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Steve Jobs Leaves Behind a Legacy

Student Entrepreneurs Tell Their Tales

NTU Triumphs at Singapore University Games

thetr bune TECHNOLOGY | 9



an ntusu publication

MICA (P) 144/09/2011

Printed By: KHL Printing Co. Pte Ltd


Students Garner support for african famine

With Horn of Africa’s emergency escalating rapidly, need for relief heightens

NEWS | 3



thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

To Be A Fly On Our Printed Walls

The new Tribune team bonds, bickers, and breakdances its way onto the change bandwagon

Charisse D’Souza and Abha Apte


ll right, so we don’t really breakdance that much onto bandwagons. Or really breakdance anywhere at all, because resembling rhinos under narcotics isn’t our thing…most of the time. And we know that sometimes, editorials are the most boring section of a newspaper. Who really wants to hear about epiphanies acquired in shower stalls, deep private musings nobody but your bathroom mirror is willing to hear, or awfully skewed, pseudo-intellectual opinions about global politics? Due to the fact that that it’s been a longstanding tradition to write this editorial, we’ll try to make this as painless as possible. To start off, we should introduce ourselves: Charisse: Hi, I’m Charisse and I’m the Publications Executive of the NTU Students’ Union. I’m Abha’s boss, end of story. Abha: I’m the Chief Editor of this paper; and I do all the real work. While Charisse hangs around holding whips and making me feel like Voldemort’s in the room. Charisse: Thank you Abha! Let’s continue this conversation another time. In a dungeon. With no exit routes. Anyway, focusing on this year: we’re planning to write some stuff that might be more interesting to you: Business, Technology, EntertainmentAbha: Campus news, global affairs, human interest features. We’ve tried to put in something for everyone! Well, except for Charisse. Because we cannot legally or ethically print articles on torture, harassment, or extreme psychological terrorism. Charisse: Moving on really fast, along with more diverse content, we are happy to introduce more interactive sections of the paper. We have special sections where you can voice your feedback – and read it in print! The NTU Students’ Union will directly answer your queries. Abha: And we have sections like People Watch, for which we’d love to cover stories of interesting students, staff, or workers on campus. Or pandas. Because we will always cover stories about pandas. Charisse: And we hope the effort of managing these revamps and Chief Editors with miniscule attention spans is appreciated – Abha: - and beards, because beards maketh the man. And the woman. And certain hairier pandas, and – Charisse: - and we always appreciate your feedback, criticism and opinions! Just write to us at Abha: Unless it is negative criticism. Because Charisse, being of unsound mind and violent temperament, sees it fit to utilize her suspected collection of mostly illegal armaments. Particularly on persons whose names begin with an ‘A’ and end with a ‘Bha’ – Charisse: - Alright then! We’ll see you later; things to do, people to whip! Abha: … Charisse: Meet! I meant: people to meet. Really. All right. Bye. Sidestepping the awkward silence and uneasy concerns about dialing the authorities, we hope to, with minimal panda references and maximum qualitative corrections, take the blacks and whites of this paper to greater heights. Like a panda on an airplane.

theed tor al Publications Executive Charisse D’Souza

Opinions Editor Shreya Sharma

Chief Editor Abha Apte

Sports Editor Vignesh Gopalakrishnan

News Editors Jayanti Basu Roy Prerna Mishra Teo Xing Zhi

Photo Editor Shubham Goyal Art Editor Anshu Garodia

Layout Editors Aneesha Subramaniam Arnav Kumar Quality Controller Ananya Roy Have any comments? Write in to us at

EXCO Speaks: Message from the NTUSU President

PHOTO | Niveda

Ramanan Kumarasamy


reetings to all NTU students! I am deeply honored for this opportunity to serve for another year in the NTU Students’ Union. The responsibility that my team and I have taken is by no means an easy one, but we promise to work to our best potential to provide the best service for the NTU population. Sticking to our motto of “Voice, Service, Vibrancy”, the 21st NTUSU will strive to achieve improvements in these 3 areas. The NTUSU will continue to be the voice of the students to the university administration. We will be highlighting the issues and the needs of all students be it their studies, housing, financial or personal problems. I would like to stress that the Students’ Union is here, not only to disseminate information from the management to the students, but more importantly to voice student concerns to the management. Students can use all the feedback channels available to raise any issues that they may have. Like last year, service to the students will be one of our primary objective. Besides the existing services like U-Study, shuttle bus services, printing services etc, we will be introducing more quality offerings for students’ benefit.

The highlight for this year is the Union Shop, the one stop centre for you to purchase items with the NTU brand. The Union Shop is situated in the Student Activities Centre. And now, Starbucks, too, has an outlet with its shop front at the Global Lounge. With great coffee, games, televisions, PC services and comfortable seating areas the Student Activities Centre will be the place to be in campus. Making NTU a vibrant campus is also one of our goals. Besides the myriad of activities that we organize, we would like create a culture where there is always something exciting going on in NTU. We believe that the Student Activities Centre and Global Lounge can be utilized for this purpose. Film screenings are already slowly happening in the SAC and we hope to eventually extend this to include live bands, performances etc. Having said all that, these plans and ambitions will only work with your support. Your feedback, criticism and input are very valuable for us to move in the right direction. After all, the NTU Students’ Union is here to serve you. Have a great year everyone. Cheers!

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Students Support



Africa’s Hunger Project

PHOTOS | Internews Network, used under Creative Commons

Jayanti Basu Roy


gony knows no bounds in the countries of Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia which are among the worst affected regions as this century’s deadliest famine continues to plague the Horn of Africa. It is however, appalling that innumerable evidences of deplorable living conditions, countless cases of malnutrition, and death due to starvation have not shaken mankind enough to rise in unity and combat this demon that has already caused death of tens of thousands of people. This is an opportunity to display a youth conscience, and a student response supporting a responsible global community. Support can be provided to victims through donations, instead of merely depending on overcrowded refugee camps in Dadaab, Kenya, Mogadishu, and Somalia, that can do only little to help at this hour of urgency.

The century’s deadliest famine continues to plague the Horn of Africa. The Tribune, in a bid to support the cause promoted by United Nations World Food Programme (UNWFP) and the CARE(NGO) student representative Arvind Raghavan, has decided to take an initiative in raising funds to arrest this dire situation. A group of students from the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE) including the formerly mentioned Arvind Raghavan, along with Eric Lim, and Yong Ling, have spearheaded their own fund-raising drive for the hunger crisis. The same, however, has not garnered sufficient support as of yet, and is calling for a much more responsive societal conscience.

“14 million of our fellow human beings need us now, more than ever. Please lend a hand.” | Arvind Raghavan, IEM year 4

Shocking statistics have revealed that the famine in Africa is here to stay. The disastrous consequences will only grow exponentially in the years to come, leaving the affected people in the hands of their fellow human beings in fortunate conditions. Children are so painfully thirsty that in their quest for water, they often end up resorting to highly unhygienic sources. Malnutrition, malaria and other conditions arising from poverty cause around 2500 children to die each day in Africa. In the current scenario, more than three children are dying every minute in Somalia. Humanitarian aid needs to be accelerated immediately. The famine was, however, foretold. It had been predicted as early as November but the world responded to it much later. This irresponsibility on our part has caused loss of helpless innocent lives . Livestock has been annihilated. It will take decades for Africans to battle this perpetual crisis. The United Nations has reported that twelve million people are in dire need of medical attention. It has called for widespread international response to end this suffering. The stark contrast between the lives of these people and that of ours is evident in the fact that a dollar worth of money donated by ud can feed a child for a day, helping him to survive what he never deserved. Relief workers are of the opinion that the loss from AIDS, together with the ills of poverty, war, bad governance, corruption and ruinous weather stand as obstinate barriers to the ability

of these African nations to fight this catastrophic drought. What can we, as responsible global citizens, do to lend the unfortunate Africans a helping hand? The heart wrenching stories of their misery can be stopped from intensifying only if we reach out to them. And here’s how: The WFP is spearheading operations in the affected regions. The organization, like several others of its kind, works only through voluntary donations. CARE is aimed at fighting poverty through the empowerment of women and children. Their shocking statistics reveal that among the victims of the drought are 36,000 pregnant women. This calls for instant humanitarian assistance. Says Arvind Raghavan, year 4 IEM student here at NTU who is helping collect funds for both these organisations, “WFP is trying to stabilize the situation in the region by gathering enough food supplies for about 11 million people for 6 months. The additional

“Donations can be made online at and care. org.The amounts need not be very big. As little as USD 15 buys food for one person for one month, and USD 75 feeds a family of 5. But even USD 0.75 can buy a mosquito net that protects a child from malaria for 2 years. Literally every cent donated is a blessing to someone.”

PHOTO | Shubham Goyal

Global organizations call for crisis aid

important aspect of their work is that this is NOT just a short-term solution, like other humanitarian aid which needs to be constantly resupplied periodically. The WFP is trying to implement lasting change by working with displaced communities about sustainable food management and agriculture so as to eventually help these communities become self -sufficient”. Any donations or resources these bodies receive go to providing food to people who have walked across countries, facing terrorist attacks, carrying infants and old family members to get the most fundamental of human needs. Arvind adds, “What affected me most was a photograph of a malnourished girl holding up a poster that read “Silence is a crime against humanity.” Those words remain with me still. As jaded and selfconcerned as we each have the

right to be, we have all at some point benefited from unconditional kindness and generosity in our time of need. 14 million of our fellow human beings need us now, more than ever. Please lend a hand.”

Arvind Raghavan, Eric Lim and Yong Ling from NTU head this student fundraising initiative.



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New Responsibilities, Great Expectations Ushering in another year of excellence.

Jayanti Basu Roy


he evening of 19 September 2011 witnessed a packed Lee Kong Chian Lecture Theatre welcoming Associate Provost (Student Life) Professor Kwok Kian Woon as the Guest of Honour at the 20th NTUSU Annual General Body Meeting (AGM) & the 21st NTUSU Investiture. This event marked the end of tenure for the previous Students’ Union (SU) as the new committee took over and duties were bestowed on the forthcoming year’s student leaders. Further, the newly elected committee promised to take their

The 21st Students’ Union Executive Committee

best foot forward in serving the students of NTU. The evening commenced with a thanksgiving speech from the previous president of the SU, Mr. Yeo Kai Xiang. He started with a brief description of a year he named “wonderful and fulfilling”, and went on to thank the university for believing. Both he and his committee have learnt a lot during their tenure and are taking back special memories that will never be forgotten. He spoke about the hard work that was put in by the outgoing committee as

well as the incoming committee for the progress of the new and delightful Student Activities Centre. He concluded with a warm welcome to the 21st Union, as well as made a request, asking them to strive relentlessly to take NTU to greater heights. Professor Kwok, the Guest of Honour, who serves as a bridge of communication between the SU and the university, coordinates efforts on both sides to enhance the standard of life at NTU for the students. He spoke about the successful interactions that took

place in the past years between the Student Affairs Office and other student clubs and societies, proving the pro-active nature of NTU in catering to its students. He next pointed out the biggest challenge that NTU faces with a student body of approximately 33,500 students: communication. He felt that the SU should dedicate itself to perfecting the art of mobilizing and reaching out to students in every nook and cranny of the campus, thereby overcoming this problem.

PHOTO | Teja Ummareddy

Prof. Kwok’s speech was followed by a prize giving ceremony where last year’s SU committees were acknowledged and rewarded for their outstanding contribution. The event ended with a solemn torch (oath-taking) ceremony where the newly elected President of the Student’s Union, Mr. Ramanan Kumarasamy, thanked the outgoing Executive Committee and pledged to work hard along with his committee to deliver excellence and overcome obstacles and challenges efficiently.


