Live Writer

image               Before you install Windows Live Writer 2011, please make sure you have an active WordPress.com blog. If you don’t already have one, you can sign up to get a new blog in seconds.
Next, download the Windows Live Writer 2011 setup program.
Select “Choose the programs you want to install.”
Uncheck everything except for Writer. Click Install. You’ll be prompted to restart your computer once the install completes.

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Heritage Trail At National Museum

During my June holiday, i decided to go to the Singapore National Museum for my heritage trail. I chose to go there as i have never been to that museum and wanted to learn more about Singapore’s history. Although in our secondary schools we have already been taught about the history of Singapore through Social Studies, i still wanted to learn more in detail and see the artifacts in real life. In the National Museum, there were four main sections in order which were “Singapura“, “Crown Colony“, “Syonan-to” and “Singapore“. However, i was more interested in the events that took place during the “Singapura” period and during “Syonan-to”.

The Singapura period ( 1299-1818)

The earliest records to mention Singapore described it as a thriving port in the 14th century. There were many trading involved with  China, Malaysia, Thailand and India, thus there were chinese porcelain wares and stonewares traded, along with locally-made pottery or natural products such as hornbill casques and laka wood.

I also got to see the Singapore Stone which i’ve always wanted to see it in person as i saw an image of it in my social studies textbook. I learned that one of these stones was once a sandstone boulder, however it was later split into two nearly equal parts and faced each other at an angle of about forty degrees. It is said that the boulder had been hurled from nearby Fort Canning Hill by a strong man named Badang. The stone is one of the three which have been blown up in 1843 to build military quarters. The interesting part about the Singapore Stone is that the inscriptions on it have still not been fully deciphered till this day.

IMG_2459

(This is a picture of some of the artifacts found at Ford Canning Hill and Singapore River.)

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                    (This are Gold earrings and armlet found at Ford Canning Hill in 1928)

I learned that many rich people back in the day lived around Fort Canning Hill and Singapore River as many jewelry and expensive pottery was found in that area. For example, Singapore is said to be one of the first places in the world to acquire the Blue-and-white porcelain, which was found in the North bank of the Singapore River. These porcelain were also some of the first ceramics to be made using cobalt blue decoration. Also, the designs on them were simple, mainly scrolls, flowers, leaves, ducks and water weeds. Another example is that white porcelains such as cups and bowls were highly valued, and was used mostly by the well-to-do families in the 14th century. The jewelry shown in the picture was the same type that was worn by a king in West Sumatra, which tells us that only the rich could own these.

Another new thing i learned was that the hill that we now call Fort Canning used to be a burial place of Sri Tri Buana, whom was one of the first ruler of Singapura in the 14th century. The hill was then known as Bukit Larangtan which means Forbidden Hill, and is said to be inhabited by ghosts. They left a shrine for people to visit the hill today.

The Syonan-to period (1942-1945)

Since i have learn most about the Japanese occupation through Social Studies lesson in secondary school, i was only interested in looking at the weapons used by the Japanese soldiers.

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(This are the weapons used during the war, and beside it are cups used to drink their Sake)

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(This is the Singapore Surrender table used when the British surrendered unconditionally to the Imperial Japanese Army)

One new fact that i learned after the British returned and the Japanese surrendered was that the Japanese troops reluctantly complied with the order and many committed ritual suicide as they could not accept the defeat.

To conclude my heritage trail trip to the National Museum, i was glad that i chose this place as i got to learn some interesting facts about Singapore’s history, as well as watching video clips of the past such as old dramas in black and white, listening to old recordings and looking at the artifacts in real life. I am happy to have shared this experience with my friend Samson as i felt that it was a fulfilling trip!

 

 

 

 

 

Worker Writes

After reading through the many poems written by the talented migrant workers from the Workers Poetry Competition, i read one in particular that caught my attention. The name of the poem is called “Desolation and Request of Mother and Son”, and was written by Glory Ann R. Balista. The poem is about the mother’s feelings and wishes for her children, due to the fact that she has been away from them since young. It is said that this poem was dedicated to her son and to all FDW’s children, to let them know how much the parents loves them and to let them know that they’re not the only one who feel sadness, pain, and suffering as their parents feel the same too.

