Monday, November 29, 2010

What's The Secret?

Today is supposed to be D-Day for the US State Department as whistleblower website WikiLeaks released hundred of thousands secret confidential cables. After reading some of the more high profile cases I can’t help but say, “That’s it? This is what they were worried about?”

Outside the embarrassment factor, I fail to see what’s so amazing about the cables released by WikiLeaks. The Chinese government trying to hack into Google; we knew about it already because Google announced it to the world. The Saudi Arabia's king's asking the US to bomb Iran; not unexpected as Saudi Arabia and Iran are hardly friends. Israel discussing with Egypt and the PLA before its war on Hamas in Gaza; hardly a surprise.

Where are the real juicy secrets? No, Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi’s suspect affair with his "voluptuous blond" Ukrainian nurse does not count. This is what the Americans were worried about? Most of this stuff can’t even be called secret.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Since Singapore Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam said that former fugitive Mas Selamat Kastari took shelter at his brother’s flat before escaping out of Singapore, the Singapore Government (and the government-backed media) has been “urging” Singaporeans not to lay blame at the Malay-Muslim community for the escape of the suspected terrorist.

All good and well except for the only problem with it is that NO one I know blame the Malay-Muslim community! Really, the Singapore government needs to stop talking about “blaming” the Malay-Muslim community because no one does! Singaporeans don’t blame the Malay-Muslim community for the escape, they blame the Singapore government for the amazing incompetence of not checking on Mas Selamat’s immediate family members! In fact some Singaporeans I know seems to understand why the family sheltered him. He is afterall their blood, but the government’s failure to keep an eye on the family? That is something no one can understand.

Frankly, it makes the government looks bad. By keep screaming that Singaporeans should not blame the Malay-Muslim community, the Singapore Government looks like they are trying deflect responsibility. With an election coming up, I can understand the Singapore government's instinct to tai-chi away the responsibility but that is something Singaporeans will not (and are not) accept.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Comics this week

Astonishing Thor #1- For a mini-series that’s supposed to bring new fans to Thor, this was rather disappointing. Mike Choi's gorgeous art notwithstanding, this issue had little going for it. Writer Robert Rodi’s story tried to cram too many things into one issue. One moment we have Thor saving Manhattan, then a visit to Asgard, then a flashback to his younger days, then a visit to Ego The Living Planet, and finally The Stranger pop up. As they say, too many cooks…

Star Wars: Blood Ties #4- After 3 good issues, writer Tom Taylor wrapped up the series in a serviceable issue. The story gave more about the relationship between Jango Fett and Boba Fett but it was the art of Chris Scalf that was the star of the issue. Scalf was excellent in the first 3 issues but that was nothing compare to his work here. He truly outdid himself and I’ll be looking forward to his new works.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


While completing for Singapore in the current Asian Games in China, the Singapore water polo team played while wearing swimming trunks which featured the crescent moon and stars from the Singapore flag.

Some people in Singapore complained that this is “obscene” especially the “placement” of the moon. In an act of covering their ass, the Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts (MICA) said that the Singapore water polo team did not seek their advice on the design of the trunks.

Talk about the ridiculous. Here we have a group of men who took time off their work and studies to represent Singapore and they are being criticized for their…swimming trunks? Really, what’s so wrong about their trunks anyway? It’s just a pair of swimming trunks and the team even design it themselves to showcase the flag they are playing for. What’s wrong with that?

The complains are both stupid and ridiculous!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Buffy Remake

"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" was a hit TV series that made stars out of Sarah Michelle Gellar, Alyson Hannigan and writer Joss Whedon. What most people don’t know is that the TV series came out of a movie starring Kristy Swanson.

In another example of Hollywood running out of ideas, Warner Bros. is now going to remake "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" the movie. Only one problem; "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" was a terrible movie! It was neither funny nor scary. In fact I remember once while watching the TV series thinking, “how in the world did this good series came out of such a movie?”

Hollywood must be desperate for ideas to remake bad movies. I wonder what’s next; “Plan 9 from Outer Space?”

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stranger and Stranger

Are you kidding me? You have to be joking! What incompetence!

These are just some of the reactions Singaporeans has when Singapore Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam said in a Ministerial statement that former fugitive Mas Selamat Kastari took shelter at his brother’s flat before escaping out of Singapore. 2 years ago, Mas Selamat escape from the Whitley Road Detention Centre (WRDC) and eluded an island-wide manhunt before being caught in Malaysia in 2009.

