Monthly Archives: February 2009

Bike resurrection

I’ve actually really missed cycling in the UK – this may well be the only healthy activity I actually enjoy – and since I never did start cycling between Boon Lay MRT and NIE due to fear for my life (and unfavourable weather), I thought I should start cycling between my home and school now. It’s apparently only 4.3km by road, I’ll probably see how long that takes me later on a test ride.

So today I’ve actually fixed up Allan’s bike (the tyres were dead) that I’d borrowed with the intention of doing the Boon Lay ride, and got some extra accessories (lights and lock). Probably need to de-rust it a bit too. All in all it’d cost quite a bit, but still a lot cheaper than what I’d used to spend in the UK. Plus, I guess there’s the money saved from not taking public transport.

Now I just need to work out the logistics of cycling to work – probably need to leave some clothes at work or something. I’ll figure it out, somehow.

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internet moneyz ftw!

Speedier StarHub torrents

I’ve been suffering really lousy Bittorrent speeds on StarHub for years now, usually amounting to about 20kB/s, and was actually thinking of switching to SingNet to see if there would be an increase in speed. I eventually decided not to due to the costs involved, but I recently became really fed up and decided to drop them a query, trying to determine if they were indeed blocking ports (whatever that exactly means) and to see if there was any way I could increase my download speeds. They replied without saying very much, aside that I should not be facing any real difficulties.

Transmission speedStrangely enough, my download speeds have been a lot faster ever since then. Coincidence? Who knows? I’m just delighted to see such a large increase in transfer speeds. If you’ve been experiencing slow transfers yourself, though, it might be worth your time sending an email to ask about it.

Site valuation

So, according to this, thecoffeespoon.net is currently (as of 22/2/09) worth a whopping S$6000. Any buyers? =P

I guess most of the page views comes from the wiki page I’d set up when I was still bored in uni. It was meant to be pretty much just an experiment of sorts, but I guess it’s been pretty successful – I’ve recently crossed the US$100 mark in ad revenue, which means I should (finally) be getting my first AdSense cheque. However, I must be doing something wrong since daily ad revenue is supposed to be in the region of $5, while I’d be lucky to even get 10% of that. Of course since the only advert was a single banner at the bottom of every page, I guess that wasn’t too much of a surprise.

So, since I had some free time this weekend (no more NIE for a few months now, woohoo!), I gave the MWBS Wiki a little redesign. Aside from some functionality upgrades (utilises screen estate better, room for expansion in the navigation bar, etc.) I’ve evilly added more banners. I’ve always hated banners at the top of the page, so I’ve avoided going down that path, and though they’re not quite Google’s advised placement spots, hopefully the new ads manage to balance aesthetics and click-drawing power.

I guess I shouldn’t be expecting too much of a site catering to a free Facebook-based game, and one that I’m not really putting much effort into anymore, at that. Still, I wouldn’t mind a second cheque coming its way soon! =P

Curry Puff Index

I rather enjoy Old Chang Kee curry puffs. Some people dislike the crust, but I really like its thick doughy texture. In my younger (secondary school) days I’d eaten quite a few of these things – they formed my emergency lunches when I’d overspent for the week. They were pretty affordable back then – I’d usually combo a curry puff (70¢) with a spring roll (80¢), totalling $1.50 for a budget/diet meal.

(Yes, buying less food helps you lose weight – two birds with one stone! Coincidence? I THINK NOT.)

It’s just recently occurred to me how much the price of these things has risen over the years. I vaguely remember being shocked when they’d increased the price by 10¢ to 80¢. Assuming that was in 1999 (I can’t really remember), that means that in one decade prices have gone up a whopping 50% to $1.20!

I’d better start saving up. At the rate inflation’s going, these things are going to cost $20-30 each when I turn 100, assuming I live to be a centenarian.

Facebooking from iPhoto

One thing iPhoto ’09 boasts is built-in compatibility with Facebook, in the sense that photos are easily uploaded, and the album details actually remain synced both ways. Meaning that if you tag or rename your photo on Facebook, iPhoto registers the changes and vice versa.

I’d tried syncing my existing Facebook albums with an unofficial workaround, but the tagged faces didn’t sync with the existing iPhoto faces very well, so I ended up unsyncing them and manually fixing the Facebook tags (which is why some of you might have suddenly got tagged on old photos again). I guess I’ll only be using this feature for newly uploaded pictures.

Transcending boundaries

Perhaps it’s because I’m doing a module on multiculturalism now, but when I first saw this sign in our four official languages (English, Chinese, Malay and Tamil), I’d thought it a nice demonstration of our (perhaps somewhat artificial) multicultural society.

It’s too bad that “Value Life. Act Responsibly” is targeted primarily at would-be train suicides. I guess some things do transcend race and language, after all.

Yay meat

Abel became a keeper of flocks, and Cain a tiller of the soil.
In the course of time Cain brought an offering to the LORD
from the fruit of the soil,
while Abel, for his part,
brought one of the best firstlings of his flock.
The LORD looked with favor on Abel and his offering,
but on Cain and his offering he did not.

Genesis 4:2-5

Somehow I don’t think this was the intended message, but the first thing that came to mind when I read this was…

GOD LIKES MEAT.

Maybe Cain had tried to give him some figs. Bad mistake, Cainy-boy.

Gone shoppin’

I went shopping today. It wasn’t exactly a planned thing – I went mainly to redeem a free $5 voucher, but somehow ended up being sucked by the combination of the many items on offer (today was the last day of the Tangs sale), the newly-acquired voucher I had to use within the week and the additional 10% discount I was entitled to as a Citibank card holder (get yours today – ask me to refer you! Heh heh).

I think this is the first time I’ve actually done proper shopping at a departmental store – it was definitely the first time I’d asked the attendants for help/suggestions. The whole process of selecting clothes and trying them out is certainly a time-consuming hassle, but it wasn’t quite as terrible as I’d expected. I guess there’s something to be said for retail therapy after all! So, about $280 poorer but more prepared for my upcoming practicum, I trotted out of the store with a new pair of shoes, two pairs of trousers, three shirts and a belt.

I bet someone’s still going to end up commenting on my limited arsenal of clothes anyway – somehow that always happens, whether or not I try.

superuseless superpowers

I’ve recently been following superuseless superpowers, and I find it absolutely hilarious. Basically the blogger thinks up, you’ve guessed it, superpowers that have near-zero practical use, and puts highly amusing illustrations to go with them. I think they do reader suggestions, too. I leave you with two random examples – go check it out if you’ve got time!

It's nice to know your colours will never clash.

It's nice knowing your colours always go together.

I suppose this could be pretty useful. At least your corpse acts as a meat shield.