Saturday, March 31, 2007
The sixth annual Global Information Technology Report from the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Geneva compares 122 countries on dozens of criteria, from Internet penetration to educational attainment to availability of venture capital. Of the top 10 countries in the 2006 survey, eight are in Northern Europe and half are Nordic. Singapore and the U.S. round out the list, but the shocker is that the U.S. fell six rungs, from No. 1 in 2005, due to a "relative deterioration of the political and regulatory environment," according the WEF.
Friday, March 30, 2007
© 2007 USPS. All Rights Reserved.
The US Postal Service has unveiled its new Star Wars commemorative stamps which feature images from all six movies in the Star Wars saga: Luke Skywalker; Han Solo and Chewbacca; Princess Leia Organa with R2-D2; C-3PO; Yoda; Queen Padmé Amidala; Obi-Wan Kenobi as seen in Episodes IV through VI; Anakin Skywalker battling Obi-Wan Kenobi; Darth Vader; Emperor Palpatine; Darth Maul; Imperial Stormtroopers; Boba Fett; the Millennium Falcon; and an X-wing fighter. The stamps will be released at a first-day-of-issue ceremony on Friday, May 25, at Star Wars Celebration IV, the largest party ever for fans of the saga, at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
© 2007 USPS. All Rights Reserved.
The back of the stamp sheet includes extensive text describing the dramatic roles that each featured character or vehicle plays in the Star Wars saga. (View a bigger image of the front and back of the stamp sheet)
You can also vote for your favourite Star Wars stamp here. The stamp that receives the most votes will be honored with the issuance of a single stamp, which will be for sale later this summer.
MAiLmeART.com is a website where you can submit envelopes or packages which have been drawn on or painted. Cool idea aye. I've looked through the submissions and found some gems there such as this envelope (above) sent by Mark Frudd. The website is accepting submissions from all around the world so go get creative and mail them something aye.
Having moved to Tokyo from London, where your cellphone wasn't safe in your pocket, I found this amazing. After a short time in a low-crime society, old habits changed. I would leave my briefcase unattended on a train, for example. And I stopped locking my bike.
I left it unclamped outside stores and restaurants, the lock wrapped uselessly around the bar under my seat. I'd leave it out all night in the driveway, unchained. One summer vacation, I left all four family bikes sitting unlocked in the driveway for three weeks.
So I was more embarrassed than angry when I went back to get my bike that Sunday morning and found it gone.
No kidding, I hear you saying. But I was so surprised I thought the ever-efficient Tokyo bicycle attendants might have impounded it for not being parked in a designated bicycle rack. Tokyo is awash in bikes, and despite long rows of parking stands at every station, there are never enough spaces.
I was still contemplating a visit to the impounded bike lot a day later when an officer from a neighboring ward office of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police called me at home.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
I think Sanjaya is a nice boy. I kinda like him from the first time I saw him in the audition rounds. There are some who dislike him. They say that he should not be in the competition and he can't sing. There's even a lady who is doing a hunger strike for as long as Sanjaya is still in the competition. Looks like she has to go on for one more week. Ha! Idol judge Simon Cowell said that he will resign if Sanjaya wins the competition.
I watched his last night's performance again and actually it's not that bad. I'm sure we all have heard much worse. He may have looked weird with the hairdo but seriously, you really have to give credit to the kid. Not many people will show up on stage live infront of millions and millions of people around the world wearing a hair like he did. Good luck kid but seriously, I do not think you will win it. No matter how many different hairdos you wear each week. If I have to choose a winner now, I think it will be either LaKisha and Melinda and I think Jordin Sparks will make up the last three standing. But as they say, it's still a long way to go and anything can happen on American Idol.
Anyway, since Ryan Seacrest was Sanjayed today, I think I should too.
Ok fellas, I've been officially Sanjayed! Now, hopefully this will bring in another thousand or so readers a day.
And to end this post, here's the Idol quote of the week.
Simon to Sanjaya: I don't think it matters anymore what we say... I think you're in your own universe and if people like you, good luck.
Nicely said Simon.
