Sunday, September 30, 2007

More cool t-shirts for you guys and gals!

I visited San Street at Suntec City on Friday evening to take a look at their latest arrivals.

sanstreetboys

Above: Zero Hour tees - $32.90, Zero Hour Polo Tees and long sleeves - $35.90, ALI tees - $22.90, ALI jumpers - $47.90, ALI bags with interchangeable cover - $35.90 , Extreme bags - $32.90

sanstreetgirls

Above: Exgal tees - $24.90 and $26.90 (with shiny printing)

San Street informed me that there is a 20% discount when you buy a second T-shirt at its Suntec City and Queensway Shopping Centre outlets. There's also a 20% discount on all bottoms! Selected Exgal polo tees and Exgal tees are at 2 for $35 - only at Suntec. All promotions till 13 October 2007 so go grab yours quick aye. Location of the outlets here.

(Disclosure: I'm the Brand Ambassador for San Street, the distributor of Extreme, Action Ladfigure Inc and Zero Hour in Singapore. San Street is also a main sponsor of this blog.)

Previously:
Zero Hour Jackets and Bags
Zero Hour T-shirts in Singapore
Zero Hour launches in Singapore!
Cool Wallets, Blets and Buckles at San Street
Presenting the San Street Contest Winners

Barbarella and the Excessive Machine



Barbarella is a 1968 erotic science fiction film that starred Jane Fonda as Barbarella, a 41st century astronaut that lands on the planet Lythion. She sets out to find the evil Durand Durand in the city of Sogo, where a new sin is invented every hour. The above clip shows the scene where Barbarella is tortured in the Excessive Machine, a sex organ that can drive a victim to death by pleasure.

Whose side are you on Singapore?

Singapore said that hope in Burma rests on UN special envoy Ibrahim Gambari who is set to meet the ruling generals today to convey worldwide outrage over a violent crackdown on anti-government protests and seek a way out of the crisis:
Singaporean Foreign Minister George Yong-Boon Yeo said he believed the government would "be restrained in what it does" during the visit of Gambari, a Nigerian professor.

"But then the demonstrators may come out in full force. Then there could be heightened tension as a result," Yeo told reporters after meeting British Foreign Minister David Miliband.

"If he fails, then the situation can become quite dreadful," Yeo said. "He's the best hope we have. He is trusted on both sides."
While Singapore has been urging the UN to help solve the Burma crisis, an article written on Australia's newspaper The Age gave a damning report on Singapore's relationship with the junta:
Hotels, airlines, military materiel and training, crowd control equipment and sophisticated telecoms-monitoring devices for its secret police — Singapore is manager and supplier to the junta, and the "cronified" economy it controls.

It's impossible to spend any time in Burma and not make the junta richer, thanks to Singapore suppliers' contracts with the tourism industry. Singapore's hospitals also keep Burma's leaders alive — 74-year-old junta leader Than Shwe has been getting his intestinal cancer treated in a Singapore government hospital, protected by Singapore security. Singapore's boutiques keep junta wives and families cloaked in Armani, and its banks help launder their money and that of Burma's crony drug lords.

...Often writing as "William Ashton" in the authoritative Jane's Intelligence Review, Mr Selth has described in various articles how Singapore has sent the junta guns, rockets, armoured personnel carriers and grenade launchers, some of it trans-shipped from stocks seized by Israel from Palestinians in southern Lebanon.

Singaporean companies have provided computers and networking equipment for Burma's defence ministry and army, while upgrading the bunkered junta's ability to network with regional commanders — so crucial as protesting monks take to the streets of 20 Burmese cities, causing major logistical headaches for the Tatmadaw, the Burmese military.
So whose side are you really on, Singapore? It's nice to have our government show the world that it cares in resolving the crisis in our neighbouring country, but it has to do more than just talk, especially since the world perceives that we are aiding the junta.

In my previous post, I said that countries with close ties to Burma have to take the lead in solving the problem in Burma. That means the likes of China and Singapore should stop the talk and begin to walk the walk. It is time to put your money where your mouth is. If countries like Singapore are really serious in solving the Burma problem, then they should take drastic actions to hurt the military generals in Burma. The UN and the world can only do so little if Burma's closest friends are still supporting them financially.

I think it's time for Singapore to take a step back to reassess its relationship with Burma and then finally do the right thing. There are plenty of other ways for Singapore to make its money. Investing and supporting a cruel regime in our backyard is definitely not the way.

Previously: The Burma Protests

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Today's Singapore News

1. Laws that protect children to be reviewed
2. Education Ministry gives 18 schools top marks for overall excellence
3. Govt sends clear signal to those who engage in high-risk sexual activity
4. Singapore says hope in Myanmar rests on UN envoy
5. Hwa Chong gets to the top
6. Changes to Infectious Diseases Act proposed
7. Singapore's close relationship with Burma's junta
8. FIA gives green light to Singapore's F1 circuit
9. Singapore drawing more foreign investors
10. Can S'pore say no to nuclear energy?

Read them all at Topix News, edited by yours truly.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Button Moon made me love the moon


YouTube Link

When I was growing up in the 80's, one of my favourite kids program on TV is this trippy show called Button Moon. Produced by Thames Television, each 10 minute episode featured the adventures of Mr. Spoon flying to Button Moon in his homemade rocket-ship.

