Monday, July 31, 2006

Monitor went kaput

My Phillips 107T 17" CRT flatscreen monitor finally breathed its last. Banging the top got the image back for 3-5 secs, then it began to flicker and scroll upwards to 1/3 of the screen.

A quick call to the Phillips service center ended up with a decision to buy a new one. A carry-in check had an up-front troubleshooting labour cost of SG$70, not including additional cost for parts replacement and fix cost. The customer representative recommended me to buy a new monitor. It would have been more worthwhile since that included a 3-year warranty.

Still the 107T served me well for 7+ years. To think that I average 15 hours per week of mostly gaming activity (MUD, RPG games, online games). At times I have clocked no less than 24 hours per session (with in-between bathroom breaks, of course!) in a non air-con room. That calculates to a lifespan of 5096 hours. Wow, that equates to spending 5096 hours of my life on gaming. Could have been worse... at least it's not on gambling or drugs.

Is it good? Yeah I guess so. Ugh, I was refering to the monitor lifespan, not drugs.

All these 7 years, I have never encountered faded colors or flickering images. The images were still as sharp as when I first bought it. Until it konked-out. Though it was on the bulky side (WxHxD 15.7"x 14.7" x 16.5", 16.5kg) but it was an above-average-decent-what-I-can-afford monitor at that time. I had a previous 15" one which died within 2 years. Just don't ask the brand name. Yeah yeah, you pay peanuts you get lousy monkeys.

*salutes Phillips monitor* Farewell.

So any good 17" flat panel monitor recommendations?
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Hardware come and go these days and they are not built to last. Technology changes everyday - today that piece of hardware may be popular, tomorrow who knows? So I understand where the manufacturers/suppliers are coming from. Why build something to last when there will not be any demand tomorrow?

Isn't it so common these days? How often have I come across people (myself included) who take people for granted until they pass away? Then we start to regret we actually hadn't spend quality time with them.

What about companies who hire and fire? Human resource is treated no more than a piece of hardware with depreciating value. After 15+ years in a company, these 'oldies' are forced to leave. We don't need you anymore, you have served your purpose. Thank you.

There is no loyalty in us anymore. No wonder each generation gets more self-centered as time passes. You see it everyday - a young couple snuggling together in the MRT train while a pregnant woman or elderly person stands in front of them. Worse, the seat is for the disabled or pregnant ladies only. Or a mother and son sitting on the comfortable the bus seats while the maid is carrying shopping bags and standing along the aisle.

The big 'I', 'ME' and 'MYSELF' syndrome.

In a developed, educated country like Singapore, you would have expected social graces to be better than those of the developing countries. However this seems to be opposite. Just enter a typical HDB lift. Everybody in the lift looks either up or down. Nobody looks nobody in the eye, gives a quick smile or say a simple 'Hello'.

And to top that, we have the Smile2006 campaign. And that's because the IMF is coming to Singapore.

Duh.

In my opinion, any developed country championing courtesy campaigns, smile movements, National Education (hidden name patriotism) programmes is in trouble. Serious trouble. Productive, efficient but clinical and calculative. Most people (even Singaporean locals) rate Singapore:

Efficiency - Excellent
Following process - To the T
Social graces - Zero
Thinking out of the box - Utter failure
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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Too busy?

I didn't blog. I am swarmed at work. Projects are kicking off and I am caught in the middle of them. Risks, problems and cost issues are flying all over the place and trying to find a target - ME! I don't remember buying a shirt from Target (ok bad joke)!

Runaway. I will runaway... (lyrics from Runaway by The Corrs)

Catching a moment to reflect, I must admit the fault lies with me. Time management. I've heard it from dozens of sources, especially my missus. My priorities are all wrong. I spent my time often on activities that don't really matter. Or really?

I wonder if I am the only one struggling with this scenario:

  1. You list down the to-do things/tasks. You prioritize them.
  2. You commit yourself to completing these tasks before you switch on the PC.
  3. You swear World of Warcraft (WoW) will have to wait but you ended up playing for 5 bloody long hours!
    3.1 Yeah our raid group killed Drakk. He was a beast. We got wiped twice while reaching there.
    3.2 The reward? A +2% critical-strike trinket! How cool can it be, huh? Go rogues!

I climbed into bed at 3am this morning. I got up with a bad hangover and I started to wonder if I had just wasted 5 hours of my life. Actually it was my 3+ year-old daughter who woke me up. I can't sleep with someone shouting in my ears, opening my lead-weighted eyelids and giggling away. My missus said I got to send her to school on my way to work.