The debris was so close to the aircraft that the pilot could hear the roar it made as it broke the sound barrier.
The alarmed Airbus pilot notified Auckland Oceanic Centre after seeing flaming space junk shooting across the sky about five nautical miles in front of and behind his plane at about 10pm.
At the aircraft's cruising speed of 880km/h it was within about 40 seconds of a potential catastrophe.
According to a planespotter who was tuning in to a high-frequency radio broadcast at the time, the pilot "reported that the rumbling noise from the space debris could be heard over the noise of the aircraft".
"He described how he saw a piece of debris lighting up as it re-entered [the earth's atmosphere]. He was a very worried pilot as you would imagine.
"Auckland is talking to [an] Aerolineas Argentinas [pilot] who is travelling [in the] opposite direction at 10 degrees further south asking if they wish to turn back to Auckland. They have elected to carry on at the moment.
"It is not something you come across every day and I am sure the Lan Chile crew will have a tale to tell," the planespotter said.
"It's not going to change me and I'm not going to change you," he said of Australian criticism of his autocratic style.Some Australians meanwhile are outraged that he was given the hon. doctorate, citing he is a traitor to democratic ideals and does not deserve such an award.
"We're going to prosper, you're going to prosper.
"But if I allowed you to run my country it will spiral downwards and hit rock bottom," he said.
Asked about a remark he made in the 1980s that Australians were destined to become the "poor white trash of Asia", Mr Lee said it was apt for that era.
"There are some words sometime said in the heat of an argument which perhaps at that time was warranted."
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
With regard to the “four times” claim – on a weight for weight basis, the claim that “the blackcurrants in Ribena contain four times the Vitamin C of oranges” is actually factually correct. However we accept the Commission’s view that this may have had the potential to mislead some customers. There was never any intention to mislead our customers, however to avoid any potential confusion, we quickly began removing the claim from our packaging and advertising across our entire Ribena range more than a year ago. These actions were completed last year...Ribena's Australia website is also carrying a similar notice. Here in Singapore, the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) will be conducting tests on Ribena to determine its actual level of Vitamin C. If you are really concerned about the amount of Vitamin C you get from drinking Ribena, I think it would be better if you choose a better alternative such as eating fruits or Vitamin C pills.
With regard to the content statement it is important to highlight that Ribena Syrup products were not part of this content information issue. They are a rich source of Vitamin C.
Only products in the Ready to Drink category were affected by the Commerce Commission concerns about Vitamin C content information. Until the Commerce Commission began its investigation into some Ready to Drink products, GSK was unaware there was an issue with the Vitamin C information on them. As with the ‘four times’ claim, we took similar prompt action to correct this more than a year ago.
Update 29/3/2007: The nice folks at AVA pointed me to a Channel NewsAsia article that says test carried out by AVA reveals Ribena in Singapore is rich in Vitamin C. Yay! Enjoy drinking your Ribena fellas!
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
(Thanks Mr Big)
The two female Labradors have been trained to detect polycarbonate chemicals used in manufacturing discs. But officials received a tip that bootleggers are using chemical sprays to throw Lucky and Flo off the scent, said Fahmi Kassim, the Domestic Trade Ministry's enforcement chief in southern Johor state.Previously: Malaysian DVD pirates want sniffer dogs dead
"The pirates are believed to be desperate because the dogs were so successful,'' Fahmi told The Associated Press.
Ministry authorities last week said the dogs were moved to a safe house after a source informed them that DVD and CD pirates were offering a bounty to anyone who could kill the dogs, on loan for at least a month from the Motion Picture Association of America.
He says: Can I buy you a drink?(Thanks Shy)
You say: Actually, I'd rather have the money.
He says: I'm a photographer and I've been looking for a face like yours.
You say: I'm a plastic surgeon and I've been looking for a face like yours.
He says: Hi. Didn't we go on a date once? Or was it twice?
You say: Must've been once. I never make the same mistake twice.
He says: How did you get to be so beautiful?
You say: I must've been given your share.
He says: Will you go out with me this Saturday?
You say: Sorry, I'm having a headache this weekend.
Monday, March 26, 2007
Pic taken from the Naughty Teletubbies set.
