Monday, May 17, 2010

Baba Yetu - Civilization 4 theme music

Damn that's beautiful. Wonder how long it would take for me to learn how to say The Lord's Prayer in Swahili...

Baba yetu, yetu uliye
Mbinguni yetu, yetu, amina!
Baba yetu, yetu, uliye
Jina lako litukuzwe.

Utupe leo chakula chetu
Tunachohitaji utusamehe
Makosa yetu, hey!
Kama nasi tunavyowasamehe
Waliotukosea usitutie
Katika majaribu, lakini
Utuokoe, na yule, milelea milele!


Ufalme wako ufike utakalo
Lifanyike duniani kama mbinguni. (Amina)


Utupe leo chakula chetu
Tunachohitaji utusamehe
Makosa yetu, hey!
Kama nasi tunavyowasamehe
Waliotukosea usitutie
Katika majaribu, lakini
Utuokoe, na yule, simama mwehu

Baba yetu, yetu, uliye
Jina lako litukuzwe.

Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.

[For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.]

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I Was A Teenage Indie Actor

A long time ago, from many lifetimes away.

I was an indie actor.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Saving the world: It's a job for you.

Environmental protection and conservation that is. It's a job for me too.

As climate change and sustainable alternative energy resources dominate social conciousness for the next 30 years, humanity is quite obviously becoming more and more dependent on technology.

We may not be zipping around in warp-capable Starships yet, but we're certainly using more consumer electronic devices than ever. Though many tout amazing e-Reader devices like the Amazon Kindle as the way to reducing our carbon footprint and saving trees. Fact of the matter is, environmental scientists are just beginning to discover that these advances in eco-friendliness are ultimately set back when there are little avenues for electronics recycling.

"Truth is, tossing an old newspaper for recycling is still easier and more commonplace than electronics recycling."

The deeper you look, the more complex the issue becomes. Take Apple for example, one of the few firms to receive the Gold standard from the Environmental Protection Agency, its products are as friendly as it gets. However, with more batteries running on their popular mobile devices, the non-removable batteries will degrade and need replacing. Though Apple gets kudos for a take-back program to replace old batteries, fact is, after a few years, people are more likely to buy a new device than upgrade the batteries. This in turn, creates more waste.

Though more are turning to the ever expanding and hyper fresh media content of the internet, the death of print is still far from certain. The advent of television didn't herald the death of radio, nor did in-home VCRs hasten the demise of the cinema. Though intuitively, it seems that e-Readers like the Kindle will ultimately consume less energy than the multitudes of petrol guzzling chainsaws that harvest trees and the fleets of trucks that transport them- it's still difficult to draw any definitive conclusion.

A recent study conducted by The Center for Sustainable Communications in Stockholm, Sweden, compared reading a newspaper on a PC for 30 minutes with reading a printed newspaper. The results were surprising- There was no discernable difference in the carbon footprint between the two activities.

At the end of the day, I suppose it's up to us, the end-user to make the best choices we can possible.-JH

How you can do your part
The Apple Recycling Program offers free and environmentally friendly disposal of your Apple products.
In Singapore, you can contact designated Apple Recycler- Li Tong at
Internationally, you can locate your local Apple Recyclers here-

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Math of Pi Made Easy.

Why the hell don't they teach math this way?
Blogged without permission from Go read the damn thing yourself.

If you keep moving halfway to the wall, will you ever get there?
Something about this one was deeply frustrating, the thought of getting closer and closer and yet never quite making it. Another concern was the thinly veiled presence of infinity. To reach the wall you’d need to take an infinite number of steps, and by the end they’d become infinitesimally small. Whoa.

Questions like this have always caused headaches. Around 500 B.C., Zeno of Elea posed a set of paradoxes about infinity that puzzled generations of philosophers, and that may have been partly to blame for its banishment from mathematics for centuries to come. In Euclidean geometry, for example, the only constructions allowed were those that involved a finite number of steps. The infinite was considered too ineffable, too unfathomable, and too hard to make logically rigorous.

