December 25, 2007

Too much money for lawsuits

I just read this article, where Apple develops auto-volume control, which I thought was a weird feature. I found out after reading that it was due to some funny guys who file funny suits, including:

  • iPod causes hearing damage due to setting it at high volume
  • iPod scratches too easily
  • iPod battery life too short

A little absurd to have the product enforce such rules, I felt. They were looking for features that were not part of the original product design. And it was not as if the product didn’t allow you to reduce the volume. The material used for the product was likely the product team decision, often a balance between cost and quality. A stronger material might have made the product cost beyond their target audience. You can choose not to buy it if you don’t like the material, I doubt its an life essential product…

Think of what I could have filed:

  • Sue iPod lookalikes for their inferior quality, lack of volume limit also.
  • Sue Macdonalds for not controlling overweights by limiting the amount of food each person can buy.
  • Sue Dell for short battery life that default battery given cannot last 2 days.
  • Sue Toyota for using low quality for car material, resulting in car scratch on every contact with pillar or other vehicles.
  • Sue Nokia for bundling its default calendar/organizer software with the phone OS.

Sue whoever say there’s a red hohoho Santa Claus for fraud. And if Santa’s for real sue him for trespassing chimneys.

December 21, 2007

The Rabbit and the Cat

These made my off day today!


I think the effects are awesome and the music integration is perfect…

December 18, 2007

I’m a Geek

It’s lengthier to communicate with IM at work with IM-words like ‘afk’ and ‘brb’ not understood.

On the same day I chanced upon this site called the Jargon File. Interesting read, and surprising how many of then I already knew.

That said, I’m still a bit taken aback that I get regular responses like “what’s afk?” and “huh? brb?” when I use them. Maybe generation gap.

December 14, 2007

Just for Fun

Some people who were also born on this day:

  1. Nostradamus, Prophet
  2. Tata Young, Singer
  3. Michael Owen, Footballer

And someone first reached the South Pole on this date in 1911…

December 11, 2007

Daily Comic Plot

Colleague: To fix this bug I had to go through this big chunk of code that I wrote. All because I didn’t write any inline comments.

Me: So did you write some when you went through it this time?

Colleague: Oh ya! I didn’t!

December 10, 2007

Shopping Songs

“… four tweety birds, three french fries, two purple ducks, and a pear tree on a pear tree!”

I hear this at every shop I go into. Getting pretty sick of it. Yep I’m asking for new songs. BUT, BUT, not the type of tongue twisting raps or crazy pitched vocals. Give me a carol-like tune, with kindergarten words. Think Jingle Bells, think Silent Night.

Same with National Day. Every year’s song getting harder to sing, and harder to understand. How to get spirit lidat!? Just keep the “Count on Me” and “Stand up for Singapore” coming! And “Five Stars Arising”!

Disclaimer: The author knows the original lyrics to the song in the first paragraph.

December 9, 2007

The Spirit of Giving

It’s the month of December, so its the month where bonuses are flying and gifts are circulating. But I’ve always found it meaningless to give someone something just because its time to give something. Like Christmas and birthdays. You buy something just because its time to do so, not because you want to give that person that thing.

Doesn’t make sense to me. Most of the time it ends up to be either some decorative gift (display item) or a common use item (mugs, towels, photo frame [credits: angdao]) that the recipient doesn’t really need. Then comes the trend of vouchers, so you could possibly get something in need.

If there’s something you find suitable for someone, buy it, give it. Whatever time of the year. That’s THE spirit of giving. For christmas and birthdays, consider a call or a get-together meal.

December 8, 2007

Milestone

Met my first roadblock while driving home about 3am this morning. But he didn’t stop me.

Next milestone will be getting stopped and doing a breathalyser test! Lol!

December 2, 2007

Entrepreneurship

So why did I write the previous post? Was I inspired to go out and be an Entrepreneur? Frankly speaking, I don’t think so. I may have the “work long hours” attitude and an inclination to “keep trying”, but I’m probably still far from it.

Lack of capital had been a common excuse, but in today’s world I think its not an issue anymore. If you can just pitch your idea good enough funds will just pour in. Lack of a good product sounds better. I’m definitely not the Entrepreneur Entrepreneur where you do it for the sake for being an Entrepreneur. Or people think you’re smart and you should go and be an Entrepreneur. But if I find a good product I believe in I might dive into it? However, the lifestyle seems more suitable for people who have less commitments, even though people say it is possible to juggle it. If it’s family most likely you don’t have any or they are so supportive that you can ignore them most of the time.

I can’t imagine if I become like this and have no time to spend with angdao. She’ll probably just find another guy. Not that I think that she is heartless but its a reality in not being able to provide for needs. As of now we already have much less time than we used to have. The best case if of course the business builds up quickly and we can buy a big house, big car, sit home and relax…

Public Insight

Just watched Public Insight on CNA just now, about two Chinese compaines Midsouth Holdings and Anwell Technologies. Having a few personal thoughts after watching it.

Midsouth specializes in creating Fibreglass-reinforced plastic, aka FRP. It’s plastics mixed with fibreglass: strong, lightweight and durable, making it very suitable as parts for automotives and furniture. Midsouth’s main clients include truck makers, air-con ducts, window frames and chairs makers. The lightweightness gives it an advantage in terms of lowering fuel costs for the vehicle. The company’s prospect in producing for diverse market segments such as aerospace, military, furniture, land/sea transport, construction, etc give good resilience against slumps in any particular sector. Coupled with growing demands in superior plastics especially in transport and construction, the company is “doomed” for success.

Anwell produces equipment which produce optical discs. It is in a technology market, but its owner is entrepreneurial; he stays next to its factory and working long hours (16-18) per day when starting out. Similar to the strategy of my company they have sinced eaten into its client business – the production of the discs in order to maintain a more consistent and recurrent cash flow. The similarity here hints to me the importance of sustainability in producing consumable products. What also triggered me is the never-give-up attitude of Franky (as a typical entrepreneur). Paraphrasing him:

In the first year my client told me: “Franky your machine is worse than the local machines”. So we improved and in the second year, my client said, “Franky, you machine is not as good as a Taiwanese machine”. We made it better and in the third year, I was told “Franky, your machine is not as fast as European machines”.

We were still not good enough, but we can observe the improvement over the years. We tried even harder and now the client says “Now I cannot differentiate between your machine and a European machine.”

Lastly, a common feature between the two companies was a focus on R&D efforts; a keen interest in improvement. They both believe a strong R&D helps the company to quickly respond to client problems and possibly provide custom solutions and products to each client. At the same time, it widens the margin between competitors and allows them to get ahead.