Not many people know this but Button Moon sparked my love for the moon and later on my interest in astronomy. I remember after watching each episode, I would then daydream about my own travels to the moon and beyond. I imagined that I was sitting in my spaceship and it would blast off to take me to the moon where I would then make friends with the different beings living there. It was so much fun. And I grew up wanting to be just like Mr Spoon.

Today, I stumbled upon some episodes of Button Moon on YouTube and they sure brought back lots of sweet memories. I'm even singing to its theme song again:

"We're off to Button Moon!
And we've followed Mr Spoon,
Button Moon! (Button Moon!)
Button Moon! (Button Moon!)"

Ah, I miss those good old days.

Needle Felted Birds

Lauren Alane makes the most adorable needle felted birds. Check out this Flickr set of her birds. They are so cute aye. These birds are also for sale.

1934 Wrist Ice Box

This is a miniature refrigerator that straps to the wrist. It encloses a pellet of dry ice which when evaporates, forms an invisible gas that lowers the temperature of the blood in the arteries of the person wearing it. This cooled blood is then carried to every part of the body making him feel cooler than the surroundings. Don't you just love 1930s inventions?

Josh Budich's Star Wars Collection

Not contend with his 600 plus Star Wars action figures filling up an entire room, Josh Budich created tiny pixel illustrations of his collection - each one representing a Star Wars figurine that he owns. Amazing!

Today's Singapore News

1. Important to avert violence: George Yeo
2. Singapore 'poaching' more Filipino software developers
3. Singapore Company Receives International Nod for Innovative Toy Design
4. S'porean man shot and kicked by Myanmar riot police
5. S'pore becomes playground for stem cell experts
6. Foreign population in Singapore exceeds 1 million
7. Latest statistics show 26,000 Singaporeans are over 85
8. All condo, club pools should have lifeguards
9. S'poreans turn up their noses at smoking
10. PM Lee opens Army Museum, pays tribute to 700,000 NSmen

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Museum of Penis

If you are going to Iceland and you are fascinated with dicks of all shapes and sizes, then you must pay a visit to The Icelandic Phallological Museum. This strange museum contains a collection of over one hundred and fifty penises and penile parts belonging to almost all the land and sea mammals that can be found in Iceland. I absolutely love their logo!

(Thanks j3d)

Hello Kitty robot for lazy mums and dads

This US$6,299 Hello Kitty robot is made for parents who do not have a lot of time to keep their child company. The robot can communicate with the child using Hello Kitty's voice. It can even remember faces and calls you by name thanks to its Stereo CCD Camera and Voice Recognition Microphone.

Faces in Places

Faces in Places is a cute blog that collects photographs of faces found in everyday places. One of my favourite pics is this one titled, "That sinking feeling".

Christopher Lee's Star Wars

Californian illustrator Christopher Lee was asked in late 2005 to create Star Wars characters based on his own style, technique and vision. His drawings (below) were then given to companies who obtained the Star Wars license to manufacture various Star Wars consumer products.

starwars1

starwars2

starwars3

1981 Hard Disk Ad

This hard disk advertisement found in a 1981 computer magazine shows just how expensive hard disks were back then. The ad says that a 26 megabyte hard disk cost US$4,995 - that's equivalent to around US$11,425 in 2007 dollars!

The Burma Protests


YouTube Link


Video above taken on September 24, 2007, showing both monks and ordinary civilians protesting the military government in Burma. Part two here.

More than 100,000 people had taken to the streets to rally against the evil junta. Latest news is that the Burmese army began raiding a monastery and had arrested at least 100 Buddhist monks on Thursday. At least four people have died after a military crackdown on the protests.

People inside Burma have been e-mailing the BBC News website and talking to the BBC Burmese Service about the growing unrest:
There are a lot of people in the emergency ward in the hospital and people are dying there. One witness told me that there were three monks that were brought in by a taxi driver and one of the monks died at the table - the other two are in a critical condition. A lot of other people are severely injured. - Thian, Rangoon

At about 10 o'clock the riot police blocked the road, but the monks pushed through the blockade and climbed the Shwedagon pagoda from the eastern side. After eating there, they came down from the pagoda about noon, in a line. At that point they were rounded up and charged with batons by the police. The monks responded merely by reciting prayers. People fled from the scene and it was mainly women who were targeted and beaten. The mob was dispersed and some people were arrested. Near the eastern stairway, tear gas was used to disperse the crowd. The monks - together with monks from Thingangyun - are said to march towards downtown. About thirty monks were badly hurt and hospitalised. - Anonymous eyewitness, Rangoon

I just talked to my sister, who lives in Rangoon. She knows someone at the local hospital in Rangoon. They have been treating three monks, who were taken to the hospital by responsible taxi drivers. The monks had been beaten up with the back of rifles. One monk had a deep wound exposing his brain, and he has already died. The other two are being treated under intensive care. Many more people died today, but there is no information about it. Many taxi drivers who are at the site of the violence take injured monks to nearest hospitals. The junta are using dirty tactics - they don't fire guns, but beat people with the back of their rifles. The monks defiantly did not fight back, endured the pain and died. - Sanda, Stocksund, Swede
I applaud the Burmese people and the monks for the courage to stand up against their oppressive military rulers. This is a country that has been run by the military since 1968 and I don't see the junta quiting its power anytime soon. The country's rightful leader, Nobel Prize Winner Aung San Suu Kyi, has been kept in detention by the military rulers after she and her party won a democratic elections in 1990. This military regime is one of the world's most repressive and abusive that rules by decree, controls the judiciary, suppresses nearly all basic rights, and commits human rights abuses with impunity.

