Friday, December 30, 2005

Biggest Discoveries of 2005

From
http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,69909-0.html?tw=rss.technology

10. Moony probe
9. It's not a lemur
8. Ten planets or eight?
7. Little fluffy comets
6. Big soft dinosaur
5. First neuro-cybernaut
4. Rocky exoplanet
3. Microscopic microbots
2. Dogs and chimps and rice, oh my!
1. It's getting hot in here

Is that a vacation job or free labour?

From the Straits Times Interactive
http://www.straitstimes.com.sg/storyprintfriendly/0,5578,361748,00.html?

Dec 29, 2005
Is that a vacation job or free labour?

I WISH to highlight a practice by a local restaurant chain which appears to use students on vacation as a source of free labour.

My daughter, who had just completed her O levels, applied for vacation work at Fish & Co in Parkway Parade. She was told the pay was $4.50 per hour.

Happily, she started work on Dec 5, working a five-hour shift for five days. However, near the end of her shift on Dec 10, she and some others were told their services had been terminated. Nothing was said about outstanding pay.

My wife accompanied her on Dec 23 to ask about the outstanding pay. They were attended by one of the staff members who told them new employees, whose services are terminated, should have served a minimum of 24 working hours to get paid. If they failed to clock the minimum hours, they would not be paid a cent. She told my wife that our daughter had clocked 23.5 hours of work.

The staff member said all new hires were told of this 'condition' before starting work but our daughter says she was not.

When my wife asked to see documentation of this, the staff member said it was done verbally. After my wife said she would report the restaurant to the Manpower Ministry, the employee called her head office. She later told my wife that our daughter would be paid $1.80 an hour as she was still under probation. Again, $1.80 an hour for new hires under probation was not mentioned before she began work.

Fed up, my wife and daughter left.

Although the amount owed to my daughter is relatively low, about $100, I am disappointed that students who simply want to earn some money during their vacation are treated in such a manner.

My questions are:

# Is it legal for the restaurant to have this employment condition? If so, why not have new hires sign some form of documentary proof?

# If the restaurant really feels our daughter is not fit, why make her work for 23.5 hours before terminating her services?

Mohamed Hanafi Mohd Noh

Copyright © 2005 Singapore Press Holdings. All rights reserved. Privacy Statement & Condition of Access.

2 More Days

Another 2 more days...
  • To welcome New Year 2006.
  • To hang onto No. 9 for 2005 in ASP and not get overtaken.
Happy New Year Soon...

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Bad Feeling

I really really really have a bad feeling in me.
This is the worst feeling I ever experienced.

Hope things turn out to be fine.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Kukup Trip

Just came back from Kukup trip.

New Year's Day to be a second late

Scientists will insert a "leap second" onto the end of December 31, by tweaking their atomic clocks, the world's most precise timekeepers, so as to be consistent with the Earth's rotation.

Leap seconds are inserted because atomic clocks tend to go slightly ahead of the Earth's rotation, largely because the rotation of the Earth has been slowing down.

It will be the first extra second in seven years. The first leap second was added on June 30, 1972, according to NIST, an arm of the U.S. Commerce Department.

Above extracted from
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2005-12/26/content_3969840.htm

Friday, December 23, 2005

So Proud of Regine

This semester is Regine's best. 1 A-, 2 B+ and 1 S. So happy for her :)
Maintain merit.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

New Belt

I have got a new nice belt!
Gift from Regine and so must treasure.

The 10 Commandments of Microsoft Access

From the microsoft.public.access.formscoding newsgroup:

And it came to pass that the cries and lamentations of the Access newbies were heard on high by the gods of the Database, and their hearts were moved to pity for their followers. And they opened their mouths and spake, saying: "Nevermore shall the young and innocent wander witless on their journeys! We shall provide guidance to them, yea, and to all who wish to seek the paths of wisdom." And they caused these commandments to be written and placed before the eyes of those seeking enlightenment.

So heed the words of those who have come before you, and keep these commandments in thine heart as thou dost create thy Database application. If thou shalt only follow these commandments thy burden shall be made light and thy path shall be made straight.

  1. Thou shalt design normalized tables and understand thy fields and relationships before thou dost begin.
  2. Thou shalt never allow thy users to see or edit tables directly, but only through forms and thou shalt abhor the use of "Lookup Fields" which art the creation of the Evil One.
  3. Thou shalt choose a naming convention and abide by its wisdom and never allow spaces in thy names.
  4. Thou shalt write comments in your procedures and explain each variable.
  5. Thou shalt understand error handling and use it faithfully in all thy procedures.
  6. Thou shalt split thy databases.
  7. Thou shalt not use Autonumber if the field is meant to have meaning for thy users.
  8. Thou shalt not copy and paste other people's code without at least attempting to understand what it does.
  9. Thou shalt not use "SendKeys", "Smart Codes" or "GoTo" (unless the GoTo be part of an OnError process) for these will lead you from the path of righteousness.
  10. Thou shalt back-up thy database faithfully, working not on thy Production Database, but on the Prototype Copy, as it is right and good to do.
Thus spake the gods of the Database, and blessed be their names! And Blessed, too, are those who contribute to the Access Newsgroup - giving freely of themselves to serve those who hunger and thirst for knowledge and understanding!

Contributors:
Andy, Mike B., Marshall Barton, Fred Boer, Sandra Daigle, Dirk Goldgar, Kevin, Eric L., Hugh O'Neill, Hsherriff, John Vinson

Monday, December 19, 2005

My Top 10 Best Products of 2005

The top 2 happened to be my top few too!
I think I will come out with my top 10 one day.

All Products Listed by Ranking
  1. Experts-Exchange IT Solutions Collaboration Site
  2. Google Gmail Web Mail
  3. QuickPost Experts-Exchange New Question Auto Notification
  4. Mozilla Firefox Web Browser
  5. Visual Studio .NET 2003 IDE .NET 1.1
  6. Visual Basic 6.0 IDE for Visual Basic 6.0
  7. MSN Messenger 7.5 Internet Messenging Program
  8. Google Search Engine
  9. MSDN Library Microsoft Technologies Documentation
  10. NJStar Communicator Chinese Input

The 100 Best Products of 2005

The top 2 happened to be my top few too!
I think I will come out with my top 10 one day.

