Archive for April, 2011


April 24, 2011 Leave a comment

“bring ur laptop down and sit there..”
“tell me if there’s anything diff”

Sometimes you need someone to remind of you the important things in life.



Categories: Happenings


April 23, 2011 Leave a comment

For some reason I thought about Nian again. I visited her Xanga and then I found this on the sidebar

On some other day this would be funny to note. But this time, it all but adds an extra sting to the fact that she literally has no pulse. Sigh.

I still remember the day I heard the news. Jw told me on MSN while I was studying in my room in PGP. Year 1 Sem 1. And then I found out You Chuan knew her mother. Penang is, after all, a small place. I cried that very night, knowing that another has left us, never coming back. The following year in December I visited Penang. I met her mother. I told her I knew her daughter from AUSMAT. I could see the look on her face when I mentioned it. Despair. Distress. You name it, it was there. And today I still think about it, wondering what might have been if anyone of us did things a little differently. What if you hadn’t boarded the bus that day? What if you hadn’t taken the JPA offer. What if, what if, what if. But I guess in all this, we need to realize that what’s done is done. We cannot change the past. We can only learn from it and make the best out of the future. While some may think the Bible teaches that God controls our destiny, the truth is that ultimately our destiny depends on ourselves. God is there to help us, not to give us our destiny. We have to make a choice, whether for better or for worse.

As for Nianz, we miss you. At least, I do. Today you are remembered.

~Falcon, OUT!

Pre-Exam Press Conference

April 18, 2011 4 comments

Second semester final exam press conference.

Q: OK, so, final sem, final exam. This is pretty much your last finals. Tell us your thoughts.
A: Ah yes! I’ve been telling people, that was my final week, that was my final lecture as an undergrad, and now this will by my final finals! Haha. Great stuff. But yeah, it’s been a great experience over here. Learned a lot over the past four years, certainly matured a lot as well.

Q: A lot has happened over the past four years. Tell us some of your most memorable experiences.
A: Memorable experiences. Ahh, there’s so many memories to recall over here. Okay, first there is the first semester where we all gathered to discuss the solutions to the online quizzes. It was great times, back then.

There was also a time last semester where Science won the IFG Chess Tournament. It was really great for me because I was a huge part of the team and I felt I made a significant amount of contribution, which was good. In the last match we were up against our main competitor, Engineering. At that time we were leading by, I think half a point, so if we could manage a draw, that was it. For my match, I capitalized on blunders by my opponent and managed to go three pawns up in the opening. But then I blundered a whole piece back, and she came back into the game. I almost lost toward the end of the game, but with seconds remaining I managed to find a queen sac line to stave off her attack. In the end she panicked under time pressure and I managed to get back into the game. And then immediately I had a chance to either secure a draw or risk fighting for a win. I checked my team’s games, and we already had 1.5 points. So I decided to take the draw and secure first place, which was very satisfying for us.

Another time was in Sem 2 of Year 1 when I was really pleasantly surprised by my friends. Sue Ann had text me  asking for programming help. So I went to the place where they said we would meet, but when I arrived, the room was dark. I was puzzled. But I went in and then I saw the group of people there waiting for me with a candle-lit cake. It was amazing stuff. Also a similar thing happened in Sem 2 of Year 2, but that was a different group of people. Terry, Pey Hua and Heong Kong that time. Great stuff. Really fortunate to have great friends.

Of course, there was something else that happened this time round too, but I think I’ve said enough.

Q: Tell us about the people you’ve met. Anyone more significant than others?
A: Like I said, I’ve been really fortunate to have had awesome friends here. They’ve been really great. There’s the Maths gang – Xu Shen, Jia Wei, Pei Ying, Tina, Siow Chuen, Horace, Jie Shen, Kim Chuee, Xiao Chen, Sue Ann, Kai Yee, You Chuan – they were my first ever closest friends over here. We went through year 1 together. Certainly was an incredible experience. Later on there was Terry, and the our ex-classmates ah Hua and ah Guang came in. We spent a lot of year 2 together. Well, my year 2 at least. Their year 1. And then in year 3 we met seniors like AXG, ZYJ, Charlotte, NBKYZYJ, Shaox, and others. Great people.. we hanged out a lot for the past couple of years. Shared Ruffles and Lays, a lot of epic jokes and gain some great Mathematical insight from them. Really owe them a lot all these times.

