Ordered: Smashing Magazine's The Mobile Book (Printed and Digital Edition)

… but,  still haven’t got the printed edition with me (after for about 5 months).
When I heard that Smashing Magazine’s The Mobile Book was ready for pre-order, I decided to pre-order it. It was back in October 2012. I paid $42.31 ($5 shipping handling included) using Paypal to get this good deal:

  • The Mobile Book (Printed Book)
  • The Mobile Book | Digital Edition (eBook)
  • Mobile Design Bundle (4 eBooks)

A good deal, wasn’t it?
That was not the first time I bought something from outside the country. Previously, I bought Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs from Amazon and had it delivered without issues. Yes, it took for about three weeks using the standard delivery method. I had no problem with it. I could wait. In short, I convinced myself to buy The Mobile Book since I had a good experience ordering books from outside Indonesia.
In December 2012, The Mobile Book was launched. Got an email notification also. Nice! So, I waited. I could not wait to have it delivered. Well, not only because that was the biggest amount I spent for a single book purchase, but since I could not wait to read it.
I waited.
The book would be shipped from Berlin, Germany. And, it was estimated to arrive in Indonesia in 9-15 days. Well, I didn’t expect much to be on-time. Even an additional 7 days was still acceptable.
I waited… and waited.
On January 18, 2013 I contacted them asking for the delivery status. I got a quick respond from them.

Dear Thomas,
Thank you for pre-ordering our new Mobile Book! We are very sorry that your Mobile Book has not arrived yet.
The Mobile Book was release on 12th December 2012 and the shipment of the pre-ordered books started on 14th December.
Since the delivery of your book is indeed overdue, we will investigate what happened to your shipment and get back to you as soon as possible.
Of course we will make sure that you receive your purchased book.

It seemed that I only need to wait. No problem. At least I got a respond from them. On the next day, I got another email regarding the shipment status with the subject: “Your shipment #100028609 for order #100063512”.
Until today (May 24, 2013), I haven’t got it delivered in my hand. I write this because I just remember about this book order. I am not blaming anybody here. I just want so share a little bit of my experience. I do love Smashing Magazine. It’s a useful resources, great site. I think I’m just unlucky this time. Few hours ago, I sent another email to them. If I still can’t have it delivered, I will stop asking. I promise.
And, I promise myself to think twice before making another order — not only at Smashing Magazine, but at any other stores. Probably, the digital version is a better choice. But… sometime I want to have a real book.
Update May 25, 2013: I got an email from Smashing Magazine Support confirming the shipping address for the delivery. They will try to send it again. Hope to have it delivered.
Update: I had my book delivered.


Paypal's Credit Card Verification

When I had my credit card for the first time, the first thing I did was adding it to my Paypal account. After having my credit card verified (linked) to Paypal, I never touch it again. But, recently I just realised that my credit card was no longer valid. I lost it few months ago, and I got a replacement.
I never had problem with my Paypal account and my credit card. Yes, my Visa card could not be used for transaction few months ago, but that didn’t involve Paypal. So, I decided to add a new credit card. In my previous verification, I waited for the credit card billing statement to get my Paypal verification. If you’re not familiar with Paypal, when you verify your card, Paypal will take $1.95 USD from your credit card. But, it will be returned to your Paypal balance once you have your credit card verified.
Rather than waiting for the credit card billing statement from the bank — you should see transaction detail there — to see the verification code, you can see the transaction detail directly from your transaction history in your bank account. My Visa card is issued by Bank BCA, anyway. I simply logged in to my internet banking account, see the credit card transaction history, and found the 4-digit verification code there.
After that, I just need to login to my Paypal account provide the verification code. Easy.


Paypal Improves Account Overview and History Pages

Today, when I logged in to my Paypal account, I see a notification about the improved design for Account Overview and History pages. After reading the details, I went to my Account Overview page.
Paypal My Account Overview
On the landing page (after logging in), as a buyer I see something what I call “these are information I want to see after getting into the dashboard”. Compared to the previous design, the page presents almost similar details, but the position and design are improved — in my taste.
Paypal History Page
Paypal balance is more visible now. It helps me to decide whether I want to spend my money, or not. The transaction activity page has some menu and shortcuts to track the history. Finding a trasaction, seeing recent and past activities, filtering by currencies are things that can be done easier. There are also some filter shortcuts.
I think it will be useful if I can see the current currency rate in dashboard — USD to my currency setting. :)
This time, the new design works. It offers solution. Thank you, Paypal!