All Products Listed by Ranking
  1. Mozilla Firefox Web Browser
  2. Google Gmail Web Mail
  3. Apple Mac OS X Version 10.4 (Tiger) Operating System
  4. Belkin Wireless Pre-N Router and Notebook Network Card Wireless Networking
  5. Dell Ultrasharp 2405FPW 24-Inch Wide-Screen LCD
  6. Alienware Aurora 5500 Performance PC
  7. Seagate USB 2.0 Pocket Drive Portable Hard Drive
  8. Skype VoIP Service
  9. Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT Digital SLR Camera
  10. PalmOne Treo 650 PDA Phone
  11. Zone Labs ZoneAlarm Antivirus Antivirus and Firewall Software
  12. Mysoft Technology Maxthon Browser Plug-In
  13. Rio Carbon Midcapacity MP3 Player
  14. Webroot Window Washer 5.5 Utility
  15. Maxtor H01R300 Shared Storage Drive Network Hard Drive
  16. Google Search Engine
  17. Netgear 54 Mbps Cable/DSL Wireless Travel Router Model WGR101 Travel Router
  18. OnlyMyEmail Pro Spam Filter
  19. Sony PlayStation Portable Handheld Gaming Device
  20. NVidia GeForce 6600 GT Graphics Board
  21. APC Back-UPS RS 800VA 120V Uninterruptible Power Supply
  22. 2BrightSparks SyncBackSE Utility
  23. Moon Software Password Agent Password Manager
  24. HP Officejet 7210 All-in-One Multifunction Printer
  25. Winternals Software ERD Commander Data Recovery Software
  26. Ubuntu Linux 5.04 Linux Distribution
  27. Epson PictureMate Photo Printer
  28. Mozilla Thunderbird E-Mail Program
  29. Cloudmark Anti-Fraud Toolbar Browser Security Plug-In
  30. Vonage VoIP Service
  31. Cloudmark SafetyBar Spam Filter
  32. Adobe Photoshop CS2 Image Editor
  33. The New York Times on the Web Web Site
  34. Apple ITunes Media Player
  35. Seagate USB/FireWire Hard Drive External Hard Drive
  36. Canon CanoScan 9950F Scanner
  37. IRiver IFP-895 Flash-Based MP3 Player
  38. Valve Half-Life 2 PC Game
  39. Samsung HL-P5063W Rear-Projection TV
  40. Tor Privacy Software
  41. LG Flatron L1981Q 19-Inch LCD
  42. Dell 3000cn Color Laser Printer
  43. BlackBerry 7100t PDA Phone
  44. Verbatim Store 'n' Go Pro USB Memory Key
  45. Seagate Barracuda 7200.8 SATA NCQ Internal Hard Drive
  46. Compaq Presario V2000 All-Purpose Notebook
  47. Microsoft Windows Media Player 10 Media Player
  48. Canon Pixma IP4000R Inkjet/Photo Printer
  49. Best Software Simply Accounting Accounting and Personal Finance
  50. Orb Media Streaming Service
  51. Flickr.com Photography Site
  52. Dell Inspiron 6000 Desktop Replacement Notebook
  53. DirecTV HD DVR HR10-250 HD Receiver and DVR
  54. ACD Systems ACDSee 7 Photo Organizer
  55. Dell UltraSharp 1704FPV 17-Inch LCD
  56. Olympus C-8080 Wide Zoom Digital Camera
  57. Qnext Instant Messenger
  58. IBM ThinkCentre A51p All-Purpose PC
  59. SightSpeed Video Instant Messenger
  60. Wikipedia Online Resource
  61. Cerulean Studios Trillian 3.1 Instant Messenger
  62. CMS 80GB USB 2.0 ABSplus Notebook Backup System Portable Hard Drive
  63. Nikon Coolpix 7900 Digital Camera
  64. Contour Design RollerMouse Pro Mouse
  65. Adobe InDesign CS2 Desktop Publisher
  66. Shuttle Computer XPC i8600b Small PC
  67. IBM ThinkPad X41 Ultraportable Notebook
  68. Adobe Premiere Elements Video Editor
  69. Dell Axim X30 PDA
  70. A9.com Search Engine
  71. Toshiba RS-TX20 Digital Media Server DVD Recorder
  72. Roxio Easy Media Creator 7.5 Burning Software
  73. Plextor PX-716UF Rewritable DVD Drive
  74. Casio Exilim EX-Z750 Digital Camera
  75. Apple Mac Mini Small PC
  76. Google Desktop Search Desktop Search Tool
  77. Mitsubishi LT-3050 30-Inch LCD TV
  78. Apple IPod Photo Large-Capacity MP3 Player
  79. Dell 3300MP Projector
  80. FileMaker Pro 7 Database
  81. Sunbelt Software CounterSpy Anti-Spyware Software
  82. Six Apart TypePad Blogging Tool
  83. Acronis True Image 8 Backup Software
  84. Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe Motherboard
  85. Brother HL-5140 Monochrome Laser Printer
  86. Apple ITunes Music Store Music Downloads
  87. Internet Archive (Archive.org) Web Site
  88. Opera 8 Web Browser
  89. Copernic Desktop Search Desktop Search Software
  90. Motorola Razr V3 Cell Phone
  91. Delphi MyFi Satellite Radio
  92. PDAapps VeriChat Standard Edition Mobile Instant Messaging
  93. Sonos Digital Music System Streaming Media Device
  94. EMC Dantz Retrospect Professional 7 Backup Software
  95. Garmin StreetPilot C330 GPS Navigation Device
  96. Klipsch ProMedia Ultra 2.0 Portable Speakers
  97. Logitech Z-5500 Digital PC Speaker System
  98. Antec P160 Desktop Case
  99. Corel Painter IX Paint Program
  100. Citrix Online GoToMyPC Personal Remote Access

Friday, December 16, 2005

EE Kinder Surprise

What will they give me this time?
The first time I got a T-shirt from them but I lost it at home!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Shiokness

The shiokness comes when I managed to answer a programming question without knowing the language and not having anything required installed to test. Purely code out the logic from examples and by instinct.

More than half of Asia's software illegal

The biggest culprits were Vietnam which topped the list with a piracy rate of 92 percent, followed by China at 90 percent, BSA said in the study which it commissioned research firm International Data Corp. to carry out.

New Zealand's piracy rate of 23 percent was the lowest in the region, followed by Japan's 28 percent. Australia was at 32 percent and Singapore 42 percent.


[All above extracted from http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/technologynews/view/182612/1/.html in parts]

I doubt it will get any better soon.

Rank High for Quick Answer

Some statistics provided by the always excellent reporting service by expert ameba.

For each of the below, click on "Quick Answer" column to sort.

January 2005 - November 2005 Statistics
Ranked 23rd for a I-took-23-seconds-to-answer question
http://www.eeqp.com/stats/2005/mra2005_01_11.html

January 2004 - December 2004 Statistics
Ranked 25th for a I-took-27-seconds-to-answer question
http://www.eeqp.com/stats/2004/mra2004_01_12.html

I am pleased.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Poem to Promote Bush

Below is a poem happen to be found inside a Pakistani's English language textbook having the first letter of each line spelt out "President George W Bush". The anonymous poem, called The Leader, is seen as a praise for the president. This textbook is due to be reprinted next year.

--
P
atient and steady with all he must bear,
Ready to meet every challenge with care,
Easy in manner, yet solid as steel,
Strong in his faith, refreshingly real.
Isn't afraid to propose what is bold,
Doesn't conform to the usual mould,
Eyes that have foresight, for hindsight won't do,
Never backs down when he sees what is true,
Tells it all straight, and means it all too.
Going forward and knowing he's right,
Even when doubted for why he would fight,
Over and over he makes his case clear,
Reaching to touch the ones who won't hear.
Growing in strength he won't be unnerved,
Ever assuring he'll stand by his word.
Wanting the world to join his firm stand,
Bracing for war, but praying for peace,
Using his power so evil will cease,
So much a leader and worthy of trust,
Here stands a man who will do what he must.
--

Especially Sleepy

Cannot figure out why am I so sleepy this afternoon. Going back to sleep again.
真贪睡。

Do You Surf in Toilet?

Interesting but it would be better if there are hard facts.
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/technologynews/view/181986/1/.html

Extract
--

"A significant number of Americans use the computer connection in the bathroom," said Jeffrey Cole, of the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School Center for the Digital Future.

Since people were unlikely to be surfing in the bath, or while brushing their teeth, Cole said he had concluded that many of them went off into cyberspace while on the throne.

Monday, December 05, 2005

23rd SEA Games Medal Tally (Finalized)

COUNTRY
GOLD
SILVER
BRONZE
TOTAL
PHILIPPINES
113
84
94
291
THAILAND
87
78
118
283
VIETNAM
71
68
89
228
MALAYSIA
61
50
64
175
INDONESIA
49
79
89
217
SINGAPORE
42
32
55
129
MYANMAR
17
34
48
99
LAOS
3
4
12
19
BRUNEI
1
2
2
5
CAMBODIA
0
3
9
12
EAST TIMOR
0
0
3
3

Difficult Project

Just received the most difficult project ever experienced in my entire lifetime. All bless me.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Freelance Project Ethics

Will
1. ANY desktop based projects in ANY programming languages.
2. ANY web based projects in ANY web programming languages excluding CGI.

Won't
3. School projects.
4. Design intensive.

Latter rules supercede former rules.

So PLEASE don't tell me to do school projects! I was once a student and so am able to identify them.

Back to Books From Tomorrow

DOT NET

Friday, December 02, 2005

Wes is 100

I wonder did Wes time it correctly and made sure the director of EE is number 100 himself.
http://www.frappr.com/ee

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

26 Nov - 30 Nov Singapura » KL » Genting » KL » Singapura

This is a long-waited trip between Regine and I. Below is the rough schedule of our trip from 26 Nov to 30 Nov.

26 Nov
0945   I left house for JB but was caught in a massive traffic jam at the cross junction before Singapore custom.
1230   I reached JB City Square.
1330   I reached Regine's house and had our lunch.
2245   Regine and I left for JB KTM.
2335   Train left for KL.