Can you believe it? The Teletubbies is 10 years old! The award winning children's TV show produced from 1997 to 2001, featuring Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po, is a big hit worldwide despite them being highly irritating to some of us.
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the premiere of Teletubbies, a series of events are planned for the end of March through the beginning of April. The Teletubbies will appear in the US for the first time when they will make appearances in New York City's Times Square, Grand Central Station, and Apollo Theater. Then, there's the partnership with designer Isaac Mizrahi in which he will design Teletubbies-inspired bags to be auctioned off to benefit the Cure Autism Now and Autism Speaks charities. The Teletubbies will also open a Pop-Up Shop in New York City's West Village from March 28 to April 7. A new line of clothing will also be launched to be sold in the Pop-Up Shop and other specialty stores. On March 28, New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg will announce the day as "Teletubbies Day" and will give the key to the city to the Teletubbies. Crikey! Good luck to you New Yorkers. The makers of Teletubbies also launched a special website where you can make your own Teletubbies clips and more. There are also special Teletubbies events all over the world. No idea where that will be but I just hope they don't come to Singapore.
Anyway, since it's the 10th anniversary of Teletubbies, here are 10 of the funniest and most popular Teletubbies clips found on, where else but YouTube.
1. Teletubbies theme song
2. Teletubbies dancing to Lean With It
3. Teletubbies dancing to Hardcore
4. Teletubbies decide to hold hands
5. Teletubbies licking each other
6. George Bush as the Sun in Teletubbies
7. Teletubbies love Budweiser
8. Teletubbies meet Pappy the dog
9. Teletubbies vs South Park
And lastly, this collection won't be complete without...
10. The Talibannies
Hehe. Enjoy. Eh-oh!
This research provides a surefire method for readers of the Dilbert Blog to improve their sex lives. Go down to the local mall with a clipboard and pretend to be doing a research experiment. Offer $1 to attractive people who will write a paragraph describing how incredibly sexy you are. (Based on the research, you should offer a low dollar amount so people don’t think they did it entirely for the money.) Tell participants that the research has to do with handwriting analysis of people who are writing opinions they do not believe. Stop after you get 100 people to do it. That’s less than the cost of one meal at an upscale restaurant.
Give the participants your e-mail address and tell them they can get the results of the research study in a month if they contact you. According to the science, about two-thirds of the people who wrote a paragraph on your sex appeal will strongly believe it a month later, no matter how hideous you are. And a few of those people will remember to e-mail you for the results. You’ll still have to close the deal, but I think we can agree that I just did the hard work for you.
(via Boing Boing)
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Two days ago, I posted some pictures of the new kitchen. Today, the guys came over to fix the countertop, hobs, sinks, lights, etc. Yay! But looks like I have to do some cleaning again on a Saturday night.
Update: Here's a crappy video uploaded to YouTube. No sound.
Previously: Pics of new kitchen!
Friday, March 23, 2007
(via Boing Boing)
Arnie versus Sly. Who will survive? This video is made by AMDS, the master of video mash-ups, using clips from the movies Rambo II, Commando and Predator He is the same dude that also brought us the exciting Robocop vs Terminator Episodes 1 and 2. I've been following his work for sometime now and I think he's getting better and better!
The online partners for the new business include Yahoo Inc., Time Warner Inc.'s AOL, Microsoft Corp.'s MSN, and News Corp.'s MySpace. The new network will also make shows available on its own Web site.The online partners (MSN, Yahoo, MySpace) are all big names and it will be interesting to see if more media companies are added into the partnership. YouTube is the King of its industry now but maybe, just maybe, the new "Hollywood Tube" may finally dethrone the Google acquired site. From a business point of view, it would have been better if MSN, Yahoo, NBC and their partners thought of this earlier. To play catch-up with a business leader is always a tough proposition. Also, it's interesting to note that Microsoft, Yahoo and MySpace all have their own online video sites and to have them join together in this venture says a lot about YouTube's impressive dominance in this field.
The impetus behind the venture is to provide an authorized, copyright-protected and ad-supported alternative to YouTube, which has turned into an enormously popular online destination, with some of its hits coming from user-uploaded shows from television.
