Monday, November 3, 2008

Evolution of the presentation for Oct. 24, 2008

24th October, 2008 was the date for our softlaunch, presided over by YB Dr. Halimah Ali. These sequence of photos explain some of the processes that went into the creation of the "Spinning Exploding Globe for MyTM" presentation and launch sequence.

The entire presentation was created using White Dune. Entirely written in VRML and not embedded into HTML. I used a VRML client to view the material which was then projected onto the large screen using a LCD projector.

The main guiding words for the presentation was:

1. Global
2. Local
3. Technology
4. Education

The first part of the sequence is the entry into the MYTM education Museum. The Museum shows all the education material, past and present, that had been or being developed by MYTM.

The museum's doors open out to a vast lawn, with trees in a row, leading to a podium where a spinning globe has been placed. The background is the Gunung Kinabalu! Cool eh?

The door itself is actually a indexed face set, which I created in CorelDraw and exported out as a 2D vector image. It was a simple oval shape.

(The scene outside, as viewed through White Dune)

This oval shape vector object was then imported into Truespace and I subjected it to a "Sweep", which created a swept 3D object from a 2D vector through a single axis.

This was then exported to VRML using the builtin exporter.

The image on the right shows the door (strange rendering by White Dune, because it shows only part of opening of the door). The actual oval door was then transformed by changing the transparency of the object, making it translucent.

I then added a script to make the door open by pulling the door down with the mouse. The actual door looks like the next image captured from the VRML viewer client.

The image also shows the objects beyond the door, which I placed simply by following the axes direction, seen in the image to the right (the axes are X, Y and Z).

The process of placing the objects is simple in White Dune.

(The door seen through the VRML viewer client). Note the translucency of the door and the object beyond it.

YB then proceeds to open the door, at which point she is presented with a stunning vista!

Trees lining her path, a red carpet, the vast Gunung Kinabalu ahead of her, she moves to the podium, where a spinning globe awaits. This is the point of impact, or start sequence.

The fact is there a 2 main timers in the VRML script which I wrote. The first timer is the spinning globe timer, which is connected to a orientation interpolator and connected to the transform group of the globe.

The second timer governs two main things, the explosion of the globe and the banner rising sequence.

At the push of the impact or start sequence, the first timer stops (I sent a "Stop Time" tick to the timer). Furthermore, I also created a Proximity Sensor to ensure that she is at the right spot for the Impact Sequence.

You can observe the Touch Sensor being enabled in the picture at right (I have enlarged a section of the "finger" and placed at lower left of the image). This is important since I didn't want the YB to launch the impact sequence from afar. I wanted her to stand as close as possible, creating a nice frame effect with the podium, spinning globe and the Kinabalu in the background. And the view we have is shown at right.

As soon as the Impact Sequence starts, the spinning globe explodes and various banners and boxes appear. The image at left shows at T+2 seconds after Impact Sequence start.

The entire Impact Sequence lasts 40 seconds, synced to music (Europe's Final Countdown). And at the end of the 40 seconds, the image is as shown at right.

Several tricks of the trade:

1. The trees along the path are not 3D! They are basically 2D images (PNG-Portable Network Graphics), with transparencies. This image is then mapped on a cube, approximately the ratio of the height and width of the image. This cube is then scripted to a "Billboard" function, which basically rotates the cube to face the avatar, creating an illusion of a rounded shape!

The cubes I used to place map the PNG image can be clearly seen in the image at right. These are invisible in the VRML viewer client. Also notice that Kinabalu ends abruptly in the background!

Thats the second trick I used to create an illusion of a wide vista. I mapped a plain JPEG image of Kinabalu onto a cube, which I placed at the background.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Attack on Yoga

Sanatan dharma has been attacked again and again, yet it has persisted for thousands of years! The gifts of the dharma to the world are numerous, if not complete. Yet we see more attacks on our philosophy and religion.

