All posts by: Cocoy Dayao

Cocoy is the Chief Technology Officer of Lab Rats Technica, a Digital Consulting company that specialises in DevOps, iOS, and Web Apps, E-Commerce sites, Cybersecurity and Social Media consulting. He is a technology enthusiast, political junkie and social observer who enjoys a good cup of coffee, comic books, and tweets as @cocoy on twitter.

Cocoy is also the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of the ProPinoy Project.

Cocoy considers himself to be Liberal.

What the blogosphere is saying on SONA

Blogs are starting to appear on what the SONA means for us, and the dust is settling and people are starting to think things through what the President said.

Our regular Pro Pinoy contributors gave their two cents. Manuel Buencamino wrote SONA, and it was followed by Felicity’s “A delayed reaction to the theif who stole in the night.”   Marocharim tweeted his take in what is appropriately titled, “the 140 character SONA.”

Caffeinesparks gave her thoughts in “Noynoy’s first SONA: reiterating the message of his campaign.” She scrawled, “this SONA sounds like a report to the people.”

Regular Pro Pinoy writer, Doy Santos on the other hand had a good piece on “Son of a SONA!” In it he criticized the administration’s choice of Public-Private Partnerships in developing nations. It is a must read.

Leo Alejandrino lent his insight in “Noy’s State of the Nation.” He said, “by my count the weighted grade for the SONA was a B+ for sincerity and goodwill. It could have done with more content especially on fiscal reform. Next year’s test will be harder. The President will no longer have the past Administration to hit on. He will also have to deliver on his promises. Let us wish him luck.”

Loyal Aquino supporter Reyna Elena jot down his thoughts in a reaction to President Benigno Aquino’s State of the Nation Address.

Over at Midfield, Ding Gagelonia wrote “P.Noy’s 1st SONA: The Hits, and Misses (retitled).”  Tony Cruz narrated Arroyo, PPP policy top Aquino’s Congress speech, ending with a quote from Bayan Muna.

The opposition’s circle had this to say. We have Edcel Lagman’s Counter-SONA.  If you’re in that camp, be sure to read Maningat’s P-Noy’s first SONA in proper perspective.

The Anti-Pinoy Ilda’s take on President Noynoy’s SONA: what the clapping audience failed to hear,” apparently the President is the ‘biggest loser.’  Of course, it hasn’t dawned on that camp that calling people names simply translates to losing an argument.

The opposition continues to oppose everything and proposing nothing.

Most people general accept the SONA in a positive light.   Yes there are misgivings and some obvious disappointment, but generally are willing to give the President the benefit of the doubt and this time to act.  In their critic you can sense that they do want to make things better loving their country and willing to change it.

Solving the water problem in the Philippines

Perennially, Metro Manila and its adjacent cities have counted on water from the various dams around it. So whenever there is a drought, the danger level goes up. And whenever there is too much— the capital sinks and drowns.

To see this as simply a Manila problem would be a failure to look at the big picture. The United Nations according to the BBC that each person needs 50 liters of water a day for drinking, washing, cooking and sanitation. Further, the story reported that the United Nations in 2000 projected that US$100 billion would be need to tackle water scarcity world wide.

According to this Inquirer article, authorities and water distributors are considering Laguna Lake a source of water for Metro Manila.

Is anybody asking that that move is just a stopgap measure?

Technological solutions

There are a number of technology solutions that could be used. First there is drip irrigation for irrigation. Second, treating of waste water so it could be drunk several times over is a way to conserve water.

Then there is Desalination, which isn’t new technology but has actually been around for years.  It is the same technology used in US Aircraft carriers to provide water for the crew (because it could work in tandem with a nuclear reactor).

There are many countries that use desalination such as China and India.

Singapore has constructed a desalination plant and it uses a total of 4.2kWhr/m3 of energy. They are selling US$0.49 per cubic meter of water for the first year. The contractor they used— Black & Veatch did the design, support during construction and operation totaled US$90 million.

The French have constructed a desalination plant. It produces 320,000 cubic meters of drinking water per day. It cost 1.5 billion Euro between Veolia and an Israeli counterpart to cover the finance, construction and operation of the plant in a build operate and transfer scheme for 25 years.

