The world has started transitioning into 2011 and we have less than an hour to go before Dubai celebrates that moment.
This year I went back and forth between deciding how to celebrate NYE. As the night came close, I was left with a couple of choices. The first one was attending the trendy party with friends usually involving an overpriced ticket, stressing about what to wear, and indulging in a lot of drinks. The second option was to enjoy a quiet night in and dinner with the family. After having done both in the past, I settled on staying in for this NYE.
When I told people I’m not planning on doing a crazy night out, most people couldn’t fathom why I would do something so “boring” on the “biggest party night” of the year. People automatically assume you are depressed or couldn’t find people to accompany you for NYE.
Neither of these reasons is why I’m staying in tonight. Generally NYE is the highlight of the winter season but I’ve had a pretty busy month already with plenty of night outs and a busier than normal work schedule. And it just so happens that I’m more excited for a few things coming up in January rather than the 31st of December. So I’m going to take this night and cross off some to-dos on my list and enjoy the evening with my parents.
To those of you enjoying the night out, have a ton of fun and enjoy to the fullest. To those of you staying in for a quiet evening, I hope you have an enjoyable evening too. All I can say is that whatever you plan on doing tonight, do it for yourself and not to fulfill some societal requirement. Remember, it’s not the dates but the moments that count.
Happy New Year and may 2011 bring a lot of prosperity to you and your loved ones!
The holiday season is here! I know a lot of people who flew home or to a vacation destination this past weekend. Fortunately, all the people I know made it to Dubai safely but some weren’t so lucky.
This month has brought record-low temperatures to the United Kingdom and Ireland. As a result, some of the world’s busiest airports, including Heathrow, were grounded to a standstill this past weekend causing thousands of passengers to spend stressed out nights in the airport and hotels. There are some amazing photos popping up on Twitter of how much snow Europe has received, including the one below of a plane struggling through snow at Heathrow airport.
Photograph by Sergio Mello, @sergiofly
The first thing I thought of was, “Thank god I wasn’t flying anywhere during the holidays.” During university, I made the trip to Dubai around this weekend every December via Heathrow. Thankfully, apart from baggage delays and a missed connection, my travels were more or less uneventful.
Once I stopped thinking about myself, I had a feeling of déjà vu from these news reports taking me back to this hard-to-pronounce-and-spell volcano in Iceland. An ash cloud from the eruption managed to cause the largest air traffic shut-down since World War II. The 6-day shutdown inconvenienced thousands of passengers and is estimated to have caused losses of US$200 million per day!
Makes me realize that even though we may be getting closer to understanding how the universe was formed, we are still at it’s mercy every day.
Most of you know I enjoy tweeting (follow me @dollz87) and I can attribute my interest in blogging to Twitter. Most of you also know about my first love: PUPPIES! Then it wouldn’t surprise you of my interest in this article from Engadget.
Mattel, the creators of the iconic Barbie, are embracing modern technology and give you Puppy Tweets! It consists of a medallion to you attach to your dog’s collar. The medallion contains an accelerometer (what let’s your iPhone change orientation), a microphone, and a wireless connection. Once you’ve set-up your dog’s Twitter account and connected the USB dongle, your dog is officially online!
The device has approximately 500 stored tweets, and depending on the activity of your dog, tweets are sent at the pre-selected frequency. Now the idea sounds pretty cool, doesn’t it? Hollywood has managed to make millions of dollars from movies that are premised on pets being able to talk. Unfortunately, from Engadget’s review, it seems that Mattel hasn’t quite capitalized on what this could be.
That being said, with some intelligent algorithms and perhaps a heart rate monitor and thermal sensor, this product may hold promise. The algorithms on Facebook are able to determine which friends you want to converse with and which ex-boyfriend you want to hide from your News Feed, so how long before they can decipher “dog”?
Until then, perhaps you can and your pup can embrace technology with Puppies Tweets this Christmas for less than $20.
I thought I'm supposed to "woof" not "tweet"
BBC – Earth News – Giant panda breeding breakthrough in China.
When I was a kid, pandas were those adorable creatures that happened to be the logo for the WWF. We all knew they were endangered and it had to do with the destruction of their habitat, specifically the bamboo forests.
As I grew up and managed to take a variety of science courses, including several on evolution and genetics, a clearer picture on the status of pandas began to emerge.
The BBC article details the difficulties pandas have in reproducing. When you read through the article, you can’t help but laugh at the numerous hurdles pandas have in breeding. While you can’t deny the cuteness of these animals, it just seems like evolution hasn’t been kind to these animals. Highlights from the article include:
- Pandas can conceive during a single 24-hour period in an entire year.
- Pandas require a very exact position for mating.
- Sex Ed and Viagra were unsuccessful and caused pandas to become violent.
- Pandas can’t store fat (despite their cuddly physique) and can only nurse one baby at a time.
Clearly scientists and conservation groups have invested a significant amount of time and money for saving the pandas. But you can’t help but wonder if this is a worthy cause to invest in. Without loss of habitat and poaching, it is possible the Giant Pandas could continue to sustain their wild population. Darwin founded the principle of natural selection and “survival of the fittest.”
In today’s day and age, there are thousands of causes that require our attention. I can’t help but wonder if they deserve this much attention. But you have to admit, they are cute!
Question: Is it better to be the big fish in a small pond or a small fish in the vast ocean?