But Archimedes, the greatest mathematician of antiquity, realized the power of the infinite. He harnessed it to solve problems that were otherwise intractable, and in the process came close to inventing calculus — nearly 2,000 years before Newton and Leibniz.

Thanks to him, we have Pi.

Let’s recall what we mean by pi. It’s a ratio of two distances. One of them is the diameter, the distance across the circle through its center. The other is the circumference, the distance around the circle. Pi is defined as their ratio, the circumference divided by the diameter.

circle with diameter and circumference indicated

If you’re a careful thinker, you might be worried about something already. How do we know that pi is the same number for all circles? Could it be different for big circles and little circles? The answer is no, but the proof isn’t trivial.

The key to thinking mathematically about curved shapes is to pretend they’re made up of lots of little straight pieces. That’s not really true, but it works … as long as you take it to the limit and imagine infinitely many pieces, each infinitesimally small. That’s the crucial idea behind all of calculus.

Here’s one way to use it to find the area of a circle. Begin by chopping the area into four equal quarters, and rearrange them like so.

Four quarters of a circle on left, then rearranged on right

The strange scalloped shape on the bottom has the same area as the circle, though that might seem pretty uninformative since we don’t know its area either. But at least we know two important facts about it. First, the two arcs along its bottom have a combined length of πr, exactly half the circumference of the original circle (because the other half of the circumference is accounted for by the two arcs on top). Second, the straight sides of the slices have a length of r, since each of them was originally a radius of the circle.

Next, repeat the process, but this time with eight slices, stacked alternately as before.

Circle showing eight slices

The scalloped shape looks a bit less bizarre now. The arcs on the top and the bottom are still there, but they’re not as pronounced. Another improvement is the left and right sides of the scalloped shape don’t tilt as much as they used to. Despite these changes, the two facts above continue to hold: the arcs on the bottom still have a net length of πr, and each side still has a length of r. And of course the scalloped shape still has the same area as before — the area of the circle we’re seeking — since it’s just a rearrangement of the circle’s eight slices.

As we take more and more slices, something marvelous happens: the scalloped shape approaches a rectangle. The arcs become flatter and the sides become almost vertical.

Circle with many slices

In the limit of infinitely many slices, the shape is a rectangle. Just as before, the two facts still hold, which means this rectangle has a bottom of width πr and a side of height r.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

New threads. Newer Treads: Go to Pedro for new belts and shoes.

According to a much loved fashionista aunt of mine, Chinese New Year is a 15 day affair, that gives us many good reasons to continue shopping. Thanks to Pedro, looking for new accessories to complete our new looks is going to be less pain and a lot more pleasure.

Here are our top 10 picks

Spring/Summer 2010 collection from Pedro.

1. Conjure the reality of a nautical soiree evocative of the French Riviera onboard a luxury yacht and cavort in style this season with the Spring/Summer 2010 collection from Pedro. This season, grey is back.
Spring/Summer 2010 collection from Pedro.

2. Embark on a superlative voyage in fashion and discover the panorama of enchantment that awaits at your style destination. In this particular case, notice the Bally-alikes for those that love the look of Fiorio but not the $900 price tag.
Pedro tie and briefcase accessories

3. Deftly brought together to form an amazing amalgamation of texture, the effect is a sublime creation which has come to encompass the very essence of Pedro. Notice the attention to detail on the necktie.
Nothing says 'practical' like a dual purpose bag that doesn't look out of place in office or pleasure boat.

4. Unleash the perennial iridescence of metallics which spread the Midas touch alongside a sensory interpretation of the stalwarts of taupe and ebony.
Trophy girlfriend not included.

