Sunday, May 31, 2009

Eat Breakfast like a King

Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.

Adelle Davis (1904 – 1974)

Breakfast, according to health gurus, is the most important meal of the day. It gives us the energy to a new day. Study has also showed that eating breakfast can help us in weight control.

Unfortunately, not many of us can do as what Adelle Davis suggested. Every morning, adults rush to go to workplace. Many skip breakfast altogether. Students may go to class slightly later. But these are the people who love nightlife. They would wake up at 10am and rush to attend the 11am class with empty stomachs. Working people are too busy to think about health, while students are too young to do so.

I do eat breakfast, but that’s a light one. In order to have the most important meal of the day, I am forced to wake up earlier than average people. This, in turn, means that I have to go to bed early.

Lunch is, likewise, a light one. I can’t have a heavy meal during the one-hour break. Not to mention that the food near my workplace isn’t so great. It turns out that my dinner is the heaviest of the meals!

Apparently I am not the only one who eats dinner like a king. For married people, this is the meal they could enjoy together with family members. Young ones, on the other hand, would have a dinner with their lovers in a romantic setting.

Can Adelle Davis’s advice still apply in the 21st century?

Friday, May 29, 2009

Unexpected Meeting with Green Packet’s CEO

On May 26, 2009, I got an unexpected e-mail, inviting me to meet up with CC Puan, CEO of Green Packet.

For those who do not know, Green Packet is the parent company of Packet One (P1), Malaysia’s first WiMAX service provider. (WiMAX is a wireless broadband Internet technology.) The CEO wanted to have an open, informal discussion with the bloggers. The invitation surprised me as I do not usually blog about technology. Anyway, since Mr Puan wished to ‘engage with the new media’, I am doing him a favor.

Puan was very ambitious. He wanted his WiMAX network to beat the nation’s ADSL service in terms of subscribers by the end of this year. His optimism was based on the fact that Malaysian market had been underserved. According to certain sources, there was only one broadband user to every five personal computers in Malaysia.

Puan also mentioned that Intel would roll out WiMAX chipset soon. PC equipped with WiMAX chipset would be available early next year, and P1 would be the ‘default service provider’ for Malaysia. Intel, by the way, has invested in Green Packet.

I have no doubt that WiMAX-ready PC would be a big boost for P1, as we no longer need additional device such as USB modem to go online. However, I am skeptical of the claim that P1 would be the ‘default service provider’. Firstly, while Intel makes the chipset, computers are made by other companies. Secondly, if Intel practices ‘favoritism’, it would alienate other WiMAX operators. Would the chip giant do so?

In any case, P1 has provided the much-needed competition to the other Internet service providers (ISP). Consumers would be the ultimate winners.

CC Puan is the smiling guy on the left. He had H0N1 flu on that day so he did not drink beer.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

World’s Most Competitive Countries

If you plan to invest overseas, you will be interested in the world competitiveness study conducted by IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland. The study, based on analysis of economic output, government and business efficiency, skills and infrastructure, ranked 57 of the world’s economies to determine their competitiveness in the economic race. Below is the partial list for the year 2009:

  • No. 1: USA (most competitive)
  • No. 2: Hong Kong
  • No. 3: Singapore
  • No. 13: Germany
  • No. 17: Japan
  • No. 18: Malaysia
  • No. 20: China
  • No. 21: UK
  • No. 28: France
  • No. 30: India

(Please click here for the full list.)

To be sure, I was a bit surprised by the rankings. Despite its rapid growth, China was given the 20th spot, two below Malaysia. According to the report, China was dragged down by concern about pollution, corruption and rising cost of capital.

India, which scored last in infrastructure among the economies studied, ranked 30th. However, the nation’s Congress Party has just scored a big victory in election, which will enable the government to push through economic reforms. Analysts and investors are already predicting a better outlook for India.

So, perhaps the ranking can only serve as a rough guideline.

One thing is sure though – USA is a highly competitive country. Having spent some time in the States, I see these characteristics among the Americans – hard-working, innovative, risk taking, highly adaptable

Despite its recent bad press, I am sure America will bounce back.

USA is number 1 in IMD's World Competitiveness Yearbook

Monday, May 25, 2009


WARNING: This post is 18SX!




Thanks Nature Devil for forwarding the interesting Chinglish image to me.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Travel Portraits

I have been a member of several Internet photography forums. Very often, there are forum members who post this type of question:

I will be traveling to Europe. What lens shall I bring/buy?

The other members usually recommend wide-angle lens. This is because people tend to think that when you travel, you are going to take pictures of beautiful sceneries or splendid buildings, such as the Swiss Alps or Eiffel Tower. Wide-angle lens is the best for the job.

I may be different. While I like to shoot landscape, I also often snap pictures of people. Therefore, a standard zoom lens or a short telephoto is indispensable.

Here is an example of travel portrait. The picture was taken in Kuta Beach, Bali several years ago. The sunset is nice, but without the kids on the foreground, it is just ordinary.

Here is a picture taken at Wat Phra Singh, Chiang Mai. Wat Phra Singh is one of the most beautiful temples in the Rose of the North. Like any other tourists, I went to shoot temple architecture. Then, I saw a monk give blessing to devotees, and I immediately captured this image…

This is a portrait I shot at Shinsane Guesthouse in Mae Salong, Northern Thailand. Boy… I was lost when I bid farewell to the lady on the right…

Warning: Not everybody like to be photographed!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Question of Language

One of the blogs which I enjoy is Correr Es Mi Destino, by Zhu. Zhu is a French lady who lives in Ottawa, Canada. Her hubby is a Chinese Canadian. Zhu speaks four languages – French (of course), English, Chinese and Spanish.

