Thursday, October 30, 2008

Enjoying Quality Time With The People You Love

Random Thought (Dedicated to the Love of My Life):

While recovering from sickness, I was spending quality time with the people I love...

Here's a piece of advice I'd like to apply to myself and share with my readers:

Try not to create stress through frustration and overwork by setting unachievable objectives. Enjoy your quality time with the people you care for, the people you love, the people you want see happy. Their happiness will help you lead a satisfying life.

-- Ramesh Kumar (Indian Thinker)

Getting Sick

It's been several days already since I got sick. (See:

I'm still in Bacoor, Cavite and I have no Internet access in my house in Bacoor. I have to get out of the house to check my e-mails. Normally, I can read my e-mails using my 3G Smart phone. However, my cellphone was blocked by SMART (perhaps due to international roaming charges) and I don't have time yet to go to a Smart Wireless Center to activitate my cellphone. I hope those people sending me text messages would read this blog post so that they would know why they don't get SMS replies from me.

It's good that we are on semestral break and there are no classes. Otherwise, I will have a very difficult time coping with this situation.

Now, I'm trying my best to organize (with Dr. Gregg Gabison) the 2nd ACM Philippine Inter-Collegiate Programming Contest scheduled on November 22, 2008 in Cebu City. We are now racing against time, and there are still lots of things to be done.

I hope that I will get well soon.

in Bacoor, Cavite
30 October 2008

Monday, October 27, 2008

It's My Father's 75th Birthday


Photo Caption: With my father, Rolando, on his 75th birthday, 27 October 2008, in Bacoor, Cavite.

Today, Monday, 27 October 2008, I visited my parents who are based in Bacoor, Cavite. It's my father's 75th birthday.

Inspite of my condition (I have a stiff neck since Saturday, October 25) I drove from Quezon City to Bacoor, Cavite.

Happy Birthday Tatang (Father)! May you have many more happy birthdays to come.

I wish you hapiness, good health, and God's blessings.
27 October 2008
in Bacoor, Cavite

Pain in the Neck

One of the hazards of long travel is jet lag. Another is injury.

Last Friday, 24 October 2008, I arrived at the Manila International Airport (NAIA) after a three-week travel in Europe.

I was very tired and slept immediately after reaching my condominium unit in Quezon City.

The following day, Saturday, I had a severe pain in my neck. This can be attributed to travel stress including weather differences between Europe and the Philippines.

To ease the stiffness in my neck I am now taking Myonal (50 mg) three times a day. I am also wearing a neck brace or cervical collar.

This just shows that travelling can also be hazardous sometimes ):

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Announcement: ACM ICPC Philippines 2008


Please check the ACM ICPC Philippines 2008 Website for details:


1. Contest date is on November 22, 2008 (Saturday)

2. Registration fee per person is PhP 1,000 (this does not include contest t-shirt).


Dr. Rafael Saldaña
Contest Director
ACM ICPC Philippines 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

EUAsiaGrid Colleagues at the SEACOOP Conference in Brussels, Belgium

. Opening Session of the 2008 Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research held on October 6-7, 2008 at the Radisson Royal SAS Hotel in Brussels, Belgium.

Dr. Rafael Saldaña (Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines), co-chair of Session 1 (Future Networks).

Dr. Marco Paganoni (right) of Italian National Institute of Nuclear and Particle Physics (INFN, Italy) is shown giving a presentation on the EUAsiaGrid Project (see

Dr. Piyawut Srichaikul (right), Manager, Knowledge Engineering Technology Program of the National Electronics and Technology Institute (NECTEC, Thailand) is shown giving a presentation during the SEACOOP conference in Brussels, Belgium.

Dr. Rafael Saldaña (Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines) with Dr. Piyawut Srichaikul (NECTEC, Thailand)

L-R: Peter Banzon and Denis Villorente of Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI, Philippines); Dr. Suhaimi Napis, Director, InfoComm Development Centre (iDEC), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM); and Dr. Rafael Saldaña, coordinator, Ateneo Grid and High-Performance Computing Group, School of Science and Engineering, Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU, Philippines).