Menerima pembayaran dari luar negeri melalui Pacto Moneygram

Saya lupa kapan tepatnya pertama kali berurusan dengan penerimaan pembayaran dari luar negeri. Dulu, yang paling terkenal — dan yang saya tahu — mungkin adalah Western Union. Tapi, Western Union sepertinya bukanlah jasa pengiriman uang yang pertama kali saya pakai. Oh ya, ini yang saya maksud adalah jasa pengiriman uang dengan cara yang “sedikit konvensional”, dalam artian tidak melibatkan bank, layanan semacam Paypal, atau cheque.

Dulu, saya pernah melakukan pekerjaan yang moda pembayaran adalah menggunakan mekanisme yang saya sebutkan diatas. Waktu itu, klien saya mengusulkan untuk melakukan pembayaran menggunakan Pacto Moneygram. Waduh! Belum pernah dengar sama sekali. Kenapa tidak pakai Paypal? Sederhana, karena saya tidak punya akun Paypal sama sekali.

Awalnya, klien saya tanya dulu, apakah ada Pacto di Jogjakarta. Setelah browsing sebentar, ternyata ada. Ya sudah, akhirnya dicobalah untuk pertama kalinya. Waktu itu, klien saya menanyakan tentang nama lengkap saya sesuai yang tertera di identitas (dalam hal ini KTP). Setelah itu, saya menunggu saja kabar dari dia. Selanjutnya, dia menginformasikan ke saya bahwa dia telah mengirimkan pembayaran. Dia menyertakan jumlah pengiriman, nama pengirim, kota dan negara dia, dan yang paling penting adalah semacam nomer PIN.

General Basic Features and Notes You Might Want to Know

When Budi Putra visited Jogjakarta last weekend, I was involved in a discussion about a video provider called I’m using it now effectively for my videoblog. We learned about the service, features, and other aspects that we need to know. It was because we wanted to find the video hosting provider that really meet our need. So far, works great on my videoblog.
Here are what we found. If you need video hosting provider, and you consider, you might want to know these things:

  1. offers two types of account: free and pro accounts. The pro account offers many additional features like priority transcode access, transcode to iPod and MP3 formats, longer transcode times, hidden videos, and also timed publishing.
    It costs $8/month. If we purchase annually, we will get two extra months for free. only accepts Paypal right now.
  2. If we do not want to continue our pro account subscription, some pro features will be removed and all hidden videos will be visible.
  3. There are no video upload limits per day, or weeks. The maximum video size is 1 GB per file.
  4. To upload videos, we can use some alternatives: using web-based uploader, cell phone, FTP or desktop software.
  5. The desktop uploader is called UpperBlip. It is compatible with many operating systems.
  6. By default, our “Show Page” is generated from our username. So, it will be something like this: We can have different address for show page URL. Username does not have to be the same with the show page. Show page address can be changed, but not the username. You have to contact for this.
  7. offers an advertisement program. This is an optional feature. If you don’t want to see any advertisement in your uploaded videos, you can simply disable them from the dashboard.
  8. shares 50% of the adjusted gross advertising revenues that are actually received by and generated by user content with the user who uploaded the content. (source)
  9. We can customize the video player. If you want to embed the videos to different sites, we can have a preset to produce desired embed code.
  10. Many ways to distribute the videos e.g. automatic notification post to Twitter, Facebook, delicious, etc.

Of course, there are many other features and information. You can see more from FAQ and Help page. Do not forget also to read its terms of service.


Withdraw Paypal funds to Indonesian bank account

Last week (April 20th, 2008), we (Lala and I) decided to withdraw our funds at Paypal into our bank account. We use BCA right now. Since we already had our Paypal verified, the process was not difficult at all. It was very easy. And here are the process and few things you might want to know (if you want to get your Paypal fund, too):

  • First, make sure you have a verified Paypal account. And you already added your bank account information.
  • You have to know that there will be a fee (Rp. 16.000,00) if you withdraw Rp. 1.499.999,99 or less. But, for Rp. 1.500.000,00 or more there is no extra cost. So, we took the second option.
  • It takes 5-7 business day to process. But, we got our fund faster — I think it was 2 or 3 days only.
  • Paypal has its own currency system I guess. So, before sending your funds, make sure that you get the right amount. There is a currency calculator available. The exchange rate was “1 U.S. Dollar = 8.944,22 Indonesian Rupiah”. It might change.
  • If the transaction failed, your fund will be returned to your Paypal account. And, there is Rp. 50.000,00 administration cost for this. Well, I am not sure about the exact number. You will see a short notification before you confirm your transaction.

Pretty easy, right? It was our first time getting funds from Paypal to our local bank. Everything was great. So, if you want to send fund into my Paypal account (donate[at], I can receive it. Hehehe… :)