“Student-Centric, Values-Driven Education” Koh Hui Fang


GRAPHIC | Taing Meng

he Minister of Education Mr Heng Swee Keat addressed the issue of local university vacancies and highlighted the importance of a student-centric, values-driven education in his opening speech at the Ministry of Education (MOE) Work Plan Seminar at Ngee Ann Polytechnic Convention Centre on 22 September 2011. Mr Heng highlighted the message that Singapore can only succeed with strong values and right competencies. He pointed out seven key fundamentals which helped MOE’s decisionmaking. These include the holistic development of children in moral, cognitive, physical, social and aesthetic aspects, as well as catering to the diverse needs of Singaporeans. The values-driving education exists on three levels: personal values such as confidence and self-awareness, moral values such as respect and responsibility, as well as values of citizenship so as to overcome crises and adversities. He cited as an example the former President S.R. Nathan’s bravery in

The Ministry of Education will be focusing on putting emphasis on holistic education and increasing university places for local students. risking his life while leading the negotiation with terrorists who hijacked the Laju ferry in 1974. Mr Heng also touched on the hot topic of university placing for local students. He mentioned the Committee on University Education Pathways Beyond 2015, a committee chaired by Minister of State for Defence and Education Mr Lawrence Wong, and set up to review how MOE can “better cater to the aspirations and talents of Singaporeans.” Consisting of members of the public from all walks of life , they will examine how universities can increase places for local students beyond the increasing the Cohort

Participation Rate (CPR) form the current 26% to 30% in 2015. CPR refers to the percentage of locals in a Primary One cohort who matriculate into places in publicly funded local institutions. According to Singapore’s University Landscape, a paper published by the committee, the setting up of several new institutions throughout the nation will help to meet the expanded intake in 2015. For example, with the additional recruitment of Singapore Institute of Technology, one in five polytechnic graduates will be able to obtain a degree at local, publicly-funded institutions, compared to about one in seven today. Mr Heng closed the address with the assurance that by working together, Singapore “will be able to help our children reach for the stars”. With the values-driven education system in place, the younger generation of Singaporeans will be groomed into citizens with both great potential and good moral standing.


thetr bune OCTOBER 2011



Welcoming The SACred Brew

The new Starbucks outlet at Student Activities Centre

Koh Hui Fang


n a series of infrastructural improvements in the favor of student welfare, the Students’ Activities Centre (SAC), previously located at the School of Biological Sciences, has been shifted to the North Spine in all of its newly revamped glory. The thousand square-feet space boasts of recreational, entertainment and learning-friendly additions such as the Global Lounge with its nine television screens, a U-Relax zone with seven game consoles, a mini theatre, and the

U-Union Shop, which promises to be the one-stop centre for all university merchandize. The SAC was formally unveiled on its Opening Ceremony on 31 August 2011. This has been one of the first completed conceptual changes which have been in the planning process for student welfare – the next few of which include the building of eight new muchneeded Halls of Residence, and new learning hubs. All these revamps have been noticeably

planned to include the consistent presence of global integrity, and aim to foster and encourage improved collaboration between international students. On the same vein, another materialistic best-friend of every university student will soon be grandly welcomed into campus. Getting a cub of Starbucks coffee quickly will no longer be a distant dream when Starbucks opens its NTU branch at the Students’ Activities Centre (SAC) from 5 October 2011.

The Presidential Proposition A look into the newly formed Student Union Executive Committee’s agenda

Varsha Ravi


elaxing in a comfortable corner couch in the new Students’ Activities Centre (SAC) amidst the bustling hustle of people, our newly sworn Student Union President Mr Ramanan Kumarasamy shares the fresh ideas the Student Union (SU) has in store for us this academic year.The members of the new governing executive committee are already in full swing, juggling their academic commitments with their new responsibilities to the student body. Mr Kumarasamy emphasized that his primary concern was to involve students in all their activities, events and such, and also stressed the fact that the feedback they get is crucial for better functionality. In order to ensure a more disciplined and motivated

workforce, the SU removed several directorial positions and Sub-Committee intake for their various portfolios. Rather than using prefixed point systems, credit for taking roles in certain wings of the SU is now based on a more performance-centric criterion. Another issue noted was the loss of the old Canteen A, a prime study area in the campus’ North Spine. Although the new SAC houses much more comfort, entertainment and facilities, its capacity is limited. Realizing this, Mr Ramanan said that the SU is on the lookout for potential study areas nearby to substitute this shortcoming. The SU President also stated that the Executive Committee, being the driving force of the student body, needs to have an excellent internal rapport to ensure the benefits

of team dynamics. To help with their bonding, the SU has regular meetings, hang-out times both on and off campus, a Facebook group dedicated for discussions, and other methods. A similar level of understanding should and will be cultivated between the directors of various portfolios and their respective sub-committees as their involvement is equally important. Every person of authority would have a unique working style associated with them. The accommodation of their varied methods in the Union will filter and bring out the best of every individual. With a new team of motivated, enthusiastic and dedicated leaders, a very promising future is felt not just for those of the Student Union, but for the entire student population.

PHOTOS | Shubham Goyal

From space design to the tender, the Students’ Union (SU) was the driving factor behind the opening of Starbucks. They first allocated a space for a café at the new SAC in response to feedback from students.

“The newly revamped Students’ Activities Centre brings us coffee, games, and much more.” The general mood among students is that of cautious excitement. For the potential customers, their chief concerns are the opening hours and the human traffic. With late nights and early mornings, students are hoping that the outlet will have long operating hours to accommodate their schedules. Second-year business student Low Jun Jack is one such. To him, the lack of 24-hour operation hours severely limits the culinary choices in school for those studying past

midnight. Meanwhile, Ho Bin Bin, a Year 3 Sociology student, worries that the high human traffic generated by Starbucks’ presence may affect the study areas nearby. “The study area at SAC may become inconducive for studying if there is a crowd, or if people go there to chat over their drinks,” said Bin Bin. However, she does not need to worry. The SU already anticipated such problems and prepared a solution. Members of the Welfare committee will monitor the area to prevent hogging of spaces. “I hope that all coffee addicts like me are happy that we will be having Starbucks in our campus. All students are welcome to give any feedback they might have to us,” says Ramanan Kumarasamy, President of the 21st NTU Students’ Union Executive Committee. The NTU Starbucks outlet is open from 7.30 am to 10pm during weekdays, and is also operational on weekends. NTU students and staff will receive a 10% discount at this outlet.



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A Race to Remember

Afifah Darke & Kavya Jahagirdar

One of the more awesome factors of the F1 race is the happening performances off track. Worldwide famous celebrities such as Shakira and rock band, Linkin Park, were invited to perform for the weekend. Shakira attracted a crowd of 45,000 on Saturday night. The beautiful Colombian singer had her audience dancing with the shaking of her hips and famous ‘Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)’ song. Linkin Park, on the other hand, was just as amazing. This final act of the weekend brought in a mightier crowd of 50,000 gathered at the vast Padang area.


n 25th September, 2011 Singapore witnessed one of the most awaited events of the year - The Formula 1 SingTel Singapore Grand Prix, 2011. It was a visual feast for the 82,500 people present at the Marina Bay Street Circuit. The 5 kilometer long circuit, which has 23 turns, is located in an empty plot of land beside the Singapore Flyer and spreads over to Nicoll Highway, Stamford Road and Saint Andrew’s Road around the Padang, past the City Hall. Excitement is still buzzing in the air after the thrilling race. Acting host for the Formula One (F1) for the 4th time , Singapore Grand Prix made sure that this year’s delight factor would leave everyone asking for more. Throngs of motor-racing fans came as early as 2pm to walk around the beautifully designed track. Many of them crowded the paddock entrance in the hope of catching glimpses of their favorite drivers. Not only locals, but also people from all ends of the world, braved the Singapore heat and humidity for this annual event. As it so happens, that Mother Nature herself is an F1 fan, the dry weekend prevented a wet race from occurring, contrary to what many had predicted. The night race was nothing short of being breathtaking. Seeing the racecars zoom by up close along with the

The race was a visual treat for the 82,500 spectators.

The race in full swing

backdrop of deafening screeches absolutely leaves the audience pumping with adrenaline. The race lasted for two hours (or 61 laps) and the results are as follows: Sebastian Vettel took pole position clocking 1:59:06.757 and is now just a point away from being the 9th man in F1 history to win two back to back F1 titles. Button kept the pressure on

PHOTO | Anay Nagarkar & Shuhul Kaul

PHOTO | Shubham Goyal

Vettel in the closing stages, but ended up as runner up, clocking 1.7 sec more than Vettel. Webber was a distant third, clocking 29.2 sec more. Alsonso and Hamilton came in 4th and 5th respectively, thus ruining their chances of winning the title further. Force India rookie Paul di Resta was sixth and Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg was seventh,

ahead of Force India’s Adrian Sutil. Massa recovered from the Hamilton crash — which caused a rear tire puncture — to finish ninth and Perez was 10th. The crowd moaned when the seven time world time champion, Michael Schumacher crashed near turn 8 as he tried to attack Pérez and ended up losing his front wing.

PHOTO | Anay Nagarkar & Shuhul Kaul

After the concert, I bumped into a few students from NTU, exclaiming that Linkin Park was one of “the greatest acts for the night!”. The students arrived an hour before the band was scheduled to come on so that they could have the up-close experience. The general response to the event this time round was positive; crowds had been found to be well-managed, and satisfied with the performances and organisation.

PHOTO | Shubham Goyal


thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Comeback of the Comic Culture



Reviving a dying tradition

Jayanti Basu Roy


orld Comic Day was celebrated worldwide on the 1st to 2nd October, 2011. This is a 24 hour challenge during which comic artists, authors, layout designers, etc. are expected to come up with 24 pages of an interesting comic. The main purpose of the event is to recreate the joy surrounding comics, and re-enforce the sort of entertainment value they hold to children and adults alike. Never failing to provide a respite from mundane school homework, popular comics such as Archies, Calvin and Hobbes as well as Spiderman, Batman and so on are an integral part of everybody’s childhood. The celebration held in Mountbatton, Singapore attracted a huge cluster of really exciting people. These individuals were either established cartoonists or aspiring artists, authors of popular children’s as well as adult books. They were absolutely geared up for the one day challenge! Rules of the game were simple. One can take as many breaks as he/she desires to during the course of these 24 hours, however, the comic should be ready with impeccable layout at the end of the day. This unique and one of a kind event had participants from Europe, India and other parts of the world. This would inevitably lead to a huge diversity of creativity and a pool of different ideas. One whole uninterrupted day for 46 graphic designers, game producers and other interesting professionals did never seem painfully long. The determination to come up with a perfect comic and to revisit their childhood was extremely remarkable. However, reasons why these participants took up this challenge went way beyond simply their love for coimcs. Being able to chase and successfully bring something up within a deadline, the extra mile one has to go to be creative and innovative while keeping time constraints in

GRAPHIC | Zhang Yuan

mind, and most importantly the value of teamwork and bonding were a few important gems the participants came to seek for and went back with. “I want to push myself and see how far I can go this time, uninterrupted for 1 full day, in a confined environment with the support from other fellow procrastinators”, said Marcus Lim, a local comic artist. The sponsors of this event , National Arts Council, Singapore; Association of Comic Artists, Singapore as well as popular local brand, G&B comics had organized the event to re-estab-

The main purpose of the event is to recreate the joy surrounding comics, and reenforce the sort of entertainment value they hold to children and adults alike.

lish the place that comic tradition held in the hearts of readers as well as in the market previously. The golden culture of comics has now been replaced by online strips. Gone are the days when one used to boast of a collection of comic books and rush to the store to buy their latest edition of Marvel or Captain America. Therefore another aim of this event was to give a boost to the comic industry by creating awareness among prospective readers. The end result? A number of captivating comic strips on contemporary Singapore. It

was truly amazing to see how a perfect finishing touch was rendered to each and every page. Passion and creativity were evident in each and every stroke of the characters that came to life through those evergreen speech bubbles. So next time you’re stressed with school work, reach out for the evergreen comic for a refreshing break. Afterall, what better way to escape the mundane complexities of adulthood than to relive those precious moments of youth!