Can the monks and their fellow Burmese people do anything more to return democracy to their country? I don't think so. The military is too strong in the country and even if there are more mass protests, they will be cracked down pretty swiftly. And there are still many people in Burma who fear the military.

Sanctions against the junta are welcomed but they will only help a little. The likes of China and India who have strong links to Burma have to do more to pressure the junta to return democracy to the country but I foresee that these two countries will stick to their non interference policy. What the world needs to do is to take really drastic measures. For example, Asean should kick Burma out of the group to send a strong message that we do not tolerate such a regime in our region that brutally persecutes its people. And countries including Singapore should stop investing in Burma. We should not be discussing any economic ties with the military junta as long as they are not willing to relinquish their power. We need to let the rulers know that the world will shut them out if they continue this brutal rule over their country.

Today's Singapore News

1. Singapore's seaport to get WiMax
2. Toilet talk serious business for Singapore's sanitation evangelist
3. Singapore's transport authority to go greener
4. More dogs being abandoned or given up
5. 880 stroke patients in Singapore to undergo TCM clinical trial
6. NSF 'a current danger', denied bail
7. Singapore welcomes UN decision to send special envoy to Myanmar
8. Singapore sending five Pusan's way
9. Fresh insights from MM in book on language policy
10. ITE wins prestigious Harvard award

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Japanese Peeping Toms

In the 1970s, Japanese photographer Kohei Yoshiyuki took a series photos of heterosexual and homosexual couples engaged in sexual activity in a Japanese park and the peeping toms who stalked them. View a slide show here and read the story here.

(via Boing Boing)

Robot Wrist Watch cum Desk Clock

This robot watch with movable arms, can be worn on the wrist or simply pop it out to put it on your desk. You can also hang the robot on a keychain.

(Thanks troy)

Matchbox Labels

Lovely Flickr photoset of matchbox labels from around the world. The majority of the matchboxes originated from Eastern Europe in the 1950s and 60s. There are 445 matchboxes in the set.

1968 Batwoman movie

Batwoman Movie is a super cult classic made in the late '60s. The low budget movie stars Maura Monti as a busty and scantily clad Batwoman who fights a mad scientist bent on creating a supreme race of men. Go watch a clip of it. You gotta love Batwoman's outfit!

The Etch-A-Sketchist

Dude does amazing artwork using a Etch A Sketch, a popular toy that uses two knobs to draw lineography. For those of you who have played with one before, you would know how difficult it is to draw something nice with it. Don't have one? Try out this online version.

Today's Singapore News

1. Most Singaporeans want sky gardens in residential areas
2. 6 in 10 S'poreans bored with their sex lives: Survey
3. Minister says Singapore should poach medical specialists
4. Substation event gets police nod after civil society groups excluded
5. Govt to spend $2b for more clinics, hospitals, hospices
6. Biotech's sexy, but maritime sector is 'basic' to S'pore: MM
7. Singapore top paradise for business: World Bank
8. S'pore is free of horse flu: AVA
9. NLB sends 800,000 mailers to recover $5.4m in fines
10. S'pore firm tests traditional Chinese stroke drug

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

How to undress in 2 seconds


YouTube Link

Japanese dude shows you how to undress in 2 seconds. It's a great skill to have especially when you really need to get your clothes off in a hurry. Ahem.

(Thanks stargirl10)

Fishbone Ice Tray

This ice tray makes ice in the shape of a fishbone! I think it's so cute to see these fishbones floating in your cup of water. I want one!

60's & 70's Asian Pop Record Covers

Californian dude has an amazing gallery of rare 60's and 70's Asian pop singles - mostly Singapore titles and the rest are records from Indonesia, Hong Kong, Japan, and Thailand. Visit his MySpace page to listen to some of these oldies.

Formula for perfect breasts

Surgeon spent many hours looking at photos of topless models and discovered the formula to perfect breasts. From The Daily Mail:
The key aesthetic elements are nipple position and the proportion between the upper and lower halves of the breast, he said.

"The ideal is a 45 to 55 per cent proportion - that is the nipple sits not at the half-way mark down the breast, but at about 45 per cent from the top."

He added: "All of the models I looked at conformed to these parameters. None of them were augmentedand yet they were clearly considered to have beautiful breasts, so I wanted to examine how that could be achieved in someone not so well-endowed by using an implant.

Mystery Soldier Wanted!

The author of the upcoming book, Defending Singapore: The Singapore Armed Forces, is looking for the identity of the soldier who inspired the open mobilisation logo. The logo was created as a sketch based on an old photograph of the soldier at a rifle range 23 years ago.

The author, David Boey thinks that the soldier might have served at the Charlie Company of the 1st Guards Battalion, or the Infantry Training Depot. He should be in his early 40s now and his surname could be 'Liew' or 'Lien'.

You can contact the author at dboey[at]sph[dot]com[dot]sg if you have any information regarding this mystery.

