Do you feel ill on Mondays?

[Published on 25 February, 2002]

British scientists believe they have come up with the answer to what we
have always suspected: That going to work makes you ill. They believe
that even the mere sight of the office is enough to trigger depression,
headaches and a cold.
The classic Monday-morning feeling that makes people want to stay in bed
rather than get up for work may not be just imagination but a real ailment
triggered by the workplace.
'Triggers' could include sounds and smells, particularly in factories from
heavy machinery or flashing lights, or merely the sight of an office building.
The research, funded by the Health and Safety Executive, will also compare
levels of illness in industrial places of work with those in offices.
Companies taking part will have to keep a detailed diary over the course
of the year, recording frequency and severity of illnesses, as well as
information about jobs and type of work.
Of those taking part, a smaller group of 25 people will be asked to provide
saliva swabs, which will be tested for the chemical cortisol, a natural
steroid hormone produced in the body.
This will give researchers the means to study any chemical change in
volunteers' immune systems which may be caused by the working environment.

British motorists confused by even the most simple road signs

[Published on 22 April, 2001]

Sixty per cent of British drivers stopped for a survey believe that the
"Beware of Cattle" road signs indicate areas infected with foot-and-mouth
disease.
The survey by the RAC Foundation found that half of all British motorists are
baffled by road signs.
Misinterpretations included a sign for toads crossing that was identified as
indicating a French restaurant.
Only 10 per cent recognised signs that a dual carriageway had ended, and 20
per cent thought that those ordering them to give way to oncoming vehicles
meant "one-way street ahead".
Five per cent said that signs warning of side winds meant "kite flying area",
while 50 per cent did not recognise the sign indicating an end to a speed limit.


AND NOW, THE SINGAPORE VERSION...

What the sign means: ACCIDENT AREA

What some wrongly think...



What the sign means: ROAD NARROWING

What some wrongly think...



What the sign means: SLIPPERY ROAD

What some wrongly think...



What the sign means: ROAD LEADING TO QUAY/SEA

What some wrongly think...



What the sign means: ERP ZONE AHEAD

What all correctly think...

New stink-bomb for crowd control

[Published on 7 July, 2001]
The Pentagon is developing a stink-bomb that would drive away
hostile crowds by unleashing an odour that creates panic in the ranks.
The new device will be part of a growing arsenal to tackle the increasing
number of violent protests against globalisation.
Researchers working on the project said there was a close link between a
particular kind of smell and fear, and that a particular odour could activate
tissue deep within the brain.
The aim would be to use such a smell to send demonstrators fleeing in panic.
"It would give us an offensive capability against large and unruly groups of
people, if they are unwilling to move or are openly hostile," a Pentagon
spokesman told the New Scientist magazine, which published details of the
invention this week. "And it would minimise the risk to our people and to the
antagonists."
Resolving situations like out-of-control crowds can be a dangerous process
for the police, suspects and bystanders alike.
To reduce the risk, scientists have tried to devise weapons that can be used
without deadly force.

US govt cyber experts advise browser switch

[Published on 2 July, 2004]
The United States government's cyberdefence experts, along with other computer
gurus, are urging users to consider a switch away from Microsoft's widely used
Internet Explorer (IE) because of new security problems.
The unusual - and for Microsoft, highly embarrassing - warning comes because
of a security hole that has allowed hackers to surreptitiously install software
on hundreds of websites that use Microsoft's Web server programs.
That, in turn, downloads spyware programs to personal computers, including
one that steals credit card numbers and other forms of financial information.
Most anti-virus software have been updated to block the specific program,
the JS.Scob Trojan, but Microsoft has not, so far, been able to inoculate IE
against the broad technique.
None of the most prominent alternative browsers, Opera, Mozilla or Netscape,
is vulnerable to the flaw. Nor are computers running Linux or the Macintosh
operating systems.
Another new threat emerged this week that might compromise the passwords and
account information of users who bank online.
It targets users of IE and can be picked up from pop-up ads that secretly
download software capable of capturing users' keystrokes.

Sentosa Sensations



Highlights of the $3 billion plan to make
Sentosa a more attractive getaway:


SENTOSA EXPRESS
A new air-conditioned rail system that takes visitors directly from the
HarbourFront MRT station at World Trade Centre onto the island.





ENTERTAINMENT ZONE



The island’s most vibrant area, with features like a waterfront village and
specialty retail shops.



SPA BOTANNICA (Beaufort Hotel)
Singapore’s first garden spa on a site the size of a football field.
It will have 14 indoor treatment rooms and six outdoor pavilions.





DANCE OF FIRE AND WATER SHOW
A pyrotechnic extravaganza, which will replace the musical fountain show.
Special effects include 12m-high fire jets and 10m-high water fountains.





MARITIME EXPERIENCE PREVIEW
Asia’s first interactive theatre show at the Images of Singapore forecourt,
it will take visitors on an "all sensory" journey through Singapore’s rich
maritime history.





GREEN BELT
Highlights include nature trails, an equestrian centre and spa resort.
And treetop accommodation.

No minimum pay needed for new credit card

[Published on 19 July, 2007]
A radically new type of credit card with no minimum income requirement and just
$500 in credit has arrived in Singapore.
Global banking giant Citibank yesterday launched Singapore’s first-ever credit
card that does away with the standard $30,000 minimum annual income
requirement.
The American bank is taking advantage of a recent regulatory change and will
start taking applications for its new Citi Clear Card from today. The card,
mainly aimed at students and other young adults, will have higher 28 per cent
interest on rollover balances.
University students will be the prime targets as they are more likely to embark
on well-paying careers on graduation, becoming potentially lucrative clients.
Indeed, tertiary students were highlighted as a target group by the three local
banks which are looking to launch similar credit cards soon.

Modern, but where is Singapore identity?

[Published on 1 May, 2002]

LETTER FROM A READER:
No doubt, both the Esplanade - Theatres On The Bay and the Supreme Court
building were designed by foreign architects chosen for their 'international
standing and design skills for innovative, world-class, award-winning
architecture'.
However, it is precisely architectural pieces such as these that have
rendered almost every major city in the world identical.
In fact, there are numerous so-called modern designs, such as the Shanghai
Arts and Performance Centre, that are similar in design to the new Supreme
Court.
Under the guise of modernisation and international design, these Western
styles of architecture have flooded Asian cities. Moreover, their presence is
reinforced by the authorities' idea that Westernisation equals modernisation.
Considering the fact that the Government is trying to retain places that are
meaningful and memorable to Singaporeans, the act of demolishing historic
buildings and replacing them with international icons negates, in effect, any
effort to create a unique Singaporean identity.