Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tesla Roadster

Reactions:  

Sleek looks, classic style, deceptive speed and cutting-edge technological achievement of this green-powered cruise missile. This is the first electric car that deserves to be called a sports car.
  • It is 100% electric powered and doesn't need single drop of petrol to travel 245 miles (392 km).
  • It accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 4 seconds, beating an Aston Martin V-8 Vantage which took 5.1 seconds to hit that speed, while a Porsche 911 Turbo took 3.8. The Tesla's listed top speed exceeds 130 mph.
  • It can be recharged at home using normal 3-pins 240V electricity outlet and it takes 3.5 hours to fully recharge.
This roadster priced at $98,000. But, after options and accessories, the price approaches $110,000.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Kuala Terengganu

Reactions:  
Getting There
  • Option 1
  • We will be driving there via East Coast Expressway (ECE)
  • Journey is 350km and tol fee is RM24.90. It takes approximately 3 hours, Ling would probably says 90 mins. :D
  • ECE information is available here and map is attached below.
  • Option 2
  • Air Asia offer daily flights to Kuala Terengganu Airport. Journey by air takes approximately 45 minutes.
  • Home to KLIA -> 90 minutes.
  • Kuala Terengganu Air port to Hotel -> 60 minutes
  • I prefer option 1.
"East Coast Expressway Map"

Beach

Resort - Awana Kijal
  • Built and managed by Genting. Official web site here.
  • Reviews are good.
  • Another reviews.
  • Cost RM330 for 2 nights stay, inclusive of 2 breakfast and 1 dinner buffet
Things to do:
  1. Food - Seafood, local delicacy,
  2. Sports - water rafting(RM 370), canoeing in Kenyir Lake, table tennis(free), tennis(free)
  3. Seafood - Chukai, seafood, nasi dagang, aroma coffee, kaya toast
  4. See - night market, Fireflies sanctuary at Sungai Yak Yah
  5. Nature - Waterfall, hot spring,
  6. Walking, relaxing,

Total Cost:
  • About RM500, including food, accommodation and transportation.

Information:
  1. East Coast Expressway
  2. Terengganu Guide 1
  3. Terengganu Guide 2
  4. Local Delicacy: link 1, link 2
  5. Water Rafting: link 1, link 2
  6. Article
Thursday, September 06, 2007

