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Showing posts from October, 2009

Updated Full Google Twitter Accounts

Is going to court one method to monetize for Facebook?

UPDATE on Thursday, Oct. 29: Today, a San Jose, Calif. court awarded Facebook $711 million in damages against Sanford Wallace, one of the spammers who accessed people's accounts without their permission and sent phony Wall posts and messages. While we don't expect to receive the vast majority of the award, we hope that this will act as a continued deterrent against these criminals. Most notably, the judge referred Wallace to the U.S. Attorney's Office with a request that Wallace be prosecuted for criminal contempt, which means that in addition to the judgment, he now faces possible jail time. This is another important victory in our fight against spam. We will continue to pursue damages against other spammers.

The Fight Goes On [via]

Review on Experts-Exchange

Exchanging of the Experts

This morning, I want to examine another site useful to both PC and Mac users called This web site helps experts find their answers by connecting them with other experts in their and others’ industries. For those who want a quick answer, or just do not care to interact with other people, they can use the knowledge database of 2.6 million solutions from various experts. For those who want the most up to date answer, they can ask their question, which will receive an answer from one of their 50,000 experts. Most of the time those answers come only an hour after the question. For those who cannot wait for that possibility of an answer in less than an hour, they can sign up under one of the various plans and receive an answer within 30 minutes. For those, who enjoy the hunt, they can explore the various categories for the solutions themselves. offers every expert a way to search for and come to the answer they desire.

For t…

Complaint lodged against my iOCBC Securities broker Matthew Chua

I wonder if it's because I don't trade with iOCBC Securities that I am being treated this way!

Dear Sir/Mdm,

I am writing to lodge an official complaint against my broker, Matthew Chua.

Many times, I have attempted to reach my broker but then he never attempted to reply me. The only time he replied was after I mentioned I was terribly irritated by his poor service and had consideration doing something against his inaction. Amazingly, he replied almost importantly. After he replied, I demanded an explanation and apology from him but he failed to reply again, till now!

I hereby wish the below investigation to be carried out
Check with the IT infrastructure team and verify if my emails were really lost.Or was it due to Matthew's unprofessional act?DEMAND a formal apology and explanation from Matthew.Have him changed.An answer from the management team on the action(s) to be taken for this matter.
I seek a detailed investigation from you. BTW, I am very utterly disappointed with Matt…

U.S. 3Q GDP up 3.5 percent

Data released today by the Commerce Department show that real GDP grew at an annual rate of 3.5 percent in the third quarter of the year. This is in stark contrast to the decline of 6.4 percent annual rate just two quarters ago.

On Today's GDP Numbers [via]

Google Maps Navigation for Android

Google just announced the next step for Google Maps for mobile: Google Maps Navigation (Beta) for Android 2.0 devices.

It's a dream owning Android phone! I want one!

Google Maps Navigation (Beta)

Here are seven features that are possible because Google Maps Navigation is connected to the Internet:The most recent map and business dataSearch in plain EnglishSearch by voiceTraffic viewSearch along routeSatellite viewStreet ViewAnnouncing Google Maps Navigation for Android 2.0 [via]

Google launches Music Search

Google is rolling out their new Music Search capability across U.S. gradually. This OneBox is limited only to the U.S., probably because the music sites that partnered with Google can provide full previews only in the U.S.

The picture below shows the music partners with Google.

Google Music Search Feature

Making search more musical [via]

Funds sweat over new CPFIS criteria

Funds sweat over new CPFIS criteria

Business Times - 29 Oct 2009

Some 40% risk being struck off; top quartile ranking is sticking point


(SINGAPORE) More than 40 per cent of the unit trusts and investment-linked insurance funds (ILPs) in the CPF Investment Scheme (CPFIS) are at risk of being struck off the scheme if they do not fully comply with CPF's admission criteria by January 2011.

By far the most contentious among the criteria is the one requiring the funds to be ranked among the top quartile (the highest 25 per cent) of their global peer group.

This is the sticking point, as fund managers can and have stepped in to ensure compliance with the other criteria. For instance, some managers subsidise the expenses of smaller funds to ensure that their expense ratios do not exceed CPF's caps.