27 Nov
0830   We finally reached KL Sentral Station. Trip was delayed for almost 2 hours.
1000   We made our way to our hotel Dorsett Regency Hotel. We left our luggage at the Concierge because we could only check in at 2pm.
1100   We had lunch at a Hong Kong restaurant in Sungei Wang.
1145   Took a cab to Sunway Lagoon.
1200   We reached Sunway Lagoon.
1700   Made our way to Sunway Pyramid for a snack.
1740   Reached shopping centre The Curve and had our dinner.
1930   Reached Utama Shopping Centre.
2230   Left for our hotel.

28 Nov
1015   Woke up
1215   Had lunch in another Hong Kong restaurant.
1330   Reached Pasa Rakyat bus terminal.
1430   Took a bus to Genting Skyway Lower Station.
1530   Made our way to Genting Highlands by the S.E Asia fastest and longest cable car system Skyway.
1600   Reached Genting Highlands and we quickly made our way to the Highlands casino.
1800  Reached the bus terminal at Genting Skyway Lower Station and bought a pair of 1830hrs tickets back Pasa Rakyat bus terminal.
1830   Left for Pasa Rakyat bus terminal.
1930  Reached Pasa Rakyat bus terminal and quickly walked back to our hotel. This time we brought only necessary stuff for the famous Chinatown.
2010   Took a cab to Chinatown.
2020   Reached Chinatown and bought quite a lot of stuff.
2230   Left Chinatown for our hotel.

29 Nov
1145   Check out from hotel. We were allowed to leave our stuff at the Concierge.
1200   Had lunch at a Malay food stall near our hotel.
1220   Shopped at Sungei Wang and Bukit Bintang Plaza and bought quite a lot of stuff.
1500   Made our way to the KLCC.
1800   Had Tom Yam for dinner. Really really spicy!
1840   Made our way back to hotel to collect our stuff.
1950   Reached hotel and collect our stuff and made our way to KL Sentral Station.
2025   Reached KL Sentral Station.
2230   Train departed for Singapore.

30 Nov
0630   Reached JB custom.
0800   Reached Singapore.

I will give a more detailed narration on some of the above events later.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Away from 26th - 30th

Will not be in Singapore from 26th afternoon to 30th morning.

.NET Communiy Seminar

Regine and I attended a .NET Community Seminar organized by JobStreet but conducted by the Microsoft and the New Horizons on 24th Nov. This is a seminar to promote the launch of Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 and Microsoft SQL Server 2005.

Throughout the entire demonstration, I was totally fascinated and impressed by the many features promised by the packages. All speakers are knowledgeable and their expertise in their areas are definitely proven. Some of the features that really grab my attention are the master pages, the site map, one-click installation, tight integration with SQL Server 2005, and many more.

The 2 tea receptions provided by the organizer were not bad - better than average. Also, the pantry area is really very self-contained. A huge fridge to house huge varieties of packet drinks, a hot drink dispenser offering several different hot drinks, a coffee blender, distilled water dispenser, several bottled mineral water, and several comfortable seats available for most. Welfare in Microsoft is certainly well thought of.

What a day of Microsoft experience!

NUS FYP Gathering

21st Nov - NUS FYP Gathering:

We went for a steamboat buffet near the famous Tian Tian Huo Guo. The cost is $12 instead of the initial $10 which I know of few months back. This $12 steamboat doesn't have the BBQ plate like what those at Marina South offer. I would say I still prefer those in the Marina South. More fun, more varieties, better atmosphere, e.t.c. We chatted and updated one another on our current status.

After the dinner, we went for a show "Dragon Squad". This show is full of firefight and is towards the over-exaggerating side.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Just Like Heaven

Yesterday 23th Nov was Regine's last paper. After her last paper, we went down to Lau Pa Sat to have a BBQ Seafood feast for dinner. We ordered BBQ Stingray, Kailan, Satay sticks and chicken wings. The serving was quite a lot for all the items especially the Stingray. I rate the Stingray, Satay and chicken wings highly and as for the Kailan, I thought it was average.

After our feast, we took a bus down to Cathay Cinneleisure for a movie. We watched Just Like Heavens. It belongs to the romantic comedy category. I highly recommend the show. Try it and you know why.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

My Blog Direction

I am intending to make my blog into more technology-based.
Erm... or it has always been like this?

Ghostzilla!

Ghostzilla!
http://www.ghostzilla.com/

Ghostzilla is a Web browser like Firefox, but it shows up and disappears instantly, discreetly, blended with your application -- any application -- so the Web pages look like part of it and not like the Web at all. (Read here how.)

What would you use it for?

1. Hide from your boss and coworkers. Not a good idea; you can get fired (the network administrator sees everything you do) or end up wasting lots of time.
2. Survive endless meetings (if you have a laptop; kind of like (1) but a little better).
3. Have a browser instantly available and dismissable within your work application, washed out from ads and unnecessary pictures. This is actually useful -- except you risk developing attention deficit disorder. Seriously.

So what's it for then?

* Entertainment. Ghostzilla is a form of computer art.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Microsoft Seminar

I will be going for a Microsoft Seminar on Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 and Microsoft SQL Server 2005 on 24th Nov. Regine will be with me.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Microsoft Support For My Conjecture

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for the reply.

Currently, the Singnet customers are facing the Windows Update issue
where the Windows Update page shows "Checking for the latest version of
software" and it hangs. Sometimes they might get the error code
0x80072F78 or 0x80072EFF stating that "Web site has encountered a problem and
cannot display the requested page".

We are still investigating on this issue and have escalated the issue
to the concerned department. We are still waiting for further updates
and will appreciate it if you may co-operate and provide us some time to
resolve this issue. Once the issue is rectified we will update you with
further information.

Thank you for your understanding and co-operation.

Have a nice day!

Best regards,

Wisut Pisitsangkakul
Support Professional
Microsoft Customer Service and Support (South East Asia)

Good Luck

All the best and good luck to Regine for her first and subsequent papers from today.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Singled out WindowsUpdate Woe

I managed to single out the reason behind why my windowsupdate at home does not work. This is a problem of Singnet. Using my same laptop, I successfully connect myself to windowsupdate on NUS wireless network and an anonymous wireless network. However, my test failed on my home Singnet broadband and Regine's Singnet broadband. Test also failed on my friend's Singnet broadband.

I called up Singnet again and this time the customer service officer knew his stuff. At least he knew what I am talking about even though he got the MTU as Maximum Transfer Unit which is wrong. He confirmed that I am not the only one complaining about this and so is most likely a Singnet problem. Hope they will revert back to me asap.

Frappr!

This is interesting
http://www.frappr.com/ee

Waiting to see more from Asia.

Flushed with success on World Toilet Day

YESTERDAY 19th November was World Toilet Day.

US Road to Isolationism

The Democrats will win the next Presidential election which will be in the next 4 year's time.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Gave a lecture to a Singnet Customer Service Officer

I realized my windowsupdate problem could be due to ISP MTU setting. I made a call to Singnet 1800 call service and my first call was pleasant. The customer service officer was knowledgeable and direct me to the steps to do the configuration. However, I was not ready to launch the configure program at that moment of time and so just relied on my memorization of steps. I made a second call to the 1800 service but was attended to by another person. This person was not knowledgeable. Described to him the whole situation and kept telling him I am able to connect to the internet but just couldn't get to windowsupdate. I told him I am able to get to windowsupdate in NUS but not at home. WindowsUpdate just returned an error number and I managed to find an article telling me that it could be deal to ISP MTU setting being not setup correctly. That stupid guy just kept telling me that Singnet does not provide the level of help if it is not found in their database. But I just couldn't understand how come the first guy was so fast in telling me the configuration and so detailed but then this guy just couldn't tell me. He did not even seem to understand what is windowsupdate. When I told him I am trying to perform windowsupdate, he asked me what OS I am trying to upgrade from WindowsXP SP2. Oh my goodness! Going to windowsupdate is not to upgrade an OS but rather is to apply patches isn't it? He just kept on telling me am I able to connect to the internet and surf and kept explaining to me how to connect to the internet despite me telling him YES I can surf but just not the windowsupdate. I just need to know how to set the MTU setting like what the first officer guided me. I was fed up. In the end, I asked him if he knew what is MTU. But he just kept telling me Singnet don't provide this support and end up teaching me how to connect to the internet again.

