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Monday, June 27, 2005
The State of the Universe as it is

I will be flying off to Thailand for another month-long army exercise on Tuesday. It hasn't started yet but I'm already looking forward to the end of it. I discovered some fun things recently but I haven't had the time to fully explore them, so I am hoping to do all those stuff after Thailand.

Among those things is this game which I found really addictive. It's a really old game, about a few thousand year old. After playing several rounds, it stays in my head all day. Whenever I stop doing something that requires concentration, I start seeing black and white circles on a grid. It's as though there is a screensaver of Weiqi installed in my brain. No wonder people can become zou3 huo3 ru4 mo2 when they play the zhen1 long2 qi2 ju2 in tian1 long2 ba1 bu4.

Another fun thing is my platoon-mate lent me a chinese flute to bring home over the weekend to play. I really like the bright, wooden sound of chinese flutes. Unfortunately, right now, all I can do is make airy notes but it's still fun.

Let's see what's in the news today.

1. President Scholar named as one of Top Ten Beauties On Your Block by People magazine cuz his friend, figure skater Sarah Hughes, nominated him. Hey! How come I don't get to meet famous people when I studied overseas?! What? People in Canada don't make the news? Oh yeah, check this out...

2. Woman who sexually assaulted, tortured and killed girls will soon be released from jail. And this is in Canada too! I'm so glad I didn't meet any of these insane people when I was in Canada. Wait, maybe I did meet some crazy dudes, like the guy from Kosovo who kept hearing imaginary noise coming from my apartment and kept complaining about me and telling me we all want peace and freedom and all that shit.

3. 60 percent of Singaporeans use their phones while sitting in the toilet. Moral of the story: Don't borrow someone else's cellphone. 23 percent can't live without their phones for even one day. The machines are already taking over.

That's all for now. Enjoy thy July!


-- permalink --
Yiheng made
3:12 AM

2 Comments:

hey! i had reverted to the hand-written version, found it really uncomfortable about pubishing stuff online. however though, i've been reading your blog. i'm still around. haha.
By Anonymous James, at 1:19 AM  

haha, you barely wrote anything online. i guess your thoughts are of a more personal nature.
By Anonymous Yiheng, at 1:24 PM  

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Monday, June 20, 2005
Marilyn and the Monty Hall Problem -vww

The Monty Hall Problem
You're on a gameshow, where there are three doors. Behind 2 of the doors are goats. Only one door leads to the prize. You pick a door, and then, BEFORE YOUR DOOR IS OPENED, the gameshow host opens one of the OTHER doors, revealing a goat. Then he gives you the choice of sticking with your original guess, or switching to the other unopened door. The question is, which gives you greater odds of winning?
Named for its similarity to the Let's Make a Deal game show hosted by Monty Hall, the problem became famous when Marilyn vos Savant (also famous for her insanely high IQ) published the solution that the odds of winning is higher when you switch to the other unopened door. Tens of thousands of people who disagreed sent letters demanding that she admit she was wrong. Many of them were professors from well-established universities too.

I am writing about this because I recently came across books and people making references to this problem. Although it seems pretty obvious to me that Marilyn vos Savant was correct, I am quite puzzled as to why so many people do not think so. A book I bought recently stated that it was due to an ambiguity in the phrasing of the question. This resulted in two possible interpretations, which yielded two different answers. Clearly, I have interpreted the question the same way as vos Savant. Actually, I find that the other interpretation is quite an abnormal way of interpreting the question.

Anyway, here are some other interesting links I googled up on Marilyn vos Savant.
1. Wikipedia entry
2. Marilyn is Wrong!
3. Official site (Quite an empty site but I like the red jacket)


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Saturday, June 18, 2005
Chiroptera Guy Starts

I watched the latest Batman movie yesterday with a couple of army friends since we were given Friday off. Although I have never read any Batman comics, Batman is my favourite superhero. I also liked Nolan's chronologically backwards movie Memento. So, I really hope this movie is an improvement over the last few about Batman.