TV executives say they see the promotional value of having short clips from their shows available on YouTube, but many also say they're frustrated that so much of their programming shows up in way that's unauthorized and doesn't result in any compensation back to them.
So far, the only major media companies in the new network are General Electric Co.'s NBC and News Corp., both of which also own major movie studios.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
Man A: Die lah. Die lah. It's all gone.
Man B: How boss? All our pirated DVDs kena raid in Johor.
Man A: Ya. $3 million worth! Haiz.
Boss: How is this possible? I thought I told you all to handle this with care. How come kena raid in the end huh?
Man B: Boss, not our fault lah. The police use the bloody dogs.
Boss: What? Nowadays dogs can sniff pirated DVDs?
Man B: Ya lah. The two dogs are given a month's trial by the police working together with those big f#^%$*rs at the Motion Picture Association. The dogs are trained to sniff out plastic. If not because of the dogs, surely we won't be caught.
Boss: Enough! That's it. Tell the rest of the syndicate. I want their heads.
Man A: What boss?
Boss: Kill the dogs! That's an order. We must have our revenge.
My job by itself was nothing special. It was the context I did it in that made it worthy of this write-up. Matt was a photographer who took amateur-style (read: no technique at all) digital photographs of hot naked girls stripping off their clothes, posing provocatively, and spreading their labia for all the world to view. Along with all the standard programming, design and maintenance, it was my burden to select the best photographs from the sets that he shot and update the site with them. I worked in the living room, where most of the action took place. Not only did I get to be there when these photo shoots took place, I got to stare at these naked pictures for hours afterwards.I can't wait to read his part 2!
Why is the theme of World Water Day 2007 “Coping with water scarcity”?
Water use has been growing at more than the rate twice of population increase in the last century, and an increasing number of regions are chronically short of water. By 2025, 1 800 million people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity, and two-thirds of the world population could be under stress conditions. As population continues to grow, and increasingly relies on water for its development, the crisis is reaching global dimensions and requires action at all levels to address the problem. This is why UN-Water has identified the theme “Coping with water scarcity” as one of its priorities for the decade “Water for life 2005-2015. World Water Day 2007 is an opportunity to reflect on the subject, and promote active participation by everybody in addressing this global challenge.
Finally, after close to a month of renovation work, the new kitchen is taking shape! It's 80% done. Today, the cleaners came over to clean up the kitchen. There are a lot of dust from the renovation work and the whole place is dusty. It's like I'm living next to the desert. LOL. I'm still waiting for the contractor to finish up the lights and the kitchen cabinet. Sometimes, I wonder why are they taking so long just to finish one kitchen. Dang, I can't wait to start cooking again.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
(Thanks Sir Thomas)
Related: Virtual Paper Plane Competition
Cartoon above drawn by Dave Walker.
Cartoonist Dave Walker gives away free cartoons on his site We Blog Cartoons. His cartoons are only free for people to use on their blogs. He says, "The more people that enjoy my work the better and life is generally too short not to give things away. I’m also hoping that there might be people out there who might like my work so much that they pay to republish a cartoon or take an interest in one of my other projects." Great stuff Dave!
Welcome to the Beer Asia Blog. Currently living in Thailand and occasionally travelling around parts of Asia I fully intend to sample, critique and review every beer I come across. So far in my alcoholic adventure I have experienced brews in Thailand, Myanmar and Malaysia. Whilst initially my drinking had been purely for pleasure I feel it is now time to catalogue the good, the bad and the downright ugly beers of this fine continent. For each review I will sample as much of the drink as physically possible then report on the price, taste, quality, history and hangover of each beverage.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Monday, March 19, 2007
(Thanks Mr Big)
Related: Watch Duck Tales and other cartoon intros from the 80s
Friday, March 16, 2007
All the gang members, aged between 14 and 23 years, were diminutive, The Star newspaper said without saying whether they were dwarfs or just small.
Some of them who were less than 5 feet tall would be picked to squeeze through small openings into the houses they robbed in central Malaysia, The Star said.