This Forum took place on October 6-7, 2008 at the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel in Brussels, under the aegis of the European Commission and of ASEAN, and with the support of the SEACOOP project. It was the first of its kind ever organized in Europe and attracted around 250 delegates, including over 100 representatives from leading Southeast Asian organisations in the ICT area.
I chaired Session 1 (Future Networks) together with Pierre Chastanet , Scientific Officer, Unit D1, DG Information Society and Media, European Commission.

Several of my colleagues in the EUASIA Grid Project (see were also present during the conference in Brussels. Shown above are some photos of my EUASIAGrid colleagues and me during the SEACOP conference in Brussels, Belgium.

Related Links:


Back in the Philippines/ E-mail Replies

To All Concerned:

Today (Friday, October 24, 2008) I arrived from a three week-trip in Europe. I still have jet lag after more than 12 hours direct flight from the Schipol airport in Netherlands via KLM to Manila.

I apologize for not being able to reply immediately to e-mails as I was moving from one city to another in Europe and sometimes Internet access was not readily available.

I will catch up on my e-mail replies this weekend.


24 October 2008
in Quezon City

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Research Collaboration Meeting in the University of Heidelberg, Germany (October 13-14, 2008)

. Photo Caption: View from the 5th Floor of the Interdisciplinary Center for Scientific Computing (IWR) of the University of Heidelberg at Im Neuenheimer Feld Campus, Heidelberg, Germany.
Photo Caption: During a meeting with Dr. Michael Winckler of the University of Heidelberg, Germany at the Insterdisciplinary Center for Scientific Computing (IWR) on October 14, 2008. From the photo collection of Raffy Saldaña (

On October 13 - 14, 2008 (Monday and Tuesday) I visited the University of Heidelberg's Interdisciplinary Center for Scientific Computing. I met Dr. Michael Winckler and discussed possible research collaboration between the University of Heidelberg and our research group in the Ateneo de Manila University.

Related Link:

Monday, October 13, 2008

Dinner in Frankfurt, Germany (Oct. 12, 2008)


Today (Monday, 13 October 2008) I will leave Bensheim and will go to Heidelberg for a meeting at the University of Heidelberg (Germany).

Lst night, Dr. Kilian Schwartz (my host in GSI, Darmstadt) treated me to a dinner in Frankfurt, Germany together with his wife Annie and his colleagues at GSI (Darmstadt). I had Frankfurter (sausages) with Sauerkraft (fermented cabbage) and cider (apple wine) -- a traditional meal in Frankfurt.

Thanks to Dr. Kilian Schwartz and his family for a wonderful stay in Darmstadt/Bensheim, Germany.


in Germany
13 October 2008


Friday, October 10, 2008

Giving a Talk on Grid Computing and Visiting GSI, Darmstadt, Germany (October 10, 2008)

.Aerial view of GSI in Darmstadt, Germany
Scientists and GSI staff who listened to my presentation on Grid Computing
With Dr. Peter Malzacher of GSI, Darmstadt, Germany
With Dr. Kilian Schwarz, my host at GSI, Darmstadt, Germany
With Dr. Dieter Schardtof GSI, Darmstadt, Germany
Photo Caption: Part of the Ion Beam Radiotherapy Equipment for Cancer Treatment that was developed at GSI, Darmstadt, Germany.

Today (Friday, October 10, 2008) I gave a talk on "Grid Computing and Applications: Philippine Initiatives and Perspective" in Gesellschaft fur Schwerrionenforschung (GSI) in Darmstadt, Germany. (See My host is Dr. Kilian Schwarz. Aside from going a talk, I visited the accelerator facility for heavy ion beams, the computer center (with its large cluster system used for grid computing), and the Laboratory for ion-beam radiotherapy in the fight against cancer. Photos from the collection of Raffy Saldana (

To see more photos, click on the following link:

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Notes on GSI:


The goal of the scientific research conducted at the Gesellschaft für Schwerionenforschung, GSI, is to understand the structure and behavior of the world that surrounds us. In addition to broadening our understanding of the world, this knowledge also serves as a basis for technological progress in all areas of our lives.

GSI operates a large, in many aspects worldwide unique accelerator facility for heavy-ion beams. Researchers from around the world use the facility for experiments that help point the way to new and fascinating discoveries in basic research. In addition, the scientists use their findings to continually develop new and impressive applications.