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LearNTUlearn’s Workshops Kick Off At NTU Providing programs helpful for students’ study and research

Xuan Phuoc Vo


ed by NTU’s Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT), the LearNTUlearn initiative is now offering workshops and talks in October and Noveamber. Events such as ‘Clinch that A! Managing the Workload’ and ‘Stress Management’ are designed to help students manage stress and other problems that prevent a smooth education at NTU. “We desire our students’ success, growth and development during these four crucial years of their lives here at NTU,” said Associate Professor Daniel T.H. Tan, Director of CELT. According to him, the initiative will provide programs that will help the students

with their study and research at NTU. Different programs will be aimed for different cohorts so as to suit the needs. Year 1 and 2 students can expect time-management and study-life balancing workshops, while the third years and fourth years will be given opportunities to learn about entering the working field. Thanks to their effective organization, the workshops and talks of LearNTUlearn have received positive feedback by students who attended them. “I feel motivated after attending the workshops,” says Thomas Dinh, an Electrical and Electronics Engineering Year 2 student who has been to two of such workshops. “The content of the workshops is closely related to the student life in NTU. We can learn how to manage our emotion and self-image, and how to relax and improve

concentration while studying.” The LearNTUlearn initiative was part of the recommendation of the Blue Ribbon Commission (BRC). Its first year of implementation was the last academic year (2010/2011). “Its history is, therefore, short, but the impact for the individual can be great and inspiring,” says Professor Tan. There are also many programs around campus providing students with academic and career opportunities. FutureWorld CoSpace Test-Bed (FutureWorld), initiated by MDA and established at NTU, is one such program, aiming to aggregate common services available from industry and research institutions for creating innovative products as well as supporting test-bedding activities. The program has provided technical workshops and many events and projects that

GRAPHIC | Zhang Yuan

give students commercialization opportunities. Events such as Dr Cecilia Leong’s “Alive! In Class! – Techniques to improve your

memory” will be available in October and November. More information about the workshops can be found at


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The World Without Jobs Millions mourn the loss of the technology giant

Kaustav Chaudhari


hen Steve Jobs passed away on the morning of 5th October, 2011, millions of steadfast Apple fans felt the seismic shock. It is hard to conjure up the image of somebody other than Steve Jobs in his iconic black turtleneck and jeans, introducing the iPhone 5 or the iPad 3 to the world, isn’t it? After thirty years of redefining and revolutionising the world as the face of Apple, Jobs finally left the building. Through the sheer force of will, confidence, vision and perfectionism, Steve Jobs alone utilised the powerful forces of technology to make so many products that delighted so many people precisely because they were improbable. Now that the master has left, will Apple still remain the tech Goliath as it was under Jobs? Yes, it will, although Apple will never be the same again.

Steve Jobs is irreplaceable as the charismatic visionary of a consumer product centric company, but his legacy will be taken forward as Apple still has the talent and the will to make things happen. Current CEO Tim Cook, a marketing genius will lead the company and be supported by a dedicated team comprising of people like Jonathan Ive, Phil Schiller, Ron Johnson which will continue to design, innovate and magically influence us as it did under Jobs. Although initially it would be testing times for Cook and his team as they will have to keep up the standards set by Jobs, they will prevail. The structure of Apple and its operating principles today are fundamentals that will see the company continue its domination as the leader of innovation and technology, well beyond this decade. Steve Jobs’ vision has laid a solid foundation and Apple will build upon it.

Stickiness Google+ has not got everyone “stuck” to them

Akilesh Sethu


here is an on-going war in the tech world. It’s between Facebook and Google. After Google's multiple failed attempts to attack Facebook on the social front (Buzz, Wave), they have placed all their bets in their new toy, Google+. In Google+, you must group people into Circles, every single time. There is no way you can add a person as your friend without adding that person into some group in your profile. Though Facebook also released Friends Lists recently, yet Lists are a feature outside the core product of Facebook. Most of the Facebook users might not create new lists (except a few power users) and will just stick to the default lists that Facebook makes for them, called SmartLists. The group information in

Google+ is restricted to the user alone. There is no way for people to know what group their friends have placed them in. It is not a uniform relationship, unlike Facebook where everyone is a friend of everyone else by default. This does not bode well for Google because it reduces the “stickiness” of the website. First off, what is stickiness? Stickiness of a website is the thing that makes you keep checking Facebook at least twice a day. Stickiness defines how bad a website can get you addicted to it. The majority of users in any social networking website are content-consumers, not contentcreators (basically, we like stalking more than providing content to get stalked). Most of the users consume a constant stream of information about other


PHOTO | Used under Creative Commons

Kindle on Fire Amazon unveiled their tablet this week, named Kindle Fire.

Akilesh Sethu


HE GOOD: $199 USD. That is CHEAP. Even the cheapest of the trillion Android tablets out there are costlier and they do not provide services (Amazon Android App Store, Books, Movies, Songs, Cloud) like Amazon. The UI is

people. In fact, users who spend a significant amount of time online are silent users. When the anomaly arises where people are not willing to share everything with everyone, and sharing by default just in Circles, it turns out to be barren land for most of the users. Without enough content, you cannot expect a site to be “sticky” enough to retain users. A decade or so back, there really was no need for users to stay on your website for you to be profitable. But today, true value for a product is determined by the number of active users and the period of time for which they remain active. After all, it is all just a business. Targeted

entirely different from Android which is a huge advantage, to say the least. THE BAD: It is missing out on a lot of hardware features like Camera, microphone, 3G connectivity etc. to compensate for the price. Kindle Fire sports a 7-inch screen (good or bad depends on the user’s perspective). UI is astonishingly similar to Blackberry Playbook’s.

ads are profitable only if users “stick” around. There are loads of questions left unanswered in this article. No one really knows who will win right now. All one can say is, Facebook is not making the mistakes that MySpace did and Google+ is a unique concept (in a way). For all we know, Facebook and Google might deviate in their product strategy and this may not lead to a face-off at all. At the same time, these two companies could keep pushing each other, racing for users and struggling to stay on top. Time will tell. Next five years should be interesting.

SITEWATCH WolframAlpha: Unlike search engines like Google or Bing that that display lists of documents or web pages after a query, WolframAlpha is an answer search engine that answers factual queries directly by computing the answer from structured data.

Featured iPhone Apps We apologize to the few people in Singapore that don’t own an iPhone. Free App a Day Free App a Day or FAAD is an app that works with developers of paid apps to release their apps for free for a limited period of time. Geodelic Ever been bored out of your mind and stuck in the middle of nowhere? Geodelic finds all your entertainment solutions “around you”. Text N’ Drive Want someone to read your text messages for you while you’re driving? This app does just that for you. What’s more, you can also respond vocally and the app creates a text message reply for you.

10 singapore

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

An Evening of Enlightenment Ministerial Forum: The road ahead

PHOTO | Courtesy

Jayanti Basu Roy “What will the future have in store for Singapore? What are the implications to Singapore’s leadership in the years ahead?” These were the question the NTUSU Ministerial Forum wanted to answer for every young mind that attended the Dialogue with Mr. Lee Kuan Yew on the 5th of September 2011. Well, this lively interaction that was held in the Nanyang Auditorium did that, and even much more. Singapore is an ever promising and ever rising global economy with striking political stability and cultural harmony. The growth of our country and its prosperity can be largely attributed to the remarkable steps that Mr. Lee Kuan Yew had taken during his

tenure as the Prime Minister of Singapore. During his 31 years as the Prime Minister, he has been instrumental in shaping Singapore into a strong and cohesive nation. The highlight of this inspiring talk was when Mr. Yew, dressed in a navy blue jacket, so integral to his identity, pointed it out to an auditorium packed with 1800 individuals that life in Singapore as an empowered human being will no longer be a cakewalk! He went on to tell everybody how the Singaporean markets are overcrowded, how the job sector is filled with graduates, etc. and most importantly, how a handful of similar minded people lacking diversity of thoughts and creativity will serve no purpose in carving the way forward for our nation state. He motivated young aspiring graduates that evening

by asking them to be different, to be an edge above the others. He said that in order to secure one’s dream job, one should have the special streak. With the expansion of institutions, competition at the workplace knows no bounds. The other big challenge that Singapore is facing today, according to Mr. Lee, is the pressure of building and maintaining a youthful, lively economy. He said that this could only be achieved by welcoming fresh, new talent into Singapore. Foreign students should be encouraged to seize academic opportunities in Singapore. This would lead to a pool of innovative ideas that would help the economy to grow and surge forward relentlessly. Moving on, even though Mr. lee jokes about it initially, he did

point out later on that Singapore’s over-competitive young minds are leading to a lower fertility rate and hence going a long way to affect the population of the country in the long run. He did emphasize the importance of settling down at the right age of one’s life. Singapore, according to latest demographic statistics, has a fast aging population and till mortality rate continues to exceed birth rate, the future of our country is at stake. Mr. Lee, however, feels that the youth of Singapore should be way more politically aware before casting votes. Being exuberant about elections and being present to have a say in the final outcome are not enough. What’s more important is to be well versed about what is happening in the country. Well-informed choices,

according to Mr. Lee, would lead to wiser decisions. Mr. Lee also identified the daunting task that newly elected Singaporean leaders will have to face in the present day scenario. According to him, the government can never propose a generic policy to be followed by all. Each and every policy should have separate prongs dealing with and catering to diverse economic and cultural stratum. The auditorium occasionally burst into peals of laughter at Mr. Lee’s jokes. This dynamic leader, ever so young at heart, has a great capability of reaching out to and connecting with the youth. The crowd seemed captivated by his sound advice, wisdom gathered over the years and his unique take at the various problems faced by a first world nation.

business 11

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

The European Debt Crisis in a Nutshell

The crisis that emerged in early 2010 is still sending shock waves across the globe with leading politicians and economists being unable to address the issues facing the European Union. Sarvesh Nevatia brings you up to speed with a brief summary of the turmoil in Europe.

Origins of the crisis

Spread of the crisis


Although the Greece bail out did calm markets for a short period of time, the crisis was far from over. The spotlight was now on other European nations who were in a similar situation, namely; Portugal, Spain, Italy and Ireland. In the past, countries that have found them selves in a similar situation have devalued their currency to get rid of their debt, however, by virtue of being members of the EU and having a common currency, stronger economies such as Germany and France did not allow this as it would weaken their nations as well. In order to meet debt requirements, these countries requested for bailouts from the EU and the IMF and pledged to implement serious austerity measures such as tax hikes which in turn angered the public. In addition to this, they began to issue bonds to raise capital. Given the poor state of the economy, these bonds were downgraded to junk status by in-

reece grew at an annual rate of about 4.2% from 20002007, one of the fastest growing economies in Europe. During this period it borrowed heavily, however its robust growth hid the obvious flaws in its fiscal policy. This debt was owned mainly by large European banks, resulting in a chain of indebtedness leading to a domino effect. Hence if Greece were to default on its debt, it would send ripples through economies and financial markets around the world. The 2008 crisis severely impacted Greece’s largest industries, namely shipping and tourism, revealing the mountains of debt within the country, worrying political leaders around the world. The IMF agreed to a 110 billion euro rescue package for Greece following which Greece had to implement budget cuts and policies to reduce its spending.

dependent rating agencies, forcing them to increase interest rates to record highs to make them attractive for investors. People lost confidence in European markets due to increased volatility and speculation. Where are we now? The debt crisis has exposed the weakness of the European financial system and has caused markets around the world to turn red. Investors are moving away from Europe and investing in the safe havens of US treasury. It is still unclear whether the bailouts will be enough to alleviate the crisis and if the troubled nations can stick to their promised spending cuts. With the stronger EU states reluctant to support distressed nations at the cost of their own economy, the crisis boiling over in the EU could result in its eventual demise.