Gang members confessed to their crimes when they were detained, according to the report.
You seem to lack the energy of late to get up and go. Your objectives appear to be unattainable and no one seems to care. You feel lost, neglected and need some W.T.C. (Warm tender care).
You are not an argumentative sort of person and 'rather than fight - you'd switch' (an old cigarette ad cliche). But when you try to assert yourself - as sometimes you may try to do - you meet with so much resistance and effrontery that manifests itself so obviously that you become hurt, indignant and resentful. So in order to have peace and quiet you tend to become inhibited. You keep it all to yourself but deep down, you 'feel' and 'hurt' a lot.
For some time now your hopes and expectations have been denied and because of this you are becoming withdrawn and introverted. Continual disappointment has manifested itself in you becoming both suspicious and restrained you have become withdrawn from others and have receded more and more into yourself. You seem to have lost your innate enthusiasm and imaginative nature, for fear that you may be carried away by it only to find that you are wasting your time. You are loath to trust people, as in the past your trust has been misplaced. You seem to be keeping yourself cautiously aloof from others. At this moment in time your attitude is to trust nobody - until they can prove themselves to you.
Since in the recent past all of your hopes and aspirations have been denied you, you are now convinced that the future will hold nothing but anxiety so therefore 'why bother?' You would love to get away from it all, to escape from the trials and tribulations of this mundane existence and fall into a peaceful and harmonious relationship, which will protect you from the lack of appreciation and give you the chance to start afresh."
Crikey! And I get all that from just clicking a few colours here.
Thursday, March 15, 2007
We call it the Sky Cycle. Why bother with all those extremely fast roller coaster rides that you find in other theme parks when you can move slowly at your own pace and enjoy the beautiful panoramic view with our own unique Sky Cycle roller coaster. The Sky Cycle sits two people, perfect for those romantic dates too.
Just hop on and pedal away like you would with a normal bicycle. Don't forget to buckle up. It's very important. Ready? Go!
Oh, and did I tell you it's better if you have a life insurance policy when you try out the Sky Cycle?
Hehe. Just kidding. Our rides are 100% safe. Really! And if you ever get tired pedaling, just scream out loud and we will try to reach you asap.
Thank you and hope you enjoy the Sky Cycle. Please come again.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Taylor and colleagues reviewed 12 papers looking at the connection between exercise and nicotine deprivation. They focused on exercises that could be done outside a gym, such as walking and isometrics, or the flexing and tensing of muscles. According to their research, just five-minutes of exercise was often enough to help smokers overcome their immediate need for a nicotine fix.
After various types of moderate physical exertion, researchers asked people to rate their need for a cigarette. People who had exercised reported reduced a desire. "What's surprising is the strength of the effect," said Dr. Robert West, professor of health psychology at University College London. West was not involved in the review. "They found that the acute effects of exercise were as effective as a nicotine patch," he said.
In the controversial documentary by James Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici, an ancient ossuary from a cave containing the tombs of Jesus and his family, was thought to belong to Mary Magdalene. Pfann says that the original transcription of the inscription on the Mary Magdalne ossuary was incorrect.
The inscription does not read “Mariamene the Master” nor does the name Mariamene or Mariamne appear on the ossuary at all. He claims that the inscription reflects the writing of two distinct scribes who wrote in different forms of the Greek script. The correct reading of the inscription is “Mariame and Mara" which means that the ossuary contained the bones of at least two different women, interred at two separate times, one named Mariame and the other Mara and not Mary Magdalene.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Pfann said, "James Cameron is a great guru of science fiction, and he's taking it to a new level with Simcha Jacobovici. You take a little bit of science, spin a good yarn out of it and you get another Terminator or Life of Brian."
Previously: Tombs of Jesus and family found
A flying ghost at Changi Hospital, a playful tree spirit at Bedok Reservoir and the ghost of a girl who died at the famous Yellow Tower at...
You can watch an almost live webcam (30 secs delay) of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant which suffered major damage from the 9.0 earthqu...
Meet Xu Rong . She's an Assistant Professor at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and judging from her photos posted on her blog an...