit and 25Mbit but data allowances are much lower than other NBN delivery technologies due to the limited data volume handling of the satellites and ground stations. Outside of this there are fully commercial 2 way satellite internet providers which tend to be used by government departments and commercial organizations where other internet is not available or reliable and the cost tends to be very high. Some of these providers have 'home' plans with more limited speeds at costs that are somewhat more affordable and a couple of companies in the Phillipines offer this. I did look at this as an alternative for when I'm over there but ended up just getting a wifi device with an external antenna instead. One company that offers it if you're interested (and I make no claims as to how well it works) is http://www.philsat.com/bigsky.html
  14. The Australian government should have stuck with the FTTP NBN plan rather than swapping part way through to a mixed mode NBN IMO. I'm lucky enough to have a good stable ADSL2 connection that syncs at 20Mbit in Australia which is faster than I've gotten when I visit the Philippines and the new VDSL NBN node is only 50 metres from my driveway so it's very likely I'll sync close to 100Mbit when that goes active some time next month but many people are not so lucky. There are however many households and businesses that are not so lucky, where I worked until 4 months ago (when I retired) is in a declared Ready For Service area but they cannot access the NBN because the nearest VDSL nodes are too far away and my sister's house on the edge of town is in the same situation, the node is too far away and the speeds both locations get are similar to what I've seen in the Philippines.
  15. Skymuster satellite? Or are they going to leave you on existing copper?