What is Free?

Got this from C.F.King’s price list / brochure / leaflet / whatever you want to call it:
CF King's Eee PC 700 price with 'free gifts'
CF King's Eee PC 700 price with 'free gifts'

Made me question what does “Free Gifts” mean.
Via Google’s define feature (because Oxford dictionary is too complicated for me)


  • grant freedom to; free from confinement
  • free from obligations or duties
  • complimentary: costing nothing; “complimentary tickets”; “free admission”


  • something acquired without compensation
  • endow: give qualities or abilities to
  • giving: the act of giving
  • give: give as a present; make a gift of; “What will you give her for her birthday?”

I would guess the typical perception/definition of “free gift” in this situation is would extra things given on top of the price of the object bought. However the different price of the unit “without Free Gifts” completely contradicts with this typical perception/definition. Thus this leads me to what does “Free Gift” mean in this context: it’s not stated in the brochure itself and I just see it as deceptive marketing. It makes the (potential) buyer that for the stated price you are getting a good deal because you get a bunch of free (having no cost) gifts. But when you realise that this isn’t the case, it’s not only deceptive but also hurts sales of products such as the Eee which is aimed more for the low end market. Bundling these “free gifts” which actually aren’t and thus increases the price, it could also put people off buying these products which are good for those who want a small light device for light web surfing, email and word processing. Oddly enough, it would have been ‘better’ if they had never revealed the “without free gift” pricing and nobody would have complained or be annoyed with this business practise.

On a side note “free” in today’s Open Source world usually refers to either or both of the following

  1. Gratis: “Free as in beer” meaning no cost
  2. Libre: “Free as in speech” meaning state of being free, as in “having freedom”

Source: Wikipedia: Gratis versus Libre


Welcoming Sickness

Night 0: Late night trip to pasar malam with satay and dried cuttlefish
Day 1: Sore throat + slight warmth. Thought nothing of it, probably due to last night’s food
Day 2: Cough. Sore throat still there but not much of a problem. Nothing too bad
Day 3: BAD cough-until-I-almost-puke cough. 1 month+ old nephew has a fever. Feeling pretty pathetic
Day 4: Running nose + slight muscle ache + feverish.
Day 5: Sneezing thus watery running nose

In the days of my sickness I have discovered command-line mplayer to play videos on my desktop while I work/lie on my bed with my laptop, Joomla and just a few moments ago (while Googling ‘geekdom’) rediscovered The IT Crowd which I believe I did watch when I was in Singapore =p So after 3 hours of postponing my sleep I think I should have just watched the video version of The Linux Action Show!, back with season 9! Hak5 will be coming back up on August 15th with weekly shows! Yayness!!

Boom De Ya Da

I love Discovery, making great ads
[Original Version with subtitles (hover over the video)]

[Short Version]

I love XKCD with their parody
I love the title-text

I love the community and project 442

I love musical stage sing songs

Boom de yada, boom de yada,
Boom de yada, boom de yada

— end of singing in tune to the ad —

Ok I know, in the last clip with Mike Rowe the text states ‘boom de ah dah’, but since to me XKCD > Discovery Channel, it’s ‘boom de yada’ =p. The Discovery file download says ‘Boomdeyada’ too so yeah =D

Discovery Channel’s MP3 audio download
Discovery Channel’s video download
XKCD version for project 442

To watch out for: project 442’s video rendition by the community of XKCD Loves the Discovery Channel. I certainly hope they don’t play around too much with this: it’s nice and simple, yet great so let’s keep it that way. Discovery don’t mess this up by trying to do some over budgeted and/or cheesy rendition of it or anything to ruin it, kapish?

Caricatures and Me

Got this done in Singapore about 3 or 4 years ago. The guy was/is from Portrait Workshop.

So naturally when I heard read “$10 A Caricature” (full article below) in my RSS feeds (*insert shameless plug for my Brudirect RSS feed here*) I want to have another one

Powered by ScribeFire.

done (need to have hair cut before another caricature, don’t like my ‘long’ locks). Not sure if I’ll have the time. But maybe….

Bandar Seri Begawan – A local artist Indera showcased his talent in drawing caricatures at the entrance of Season’s Restaurant at the Centrepoint Hotel in Gadong.

For $10 per drawing, the public is invited to come and have their faces caricatured; Indera will also be stationed there on Sunday.