Incredibly, now it is reported that he was staying at his brother’s flat! An island-wide manhunt for a wanted fugitive and they never bother to check on his brother’s house? We’re not even talking about an uncle or a distant cousin here, but his brother! As impossible as it sounds, the escape of Mas Selamat Kastari has just gotten stranger and stranger.

Singaporeans are in disbelief over this latest revelation. Some don’t believe it, even go as far as to say that this is nothing but a tactic to pressure Mas Selamat to reveal who actually helped him escape Singapore (of course that’ll open another can of worms). Personally, I believe this. I mean if it’s false, it’s one stupid, stupid lie. It’s so ridiculous it has to be true.

That means that the Singapore authorities really didn’t check on his brother’s house. That means heads has to roll for this incredible oversight.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Yes, We Can Judge

Recently, a Singaporean student studying in England was arrested after hardcore child pornography was discovered on his computer. Mr. Jonathan Wong, 23, then plead guilty to 17 charges of making child pornography videos, some featuring girls as young as 6.

Now Mr. Wong has been reported to be remorseful for his actions and some Singaporeans have rallied around him saying it’s not their position to judge him. Why?

People who know me personally know that I’m not lily-white. I accept that everyone has their fetish but even I have to draw a line at child pornography. This is child pornography!

I do not know Mr. Jonathan Wong personally but he seems like a bright man with a good future in front of him. He is also on a teaching scholarship from the MOE (Ministry of Education) at Goodricke College.

That does NOT matter! 50 videos were found in his computer, some files showing 6 years old girls! Of course we as a public, as a society are in a position to judge. If you can’t condemn and judge child pornography, Singapore as a society is in big trouble.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Comics this week

Brightest Day #14- Maybe it’s just me but I can’t understand why writers Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi let Deadman get the white ring. He’s not a truly likable character and worse, he’s not even an enjoyable one. So it’s not really a smart move to let Deadman carry this whole issue. A lot of interesting developments happen here but none of which is truly enjoyable, if only they had a better lead.

X-23 #- That was faster than I thought. I always believe that writer Marjorie Liu had to move X-23 out of Utopia if only to get her out of the X-Men’s shadow but I surprised she’s gone after just 3 issues. Luckily, the “Wolverine in Hell” tie-in looks over and Liu look like she has plans for X-23. She did more than enough to get me back for the next issue.

Artifacts #3- Set-up for the coming battle between the bearers of the 13 artifacts, not much really happened except for the fact Nottingham got the Blood Sword (too easily for my liking). This was a strange issue. Battle lines were drawn, all the bearers of the artifacts were introduced but there was neither suspense nor build-up to the coming battle. No reason was given why Aphorodite IV was recruiting the bearers or even why some of them agreed to fight for her mysterious master. Basically, there’s no reason why we should care.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Our Language

Today there’s an article on Yahoo Singapore about the unofficial national language of Singapore; Singlish. Written by an “ang moh”, it’s basically a foreign look at Singlish. Anyone who read the article can easily see 2 things;
1) Singlish is distinctly Singaporean
and 2) foreigners loved Singlish!

This is generally true as most foreigners I know, even those from other Asian countries, think Singlish is fun. They are amused by it and most think of it as a national trait. As they say, “You can dress like a Singaporean, walk like a Singaporean, but the moment you open your mouth, people can tell you are not a Singaporean.”

Now the Singapore government might be embarrassed by Singlish (remember the stupid “Speak Good English” campaign?), but most Singaporeans are proud of the unique language. There’s even a Facebook page asking the government to declare Singlish as an official language.

I’m not on Facebook but if I am, I’ll be on the page. Why not? Singlish has its own distinct grammar and vocabulary, so why not call it what it is; a national language.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Great Waste Of Money

A friend and I were on the road when we saw a Volvo. He commented that it’s a great looking car; I reply that it’s true but it’s also a great waste of money.

He said that the COE (Certificate of Entitlement) for these vehicles is the same as any car above 1600cc. Also true, but he (like most Singaporeans) forgot one thing. The COE might be the same, but the registration fee for a Volvo is much higher than that of a Toyota or Hyundai.

When you register a vehicle in Singapore, the COE is not the only thing you will need to pay. There is another payment called the Additional Registration Fee (ARF). This registration fee is 100% of the vehicle’s Open Market Value (OMV), which for a Volvo can come to 6 digits. Although you will receive a de-registration value when you scrap the vehicle (called the PARF), that value at most 75% of your OMV.

