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Preview: Alan's Tao Hua Yuan - 桃花源

Alan's Tao Hua Yuan - 桃花源

Everything about anything Alan sees, thinks and wants to share.

Updated: 2018-03-06T16:45:42.898+08:00


叫N73太沉重 - N73, a synonym of heartache


(image) The Nokia N73 is a smartphone described as a multimedia computer released by Nokia in year 2006. It was famous then but what is the point of talking about this old model now?

No, I do not mean to discuss about its functionality or design. I am just missing the one I used to carry since December 2006. I dropped it carelessly in a morning 5 months ago and the person who picked it up intended to possess it after he hung up my call twice. I do not hate him, really, but I do hope he buy what he likes next time.

I used to complain about N73's "birth defects" and its Symbian OS's stupid bugs but I still like it after all. My N73 Music Edition is not a perfect product, nevertheless it costed me RM2,214.

Since June, I have been using Motorola C139, a phone by the manufacturer I dislike most, which supports only phone call and sms. It does not even have an alarm clock or polyphonic ringtones. It forces me to rely on the kampung roosters' crow in the morning. Sound crazy, eh? It is true, anyway. "I think I am going to buy a new phone", this is what I have been telling my buddies but up to now I still cannot make up my mind. I told myself I would not go for an expensive one again, and because of that, I do not know which one to buy... haha!

Oh yeah, I actually found something which managed to prove the value of my current C139 today. The steps show you how to tell where your mobile phone is made :-

1stly, type *#06# and the international mobile equipment identity (imei) number appears,
2ndly, check the 7th and 8th numbers,
finally, if the 7th and 8th digits are 13, it means your phone was assembled in Azerbaijan which is Very Bad in quality and also dangerous to your health;
if the 7th and 8th digits are 02 or 20, it means your phone was assembled in China which has Low quality;
if the 7th and 8th digits are 08 or 80, it means your phone was manufactured in Germany which has Fair quality;
if the 7th and 8th digits are 01 or 10, it means your phone was manufactured in Finland which is Very Good in quality;
well, if the 7th and 8th digits are 00, it means your phone was manufactured in original factory which has The Best quality.

Okay, you are right. Mine belongs to the last category. Do not tell me if you find these steps are merely for fun. Thank you.

Time to plan for your next vacation? AirAsia removes fuel surcharge and offers free seats


(image) Great news for those who always look for a budget trip! AirAsia today abolished fuel surcharges on all its flights and said it will give away half a million free tickets next year in an attempt to lure travelers amid the global slowdown.

AirAsia boss Tony Fernandes said the region's biggest budget carrier will offer 500,000 free seats for travel between 22nd June and 24th October, 2009, on all its domestic and international destinations.

He said the recent steep drop in fuel prices has allowed AirAsia to adopt the bold strategy, adding that the loss of revenue should be offset by higher ticket sales, which will also be bolstered by new marketing strategies.

According to Fernandes, AirAsia is the first carrier in the world to abolish fuel surcharges, which became a standard industry practice a few years ago as oil prices rose on their way to peaking at nearly US$150 a barrel in mid-July. But since then, crude prices have tumbled because expectations that slower global growth will mean less demand. With the surcharges eliminated, travelers only need to pay for the airport tax and can also save the ticket charges if given free seats.

Fernandes said the move will boost Malaysia's economy as well as domestic and regional tourism by encouraging travel. This decision was also praised by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Shahrir Samad but Fernandes added that he could not guarantee that the surcharge would not be reimposed if oil prices surge again.

It would be a very good opportunity for those with spare money and those who plan to go on honeymoon next year to take the offer. I have taken the similar offer before. I know it is not so easy to "fight" for the free seats as the Website's traffic will be jammed by heavy load. You have to plan one year advance and must be very sure that you can be on leave a year later or else you forfeit your ticket and lose your payment for airport tax.

