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MONDAY JULY 1 2013 MCI (P) 116/05/2013

Visit the new My Paper website and stand to win cool prizes NEWS A6


How Hello Kitty turned journalist Lisa Oon into an ugly Singaporean STYLE A16


MILITARYSECURITY ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// new Cyber Defence Operations Hub has been set up to defend the Ministry of Defence and Singapore Armed Forces military networks against cyber threats, said Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen last Saturday. The hub will provide round-the-clock capabilities to protect the militarys systems, and detect and neutralise cyber threats, as well as quickly recover military networks.

MONDAY JULY 1 2013 MCI (P) 116/05/2013

SAF beefs up capabilities to quash cyber threats A

Manila slams Beijing over militarisation amid sea rows

THE Philippines hit out at China yesterday over the increasing militarisation of the South China Sea, as tensions between the neighbours flared amid slow-moving regional efforts to forge a compromise over one of Asias naval flashpoints. The rebuke by Philippine Foreign Minister Albert del Rosario at a regional summit in Brunei came a day after Chinas state media warned of an inevitable counterstrike against the Philippines if it continued to provoke Beijing. The Philippine official said the massive presence of Chinese military and paramilitary ships at the Second Thomas Shoal and at another reef the Scarborough Shoal, site of a tense stand-off last year was a threat to regional peace. The statement on a counterstrike is an irresponsible one. We condemn any threats (involving) the use of force, he said in Brunei following a meeting of Asean foreign ministers. Friction between China and the Philippines over disputed territories in the oiland gas-rich sea has intensified since last year, due to several naval stand-offs. Most recently, the Philippines accused China of encroaching on its territory after three Chinese ships converged about 9km from a small reef where the Philippines maintains a small military force. Asean hopes to persuade Beijing to join talks on a proposed code of conduct this year, even as Chinas naval actions have alarmed some nations, particularly the Philippines and Vietnam.


Tour de France mayhem:

Pile-ups on the racecourse, confusion in the ranks and a huge crash with 15 riders injured marked the opening stage of the Tour de France last Saturday. Alberto Contador (centre, with the number 91), one of the favourites in the tour, suffered injuries to his shoulders and elbow. The crash took out half the peloton, which was travelling at about 30kmh.

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M Y P A PE R M O ND A Y J UL Y 1 2 0 1 3


Malaccas plan to patent asam pedas a mixture of spices that makes a hot gravy appears to be leading to a fiery war with its neighbour Johor, Malaysias The Star reported. Johors executive councillor for Youth, Sports, Culture and Heritage, Datuk Zulkurnain Kamisan, said asam pedas is common across the country, and that it was absurd for Malacca to claim the dish as its own.


POLLUTEDAIR /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Sporeans rightly worried by haze


INGAPOREANS are rightly worried about the effects of haze on their health, said Dr Ng Eng Hen, chairman of the Haze Inter-ministerial Committee, last Saturday. Responding to a question from the media about whether people have been overreacting to the haze situation, he said that Singaporeans get upset because they treasure the countrys clean air and environment. However, both the Government and citizens need to have a measured sense of composure and to deal with other countries and people with dignity and respect, he said. Dr Ng, who is also Defence Minister, was speaking at a media interview ahead of Singapore Armed Forces Day today. The three-hour Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit its lowest in

weeks yesterday, dipping below 20 for a few hours at one point. The 24-hour PSI is expected to remain in the moderate range today, said the National Environment Agency. But PM2.5 particles particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns, said to be more harmful than larger particles are still at slightly elevated levels, putting the health advisory in the unhealthy range.

Haze: yn w Clean air: xn xin kng q Composure: zhn dng Particles: wi l



Dealing with the haze

HOW does one cope with the haze? This is a pertinent question, especially since schools reopened today amid the current haze situation. My Paper has prepared a guide on dealing with the haze.

Cross section of human hair (60m)

What can I do when it gets hazy?

Pay attention to the National Environment Agencys (NEAs) hourly PSI updates, and follow the daily advisories found on its website ( When the PSI hits very unhealthy levels (above 200), healthy people should avoid prolonged or strenuous outdoor activities, or wear an N95 mask otherwise. Prolonged and strenuous activities refer to those that last several hours and lead to people taking in more breaths than normal, such as swimming. Vulnerable groups of people including children, pregnant women and the elderly should avoid outdoor activities when the PSI is above 200, or wear an N95 mask if they cannot avoid being outdoors. Air purifiers can help filter particles from the air. Visit NEAs website ( for a list of portable air cleaners. Air-conditioners can help, but not all can filter PM2.5 particles. If you are suffering from an

How can the haze affect my health?

The haze contains particulate matter (PM), which are graded by size. PM10 refers to particles less than 10 micrometres in diameter, while PM2.5 refers to particles less than 2.5 micrometres in diameter. PM2.5 particles are more hazardous to humans as they can get lodged deep in the lungs, causing complications for those with respiratory illnesses. Healthy people can get irritated or watery eyes, conjunctivitis or nasal irritation due to the haze. Other symptoms include throat irritation, shortness of breath and dry cough. For those with respiratory illnesses, the haze can cause shortness of breath, and worsen conditions like asthma or chronic bronchitis when

PM10 (10m) m: micrometre

PM2.5 (2.5m)

existing illness, take your medication regularly. If you feel uncomfortable, seek medical attention immediately. Drink more water, which can relieve an irritated throat, and eat more fresh fruit and vegetables. Cut down on alcohol and coffee. Use a warm towel to wipe eyelids and apply eye drops when eyes are irritated. Get medication, like antihistamines and decongestants, if you are suffering from a runny nose.

Seniors, people with chronic lung or heart disease, those who have suffered a stroke, and pregnant women in their second and third trimesters should consult their doctor on whether they can use an N95 mask. N95 masks are not certified for kids use, so they should remain indoors as much as possible when haze conditions are bad. To learn how to wear an N95 mask, visit the Ministry of Healths website (


Should I use a surgical or N95 mask?

The N95 mask has been scientifically proven to filter out microscopic particles, including haze particles, effectively. Most surgical masks do not effectively filter small particles. Still, in cases where an N95 mask is not recommended, healthy people can use a surgical mask instead. The N95 mask increases the effort required to breathe, so using it may cause discomfort, tiredness or a headache.

haze conditions are bad. In children, long-term exposure to PM2.5 may lead to chronic respiratory diseases. For pregnant women, long-term exposure to haze can cause birth complications. Seniors, as well as those with heart problems or are stroke victims, are more susceptible to the haze, which can exacerbate health problems.

N95 mask

Surgical mask


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MILITARYSECURITY //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Singapore update
EXPECT the tougher rules on home-loan financing to stay. They are a structural measure to ensure a more stable property market, Minister for National Development Khaw Boon Wan said yesterday. Its not really a cooling measure as such, but its a measure which will be quite permanent, said Mr Khaw.

SAF beefs up for cyber threats


NEW centralised, round-the-clock Cyber Defence Operations Hub has been established to create a more robust defence for Singapores military networks, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said last Saturday. Speaking in a media interview ahead of Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Day today, Dr Ng said the ops hub will help to develop expertise to combat evolving cyber threats, which can not only disrupt the militarys front- and back-end systems, but civilian water and electricity grids as well. The ops hub will carry out day-to-day cyber-defence operations to detect, identify, contain and neutralise cyber threats to the countrys military networks. It will be able to quickly recover the networks, too, if needed. We are beefing up our cyber defence because thats the next (leap forward) that we see, Dr Ng said, when touching on the SAFs future developments. He added that the issue of cyber attacks was a major point made at the Shangri-La Dialogue last month by United States Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel.