PHOTOS | Used under Creative Commons

The Beat Sudipto Shome recaps, reviews and summarizes the major trends in international markets and upcoming events in international business


reece recently made progress in bringing into action reforms that would allow further foreign aid, leading to a moderate short term rise in markets around the world. Germany’s renewed fealty to the Euro added further strength to the upward sentiment. Questions still remain however as to the feasibility of maintaining the bailout policy and the possible collateral damage from an out and out default. Japan’s government decided to spend $156b in a forthcoming stimulus package to revive its stagnating economy. Plans for a Japanese Sovereign Wealth Fund to better utilize the unprecedented strength of the Yen are also under discussion. In capital markets, Manchester United pushed forward their billion dollar Singapore IPO due to market conditions and there is doubt on the street about its continued feasibility. The full-service Internet infrastructure service provider HiChina Group Ltd, controlled by Chinese e-commerce portal Ltd plans to raise $200m in an IPO in the US. This comes despite the poor showing of fellow Chinese Internet companyTodou Holdings’ IPO in August 2011 Chinese bank ICBC announced that it plans to raise up to $11b in debt from domestic and international debt markets, in an attempt to shore up its capital before the impending tightening of capital requirements by the Chinese Banking Regulatory Commission.

The banking industry continues to suffer through the Sovereign debt crisis. UBS remained embroiled in controversy as it lost its CEO over the recent $2.3b loss due to unauthorized trading and has issued statements indicating a substantial downsizing of its investment banking franchise. The Swiss bank has started bleeding personnel and may have to shell out substantial bonuses to retain the talent it requires. Meanwhile European rivals HSBC and Credit Suisse have announced plans for more than 70,000 cuts. Across the Atlantic, analysts are predicting Goldman Sachs will report a third quarter loss, only the second loss making quarter in its 12 years as public company. On the Mergers and Acquisitions front: SABMiller’s A$9.9b bid for Foster’s recently achieved a significant milestone when it received approval from the Australian brewer’s board. SP SetiaBhd, Malaysia’s largest listed property developer by sales recently received a $2.2b bid from PermodalanNasionalBhd making it possibly the largest property acquisition in Malaysia in two decades. Indian billionaire Anil Ambani’s Reliance is in talks to sell a stake in its fund management business to Japan’s Nippon Life Insurance Co. Ltd and may enter into the banking business as it seeks to reduce its debt burden and revive shareholder returns.

12 green

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

because Green is the New Black A comprehensive spotlight on the environmental events over the last few months. The members of Earthlink NTU have been busy both on campus and overseas, promoting green and clean habits and bringing you the latest on ecofriendly happenings on campus. Top(L): Recycling drive at NTU halls Bottom(L): A family pledges their support Centre: Raising awareness at Orchard road Bottom(R): Teaching young minds at EcoV Top(R): Coastal Clean Up at Ulu Pandan PHOTOS | Earthlink

Record Breaking Environmental Camp Preethi Josephina

Spreading Love Overseas Shreya Gopi

The E3 (Earthlink Environmental Expedition) camp, organized by Earthlink on the 20th and 21st of August 2011, brought together 146 students of different schools and nationalities to show their love for the environment. Day one was packed with fun-filled activities which not only enabled members to connect with other young people whose ideals complement their own.The day continued with the screening of the documentary “6 Degrees” produced by the National Geographic channel and directed by Ron Bowman that illustrated the dangers of climate change from the first degree of rapid increase in temperature to the 6 degree change: collapse of emergency alert system, disintegration of infrastructure, contamination of oceans, unsustainability of cities. The second day witnessed the climax of the event where the participants carried sandwich boards along Orchard Road and encouraged the passers-by to pledge their will to safeguard the earth by signing the sandwich boards. An impact was truly made by spreading awareness on various environmental issues. Later, the sandwich board parade at NTU was also a huge success and was recorded in the Singapore Book of Records.

Getting to watch a shooting star streak across a star-studded sky was the last thing on my mind when I signed up for EcoVenture 2011, an annual outreach programme organised by Earthlink NTU. That sight, however, was only one of the many fulfilling experiences we went through at Buru, the Indonesian island that was our destination. We aimed to install a water purification system at the island from Pedal-Gen developed by the Institute of Environmental Science and Engineering Pte Ltd, to improve the quality of the water consumed. Our group of twenty-one NTU students was at Buru from the 20th to the 25th of July 2011. Over these six days, we visited one secondary school and two primary schools. Using in-class games catered to their level, we taught the students about the 3 Rs – Reduce, Reuse and Recyle, about conservation and about the dangers of unclean water. In turn, staying at the village and moving freely among the villagers taught us about the pleasures of a simple life, such as watching the sun set while dangling our fee in the sea, and new experiences like trying to interact with children who spoke little or no English.

The Coast is Clear


Hui Fang Koh

In recognition of its seven years of dedicated participation in the International Coastal Cleanup Singapore (ICCS), Earthlink NTU was presented an award by Brigadier-General (NS) Tan Chuan-Jin, Minister of State for National Development and Manpower, at the 3rd Biodiversity of Singapore Symposium on 24th September 2011. Coordinated by Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research at the National University of Singapore, ICCS is an annual event that aims to remove and collect data on the debris from shorelines, waterways, beaches and coastal regions in Singapore. Information collected from the cleanup serves to educate the public on marine debris issues and inform governmental and international organisations, thus encouraging the enhancement of aquatic environments by reducing debris in waterways. This year, Earthlink NTU participated in the Pandan Mangrove, a remnant strip of mangrove in south-west Singapore. Within a few hours, the 22 participants from Earthlink NTU cleared 96.5 kilograms of waste. Anand Raj, from Earthlink, observed that the participants enjoyed “getting into the marsh and coming up with an awesome trash collection” and noted the better turnout this year. He believes the turnout will be even greater next year.

Ananya Roy

I am sure most of us would have this confession to make: we are bad recyclers. We have perfectly noble intentions of saving the earth, are familiar with the 3 R’s but are just too preoccupied with other things to bother about the environment. Picture yourself standing in front of your study table looking at the pile of notes which have accumulated over the term and thinking how to dispose them. Sounds familiar? Earthlink NTU though, has tried its best to make recycling a wee bit easier for all NTU students. Earthlink in collaboration with Students’ Union, organized Recycling Drive 2011 after the end of the previous semester. The objective of the Recycling Drive was to encourage halls, clubs and societies to do their bit for recycling. The drive commenced on the 19th of May and continued for 10 days. Recycling bins were placed near each hall of residence and segregated into 2 sections, one for paper and one for clothes. The bins were checked periodically by the committee to ensure no contamination and overflow. The response we received for the recycling drive was phenomenal, with an approximate of 2670 kg of recyclables collected, which is the highest ever for the recycling drive. Here’s hoping that the results keep going up year after year.

welfare 13

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

RSPID Celebrates Mid-Autumn Festival Shashank Jere

One of the games played was the extended three -legged race to improve the motor skills of the beneficiaries.


he Mid Autumn Festival Celebration is an annual event organized by the Regular Services Project for the Intellectually Disabled (RSPID). This year it was held at Labrador Park on the 17th of September 2011. A usual weekly Saturday tutoring session was transformed into a joyous day of celebration of the traditional Chinese festival for volunteers and beneficiaries alike. The event was kick-started with a sing –along session to freshen up the beneficiaries and get them involved. This is a usual routine to commence every session or event as the beneficiaries have learnt to identify it as starting point of session. A simple sing -along led by volunteers changed the atmosphere of the room immediately. Smiles began to shine on the faces of the beneficiaries as their volunteers pulled them along and paired up with them to sing and dance to songs they are already familiar with. The theme of the event was

closely linked to the origin of the Mid Autumn Festival. The primary objective of the event was to educate the beneficiaries about the history of the ancient festival and to let them experience the gaiety of collective celebration. After the cheerful sing–along, the volunteers presented a short skit designed to illustrate the origin of the Mid Autumn Festival to the beneficiaries. Using simple props and phrases, the volunteers thoroughly engaged the audience in their interesting and refreshing story telling. Laughter erupted from the beneficiaries and volunteers as the actors played their roles enthusiastically to entertain their fellow volunteers and beneficiaries. Following the skit were game stations that were stationed all around the park, designed to encourage the beneficiaries to walk around and explore the park. The various stations, with different elements and different objectives, made the beneficiar-

ies challenge their physical and mental limits while having fun

at the same time. The most exciting game station was the treasure

hunt, which involved the beneficiaries and volunteers working as a team and searching for the “lost arrow” around the playground. Tired though the beneficiaries were after the eventful day, the dinner with their beloved volunteers and a walk around the park with sparklers and lanterns brought the zeal back and lifted their spirits. Bright lanterns and colourful sparklers all around the park created a heartwarming atmosphere as volunteers and beneficiaries mingled amongst each other, keeping up to the spirit of the festival. Despite the long day, the beneficiaries and volunteers waved each other goodbye with smiles on their faces. Volunteers enthusuastically promised their beneficiaries to visit them the following week to continue their weekly tutoring sessions, another small step towards fulfilling the worthy cause that RSPID has envisioned since its inception. The event lent the celebration of the traditional Mid-Autumn festival a whole new meaning, and was successful in making it a memorable experience for one and all.

Volunteers always take the initiative to help their beneficiaries when they face challenges while playing games. PHOTOS | Tu Siew Palm

14 careers

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Who Says You Can’t Dream for a Living? Being university students, we have big dreams, dreams that come in different shapes and sizes, and dreams that are often more attainable than expected. Ong Xun Xiang now speaks to three NTU graduates who dream for a living today.

