Kim Huat shares stories of how fake news affected his life and how it can affect our nation. #WeAreTotalDefence
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/RlsSTbDSPu0
Kim Huat looks for a hot CNY date, Part 2. How did Kim Huat's date go? Did Premium Ah Lian come to see him? Watch the video to find out! And Kim Huat has a special promo for you to celebrate CNY. Click http://bit.ly/2nUO8C2 to find out more. Don't say bojio!
Make every moment #spiceable. #sponsored
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/tv34nEfyMb4
Kim Huat shares the common CNY customs on how to make your money grow, including a new pro tip. Earn up to 1% P.A. on your money in a UOB Stash Account, which is more than most savings accounts out there."
For more details go to: http://bit.ly/SureWinAngpao
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/jEaluEVWRDk
It is Chinese New Year again, and mrbrown needs to do his spring cleaning. This time he has a new weapon to combat the dust bunnies: The Tefal Air Force™ 360. Watch what happens when mrbrown is volunteered by his mother to do his spring cleaning duties. Tefal's latest Tefal Air Force™ 360 vacuum cleaner is powerful enough to suck up an apple (the fruit, not the computer), versatile enough to cover all surfaces with one head, and has performance features like an always-on one-click button, quick charge, and 12 minutes of use in BOOST mode and 20 minutes of use in normal mode.
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/Ukv6BpEQi_I
This is the story of my family trying BlueSG, Singapore's first large-scale electric vehicle car-sharing programme, as told by my youngest.
The service will start with 80 Bluecars and 32 BlueSG charging stations, and by the end of 2017, the aim is for 110 Bluecars and 42 BlueSG stations with 165 charging points, islandwide.
By 2020, the aim is for 1,000 Bluecars and 2,000 charging points. That is a LOT of Bluecars and charging points, which is something to look forward to, as the more of the cars are available, the more accessible it will be for users.
Singapore will be the second largest deployment of Bluecars and charging stations — the largest being Paris — where the system began. And we are the first in Asia to have the service. For more details, and to sign up for membership, head on down to www.bluesg.com.sg
My family had a lot of fun filming our experience with the Bluecar. Mom, Isaac and Joy were my sporting participants in this adventure.
I think this will add to the choices available for public transport, and that is always welcome. The fees range from 50 cents per minute for regular membership, to as low as 33 cents per minute for Premium members (subject to a minimum rental of 15 minutes at $5).
One of the major attractions for me is the flat standard rate 24/7 with no peak surcharge. So this means your rental fee is the same throughout the day, even during peak hour. No surge pricing!
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/TjVlPc4sCnA
I was tagged by Mr Miyagi to do the #DaretoCare Challenge recently. Now, I don’t usually do these tagging things but Miyagi explained that #DaretoCare is about getting people to perform random acts of kindness, or simple acts of care, or spearheading ground-up movements for volunteering.
Essentially, the movement seeks to get us all to pay attention to the needs of those around us.
It does not have to be big and grand gestures (though those are good too). Just asking if someone is ok, or finding out what they need, and acting on it if possible, is a good start.
This reminds me of my mom. My mother has a habit of giving useful things like clothes to foreign workers near our home and to the poor, when we travel (she carries a huge suitcase of stuff to give away very often). She is a big old softie at heart, even though she can be very fierce to us.
So, inspired by my mother and the message, I did the #DaretoCare Challenge too, and this is my video.
You can do the same. Just create a post on your social media platforms, it can be a text post, image post, or a video post, on how you showed kindness or care, or spotted someone who did it, and tag three friends to do the same thing. Use the hashtags #DaretoCare and #SGcares in your posts.
I hereby challenge and tag Leslie Tay of ieatishootipost, Nadia a.k.a. @nadnut, and Dennis of Superadrianme, to #DaretoCare! And let’s see this movement snowball!
Caption: The author in Mount Gassan, Japan, contemplating the meaning of life and the future of mobile wallet apps.
People who know me know I am a bit of an electronic payments kind of person. I hate carrying cash because it takes away precious space from my falling-apart wallet and I won't have space for the useless receipts I never throw away.
DBS PayLah! lets you pay another PayLah! user with just that person's mobile number. Sure, you can pay with internet banking or ATM funds transfer, but then you'll have to know the other party's bank account number and/or your banking dongle.
I can do small payments and fund transfers easily with PayLah! I use it all the time. For example, I got a text the other day from the wife that said, "Please pay for the son's tuition."