Top quartile is defined along quantitative and qualitative factors, where a fund registered for Singapore sale will be scored and ranked alongside its global peer based on Morning…

Twitter added beta feature to organize people into list

On Oct 1, Twitter has announced that they are launching a new feature that allows friends to be organized and grouped into "Lists" soon. This should make the list of followers more neat.

Today, I am included into the small group of twitters to try out this new feature. The main inconvenience with this new feature is that there is no way we can multi-select friends we followed to and move them to a list. We have to do it one at a time.

Bid farewell to Geocities

For many like myself, especially those who started learning markup language (HTML) for the web in the 90s, we should have tried hosting our proud amateur web site on Geocities. This week, Yahoo!, the owner of Geocities, declared closure of Geocities for good.

I shall bid farewell to Geocities. My first hands-on on web will be with Geocities forever.

The Google Story

A (very) quick look back at the Google story over the last 11 years. From Stanford to Mountain View and around the world, featuring many different products, starting with BackRub (Search) up to Google Wave, StreetView and Chrome.

Man Utd loses to Liverpool

Before the kick off between Manchester United and Liverpool today, I predicted Liverpool is going to break the jinx of losing in this rivalry match, and they really did that in style! I am beginning to believe Chelsea is going to be the new champion for 2009/10 season.

Manchester United, please wake up!

Reds respond in style [via]

Invited for Google Wave

I am finally being invited for Google Wave after almost a month in the queue.

Okay, I have now 20 Google Wave invitations with me. Who wants to wave with me?

You may refer to my earlier post "Understanding What is Google Wave in Two Minutes" to learn more about Google Wave.

Mapletree Logistics Trust announced 3Q financial results

Mapletree Logisticsannounced its financial report for 3Q 2009. I must say it looks pretty healthy and strong. I owned shares of this company due to its relatively high dividend yield.

Steady 3Q 2009 results
Amount Distributable of S$29 million is 13% higher than in 3Q 2008Improvement driven largely by 10% y-o-y increase in NPI to S$44 million3Q 2009 DPU of 1.48 cents maintained vs 1.48 cents in 2Q 2009Stable tenant base ensures portfolio resilience
Approximately 80% of leases expiring in 2009 have been renewed or replacedSustained high portfolio occupancy above 97%High quality tenancies, long leases and strong leasing covenants (e.g. ample security deposits, rental escalations, etc.)Diversified tenant baseNo balance sheet risk
No refinancing risk in 2009Aggregate leverage stable at below 40%

Which Windows 7 is right for you?

The new operating system unveiled by Microsoft, Windows 7, comes in 4 editions - Starter, Home Premium, Professional, or Ultimate. Before you invest your money on Windows 7, it is important to know the differences among the many editions and make sure you don't get one that does not meet your needs.

CNET has a comprehensive article comparing the 4 editions of Windows 7.

Which Windows 7 is right for you? [via]

PSLE Maths Question with Workings

The below are some questions with workings asked in this year's 2009 PSLE Maths paper.

Question 1
The above figure is a square. The angle question answer above is 150 degrees. Because the bottom triangle is equilateral triangle. (draw a circular curve through all 3 lines and they become the radii of the incomplete circle otherwise known as the arc)
360 - 60 = 300 degree
300 degree / 4 = 75 degree
75 degree x 2 = 150 degree

Question 2

6 friends decided to rent computers from 2pm to 4.30pm. While 4 of them were playing, the other two would watch. If the cycle continues, and each of them played for equal number of minutes, how many minutes will each person get to play? Ans: 100 minutes

Question 3

Mei and Lin were in a bicycle race. Mei was travelling at a constant speed of 20km/hr and they both did not change their speed. When Lin completed half the race, Mei was 3.5km ahead. Mei completed the race at 10.45am. What time did Lin complete the race? Ans: 11.06am

Question 4

Sally baked some cookies…

Sunderland scored against Liverpool with help of a beach ball

Life's a beach for Sunderland. Sunderland scored a goal against Liverpool with the help of a beach ball. Former Premier League referee Jeff Winter branded the decision to allow Sunderland's winner against Liverpool as "absolutely amazing" for the goal should just not have stood. The laws of the game state that if there's an outside interference, the game has to be stopped. The soccer ball hit a beach ball and the beach ball completely deceived the Liverpool goalkeeper, resulting in the keeper going in the wrong direction. An outside influence is anything other than the 22 maximum players on the field and the referee. If it hits the referee and goes in, he's part of the game. If a spectator comes on the pitch and kicks the ball, the game must be stopped. Ironically, the beach ball was let in by a Liverpool fan.

