Punchlines without the jokes

Social media has brought about profound changes to our public lives — for better and for worse. It has toppled governments, improved efficiency of disaster management, spread news with a reach and speed that was unthinkable just half a decade ago, and even reconnect long-lost friends. It is unfortunate then to see that it has […]

The problems with boarding schools

Some people believe that the biggest problem with boarding schools is that students are typically spoon-fed with the materials they need for acing exams. In doing so, they lose the chance to develop the capacity for self-education and never fully learn how to learn — perhaps the most critical skills of all. Throughout my formal […]

Realising our imperfections

Everyone thinks. It is our nature to do so. But much of our thinking, left to itself, is biased, distorted, partial, uninformed, or downright prejudiced. Yet, the quality of our life and that of what we produce, make, or build depends precisely on the quality of our thought. Shoddy thinking is costly, both in money and […]

You don’t need a brand new car

A lot of young people, especially graduates fresh off formal education institutions, rush to buy a brand new car after a few months into (or even before) their first job. Arguably, it’s a trend further strengthened by typical societal expectations on young people, especially parents and friends. What most don’t realise is that such purchases […]

Our greatest technological achievement: smartphones

… if you believe the scores of supposedly technology news sites, that is. I use Pulse to aggregate news from multiple sources sorted into different categories. It has been my primary source of news ever since I’ve gotten my first smartphone, to be consumed alongside breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And guess what is the most […]

Majestic creatures

I am not a fan of zoos. They strip out the sense of respect that we have towards the fellow creatures that inhabit this Earth, and reinforce our undeserved sense of dominance over them. To me, the best way to watch wildlife is always to watch them in their natural habitat. That experience trumps any […]

Don’t surrender your responsibility to think

There was a protest today at Symonds St, the trunk road that runs through the University of Auckland. A group of students staged a sit-in on the road, prompting the police to close the road and forcing the student-protesters to stand up by literally pulling them up. Of course, such a commotion would attract a […]

Graphene 1.7: What to know before upgrading

As at this time of writing, Graphene 1.7 has been sent up the pipe to the WordPress.org Theme Repository. Here’s what you should know before you upgrade. Note though that it might take anywhere from several hours to several weeks before the theme is published on the repository, as each theme is reviewed by the […]

Bog, rockfaces, and stars – the Kauaeranga Valley hike

I was desperate to get out of the city and into the bushes. Sitting and working in front of the computer day after day after day really sap the life and enthusiasm out of you. I needed a break, and cities with their concrete jungles just won’t do it for me. So I invited a […]

How monitors produce colour

You might have known already that most monitors produce colours using a combination of only 3 colours. Those three colours are red, green, and blue, and that is what RGB stands for. In most monitors, each pixel is divided into three subpixels, with each subpixel displaying one of the three colours. Each subpixel can vary […]

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