Saturday, December 31, 2011

Premier Taxi price hike

Premier Taxi is the next taxi operator to follow ComfortDelgro and SMRT to increase its fares. Flag down rates will now be increased to S$0.20 to S$0.70, making the updated rate cost between S$3.00-3.90, depending on the taxi model. Distance fares will also increase by $0.22, an increase from the original S$0.20.

Like ComfortDelgro and SMRT, Premier Taxis also reduced their peak period surcharge, which is from 35% to 25% of the metered fare. While the peak period has been extended to 6- 9:30am from Mondays to Fridays (excluding public holidays), and 6pm - 12 midnight from Monday to Sunday, including public holidays.

It was reported that Premier Taxi attests that with the new fare structure, drivers will experience more productive hours on the road. Premier Taxi, like ComfortDelgro and SMRT, state that the increase is due to inflation and higher operating costs, so their drivers' incomes have been affected (which would imply that the taxi operators are also affected?). It is a matter of time that Prime Taxi will follow suit. After which, the rental for taxis will also increase; ultimately making the taxi operators the ultimate winners.

These taxi operators have claimed that they have consulted their drivers and studied the situation before making such a decision, but perhaps they forgot to consult the "source" of their income - the passengers (many of whom may or may not be able to afford such luxury anymore or simply unwilling due to the high-handed nature of the assumption/announcement), assuming compliance. It is hard to tell the true impact of these price hikes as it is the festive season, with more people willing to splurge and less people actually in the country as they head out for their holidays.

The recent MRT disruptions and boo-boos in PR skills, has resulted in disgruntled Singaporeans. And who can blame those disgruntled ones? It is hard to adjust when you have been informed and assured that your country’s transport system is one of the best, only to have needless(?) disruptions and poor contingency plans shatter your "perfect pretty" world, resulting in utter disappointment and discontent. Timing is everything, and the MRT disruptions together with the saga that followed right after the announcement for taxi price hike, couldn’t be a better timing, but unfortunately for all the wrong reasons. This plus the fact that everything else but salaries are increasing (more rapidly) is adding more fuel to an already fanning fire of discontent and unhappiness; when nothing "seems" to be done about anything in particular.

I believe that (majority of) Singaporeans are reasonable (as long as it is within reason). However, the younger generation, unlike the older one is not as trusting or forgiving when it comes to things that "should not" have been (per ingrained mindset or perceived perception). They not only want to be heard, they want their opinions to matter and not be brushed aside because they are “young and inexperienced”, or simply “not qualified enough”.

**Please note that this view is that of an individual with a “microscopic” view of this situation, unlike that of bigger organizations (e.g taxi operators) who are extremely "macro" that they see the “full picture” and think of the “greater good for all”.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

3M Greptile Glof Glove Marketing Strategy Strengths and Weaknesses

3M Company has a strong sense of innovation and research and development technology, which it has incorporated into the production of its glove. This technology provides greater functional benefits as opposed to the traditional benefit of comfortable fit. It is perceived as a product as value for money as it improves a golfer’s game and is durable. Furthermore it is priced affordably and reasonably. 

However, as 3M is not known for products in the golf industry, it lacks consumer product and brand awareness. This increases the risk of successfully selling the product to potential consumers. In addition, there are not much promotions for the and 3M targets more towards those who are avid or professional golf players, leaving out the factor that golf is fun and a recreational sport as well... Read more>>

3M Marketing Mix Variables (4Ps) for the Greptile Golf Glove

1) Products
Points of Difference
The proprietary micro-replication technology used in the Greptile™ golf glove contains griping fingers to maintain consistency in gripping while using minimum effort. It is designed for both wet and dry conditions. According to golf editors, 3M’s micro-replication technology provided a much-needed innovation in the golf glove industry. Prior to the Greptile glove’s introduction, most gloves focussed on comfort rather than on improving the golfer’s game.

The materials used ensure durability and provides value for money. 3M has developed specific materials that focus on different aspects of durability. As evidenced in their website, the four different varieties of durability are contained in materials such as the G100, G200. G300 and G400, which each contain specific functions.

Product Life Cycle  
The product life cycle of the 3M Greptile™ golf glove is has moved from the introductory stage and is  ...Read more>>

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Skoob Review: Singtel’s First E-book Service

Sometime back in November Singapore Telco SingTel announced the launch of their first e-book service Skoob. This e-book service offers various overseas titles from authors such as Stephen Hawking, as well local titles, study guides and educational books for local primary and secondary school students: more than 39,000 local and international bestsellers for smartphones, tablets and PCs.

Besides being Singtel’s first e-book service, it is the first e-book service to accept payments in Singapore dollars via Singapore credit card, with SingTel customers having the option to charge their purchases to their monthly bills, offering tremendous savings versus the cost of traditional paper books. For example, fans of John Grisham can enjoy his novel, The Confession, at S$9.00 instead of S$17.07 for the hardcopy version. While Neil Humphreys‘ acclaimed Complete Notes is available at S$13.90 instead of S$29.90 in the Singapore contect. There is also a range of classics for free download, such as Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and... Read more>>

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Public Transportation in Singapore

Traveling in Singapore in relatively easy and convenient, there is a variety of land mode transportation that you can choose from. There are taxis, buses and the MRT (Mass Rapid Transport), each with their benefits and fair share of paradoxes, as with every country I guess.

The SMRT website has a fairly useful map, journey planner and even train timings for you to plan your journey in Singapore. Travel on the MRT has made getting to the airport made more accessible with its very own Changi Airport stop. It is also very convenient, compared with buses and taxis, as most of the MRT stops are near shopping districts and attractions.

SMRT Website
With the Circle Line being launched and some more lines in the works, traveling in...Read more>>

Wonton noodles

Wonton noodles, also known as wanton mee, is a Cantonese noodle dish which is popular in Guangzhou, Hong Kong , Singapore , Thailand , and Malaysia . The word "wanton" is a Cantonese or dumpling while “mee” means noodles in Hokkien, both Chinese dialects. This noodle dish is usually served in a hot broth, garnished with leafy vegetables together with wonton dumplings, or served dry with sauces like chilli, black sauce, and/or ketchup.

The Singaporean version of this noodle dish is either soup based or dry with chilli or ketchup. It is not that common to have black sauce added into the noodles here, unlike in Malaysia . Along with the noodles are green leafy vegetables usually cai-xin, slices of barbequed pork (known as char siew) and bite sized wontons (dumplings). If it is served...Read more>>

Sunday, December 11, 2011

3M Greptile Golf Glove Strategy Discussion

3M’s main objective was to introduce the 3M Greptile™ golf glove as a product that improves a golfer’s grip and game; especially, those who have a weaker grip (i.e. golfers with arthritis and other hand related disabilities), which affects their grip and performance. By building awareness among potential consumers in golf glove market about the 3M Greptile™ golf glove, 3M will be able to gain their market share; earning a profit and sustaining their position in the market. Still have a question? 

