Thursday, June 26

The joys of reviewing papers

Reviewing papers that were submitted for journals is always a tedious thing. First of all, because the deadline for the review is so far away from the moment you receive the paper, you usually end up reviewing it in the last 20 minutes or so before the review is due. Secondly, it is so unbelievably BORING to read 30 pages or so about other people's work. We did this, bla bla bla and then we did this bla bla bla, not like that guy did it but like this bla bla bla. But not when you review papers that were written by authors (like myself) for whom English is a second language. Even more so if you read papers that were translated (using a translator) from Chinese to English, or papers whose authors are definitely Chinese (or german for that matter, or thai). You can tell by the way the phrases are constructed and so on :) A few examples, even though these are not by far the best :))

However, the separation also leads to much bewilderment in the process of assembling systems. (bewilderment? wtf?)

First, the composition of quality properties is even impossible or it is possible but not at the same phase as that of functionalities, which makes it difficult to reason ...

Second, it is a paradox that dealing with the functional and quality of requirements of components separately.

The approach allowed designing and developing a software tool for devs modeling and simulation.

... besides the underlying network connectivity, the causally entering or quit of autonomous software entities may dramatically impact on the availability of software systems as well since the availabilities of autonomous entities may change over time and they are even unpredictable to some extent.

An AC had better be reused and assembled like a traditional component and it implements a collection of interfaces as a traditional component so that users could invoke its services.

Tuesday, June 24

A man in a line

I went today to the Thai embassy to get my visa since I am leaving for Railay on Sunday, woo hooo!!! Queued up because I was early as usual. Behind me, there was this caucasian man in about his sixties, short but fit. Started a conversation with me even though I was evidently listening to music :) He was from New Zealand but had been living in Thailand for a LONG time. Boat builder and English Teacher. He told me how he was the first white guy the townspeople of Lopang or Lampang had seen in ages. He was with some poverty organization that paid him to teach English to people in Thailand free of charge. People would still try to pay him money and would shove 100 Baht in his pockets to which he would give back 80 baht. Then when he would get home he would find food on his porch.

He said that the bar girls found it unbelievable that he would not drink or sleep with them, but instead he would take them outside, sit on the sidewalk and teach them english. It would be a great deal for somebody from that town to travel to Bangkok, but when he left 30 people showed him off to the airport. Talk about life with a meaning, huh?

He said that when he came to Singapore 35 years ago, he had long hair down to his hips (rocker, playing in a band) and that one of his friends told him to wear a t-shirt instead of a shirt. Why? Because in order to exit the airport and enter Singapore he had to have his hair cut. Now that he had a t-shirt on, they only cut it to t-shirt level. Had it been a shirt with a collar, they would have cut it much shorter.

Monday, June 23


Woohoo!!!! Last night just got a text message from NitA!!!!!!! Kumaran and Terence reached Uhuru peak and the rest of them reached Stellar point, 140m below the peak! I don't know more yet, but will update with stories and pics just as soon as i get them! I can't wait to hear the whole story!!

Thursday, June 19

Shrub, just go fuck yourself

And this does the "shrub" disservice: even shrubs have better sense than what I am reading:
President George W Bush has called on Congress to end a 27-year ban on drilling for oil in US coastal waters, to reduce dependence on imports. [...] In a news conference at the White House, Mr Bush told Congress there was "no excuse for delay" in lifting the ban.

"Families across the country are looking to Washington for a response," he said.

Environmentalists have reacted with alarm to Mr Bush's call, arguing that off-shore drilling would take at least a decade to have any effect on oil supply and would exacerbate climate change.
"We are in this situation because of our dependence on traditional petroleum-based oil," said California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican.

He advocated "new technologies and new fuel choices for consumers" instead.

Mr Bush, who has repeatedly pushed for an end to the ban, has accused Democrats of using their control of Congress to undermine attempts to boost domestic oil production.

The president also renewed his call on Wednesday for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to be opened up to drilling.

Wednesday, June 18


Happie happie! Not only has Marian returned from san francisco, a reason to be happy in itself, BUTT! I have a lot of wonderful presents which I am here to boast about.

