Firecrackers Again
Wednesday, November 24, 2004
Bastards who play with firecrackers middle of the night, in a condominium should be hung to death. Hundreds of students living here are busy studying for the upcoming exams, while others are already asleep. Other residents include foreigners, employees from companies nearby and families. The guys who set off these loud explosions are simply... I don't know. Just indescribable. No remorse, no regards, no sense! Plain playful. No point complaining the police - they can't do nuts. Firstly, there isn't any police station nearby. However, I must admit that they (the police) patrol the area pretty often (in Waja police cars). Like I said, patrolling the area - they watch the roads. Secondly, even if they come and check, they won't be able to trace those pricks. What's gotten into the brains of these people? And I thought firecrackers was banned in the country.

The next time you wanna buy a house, steer clear from places where students make up the majority of the residents.
Good Samaritan
Monday, November 22, 2004
Got an email from a reader, informing me about Living Gem's skewed (yes, "screwed (up)" is also applicable here) text box - apparently to the left, "chopping" off a fraction of the text box. As a result, some alphabets of each line went missing (overshot the screen's display area), despite having
maximized the window. And nope, there isn't any horizontal scrollbar in Living Gem either. I
blogged about a similar experience when I first accessed Living Gem from my old PC.

Y'see, I was keen on picking up CSS for my page - because I knew I could learn something from it. After reading articles and tutorials about CSS and "valid" html wrtiting, I felt that my html knowledge was totally tested - and applied to produce something different. Living Gem's design is actually a pre-designed template, sourced from Eris design. Modifications were made to include Blogspot's tags, etc. Further mods (almost a revamp) were made to validate (tidy up) the codes, too. As a result, Living Gem is now xhtml 1.0 Transitional! *Grins*

So what's keeping me up this late? I was tidying up my notes and books when I decided to just take a peep into my inbox. Gmail notifier wasn't running at that time. Thanks to Mr KY Wong, for pointing out the boo-boo.

Study Blues

I've always dreaded computer-related subjects: Data structuring, data processing, algorithms, computer design, architecture, and even programming. Come this Thursday - I'll have to squeeze every ounce out of my brain, as the subject requires alot of memorizing. Analog Communications is on the following day - and given the 24-hour separation between these two papers, I figured that I had to read up the latter first. I can't even tell how prepared am I for the papers. Just hope for the best - and may my lucky stars be with me. Ahead of the exams, I shall cut down on blogging (as well as reading others' blogs). (Uhm, did I just say "cut down"? Or did I say "stop"? ... Oh well ... )
Snatch Thieves' Deaths
Sunday, November 21, 2004
He rammed his motorcycle into a car and fell. Then, he was run over by another car. Sounds bad? He was a snatch thief - in his haste to escape. If he had escaped safely, it would be almost impossible to catch him. Snatch thieves change their motorcycles' registration numbers. Even if they don't, their bikes may not be theirs - they could be stolen bikes. Should snatch thieves be made to pay with their lives?

In July, a snatch thief was killed in a hit-and-run incident while trying to escape. This is interesting. Should the driver be even held liable for his death? You can imagine how it's like when snatch thief tries to escape after snatch - speeding and weaving in-and-out of traffic. I wonder if the poor driver will ever be identified. He/she must have freaked the hell out because of that. If it was me, it would help to know that the victim was a snatch thief.

In 2002, a snatch thief died after crashing into a lamp post, moments after snatching a woman's handbag. (Sourced from Malay Mail Online). Notice the year - 2002! You can tell how often snatch thieves die while trying to escape - Out of a zillion snatch thefts in 2 years, only three! On the other hand, innocent victims are killed because of these thieves. So the question again: Should snatch thieves be made to pay with their lives?

If you ask me, I'd say, "Yes, they should".
Malaysia's Recent Top 3 Boleh's
Thursday, November 18, 2004

A Malaysian Woman For A Yet Another Extraordinary Feat!

Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) lecturer, Datin Paduka Sharifah Mazlina Syed Abdul Kadir, 39, is set to become the first Asian woman to ski-sail from the South Pole to Hercules Inlet (western edge of Antarctica). She is to begin her 1,100km, 30-day solo expedition on the 4th of December. “I am mentally and physically prepared. I will be ski-sailing (skiing without poles and relying on a sail for propulsion) a minimum of 40km each day over a period of between seven and eight hours,'' she said. You can send your well-wishes to her through her website.

A Cup Of Teh-Tarik In Space, Anyone?

Fancy a trip to the outer space? Soon (or so it's claimed), space tourism will no longer be impossible, in Malaysia - with a cool fee of about RM70,000. Bristol Spaceplanes Ltd hopes to build Asia's first launch pad for space pods in Ipoh. The project would cost RM480million. If (ever) approved, the launch pad would be built for the RM100mil Ascender sub-orbital space plane. Your RM50,000-RM70,000 trip would bring you to an altitude of about of 100km, and back in about 90 minutes. You can't take more than a friend along in one trip, though. The plane only fits four: two crew members and two passengers.

Kancil Boleh!

