Tuesday, April 01, 2014

April Fools' Day - Blk 71 article by e27.co

I'm quite sure that the article by e27 on how Singapore's Blk 71 is to be shifted to Sentosa and become a museum, is an April Fools' Day joke.


While Blk 71 is now a news highlight because of government's focus on entrepreneurship, I seriously don't think anyone would want to change it into a museum, least of all shift it 'brick by brick' to Sentosa.

Nonetheless the crawler engine of Yahoo pick the article up as a news item, and it is now on Yahoo.


Nice try e27, and Wish all a Happy April Fools' Day (& have some fun)!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Presidential Election 2011 - Poll Card has arrived

The Poll Card for Singapore's Presidential Election 2011 has arrived (see the picture below). The news stated that Singaporeans should receive their poll cards this few days, so look out for it in the letterbox. If you didn't get your card, you can actually print one yourself via the Elections Dept online service. I think Election Dept has an easier time for this Presidential Election since they can mostly re-use the earlier procedures / details from the General Election in May 2011. My polling station was the same as the earlier GE polling station.

The Poll Card looks the same, except it says "PE 2011" instead of "GE 2011", and the location of the "PE 2011" box is different, that is all.


So who will most Singaporeans vote for as the next President? I don't know but can only offer an educated guess (heh, my previous guess about the Writ of Election date and polling date is accurate!) after I hear what the candidates have to say, and people's responses to their views. Tonight is the broadcast of the speeches by the four Presidential hopeful - Dr Tan Cheng Bock, Mr Tan Jee Say, Dr Tony Tan, and Mr Tan Kin Lian, so for those who care, turn on your TV tonight at 8pm.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Sunset Grill & Pub (Seletar Airbase) - Hot Wings

Sunset Grill & Pub is located at an obscure part of the Seletar Airbase. Honestly speaking the cafe is very hard to find, but nonetheless it is quite famous for food-seekers of a particular type - hot wings.



Sunset Grill & Pub is not the most beautiful restaurant or that the ambiance is fantastic (unless you happen to like the army camp feel, with heavy smell of mosquito coils lingering in the air. So most folks do go there for the simple reason that they served very special spicy buffalo wings. The spicy buffalo wings have ratings from 1 - 10, to indicate their spiciness. Of course, they do offer wings with ratings beyond 10, all the way to 35. Folks who attempted wings beyond rating 30 will get certificates and a place on their wall of fame.



Actually, most people who tried wings rating 30 and beyond will end up in bed or worse the hospital, so please don't try. I'm perfectly fine with wings of ratings 3 or even 5. Their sauce for the wings had a certain pungent acidic taste, which led me to believe that they added other spicy ingredients other than chilli. Order for wings is at a minimum of 6 wings. Not my type of chicken wings, but everyone has their own version of 'taste' I suppose.

For those who want to get a bit of 'hotness' on their tongues and in their stomachs, here's the address of Sunset Grill & Pub - Republic of Singapore Flying Club, 140-B Piccadily, Seletar Airbase East Camp. Tel: 6482 0244. They are closed on Tuesday, and even on normal days Sunset Grill & Pub can be quite crowded, so go early if you want to.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

New Soon Huat Bak Kut Teh @ Jalan Kayu

It has been a while since I had great tasting bak kut teh in Singapore. So when we heard about the New Soon Huat bak kut teh along Jalan Kayu, we decided to give it a try.


We ordered bak kut teh, braised pig trotter, and pig liver soup, and they tasted great. Unlike the peppery clear broth that is pretty commonly in food court, New Soon Huat's bak kut teh soup has a slight herbal and rich smooth texture to the soup. Moreover, instead of just pieces of pork ribs, they served the bak kut teh with a mixture of different pork parts plus some tofu skin. The parts were innards, and both lean and the fatty meat in the bubbling claypot. As for the ribs, the meat pieces came off the bones easily and didn't get stuck between the teeth.


We liked the braised pig trotter as well. The portion that was served had the good combination of the tendons, meat and the fatty parts. The meat came off the bones easily, and was wholly infused with the spices used. The serving was not too oily, and the black soy sauce added much aromatic flavour when we put it onto the rice.


New Soon Huat served liver soup in claypot as well. They didn't have the kidney, which was somewhat disappointing. The liver pieces were cooked just right with slight reddish tint, i.e. not overcooked till somewhat rubbery.


Overall the dining experience at New Soon Huat bak kut teh was good. For a price of $20+ (the dishes above cost $5.80 each and can drinks are retailing at $1.50 each), we get these three dishes that were just nice for two persons. The New Soon Huat bak kut teh is located at 257 Jalan Kayu, opened daily 11am to 10pm. They accept reservation, and those who are interested can call 6484 3224.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Transformers @ Changi Airport T3 (6 & 7 August)


Optimus Prime & Bumblebee will be at the Changi Airport Terminal 3 on 6 & 7 August (i.e. tomorrow and Sunday)! Heh, for those Transformers fans who want to have a photo grab with these autobots, make your way down to the Changi Airport T3 these two days at 1 pm and 4pm. I am not sure how the photos will turn out since it is quite hard to make 'Transformers' mascots, but I am sure the fans will still be thrilled nonetheless. The event will be at Basement 2, just opposite the kopitiam area.



