Los Teropong (Teropong means binoculars) comments on current issues in Malaysia, and sometimes the world, and put forth another opinion and perspective. BY THE WAY - THEY HUNG THE WRONG GUY ...


Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Malaysian Newspaper
International News
TV Chefs
Cooking Anyone?
Bonsai Anyone?
Monday, July 30, 2007
Research Universities in Malaysia ..
29 July 2007 - NST - Four to be research universities - FOUR public universities will be anointed research universities on Aug 2, a status which transforms these institutions to function not only to produce graduates but also generate intellectual capital, knowledge and innovative technology.

Research universities are a natural evolution in the education system and are vital for the nation’s growth in a knowledge-based economy. They are also the natural place where new ideas are explored and to expand knowledge.

Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Malaya have evolved to be the following:

• Centres which can translate research outcomes into teaching learning curricular;

• Student-centred institutions which combine research with academic programmes;
• Rich learning environments for undergraduate and post-graduate education, and
• Vibrant centres for conducting scholarly pursuits.

The four will also seek to produce Nobel Prize winners and world-class research outputs.

These research universities, said Higher Education Ministry director-general Datuk Prof Dr Hassan Said, must be measured against top universities in the world. Examples of model research universities include University of Tokyo, Harvard, Stanford, Oxford and Cambridge.

"By designating these four institutions as research universities, the government hopes to elevate the number of post-graduates." To do so, they must offer academic programmes which focus on post-graduate teaching, short courses and training.

In terms of research, the universities must also have facilities for technology transfer and technology licensing besides giving high priority to consultancy, research contracts and training contracts.

posted by Rozhan @ 7/30/2007 01:00:00 AM   0 comments
Connecting to UNITY ..?
29 July 2007 - NST - Rural schools to ‘get connected’ - JOHOR BARU: The government will provide schools in rural areas with software for pupils to interact online in efforts to promote greater unity.

Deputy Education Minister Datuk Hon Choon Kim said 353 schools had been selected for the e-integration pilot project that would begin next month. The programme is in line with the Students Integration Plan for Unity (Rimup).

"This will be expanded to 1,000 schools next year," Hon said after attending a Rimup programme that saw pupils from Sekolah Kebangsaan Masai, Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (C) Masai and Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (T) Masai getting together to perform dikir barat and traditional Chinese dances.

Under the e-integration project, pupils from different schools can interact online with each other using the specially-designed software. "The programme is tailored for schools which are unable to form clusters," he said. Schools that have set up clusters in conjunction with Rimup will get an allocation of between RM500 and RM2,000 each. Cluster B consists of pupils from national primary schools and Chinese primary schools; Cluster C is made up of national primary schools and Tamil primary schools; and Cluster D is formed through partnership of Chinese primary and Tamil primary schools.

Wow, how are they going to interact online? Is there a GIANT screen on each side so that they can see what is happening? People meet, work, learn and interact with each other in a human interaction way .. I am not sure if the software will do the trick. Can we not visit one anothe during the long school breaks ..? Aiyaa .. tak tau lah ..

posted by Rozhan @ 7/30/2007 12:15:00 AM   0 comments
Monday, July 23, 2007
Poor English ..
23 July 2007 - Poor English grounds cabin crew hopefuls

KUCHING: Poor command of English has "grounded" hundreds of AirAsia cabin crew hopefuls who attended a recruitment drive here over the weekend.

Of the 426 applicants, about 95 per cent were shown the exit because of their lack of command of the language, poor communication skills and personal grooming. "The ability to communicate well in English and Bahasa Malaysia is a criterion," Bo Lingam, AirAsia executive vice-president for operations, said yesterday. "And English is a must." He said of the 16 applicants called for the final interview yesterday, half of them might not make the cut. The budget airline is looking for about 300 cabin crew as it prepares to take delivery of 35 to 37 new planes starting from year-end.

Lingam said that AirAsia might have to recruit crew from Thailand and Indonesia, countries where its subsidiaries were operating, if the local drive did not meet its target. He said this would be in line with its plans to have cabin crew who could speak foreign languages.

"For example, we are looking for Mandarin-speaking crew for our China routes," Lingam said.