(Thanks Mr Big)

Today's Singapore News

1. S'pore among top 3 cities for meetings
2. Racist blogs taken offline
3. Singapore's magic monkey trees inspire cult, cynics
4. PM says `heterosexuals should set the tone'
5. 250 trained to spot problem gamblers
6. Honest Filipina worker in Singapore lauded
7. Singapore Cord Blood Bank joins global network
8. Bt Batok remains worst hit dengue area
9. Singapore loses to Hong Kong in corporate governance reform
10. Microsoft's Halo 3 video game hits S'pore with a bang

Read them all at Topix Singapore News.

Monday, September 24, 2007

The HP Dragon: Setting up its Integrated HDTV Hybrid Tuner


YouTube Link

I promised you guys and gals that I will post another video of the HP Dragon over the weekend so I'm sorry this is out one day late. Here's the video of me setting up the Dragon's integrated digital and analog TV tuner that enables me to watch, record and pause live TV anytime on the Dragon.

Setting up was a breeze. I plugged my Starhub cable from its set-top box into the Dragon. Then I used the dockable Media Center Remote to activate QuickPlay and then click on the relevant buttons to start the set-up. It took the Dragon more than 15 minutes to complete the scan of the available TV channels. Once completed, it listed down all the channels and all I had to do next was to choose the right channel to watch my cable TV.

With the Dragon, I can also record Live TV. I tried that out too as you can see from the video above. Again, using the Media Center Remote, I just had to press the record button. The screen went blank for a few seconds before the recording began. It also went blank when I stopped recording and seconds later the Dragon reverted to the Live TV. This could be a little annoying for some but overall using the Dragon to watch and record Live TV was relatively easy and fun. I love it!

Previously:
HP Dragon Video
HP Dragon Specifications
Enter the Dragon: First pics of the new HP Notebook PC

Today's Singapore News

1. Bak kut teh on a Singapore Airlines plane
2. Govt addresses Singaporeans' concern about living long enough to enjoy benefits of plan
3. Singapore's Inflation Highest in More Than 12 Years
4. The rant over rent: Landlords strike back
5. 3,000 retailers still petitioning Nets for lower fees after hike
6. Flu vaccine for 1,000 needy residents
7. Sexual harassment study launched
8. Soven gets 4th win in Singapore leg of Wakeboard World Cup
9. Imports 'failed', but locals will take up baton: Athletics chief
10. Quick test for bird flu devised

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Simpsons Stills and their Reference Movies



66 stills from various episodes of The Simpsons placed side by side with the stills from the movie scene which they refer to.

T-Shirt Screen Printing

On Saturday, I blogged about how you can use bleach to create stencil art on your t-shirt. Today, here's how you can do silk-screen printing using embroidery hoops and waterproof glue. Flickr set here.

Japan spa offers ramen bath

Ramen lovers in Japan can now take a bath in a tub full of ramen thanks to a Japanese spa. From Reuters:
Because of health regulations, the Yunessan spa in Japan's hot spring town of Hakone does not use edible noodles.

Instead, noodle-shaped spa treatments are placed in bath water that contains elements from pork broth supplied by a nearby noodle shop.

Spa officials say taking a dip in the noodle bath is good for health as ingredients in the broth such as pepper collagen help improve the bather's metabolism and cleanse the skin.

Chinese Fake Brands

You gotta give full marks to the makers of these Chinese fake brands for coming out with really creative names for their products. Playstation becomes Polystation. KFC becomes KLC.

Japanese Rice Field Art

These beautiful artistic rice fields are created by Japanese farmers using red rice planted into paddies together with regular rice.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Former King is Cambodia's founding father of blogging

According to this AFP story about Cambodians using blogs to inform the outside world about how the people there are thinking and progressing, the country's former King could be its founding father of blogging:
A Cambodian blogger asked recently whether former King Norodom Sihanouk should be considered the country's founding father of blogging.

He got no definitive answer. Cambodian blog watchers say the 84-year-old monarch may not have known he was blogging when he unveiled his Web site, updated daily by his staff since 2002 with his views on national affairs, correspondence with his admirers and news about his film-making hobby.

But it is clear that young, tech-savvy Cambodians are joining Sihanouk in embracing blogs. The trend is changing their lives and their communication with people abroad — even as electricity remains an unreachable dream for most households in this poverty-ridden nation of 14 million.

Veggie Art

Pictures of animals created from vegetables. On the left is a pic of cauliflower sheeps. I don't think kids will ever eat their veggies if they are this cute.

(Thanks micah)

Update: According to Edd who left a comment in Boing Boing's post, these pictures were taken from a children's book called Food For Thought.

Vespa Table Lamp

I can imagine a lot of Vespa lovers will go crazy when they see one of these Vespa table lamps designed by Maurizio Lamponi Leopardi. The Italian designer uses a real Vespa handle bar for that table lamp. Besides making motorycle/scooter inspired table lamps, he also designs other equally amazing table lamps.

Timeline of Japanese contributions to video games

The folks at GamePro.com pay homage to the major contributions made by Japanese companies to the video game industry with this timeline:
1889 - Nintendo is formed in late September by Fusajiro Yamauchi to produce handmade hanafuda cards which are used for several popular Japanese games. Over the years the company will transform into one of the most powerful and influential video game companies in the world.

1941 - Gunpei Yokoi is born. His ingenuity in creating a mechanical arm for his own enjoyment while on the job would later inspire Nintendo authoritarian president Hiroshi Yamauchi to extend Nintendo's business beyond that of playing cards. Yokoi would go one to design Metroid and the Game Boy before dying in a car crash in 1997.