I chose this poem as it was easy to understand the meaning behind it, also it shows just how much the mother cared for her son and wanted the best for him. This can be seen from:

I hope you understand

I just wanted to make

A bright future for you

It saddens me that many parents like her have to leave their children for long periods of time such as years, just to earn a living overseas so that they will be able to send money back home to their children. It shows that the only way for her to express her love to her son is by sending money back home so that he can continue with his studies which will provide him with many opportunities in the future when he grows up. This can be seen from:

Hopefully you hear, Son!

This is my little wish,

That I have to create opportunities

To again express to you

My love and tenderness.

The poem describes a lot about her sadness and regret from leaving her son at such a young age to work in a foreign country to make a living. Also, she hopes that they would forgive her as she had no other choice as she had to support her family in order for her children to survive and get a brighter future. This can be seen at:

My departure

 filled with resentment.

Feelings of sadness in my heart

I just endure.

When I sleep at night

I wish,

you are next to me

I try to close my eyes. . .

But cannot stop the tears flowing.

Forgive me my son

Because I have been distant

Since you were little.

This is a poem which i feel that many of us can relate to including me as i once had a maid and she had to leave behind her children back in Jakarta as she was making a living in Singapore. I felt really bad for her as she could only see them once every few years and her children may or may not be able to recognize her due to the long period of time away from them. This can also be a learning lesson to us, to cherish and be more understanding towards our parents as they have worked so hard to raise us. If we put our shoes in theirs, we would realize how fortunate we are to have our parents by our side every step of the way, unlike those who have unfortunate circumstances.

Website: http://www.singaporeworkerpoetry.com/#!poets/jg0k8

Society & Co.

What is Corporate Social Responsibility(CSR)? 

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) refers to a business practice that involves participating in initiatives that benefit society. It is important that more companies continue to take up good CSR as well as to improve them, this is because consumers’ awareness about global social issues are continuing to grow, therefore they will choose places to shop at that has good CSR. Surprisingly, consumers are not the only ones that care, as top talents around the world are also wanting to work in companies that practices good CSR.

Types of Corporate Social Responsibilities(CSR)?

Environment: Many companies focus on reducing the emission of large carbon footprint as it is both good for the company’s image and also the society as a whole.

Philanthropy: Companies also helps the needy by donating to local and international charities. They also offer their time and effort by participating in local community programs.

Ethical Labor Practices:  By treating the employees fairly and ethically, these companies are also demonstrating CSR.

Website: http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/4679-corporate-social-responsibility.html

After researching for companies in Singapore that demonstrates good CSR, i came across one called City Developments Limited. Just a quick glance from their website, i could see that they have continued to demonstrate good CSR and have achieved numerous awards. For example, the company have made it to the 10th position in 2016 in the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World, which made a drastic improvement from year 2011 when they were only placed 100th position. This shows that they have been determined to improve on their CSR over the years.

City Developments Limited(CDL) have also done a lot of community work over the years. They have 4 major areas, which is  charity towards the needy and less fortunate, the environment, youth development and the arts. To help the community, CDL works closely with the government, non-governmental agencies, public and private organisations on wide-ranging community initiatives.

Website: http://www.cdl.com.sg/app/cdl/csr_and_sustainability/community_involvement.xml

CDL have also been advocating on environmental sustainability in Singapore’s built environment to prevent pollution to the environment, and to apply environmentally-friendly practices in their operations. Therefore, i feel that CDL has great CSR as they focus on many aspects such as the environment, the community, and their charitable donations to help the needy. Companies in Singapore and around the world should use CDL as their role model and learn from them, so as to promote good CSR which will benefit both their company and the environment.

More information on their CSR and their work can be seen on their website at

http://www.cdl.com.sg/app/cdl/csr_and_sustainability/csr_philosophy.xml

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Global Voices

After reading through a couple of articles on the website, i read one particular one which was about a Syrian woman whom fled her country to Europe as a refugee. Reading through parts of her journey and the different stages she went through before reaching Germany really made me feel bad for the Syrian refugees or any refugees out there in the world, because i felt that no one deserved to be treated in that manner. Their struggles made me realize how blessed i am to be living in Singapore, not having to suffer these kinds of situations.