It looks particularly menacing now, using threats of violence and persecution as a means of achieving their goal. But I hope the people of the dharma remain truthful to the basic philosophy - ahimsa (peace).

For those who wish harm on our philosophy and religion, I tell you, it won't be me to hang the sword of karma over you! It will be shakti herself! And that force won't stop to take names! Remember that....

The truth is yoga works! But because its a derivative of the dharma philosophy, you can sense the hatred. The hatred is like stabbing, straight to the bone. The need to see anguish in our eyes is blatant. Their desire is to see us hide ourselves in sadness and shame. Why? Because we believe in something that really, truly works!

Well, I know yoga works because I can show you the results:

If I were asked to define the Hindu creed, I should simply say: search the Truth through non-violent means. A man many not believe in God and still call himself a Hindu. Hinduism is a relentless pursuit after truth. - Mahatma Gandhi on Hinduism.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Looking for the Silver-eared Mesia....

The Silver-eared Mesia (Leiothrix argentauris), one of the most beautiful babblers that I have ever seen. Thought I would spend next weekend looking for it.

Saw a whole group at the Boh Tea Plantation at Cameron Highlands some time ago. Hmmmm...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Multiplications using bases other than 10, 100, 1000 etc.

I have shown how easy and fast it is to multiply numbers using a base number. However, these bases tend to be factors of 10 or 100, etc. And if the numbers we are dealing with are not close to these factors, using bases such 20, 30 or 40 is desirable.

HINT: Using any number is possible as a base! Wait for the next streaming.

NOTE: These methods are derived from the Hindu scriptures, particularly the Vedas. For further info, check out Swami Bharati Krishna Tirtha's Vedic mathematics.

Live video chat by Ustream

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Sunday, July 6, 2008

Melaka Program at Naza Hotel, 5 July, 2008

Impressive crowd and good work by the MyTm Community!

We promised the folks we will return in a fortnight.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Yayasan Amal Malaysia

Had a great time presenting the Qmaths and Str8A to Yayasan Amal Malaysia at Shah Alam.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Loceng maut...

"Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee." -- John Donne

If you gotta listen to the news.....

Eagles! I love em...

"...Its interesting when people die-
Give us dirty laundry..."

"...We all know that crap is king
Give us dirty laundry!..." Haha! Brilliant!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Good beat, I like...

Its really reminiscent of the Thaipusam dance beat. What DarkKey has done is to infuse it with that almighty musical instrument - the electric guitar. Good stuff! I bet Richard Dorrall would give me a two hour tongue lashing if he hears this!

Some of the lyrics (truly Malaysian, I tell you):

"...dei maccha, nee sollu dari mana? vadda, vadda, vadda, vadda, vadda maccha, bijak..."
"...tarak pa, tarak pa, mugatulle rettum vadikitu, tarak pa...kerana, kerana, sandapottu, [can't make it out] merana..."

And of course the title of the song - Karatana. A "karat" person (karat = rust).

Rock On Guys!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Subtractions, a primer...

I was in Taman Medan Jaya, Klang, on Saturday for a preview of our program, especially Qmaths. Its always a good feeling, especially if the kids and their parents show up and take part.

I had finished the "all of nine, last of ten" formula when one of the parents asked: "What if the number to be subtracted from (edit: the minuend, if you must know) is not 100 or 1000 or whatever, but a complex number, like 4,321?"

OK, I said. Lets figure that out.

Lets say we are trying to find the difference between 1,234 and 4,321:

Step 1:
Subtract 2,000 from 4,321. Why? Because 2,000 is the nearest thousandth number and larger then 1,234. If the subtrahend (thats the name we give to 1,234 in our example here) is say is only 234, then it is not 2,000 but 300. Get it? Anyway, we get 2,321 as our answer.

Step 2:
Using "All of nine, last of ten" we subtract 234 out of 1000. Easy aint it?

Step 3:
Add 2,321 and 766! Thats all there is to it!


Monday, April 7, 2008

Convent Klang and Qmaths!