Sure, easy. Except that I was in Japan at the time. But no problem, I just sent the money to the wife via PayLah! from my iPhone. Boom. Done.
Caption: The author in Yamagata, Japan, just before the wife told him to pay the tuition fees.
I don't pay any fees and my wife doesn't either and she can easily transfer the funds from her PayLah! wallet to her POSB bank account, also from her iPhone.
I even converted my aircon repair man, Ronnie. I taught him how to install and sign up for PayLah! and I paid him with just his phone number.
So now it's so easy. The wife would message me while I am in Taiwan on a work trip, to tell me that the aircon was dripping on my precious wireless speaker system.
I would call Ronnie to tell him I think my aircon needs servicing, maybe a major one.
Then he comes by with his team and does the servicing and a chemical clean.
Then I pay him with PayLah! I don't need to prepare cash or cheque to pay Ronnie. I even include a WhatsApp message to him at the same time as I sent the payment within the app.
Caption: The author in Taiwan, just before the wife told him to pay the aircon man.
Now is a good time to sign up for PayLah! by the way. Don't say I bo jio. DBS will give you $5 if you refer a friend and that friend signs up, he or she gets $5 too.
It's win-win for both of you!
The maximum amount you can earn is $50 when you get up to 10 friends to sign up for PayLah!.
And the maximum maximum reward one can earn is $55: ($5 if you’re a new sign-up through someone’s referral code) + (10 friends x $5) = $55
This friend referral program will run from 4th November to 15th December 2016 so hurry and do it. Do eeeeeeet!
I already started. I am referral King. Use my referral code if you need one: KINXGD221
The "Artist and Empire: (En)countering Colonial Legacies" exhibition is now on at National Gallery Singapore and I am in it! Kind of. The British High Commissioner to Singapore, Mr Scott Wightman and I recorded an audio tour for this exhibition and I think it was jolly good. So do go down to the National Gallery and check it out.
The exhibition looks at art associated with the British Empire and how it has been represented and contested.
We had a lot of fun recording our bits (audio bits, I mean). I also had to do a lot of homework reading up on the art I was supposed to be knowledgeable about.
Artist and Empire: (En)countering Colonial Legacies (in association with London’s Tate Britain) runs from 6 October 2016 to 26 March 2017, but wah lau eh, don't wait until next year then go lah. Fasterly go!
It is at the Singtel Special Exhibition Gallery, Level 3, City Hall Wing. Admission is S$15 for Singaporeans (got discount ok?) and S$25 for non-Singaporeans. For more information on the exhibition, visit www.nationalgallery.sg
(Photos by Ung Ruey Loon)
I am in Japan (I know, again) for ten days of travel shooting. Follow me as I take the Panasonic LUMIX GX85 camera out for a spin through Nagano, Yamagata and Iwate.
And yes, I know I look like Paddington Bear in that hat. It's my favorite hiking hat and you can't take it away from me!
Waiting for our train from Shinjuku, Tokyo, to Matsumoto.
Kamikochi in Matsumoto.
The place where they filmed Oshin, Ginsan Onsen. I want to come back in winter to see it again.
Lovely lake at Mount Gassan (月山 地蔵池), Yamagata.
And yes, all the photos here were made by me with the GX85. Ryan took the photo of me above with a second GX85. It's like GX85ception.
Yes, I am in my old Anglo-Chinese Secondary School uniform. Yes, it is newly bought because I cannot fit in my Sec 4 one anymore. But it is for a good cause.
(I know, my shoes sure kena prefect catch one. And my hair is too long and wrong colour, so Mr Tjia or Mr Sachi, our discipline masters, sure come after me one.)
#IncomeOrangeAid champions empowerment through education for youth in need.
We support the cause by standing together in our school uniforms.
Join us by posting an old school photo of yourself in uniform and tag 3 friends to do the same. For every photo post, Income will donate $1 to the cause. Find out more at http://www.income.com.sg/orangeaid
Post your photo with the above caption in full and remember to set your post to public!
When Qingjian Realty asked me if I wanted to see their Smart Home showflat, I was at first a bit skeptical. It is not easy to pull this off and get the tech infrastructure right. So out of curiosity, I went to the northern part of Singapore to have a look at their showflat.
The Visionaire is an Executive Condominium (EC) project located near the upcoming Canberra MRT station, at Sembawang. It is touted as the first EC with Smart Homes.
Now I love tech as much as the next geek, and I have tried to make my own home “Smart”, so I know how hard it is to implement the Internet of Things on your own. I think if a developer can help you implement the Smart Home stuff from the beginning, using standards like ZigBee and Z-Wave, you will be able to build on that infrastructure easily.
