Monday, December 3, 2018

Links from Sept, Oct, Nov 2018


It's time for a massive catch-up of links for the past 3 months. Interesting stuff I read about Korea from Sept through Nov 2018. To be honest I've just been hoarding these and forgot to post them. I'm busy trying to finish up this year so once again I don't have time to go through and add my hilarious commentary to these links so …

Friday, November 16, 2018

Chris Pratt promotes Fortnite by insulting Koreans [video]


Fortnite is now available to play in Korea and will no doubt challenge homegrown PUBG for domination of PC Bangs. The makers of Fortnite, that super popular battle royale-type shooter where you also build stuff that has captured the hearts of young teens and questionably-adult men the world over, has picked up lovable Chris Pratt to do some Korea …

Thursday, November 15, 2018

2019 Suneung 수능 questions (end-of-year 2018)


Today was Korean SAT test-taking day (for the 2019 university admission year, even though the test itself happened November 2018). As usual the answer sheets were released within minutes.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

English guide to Korean floor heating controls ("ondol")


Here's a simple guide to using the control panel for the ondol (온돌) floor-based heating in your Korean apartment. Winter is starting and I saw some questions about this over on Reddit and Every Expat, so hopefully this can help you out.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Halloween special: sexy Korean costumes from Coupang 🎃


Now here's a cultural import that I can get behind. I was doing some shopping on Coupang and got a pop up about their Halloween merchandise. Check out this massive list of stuff you can order.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Tistory blogging platform gets big update


Korean blogging platform Tistory has received a big update. Now part of Daum-Kakao, Tistory has been a longtime player in the Korean blogosphere. It recently got a refresh of modern skins/themes, and a new theme designer that looks pretty neat. It reminds me of Wix in the way it looks like you can just drag/drop chosen sections in on the homepage …

Naver Weather Map shows fine dust forecasts and visual current conditions


Naver expands their one-box* in-results detailed information for weather. In addition to previous fine dust counts and current conditions, results will now include  predicted fine dust forecasts as well as the mini map of air quality as measured from various stations. Good to check up on whether you should bring your mask with you the next day or …

Monday, October 22, 2018

Electric cars and Korean apartment rules - a mildly interesting dilemma


This weekend I was at an apartment complex and saw this car parked out front with a hand written note stuck under the wiper apparently left by the complex's security guard. The sign said 후면주차금지 ("No rear parking" or Park facing forwards). You can see the cars next to him are both facing forwards. That's pretty unusual given the &…

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Tribute to Jo O-ryeon


You may know about "Marine Boy" Park Tae-hwan, the darling South Korean Olympic swimmer. But you probably haven't heard of the godfather of Korean swimming, the "Asian Seal," Jo O-ryeon. Tribute to Jo O-ryeon (1952 – 2009) So I got curious after typing up an off hand comment in my last post , and did some quick googling abou…

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

How big is Korea? Maps of South Korea on top of other countries


Tonight, instead of catching up on sleep, I was playing around on  The True Size Of ...  which lets you drag outlines of countries on a world map to see how they compare. All the sizes are apparently accurate and whatever and it gives you a pretty good idea of how these places stack up relatively.

Simple fix for natural (reverse) scrolling in Lubuntu 18.04


Here is a simple fix for enabling natural (reverse) scrolling in Lubuntu 18.04 Background The default trackpad scrolling behavior in Lubuntu was driving me crazy. When I scroll my fingers up, I want the content to move upward, i.e. I want to scroll down the page. The default on Lubuntu, even in 18.04 is still the opposite. I feel like a fighter pi…

Friday, October 12, 2018

Naver reveals cleaner new home screen, with voice assistant access and content reorganization


It looks like the Naver homepage refresh is almost done. Naver released a promo video showing how the app will look. Nice and clean. Here's a more upclose view: Here's the short video. Watch for yourself. [Direct link  or embedded below] You can see in the video that in addition to quick access to all basic Naver services, that cute little …

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Google Maps Street View car schedule in Korea


Google has a page that shows current worldwide street view coverage . Here's the map for Korea. It's interactive, so you can zoom all around the country to see if your area has been covered. Here's an upclose shot of the capital area. You can see little dots of coverage elsewhere even out in the sea, usually where special collections we…

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Seoullo 7017 to get major 7-leg expansion


This is pretty amazing. The elevated pedestrian walkway over the Seoul Station area is due to be massively expanded, with 7 new legs branching off into neighboring areas off from the main original portion. Soon you'll be able to walk up in the sky around a huge portion of downtown Seoul. Here are the details from a Seoul City press release: Th…

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Naver and Google logo doodles for Chuseok 2018


As usual, Naver's homepage will feature some cute doodles to celebrate Chuseok. This year (2018) they'll be from an artist that goes by "Kimi & 12" (pronounced "Kimmy and ill-ee"). They're all cute and of course the good old rabbit and moon trope shows up again. Here's a preview of this year's logo doodl…

