• 一本书,你看到的是空的那一页,还是既将被未知填满的精彩?

    A Blank Book- Do you see the blankness or the mysterious yet exciting pages that are going to fill up?

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Attended a course and was just thinking abt the issue of conserving Singapore's built heritage.

I believe many Singaporeans have a shared memory of wet markets and hawker centres as this are places that people in Singapore frequent daily.

Should the architecture of the wet markets and hawker centres be conserved?

Apart from Lau Pak Sat at Raffles Place, many of the wet markets and hawker centres seems to be utilitarian in nature. That may seem to suggest that the architecture may not be worthwhile for conservation.

However, I have another viewpoint which I'm pondering over.

When many of the Singaporeans become familiar with and accustomed to these 'utilitarian' buildings, does it make these building an iconic representation of what Singaporean would subconsciously link to wet market and hawker centres? If so, these buildings would form part of Singapore's common heritage shared by many generations. Therefore, it might be worthwhile to conserve such heritage.

I had another thought. What is the true essence of the wet markets and hawker centres that people associate with? Is it the structure? Or is it the people, the relationship between the residents and the stall holders, the culture of bargaining in the market or the familiarity of identifying with the way the daily sales goes on in the market?

This I am not sure. What do you think?

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(AP Photo/Mohammed Seeneen)

On 17 Oct 2009, the Maldives government held an underwater cabinet meeting to signal to the world that Maldives is a frontline state (in terms of being affected by climate change). "What we are trying to make people realize is that the Maldives is a frontline state. This is not merely an issue for the Maldives but for the world," President Mohammed Nasheed said.

This meeting is a bid to draw the international attention that melting polar ice caps could lead to sea level rise that could submerge this island state by this century. View the news via this link.

According to the IPCC report, many small island states are facing threat of partial or complete inundation by future rises in sea level, given their low elevation and small size. In addition, the small island states could be harmed by the increased intensity of cyclones. In addition, the ecosystem on the island is threatened. An estimated 30% of known threatened plant species are endemic to such islands, and 23% of bird species found on these islands are threatened (Nurse et al., 1998).

The report also mentioned that these small island states are only a few metres above present sea level. "Among the most vulnerable of these island states are the Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Tuvalu, Tonga, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Cook Islands (in the Pacific Ocean); Antigua and Nevis (in the Caribbean Sea); and the Maldives (in the Indian Ocean)."

The issue of climate change has far-reaching consequences to the environment and it knows no borders. It is scary to know that small island states might be completely inundated. This would cause socio-economic to the people living there. Should an island become submerged, the resident would have no choice but to move to another island. This might cause social tension in the other island. In addition, with the incoming sea water, water sources that resident rely on for consumption and living might be threatened.

Whatever we do, it affects the whole earth. We have to stand united as one EARTH and prevent further degradation to our environment, which invariably affects all of us. Instead of focusing on short term economy gains, there has to be long term vision to focus on the really urgent things. Without the necessary environment to survive, how is it possible to sustain the economy?

Watch the video here:


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In support of Blog Action Day against Climate Change




Some fundamental issues remain unresolved as humans enter the next phase to fight climate change. Sorry... Did i overstate it? 'next phase'? How far have we moved since Kyoto Protocol?

Every country seem to be hoping and demanding that the other countries would cut emissions, developing countries demanding developed countries to take responsibility for the effect of climate change and cut emission massively and to help developing countries fight climate change; developed countries emphasizing to developing countries that they should not follow the model of the developed countries as it is not sustainable. The developing country is concerned about developing their economy, improving their citizens’ standard of living (I mean in some of the country, of course can’t rule out corruption and other factors).

What is the fundamental and crucial issue? Have they thought abt it? Are we going on with the buckling, continuing with the massive consumption of energy, burning fossil fuels and continuing our lifestyles and argue with each other?

This century has seen the first time that the urban population in the world being more than the rural population. It seems that there could be potentially greater demand on the eco-system by rapid urbanization. (to avoid me writing too much… I won’t elaborate in this post)

The More Crucial and Fundamental Issue
I think the most crucial issue is with the value system we placed in things- the value system of economics, development, earth's resources and our place in the whole system.
Most importantly, I believe we should reflect on the value we placed or tag on things we use. We should evolve the current economic system to reflect the true value of goods to include environmental costs. Environmental costs includes the following:
1. Cost on the environment through extraction of raw materials
2. Cost on the ecosystem that results from lost of biodiversity and natural habitat
3. Cost on the environment through transportation of the raw materials (release of greenhouse gases and other harmful gases by planes, trucks)
4. Cost on environment in the process of manufacturing the product (waste generated, energy used and release of greenhouse gases and other harmful gases by planes, trucks etc)
5. Cost on environment through publicising and packaging the product (printing uses paper; posters uses ink which comes from fossil fuel etc)
6. Cost on environment by deposing the waste after the product is used (landfill, incineration etc possibly produces harmful gas and greenhouse gases, not to forget that it takes up land which could possibly have been natural habitats)
These are just some potential implications and cost on the environment but… this is not the end of the cycle.