The name of the article was called “The Day I Became Just a Stupid Number”: One Syrian Refugee’s Journey to Europe. The essay in the article was written by Zozan Khaled Musa, whom is 25 years old, she talks about the hardships she had to go through to Turkey, to Greece and to Southern Europe to reach Germany.Zozan Khaled Musa

There were many instances where she and the rest of the refugees was being treated inhumanly. For instance, instead of registering their names on the list, they wrote numbers on their hands as if they just represent a number to them. Also, the people handling the refugees were unfair as some people had been waiting for a long time, however the security guards were letting newer ones in before them. He even said “You seem nervous. If you want, you can go back to your country and stay there,” These refugees were treated as if they had no human rights at all, like they had to shut up and   listen to their orders just because they were refugees, which made me feel really angry and annoyed that they were getting this kinds of treatment. She also said that “It was a shock to see thousands of people waiting and pushing each other, and how badly everyone was being treated by the Serbian police. It is an experience you would never want to go through unless you are truly desperate.” Many of these refugees had to wait for days while sleeping on the streets  just to get a registration paper which i felt was ridiculous, as this shows how inefficient they are in handling the refugees, its as if they simply do not care about this people.

Article Website: (https://globalvoices.org/2016/06/11/the-day-i-became-just-a-stupid-number-one-syrian-refugees-journey-to-europe/)

Why i chose this story?

After reading her last few sentences in the article which says”I put myself in their shoes. It’s hurtful when you see others look at you in a certain way, assuming that you came because of poverty. That’s what most people think of the word “refugee.” ”

Many people think that if you’re a refugee, it means that you’re poor, which is why you flee your country. This is a wrong perception that should definitely be changed because there are many reasons why people would want to flee their country.

The reasons are: 

  1. They’re forced to flee persecution for their political or religious beliefs, ethnicity, nationality or membership of a particular social group.
  2. They are compelled to leave the country as a result of war.
  3. Because of natural disasters occurring increasingly as a consequence of climate change.

Website: (https://www.oxfam.org.au/what-we-do/emergencies/refugees/)

I feel that the government should make more efforts in helping these refugees around the world, be it accepting them to their country, providing basic necessities and shelter, or even raising awareness to stop the discrimination which these refugees do not deserve at all.

After researching for organisations that are helping the refugees in Syria due to the war, i found out one in particular called Islamic Relief Singapore. They are raising a lot of money to provide the people with an education, food for survival, emergency relief, livelihood, water and many more. You can learn more about whats happening to these refugees and how we can help them by checking out their website at http://www.islamic-relief.sg/

To conclude, i feel that more should be done to help all these refugees around the world, especially the ones in Syria as they are in desperate need of help, and i feel that we can all do our part in little ways to help ease their suffering.

 

 

 

Made in Singapore

I did some research on some of the inventions created by Singaporeans and some of these inventions have surprised me! I never knew that there were so many interesting and unique inventions created by Singaporeans.

One interesting invention is the Rotimatic, which is a microwave-sized instant chappati-maker which can make one warm roti in about a minute. This invention was created by an India-born lady called Ms Pranoti Israni, who is now a Singapore citizen. The Rotimatic won the Start-Up@Singapore 2009 Business Plan Competition organised by National University of Singapore Entrepreneurship Society when it was first unveiled to the public. This product became widely used in Singapore, India and the United States when thousands was sold online, making their company, Zimplistic, earn a total of 5 million dollars. I find this invention a smart one as it allows anyone to make their own roti or chappati at home, instead of going out just to purchase one. The product is also very efficient as the machine would do most of the work while the user can just wait for the food to be cooked. (http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/successful-made-in-singapore-tech-products)

rotimatic

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/fZOR8QesD5nA8JiFQ9uT8MWYlNgxZL37dPWncsPO7bcIGvWq-wU6Nna_150YEup_n0JUeA=s170

