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3. New technology to cut down greenhouse gases by designing a ‘green plane’. July 5, 2009

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Uncategorized.
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I’ve promised to post about Green planes and it is later than what I would have liked to post. Anyway the topic is interesting enough to be placed on 2 of my blogs; one of which is this one here at WordPress and the other at Blogger.

Here are the links to the 2 posts  about the competition organized by Airbus.They will highlight the various thoughts and issues on green design as well as the videos of the finalists. Click on underlined text to view.

1.Winners of the Green Plane Competition

2. Thoughts about the Competition and issues on Green Design – Wants vs Needs:

There were 5 final contestants and the winner came from Australia with the runner up team from Singapore.  What was commendable of the Singapore team was that the 3 contestants were not PhD students and 2 of them were actually undergraduates who worked on  The Solaire Voyagers: Second year Engineering students Vignesh Subramaniam, Muhammad Adil and team leader Louis Lee Wee Boon, a first year Masters student in Materials Science and Engineering.

I’ll leave you to read more about the contest !


3 big events for the last 3 weeks – terrorism, green design + Obama May 11, 2009

Posted by @Karen_Fu in design, life challenges, terrorism.
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I am back with  some interesting design posts and thoughts for these 3 weeks.. During which 3 big events have happened :

1. One of the JI leaders in Singapore Mas Selamat has just been caught after a year in running away from authorities.

2. New technology to cut down greenhouse gases by designing a ‘green plane’.

3. US President Obama’s recent handling of the tax evasion problems in the quest to keep jobs at home (US).

I have been wondering since if any of these events are really going to value add life ? I will first focus on  Mas Selamat, followed by my other points 2 and 3 for now.— 1: Mas Selamat is finally captured with the help of the Malaysian authorities recently. I thought the hard copy of the Straits Times headline on Sunday (11 May 2009) was somewhat complacent. It wrote in its sub-headline that Mas Selamat’s attempt was only a School boys feat:’20 laps of the swimming pool’ with waters that are ‘4 stories deep’ was easy and  any school boy could do it. If that were a simple feat, then why was Mas Selamat able to escape from the local prison ? Bearing in mind that he is crippled, swimming across the Johor Straits under the coast guards’ eye would deem a very real fact that he was an extremely determined man of wits and guts. How could that be a simple school boy’s feat is really beyond me. Unfortunately his courage and intelligence went into a destructive force. Should he been still in the loose, I bet Singapore would have been in an unimaginable catastrophe.

Terrorism is a dangerous act that  destructs both the terrorist and others. Its a loser’s situation whichever angle you view it. In 2001 September 11, the US witnessed their first unexpected attack on their land. It was an event that 2 planes piercing through not only their buildings in New York, but their hearts as well. It was a lesson  not just for the Americans but for the world to remember – we simply cannot overlook and take peace and formidability for granted.  For since then, a series of other attacks has sprung up  in India, Spain, Indonesia, and attempted attacks here in Singapore. This came in with the freshest memory of the Mumbai attacks.  They are all linked and you’ve got to think why all this has been ongoing. It is frightening to see that a peaceful landscape be always overshadowed by this constant darkness of terror.

We should never be complacent and arrogant about any cause of terrorism because it could actually stem out from our daily carelessness and thoughtlessness that we may not be conscious about what we say, do or act. I believe no one wants to fight and kill people out from a complete nothing. I suspect it  stems out from a misunderstanding of cultures. Maybe you and I are guilty about it without knowing it.  When such problem is left untreated, it usually blows out of proportion. I often believe that most of the hatred could be tamed down or completely eliminated, if we could be more sensitive and careful in the way we treat others. It is sad that Mas Selamat went into this route of anger and destruction. It doesn’t do him good and definitely not in any good for his immediate family and relatives. I don’t know what his story is about but I am sure something must have provoked his anger. Whatever the anger is, we must learn from this lesson that anger only leads to more anger. And when that anger goes beyond the boiling point, it will explode. If we look back in history, all these daily fights between countries, people and within business competition stem out on the pure greed, inconsiderateness, and a sheer lack of wisdom – the type of intelligence that we need to save ourselves and others the sanity that we need in this crazy world. We need to ask hard questions why people choose to do such self-destruction and killing of others; and onwards to look for win-win situations to never repeat the same mistakes again like our forebearers have  done.  I hope we could cool ourselves down amidst our hectic pursuement of wealth and self-interest to ponder about what life  really is.  I think this definition is crucial in setting the foundation of a healthy living that benefits all. There are many ways to a good life. It doesn’t need to be done in a heartless way to get even  and  ‘win’.

Other references:

Some small interesting sites about terrorism: http://www.politicalbase.com/forums/topic/is-terrorism-ever-politically-correct/1118/

causes of terrorism: http://uk.oneworld.net/guides/terrorism?gclid=CKep-MGlspoCFVEwpAodchPlcA