The final score is Sunderland 1 Liverpool 0.

I am sorry that the embedded video showing the blunder is removed due to some legal issues.

Look at 2:00 mark…

XL is back in Dec!

Am getting quite excited that XL is soon to be back in Singapore from Hong Kong by end of Dec. It has been a long time since XL (Xiaoli), XM (Xiao Ming or myself) and etc get together. I promise to be a great host.

BTW, the reason for this regroup is made possible only because SL is getting married on 3 Jan 2010! Sorry to inform you that just invite me alone will do.

Weekly Address: Taking the Insurance Companies on Down the Stretch

Excerpt from Obama's Weekly Address speech.

It’s smoke and mirrors. It’s bogus. And it’s all too familiar. Every time we get close to passing reform, the insurance companies produce these phony studies as a prescription and say, "Take one of these, and call us in a decade." Well, not this time. The fact is, the insurance industry is making this last-ditch effort to stop reform even as costs continue to rise and our health care dollars continue to be poured into their profits, bonuses, and administrative costs that do nothing to make us healthy – that often actually go toward figuring out how to avoid covering people. And they’re earning these profits and bonuses while enjoying a privileged exception from our anti-trust laws, a matter that Congress is rightfully reviewing.

Now, I welcome a good debate. I welcome the chance to defend our proposals and to test our ideas in the fires of this democracy. But what I will not abide are those who would bend the truth – or break it …

Manage to squeeze 2 trainings after 2 were cancelled

After 2 of my trainings were cancelled prematurely due to work commitments and inefficiency of the HR, I manage to squeeze out 2 trainings in a day.
Have my 2 to 6 Nov 2009 NICF Object Oriented Analysis & Design training rescheduled to 25 to 29 Jan 2010.
Enrol myself into Leadership Foundation Course (LFC) Module 2 - Creating Winning Partnership, conducted by Adam Khoo Learning Technologies Group, from 3 to 4 Dec 2009.Hope they will not be cancelled again.

Dubai Support Fund Insufficient To Meet Debts

It is reported that Dubai needs to repay about $50 billion worth of debt over the next three years. It is not shocking to me after seeing them splurging money to build world's largest, tallest for almost everything. With oil now more than half its price 2 years ago, it is going to be tough.

S&P: Dubai Support Fund Insufficient To Meet Debts [via]

In a separate article published in PM Network August 2009 Volume 23, No. 8, article titled "DUBAI TAKES A DIVE?", I read the below.

Efficiency in the buying/selling, often mismatch, stock market

I suppose in any market, be it food market or stock market, pricing mismatch occurs everyday. That is why in every transaction, there is a seller who believe that the price is too high/low, and a buyer who believe the price is too low/high.

In an efficient market, the market returns is difficult to beat even with much effort trying to do so. Eg. Suppose Stock A generates a return of 50% over the past year, and an active investor tries to beat it. Stock A will be deemed as efficient if the investor finds it hard to generate a higher than 50% returns.

GIC could be in another multi-million to a billion dollar investment wipe out

One of the biggest, most high-profile deals of the commercial real-estate boom is in danger of imminent default, say people familiar with the matter, signalling the beginning of what is expected to be a wave of commercial-property failures.

Another big player in the restructuring talks could be Singapore's GIC. The fund owns a $575 million mezzanine loan backed by the property, according to people familiar with the matter. Also, GIC owns about $100 million to $200 million in equity, the people said.

Both investments might be wiped out unless GIC maneuvers to have more influence in the loan workout process, possibly by buying more senior debt. GIC declined to comment.

An Apartment Complex Teeters [via]

Fed up with my HR!

Can you believe my HR actually started to apply for my training only today, more than a month since I submitted to them? Because of their incapability and inefficiency, my 2 to 6 Nov 2009 training is terminated.

In under two weeks, two of my planned trainings are cancelled. I am going to squeeze one in no matter what!

PTC impose "huge" fine on SBS Transit and SMRT for $500 and $200 respectively

The Public Transport Council’s (PTC’s) regular review of SBS Transit and SMRT buses operating performance showed that in the 6-month period from 1 December 2008 to 31 May 2009, there were general improvements in performance and bus operators had largely met the Quality of Service (QoS) standards set.