YouTube to post full-length films


(image) Here is an exciting news. YouTube, the largest video-sharing website, will show full-length television shows and films from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's archives in its latest step to boost advertising revenue by adding professional programing, the company representative said.

The site, owned by Google Inc, plans to make the announcement about the new partnership officially on Monday, US time.

(image) MGM Studios will kick off the partnership by posting episodes of its decade-old "American Gladiators" program to YouTube on one channel.

On another channel, MGM will post full-length action films like Chow Yun-Fat's "Bulletproof Monk", "The Magnificent Seven" and clips from popular movies like "Legally Blonde." These will be free to watch, with ads running alongside the video.

(image) (image) YouTube in October forged a similar partnership with CBS Corp to run full-length archived shows, including the famous "Star Trek", "Young and the Restless" and the popular primetime television soap opera when I was in primary school "Beverly Hills 90210".

Many TV networks already run short clips on YouTube, which also offers millions of home videos uploaded by users.

But until now, YouTube videos were predominantly short clips of ten minutes or less. The company has been experimenting with full-length shows for some months with Time Warner Inc's HBO and CBS's Showtime cable networks.

Let's expect more surprises from the new partnerships in the near future.

Wedding dinners, the hosts, the guests and Ang Pows


It is true that I was invited to wedding dinner every month since September. There are more wedding dinners to attend in the coming weeks till end of December. These are indeed happy occasions and I actually feel honoured to be part of them as a guest, although it can also be a burden financially in a sense. Imagine if you, a Malaccan, are going to attend 3 or 4 dinners in certain month, and 2 of which are arranged in KL. Then you probably need to spend very very wisely in that particular month in order to cope with the daily expenses. Besides this issue, what are the things that you hear most from the people around you when it comes to wedding dinners?

Okay, for those who are given invitation cards, I believe many will say "I kena red bomb (红色炸弹) lar!" or even worse some may say "Tiok satu lagi saman!". I am sure that the friend who invites him would feel harsh and terrible.

For those who invite people to the dinners, at least I have by far heard of this so many times, the first thing that comes to the to-be-weds' mind would be "Eh! Can we make money from it ar?" or "How much can we gain from the dinner?". It is a woeful situation, isn't it? The wedding, the ceremony and the dinner are all our traditions but this thinking is not, right?

No matter if you are the old school type or the trendy, as long as you consider yourself as a Chinese, Ang Pow means a blessing to the couple and the wedding dinner is a celebration of the marriage. The host should invite with great sincerity and the guest should be honoured when he is attending the wedding dinner by invitation.

If we find that we are living in an unhealthy culture, each and everyone of us has the right and obligation to rectify it. The idea of making money from a wedding dinner is sick. I mean we can always look for an affordable venue and plan for a dinner within our budget. Whereas being a guest, we attend the dinner with an Ang Pow filled with great blessing and money within our capability. Isn't it nice if both parties go to the dinner with a sincere heart? We do not talk about money, the amount of the Ang Pow is not a concern or at least not the first thing we care about, and we all focus on the couple and the meaning of the dinner, the auspicious occassion.

Please do not forget the real meaning of Ang Pows (红包) or Red Packets. It is a blessing with money used as a gift from a friend, a relative or a family member.






事實上,帶著負面能量的負面情緒是可怕的。它可以在某種程度上阻礙我們的工作動力,同時也讓我們對未來的憧憬和期待失去信心,更甚者可能是對未來不抱任何興 趣。因此,負面情緒一旦產生,我們該做的是設法把它“趕走”,而不是暫時把它封存,三不五時就將其釋放出來。豈不虐待自己乎?