However, as 3M has not ventured into the sports industry previously, consumers would find it hard to identify 3M with sports. This would be particularly so for 3M’s Greptile golf glove. Given the large varieties of golf gloves available, there is also a higher perceived risk from consumers. In addition to the above constraints, 3M’s lack of colour variety for the Greptile™ golf glove limit consumers’ choices as they can...Read more>>

Industry Analysis for 3M Greptile Golf Glove

The golf industry is a growing one, with a worth of approximately $300 million worldwide, with $160 million in America alone (Kerin 2006). In recent times, golf has become an increasingly popular: a sport that is played for various purposes (e.g. recreational, professional, and business).

According to ‘Golf Digest’ (2005), there are approximately 32,000 golf courses in the world. In addition, The Golf Research Group (2006) reports that there has been an increase of about 7,000 new courses since 2005, with courses in 119 countries: there are about 56 million golfers in the United States of America, who constitute 59% of the golf market worldwide.

As a result, the increased number of golf courses and people who play golf has contributed to the flourishing international trade in golf goods worth about $2 billion per annum (The Golf Research Group, 2006). This growing trend has led to the increase of golf related industries like golf clubs, gloves, shoes, and even tourism in the form of specialized golf vacation packages and the development of... Read more>>

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Review of Def!nd: Not Singapore’s Answer to Siri Review of Def!nd: Not Singapore’s Answer to Siri

Touted to be the Singapore version of Siri, I was expecting something of a similar level. However, Def!nd has proved to be a disappointment of sorts: it is less intuitive than Siri and even requires many unnecessary hand actions to select options. The only good point about Def!nd is that it localized to Singapore, but that is about it. The application’s menu is cumbersome and the interface not user-friendly enough.

When my friends and I were testing out Def!nd, it took us a while to figure out where is the ‘tap to speak’ button, whist everything else was actually accessed via touching the options on the menu. Categories such as restaurants and movies were sub-categorized into menu options, which required users to select that item before “speaking”, which defeats the purpose doesn’t it? With Siri you are able to find locations and do things with just your voice most of the time, but with Def!nd, you have to use more effort and energy. I might as well just key In my search into the search browser than use Def!nd....Read more>>

Def!nd: Singapore’s Answer to Siri?

To cater to the local market, Singtel, one of Singapore’s major telco, has developed an application called ‘DeF!nd’ which understands Singlish. According to Singtel,  DeF!ND is a localised Siri-like application that is able to decipher uniquely Singaporean accents, names and locations. Singtel also said that DeF!ND will be available for free on the Android platform and Apple’s iTunes “soon”...Read more>>

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Price of Fame in The Korean Entertainment Industry: Is it worth it?

The Korean wave, particularly Kpop, seems to be unstopping transcending across language and continents, from Asia (Taiwan, China Singapore, Malaysia etc…) to Europe (Paris etc..). To produce artistes that are versatile, the Korean entertainment industry has developed a “fool-proof” way to nurture talent to become world-class performers. 

All Korean artistes require going through a training phase which consists of intense singing lessons, dance training, and language lessons amongst other lessons. Many of these artistes may remain as trainees until they officially debut. For example, Jokwon from the ballad group 2AM was a JYP trainee for 8 years before he debuted, while G-Dragon and Taeyang of Big Bang have been with YG Entertainment since their pre-teen days. The training ensures that artistes that debut are strong in both their vocal and dancing skills. 

For those that survive and shine through the training and debut, they have to contend with others in a highly competitive and evolving industry; they either shine or fizzle out after their debut depending on their popularity.

However, despite the success, glitz and glamour, there is an interesting “dark” side to this formula. As it takes money and time investing in training potential artistes, entertainment companies such as SM Entertainment, have had issues with “slave contracts” where deemed unfair to the artiste (e.g. 13 year length and unfair distribution of album sale profits)...Read more>>

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Circle Contact Lenses Review Part I

After trying contact lenses for the first time a few months ago, I started to get interested in contact (circle) lenses that can enlarge the iris and give off the effect of enlarging the eyes. So off to the optometrist it was!

The optometrist gave me 2 trial lenses: FRESHLOOK® ILLUMINATE, and Acuvue Define Natural Style. Both are daily disposables.

FRESHLOOK® ILLUMINATE is touted to be designed for Asian eyes, giving them a natural look. Its starburst pattern blends the colored ring into the iris of the eyes to make eyes naturally bigger and more beautiful. In addition the special dual-layer technology make the lenses able to enhance all shades of Asian eyes, with the color of the lenses being able to interact with light to interact with the shade of the wearer's eye for a more natural look.  The lenses are made of 31% nelfilcon A, and 69% water. When I tried them on, they were not comfortable and I could literally feel the lenses in my eye for the duration I wore them. Wearing the lenses for more than 1 hour gave me a headache, with dizziness.

Next was the Acuvue Natural Style, it has a dark limbal ring with glittering gold shine for naturally sparking, luminous and beautiful eyes. Although the percentage of water it ... Read more>>

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Thought of the day: Fear

Your fears and worries are only as big as you'll let them be.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Pinoy 'Superman'

Yahoo News:
A combination photo shows Herbert Chavez before and after his cosmetic transformation to look more like the comic book character Superman in Calamba Laguna, south of Manila October 12, 2011. In his idolization of the superhero, Chavez, a self-professed "pageant trainer" who owns two costume stores, has undergone a series of cosmetic surgeries for his nose, cheeks, lips and chin down to his thighs and even his skin color to look more like the "Man of Steel". The final result bears little resemblance to his old self. The photo on the left was taken when Chavez was 16. REUTERS/Handout (L) and Cheryl Ravelo

Is it wrong to admire someone? No. But to admire someone or something to the extent that you want to become that person is plain pure scary. I can understand if you want to be like the person you admire, but to do so to the extent where you want to look like the person you admire means that something is not quite right. It might be due to some kind of complex or thought/belief that you can do more or life will be better if you look like the person you admire.

It is like in the race to look like, rather than be like, you lose your own self identity while on the way trying to find it. It is not how you look that would make any difference, but rather how you behave and the things you do that really matters in life.

Yes, you may be happy that you have achieved a level of similarity or status by looking like the person you admire. But happiness will only be temporary. The reality is you can never be that person, at most if all is well you look like that person, if something gets blotched you won't even look like yourself or the person your admire. You are unique and special in your own, so why change the impossible when you can change yourself from the inside out, where it really matters?

Looks after all will fade with time, that is what people call aging. So you either age gracefully, or otherwise.... Even with all the makeup or all the surgeries, as time goes by, there is no guarantee what will still hold up post surgery. The most important thing? Being happy with who you are, and even if you want to change outwardly or inwardly it should be the betterment of yourself not because of a fantasy. After all, no matter how much your outer appearance changes, if you are not happy, you will never be no matter what you do. Happiness not something that just happens, you make yourself happy because that way, life will go by easier. Don't you think?