Changi Airport has these Meet & Greet events (I saw the Kung Fu panda event sometime back), which are also publised on their website. However, the details on the website are a bit different from the terms and conditions posted at the event itself. The website stated that interested parties can just spend "any amount on a single receipt" but the T&Cs at T3 stated a minimum amount of $10 ($5 for Changi Reward members) before a person can qualify for the photo passes. 

Thus to be safe, interested folks should ask the Changi Airport staff before they start to hand out the Transformers photo passes. Here's the picture of the T&Cs.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Writ of Election from 3 August - Presidential Election Date?

Channel News Asia has suggested that the Writ of Election will be issued from today, i.e. from 3 August 2011. The national broadcaster suggested this date because of developments from the Election Department. With such date made public by the national broadcaster, it is simply almost certain that 3 August will be the day that the Writ is issued.

What next? Well, straight after the Writ is issued, the 5 candidates who indicated their aspiration to be the next President of Singapore, will have up to 3 days to submit their applications for the Certificate of Eligibility to run for the President. Since it is stated as 'days' and not 'working days', that means should the Writ be issued on 3rd August, the candidates will have up to this Saturday (i.e. 6th August) to submit their applications. 

If we keep this T+3 day rule in mind (i.e. 3 days from the issuance of Writ of Election for application submission), there isn't any other ideal date for issuing Writ of Election except on the 3rd August, or from 10th August onwards. 

Why? 4th August is no good, since that means the T+3 date land up on a Sunday, which is a bad day for dealing with administrative stuff. Civil servants wouldn't typically choose a Sunday to handle such an important procedure dealing with Presidential Election. 

5th August means 8th August is the T+3 date. While possible, this means the media's attention on the 8th August will be focus on election matters, and not National Day celebrations, which is again a no-no. 

6th August means application deadline is 9th August, the National Day, which is definitely a no-no. 

7th August is a Sunday, and the 8th - 9th August will be devoted to matters of National Day. So I guess the best bet is still 3rd August.

We know that Dr Tony Tan and Mr Tan Kin Lian had submitted their applications, and that leaves us with the other three candidates - Mr Tan Jee Say, Dr Tan Cheng Bock, and Mr Andrew Kuan. Understandably, there may be confusion for some heartlanders (or those not familiar at all with local politics) which 'Tan' they will like to vote for when our citizens are at the polling station. So the Elections Department has decided that the ballot paper will have the photographs of the candidates.

With the list of candidates settled, there remains the other unknown for this Presidential election, i.e. the date. There is much speculation that the date will be 27th August, i.e. the last Saturday of this month. I personally think 27th August 2011 will be a good date for election, for a simple reason. There is a public holiday, Hari Raya Puasa, on the 30th August 2011, i.e. following Tuesday. Thus should 27th August, the Saturday, be a polling day, many companies and organisations will provide the following Monday as a day off.

Thus folks can wake up early in the morning of 27th August, vote for their ideal candidate, and enjoy the extremely long weekend from 27th August till 30th August, i.e. 4 days off! Knowing the well-oiled machinery of Singapore's bureaucracy, 27th August will indeed be a best bet for the coming Singapore Presidential Election date. We will know soon if my guesses are correct.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Straits Times App - iPhone & iPad

News about the new Straits Times app on iPad, and its full version cousin for iPhone were spreading for the past few days. MyPaper had also ran a full page advertisement for these 2 apps today. Honestly speaking, news apps on iPhone and iPad are not new at all. I've tried the other apps from other news agencies from abroad. What is more important for the success of these apps is its usability. This is especially so for subscription based news apps. 

The Editorial content from the Print Edition of the Straits Times' apps on iPhone (full version) and iPad (you can get these apps on the iTune apps store) will be free from now till 7th Sep, but they have not announced the charges that are applicable from 7th Sep. I believe they are watching for consumer responses before deciding the price tags.


Out of curiosity, I decided to try out the full version iPhone apps from Straits Times. Well, the news coverage is more complete now, with articles from the Print Edition added into the picture. The users could also retrieve older articles from the past 7 days. I like their keywords alert function, where news articles containing these keywords could be 'push' via notification. I am puzzled about their 'Expiry Date' under the Subscription tag of the Settings though. It stated 31 August 2011. Isn't the app suppose to be free until 7th Sep?


An area for improvement for the Straits Times apps on iPhone would be its refresh rates. It took a while to refresh the articles (see pic below), especially when the reception is not in the most ideal location. It is inevitable that network quality may suffer at places of low coverage - e.g. SMRT trains, tunnels and such. However, these are also the locations where users are more inclined to use the apps to get news updates - traveling on trains for example. Straits Times could format its update in a way to enable better refresh I suppose.


Overall the feel of the Straits Times iPhone apps is good, and I am sure it will appeal to the news junkies, especially for folks who travel frequently. Singaporeans who are residing overseas may also be attracted to these apps for an instant update of the Singapore landscape. It remains to be seen if the subscription rate is attractive enough to encourage mass take up of the Straits Times app. Just a food for thought - if the adoption rate for the Straits Times iPhone app is high, will the paper version suffer from such 'internal cannibalisation' then?

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