Archive for June 2010

First Look: Nokia X5

Nokia never fails to show off their new phone in their Nokia Connection event held in Singapore. Last year, they unveiled the E72 to the world for the first time. This year, Nokia unveiled the Nokia X5. Again, Singapore media (together with regional media) are the first in the world to see the latest Nokia product.

The Nokia X5 is rather interesting. I managed to play with it for 5 to 10 minutes. It’s a square-ish slider phone. I don’t remember seeing any phones with this shape. It’s a 2.36″ QVGA screen with up to 262k colors (320×240). And surprisingly, it felt pretty comfortable when I held it. 7.43 x 6.64 x 1.68 cm and 129 grams. Keyboard is wide and generous. Very comfortable to type. I certainly don’t mind chatting with that keyboard.

The Nokia X5 is targeted at the trendy youth. It has easy access to the major social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Hi5 and MySpace. It’s available in Pink, Azure, Graphite Black, Yellow Green and Purple colour which I think the youth will like. There are some gimmicky features like shaking the phone to find out the number of unread message. Or spin the phone when music is playing to jump to a random track. Sounds like a cool feature to have, but I’m not sure how practical is that.

And although the Nokia X5 seems to be targeted at the youth, it comes with a metallic body and keyboard which reminds me of phones targeted at the working professionals. In fact, if you choose Graphite Black colour, it might pass off as a professional looking phone (Just don’t shake the phone to find out how many unread message you have). Which I guess isn’t anything bad. After all, youth do grow up and become working adults right?

Oh, in case you are still wondering, the Nokia X5 is running on Symbian S60. It has WIFI and Bluetooth. There is no mention of GPS and Digital compass, so I’ll assume there isn’t any for now. 200 MB internal memory and supports up to 32GB microSD card. 5 megapixel camera. Charging and data transfer is thru a MicroUSB port. The review unit that I’m playing with comes with a rubber thumb ring for me to wear so that the X5 won’t fall off my hands if someone knocks me. The Nokia representative I spoke to said that they are still considering if they want to include the rubber thumb ring in the retail package. If you ask me, I’ll definitely say yes. It’s pretty cool to wear that.

The Nokia X5 will be available in Q3 2010.

So Long For Now: The Fire Fight Says Farewell

I’m no expert when it comes to the music scene, especially local music scene. I think I can’t even name more than 10 local bands/singers.

But I do know good music when I hear one. Which is why I’ve been sharing videos of all the great local bands and singers whenever I sees one.

It is kinda sad when I found out that the Fire Fight is saying goodbye. It’s a pity that I can’t make it to the final performance. Would really love to go. I’ve seen them perform live 3 times and I must say I really enjoyed their performance. I personally think they have great potential. They really know how to entertain their audience with great music. It’s sad to see them go.

Thank you Fire Fight for the great music.

Fire Fight – Fire at Night

Set a fire into the night
For tomorrow we’ll start a fight
To be, to be…

10 years ago….

I guess every male Singaporean will remember the day they took that ferry to Pulau Tekong for the first time (Or report to CMPB for the older one and report to camp for those under mono-intake). 10 years ago, on today, I took the ferry to Pulau Tekong for the first time in my life. Still wearing my civilian clothing and holding on to my pink NRIC. It is something unforgettable. It marks the start of my 2 1/2 years of National Service.

I’m not a fan of National Service. I doubt there are many out there. I rather use that 2 1/2 years doing something else. Like further studies or getting a job. But National Service is necessary for an island state like Singapore. NS is to protect the independence of Singapore. And this is something that we can’t get a foreign talent to do the job. We need to do it ourselves, like it or not. It’s our country and we have the obligations to defend it ourselves.

I’m sure almost everyone complains about National Service. I do that too. But at the end of the day, we know we have to do it. Some of us put our studies on hold. Others put their dreams on hold. We gave up a lot of things during these 2 1/2 years. From simple comfort like sleeping on your own bed every night to meeting your girlfriend every day. Many of us (including myself) broke up with our girlfriends because we didn’t spend enough time with them.

2 1/2 years flies by very quickly, although there were times when an hour seems like eternality. But I’m glad that I’ve done my part. And after the 2 1/2 year National Service, we still need to put down our work every year to report back to camp for Reservist. I’ve already gone back for 7 In Camp Training since I ORD and have 3 more cycle to go.

