The Sand Bunker

Just another Blog by anDru

Archive for the month “September, 2008”

Singapore Formula One GP

Fernando Alonso has won the inaugural Singapore GP is the drama packed race ahead of Williams Nico Rosberg and McLaren’s Hamilton. Felipe Massa started the race at pole position but some pit stop blunder by the Ferrari team caused Massa to race most of the time at the bottom end of the pack. 

It was a night of good team work by the Renault team. First Piquet lost control of his car a knocked the wall that caused safety cars to be deployed. The biggest gainer of the safety car is non other than Fernando Alonso who started from 15th place in a circuit where overtaking is close to impossible.

It was nice to see a Williams team both finishing in points and Nico made it to the podium finish despite had to undergo a 10 second stop go penalty for pitting when the pit lane was not yet opened. 

Nothing seem to be right for the Ferrari team, as Kimi too crashed his car onto the wall at the closing stages of the race.

It is real nice to see some other team beside the big names of Ferrari and McLaren winning races like Vettel 2 weeks ago. Now Formula One also has moved into another dimensions where night racing is introduced for the first time in Singapore. Many more circuits is going to join for the night racing as it is not only cooler for the drivers, but it will cater for the television viewers in European countries as well. 

I have been a follower of Formula One race for so many years now. Starting from the days of Nelson Piquet, Aryton Senna, Alain Prost and Nigel Mansel. Teams partnership also changed where McLaren was once team up with Honda forming the winning Mclaren Honda team with Senna as the world champion.

We do hope to see more good races and more young drivers coming up into this wonderful sports.



Danger of Wi-Fi

Our life has come to the stage that we can no longer survive a day without the internet. In fact my day started with the internet. I just cannot imagine myself going offline for just 1 day. Recently there was a study in Germany where they discovered that Wi-Fi usage can cause danger to our health.


People should avoid using Wi-Fi wherever possible because of the risks it may pose to health, the German government has said.

Its surprise ruling – the most damning made by any government on the fast-growing technology – will shake the industry and British ministers, and vindicates the questions that The Independent on Sunday has been raising over the past four months.

And Germany’s official radiation protection body also advises its citizens to use landlines instead of mobile phones, and warns of “electrosmog” from a wide range of other everyday products, from baby monitors to electric blankets.

The German government’s ruling – which contrasts sharply with the unquestioning promotion of the technology by British officials – was made in response to a series of questions by Green members of the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament.

The Environment Ministry recommended that people should keep their exposure to radiation from Wi-Fi “as low as possible” by choosing “conventional wired connections”. It added that it is “actively informing people about possibilities for reducing personal exposure”.

Its actions will provide vital support for Sir William Stewart, Britain’s official health protection watchdog, who has produced two reports calling for caution in using mobile phones and who has also called for a review of the use of Wi-Fi in schools. His warnings have so far been ignored by ministers and even played down by the Health Protection Agency, which he chairs.

By contrast the agency’s German equivalent – the Federal Office for Radiation Protection – is leading the calls for caution.

Florian Emrich, for the office, says Wi-Fi should be avoided “because people receive exposures from many sources and because it is a new technology and all the research into its health effects has not yet been carried out”.


Bail Outs

These are the common words we are going to hear these days as government are bailing out banks from going deeper into bankruptcy. Bail outs are not actually a bad thing if the steps are really necessary especially when everything else seem impossible to save those giants banking group now.

I remember very well some 10 years ago, when we had our financial crisis and some currency in East Asia dropped drastically to a level never seen before that many countries did not have a choice but to get aid from the IMF. This maybe some kind of bail out to some, but some of these countries never really made it out of the tunnel and again 10 years after that the world was hit but another financial crisis due to sub prime mortgage issue in the United States. So far we have yet to hear any of IMF news or plan or is this the beginning of a long dark tunnel.


What a weekend

It was one of the weekend that you wish it was an eventful one but ended up doing nothing and you wish you could start all over again. I just back to my golf game after an absence for about 1 month due to the injury to my arm, the one they called the tennis elbow or golf elbow for golfers. I did play pretty good despite the fact that I lost some of my swing patterns and speed but managed somehow to get the balls on the fairway. 

Now I’m all back to square again, back to the point where we need to start it all over again. I have to get back to training and fix my swing. For some people that is a good news since my previous swing was not good at all. Now I have the chance to start it all over again.

