Archive for October 2011

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew

OK, this is a very very delayed blog entry. I know. Starbucks VIA Ready Brew has been in Singapore for more than a month already. But it took me this long before I finally blog about it.

Firstly, for the uninitiated, Starbucks VIA Ready Brew is a line of instant coffee from Starbucks. The word “VIA” is an Italian word for “road”. It was first unveiled in New York City in March 2009. And its finally in Singapore.

I took part in the VIA Taste Challenge during the launch event. Let’s be totally honest. You can most likely tell the difference between VIA and brewed coffee. It’s quite impossible for any instant coffee to beat the taste and aroma of a cup of freshly brewed coffee. It’s just an unfair fight. Don’t get me wrong. VIA taste good. But you just can’t beat a cup of freshly brewed coffee.

But then, something strikes me. Although the Starbucks VIA is not comparable to a cup of freshly brewed coffee, it is most likely the closest you can get from instant coffee. In fact, the Starbucks VIA doesn’t taste like instant coffee at all.

So can VIA Ready Brew replace your daily cuppa coffee? Most likely not. But if you don’t have the time to brew your own coffee or head down to the nearest Starbucks, then the Starbucks VIA is a good option.

One thing good about the Starbucks VIA Ready Brew is that you don’t need hot water to mix it. The coffee powder is so fine that it is soluble in cold water too. But most of the time you will need hot water to dissolve the sugar or creamer. You see, VIA is only coffee powder. It is good for those who want to mix their own fanciful coffee drinks. But if you just want a cup of coffee, you’ll most likely need hot water to dissolve the sugar unless you like your coffee unsweetened. Or you have sugar syrup.

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew is now available in Colombia, Italian Roast and Decaffeinated Italian Roast in Singapore. The 3 stick pack cost S$3.90 and the 12 stick pack cost S$13.90.

By the way, I was googling about VIA and I notice that they have flavored Starbucks VIA in other countries. Hope Starbucks Singapore will bring in favors like Cinnamon and Mocha.

Air Swimmer Shark and Clownfish

This is like the coolest remote control toy I’ve ever seen. The Air Swimmer Shark and Air Swimmer Clownfish.

It’s basically a helium balloon with infra-red remote control. The tail controls the direction of the air swimmer while a weight at the bottom of the air swimmer controls the height. Check out the instructional video to find out how it works.

The Air Swimmer is 144.78cm long and 91.44 cm tall. It runs on 4 AAA Battery (1 on the Air Swimmer and 3 on the remote control). The only problem with this is that you need to fill it up with helium and refill every now and then.

Besides using it to scare kids, I think it’s a very good for attracting attention in a crowd. Maybe hang a banner below it and fly it around a shopping mall. Haha.

C Programming Creator Dennis Ritchie dies

Dennis MacAlistair Ritchie, creator of C Programming and one of the co-inventors of the Unix operating system, passed away recently at the age of 70.

C programming is one of the most widely used programming language of all time. It also greatly influenced other popular programming language like C++.

C programming wasn’t the first programming language that I learnt in Polytechnic. We were taught Java first. But personally, I kinda like C Programming back in Polytechnic.

#include <stdio.h>

int main(void)
printf(“Rest in Peace Sir…\n”);
return 0;

Damn You Siri

If you think damn you auto correct is funny, wait till more people get the new iPhone 4S with Siri. No, I’m not referring to cases where Siri mis-recognize what you said. I’m referring to the funny thing that Siri say.

In fact, This is my next already has an article on some funny Siri replies. Here’s my favorite.

It’s scary and fascinating that Siri has an answer to this kind of question. But we all know that Siri has a sense of humor sometimes. I think we will see more Siri jokes in the next few months. In fact, someone should totally start a website for all the Siri jokes.

Oh, on a totally unrelated note, here’s a funny parody on the Siri introduction video. Portal fans will love it.

I wonder if it is possible for Jailbreakers to make different voice pack for Siri. Darth Vader voice on Siri will be damn cool.

Adobe sneak preview deblurring feature on Photoshop

Adobe recently demoed an early version of deblurring/unblurring feature which can turn blurry image into a clearer image. The feature works for texts too. Works for text too.

The feature is tentatively called “restore sharp image”. Check out the video.

We are not sure when they will ship this feature. But get ready to say goodbye to those blurry pictures.

By the way, isn’t it an irony that the video which shows the deblurring feature is actually quite blur? Haha.