That is the sacrifice of every male Singaporean.

There is 1 song in the army that I like a lot. We often sang this song during route march. Sometimes I feel that it reflect what every male Singaporean have to go thru once in their life.

Far far away in the South China Sea
I left a girl with tears in her eyes
I must go where the brave man die
A soldier has to fight the front because he loves his land
A soldier has to fight even if he has to die
Coz we’re the ones who fight the front!
And we’re the ones who hold the guns!
We are mighty warriors of our land.

People often don’t appreciate National Service. I can understand why. The only time people truly appreciate something is when that something is really put into use. (Remember 2003 SARS period when everyone starts to appreciate the contributions of Doctors and Nurses?) And for a small country like Singapore, we cannot really afford to have National Service put in use. Our army is a deterrent force. If put into use, both side will suffer heavy losses. Which is why I always say it’s alright if people don’t appreciate National Service. I rather people don’t appreciate NS than have NS put in real use.

Oh, so the graffiti on SMRT wasn’t a marketing campaign?

When I first saw the news on the graffiti on SMRT train, I thought it was yet another marketing campaign. Remember the failed Singpost stunt where they “vandalized” their mailbox for….. eeerrr…. I forgot why they vandalized their mailbox for. Please note the difference in the words I use here. The one at SMRT is a graffiti art. The one at Singpost is vandalism. And it’s an irony that Singpost actually paid someone to do it but SMRT got theirs for free.

Anyway, jokes aside. I was kinda surprised that the graffiti art on the train wasn’t approved by SMRT. A Swiss national has been arrested and the location of his partner is still unknown. Who would had thought that someone could sneak into the train depot at night and do graffiti art? Isn’t the train depot a restricted area? I would also presume the two of them take at least 15 minutes to do it. And that spraying paint isn’t exactly a very quiet activity, especially in the middle of the night. What exactly happened?

And I can’t help but wonder. What is the use of policemen patrolling the SMRT station and security staff doing random bag checks when the depot is so unprotected?

Singapore is fortunate once again because the trespasser is doing it for art and not terrorism. Maybe someone have become complacent again after the arrest of Mas Selamat. Well, at least we managed to arrest one of them very quickly. But then, if that is a terrorist act, the damaged would had already been done.

As for the Swiss national, I find it a pity that he is doing this without the approval of the authorities. I don’t know about you, but I actually don’t mind some graffiti once in a while, as long as they look good. (Hello Singpost, you reading this?) If only the guy seek approval from the authorities. But then, maybe part of the street art is to sneak into unauthorized places and do the graffiti.

But even though I kinda like the graffiti, I still feel that the law is the law. Since he has broken it, he should be punished for his action.

Steve Jobs will address the fans in an hour time

It’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2010 (WWDC) and Steve Jobs will address the Apple fans again during the keynote. The keynote will happen on 8 June 2010 (Tuesday), 1am Singapore time. Everyone is expecting a new iPhone announcement today. It’s no surprise since the unreleased iPhone has been appearing at pub and Vietnam.

I guess the form factor of the new iPhone will be slightly different judging from the 2 leaked iPhone. While the final same and size should be the same as the leaked iPhone, my guess is that Apple will make it look better by removing that ugly seam at the side. Which is why I’ve been telling everyone not to buy new iPhone accessories which fit nicely to the phone as you might have to change them when you upgrade your phone.

There is no doubt that the new iPhone will be using MicroSIM. All signs are pointing towards that direction.

There are some rumors that the new iPhone is called iPhone 4G, since the previous iPhone is called iPhone 3G. There are also some words that it will be called iPhone HD but I highly doubt so. My guess is that the iPhone will be called iPhone 4G and that it will come with LTE. If you notice, AT&T is preparing their LTE infrastructure. And I guess the best way to fix their 3G problem now is to move people away from 3G and to the next network.

But based on my previous predictions, I guess my predictions will be off by a couple of miles. Hahaha. But one thing for sure, Gizmodo is not attending the keynote.

If you are interested, check out the following website that is doing live blogging for WWDC 2010:

gdgt
Engadget
MacRumors
Cnet