My reply to his "service" is this.
"For your reference, MTU stands for Maximum Transmission Unit. As a technical support officer, one should not restrict himself to just what Singnet database offers you. He needs to know more than that because any problems can be asked by any customers and he needs to be ready to troubleshoot. If you really don't understand what MTU is then you should transfer this call to someone more knowledgeable than you."

From my elder brother, he has a friend who used to work as a Singnet customer service officer. That friend is only ITE graduate. IMHO, I feel this position should at least demand a Diploma holder.

What an experience!

Windows Update Woes Again!!!

Cannot work at home!
Don't know what happened.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Windows Update Woes

Yesterday, I formatted my laptop and re-installed WinXP. I applied SP2 and installed NAV 2003. But then I end up not able to perform Windows update. WindowsUpdate.log shows download failed for some crucial *.cab files which really puzzled me. HOSTS file is not tampered but then I just cannot contact windowsupdate.com. I tried whatever possibilities on the internet to troubleshoot but to no avail. I am now a serious windowsupdate troubleshooter. Below are 2 postings made by 2 gurus.

Extract 1 - MowGreen [MVP 2003-2006] from microsoft.public.windowsupdate newsgroup
Open Internet Options in the Control Panel. If you're NOT running a proxy server, click the Connections tab.

Click the LAN Settings button. If any boxes are checked there, UNcheck them. Click OK.

Click the Advanced tab. Scroll down to HTTP 1.1 settings. UNcheck the box next to " Use HTTP 1.1 through proxy connections ".
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Under Java ( or Microsoft VM ) which java package is installed ?
If the Java (Sun) JRE is installed make sure that the box next to it is checked. If the Microsoft VM is installed, make sure that the JIT compiler for virutal machine is enabled.
If BOTH are installed, uncheck the Microsoft VM boxes and make sure that the Java (Sun) " Use JRE .. " is checked. Click Apply, OK to make the setting stick.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

IF that doesn't resolve the issue, try reregistering these files.
Go to Start, Run, type in

regsvr32 softpub.dll

Press Enter or click OK.
Do the same for :

Wintrust.dll, Initpki.dll, Dssenh.dll, Rsaenh.dll, Gpkcsp.dll, Sccbase.dll, Slbcsp.dll, Mssip32.dll, and Cryptdlg.dll

If that doesn't resolve the issue, download and install Windows Script 5.6 for XP/Win 2K :
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=C717D943-7E4B-4622-86EB-95A22B832CAA&displaylang=en
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Other possible causes could be Norton Internet Security, an entry in the HOSTS file that has a static IP address for Windows Update, or a security program ( popup and/or script blocker, or Bugmenot,etc. ) that is blocking access to downloading from WU.


Extract 2 - Wisut Pisitsangkakul, a Support Professional from Microsoft Customer Service and Support (South East Asia) - EXCELLENT! Replied within 1 business day
To troubleshoot the issue ,kindly follow the steps given below.

Regarding " Windows Update Error Number : 0x80072EFF ".

We would suggest you to follow the given steps:

1. Click Start
2. Click Run
3. Type "Notepad"
4. Copy and paste all the data into the notepad file
5. Save the file as solution.bat (You may save it on the desktop)
6. Close all running applications and disconnect from Internet and
Network.
7. Double click the file solution.bat

Copy the data between the lines
************************************************************************************
************************************************************************************
regsvr32 comcat.dll /s
regsvr32 shdoc401.dll /s
regsvr32 shdoc401.dll /i /s
regsvr32 asctrls.ocx /s
regsvr32 oleaut32.dll /s
regsvr32 shdocvw.dll /I /s
regsvr32 shdocvw.dll /s
regsvr32 browseui.dll /s
regsvr32 browseui.dll /I /s
regsvr32 msrating.dll /s
regsvr32 mlang.dll /s
regsvr32 hlink.dll /s
regsvr32 mshtmled.dll /s
regsvr32 urlmon.dll /s
regsvr32 plugin.ocx /s
regsvr32 sendmail.dll /s
regsvr32 scrobj.dll /s
regsvr32 mmefxe.ocx /s
regsvr32 corpol.dll /s
regsvr32 jscript.dll /s
regsvr32 msxml.dll /s
regsvr32 imgutil.dll /s
regsvr32 thumbvw.dll /s
regsvr32 cryptext.dll /s
regsvr32 rsabase.dll /s
regsvr32 inseng.dll /s
regsvr32 iesetup.dll /i /s
regsvr32 cryptdlg.dll /s
regsvr32 actxprxy.dll /s
regsvr32 dispex.dll /s
regsvr32 occache.dll /s
regsvr32 occache.dll /i /s
regsvr32 iepeers.dll /s
regsvr32 urlmon.dll /i /s
regsvr32 cdfview.dll /s
regsvr32 webcheck.dll /s
regsvr32 mobsync.dll /s
regsvr32 pngfilt.dll /s
regsvr32 licmgr10.dll /s
regsvr32 icmfilter.dll /s
regsvr32 hhctrl.ocx /s
regsvr32 inetcfg.dll /s
regsvr32 tdc.ocx /s
regsvr32 MSR2C.DLL /s
regsvr32 msident.dll /s
regsvr32 msieftp.dll /s
regsvr32 xmsconf.ocx /s
regsvr32 ils.dll /s
regsvr32 msoeacct.dll /s
regsvr32 inetcomm.dll /s
regsvr32 msdxm.ocx /s
regsvr32 dxmasf.dll /s
regsvr32 l3codecx.ax /s
regsvr32 acelpdec.ax /s
regsvr32 mpg4ds32.ax /s
regsvr32 voxmsdec.ax /s
regsvr32 danim.dll /s
regsvr32 Daxctle.ocx /s
regsvr32 lmrt.dll /s
regsvr32 datime.dll /s
regsvr32 dxtrans.dll /s
regsvr32 dxtmsft.dll /s
regsvr32 WEBPOST.DLL /s
regsvr32 WPWIZDLL.DLL /s
regsvr32 POSTWPP.DLL /s
regsvr32 CRSWPP.DLL /s
regsvr32 FTPWPP.DLL /s
regsvr32 FPWPP.DLL /s
regsvr32 WUAPI.DLL /s
regsvr32 WUAUENG.DLL /s
regsvr32 ATL.DLL /s
regsvr32 WUCLTUI.DLL /s
regsvr32 WUPS.DLL /s
regsvr32 WUWEB.DLL /s
regsvr32 wshom.ocx /s
regsvr32 wshext.dll /s
regsvr32 vbscript.dll /s
regsvr32 scrrun.dll mstinit.exe /setup /s
regsvr32 msnsspc.dll /SspcCreateSspiReg /s
regsvr32 msapsspc.dll /SspcCreateSspiReg /s
regsvr32 /s urlmon.dll
regsvr32 /s mshtml.dll
regsvr32 /s shdocvw.dll
regsvr32 /s browseui.dll
regsvr32 /s jscript.dll
regsvr32 /s vbscript.dll
regsvr32 /s scrrun.dll
regsvr32 /s msxml.dll
regsvr32 /s actxprxy.dll
regsvr32 /s softpub.dll
regsvr32 /s wintrust.dll
regsvr32 /s dssenh.dll
regsvr32 /s rsaenh.dll
regsvr32 /s gpkcsp.dll
regsvr32 /s sccbase.dll
regsvr32 /s slbcsp.dll
regsvr32 /s cryptdlg.dll
regsvr32 /s schannel.dll
regsvr32 /s oleaut32.dll
regsvr32 /s ole32.dll
regsvr32 /s shell32.dll
regsvr32 /s initpki.dll
regsvr32 /s msscript.ocx
regsvr32 /s dispex.dll
regsvr32 jscript.dll /s
del %temp% /Q /F
del c:\wutemp /Q /F
net stop wuauserv
ren %windir%\system32\catroot2 catroot2.old
cd /d %windir%\SoftwareDistribution
rd /s DataStore /Q
regsvr32 wuapi.dll /s
regsvr32 wups.dll /s
regsvr32 wuaueng.dll /s
regsvr32 wucltui.dll /s
regsvr32 wuweb.dll /s
regsvr32 msxml.dll /s
regsvr32 msxml2.dll /s
regsvr32 msxml3.dll /s
regsvr32 urlmon.dll /s
net start wuauserv

------------------------------------------------------------
If the issue remains, please try the next steps in Suggestion 1:

Suggestion 1:
************
This error occurs if the Internet connection or configuration is
preventing access

to the Windows Update site. We will need to disable the proxy for your
computer.

