Things Finally Start Off in Los Banos

posted May 18, 2009, 2:01 AM by Diego S. Maranan   [ updated May 18, 2009, 2:08 AM ]
by Al-Francis Librero
March 12, 2009

I had been wondering when I was really gonna get into the picture. For the past months, it's been about attempting to establish sponsorships and partnerships. But the building part. A rig was set up to propagate the algae we'll be using, but I wasn't part of that.

Anyway, an HMR donation of PC parts didn't seem like it was going to pan out after visiting their Sta. Rosa processing plant. After seeing the noticeably disappointed looks of my teammates, I had to find out if I could at least mitigate this minor setback as much as I could. I always thought abot how I could provide even a few working PC units from the UP Open University. But as I told Angelo, I couldn't really commit myself to do this as I didn't really know if there was anything to share. UPOU has always been in shortage of PC parts, after all. However, as luck would have it, UPOU is in the process of decommissioning a good number of PC's from its learning centers.

And so, Angelo spent a good part of his three-day stay in Los Banos sifting through PC hardware, conducting Net interviews, doing paperwork and drinking beer (I have no idea how much he'd have drunk if other tasks didn't get in the way).

We went about trying to identify which ones worked, or more importantly, which ones would still be useful. I mean come on, while we did manage to get this computer with an old Celeron 533 MHz processor and 64MB RAM running, I seriously doubt we'd be able to make use of it for Biomodd. Fortunately, we had more to work with than that. By the end of the first day, we had two decent working units and a handful of parts to help come up with even more better units.

Angelo and I eventually felt the need to go back to HMR -- this time as paying customers. We bought some more cool stuff. My Belgian friend could hardly contain his excitement while loading the aluminm ladders and floodlights to my car, raving on about adding some sort of industrial flavor to the sculpture. Oh boy... first, there's the ecological, ethnic and digital themes. Now, we can add in one more...

For good measure, we went back to the UPOU stockpile to test even more parts. But even after a second pass, as it stands, we're still short on many critical components. We never got to finish our tests, though. Important paperwork took precedence. I guess I'll have to try to do the rest on my own.

Anyway, the good thing for me is that I've finally gotten my hands a bit dirty for Biomodd and now have a better grasp of what I need to do as part of the team. I'm excited to see how business will pick up when we start building this April. It ought to be interesting, to say the least.