我認為,不開心的事 不值得記錄。當然這不代表我鼓勵大家當個報喜不報憂的人,這樣是把一股悶氣強迫壓製在心底。那股悶氣會讓我們呼吸作息不規律,俗稱”條氣不順“也。一旦” 爆炸“,更是會導致精神崩潰,糟糕之至!因此,我們可以在排除將其文字記錄后,再尋找其他有效途徑。而我個人小小的經驗和觀點是把不開心的、納悶的和煩心 的事統統都吐出來,然后再讓它隨風而去。所謂不吐不快,在適當的時候我們可以找個聽眾。他不需要是個懂得安慰人或是善于提供意見的朋友,他只要是個稱職的 聽眾就好。不開心的事都訴說出來之后,人自然地就會舒服許多。然后就重振心情,回到自己的生活當中繼續打拼並扮演好自己的角色。

曾有朋友在聽了我 的言論后問說,你不是學電腦的嗎?你不也浸泡在電腦網絡的世界十年了嗎?怎么你對目前最流行的部落格好像不很贊成?不然不然,我的建議是不記錄負面心情, 不好的情緒我們讓它逝去而無痕。人類的心情有千百種,成人的思緒變幻更是千千萬,我們又何必偏要記錄下會讓自己再度受傷的東西呢?

你要是問我,那現今科技可以如何幫助我們趕走負面情緒呢?那我想,嗯。。。就把當下不開心的事和想控訴的話寫在MSN即時通的狀態信息(status message)上吧!待換個心情之后,隨時可以將其抹去又不留痕跡,豈不好么?

Weekend movie - Man on Fire


(image) Today I came online in the morning and glanced through the list of movies available on PPS (refer to earlier thread posted on this blog) and I finally found this, Man on fire.

Man on Fire is a 2004 American action drama thriller film about an ex-CIA operative (assassin?) who takes the job as a bodyguard and takes revenge on a Mexican kidnapping gang after they kidnap the child he was hired to protect. The film is a remake of the 1987 film of the same name, both based on the first of a series of books by author A. J. Quinnell, starring Denzel Washington the leading actor, Dakota Fanning the very beautiful little girl, Christopher Walken and Marc Anthony. The film actually received quite a number of negative reviews by the critics but was reportedly successful in commerce. This film drew US$23 million in its opening weekend and has grossed US$130,293,714 internationally, including a box office of US$77,894,965 in the United States in particular.

Why am I blogging about this film? I have to admit that I quite like this one, although I am not so into the revenge thing. Anyway, I think it has a nice plot and a mysterious and strange background to us as it was shot in the Mexico City. I am not saying that it is a perfect or Oscar-worthy movie but this heart-wrenching one is kind of a must-see. We have seen enough heroes killing all the bad guys and saving the hostage but this movie is somewhat different and that is what makes it special. The man in the movie is not a killing maniac. He is experienced but is not a superhero who kills everyone without getting a wound or even getting his shirt dirty. Kia Xin, a good friend of mine recommended this film to me quite some time ago, until today I finally got warmed and touched by the relationship of a man and a little 9 year-old beautiful girl.

Try it if you have not watched this. John Creasy will not fail you.

High court orders Raja Petra's release


(image) The Shah Alam High Court this morning ruled that the detention of well-known blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin under the ISA (Internal Security Act) was illegal and ordered his immediate release. Raja Petra Kamaruddin, via his habeas corpus application has succeeded to obtain a release order from his ISA detention. The Court has allowed him to be brought to court for the release. He has been detained since 12 September 2008.

Shah Alam High Court Justice Syed Ahmad Helmy Syed Ahmad ruled that the home minister acted outside his powers in having Raja Petra Kamaruddin arrested for allegedly causing racial tensions, said Raja Petra's lawyer, Malik Imtiaz Sarwar.

"It's a historic ruling and definitely a wonderful step in terms of civil liberties in Malaysia," Malik Imtiaz said. He quoted the judge as saying the grounds given for Raja Petra's detention were insufficient and his arrest under the Internal Security Act was unlawful.

The Internal Security Act is a holdover from British colonial days, when it was used against communist insurgents. Independent Malaysia's postcolonial government, especially the Dr. Mahathir's government, has kept the act in the statute books and has used it sparingly against political dissidents, ignoring calls from opposition groups and others to disband the law.