5. Blue loafers for that 'lady-killer' playboy look.
Look out for our "How to wear Colours" guide on at

6. The Angry Ho says it's too much. I say, if you're man enough- Go Fuschia.
Spring/Summer 2010 collection from Pedro.

7. It's odd how they've focused on his shoes and ignored what I believe to be a patent leather patchwork briefcase.

8. Call attention with a pair of striking blue trainers.
Belt from Pedro

9. Details on the belt that people are bound to notice.
Look out for the reptile skin design card holders.

10. Ratty, tattered looking wallet? Get a new one.

From belts to wallets to shoes, Pedro provides some of the best looking designs I've seen this season sans heavy price tags. -JH

Monday, March 8, 2010

History of the Shirt

The article of clothing often symbolizing elegance and refinement but also an expression of liberty, the shirt for centuries has accompanied and characterized the life of men. Worn by emperors, generals and by common people without distinction, with the passage of time it assumes different roles and meanings.

Until the time of the Italian Republic (1860s), as can be deduced from Latin sources, known by the term "subucula" the shirt had the function of modern undergarments. His historians report that Charles the Great "...wore directly on his person a shirt and pants of linen cotton." Men and women in the city and the country dressed in the same manner: shirt and long tunic with sleeves of different dimensions. The popularity of the shirt continuously increased and it became a gift object for both the privileged and the needy.

Beginning in the 1300s also art and literature give prominence to this top garment: in the canvases of many painters among which is Caravaggio, or in the literary works such as Boccaccio's Decameron, where often men and women wore shirts. We suppose therefore that its wide adoption was above all for reasons of hygiene.

Many cities became famous for their shirt production, such as Venice, where for the wedding of noblewoman Lucieta Gradenigo a "shirt of gold" was created. In the 1500s the true protagonist was the collar: from the small flat collars called French to the Italian version that took the form and name of "frill", to the "giorgiera" that required an enormous expanse of fabric up to 11 meters (36 ft.).

In 1843 at Montevideo in Italy the famous red shirt of the Garibaldini was born.
The shirt, its success constantly growing, began to alter its style according to the occasion: white without a collar and with wide sleeves for the painter, white and at times without a right sleeve for the sword duel, or well hidden under the jacket for pistols. In the 20th century it was above all the American cinema that popularized different types of shirts. Pure white shirts with flowing sleeves worn by Rudolph Valentino, the "Oxford" of Humphrey Bogart, the type suited for the hard life of the far west worn on screen by John Wayne, or to finish, the mythic Hawaiian worn by Tom Sellek in the cult series "Magnum P.I." of the 1980s.

Of the many types of shirts, how can one forget the "button down", in particular for the varying accounts of its true origin and authorship. The most memorable suggests that the founder of this most famous American shirt industry, the cult following of this leader of shirts, was inspired in England at a polo match where the players had their collars attached to keep them from flapping in the wind. The more credited version however is another in which its anonymous inventor found himself on a pier in the New York harbor during a particularly windy day and, annoyed by his collar blowing in the wind, attached it at the ends with buttons made of mother of pearl. Whichever is its true genesis, the "button down" is found in formal settings, with the collar open, in moments of relaxation, and dressed up with a tie or bowtie for important occasions, demonstrating that it is the most versatile leader of the many models of shirts.

With this brief voyage through the history of the shirt we can see that from its first appearance in ancient times to today man has never stopped producing it in new shapes and fashions, wearing it in different ways and loving it with an immutable passion

Monday, February 22, 2010


For many animal loving evangelical Christians the problem of who is going to look after their pets when the rapture comes is upsetting to say the least.

For those who aren’t aware of what the rapture is, it is a belief in some Christian doctrines that believers will be whisked up to join Jesus in the sky leaving non believers on earth to suffer a seven year reign of terror under the anti-Christ.

Now some entrepreneurial atheists have come up with a novel idea to solve the problem of the abandoned pets and have created a website, ‘eternal-earthbound-pets’ to put animal lovers who are destined for heaven in touch with animal loving atheists who aren’t going anywhere.

The idea is that those bound for heaven can find an earthbound atheist to look after their beloved pet when they are whisked away for a better life.

All those who have signed up to take the pets in are self confessed sinners, blasphemers and atheists so the pet owners can relax in the knowledge that there’s no chance of them being saved.

Read more here.