Fortunately, Batman Begins is a great movie. In fact, it is the best movie I have seen this year and as good as, if not better than, Tim Burton’s Batman. I don’t really like making such a comparison since Burton’s Batman was the best Batman movie before Batman Begins. It is also difficult to compare because Nolan’s Batman is so different from the rest.

Batman Begins is the most serious and deep Batman movie of all. The focus is really on Batman rather than the villains, the chicks and the technology. It is also quite philosophical about the nature of crime and justice. The first half of the story tells the story of Bruce Wayne’s journey and training before returning to Gotham to become Batman. It is quite long for someone who just expects lots of explosions and car chases but it is great character development and vital to the success of the movie.

Liam Neeson and Michael Caine is especially memorable in their supporting roles. I didn’t know where Gary Oldman was until after the movie because he looked different in almost every movie he acted in.

The only problem I have with the movie is the car. I much prefer the more elegant look of the vehicle from the first Batman movie. The Batmobil in this movie looks like a turtle and it is quite a distracting piece of technology.

The ending was great. There were some humourous parts. Then there were the parts that made you go “ahh, I see” because they provided links to the present. The one I particularly liked was the final conversation between Gordon and Batman on the rooftop when Gordon asked for help on a new case. In a way, this is like how Star Wars Episode III ended with scenes that leads us to Episode IV. What makes it an enjoyable experience to watch such movies is that you can spot familiar characters or places which you know will play important roles in the future.

I hope I haven’t given away any major spoilers. Batman Begins may be the best movie this summer so you know you don’t want to miss it, especially when I highly recommend it.


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Monday, June 13, 2005
Damn Tired Man

What a lousy week.

Last Sunday: Book in early for rearlink duty from 1900h to 0700h the next morning. Sleep on couch beside the radio I was supposed to be monitoring.

Monday: Duty signaller for the day.

Tuesday: Understudy COS and allocating radio frequencies resulting in super late dinner.

Wednesday: My FIRST COS duty. Super late dinner again. Sleep in office. Very busy day due to countless inconsiderate people from QM department applying for leave and getting MCs at the last minute.

Thursday: Some idiot from QM department called in to report MC while I was out of the office yesterday night, resulting in 2 extra duties punishment for me for "unsatisfactory performance while doing COS duty". This happens to be my FIRST extra after almost 17 months of NS. My perfect record is broken and I am damn pissed about it. And I also feel like slicing someone's head off with a samurai sword...and then putting the head back so I can slice it off again.

Friday and Saturday: After a hectic week with hardly any rest, we head out for Battalion Exercise, meaning no sleep. The exercise goes on 24hrs a day with only breaks of at most 2-3 hours when we can catch a quick nap while seating on a bench. I don't know which is worse, the lack of sleep or the abundance of mosquitoes.

Sunday (i.e. today): End of Exercise. Book out at 0800h. Finally.

Wait, it's not over yet. There might be an exercise next week and I have three 500-word cover letters to write by the end of the month. If I screw this up, it's gonna be a lousy job for me for another half a decade. Crap. The only good thing that happened in the past week was the posting in of a new signaller, or rather, an old signaller since he just returned from his studies. It was a pleasant suprise to find that the new guy was my platoon mate in the same unit before I disrupted for university.


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Saturday, June 04, 2005
Love more live long

There is an article in the Straits Times today that says that Professor Cohen from RMIT claims that the more you love, the longer you live. The article also mentions that three decades ago, a US study found that lab rats which were cuddled by laboratory assistants lived 60% longer than those which were not. People actually get paid to cuddle lab rats?! Give me that job anytime. Anyway, a love of inanimate objects or an obsession for a particular pastime has the same effect too. No wonder Gollum lived so long.
Article in Australian news


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Yiheng made
1:18 PM

1 Comments:

they should test on people loving people... animals generally wun hurt u... ppl do... loving ppl give u higher chance of heart attack... lolz
By Blogger fEatHeRs, at 7:17 PM  

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