Even my children did not want to listen to me when I said it is good to learn another language such as Japanese, Mandarin and even French. There are so many resources on the Internet and one can even learn a language for free .. Aiyaa .. tak tau lah .. don't want to listen one ...
posted by Rozhan @ 7/23/2007 04:27:00 PM   1 comments
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Price war? Hah .. !!
21 July 2007 -News Focus: Major chains won't sell book due to price war By : Nisha Sabanayagam and Suganthi Suparmaniam

PETALING JAYA: Harry Potter will not be casting his spell at four major bookstore chains today. Eager fans who have been awaiting the magic moment should not go to the hundred-odd outlets nationwide that make up MPH Bookstores, Times the Bookshop, Popular Bookstores and Harris Bookstores unless they have pre-ordered the latest book on the boy wizard.

"There will be no Harry Potter books on the sales floor for walk-in customers," said MPH Bookstores (M) Sdn Bhd chief operating officer Patricia Chen on behalf of the four booksellers. In a bold move, they have withdrawn the seventh and final book in the series titled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows from shelves in protest over the "indiscriminate" price discount offered by hypermarkets Tesco and Carrefour. The hypermarkets are selling the books at RM69.90, which is RM40 cheaper than the recommended retail price of RM109.90. The latest — and cheapest — price was only made known to the booksellers yesterday morning through advertisements in the newspapers and over the radio. "It came out of nowhere and was a shock to all of us (the booksellers)," said Chen at a hastily held press conference yesterday.

Also present were Popular Bookstore Co (M) Sdn Bhd executive director Lim Lee Ngoh and a representative from Times the Bookshop Pte Ltd.

Chen said although the hypermarkets had sold the sixth Harry Potter books at discounted prices two years ago, this year they were selling the latest title at "a very low price" and on the day of the launch. The booksellers have also decided to cancel all activities related to the launch of the book with the exception of a costume party held last night.

However, both MPH and Popular Bookstores will be open at seven in the morning today to cater to those customers who had pre-ordered the books since February of this year. Both bookstores have also agreed to refund the deposits placed for the books, should the customers decide to cancel their orders, said Chen. Customers placed a RM70 deposit at MPH and RM50 at Popular for a copy of the book. Both bookstores have a total of 43,000 books in stock, about 11,000 of which have been pre-ordered.

Lim said that the protest was to let consumers know that they were not simply pricing their books to make a "quick buck". As book operators, she said, they had certain costs to meet including marketing and promotion expenses.

Wow, they got it wrong this time ... Harry Potter is not an ordinary book. Congratulations to the hypermarkets for serving the public - as hypermarket should do. I know about selling books and I know the profit margin they make, so I am all for the low prices. They have misjudged a few areas: the bookstores have already taken deposits ... at an average of RM60 for 11,000 pre-ordered books gives you ... RM660,000-00. And how long has that been sitting in the bank? Honestly, how much promotion do you have to make for Harry Potter's book? The WHOLE WORLD has been waiting for it .. it promotes itself, dang !! Integrity? Bah !!.. if they know the hypermarkets only have limited stock, what are they worried about? Typical Malaysians .. aiyaa.. tak tau lah ...

posted by Rozhan @ 7/22/2007 03:35:00 PM   1 comments
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Secular or NOT?
19 July 2007 - MCA: We are a secular nation By : Eileen Ng - KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is a secular state, insists the MCA.

It said the position was clear as evidenced by numerous historical documents, including the Reid Report, the Cobbold Commission and a 1988 Supreme Court decision.

After reviewing the documents used in the process of drafting the Federal Constitution, the party’s secretary-general, Datuk Ong Ka Chuan, said Malaysia was a secular state based on the consensus and social contract agreed upon by the nation’s forefathers.

"The documents showed that a secular state is the foundation of the formation of Malaya and this consensus was made by our forefathers," he said yesterday.

He said this in response to the statement by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Monday that Malaysia is an Islamic nation that protects the rights of non-Muslims.

Citing an example, Ong said according to the Alliance’s memorandum to the Reid Commission dated Sept 27, 1956, it was stated on Page 19 that "The religion of Malaya shall be Islam. The observance of this principle shall not impose any disability on non-Muslim nationals professing and practising their own religion, and shall not imply the state is not a secular state."

