Fight World Hunger

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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Nothing less than 50, please

I'm in the market for a new TV, well not right now, but sometime this year would be realistic. And how television has changed. My 32" LCD TV, the epitome of flatscreen LCDs of its time while it was battling a winning war over the large chunky CRT TVs that weighed a quarter of a ton, has now entered into a price range that costs less than an iPhone. In fact, I think you could even get 2 of those for the price of an iPhone today.

The new LED TVs are pretty interesting, insanely thin at less than 10mm, thats about as thick as a Zippo, they can be mounted flush to any wall and look like part of your deco. The 55" one will set you back about 15k, but it comes with a free mount and Blu-ray player among other things.

Talking about Blu-rays, these are the definitive things to collect if you're really into details. I mean the first Blu-ray I tested was Mamma mia, which I am proud to say I have never watched it except for that few moments where it was so vivid you could see the freckles on Pierce Brosnan's face. One of the best places to get Blu-ray discs are on, hands down. Check out their deals and their ever fluctuating prices and you might just walk away with a couple for a song. (Does anyone really talk like that anymore?)

Here's what I would be putting in my library, not a complete list, but if you were thinking about building one at the same time, this would help with not buying anything completely useless like Mam...ok in all fairness my niece was really into it so I won't say more.

- Taken: Completely fantastic edge of your seat entertainment. Liam Neeson scores big and it makes you want to tell these overexcited lying scheming teenagers 'I told you so.'
- Slumdog Millionaire: Well deserved award winning movie. Its a shame the actors are still living in the slums, some even got kicked out and their houses demolished. More should be done for them, these invading Brit opportunist directors...
- Transformers: Robots and Megan Fox, you really can't go wrong there.
- Batman Begins: Best Batman movie ever, and I think even better than the sequel, which is why it isn't on this list.
- Serenity & Firefly: I never watched Firefly until there was nothing left to watch and once I did I was hooked. A sci-fi western? Doesn't sound right, but one of the better series that doesn't deserve to be nixed midway. Huge fan following until today.
- Iron man: The idea of a guy who spends all his time at home working on his hobby and eliminating bad guys? That's everyone's favorite ambition.
- The Godfather: Come on, its a classic.
- Wall-E: Something for the kids, this was a particularly well done animation, I enjoyed it. Almost bought plush toys, imagine that. Keyword: Almost.
- Generation Kill: Gritty, intense, realistic combat action of the Marines in Iraq. Very well done and easy to follow even for non-military nutheads.
- V for Vendetta: I bought this on VCD, I bought it on DVD, I bought the comic book that started it all too. Loved the movie, loved the theme, and Natalie Portman was great in it too.
- Underworld Trilogy: Kate Beckinsale in tights. Guns and vampires.
- Sin City: This is also another classic and others that tried to mimic it failed. Its a long movie so make sure you have enough time to really get into it.
- The Bourne Trilogy: Matt Damon says 'I don't know who I am, but if you cross me, you die'. Love it.
- Bolt: Fairly adult animation about a little girl and her dog. Extremely engaging but I'm not sure the kids will fully get the dialogue.
- Black Hawk Down: Yes yes, I am after all a guy. Great action flick overall.

Of course there are more, but these are the few must have ones, at least for me.

Over and out.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Too accessible

Ever notice how this communication gap is closing and as we get more and more tools to communicate we get further and further away from our contacts? We got Friendster, Facebook, Twitter and what not and they are incorporating chats, location trackers (for Google accounts), so that we always know where each of our friends are. But the more these tools become available for our utilization the more we want to deactivate it.

Look at the 'Away' mode for instance. That currently signifies that 'I don't want to talk to just anyone, but if you're in the loop, I'll reply your message'. Or that 'Do not disturb' mode that says 'I'm not really busy but I just don't want to receive any messages.' We have become so socially adept that we've become unsociable!

We end up trying to find features to shut off our online presence instead. What's up with that? I reckon that if you don't want to be found, don't log in or even sign up for chat. If you don't want your pictures shared or edited or used in a malicious manner, don't post your pictures up. If you don't want people to know what you're doing every other second of the day, don't post Twitters every other second of the day. It really is that simple! The more information you share, the more information that can be used against you.

I think at some point people would think, 'How nice would it be if I just lived in a cave and people can't find me?'.

Then maybe a few hours after you've found the cave you'd think, ' Why doesn't this cave have WiFi?'


Thursday, June 14, 2007


Work, late nights, physical labor, building schematics, carpentry drawings, joinery, hot blazing sun, constant phone ringing, chasing for payments, financial reports, Forex hedging, managing shipments, managing life. Its tough, yes...

Then it all gets better.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Life's certainties

They say the only thing certain in life are death and taxes. That doesn't become apparently clear to you until they happen almost simultaneously, and at that moment you wonder, all those things, those insignificant things I've thought about, actually are somewhat insignificant.

A couple of days ago my grandma called me in the office, this was one of those routine 'How are you doing' calls that happen monthly. Except this time I spoken to her a little longer since I had time, its one of those moments in the office when things are working out and I'm not overwhelmed with work. So she asked me about work, life, and what she'll be doing over the next two weeks, and perhaps after that she'd come visit.

She'd never make that visit.

At the funeral a few things happened, I met with relatives I hadn't seen in years, the guy leading the wake seemed like he was recruiting all of us into Christianity, and the first day I brought KFC but wasn't in an eating mood. There was water, nuts and boredom. It felt wrong, but I felt bored sitting outside having nuts and water 2 days in a row. Then I decided that next time, I will prepare my own posthumous speech. I don't understand why a daft punk can pretend to know who she was, and that she would want us all to be Christians? That is wrong, but then again he was just working, I guess.

My own speech would probably be 'Dear family and friends, thank you all for coming today. I hope you are dressed up because I don't die everyday. If you are in a t-shirt and/or shorts, please go home and change, have some respect, eh? Also please turn off your mobile for the entire duration of my wake/burial service because that's just rude.'

I did my taxes today as well, finally. The e-filing system is surprisingly easy to use, and I don't have to drive all the way to the tax offices to submit it, so that's perfect. With e-filing, I was done in a jiffy. A jiffy was like 20 minutes. Which is the time it'd take to just drive to Pandan Indah before lunchtime.

Also I renewed my passport the other day as well, and the people are surprisingly courteous. Dare I say professional? Yes they were, considering we're at least RM300 a pop, I think they're making pretty good money, its the least they can do. I was done in about an hour and a half, and at a pleasantville scale of 9. 10 if they spruced up the deco a little. The whole teal-greenish government building theme with the assorted longkang-fish in the aquarium doesn't quite cut it.

But I guess that'll be fixed once they have a online system for that. I do love it when you merge government offices with zero interaction, everything's suddenly so pleasant.

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