On my tour of their Smart Home showflat, Qingjian showed me how they envision future homes, with their technology partner Samsung Asia. There is Smart Home tech like a digital lockset for your door, Smart IP cameras for monitoring your home inside and outside, Smart air conditioner, Smart motion and temperature sensors, a Smart sound system, Smart washing machine and Smart lighting, all controlled by a Smart Home Control Center app, that is available for both Android and iOS.
Turn on the aircon to get the best temperature just before reaching home, or turn on the lights and music and draw the curtains as a morning wake-up alarm, or turn on your washing machine for it to finish the laundry just before you get back, it can all be done in this Smart home.
I particularly liked the ability to monitor the power usage of the various appliances and devices in the apartment.
The Visionaire EC also offers the hiLife app, already in use by many other properties, for future Visionaire residents to do things like book facilities, get home services, and order from food caterers (like for your upcoming BBQ).
Tech aside, I was very impressed by the layout of the entire property. That 50m pool, wow.
There is ample greenery and generous communal space, an iconic-looking clubhouse with rooms for courses, parties and functions, and BBQ pits peppered throughout the area.
I was struck also by the clever use of space in the apartments. You can combine two spaces into a larger area, a concept Qingjian calls CoSpace.
The fittings and materials used are very high quality, I must say. If you didn’t tell me this was an Executive Condominium, I would have sworn it was some high-end condo. I also liked that the blocks are spaced out nicely, without the over-density that plagues other developments.
Sembawang MRT station is nearby, and when Canberra MRT station is open very soon after The Visionaire is completed, it will be even more convenient. There are also shopping centres nearby, like Sun Plaza, and the upcoming North Point City and Canberra Plaza, and a future sports and community hub.
Do drop by at their future life exhibit and see it for yourself. E-applications start from 8th of April 2016, and details are at www.thevisionaire.com.sg.
I just realized that this is the fourth year in a row I am writing on dengue prevention (last year I wrote this). But I had a scare a few weeks ago, when I was suspected of having dengue (it turned out to be food poisoning and fever). And another friend had a dengue attack just weeks before a church Christmas production (he got well, thank goodness). Both cases reminded me that dengue is still out there
2013 was a year when dengue cases were very high. NEA projects that dengue cases this year could go up to 30,000. That is higher than the record in 2013 when 22,170 cases were reported.
Already the weekly cases from Jan – Mar were much more than compared to 2015. That is not a good way to start 2016. Apparently this is due to El Nino causing warmer weather conditions, high mosquito population and a change of the main circulating virus. Warm conditions make mozzies breed and mature faster. It's like a summer honeymoon for them.
Go check out the dengue clusters from dengue.gov.sg, and see that many of the hotspots are in residential areas. Because a majority of mosquito breeding habitats are found in homes.
Our homes, people. The mozzies are breeding in our homes and disrespecting us!
It's such a serious situation that the big stick is coming down. At this year's Mozzie Wipeout campaign launch, the NEA announced a step up in enforcement measures — any homes found with mosquito breeding are liable for a fine, as opposed to only those found in dengue clusters. Nobody likes to be fined but tough times need tough measures.
But besides enforcement, NEA is also deploying gravitraps to monitor and suppress mosquito population, as well as drones to check for mosquito breeding in areas that are hard to reach. There are also breakthroughs in dengue vaccines that are being tested for viability for use in Singapore.
I would like to see those drones in action myself. That's pretty cool use of tech.
So please please please lah, help yourself and your family and help your neighbours and do your part.
Doing the Mozzie Wipeout is very easy: Turn the pail, flip the plate, tip the vase, cap the pole holder, clear the gutter. So catchy, maybe I should write another Mozzie Wipeout song like I did last time.
I didn't manage to get on TV news with the new Minister this year (heng ah, I have a tendency of photobombing these events hor?) but I still say: dengue must die. So do the 5-Step Mozzie Wipeout. Stop the breeding, you stop the dengue transmissions, it is as simple as that.
This is me practise-waving my DBS PayLah! app. Why am I doing this? Read on and find out!
You know how concert fans wave their phones like light sticks to support their music act? 我们永远支持你！
Well, for our 50th National Day, DBS PayLah! is is inviting you to do the DBS PayLah! SGWave!
You just need to be a PayLah! user (or if you are not one get, just download the app and register, preferably before noon tomorrow). Then on on 9 August 2015, launch your DBS PayLah! app, wave your phone during 1pm to 2pm and 5pm to 6pm, and you may stand to win cash prizes up to $100k!