The second interesting invention is the CreoPop, which is a 3D printing pen that solidifies ink using UV Light. This invention would definitely attract kids to use as they would be able to use their imagination to draw whatever they like in a safe way, because it does not melt plastic. The Singapore company has also promised a magnetic ink, ink that changes color based on temperature, ink with aroma, and even ink which conducts electricity, stretches, or glows in the dark. I find this invention really cool and interesting as i never knew it was even possible to create. This shows that the possibilities are endless and how creative we can be in creating new stuff.(https://www.techinasia.com/5-innovative-gadgets-proudly-designed-singapore)

creopop 3d printing pen

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/0jAXkSKmq5F0OcVC_bFnoYmcmKWDbKZ2tO4boe_NMuHWzE8C0oYf40Ae6fUYIBEYUi659A=s158

However, my favorite Singapore invention would be the E-skin. The invention is still in progress with many teams around the world involved in the project, however, Benjamin Tee is the first to develop the e-skin that self-heals at room temperature, is sensitive to different pressures, conducts electricity, and is flexible at the same time, which is a huge break-through. It is also probably the closest artificial thing to real skin at the moment.

electronic skin

Image Link:  https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/QKRpF8pAJYVopN95UNpxJAgdWGkyA2te5an4IQyGGdzRVZrepnNz5A4zMz-w31MPxfFKVGM=s170

For his research work, he recently became one of the ten regional finalists for the annual MIT Technology Review magazine’s 35 Innovators Under 35 list. If Tee succeeds in finding a partner and an investment to build a factory, he’s research could go beyond creating better prosthetic that mimic real limbs. He says that it might enable touchscreens that sense different pressures, batteries that are four times more efficient than the Lithium-ion ones used in smartphones, and a method of measuring brain pressure without needing to “put a giant stick into someone’s head.” The material he proposed to be used into making the skin would consist of silicon as it can hold more electricity than the carbon used in current batteries.

After reading this article, i felt really amazed that this invention could be possible to create. Also, it blows my mind that a Singaporean is leading through this research. Therefore, i felt that this invention was my favorite as it was very fascinating and would help many handicapped people around the world, if the product was to be made successful in the future.

What would i create if i was an inventor? 

Although i do not have anything specific that i would want to create, the first thing that came to my mind was to invent medicines which would cure diseases or cancer which is still incurable till to this day. It always fascinates me that researchers and scientists can invent this kinds of medicines to save many lives, and that made me look up to them. Therefore, i feel that if i was an inventor, i would definitely create medicines to cure people’s illnesses.

 

 

Unusual Occupations

What does unusual mean to me:

An unusual job to me is a job that is uncommon for people to undertake, however it is a interesting job that might interest me to undertake in the future.

One such occupation would be an archaeologist. 

Link of image: https://www.google.com.sg/search?q=archaeologist+singapore&biw=1920&bih=979&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&sqi=2&ved=0ahUKEwjYpp3BpNLNAhWKRo8KHTvgCTYQ_AUIBigB#tbm=isch&q=female+archaeologist+&imgrc=TtmRYvJFeAlU9M%3A

I feel that archaeologist is a very uncommon job, especially in Singapore as you often wouldn’t hear someone say that they would want to become an archaeologist. Also, it could be because Singapore is a tiny country, therefore there will be lesser artifacts to find and dig out. In other countries such as America, the country has a longer history and a much larger land space to dig out for artifacts. That is why many archaeologist are from other countries or would want to travel overseas to study and become archaeologists.

Ever since i started studying Geography in secondary school, i got really interested of the world around me, and this made me want to learn more about the Earth and the land forms around the world. Since i love geography and was also fascinated about history, i thought of becoming an archaeologist as i get to travel around the world in search of rare artifacts which would tell me more about the people who lived here long time ago. Digging and finding the artifacts would also be very exciting as i get to touch and look at the artifact upfront. Being an archaeologist can also help me expand my knowledge as i get to research and learn more about the artifacts and the way of life of the people in that particular era. Also, i would be able to make friends from other countries around the world and learn about their experiences and their interesting findings as an archaeologist.

I feel that being an archaeologist is an exciting job which i will never get bored of as i will always be in search of new artifacts and i will be travelling to new places. Therefore, one unusual occupation which i might undertake in the future would be an archaeologist.