Trinidad and Tobago built a US$120 million dollar plant that would process 28.8 million gallons of water per day.  The plant is selling water at the price of US$2.67 per 1,000 gallons.  At 46 pesos per one USD, that’s 122.82 pesos per 1,000 gallons of water.

Is Desalination the answer?

That said, there is an ecological cost to desalination and other side effects such as heavy use of energy and it leaves brine.  What ecological considerations?  For example in Australia, the facility there produces only 140,000 cubic meters of water per day and sucks in 0.1 meters per second of water to allow fish to escape.

Is desalination the answer?

How much water does Metro Manila really need? And if a facility is constructed to meet that demand, would the cost be affordable for people? How much would the cost of water then becomes for Juan dela Cruz?

Perhaps what is needed is a holistic approach. How does this affect the public years down the line.

And sadly yes, if you want water, you got to pay for it. The problem of water not just in the Philippines but for the rest of the world has few solutions and a lot of cost. What else could be done but to start using technology to our advantage— whether it is treating water or desalination or some other solution.

It seems to me that simply tapping Laguna Lake and looking at it as the ultimate solution is a stopgap measure and might not be the best idea.  Yet in spite of that, even if a desalination plant is the solution, it would take years and much money to build— in the order of billions of pesos in magnitude but the choice to solve the future has got to start real soon.

Lola Basyang reminds Aquino and Filipino to Triage

The Philippines’ capital was hit by a typhoon.  Power across much of Luzon was taken out.  It is a startling reminder of how fragile this digital life is.  This is mild compared to the Typhoon that was Ondoy.

It is also a startling reminder of the things the country needs, but sorely lacking.  For instance, improving weather tracking by PAG-ASA.  As a nation we surely can’t blame them for spotty reports when during the past administration the need for Doppler radar was mentioned everytime the metropolis goes under water but where is it now?

There have been myriad senate hearings and certainly the weather bureau and everyone knows what needs to get done.  Yes, funding is a problem and there are myriad concerns as the nation runs under a deficit.  Surely damage in property and lives lost due to storms would be reduced somewhat with an investment in the right kind of equipment and the right kind of people.

The Metro Manila’s skyline is clean, thanks to Basyang.  Children have no school and they must be happy.  Back in the day I would be too.  This is the first storm that Aquino has faced.

Little is expected in how he reacts to it.  He is after all only weeks into the job, but it is with hope this is a startling reminder of yet another thing on the to do list.  One can argue that without proper funding, it would take time.

A few hundred million invested in weather tracking and forecasting as well as fixing the problems of Manila’s international airport would be a proactive way to deal with the problem that I would hope would at least be on the to do list and hopefully at the top ten things.  And yes, there are a million other things that need to get done.  Doctors call it triage.  For Aquino’s government, I hope they learn how to triage.

MLQ3 joins Aquino Administration

Today, Mr. Quezon announced on his blog and his column that he is officially joining the Aquino Administration and ending his op-ed column with the Inquirer. “Transitions,” is his valedictory piece, closing a chapter and embarking on a new adventure. As RG Cruz posted on his blog, Mr. Quezon has also resigned from ANC.

I’ve agreed with Mr. Quezon more times than I locked sabers. There will be a vacuum of rationality on Op-EDs. He was always a good explainer of events of the day and issues of the time. He joins the Administration in crafting strategic messaging, of which there is no doubt he is king of these days.

Summary of Information Lt. Gen. Ricardo A. David Jr.

Lieutenant General Ricardo A. David Jr. AFP is the current Commander of the Northern Luzon Command, Armed Forces of the Philippines, which is the AFP unit that oversees the security and preserves the peace in the communities of North and Central Luzon.

He was born in 1955 in the town of San Fernando, Pampanga, but spent most of his childhood in Victoria, Tarlac. His humble beginnings instilled in him the value of hard work, perseverance, and faith in God which are essential in his pursuit of a professional career and other personal goals.

Since the start of his primary education in Dolores Elementary School of Dolores, San Fernando, Pampanga in 1961, his desire to develop himself and his abilities was already deeply imbued in him, which paved the way for him to graduate at the top of his class in 1967. With the same grit and determination, he continued his journey in order that he could hone his intellectual capabilities. This enabled him to graduate from Victoria High School in Tarlac as the salutatorian of his class in 1971. Aside from his academic achievements in high school, he also garnered the highest rating in his class’ Preparatory Military Training course.