The issue of cyber attacks is also a topic often discussed with defence chiefs of other nations, Dr Ng said. All of us recognise they are increasing in frequency, potency and create great damage. Dr Ng said the SAFs tail-end functions such as logistics and engineering and its front-end capabilities in quickly sensing and responding to threats, all depend on computer networks. The ops hub will partner the Singapore Infocomms Technology Security Authority to keep abreast of the latest developments in cyber threats. It will also draw on existing expertise from the SAF and Ministry of Defence, as well as the defence-technology community. While he declined to reveal the size of the ops hub, Dr Ng said: We are not starting from a blank slate... We are gathering everything together and putting it under one centralised agency. During the interview, he also emphasised that a strong SAF cannot do without national service (NS). We dont have the option of not having NS, like some other countries. We have to be clear-eyed about it, Dr Ng said. Despite our falling fertility,

we still have enough able-bodied national servicemen (NSmen) to generate a sizeable SAF force for years to come, he added. He said it has been 45 years since NS was established, and this was a good time to stock take and re-examine it. So, the Committee to Strengthen National Service was set up. The committee is gathering feedback from servicemen and the public via town-hall meetings and focus-group discussions. On suggestions to give NSmen rewards like priority housing and medical subsidies, Dr Ng said the Government is continually looking into recognising and providing benefits to NSmen. Past examples include Safra clubhouses and vouchers. But he said: In terms of recognition and benefits for NSmen: Whatever we do, we must not dilute the values of duty, honour and country. It cannot be (on) a transactional basis I give you benefits, therefore you serve. That just...adulterates the value system. Dr Ng said the commitment to serve NS still remains strong, with many servicemen expressing their desire to become officers and commanders.

He said the ministry is looking into increasing the proportion of officers and commanders in SAF. Although more details of the Cyber Defence Operations Hub were not revealed, Mr David Siah, Trend Micro Singapores country manager, said todays cyber attacks extend beyond delivering malware, to establishing lasting footholds inside networks. Under the assumption that we will be compromised, organisations must improve detection capabilities that provide visibility of a breach, and establish an incident-response process and plan that can quickly mitigate and minimise the impact, he said.


CHANGES to the Legal Aid and Advice Act come into effect today, potentially benefiting 300,000 more people. The amendments enable greater access to justice for those who need but cannot afford basic legal services, the Law Ministry said yesterday.


Defence: gu fng Cyber attacks: wng lu gng j Centralised agency: zhng yng j gu Adulterates: bin d

MR LIM Swee Say, Minister in the Prime Ministers Office, and Mr Lawrence Wong, Acting Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, are leading a business delegation to Luzhou and Chengdu in Chinas Sichuan province. The four-day business mission ends on Wednesday.

News on the go with My Papers revamped site

MY PAPER readers, youve now got another way to get your daily news, as the paper is now available on all digital platforms. Today marks the launch of our revamped website (, which carries content from both the English and Chinese sections of the free bilingual newspaper. Each story has its own unique html link, making it easier to read on Web browsers of your laptop, as well as your smartphone or tablet. That includes those for iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone operating systems. It also means that articles can be shared more easily on social networks, including Facebook and Twitter. Reports are also categorised into different sections to help readers find news they are interested in. Just like the paper, the News section condenses both local and

PHONE-FRIENDLY: From today, English and Chinese articles from My Paper are hosted on the revamped site, PHOTO: INTERNET SCREEN GRAB world news. The My Executive page, which serves as the papers back cover, is a unique page which touches on topics that affect the young working professional today, and has its own section on the website. Dont miss our coverage of Asian stars in Showbiz, or travel trends in Journeys. Eats explores the yummy bites around town, while Active focuses on gym and

lifestyle fitness trends. In Specials, youll find our feature issues, such the Great Singapore Sale and Property Picks supplements. In the future, you can look forward to a search feature within the site, too. We are also planning to release mobile applications for My Paper. Details will be made known later. For readers who love flipping through digital versions of the physical paper, fret not: The flash-based e-paper can still be accessed via the website. As part of the launch for the website, we are giving away prizes to readers who register with it. One lucky reader stands to win a two-night cruise aboard the SuperStar Virgo to Malacca, Redang or Kuala Lumpur for two adults and two kids. The total package is worth $2,280. My Paper is also giving away two Nikon Coolpix S800C cameras worth $549 each, as well as four Nikon Coolpix S01 cameras worth $249 each. Some $2,000 worth of shopping vouchers will be given away to 10 lucky readers as well. Winners will be announced in My Paper on Aug 6.

Consulting Editor FELIX SOH Editor Deputy Editor News Editor Assistant News Editor Foreign Editor Entertainment/ Lifestyle Editor Design & Photo Editor Copy Editor SARAH NG JILL ALPHONSO SUJIN THOMAS KENNY CHEE CHEW HUI MIN KAREN LIM PETER WILLIAMS KONG SOON WAH

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MY P A P ER MO N D A Y JU LY 1 2013



MY P A P ER M O N D A Y J U LY 1 2013


Germany ranks with China in US spying


Italys soup kitchens go gourmet

IN A gritty Rome neighbourhood, a soup kitchen is serving up gourmet food donated by a famous delicatessen. Of course, its good! This is a VIP soup kitchen. We get a first course, second course and dessert. Its like a trattoria, Mr Alessandro, a homeless Moldovan builder, said as he finished his sorbet in the San Benedetto parish canteen. Organisers of the project entitled Pasto Buono (Good Meal) contact gourmet grocers and restaurants which throw out scraps and day-old food, and put them in touch with organisations that run soup kitchens like Catholic charity association Caritas. Volunteers said former middle-class Italians who have been hit hard by the governments austerity measures are among the new poor coming to soup kitchens, while immigrants who used to attend have since left the country.

HE United States taps half a billion phone calls, and e-mail and text messages in Germany in a typical month, and has classed its biggest European ally as a target similar to China, according to secret US documents quoted by a German news magazine. The revelations about alleged US surveillance programmes, based on documents taken by fugitive former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden, have raised a political furore in the US and abroad over the balance between privacy rights and national security. Exposing the latest details in a string of reputed spying programmes, Der Spiegel quoted from an NSA internal document which it said its reporters had seen. The document Der Spiegel cited showed that the US categorised Germany as a third-class partner and that surveillance there was stronger

than in any other European Union country, similar in extent to that of China, Iraq or Saudi Arabia. We can attack the signals of most foreign third-class partners, and we do it too, Der Spiegel quoted a passage in the NSA document as saying. It said the document showed that the NSA monitored phone calls, text messages, e-mail and Internet chat contributions, and has saved the metadata that is, the connections, not the content at its headquarters. On an average day, the NSA monitored about 20 million German phone connections and 10 million Internet data sets, rising to 60 million phone connections on busy days, the report said. In France, the US tapped about two million connection data a day, Der Spiegel reported. Only Canada, Australia, Britain and New Zealand were explicitly exempted from spy attacks. Meanwhile, a shocked EU angrily awaited explanations from Washington follow-

ing allegations of US spying on EU offices. Mr Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, said in a statement that I am deeply worried and shocked about the allegations of the US authorities spying on EU offices, in both Brussels and the US. If the allegations prove to be true, it would be an extremely serious matter which will have a severe impact on EU-US relations. Some EU policymakers even called for a suspension in talks for a free-trade agreement between Washington and the EU.