1950 - Ken Kutaragi is born. His curiosity for taking apart toys to see how they work led him to pursue a degree in electrical engineering. After seeing his daughter play the Famicom (NES) in the Eighties, he realized the potential of video games. He would go on to become the "Father of the PlayStation," making gaming more ubiquitous than it ever had been before.

Bleach Stencil Art

Learn how you can use bleach to make some cool stencil art on your t-shirts. The artist behind this spent two years of research and testing with bleach to find the best way to produce images on garments that would be more “tattooed” into the fabric than screened on.

Super Rabbit Comic Book Scans

Super Rabbit is a comic book featuring a fictional, funny-animal superhero published by Timely Comics, a predecessor of Marvel Comics, during the 1930s and '40s. You can view some high quality scans of Super Rabbit Vol.1 Number 3 here. Go Super Rabbit!

Today's Singapore News

1. National Healthy Lifestyle Campaign to focus on mental wellness
2. Pre-participation screenings urged for sporting weekend warriors
3. Singapore to let golf clubs build hotels
4. Singapore showcases Asian art
5. Views divided, so gay sex law stays
6. Playboy's mobile content to play by Singapore rules
7. 16 cases of snatch thefts reported recently
8. Deterring sex fiends online
9. Singlish? Don't make it part of Spore identity
10. Singapore is not just for the rich

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Scanned Old Maps

Dude has a growing collection of old books that contain a large number of maps. He thought it might be interesting to scan and make them available for others to see on his website. Hooray! View his gem of a collection here.

Malacca Strait Pirates

Peter Gwin wrote an absolutely brilliant piece for National Geographic Magazine about pirates who patrol the Strait of Malacca. For his story, he traveled to Batam to meet an experienced pirate who shared with him some secrets of how pirates there really work. From National Geographic Magazine:
In my hotel room, we laid a map of the Malacca Strait on the bed. Jhonny’s thick fingers traced the coastlines with practiced familiarity. He pointed to places with obscured shoals and noted currents and unmapped islands. “This area,” he drew his finger around Batam and Singapore, “too many patrols now.” He moved his finger to a spot south of the strait, “now the best place for shopping is here.”

“Shopping,” Batam argot for the lowest level of piracy, is roughly equivalent to robbing a liquor store. Even the smallest cargo ships and tankers carry sizable amounts of cash, used to buy supplies in port and to pay the crew. Often these ships are older and have less security than newer, larger ships. Sometimes, Jhonny says, the captains are running their own scams, conserving fuel by going slow, then selling the excess to passing ships and pocketing the cash. He explained that shopping trips are carried out by teams of “jumping squirrels,” pirates who use wooden boats called pancungs, rigged with powerful engines, to stalk the ships at night and climb up the sides and rob the crew. I tell him I would like to meet a jumping squirrel. “It’s possible,” he said, and dialed a number.

Lightsabre comes to the Wii

I think I got to get myself a Nintendo Wii soon to play this new Star Wars game that enables the player to use the Wii Remote as a lightsaber. Dang. This will be the best game ever! From Times:
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, developed by LucasArts, will also be released early next year on Microsoft’s Xbox 360, Nintendo’s handheld DS machine and Sony’s PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation Portable.

But it is the Wii version that is causing the biggest buzz – literally, possibly, since the Wii Remote is equipped with a loudspeaker.

Jim Ward, President of LucasArts, said: "The Wii is a great platform for The Force Unleashed, because the console's motion-oriented controllers really bring the game to life.

"We've worked hard to make the Wii version of the game unique in order to truly let you unleash the Force."

Original Homemade Air Conditioner

Dude makes his own air conditioner using a fan coiled with copper tubing and a garbage can filled with ice water. His homemade air conditioner can cool a room in 15 to 20 minutes and lasts up to 3 hours!

Paper Moon

A nice vintage Flickr photoset of men, women, couples, kids and families posing beside a "paper moon".

(Thanks Benny)

Man sues God, God responds

Apparently you can never sue god because he has immunity from any prosecution by puny earthly courts. A US state senator who sued the almighty last week found that out after he finally got a respond from 'God' in the form of two court filings - one of which named God's Army Field Commander, the Archangel St Michael as witness. From Yahoo News:
Chambers, a self-proclaimed agnostic who often criticizes Christians, said his filing was triggered by a federal lawsuit he considers frivolous. He said he's trying to makes the point that anybody can sue anybody.

Not so, says "God." His response argues that the defendant is immune from some earthly laws and the court lacks jurisdiction.

It adds that blaming God for human oppression and suffering misses an important point.

"I created man and woman with free will and next to the promise of immortal life, free will is my greatest gift to you," according to the response, as read by Friend.

Today's Singapore News

1. Wakeboard Tour Hits Singapore
2. New, tighter rules for en bloc sales passed
3. Singapore to attract more foreign doctors
4. Healthy prospects for mature workers
5. Tremors felt in Singapore again
6. Singapore counts on '881' for Oscar
7. Some SMEs underestimate market wages
8. Specialist centres: preparing for the next lap
9. HDB launches sixth build-to-order project in Fernvale
10. Singapore biotech drive loses star UK scientists

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

HP Dragon Video


YouTube Link


Here's a video that I took of the new HP Pavilion HDX Entertainment Series Notebook PC, aka the Dragon, courtesy of the lovely folks at Hewlett-Packard Asia Pacific and Burson-Marsteller (SEA). Over the weekend, I will post another video showing how to use the Dragon's incredible integrated digital and analog TV tuner that enables you to watch, record, pause live TV on the computer.