With the active publicity for products, more people are tempted to buy the products. What happens next? More waste! Imagine the handphones, bottles etc which got thrown away when people changed or “upgrade” their products.

What can we do?
I see potential solutions in various ways.
1. Global consensus and pressure to change lifestyle habits and most importantly the way economic system works.
2. Nation led effort to change lifestyle habits
3. From the people, change the way we view things we use in our daily lives. Think of innovative ways to give a used item a 2nd and potentially 3rd life. Buy local products to avoid having products flown from other countries (burning fossil fuel in the process).

Let’s act on it now! Fight Climate Change!

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The Blog Action Day 2009 is here! This year is on Climate Change!
Let's support them on 15 Oct 2009!



From Blog Action Day Website: http://www.blogactionday.org
"Blog Action Day is an annual event that unites the world's bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day. Our aim is to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion.
 
Our Goal

First and last, the purpose of Blog Action Day is to create a discussion. We ask bloggers to take a single day out of their schedule and focus it on an important issue.

By doing so on the same day, the blogging community effectively changes the conversation on the web and focuses audiences around the globe on that issue.

Out of this discussion naturally flow ideas, advice, plans, and action. In 2007 on the theme of the Environment, we saw bloggers running environmental experiments, detailing innovative ideas on creating sustainable practices, and focusing their audience's attention on organizations and companies promoting green agendas. In 2008 we covered the theme of Poverty, and similarly focused the blogging community's energies around discussing the wide breadth of the issue from many perspectives and identifying innovative and unexpected solutions. This year we aim to do the same for Climate Change, an issue that threatens us all.

How You Can Help

From the smallest online journals to huge online magazines, Blog Action Day is about mass participation. Anyone is free to join in on Blog Action Day and there is no limit on the number of posts, the type of posts or the direction of thoughts and opinions."

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Dowloaded Richard Marx's "Now and Forever" from Nokia Music Store on Friday.

Felt nostalgia... The song brought about memories of my secondary school days... recall the school hall and the many huge wall paintings on Singapore's history... The very beautiful gardens... the times with my classmates... The school camp  that the class went to...

Miss them.... The school has since moved to a new premise...

Miss my classmates...

There are certain songs that will bring back memories as we have listened to it at certain point of our life... What's yours? And what memories does it bring back for you? 

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Came upon this exciting blog TODAY I SAW!

Check out the description of the blog: "I see something. I draw it. I send it to someone i like."

Woo! I had a similar idea to capture images of things I see everyday and posting it on my blog... but hee hee... too lazy to carry a camera around... looks weird to see a guy wearing long sleeve shirt and snapping photos... Haha... Thought of drawing out my thoughts and posting it on my blog too... but... hmm... my drawing skill is not very good... -.-''


Anyway, visit the "TODAY I SAW" blog! It's interesting! The drawings are nice! 
 "TODAY I SAW" blog: http://jillstodayisaw.blogspot.com/




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今天有位朋友问我2060年时,我会是多大年纪。
我收到这个简讯时,迟疑了一下。咦?她要干吗?