Who ever said that Kancils are too small for practical use? Don't underestimate this Malaysian treasure - You can fit 15 passengers into two Kancils (7 in one, 8 in the other, presumably). Forget the Naza Ria or the Toyota Avanza. Kancil fits 8 alright! Not only that - the Kancil became an instant star when a couple was interrupted while having sex in the backseat of the woman's humble ride. I'm sure all of you remember this story. Poor 20-year-old woman (u'huh, she's my age!), and lucky mysterious boyfriend. This story shot to stardom a few months back. Remember the next time you're caught-in-the-act, don't panic or else you'll rise to instant fame. By the way, you can also count on the Kancil's toughness - The woman rammed into a police motorcycle, and drove for "several miles"!

Jokes aside, my condolences go to the family members of those who died in the Raya exodus.

Inhumane Crime
Sunday, November 14, 2004
I was taken aback when I learnt that snatch theft victim, Sanorfizah Salleh, had succumbed to her injuries, last Wednesday. Such deaths should not have happened, what more to a helpless pregnant woman. She was 31. The expectant mother was attacked in Johor Baru, while on a motorcycle. Two men on another motorcycle came from behind and one of them snatched Sanorfizah's handbag from her bike's front carrier. Her ordeal didn't end there. One of the riders kicked her motorcycle, causing her to lose her balance and fall. Her head hit the road divider and, she fell unconscious.

Doctors had to perform a Caesarian section to save her son, and other operations to remove a blood clot in her brain. Sanorfizah died without regaining consciousness 20 days after the incident. This year's Hari Raya could not taste any bitter for her husband, Azhar Ali, and her 6 children, including three-week-old Amirul Naim.

Snatch thefts are occuring more often than ever before. It could be the media hype, it could be the police report - Let alone unreported cases. The police should make things easier for victims who wish to make a police report. Time and again we hear things like "Kawasan itu bawah Shah Alam, I syorkan you pergi ke HQ di sana". What happened to computers? Aren't all stations linked in some network or something? Can't a police report be conveniently lodged near our residential area? My sis, for one, was a victim of 2 snatch thiefs more than a year ago. She was threatened with a knife of about 30cm, right outside my car porch. Thankfully, she was not harmed as she handed over to them her pouch, as requested - containing a few ringgits and her handphone. To lodge a report is a hassle in Malaysia. Susah is the word in Malay. Mafan is the word in Chinese.

My mom was once a victim too, also about a year ago. This goes to show how common snatch thefts have become in our country. Losses included cash, handphone, driving license, identity cards, ATM cards... everything. Mom put up a struggle before being pushed to the ground. She suffered some bruises as a result of that. Ask any family and they'll tell you that they, too, or relatives, colleagues or friends, were once snatch theft victims. It is quickly becoming our country's most popular crime, another one being rapes. What's worse is that, these incidents even take place in broad daylight. Aren't they afraid of being caught, recognized, or chased? I guess it doesn't take balls to commit a crime in broad daylight these days - just cover your face, change your motorbike number plate, do snatch-and-dash, and you're off. Criminals just aren't afraid anymore.

For Sanorfizah, having her handbag snatched was bad enough. The kick was certainly not necessary! It caused her her death. Such cowardly acts committed on a pregnant woman. Beasts. Rapes and snatch thefts are becoming a trend. Run-arounds during the process of lodging a police report don't help. Lenient punishments don't help. Unfriendly policemen don't help. (More often than not, if no important documents were lost, a victim may not even lodge any report.). It's epidemic.

Education might be the key to counter these crimes. But then again, looking at the youths, the 18-year-olds who hid weapons in their NS camps, I doubt that the situation will be any better in the future, anyway.
Ferrari F430
Friday, November 12, 2004

Dad came across a video streaming of the F430, and he told me to check it out as well. I knew Ferrari launched the much hyped F430 (a successor to the Ferrari 360 Modena) a coupla months back, but only today have I seen its video (5.4MB). There're more videos available out there, especially in forums (just do a random search at Google).

Its design is controversial - feature an Enzo tail, and a shark nose, many call it ugly. Whatever it may be, this car shares wind tunnel testing as well as aerodynamics design methods with Ferrari's Formula 1 division, which has, to date, won 6 championship titles.

The F430 features a 6-speed sequential manual gearbox (the conventional manual transmission is optional). The sequential gearbox - also dubbed the "F1" transmission - simply means it's a manual transmission minus the clutch pedal. Also noticeable is the engine Start button mounted on the wheel - a novelty.

490 horsepower at 8500rpm, 4.3-litre, new V8 engine. was quoted:

"For those who have never driven a Ferrari before, the engine starts at low speeds by making the sort of deep growl you expect from a race car. But as you mash the throttle, you don't get a predictable automotive "vroom vroom." Instead, you hear the growl develop slowly into a wail, and then into a piercing scream. Heard trackside at races, Ferraris emit a deafening banshee wail. In the driver's seat, thanks to that sky-high redline, you seem to hear the engine saying, "Go ahead. Keep pushing me. I dare you. You'll buckle before I do.""

Humongous ceramic brakes are used here, the same ones used on the Enzo. They weigh twice as heavy as conventional steel brakes. The F430 is fitted with 19" wheels, with optional Goodyear run-flat tires (which can run temporarily while punctured).

All pictures posted are high-resolution wallpaper jpegs. For a complete review, you may go here.

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