Monday, December 29, 2008

The truth is out there

Transport minister Raymond Lim tempered expectations that falling oil prices will translate into a similar drop in fares, saying that there is no direct correlation between the two.

Public transport companies however always state that rising oil prices were the main reason each time they applied for fare adjustment to the PTC. Below are those statements, direct from their own mouth. SBS Transit seems to be using the same template every year.

So who is telling the truth?


2008 - For FY2008, SMRT’s energy cost increased 18% to $89.7 million due mainly to higher electricity and diesel prices. Of the $89.7 million, electricity cost accounted for $47.5 million, an increase of 19% compared to FY2007. Diesel costs for bus operations amounted to $42.2 million, 17% higher than last financial year

2007 - Electricity cost has increased by 26.3 per cent from $31.5 million in FY 2006 to $39.8 million in FY 2007. Cost pressures posed by the sustained high price of diesel is further compounded by a 3.8 per cent increase in the cost of diesel for SMRT Buses, from $34.2 million in FY 2006 to $35.5 million in FY 200

2006 - SMRT is still facing cost pressures, particularly the large and sustained increase in the price of diesel. Diesel cost has increased by 40% from $24.1 million (FY05) to $33.8 million (FY06).

2005 - During the past 3 years, SMRT's operating costs have also risen because of the increases in the statutory and operating fees, as well as high oil prices that continue to affect our electricity and diesel costs.

SBS Transit

2008 - Fuel and energy costs have, for example, increased significantly in the last year.

2007 - Due to significant cost increases, including record high fuel prices and rising manpower costs

2006 - Due to significant cost increases, led by the continuing rise in fuel costs. In the last year, energy costs have risen by over 40%, or nearly $30 million, compared to the year before. From the end of last year, we have been further required to use only ultra-low sulphur diesel which costs more. This alone will increase our fuel costs by another $2.2 million a year. At $101 million, or 18% of total operating costs, energy costs have become our largest expense after manpower costs.

2005 - Due to significant cost increases, including an unprecedented rise in fuel costs. Fuel costs for buses alone have risen from $39 million in 2002 to $55 million last year. Oil prices, which started off last year at about US$33 a barrel, have been rising strongly and is now trading in the region of US$50.

Rescuing Linksys WRT54G

Is your Linksys WRT54G power light blinking continuously and not in working order? If it is, then it simply means you most likely have been playing around with 3rd party firmware and the previous firmware was not properly flashed.

Have you tried to re flash it but problems still persist? Then the following rescue method applies if your Linksys WRT54G still respond to pings at its default IP. As long as your Linksys WRT54G is a v4 or below, then you're in luck.

Basically you will be doing the same thing, which is to re flash the firmware but this time use this particular one which you can find here. Instead of a .bin file, you will flashing a .trx file.

If you have never flash before, then you can follow these simplified steps.

1. Download the firmware from the link above.

2. Set up your system (PC or notebook) with static IP of

3. Connect your system to one of the 4 ports on the wireless router.

4. Open up a command prompt and go to the folder where the firmware you downloaded from the link above is located

5. Power up the router

6. Execute this command and wait till it is finished

tftp -i PUT openwrt-brcm-2.4-squashfs.trx

7. If the power light stops blinking, you've have successfully recovered your router!

You can access the router's management page through your web browser at

If you prefer to use back Linksys official firmware, just upgrade it through the web interface.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008


This is not exactly a InfoTech post but it does drives the message across. If the conventional don't work, maybe this will

Friday, December 19, 2008

Starhub Triple Freedom Pack Lite

It's quite a deal if you ask me. Below are the summarised details.

Terms and conditions

1. must not have any existing TV or MaxOnline contract.
2. minimum subscription of $38.52 to TV (including 3 basic groups or more and excluding set top box rental)
3. one year contract.


1. free HubStation rental for 3 months.
2. free MaxOnline SurfLite for one year (after which prevailing rates applies)
3. free home phone line with unlimited local calls (retain existing or get new number) as long as a subscription to TV or MaxOnline is maintained.
4. free voice enabled modem (for MaxOnline and home phone line)

Tips and tricks to get the most bang for your buck

1. If you do not need the free modem because you already have one, then you can exchange it for 3000 Starhub points. This is equivalent to 10 months of HubStation rental.
2. Choose the channels you like that are in promotion eg HBO pack which is 50% off for the first 3 months etc. After 3 months, change to other channels that are in promotion. Repeat again when promo is over. Take note that a $10.70 administrative charge applies so make sure the savings you made throughout the promo period is more than that.
3. Take the HubStation and enjoy the 3 months free rental. If you don't use any the HubStation recording function, return it after that and change your channels to include a digital channel which comes with free rental of a digital set top box.
4. After the one year contracts end, exchange your digital set top box to HubStation (if you are not already renting one), downgrade your channels to the basic 3 groups and terminate your MaxOnline. You got TV, free 1Mbps broadband on the HubStation and home phone line with unlimited local calls with the free modem, all for $34.24.

