Showing posts with label Current Affairs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Current Affairs. Show all posts

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Imagine your World in 3 Words, then Russia will be flaky.redefined.aftershave

Something revolutionary got reported on the mainstream news in Singapore over the past few days but didn't gain much traction on social media. Perhaps words are not as attention-grabbing as images and videos. Most likely, we were all focused on clickbait headlines and, of course, Hari Raya festivities!

Read from Channel NewsAsia that a British company, what3words, had "developed a simple way to refer to any location in the world using a global grid made up of 57 trillion 3mx3m squares, each tagged with a code of three English words." The company's website and mobile app turn geographic coordinates into 3 word addresses & vice-versa.

Anyone who read about this would probably end up like me, throwing in lots of addresses to find out what3words come out of it. Here are some of them:

NTUC Centre @ One Marina Boulevard


Definitely got to start with my workplace address. But hey, aren't 1) One 2) Marina 3) Boulevard three words already?

Next: Eunos Community Club


Interestingly, the same venue can give you different results. "Eunos Community Club" yields await.paper.waddle while the address, 180 Bedok Reservoir Road, yields loans.tooth.worker. And both names are two extreme ends.

Since the grids are 3 metres by 3 metres, as your cursor scrolls into the different parts of the Community Club, you get 3 different words as well.

The Istana Singapore


Oi. Why like that?

Parliament House of Singapore


Don't friend you already.

Jurong Island Singapore

[No photography allowed in Jurong Island]


Seems like a good place to work

Police Cantonment Complex Singapore


Hours (of non-cooperation) causes slams of fists (on the table).

And finally, Merlion Singapore


Enough. (Don't try keying in "Singapore". Once seen cannot be unseen)

It is totally unfair that the West gets better 3-word names. While Malaysia's what3words is disorder.rule.riding, Thailand's midbrain.bumpy.blouses, United States of America's what3words is revised.eloquently.shimmered, England's

And Russia's flaky.redefined.aftershave. Yes, aftershave!
China's birdseed.suppressing.buttery.
Taiwan's searcher.defectors.misnamed

I smell politics.

With good urban planning, Singapore won't need to be relying on 3 weird words too much. On a serious note, the reason I call this a revolution can be found in what3words' noble cause as stated on its website:
Around 75% of the world (135 countries) suffers from inconsistent, complicated or inadequate addressing systems... 
Even in countries with advanced address systems, people get lost, packages aren’t delivered, and businesses and tourist attractions don’t get found. 
Poor addressing might seem no more than annoying in some countries, but around the world it hampers the growth and development of nations, ultimately costing lives.
Now that the grids are all named, with apparently no chance for protests against weird names, hopefully there won't be nasty words which might find its way to some villagers' envelopes in the future. And may what3words addresses spurn a continued interest to pick up English despite Brexit.

Source of photos: WikiCommons 

Friday, February 27, 2009

Chancellor's Challenge Shield 2009

21 February 2009

This is an annual event organised by NUS Political Association to create awareness in current affairs. It is a contest in which teams of students from various Junior Colleges and Universities sit for a mini-exam to test out their level of general knowledge and current affairs.

My team was SpideySense, comprising of Minru, Gary and myself. After the preliminary round, we discussed our answers and found out that when one answered wrongly, the other 2 answered that right. As a team, we neutralised each other... but we didn't get to the finals.

During the lunch break, we went for the free health check-up at MPSH 4.

The Guest-of-Honour was Mr Steven Chia, Channel NewsAsia news presenter. He was humorous in his speech and his charisma won over the participants.

The finals was held after lunch. It was a battle among Hwa Chong Institution, NUS and Victoria Junior College. HCI students were impressive, clinching the top award, followed by NUS and then VJC.

Even though I didn't win the top 10 individual award, I enjoyed myself very much. I got to make a new friend (Gary) and also had a brain-squeezing session during the finals.

YOUTHSpeak on Budget 2009

19 February 2009

Had a long rest after the exhaustion incurred from the 7-day Hong Kong cultural exchange. Reached People's Association Headquarters at 7pm to attend the first national-level PAYM Policy Forum. Being overseas in Hong Kong had deprived me of the updates of the Budget Debate, so thought of learning more about it through the session.

The Guest-of-Honour was Defence Minister Teo Chee Hean. He gave a brief lecture on the Resilience Package and explained the governments' decision.

Also speaking was Associate Professor Tan Khee Giap, Associate Dean, Graduate Studies Office and Co-Director, Asia Research Centre, Nanyang Technological University. He predicted that Singapore would be among the last to recover from the recession, a point which was dismissed by Mr Teo.

Most of the concerns from the floor were targeted at the availability of job opportunities. Questions were raised spontaneously.

Hong Kong Exchange friends:

Eunos CC YEC:

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Pedra Branca belongs to Singapore!

23 May 2008

As a Singaporean, today marks an important day. The 28-year dispute over the Pedra Branca is resolved. Pedra Branca belongs to Singapore!