That means the day you buy your car, the vehicle has already lost 25% of its value. Not only that, the COE is for 10 years so everyday, you are losing the value of your COE as well. Take the example of the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) fraud case involving Mr. Koh Seah Wee. The case was still under investigation and the authorities were already trying to sell Koh’s Lamborghini and Mercedes Benz cars. The reason is simple; those vehicles were losing money every single day so they need to sell them off as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, it’s difficult to sell such vehicles. Not just in Singapore but frankly everywhere else in the world. When was the last time you heard of anyone proudly proclaiming they have a secondhand Lamborghini, Volvo, or Mercedes Benz. There’s no resale value in such vehicles and that’s beside the point that anyone who can buy these vehicles would naturally want to have the latest model, not a used secondhand one.

Lamborghini, Volvo, Mercedes Benz. All great muscle cars, all look great and all great money drainers.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Get Your Free AK-47!

The AK-47 is widely known to be the best assault rifle in the world. It’s the weapon of choice for armed forces, rebel groups, and militants the world over.

Now it is also the weapon of choice for a sales promotion in America. A truck dealer in Florida has offering a free AK-47 assault rifle to anyone who buy a vehicle from his dealership. And the promotion is so successful, sales has tripled!

Now I know the right to own guns is a big deal in America but using AK-47 as a sales promotion tactic? I don’t know what’s more surprising, that it’s legal or that sales have tripled since the promotion!

Well, sales have tripled and since you can’t knock success; I wonder when they will start offering rocket launchers and Stinger missiles there in America?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Saying Bye-bye To Our Sushi

Even when everyone agrees on the fact, humans can still disagree on what to do. A few months ago, I posted about how the Atlantic bluefin tuna is heading towards extinction due to over-fishing.

Industrial-scale fishing in the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic over the past 40 years has depleted stocks by 85% but instead of stopping, nations are now “discussing” how much tuna they can fish from the sea without destroying the species (and the multi-billion dollar business that goes along with it).

On one side are the conservationists who say that the species will die out unless the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) suspends or at the very least heavily reduces the catch. On the other side is the fishing industry who says that thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of people will be out of jobs if fishing is suspended. Instead they are saying the 13,500-tonnes annual quota will be enough to allow stocks to increase.

The one thing everyone agrees on?

The 13,500-tonnes quota is widely ignored! Everyone agrees that despite steps to increase enforcement of the quota, almost every country in the ICCAT catch more tuna than they should. In 2007, investigations shows that France caught more than double their quota that year.

So everyone agrees that the quota is useless, that it is widely ignored and yet this quota is the basis the fishing industry is basing their argument on? I guess everyone can say bye-bye to their sushi.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mr. Lee Kuan Yew

With a general election (GE) expected soon, an unwanted question has been bugging Singaporeans; how will Singapore cope without Lee Kuan Yew? The 87-year-old Lee is considered a sage in Asia and a large part of Singapore’s success is due to the man’s vision and determination.

However Mr. Lee is now 87, in poor health and rumored to be in grief over the recent passing of his wife. So the question is being asked if Mr. Lee should stand for elections in the next GE.

The question came up again yesterday when the Mr. Lee himself said that he will only stand if he is physically capable and if the Prime Minister wants him. Since the Prime Minister is his son, there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that he and the People’s Action Party (PAP) would want Mr. Lee in the next GE (you have to be an idiot not to). So the question is down strictly to Mr. Lee’s health.

If that’s the case, then I say Mr. Lee Kuan Yew should not stand in the next GE. Mr. Lee has been in politics for over 50 years and with his poor health, there’s no need to risk it to stand in the next GE. Fact of the matter is; although the opposition would probably gain some seats in the next GE, there is no way they are going to stop the PAP from forming the next government. They just don’t have the numbers.

In short, the PAP will form the next government without or without Mr. Lee Kuan Yew. There is no urgent need for him to stand in the next GE, and even if there is a need, his health should be of paramount importance. The man has done more than enough for Singapore, his place in Singapore’s history is secured and he should look after his health. The man deserved his rest.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Comics this week

The Thanos Imperative #6- Writers Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning made the right decision this issue to focus on Thanos' betrayal of the Guardians of the Galaxy and his new alliance with Lord Mar-Vell. As expected, Thanos then betrayed Mar-Vell as well in the name of for his one, true and only love; Death. The aftermath of the betrayal was the golden moment of this issue, no, of this whole series. The last stand of Nova and Star-Lord was nothing short of momentous and credit has to be given to Miguel Sepulveda as his art managed to bring out the best in the story. The final scene on Hala was a fitting sendoff to this great series and fans of the Guardians of the Galaxy might have a tear or two in their eyes at how many of the team had died in the line of duty. The Thanos Imperative ends with a bang, here’s hoping there’s more of this to come.

Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time #6- One of the most fun things about Wheel of Time is seeing the pictures of characters we read about years ago. I never thought the warriors of Manetherendrelle have samurai-like armor but it does make sense. The famous axe of Perrin is also shown. A complain I have of the series is the pacing. After 6 issues, we are only now leaving Two Rivers and that’s just way too slow. The Wheel of Time is a thirteen book series and we’re like not even a third of the way through book one! This is going to take forever.

Halcyon #1- Halcyon means heavenly or peaceful and that’s the premise for this new superhero series by Marc Guggenheim and Tara Butters. What would superheroes do if suddenly there’s no crime? In this case, Halcyon is a JLA-like group who faced a single particular problem; crime rate has dropped like a stone all over the world. There is almost no crime anywhere in the world and even the most feared super-villain in the world has surrendered. The idea is intriguing if nothing else and I’ll be here to see how it goes.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Stop Whining!

With World of Warcraft having 12 million subscribers, it's no surprise that developers are currently trying to find the next big online game. One of the biggest is Star Wars: The Old Republic.

Budgeted at US$100 million, and developed by the respected Bioware Star Wars: The Old Republic is one of the most ambitious MMORPG projects to date. However with the big budget come the high expectations. Already the internet is filled with doomsday scenarios that the game will suck, it will never make a profit, that it’s too big for its own good, etc.

What a bunch of whiners! Really, the game is at least half a year away and people are already whining that the game will fail. Whatever happened to the days when gamers actually look forward to games coming out? Okay, I’m not a Star War fans so I’m not really looking for to the game but that’s a different matter. People should stop whining about games that are months (MONTHS) away from being released.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Time For Change

During his trip to India, U.S. President Barack Obama publicly endorsed India's wish for a permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council. Now I know Obama did this because America needs access to India’s economy and influence but that doesn’t change one thing; he’s also right!

The U.N. Security Council currently has 5 permanent members; Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States. All 5 got their seats after World War 2 which ended over 60 years ago. That’s a long time ago and with its economy, India has more right to be on the council than say, France or Britain. Hell, I think Brazil has more right to be on the council that France or Britain.

The 5 permanent members of the U.N. Security Council is no longer a fair reflection of the world powers. Obama might have said what he said in America’s self-interest, but he is also right. It is time to change the U.N. Security Council and countries like Brazil, Turkey and India deserved their permanent seats on it.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Ogawa Ryuju Deserve Singapore Citizenship

Anyone who read my blog before know how I feel about Singapore giving out citizenships to rich foreigners who then disappear from the island to live in another country. So it is extraordinary to me that Ogawa Ryuju is having such a hard time getting his Singapore citizenship.

Ogawa Ryuju is a half-Japanese, half-Singaporean who have been living in Singapore with his mother since he was 10. He did his ‘N’ Levels education, did his National Service, got his Pink NRIC from a Member of Parliament (MP), even renounced his Japanese citizenship at the age of 21, all so that he can be a full Singapore citizen. Then when he went to renew his passport, he found out that he wasn’t a Singaporean. All because he did not take a formal Oath; a technicality!

Now I always thought there’s something wrong with our citizenship system and this proves it! Here we have a young man who gave up his Japanese citizenship to be a Singaporean and he is denied this, even after doing his NS, because he didn’t take a formal pledge?

I don’t get this at all. Ogawa Ryuju did his NS and already had his Pink NRIC. So why isn’t he considered a Singaporean? Permanent Residents (PRs) get the blue NRIC, while Singaporeans have the Pink NRIC. That has always been the case right? He already got his Pink NRIC but is still NOT a citizen of Singapore? And all because he did take a formal pledge; a pledge he has been taking in school since he was 10?