Are Leaders Born or Made?

Throughout history, there has been, and still is an ongoing debate on whether leaders are born or made. It has been an age-old question that has been on the minds of many. So are leaders born or made? I believe that it takes both, more so of being born with certain qualities and nurturing those qualities that makes effective leaders, rather than just nurturing alone.

According to Gary Johns et al (2005) and Robbins, S et al. (2006), leadership, in an organizational context, is defined as the ability to exert influence on others to achieve (organizational) goals: leaders are people, who not only able to influence others towards (organizational) goals, but also have managerial authority. Furthermore, S.A Kirkpartrick and E.A Locke (1991) state that leaders are intelligent individuals who are initiative, energetic, ambitious, and willing to take on responsibility. Therefore, a (effective) leader is someone who is able to inspire (influence) others (e.g. taking charge or command), a figurehead whom others look up to, and is able to lead people towards certain goals.... Read more>>

Thought of the day: Maturity

Maturity has got nothing to do with age, but the right mentality towards experiences. After all the best lessons learnt are 'caught' not taught.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Strange Hero Yi Zhi Mei

* Wallace Huo as Li Ge Xiao
* Liu Shi Shi as Yan San Niang
* Ma Tian Yu as He Xiao Mei
* Shi Yan Neng as Chai Hu
* Edwin Siu as Ying Wu Qiu
* Hai Bo as Hai Rui

Also known as: The Vigilantes In Masks / Guai Xia Yi Zhi Mei
Genre: Wuxia, adventure
Episodes: 30
Broadcast period: 2011

From DramaWiki


The previous adaptations of Strange Hero Yi Zhi Mei include a 1994 HK film, a 2005 TVB series, and a 2008 SBC Korean. Strange Hero Yi Zhi Mei is a drama series based on folktales of a Robin-like hero during the Ming dynasty.

During a corrupt period in the Ming dynasty, Li Ge Xiao was once a high ranking Marshal with much authority in the army. Due to the schemes of a corrupt and influential official, Yan Song, Li Ge Xiao’s beloved wife, Ru Yi, was killed and he became a fugitive. Li Ge Xiao is a skilled martial artist and has the intelligence. However, his wife’s passing made him desolate, turning to alcohol to down his sorrows. He indulges in this lifestyle for a couple of years, until his ex-colleague, Ying Wu Qiu, seeks his help in retrieving the stolen gold for disaster relief from the corrupt high ranking official, Yan Song.

To help Wu Qiu, Li Ge Xiao gathers an ensemble of experts in the area of fighting (Chai Hu), disguises, hidden weapons and poison (He Xiao Mei), and Yan San Niang an expert thief who is quick-fingered, fast and light on her feet (she knows qinggong). Using the expertise of each...Read more>>

Episode Guide

Appshopper: App Review

Inspired from the website of the same name (, the app AppShopper from the Apple Store is one of those apps that you simply must have if you are obsessed with downloading apps, or if you just simply want to have a better deal when downloading (purchasing an app)! If you did not know already, the Apple Store is constantly having sales and promotions for apps. The AppShopper is a universal app; it is compatible with the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

The AppShopper is designed to show the apps on the Apple Store and helps you keep track (of the ones you are interested in) of any change in pricing. With this free app, you are able to find and track apps that you are interested in, and get notified when if there is a price change (sale, discount, price increase or free…. yes free). Sometimes developers offer the app for free, or a discounted price, in return for reviews. There are many categories and options to choose from, with the default option show everything...Read more>>

Saturday, September 24, 2011

iPad Orientation: Part I

After all the hype about the iPad, I finally got one. Well, it was more of a gift then getting it myself. I have a (generation 1) iPod touch, and it is still working fine, so I never thought about actually getting an iPad because I never saw the need for it. Well, now that I have an iPad, and having used it for the past 2-3 days. Here are some of the things I learnt:

  • In order to use your new iPad, you need to connect it to your iTunes and go through the setup and linkage to your Apple ID (existing or create a new one).
  • There are 3 types of apps :

1) iPod/iPhone

Almost all apps for the iPod/iPhone and iPad can be installed on the iPad. However, as the resolution for the iPod/iPhone and the iPad are different (with the iPad having larger resolution), apps (especially games) for iPod/iPhone appear small on the iPad's larger screen. Although there is the option of magnifying (2X) the apps, games graphics in particular tend to be more blur and pixilated. Some examples are:

2) iPad

Apps for the iPad are made specifically for it. So far I believe that it is not possible to port them over to the iPod/iPhone as the specifications for the iPad is higher than the iPod/iPhone.

Pricing for iPad apps are also more costly than those for the iPod and iPhone. An example would be Angry Birds where you pay $0.99 cents for the iPod/iPhone version and $4.99 for the Angry Birds HD version. That is about 20% more then the iPod/iPhone version. There are others with a much higher markup price...Read more>>

Friday, September 23, 2011

Angry Birds: App Review

What is all the hype about “Angry Birds”? It seems to be phenomenal the rate of success this game has achieved. The objective of the game is to crush the enemy (in this case pigs were want to eat the birds eggs, making them “angry”), through game play that is physics based and requires logic, skill and force. Maybe it is the concept, or the fluid graphics and game play that propelled it into success or it might have been the marketing and the timing, whatever the case its success cannot be disputed with merchandise appearing as well and it being made available for PCs and Macs.

Having been one of the most popular games on the Apple market (iPhone/iPod/iPad), it has finally made its way to the Android market. Basically, you get to hurl the angry birds at loosely made defensive forts made from glass, wood, and stone with pigs inside, and the aim is to destroy all the pigs at each level with as little moves possible. You get more points if you achieve destroying the pigs with as little moves as possible, destroy as much structure as you can, and have remaining birds that have not been used.

There are different birds with different abilities: to name a few, the default red bird has no special properties, while the blue bird splits into three with a second touch, or the black bird which explodes when tapped...Read More>>

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sally's Spa: App Review

Time management games are plenty on the Apple App store, and Sally’s Spa is just one of those games that is actually entertaining and enjoyable. Similar to Diner Dash in concept: you are running a salon (helping Sally) and have to serve the customers as best and as fast as you can. And yes, you guessed it, it is one of the games that I actually bought and so here are my thoughts on it. There is also a lite version available.

There are different locations, scenarios, customers, and upgrades of the spa’s equipment (e.g. Sauna, nail station, spa, massage table, and hair station). As you advance, you can also hire staff to speed up the process. The objective of the game is to get all the customers that come through your spa to complete the various treatments and leave with a smile on their faces and a huge tip for you. You are also able to sell various products to earn extra money. There is a chart that tells you what products customers’ would be interested in buying that day, and an indication of how well the items might sell...Read more>>

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Amazing Sudoku: App Review

With the many available Sudoku games made available on the Apple App Store, there are various designs and graphics that offer different game play experience, most of them plain and unappealing. I happened to chance upon Amazing Sudoku, which is currently available for $1.99 for the full version, when it was offered free for download one fine day (lucky me). There is also the free version, which limits the difficulty.