Watching the International Court of Justice ruling live on Channel NewsAsia, I was paying close attention with ears wide to what the Judge was trying to read out from his script. It took about 2 hours before he finally announced that Pedra Branca belongs to Singapore; Middle Rocks go to Malaysia and South Ledge ownership would depend on the International Sea Boundaries. 12 judges agreed that Pedra Branca belongs to Singapore while 4 disagreed.

In my opinion, the judge ruling on the matter displayed signs of diplomatic gestures. Singapore takes Pedra Branca while Malaysia takes Middle Rocks. The ICJ leaves both parties to work out on South Ledge. It seems like the most optimum "win-win" situation that could possibly work out. Professor Tommy Koh, ambassador-at-large, had previously mentioned that the ICJ should not worry about diplomatic concerns but rule fairly.

South Ledge could be a good means to establish good links between the two states. The most ideal is that South Ledge belongs to both Singapore and Malaysia. This would be the first case in history whereby a disputed territory could be shared by two countries, even though it's a really tiny piece of rock. A statue could be placed there to express the friendship between these two countries. However, if were to come to reality, perhaps this arrangement would sound too far-fetch.

BH enjoyed the "lullaby" by the judge. Haha.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Reactions to the Sichuan Quake

Over the past few days, the unfortunate Sichuan earthquake disaster provided headlines for the newspapers. A Current Affairs programme, Frontline, by MediaCorp Channel 8 featured the event by interviewing Singaporeans who were caught up in the airport at Sichuan about their experience.

A man who was interviewed was seen speaking with tears rolling in the eyes. His words were spoken with deep emotions. If I were to watch the interview and keeping the volume muted, I would have thought he had probably lost his families in the disaster. His predicament: he was stuck in the airport as flight schedules were delayed. He lamented at the authorities for not providing information. He was apparently angered by the fact that he had to spend hours strangled at the airport of his holiday destination. He would later return to Singapore via a transit at Hong Kong.

I was irritated by watching the interview. I don't know whether one should blame the programme crews for featuring such a parochial citizen, or sigh at the fact that our fellow citizen, with his Singaporean voice, reacted in such a disgracing manner.

Perhaps the immunity of Singapore to natural disasters had been taken for granted. While global citizens are pouring aid and showing concern over the nasty results of the Sichuan quake disaster such as the growing casualties and the family members lost in the event, our interviewee, on the other hand, was so narrow-minded and selfish by caring over his own plight albeit being in a relatively safe zone.

Maybe one day, National Education would consist of a programme where people get dumped in disaster-prone zones and experience for themselves the hardship and through the process, hopefully they start to appreciate.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Flattening World

There is really no link between the title and what I'm going to be writing today. Got really inspired by Thomas L. Friedman's The World Is Flat. And I think Windows Live Mail is a must-have for all bloggers!

So many events occurred in the past month.

Not too long after visiting the Parliament House for the Budget Debate, the escape of the Mas Selamat bin Kastari began to hit the headlines for days. Conspiracy theorists added some humour to the matter with the various viewpoints such as 1) He's dead, search is a cover-up; 2) mobilise the police since they have been too complacent; 3) he's being tracked via an irremovable device so that he can lead the security forces to his den. I'd been to the Internal Security Department Exhibition Gallery. Not only now did I realise that I was then standing above detention cells.

Following that unbelievable news that a terrorist escaped from the Gurkha-guarded installation, the Barisan Nasional of Malaysia lost the two-third majority of the parliamentary seats. More than 4 decades ago, PAP contested in Malaysia calling for a Malaysian Malaysia. UMNO was furious. Today, opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim championed the cause of racial equality and won big.

I guess it's been a very long time since I stepped into a Polyclinic. It's well known to be a great place to get MCs and to waste time waiting. On Monday, the bladder gang and I accompanied Bao Hui to seek treatment on her earhole with a ear stud stuck into it.

At noon, we arrived at Sengkang Polyclinic and I was shocked [out of my life] to see a "Closed" sign requesting patients to come back after the lunch break as the clinic is overcrowded. Something sounds wrong -- the system or the health of people?

After getting in to the Polyclinic, we waited for more than an hour to receive a referral letter to SGH. The wait at SGH A&E department is horrendous. To get a glimpse of the doctor, there was a wait of close to 2 hours. The doctor then told Bao Hui to wait a further hour for the Ear specialist to arrive.

The most important thing is that the ear surgery was perfect. And the service was too. No wonder Bao Hui kept thinking of the Doctor for days!

After that the Bladder group went for their dinner while I embarked on a jogging mission to supper! A paradox in itself though. Jian Hao was a great company. We ran on the Park Connector to East Coast Park when we failed to reach Changi Village. There we found out that the food court is closed, so we ran to Blk 85 market instead. Long jog, Great Food, Wonderful feel.

It's been sometime since I did something real good to someone. And I was glad that the person was appreciative.

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