Mortgage Crisis lead to Dollar Crisis

Reactions:  
Behind the Subprime Crash
by Robert Wallachby Robert Wallach

Market volatility in recent days prompts one to ask, "Just what is going on here?"
The quick answer is that Federal Reserve manipulation of the money supply causes these crisis periods when previously available Fed money is no longer available.
The long answer requires a very winding explanation.
The Federal Reserve, however, still plays a major role in the long answer.
The Federal Reserve has been pumping new money into the economy for decades. A lot of this new money, not surprisingly, has found its way into the mortgage markets. With Wall Street's "securitization" of the mortgage industry, close examination of mortgage borrowers disappeared. Banks and mortgage companies had incentives to originate mortgage loans, but since they sold the mortgages off (via securitization) they had no incentive to carefully weigh the risks of individual mortgages.
If you had a warm body, banks and mortgage companies only had incentive to figure out how to get you a loan. Bad credit, no problem. Can't afford to make monthly interest rate payments, no problem. Thus, we had the era of "no docs" mortgages and "Adjustable rate" mortgages with early year rates set sometimes at zero often times at 1%.
On the buying end of these securitized mortgages were institutions with faulty economic models. These models were quantitative in nature. As Austrian economists have warned many times, economics is a qualitative science, not a quantitative science. This is so because the world of human action contains no constants, when you are dealing with humans everything is a variable. The models designed by these institutions must therefore assume that some variable is a constant, since an equation with all variables just can't be.
Some of these variables will indeed over very long periods of time "act" like constants in their relationship with other factors and not change much. These are the variables that econometricians plug in as constants to design their equations. Every once and awhile one of these pseudo-constants begins to act up and act like a variable again. At such time, the variable will blow up the misplaced belief in the equation and quite possibly blow up an investment portfolio or even an entire economy. The designers and money managers who believe in these equations are in fact playing "Equation Roulette." The blow-ups can occur at any time.
The collapse of funds like Long Term Capital Management (Equations designed by Nobel Prize winning econometricians!) and the current hedge fund blow-ups (because of subprime mortgage investments held) always collapse because variables start to dance.
In the subprime mortgage arena, the variables are dancing.
The equations used as the data points of how mortgages would perform come from the data from the decades of the 1980's and 1990's, before securitization. So the models did not take into account the change in the way banks and mortgage firms would change the types of mortgages they would originate if they did not have to worry about the risk.
Thus, a market of nutty mortgages, with no docs and, goofy ARM's structures, developed, one that only an econometrician with nutty equations in hand would buy – encouraged by a Fed pumping money in so that real estate flippers could hide the fact the mortgages were nutty.
Along this happy road of Equation Roulette, before the subprime crisis started to bloom, the government stepped in with small changes in some regulations as to who could get mortgage financing. Naturally, the econometricians in their models didn't include for a change in regulations, but this change in regulations started the subprime crisis. At the margin, these regulation changes took out some of the real estate flippers. For the first time in decades, there was a small decline in the true number of real estate buyers.
The few smart, more detailed oriented, buyers of subprime paper picked this trend up and stopped buying the subprime paper. The Fed was still printing money, it was just starting to be re-directed. The smarter players just started to put their money into LBO's and private equity deals instead of mortgage securities.
The decline in subprime paper buyers, coupled with the regulation changes, formed the start of the subprime crisis in near perfect storm timing, since these factors dovetailed with the first zero percent and 1% ARM mortgages coming due for readjustment and the Fed notching interest rates up a bit.
This was a formula for disaster. Equation roulette was about to blow up another batch of econometricians. As default rates climbed, more and more subprime paper buyers backed away from the subprime market, until we have reached the point today where there is near zero liquidity in the subprime market.
The near zero liquidity of these highly leveraged funds has resulted in margin calls, panic, and some of these funds being forced to sell positions in other sectors of the market. But, this crisis is near over. The Fed has come to the "rescue." Just today it has pumped $19 billion in new reserves into the banking system by buying mortgage securities. My rough calculation suggests that over the last two days the Federal Reserve has pumped in enough new reserves to increase the money supply by somewhere between 10% and 15%.
This is a stunning number. The money supply in a year rarely grows by 10%, for it to do so in 48 hours is mind-boggling. Yes, the Fed has come to the rescue by further pushing the dollar on the road to collapse. While most eyes are on the current mortgage crisis, the bigger danger is the potential collapse of the dollar on foreign exchange markets. The dollar has been slowly falling in value against most currencies for a while. It is at multi-decade lows in some cases. I have feared a further major collapse of the dollar even before the Fed's moves over the last two days.
The mortgage crisis will pass. The Fed will print its way out of this crisis. But, the dollar crisis is ahead and the Fed won't be able to print its way out of that since it's been Fed money printing that is the cause of the world being flooded with dollars.
From the outrageous money printing that fueled the mortgage "boom" to the Fed "rescue," the Fed step by step is setting up the economy for inflation and a crash of the dollar that won't just affect mortgage holders and hedge funds, but anyone holding deteriorating dollars in their bank accounts and wallets.
Saturday, April 14, 2007

How to paint the MONA LISA with MS PAINT

Reactions:  
This guy is incredible. It is a piece of art to me.

He made a painting of the Mona Lisa using Microsoft paint, a simple program that can be found in Windows. Painting took 2hrs 30mins to complete. Following video plays in under 5 minutes






Friday, April 13, 2007

Comparison SSD and HDD boot time in Windows Vista

Reactions:  
HDD boot time is longer by 25~30 seconds . The speed difference is much bigger to boot Windows Vista then XP.

HDD is slower by 2 second for booting XP system. It is not very conclusive that SSD is faster than HDD as the specification of HDD used is unclear. I am curious whether Savio 15K rpm drive could beat SSD.
Monday, February 12, 2007

春节快乐

Reactions:  

新年快乐

新春如意

一帆风顺

恭喜发财

财源广进

龙马精神

身体健康

快高长大

聪明伶俐

一本万利

事事顺利

子孙满堂

风调雨顺

东成西就

Construction for MSC Cyberport City in Johor will commerce in July this year. The annouced investment amount so far is RM700mil (vs RM500mil from press statement last year), all from MSC Cyberport Sdn Bhd, in which the Johor Government holds 30 per cent equity. This latest 150-acre development is located at Kulai's Indahpura integrated township, 50km away from Singapore.