Some people may deem the colorful background and graphics too distracting, but I think that it adds a nice touch to an otherwise “boring” game of Sudoku. Within Amazing Sudoku, there are two modes of game play: Classic and Magic, each with 3 difficulty settings...Read more>>

Cut The Rope: App Review

“Cut the Rope” is one of the games that I bought from the Apple App Store, costing USD$0.99. The objective of the game is to feed the green cute looking creature with the sweets that you are supposed to navigate to the little create by cutting ropes, all the while collecting stars to advance to the next stage / box. You do so by cutting the ropes loose, in a way that the sweet will land up in the little green creature’s hungry mouth and collecting stars at the same time. Recently this app has also been made available on the Android Market as well...Read more>>

Friday, September 16, 2011

Avoiding Plagiarism: Learning What is Plagiarism

Plagiarism, a word commonly heard these days. Just what constitutes plagiarism? Well, plagiarism is the use of word of ideas that are not your own and presenting them as if they were your own, without acknowledging and taking credit for someone else’s work. Plagiarism is considered a type of intellectual theft, and it is on the rise with the increased use of the Internet and the convenience of access to information it offers.

There are many forms of plagiarism, ranging from deliberately cheating (copying) to accidentally copying from a source without proper acknowledgment. Whenever words or ideas from another person’s work are used, you have to acknowledge where they came from. By learning how to reference properly, you will be able to clearly specify where you received your inspiration from and show the depth of your research and understanding.

One of the best ways to avoid plagiarism is to understand what it is and how to best avoid committing it. Although the Internet can be a great source of information, with readily available information, it does not imply that it is necessarily “free”. Information found on the Internet should be referenced, just like any other source; it should be fully acknowledged and evaluated in the same way you would information from print-based sources...Read more>>

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Wave House: Surfing Made Possible in Sentosa (Singapore)

Singapore has always been known for its food and shopping. However, If you are a beach enthusiast, or if you are just looking for something more than just shopping and eating, head down to the Wave House located Siloso beach on Sentosa island – a resort-styled island off the southern shores of Singapore and popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

Wave House Sentosa, according to its website, is the fourth such installation of Wave Houses around the world. It takes about10- 15 minutes to walk from the rail station to Wave House Sentosa, which is located along Siloso beach. The Wave House offers two rides, the FlowRider and the FlowBarrel.

Compared to the FlowBarrel, the FlowRider is the more basic ride, and recommended for beginners. With 30,000 gallons of water gushing out per minute at a speed of 20 mph (32 kmph) over a plastic surface, it generates a thin, fast-moving sheet of water; resulting in a safe, non-curling, endless wave.

Riders have the option of using body boards or flowboards. Beginners will learn to balance and stand, while those who have mastered their balancing will learn how to slide down and ride the wave (e.g. carve turns).

The FlowBarrel on the other hand, would be the more challenging of the two: with 100,000 gallons of water per minute gushing out at 30 mph (48 kmph), it creates a curl over the surface which looks like a section of a skateboard park. The speed at which the water gushes out, results in a perfect, endless tubing six-foot wave that has the power and challenge akin to the waves along the reefs of Indonesia...Read more >>

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Long wait at the Hospital

Accompanying my mother to Changi General Hospital clinic S for her eye checkup/followup is proving to be a tiring affair. We have been at the hospital since 3pm and we are still waiting. In fact quite a few were also still waiting. Only after voicing out that they have waited for nearly 3 hours, are they granted their consultations.

What I do not understand is why does the clinic use a system that issues number queue tickets but does not display them in the order that they are received. Names seem to be just called at random. Seriously why even bother incorporating any type of system?

If we are supposed to wait for so long why bother with a number system at all. It is either the person that programs the system that is at fault or the incompetent people using the system that are fault. Aren't systems that are automated supposed to ease the whole process and make it more efficient?

A little off-point, but this is one of the reasons I would rather go to a private GP than the polyclinic. Though it is more expensive, somehow the waiting time is much shorter.

Ok so hospitals are busy and they have to deal with many patients in a day, or they may be short-handed. Then isn't it precisely that that a system and process are in place to make it more effective and efficient? Processes have a need to be constantly improving, as with the changing times. Accommodations should be made to make patients comfortable and prepared for the long wait. Just because they are "patients" doesn't mean they have to have an unending amount of "patience". So why does it seems like we are going backwards.

Well if you are ever at the hospital or polyclinic in Singapore for anything, be prepared to waste your precious time, one way or the other. The majority of the doctors and nurses are nice, which makes the whole experience better, like by 40% only. The long waiting time minuses almost all of the remaining points.

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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Painted Skin Drama Series (2011) (Complete)

This drama series is adapted from as Pu Songling’s classic short stories in Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio, as well as the movie of the same name. The drama series sets out to explain the characters and their origins.

In the movie, the storyline is about how a fox demon, Xiao Wei, who tries to prove that true love does not exist in the world and that it can be broken easily. She makes her way into the home of General Wang when he ‘rescues’ her. Xiao Wei’s beauty starts to attract people, and she slowly falls in love in General Pang. She plots to take over the position of his wife. In order for her to retain her beauty, she has to consume the hearts of humans. With dead bodies with their hearts missing increasing in numbers around town, General Wang’s wife, Pei Rong, suspects Xiao Wei.

When Pei Rong discovers that Xiao Wei is a fox demon, she enlists the help of Pang Yong and Xia Bing to help eliminate Xiao Wei. Xiao Wei forces Pei Rong to drink a poison that will turn her into a ‘demon’. General Pang upon seeing that his wife turned into a ‘demon’, tried to kill her. In the end, when both Gerneral Pang and his wife were dying, Xiao Wei finally understood what love meant and sacrificed her life to revive them.

The drama begins with an innocent Xiao Wei, who is not yet called Xiao Wei but Xu Xu. Xu Xu is caught in a demon trap and is unable to escape. She is set free by the noble and righteous Wang Sheng, unaware that she is a demon in her animal form. In the time it took him to free Xu Xu, the guards who were chasing him managed to catch up with him; dragging him back to his forced marriage. He was escaping from an arranged marriage set by his tyrant father who happened also to be a prince who abused his powers. After the first encounter, Xu Xu cannot forget about Wang Sheng and takes on human form and travels the world.