Previously:
HP Dragon Specifications
Enter The Dragon: First Pics of the new HP Notebook PC

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Mosquito Magnet

A Singapore company is selling a machine that provides a 24-hr protection against mosquitoes and other biting insects. Called the Mosquito Magnet Liberty Plus, it mimics a human by emitting a plume of carbon dioxide, heat and moisture and Lurex, a short-range attractant. According to the company's website, this precise combination is irresistible to female mosquitoes. As the mosquito approaches the trap hoping to bite a human, it is quietly vacuumed into a net where it dehydrates and dies. This machine doesn't come cheap. It costs close to S$2k!

(Thanks primus)

Books in Chinese Propaganda Posters

"Books in Chinese Propaganda Posters: Objects of Veneration, Subjects of Destruction" is an exhibition of old posters from China that portray the changing attitudes of the Chinese towards books, book knowledge and learning in general. View all the posters here. This 1969 poster on the left says that educated youths must go to the countryside to receive re-education from the Poor and Lower-Middle peasants!

(Thanks Norman)

Spacesuited Women

For those of you who love women in spacesuits, here's a website that lists all the spacesuited ladies found on tv and film from the 1950s to 2000s. Yay!!!

Khet, strategy laser board game

Khet is cool board game that combines classic strategy with the physics of lasers and optics. The aim of the game is to illuminate your opponent's pharaoh by firing a laser and eliminate them from the game, while shielding your own pharaoh from harm. The laser is built into the board and once fired will bounce from mirror to mirror on a series of Egyptian themed pieces. I think it's like a high tech chess game!

Today's Singapore News

1. Jeyaretnam reinstated as an attorney after appeal is accepted
2. Launch of Singapore's largest mobile X-Ray container
3. Singapore offers study grants for Filipinos
4. Seven in 10 people in Singapore frown on homosexuality
5. Singapore to strengthen anti-money laundering laws
6. Citibank Ranked as Employer of Choice by Graduates in Singapore
7. Singapore invites immigration from US
8. Some Shell station pumps run dry after delivery glitch
9. HDB to introduce "family-friendly" car-parking arrangement
10. Giuliani says Nato should admit Singapore

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mr Miyagi's In My Time

I received a copy of In My Time from its publishers recently. The comic book written by our very own Mr Miyagi and illustrated by Malaysian Chua Jon Dep, recalls some of the excitement, challenges and mirth from Mr Miyagi’s time in National Service.

Mr Miyagi informed me that the book was done together with the help of Mindef. He said the idea for the book came because everyone was tired of him telling them his army stories so they suggested why not put them in a book. After talking to publisher Marshall Cavendish, together they then approached Mindef who was looking to do something for NS40. The result was Mr Miyagi's first ever comic book, In My Time.

I had a good time reading In My Time. The texts are funny thanks to Miyagi's wacky sense of humour and the comics are well drawn too. I think all NS Men will love this book because it will make them recall the memories of going through Basic Military Training, unit life and reservist.

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In My Time will be available at Kinokuniya and Borders from 21 September. It costs only $9.95 so go grab a copy aye!

Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management

Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management is a book written by Isabella Mary Mayson and first published in October 1861. Essentially a guide to running a Victorian era household, the book contains advice on fashion, child-care, animal husbandry, poisons, the management of servants, science, religion, industrialism and a very large number of recipes. Read the entire book here.

Snip from Chapter 1 - The Mistress: "AS WITH THE COMMANDER OF AN ARMY, or the leader of any enterprise, so is it with the mistress of a house. Her spirit will be seen through the whole establishment; and just in proportion as she performs her duties intelligently and thoroughly, so will her domestics follow in her path. Of all those acquirements, which more particularly belong to the feminine character, there are none which take a higher rank, in our estimation, than such as enter into a knowledge of household duties; for on these are perpetually dependent the happiness, comfort, and well-being of a family."

(Thanks Sir Thomas)

Chocolate LEGO

Just what I've always wanted - chocolate LEGO bricks! They are incredibly simple to make. Just pour melted chocolate into the LEGO ice cube trays. Yum.

The Firefox Car

You had seen the Firefox Bus before on this blog. Now here's the Firefox Car, created by the folks at Mozilla Japan to compete in the largest all-Japan custom car show in Nagoya this month.

Today's Singapore News

1. Foreigners will not be allowed to interfere in Singapore's domestic affairs.
2. Government's role is to ensure S'poreans save up enough funds for retirement
3. MPs suggest ways to make annuity scheme attractive
4. New route, highlights for Chingay 2008
5. Daughtry to rock St. James Powerhouse
6. Singapore stops missile parts shipment to Iran
7. Boys, 9 and 11, Charged in Sex Assault
8. Former NKF chairman Richard Yong sentenced to 15 months' jail
9. 8th person dies of dengue
10. Hospitalized men in Singapore to be asked to take HIV test

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Happy Birthday :-)

Everyone's favourite computer smiley :-) turns 25 today. Happy birthday :-) !!! From CNN:
Fahlman posted the emoticon in a message to an online electronic bulletin board at 11:44 a.m. on September 19, 1982, during a discussion about the limits of online humor and how to denote comments meant to be taken lightly.