Ally: mng yu Categorised: gu li Tapped: qi tng Suspension: zn tng

Grace and grit:


Orlando Duque of Colombia diving from the 27m platform during the third stop of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series in Ilset Vila Franca do Campo, Portugal, last Saturday. Britains Gary Hunt won the event, ahead of second-placed Duque and Jonathan Paredes of Mexico, who came in third.

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Chinas polluted groundwater


World update
THE Philippines Vice-President says China has told him not to make a planned trip to Beijing to make a final appeal to President Xi Jinping to spare the life of a Filipino woman who faces imminent execution on drug charges. Mr Jejomar Binay says he was told by the Chinese Foreign Ministry that it would not be convenient for him to visit China at this time.

HE issue of polluted groundwater in China has once again bubbled to the sur-

face. Such rising concern follows in the wake of a report claiming that only 22 per cent of underground water in the densely-populated North China Plain qualifies as drinking water. In February, claims washed over social-media sites that tainted water from paper mills and chemical works in Weifang, Shandong province, was being pumped underground, thus polluting groundwater sources. However, experts and officials said the problem can be solved only by greater investment in monitoring systems, stricter laws and an upgrading of outdated quality standards that have not been amended for more than 20 years. Many experts pinpointed a lack of monitoring sites and their inadequate facilities as one of the key factors hindering the governments efforts to tackle groundwater pollution. Out of fewer than 25,000 monitoring sites managed by all levels of the water resources departments, only about 10 per cent

are equipped with facilities to test water quality, while the rest can only monitor water quantity, said Mr Chen Ming, head of the water resources department at the Ministry of Water Resources. Only about 40 per cent of Chinas groundwater qualifies as a source of drinking water, according to the Environmental Protection Ministrys 2012 Environmental Conditions Report, published on June 4, which examined 5,000 pockets of groundwater in 198 cities. The number of qualified sources was much lower on the plains, and fell to around one fifth on the North China Plain, which includes the provinces of Henan, Shanxi, Hebei and Shandong, plus the municipalities of Beijing and Tianjin. Its not that the government has ignored pollution in the past, said Mr Chen. The reason for the sharp contrast is that pollution has emerged as a problem only in the past 30 years, as a result of the countrys rapid development. He said recharge polluted surface water that sinks into the ground is a major cause of groundwater pollution, because most of the exploitable groundwater is connected to surface water.

The major sources of pollution include urban domestic refuse, leaks from industrial pipelines, the illegal discharge of sewage, and the widespread use of pesticides and fertilisers. The discharge of untreated industrial sewage nationwide reached almost 16 billion tonnes in 2009, but wasnt included in the official data, according to research conducted by Professor Ma Zhong, head of the School of Environment and Natural Resources at Renmin University of China. Prof Ma suspects that at least part of the untreated sewage has been dumped underground. In addition to the inadequate facilities at many monitoring stations, there simply arent enough of them. During the 1970s and 1980s, groundwater was still untainted in many regions because of limited human activity. There was no large-scale exploitation of groundwater. Therefore, only a small number of monitoring stations were required for groundwater resource investigation and assessment, said Mr Gao Cunrong, director of the department of groundwater monitoring at the China Institute of Geological Environmental Monitoring. More than 20,000 national-lev-

el monitoring stations will be built or upgraded in 31 provinces by the ministries of Water Resources and Land and Resources, and more than 50 per cent of those stations will be equipped with facilities to test water quality, Mr Chen said, without giving a completion date for the project. The problem of polluted groundwater on the North China Plain is exacerbated by the high level of consumption around 70 per cent of the areas total water consumption. The level is much higher than the national average of 17.4 per cent, according to a research paper written by Wu Aimin, director of the Geological Survey and Technology Department at the China Institute of Geological Environmental Monitoring, in 2010.


CHINAS President Xi Jinping said officials shouldnt be judged solely on their record in boosting gross domestic product, the latest signal that policymakers are prepared to tolerate slower economic expansion. The Communist Party should instead place more importance on achievements in improving peoples livelihood, social development and environmental quality when evaluating the performance of officials, the Xinhua News Agency reported, citing Mr Xi

Underground water: d xia shu Drinking water: yn yng shu Industrial pipelines: gng y gun do Exacerbated: ji j


CHINESE paramilitary troops began round-the-clock patrols yesterday in the countrys northwestern region of Xinjiang, following a series of bloody clashes that have killed at least 56 people over the last several months. The action came just days ahead of the July 5 anniversary of a 2009 riot between Xinjiangs native Uighur people and Han Chinese migrants in the city that left nearly 200 people dead.


YOUNG children and certain other people with the Aids virus should be started on medicines as soon as they are diagnosed, the World Health Organization says in new guidelines that also recommend earlier treatment for adults. The advice will have the most impact in Africa, where nearly 70 per cent of people with HIV live. Many rich countries already advocate early treatment. WHOs new guidelines were released yesterday at the International Aids Society meeting in Kuala Lumpur.


Manilas storm scare:

A street in Manila flooded by Tropical Storm Rumbia yesterday. Forecasters had predicted that Rumbia would hit the densely-populated Manila metropolis early yesterday, sparking emergency preparations. Instead, it veered away and struck Batangas province, about 80km south of Manila, then blew away towards the South China Sea, officials said.


MY P A P ER M O N D A Y JU LY 1 2013


Cop met sultans brother months before Sabah intrusion

A MALAYSIAN police officer met a brother of self-proclaimed Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III two months before the February intrusion into Sabah by followers of the sultan, which led to the deaths of over 70 people. The meeting between former Sabah Special Branch deputy chief Zulkifli Aziz and Mr Esmail Kiram suggested that much planning had gone into the intrusion, and that it was possibly aided by people in the territory. At least one Malaysian police officer is suspected of aiding the Sulu sultanates plan to take over Sabah by withholding information about it, and it was during the officers trial which began last Monday that Mr Zulkifli testified to contacting Mr Esmail

Kiram prior to the intrusion. The Special Branch officer, Hassan Ali Basari, is being tried for withholding information about the intrusion from investigators. He was arrested in late March after it was found that he had learnt about the plan for the intrusion into Tanduo village, in Lahad Datu, but did not inform his superiors.