That makes no sense. Most Singaporeans thinks so and at least 2 MPs, Mr. Lee Boon Yang and Mr. Heng Chee How, are helping Ogawa Ryuju on his case. Here’s hoping there’ll good news for him. He went to school here, did his NS and renounced his Japanese citizenship; Ogawa Ryuju deserve Singapore citizenship a hell lot more than some movie stars I could name.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Comics this week

Brightest Day #13- After a long time gone, Hawkman gets his turn as the star this issue. Writer Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi get down to business quickly as battle scenes filled this issue. Outside a somewhat boring exposition in the middle, it’s battles all the way but none of the scenes were truly memorable. Personally I don’t care much about the story of Hath-Set and the Hawks but it was nice to see Hawkgirl do an Onatopp on him. Outside that, the only thing that got my interest was the final scene which made sense but at the same time was very surprising. An okay issue saved by the ending.

Taskmaster #3- This issue reminds me of an old Elektra series I collected a few years ago. In the series, Elektra was protecting a young girl and teaching her self-defense at the same time. Yes, this was the time when the stupid movie starring Jennifer Garner was coming out. The series, like the movie, died a quick death. The reason was this; Elektra is a killer, one of the top assassins in Marvel, if not the best! She works best as a killer, as an assassin, as a bad-guy. She is a villain! That’s why people like her! Taskmaster is also a villain. He teaches bad guys how to be bad guys. That’s why people like him. He is NOT a memory loss S.H.I.E.L.D agent with a S.H.I.E.L.D agent wife who has been secretly funneling info to Nick Fury since the start of his career! That’s not why people like him and writer Fred Van Lente better have some way to save this in the final issue or there’s going to be a lot of angry Taskmaster fans out there!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Generally speaking, I don’t care much about biographies. Especially if they are biographies written by people about themselves. Whether they are politicians, leaders or generals, I think it’s pretty impossible for these biographies to be objective.

So I didn’t care much about it when I heard that former U.S President George W. Bush is going to release an upcoming book titled, "Decision Points." Then I heard the interview he did with a reporter to promote his book and boy, was I interested!

In an interview with NBC reporter Matt Lauer, the former President said that the worst moment in his presidency was when rapper Kanye West criticized his handling of Hurricane Katrina and called him a racist. Now I’m no fan of his but I don’t hate George W. Bush like some people. In fact, I question if he can be blamed for Hurricane Katrina. I mean who can stop Mother Nature right?

However even his greatest fans will have to admit he made quite a lot of mistakes during his presidency. The Iraqi War, Iraq's non-weapons of mass destruction, economic meltdown; all happened on his watch. But the worst moment of his presidency was when he was criticized by a loudmouth rapper?

Now that’s getting your priorities right! No wonder his presidency was such a smashing success. His book will be funny if nothing else. I need to go read it.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

New Templates

I’ve been receiving “reminders” from blogger for a few months now that there are new templates available and I “can” change my template to a newer version. After months of ignoring them, my resistance has been broken.

So how do you like the new template? Hate it, loved it, can’t be bothered; all comments are welcome!

Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay

Guy Gavriel Kay has been writing fantasy novels for quite awhile now however “Under Heaven” is the first novel by him that I have read. Yes, I see a few heading shaking among you and you might be right. I might be missing out on a few good reads because “Under Heaven” was a very good novel.

Although set in the Empire of Kitai, the story actually started on the western frontier of Kitai, Kuala Nor. The site of a massive battle 20 years ago between the Kitai and Taguran Empire, the place is now a no-man land between the 2 great Empires. It is also a massive graveyard for unburied soldiers from the battle. In the midst of the graveyard toiled Shen Tai, the second son of a Kitaian general who rose to prominence in the battle. Despite the ghosts of the unburied soldiers haunting the area, Shen Tai had been there for the past 2 years burying the bones of dead Kitan and Taguran soldiers in honor of his deceased father.

Thought of as a virtuous man due to his work, Shen Tai was given an unwanted gift of 250 prized Sardian horses from the Taguran Empire to honor his work burying the dead of both sides. After escaping an assassination attempt with the assistance of the ghosts of the Kuala Nor, Shen Tai has no choice but to leave for the capital of the Kitaian Empire, Xinan.

Along the way, he picked up allies and enemies who were drawn to him by the gift of the Sardian horses. He also picked up on the political situation of the Empire, including the fact that his younger sister Li-Mei has been made a princess of Kitai and had been sent off in marriage to the northern Bogu people. The arranged marriage was done by his older brother Shen Liu, who did it to further his own political career as well as their family’s fortune.