The artist also provides lessons on drawing caricatures at $3 per hour but those interested must bring their own drawing material. — Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin

Holidays started

More or less started last Wednesday when my group didn’t make it through to the next round of the Philips competition. Didn’t think the project was innovative so wasn’t really a surprise but actually it was more or a relief than a disappointment. The project was too draining especially for preparation for the finals which will be held next week on the 23rd. So now I can focus on more important things :) Possibly will be helping out with YWAM Singapore especially with their GoFestAsia Conference & Outreach coming up next month.
Just updated my User registration AMX Mod X plugin due to a user request.
Minty MP3 is progressing after a proper inventory check yesterday :P Found out we forgot to order quite a few components so will be doing that ASAP while tinkering around with the available stuff first.
Moved out of my old block last Monday and found out today that I have lost my matric card.. Gah… Moved Ya Chee and her cousin on Sunday and ended up bringing her monitor back to my place and now I have a dual monitor setup :D The only problem was actually bringing it back… Carrying a 17″ CRT monitor on a bus from Boon Lay to PGP is no fun. Especially when you have to carry the monitor from Heng Mui Keng Terrace (I think that’s how you spell it) which is where Kent Ridge Hall is to PGP itself. And that was like around 2330 at night after being out the whole day. The morning was at church, afternoon was helping Ya Chee’s cousin move and after that Ya Chee to move.
Tonight is supper with some people who I went to China with in December. Yay!!! Supper is always good. Need to go for Swensen’s all you can eat one of these days. Went to Swensen’s on Saturday after my church cell outing but they only had a special Mother’s day menu and no promotion :(
Hope to use these holidays productively… to know God better and grow in the word. Dear Lord please guide me in to know You more and to strengthen me to have the discipline to read and study Your word diligently. Thank you for teaching me more about myself day by day and Lord God I pray that I will be able to please You and to do Your will: not my will but Yours be done. Amen

Moving done

3 trips was all it took. And this is with some stuff I have yet to get rid of. Good to know I’m cutting down on things I own. I think :P When I go back home I’m thinking of 3 main boxes: clothes, books and electronics :P
Thinking of shipping a few things back home first, some of the stuff that I barely ever use like squash, tennis, badminton and table tennis stuff haha
Anyway resting now before going back to FYP partner’s place later to prepare for our big presentation on Wednesday: first round of the Philips competition.
Last week of school work as FYP thesis due at the end of the week, thinking I will touch it up tomorrow or Wednesday after the first round of competition. Then it will be more or less relaxation time. Hopefully :P

Last exam

** Updated at 4:41:48 on 2006/04/26 **
Today. In a few hours time.
Time: 1700
Venue: S16 TR4/TR5 = S16 #03-04/05
Seat: 30
Notes: Open book
Could not sleep properly this morning. Slept at 6 up at 7, then back to sleep up at 8, then back to sleep up at 9. So decided to get up and do some more reviewing. The module content seems much better after reading the textbook once over. I like the fact that I have a much better outline of the module but feel that something just isn’t right but I guess just leave it in God’s hands ;-)
If all goes well tonight will be in Visualization Lab to try complete my EE4217 Technology of Digital Entertainment project. Yeah sounds kind of sad going to lab to work right after the LAST exam of my NUS life. Aaaaahhhhh. Anyway I better get back to reviewing.

PS. Useless fact of the day
Every Microsoft Excel worksheet has a maximum of 256 columns and 65536 rows (at least for Excel 2002 (10.6789.6735) SP3) :P

2nd last exam

At 5pm tomorrow
Venue: MPSH2-A
Seat: 316
316, cool number haha. John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”. God’s assurance and funny sense of humour I take it. To think got up at 0400 this morning with a dream of being cradled in 2 giant hands.
It’s amazing how much God loves us and still loves us despite straying away. Been a tiring and trying past week for me and thankfully refreshed after service yesterday, physically tired due to lack of sleep but spiritually refreshed :) And before going to sleep last night I thought about the realization of going back. Started crying thinking of the things I’ll miss especially the cell group. If only things lasted for a while just be glad they lasted… if only for a while.
Now my worry is being sleepy during exam. Been sleeping like 3 hours at night and 6 hours in the afternoon for much of the past week. Horrendous sleeping hours I know but thats what happens with projects that I wanted to complete and yet to finish. Thank God that it was extended and will be focusing more on it after exams. Thank God that it’s an enjoyable project and that lots of things that I thought was going to be hard turned out to be much easier than expected after I put some effort into it.
4 chapters left to revise then hopefully sleep. Then wake up revise once through yet again then go for exam. To think after this exam is going to be a tough time. Open book exam for CS3221 Advanced Operating Systems on Wednesday 1700-1900 yet again and to think of it I don’t think there are any School of Computing students taking it, only Computer Engineering Students from Engineering. Perhaps that says something about the course in itself which is a pain to read through the recommended text. I guess I should have paid more attention in class and actually gone to class (skipped the last few weeks I think). We don’t even know how much weightage the exam is, but it should be 100% if not close to it as there was only 1 assignment from which were two 2 minute presentations where he gave us sample input and got a sample output and that was it. The last exam of my NUS life. Man its going to be weird….
Anyway back to studying.
Good luck to everybody having exams and God bless