I, ROBOT: Ms Madoka Nishibori working with a humanoid robot on an assembly line at machine manufacturer Glorys Saitama factory in Japan. PHOTO: YOMIURI SHIMBUN/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

Meet my fellow worker the robot


AID Ms Madoka Nishibori, a 42-year-old factory worker, of her colleague: At first, I felt a bit strange with him, but now I like him somewhat. He sometimes makes mistakes, but hes nice to work with because he works at a constant pace. Ms Nishiboris colleague is a humanoid robot. It has been about six months since she and the robot began working together on an assembly line. At a Saitama factory of Glory, a money-handling-machine manufacturer headquartered in Himeji, Hyogo prefecture, one robot joined about 320 workers in 2010. Currently, 17 robots help manufacture devices, such as change machines for cash registers. At the assembly line for coin slots for cash-register money changers, four robots are responsible for four of the five processes, while the final process is handled by a human worker. About 80 per cent of the work, such as installing belts and gears, is done by robots. According to factory manager Katsuhiko Maruo, humanoid robots use their eyes, meaning cameras in their heads and hands, to recognise parts and the locations of holes, and can choose the right tool to assemble them. He said: Automating lines to build various machines in different quantities used to be very difficult. But a robot can flexi-

bly handle various jobs. Their jobs are similar to the ones humans do, so people can replace them in case they stop due to malfunctions or power blackouts. The humanoid robots, called Nextage, are manufactured by Kawada Industries, headquartered in Toyama prefecture. The firm said about 100 robots are working at more than 10 companies around the country. They are slower than their human counterparts, so the robots at Glorys factory keep on working even when the human workers take breaks, to make up for the delay. Mr Maruo thinks the robots can start working on the night shift within this fiscal year. We arent planning on reducing our workforce. Rather, we hope they can coexist with the robots, by sharing roles to improve efficiency and further develop the company, he said.

Colleague: tng sh Humanoid: rn xng Automating: z dng hu Coexist: gng ch


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3,500 3,200 2,900 2,600 2,300
June 12 Aug Oct Dec Feb Apr June 13



0.75% 1.09%
DOW JONES IA 14,909.60 (+110.20)

FTSE 100 6,215.47 (+99.30)

NIKKEI 13,677.32 (+447.19)

HANG SENG 20,803.29 (+539.98)

COMPOSITE INDEX 1,979.21 (-93.89)

KOSPI 1,863.32 (+40.49)




YEN (100 units)

0.26% 1.1420 BUY

0.25% 1.1990 SELL

1.6090 BUY

1.6890 SELL

2.27% 1.8920 BUY

1.9670 SELL

0.65% 1.2310 BUY

0.62% 1.2920 SELL

1.2590 BUY

1.3090 SELL

3,150.44 (+25.99) June 21- 28


ANALYSIS ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Markets stormy but no full-blown crisis


Agence France-Presse

ARKETS are heading into a stormy few months after the United States pricked the euphoria that pushed share prices to record highs, but turbulence does not mean a return to crisis, analysts said. After elation over Japanese efforts to stimulate the economy out of two decades of deflation and stagnation sent shares soaring in May, indices in many countries tumbled about 10 per cent last month. Yields on government debt have also risen and emerging markets have been hit by large capi-

tal outflows. What affected the markets was the announcement of the Fed. That was what triggered the volatility, said Mr Olivier Garnier, chief economist at Societe Generale bank. On June 19, US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke signalled that the US central bank could begin winding down its asset-purchase programme and stop it altogether in the middle of next year, if the US economy continues to recover. Equities markets plunged for several days before recovering some ground last week, while the yield on 10-year US Treasury bonds shot up nearly 18 per cent in one week to levels above 2.5 per cent unseen for two years.

The markets dont really know which way to go. There is uncertainty, which has a price volatility, said Mr Rene Defossez at Natixis investment bank. The Fed has flipped a switch that will disturb the markets for a while. The shift in US monetary policy pushed investors to reduce their higher-risk investments. The rise in sovereign-borrowing costs, if it continues and filters through to higher rates for mortgage and consumer loans, could also hit the recovery of the US economy. But markets have had more to worry about than just anticipating the Feds actions. The slowdown in Chinas economy and a credit crunch at its banks have also sparked concern among inves-

tors, as has the limping recovery in the euro zone. Nevertheless, analysts dont expect the current volatility to degenerate into a full-blown crisis, saying the situation is still far from the chaos of the summer of 2011, when fears of a euro-zone break-up swept the markets. This is not an end-of-the-world climate, said Mr Romain Boscher at Amundi Asset Management. But stock brokerage Aurel BGC noted that the scenario is getting more difficult for investors as recent developments force them to review their strategies and concentrate more on economic perspectives. The easy-money policies pursued by the major central banks had hidden the bad surprises on

the world economy: Chinese growth has slipped, the US economy has slowed in the second quarter, Europe is having difficulty getting out of recession, added the brokerage.

Turbulence: dng dng Volatility: b dng xng Credit crunch: xn yng kng hung Full-blown crisis: qun min wi j

Murdoch splits media empire into two firms

MEDIA mogul Rupert Murdoch split his corporate empire into two parts last Friday, under a long-promised plan to unlock value by separating high-flying entertainment operations from struggling publishing activities. The split became effective at the close of trade in New York, creating a group called 21st Century Fox while retaining the name News Corp for the publishing group. Mr Murdoch remains in charge of both. The 21st Century Fox group, which includes the Fox Hollywood studios and television entities, launches as a unique force bringing news and entertainment to more than a billion customers every day in over 100 languages, he said. Our success will continue to be rooted in a deep belief in originality and a commitment to empowering creative minds and entrepreneurs around the world. Our management teams are the best in the business and we will drive growth and shareholder value by expanding our existing assets and brands, while embracing new opportunities and technology. The new News Corp, with Mr Murdoch in the role of chairman, includes well-known newspapers like the Wall Street Journal and New York Post in the United States; The Sunday Times of London, Sunday Telegraph and The Sun in Britain, and The Australian. It also includes Dow Jones news agency, Fox Sports Australia and the HarperCollins publishing house.


Colour play:

Southern California dog groomer Catherine Opsons miniature poodles, Porsche (left) and Kobe, running in a park in Dana Point, California, last Friday. Ms Opson has won multiple awards for her creative approach to dog grooming.

Shop Parenting
riety of side-scrolling hack-and-slash games on the Lego website, including one where your avatar wielded a light sabre in Star Wars. Father and son would sit side by side at their computers playing these games simultaneously, challenging each others high scores or discussing gameplay. Occasionally, one would exclaim excitedly to the other about the weapons hes acquired or special attacks executed. In short, it was cross-generational geek heaven. Typing at my own laptop in the same room, I would roll my eyes. But I secretly wished that I was done with my work so that I could join them. It was such great bonding. Instead, I did the mum thing, and started worrying about how much computer time is too much for kids. An irony, seeing as how, in the late 1990s, I was so addicted to a certain Local Area Network (LAN) first-person shooter that I would skip lunch at my first job, take a bus to the nearest LAN gaming shop, play for 30 to 45 minutes, and then take the bus back to the office.


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Kenny Rogers is determined to witness his young sons early years as he regrets missing so much of his older kids childhoods due to his busy career, he told Britains Daily Express. The singer, 74, has two grown-up sons and a daughter from previous marriages. His twin sons with his fifth wife, Wanda, are aged nine.