Just 3 simple steps:
Step 1: Open your DBS PayLah! app on National Day during the above time periods.
Step 2: Click on: “Play Now”
Step 3: Wave your mobile phone and if you are lucky, you will win an instant cash prize!
Launch, Click and SGWave your way to some cash! Wave with your Paylah! app in one hand and the Singapore flag in the other!
Reminder: if you are a new DBS PayLah! user, do try to pre-register for PayLah! before noon tomorrow, 9 August 2015. Do eeeeet naaaaaao!
For more info, go to: go.dbs.com/sgwave
Fans. They stand there, doing their jobs, stoically and without complaint, keeping us cool in this blasted heat. They either work or they don’t. I say this because my air-conditioner was leaking and we did not have air-conditioning for a week, so we had to rely on our fan. And boy, did we appreciate our fan.
We have gone through a few fans in the decades living in our flat. We bought so many brands, mostly cheaper ones. Inevitably, the cheapo brands let us down. Either the weak plastic blades did not generate strong enough wind, or one of our industrial-strength metal fans would become super noisy after the kids pushed it down accidentally while playing.
At one point, I threw out TWO industrial-strength fans costing some $250 each, because I could not stand the noise anymore.
You can tell I have much experience with fans.
Then one day, I said, forget it. I am going back to the fan that my mother and her mother owned. Good old KDK fans. I bought one to test. Still good and strong. I went home, and threw out the remaining cheapo fan I owned, and bought a second KDK, same model.
This touching video from KDK brought back memories of the times we spent making robot sounds in front of our fans. It was great for doing the Cylon voice from Battlestar Galactica too (“BY YOUR COMMAND.”), and I mean the old one starring Lorne Greene.
YouTube link: https://youtu.be/in-ymwb3-ws
Facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/kdkleaderinfantechnology/videos/857207521036933/
Good times and good memories, man. Even the Cantonese dialogue.
KDK is celebrating family unity and love on this SG50, and honouring the nation’s golden jubilee. Share your treasured moments at the KDK Treasured Moments site, and win exclusive prizes and 6 invitations to a private screening of 1965! Details at www.kdk.sg/treasuredmoments/
I got my Apple Watch a day before the official release in Singapore on the 26th of June (ya, I know, big fat hairy deal, haha!). One of the first things I noticed was the DBS Paylah! app installed on it. This was one of the first few Singapore apps I saw on my Apple Watch.
A few months ago, my friend, whom I owed money to because she helped me buy some stuff overseas, said I could pay her with Paylah!.
At first, I thought she was saying, "The money you owe me? Pay lah!".
But then I realized she meant the DBS Paylah! mobile wallet app. I was going to visit the ATM to do a fund transfer to her, but this seemed like an easier option. So I installed the app on my iPhone and linked it to my bank account, and in seconds, I was done transferring the funds.
Also neat was the ability to log into my PayLah! app with my finger via Touch ID. No need to type my password every time. DBS tells me that as of today, more than 40% of logins are being made through the Touch ID fingerprint sensor feature.
The app is available on both Apple iOS and Android platforms, and you link your bank account to your mobile number. All anyone needs to send you money, or for you to send money, is a mobile number. The app even works with non-DBS/POSB accounts now.
The second time I encountered PayLah! significantly was at this year's DBS Marina Regatta. The food stalls there accepted Paylah! as payment and there was even a 10% discount for Paylah! payment, so it was just a matter of sending payment via the app and then collecting our order at the counter.
I roped in my wife and youngest brother to install the app too. The latter was because we were splitting the bill for meal that he paid for (my family's share was $30). As for my wife, my little demonstration cost me $10. She happily pocketed my $10 into her mobile wallet.
Some of the other things you can do with Paylah!: You can use it to pay your bills, donate money to 15 charitable organisations, shop online, send or request money from anyone instantly (even non-DBS/POSB customers), and even send an eAng-Bao (great for overseas relatives).
I know of many small businesses, blogshops and sole proprietors accepting payments via Paylah! because it is easier and faster than asking customers to pay by bank transfer. You can even try paying your kid's tutor this way.
Why am I spreading the word? Because I like the service, and the more people use it, the better the service becomes.
This is what Paylah! shows on my Apple Watch, which is mainly notification data (the app will only display notifications on the Apple Watch if your iPhone screen is off).
This is Paylah! on the phone itself.