As he pursued further studies in the field of engineering at St. Louis University in Baguio City, he was awarded a scholarship in the said institution for his exceptional academic records and performance. His desire to serve his country, however, brought LtGen David inside the walls of the Philippine Military Academy on April 1, 1973. He was trained there for four years and molded to become a true and faithful servant of the nation. Upon graduation from the Philippine Military Academy on March 1, 1977, he began his illustrious military career as a second lieutenant in the Philippine Army.

He spent his military career in various units of the Philippine Army and of the Armed Forces of the Philippines in different parts of the country. Some of his assignments are as follows: He saw action as a combat officer in Mindanao from 1977-1983. He commanded the 50th Infantry Battalion of the 5th Infantry Division, Philippine Army from December 1996 to April 1998. Having firmly established his leadership and management competence, he led the 402nd Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army from March 2005 to December 2006. This was followed by his management of the AFP Command Center until August 2007. Afterwards, he commanded the Army Support Command until April 2008, then the 4th Infantry Division, Philippine Army until June 2009. Eventually, he was assigned to lead the Northern Luzon Command, AFP to date.

LtGen David achieved these accomplishments by always aiming for the best in everything he does, through the continuous enhancement of his abilities and through the various trainings he received, both here and abroad.  He successfully completed his tours of duty in the aforementioned command positions, aside from his innate commitment to excellence and hard work, through the military training he has undergone.

Some of his other academic accomplishments are as follows: He finished at the top of his class in the Ammunition General Supply Course and the Special Forces Operation Course, second in his class in Field Artillery Officer Basic Course, third in class in his Comptrollership Officer Basic Course, and an honor graduate in the Command and General Staff Course. He also took several courses in foreign military institutions, a number of which include the Field Artillery Officer Advanced Course in the U.S. Army Field Artillery School, the Overseas Joint Warfare Course in the Australian Joint Warfare Center, the International Defense Management Course and the Senior Executive Seminar at the Marshall Center, Germany.

He took his Master of Arts in Security Studies at the Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, California and Master in Business Administration from Xavier University in Cagayan de Oro City. Ltgen also completed the Basic Management Course at the Asian Institute of Management

As a seasoned military commander, LtGen David strongly adheres in the persistent pursuit of our national security objectives, through a consultative approach with other stakeholders and under a broad partnership with other sectors of the government and private entities. This is best exemplified by his contributions as division commander of the 4th Infantry Division, Philippine Army and as co-convener in the establishment of the CARAGA Council for Peace and Development (CCPD), which brought together stakeholders in the CARAGA region to focus their efforts into addressing various issues in the area. LtGen David also encouraged the creation and strengthened the existing church-military advisory councils and the ugnayan centers, which has the similar aspirations as that of the CCPD, in North and Central Luzon.

As a responsible servant of the nation, LtGen David firmly believes that as the AFP drives itself to achieve its mission; the organization must carry out its tasks with utmost respect to human rights and international humanitarian law; that a person’s right to life, liberty, and property cannot be compromised; that an individual shall not be deprived of such rights without due process of law. He shares these beliefs constantly with his subordinate commanders and vows to hold them accountable if they commit any transgression in this regard. His purpose is to contribute in the strengthening of the military organization as an institution of the Filipino nation.

As a leader, LtGen David puts the welfare of those under his command as his top priority. He believes that looking after the needs of the men and women under his command and ensuring that they are receiving whatever is due to them are but a simple reminder of the organization’s appreciation for  their sacrifices for country and people.

As an individual, LtGen David actively participates in various sports activities such as cycling, running, bodybuilding, badminton, and golf. During his spare time, he reads books, magazines, and other materials on various topics. He also enjoys solving puzzles, like sudoku.

LtGen David, who is fondly called Ric, Jun, or Dabong by his superiors and peers, is happily married to the former Miss Merilou Malacay of Cagayan de Oro City. They are blessed with two sons, Russell, a naval officer and a graduate of PMA class 2005, and Rommel, a licensed electronics and communications engineer.