Knowing why it was done did not make Shen Tai any less angry with his brother for sending away their sister. Despite his wishes, Shen Tai also found that his horses has thrust him into the political and dynastic struggles of the empire and he has to make unwanted choices between personal and family needs especially when Kitai was rocked by a military rebellion.

As I said earlier, I have never read a novel by Guy Gavriel Kay before but after reading “Under Heaven”, I can just he is a good writer. The plot of “Under Heaven” is relatively simple but Kay managed to impose a sense of history to Kitai. The story is filled with small insights on how things are done in Kitai and the reasons (or at least the tradition) behind them. This gave Kitai a sense of being “lived-in” and made the Empire of Kitai more believable.

The main character of Shen Tai was also a winner. A man thrust into an unwanted situation by a gift he did not want but cannot reject, he was both realistic and heroic at the same time. Not an easy thing to do.

Another thing Kay done was to fill the story with appealing minor characters. Bytsan sri Nespo, the Taguran officer who helped Shen survived Kuala Nor was an interesting character who could never understand why he helped Shen Tai as much as he did. Another interesting character was Roshan, the general who rose up against the imperial rule. The would-be villain of the novel, he was a warrior who was always an outsider in the Kitai court due to his non-Kitai heritage and decided, not without reason, that he has a better chance of lifelong power by himself. This was a book where there wasn’t any real villains, only men who did things in their interest.

Of course not everything Kay did came off. About a fifth of the novel followed Shen Tai's sister Li-Mei during her adventures in the north and the whole piece was a bore. Her journey across the steppes with her rescuer Meshag could have been great, but it wasn’t. It was confusing at times and worse; boring. Most of the time when I reached Li-Mei’s part, I had to fight the urge to skip the whole chapter.

Also I found some the characters a little perplexing. The Banished Immortal was one of these. He is a swordsman, a poet, a wanderer, an adventurer all roll in one. All good and well, unfortunately he’s not the main character of the novel. Usually only the main character of the story gets to be everything at once and the Banished Immortal was a character that I can’t help but felt was underused in the novel because there’s just a story to be read there.

One thing that could be great or could be a complain is the amount of poetry in the novel. Kitai has a culture of poetry and it shows. At times, characters would break into poetry over drinks and there is even a poetry contest scene. How much you’ll enjoy them depends on how much you like poetry. If you enjoy poetry, this will be great. If you can’t tell good poetry from bad poetry, like me, this could be a problem.

Overall however, these are just minor complains as the story successfully weaves itself into a good book. Fill with interesting characters, “Under Heaven” is an excellent novel set in a rich new fantasy world. Here’s hoping there will be other novels set in the world of Kitai.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Crazy Players in EVE Online

Most people in Singapore would probably have never heard of the online game EVE Online. It’s a space online game where players pilot spaceships for trade and to control territories. Gamers in Singapore probably have heard of the online game before but most of them, like me, are probably not playing the game.

After hearing the latest piece of news from the game, most would probably never will. They, like me, will probably be too scared to do so.

In what’s called the biggest, largest and longest PvP battle ever recorded, over 3,000 players from Russia and Europe engaged in a battle for control of a territory in the game called LXQ2-T. As you can see from the screenshots above, this is no joke (all the small dots you see at the background are all players). Yes, over 3,000 players at one battle.

I can only ask this, “Are you people insane?”

I know of some games that don’t have that many players that login at any time of the day, and there are that many players at just ONE battle. What’s even more amazing is that the server didn’t crash. Although there are reports of players being crippled by 10 minutes lag, the server did manage to stay up. Now that’s amazing!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Celebrating World No. 2

After a reign of 5 years, Tiger Woods is no longer the world no. 1 in. In the latest world golf rankings, England's Lee Westwood is now the new world number one. This ends Tiger's 281 weeks reign as world no. 1 and the way you hear it on the news; it’s like the end of an era.

No, it’s not.

Personally, I’m always a little amused when sport writers calls for an end just because someone is no longer world no. 1. The same thing happened to Roger Federer. So Tiger Woods is no longer world no. 1, he’s now the world no. 2.

So what? That’s still great right? To be the second best player in the world at a sport is still something to celebrate isn’t it? Whatever happened to just participating in sports? Being the world best isn’t everything right? Hell, I would love to be the world no. 2 at any sports, much less one as rich as golf!

Winning isn’t everything, and being the world best isn’t the be-all and end-all of sports. Being world no. 2 is still a case for celebration.