Sep 07

Closing Shop! 9 More Days. All Things Must Go Sale!

I was window shopping at Sunway Pyramid last night. I think the last time I’ve been there was a few years ago. I didn’t even know they have a new building now.

The thing that amazed me the most about this Sunway Pyramid shopping mall is their car parking system. Wow! I didn’t know we have such intelligent car parking systems in Malaysia. Each parking lot has a censor above it to detect if a vehicle is parked in it. A lamp above the lot will turn green if the parking lot is vacant and red if it is taken.

Now, I don’t want to sound like an idiot. My line of work is developing computer systems. Therefore, I am very aware that such a system is implementable. In fact, a few years back on the Nescafe Kick-Start programme, I remember one contestant had this same idea.

The reason why I was amazed isn’t because such a car parking system exists in Malaysia. It was simply because there is a company who is willing to invest money to prevent their customers from going berserk from hunting for a parking lot.

Anyway, my main blogging point isn’t Sunway Pyramid’s car parking system but what I saw while window shopping there. As always, when you are shopping with a group of girls, any shops with sales or discount signs will be a ‘stop’.

As they were happily doing their thing, I saw the sign the shop had in their window and couldn’t hold my laughter and just had to take some photos of it. I didn’t have my Nikon D40x with me so I borrowed my gf’s camera phone to take a snapshot of it. I don’t have Bluetooth or infrared dongle with me so I couldn’t transfer the photos over. Arggh…whatever.

Everything Cheap! Closing Shop Sale!

It seems like the shop was having an “All things must go!” sale. The sign shows that the sale will last for only 9 more days. I guess they were closing shop soon. Either that or it was just a sale gimmick.

No, I wasn’t laughing at them. I was definitely not laughing at them because they might be closing shop soon. I was thinking — If DS Anwar Ibrahim’s 16th September plan is really on track (give or take a few days or weeks), that means BN will be “closing shop” real soon.

If BN will be closing shop soon, are they having any cheap sales?

Aug 27

PR Vs BN: A case of Lampa-Palan?

So, DS Anwar Ibrahim won the Permatang Pauh by-election. I am sure the result does not surprise many. However, I was quite surprised that he still managed to win with a bigger majority compared to what his wife achieved on March 8th. Considering all the effort by the BN camp but still fail to make a single dent to the result is simply amazing to say the least.

Monkey drawings on a bananaIt was only a few days back when KJ (I think) confidently declared they are out to bury Anwar’s political career. Later, it was DPM DS Najib Tun Razak or the BN candidate (what is his name again?) that said they are confident of winning with 500 or 5000 majority. I am sure that they knew then that they didn’t stand a chance against Anwar. Their goal probably wasn’t to defeat him but just to reduce his winning majority. Despite all that, they still failed.

So now that Anwar has won the by-election, what is next?

Firstly, he is definitely on his way into Parliament and staying put for many years to come lest he ends up behind bars. Next, he may pull some tricks out of his magic bag ala David Copperfield style for the September 16th deadline. Then, maybe a few more cents reduced from the current petrol price together with other promises he made in the past.

The comments I have read and heard for the past few months have been mostly of supportive nature towards the PR camp. Call me a skeptic but I am in the group of people who doesn’t think BN or PR will make any much difference.

As I view it, politics is just another form of business. Politicians are the business owners, the people are the consumers and there are other shareholders/stakeholders.

A bunch of bananasOne company (A) has been monopolizing the market for over 50 years now. Then three smaller companies merged into one company (B). Their mission is to break the former company’s monopoly in the market and to try to monopolize it for the next 50 years or so.

You see, it really doesn’t matter who controls the market — company A or B. Company B may claim that they provide better service and quality products. At the end of the day, they are still businessmen. If there is only one thing in a businessman’s mind, it has got to be making money.

I don’t blame them. Like I said, politics is just like business. Unless and until politicians behave like they are running a nonprofit organization instead of a business, PR or BN makes no difference. PR or BN…will it become another case of lampa-palan?

Monkey eating banana pationately

Wait a minute. If politics become “nonprofit”, just who on earth would want to be in politics? Who am I kidding? Even a kid wouldn’t fall for that.

Jul 31

Malaysia Today Website Hacked?

It was a little strange to visit the Malaysia Today website moments ago only to find it going absolutely berserk. That is, the blog kept refreshing itself thus it was unable to display the content.

A quick check on the source code reveals the evil behind it all.

Malaysia Today website Hacked? 31/07/2008

<META http-equiv="refresh" content="0;URL=http://malaysia-today.net/2008/">

One line of code that did some minor harm (considering that it only happened for a couple of minutes).

What the code does:
When you load the Malaysia Today website, the code tells the browser to open up the link http://malaysia-today.net/2008/ in 0 seconds — which literally means immediately. When you reach the above link, which is the same Malaysia Today website, the same code appears thus calling the browser to constantly refresh itself.