Fiirst, a sports watch: Tada!! Useful functions like timer, stopwatch and alarm. Nothing more, which makes it delightfully useful. Plus, it's blue!!

Theen, a Patagonia singlet to show my muscles in. Will only wear it when i will be able to climb 6b. Effortlessly. Or if I run out of outfits in Krabi, whichever comes first.

Next, my favorite (even though a bit hypocritical), a Save the planet Hard Rock cafe t-shirt. It's green, it's soft, it's wonderful! But it's made in China, hopefully not in some sweatshop (even though i suspect the opposite).

Then, a Nike+ sensor - must buy the iPod though.

Finishing off with a pink blouse from Levi's. Not the blonde pink, but still pink. I like it though (picture not available). Nothing beats the fact that Marian is home though. IR iz happie!!

Kilimanjaro team

Yes I am aware that there might not be any Internet cafes in the bloody safari but I so much want to know how Nita and Fen did! Why oh why can't they just reply to my email OR blog on their blogs? They are coming back on the 22nd, which is coming up soon, but still! I want to know!! If only I knew their home phone numbers ...

Monday, June 16

The skies have won

From Explorer's Web tribute to Inaki Ochoa:
A realist, Inaki had little hope for the future of Mount Everest. "80 years from now Everest will be climbed by helicopters and cable cars," he said. "In the lift, you will hear somebody say, 'Hey, remember years ago all those dumb-asses getting themselves killed in avalanches and storms?' And people will agree, smiling and shaking their heads in disbelief. Fortunately I’ll be gone."

Yes Inaki was careful, but he was no coward. "Comfort, security and money are the three modern Gods of our western civilized society," he said. "Everything is ergonomic, insured, and aimed to take least possible physical effort. The value of whether a thing is good or bad is determined by how much money you can make out of it."

"Himalayan climbing is regarded useless and stupid, because you have to sweat to make your dreams come true and because you might die - as if you would live forever were you not a climber."

The hill ...

It has been conquered. And down it went my friends ... Sunday morning when Mihai and Mariuca finally woke up (around 1pm), we went again to Bukit Timah nature reserve. Yup. I did the hill three times, running to the top and walking back. I only stopped the first time after the steeper slope because I had made a tactical error and ran too fast!! Which of course left me dead by the time I reached the nicer part :) When I was coming back from my second run a man in his fifties that was running the mellow part told me that he saw me running the steep part and "Congratulations, you're doing great!". I met him and his wife again when I was running the third time and he said "congratulations" again :) By that time that was the only thing that kept me going (that and the fact that I had told M&m that I will be running three times).

Saturday was a bad day for climbing. Do remind me never to climb when I'm tired. I could only trust myself to hold the really really big hand holds (think the size of my head) and to step on really big things. Truly horrible performance. For the easy peasy routes that I could do without a sweat last time, this time I was drenched and shaking like a leaf. Bugger. Sandra's climbing has improved a lot, she's inspiring me :)

Friday, June 13

Finally ...

After one year, I have managed to get to the Bukit Timah nature reserve and run! Yay!! Even though it was raining and we only ran uphill on the very first slope that we could see from the parking lot, it was great!! The slope is about 45-50 degrees steep, for the first 500 meteres and then maybe it reduces to 20 degrees for the next maybe 800 meters. To my shame, I did not run the 500 m steep one in the first go. This is because I didn't expect it to be soo long, so I nearly died when after the first corner I was greeted with the same steepness ... On the second try and after careful consideration and application of my strategy, I succeeded in running the whole 500 m. For Sunday, I plan to run the whole thing (till the hill top) three times. Can't wait!

The back of my thigh feels a bit stiff. This is because on Wednesday Mihai, Maria and I decided to go for a run. Only 1 km mind you (they are pretty out of shape), but then Mihai said we should do some sprints. And sprints we did. Imagine me trying to run fast ... It's like watching a beer barrel trying to roll itself on a flat surface ... Mihai and Maria have been so kind as to take care of me now that Marian is in San Francisco. This only means that I'm making the poor souls do much more sports than they would normally do. This together will late night watching of football matches has turned my brain to M.U.S.H. So today I am slacking in school, woo hoo!! Will catch up on Sunday, I swear.

