Archive for September 2009

Have we gone too far?

I honestly don’t remember any Miss World Singapore that creates so much debate. I think it all started with the RazorTV interview. Yes, I have to agree that her English standard isn’t the best. But who says that Miss World Pageant must speak perfect English.

And honestly, is she always like that or just like that during that interview?

I feel sorry for Ris Low when I saw all the youtube video mocking her. Come on, what have she done to deserve this? I quote one of the comments in the video “It is like a group of school bully’s picking on a girl because she is not very bright”. I couldn’t agree more with the commenter. The people behind almost-famous.tv should be ashamed of themselves.

And our Straits Times isn’t very kind with Ms Ris Low too. Someone in SPH named her photo as “sg-stupid.jpg”. How could our mainstream media label someone as stupid? I think SPH owes Ris Low an apology.

ST

Update: Straits Times has removed the picture from the article. But the picture can still be found here.

Update 2: The picture has been removed from the server. Good thing we still have screenshots.

The best part was when Member of Parliament Lee Bee Wah (Ang Mo Kio GRC) said that Miss Low should not represent Singapore internationally because of the credit card fraud. Yes, she did commit a crime. But she was also charged in court. (Although the sentence is surprisingly light) So, shouldn’t an ex-convict be given a second chance? Has MP Lee Bee Wah forgotten about Yellow Ribbon Project? Or is it just a wayang?

Perhaps its time for us to relook at our action and put ourselves in her heels shoes. Have we gone too far this time? Who are we to mock at her? To label her? To deny her?

I think that it is good that Ms Ris Low has decided to withdraw from the Miss World Pageant. Singapore doesn’t deserve to have her represent us after what we have done to her. Let’s hope she continues to contribute to Singapore in other ways. Perhaps a spokesperson for Yellow Ribbon Project to remind everyone that we still discriminate against ex-convict after all these years.

Gordon Brown apologize to Alan Turing

I don’t really know much about Alan Turing. But I’m sure most IT people would have heard of his name. Those who study about artificial intelligence will surely hear of Turing Test.

Besides Turing Test, he also devised a number of techniques for breaking German ciphers during World War II. Without him, the war might have end differently. In 1999, Time Magazine named Turing as one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century for his role in the creation of the modern computer.

But many people did not know that Alan Turing was a gay and was prosecuted in 1952. Back then, homosexual is illegal in UK. Turing was given a choice between imprisonment or probation conditional on his agreement to undergo hormonal treatment designed to reduce libido. He accepted chemical castration via oestrogen hormone injections, one of the side effects of which was that he grew breasts. His conviction also led to the removal of his security clearance, and barred him from continuing with his cryptographic consultancy for GCHQ

He took his own life two years later.

On 10 September 2009, following an Internet campaign led by John Graham-Cumming, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown made an official public apology on behalf of the British government for the way in which Turing was treated after the war.

So on behalf of the British government, and all those who live freely thanks to Alan’s work I am very proud to say: we’re sorry, you deserved so much better.

— Gordon Brown

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I always admired government who are not afraid of stepping out and apologizing for their mistakes. Something that my government still lacks.

We are going to be outnumbered soon

The latest figure from the Department of Statistics is worrying. Singapore’s population reaches 4.99 million at the end of June 2009. 3.73m are Singapore residents and 1.25m are non-residents.

That means 75% of the total population on this island are Singapore Residents. But here is the scary part. By Singapore Resident, they mean Singaporeans and Permanent Residents. There is no figures on how many Permanent Residents and from past experience, this figure will not be released. And we must not forget that there has been lots of new citizen lately.

Update: My mistake. They did release the PR figure in the report. There are 3.2m Singaporeans and 0.53m PR. Which means 64% of the population are Singaporeans.

Are native Singaporeans going to be outnumbered soon? Will we going to become minority in our own country soon? Is it time for us to start relooking into the foreign talent policies? Or am I worrying too much?

On the side note, a local company called Ektronics Pte Ltd posted a job ads on JobsDB looking for a Sales Development Engineer. Singaporeans need not reply as one of the requirements is “Preferably non Singaporean (PR welcome)”

The company has amended the job ads to remove that requirement after being slammed by forumers in major forums in Singapore. But if you are curious, there is always google cache.

ektronics

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Paddock Club 2009

I was invited by Lenovo to watch the Singapore Grand Prix Friday practice session at the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Paddock Club. It was a great experience. Good food, great drinks and one of the best view of the race. The Paddock Club is located right next to the race starting line, above the pit stop. Truly the best way to watch F1.

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The ticket for the Paddock Club. Comes in a very professional looking box. Definitely going to keep it.

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View from the outdoor sitting area for the Paddock Club.

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Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team room. Didn’t get to go in. I think its their rest area.

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The nicely laid out table. We were fed food and drink from the moment we step in till the moment we left. That’s eating and drinking non-stop from 3:30pm till 11:30pm.

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The beautiful Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Paddock Club. For the guests of their sponsors.

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The viewing area inside the Paddock Club. The view from the window is great. You get to see the starting line and also a bird eye view of the pit stop.

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Looking down from the Paddock Club. Can see what’s happening at the pit stop. This has got to be one of the best view of the entire race.

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Lewis Hamilton pops by for a while to greet the guest and give us some updates on the team’s preparations for the race.

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The Paddock Club lifestyle area. There is a massage service, internet, local food and drinks, live performance etc etc. I didn’t really go explore this area. Spend most of my time watching the practice session.

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The Kangaroo TV. You can watch the race anywhere you like, even in the toilet if you want. (but not advisable) You can even select the driver you want to follow.

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I got an exclusive tour to the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes garage.

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The crews are busy fine tuning the car for the practice session.

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This is where they monitor the race and communicate with the drivers. Not many people knows that the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team are using Lenovo computers.

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Apart from the exclusive garage tour, I also get to go for the pit lane walk.

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A huge thanks to Derrick and Lenovo for inviting me to the Paddock Club. Really a great experience. Had a very enjoyable evening.

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Oh, and the best part is I get to take photo with Lewis Hamilton. It’s hard to grab hold of him for a photo. He has a tight schedule and is rushing of to get ready for the practice session.

All the best to Hamilton tonight. He did well last night and managed to clinch pole position during the qualifying round.

The danger of texting while driving

Here is a video made by the police in UK to be shown to school kids. It’s to educate them the danger of texting while driving. Pretty realistic I must say.

Remember: Texting while driving is dangerous. So is drink driving.