For their improved extraordinary performance, the PTC is imposing lesser financial penalties of $500 and $200 on SBS Transit and SMRT respectively. In the previous
period, SBS Transit and SMRT were fined $4,500 and $100 respectively. The unbelievable small fine imposed is real and not a joke. I can say the amount fined is insignificant to the two companies and I certainly do not think they will even give a damn.

Great job to the PTC for the extraordinary small impact fine (with sarcasm).

Bus operators’ Quality of Service (QoS) has improved for the 6-month period, Dec 08 to May 09 [via]

Hope Lorenzo stock will stay or prosper

I learnt today that a friend actually bought Lorenzo stock without doing much study after getting some tips from colleague. It is said that the stock will rise further to S$0.18 per share. Today, Lorenzo ended higher by 21.739% to close at S$0.140.

I wouldn't and dare not comment on this particular stock since I have little knowledge of this company, except that it is a furniture making company. It's important to constantly remind myself not to be tempted and end up chasing stocks purely on market expectations.

What I can do now is to cross my fingers and hope the tip is accurate and Lorenzo stock value to stay or prosper near S$0.18 range.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for performance of Lorenzo's share price neither do I know the accuracy and the source of the "tip".

Twitter adds "Report as spam" feature

Twitter has added a new feature to report a user as spam. I believe the motivation in the new feature is an attempt to reduce the number of spammers and the many attempts of DDoS on Twitter.

Report as spam” button can be found under the Actions section of a profile’s sidebar. Once the user is "reported" as spam, Twitter's Trust and Safety team will verify and do the necessary actions. And any tweets from the user automatically be blocked from following or replying to you.

Help us nail spammers [via]

Got scolding from a scavenger for showing sympathy

I was at Holland Village hawker centre after school for my dinner when I saw a scavenger, in her seventies or eighties, walking around collecting aluminium drink cans and eating leftover food left behind by diners.

She sat just in front of me, at the same table as me, and finishing up the remaining Char Kway Teow left by someone else. Out of sympathy, I offered to buy her a plate of Char Kway Teow, but what I got in return from her was an extremely ungrateful snort and scolding. She then quickly walked away from my table.


Busy last quarter

Papers, papers and more papers
Readings, readings and more readings
Writings, writings and more writings

20 Oct - CS5261 Assignment 2
20 Oct - CS5261 Term Paper draft
24 Oct - CS5212 Presentation Dry Run
28 Oct - Flight Trial
02 Nov - CS5212 Presentation
02 Nov - CS5212 Term Paper
10 Nov - CS5261 Term Paper
02 to 06 Nov - OOAD Training
09 to 13 Nov - Software Safety Training cancelled (possible) for GAT
24 to 26 Nov - Flight Trials
24 Nov - CS5261 Exam
28 Nov - CS5212 Exam

Some selected questions from PSLE 2009 Maths Examination Paper


The below are some questions asked in this year's 2009 PSLE Maths paper.

Question 1
The above figure is a square. The angle question answer above is 150 degrees. Because the bottom triangle is equilateral triangle. (draw a circular curve through all 3 lines and they become the radii of the incomplete circle otherwise known as the arc)
360 - 60 = 300 degree
300 degree / 4 = 75 degree
75 degree x 2 = 150 degree

Question 2

6 friends decided to rent computers from 2pm to 4.30pm. While 4 of them were playing, the other two would watch. If the cycle continues, and each of them played for equal number of minutes, how many minutes will each person get to play? Ans: 100 minutes

Question 3

Mei and Lin were in a bicycle race. Mei was travelling at a constant speed of 20km/hr and they both did not change their speed. When Lin completed half the race, Mei was 3.5km ahead. Mei completed the race at 10.45am. What tim…

President Obama Pushes for Financial Reform

The President pushes for one of the pillars of his new economic foundation: reforming our financial system to look out for consumers, not just banks.

I admire how the American's strong showing in protecting consumers. Obama openly pointed how consumers, even CPA certified, got "cheated" by the financial institutions' pages and pages of fine prints, unfair rates hikes, unfair dealings, etc.

Obama said
He do not want them to compete by figuring out how much they can fool ordinary Americans.