The research program at GSI covers a broad range of activities extending from nuclear and atomic physics to plasma and materials research to biophysics and cancer therapy. Probably the best-known results are the discovery of six new chemical elements and the development of a new type of tumor therapy using ion beams.

What are Ions?
Ions are "charged” atoms, they are formed from neutral atoms by adding electrons to or stripping electrons from the electron shell. Due to their charge, ions can be accelerated and steered by means of electric and magnetic fields.

Facts and Figures
Foundation 1969
Associates Federal Republic of Germany (90%), State of Hessen (10%)
Member Helmholtz Association
Task Construction and operation of accelerator facilities and research of heavy accelerated ions.
Budget 85 Mio Euro per year
Staff 1050 employees, including 300 scientists and engineers
Capital equipment

Linear accelerator UNILAC
Heavy ion synchrotron SIS
Experiment storage ring ESR
Fragment separator FRS
High-energy/high-efficiency laser PHELIX (being constructed)
Several large systems of spectrometers and detectors
Medical irradiation unit for cancer therapy

Scientific Cooperation Users of the GSI facilities are predominantly non-resident scientists, mainly from German Universities (totalling over 1,000 scientists per year).

World-wide cooperation with approximately 400 institutes from over 50 countries.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Flight Details: Manila to Belgium, October 4, 2008


MNL AMS 18:35

For Session Chairs, SEACOOP Conference, Brussels, Belgium

(This email is sent to all session chairpersons)

Dear all,

Thank you again for having accepted to chair a session of the 2008 Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research, to be held on Oct. 6-7 in Brussels.

Beyond the “Information and guidelines for speakers and chairmen” you have already received but which I reattach for your convenience, I think it might be useful that, before each stream of 3 parallel sessions, a meeting can be organised with the 6 session chairpersons (3 European and 3 Southeast Asian chairpersons) so that the organisation of each session can be fine tuned if necessary and to address any last minute questions you may have.

I therefore propose you that we meet,
30’ before your session starts, in the Oslo room located near the registration desk (the staff on site will give you further indications on how to reach this room).

I am very happy to have the opportunity to meet you in some days from now.

Best regards

Roger Torrenti
Coordinator of the SEACOOP FP7 project

Tel: +33 (0) 493 958 530
Mob: +33 (0) 612 322 728
Fax: +33 (0) 493 958 477

Invitation: SEACOOP Conference, Brussels, Belgium

School of Science and Engineering
Ateneo de Manila University


September 16, 2008

Dear Mr.

We have the pleasure to invite you to participate in the “2008 Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT research” to be held on October 6-7, 2008 in Brussels, under the aegis of the European Commission and of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

This Forum is organised with the support of the SEACOOP project, funded by the European Commission, and which we have the privilege to coordinate.

We count on your presence to allow the event fully achieving its main objective: to contribute to the development of strategic cooperation on ICT research between Europe and Southeast Asia.

Please note that all expenses related to the visit will be covered by the project budget allocated for ASTI.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for any further information you might need.

With my best regards.

Roger Torrenti
Coordinator of the SEACOOP project


Guidelines for Chairmen: Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research

October 6-7, 2008
Radisson SAS Royal Hotel - 47 Rue du Fossé-aux-Loups - Brussels - Belgium




The Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research is the first of its kind ever organised in Europe and should be a key milestone in the development of S&T cooperation on ICT between the two regions. It is not a scientific conference but an event aiming at providing suited conditions to identify or further develop concrete cooperation projects. Since the event is held only some weeks before the launch of important calls for proposals of the European
Commission related to ICT research (including the FP7 ICT Call 4), it is foreseen that some of these cooperation projects may eventually become proposals submitted in response to these Calls. Over 200 delegates, including 70 to 100 representatives from leading Southeast Asian organisations, will participate.


The programme is mainly composed of parallel thematic sessions. The pragmatic objective of each session is to provide European and Southeast Asian organisations active in the theme on which the session is focusing, an opportunity to meet and discuss potential cooperation projects, particularly under FP7. An opening session devoted to welcome and keynote addresses, will set the scene. A training session will cope with practical aspects concerning FP7 proposals. A closing session, involving all session chairmen (or rapporteurs they will designate) will allow to take stock of the two days and to pave the way for the future, namely until the deadlines of coming FP7 Calls. Last but not least, during the 30' session breaks, "5 minutes to convince" sessions will be organised in the main conference room in order to give the floor to more delegates (this conference room will also be available during the two days for delegates wishing to have specific meetings there, the room being set up accordingly when not used for plenary sessions).