We were there on 29th March, 2008 to demonstrate Qmaths. The kids took to it like duck to water!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

3D Island!

This is the 3D island I created for EVO. You'll need to download the VRML viewer. click

You will need a VRML viewer for this...

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Phantom of the Opera....

Ok, I love Bruce, but sometimes Paul Di'anno is just sooooo good! I listen to this everyday:

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Malek Noor!

Met the man himself at a function at MyTm Dot Biz. Look at the size of those deltoids!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Dedicated to those who fought and won for a new Malaysia!

You guys, with the titanium cojoneses, for winning under tremendous pressure and threats, physical and psychological, from the Barisan Nasional. For slaying the dragon, and getting to hell and back! (A song inspired by a poem, inspired, in turn, by an act of extraordinary courage)

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wondered.
Honour the charge they made!
Honour the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred!
-Charge of the Light Brigade (Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1854)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

NvU - Web Building class for the community - Class 01032008

I ran the class last Saturday (1st March, 2008). 14 members showed up, which is a sign of improvement.

I am told the next class has been scheduled for the 15th of March. So if you are interested in learning how to create a web presence, sign up!

Friday, February 29, 2008

Faster Than Lightning! Expanding on multiplication method for numbers near to a base number....

How fast would you able to calculate 105 X 104, without pen or paper or a calculator?

Let me demonstrate a method to compute the answer in your brain in less than 10 seconds!

If you are proficient with using a base number to calculate your squares or simple multiplications, this, then, is a breeze. First off, use 100 as your base number.

Simply add the deviations (either one) and .... multiply them (the deviations)!

105 X 104 = [104 + 5].[4 X5]

= [109].[20]

= 10920 #

Try it with other numbers nearer to 100 (either less or more). What do you think? With my own karat old brain, I can compute the answers in 5 seconds or less. Test yourself.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Donate Rice! Play and Feed the Hungry!

If you are good at vocabulary, or if you think you are good in English, why don't you help out feeding people? How you ask?

Just click on the image:

What a novel idea!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Check with SPR.GOV quick, please people!

Please check the Election Commission's website for your polling stations and all the relevant channel and serial numbers. Write it down somewhere, if you can't print the data out. Check the location on a map and plan to be there early. I can't believe that this is my third time voting in this constituency!

I checked mine, which surprisingly, even came with a picture ;-)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Speed is the Key!

Lets look at the multiplications of 9 (that special number!) :

9 X 1 = 09
9 X 2 = 18
9 X 3 = 27
9 X 4 = 36
9 X 5 = 45
9 X 6 = 54
9 X 7 = 63
9 X 8 = 72
9 X 9 = 81

9 X 10 = 90

If you look closely, the product of the multiplication seem to follow a simple pattern. And if you are familiar with the concept of "Digital Sum", you will also notice something else. What?

First of all, if you look at the first result, (I have deliberately written it as 09 rather than just 9), you will notice that the Digital Sum of the the result is also 9. This is the same for all the multiplications of nine. So this is our first clue.

Secondly, when 9 is multiplied by a number (up to 10, in the first set), the result then starts with a number that is one less. Say for instance, 9 X 6, the result must start with a number one less than 6, which is 5. And since we know that the Digital Sum of the result must be also 9, so the second number must be....4, of course! So the answer is simply 54.

Simple isn't it?

Expanding if further, notice that any product of multiplications of 9 has a Digital Sum of 9: e.g.:

108 X 9 = 972

972 --> 9+7+2 --> 18 --> 1+8 --> 9!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Speed and Power: Multiplying Numbers with the Same Ending...

Jagadguru Swami Sri Bhārati Kŗşņa Tīrthaji Mahāraja showed through Nikhilam Navatascaram Dasatah that you can instantly multiply numbers using a base number. Lets say we are trying to multiply 18 X 13. Here if we use 10 as our base, and we find the deviation of the numbers from the base, the rest is so easy to calculate.