The Financial Consumer Protection Agency is not for big banks, financial firms, but for hardworking Americans.
Kudos to the Obama Administration.

How Brain Works

The below was posted by myself on 28 Jan 2007.

Brain is so complicated. Try out below:
WITHOUT anyone watching you (they will think you are GOOFY.....) and while sitting where you are at your desk in front of your computer, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.

Now, while doing this, draw the number "6" in the air with your right hand.Continue making the 6 in the air.......
Your foot will change direction. It works every time.

Explanation from "Infinity08", Experts-Exchange member.

"Those two movements are very basic, but your brain is not accustomed to doing them together. It can't consciously do two different things at the same time : in this case clockwise and anti-clockwise movements of foot and hand ON THE SAME SIDE of the body.However, you can train yourself to do this correctly, by doing it so often that it becomes an unconscious action. When you start to think about it actively (consciously), it fails.

Compare it to learning to dr…

SingTel charges just S$23 for all EPL games on mio TV

SingTel unveiled on Saturday football fans need to pay just S$23 to watch the Barclays English Premier League (EPL) on SingTel mio TV starting next year. This pricing is 60 per cent lower than the current S$53 charged by StarHub.

However, do note that this S$23 subscription will only be for one season until May 2011, after which they will be reviewed. I am certain that review means price increase.

SingTel charges just S$23 for all EPL games on mio TV [via]

My opinion on PRUinvestor guaranteed plus product

I got to know of Prudential's new product PRUinvestor guaranteed plus only recently.

From agents, it is said to be 1) 100% Capital Guaranteed at maturity, 2) 2.5% p.a. interest guaranteed (Total 13.14%), 3) able to accept both cash and SRS, 4) and telling people application date for such "cool" product is ending soon but that's not really the case. I do not like the way products are marketed by agents.

1. 100% Capital Guaranteed at maturity

It is not really 100% guaranteed if it is guaranteed upon 36 months.

2. Sometimes marketed as 13.14%

This is a common tactic to "fool" aunties and uncles who are unaware of the compounding effect.

3. Able to accept SRS

At the rate of 2.5% p.a., I would say investing SRS monies in such product does not make sense to me since the new CPF interest rate structure is close to 2.5% p.a. too. At least CPF is truly 100% capital guaranteed.

4. Publish application date to be earlier than actual

This tactic attempts to make consumers make r…

Low Thia Khiang says PAP is playing politics together with HDB

Worker's Party Secretary General, Mr Low Thia Khiang, made a reply to HDB on the recent announcement on Lift Upgrading Programme (LUP) in Hougang area. Mr Low condemned HDB's role, despite being a Statuary Board, it seemed to team with Singapore government People's Action Party (PAP) in playing politics.

I sort of agree with Mr Low that the Singapore government should have allowed Worker's Party to make the announcement instead of PAP. PAP's action may backfire.

No basis for MP not to announce life upgrading
Saturday, 10 October 2009

I refer to the HDB’s reply to Mr Muhammad Yusuf Osman’s letter on the Lift Upgrading Programme (LUP ) in opposition wards published today, titled “Why grassroots advisers announce lift upgrading”.

The HDB deems it appropriate for the grassroots advisor to announce the LUP because “the adviser gathers input from residents, thereby ensuring that the programme’s plans meet residents’ needs”. The HDB further states that the adviser can propose …

'hongjun' in barcode

Code 128 barcode for "hongjun"

Obama honoured by Nobel Peace Prize

“I am both surprised and deeply humbled by the decision of the Nobel Committee. Let me be clear: I do not view it as a recognition of my own accomplishments, but rather as an affirmation of American leadership on behalf of aspirations held by people in all nations.

To be honest, I do not feel that I deserve to be in the company of so many of the transformative figures who've been honored by this prize -- men and women who've inspired me and inspired the entire world through their courageous pursuit of peace.”

Printliminator Quickly, Easily Makes Any Page Printer Friendly

The Printliminator bookmarklet lets you selectively remove any element from a web page to make it printer friendly in just a few simple clicks.

Drag the Printliminator bookmarklet to your browser's bookmark toolbar, then just click it whenever you want to print a page but don't want to waste ink on extraneous ads and other page content. As you can see in the video, using the Printliminator bookmarklet to eliminate unwanted content is as simple as clicking on whatever you don't want. If all you actually want is one element on the page, just Alt+Click (or Opt+Click on OS X) that one element and everything but that will disappear. Other than that, there's not much to it. Click the Print icon once you've got things looking how you want, and you're good to go

I just tried Printliminator bookmarklet and it works just GREAT!