"I propose the following character sequence for joke markers: :-)," wrote Fahlman. "Read it sideways."

The suggestion gave computer users a way to convey humor or positive feelings with a smile -- or the opposite sentiments by reversing the parenthesis to form a frown.

Carnegie Mellon said Fahlman's smileys spread from its campus to other universities, then businesses and eventually around the world as the Internet gained popularity.

Mystery illness strikes after meteorite hits village

This just sounds like something out of a science fiction story. Meteorite hits village in Peru. Villagers then fell sick. From Yahoo News:
Residents complained of headaches and vomiting brought on by a "strange odor," local health department official Jorge Lopez told Peruvian radio RPP.

Seven policemen who went to check on the reports also became ill and had to be given oxygen before being hospitalized, Lopez said.

Rescue teams and experts were dispatched to the scene, where the meteorite left a 100-foot-wide (30-meter-wide) and 20-foot-deep (six-meter-deep) crater, said local official Marco Limache.

"Boiling water started coming out of the crater and particles of rock and cinders were found nearby. Residents are very concerned," he said.

The intelligent folks at SpaceWeather.com thinks that this story is BS:
This report is probably erroneous. To gouge such a crater, the meteorite on impact would have liberated energy equal to about 1 kiloton of TNT (akin to a tactical nuclear weapon) leaving a clear signal in worldwide seismic and infrasound records. So far, no such signals have surfaced.

I think it is more likely that the meteorite hit the ground, severed some chemical or sewage pipes and that led to the villagers falling sick.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

What on Earth are we doing?

Scans of 'What on Earth are we doing?', a book published by Ladybird in 1976 that shows us how we can prevent further damage to Earth before it is too late. Snip from the book's forward: "What is the most dangerous animal in the world? A hungry tiger could kill a man in a few seconds and an angry elephant could soon trample him to death. Yet tigers and elephants are neither as dangerous as the animal you see when you look in a mirror. MAN is the greatest danger, not only to other human beings but to the world in which he lives in."

Cheeseburger USB memory stick

Coming soon to Japan: Cheeseburger, hotdog, pizza and sandwich USB memory sticks that come with 1GB of memory. The cheeseburger one looks so delicious.

Hitler's Secret Indian Army

The BBC has received special access to a top secret file so sensitive, it was locked away in 1945, not due to be released until the year 2021. The file reveals a remarkable saga of how thousands of Indian soldiers joined Adolf Hitler to fight British rule in India. From BBC:
Bose, who had been arrested 11 times by the British in India, had fled the Raj with one mission in mind. That was to seek Hitler's help in pushing the British out of India.

Six months later, with the help of the German foreign ministry, he had set up what he called "The Free India Centre", from where he published leaflets, wrote speeches and organised broadcasts in support of his cause.

By the end of 1941, Hitler's regime officially recognised his provisional "Free India Government" in exile, and even agreed to help Chandra Bose raise an army to fight for his cause. It was to be called "The Free India Legion".

Bose hoped to raise a force of about 100,000 men which, when armed and kitted out by the Germans, could be used to invade British India.

He decided to raise them by going on recruiting visits to Prisoner-of-War camps in Germany which, at that time, were home to tens of thousands of Indian soldiers captured by Rommel in North Africa.

Today's Singapore News

1. Singaporean's song to rally Olympic spirit
2. NSman's arms theft due to human error and poor building design
3. Odex adopts the warning approach
4. Monkey God tree in Jurong attracts crowds
5. Oral, anal sex legal in Singapore
6. 2 successes, 1 more cord blood transplant in progress
7. International arbitration court launches in Singapore
8. Singapore Changi Airport Breaks Record in International Best Airport Survey
9. Singapore Companies To Decide On Their Own Whether To Invest In IDR
10. Higher interest and better returns with CPF changes

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Saudi Sandal Skating


YouTube Link

Skating is a popular worldwide sport but these crazy Saudi guys are taking it one step further. They are skating on the road with their sandals! I wonder if they are wearing special sandals or normal ones.

Child Burger



This UK restaurant serves child burger. Crikey! I didn't know kids taste that good.

(Thanks Sir Thomas)

How to use 'have had' and 'had had'

Some English lessons for you people! The BBC Learning English website teaches us how to use 'have had' and 'had had' together in a sentence. From BBC:
Had had is the past perfect form of have when it is used as a main verb to describe our experiences and actions. We use the past perfect when we are talking about the past and want to refer back to an earlier past time, Madiini. In these examples, note the use of before, after, already and by the time as a trigger for the past perfect. Note also that the contracted form of had had is 'd had.

-She'd had a lot to drink and wasn't capable of walking home by herself.

-After he'd had a good night's sleep, he felt much better.

-She sacked him before he had had a chance to explain his behaviour.

-By the time he was twenty he'd already had four different jobs.

-I'd already had a word with Joan about re-locating to Manchester and now she's had time to think about it, she quite likes the idea.
Ah, now I know.

Crocs - colourful, fun but are they dangerous?

There are reports coming from all over the world of kids wearing Crocs sandals that had their toes caught in escalators. From AP/Google:
In Japan, the government warned consumers last week that it has received 39 reports of sandals — mostly Crocs or similar products — getting stuck in escalators from late August through early September. Most of the reports appear to have involved small children, some as young as two years old.