Raja Petra's arrest triggered widespread protests by civil society groups, lawyers and other online commentators. Some of Malaysia's most popular blogs offer strong anti-government commentaries and present themselves as a substitute for mainstream media, which are controlled by political parties or closely linked to them.

Shall we expect more news or facts revealed on from today?

会心一笑,烦恼忘掉 Jokes after work


(image) After a hard day in the office today, I went online after shower, checked my mailboxes and read about 10 forwarded emails out of the 100 unread. I got an email from a "long lost" friend (not lost actually, we used to see each other hanging on MSN but we didn't chat for quite some time) telling me about jokes. In fact, that's just another ordinary email forwarded by YuXin but somehow, this one saved my day. What a relief in the evening!

Jokes are relaxing and can also be a fine break in our stressful life. It refreshed my mind when I felt exhausted and saved me from bad mood. Try it if you can read the following, it helps.












5。题目:又 又








Employee's contribution to EPF to reduce by 3% as RM7billion stimulus package unveiled


(image) The government today announced an economic package to reinforce the economy, strengthen national resilience and to maintain economic growth momentum to face the increasingly challenging global economic climate. Finance Minister Dato' Seri Najib Razak said that the government would inject RM7 billion to strengthen the economy and boost confidence within the private sector as the country's projected gross domestic product (GDP) growth for year 2009 was lowered from 5.4% to 3.5%.

Among the measures Najib announced were :-
1) RM1.2bil to be allocated to build more low- and medium-cost houses;
2) Abolishing the 5% import duties on fertilisers, cement and steel;
3) Allowing hypermarkets to close late (weekdays 11pm; weekends 1am);
4) RM500mil for the maintenance of police stations and quarters, as well as Army camps;
5) RM200mil for Chinese, Tamil, religious and mission schools;
6) RM200mil for pre-school education; and
7) Employees can reduce their EPF contributions by 3% on a voluntary basis for up to two years.

The EPF contributions by employees will be adjusted from current 11% to 8% with effect from January 2009, on a voluntary basis. Just like the step the government took in 2003 but this time the statutory rate is lowered by 3% instead of 2% and for a period of two years instead of one. The employers’ portion of the monthly contributions to the EPF remains at 12%.

Why doing do? This measure is to give our people more cash in hand and spend in the market, although the 3% is not much to many. Now that it is optional, which way do you prefer? Save it in your EPF account or hold it in hand? Every sign is telling that we are going to face hard times, aren't we?

Football Manager 2009 demo available now!


(image) (image) The long awaited managerial computer game is finally available for download today... oops, just the demo, sorry! Hehe...

Just like the last few years, Sports Interactive provides two different versions of the demo available for PC and MAC, a 'strawberry' and 'vanilla' version, with both providing half a season of gameplay. The saved games from the demo will be compatible with the full release of the game. The vanilla version features only the English and Scottish leagues, with no player photos or logos in order to reduce the size of the download, whereas the strawberry version includes all player pictures and logos, with quickstarts for the world's biggest leagues, giving players a chance to try out their skills in leagues from multiple countries including England, Scotland, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Brazil, Australia and Indonesia. No Malaysia? A bit disappointed but understandable. Okay, let's get started now.


Download Vanilla version
for Windows (175MB) for Mac (140MB)

Download Strawberry version
for Windows (1,004MB) for Mac (977MB)
(very much bigger in size compared to previous demos)

重点推介PPS网络电视 (online TV)


(image) (image) 这是一套非介绍不可的的软件,它结合了几种电脑可提供的娱乐于一体,而其中最重要的功能当然就是网络电视了!大家看到这里恐怕还有个疑问,不过不用担心,我知道你们在想什么。既然我会在这里特别介绍,没错,它当然也是免费的!