PHOTO | Courtesy of Melvin Tan

PHOTO | Courtesy of Yvonne Tan

PHOTO | Courtesy of Anindya Dutta

The Nanyang Banker: MELVIN TAN

The accidental entrepreneur: YVONNE TAN

Engineer in Deutsche: ANINDYA DUTTA




usiness (Marketing) graduate Melvin Tan, began university with an end in mind. He dreamed of working in the banking and finance sector. To push himself nearer towards this goal, Melvin worked very hard and went all out. He joined NTU’s Investment Interactive Club and shone in it, rising to the position of President. As President, Melvin actively advocated investor education and financial literacy, voluntarily giving free talks in JCs, polytechnics and universities. Melvin’s peers elected him to become chairman of the Alliance of Varsity Investment Clubs, where he headed all university investment clubs in Singapore. During his term, he also founded the Securities Investors Association Singapore Youth Chapter in 2009 with a mission to educate youths on money. Deep inside, Melvin believed very strongly that the root of many financial ills today lied in poor money management. This drove his passion for working in the banking industry, first to educate the masses and secondly to impart to them sound financial habits. Melvin clearly knew that business development and strategy was in his blood, pressing on to pursue the challenging Major in Marketing and Minor in Entrepreneurship while juggling with the positions of Business Development Manager for EVVO Media and COO of Golden Steam Corporation. Today, Melvin is the Vice-President and Head of Youth Engagement in CIMB-GK Securities.

or Accountancy graduate Yvonne Tan, building a business didn’t cross her mind when she was consolidating orders to help people save on shipping. It was a route she hardly considered as all she wanted was to bring them cost savings. But accidental is perhaps what best describes the birth of Ministry of Retail when her husband (then-boyfriend) suggested that she set up an online store. Having this newfound direction, the couple did intensive research and went overseas to source for supplies. After returning, they started working on their website, giving birth to today’s Ministry of Retail. Yvonne’s journey wasn’t easy, especially when she made the tough decision of taking a semester off her studies in NTU. During this period, she attended external business courses and applied what she learnt to her business. This was when her baby business started to grow. Upon returning to campus for her final semester, she continued with the rigorous full-time student, part-time business schedule. Life was tough but she knew deep inside that this was what she really wanted. She yearned to introduce authentic Korean fashion to the masses. Experiencing both university and real life business problems allowed Yvonne to learn from the best of both worlds. Building Ministry of Retail during her university days was an extremely trying but fulfilling period in her life. Today, she dreams big for a living.

or EEE graduate Anindya Dutta, venturing outwards and constantly challenging himself had always been something he liked. Despite being an Engineering student, he never hesitated to break new ground and learn about other, more varied academic and professional fields. This rare willingness to step outside the comfort zone eventually brought him to banking, an industry he had a strong affinity to. The path to becoming a banker began when Anindya did his Industrial Attachment with Credit Suisse. During this period, he had the opportunity to learn more about the various roles available within an investment bank. All Anindya wanted back then was to know more about the investment banking and try something new. Little did he expect that this new experience would eventually attract him to banking. With this new passion for finance, Anindya toiled extremely hard to secure a summer internship with Deutsche Bank as Trader at the end of his third year. During his time there, he demonstrated an admirable professionalism to the job and this received much appreciation from his superiors. Seeing Anindya’s immense potential and dedication, his managers gave him a full-time offer upon the completion of his internship there. About his approach to challenges, Anindya quips, ‘I genuinly don’t think there has been anything I consider a challenge in my life ; I guess it depends on fortune, and opportunities.’

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

feedback 15

Students Ask, Union Answers

GRAPHIC | Anshu Garodia

Feedback on Shuttle Bus Route D (NTU-Pioneer MRT Station) The queue at pioneer station is always very long in the morning. What is the plan to change this situation? Your Students’ Union noticed that the commuters for Shuttle Bus Route D (NTUPioneer MRT Station) increased when the new academic year started this semester. Our shuttle bus contractor has been given the approval from Land Transport Authority for standees on NTU shuttle buses. This has eased the crowded situation in Route D. NTU introduced Shuttle Bus Route D service to complement the SBS Transit services namely, SBS 179, SBS179A and SBS199. It is not meant to be an alternative to replace SBS services. Commuters are encouraged to continue taking the SBS services between the campus and Pioneer MRT Station/Boon Lay Interchange if they cannot catch any NTU Shuttle Bus. The SBS Transit is trying their best to increase loading capacity for commuters waiting at the bus stops by adding more buses during peak hours. We will try our best to increase the frequency of our shuttle buses and maintain the operation at a good level. However, any additional buses will increase the operating cost. Furthermore, any increase in buses for Route D, may disrupt further the operation of bus services at the Pioneer bus stop which involves other public bus transport users including taxi operators.

Insufficient halal food stalls in NTU I would like to be the voice for the Muslim population in NTU who stay in hall; I believe they experience the same problem as me. There are hardly any halal food places in the hall canteens. With the recent closure of the Malay stall in Can2, there ceases to be a place where we can buy food at Hall 1-Hall 2 area. The newer halls do not have halal food places too. It is a hassle for us to keep travelling out of NTU to buy food and we cannot simply live on fast food. Your Students’ Union has raised this issue to university Canteen Advisory Committee and urge them to look into it. Office of Facility Planning and Management is working on it currently.

Suggestion on amending 179A route Why SBS179A cannot stop at Pioneer MRT Station? SBS179A is a specially designed service for NTU students that proposed by your Students’ Union and Student Affairs Office. The aim of it is to provide an express service between NTU and Boon Lay Interchange. Therefore it cannot stop at any bus stops other than within NTU campus and the Interchange. Students can take SBS179 which stops at the bus stops along the route between NTU and Boon Lay Interchange. Students who go directly to Boon Lay Interchange are encouraged to take 179A. Therefore more loading capacity can be created for other people who do not alight at Boon Lay.

Study place hogging issues Certain students are placing their personal items, ranging from study materials to laptop chargers, to stationary holders, even mugs, on the tables, effectively “reserving” the tables for themselves at Common Reading Room at N2B1C-14. They either come very early to do this, or they leave it throughout the night. What’s Students’ Union’s response about this hogging issue? Your Students’ Union has taken note of this issue and will be carrying out regular checks and patrol at the reading room by U-Study Campaign Committee to ensure that items are not left around without its owners and thus avoid the hogging. How can I give feedback to Students’ Union? Your Students’ Union treasures every piece of feedback from the student population. Students are welcomed to give their feedback through our 3 feedback channels, i.e. Online Feedback System (, U-Shout Expression Boards located at both North Spine (near to 7-eleven) and South Spine (Canteen B Concourse) and Online U-talk forum ( Students’ Union will follow up every piece of feedback and be the students’ representative to address students’ concerns.

our s


|After hours of campaigning, rallying elected. The Tribune team gets to kn their favourite hangout spots – the S

Ramanan Kumarasamy (MAE/3) President The song that you sing in the shower? “Who Let the Dogs Out by Baha Men” Ang Hua Huang (MATH/3) Honorary General Secretary The cutest member of the EXCO? “Clarence, because he’s cute and so clueless!” Yan Xia (CHEM/3) Vice President, Welfare & Student Activities Your ideal honeymoon destination? “France, the most romantic place in the world.”

Christian Wihananto (ACBS/2) Business Projects Executive What women find most attractive about you: My arms Jieqi Koh (ECON/2) Corporate Liaison Executive Most romantic movie: The Love of Siam Zhang Zhong Yi (EEE/3) Financial Controller Idea place for a date in Singapore: Someplace really quiet, like the Singapore Art House!

Nitish Ramkumar (CSC/4) Vice President, Business & Corporate Communications An embarrassing moment: Commented that a girl (who was my age) looked old in a photo. The girls in my committee didn’t speak to me for the next 3 days Marchelina Vincensia (CHEM/3) Honorary Financial Secretary A personality trait: I’m really random all the time Shi Yan (EEE/2) Student Services Executive Best thing about NTU: The diverse people!





g and elections, our newest student leaders have been now the new Students’ Union Executive Committee at Students Activities Centre and Global Lounge!

Yong Yee Shi, Elda (ACC/2) Human Resources Executive Where to find you on a saturday night:At the transit area in Changi airport, happily serving passengers Saw Sheng En (EEE/3) Events Executive Your dream job: To be a police officer and uphold the law Charisse D’Souza (ECON/3) Publications Executive Favourite cartoon character: Scooby Dooby Doo!

Clockwise from left: Marchelina Vincensia, Zhang Zhong Yi; Foo Shiyang, Clement, Pung Hui Lee, Michelle , Reinardus Surya Pradithya (L to R); Ng Chuan Swee, Clarence, Charisse D’Souza; Christian Wihananto (L), Jieqi Koh (R); Lee Siau Li, Tommy Susanto; Ang Hua Huang , Ramanan Kumarasamy; Yan Xia, Nitish Ramkumar; Shi Yan, Yong Yee Shi, Elda, Saw Sheng En

Ng Chuan Swee, Clarence (ADM/1) Publicity Executive Your happy place: A place with lots of cakes (I love cakes!) Lee Siau Li (CS/3) Student Relations Executive One word to describe you: Sweet! I like chocolates. Tommy Susanto (CBE/3) Logistics Executive Most prized possession: My family and friends.

Pung Hui Lee, Michelle (CHEM/3) Welfare Executive Coolest TV show character: Pooh, because he’s friendly, cute & cuddly! Foo Shiyang, Clement (MSE/3) Orientation Executive The celebrity you want to marry: Angelina Jolie (cause I’m as hot as Brad Pitt) Reinardus Surya Pradithya (CSC/3) Media and IT Executive Favourite place in NTU: Hall 6 - I spent two whole years with my friends there!

18 opinions

thetr bune


Two Wolves and a Lamb


Of Riots and Rationality

London Riots: Causes and consequences of the destruction

Anisha Raina


PHOTOS | Used under Creative Commons

The seeds of democracy have been planted, but will they sprout?

Karina Maharani


t the beginning of the year, the eyes of the world were on the Middle East. The protests that started with the self-immolation of Tunisian street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi spread through the region like wildfire. For a while there we couldn’t tear ourselves away from it. But, as is the way of this fickle world, more important things like laundry day and the last Harry Potter movie came up, and the Arab Spring was placed on the back burner. NATO’s military intervention in Libya caught our attention again for a while but after it became clear that the conflict was not going to end overnight we all went back to our daily activities. But, though no longer in the spotlight, the struggles there continue, even in countries like Egypt that have toppled their iron-fisted dictators. It has become clear, if there was still any wide-eyed idealist who may have thought otherwise, that democracy is not the be-all and end-all - it is merely the first step.

Benjamin Franklin once wrote, “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!” The wolves seem to be closing in around Egypt and there are fears that what began as popular uprising may end up being remembered as a military coup. The Egyptian army maintains tight control over the “transitory” government and it’s becoming increasingly uncertain as to whether the transition will ever happen at all. And though Libya’s rebels have Muammar Gaddafi on the run, the country’s future fortunes are open to question, given Libya’s diverse population and deep-rooted tribal loyalties. In Saudi Arabia, women are about to be given the vote, but the cynic in me - who sadly enough, is right most of the time says that this is just a ploy to keep dissent at bay. Democracy is a word that people like to throw around rather flippantly – it’s the cure-all for any socio-political malady. Except that it isn’t. Democracy can only thrive in a free society, and a free society is hard to come by. If the prevailing sentiment on the transgressions against liberty that

are still occurring throughout the world in general, and in the Middle East in particular is one of global apathy, it will be harder still. So let us not forget our brothers and sisters in the Arab world and make sure that that lamb is well-armed.

iolent demonstrations and protests have become a regular occurrence this year. However, a country like England, which has always maintained a good image of unity, would be thought of last to include in this scenario. It has had occasional blemishes. And the London riots were just that. It started off as a peaceful march by the relatives of Mark Duggan, who demanded a fair investigation of his shooting. Hearing of the gathering at the station, more than 200 people marched from Broadwater Farm accusing the police of attacking a 16 year old girl. From then on, the protests spiraled out of control, leading to riots all over causing rampant looting and arson being committed at every corner in the city. There really doesn’t seem to be a logical link between the shooting of one individual and riots happening across a country. So what then led to such disorder in England? For quite a while, there had been immense societal discontent from the lower sections of society. They had been going through a very tough time with respect to jobs, education health care and so on. Peaceful protests had been conducted in an attempt to get their voice heard. But every at-

tempt of theirs was futile, causing them to suffer in silence. The riots were a way for these people and minorities to get their voice heard by the government. It frustrated them that their survival depended on people they never looked up to. For them, the riots were a way to make a statement- a reversal of roles of sorts, where for those few days, they were in control, and the police and politicians were at their mercy. It gave them a sense of empowerment, which spread like wildfire to other districts where there were localized outbreaks of copycat crimes. This lead to lootings and arsons, since they wanted to bring the rich down to their level by taking all they could. They knew what they were doing and were proud of it, posting pictures on social networking sites to “show off”. These irrational acts were done as a result of mob mentality, where someone loses control of their individual actions for a common cause. The rioters thought they were making a statement, but the real question is at what cost? Billions of pounds of property damage, human life and societal harm. Is it worth the measures that the citizens had to use to get their voices heard?