Kazuo Motoya of Japan's National Institute of Technology and Evaluation said children may have more escalator accidents in part because they "bounce around when they stand on escalators, instead of watching where they place their feet."

In Singapore, a 2-year-old girl wearing rubber clogs — it's unclear what brand — had her big toe completely ripped off in an escalator accident last year, according to local media reports.

And at the Atlanta airport, a 3-year-old boy wearing Crocs suffered a deep gash across the top of his toes in June. That was one of seven shoe entrapments at the airport since May 1, and all but two of them involved Crocs, said Roy Springer, operations manager for the company that runs the airport terminal.

Monday, September 17, 2007

City of Toothpicks

Amazing pictures of a miniature city constructed using millions of toothpicks. Look closely and you can see that even the roads are made of toothpicks!

(Thanks GeekGod)

Show your metal t-shirts!

Tshirt Slayer is a site where metal band lovers can upload pics of their favourite or rare metal band t-shirts and share their devotion to metal band t-shirts with the rest of the world. Go show them your metal!

Condom Fashion Show in Beijing

Pictures of models wearing condom inspired clothes at a fashion show in Beijing. I don't think these will sell but they are definitely fun to look at.

(Thanks Mr Big)

Sumatra Earthquake Map Animation


YouTube Link

I recorded this video using the excellent and free CamStudio. It shows an animation of recent earthquakes from Tuesday, September 11 to Friday September 14 2007. The first big earthquake that struck the Sumatra region last week happened on Wednesday at 11.10 UT (7.10pm SG time), after which you will see a flurry of activity near the same area.

Previously:
Quake toll and update
Singaporean's tremor video on CNN's I-Reports
7.9 mag earthquake hits Sumatra, tremors felt in Singapore

Today's Singapore News

1. A mission to save stressed 'trees of the seas'
2. 60,000 throng NATAS Travel Fair
3. Civil society making its mark, quietly
4. ITE students help build rally car that wins at APRC
5. Fake monks and nuns prey on charitable in Singapore
6. MM Lee graces Raffles Hotel's anniversary gala on his 84th birthday
7. One in six people suffer from mental illness in Singapore
8. Sotheby's Ends Singapore Art Auctions With S$10.8 Million Sale
9. Singapore Gives Up On Hosting 2008 ASEAN Championship
10. Hot-air balloon needs new home

Read them all at Topix Singapore News, edited by yours truly.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Braving the crowds at Natas Holidays 2007

According to a story published on Thursday, more Singaporeans are taking advantage of the buoyant economy, rising affluence and lower air fares to head overseas for their holidays. Since holiday travel is now at an all time high in Singapore, it is not surprising to see many people flocking to Natas Holidays 2007 which began on Friday.

This year, the popular annual travel brought together 160 exhibitors, including new participants like Air Bagan, Air Zimbabwe, Asia Global Vacation, the Austrian Embassy and Jakarta City Government Tourism Office. The organisers even boasted that it will be one of the largest and most successful fairs held in Singapore. So yesterday, I decided to head to Singapore Expo to check it out.

The first thing that greeted me once I was outside the hall was the crowd of people queuing to buy tickets to get into the fair.

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YouTube Link

It was so crowded as you can tell from the video above. Don't you think these people look like robots coming out of a factory assembly? Haha! Here's another video.

Once inside, I noticed more queuing.

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Queue! Queue! Queue! Queue! Bloody hell, to get a free cup of Milo, also need to queue.

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And if you're not in the line to grab the travel offer that you fancy, you'd most likely be sitting while you wait for your turn. Sigh.

Anyway, I managed to grab lots of flyers and brochures while I was walking around.

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Switzerland, Italy, Turkey, Sydney! Argh! So many places to go to! Damn, I'm confused.

One of the exhibitors at Natas that caught my attention was online travel agent ZUJI.

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Unlike other booths at the fair, the ZUJI booth was simplicity at its best. It only had stacks of flyers and a laptop on the table which says "Book Online at zuji.com.sg". Ironically, amidst all the queue and crowds, they were present with one objective in mind - to encourage people to 'quit the line, and book online.' The ZUJI folks even had guys walking around with big signboards to spread the same message. I know queuing seems to be Singaporeans' favourite pastime but it's definitely not mine. I HATE to queue - well, maybe for delicious donuts but that's the only thing I would queue for aye.

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I thought it's a brilliant idea by ZUJI to come to Natas, get a booth and tell people not to queue. Why queue when you can save time and money aye? I think nowadays online bookings are getting quicker, easier and safer and they are beginning to offer more and more products online. There's also the price transparency. I can go to sites such as ZUJI, Priceline and Expedia, and let them do the searching for me to quickly come up with the best deals. Ok, I know websites can never replace the advice and knowledge of an experienced travel agent because there are always going to be limitations in the complexity of the bookings the websites can process but for people like me who prefer the convenience of the internet, online travel agents like ZUJI are definitely here to stay. With these sites, I can book travel safely, securely and conveniently for hotels, flights and other travel services that I need. Nothing beats sitting back at home and let my mouse do the clicking instead of braving the crowds at travel fairs.

Now, where should I travel to? Hmm...

*looks through the ZUJI website*

Yay! Back to Sydney!



Gosh. I miss the Three Sisters.
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