Printliminator Quickly, Easily Makes Any Page Printer Friendly [via]

Paradigms as physiological filters

“Our paradigms act as physiological filters - we see the world through our paradigms. This means that any data that exist in the real world that do not fit our paradigm will have a difficult time getting through our filters. The data that do fit our paradigm not only make it through the filter, but are concentrated by the filtering process. Therefore, what we actually perceive is dramatically determined by our paradigms. What may be perfectly visible, perfectly obvious, to persons with one paradigm, may be quite literally invisible to persons with a different paradigm.”

OMG! Bidding for World Cup 2018/2022 has begun!

We are now currently still in the year 2009 but then the bid to host World 2018 and 2012 have already begun. The World Cup is held every 4 years but then bid to host the top football event happens every less than 4 years. At this rate, I guess when we are in year 2050 for World Cup 2050, it is possible that we may already have the list of countries hosting the event all the way till the next century.

Russia tables bid to be World Cup hosts [via]

Glad to see Parkway Holdings closing higher again

I am glad to see Parkway Holdings closing at S$2.320, higher by S$0.070 or 3.111% today. The stock opened at a price of S$2.02 last Monday, which means, an increase of 14.85% in just 5 days.

I MUST see this stock rise because this is the stock I recommended to a friend. Just too bad my friend sold off the stock too early in midweek, earning only approximately S$100 in the process. But I thought it is not too bad for a first timer.

Maldives is sinking

Maldives is sinking and getting drowned soon.

Sinking island's nationals seek new home (11 Nov 2008)

Maldives underwater cabinet meeting to highlight climate change (8 Oct 2009)

Steve Jobs Stanford Commencement Speech 2005

Here we see Steve Jobs delivering his commencement speech to the graduates of Stanford University in 2005. In it he talks about getting fired from Apple in 1985, life & death. This is indeed a very inspiring speech to all Stanford graduates. Come to think of it, billionaires like Steve Jobs (Apple and Pixar), Bill Gates (Microsoft), Segrey Brin (Google) and Larry Page (Google) are all dropouts from colleges.

My professor wrote this:

"If you are not interested in, feel free to skip this, it won’t be in the exam. But, I really like this speech, which is among the best commencement speech in my opinion. This video could be far more important than the CS5261 to your life, depending on your career choice: if you choose a path full of uncertainty, this speech is enlightening. If you are a conservative person doing a stable job, his speech is less relevant."


Steve Jobs Stanford Commencement Speech 2005

Wonder why SPH publish news without confirming its validity

Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) Business Times dated 8 Oct 2009 reported Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering)'s aerospace arm, Singapore Technologies Aerospace Ltd (ST Aerospace), clinched a multi- million-dollar deal to install a new onboard automatic fire-suppression system (FSS) in planes operated by global logistics giant FedEx Corp. This news is not released on Singapore Exchange and makes me puzzled.

At the end of today's trading day, ST Engineering clarified that ST Aerospace is still in discussion with FedEx and that there is no contract signed. Nothing is yet to be confirmed.

I wonder if SPH did their due homework before publishing any news, especially when the news is sensitive like this.

Cheating as defined in Singapore's Penal Code

Please take a deep breath before you read on for the definition of Cheating in Singapore's penal code. The definition is made up of very LONG sentences.

"Whoever, by deceiving any person, fraudulently or dishonestly induces the person so deceived to deliver any property to any person, or to consent that any person shall retain any property, or intentionally induces the person so deceived to do or omit to do anything which he or she would not do or omit if he or she were not so deceived, and which act or omission causes or is likely to cause damage or harm to that person in body, mind, reputation or property, is said to "cheat". For example, A cheats if he intentionally deceives Z into a belief that A means to repay any money that Z may lend to him when A does not intend to repay it, and thereby dishonestly induces Z to lend him money. Cheating is punished with imprisonment of up to one year, or a fine, or both."

Google's Barcode doodle decoded

If you were to visit Google homepage, you should spot Google with a new doodle - Barcode. It looks like the reason for the doodle is to celebrate the invention of barcodes 60 years ago.