Download PPS

Windows XP SP2用户特别补丁
Patch for WinXP SP2 user

It is sad to tell that PPS is developed by a Chinese company and there is no English Version available for the time being. If you cannot read Chinese, you may still use it with some help from your friends, or else just simply click on the navigation panel on your left hand side, I am sure that you can still get some show played. Oh yeah, what is PPS by the way? It is an online streaming TV using P2P concept and the best part of it is... yeah, it is FREE! Oh well, at least for the time being, who knows?

I have watched plenty of movies like Casino Royale, Con Air, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, The Godfather, Mummies 3, Bangkok Dangerous, Kungfu Panda, National Treasure, Stephen Chow's series, Jackie Chan's series and also drama series like Prison Break, Hero, CSI, Lost and etc. Besides, you can also watch football matches, F1, NBA, Pool and Snooker live. All you need is a computer with broadband services. Good luck, mates!

Introducing Soccer Manager 2009 online


(image) Can hardly wait for the release of Football Manager 2009? Don't feel like re-installing the old FM2008 either? Okay, I think this is the right game for you to restrain your addiction to it before 14th November.

Soccer Manager 08/09 is a Flash game presented by It might be a bit simple to you but at least it comes with the 20 teams from English Premier League and also their current first team squads. Another good thing is, it doesn't consume too much of RAM so you can play it in the office, it won't slow down your computer and you can switch between your worksheet and the game... hehe! Anyway, Don't put the blame on me if you ever get caught by your boss.

URL to start your managerial life :-
*Soccer Manager 08/09*

You can also play the previous seasons :-
Soccer Manager 07/08
Soccer Manager 06/07
Soccer Manager 05/06

World longest city name, an interesting Guinness record


Guinness World Records, officially known as the Guinness Book of Records, is a reference book published annually, containing an internationally recognized collection of world records for both human achievements and the extreme of the natural world. Besides, the book itself also holds a world record as the best-selling copyrighted series of all-time.

Because of natural human curiosity, people always have the desire to know more about the novel or extraordinary things that arouse interest. This was one of the factors how the Guinness Book of Records came into shape, I believe. Among the records that I have ever heard of, this one is an amazing one to me...
"Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Yuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit."

What does it actually mean? Well, the whole phrase is originally in Thai and it is the full name of Krung Thep, the capital city of Thailand which is more commonly known as Bangkok. For this, Bangkok is recognized by Guinness World Records as the capital city with the longest name! In English, it means "The city of angels, the great city, the eternal jewel city, the impregnable city of God Indra, the grand capital of the world endowed with nine precious gems, the happy city, abounding in an enormous Royal Palace that resembles the heavenly abode where reigns the reincarnated god, a city given by Indra and built by Vishnukam."

It took me nearly 30 seconds to pronounce the full name, in the wrong way, of course. What about you? A fantastic record?

Happy Deepavali 2008


^.^ ^.^ ^.^

Adult eye chart for men


(image) (image)
What is an eye chart? An eye chart is a chart used to measure visual acuity. Eye charts usually display several rows of test symbols called optotypes, and each row in a different size. Under normal procedure, the person is asked to sit in front of the chart and identify the numbers or letters on it, usually starting with large rows and continuing to smaller rows until the optotypes cannot be reliably identified anymore.Technically speaking, testing visual acuity with an eye chart is a psycho-physical measurement that attempts to determine a sensory threshold.

As showing above, on the left hand side, it is a typical one called Snellen Chart. There are also other types like Landolt C and Lea Test but I bet you never heard of this one -- Eye chart for men, which is also shown above on the right hand side.

Some of you may think this chart must be taken from some adult sites but I can tell you that this one is actually seen in Shanghai, China and has recently caused some debates in the public. The woman in the chart strips as the symbol (picture?) turns smaller. This 'creative' chart may have drawn interest of men but the professionals have strongly denied its accuracy and slammed the purpose and the use of the ridiculous eye chart.

Well, I do not really know where the idea comes from but one thing for sure is sexually explicit content has already become a bad competitive weapon. I truly hope that our people will not believe in this thing if we ever see this around us one day.