How it would be nice if things can be started all over again. It’s just like the New Year where the first of January will definitely come and we all busy ourselves with our resolutions of the things we want to do or accomplish. We actually were given the chance to start it all over again. But sadly we just do not bother because we know that there is going to be another year coming with 1st of January as the first day.

What are people’s ideas about dream? What do people know about dream? How many of us actually has a dream? When we were young do we actually have dream to be somebody we want to be or we just let ourselves grow up and to be somebody we not really know why. Maybe that is why we never bother to start that journey to the dream which is not ours. 

Dreams are not to be given up. The moment it is given, all hopes will be gone and it just game over.

Ban on Smoking

It is good to know that many countries are taking drastic to discourage people from smoking but despite all those efforts, many people fail to give up the habit and in fact new smokers are increasing by the day. Smokers burn millions of dollars everyday just to satisfy their addiction and while doing that they are also endanger themselves to cancer related disease. Here is one article I found that may make it possible to ban smoking by starting at public areas.

It seemed impossible at first. But in 2004, Ireland made history as the first country to implement a comprehensive smoking ban in indoor workplaces, including restaurants and bars. Defying dire predictions, Ireland’s policy has proved to be both popular and enforceable, with ready compliance, no decline in business, and improved health outcomes for hospitality workers. Overwhelmingpublic support for the ban has come from smokers and nonsmokers alike, dispelling the belief that restaurants and bars shouldrepresent bastions of smoking and socialization. For a country traditionally known for its smoke-filled pubs, the new societalstandard represents a breathtaking (or breath-enhancing) revolution.

Historians may someday view Ireland’s bold move as a tipping point for global public health. Previous actions worldwide hadstemmed from mounting scientific evidence, summarized most recently in the 2006 U.S. Surgeon General’s report, confirming thatexposure to secondhand smoke leads to premature death and disease, including lung cancer and ischemic heart disease. For example, in 1998, California became the first U.S. state to adopt smoke-free policies for all restaurants and bars. South Africa passed national laws in 2000 making public places smoke-free, although exemptions for bars and restaurants were allowed. Most recently, the Bloomberg Global Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use has been funded by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg with the aim of reducing tobacco use in low- and middle-income countries.

When Ireland enacted its smoke-free policy, startled observers wondered whether other countries would follow suit. The answercame within months, when New Zealand successfully implemented a comprehensive ban. Global momentum has since accelerated, with a host of additional countries enacting policies within a few years.  Most smoke-free countries are in Europe(although a number of these countries allow for the possibility of a designated, enclosed, ventilated smoking room). But othercontinents have seen activity as well: Australia and Canada are poised to join the group, and a growing number of countries are considering legislation. Though the United States lacks a federal policy, 17 states and dozens of municipalities are recognized as having smoke-free public places.

Given these developments, the world’s nearly 1.3 billion smokers deserve heightened support. Studies indicate that most smokerswant to quit but are unable to do so. Smoke-free policies remove the social stimuli that promote relapse, motivating smokersto decrease consumption and quit. But battling this addiction also requires better systems of care, including behavioral modification, counseling, pharmacologic interventions, telephone “quit lines,” and other services. Providing access to such resources, a challenge in high-income countries, is even more daunting in the developing world. Furthermore, since the addiction disproportionately burdens those of lower socioeconomic status, tobacco control must rank as a prime focus of global efforts to eliminate health disparities.

The first few years of the 21st century have made possible what was once considered impossible. In the face of an escalatingpandemic, a global haze may be starting to lift. We are witnessing a public health evolution in which the once-extraordinary israpidly becoming the social norm. Making smoking history moves us closer to reaffirming the right to the highest standard ofhuman health for all.


New Clean Diesel Engine for the Environment

AFP Reports Says:

TOKYO (AFP) — Japan’s Mazda Motor Corp. said Tuesday it had developed a clean diesel engine to launch next year in Europe as demand grows for fuel-efficient technology.

Japan’s fifth largest automaker plans to introduce the MZR-CD 2.2 engine worldwide but first in Europe, where diesel accounts for nearly 60 percent of vehicle sales.

The technology allows the engine to burn off soot from exhaust fumes some 60 percent faster than traditional diesel engines, the Hiroshima-based company said in a statement.