PHOTOS | Used under Creative Commons

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011



A Leap of Success

at university rankings and chose NTU as it had a good ranking in previous years. 5th of September,2011- I open Facebook, as I usually do in the

mornings before I leave for class and NTUsg, the facebook page of NTU was quick to announce that NTU had moved up 16 places to become the 58th best university

in the world and was one of the fastest growing universities in the QS world university rankings. A sense of joy pervaded through the campus, many of my friends

updated their statuses on facebook and students could be heard telling each other. I was quick to have called up my parents and informed them of the good news. I personally attribute this rise to Prof. Andersson. His deep interest to bring in the best researchers and educators from around the globe and his personal commitment in the various activities in NTU from the past one year since the time he was announced president designate, I guess, has done the trick. I am confident that with the new medical school coming up in 2013 and the master plan put forth by NTU to achieve the big 5 will soon make it the best universities in the world. Narayana Murthy, founder of IT giant Infosys in India, once said that he never knew that Stanford would reach the kind of status it has reached today when he graduated. In the same way, I feel cofident that NTU will reach the epitome of success and I will proudly say that I graduated from NTU.

a familiar sight. Although one might argue that the price of a typical meal was reasonably economical, the portion of rice given was comparatively smaller than what one would get if he ordered a similar meal from elsewhere. So, what draws the crowds to most of the canteens in NTU? Are we enticed by the delectable array of food available or is it because we are simply too busy to bother travelling to other eateries to consume our meals. I believe many students, including myself, have

encountered several occasions when we were unable to find a seat at the canteens and were left with no other choice but to eat somewhere else or worse still, postpone our meals to a later time. Unlike the National University of Singapore (NUS) or the Singapore Management University (SMU) where the meals are priced at a subsidized rate for students, NTU does not have a similar policy in place. This means that the public is able to dine at the canteens and other cafes at the same rate as the

students, which might explain the overcrowding of canteens here in NTU. One suggestion would be to have NTU implement a policy similar to the other two local universities but the subsidy to include only the cafes such as The Palette, Cafe Express and Cafe by the Quad. The rationale for this is that students do not often consider dining at these cafes because the prices of the meals offered there are significantly higher than the ones at the canteens which results

in far less students patronizing the cafes. A subsidy of food prices at the abovementioned cafes would thus attract students to eat there and reduce the crowd at the rest of the canteens, especially at canteens A and B. Furthermore, the three cafes are not out of the way and are easily accessible from the various lecture theatres and tutorial rooms. This would not only provide additional revenue for the cafe operators but also solve the problem of overcrowding, hence killing two birds with one stone.

Reactions, expectations, and consequences as NTU climbs back up the rank ladder.

Kunal Ahluwalia


still remember the day when the world college rankings were released by TIME last year and NTU had plunged to the 174th spot, leading to dismay among students as well as faculty. It became the topic of discussion on campus and all that one could hear was why the rankings of NTU had fallen so much. The then NTU president, Prof. Su Guaning, sent out a mail to the entire NTU family reassuring them that NTU was definitely on the way to the top and that rankings would not matter much as they varied with criteria and the institution conducting these rankings. However, a lot of the student body was worried and disappointed, more so because no one had anticipated that the rankings would fall that year. The truth is, whether rankings are to be believed or not, most of us look


PHOTO | Venet Venet Osmani

When Demand Exceeds Supply

The lack of sufficient space in the canteens during peak hours calls for addressal

Shaun Yap


he queue at the mixed vegetables and rice stall was unbelievable. It snaked out of the canteen towards the School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences or SPMS for short. A freshman might have mistaken it for the queue to his next lecture at the SPMS block. For those students and professors alike who regular dine at canteen B, this would be

PHOTO | Shubham Goyal

20 opinions


The Perverse Mind

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

The Pursuit of Happiness

GRAPHIC | Anshu Garodia

The line between disturbed minds and disturbing actions

Siddharth Janarthanan


have read about many psychopaths and watched many movies about them. In the movie, every time the ‘guilty’ one confesses to his (or her, but seriously how many movies have female leads as psychopathic rapists or/and killers?) fantasies or cravings, there will be this person sitting next to me who shudders and gasps and squirms. I used to wonder; true, maybe I or this highly sensitive soul haven’t ‘done’ such deeds, but surely we have ‘thought’ about them or even more perverse thoughts? Perverse thoughts can permeate just about every aspect of life. I have thought about how it might feel to just suddenly strangle the person sitting next to me to death or by suffocating them with a pillow on their faces, to just jump off the terrace, or to eat my friend’s arm seasoned with onions and capsicum among many, many other more perverse visions that are simply unprintable. If you think that ‘perverse’ thoughts are gener-

ally of a deviant, sexual nature, you are correct, but they aren’t restricted to just the sexual dimension (but lets not get into that). But to this day, I am sure that no individual would (pardon my assumed confidence) brand me mentally disturbed or claim I require psychiatric treatment. Freud may have got a few things wrong, but I absolutely agree with his claim that “all humans are innately perverse and that the aptitude for such perversity is innate in the child’s polymorphous perverse inclinations”. As far as I am concerned, I believe that it is this innate potential for perversity and our ability to shape it and control it that defines who we are as an individual. I also like to believe that it contributes quite a bit to our overall creativity-quotient. And ultimately, thats what makes a person unique and interesting. Do not for a second, think that I support or idolize psychopathic serial killers or cannibals or hallucinating ballerinas. I am

GRAPHIC | Sriporna Mukherjee

Chasing happiness is often the only thing keeping us from attaining it

Vaishnav Sunil


appiness is often described as a mental state of well-being, characterised by positive emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy. The truth and consensus, however is that no science or philosophy can define happiness. Moreover, it is almost impossible to ascertain what contributes to this “happiness” even if we run on the premise that the mental state can be defined. So let us assume that we all know what it feels like to be happy and get to the bottom of what might cause it. Satisfaction is one reason that’s often put forward. This also happens to be the most believable cause simply because if you aren’t content with any aspect of your life, you can’t be completely happy. But what if

you think you have the perfect job, a bulky compensation, a hot (and faithful) wife, two lovely kids and no regrets or guilt whatsoever. When one’s life is ostensibly perfect , one still finds reason not to be happy simply because he asks himself something profound like “What’s the purpose of life? So what if I have everything?” And boom goes his “happiness”. The key to happiness seems to lie in not chasing it. The reason there’s so much unfounded unhappiness in the world is because everyone is constantly pursuing it. I believe it’s the cliché of “Always find reason to be happy”, that furthers people away from happiness. It’s only when you keep asking yourself about happiness and contentment do you think of

all that’s keeping you from it. There are a few things one must never base happiness on like the purpose of life itself and one’s greater significance. The bitter truth is that life is merely a countdown to death and has no real purpose. That only makes it more important for us to forsake this unwanted pursuit, and just live life to the fullest possible. This message is best exemplified in the lyrics from a Fray song- ”Happiness is like the old man told me- Look for it, but you’ll never find it all. But let it go, live your life and leave it. Then one day, wake up and she’ll be home, home, home.” Let not happiness dictate how you live your life, just let life bring happiness to you, whenever it decides to.

not campaigning to support them but I would like to suggest that fundamentally, we are no different from them. Somehow, they seem to have lost control over the translating-thoughts-into-actions faculty and well, of course that makes all the difference. We should engage ourselves in a

more reflective and understanding manner while trying to help them. Now, if you happen to be one of the few who found this article, and thereby me, disturbing, then just drop by my room for a chat and you will see I am sane. Also, I have a couple of onions

and capsicums left over and I would love to cook (something nice for) you. DISCLAIMER | The opinions expressed in this section do not represent the views of The Tribune. They are independent views of the writer.

features 21 Glitz, Glamour & Glory at the Emmys thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

The biggest winners at the 2011 Emmy Awards held at Nokia Theatre, Los Angeles, California were the usual suspects and the night yielded few surprises, hilarious sketches and heartwarming acceptance speeches; the icing on the cake being the incredible Jane Lynch from Glee hosting. Shreya Sharma & Rohan Paul review what went down that day.

W orthy W inners Modern Family

The ABC network comedy series “Modern Family” reeled in a total of five Emmy awards for Outstanding Comedy, Directing, Writing, and Best Supporting Actor and Actress Emmys for onscreen husband and wife team Ty Burrell and Julie Bowen. The mockumentary style show depicting the events of three ordinary families grabs audience due to its likeable characters, great dialogue and most importantly - avoidance of clichés. The interesting personas of the characters and their interaction with each other and the camera make the show consistently laugh out loud funny.

Mad Men

“Mad Men” took home the Outstanding Drama Emmy for the fourth year in a row – one for each season. The drama is set in the golden age of Madison Avenue, New York during the 1960’s when the advertising agencies controlled America’s growing consumerism. Every detail of that period is tapped into, focusing on the suave Don Draper, a talented ad executive. The show’s charm lies in its wit, character development, superb cinematography and contained sophistication.

The Daily Show

“The Daily Show” hosted by Jon Stewart also won two Emmys for its presentation of comedy and news with a satirical edge. The show boasts of the most honest and funniest interviews on television with guests ranging from President Barack Obama to Jay-Z. The exaggerated presentation coupled with the hilarious recurring segments and wacky celebrity interviews has made the show a huge hit.

The Amazing Race

The reality show, “The Amazing Race”, won its ninth Emmy award during the ceremony, after receiving it every year since 2003 except in 2010 where it lost out to “Top Chef”. It is a show with a simple format and a strong human element. The show follows teams of two all over the world as they make their way through pit stops and detours, performing challenges that reflect the culture of the place being visited. The show has managed to stay fresh and relevant for eighteen seasons and is slated for at least two more.

Mildred Pierce and Downtown Abbey

Beautifully produced, “Downtown Abbey” took on “Mildred Pierce” and emerged with four Emmys to the latter’s two. Although Kate Winslet and Guy Pearce won Best Actor Miniseries and Best Supporting Actor Miniseries respectively for “Mildred Pierce”, “Downtown Abbey” won the Emmy’s for Outstanding Miniseries, writing, directing and supporting actor. The excellent casting and writing were major strengths with the subtle but witty and occasionally poignant writing being the backbone of the show for Downtown Abbey.

M emorable M oments And the Homecoming Queen is:

It was a sincerely heart warming moment when all the nominees for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series got on stage as their names were announced and held hands as if waiting to hear pageant results. When Melissa McCarthy won the award for “Mike and Molly”, she received hugs and genuine smiles from all around. She also got a tiara and a bouquet of roses in addition to the usual trophy and began her speech by calling it her “first and best pageant ever”. One of the cutest moments in the history of the Emmys.

Charlie Sheen Acting…Normal?

After creating headlines for his bizarre and admittedly hilarious behavior, Charlie Sheen has finally pulled it together. His appearance to present the award for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series was watched with baited breath, waiting for one of his quotable gems to drop but he made a seemingly sincere, non sarcastic (maybe?) speech about thanking and wishing the team of Two and a Half Men luck and continued with the ceremony.