Go check it out and let me know what you think!
Guess where Barefoot mrbrown is! I'm doing the #DareToGoBare2015 challenge! Find out more about #BareYourSole2015 at www.bareyoursole.org.sg/donate
Try playing the Instagram below:
Funds raised will go towards supporting Habitat for Humanity Singapore's Project Homeworks, to improve the living conditions of the elderly, the sick and the physically challenged living in one-room flats in Singapore.
Last year, I went barefoot for a day for Bare Your Sole 2014, and it was very enlightening.
Here are the other two little cinemagraphs I did in Instagram! Can you guess where I am at these locales?
Dengue, I hate it so much, I went down to the launch of the “Do the Mozzie Wipeout” Campaign for 2015.
In Bukit Gombak.
In the South West of Singapore.
With a coterie of press and ministers present.
On a Sunday morning,
After landing in Singapore from Seoul at 5am.
THAT is how much I hate dengue and the Aedes mosquito.
I found out that Singapore has seen fewer dengue cases in 2015. In the first quarter of 2015, there was 39% less dengue cases reported compared to the first quarter of 2014. But the NEA detected an increase of about 80% in the number of Aedes mosquito breeding habitats found in homes between February and March this year.
Oi, don’t liddat leh. We all like to think it is the work sites that are breeding mosquitoes but it seems that many of the breeding areas are found in homes. So please take the necessary preventative measures at home. Watch my last year Mozzie Wipeout video if you need a reminder.
Also interesting to learn at the launch was that NEA is now exploring the using of Wolbachia-carrying male Aedes mosquitoes to suppress the Aedes mosquito population in Singapore make the wild female Aedes mosquitos eggs unable to hatch. Wolbachia sounds like Chewbacca’s long lost brother hor? But it is a type of natural occurring bacteria found in 60% of insect species like butterflies, fruit flies, dragonflies and mosquitoes. The cool thing is that the Wolbachia-carrying male mosquitoes don’t bite or transmit disease (because they don’t need protein in blood to reproduce eggs), but when they mate with the female Aedes mosquitoes, the eggs laid by the ladies will not hatch into they make the ones that do spread dengue unable to make more evil babies that might spread dengue.
I think it is also nice that more education is happening at the community level. Students will be appointed “Dengue Mobsters” to be roving ambassadors, to go to homes and spread the word and help others fight the good fight against dengue. It may be the only time it is ok for a student to be in a gang. Go and whack those mosquitoes jialat jialat!
I also hear there will be residents appointed as Garden Sheriffs. They will be taught how to maintain make mosquito-free gardens.
As pointed out in an earlier FB post, I was captured on TV news at that event looking a little out of place and unglam. But hey, it was for a good cause, ok? Dengue must die.
So after watching my Beer Gao video, did you guys try it with your buddies at the coffee shop? If you have not, here’s the video for you.
I think it is such a Singaporean thing, gathering over good drink and good food with your best friends, and as usual, arguing over life’s most important questions: Which stall has the best sambal chilli? East vs West — where’s the best place for supper? Which football club deserves our undying support?
One of the great debates of recent times has been over our new-found method of enjoying beer - Beer Gao. I love it half-half, while Marc likes it super-gao with just a touch of beer added to his Guinness . I realized then that this was the perfect premise for a photo contest. I gave the folks at Guinness a ring to see if they could sponsor some prizes and they said yes.
So here’s what I want you to do. Seeing how Beer Gao mixes Guinness with lager to create a very flavourful way to enjoy your beer, I want you to send me your pictures and describe what you think represents the most flavourful mix – enjoying delicious food in the company of friends and family? Savouring the perfect pint of Beer Gao over a bucket of chips and wings? Or perhaps what level of Guinness you enjoy most with your Beer Gao?
Share your pictures via Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #MyBeerGao and I will pick five lucky winners with the best picture & caption to win exclusive Guinness merchandise and of course, a few bottles of the flavourful Guinness Foreign Extra Stout. Submit your entries from now till 17 May 2015.
If you don’t do Twitter or Instagram, you can also send in an entry via email to the address email@example.com with the headline #MyBeerGao. Include your photo and caption in the body of the email.
Winners will be announced via Guinness’ Facebook Page on 20 May. www.facebook.com/Guinness.SG
What are you waiting for? Go forth and share your #MyBeerGao experiences now!
Important Note: The Competition is open only to legal residents of Singapore who have reached the minimum legal drinking age in Singapore. Please enjoy Guinness responsibly. http://WWW.DRINKiQ.com