Apple introduces new Macbooks in Malaysia


A new series of MacBooks were officially announced today. I believe many are keeping an eye on the news of Apple's new notebooks and already know its technology very well, where all the technical information can be easily found on Apple's official site. Therefore, what most people would like to know is how much these things will cost in Malaysian Ringgit, as well as when they will be seen on rack.(image)

The details for retail price are as follows :-
The lowest end Macbook comes with a 2.0GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, a 160GB HDD and the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M integrated graphics solution costs RM4,799;
The next model comes with a processor upgrade (2.4GHz), greater storage space (250GB) and an illuminated keyboard costs RM5,899;
The MacBook Pro line comes with a 2.4GHz processor, 2GB DDR3 SDRAM, 250GB HDD and GeForce 9600M 256MB graphics costs RM7,199;
The following model which has a 2.53GHz processor, 4GB DDR3 SDRAM, 320GB HDD and GeForce 9600M 512MB costs RM8,999;
Lastly, the MacBook Air comes with a 1.6GHz processor and a 120GB SATA HDD costs RM6,599; and
the other variant comes with a 1.86GHz processor and a 128GB SSD costs RM8,999.
However, the new MacBooks are not put on sale yet despite the announcement. Apple Malaysia is still working on it and it is said to aim the release in early November.

8 notches drop for Malaysia in press freedom ranking


(image) Indeed, Malaysia's press freedom ranking is on a free fall. It already crashed into the bottom quarter of 173 countries in the worldwide press freedom ranking index released today by Paris-based watchdog Reporters sans Frontieres (RSF, Reporters Without Borders). Malaysia recorded a worst-ever ranking by falling 8 spots from 2007's 124th to current 132nd place.

The facts that Umno-linked New Straits Time has long been a tool to the government, major media are being controlled and are sometimes facing crack-down and bloggers have been continuously threatened by ISA are believed to be the main reasons for the drastic blow. If Malaysia continues to ignore recommendations to revamp its press freedoms, this shameful position could turn even worse next year.
Meanwhile, Bintulu MP Dato Seri Tiong King Sing blasted 3 Astro AEC TV programmes "Living in Malaysia"(身在马来西亚), "Evening Editor"(新闻报报看) and "马华党选面面观", claiming that these tv programmes spitefully emphasize on the bad sides of the government and only deliver negative message to the audience. He even urged the relevant department to take action against AEC.

In fact, the new episode of "Living in Malaysia" was already put on hold. Why? To our BN leaders, citizens must be taught to irrationally believe in the "flawless government"? And whatever discussion about administrative error is just prohibited? This is simply insane, something goes really wrong!

KLSE Real-time Monitor - handy tool for stock investment


Guys and girls, I know many of you keep asking me about the tool I'm using to monitor KLSE market. I think it would be easier to put up here so that you can download it at anytime and I can take back my thumbdrive. Hehe...

What is it? The monitoring tool is an utility which provides KLSE (Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange) real time monitoring. It is integrated with a powerful stock indicators editor. This handy tool is highly modularized, where other countries' stock market information can be plugged in easily. Distribution of this software is granted under the GNU General Public License. Want to know more? Find out yourself.

Full version Download here:-
KLSE Monitor (JStock v0.9.9)

Compact version Download here:-
KLSE Monitor
.Net Framework (you may need to install this before using the compact version)

Transformers are coming to Singapore!


(image) According to news report, some giant robots are heading for Singapore.

Universal Studios announced on Monday that a new theme-park ride based on the blockbuster movie last year - Transformers is being developed for the company.

The movie Transformers recorded a remarkable US$319,246,193 box office in the United States in 2007. The new rides, scheduled to debut in 2011, incorporate robotics and 3-D, high-definition technology with the help from Hasbro Inc. and DreamWorks Pictures. The director of the movie Transformers Michael Bay and producer Steven Spielberg will also consult on the development.