If you were to upload the Google barcode doodle to, the barcode will read "Google".

Will U.S. dollar finally lose its shine?

The U.S. dollar is currently in its fall after rumours mentioned the Gulf State, China and Russia are in discussion of dropping U.S. as the default trading currency with a new currency for oil. If this goes through, U.S. dollar is definitely going to lose its shine.

Will the fall in U.S. dollar going to result in currency conversion losses for shares, Unit Trusts, ETFs, etc. that are traded in the dollar?

Choosing a smart password

Google Gmail recently published an article to advice how to choose a "smart" password to avoid being hacked and abused. Just this week, there have been several cases of passwords being leaked and posted on the World Wide Web due to phishing. Affected passwords include those from Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail and AOL.

Internet users need to be educated to be IT-savvy and be on guard against potential attacks. Attacks based on social engineering look to be on the rise these days.

I summarise the article by Gmail below.

Problem 1: Re-using passwords across websites
Solution 1: Use unique passwords

Problem 2: Using common passwords or words found in the dictionary
Solution 2: Use a password with a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols

Problem 3: Using passwords based on personal data
Solution 3: Create a password that's hard for others to guess

Problem 4: Writing down your password and storing it in an unsecured place
Solution 4: Keep your password reminders in a secret place that isn't ea…

Dine and no pay experience for a dinner

Ever tried walking into a restaurant, had a banana split, and then walk out of the restaurant without seeing the bill? I did just that this evening!

I finally made use of my remaining last Swensens 'Outrageous Sundaes' ice cream voucher this evening. After having our dinner proper in Xin Wang restaurant, my friend and I walked into Swensens. We redeemed the voucher for a banana split, finished the dessert and then walked out.


The ghost fleet of the recession anchored just east of Singapore

The above photo taken shows how it would look like from the top view of Singapore east coast. Fleets and more fleets of vessels, anchored without containers on board. That was exactly what I saw 2 weeks ago when I flew above Singapore! I thought Singapore seawaters is really that busy but then it seems not to be the case after all.

The ghost fleet of the recession anchored just east of Singapore [via]

What is Counterparty (CP)

What is CP in investment terms? This is a question posed by a friend who just purchased her first 1,000 shares. I was shocked to find POEMS actually displayed CP to investors. I thought CP should be transparent to investors and its significance is irrelevant.

So what is CP? We should really ignore CP (Counterparty) since it should be handled by the platform of a brokerage house (in this case POEMS). Some may see UBS Securities, OCBC Securities, or some other brokerage houses as the transaction's CP. In any transaction, there must be a pair of willing buyer and seller. If CP is UBS Securities, this means shares just owned was sold by a investor using UBS Securities platform. This piece of information is insignificant.

Photo of an Ice Berg

That's one of the many perils of our big ocean. There is no escape if a ship is to hit an ice berg.

Photo from [via]

Stock Pick - Parkway Holdings

I just picked Parkway Holdings as the next stock to purchase this coming Monday.

I am queuing at S$2.01, just 1 cents lower than Friday's closing price of S$2.02.

All Experts-Exchange Questions Answered by me in a Single CHM Help File

Using a tool created by PaulHews, I compiled all of my 3,414 Experts-Exchange questions answered by myself as a chm help file. These questions come from a total of 189 zones (topic areas).

My Experts-Exchange profile, under member id hongjun, can be found at

Download EEHelp_hongjun.chm now [8.82MB as of 3 Oct 2009].

Gold tells you bubble hasn't popped yet

Gold tells you bubble hasn't popped yet
Business Times - 03 Oct 2009

IF you owned stocks and gold and had to sell one, which would it be? The Standard & Poor's 500 Index has gained almost 60 per cent since its low on March 9. Gold is near a record price. I know a fair number of people who would keep the gold.

I've never been a gold bug myself. They get no respect. They are associated with survivalists, conspiracy theorists and nutcases. They are always looking for the hyperinflation that never comes. Gold bugs pay a premium over the metal price for gold and silver coins on the notion that they will need the currency, come the Apocalypse.

On the other hand, the relationship between gold and financial crises goes back centuries. In the aftermath of the credit-bubble bust, we confront a Moby Dick-size pile of leverage and the question of whether this is inflationary or deflationary. So it's worth considering what the price of gold may be telling us.