Mazda becomes the second Japanese automaker to announce its own clean diesel engine after Nissan Motor Co. last week unveiled the country’s first clean-running diesel SUV.

Market leaders Honda Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. are also developing their own clean diesel technology, hoping to turn Japanese consumers to diesel which they long perceived as dirty, noisy and sooty.

Japan is planning to introduce incentives for consumers buying clean diesel cars starting next year as part of efforts to fight global warming.

It is indeed a good move by one of the giant car maker as an effort for a better and green environment.

Are we heading for the worst?

So many things are happening around us and before one problem is solved another one just coming up from no where. The world faced so many problems this year starting with the high energy price and shortage of food and later some financial problems in the US due to the sub prime mortgage problem that led to some economic slump.

Today we faced yet another major problem in the financial market and this could let to another big recession. Lehman Brothers and Meryll Lynch are some of the giant financial institution in the world and they just went down due to bankruptcy. Another giant the AIG is seeking some rescue package from the US government to prevent it from collapsing. The impact is yet to be felt in other countries especially Asia. For the last 2 days, the stock market is Asia dropped tremendously as fears in the market spread throughout the world.

Guess that what have been predicted before is true. Now that the Beijing Olympic is over and people were already saying that many more economic disaster will come and it did and it hit very hard. How could we recover from this and how long could this hard time last. What are the cause of all these. Nobody can really answer to those questions but we need to learn from this so that we can prepare for the worst in future. Who could have thought that the oil price could dip to below US100 a month ago and it is USD93 a barrel now. Hopefully it will stay low.

We just hope that government and policy makers will make good judgement and decision to overcome this problems. There are jobs being lost but a lot of mouth to feed and tons of bills to pay. So hold on to it…

Lehman Bankrupt

The business world received a shocking news today when Lehman Brothers, a top investment banking powerhouse has filed for a bankruptcy. The 158-year-old New York-based company has more than 24,000 employees worldwide – between 10,000 and 12,000 of them in the city – facing the specter of unemployment.

Former Federal Reserve chief Alan Greenspan described the financial hurricane that has swept away Lehman, Merrill Lynch, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae and Bear Stearns as “a once-in-a-century event” that can still take down other firms. Mayor Bloomberg put off a trip to San Francisco to help deal with the crisis, since New York City collects a disproportionate share of its revenues from the financial sector.

Lehman’s collapse was expected to send shock waves through Wall Street today, with futures trading late last night indicating a likely drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average of around 300 points. Stock markets in Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and China are closed for holidays today. A key index in Australia slumped only 1.5 percent last night, giving traders hope that the sell-off may not be so dire

Only Hours before September 16

Finally September 16 is just a few hours away. It is the day which have been the talk of many people who hope that something will happen on this day. A new hope and a new life that people have been hoping for. At the moment many still not quite sure if all these is going to happen and for sure September 16 will come when the clock strike after 12 midnight today.

When we wake up tomorrow, we will ask ourselves if all these going to come true. But if September 16 is just another day, like any other day and when it ended tomorrow we are still waiting. Although we learned there are a lot of development and progress being made, we just need to wait and see.

Taking a Nap

People who are sleep deprived feel groggy during the day and may fall asleep when they least want to, perhaps at their desks or, worse, behind the steering wheel. Poor sleep at night may be caused by simply not devoting enough time to sleep or by medical problems that disrupt sleep, such as restless legs syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea. And in some cases, daytime sleepiness can result directly from medical problems such as depression or an underactive thyroid.

Voluntary napping, on the other hand, is not a sign of sleep
deprivation, illness, or aging. In fact, a “power nap” can be helpful as well as enjoyable. Many studies of shift workers and other volunteers have reported that a nap as brief as 20 minutes can improve alertness, psychomotor performance, and mood.

Naps, however, aren’t trouble-free. One problem is sleep inertia, or grogginess and disorientation that may accompany awakening from deep sleep. The second problem is nighttime wakefulness.

To get the benefit of a quick snooze without being caught napping,Harvard Men’s Health Watch suggests the following tips:

* Plan to take your nap at a good time in your daily sleep-wake cycle; for many people, sometime between noon and 4 p.m. is best.
* Don’t sleep too long; a 20- to 40-minute nap may refresh your day without keeping you up at night.
* Give yourself 10 to 15 minutes to wake up fully before you resume a demanding task.

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