The ride, just like the movie, shows humans caught in an intergalactic war between armies of giant robots that can transform into cars, planes and many other technological creations.

One week review


Haloooooo! Yeap, I left Malaysia for some fresh air last week, by chance, and has literally come back to my arena just a few hours ago. I was sort of isolated without a computer out there and Malaysian news were virtually out of reach.

So, what actually happened last week? These are what I finally figured out:-
No demo version for Football Manager 2009;
No surprise from Pakatan Rakyat;
More Hong Kong corporates went bankrupt;
The dust settles on the MCA party polls, "best leading actor" Dr. Chua Soi Lek was elected as new deputy president and may get the chance to re-enter cabinet because of the BN tradition. Well, that only tells that moral is not an important issue at all to MCA members, shameless politicians;
Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has qualified to stand for election as Umno president, while Ku Li's top post challenge appears to be yet another monkey show;
The ambitious Melaka CM Ali "the racist" Rustam seems not powerful enough to overcome the rebel Muhyiddin;
The UMNO supreme council met again tonight to discuss about party's image building while global financial crisis is causing massive impact to various markets;
Newly appointed Finance Minister Najib insists that Malaysia is not in financial crisis while Singapore has already slid into recession; and
Domestic Trade Minister Shahril didn't reduce national petrol retail price to RM1.92 when crude oil plunged below US$72, but only cut another 15 sen to current RM2.30...
(image) (image)

That's it, life goes on. Nothing special but only the quiet Melaka streets this afternoon scares me. I've never seen this scene for as long as I can remember. Is it a sign of recession?

Petrol price to lower to RM1.92, if crude oil tumbles below US$72 a barrel


(image) Domestic trade and consumer affairs minister Dato' Shahrir Abdul Samad said the government would further cut the local petrol price from current RM2.45 to RM1.92 per litre, if crude oil price dropped to US$72 a barrel. Our minister made this promise after oil prices closed at US$78.61 a barrel in New York on Friday.

The latest violent sell-off of crude oil also sees the prices hit a 13-month new low. Crude has fallen nearly 47% since soaring to record US$147.27 in July, 2008. The recent change reflects that the investors generally tend to be pessimistic about the global economic crisis which is widely believed to turn worse than the 1997/98's.

Will we see the price tagged as RM1.92 soon when we are standing at the pump? By then, will it be a good news or bad? This is a complicated question to think about. Maybe we should focus on our local political change first as parliament reopens on Monday. Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim told the media last night there would be spark in the parliament from Monday, just after 3,500 Penang MIC members crossed over to PKR. Let's keep a close eye on our country's future.

No sequel for the Dark Knight?


(image) The Dark Knight is a superhero film directed and co-written by Christopher Nolan. Based on the widely known DC Comics character Batman, the movie is a sequel to Batman Begins.

The movie was released in July, 2008. It was reportedly numbers of advance tickets were sold prior to its box office debut in the North America region. The Dark Knight became the second movie ever to earn more than US$500 million at the North American box office, hitting a massive cumulative of US$526,068,474 in the US alone. How popular this movie was.

There is no sequel for the Dark Knight yet, anyway. Co-writer David Goyer told media recently that there is no script so far and Christopher Nolan has yet to sign on to any new project. There have been rumours suggesting that Hollywood stars like Johnny Depp and Philip Seymour Hoffman are set to play key roles in the Batman series but according to David Goyer, these are all plain rumours?

The fans are still looking forward to the next episode anyhow and would be interested in the installation of successor to the fantastic Heath Ledger who died before the release of the Dark Knight. Hopefully the crew would start filming in February, 2009 as reported earlier.

Microsoft to unveil Windows 7 to the world


(image) What is Windows 7? Windows 7 is the next major version of the Windows client operating system. At this year's Professional Developers Conference (PDC2008) which will be held later this month in Los Angeles, Microsoft are to give multiple sessions to the attendees to get a look at Windows 7 in detail. It will also be the first public appearance of the successor to Windows Vista.

