Steady, Ghost!

1. Ghost story makes millions of ringgit. Rich movie producers suck millions from viewers without them realising the amount of money they had lost. It’d just shown that people did believe in ghost, often more that they fear God.
2. Malaysians are Malaysians. Supernatural power is part of their belief system that make up their worldview. For Malaysians, even ghosts have religion: Jin Islam and Jin Kafir. They also have names too: pontianak, jembalang, puaka, pelesit etc.

A tree with dense branches: Where is ghost?

3. Could it be that the ghosts are literally formed from our cognitive bias i.e. our consistent misinterpretation of the world? Even the designs of our mind are made such that it has two levels of processing i.e. the rational and the intuitive systems.
4. Generally, the rational system is slow, deliberate, abstract and logical whereas the intuitive system is quick, automatic, associative and emotional.
5. If you are getting scared because you believe there is a ghost, in your opinion which processing system is at work? Most likely when goosebumps start, the feeling and intimation has switched on the autonomic engines of your central nervous system. Once started, the chain of reactions occur.
6. The experience can be replicated in cinema. Oh, Yes, of course .. and it scoops million of dollars.

Traditional Malay Engagement




1. Engagement in traditional Malay culture is like making a deal. A family rep talks on a desire to ‘pluck a flower’ which literally means ‘take on a lady to be matched with a man’.

2. The male group will be headed by a father or an elderly man, in case the mother is a single parent. He briefs the host on the objective of the visit and thanks to the host for the reception. In some cases, when delivering the purpose of the visit, the elderly reps uses pantun and gurindam. These are traditional Malay oral verses, recited according to the fixed rhythm with similar ending sound.

3. The father of the groom in exchanging speech than would decide the dowry (hantaran) and mas kahwin. Real negotiation actually happens before the official ceremony. Once agreement on the dowry is sealed, no more negotiation allowed on the engagement day. Both parties are indeed, save from public humiliation.

4. Not uncommon, for ordinary folks, dowry depends very much on career, social and family status.

5. Both parties then decide on the wedding date. Interestingly, Malays when deciding on proposal rarely produce agreement letter. Unlike marriage, the certificate is not needed.  Engagement contract belongs to socio-religious plethora which requires total commitment to faith and deep-rooted cultural appreciation.

6. Exchange of gift traditionally involves flower arrangement made from betel leaves, cakes, candy, and hand-bouquet. The ceremony ends with some prayers (do’a).

The Winner is…

1. Singaporeans apparently love spending more time on than anyone else in the world, based on a new international study about social networks in eight countries conducted by Experian Hitwise.

2. The global information services company found that Singaporeans spend on average 38 minutes and 46 seconds per session. Compare that to Brazil, where Facebook members spend less than half that with an average of 18 minutes and 19 seconds per session during August 2011.

3. Singapore loves social networks so much that Hitwise found that approximately one in four Singaporeans (18 percent) jump from one social network directly to another.

4. It looks like Brazilians are spending more of their social networking time elsewhere as Brazil had the highest percentage of Internet visits going to social sites (18.9 percent of Internet usage). Orkut came out on top as the most visited social network in Brazil with 43 percent of all social networking visits.

5. The United States found itself somewhere in the middle as Americans spent an average of 20 minutes and 46 seconds in August 2011. The U.S. was also named as the third top market for social networking as 15.4 percent of all U.S. Internet visits were to social networks in August 2011. was still the most visited social network in the U.S. with 91 percent of visits among the options.

6. Twitter came in a distant, distant second with 1.92 percent, and surpassed MySpace for third place with 1.04 percent.

7. There are some underlying lessons and tips for online advertisers and retailers. For instance, Hitwise found that social network users in Brazil, India, and Singapore rarely visit retail websites after being on a social network. Thus, retailers in these markets should increase their presence on social networks, which could ultimately drive up website traffic and sales.

8. Interestingly enough, none of this data includes mobile traffic. If it did, then these results could be drastically different considering many people worldwide typically have easier access to mobile devices than computers.

Polisi Goes Hindustani

One hot, balmy day, Norman Kamaru, while on the job, records himself groovin’ while doing a lip-sync to a hit Hindi song. Somehow or the other, the video found its way to YouTube and somewhat unwittingly, he became an instant star.

The video went viral not just because Norman Kamaru is a member of Indonesian police’s paramilitary wing, the Mobile Brigade, but also because his style is somewhat cool in a ‘I-am-just-chillin’ kind of way.

Norman holds the rank of a first police brigadier in his Mobile Brigade in Gorontalo which is a province in Indonesia’s northern part of Sulawesi.

Fame on YouTube would have been a nice ending of it but a Gorontalo police spokesperson said Monday they were questioning Norman and investigating how the video went online.

Norman, claimed the spokesperson, had allegedly violated ethical codes because his ‘action’ was done while wearing a police uniform and while on the job.

This, plus other comments from senior Indonesian police officers, has stirred a heated debate with more than 7,000 comments on Yahoo! Indonesia’s site following fears that Norman could be punished.

The Hindi song which Norman sings is entitled Chaiyya Chaiyya and was originally sung by Bollywood singers Sukhwinder Singh and Sapna Awasthi.

The song was introduced in the box-office hit movie Dil Se (1998) starring a young Shahrukh Khan and Malaika Arora.


I trust we should honour talent. So, for whatever reason, this man shouldn’t be punished. He is so talented..