Back from being captured, Wang Sheng is forced to go through the marriage ceremony with Pei Rong, the daughter of a noble family. Pei Rong is not happy and does not want to marry into the Wang family, but she has not choice as her family is held hostage. It so happens that a band of bandits attack the city that Wang Sheng is residing on the day of the wedding. This results in a series of events that resulted in Wang Sheng leading Pei Rong out of the city. Wang Sheng encounters Pang Yong, Pei Rong’s childhood friend, and who is also in love with her... Read More>>

Cast (taken from Drama Wiki):
薛凱琪 Fiona Sit as Xiao Wei
陳怡蓉 Chen Yi Rong as Pei Rong
Li Zong Han as Pang Yong
Ling Xiao Su as Wang Sheng
鬼鬼 Gui Gui as Xia Bing
Qi Yu Wu as Long Yun
杨幂 Yang Mi as Xiao Hong

Episode Guide

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Hyundai Motors Part 2 - Entering The High End Automobile Market

Discuses some of the challenges Hyundai Motor is likely to face in trying to reposition itself as a premium automobile brand, with its new premium model, the Genesis.
As Hyundai Motor tries to reposition itself as a premium automobile brand, one of the biggest challenges the company faces is its perception problem; being perceived as a manufacturer of entry-level cars and lack of prestige amongst consumers. This is evidenced in the first quarter sales of the Accent (least expensive car) increasing by 74%, while the Sonata sedan (more expensive) was down by 30%. (Gidman 2007) Hence, Hyundai Motor has the challenge of trying to change (improve) consumer brand knowledge, and convince consumers that they are capable of producing premium cars with prestige, which still maintains the company’s trademark affordability and durability.

Although Hyundai Motor has come a long way since its days of being branded as the “Worst Car Ever Made”, the notion amongst consumers that the Hyundai brand is inferior to Japanese car manufacturers such as Toyota and Honda is still prevalent. Gidman (2007) mentions that according to a May 2007 Business Week article, 71% of people who viewed an unidentified car without any Hyundai logo on it said that they would buy it, if a Toyota logo was on the car they were 20% more likely to purchase the car. However, once the Hyundai logo was shown, those willing to drive it out of the showroom dropped to 52% (lack of prestige).

As with any product line or family that is extended, there is always a risk of cannibalization. One such example can be seen when the sales of the Tucson affected the sales of the Santa Fe: the Tucson’s similar size and more affordable (cheap) pricing was the reason for the drop in the sales of the Santa Fe. (Ward's Dealer Business 2005) In its attempt to create a more up-market image for the whole brand with its latest luxury offering – the Genesis, sales of its other models may be affected or vice versa (Eisenstein 2008)...Read more>>

Hyundai Motors Part 1 - Hyundai Motors Success

Factors that have contributed to Hyundai Motor's success:

• Brand Equity:
The initial failure of the Excel propelled Hyundai Motor to improve their product quality and regain consumer confidence by "adding an unprecedented 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty—assurance to buyers that the car wouldn't fall apart on the turnpike while speeding along in the passing lane" (Gidman 2007).

Due to its efforts, Hyundai Motor was able to reposition itself as a producer of affordable cars (with quality), and consumers overall confidence in the Hyundai brand improved. As a result, Hyundai Motor has since been recognized as a producer of quality cars which are reliable and affordable; being ranked 72nd in the 2007 Best Global Brand survey. Bunkley (2008) quoted senior director of automotive testing at Consumer Reports, David Champion, that Hyundai has made "phenomenal progress" in the quality and reliability of its vehicles.

Being focused on the consumer, and improving in areas such as quality, durability, value and warranty programs have contributed to the success of Hyundai Motor's brand equity. The company's focus on affordability and practicality, unlike its competitors (e.g. BMW choosing to focus on technology), set it apart from its competitors and contributed to its success. (Vasilash 2006)

• Product Differentiation:
By improving (augmenting) its cars' exterior design and engineering, while still maintaining its affordability, made it appealing to consumers and improved its brand image (from being the "Worst Car Ever Made"); giving it a competitive edge. For example, "Hyundai's sleekly redesigned flagship" - the Sonata - was equipped with "six airbags, electronic stability control and a long list of standard equipment, all for less than $20,00″ (Muller & Meredith 2005). Hence, according to Muller & Meredith (2005), "Hyundai is now dictating trends that others must follow": the company's "success with cheap cars inspired General Motors to buy its own Korean company, Daewoo, to try to match Hyundai's offerings", and "Hyundai's breakthrough ten-year, 100,000-mile warranty spawned extended warranty offers by Chrysler and Mitsubishi"...Read more>>

Writing Reports: How to

Explains why there is a need for writing reports, and describes how to write reports.
According to, reports are "an account or statement describing in detail an event, situation, or the like, usually as the result of observation, inquiry". There are many reasons why there is a need to write reports. Unlike creative writing, reports are written for educational and informational purposes. They are always based on facts, and can be in the form of assessments or for references. There are many types of reports, namely progress reports, investigative reports, and feasibility reports.

Reports generally have 3 parts: the introduction, body and conclusion. The introduction of the report (like its name suggests), introduces the reader to the report:

  • Background (of the report)
The background within the introduction of a report provides the history of the situation (that the report is about), who the report is targeted for, what the topic (of the report) is about, the current status of a situation (that the report is about) and the reasons for it, and the definition of key terms (e.g. scientific or technical). ...Read more>>

What is a Team?

Consisting of more than two individuals, Robbins and Judge (2007) describe a team as a group of interdependent individuals with special skills and/or knowledge, who have gathered together to achieve specific objectives; interaction is necessary and encourages “positive synergy through coordinated effort” (Robbins & Judge 2007, p299).

For example, 3 people (e.g. Lawyer, Programmer, Accountant) work together as a team producing high quality (computer/system) programs for an organization specializing in tax accounting. The programs produced require a high level of programming skills and aptitude to comprehend the law, with new laws and interpretation of existing laws have to be integrated quickly (and flawlessly) into the existing regulations and analysis tools. Each individual is equipped with the necessary (complimentary) skills and knowledge to integrate, as well as interpret new laws into the organization’s existing programs’ efficiently and effectively. Due to their education background and working experiences, each team member is able to contribute an area of expertise (law, accounting and programming); integrating desired objectives seamlessly and effectively through coordinated effort...Read more>>

Friday, September 02, 2011

Myung-wol The Spy / Spy Myung-wol (Korean Drama)

The drama revolves around Han Myung-wol, a North Korean spy, and Kang Woo, a big Hallyu star. Although Myung-wol works for the North Korean government, she is a member of the Hallyu crackdown squad, where she deals with the illegal distribution and smuggling of media (i.e. South Korean dramas). It has always been her dream to be in the special force unit, but she fails the final round of tests. Undeterred she tells Choi Ryu, a special force agent and friend. He tells her to stick to what she is good at instead of trying so hard. He does not want to see her bruise herself over the memory of her father, trying to become like him: her father was a solider and had died while in service.

Acting on intel, her team locates one such source. When Myung-wol tracks him down, she arrests him as he’s screening Kang-woo’s newest drama. From here on begins Myung-wol’s adventure: General Kim has a daughter who is a Kang-Woo fanatic and the General makes arrangements for Myung-wol to escort his daughter as her bodyguard with Ryu accompanying them. The mission has a dual purpose, the first is that Myung-wol play bodyguard to the General’s daughter at a Kang-woo concert in Singapore, and the second is for Ryu to track down some mysterious ancient books that apparently hold the fate of the world.

