Phrase of the day

"What matter more is the perception rather than the reality of things".

from someone in channelnewasia.

So true. So so true.

Thought of the week

Human are fickle minded. They are stereotypical. Which is why we can find that we can generally group them into category and why human can be studied. 'Cos if you find one person with that kind of character, you can find another one of similar character else where. We cannot however rule out that there is always a possibility of uniqueness.

Ok. So why I am writing all these? Sometimes being honest has consequences. But I shall be honest with my opinion here nevertheless. Take it or leave it. Judge it for yourself.

Just started work this week after a moderate period of rest. Back to the same company that I left, as an contract staff. Why I went back? I guess was the way in which I was asked to return. As a norm, the office has an electronic access entry and going in an out of the office requires an access card. It took them 2 day to issue me with an temp card. Whoa and behold! It was the same card I had. Hmmm. Either they had expected me to go back within 3 months or someone did not do their job.

So I check out the IT support, people which I knew. They gave me my account to access the office network and email and stuff. Another surprise, my mail was flooded with emails. The old mail are still there. Not efficient.

So I guess, from the few incidents the opinion is form and reinforced.

Teachers and Teaching.

I remember back in those days, when I was still green, inside and out. (ie, green in the ways of the world and wearing the ugly camouflaged No.4) Everytime when we have an exercise we would have a safety briefing and there would be tons of safety regulation books to bring out and to go through. The briefing would be boring and long. (I am not saying that this is bad, unnecessary or anything. It is more like common sense at work. If you happen to have no common sense, then people around you would inject some into you. Usually append with the F!@#$#% and end with #$@#. You tend to remember more from the #@$$@# than from the "Please do that" )

I found out some interesting happening within the government's offices from my daily chats. Namely the SAF and MOE. There is a new department called School Safety in MOE. The government being the good people that they are, provided SAF personnel with an avenue to work after their retirement age. (FYI: SAF combat personnel are no longer an asset after their age of 45. They can no longer hold combat position. They will be switch over to administration or instructional role. Of course the position of General is exempted. Not that they have seen any life action before.)

These retired people from the Uniform services, namely the SAF, Police Force or the Civil Defense take up position in the other various ministries. MOE being the largest employer in Singapore (In my opinion only. Vague recollection of seeing it somewhere before. I did not really check it out), absorbed quite a number of these retired personnels.

They take up position as the Operation Manager of the School. They bring with them the years of experience in running the uniform groups into the schools. Sometimes they bring about a discipline and injected some into the students. Some other times, they help out with the logistic of the school, in helping to co-ordinating the building management and school buses. It relieved the School Administrator of some work. The teachers work load still remains the same.

Safety is an important aspect in our daily life. It is aided by common sense. This group of "retired" people from the Safety committee wants to document down the safety procedure in school. So what did this committee do, they delegate it down to the people on the ground to generate, collate and compile it for them to review. So these people who has no prior knowledge of the situation on the ground start to review this documents. What can they do? Do they know what is right? Have they done any job? Did they come down to quietly observe the situation? Sounds like easy money to me. They are bringing the "Eye power" from the SAF to MOE. 3G army so what? You still need people to run it. Scholars only read about it and talk about it. You need people to talk the talk and walk the walk. Do what they preach.

Who are the people on the ground? The teachers! The HODs! The principals! Every day they spent time handling the normal school stuff. They also had to handle the discipling, the morals, disputes, the homeworks, the parents, the queries brought up by the parents, the CCAs of the students, the co-ordinating of the CCAs events, school functions, staff welfare, small financial matters, photocopies worksheets, read emails, update the daily class lessons, do projects from MOE, provide feed back to new systems, mark test papers, handle teacher work load, arrange meetings, conduct workshops, managed expectations of the parent or public, source of vendors, generate publicity for the school, attend meetings, write email, write report, perform ranking of staff.... the list goes on. (I am sure there are more. But not being a teacher myself, these are some of the activities which I see happening from some of teachers, friends. And no wonder a large number of teacher marry within the same profession. They had no time to have a normal social life.)

So why do these committee had to generate additional work for the poor teachers? Why ask the teachers or HODs to come out with a school safety document? This is a huge task. Ask the committee to do some work. What is being done to help them? Mr Education minister can you say thing? You had admitted that the 5 day work week was an impossible thing. Yes, some teachers had to work on Sunday and public holiday too. And they do not get off-in-liew to compensate them for working on a rest day. (Like bring the children to the National Stadium for National Day parade)

Teaching is a joy. Imparting knowledge and morals is noble profession. However it is is being killed by tons and tons of paperwork. Sometimes unnecessary paper work. Too much meeting means lesser time to do work. Too many committee means too many meeting. Education industry has change plenty, but something still stays the same. Grooming and imparting values take a lot of time and it cannot be hurried. Express or Normal. EM1 or EM3, it is the same. Used to be that there are teachers who are in the teaching force all their life. Now, most wants to retire early. We still only have 8 hours a day.

Please don't give them more unnecessary work. Let them teach.

Ubuntu Edgy Eft on Intel T2400 processor

Haa. Finally understand what all those article in the forum meant. I shall put that down into simple layman terms.

What I was trying to do was to update my standard Edgy Eft installation of Ubuntu to an SMP version of Edgy Eft.

Dell Inspiron 640M/E1405 with a Intel T2400 Duo Core processor.

- Using the Synaptic Package Manager. Go to the Base System (Restricted) on the right hand side.
- Mark the Linux package. The description will say complete generic Linux Kernel.
(see the screen shot)
- Install the package and reboot.
- During the boot menu, choose the generic version and boot up that image.
- After system up, execute the command "cat /proc/cpuinfo". You should see 2 cpu registered. Alternatively the system monitor should show 2 cpu instead of 1.
- (Optional) Uncheck the Linux 386 package. Update the "/boot/grub/menu.lst" and remove the 386 option.

Thanks to the folks in the Ubuntu Forums! Thanks to google too!

Now you know too!

Linux Ubuntu- Edgy Eft

Today is official. I am a 95% convert to Linux platform for my desktop.

Apart from Picasa, I am doing everything on my Linux desktop.

Google please update your picasa for linux. So that I will totally convert.

Go Ubuntu!! Go Linux!!

Will post my adventure on the installation soon. I hope.


I tried to capture the exact words that was on screen but before I can do that, the commercial was discontinued.

This is from the Discovery Channel.

"In Life, nothing is certain.
If you feel frighten, don't.
Embrace uncertainty and allow it to lead you to places.
Allow it to lead you to places.
Don't waste time on regrets.
Take each moment as it come.
And you if you find yourself lost,
simply take a break and start over again."

I am 95% sure I got the wording correct.
But heck this statement is motivational.

Hello 2007

How did my 2007 start off?
If it made any sound, it would be like the turning of a page in a 1000++ page story book. IFF.

I know some had a loud bang! Other whizzing and popping of champagne. Maybe some minute number of people celebrate the passing of 2006 with some loud snore. Mine was just another page.
I spend the last few minutes of 2006 at a good friend house. A modest 3 room flat that was very much cosy for the newly wed. Some drink and home brew made me grounded for a few hours. During these festivities season, the traffic police are very much active and it is wise to avoid them and have a brush with the law with you standing on the wrong side of it. So just like another page, with lines and lines of sentences, we exchange notes, share our recent holiday photos. We talk about car, houses and career.

"What about the future?", people will ask. I don't know. What I want for the future? How about world peace? Nah. I am not that noble.