MANICMUMMY ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Cross-gen geekdom hits Manic home

Still, having had my brush with computer addiction, Im mindful about helping my son keep his usage in check. Now that school has started again, the rule is that he can play computer games only on weekends. Even then, we havent actually stipulated how many hours of game time he can have something the Supportive Spouse and I need to discuss before making it clear to the boy. Frankly, I find all computer games educational, to varying degrees even Angry Birds and silly shoot-em-ups. RPGs teach you to keep an eye on the big picture, to plan ahead, to multi-task, and crisis management when the enemies start to attack all at once. Action-adventure and fighting games test the mental reflexes and coordination (just try pressing A, B, Left, Down, Right, Up, Left, Left, Right, Right, Up, Down, Punch, Kick, Punch in the right order for secret powers; now, memorise 50 different permutations for the different characters). Angry Birds, if you dont already know by now, is a test of your knowledge of physics: angles, trajectory, mass (big red bird or small blue ones?), acceleration and force. My concerns about my kids video/online gaming habits, however, are tied up with another issue: the need to read. Growing up in a house full of books, and with professional writers for parents, itd be a travesty if my seven- and three-year-old boys do not read as much as they can. Computer games, I feel, eat into their free time for reading. My reasoning is that, if the boys have no computers or iGadgets, they would eventually be so bored that they will pick up a book. With adults who have already established a life-long love for the printed word, like me, it is easy to switch between computers and books. For kids who are still developing the habit, adding gaming to the equation might throw them off the path of embracing texts for entertainment and knowledge. The solution? To monitor and tweak the computer-book balance as we go along. If gaming proves all-consuming, I would distract them with other fruitful activities or even impose a computer moratorium. Meanwhile, Im taking comfort in the fact that my elder son is expanding his vocabulary by playing games. You never know when words like smithy and macemen come in handy for composition or just continued geekdom.

HE Supportive Spouse bought a new MacBook Air recently, and so our seven-year-old inherited the aged laptop his dad had been using. In a way, that hand-me-down computer has been a lifesaver. During the just-concluded June school holidays, our son used it to play computer games online keeping him out of our hair for a couple of hours a day. First, it was Minecraft, the block-shaped world it game of little and big males everywhere for a few years now. Then, it was Games Of Throne Ascent, a free strategy role-playing game (RPG) based on the hit fantasy series. Of late, it was a va-

Wielded: hu w Crisis management: wi j gun l Trajectory: gu j Moratorium: zn jn q

Buffy joins Q&A fight against Actress SARAH MICHELLE whooping GELLAR cough
Actress and mother-of-two Sarah Michelle Gellar, best known as the star of TV series Buffy The Vampire Slayer, is joining March of Dimes and the Sounds of Pertussis campaign to help raise awareness about pertussis, also known as whooping cough. She recently talked to Celebrity Baby Scoop about family life with husband Freddie Prinze Jr and their two children Charlotte, three, and eight-month-old Rocky. Tell us about teaming up with March of Dimes and the Sounds of Pertussis campaign.
Its something that I did for my children and for myself. The Sounds of Pertussis has a partnership with March of Dimes, and theyre trying to get people to understand that its not just babies that carry pertussis. It can be adults that give it to children. The statistics are staggering. When they trace back to where these infants are getting pertussis which can be fatal 80 per cent of the time it was given to them by a family member, 50 per cent of the time it was from the parents.

The best way to help prevent pertussis is to vaccinate yourself and your children against it. So Im happy to spread the word.

Did you get your kids all the recommended childhood vaccinations?
Yes, I made the decision to vaccinate my children according to a schedule that I agreed upon with my paediatrician. I can speak in depth only about the pertussis vaccine. And I can tell you that all of us have had the vaccine and none of us have had any symptoms.

Focus on kids diet, not weight

FOOD, nutrition and weight are hot topics in the world of parenting. Now, a University of Minnesota study has shed light on how to talk to kids about these topics important tools when obesity rates are on the rise, said Minneapolis TV station Kare 11. Many (parents) ask their health-care providers: What should I say? Should I have a conversation? Should I avoid it? said researcher Jerica Berge. The study, titled Parent Conversations About Healthful Eating And Weight and published in Jama Pediatrics, has found that it might not be helpful to tell a child outright that they are overweight. Instead, it does help to fo-

How are your kids doing?

Theyre good. I reached a milestone and flew on a plane with both children. I had an extra hand with me as I didnt want the plane to revolt against me (laughs). But, the children were great and they loved it. My little one slept 21/2 hours and then played a little bit. The older one was just in heaven on the airplane.

cus more on healthy eating, rather than confronting a child directly about his weight, Dr Berge said. The researchers surveyed more than 3,500 parents and asked them how they talk to their adolescent children. They also surveyed those parents some 2,300 kids and asked them how they control their weight. They found that parents who were focused on weight conversations had kids who had more unhealthy behaviours around weight control and dieting, said Dr Berge. Those are (behaviours) like binging, purging and taking laxatives and diuretics, whereas parents who focused more on healthy-eating messages had adolescents who engaged in fewer of those unhealthy dieting and weight-control behaviours, she told Kare 11. Those unhealthy behaviours can lead to eating disorders or obesity, she added. Instead, she advised that parents focus on getting information like the importance of eating fruit and vegetables so you have a healthy body, rather than on showing concern over your childs weight.

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American pop diva Jennifer Lopez performed yesterday at lavish celebrations for Turkmenistan leader Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedovs 56th-birthday bash at a US$2-billion (S$2.5-billion) Caspian Sea resort in Avaza. J.Lo is believed to be the first major Western star to visit the isolated former Soviet republic.


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G-Dragon slays with bombastic show

ARTIST: G-Dragon VENUE: Singapore Indoor Stadium ATTENDANCE: 7,000 WHEN: Last Saturday
South Korean girl group 2NE1, who were no filler for the night. The pop quartet got the crowd all pumped up with their hits Fire, Cant Nobody and Im The Best. While G-Dragon is great in a one-man show, BigBang songs such as Fantastic Baby and Bad Boy that he performed were just not the same without the diverse vocals of the other four band members. Most of all, I missed the camaraderie the band leader shared with his members T.O.P, Taeyang, Daesung and Seungri during their sold-out concert here last year. Towards the end of the concert, the singer said: Ill come back soon with my BigBang brothers. Ill hold you to that, G-Dragon. ONE OF A KIND: K-pop star and fashion maverick G-Dragon worked the stage last Saturday, putting on a razzle-dazzle affair of a show complete with fireworks, strobe lights and elaborate props. PHOTO: KEVIN LIM/THE STRAITS TIMES razzle-dazzle affair of a show complete with fireworks, strobe lights and elaborate props. Think a throne made entirely out of chains and a futuristic transparent sports car. You see, subtlety is not one of G-Dragons strong suits. Albeit overwhelming at times, the singers avant-garde ways make him stand out in the competitive K-pop industry. Performing a 19-song set list filled with mostly high-octane tunes like Michigo and One Of A Kind, there were times when, sadly, the deafening music overpowered his vocals. The quieter moments during his ballads were refreshing to the senses. When G-Dragon performed his favourite song, That XX, the audience could hear his unique vocals above the simple acoustic-guitar accompaniment. The guest performers were

OUTH Korean idol G-Dragon may be one fifth of boyband BigBang, but the singer-rapper proved that he can hold his own at his first solo outing in Singapore. At the first of his two-night concert held over the weekend, the 24-year-old G-Dragon was one Energizer bunny, working the stage and charming the audience with constant teasing. The performer seemed more at ease on the sprawling stage of the Singapore Indoor Stadium, unlike his sullen self at an earlier press conference. Singapore is the final leg for his inaugural One Of A Kind solo world tour that has taken him to countries around the region, such as China, Japan and Indonesia. The fashion maverick put on a

Maverick: z xng q sh de rn Avant-garde: xin fng pi de Quartet: s rn z Diverse: bin hu du de

See Korean idol in the buff? Not likely

K-pop star G-DRAGON

At a press conference in Taiwan, you said in jest that you were going for the aunty look with your black fedora hat. So, why just a cap today?
Its just that I liked the hat. Theres no particular reason. As someone who needs to present myself in front of the public, I feel the pressure to do more, to constantly come up with new looks. But at times, I think I tend to overdo it, and it can get a little uncomfortable for those looking. But I hope that everyone will like my looks and support me.

to make it perfect for my fans. I want to be satisfied with the work I produce. Im aiming for a release next month.