Kang-woo, appears to be quite the perfectionist, nitpicking every flaw which planning the performance in Singapore. However, he gives the impression that he an easy-going, smiling top star.

Finally in Signapore, the General’s daughter attempts to sneak out of the hotel room, only to be caught by Myung-wol. The General’s daughter assigns Myung-wol to get her a Kang-woo’s autograph. So off she goes to conquer Kang-woo’s autograph, which is proving to be more challenging that she initially thought... Read More>>

Review of Thai Restaurant: Sakon Thai (Singapore)

Sakon Thai is a "restaurant", more like open air cafe? It is located in a quiet part of Singapore along 77 Jalan Wangi, Macpherson. Initially what attracted me to this place was the reasonable pricing. However, standards don't seem to be consistent and fluctuate each time I go there. I have been to this restaurant a couple of times already, but today might be my last.

When my group of 4 arrived at the restaurant, business was rather good with a crowd forming a queue waiting to get seated. So we joined in the queue and waited patiently, however when it was our turn we were conveniently ignored by the restaurant staff and had to find our own table ourselves. Disaster soon ensued after we seated ourselves, despite our waving and calling the waitresses totally ignored us. It took some for time to take our orders and the food to actually arrive (45 min!). The drinks arrived first, however they were blend and tasteless. I had ordered an iced lemongrass drink and it tasted more like flavored water, it tasted better the first time I had it. Even my friend, who had previously ordered the lemongrass drink commented that the drink was much more blend and tasteless then the previous time she had ordered it.

After waiting (patiently) for 45min close to an hour, and some serious prompting the food arrived.  We had reminded them and asked about our order 3 times, each time they replied that the food was coming. There was a group that ordered after us, but by the time our food arrived they had already eaten, paid and left. All my group of 4  ordered was one tom yup seafood soup with rice (which they forgot and we had to remind them twice, which ended up in two plates of rice), one rice with bail leaf beef and egg, and 2 phat thai noodles.

It would be interesting to note that there was a lady seated at another table who demanded a change of her drink. She was asking the waitress why the drink tasted horrible when it had (previous) tasted fine. The waitresses were non-apologetic when it came to the appalling service and sub-standard drink quality. Neither were they friendly or helpful. Maybe it was because of the high influx of guests, but service standards nonetheless should not have been so deplorable to such an extent. Perhaps there was really too many people that the staff cannot cope with, perhaps we were just "forgettable" customers. Who knows?

Maybe the food is ok, maybe the pricing is reasonable (no 10% GST...yet), but the inconsistent service and drinks, on top of the bad attitude make it not worth the while. So either you avoid this place, or you may want to try this restaurant when there is no crowd. Now if the food was worth the wait and the waitresses approachable and friendly... that would be a totally different story altogether...Whichever the case, do let me know if you visit this place and is the service and food have improved.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

China bans songs in culture crackdown

China has banned 100 songs from being featured on websites, barring artists ranging from Lady Gaga to the Backstreet Boys apparently for being out of tune with the country's cultural authorities.
The ministry of culture said it aimed to regulate the "order" of the Internet music market, adding songs that "harm the security of state culture must be cleaned up and regulated under the law". The notice, issued on August 19 and posted on the ministry's website, included American singer Lady Gaga's "The Edge of Glory", "Hair", "Marry the Night" and "Bloody Mary".

It did not explain why the songs were banned but China routinely censors anything it considers politically sensitive or offensive. Lady Gaga's "Bloody Mary" ends with the line "Oh, libertad, mi amor (Oh, freedom, my love)", while "Hair" includes the lyrics "This is my prayer/ That I'll die living just as free as my hair".

Teng Jimeng, a professor of American studies at Beijing Foreign Studies University, said that sex, politics or religion could put a song on the black list but even songs about "youthful independence" may run afoul of censors. "Sexuality should be avoided, and politics," he said. But he saw the move as part of a broader tightening of controls over culture given the revolts in the Arab world, which have worried Beijing. "It's part of a cyclical chill in terms of cultural control," he said.

Boy band The Backstreet Boys, American R&B singer Beyonce, Canada's Simple Plan and British pop group Take That all had songs on the list -- the third to be issued by China's government. Asian artists with songs banned included Taiwan's Chang Hui-mei, who previously drew Beijing's ire after singing the Taiwan anthem at the inauguration of former Taiwanese president Chen Shui-bian in 2000. China, which regards Taiwan as part of its territory, temporarily banned her from mainland performances and pulled her product advertisements.

Songs placed on previous blacklists include Avril Lavigne's "What the Hell" and the Rolling Stones' version of "It's All Over Now" which dates to the 1960s. Since 2010, China has required all songs posted on music websites to receive prior approval, in a move the government said was aimed at controlling content and rampant piracy.

Pirated music in China is said to account for as much as 99 percent of all downloads, according to industry estimates. Authorities have blocked some foreign bands from giving live performances in China, or at least scrutinised set lists in advance to nix songs considered offensive. The culture ministry reportedly axed the Rolling Stones' sex-and-drugs anthem "Brown Sugar" from the set list when they played Shanghai in 2006. The official squeamishness over headline foreign performances was heightened when Iceland's Bjork closed a 2008 Shanghai show by shouting "Tibet!" at the end of her song, "Declare Independence".

10 Products that defined Steve Jobs' career

NEW YORK (AP) — Steve Jobs had no formal schooling in engineering, yet he's listed as the inventor or co-inventor on more than 200 U.S. patents. These are some of the significant products that were created under his direction:

1. Apple I (1976) — Apple's first product was a computer for hobbyists and engineers, made in small numbers. Steve Wozniak designed it, while Jobs orchestrated the funding and handled the marketing.

2. Apple II (1977) — One of the first successful personal computers, the Apple II was designed as a
mass-market product rather than something for engineers or enthusiasts. It was still largely Wozniak's design. Several upgrades for the model followed, and the product line continued until 1993.

3. Lisa (1983) — Jobs' visit to Xerox Corp.'s research center in Palo Alto inspired him to start work on the first commercial computer with a graphical user interface, with icons, windows and a cursor controlled by a mouse. It was the foundation for today's computer interfaces, but the Lisa was too expensive to be a commercial success.

4. Macintosh (1984) — Like the Lisa, the Macintosh had a graphical user interface. It was also cheaper and faster and had the backing of a large advertising campaign behind it. People soon realized how useful the graphical interface was for design. That led "desktop publishing," accomplished with a Mac coupled to a laser printer, to soon become a sales driver.

5. NeXT computer (1989) — After being forced out of Apple, Jobs started a company that built a powerful workstation computer. The company was never able to sell large numbers, but the computer was influential: The world's first Web browser was created on one. Its software also lives on as the basis for today's Macintosh and iPhone operating system.