Ong said former prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj had said during a meeting on April 17, 1957, that "the whole constitution was framed on the basis that the federation would be a secular state".

Ong said notes prepared by the Colonial Office dated May 23, 1957, at the London Conference Talks mentioned that "the members of the Alliance delegation stressed that they had no intention of creating a Muslim theocracy and that Malaya would be a secular state".

Additionally, Ong stated that when former MCA president, who was Finance Minister, Tun Tan Siew Sin spoke in parliament on July 10, 1957, in support of the Constitutional Bill, he said that although Islam would be the official religion, "this does not in any way derogate from the principle, which has always been accepted, that Malaya will be a secular state and that there will be a complete freedom to practise any other religion".

Ong added that all these documents showed a true picture of Malaysia, which is a secular nation.

MCA central committee member and Kota Melaka MP Wong Nai Chee said Najib’s interpretation was "not in accordance with the spirit and intent of the Federal Constitution".

He said that the issue of Malaya as a secular state was vigorously debated again during the 1962 Cobbold Commission before the entry of Sabah and Sarawak, forming Ma- laysia.

"Again, the secular nature of Malaysia was reiterated as having been stated in the Reid Commission. The secular nature of our Federal Constitution has been the basis for our nation building since 1957 and reinforced in 1963."

The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism president, Datuk A. Vaithilingam, urged the government and all Malaysians to respect the social contract agreed to in 1957.

The council also strongly objected to attempts by the government to change the status quo.

The Bar Council said that in the context of the country’s history and the constitution itself that proclaimed its supremacy, there was no doubt whatsoever that Malay- sia was a secular state.

"It is noteworthy that the prime minister in his speech delivered at the conference yesterday and in his propagating Islam Hadhari has never referred to Malaysia as an Islamic state," the council’s president Ambiga Sreeneva- san said.

"It is time that the proposition that Malaysia is not secular (which is a rewriting of the constitution), be put to rest once and for all and that there is due recognition and reaffirmation of the clear legal and constitutional position that Malaysia is, and has always been, a secular state."
posted by Rozhan @ 7/19/2007 11:53:00 AM   0 comments
Outdoor Movie
Outdoor movie fest By : Dennis Chua - From now until July 28, Starlight Cinema returns at KBU International College, Bandar Utama in Petaling Jaya, with daily shows from 6pm.
Back for the fourth year, it is sponsored by iProperty.com.my with ntv7 and Fly FM as the official television and radio stations, respectively. A one-of-a-kind cinematic experience, it enables viewers to watch their favourite movies on an inflatable screen 17 metres wide and 10.5 metres high, beneath the open sky, and aided by a dynamic sound system. More than 350,000 viewers have given support to the cinema, dubbed “movie magic under the stars”. A 35,000-strong crowd is expected to attend the cinema which will be complemented by a flea market, cafe and various entertainment-related activities which begin at 6pm, two hours before the films are screened.

One-of-a kind cinematic experience? Hmmm .. I saw something like this eons ago ... when the Broadcast department (Jabatan Penerangan) came to my school playing field in their jeep and showed a movie in the middle of the field, on a big screen .... in Balik Pulau. I still remember watching BATMAN on that occassion, 1967 if i am not mistaken ...

posted by Rozhan @ 7/19/2007 10:00:00 AM   0 comments
Friday, July 06, 2007
Animal Products - BEWARE!!
BBC News - 14 May 2007 - Mars starts using animal products - Some of the UK's best-selling chocolate bars, such as Mars and Twix, will no longer be suitable for vegetarians.

Also affecting brands such as Snickers and Maltesers, owner Masterfoods said it had started to use animal product rennet to make its chocolate products. Masterfoods said the change was due to it switching the sourcing of its ingredients and the admission was a "principled decision" on its part.
The Vegetarian Society said the company's move was "incomprehensible".

Masterfoods said it had started using rennet from 1 May and non-affected products had a "best before date" up to 1 October. Rennet, a chemical sourced from calves' stomachs, is used in the production of whey.