South Korean pop idol G-Dragon may be bold in his clothing choices, but fans are unlikely to see him in the buff.

Nudity is the one thing that he will not do in the name of fashion, said the 24-year-old leader of boyband BigBang at a press conference held at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel last Saturday. G-Dragon was in town over the weekend for his One Of A Kind solo world tour. He also went to the opening of multi-label boutique Salon by Surrender at Marina Bay Sands last Friday evening.

You have a successful solo career. Have you ever thought of leaving BigBang?
Im currently concentrating on my solo tour, but when I join the other members of BigBang, I will concentrate on being a band member. Personally, I think that the love and support I get from all over the world are from fans who know me through BigBang.

Back when I started, I wasnt experienced enough... I could have made a few mistakes. I think Im still learning. But, among South Korean artists, I think BigBang and myself do not worry as much about censorship. We want to produce music that we like.

Are there any artists you wanted to work with for this concert?
If I name them, will you bring them to me? (The cheeky G-Dragon flashes a rare smile). Im not so sure. To work with other artists, weve got to have the same goal in a particular performance. Its not about working with big-name artists, its really about the elements that we are looking for in our performances, so that we can achieve synergy.

When will you be releasing your next solo album?

Im working really hard on it. Im not sure when it will be out. When I release an album, I want

Have you ever felt limited by censorship when writing songs?

Of course, I cant say no. I worry about censorship.



MY P A P ER M O N D A Y JU LY 1 2013


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Snoop Dogg and Moby to gig at music fest here

A-LIST performers Snoop Dogg and Moby will be here during the Grand Prix season in September for the inaugural 1 World Music Festival. This is the first time the two artists will be performing in Singapore. Organised by Australias Retfar Entertainment, the festival which will also feature other big names in the dance-music scene will be held over two days at the Marina Barrage on Sept 20 and 21. Musicians performing on the first day are dance-pop band Cobra Starship, known for the hit You Make Me Feel; eclectic pop duo The Cataracs; DJ group Pendulum; Australian hip-hop artist Iggy Azalea, Britains Infected Mushroom and electronic-dance duo Orbital. Hip-hop artist Snoop Dogg, also STAR POWER: Snoop Dogg will perform here in September. MUSIC MAN: Moby will perform on the festivals second day.

known as Snoop Lion, is scheduled to perform on the second day, along with musician and DJ Moby. Artists who will perform that night include Far East Movement of club hit Like A G6, rapper Taboo from The Black Eyed Peas, and DJs Cosmic Gate and Miguel Migs.
KAREN LIM The 1 World Music Festival will be held at the Marina Barrage on Sept 20 and 21, at 6pm on both nights. Tickets start at $88 and are on sale now at Ticketbooth at sg and Redtix at

ELECTRIFYING: Although she looked thin from recent weight loss, Hong Kong star Joey Yung pranced around the stage at her concert last Saturday. PHOTO: UNUSUAL ENTERTAINMENT

Emo Yung puts on energetic show

BY LISA OON ARTIST: Joey Yung VENUE: Compass Ballroom, Resorts World
Convention Centre ATTENDANCE: 5,000 WHEN: Last Saturday

ONG Kong Cantopop singer Joey Yung might have looked thin from her recent weight loss, but her performance last Saturday showed that she was still her energetic self. The 33-year-old delivered a total of 29 songs, providing the 5,000-strong audience with an electrifying performance. For 21/2 hours, she pranced around the stage at the Compass Ballroom, belting out hit songs including Airport, which is said to be the theme song of her tour. Yung chose a mix of tunes that showed off her vocals. Even though she is usually known for singing ballads, she mixed in a few fast songs as well. With each of her ballads, such as Avoid You and Tong Ai (Painful Love), it felt like Yung was communicating her feelings to the audience. Her songs were emotionally charged, and she even teared while singing the shows last song, Strong. Her fast songs, such as Mad About U and Monroe, however, did not impress. It could have been due to the more complicated choreography, but she seemed to have less control over her voice. Named Joey Yung Concert Number 6, the performance featured different sides of Yung, from a sweet young thing to a confident and sexy bombshell. To do that, she changed in and out of seven costumes. While some of the outfits impressed like a butter-yellow gown and a rainbow-coloured skirt some just fell flat. One example was her third costume, a huge white coat that made her look like a white Cookie Monster.

During the gig, Yung shared with fans that she had to go on a strict diet while on tour. Her weight loss was evident when she kept having to pull up the trousers of one of her outfits. The Hong Kong star also told the audience that she was worried that the haze that had enveloped Singapore which was the last destination for this tour would affect her voice. She added that now that the haze is clearing up, the air here is much better than in Hong Kong, eliciting laughter from the crowd. One of the highlights of the concert was when she took out a guitar and strummed to Airport. Halfway through the song, she performed it acoustically, displaying her musical talent. Another highlight was when she performed a Matrix-like dance to the song Scream. The singer showed off her flexibility when she bent backwards in the middle of the dance to avoid a speeding bullet shown on an LED screen behind her. The audience was visibly awed, judging from the gasps. At the end of the concert, Yung told the crowd to remember the night that they had shared. I know I will.

Ballads: qng g Choreography: w do bin pi Eliciting: yn ch Awed: jng tn

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Canadian troupe Cirque du Soleil is working with Michael Jacksons former music and dance partners to bring the King of Pops spirit and energy to the Beijing stage in August. Despite being one of the first Western pop icons to be embraced by Chinese audiences, the late singer never performed on the Chinese mainland.


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Kitty brought out ugly Sporean in me

citizens that would otherwise go unnoticed. The group uploads stories, film footage and pictures of people doing kind deeds. I wish people would take more notice of projects like this, as such things serve as good reminders of the fact that we all want to be at our best, even in the face of adversity. As for myself, I keep in mind Chinese philosopher Laozis words: Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become character. I hope that the Hello Kitty incident was merely a minor slip. I wouldnt want that sort of behaviour to become part of me.