1. Start Internet Explorer
2. On the Tools menu, click Internet Options
3. Click the Connections tab.
4. Click LAN Settings
5. Clear the Use a proxy server for your LAN check box.
6. Click OK.
7. Close Internet Explorer.

Restart Windows and try accessing the windows update site. If the issue
still
exists, please try the next set of instructions in Suggestion 2.

Suggestion 2:
************
This error may also occur if one or more of the following services are
disabled or
not running. We will therefore RESET Background Intelligent Transfer
Service and
the Automatic Updates service.

1. Click Start --) select Run. In the Run box, type "services.msc"
Click OK.
2. Find the Background Intelligent Transfer Service. Right-click on it
and select "Properties".
3. Click on Stop and then again click on Start. In the Startup Type
list, make sure that "Automatic" is selected. Click OK.
4. Similarly find Automatic Updates service, then right-click on it and
select Properties.
5. Click on Stop and then again click on Start. In the Startup Type
list, make sure that "Automatic" is selected. Click OK
6. Close the Services window

[Please note that if the service is already started the "Start" button
will be grayed out. In this case "Stop" the service and then "Start" it
again. On the other hand if the service is not running, the "Stop"
button will be grayed out. In this case "Start" the service]

Once we have reset the two services, please access the Windows update
site and check if the issue is resolved. If the issue remains, please
try the next steps in Suggestion 3 .


Suggestion 3
***********
This issue also occurs due to security settings in Internet Explorer.
Let's change the security settings applied to your system. This can be
done by performing the following steps.

Add Windows Update to the Trusted Sites Zone:
--------------------------------------------------
Add Windows Update to the list of Trusted Site Zones. Security settings
in Internet Explorer must be set to Medium or lower for ActiveX files
to correctly pass to your computer. Only the Web sites listed in
Internet Explorer's Trusted Sites Zone will be affected by the lowering of
Security settings. Your current security settings for all other Web sites
will remain as they are currently configured.

1. From the main toolbar in Internet Explorer, click Tools, and then
click Internet Options.
2. Click Security.
3. Click Trusted Sites Zone.
4. Click Sites.
5. Clear the Require server verification (https:) for all sites in this
zone check box.
6. Use the Add button next to the Add this Web site to the zone box to
add the following sites:

http://*.windowsupdate.microsoft.com
https://*.windowsupdate.microsoft.com
http://download.windowsupdate.com

7. Click OK.

As a Web Developer

I have land myself a job as a Web Developer with salary after CPF deduction at S$2,400 and rejected a job offer. The rejected job offer is a Software Engineer position at S$2,300 but before CPF deduction. I will start work on 3rd Jan 2006 but it is only 3 months contract. I wouldn't mind for the attractive salary.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Smurf Goodnight Song

***********
Try to sleep now, close your eyes
Soon the birds would stop singing
Twinkling stars, are shining bright
They'll be watching you all night

All the things, you enjoy
On this beautiful day
All your friends, all your toys
will be waiting for you to play

"Mr moonlight will come bring you dreams
As soon as the lights are out
And tomorrow you must tell me
what those dreams were all about"

Try to sleep now, close your eyes
Try to think of tomorrow
All of us wish you good night
So I'm switching off the lights

One more hug, one more smile
Kiss you once, kiss you twice
I'll be here for a while
Try to sleep now and close your eyes

GOOD NIGHT!
***********

For you all to enjoy.
http://www.eecis.udel.edu/~eckman/misc/ascii/ascii/smurf


Too bad I lost the mp3.

YouTube version:

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Custom Misfortune

I made a trip to JB last Thursday to buy 2 return train tickets from KL. At the counter, a train on its way back to Singapore arrived. I decided to buy ticket for that train to return to Singapore. Everything was in a rush and I was the last passenger for that train. I quickly bought the 2 tickets from KL-JB and 1 ticket for that just-arrived train back Singapore. I rushed to get my ticket punched and hopped onto the train. None of the JB immigration officers stopped me to have my passport checked. They just let me pass them. On the train, I realized I forgot to have my passport stamped to prove my exit from JB! I made a call to Regine and she advised me to go back to JB custom and have my passport stamped to avoid future problems. I reached Singapore-Woodlands arrival hall, had my bag scanned, made my way to Singapore-Woodlands departure hall again, exit Singapore, and then finally reached JB custom again. This time the queue was a lot longer than earlier. When it's my turn, I explained to the immigrant officer that the officers from the train departure side forgot to stamp my passport. He understood my problem and allowed me to pass through and enter JB. I made my way straight to JB exit point again and had my passport stamped at last. This time, I had to leave for Singapore by bus along the heavily congested causeway and not on a train because the next-bound train would only be coming in an hour's time. All in all, I had wasted about 2 hours for the mistake I made.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Yahoo Sucks

I don't understand why my yahoo account is removed without warning. This means my geocities account is gone too for "good". There goes my wap files.

Give back to me!

Iran Oh Iran

Their remark will cause them their place in UN.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

NSF Days Over Soon

In just 52 more days, my NSF term will be over. This does not include Saturdays and Sundays, 2 public holidays, and my remaining 17 days of leave. On top of that, I think I may take one more MC.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Back Camp

I will be back in camp from tomorrow onwards. Regine JIAYOU!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

You are currently using 276 MB (10%) of your 2654 MB

Finally I managed to use 10% of my gmail account size. A total of 5225 email topics make up the 276MB size emails. So this means on average each email topic is only of 54.090717703349282296650717703168KB which is rather small as compared to many others I believe. It is true that I received mostly text-based emails only with file attachments.

You are currently using 276 MB (10%) of your 2654 MB.

Congrats to Myo

Congrats to myo for getting his PR. You certainly can go travel easier without worrying much on Visa.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Quote of the Day

That's the objective of both Google and Sun

The point here is both companies are dedicated to software as a service, and the network as the computer.

NUS Library Complaint

Since I promised to write something about the complaint I made to NUS library days ago, I will uphold my promise now.

The purpose of the email is to bring out the problem of outdated IT books in the NUS Science library. If one were to notice, many books on the shelves were old and were from years as old as the hills can be. Books of year 2004 or 2005 are rare. I see this as not helpful at all espeically to IT undergraduates. I feel students should have easy access to a vast repository of new books since school fees are paid for. A world class university like NUS not having decent bookshelves is a disgrace. I conducted a comparison with the local polytechnics and found out that NUS is no match with them when it comes to owning new library books. NUS libraries actually resembles a museum, keeping out-dated books since early days. Unlike NUS, SP and TP keep updating their shelves and have many new books of year later than year 2004. NUS has very few books of year later than year 2004.

NUS Library Search
http://libpweb.nus.edu.sg/web/appmanager/lib/desk
SP Library Search
http://www.lib.sp.edu.sg/
TP Library Search
http://spark.opac.tp.edu.sg/F?RN=374436816

Do a simple search on terms like "jsp", "tomcat", "vb net", "windows", etc say it all.

Reply from them is that their budget is tight and so will need to spend wisely. I don't accept this excuse. It seems I have to fall back on SP should I decided to become a member of a tertiary institution for access to a large repository of IT books. Furthermore, SP membership fee is more than half cheaper than that of NUS's.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Acronyms

Came across this and thought it is rather interesting.