原来,她今天读了一则新闻报导说2060年时,地球气温可能上升4-10度。她感到很难过,因为到那时候,不知道还可以看到美丽的世界吗。。。

我误会她因为会老而难过,便说了一下的话。其实,她是因为世界可能不再和现在一样美丽而难过。

想起来,虽然是场误会,但不乏人生的反思。

我告诉她说生命是短暂的。人有生,必有死。
花朵盛开时是又美又香。但,它的生命是有限的。
蜡烛点亮时,照亮了周围。但,它的生命也是有限的。

人的生命也是有限的。

花朵在它有限的生命里,带给了世界芳香与美丽。
蜡烛在它有限的生命里,带给了世界光明。
 人的生命也是有限的,就要把握这有限的时光,燃烧自己的热忱。

~~~~~
最近读到一个故事。有一只鱼见到一片很香但有象泥土的东西,便问它是什么。这东西告诉鱼说它是片泥土。鱼儿听了,诧异地问泥土为何它会这么的香。泥土谦虚地回答说因为它曾在玫瑰园和玫瑰长时间相处,所以久而久之便芳香了起来。

是否曾经看过人们是怎么点燃一根根的蜡烛能?通常,如果已经有一根蜡烛已经点燃的话,人们便会用这根蜡烛的火点燃另一根蜡烛。

我们可否在有限的生命里发光发热,点燃别人的希望、热忱,照亮这个世界?

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Came upon this video when I am searching for information. Amazing young man who made a windmill from spare parts and scrap!



Visit this link for more info: http://www.ted.com/talks/william_kamkwamba_how_i_harnessed_the_wind.html

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Woo hoo...

Saw this giant moon cake at Albert Mall! Oh man, the moon cake festival (Mid Autumn Festival) is slowly approaching!



Compare the size of the moon cake to the surrounding!


 
 
“床前明月光, 疑是地上霜, 举头望明月, 低头思故乡 ”
《静夜思》, 李白

Mid Autumn festival is a time for gathering, family reunion. Remember to gather with your family members, friends to have a cup of tea, some moon cake and chit chat!

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很久前读了莱斯特布朗(Lester R. Brown) 的计划B 3.0 (Plan B 3.0)的开头的莫一章。是这样写到:"市场是一个难以置信的制度。它能够以没有任何中央策划机构能比美有效地分配资源,而且可以轻易地平衡供与需。但是,它有一些基本的弱点。这弱点就是在计算生产物品的价格时,没把非直接的成本包括在内。它没正确地评估大自然所给于的服务(物资)。它也不尊重大自然系统的可持续产量户限。它也倾向短期的情况而非长期的情况,并且忽略了对下一代应响。"(原文:"The market is in many ways an incredible institution. It allocates resources with an efficiency that no central planning body can match and it easily balances supply and demand. The market has some fundamental weaknesses, however. It does not incorporate into prices the indirect costs of producing goods. It does not value nature’s services properly. And it does not respect the sustainable yield thresholds of natural systems. It also favors the near term over the long term, showing little concern for future generations." (pp7, Lester R. Brown, Entering A New World, A Massive Market Failure))

鸿观其言

依据布朗先生所言,鸿观的息考就会发现所言其实。看一看我们现今社会的物质文明,其重点在于大量生产以取得经济效益。因为工业化,物品得以大量地生产。一个模就可以制造出成千上万一模一样的物品。人们已不许要手工制造许多的东西。物品充斥着市场,人们也廉价地购买。但是,物品大量的生产带来应响甚远。其一,大量的生产消耗了大自然大量的物资。采矿,伐林都对自然系统造成伤害,并导致系统不平衡。其二,大量的物品造成了许多的垃圾,造成环境的污染,进一步伤害大自然。其三,价廉的物品造成了不必要的浪费。设想,在物资缺乏的年代,人们在用每一件东西时都特别珍惜,一样物品可以重复使用许多年。反观现在,物品替换的次数频繁。例如人人不离手的手机。同一个品牌,一个月内就有三四种机款推出。消费者也频频更换手机。

自我反省

是否应该乘我们还有时间挽救全球气候变化,从新息考我们的生活习惯?

写这编“文章”并不是要指责任何人,因为我也是有浪费物资。只希望把我所读到的一些资料和自己的感想分享,对自己、他人有所启发。写着写着,我也是自我反省。写的时后,也觉得有所惭愧,因为毕竟自己作的也不是很好,不好意思写这些话题。但又不想把这个想法收藏起来。不吐不快啊! 我也是正在摸索如何更好地使用物资、并减少浪费。正在努力当中。。。大家一起努力吧!

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今天部落格开张!今天也是地藏菩萨圣诞!




地藏菩萨是我从小到大都非常喜欢、尊敬的一位伟大的菩萨。看着地藏菩萨慈祥的金容,我心里感到非常的平和。:)所以,趁着地藏菩萨的圣诞,设立想了很久的部落格!

地藏菩萨(Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva)是四大菩萨之一。在中国,地藏菩萨的道场是安微省青陽县九华山。

以下是从维基百科转载关于地藏菩萨的一些资料:
地藏菩薩(梵文:क्षितिगर्भ,Kṣitigarbha),或稱地藏王菩薩,曾音譯為「乞叉底蘗沙」。因其「安忍不動如大地,靜慮深密如秘藏」,故名地藏。為佛教四大菩薩之一,與觀音、文殊、普賢一起,深受世人敬仰。以其「久遠劫來屢發弘願」,故被尊稱為大願地藏王菩薩
~~~~~

今天就写到这里!

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