ELLO Kitty turned me into an ugly Singaporean, and Im not proud of it. This is how it went. At first, I was amused, irritated and curious about the McDonalds Kitty craze that gripped people. Then, I found myself harbouring a burning desire to own at least one of the felines. Thats how my friend and I ended up in a horrendously long queue for the most coveted feline in the country the Singing Bone Hello Kitty. Its also how I ended up bearing witness to the ugly side of my fellow countrymen and myself. There were people who walked by, commenting snidely on those in the queue. Some even snapped pictures of us. Meanwhile, those in the long line stared at their mobile phones, not speaking to each oth-

KITTY FEVER: The writer waited three hours to buy Hello Kitty plush toys in a queue similar to this one outside a McDonalds outlet last week, but not before witnessing the ugly side of Singaporeans amid the craze. PHOTO: STOMP er. There were also those who asked others to help them buy more of the plush toys by sharing McDonalds coupons that had been handed out. Each coupon entitles you to buy a maximum of four Singing Bone kitties. I finally got to the counter after three hours, my friend and I bearing two golden tickets. The flustered cashier mistakenly told us that we could get only seven plush toys. I got snappy and stared her down, explaining that, according to McDonalds rules, we were eligible for eight. The cashier realised her mistake, and let us have the number of kitties we wanted. Walking away, I felt bad about being rude. Id got what I wanted, but the event was tainted for me. Im normally a nice person, and I make it a point to be polite especially to service staff, having worked in the food-and-beverage industry before. I guess the queuing really took its toll on me. The incident got me thinking about how we encounter this sort of behaviour every day. Ive often seen people pushing each other during rush hour at MRT stations, and have witnessed people being rude when they didnt get the right dish at restaurants. Ive also seen people queue-jumping while waiting for entry into concert halls. Its no wonder Singa the Courtesy Lion quit on us. But the truth is, this is part and parcel of living in a crowded city. We just have to learn how to deal with it better. Instead of elbowing each other, we could be learning how to connect and communicate better. The Hidden Good is a Facebook page run by a group of people who believe that Singaporeans are inherently good. Their aim is to acknowledge and, more importantly, appreciate the good deeds performed by

Coveted: lng rn chu xin de Snappy: p qi hui Tainted: bi w rn Inherently: tin xng de

Global pageant chooses women with a cause

This pageant focuses on inner beauty and on the transformation of each finalist, and is probably the only pageant in Singapore in which the winner is chosen by the public.

Pageant organiser VANNESA TAN

Former Mrs Singapore World winner Vanessa Tan, 33, has participated in a number of beauty pageants and even

authored a book, Be The Right You. Now, shes in charge of organising a new pageant, Miss Singapore Global, to look for a finalist to represent Singapore at the Miss Global pageant in Jamaica in September. Voting is under way for the nine finalists. Ms Tan explains the pageant with a cause. How is this pageant different from traditional pageants?

How were the finalists selected?

The finalists were selected not based on looks first, but on their current involvement in charity and volunteerism, and their desire to use the pageant platform to champion a cause close to their hearts. They were then chosen based on their character and personality and, subsequently, their height (above 1.65m) and age (18 to 26 years) to meet the international requirements.

own Facebook fanpage and Twitter account to communicate with her friends and fans. We gave the finalists individual image overhauls and as for their fitness and wellness transformation instead of going through weightmanagement programmes, we partnered with Abvolution Bodies gym to help them lead an active and healthy lifestyle. The women were also given a crash course on wine appreciation and etiquette, and attended personaldevelopment and fund-raising events.

What is the pageants fund-raising method and who is the beneficiary?

Each finalist will wear wings designed and handmade by the finalists and mothers from the Mother and Child Project, a social enterprise which provides home-based work for disadvantaged mothers and their children. The finalists will walk down the runway wearing the wings during the swimwear segment in the grand finals. They will auction off the wings at a minimum bid of $1,000 and the finalist with the highest bid will advance automatically to the top 5. Fifteen per cent of proceeds from the competition will go to the Mother and Child Project.
The Miss Singapore Global grand finals will take place on Aug 31 at Grand Corpthorne Waterfront Grand Ballroom. Visit MissSingaporeGlobal

How is voting done for this pageant?

Through social-media channels such as Facebook likes (30 per cent), iPhone voting via the Miss Singapore Global iPhone app (30 per cent) and judges (40 per cent). The voting system ensures that the public has 60 per cent of the power to decide on the winner. Because public voting consists of over half of the total score, the winner will be the peoples choice.

What kind of transformation did the finalists go through?

We believe that the finalists are a brand in themselves and they can leverage on social media to build their brand. Hence, each finalist has her

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British tennis player Laura Robson has adopted yoga techniques in her quest to perform better. The 19-year-old told Britains The Mirror that she uses yoga techniques for relaxation, and did so in her recent match against Maria Kirilenko in the first round at Wimbledon when she got nervous. She won 6-3, 6-4.


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SLEEK: The US$8,000 Porsche Racing Sport is inspired by the 911 sports car. It weighs less than 9kg and has a 20-speed gear system. PHOTO: PORSCHE

MAKING TRACKS: The BMW M Carbon Racer, priced at US$2,799, wears the M logo of the German carmakers high-performance division. In black and red, the bike is meant for demanding use. PHOTO: THE NEW YORK TIMES

SEXY: The Impec Lamborghini 50th Anniversary Edition costs US$32,000, and is loaded with carbon-fibre components. Only 50 will be built. PHOTO: LAMBORGHINI

Put the pedal to the metal


MAGINE your new Lamborghini racing down the road, the wind tousling your hair, the tyres straining through a corner, the adrenalin pumping. And then it starts to rain. This is a problem: Your Lambo is a bicycle. A US$32,000 (S$40,600) bicycle, no less. Through the decades, cars and two-wheel (or one-wheel) conveyances lacking motors have co-existed, usually peacefully. And todays race cars and racing bikes have some technology, engineering and style in common. So its perhaps not surprising that some of the most advanced premium bicycles are designed by, or sold by, car companies. While bicycle engineering is generally one way, borrowing on the vehicles colours, logos and material textures, sometimes the sharing filters up from the bike manufacturers to the car engineers.

Take the very-limited-edition Aston Martin One-77, created by Bf1 Systems, which devises electrical systems for Formula One racers. The One-77 (only 77 were made) has a touchscreen integrated into the handlebars; sensors provide data on speed, power and cadence. Be warned: One wont find high-end models in the local bike shop or at mass-market merchants. They are available usually in limited editions, through the carmakers lifestyle boutiques and online accessory catalogues. Heres a closer look at some bikes sold though carmakers:

just over 7.3kg, a Shimano Ultegra 20-speed derailleur system and sizes of 21, 22 and 24 inches. Theres a sassy childrens bike as well, for US$353.

The Impec Lamborghini 50th Anniversary Edition, built by the Swiss company BMC, costs about US$32,000. Incredibly sexy, the bike is loaded with carbon-fibre components and suede-covered handlebars and saddle. Only 50 will be offered on a build-to-order basis.

For US$548, a bike built by Dahon, which has been producing folding bicycles for about 25 years, collapses to fit in the trunks of Mini cars. The contraption is fairly light, at about 11kg, with an eight-speed shift system and 20-inch wheels.

the pro model at US$8,000. Constructed with carbon fibre it weighs less than 9kg it has a 20-speed Shimano gear system and custom pedals. The US$4,500 S, framed in aluminium and offering 11 gears, is slightly heavier and comes in three sizes. Although the pair of Porsche-branded bikes released last year are built by German bike-maker ADP, they were designed in a Porsche studio in Austria to incorporate the Porsche genes of weight and styling, according to Mr Adam Miller, product manager in North America for Porsches Drivers Selection goods.

