Year: 2008

Lim Seng Lee duck rice

.flickr-photo { border: solid 2px #000000; }.flickr-yourcomment { }.flickr-frame { text-align: left; padding: 3px; }.flickr-caption { font-size: 0.8em; margin-top: 0px; } Lim Seng Lee duck rice, originally uploaded by sangsara. I ate here last week and it was still as good as when my family used to visit on a regular basis over a decade ago. These days they’re closed on Sunday, inexplicably, which is a bit of a bother as there never used to be anything else of interest nearby to make up for going down on a Saturday night. The new West Coast Plaza mall has just now opened though, so that’s not too bad. I picked up a copy of Apocalypto on DVD for about $15 and had some coffee from the Seattle-based Tully’s company, which has just opened two outlets here in Singapore. I think the other one is at Far East Square but can’t be sure. Lim Seng Lee Duck Rice & Porridge38 South Buona Vista RoadTel: 6475 9908 HungryGoWhere users have given them a 5.8 score, which I think …

Broadband Speed Comparison: Singnet vs Starhub (SCV)

For a brief period of time, I will be having both Singnet and Starhub broadband services in my home, so I thought it would be fun to run speed tests and see if I’ve made the right decision in switching (I shan’t say from which to which). Both are 8Mbps plans, with Singnet promising up to 512kbps of upload bandwidth, and Starhub only half of that, at 256kbps up to 768kbps after a recent free upgrade. Their prices are comparable. I connect to both via Wi-Fi, although my Starhub connection uses WEP and my Singnet uses WPA. It’s supposed to make a slight difference, but I don’t expect it will matter much because speedtest.net results tend to vary within a few minutes of each other (I’ve run tests consecutively and seen very different results – generally if it doesn’t make sense [like upload speeds coming very close to download speeds], I’ll run them again and take the higher one). It’s not an exact science but I hope the data will be useful anyway. Note: Starhub …

Singapore Biennale 2008

The half-shipping container, half-Parthenon structure above is one of the venues for this year’s Biennale (sadly ending this weekend, and completely neglected by myself for the past two months). One of the exhibits inside is an expression of the perfect city in a series of sketches and wood models of observatories. Something like that. The aliens posing next to the Supreme Court building can be seen at City Hall. A couple more photos in my Flickr stream.

News Roundup: 6 November 2008

From this morning’s cursory glance through the Straits Times (print edition). Burger King has finally brought the Quad Stacker to Singapore. I never understood the point of marketing a burger called the Quad Stacker, and offering wimp-out options like a Double or Triple variation. Locally, these are being called the “Bold Stacker” (2 patties) and the “Brave Stacker” (3 patties). If you want to eat like a (fat) man, you also have to have swallow your pride and self-respect by saying “I’d like a Ballsy Stacker, please.” Imagine that. As of today, I’m publicly offering my services to any company about to make a stupid marketing move. If you have even the smallest iota of doubt about a name, promotion, slogan, or ad that you’re about to debut, please call me. I might not even charge you, depending on how much I like your brand. Burger King, I adore you. We could have avoided this. Call me. Starhub has conceded that they won’t be able to sell the iPhone here by year’s end after all. …

Avenue Q at The Esplanade

I wasn’t expecting to thoroughly enjoy Avenue Q last weekend, in part because it had been hyped to me as being extremely funny, and when your marketing is all about how you’re a naughty adults-only take on a children’s show, the likelihood of being genuinely, naturally funny is diminished. Fortunately, those expectations were lowered the night before when a friend said it was enjoyable, but not as funny as he’d been led to believe. In my opinion, that is how one should head into the show. Expect to have a smile on your face, but not to laugh (unless you find any mention of homosexuality to be funny, like some others at my seating). My initial expectation was that the actors/puppeteers would be invisibly clad in black, like Kuroko stagehands in Japanese theatre, but they stood alongside their puppets and emoted in sync. If a puppet character was confused, it would show in the body language and on the face of his handler. This peripheral vision trick worked really well, and indirectly lent the felt …

Pick-up lines from the SDU

Singapore’s Social Development Unit (SDU) is a sort of government-funded dating service to help those who have spent their lives putting academic achievements and other forms of personal enrichment before relations with the opposite sex. Or, as they say, people who just want to make more friends. It sounds a little weird that a country’s government would run an outfit like this, but I suppose part of it might be motivated by a sense of guilt. Growing up as a teenager in the 90s, I clearly remember just about every authority figure, mainstream media outlet, Aunt Agony column, parent, and teacher sharing the view that so-called Boy-Girl Relationships (or BGR, as was the sickening but popular term) were only to be pursued once one had completed higher education. The most important thing, it was said, was to graduate and have oneself a safety net before allowing the opposite sex a chance to derail your life. The subtext was that this denial-of-self was only patriotic, as we were a fledgling nation always on the brink of …

iPhone Emporium: PocketGuitar

PocketGuitar$0.99iTunes Store LinkAttractiveness to females when performed below a balcony: ZeroEssentiality: Absolute Ok, so I can’t play the guitar. But that’s really no reason not to buy what is essentially 6 guitars, a couple of amps, and several effects pedals for 99 cents. YouTube has a few amazing examples of what’s possible in the hands of masters, but even now, creatively crippled as I am, I’m having a pretty fun time annoying my girlfriend with wannabe punk rock riffs while she’s driving. If that’s not worth a dollar I don’t know what is.

Apple App Store’s release dates flawed

I’ve just discovered that iPod touch/iPhone apps in the App Store (as displayed in iTunes) are tagged with incorrect release dates, which renders viewing apps by ‘Release Date’ criteria completely broken. I’m accustomed to checking for new apps each day by browsing the store in such a manner, but it seems I’ve missed a number of releases I was waiting for because the newly released apps were backdated and appeared out of order. I think the so-called release dates shown might actually be the dates that the apps were submitted for approval and listing. Evidence: Spore Origins, a highly awaited game that was released on Sept 8 following the Sept 7 worldwide release of its PC/Mac version, has a Sept 5 release date. At present, one must navigate back 25 pages of the Sort By Release Date view to locate it – a blockbuster game released yesterday. Ditto for Real Football 2009, which was just demoed at the Let’s Rock iPod music event.

Time on my hands

I took an unserious vow yesterday never to talk about technology again, but I think now that it might be fun to see how long it can last. Apart from this brief mention that I am blogging from my iPhone to see how easy it might be to write something longer than a text. So far so good, but I wish I had smaller thumbs, or at least transparent ones. Am currently reading Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead, and so far it has been an absorbing and marvelous 140 pages made up of Dickensian coincidences, foreshadowing, and the most stoic and infallible fictional hero since Jesus. I kid, I kid. It’s easy to feel the machinery moving beneath the surface of the plot and its dramatically convenient developments, but that takes nothing away from the craft of Rand’s writing, which is frankly quite fucking good (‘fucking’ is a word I just had to type, so my iPhone can learn some proper English). One friend has described it as a sort of guilty pleasure at times, likening …

Singtel iPhone unable to connect to Twitter

Approximately 80% of the time, my Singtel iPhone is unable to connect to twitter.com or refresh my tweets view in Twitterific (which uses the Twitter API). This only happens when connected to the internet via 3G or GPRS. If I connect via my own WiFi network, Twitter works whenever the whale isn’t flying. Either something is wrong with the DNS resolution over on their end, they’re blocking twitter (which makes no sense to me; it’s not the highest traffic application), or something much worse. Whatever it is, I am getting seriously pissed off.