Thursday, October 29, 2009

LOG ......

Another day, another meeting. Woke up feeling slightly groggy. Heard an interesting fact over the radio. Today, 29 October, is the birthday of the internet! Happy Birthday Mr or is it Miss Internet. Just being careful not to be labelled as having gender bias or even politically incorrect.

On this day, 40 years ago in 1969 at 10.30 pm the first recorded internet message was sent. What was the first message? “LO”. LO you wonder? Yeah it was a simple word “LO”. Actually, according to well documented account, the message was suppose to be “LOG” which was sent letter by letter from UCLA to Stanford Research Institute with the people involved also connected over the telephone. “L” and “O” reached safely. But when “G” was sent, the system crashed. Imagine how little the computing power back then. Compare that to the power of even the simple desktop home use computer. It is like comparing “injin sigal” with and F1 car.

As advance as the computing power and computer modelling the world has now, it is not powerful nor advance enough to model something as complex as climate system our planet. If we can, at least we can get clear answers to the “big problem” facing the human race i.e. the rapid climate change. Some may ask why worry after all the climate of the planet has gone through natural cycles of warming up and cooling down over its life. The statistics look grim. Over the next 100 years the global warming is likely to be 3 to 10 times more than the figures in the 20th century. The serious effect of the global warming is no longer an issue. How it develops, its effects and detection are now the issues. Can we cope? How can we cope? Some may not be bothered at all. After all, it will happen beyond their life time.

To combat the global warming, the world comes up with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992 to reduce greenhouse gases emissions such as Carbon Dioxide, Methane, Nitrous Oxide and CFCs. To my knowledge and understanding, this Convention at the very least recognised or shall we say admitted there is a problem, set some objectives and time frame. Next step, in 1997 comes the Kyoto Protocol. More or less same objectives as the Convention but legally binding with targets to be reset by 2012. I am sure if you have been following the current affairs lately, you would have noticed Copenhagen 2009 mentioned many times. Copenhagen this, Copenhagen that. Copenhagen is where the United Nation Climate Change Conference will be held in December this year. This conference is significant as it is the dateline whereby a new target will be set. As usual things will go down to the wire. The outlook for an agreement is not good. Well, we can hope, must have hope. With no hope, might as well stop all the negotiations. But if I am a betting me, which I am not, I will put all my bet on No Agreement. Almost as sure as the buah dadu of Ibrahim Pendek in the Ali Baba Bujang Lapuk movie.

All this global thing is well and truly good. But what does it mean to our small country? Well we have one of the highest per capita carbon dioxide emission, in the top ten. We must do our bit to reduce our emissions. Remember we live on the same planet. Whatever happens in the other side of the world will affect us. Rain pattern will change. We have seen some weird weather affecting us lately, unsesonal rain, strong “uprooting trees and roof” winds. We must do our bid to save the planet. Go green, not wear green but live green with green lifestyle.

LOG ... Lifestyle of the Greens .........

Reduce, Reuse, RECYCLE .......

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Snippets again...

It has been a while. Here I am sitting in a meeting. Fascinating as it is, I am slowly but surely moving into “dozing off” mode. Blame it on the phenomenon of can’t sleep properly on strange bed.

A lot had happened. The obvious hot one is the zakat story. Many people has written and commented about it. Many more has started to fill in the forms. With any luck these people can own brand new cars, phones, just anything that take their fancy. My take on this is simple. Zakat is to help the needy. The authority is there to ensure the recipients are the worthy ones as required by Islam. The applicants and eventual recipients MUST be truthful. If any unworthy recipients got their hands on the zakat money, as the saying goes, “dosa tanggung sendiri”. May be they can put this warning on the zakat forms. Then again, in anything, it is not easy to get 100% correct. As long the percentage of the unworthy recipients is small, maybe it is acceptable. But what percentage will be small enough to be acceptable?

Another hot stuff was the “banning” of DPMMFC from completing their S-League Fixtures. To me, this is not the main issue. The main issue is how to revive the “legal” football in Brunei. By international law, as far as I understand it, nobody can organise any football unless under the umbrella of FIFA affiliated local organisation. Taking this to the extreme, even local kampong league may be illegal. The solution? Like it or not, hard to swallow may be, BAFA has to be reinstated as FIFA wished it to be. Once reinstated, we can all work together to ensure past mistakes, if any, are not repeated. Lucky not being a member FIFA is not a requirement to watch football. If not, there would be a high probability of riot by the football mad supporters of the Premier League starved of football.

Talking about premier league, to all Man United supporters, enough of all the excuses. Face it, your team lost. That is a fact and that’s what matters. Three defeat in a row......

“Positive Thinking” in our local context equates to “Macam Si Tahi”, my boss recently shared.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Jokes & Theories.....

I love jokes especially funny ones. Well, I am sure nobody likes unfunny jokes. While I love jokes, for the life of me I can’t tell a joke even if a gun is pointed at me. Punch lines fizzle coming from my mouth. Laughter blurted well in advance of the punch lines. Not remembering how the punch line goes is another one shortcoming of mine. All in all I don’t qualify as a joker nor a stand up comedian. I am sure the audience will be laughing their heads off. Not at my not funny jokes but at how silly I look standing in front of them on the stage. Who knows that is one way for me to strike gold? Here I go again, me and my endless digression.

Back to the jokes. This morning I heard a funny yet so true joke from my boss. I hope I can repeat it here and do justice to the joke. It is about a crazy man who has a theory about where the ear of a spider is located. He theorised spiders have their ears at the end of their legs. One day to prove his theory, he gathered a group of people around a spider. After placing the spider on the floor he then commanded the spider to walk. It duly obliged. Then he took the same spider and removed all its legs. Repeating the same step, he placed the spider on the floor and commanded it to walk. The spider did not move even a single millimetre. On seeing this, the man with great pride told the group of people the reason the spider did not walk was because it could not hear the instruction as he had removed all its ears..... To him his theory is proven.

In the real world, we can come up with many theories to explain the phenomenon and happenings we came across. We can even come up with reasons, explanations to promote and lobby for an idea or a cause. Some are true, some are plausible. There are some totally absurd ones. Yet we come up with it. Some believe it, some do not. Throughout history, again and again theories and hypothesis are proven and disproven. Like a yo yo. But whatever we theorised; the key is to be truthful eventhough sometimes the truth hurts, be professional. Surely you can sell your theory.

A friend theorised eating durian instead of rice helps in weight reduction.....