<start>

http://www.howtouniverse.com/CI/chatterms.html
http://www.strangecosmos.com/content/item/24523.html

Quite comprehensive:
http://netforbeginners.about.com/cs/netiquette101/a/abbreviations.htm
http://netforbeginners.about.com/cs/netiquette101/a/abbreviations_2.htm
http://netforbeginners.about.com/cs/netiquette101/a/abbreviations_3.htm
http://netforbeginners.about.com/cs/netiquette101/a/abbreviations_4.htm

Ass.. Acronyms Say "Stupid!"

Acronyms are, in my humble opinion, a blight upon the young and the lazy. Yes, I'm from another time period. And in that time period IBM acronyms ruled and you weren't "in the know" and a real engineer unless you could spew those acronyms from your mouth and listening to them in return while determining the architecture for the next big application. Resumes were riddled with these funny little meaningless phrases that, if used properly, landed you jobs at the best consulting firms and, if not, pushed you into a purgatory of punching and sorting cards or, even worse, selling insurance. To the outside world they might as well have been Greek and that was cool because you knew something they didn't - you were a real engineer and doing something few others could do.

I was a real engineer. I wanted to make my own acronym. I had just built this really nice application interface technology to let banking applications written in IBM mainframe COBOL use an expert system running on a unix box (so they could better discriminate and more effectively seperate the suckers from their money.) I thought Application Interface Development System sounded pretty good...oops.

Today our children use acronyms like it's a second language. In a sense it is. But it is also a grossly misunderstood and abused language. People who have caught the bug let the acronyms fly without regard to proper sentence construction and grammar. As a result, few understand and the rest are confused and occasionally insulted. Take the simple phrase "lol". To most it means "laughing out loud." I use it myself when appropriate. But my 11-year-old daughter will use it to mean "lots of love." OK, now I'm confused...what does it mean again? Have to watch that context.

What I find most annoying is when people overuse an acronym. Take the above example: lol. Having a conversation with my daughter she will use lol (as laughing out loud) about once every three sentences. Yet she never actually laughs. I know this because I have conversations with her when we are in separate rooms of the same house (we are both, much to my wife's dismay, engineers.) Another acquaintance of mine will use it when he is ever so slightly amused by my misunderstanding of facts or lack of knowledge. I write "this is how I would do it" and he responds, "lol, have you considered doing it the other way?" Now I am not as well versed in the subtleties of this other language but I believe I am not too far off the mark if I read this as "laughing out loud, have you ..." Extrapolate just a little more and put the two of us in the same room where I say "this is how..." and he responds by laughing out loud and says "have you considered..." and now the conversation has gone from cute to insulting. Communication is 90 percent infection and body language and 10% content (or something like that) - why take chances with that 10% if that's all you have with which to work?

Acronyms have always been and always will be the way of the lazy and the clickers. I am neither lazy nor do I feel a need to use acronyms to be part of a group. Camaraderie is built upon common experience and shared interests, not by learning and using the obtuse language of the group. Maintaining a group though the use of some arcane codes, handshakes, or other silly gesture that only the included know may create an artificial sense of connectedness but it also alienates others and gives the members an excuse not to really explore why there is a group in the first place. Some might say that the second language is here to stay and, if you look in any modern dictionary, you will see some of these new "words." That will happen eventually and, when the larger population accepts the phrase as a legitimate word much the same way "Kleenex" now is synonymous with tissue and "OK" means, well, OK, then that is the way it will be. In the mean time I will be boring and stick with what is tried and true because I respect those with whom I communicate and I prefer that their understanding of me and my feelings is as close as possible to what I am.

So, now that I have wasted my time spewing this crap to a blog that few will read and most who do will retort with funny and snide remarks (presented as acronyms no less)...

FYAYH,

Kevin

P.S. I'm pretty sure I'm going to regret this post by the end of today ;-)

</start>

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Going back camp

Suddenly feel so so tired. Haiz...

Lihat Sini

Lihat Sini - Please proceed to any bus interchange and read the white piece of announcement pasted on walls/pillars. It states the extension of smoking bans on more public places. Offenders will be fined S$200.

Complaint to NUS Lib

Made a complaint to NUS library a week ago. I will elaborate on this only after blogger solves its richtext editor. It's really making me lose mood in posting any new entries.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Taiwan braces for Typhoon Longwang

The first typhoon, Typhoon Talim, I experienced last month killed 3 people and injured 59. God bless.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Book List

I have decided to set up webpage to show a list of IT-related books I have read the past few years since I first touched PC back in 1998. I wish it will serve as a motivator for me to read more.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Write Resume Tomorrow

I am going to write my resume and cover letter tomorrow. Cover letter is a headache.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

ROC Training

13 Aug
I reached 高雄国际航空站 in the morning. Weather was not good and was in fact drizzling. A typhoon had just passed Taiwan. We alighted from the Eva Air plane right onto the runway where we were picked up by a shuttle bus to the arrival hall. The system could have been better if we alighted not on the runway and at a place with shelter.

We then took a bus from the airport straight to our camp, Hengchun Camp. The journey was long. It was too early a morning and so all the shops along the way were not opened. I could see mountains everywhere.

Hengchun Camp was more like an old camp to me. The camp was there for more than 30 years. The external looked average but then the internal revealed itself. More than 50 soldiers were made to live in a bunk! Fans were not enough! Toilets were at another block and so we actually had to cross to another block just to use the toilet. Toilet facilities were bad too. Some of the showers let out water that could boil an egg! Those were condemmed. The first day was more like an admin day. Packing of stuff, setting up of beds, and orientation around the camp were all done on the first day.

NAVEX
NAVEX, NAVigation EXercise, was the first outfield. This was a 3 days 2 nights exercise and to pass this exercise, each team had to find a total of 5 check points inclusive of start point, log points and end point. I was allocated to one of the Charlie Coy teams. NAVEX was the most enjoying exercise to me because of the absence of CO. The purpose of the NAVEX was to acclimatise us to the undulating mountaineous terrains of ROC. Even though the distance to be covered was more than 25km and terrains in ROC was more undulating, it did not turn out to be as tiring as the previous few exercises in Singapore. Maybe seeing civilians outfield gave us motivation to move on. Houses, shops and civilians could be seen everywhere even on top of mountains. KTV (both mobile and fixed), restaurants, hotels, houses, temples, anything could be spotted anywhere. There's also this special service that we labelled them as Ninja Vans. Ninja Vans are mobile food stalls that come in the form of a van. They often were seen tracking the whereabouts of soldiers, following behind soldiers and then stopped in front of them, setting up their mobile food stall, hoping to earn some money out of the soldiers. NAVEX was the only exercise that permitted me to patronise these ninja vans. They sold cold drinks, chicken burger, etc. My first night outfield was spent in a house beside a temple. The owner of the house was kind enough to take in 2 teams and allowed us to spend our night there. The next morning, we were awoken by the owner for breakfast. I could not believe my eyes when I saw a big pot of hot plain porridge and more than 5 varieties of vegetarian dishes on the table. They were more than enough for more than 20 people. We did not manage to finish the food in the end. We offered to pay for the food but was rejected and so we decided to give the money as offerings to the temple instead. The owner was really very nice people. My team then went on to find the remaining checkpoints. We were determined to complete the exercise before the second night so we could spend the night in camp instead of outfield. We succeeded.

Platoon Battle Course
Platoon Battle Course was the second outfield for me. This outfield actually only involved platoon levels and so I should not even be involved. However, CO wished to conduct a visit and see how individual platoons performed and so I was called to accompany him. This outfield was quite a relaxing one. Just needed to walk around and observed how other people fight. Everyone wore a system called the TES. A head mount on the helmet plus a harness on the webbing constituted the TES. For goodness sake, it's quite heavy and most importantly, it's uncomfortable. The purpose of the TES is to indicate who has being killed in action or wounded in action during a battle. TES will give a continuous beep sound for KIA personnel and a discontinuous beep sound for WIA personnel. There was one platoon who was made to fight in a cemetery. Cemeteries in Taiwan and the ones in Singapore were so much different. In Taiwan, all cemeteries are really huge and grand. I hope the dead were not disturbed.

CME
CME, Company Mission Exercise, was the third outfield for me. I would say this one is rather tiring. The 3 different companies - Alpha, Bravo and Charlie, were made to fight one another. CO and I were attached to Alpha team. The night walk was quite okay except for the river bed walk. My whole boots and feet were all wet because of the river bed walk. The morning walk was tiring. Ever-ending up and down the mountains plus the hot sun made everyone so tired. Everything was over in the early afternoon.