Runaway. I will runaway...

Food for thoughts:

  1. Heard from the radio on how the Public Transport Company has set a higher service standard on bus operators. And guess what the solution is?

    Hefty fines.

    Excuse me, what's new? Who cares if it is going to be a 1-million dollar fine? Or 1 dollar? Isn't it from the government's left pocket to the right pocket?

    Dear LTA, how does this translate to actual benefits for the commuters who were inconvenienced by the disruption?

    I have a better suggestion. Why not let the duration and time of the disruption translate to free-rides for commuters at a similar time and duration.
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  2. Tried to read the Straits Times Interactive Online. Realised I have to pay for a subscription fee now. What the...?

    I am an old-fashioned-style reader. Hard copy. Rarely do I search online, unless I want to hyperlink and comment on an intersting article I have read or heard. mrbrown's blog entry and the comments therein sum up my feelings.

    Dear SPH, must everything be tied to a cost (I know it's a stupid but valid question every Singaporean man asks)?

    It's not as if you belong to the category of Reuters or Factiva. As for your so-called awards in the media industry, read my next point below.
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  3. While searching for the Straits Times website using Google, I came across this newspaper review. I wonder where we actually stand in the world ranking for media.
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  4. Speak Guud Engrish Movement? Seh-mi lai eh? Read it here.

    See how the Professor Koh Tai Ann's (Chairman of the Speak Good English Movement) English is corrected.

    Totally pwned. I wonder if he knows what pwned means.

    And to think Father Lee told the young folks at the infamous TV dialogue, "We have co-opted all the best people".

    Just for laughs: this site is Singaporean-ly hilarious, albeit vulgar. (warning!) Read at your own risk.
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  5. I wanted to comment on the Israel-Lebannon conflict but it has to come later. I'm going to do WoW LBRS raid tonight. Who has time for anything these days?
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Friday, July 21, 2006

It's one of those times

...when you can't wait for the end of the day. I just wanna pack up and go. Call it a day. But alas, meetings are holding me back. Not to say the least, I have tons of items to follow-up in my 'To-Do' list.

Wince.

I kinda remembered an article (actually taken from The Straits Times but I can't find it anymore) I've read quite sometime ago. Made me re-think about what/who really matters.

I'm sure the world still remembers Eugene O'Kelly. He passed away on Sept 10, 2005, and that's just ~1 year ago from my blog entry. He was the CEO of KPMG at 53, one of the largest US accounting firms. Only had lunch twice with his wife in his 12 years there.

He died. Ka-put.

And the world moved on. Give it another 5 years and I doubt people even bothered if a CEO named Eugene O'Kelly ever existed. That's the sad side of life - each passing day is a fleeting moment. We are bustling ourselves with things that don't really matter, and spending most of our time with people who don't really care.

Sad. Very sad.

His memories will be treasured by his loved ones. People who really matter to him. He became wise towards his final moments. Can I?

Life. Memories. Loved ones. Treasures.
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Thursday, July 20, 2006

Where is Friday?

I nearly had an accident driving my car this morning. I was making a turn when one of the bags in my front passenger seat obstructed the gear-changing left hand. Taking a quick glance at the bag, I pushed it away.

Big mistake. My body followed the direction of my eyes. My hand unconsciously swerved to the left. I recovered just in time as the car nearly went up the kerb.

I wonder how many accidents happened because a mother turned back to look at her kids, or a young man stole a quick glance at his fiancee.

Anyway, I don't know what kind of relief washed over me. That I am unhurt or that nothing happened to the car. Perhaps I am just thankful for both.

You see, car repairs are expensive, especially those at my expense. *mutters quietly*

Now where is my coffee to wake me up? Tell me Friday is tomorrow.
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Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Kaffein-nated

So I got the blog-bug after what... 3 years?

My fingers have been itching, especially after reading mrbrown's plight with MICA. I decided to go public that I'm behind MB all the way.

So why Kaffein-nated?

1. I drink coffee. Lots of it daily. I will never be qualified to donate blood - it's full of alkaloid.
2. I had a hard time trying to find a suitable name for the blog. Try these for starters:
  • Disgustink (This was supposed to be really good. But then who likes to read disgusting stuff anyway. Or would they?)
  • What the...
  • Jazz in Office ( I love jazz)
  • Destinations in a Postcard (I love traveling)

So welcome me into the world of blogging, won't you?

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