Spotlight on “Friday Night Lights”

The show “Friday Night Lights” is a show that came into the night as an underdog and came out with two wins, Best Writing and Best Lead Actor in a Drama. The unconventional show got its first Emmy attention this year and as actor, Kyle Chandler, got on stage, he started his acceptance speech with an honest and endearing revelation that he hadn’t prepared anything because of the certainty that he would not win. The show about a small town high school football team got noticed and the feeling was akin to that of a scrawny kid winning the final of a wrestling match and the entire crowd cheering on their feet.

Killing it Like Ricky Gervais

Ricky Gervais presented a very noteworthy monologue from outside the venue. Or the country. He started the pre-taped video monologue by stating that he was “not allowed on American soil” after the Golden Globes debacle and the video went to show edited footage of him, talking about absolute ‘Schindler’s List’. The obvious edits censoring his speech were brilliant and the video finished off by Gervais calling himself an “absolute idiot”.

A Not So Lonely Island

The best part of the evening was probably the performance by the Lonely Island, knowing for their not-so-subtle humor and over the top music videos. They performed their recent hit “Jack Sparrow” with Michael Boulton in a Jack Sparrow costume, followed by “3 way” with Maya Rudolph, John Stamos and Ed Helms. The musical performance ended with the trio, “freaking” Bill Macy at his seat and chanting “USA, USA, USA” as they got on stage for the finale with Akon and a US flag waving in the background.

22 features

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Of Wall Street and Balance Sheets For a university with the rough student strength of a small South-East Asian village population, budding entrepreneurs are always popping up everywhere. Abha Apte helps make most readers of this column feel marginally insignificant by interviewing some such student entrepreneurs.



All Deals Leak

What is your company about?

What is your company about?

What is your company about?

Qwer-T’s aim is to build a community of art lovers and bridge the gap between artists and art lovers. We conduct design competitions online and sell t-shirts printed with the winning designs.

Workbox is a portal that provides a one stop solution to students and others looking for part time jobs. It doesn’t just make work easier for job lookers, but also provides a great avenue for companies to find suitable people.

Our company All Deals Leak Pte Ltd is a Singapore Only Deal review site for the daily deals industry. We publish one deal review every day. We also generate reports that capture data for deal sites in Singapore, which are then sold to the owners and investors of deal sites.

Who are the people involved? Qwer-T Designs LLP is run by a 6 member team – Jin Toh, Khairul Rusydi, Kezia Gusmawan, Dai Le, Wendy Ho and Biju Joseph Jacob. Our team members come from diverse ethnic backgrounds.

Why did you take this initiative? We started Qwer-T Designs as a project for a module of the Entrepreneurship Minor. Since we were passionate about it, we decided to continue running the company.

How has the target market’s response been? Designers were initially slow to react and we received very few designs. But later we publicized our events and got a better response. We have printed t-shirts for various clubs and events, such as the Ministerial Forum 2011 and the Junior World Entrepreneurship Forum 2011.

Future growth you’d like to see? We are negotiating with some clubs in NTU for collaboration. There are also a couple of competitions, which are still in the planning stages.

Who are the people involved? The current Workbox team consists of Alvin Chew, Ankita, Bruno Yip, Darras Ang and Sim Ken Wee.

Why did you take this initiative? We saw the lack of a platform for undergraduates to look for part time jobs. Most job agencies mainly cater to individuals looking for professional jobs or jobs with long working hours which are unsuitable for students.

How has the target market’s response been? We managed to match 41 jobs and have built a database of over 200 students. Most of the students are satisfied with the jobs we offered them. Clients are also happy with the students working for them.

Future growth you’d like to see? We hope to expand our student database to over 1000 students and also liaise with big event companies to provide students jobs generated by large scale events.

Who are the people involved? The company is run by NTU students, Lee Jie Sheng, Ewan Sou Xuan Hao and Terence Chung, an NTU alumnus.

Why did you take this initiative? We started a small scale site for our Minor in Entrepreneurship. Later we realized the need for a site in Singapore to review deals. Therefore, we set up this site.

How has the target market’s response been? The market response was slow initially. However, our site has gradually established itself as the authority to approach to verify how good a deal is. We keep receiving requests for deals to be reviewed. We have more than a thousand unique visitors each day.

Future growth you’d like to see? We hope to expand our services overseas and to develop more consumers-orientated services in the future.

Scoopz What is your company about? Scoopz@NTU serves all natural ice cream, Belgium waffles. Our value proposition is to provide the often stressed-out NTU students and staff with a healthy, sweet indulgence.

Who are the people involved? It is a sibling-duo venture by Jonathan and Jaeden Tan, both Year 3 students.

Why did you take this initiative? It is somewhat like a family business, because our cousin has been making home-made ice-cream for many years. It was by chance that we came across someone, who happened to have an empty tenancy in our school canteen, creating an opportunity for us.

How has the target market’s response been? Many of our customers commented that our ice cream is fresh and occasionally find fruit pieces in them. Our bestsellers are what we call the ‘GPA 5’durian, rum and raisin, avocado, cookies & cream and Horlicks.

Future growth you’d like to see? We hope to make Scoopz@NTU a place where students can let their hair down after a rough day in school. We also hope to help make their time here less bitter by adding sweetness to their lives.

Gourmet Guru What is your company about? Gourmet Guru Academy started as an initiative by NTU Students in Free Enterprise (NTU SIFE) with the aim to empower low-income, selftaught chefs like homemakers.

Who are the people involved? The pioneers of this project are seniors who have already graduated. The current members of the project are Tan Hui Ming, Poh Li Wen, Keshav Mohta, He Jia Xin, Manmitha Manjunath, Josephine Pang, Chua Qiao Han, Chua Yu Meng and Sarah Loo.

Why did you take this initiative? We embarked on this project aiming to help low-income, self-taught chefs, mainly homemakers in Singapore earn a living. Through our weekly cookery classes, these homemakers have acquired skills to earn and support themselves and their families.

How has the target market’s response been? It has been very positive. Participants learn and have fun at our classes. They have given us positive feedback.

Future growth you’d like to see? SIFE is looking to expand Gourmet Guru Academy to more areas in Singapore. We will also be offering catering services and have already received numerous catering assignments.

features 23

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Diving into the City’s Underground Music Scene Rebecca Lim

For the Indie Rock Junkie

Musician/Band: King Kong Jane This 5-member band was formed in 2005, consisting of Colin (vocals), Ian (guitar), Jianping (drums), Renquan (bass) and Ruishen (guitar). All 5 who are NTU alumni! Having played at indie music festivals like Baybeats (the largest alternative music festival in Southeast Asia) in 2007 and Love In 2011 (a concert in raising awareness of domestic violence), King Kong Jane released its long-awaited debut album ‘Waiting For Friday’ in March 2011. Coming a long way from playing covers, they have a greater repertoire of originals now. Definitely one of the better rock bands in Singapore. Song Picks: ‘Waiting for Friday’ & ‘Stranger’ – both songs have catchy, guitar parts and a very appealing ‘emo’ brand without being overly depressing. In ‘Stranger’, the line “Don’t pass me by, don’t walk away, won’t you be mine...” stays in the head even after one listen. For lighter tunes, go for ‘If it Wasn’t for you’, a track available free online. Download it at their website:

For the Synth/Electronic Pop Fans Musician/Band: Riot !n Magenta

Imagine two people creating strange tunes in a world of their own – this band would be them: Euginia Yip and Hayashida Ken. Riots !n Magenta is a quirky 2-member duo – a synth pop project of singer-songwriter Euginia and keyboardist-producer Hayashida Ken. I first spotted them at the recent 2011 Baybeats music fest and was impressed by how Euginia’s powerful vocals complemented the electronic tones. To top it off, she was wearing a weird green wig making robotic hand gestures. With Hayashida Ken engineering the sounds quietly in the background, the whole getup was oddly pleasant. Song picks: ‘CTRL’ & ‘Itsy Bitsy’ – love these for the soulfulness that is not usually found in electronic pop acts. ‘CTRL’ can be especially addictive and is a great song if you’re game for some head bobbing and hip swaying. ‘Itsy Bitsy’ is a reinvention from the nursery rhyme, and similarly, Euginia’s vocals manage to penetrate the electronic sounds.

The Hip-Hop/Funk Addict Musician/Band: Sixx

Despite their name, this band has 9 people. Aarika the vocalist, Kevin the rapper, Timothy the bassist (he is an NTU alumnus!), Kelvin (Ang) is the guitarist, Sarah the keyboardist, Joseph on drums, Shaun the sound engine, Daniel the Saxophone guy and (Kelvin) Kong trumpets. They started back in 2006, with just Kevin, Aarika, Timothy, Kelvin, Mark (the old drummer) and Sarah but grew out when one called another. If you like the old soul, funk genre this might just be your cup of tea. With the added fusion of rap and hip hop, this band has a unique sound and is a breath of fresh air. They have played at events like Sunburst KL Music Festival 2009 and Music Matters Live2011. Song Picks: ‘Say’ & ‘Superstar’ (cover) – their cover of Lupe Fiasco’s ‘Superstar’ remains my favourite. The band nailed it, with instruments slipping in seamlessly and each had a part to contribute. ‘Say’ is an original and a showcase of the rapping, saxo and trumpets.

For Acoustic Pop Lovers Musician/Band: Tay Kewei

Kewei has come a long way, first starting out during her university days by singing backup for David Tao. Last year at the Singapore Hit Awards, she won the Media’s Choice Award for Local New Artiste, which was a surprise award announced on the day itself. Signed with record label S2S, she released her debut album in Sept 2010 which is a trilingual album with a mix of covers and self-written originals. More recently, she has been nominated for the Best Local Singer and Most Popular Newcomer Awards at the Singapore Hit Awards 2011. And by the way, she’s an NTU alumnus too. Song Picks: ‘(This Too Shall Pass)’ & ‘Plastic Mannequin Love’ – both songs showcases her sultry vocals, the latter being written about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and how affected she was when she saw a photo of it. She does these pop tunes with a slightly jazzy touch which keeps the song interesting. All in all, the album is very suitable for easy-listening on a rainy day.

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event watch 25

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011


sneak peaks


18 Nov

The event comes back to feature yet another line-up of esteemed speakers

Good Charlotte Live

Prerna Mishra & Sindhu S Adhoni


his October NTU will be witnessing its second TEDxNTU event, an independently organized TEDlike event by NTU. TEDxNTU, is not just another ordinary event in NTU’s calendar, but a phenomenon world over. TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to ‘Ideas Worth Spreading’. Ever since its inception in 1984, TED has made untiring efforts to bring together leader and high achievers from all walks of life including Bill Gates, Stephen Hawking, Bill Clinton etc. Over the years, it has grown exponentially with 2 annual conferences and innovative incorporations such as TEDTalks video site, the Open Translation Project and TED Conversations, the inspiring TED Fellows and TEDx programs, and the annual TED Prize. In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized

events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. TEDx made its debut in NTU in March 2011, and its back again. Through the TEDx programme, NTU students will have the golden opportunity to hear from great minds. Organised by a group of NTU students, with the support of NTU Graduate Students Club and Nanyang Technopreneurship Center. The event shall feature 6 speakers from fields as diverse as technology, entertainment and design will grace the event and inspire the youth of NTU to aim higher, dream bigger. TEDxNTU will be held at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre on the October 15, this year. The event is only open for qualified applicants, and registrations have already begun. Sign up at register/ . Come and be inspired! For more event details, visit

This pop-punk band needs no introduction: they played a major part of most pre-pubescent teenagers’ lives, with their whiny, wronged-youth soft-rock tunes. Watch the band share the Hard Rock Coliseum stage at the Resorts World Sentosa with a selection of quality support talent from across the region.