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Naver Blogs get fresh new default theme skins for 2018


Naver is releasing a whole set of new updated and responsive blog templates for their service Naver Blog. This is hot on the heels of their refreshed Google Blogger-style theme updating  from 3 months ago. They use the same sort of minimalist and clear style. Here's how some of them look: They look pretty nice. I like this design style that Nav…

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Lookalikes 4: Na Ah-reum and Lee Mi-Do


Asian games gold medalist in cycling Na Ah-reum looks a little like actress  Lee Mi-Do. I think it's the eyes and eyebrows. And as far as I know they're both Jeollado people so maybe that has something to do with it. Congratulations to both on their recent achievements: Cyclist wins monumental gold; baseball team reaches final Actress Lee Mi…

Monday, September 10, 2018

Warning: KakaoTalk 8.0 update kills Groups feature


KakaoTalk recently got a big update to version 8.0 which is supposed to include the "delete sent messages" feature and a big revision of the UI (mainly by placing the menus at the bottom now). However some guy on Reddit pointed out , and I just confirmed on my own phone, that the Friends Group feature has been removed from this update wit…

Recommended: "Life at a Korean law firm"


Over at the Korea Times, they've been running a series the whole year so far called "Life at a Korean law firm, or at least my journey to it" (now simplified to "My life at a Korean Law Firm") by longtime expat Jacco Zwetsloot. As of right now there are 32 parts and counting, where he recounts his memories of coming to Kore…

Banking Tip: change password to keep Korean account active


Since my shtick here is offering tips, here's a useful one that popped up in my feed last week I felt deserves some more attention. This from KEB Hana Bank Facebook page. Our online banking system suspends your online transfer service if you do not make any online transfers for 12 months. You can prevent this service blockage by just logging i…

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Bookmarklet for getting RSS feeds from Blogger labels


All labels on a Blogger blog have their own corresponding RSS feed . This makes it a great way to subscribe to specific topics on a blog rather than the entire blog. Unfortunately Blogger does not natively make these feeds discoverable by most RSS readers. So I always felt annoyed to have to go manually edit the URL to get at the feed. So instead I…

Prevent text flowing under image in Blogger mobile templates homepage


I currently still use a variation of Blogger's "Awesome Inc" template. If you use one of these slightly older themes too, you may notice that the post summaries on your blog's mobile version tend to have the text bleed under the image. It looks a bit ugly. You probably want the text to stay to the right of the image, as in these …

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Links from August 2018


Time for another good old link roundup. Interesting stuff I read about Korea in August and a little bit from early September that you might be interested in too. I've been swamped this week and don't have time to go through and add my usual hilarious and engaging commentary to these links so I'm just providing a big fat list of links. …

Friday, August 24, 2018

Costco Korea to exclusively use Hyundai Cards starting May 2019


Big news for long-term expats: Costco Korea has officially announced that they will switch from Samsung Card to Hyundai Card starting next May. Previously, Costco customers were required to pay with Samsung Cards (or cash) but following speculation that Costco were considering switching to Hyundai Card , they announced today via their website and a…

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Naver widgets affected by new Android API changes


Real quick FYI, I noticed a few posts from Naver recently about changes they're having to make to a couple of their apps due to new stricter guidelines for background services running in Android 8 Oreo and beyond. I noticed three apps so far have had changes made to accommodate: Naver app's home screen widget which was basically access to m…

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Naver Map features updated Joseon-era palace imagery


Naver Maps is featuring some updated high-quality indoor streetview-type imagery to celebrate Liberation Day. Several palaces and museums from Chosun times can be examined in full 360 panorama mode in Naver Map. Most imagery is from the last month or so and is highly detailed, so you can zoom in. Here's one of several promo images Naver highli…

Korean Liberation Day (광복절) 2018 commemorative logos from Daum, Google, Naver, Nate


Today is Korean Liberation Day (광복절), celebrating the kicking out of the Japanese and reinstatement of a Korean nation after the colonial period. Or what we call " V-J Day ." Just for fun, here are some of the commemorative logos the portals have put up for today. This day has a partisan divide of course. Right-wingers tend to favor this d…

Sam Hammington's son William in LGU+/Naver commercial


Your favorite foreigner-in-Korea, Sam Hammington, is in a new commercial promoting a collaboration between LG U+ TV service and Naver's translation service Papago. You can use a special smart-TV version of the Papago app to get translations if you're a U+ customer. The name of the service is " U+tv 아이들나라 2.0 " (Kids' Country 2.…

Friday, August 10, 2018

Update on Saya, the CGI Japanese girl, and my doomsday predictions


I wanted to share some updated photos of the CGI creation "Saya" and spew some predictions about what this kind of tech means. Saya Not related to Korea at all, but you might remember way back in 2015 reading some news about a CGI-rendered fictional Japanese girl called "Saya," created by your typical wacky Japanese couple. Her…