#MASJAN15 In Retrospect: Part 2- The Calm Before the Storm

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So, I got the most ridiculous job imagined. I was low on morale. Everyone on campus knew who to blame if this MAS happened to be the worst.

What should I do?

At times like this, it’s best to give in ask help from the Mightiest of them all. I am a man of faith, although not as strong as most of my friends I knew. I mustered what I could and prayed.

But I know for sure just praying would not give me a miracle, I knew I needed to do something.

This is part two of an ongoing series. Here, I will share how I personally prepared myself for #MASJAN15 , and what I did to cater the Training of Trainers Session, and help assembling a ragtag group of people into a solid dream-team of facilitators. Hopefully my personal anecdote would help any would-be leaders who found trouble to get their team, or themselves, together.

Read Part 1 here.

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#MASJAN15 In Retrospect: Part 1- How I Got the Most Ridiculous Job Imagined

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Minggu Aluan Siswa. The orientation programme that all new students of Universti Teknologi PETRONAS had to go through. A one-week long full of briefings and introduction to the facilities in the university from the management, along with the help of facilitators, senior students who willingly volunteered themselves to assist throughout the programme.

It’s the best ever programme that I was able to be involved in during my studies. Most probably because I suck at handling events involving various degrees of technical know-how, and my not so prolific stint with some student bodies. Yes, I under-performed in most of my endeavors, but not in MAS, as I was able to do many great things with the team I was part of.

Somehow, I was selected for the first time ever to actually lead the team of facilitators. It was surprising, as I was ending my studies by that time, and to be called back to action for a last hurrah of sorts is humbling, and also a challenge.

A ridiculously tough challenge.

This write-up is intended to be shared for UTPians- both students and the management, to understand some of the interesting challenges we, the team of facees, have bravely faced. It was by far the most radically changed of all the MAS before it, and I am willing to share on how my thought process was in coming up with certain decisions and how we faced some obstacles. It should be interesting for non-UTPians as well, you might learn a thing or two.

The first part is an origin story of how I grew up with joining MAS, and how I eventually got the most ridiculous job imagined, given the worst of all circumstances.

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Maths Is Not All About the Numbers ( or Bass for That Matter)

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A math question for Singaporean kids aged 11 has gone viral. Otherwise known as Cheryl’s Birthday Problem, this is actually something not many people pointed out, and I just realised.

Maths is not all about numbers. Logic is part of maths, too.

Consider the problem, in full as the header image shown, can you guess the answer?

No? It’s okay, there’s a professional mathematician who can explain the solution.

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Playing The Crew Without A Crew- Is It Still Fun?

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Back in early January, I was so pumped for The Crew, a racing game made by Ivory Tower and published by Ubisoft. I even used one its songs from its launch trailer for a small introduction in an event I joined at the time, because the tune is awesome.

Fast forward three months later, I finally got a copy on the PS4. The hype has died down. I’ve watched a few let’s play which just spoiled me something very interesting about the game. And I still have not found friends that I can play together.

So here’s the impression of my time playing The Crew, without a crew.

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Guitar Hero Live Might Live As Long As Ever

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There’s a new Guitar Hero announced, as expected by the rumour mills. In case you’re not familiar, Guitar Hero is the music game that has once a phenomenon across the world. Along with its rival Rock Band (which shares a history- both series was started by developer Harmonix), everyone was into playing plastic instruments. It’s easy to pick up and play, anyone, even non-gamers, could easily join in. It was the go-to party game, the new karaoke.

Both series grows in popularity with each new iteration of their games, until they reached the plateau by the end of 2010. The popularity was a fad, and it fizzled out quickly afterwards.

Now,it is official that Guitar Hero is announced, as well as a new Rock Band announced earlier, plastic instruments are coming back.

But first, watch the trailer.

In case you cannot watch it, let me explain why I think the new game is doing something clever.

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The Placebo- Or, “Have a Little Faith, It’s Just a Flesh Wound”

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My brother was sick for a week. A week is a long time, and trying to catch up a week worth of study is not an easy task. From what I see, it’s not that bad. A common cold, some dizziness, and  a little bit of diarrhea. I kept saying – “this should be just ‘a flesh wound’. Fight it a bit, and you’ll get healthy in no time.” Rather, he seemed to just let it be, let the sickness get the better of him, which prolonged to a whole week.

The black Knight, having lost his two arms, still insists on fighting. "just a flesh wound", he says. (From Monty Python & the Holy Grail)

The black Knight, having his two arms severed by King Arthur, still insists on fighting him. “It’s just a flesh wound”, he says. (From Monty Python & the Holy Grail)

So, every morning that week, I just send my other brother to school. Apparently I was listening to Lite FM where they had a panel from a health expert, a doctor, to talk about common misconceptions of home remedies. One interesting question the DJs asked the doctor :”Is the Chicken Soup  good for your soul?”, referring to the common remedy of eating chicken soup, that can help any cure any common disease.

The doctor’s response, was pretty surprising. Continue reading