That was the cause of the website refreshing itself madly as if it was having mad cow disease. Here is a link to Wikipedia on Meta Refresh.

I wonder if someone managed to tamper with the website’s files or someone within the MT-TEAM screwed up badly.

I am not sure what could have happened to the website if this were to happen for a longer period of time. During the election period back in March, the Malaysiakini website was inaccessible (through the domain name) because the DNS servers blocked requests to Malaysiakini.com after receiving an enormous amount of request in such a short period of time. The same thing could or could not have happened to MT.

**********

Ah, just when I was about to publish this post, the Malaysia Today website is doing the mad cow dance again.

Someone screwed up or someone is being screwed?

Jul 08

Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) Obscene Gesture

Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) Obscene GestureCaught on tape but RTM is not releasing it. Anyone recorded the parliament session where Bung Mokhtar Radin was alleged to have shown the ‘palm hitting a clenched fist’ gesture? If I had it, I will make a deal with one of the online papers.

It should be worth some money. Maybe I can buy a packet of nasi lemak or something.

If you are so innocent and have no idea what the ‘palm hitting a clenched fist’ is, just take a look at the video below. Finding this video as an example was easy. In fact, this video featuring present/former(?) MB Pahang Adnan Yaakob immediately came into my mind.

Well, I could be wrong though since the video isn’t aired yet (if ever). I mean, I can’t think of any other ways a ‘palm hitting a clenched fist’ that looks obscene.

He denies doing the ‘palm hitting a clenched fist’ but instead said he was just “hitting his palm on the back of his other hand”. I wonder what that gesture is supposed to mean. Maybe he’s trying to be a trend-setter. Let’s see if this gesture catches on in the streets.

Jun 24

VVIP With Full Police Escort Using Cash Lane At Toll Plaza

I was over at a client’s place for a couple of hours yesterday. After two cups of hot mocha, lunch and some actual work done, I headed back to my office. When I was about to exit the PLUS Sungai Besi toll plaza, something rather strange happened.

Firstly, I noticed two policemen on their oversized motorbikes waiting beside the (blood sucking) toll booth. I quickly looked down to make sure I was wearing my seatbelt. It isn’t like I do not wear my seatbelt when I am driving. I just wanted to be 100% positive that I was wearing it. I was exhausted and didn’t want to have a coffee break chat with them.

Malaysia Police Officer White UniformI was having a good laugh at how one of their supposedly white police uniform was actually bluish-purplish white. It looks as if it was oversaturated in Photoshop or something. I have seen quite a few shirts like that back in my primary school years. I guess that’s why my mother always tells us not to mix white and colored clothing when washing.

Anyway, as I was paying for my toll ticket, I started hearing a loud siren behind me. I looked into the rear view mirror and saw a car with flashing lights behind me. It was either a police car or a black Proton Perdana (my memory is failing me right now). I started to panic and thought of what I needed to do next. My instant reaction was to get the hell out of the way for whoever was behind me but then I realized that I was at a toll booth. There is no place for me to squeeze into.

Malaysia Proton Perdana V6It was only less than 5 seconds later that I got my change and receipt from the toll booth attendant but it felt much longer than that. I snatched the coins from her hand and at the same time tried not to drop them. In that situation, opening the car door just to pick up a few cents is totally out of the question, although the price of petrol has risen sharply lately and the cost of some items has risen.

I stopped the car at the side of the road at the far left to have a better look at what was going on. It took me more or less 10 seconds to reach the side of the road — I had to cross 4 to 5 lanes before reaching there while making sure that I do not get hit by other vehicles. When I arrived there safely, I was still able to see the Proton Perdana passing by me. I couldn’t see exactly who was in the car but they were all dressed in suit and all — official VVIP looking.

Malaysia Toll Touch 'N Go Smart TagThen all of a sudden, all the dots seem to connect and I realized why I was feeling strange earlier on. Why on earth were they using the manual cash lane booth? One of the purposes of having police escort is to allow the VVIPs to zig-zag across the traffic without stopping. I am sure if they have allocations for a police escort, they would be able to afford a Smart Tag device. At the very least, they should be using a Touch ‘N Go card.

CASH?!

Now thinking back, I should have come out from the car to ask for an autograph before driving off. Who knows, MB Selangor, Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim could have been in the car. Or maybe the PM? Deputy PM maybe?

Wait…Anwar Ibrahim! ;-)

Side note:

Why on earth is our parliamentarian cycling on a girl’s bicycle? Siap ada bakul lagi. Photo courtesy of Malaysiakini.

Malaysian parliamentarian cycling on a girl's bicycle

There are better ways to experience the real hardship the average Malaysian goes through in their daily lives. However, I feel that cycling isn’t one of them. Just how many people actually cycle? Try going to work with any public transport. Use the bus, LRT, KTM, etc. Make it a “surprise visit” thing. If the operators know before hand, it’ll be just a plain “cow-dang experiment”.

If taking motorized vehicles is too “grand”, try walking.