18 : deviation from base = 8
13 : deviation from base = 3

Now, we cross-add one of the deviations to the number, for instance, 18 + 3. Either way we get 21. That will be our left most number. Now we multiply the deviations, 8 X 3, to get 24. Now since we are using base 10, we leave 4 (from the 24) as the right most number and carry the 2 to the left most number, which is 21. So we get [21 + 2].[4] = 234!

This is explained quite thoroughly in other websites and posts, especially here.

But if that intrigued your interest, how about if we try something else? Lets say we have two numbers, both end with the same number, lets say 23 and 13.

If we want to quickly (and mentally) multiply the numbers, just do this 3 step process:

1. Square the ending number to get the the right-most number of the answer: in this case its 9
2. Add the two first numbers together, (2 + 1) and multiply it with the ending number (3): in this case its 3 X 3. This gives us the middle number, which is 9.
3. To get the left-most number, just multiply the first numbers together, in this case (2 X 1), to get 2.

So, the answer is 299.

Lets try that with a bigger number, lets say (212 X 312). In this case the common ending number is not 2 but 12! So to get the right-most number, we just square the ending number, which is 12 to get 144. But since the ending number is based on ten, we leave 44 as the right-most number of the answer and carry the 1 to add to the middle.

The middle number is simply (2+3) X 12, which is 60. Add the 1 from the carry we just did, and you get 61, which is the middle number.

The left most number is simply (2X3) = 6.

So the answer is: 66144.

Since the idea is to keep the multiplication as simple as possible, this technique can cut your calculation time considerably and even save on paper! I can do this similar calculations in less than 10 seconds, and I would think younger students can do it in less.

What do you think? Email me.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Blood Donation with the boss...(2)

Here are the pics of us at the Blood Bank: This is with the boss, Sam. Sam is the CEO of MyTm. A Master Marketer, his life story is something everyone should read!

Somehow I persuaded him to donate blood! Anyway he was gracious enough to come with me and get stuck with needles too.

Again, Staff Nurse Sharifah expertly collected the blood, and the boss was smiling at the end! Thanks Sam for a great day!

Blood Donation with the boss...

Since yesterday was a public holiday, the blood bank was closed. So today I thought I might get the big-boss-man to go with me to the donation center. He was gracious enough and off we went to Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah, Klang!

The cutie pie made a HOLE(!) in my finger and sucked out the blood!!

Sorry, that was not the way it was done. This is how it went:

The technician (a definite cutie) pricked my fingers and pipetted out a small amount of blood. She did the ABO test and also the colorimetric hemoglobin test using a hemoglobin photometer.

Next, a short interview. "Did you recently have sex with a prostitute?" "No ma'am, I've been celibate for the past 7 years!" Then she took my weight (80 kg.) and my BP (120/80).
Next, I lay on the cushioned seat while the orderly prepares the tubes, cannula and collection bag. She was sweet enough to take some pictures of us. She even prepared our drinks and food when we had done donating.

Next, the Staff Nurse, Puan Sharifah, wrapped a torniquet around my upper arm, which helps to speed up the process. before giving me a Lidocaine injection, which is an anaesthetic, on my inner elbow.
This is then followed by the cannula, a large needle which will draw out the blood from my median cubital vein.

It took just under two minutes for the 450 cc collection bag to be filled. The final portion of the process is to collect blood samples for screening. Typically the blood is screened for Hepatitis B and C, HIV, Syphilis, etc.

We rested for a few minutes before we were given complimentary drinks and food.

The entire process was pleasant because of the professionalism of the staff, without a doubt.

I do it as a "dharma", a duty. The amount of blood given is easily replaced by the body, but to the patient in need, it may be the life saver.

For the donor, there are so many advantages. Indeed the whole donation process burns about 650 calories! Try that for trimming your body a little bit.

Studies have also shown that donating blood reduces the risk of heart disease, in men especially. It stimulates the production of red blood cells

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Off to the temple, then to the hospital....

Temple for prayers, hospital for blood donation.