There’s also some outstanding lecturers throughout our study here. VT and Wang Fei graced our year 1, preparing us for the mathematical storm that was to come. TKM traumatized us with Zorn’s Lemma, and then there was CHH. He was like a father figure to me, always guiding and helping me in every way, not only in maths but also in my character. I owe him a great deal, especially for those times he scolded me. Phenomenal really, it’s been.

Q: On to the exams then. Three papers this time round. Let’s start with Functional. Midterm not too good, do you think you can turn it around?
A: Yeah Functional has been neglected this whole while. It’s really hard to pay attention in class and not fall asleep if you know what I mean! But yeah the midterm wasn’t too good. Scored below the mean. In any case we are just planning to hopefully get an A+ this semester and not fail anything so as to graduate. So we’ll definitely do as best we can, but there really is nothing much to aim for at this point.

Q: So are you saying you wouldn’t mind a C+?
A: Well if before the exam you’d ask if I would take a C+, I’ll definitely say no. It will look bad on my transcript. I certainly don’t want that, no. A B- would be OK but I hope not to get it as well.

Q: So what would be a minimum you would take?
A: A B+ would suffice.

Q: Fair enough. On to topology. Above average scores for both midterms, in fact, way above average. Any chances for an A+?
A: Don’t know. This module seems to be our strong suit this time though. So we’ll be doing all we can to get it. There are a lot of good competitors here but we don’t want to be too concerned with what they’re doing. We just want to keep pushing and just hope for the best.

Q: Your third module is a GEM. What’s been going on there?
A: I have a third module? Haha, just kidding. Yeah I really don’t know what’s going on there. I haven’t attended any of the lectures save the first one. Anyway I’m not too concerned. We have 2 S/Us in hand and we plan to use one of them on this one, so not putting too much effort into it.

Q: So there have been rumors that you’ll be going off to UK for postgrad after this. Are these true? What are your future plans?
A: Yeah I got a conditional offer from Oxford. But it’s just a conditional offer so we don’t want to get our hopes up too high. We will let you know if anything definitive comes along, but at the moment we just want to focus on the exams.

Q: Have you accepted the offer then?
A: Yes, but like I said, it’s nothing definitive.

Q: What about immediate plans after the exams? Long break to look forward to?
A: Yeah looking forward to a long, long break, definitely. A lot of plans lined up, hopefully we’ll be disciplined enough to get them done.

Q: And what exactly are those plans?
A: Wouldn’t you like to know!

~Falcon, OUT!

God & Suffering & Tsunami Pt. II

April 16, 2011 Leave a comment

I think something that we need to keep in mind is that ultimately despite what happens, God continues to be in control. We often blame God when bad things happen to us, but when good things happen we give credit to ourselves. So some of us live our lives with the mentality that when bad things happen, blame God. When good things happen, praise yourself. But really, is this right?

The people today are not the only ones blaming God for the suffering in this world today. Job himself did that millenniums ago.  In Job 29,30 and 31, Job was accusing God of not doing His job right. He was practically saying, “God, this is not how You should be doing things.” Sounds familiar, eh? Yup. Today, we tend to do the same. We often blame God. We ask, “Why me?” and we accuse God of not being the loving God that He is supposed to be. Well then, what was God’s response? Let’s consider.

Job 38:1-3 reads, “Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said: “Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me.” Job felt that he knew how God should run this world.  So God came out of hiding, so to speak, and presented His case to Job, with the intention of showing him that he is in no place to question God.

