Somdet Phra Theppharatratsuda Chao Fa Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Ratthasimakhunakonpiyachat Sayamborommaratchakumari

AKA Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, Thailand’s Princess Royal, came to our university to open my faculty’s new building today (Official title: The Local Knowledge Learning Center). Pretty much every Thai staff member/teacher wears an official white uniform to these ceremonies, so it was fun being the only person in a black pinstriped suit (those not wearing dress whites wore white or black suits, but nobody else had pinstripes – I’m so happy I had this one made all those years ago because it’s BOSS). There was much discussion leading up to today’s event about where the best place to enter the campus and park would be, with some teachers coming in hours before the ceremony started, but I snuck in through an unguarded back gate on my scooter and talked my way past three roadblocks five minutes before assembly time. Then I sweated through the next three hours, happy I had an undershirt and a folding fan. It was glorious.

Phu Farm Canned Foods

Phu Farms… As aptly named as a company can be…

Silkwork larvae are a snack I’ve had in Korea and Cambodia as well, and they don’t taste so bad. They are a good novelty food after a few beers. The canned frogs, however, are, well…

New canned food display at Nam’s university shop featuring locally conceived products
Silkworm pupae – YUM!

Mina approves (well, she did before we opened the cans)

The shopkeeper gave Nam a sample of the new product – canned frogs!


How to fix Broken Thai Text Display in Google Chrome

I recently experienced a very strange and vexing problem in Chrome (EN v.38, 64-bit, Windows 7) where all Thai text appeared as small boxes or squares, or squares with strange symbols inside of them. It literally appeared overnight, and no amount of tweaking encodings or font settings (you know, the normal stuff) could fix it. Only Thai language seemed affected, and it only happened in Chrome (I tested in FF, IE, Opera, and MS Office as well).

I cannot understand your boxy language.
I cannot understand your boxy language.

If you are experiencing the same problem, I have a solution that is working 100% (for me). It is tied to a new Microdicksoft font rendering technology recently enabled in Chrome by default called DirectWrite.
TL;WR: If you want to fix this problem with garbled foreign text display, you need to turn that shit off.

How to turn off DirectWrongWrite:
1) Open Chrome and type (or copy and paste, you lazy fucker) chrome:flags in the address bar, then hit Enter. This opens a magical gateway to a Land That Makes Chrome Bipolar:

2) Click the “Enable” link under Disable DirectWrite. That’s right, you have to click a link called Enable to turn off the Microphallussoft shit. But Bill Gates cured hemmorhoidal dysentery in the fourth world, so I forgive him.

3) Restart Chrome (remember to shut it down completely if you have it set to run in the background.)

Results for me:

What? Ping pong show RIGHT NOW? I'm on my way, homies!
What? Ping pong show RIGHT NOW? I’m on my way, homies!

I am including the bug report I filed with Google below, for posterity.

All Thai language text suddenly started appearing as boxes or squares in English version of Chrome 38.0.2125.101 m (64-bit). This was a sudden problem that appeared and persisted through various attempts at problem solving: Changing page encoding, font settings, re-installing Chrome, emptying cache, overriding CSS properties with various Extensions, etc. Although other browsers and applications were unaffected, I also tried re-installing all fonts in Windows (64-bit Windows 7), tweaking language settings, deleting FNTCACHE.DAT file, multiple restarts, etc.

I finally found a solution that is working for my system: disabling DirectWrite in chrome://flags/ and restarting Chrome. This solves all problems with Thai text rendering.

EnablingDirect write again and restarting Chrome causes the same problems again, disabling it and rebooting solves it instantly.

Keywords: Fuck Microsoft, Fuck DirectWrite, Fuck Windows 9, thank god it’s friday