Of late, I have been thinking of these questions: If Zhu were to have kids, what language(s) would they speak? If I were in the same situation as her, what would I do?

Imagine that I live in Ottawa. I would like my kids to be able to communicate with the neighbors. There, English and French are the dominant languages, so they must be given priority. Oh yes, I definitely would encourage my kids to learn Chinese, but that might come later.

The multilingual Zhu

Saturday, May 16, 2009




2001911日,恐怖分子袭击美国,中文媒体把这起事件称为911(九么么)。请注意:在英文里,这起恐怖袭击是叫September Eleventh,不是nine one one。它一般是写成Sep 119/11,不是911



P/S 猜猜看以下几个是什么日子:


Wednesday, May 13, 2009


The other day I was jogging in the park. I saw a lady riding a bicycle, rather clumsily. She was possibly a learner. As she rode past me, I heard her screaming at her friend, “I don’t know how to step on the brake!” Her friend replied, “No, you don’t!”

Ah! Bicycle… I can’t remember when was the last time I rode one.

I grew up in a small town. As a student, I used to ride a bicycle to school. After finish high school, I attended a university in the nation’s capital. Kuala Lumpur’s clogged streets weren’t friendly to cyclists, so I got myself a motorcycle. At the same time, my little hometown got more motor vehicles each year. Today, it is no longer safe to ride a bicycle there.

Amsterdam is one cyclist-friendly city. There are lanes reserved for bicycles. Cities in China also have bicycle lanes. Somehow, as Chinese get wealthier, more and more opt for cars. In fact, in the first quarter of 2009, China leapfrogged the United States to become the world’s biggest car market.

In the past, cycling was a mode of transport. Now, it is just a sport. As we are concerned with global warming, air pollution, high oil price and personal health, should we not encourage more people to cycle?

Bicycles in Amsterdam

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Photo Hosting Service

Digital photography is all the rage these days. We take photos with digital cameras or mobile phones with camera function, and share them with our family or friends. We may e-mail our photos or upload them to photo hosting sites. Some of the most popular photo hosting sites are PBase, SmugMug, PhotoBucket and Flickr.

I upload my photos to Flickr. (See here.) I like Flickr’s clean, minimalist design. But Flickr offers more than photo hosting service. It is also a social networking site, where shutterbugs form groups and share their works.

Popular it is, I suspect that Flickr is being challenged by Facebook. (Well, as an MBA student, I am trying to compare them from business perspective.) Facebook users can create photo albums on the site. Better still, it is free. By comparison, a free Flickr account only displays a maximum of 200 pictures. If we wish to display more than that amount, we need to upgrade to a pro account by paying a fee.

How should we choose between Flickr and Facebook? If you are a casual snap shooter who merely want to share your pictures with your friends, the choice is a no-brainer. For professionals or serious amateurs who wish to showcase their works to the world, Flickr still has some advantages. Still, I notice that many advanced photographers have formed their groups in Facebook.

Which photo hosting services are you using?

Thursday, May 07, 2009





Fast forward到互联网时代。我常常收到友人转送过来,有关于罪案发生经过的电邮。电邮里所描写的,是『印裔抢匪掠夺华妇手提袋』或『印裔匪徒掳走并强奸少女』之类的故事。没错,大马南亚裔人士,因为贫穷而有较高的犯罪率。不过,这种强调肤色的报道方式,是否造成了不必要的恐慌和偏见呢?说老实话,我还真不清楚电邮里的故事是真实的还是捏造的。


许多年前,美国有一个白人妇女,名叫Madelyn DunhamDunham夫人原本对黑人有恐惧感,因为他们的犯罪率较高。偏偏她的女儿嫁给了一名黑人,并生下一个黑皮肤的男孩。女儿在外国工作了几年后,决定把孩子送回美国。Dunham夫人抛下成见,把外孙儿抚养长大。


Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Poolside Beauties

In my post, Fashion Photography, I mentioned that, for some reasons, I had lost interest in shooting fashion show. Instead, in the last one year, I joined several private model shooting events, the latest one at a swimming pool.

I have to pay a fee in order to join the shooting, but am more satisfied. There are usually five or six photographers to every model, so it is more manageable. By comparison, shutterbugs who shoot a fashion show can be in the range of dozens.

OK, enough talking. Let me introduce you to, from left to right, Rhea, Esther and Evie

More photos can be found on my Flickr page.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Sexual Harassment

Disclaimer: This blogger never discriminates against women.

I came across this joke on the Internet:

Why Beer is Better than Women?

You can enjoy a beer all month long.

Beer never threatens to go to a lawyer.

Beer doesn’t talk back to you and ask a lot of silly questions.

Beer doesn’t have a mother that goes with it.

Beer doesn’t have an anniversary for you to forget.

When you buy a beer, you own it.

Beer never cries or get jealous.

(To learn more about the joke, please google in the Web.)

So what do you think? Is it a harmless joke that lightens your day? Think again…

In 1992, an e-mail containing this joke was circulated in Chevron, the oil company based in San Francisco. Four female employees sued the company for sexual harassment. The court ruled in 1995 that Chevron must pay a total of $2.2 million to the plaintiffs.

So, what constitutes sexual harassment?

Friday, May 01, 2009







我在一篇旧贴子中提到中国大陆词汇取代本地式中文,『翻了一倍多』又是另一个例子。星洲日报是亲中派的 郑丁贤可能例外 当然是急不及待的要大陆化。




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