God started of with the inanimate objects of the universe, like the foundations of the earth (vs. 4), the “morning stars” (vs. 7), the motion of the waves (vs. 8-11), the “doors of the shadow of death” (vs. 17), the “treasury of the snow” (vs. 22), the “path of the thunderbolt” (vs. 25), and so many others. Then God asked Job to consider the animate objects – the living things of the earth, how mysterious their behaviors are – so orderly, yet till today, we still cannot explain why. He used the example of how the behavior of an ostrich (Job 39:13-18), the strength of a horse (vs. 19-25), the flight patterns of a hawk (vs. 26), etc. God revealed to Job His infinite wisdom, proving to Job that he is but a small fry in the whole scheme of things. After all this, Job still held his ground. He said in Job 40:4-5, “Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer You? I lay my hand over my mouth. Once I have spoken, but I will not answer; yes, twice, but I will proceed no further.”

So God proceeded to reveal to him His two majestic creatures – the behemoth (Job 40:15-24), a creature of the land, and Leviathan, a creature of the sea (Job 41). God challenged Job to consider his creations, and know his place in all this.

Finally Job conceded, saying, “I know that You can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.” What do we learn from this then?

One lesson we can draw from this whole account is that we should never question the way God governs the world. Yes, there are some things we cannot understand, but ultimately, we are in no position to challenge God, but to be obedient and humble in His presence. Isaiah 55:8-9 tells us that God’s ways are higher than our ways, and so are His thoughts than ours.

So then we do not say, “Tsunami is God’s warning to ALL”, for nowhere in the Bible is that revealed, nor do we say, “God caused the tsunami, ” for we do not know if God caused it. Yes, He may have allowed it, but we do not know if He caused it, just like how we can make the decisions we make, and face its consequences – God allows it, but He is not responsible for it.

The conclusion thus, is this – God allows suffering in this world, but He isn’t necessarily responsible for it. He has set in place laws of nature, and if we try to go against it, we suffer the consequences. God will not suspend the laws just so things like natural disasters or terrorist attacks can be stopped, simply because that will cause chaos in this world, we would lose our faith in the laws of nature, in science itself! So let us not blame God for suffering, nor do we blame ourselves, but accept it as part and parcel of life, and get on with it!

Falcon, OUT~

God & Suffering & Tsunami

Currently there’s an earthquake happening in Japan. A second one. A tsunami has been triggered as well. It is at times like these that people ask, “If God is so good, then why does He allow such things to happen?” There are also people who say that tsunami happens because of people’s own actions. Who then is right and who is not? Some believers of the Bible say that “tsunami is God’s warning to all”. What’s THAT supposed to mean? The truth, in fact, lies somewhere between these two extremities.

A great place to start addressing this issue is the Bible. But where? The answer is clear. Where else has someone ever suffered so much in his life? That’s right – we go to Job.

Job, a servant of God, was praised so much by God in the presence of Satan. Satan challenged God, saying that if God were to take away all his blessings, Job will surely “curse You to Your face.” (Job 1:11; 2:5).

And so it was – the scene was set for Job to, within literal seconds, lose everything he ever had. And he did – his possessions, his children, even the support of his wife. Job was then accompanied by his three friends – Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar. They came to comfort and mourn with him (Job 2:11-13).

So now comes the discussion – why did Job suffer? Similarly, why do we suffer? In those days it was generally accepted that we suffer if we sin.  Conversely, if we suffer, it was because we sinned. That was the thought in the days of Job. Today, some people believe the same thing. That is why when evil befalls anyone, they think that it is punishment for that person for their sins. But is this the case? We do not have to be rocket scientists to know that this is a completely false statement.

Consider the 911 attacks. You say that the people within that tower on that day paid because of THEIR sins?!?! That’s outrageous! If so, then what about their families? They sinned too? Well, maybe so, but the whole thing makes no sense! 911 happened because of the terrorists! They lost their lives that day because of the terrorists! Not because of themselves! Therefore we see that suffering happens not entirely because of our own actions, but it is sometimes due to the decisions of others.

So what about natural disasters then? Did someone caused that?

…Continued in part II…

F1 2010 PC Gameplay

I’ve been dying to get my hands on the F12010 Game. Unfortunately my PC and my laptop are rubbish compared tot he requirements this game requires. But checking out this makes me wanna try out this game even more!! ARGH!!!!

Anyone care to spare me money for a better PC? Heh.

Falcon, OUT~

Categories: Buzzes in my head, F1