Tuesday, June 10

Sleep deprivation, woo hoo!

Pathetic uneventful football last night. What I really am upset about is that because I watched the damn match until 02(fucking):30 am, I didn't get enough sleep. This has left me feeling drowsy and literally speechless - I cannot express myself in articulate phrases and I manage just by giving examples (like now). Just the perfect time for my supervisor to come take me to lunch woo hoo!! Yup. Managed not to make a total ass of myself but had we stayed longer, I would definitely have succeeded. Still sleepy now and with a tendency to procrastinate (e.g. blog and surf).

Monday, June 9

Long hair's a hassle

Yesterday morning was supposed to meet Shumei at Dover MRT station at 0620 to go for Singapore Passion Run (15km). Because by 0610 i was still in the bathroom trying to fix my hair with colorful clips such that when I run I don't look like this deranged ang moh hovering over her poor singaporean friend, I had to make a run for the mrt station which is one km away. So in the end ran 16 km yesterday. Yay! With a very good time also, 1hr:37 minutes, woohoo, we're good! The only bad point of the race was that the water (WATER) points didn't have water and 100Plus together, they only had one of them, with the last waterpoints stacking up only on 100Plus. Yuck. I hate 100Plus when I run because it leaves a taste in my mouth and is gassy.

Which left me hick-uping. Which lasted all the way back home and on the tennis courts where I played tennis for another hour and a half. Bad, uneventful tennis. Much like the Roland Garros final which I said last year that I will not watch again. Federer lost again. This time though, I did not hate Nadal as much. He played the best tennis on clay I have ever seen, and for once he was really a gentleman. Perhaps he is picking up something from Federer as well :)

Today was supposed to be leading! yay! Just that after one hour and a half of traveling to the wall, all I wanted to do was sit down and talk. To say nothing of the fact that when I saw the plastic tiles I wanted to cry for thailand again. After an hour or so, headed back (yet another hour). In an hour or so Romania will face France in the euro 2008 championship. We will lose, which will gain me 2 beers.

Been trying to get a hold of Tracy or lindsey to go for climbing and yoga and climbing respectively, but none of them answer. something must be up. Maybe it's just monday.

All is well. I can now tie a small pony tail. Mondays suck.

Friday, June 6

Climbing in Thailand (Photoblog)

We finally got there after a taxi from the airport to the bus terminal, 3 hrs bus to krabi, taxi to Ao Nammo pier, then boat to Railay east beach.

Then I made Marian go climbing immediately after we got our accommodations figured out and bought another guide book because we forgot my dear book in the bus. See the enthusiasm on his face.

Our resort was way too nice for the time we spent in it.

I even got to run on two occasions on the beach (I don't know how i will complete the race on sunday!!)

We climbed a lot of nice, easy routes. And we also took a kayak once to the sea! Very relaxing, although I insisted on taking Bobby. The sea was restless but we managed out of there safe and sound.

And took some Lord of the rings like pictures.

Even though the waves were big

some people kayaked much better than us. He even told us something but we didn't get it because of his french accent. Mais oui...

Had a rest at an island close to Pra Nang beach.

If you must know I was wondering if my blisters were going to soften because of the salted water.

Climbed Lord of the Thais and Mala Mujer. Both beautiful, long routes with marvelous views from the top.

We even met up with Kiat, our trainer for this semester, and his friends. Had lovely diners. Notice my knee tan (I do look silly, don't i?)

Went into Diamond cave and then to Pra Nang beach on the other side. Just lovely.

I know now that I can climb 6b. Rewarded myself with a mango sticky rice afterwards (notice I did not wash my hands).

Ate a lot of tom yam soup (i suspect the shrimp!)

Enjoyed the magnificent views both in Tonsai and Railey.

Had a lovely time all in all.

Side note: You can run marathons, do yoga, climb mountains, but NOTHING beats losing weight like good ol' diarrhea!!