Archive for September 2009

MOE Adopts Open Standard Internet Email and Collaboration Services

The Ministry of Education (MOE), together with NCS Pte Ltd and Google, officially announced today that they are working together to make available the Google Apps (Education version) suite of online communications and collaboration tools to more than 30,000 teachers and staff in over 350 schools in Singapore by end 2009. This will make MOE the first Ministry in Singapore to adopt an open standard cloud computing platform and the first in Asia to provide Web 2.0 communication and collaboration tools to all teachers in the public school system.

The Google Apps for Education will offer better and up-to-date email features with bigger email disk space size of 7GB. This is a huge increase compared to the existing system which provides only 110MB of email disk space. (Wow, How did our teachers managed to survive with 110MB email disk space?) Features like calendaring, flagging of emails for follow-up, email to-do list are also included. It is also bundled with collaboration tools such as Instant Messaging, Blogs and Wikis which provide collaboration within and across schools.

There is no mention of Google Docs in the press release, but let’s hope it is also included in the system. It would be useful for teachers to collaborate with the help of cloud computing. Also, it would be good to see MOE extending this to students too.

For more info about Google Apps (Education version) suite, visit the website or check out the youtube video. (Skip to 8:56 if you want to skip the marketing pitch)

And the 2008 most blogged-about-event award goes to….

Mas Selamat!!!!

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Actually it’s no surprise that Mas Selamat will win the 2008 Most Blogged-about-event award during the OMY Singapore Blog Award. A lot of bloggers were blogging about the Mas Selamat escape incident. Even I myself blogged about him at least 10 times. He is really one of the biggest talking point for 2008. He really deserve this award.

It’s a pity that Mas Selamat is still in Malaysia and is unable to attend the award ceremony to receive the award. Well, at least we know that he is happy in Malaysia.

Reservist Day Nine to Twelve plus – The Longest Four Days

**This entry was hand written between 31 Aug to 3 Sept 2009**

Finally, the grand finale of this year’s in camp has arrived. The 4 days outfield exercise. We have been training since late May for this and I’m just hoping we can get this over and done with. We will be put to the test to see how well our battalion perform. We performed very well last year and everyone have high hopes for us this year.

I spend the morning in the planning room helping my officer. The planning room is another battlefield. Fought in aircon room with pen and mouth. I never like going to the planning room and will try to avoid that place as much as possible. Had an early lunch in camp before moving out at 2pm. As usual, I’m in the first batch to move out. Sort of gotten used to it already. Everything went on smoothly for the day. Slow and steady in fact. I think they allocated too much time for us to accomplish our task. Which is something good. It’s still a long way to go, don’t want to rush everything and get ourselves tired on the first day. It was my CO’s birthday. They brought a birthday cake to the command tent to celebrate for a while. I managed to catch some sleep at night, between 2 rovers. When you are out in the field, everywhere is your bed. (and toilet too)

Our Div commander came to visit us in the morning. First time see a star outfield. It rained in the late morning and I took shelter under a bridge with another platoon. Had fun chatting with them and exchanging stories about NSF life. Tried to catch as much rest as possible cause I know we won’t be able to rest much for the next two days. By evening time, we are ready to move out. Almost puke blood when suggesting to someone from my platoon a better way to do thing. Refuse to listen. Look, I’ve been doing this thing for so many years already. I know your method is going to be damn troublesome. If you refuse to listen to me, don’t come bugging me for the rest of the night when you have problems.

And he was bugging me throughout the night. Told him already don’t listen. Sigh.

We were deployed by the roadside. With civilian cars driving pass every now and then. There were even some factory workers walking pass our deployment ground. I bet they are wondering what are we doing there. And we waited and waited and waited for the enemy to come. It was the longest wait I’ve ever encountered. In total, we waited 12 hours before the enemy finally decides to arrive.

After that mission, we head to another area to rest while our officers plan for the next mission. It was the toughest mission ever. I think they wanted to test our limits. But honestly speaking, this is a suicide mission. If we are using real bullets, most likely none of us will come back alive. And I’m sure they won’t assign this sort of mission in real war. It’s not feasible. But no choice, we have to fight the mission assigned by the top.

It was already the next day morning when we reach our location. All of us are dead tired. But we still need to get ready and prepare to fight the enemy. I was shouting at one guy for not doing his job well. Am already dead tired and this guy is creating more trouble. Almost wanted to use my weapon to wack him. Almost. You don’t piss off a tired and sleep deprived guy. Especially when he is wearing green.

We were deployed there until end of the day when exercise end. The enemy didn’t come. We waited until tired.

By right we should all be happy that the exercise is over. But some incident that happened towards the end of the exercise causes some unhappiness and spoilt the mood for celebration. Everyone have different methods to get things done. Our battalion’s method might be a lot different and bent a few rules. But our method is the most effective. Oh well, sometimes people just want you to follow the rules.

And because of that, we delayed quite a bit and end up reaching camp around 3am on friday morning. Everyone is dead tired. But we know that the faster we return our stores, the faster we get to rest. It was an amazing sight to see everyone working in a team to speed up the process. We got everything done within one hour plus. After that, we went back to bunk to wash up. Haven’t showered for 4 days.

By the time I finish washing up, it was already 5am. So we head down to the cookhouse for breakfast before hitting the bed.

Formula 1 SingTel Singapore Grand Prix

The Formula 1 SingTel Singapore Grand Prix will be held from 25 – 27 September 2009. Are you ready to party?!?!?!?!

Starbucks Good Coffee Day

Starbucks Singapore is having a “Good Coffee Day” on 22 Sept 2009.

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From 10am to 12noon, Starbucks will be giving out their 100% responsibly grown, ethically traded coffee.