Windows 7 is expected to be officially released in the period of June 2009 to January 2010. The specific date is to be confirmed but (image) Microsoft has announced earlier that the release date will ultimately be determined by meeting the quality bar.

Take a sneak peek at the new product by clicking the link to the video!
-> Windows 7 Official Video

Who will be Malaysia's sixth PM?


(image) This afternoon Pak Lah made an important announcement to all the BN component parties at the BN council meeting. As expected, he told all the leaders that he had decided to step down as prime minister in five months time and he would not be contesting in the upcoming UMNO party poll.

This is not a surprising decision as he was repeatedly forced to quit by the UMNO supreme council before Hari Raya. Although Pak Lah denied that he was under pressure to compromise, most of the people know what is really going on in the battle of the party. Just like most of the people can tell the innocence and the devil apart from the cases of VK Lingam tape, Altantuya, Anwar Ibrahim's sodomy trial and Raja Petra Kamarudin's sedition trial. We are not idiots after all.

So Najib could be the next UMNO president and the next Malaysia PM, if Anwar Ibrahim and his Pakatan Rakyat did not do something before March 2009. I don't see how Ku Li can be a threat to Najib, he would probably find himself living in his own dream at the end of the day. Anyway, Najib could become Malaysia's sixth PM to complete the R.A.H.M.A.N. chain but even if he came before Anwar, it does not mean that Anwar cannot topple down his government at a later time.

'I plan to complete my mission', quoted Pak Lah. 'There are several initiatives I intend to see through before I leave office. These initiatives are important because they are necessary to move our country forward.' I do hope that he keeps his words this time, though this is not the first time we hear him telling such intention. Pak Lah seemed relieved after the meeting today, big contrast to the mazed PM at the media conference before Raya. Will he really do something to save himself from the history book after putting down the burden?

FIFA president calls to rail against billionaire investors


(image) Today Sepp Blatter called on European Union lawmakers to work with world football's governing body to draw up plans that would help tighten up regulations on club ownership to deal with the so-called "out of control" investment in football, particularly the English Premier League.

We have already seen super-rich investors like the Russian Roman Abramovich and the Abu Dhabi United Group buying out Chelsea FC and Manchester City. English football is too attractive for the investors from around the world because of its economic power. They always keep an eye on it and rumours of taking over of the English clubs never stop spreading on the media. Few months ago, Brittish media claimed that Belarus born Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska was interested in buying West Bromwich Albion. His reported wealth of £28 billion is even a match for Roman Abramovich. Anyway, the deal did not come true but who knows? Oleg Deripaska may come back anytime in the future.

Some fans may feel happy when being told that his club is taken over because they are looking for the cash injection to see some splendid achievements in the transfer market. In long term view, this can be a very bad phenomenon to football. Thus, Blatter's appeal is to restrict men with a lot of cash to make their profits and run. For example, the very recent case, former Thailand prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra sold Manchester City after a season and he reportedly gained a net profit of £30 million. While the current owner of Newcastle United Mike Ashley is also believed to settle for his shares for a price of £280 to £300 million soon which would leave him with a profit of £30 to £50 million from his 15 months in charge.

"I don't know how it can be stopped, but there is always a danger that these people will just one day leave. You get people turning up with banker's guarantees who are not interested in football and then they lose interest in the clubs and leave. What happens to the clubs then?", quoted the FIFA president. English Football Association chairman Lord Triesman today also waged war on English football's mounting debt, revealing that the game was a staggering £3 billion in the red and needed a radical review to stop it spiralling out of control. He also added that in 2006-2007, data identified over £950 million of debt in the top four clubs alone, with wages growing at 12% per year.

I agree with Blatter that there must be better control of football's finances, although he used to be a disgusting figure to me. It is not an easy job to rectify this problem of the football world but it is a must or otherwise there will be big financial difficulties for the English Clubs in the future.