Each thematic session will start with a 10 to 15’ presentation from the European chairman, introducing the way the session theme is addressed in FP7 and providing available information on priorities set for the next FP7 Calls in the area. Then, each speaker listed in the session programme will be invited to make his/her presentation in 5’ to 10’ (please remember: it’s not a scientific conference, be as concise as possible!), which means basically using 3 main
slides: the first one introducing the activities of his/her organisation, the second one devoted to the vision of the speaker / organisation in terms of potential cooperation project, the last one addressing the status of this potential project and/or the envisioned next steps. Speakers are provided with a template that they may use to prepare their presentations (they
may alternatively chose not to use this template). Such a session structure will leave ample time for thorough discussions on concrete cooperation projects and hopefully allow concluding each session with a set of well identified and promising projects.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Photos: PSHSAA Meeting in Anvaya Cove (Morong, Bataan) near Subic Bay


Last Wednesday, 1 October 2008, a national holiday, the Board of Members of the Philippine Science High School Alumni Association (PSHSAA) with some of their family members went to Anvaya Cove in Morong, Bataan via Subic for a meeting and R&R (rest and recreation). Although it was raining we had lots of fun and team building activities. From the photo collection of Raffy Saldaña (

To view more photos, click on the following link:

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PSHSAA Board Members Present:

1. Jun Sabug, Batch '69
2. Raffy Saldaña
, Batch '77
3. Susan Warren-Mercado, Batch '78
4. Butch Zaldarriaga, Batch '80
5. Carlo Subido, Batch '82
6. Galdys Barrer, Batch '83
7. Tina Jardiolin, Batch '84
8. Raymond Ancog, Batch '88
9. Joyce Simpas, Batch '92
10. Jeff Jubilado, Batch '93



Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Travel: Anvaya Cove (Morong, Bataan) via Subic


Photo Caption: Views of Anvaya Cove, an exclusive resort and residential complex in Morong, Bataan near Subic Bay. From the photo collection of Raffy Saldaña (

October 1, 2008 (Wednesday) was declared a national holiday in the Phillippines. So during this day my colleagues in the Philippine Science Alumni Association Board (PSHSAA) went to Anvaya Cove in Morong, Bataan (near Subic) for a meeting and an R&R (rest and recreation) functions. I rode with Tina (Jardiolin) and Joyce (Simpas) -- my fellow officers in the PSHSAA --in Tina's BMW mini-SUV and we took the NLEx (Northern Luzon Expressway) and the new SCTEx (Subic, Clark, and Tarlac Expressway) on the way to Anvaya Cove. Anvaya is an exclusive resort and residential complex close to Subic Bay, about two and hours drive from Manila. Although it was raining most of the day, we had a productive meeting and lots of fun. Thanks to Butch Zaldarriaga (president of the PSHSAA), we were able to use the facilities of Anvaya Cove. Butch is a member of the Anvaya Cove Club.

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2008 Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research (Brussels, Belgium)


Figure Caption: Vicinity map of the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel in Brussels, Belgium -- venue of the 2008 Euro-Southeast Asia Cooperation Forum on ICT Research.

On October 6-7, 2008 I will participate in the 2008 Euro-Southeastasia Cooperation on ICT Research to be held at the Radisson Royal SAS Hotel in Brussels, Belgium under the sponsorship of the SEACOOP project through ASTI (Advanced Science and Technology Institute of the Department of Science and Technology).

This conference event will be the first of its kind ever organised in Europe and is planned to be a key milestone in the development of EU-Southeast Asia cooperation on ICT research. Over 200 delegates, including 70 to 100 representatives from leading Southeast Asian organisations in the ICT area, are expected to participate.

Held only some weeks before the launch of an important FP7 call for proposals related to the ICT theme (Call 4), this Forum will particularly aim at thoroughly discussing the opportunities of strategic cooperation presented in the Strategic Projects section of the SEACOOP website (

Ateneo Grid and High Performance Computing Group
School of Science and Engineering
Ateneo de Manila University
Loyola Heights, Quezon City