6. iMac (1998) — When Jobs returned to Apple in 1996, the company was foundering, with an ever shrinking share of the PC market. The radical iMac was the first step in reversing the slide. It was strikingly designed as a bubble of blue plastic that enclosed both the monitor and the computer. Easy to set up, it captured the imagination just as people across the world were having their eyes opened to the benefits of the Internet and considering getting their first home computer.

7. iPod (2001) — It wasn't the first digital music player with a hard drive, but it was the first successful one. Apple's expansion into portable electronics has had vast ramifications. The iPod's success prepared the way for the iTunes music store and the iPhone.

8. iTunes store (2003) — Before the iTunes store, buying digital music was a hassle, making piracy the more popular option. The store simplified the process and brought together tracks from all the major labels. The store became the largest music retailer in the U.S. in 2008.

9. iPhone (2007) — The iPhone did for the phone experience what the Macintosh did for personal computing — it made the power of a smartphone easy to harness. Apple is now the world's most profitable maker of phones, and the influence of the iPhone is evident in all smartphones.

10. iPad (2010) — Dozens of companies, including Apple, had created tablet computers before the iPad, but none caught on. The iPad finally cracked the code, creating a whole new category of computer practically by itself.

Health Consciousness Increase in Singapore

As Singaporeans become increasingly health conscious, this discusses the possibility that this trend could affect the future of businesses that sell food high in sugar and fat content and what they can do.

According to an online survey conducted by The Nielsen Company Singapore Survey (2009), it was discovered that one in two Singaporeans are trying to lose weight (Figure 1): 48% of Singaporeans considered themselves to be on the heavier side, while close to one in ten (8%) felt that they were hitting the lower end of the scale. The survey also found that majority of the 57 percent of respondents who want to lose weight would either change their diet (75%) or work out (66%) to achieve their goal.

Majority of Singaporeans who want to lose weight through dieting blamed sugars and fat as the biggest contributors to their weight gain, with over two-thirds of respondents resolving to cut down on these.

Furthermore, Barkar (2009) reported that many Singaporeans are going online to track weight loss: the Health Promotion Board website’s online diet tracker gets about a million visitors monthly, while its mobile diet tracker has attracted 7,650 registered users since its launch in 2007, which is increasing everyday...Read more>>

Three Limitations of Secondary Data

Firstly, secondary data (Hair et. al, 2009) may be designed in a biased manner towards the original study purpose. Hence, data will have to be carefully evaluated to determine if it suits the current research purpose: prior data manipulation may render the data unsuitable for present study purposes (i.e. if data had been manipulated to suit the previous research objectives, it renders the data less suitable for use in the current project).

Secondly, data relevancy affects the suitability of secondary data meeting the needs of the current problem. The time frame in which secondary data was collected will affect data relevancy and usability: secondary data not reported in the desired units of measurement could be misleading. Inconsistency in summarizing categories, different or undefined reporting periods, leads to incorrect inferences, as data conversion often is not an option... Read more>>

Exploratory Research Methodology Example

To understand Hong Kong consumers better, a Singaporean food company plans to do preliminary exploratory research through focus groups. This provides details for a proposal to describe how focus groups can be conducted for the company (e.g. selection criteria for respondents, number of sessions, participants’ profiles, location of study, etc).

The proposed methodology is to combine literature review and a focus group (in-depth) interview process. The purpose of the focus group would be to gather and explore perceptions, thoughts, opinions and preference (i.e. whether Hong Kong consumers would eat Singaporean food, their frequency of eating Singaporean food and its popularity). This would able the company to assess the Hong Kong food and beverage industry with minimum cost and time possible, providing in-depth knowledge about their potential customers and determine if there is a market (opportunity) for the company.

As it is difficult to predict the number of participants that will turn up for the group session, 12 people will be invited. The size of the focus group will consist of 8-12 people, 8 being the minimum and 12 the maximum (i.e. 12 people agree but only 8 people show up). This is to generate the right type of group dynamics/energy necessary for a beneficial group session.

The proposed number of focus group sessions is 4. However, the number of sessions may be continued until the different groups of participants offer no more new ideas, thoughts or feelings. Each session will comprise of 90 minutes, but may be extended to 2 hours. Hence, to encourage participants to attend the scheduled session on time and remind them that their commitment to participate is worth the effort, a $50 incentive will be given to participants... Read more>>

Monday, August 22, 2011

ICT 203 - Q1d (Foundations in Modern System Design)

Three classes should be coded, each with its instance variables (if applicable), constructor, and accessor methods. The question also guides that each subclass should have a computeFee() method, as coded below: Question

For OrdinaryMember class:

public double computeFee() {

double payment = 0;

if (getIsOverseas())

payment = getMembershipFee() * 0.5;


payment = getMembershipFee();

return payment;


For AssociateMember class:

public double computeFee() {

double payment = 0;

if (getIsOverseas())

payment = getMembershipFee() * 0.5;


payment = getMembershipFee();

payment = payment + magazineCharge;

return payment;


ICT 203 - Q1c

I would check the location of the associate member within the subscribeMagazine method in the Associate subclass to determine if the Associate Member is eligible to subscribe for the magazine. If the member is eligible to subscribe for the magazine, within the subscribeMagazine method, it will check to see if the member wants to subscribe for the magazine. If the member is eligible and wants to subscribe to the magazine, the value of the variable subscribeMagazine (true) is returned, else false will be returned. The value of the variable subscribeMagazine returned will be used in the computeFee method. If the value of variable subscribeMagazine is true, the additonalFee variable will be added in the calculation of the totalFee, else the additionalFee will not be added to the totalFee.


ICT 203 - Q1b ( Foundations in Modern System Design)


ICT 203 - Q1a ( Foundations in Modern System Design)

Classes involved would be the superclass called Membership, and the subclasses Ordinary and Associate. The superclass Membership would be an abstract class with its common (generic) attributes such as memberName, address and totalFee, and methods such as computeFee(), which would be inherited and reused by the Ordinary and Associate subclasses. Thus, the Ordinary and Associate subclasses have a “is a” relationship with its superclass Membership.


ICT203 - Foundations in Modern System Design Question 1

An employees’ union has two types of membership: ordinary and associate. Ordinary members pay $108 per year and receive a free monthly magazine. Associate members pay $72 per year, but they do not receive the magazine unless they pay an additional charge of $12 per year. Every  member gets a 50% discount off the membership fee, if he is stationed overseas; however, this discount is not applicable to the magazine charge for the associate member as the union does not send the magazine to associate members overseas.
(a) Identify the classes involved and explain the superclass-superclass relationship among  them. (answer)

(b) Draw a UML class diagram to depict the given information, showing the attributes for each  class, and the class hierarchy. (answer)

(c) Explain how you would record the fact that an associate member needs to pay for the  magazine. State also the class or classes concerned, and the attributes and/or methods added. (answer)

(d) Write Java code to define the classes and hierarchy you had identified above. In each class, include the attributes as instance variables of suitable data types, and appropriate  constructor(s) that initialize(s) the instance variables. Note that each subclass should have  its own implementation of the computeFee() method. (answer)

(e) (i) Explain how you might write the computeFee() method for the superclass.