It will now also be found in Bounty, Minstrels and Milky Way products, and the ice cream versions of all Masterfoods' bars. "If the customer is an extremely strict vegetarian, then we are sorry the products are no longer suitable, but a less strict vegetarian should enjoy our chocolate," said Paul Goalby, corporate affairs manager for Masterfoods.

Hmmm .. to all those 'sweet tooth' people .. please check the labels each time .. especially those addicted to 'IMPORTED PRODUCTS' ... aiyaa ... tak tau lah ...

posted by Rozhan @ 7/06/2007 10:29:00 AM   0 comments
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Malaysian Technology to the WORLD
NST - 5 July 2007 - E-passport pride of Malaysian technology By : Azura Abas

Two years before the Sept 11, 2001 attacks, the United States immigration inspectors came across something they had never seen before — a passport with a chip embedded in it. It was a Malaysian passport, which carried a digital photograph and fingerprints of the holder.

The world’s first electronic passport, it baffled the US Immigration and Naturalisation Service (INS) and its laboratory staff, said author and consultant Neville Cramer. At the time, he was still serving as special agent in charge of the Immigration and Naturalisation Service, under the US Department of Justice.

"Inspectors came to me and said this passport is the finest thing we have ever seen. The best in the world," he said in an interview.

Then two jetliners crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in 2001, hijacked by men who used fake passports to enter the US.
The Sept 11 attacks triggered a desperate search by governments around the world for the right technology to make travel and identity documents more secure.

In 2003, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) set new standards for passports, including the use of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) microchips. The Malaysian RFID chip, which allows contactless operations of smart cards, was developed by local MSC-status company Iris Corporation Bhd.

Despite concerns that the chips could be cloned, information encoded into Malaysian passports has so far remained secure. Digital keys stored on each chip made such duplication and forgery impossible, according to a company statement last year. Iris has gone on to supply its technology for smart cards and passports to a number of countries, including Turkey and New Zealand.

But almost a decade after Malaysia launched its e-passport, the US, which issued its first e-passport early last year, is still trying to get it right. Cramer, who headed the first INS field test of Malaysia’s e-passport, believes that the US should adopt Malaysia’s technology. "To this day, (the US) has not done it right. The chip stores a photo of the holder but not his fingerprints. It is mind-boggling that they have not utilised (Malaysian) technology fully," said Cramer, on a recent visit here to meet Home Affairs Ministry officials.

Since retiring in 2002, Cramer has written a book, Fixing the INSanity, on some of the causes of America’s immigration problems. He has also started a consultancy called Immigration Enforcement Solutions. When Cramer first came here for the INS field test, the team he led ordered 19 machines to read Malaysian passports. Within a week, they saw for themselves how well the passport’s security features worked.

A man had presented a Malaysian passport, but the reader showed a woman’s face in the digitised photograph contained in the chip, he said. The photograph on the physical document had been replaced, but the one stored on the chip could not be tampered with. "He confessed that he bought the forged passport from a smuggler."

Sadly, Malaysia lost the chance in 2003 to help set world standards on e-passports, he said. "The government should have gone to the UN, which oversees the ICAO, to tell everyone that Malaysia has already done it. "Malaysians are not getting the credit for what they have accomplished."

Partly, it’s because European and American technology giants cannot accept that a small country like Malaysia had beaten them to it. "So they downplayed what Malaysia has," said Cramer.

Indeed, Malaysia is well ahead of the rest of the world.

E-passports, he said, are the only way to speed up clearance times at immigration points and border controls, especially with air travel on the rise around the world.
"The world has to start embracing the use of e-passports."

Hmmm .. too bad ... Giant countries and giant companies do not come with GIANT HONESTY AND INTEGRITY ... they still think size of the country matters ... hmmph .. aiyaa.. tak tau lah ...
posted by Rozhan @ 7/05/2007 09:18:00 AM   0 comments
About Me

Name: Rozhan
Home: Penang, Malaysia
About Me:
See my complete profile

Free shoutbox @ ShoutMix

Web Counter
Web Counter
:: MalaysiaTopBlogs ::
Malaysia Blogsites List
Locations of visitors to this page

Previous Post
Tarikh Hijriah
  • Web Pages referring to this page
    Link to this page and get a link back!
Template by

Free Blogger Templates