More details here

Thursday, December 4, 2008


This is a quote taken from Good Will Hunting and it's something good to remember when you are in a relationship.

"My wife use to fart when she was nervous. She also does all sorts of wonderful amazing things. She use to fart in her sleep. Sometime shit happens and it went so loud it woke the dog up. She woke up and gone like "Is that you?" I said "Ya". I didn't have the heart to tell her. She's been dead two years and that's the shit I remember. Wonderful stuff you know. Little things like that but those are the things I miss the most. All the little idiosyncrasies that only I know about. That's what made her my wife. And she had the goods on me too. She knows all my little peccadillos. People call these things imperfections. But they're not. That's the good stuff. And then we get to choose who we let in our weird little worlds"

"You're not perfect sport and let me save you the suspense: this girl you've met, she isn't perfect either but the question is whether or not you are perfect for each other. That's the whole deal. That's what intimacy is all about. Now you can know everything in the world sport but the only way you'll find out that is by giving it a shot"

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Thailand and democracy

I am all for democracy which we can do more with here.

Having said all that, what the Thais are doing is simply wrong.

Protest all you want but you cannot hold someone else hostage. By crippling the airport, you practically deny someone else of their rights, whatever it may be. How can you profess to be democratic when your actions are contrary?

Democracy is not about chaos. That's is reserved for a revolution.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jangan Pandang Belakang, in real life

Have you heard stories of ghost encounters where someone who drove or rode alone suddenly had a 'passenger' or a 'pillion' at the backseat in the form of a pontianak etc? Scary isn't it?

Well I got a story for you and this is scarier.

I was moving my movie reviews from Multiply over to this site and when it was time for the movie review of 'Jangan Pandang Belakang', I realised it did not come with a movie poster attached like all the other movie reviews I have so far.

So I went looking for one and I found something will give me nightmares for many years to come. Coincidence that I found it while looking for material for a horror movie? I think not.

Long story short, if this is were to happen to me, it would scare the crap out of me more than any pontianak can.

Think you're not afraid of anything? Then I dare you take a look at this

ps - I am not responsible for any distraught you may experience as result of this post.

Jangan Pandang Belakang

A man investigates the mysterious death of his fiancee and discover more than he bargained for.

Rose commit suicide and her boyfriend Darma as well as her twin sister Seri never believe for one second that Rose will take the easy way out. After tracing back what actually happened to Rose, they find evidences that suggest supernatural intervention.

I think I am not the only one who is sick with horror movies from the west. It is either a slasher flick or some mystery that cheats the audience in the end. Asians have loads of creepy tales that send chills down the spine, just verbally. Can you imagine how scary it can be with visual aids?

After reading mixed reviews of this movie, I guess it was worth to check it out even though I can almost immediately expect the worse. I was not wrong

This movie is way overrated, way too much. It's bad in many ways. The sequence is bad; some scenes were simply redundant or non coherent; storyline is pretty much loose and non-contiguous; bad acting. I can go on. To its credit, there are two scenes which I feel were genuinely scary. But when compiled as a whole, even that cannot save the movie.

I understand that it is not easy especially for our Malay film industry to embark on a new genre like this. With pretty much minimal expertise in the area iof special effects, it is even harder. But like I said earlier, if ghost stories from this region can scare the crap out of you just verbally, why the need for elaborate visual effects?

I feel that there are many ways this movie can be improved.

First of all, better actors please.

Next, clean up the storyline. If it is meant to be simple, then make it as it should be. Why the need for the security guard to have so many lines and giving impression of importance when in the end he was not even necessary. Why have cartoonish characters like the bus driver?

Camera angle in my opinion can and should be exploited further particularly for horror films. The thing about ghost is the fact that it scares us with thoughts of how it looks like. When shown too much of it, especially with poor makeup, it then become an object of amusement rather than one that instills fear. With the right camera angle, viewers know it's there but with just glimpse of it, the rest is left to our wild imagination.

My dissapointment stems not only from viewers who can't tell horror from comedy and gave unrealistic ratings, but more from the fact that older Malay movies were of much better quality than this. Take for example Rahsia starring Noor Kumalasari. It a freaky show and it's stamped in my mind that I can still remember it till today, even after 20 years. Then there's Pengabdi Setan and Arwah Penasaran, both Indonesian films. Those two scared the crap out of me way back then.

If it can't beat those 3 films I mentioned, especially in this day of age, with more technology at movie makers' disposal, than Jangan Pandang Belakang don't a deserve a mention, other than it was released with smart promotions.

Horror movie lovers should just forget about this movie. Like the title suggest, jangan pandang belakang. There is nothing to regret about missing it.