Monday, October 26, 2009

A bigger car

Bought our 320d back in Dec 2008, and with Alana now taking one full seat with her Group 1+ baby car seat, we are starting to feel the need for more space. Initially, we went for the estate model as it gives more boot space for the buggy. It looks like we have starting to "outgrown" this car soon.

We love the low running cost for this 320d, with 55mpg the fuel tank takes longer than normal to dry out, which is fantastic. Also the very low CO2 emission, bring the road tax to one of the lowest group.. less than 10 pound Sterling a month. We were pleasantly surprise that it was 50% less to run this car compare to our previous old faithful Stream. The in-built Satnav is an additional bonus for Ann as it makes her more confident and independent to drive out without me. So it is gonna be tough to replace the 320d.

Now that space is becoming a bigger issue, we start to look around for alternatives. We need a people carrier, a full size people carrier. Perhaps it was due to the fact that we were so spoiled by the Stream which gives us the flexibility of carrying people as well as a multi purpose car for transporting goods for our house project back in Aberdeen. So we went to the garage on Saturday and found this wonder beauty - R Class.

The weekend discovery trip was simply to see what is available out there... We will have a serious look at it more when we come back from Houston in mid Nov.

Should we go for it?

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Best way to reach us is by email or drop us a comment in here.

Until we get our Google Voice setup (which has to be a US residence)... there is no point remembering our numbers which keep changing year on year.

Bladeless Fan

Another incredible invention by Sir James Dyson. After making a big wave with his bagless vacumm cleaner more than twenty years ago, his latest product is set to change the way we perceive how a fan should look like.

He is applying the aerodynamics theory by spraying a very thin flow of air on the ring which then drag the stream of air from surrounding into it. Very clever indeed.

The media mentioned that the fan is available for £199, which is pretty steep compare to a conventional fan. It is however ... safe, easy to clean, sleek, a focal point by itself... is it worth it? Judge it by yourself :)

Sometimes the simplest idea could well be the one that works! Check out his demo video.

Dyson's Bladeless Fan Air Multiplier

Reactions to Dyson's Bladeless Fan

Demo with baby

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Free Antivirus Protection

Microsoft Security Essentials
Microsoft is now giving away PC antivirus for free to home users. It is called Microsoft Security Essentials and it contains anti spyware and antivirus protection.

Available as free download to all Genuine Copy of Windows. There is a check during installation to verify that you copy of Windows is not one of those doggy copies purchased from the back alley streets :)

So if you want to save money from buying 3rd party antivirus like McAfee or Norton, this could be a good alternative. I wouldn't say it is 100% proven to give the strong PC protection but sufficient for Home use.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Houston 2009-11

Houston ... another business trip to Houston this coming November. Both Annette and Alana will come along this time round. This is going to be Alana's first trip to the United States. Other than the border control which may take a little longer than usual and a little more stressful than other countries, we always enjoy the stay in Houston. Good food, friendly people, good factory outlet shopping... can't complain. :)

Will write more about it when we get there. In the meantime, below are some of the food we love to have in Houston.

Cheesecake Factory's Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake
(Ann goes "gaga" about this whenever we are in Houston)

Pappadeaux's Seafood Platter

Daylight Saving Time

UK Daylight Saving Time or more commonly known as British Summer Time (BST)

Folks back home always ask about the time difference between Malaysia and the UK. It is hard sometimes for ones who have never experienced the time change their whole life to comprehend the time change. I am going to try to explain it in simpler terms.

Twice a year, the clock is tuned either forward or backward during the last Sunday in March and last Sunday in October. During the Last Sunday in March of every year, the clock is tuned to one hour forward at 1am. If you have your TV or computer on, the clock will magically skip forward to 2am bringing us to GMT +1 timezone. However, this does not apply to your "standalone" clock at home which are not tied to a time server.

The clock will stay at this GMT +1 timezone until the Last Sunday of October. Again, at 2am of the last Sunday of October, the clock will move backward to 1am bringing it back to GMT +0.

The cycle will repeat itself year on year every March and October.

So this weekend is the last Sunday of October, the clock will switch backward by 1 hour for us in the UK.

Since 1996 all member states of the European Union change their clocks on the same date at 1am GMT. DST or BST first began in 1916 with a mandate from parliament.

This time change, however, differs for Continent of Northern America. The time-change for US Continents happen on the 2nd Sunday of March and 1st Sunday of November instead.

So is it simple enough to understand? Or am I still too technical in the explanation? :)

For further reference, check this out

Rationale and original idea

The main purpose of Daylight Saving Time (called "Summer Time" in many places in the world) is to make better use of daylight. We change our clocks during the summer months to move an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening.

If you live near the equator, day and night are nearly the same length (12 hours). But elsewhere on Earth, there is much more daylight in the summer than in the winter. The closer you live to the North or South Pole, the longer the period of daylight in the summer. Thus, Daylight Saving Time (Summer Time) is usually not helpful in the tropics, and countries near the equator generally do not change their clocks.

A poll conducted by the U.S. Department of Transportation indicated that Americans liked Daylight Saving Time because "there is more light in the evenings / can do more in the evenings." A 1976 survey of 2.7 million citizens in New South Wales, Australia, found 68% liked daylight saving.

Indeed, some say that the primary reason that Daylight Saving Time is a part of many societies is simply because people like to enjoy long summer evenings, and that reasons such as energy conservation are merely rationalizations.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Fairy Cakehouse

Annette's sister is starting up a new blogshop on custom cakes in Singapore. They are really good. Helped her with the initial blog setup, site tracking, etc... the rest of the contents from her were really great.

If you are based in Singapore and have a birthday in the coming weeks or months, why not get Jean to make you special one?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Here we are...

Here we are, joining the rest of the blogging world! Will be using this space to update friends and family. I can't promise that it will be regular, but whenever we can.

And here is my other more technical blog - Sharepoint Garage.