Ganesh Kumar Bangah, Chief executive officer of MSC Cyberport Sdn Bhd, says he plans attract leading IT-based companies from Singapore, Bangalore and the region to set up operations in the city. These companies will offer services such as software development, call centre operations, one-stop logistic outsourcing, bio-informatics and bio-technology development and Internet content creation and distribution. The State Government will set up a fully web-based one-stop centre to serve all requirements of companies located at Johor Cyberport.

Foreign companies enjoy following prvileges to run an operation in the city:
  • Unrestricted employment of local and foreign knowledge workers.
  • Exempted from local ownership requirements.
  • Freedom to source capital globally and the right to borrow funds globally.
  • Eligibility for R&D grants
  • No income tax for up to 10 years or an investment tax allowance, and no duties on import of multimedia equipment.
  • Ensure no Internet censorship.
  • Provide globally competitive telecommunications tariffs.
  • Tender key MSC Malaysia infrastructure contracts to leading companies willing to use the MSC Malaysia as their regional hub.
  • Green environment protected by strict zoning if located within the MSC Malaysia.

He expects MSC Cyberport City to attract about 100 companies in its first year of operation, and bring in RM300mil in investment.

It is still early to know how successful this project would be, how much threat would pose to Singapore IT industry, but it would certainly make IT industry more vibrant, by:

  • Opening more job opportunity to Malaysian IT graduate (UTM, Nilai College and nearby states)
  • Drive down IT development cost
  • Increase of transportation between Kulai and Singapore, and probably the 1st phase of high-speed KL-SIN train?

Let's wait and see if Johor MSC would be as successful as Ceberjaya.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

My Ideal Home

Reactions:  
Desa Park City in Kepong. The whole concept is very good. You get a 'landed' property with condominium facility like security, pools and nice landscaping. (of course, need to pay maintenance too). Need to invest more Toto in coming CNY. haha.


Posted by Picasa
Monday, January 29, 2007
Reactions:  
2004, 3rd Jan.. Louise's 1st day in school..


Now, 2006, 28th Dec, Gladsy and Leonard 1st day in school. They really grow up fast!


Posted by Picasa
Thursday, January 25, 2007

A Closer Look At The iPhone

Reactions:  
The picture zooming function is really cool! A great product.
Friday, January 19, 2007

Eye on Malaysia @ Tasik Titiwangsa.

Reactions:  
May be going there next week.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

National Animals

Reactions:  
Read this somewhere and find it so funny. If you do follow Malaysian news, you would know what is Mat-Rempit or Mat-Cermelang. ;)




I have been using NJStar for few years. There are many instance where I can't find a particular character and it's library is too small. Then I started to search web for a better software. I have been using 加加输入法 for sometime. It is very powerful and easy to use. Following are some but not all of advantage it offers:

  1. Type a character that you rarely use and unsure. For eg. to type in "麸". Normal method is key in "fu" and search the character page by page. Using 加加, simply type in "fu"+[Tab]+"m". !([Tab]意味着切换到拆字输入,“m”是"麸"字左半边"麦"字的声母.)
  2. Inputing Date and Time in Chinese. Simply key in "2000/1/28" and 加加 will convert it to "2000年1月28日" or "二○○○年一月二十八日".
  3. Extensive library from 成语,言语,历史名人,医学,法律 to 足球明星.

If you are looking for a better chinese input software, please give this a try!

On top of the sleek design, it comes with revolutionary user interface, including:

  1. Multi-touch - you can use both thumbs to operate the screen and perform scrolling and zomming.
  2. Intelligent Keyboard - more efficient to use than the small plastic keyboards on many smartphones.
  3. Advanced Sensors - detects when you rotate the device from portrait to landscape, then automatically changes the contents of the display. Also it detects when phone is near to ear and immediately turns off the display to save power and prevent inadvertent touches until iPhone is moved away.

Check out the video!!