29 March 2013

This Really Puts Us in a Bad Light

Source

ICA warns individuals not to enter sham marriage to bypass immigration laws

SINGAPORE: The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority has warned individuals not to enter a marriage of convenience to bypass immigration laws.

ICA said it will not hesitate to take action against those who have submitted their applications under false representations and have their immigration facilities revoked.

It highlighted a case which involved a Singaporean man and a China national. 35-year-old Quek Mu Lian met 28-year-old Yu Dan during a holiday to China in January 2012.

Quek, a heavy gambler and unemployed at the time, was tempted to make a quick buck off Yu when she told him that she was keen to stay in Singapore for a longer term. He then abetted Yu to enter a marriage of convenience, and asked her for S$15,000.

They registered their marriage some five months later, and Yu obtained a long-term visit pass under Quek's sponsorship.

Both were arrested on December 6, 2012 and charged two days later with offences under the Immigration Act.

Quek was convicted on December 28 and sentenced to six weeks' jail, while Yu was convicted on December 14 and sentenced to one month's jail.

-CNA/ac

Dear Singaporeans, don't gamble, don't do anything illegal to sustain your bad habit, think for others.

27 March 2013

Bought SembCorp Industries (U96) at S$5.15

I have been thinking about what to buy next after selling my SingPost a week earlier, and I have been looking closely at SATS, M1 and Sheng Siong, but unfortunately, all 3 were at peak prices and that really made me rethink my decision.

Then I decided to check out some GLCs, and I saw SembCorp Industries at a 3 month low price, wow, felt like I found a piece of S$50 note on the ground. And without thinking too much, BAM, bought it at 5.15.

And the best part is, they will be paying out dividend in May, info as follow,

Record Date: 02 May 2013
Payment Date: 14 May 2013
Include Dividend: From now until 26 Apr 2013
Exclude Dividend: 29 Apr, 30 Apr, 01 May is holiday, 02 May, resume normal trading on 03 May.

21 March 2013

Oracle LPAD Function in Derby

Recently I had the opportunity of working with Derby 10.9 and I needed to convert some queries written in Oracle to Derby, and I hit this wall; Oracle has this lpad function which can add zeroes to the left of a string e.g.

lpad('tech', 8, '0'); would return '0000tech'

Basically what the above meant is you pass in a string called "tech", it will fill up from the left with 0s, and make sure the final string is of length 8.

So how the heck do I make it work the same way in Derby? Took me one or two hours to figure it out...

ij> select myname from mytabletest;
MYNAME
----------
tech


ij> select substr('00000000'||myname, length(myname)+1) from mytabletest;
1
------------------
0000tech


As you can see, there are 8 zeroes, you adjust it according to the final length of the string, so if you want a longer length with more zeroes, just add more zeroes. By the way, the myname field is a varchar(10).

So what happens if myname is a number? We look at myid which is a decimal (10,0).

ij> select myid from mytabletest;
MYID
------------
12345


So if you run the same query, you will get an error.

ij> select substr('00000000'||myid, length(myid)+1) from mytabletest;
ERROR 42846: Cannot convert types 'DECIMAL' to 'VARCHAR'.


Try this, just cast myid as a char, depending on the size, as mentioned myid is size 10, so just put char(10).

ij> select substr('00000000'||rtrim(cast(myid as char(10))), length(rtrim(cast(myid as char(10))))+1) from mytabletest;
1
------------------
00012345



20 March 2013

Sold My SingPost Shares

I sold my 5000 shares of SingPost yesterday at S$1.22, and today it went up to S$1.225, cheesecake. Nevertheless, I still made a profit and I'm thinking of what to do with this cash of S$6,221.41. Which stock is worth buying now? I'm looking at M1, Sheng Siong or SATS; M1 and Sheng Siong are now trading with dividend , M1 paying out in April and Sheng Siong in May. But I like Sheng Siong and SATS more.

Sheng Siong because me and my wife shop there quite often, their branch at Bedok Reservoir, it's a very local supermarket, you need anything local or Southeast Asian, you'll find it there. I also find their price to be very competitive. Their counter staff are also very friendly.

SATS because they are huge and government-linked (via Venezio to Temsasek), sometimes they give out crazy dividends, and when I went back for my reservist recently, I realized our army cookhouse are now managed by SATS Food, and the food is decent, much better than during the times of Singapore Food Industries.

10 March 2013

How to Avoid Shitting During Field Training

Recently I completed my high-key In-Camp Training (ICT) and during that period, I stayed in the wilderness for 3 days 2 nights, and you know what, I didn't shit at all. I only took a dump when I reached home on the third day evening. So how did I do it?

Before training

The field training started on a Monday morning and ended on the following Wednesday before lunch. On the Sunday prior to training, I skipped dinner and slept in camp.

Monday

I skipped breakfast and after some waiting, we were in the field by lunch time. My lunch was rice with meat and veggies. I ate only the meat i.e. proteins, some veggies and threw away the rice i.e. carbohydrates = *WARNING* = Good Shit Material. Dinner was the same. During night training, I ate a biscuit, I have no idea what it's made of but it's very dry, don't think it's shit material, and I also ate a pear. No urge so far.

Tuesday

Same thing, skipped breakfast, the breakfast looks delicious though, glutinous rice with chicken and a tau-sa puff, but no, I forced myself to look away and act like I'm not hungry. Lunch and dinner was the same routine, ate only proteins and avoided carbohydrates *cough* <shit material> *cough*. During the night, I ate 2 or 3 pears and 4 slices of bread with peanut butter, I have no idea why I ate so much, it's a mistake, but luckily I still didn't have the urge.

Wednesday

It's the day everybody is looking forward to, screw the breakfast, it's just fried beehoon, doesn't look tasty anyway. No urge at this point. By lunch time we were all back in camp.

So as you can see, I avoided carbohydrates as much as possible, and this is not my record, my best record was 4 days 3 nights without shitting and that's during my Basic Military Training about 12 years ago.

Singles Can Buy New HDB Flat in July 2013

Source (Click on Singles tab)

Singles Buying BTO Flats

To meet the housing needs of singles, HDB will be allowing eligible singles to buy 2-room flats directly from HDB from the July 2013 BTO exercise onwards.

(a) Singles can buy direct from HDB
Current
  • Singles aged 35 and above can buy HDB flats from the resale market.
New
  • First-timer singles aged 35 and above, and earning up to $5,000 per month, can buy new 2-room flats directly from HDB.
Implementation Date
  • Eligible singles can apply from the July 2013 BTO exercise onwards. Further details will be announced when ready.

Congratulations to those singles who are eligible!

But I am slightly disappointed as it seems that our government continues to ignore the housing needs of Singaporeans with foreign spouse, still we are left behind, oh well, life goes on.

Me and my wife are staying with my parents in their 3-room flat, would certainly be great to have our own place as we are planning a child in 2014. It just doesn't make any sense to pay for an over-priced resale flat, not to mention the Cash Over Valuation, I would rather dump that cash into stocks.