The company says it borrows design engineering from the motorised side of its business and has been refining its bikes for more than six decades. The US$2,799 M Carbon Racer in black and red the M signifies BMWs Motorsport division is meant for demanding use. Specs include a full-carbon frame weighing

Conveyances: jio tng gng j Sensors: chun gn q Sassy: sh mo de Pedals: t bn

The sports-car company offers RS (Racing Sport) and S (Sport) models. With a sleek style inspired by the 911 sports car, the RS is

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At Microsofts Build developer conference, the company did not announce anything new about its Surface tablet, but there were hints. The Verge is now predicting that Microsoft will launch 7- to 10.6-inch Windows 8 tablets with super-high screen resolutions.


UPHILL BATTLE: BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins introducing the Q10 phone in January. The company is struggling to expand beyond keyboard phones. PHOTO: MARK LENNIHAN/AP

No respite for BlackBerry


LACKBERRYS shares tumbled the most since 2000 after the company reported a surprise loss and weak sales of a new touchscreen model, underscoring the challenges it faces in competing directly with the iPhone and Android devices. The company shipped 6.8 million smartphones last quarter, including about 2.7 million new BlackBerry 10 models primarily its flagship Z10 touchscreen phone. Analysts had estimated total shipments of 7.5 million, with about 3.6 million BlackBerry 10 units. BlackBerry is struggling to expand beyond keyboard phones, which are not as sought after as Apples iPhone or smartphones based on Googles Android. The stock tumble more than wiped out its gains for the year, signalling that investors may have been too optimistic about BlackBerrys ability to make a comeback against touchscreen rivals. The company is now a niche player for the declining segment that clings to a physical keyboard, said University of Michigan business professor

Erik Gordon. BlackBerrys flagship Z10 model was introduced in Britain in late January, before being rolled out in the following weeks in Europe and the United States. The Q10, which has a physical keyboard, is meant to appeal to BlackBerry loyalists who prize the companys qwerty keypads. BlackBerry faces price pressures in regions such as Latin America and South Asia, where low-cost Asian manufacturers are flooding the market with devices that run on Android. BlackBerry 10 is still in the early stages of its transition, chief executive Thorsten Heins told analysts in a conference call. In fact, we are only five months into what is the launch of an entirely new mobile-computing platform.

Touchscreen: ch m png Flagship: q jin chn pn Keypads: jin pn Transition: zhun bin




G-Dragon tells why youll never see him nude



Why healthy eaters fall for fries

AST Tuesday, Mr Connor Moran, a limit-the-red-meat, increase-the-greens, eat-salad-for-lunch kind of guy, went into a Dunkin Donuts for his usual black coffee, no sugar, no cream. He walked out with a sandwich of egg and bacon between two halves of a glazed doughnut. Such is the puzzle of the food industry: Consumers, even otherwise-healthy ones, keep choosing caloric indulgences rather than healthy foods at fast-food restaurants. Public-health officials in the United States have been pushing fast-food restaurants to offer more nutritious foods to help combat excess weight. And restaurants have obliged by adding healthy menu items. But its the sugary, fatty items that are flying out the door. The new menu items added by fast-food chains this year indicate as much: a brownie batter-filled doughnut (Dunkin Donuts), a bacon habanero ranch Quarter

What were learning from whats happening in the industry is, consumers dont see fast-food restaurants as places to eat healthy. Its indulgence thats important.

Pounder (McDonalds), bacon-filled tater tots (Burger King), a six-slices-of-bacon-and-cheese burger (Carls Jr), and a choco-covered pretzel and choco-chunk vanilla Blizzard (Dairy Queen). While restaurants try lower-calorie options an egg-white sandwich here, a turkey burger there the unhealthy stuff is what consumers order, said Mr Darren Tristano, executive vice-president at Technomic, a food-industry consulting firm. Professor Gavan Fitzsimons, who studies consumer psychology at Dukes Fuqua School of Business, has researched the disconnect.

In studies, he has presented participants with a range of menu choices. It turned out that including a healthy option did change peoples behaviour by making them eat more unhealthily. When you put a healthy option up there on an otherwise-unhealthy menu, not only do we not pick it, but its presence on the menu leads us to swing over and pick something thats worse for us than we normally would, he said. Health-conscious eaters are the most susceptible to picking unhealthy items when the menu also has healthy ones. Its often the ones raising their hands, saying they would

pick the salad, those are the ones that are the most at risk when they walk in, he said. Its a conflict the Nobel-winning economist Thomas Schelling described in his book Choice And Consequence. People behave sometimes as if they had two selves, one who wants clean lungs and long life and the other who adores tobacco, or one who wants a lean body and another who wants dessert, he wrote. The two are in continual contest for control. Even when consumers are explicitly told the calories a food contains, it doesnt change their behaviour much. Dr Brian Elbel, an assistant professor of population health and health policy at New York Universitys School of Medicine, studied consumer behaviour before and after the city required chain restaurants to post calorie counts in 2008. He found that 54 per cent of respondents in New York City said they noticed the calorie labelling. Of those, less than a quarter said they ate fewer calories as a result. When he analysed consumers receipts, he found that there was

no difference in calories consumed, whether people said they responded to the calorie counts or not. Consumers may be engaging in what behavioural economists call hyperbolic discounting, he said. Its just easier to imagine what this is going to feel like now, and harder to think through what it feels like later, he said. What were learning from whats happening in the industry is, consumers dont see fast-food restaurants as places to eat healthy, said Mr Tristano. Its indulgence thats important. Researchers are thinking of new ways to signal nutritional value: how much exercise it would take to burn off a menu item, symbols like traffic lights, or educational campaigns on understanding calories. But they are not leaving it up to the restaurants. Theyre not social-service agencies theyre places that are trying to make money by selling food. Thats their business, said Dr Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at New York University. Sugar, salt and fat sells.

New 3-D system helps surgeons get the picture

THE Tokyo Medical and Dental University and Sony have jointly developed a new system that enables multiple doctors wearing head-mounted displays to see 3-D images of a target area captured by an endoscope during surgery. The system was developed by Dr Kazunori Kihara, a professor at the university, and Sony, and will likely attract attention worldwide as a next-generation surgical system, sources said. The system utilises commercially-available displays for watching 3-D movies at home. The displays are integrated with an operation technique called Portless Endoscopic Surgery (PLES), developed by Dr Kihara in 1998. In PLES, an endoscope and other surgical tools are inserted into a patients body through a hole in the abdomen measuring 3-4cm in diameter. The 3-D displays allow doctors to clearly assess the depth of a target organ in the patients body. Therefore, operations involving blood vessels and organs deep inside the body can be conducted more safely and accurately. With the new system, a surgeon, his assistants and the doctor manipulating the endoscope can work together, viewing the same 3-D images on their individual head-mounted displays. During clinical-research trials that have taken place since October 2011, the new system was used in about 250 operations, including those for kidney and prostate cancer. (As doctors) can monitor organs in a sterile manner, operations can be conducted more safely and precisely, Dr Kihara said.


Its... Iron Man!

Designer Otto Dieffenbachs radio-controlled Iron Man plane flying past the moon last Thursday in San Diego. Mr Diffenbach and business partner Ed Hanley run a small start-up that creates flying radio-controlled planes in the form of people, characters and objects, for commercial and promotional uses.

M Y P A P ER M ON D A Y J U LY 1 2013


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