BME
BME, Battalion Mission Exercise, was the fourth or rather the final exercise before the ATEC. Talks circulated that this walk would be a test for everyone. We would be doing a mountain hook around RAMROD. Map distance revealed only 7km but this was without taking consideration of elevation and mountain hook. By the time we reached the peak of the mountain (700m plus), the feeling was good. Cooling wind plus a 30min rest energized me. Mountain hook is really a good experience to me.

Nights off at Kenting
After the BME, we were given a grace 1 week rest before the real test, ATEC. Arrangements were made to ferry all soldiers to Kenting. Kenting is a tourist attraction. It is basically a night market. Roadside food stalls, souvenirs shops, boutique, restaurants, etc can be found there. My friends and I had our dinner in a Italian restaurant. From the many roadside food stalls, I tried food like 烧烤鱿鱼, 鸵鸟沙爹, 羊沙爹, 鸭舌, etc. YUMMY!

Typhoon Talim
This typhoon was said to hit Taiwan and might disrupt ATEC. ATEC is the code name for the final exam which every battalion has to sit for. ATEC is an exercise to test how well a battalion can fight. The ATEC people will also put on their TES and then become enemies of us in the 4 days 3 nights exercise. If ATEC is delayed, then it may have to be held in Singapore instead. What this means is that our 1 month training and preparations in ROC will go down the drain. No one wanted to go back to Singapore for ATEC. In Hengchun, we were at the outskirts of the typhoon but then the wind was already blowing at around 30km/h. I could even feel sand particles blowing and hitting my legs. Birds were seen fleeing from their homes on trees and trying desperately looking for better shelters. But very often, they were blown and ended up against nearby concrete buildings. This night was the first time I had a really good sleep because of the cooling effect brought by the strong winds even though windows and doors were locked. By the next morning, Typhoon Talim had past us and Taiwan. ATEC would continue!

ATEC
I will continue writing some other day...


[ To Be Continued ... ]

AI Game

This AI game is really powerful
http://www.20q.net/

Why New Orleans (victim of hurricane Katrina) is vital

The Louisiana Purchase (this is back in the 19th century if I am correct) was important because it gave the US the port of New Orleans, the port at the mouth of the Mississippi. Even today the New York Times in an article titled. "Across the US, outrage at response" said, All the grain that's grown in Iowa and Illinois, and the huge industrial output of the Midwest has to come down the Mississippi River, and there has to be a port to handle it, to keep a functioning economy in the United States of America."

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Sony recalls 3.5 mln Playstation power adaptors

Sony Corp. is recalling 3.5 million faulty power adaptors for its popular PlayStation 2 video game console because they may overheat and cause injury. More information at http://www.ps2ac.com/

I ate a lot

Lunch
Lemon chicken rice add chicken for lunch.
30 minutes later.. Hup Lee Nasi Lemak.

Dinner
Yong Tau Foo
1.5 hours later.. Fried rice.

Guess I must have missed Singapore's food too much.

"Good Samaritan" or "Poverty Pimp"

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/240452_bumvertising13.html

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Tired

I am so tired and sleepy now. I had only a couple of hours of sleep on the plane. This means I only had that little amount of rest for the past 2 days.

I will update my ROC trip tomorrow.

Back in Singapore

I am finally back from ROC training. Yeah!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Freelance Project Finally Over

Finally after more than 2 months of work together with Regine on a freelance project, the project is completed - at least 99.9% completed. The project is a web-based application for Regine's elder sister's financial company. For more than 2 months, we have spent most of our weekends on the project. The process is tiring no doubt but then at least we are together most of the weekends. If not for me only able to book out on weekends, this project would have completed earlier.

We went back to JB yesterday evening to submit the product. Before that, we took a bus from NUS to Jurong West to have a sumptuous curry fish head dinner. I ordered curry fish head, a plate of vegetable and 2 plates of plain rice. The serving is quite big. After we had finished our plate of plain rice, there were still a lot of food left and so.. hehe.. we ordered an additional plate of plain rice each.

The next morning (today), her sister handed RM1,800 to us for the project. I was rather shocked because I only expect to receive only around RM1,000.

In the afternoon, Regine and I made a trip to a IT shopping centre "Landmark". She bought a 512MB 333MHz DDR RAM for her laptop for RM215. Hope it is cheaper than in Singapore.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

All the Best to all NUS Students

Tomorrow is the first day of school for all NUS students for 2005/2006 semester 1. All the Best to all NUS Students.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Embarkation Leave

I am on embarkation leave till the day I board plane to ROC for ATEC.

Harbin Ice Wonderland

I got free ticket to Harbin Ice Wonderland from regine's sister. Regine and I went to the Harbin Ice Wonderland at Bugis today. We rented 2 winter clothing before we started our Ice World journey. I must admit the place is small and seriously there are nothing much to play. $16 is not worth it. But then I enjoyed myself today.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Stupid Me

I took off from NS today to collect a Dean's List certificate from NUS School of Computing. I wore collar shirt and jeans for the event, bearing in mind not to wear T-shirt so I wouldn't look too casual. When I reached LT34, I saw everyone wearing long sleeves shirt with pants and leather shoes. I really was shocked. I decided not to turn up for the event.

Feel so stupid. Never mind, I collect the cert on Monday.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Saturday, June 18, 2005

ARGH

Please don't ask me why I am not taking honours. It's has been my intention to take up Bachelor even before my very first semester starts. So please don't ask me why again.

In trouble

One of my friends is in trouble. Hope I can help a bit.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Stomachache

I had a stomachache just now all because of I being a glutton. I went to JB just now and before I left, I bought myself Bak Kut Teh for dinner at a coffeeshop. I guessed the Bak Kut Teh was the culprit for my stomachache.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

What's good of a COPA

Some of the benefits of a COPA are the following:
1) No duties for me other than "serving" CO. This means no COS, no duty clerk, no guard duty, etc.
2) No one (except CO) dares to ask me to do things.
3) Everyone (except CO) listens to me.
4) Everyone (except CO) takes my word seriously.
5) I am allowed to call everyone's including CO's handphone.
6) I need not queue up.
7) When I need to get something which is not found in my working area, I make a call and get someone to get it for me.

Bad day for me

CO called me early in the morning regarding particulars of members for this Sunday's briefing. I printed a list of contact numbers of members involved in the briefing and reminded him to bring home but then he forgot! This morning, he politely told me if I could make a trip to camp and tell him those contact numbers. My goodness! I live in Ang Mo Kio and my camp is at Lim Chu Kang! There goes my lunch with Regine. Before I left for camp, I called Orchid Country Club to help book 18-hole golf session for 4 on behalf of my that CO. Trip to camp took me almost 2 hours.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Life as a COPA

COPA (Commanding Officer Personal Assistant) is not easy at all. In practice, a COPA usually just stays in the office slogging like a typical secretary. Only the CO (Commanding Officer) runner is to go out-field. However, my CO (Commanding Officer) thinks otherwise. He feels there should not have a clear line separating between the duties and responsibilities of a COPA and a CO runner.

Some of the duties of a COPA are
1. Receive calls and take down messages
2. Schedule meetings/briefings for CO
3. Facilitate signing of documents
4. Check and reply his emails
5. Schedule cleaning of his GP car.
6. Keep his desk clean and neat
7. Pack his field pack
8. Ensure cleanliness of his field pack
9. Go out field with him
...

Going out field with him also sucks.
"Map please" - I have to pass to him
"Camo" - Pass him his camo cream
"Mirror" - ...
...

Would not want to describe further.

I have GRADUATED

Finally, I have confirmed to have graduated. My exam result was released on 1st June 0900. So happy :)

Saturday, May 28, 2005

BuzzCity Bogus?