(ii) What is the advantage of having this method in the superclass?

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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Manhwa: Cutie Boy by Hwang Mi-ri

Cutie Boy is another of Hwang Mi-ri’s creations spanning 8 volumes. The story revolves around Lee Han-Ah, a girl who happens to be the leader of her high school gang and her mishaps at her attempts to look for a pretty boyfriend.

When Han-Ah was in grade school, she was bullied by a boy called Yoo-Min. Yoo-Min had made fun of her and commented that she had a “wide and flat” butt; it left a scar in her heart, not knowing that it was actually Yoo-Min’s method of expressing his affection. Now in high school, Han-Ah has become the leader of the gang at her school. Although she is not a talented fighter, she wins fights by using the ‘innocent’ girl act. Although she is not that enthusiastic about her new role, her friends push her to do so as she is seen as their only hope. As her school is an all-girls school, the girls were once bullied by the boys from a nearby boy’s school, until Han-Ah became the captain and started to win fights.

On day, Han-Ah meets Yoo-Min on the streets and starts dating him without knowing that he is the same Yoo-Min that had bullied her in grade school. She soon finds out that his true identity and becomes scared of him. However, after a series of encounters with Yoo Min, she begins to realize that he truly cares for her. During the exams terms Yoo-Min takes her to meet his family, and his grandmother tells him she won’t allow him to be with Han-Ah because her narrow hip is not suitable for bearing children (the root of all the tormenting). They start going out again but due to some misunderstanding, Han-Ah becomes Mi Yoo’s ‘girlfriend’, because he realizes she is his ideal type of woman...Read More>>

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Fake Contact Lenses

Counterfeit products are no longer limited to health products, IT gadgets and branded goods, now even contact lenses are not spared. What is scary is that it is legitimate shops knowingly selling such products.

In recent years, in an attempt to cut costs and earn more profit, people have devised ingenious yet harmful products. From highly sought after IT gadgets (i.e. Apple iPhone), branded goods, all the way down to daily necessities (i.e. milk, eggs) and children’s toys. There’s just about a counterfeit for almost everything available in the (black) market.

Now there are even counterfeit contact lenses, which are harmful to the eyes. For the first time in Singapore, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has confiscated over 100 boxes of counterfeit colored contact lenses from legitimate suppliers, such as licensed optical shops. The confiscated boxes of counterfeit lenses were obtained after raiding five optical shops across the island. Currently, more than 10 people are also being questioned in connection to the case.

It was reported that the counterfeit contact lenses were fraudulently labeled as “FreshLook ColorBlends” Contact Lenses from CIBA VISION. These counterfeits were found to be unsafe and of poor quality: the solution in which the lenses are packed were tested and determined to have been contaminated with Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a harmful bacteria known to cause serious eye infections. The packaging for the counterfeits looks almost authentic, apart from typographical errors on the packaging. A closer look on how to spot the counterfeits here

To date, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has reported that one anonymous consumer, who is in her 30s, removed the lenses immediately when she could not close her eyes after wearing them.

According to CIBA VISION, this is...

Smile, Honey

Smile, Honey is a family Korean drama that revolves around 2 families and their interactions. First, there is the Suh family, who owe their riches and prestige to the now-deceased CEO/father/grandfather. There are 5 members in the Suh family: Suh Jung-gil who is the head of the family, his wife Ju-hee, Sung joon the eldest son who went to U.S. to become a pro golfer, Jung-Kyung the second child in the family and Jung-in, the youngest daughter.

Jung-gil is a snobbish man and looks down on people who have no money, his wife is more of an air-head that only cares about her nails and feels faint at the slightest sign of trouble of hardwork.

Bascially, the whole Suh family, except for Jung-kyung are snotty and out of touch with reality. Jung-kyung is the only one in her family that is rational. However, she is a little too rational and practical; that it would seem that she lacks emotion: she’s cool, professional, and detached. Her attitude causes strain to her relationship with her younger sister Jung-in. Jung-kyung chooses to focus on her career and at the start of the show, interacts or spends very little time with her family, preferring to stay at the hospital than go home. She does not think too highly of her younger sister who is the princess of the family and only dreams about getting married into a good rich family.

Then there is the Kang family. Kang Man-bok (Grandpd Kang) has been the driver to the Suh family since Jung-gil’s father’s time. Jung-gil is rude to Man-bok and disrespectful to him; he even fires Man-bok one morning because he felt that Man-bok was nagging too much. Gandpa Kang is not necessarily the lead character but certainly the central one who holds the rest together...Read more>>

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Minit-lube’s Mission

A brief explanation on what is Minit-Lube’s mission and purpose.
According to Heizer & Render (2008), a mission is defined as an organization’s purpose, it provides the boundaries and focus for an organization: it states the rationale or purpose for an organization’s existence on how it will contribute to the society. Hence, it is important for the mission to be well defined.

The mission of Minit-Lube constitutes providing fast economical vehicle maintenance (i.e. oil changes and lubrication), and interior auto cleaning in a spotless environment: ensuring fast, reliable and superior services in a customer friendly environment and trying to keep the price as low as possible. For example, cars can be driven through three abreast into three service bays, with each service bay manned by a service team. Precise task assignments and good training ...Read more>>

Tangible and Intangile Parts of Minit-lube’s Service

Briefly discusses what the tangible and intangible Parts of Minit-Lube’s service are.

Minit-Lube’s product is a combination of intangible and tangible parts. The intangible part would be its service action which is unique, requires high customer interaction, and is produced and consumed at the same time. For instance, the service component (service performed) consists of service representatives/personnel: representatives greeting customers and taking their orders, and personnel performing tasks such as providing oil changes, lubrication and interior cleaning services. Having employees that serve customers with a smile, creates a customer friendly environment, and improves customer relationship; increasing revenue for Minit-Lube when customers are satisfied with the service...Read more>>

Disposable (Daily) Contact Lenses: Acuvue Trueye Review

There are many reasons why you would want to wear contact lens in place of your usual spectacles: you might want to look different or you simply want to have the convenience and practicality of contact lenses. Contact lenses are less prone steaming/fogging up as with glasses. They are also less affected by wet weather (no more droplets!), provide a wider field of vision, and are more suitable for a number of sporting activities.

If you are not intending to give up glasses for good and just want to look different once in a while, daily disposable contact lenses are a very good solution: they require no cleaning as they are thrown away daily after use and are convenient. The only downside is that they are more expensive than those weekly or monthly lenses.

Being a first time user of contact lens, it took me about 1 hour to learn how to insert and remove the contact lens. After that it was just a matter of practice. The type of contact lens that I tried was Acuvue TruEye. After telling the optometrist Ihad never traied contact lens and wanted to, was given a 5-day trial along with a 1-hour tutorial on how to use (insert and remove) them during a scheduled fitting session...Read more>>