Someone just turned a year older today. He happened to be the man behind a popular Filipino search engine which I wanted to copy when I was in high school (hindi kinaya ng notepad ang codes LOL). He also runs and operates a bakery somewhere in the South and not only that – he is also into baking blogs and ranks their hotness and freshness according to several factors which I don’t really want to discuss because I am lazy. He is also a camwhore who kept on imitating the Villar pose or the Jejemon Heart in his Piclyf updates. What a talented guy, right? He also happened to be my partner – at least on Facebook.
We last saw each other at the recently-concluded Cebu Blog Camp. I don’t know why all of a sudden, I saw myself in some of the newbie bloggers who were approaching me. The Devcom thingy at IT Park also made me remember that once in my life, I want to become a web developer/programmer. I want to run my very own website and yes, a search engine.
Then I started asking the birthday boy Â about his search engine and how he Â feels whenever people approach him and express how they truly adore his work way back. To be honest, I sort of find it weird that most people would refer to him as ‘Mr. Ratified’ instead of ‘Mr. Alleba’. Well, that’s just me 😀
I wrote a birthday post for him last year which is more candid and errr… fangirl-ish. For a change, I’ll be posting an excerpt from my current interview with him related to Alleba. No need to search for answers because it’s all here so read on 😀
> 1. Give me a short story on how Alleba started.
My classmate introduced me to Google back in 2000 and thought how it
would be cool to have my own search engine. I searched online for PHP
directory scripts and found one that I still use to this day. I chose
Alleba because Abella.com was taken. Abella is my middle name.
> 2. What pushed you to make a search engine?
I guess it was out of curiosity. And I had a lot of time in my hands.
I decided to do something fruitful while I was looking for a job.
> 3. Why Alleba? (kunwari di ko alam)
Again, when I was starting out, Abella.com was taken. So I flipped
the letters and settled for Alleba. In retrospect, it did sound
> 4. Did you manage the whole thing by yourself? I remember submitting some
> sites to the directory way back 😛
Yes, it was all me.
> 5. Who were your ‘competitors’ during that time?
I’m not sure if I was competing since it was a purely experimental
project. But I would say Yehey and Filipinolinks.
> 6. Why did you require the Alleba code to be placed at every site submitted
> before you put them at the directory? LOL
For higher Pagerank? Haha.
> 7. Do you remember a specific fangirl who kept on contributing sites about
> Filipino celebrities? LOL
I only recall somebody who kept submitting fan pages. That was a long
time ago. I honestly could not remember specific names. But after
your little confession, I guess that somebody was named Mica. Lol.
> 8. Did you receive any recognitions or awards during the peak of Alleba?
> 9. How do you feel when students/IT practitioners give praises whenever they
> find out that you are the guy behind Alleba?
It always feels good to be recognized. Funny story. There was a time
when a guy asked me if I was in high school when I made Alleba but in
reality I had just graduated from my second degree when I made it.
That guy turned out to be someone from Yehey. We were co-organizers
for the first Wordcamp in the Philippines.
> 10. Alleba or Ratified? Choose one only 😛
Alleba coz it has more sentimental value.
> 11. Do you find it weird that all of a sudden I am asking these questions to
> you? Because I do feel weird. I feel like a high school fan girl all over
> again teehee
I’m used to fans. Lol.
> 12. Is Alleba.com your first baby?
I’d like to say yes but no. I created my first website in 1997 on
Geocities and a few others followed. Let’s keep those under wraps can
So there. As I type this one, I wonder why am I too formal? T_T It feels weird but I simply want to show my heartfelt and sincerest happy birthday greeting to Mr. Joseph Andrew Abella dela Serna. I don’t really care if you are Mr. Alleba or Mr. Ratified or Mr. Piclyf or Mr. Jejemon (awth). All I know is that you are my Bebs Â 🙂 Lucky to have a bestfriend in you 🙂 hAp! bUrTdEi pOwH hUh gOd bLeSs pOwH iNgAtz U 😀
PS: Remember my prediction last year? I hope you don’t 😛