Can anyone tell me is BuzzCity (http://www.buzzcity.com) a bogus website? I have no time to check on them and so I am relying on anyone who may happen to barge into my blog to help me out.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

10GB Free

Nearly forgotten about this. I sent my laptop for servicing few weeks ago. My laptop was having a mere 4KB of bad disk sector and a suspected LCD problem. Fujitsu engineers had determined that my LCD is perfectly okay. As for my harddisk, they replaced it for free with a 40GB brand new harddisk instead of getting a same size harddisk as my original one because they could not find a 30GB harddisk. My laptop is on warranty and so the replacement is free-of-charge! So happy.

Star Wars 3

Went to buy a pair of tickets for Star Wars at Orchard Cinneleisure early in the morning 10am plus. I, being a M1 user, am entitled half price for the 2nd ticket. Yeah!

Overall, the show was average only at least in my opinion.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Countdown To Kickoff Soon

A countdown is scheduled to kick-off in less than 2 hours time at 12MN.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Friday the 13th

I don't reckon anything bad is going to happen to me.
At least it never happen on any Friday the 13th.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Suspend Cleanup Duties

I have officially announced temporary suspension of my voluntary cleanup duties on EE. See you guys in an approximately 211 days later.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Laptop Sent for Servicing

Finally, my laptop is sent for servicing. Hope I can get a new LCD and a new harddisk if possible. Hehe..

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all mothers.

Zoo Trip YEAH

Went to the zoo today with Regine, her sister, and her sister's boyfriend. Weather was hot but I still find it quite fun. We took quite a lot of photos and I must admit many were quite well taken. Too bad we don't have the time to make a trip down the Children's World and have a ride on the tram.

Overall, it was truely fun.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Zoo Trip Very Soon

So excited. I will be going to the zoo in few hours time. YEAH!

Friday, May 06, 2005

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Backup All Blog Post

I am too afraid of losing my blog post. I will backup all blog posts onto a database soon hopefully within this week.

Regine's Last Paper

4th May is Regine's last paper. I can see she really is very excited over it. Ya, we went for a ktv session from 2pm till 7pm that same day with Regine's JC friends at Clementi KBox. We then went to HollandV for dinner and a drink.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

NUS Summary

I shall now summarize the 2 short years of my life in NUS.

I knew life in NUS will be of few friends from my poly friends (girls) who enrolled before me. They told me it is always difficult to make new friends especially those from JCs. Those from JCs usually have their own usually big group of buddies and when come to forming groups for projects, they are always together. So, it is good to come in with someone whom you know of especially if you are from poly. I am from poly but I am the only one enrolling in year 2003/2004. Girls enrolled 1 year before me and all guys enrolled 1 year later than me because they choose not to disrupt from NS.

Pre-NUS
I conducted a medical checkup at NUS one hot afternoon. That was the first day I set foot on NUS. As required by NUS for all poly students, I took QET (Qualified English Test). I bumped onto a primary school friend, Francis. We lost contact after PSLE even though he lived just opposite my block. Francis was from NP. The paper was tough and as expected, I failed the paper. I attended a seminar for poly students on how to choose modules. I saw Francis and made more friends all being Francis's friends. They are all from NP. From them, I heard all failed the QET except one. I think that was expected since all of us did not have exposure to English writing for at least 5 years. I had set myself Bachelor in Computing (Tech Focus). Getting a Honours degree never came to my mind because I knew there are far too many modules like Mathematics modules, Physics module, life science module, Singapore Studies module, and General Education modules that will kill poly students. Our Mathematics, Sciences and English capabilities are far behind others. Let's settle for a Merit instead of a 2nd Lower of 3rd class honour degree. 2 years and get out of it.

Orientation
I attended the NUS orientation but only turned up for 2.5 days out of the total 5 days - first day, third day and the half day on UNIX workshop. Through this orientation, I got to know friends like Regine (who became my girlfriend later), James, Peiru, etc.

Bid for Modules
Bidding for modules with virtual points? That's new. From recommendations from my poly friends (girls), I chose my modules carefully. After all, they are my seniors. I bidded for 5 modules and they are, 1) CS2104 - Programming Language Concepts, 2) CS2106 - Operating Systems, 3) CS2250 - Fundamentals of Information Systems, 4) MA1505C - Mathematics 1, and 5) GEK1505 - Living With Mathematics. I took an additional 6th module ET1000 to satisfy the English requirement.

2003/2004 Sem 1
I dropped CS2250 - Fundamentals of Information Systems because I find that module too business-like. I never like this type of module. I prefer technical stuff. This means I had only 4 modules this semester and I would need to take an additional module to make up for this. ET1000 is a module I love. Lots of interaction and chatting. Class size is small and we have discussion groups instead of lectures. Everyone know one another. From ET1000, I get to know friends like Wenkang, Rui Kai, etc. MA1505C is a module I dislike (not hate). I spent most of my time on MA1505C. Mathematics used to be my strongest module in primary and secondary school days but in NUS, I am handicapped. I was at the science library reading the Calculus RBR textbook most of my free time. From this semester, I got to know friends from other poly like Francis (NP), Ziwei (NP), Chunyin (NP), and Peiru (NYP). We worked together as project mates from this semester onwards.

2003/2004 Sem 2
I took 6 modules this time to make up the one I dropped 1 semester ago and they are 1) CS1231 - Discrete Structures, 2) CS2105 - Computer Networks 1, 3) CS3240 - Human Computer Interaction, 4) LSM1302 - Genes and Society, 5) MA1101R - Linear Algebra 1, and 6) ST1232 - Probability & Statistics. LSM1302 and MA1101R were not my cup of tea but I still have to take them. CS1231 is another Maths-like module even though it is prefixed as CS (Computer Science). CS1231 is all about proving mathematical methodologies, formulas, graph theories, and probabilities. Notice the so many non-CS modules here. I hate them! There is particular one friend whom took 2 modules with me! Regine is the one! She also took CS1231 and LSM1302. It was this semester whereby we got to know each other better. She eventually became my girlfriend.

2004/2005 Sem 1
I took 5 modules and they are 1) CS2281 - Programming in UNIX, 2) CS3235 - Introduction to Computer Security, 3) CS3266 - E-Commerce Technologies, 4) EC1301 - Principles of Economics, and 5) GEK2000 - The U.S. From Settlement to Superpower.

2004/2005 Sem 2 (Final Sem)
I took 4 modules this time and they are 1) CS2301 - Business and Technical Communication, 2) CS3214 - Information Systems Development Project, 3) FNA1002 - Financial Accounting, and 4) SSB2216 - Employee Management In Singapore. 4 modules do not imply easy semester. This is because one of them, CS3214, is a big final year project. I was grouped with Francis, Ziwei, Chunyin and Peiru.

Post-NUS
I knew I will miss NUS. I will miss everything. Life in NUS is very much different from primary, secondary and poly life. In NUS, competition is too strong and many have shown their true colours.

Some have proven to be selfish and they have the calibre of a 100% hypocrite. He can go around telling people "I did not study", "I will definitely fail", etc. but then in the end, he is always studying. I don't understand why make it so obvious that you are studying very hard, spending sleepless nights, and at the same time going around telling others his famous quotes.

There is another group of people whom I classify as free loader. These free loaders always don't like to contribute in a group project. They can sleep during group discussions, appear to be busy, appear to be indifferent, always seen to be complaining about workload, always seen to be complaining on lecturers, etc. Free loaders are very clever because they can get away with it and share equal grades for the group project. Free loaders are NOT those who have tried but are unable to make solid contribution to the project. If one has tried their best, then they are not free loaders.

Another group is the lost-credible group. He used to be the okay type but then after 1 semester, because of poor CAP score, he became very grade conscious. He can make friends who are better in programming, studies, etc. He will try to stick with these friends and then try to form project groups with them. He can agree in joining a group but then jump boat to another group with "better" project mates. This person has lost his credibility.

There is whom I label as the sigh-group. People of this group are in search for a minor degree in areas like IS, etc. However, their CAP are enough just for a pass. They may even flunk one or more modules. They will end up getting a minor degree just because they manage to pass all modules eventually no matter what grade they got. I feel universities should set a minimum CAP requirement for students who wish to obtain a minor.

There are many more cases in NUS. I believe this has to do with the intense competition faced by everyone. Everyone wants to be better than everyone but end up doing things which are unbelievable. Everything is getting ugly.