1 Nov-13 Nov Anime Festival Asia 2011



Cultural Activities Club

Inter-Tertiary Salsa Competition

24 SEP

mark your calendar Cultural Activities Club (CAC)

Impresario Registration begins

School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering (EEE)

Sports Carnival

10 OCT

Cultural Activities Club (CAC)

More Than Jazz That (Performance)

13 OCT

Students’ Fund BHG Bazaar

13 Nov 19 OCT

Halloween Celebration

Students’ Union

Students’ Union

10-13 OCT

School of Physical & Mathematical Sciences (SPMS)

17-21 OCT

U Study Goodie Giveaway

Local and regional fans of anime and Japanese popular culture can look forward to seeing the latest and most popular content with fresh eyes: this festival takes on a multi-dimensional approach with open discussion sessions with top character designers and behind-the-scene industry experts. So grab your pet Pikachu and head towards the land of gigantically cute eyes and bright, multicolored hair!

03 NOV

Charity Swim 2011 Put on your trunks and swim a distance of 10km along the shores of East Coast Beach to raise funds for charity. All proceeds will go to the programmes that The Student Advisory Centre runs, including Development programmes for children in schools, The Lunch Box Fund which provide needy children free lunches and The Wishing Well.

26 entertainment Karina Maharani & Shreya Sharma


thetr bune OCTOBER 2011



George R. R. Martin


A DANCE WITH DRAGONS Obviously a must-have for any fan of the A Song of Ice and Fire series, A Dance With Dragons asks as many questions as it answers and ends on a cliffhanger that leaves you eager for more. I’d recommend this book and the series as a whole to any fantasy fan and any fan of general reading. As Martin writes in the book: “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.”


Being an impressive debut novel by English journalist Miller, Snowdrops is on the shortlist for the 2011 edition of the prestigious Man Booker Prize. One thing that sets it apart from other contemporary fiction is its setting - Snowdrops takes place in Vladimir Putin’s Russia, a relatively unexplored area in the annals of literature. Having read the first few chapters, I can say that the book promises to be a great psychological drama and makes for a very interesting read.


Alexandre Desplat

Alexandre Desplat’s score for the final installment of the Harry Potter movie series does not disappoint its fans. The soundtrack weaves in John Williams’ iconic Hedwig’s Theme while maintaining its own individuality. The opening Lily’s Theme is also repeated in various forms throughout the score and gives it a cohesiveness that I thought was missing in Deathly Hallows Part 1. Other standout tracks include Courtyard Apocalypse, Severus and Lily, and The Resurrection Stone.

ALL THINGS BRIGHT AND BEAUTIFUL Owl City The latest release by popular electronica band Owl City was a bit of a letdown for me. Deer in the Headlights is a very catchy song, but this album as a whole was way too “poppy” for my tastes and the oftentimes awkward lyrics don’t help (“So if you’re dying to see, I guarantee there are angels around your vicinity!”). Yet, this one is mostly of the same style as any of the band’s previous albums, so fans of the band won’t have too many problems with it.

Roger Ebert

The autobiography of legendary film critic Roger Ebert will be of interest to even the most casual movie fans - It not only chronicles Ebert’s storied career but also his deep love for his wife as well as his struggles with thyroid cancer and failed facial reconstructive surgery. Though it could easily have been a downer, it ends up being very uplifting. As Ebert writes in the book: “I may seem tragic to you, but I seem fortunate to myself. Don’t lose any sleep over me.”






The pilot of New Girl aired recently, amid a huge amount of hype and anticipation. However, for me, it was a bit of a disappointment. Zooey Deschanel played Jessica Day, a young woman trying to get over a surprise breakup and looking for a new place, who moved in with three single guys. She was refreshingly great as usual and the three actors, Jack Johnson, Max Greenfield, Lamorne Morris, also played their parts well but the script suffered from lazy and generic writing. I would still recommend checking out its next episode before we can finally decide how good it is.


Criminal Minds is one of those shows that take a tested and tried genre and twist it to make itself new and exciting. The show follows the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit as they hunt down serial killers and pattern crimes. The show makes itself different by focusing on the criminal, rather than the crime and by profiling and using behavior traits to narrow down the suspect base. It is a must see for all fans of macabre.


One of the most popular TV shows made a comeback in the fall. This episode of Glee is attractive, full of funny moments and some new developments. The producers of Glee have remarked that they will be focusing more on characters and story lines and producing less tribute shows this season, which is a relief for the show’s fans like me who are looking forward to a better season than the previous one.

I first saw indie band Florence and the Machine on an episode of The Colbert Report and was really impressed by the lead singer Florence Welch’s beautiful voice. In a music industry that is increasingly dominated by autotune, it’s refreshing to listen to a genuine vocal talent. Cosmic Love is currently playing repeatedly on my iPod and I’m Not Calling You a Liar is an underrated song with lovely lyrics. Look forward to their upcoming album Ceremonials which is out on October 28.

There has been a fllood of disaster movies in recent times but Contagion stands out as a unique and smart addition to the genre. It is a star studded movie with a smart, tensely executed story line. The concept of predators in the movies being microscopic viruses is interesting and as you leave the theater, you can’t help but get the feeling that they’re everywhere.

Johnny English Reborn

A late but eagerly awaited sequel for Johnny English hit the theaters recently and it was fun to see Rowan Atkinson back on the screen playing Mr. Bean, this time being a secret agent. The plot revolves around English trying to stop a group of international assassins before they eliminate a prominent world leader and obviously, much hilarity ensues. The movie is able to recreate the magic of the original and is definitely worth a watch, to re-capture the nostalgia of Johnny English if nothing else.

Friends With Benefits

When you watch Friends With Benefits, you keep feeling that you’ve seen this movie before. Every joke, every situation, every dialogue in the movie is very ‘been there, done that’. It’s mind-numbingly cheesy and sappy. As likeable as the two leads, Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis are, it is still not enough to save the movie from being just another dumb romantic comedy.

PHOTOS | Internet

people watch 27 Venture5: Driving through the Sun

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

For a university with a student body strength vaguely resembling the population of a small south-east Asian village, budding youth talent is always springing up in steady frequency. In addition to inflicting slow, cruel pangs of insecurity amongst the remaining sample space of strictly mediocre peers, these unique snowflakes of students also make up for an interesting, grudgingly inspiring read: Ananya Roy scopes out such a group.



n eleven member team who stand out from the rest. They have not stopped just at acquiring knowledge from coursework like most of us, but have gone one step further and put it to practical use. After months of deliberation on the design and loads of effort, this group has built a solar powered car which will compete in the World Solar Challenge 2011. The eleven member team comprises of nine NTU undergraduate students from different engineering disciplines, namely Khoo Ri Xiang

Raymond, T’ng Wei Hui Alvin, Cheer Ruey Shin, Budhaditya Bhattacharya, Devika Shinde, Lim Zhen Yi, Tee Yifei, Kunhal Lakhiani and Raktim Hazarika and two NTU alumni, Shaun and Sario. Raymond leads the team as they prepare to leave for the World Solar Championship to be held in Australia from the 16th to the 23rd of October 2011. The intrinsic difference between team members notwithstanding, they shared a common goal which they were completely committed to.



his group has accomplished what most of us would consider highly complex and challenging: building a solar car from scratch. Venture2, the 1st car

that NTU students had designed for the World Solar Challenge in 2009 had an aluminium frame which made it heavy and bulky. The present solar car is an im-

proved version of its predecessor. The team has done away with the aluminium frame for the car design and opted for only a carbon fibre shell for the car to reduce its weight. There will be three cars in the race, the solar car, the lead car and the chase car. The team has also put in place a telemetry system to relay data between the solar car and the lead car to know the power consumption of solar car to make sure running out of power is not an issue in the race. The new car is lighter and

way faster with an expected top speed of 130 mi/hr and a cruising speed of 80mi/hr. The team is headed by Raymond, who was very involved at each and every step of the venture. The team was split into groups and they were assigned different sections of the design. Shaun was the one who always got burnt-he was in charge of welding. Devika, Budhaditya, Kunhal, Raktim and Lim Zhen dealt with the solar cells segment. The Electrical segment was taken care of by Sario and Cher Ruey

Shin and the mechanical segment by Yife and Sario. Sario was the group’s Mr Dependable. He would help out whenever things went wrong. The logistics for the race is also an important aspect as the team is headed for Australia all by themselves without a professor. All the necessary equipment needed for the race have to be packed and essential things needed for the race need to be brought there in Australia. Budhaditya and Alvin have helped coordinate the logistics.

when the team was already well into the project, a lot of things had to be changed for which the team worked overtime. Having Shaun and Sario, the two alumni in the team benefited the team a lot. They had the necessary experience. Having been a part of the team that had built the previous version of the solar car, they were

a great support to the rest of the team. The team got funding from College of Engineering (CoE) and School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) for their venture. The batteries of the vehicle were sponsored by Panasonic and Lee Foundation. Here’s wishing the NV5 team all the very best in their endeavours.



ne of the team members remarked, “I saw the car in my first year and the car looked really cool. I wanted to be part of something different, something like this.” The story was no different for the rest of the team members. They too wanted to do something extra ordinary. They wanted to put theoretical knowledge to practical

use. They wanted to figure out the relevance of all that we learn in school in real life and this project gave them just the right platform to do so. While doing the project though, the team realized that in practice, things are not as easy as they appear in the text books. There are many more complications as the ideal conditions stated

in the textbooks do not always happen and crisis situations need to be handled. This project might sound like it is only for Mechanical Engineering students, but that is completely untrue. People from various engineering disciplines are required for the various sections of the project.



o do something of the magnitude of building a car requires a great deal of effort and undeniably, sufficient funding. The team has put in a lot of effort, even staying awake nights working on the car in the lab. It was only in May that the team decided to change the design of the car to make it lighter. As this decision was made

28 people

“I am currently a year 4 student and hence am not involved in either Student Union or school club activities.” -Floris/Yr4


“Most of the elected representatives are suitable for their positions and on the whole the Student Union is doing its job quite well.” -Guanting /NBS/Yr3



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“I was really very interested to go for the dialogue, but could not do so because of the long queue for tickets. I tried watching it on the screens put up outside, but the audio quality was bad and most of the time nothing could be heard.”

“Our elected leaders seem to be serving us quite well. Shuttle bus frequency has definitely improved and the new SAC and Global Lounge have benefited us.”

“It is not always that the most qualified candidates get elected. There should be some kind of interviewing process before elections to determine if the candidate is suitable for the position or is just popular.”


-Swarnali Mitra/EEE/Yr2

“The dialogue was insightful and gave a fresh perspective of things to the youth. But I don’t agree with all that was said.” -Alan/Accountancy/Yr1


“The new SAC is more accessible than the old one and also has more leisure facilities. But we definitely need more seats as the SAC is quite crowded most of the time. -Mei Ying/Maths/Yr 4

“The facilities at SAC can definitely be improved. The old SAC had a printer which could be used to print at odd hours. The new SAC should also have the same arrangement.” -Shree Patwardhan/Yr4

“The new SAC is good and the atmosphere is conducive for studying. But we need more tables as well as more plug points.” -Atikah/MAE/Yr2

| student activities centre (SAc)

-Amitabh Awasthi/EEE/ Yr3

“The new SAC is a great place to hang out and also for project discussions. But I suggest SAC should do away with the tables and make SAC more comfortable.”

“The issues discussed were mostly Singaporean. I would have liked some South East Asian issues to be taken up too. But it was great to get to know the ministers of Singapore.” -Yash/EEE/Yr2

-Kunal Ahluwalia/MAE/Yr2

“There is no receptionist at the SAC during recess week and hence we can’t play pool. There should be an automated system for student registrations for the facilities at the SAC.”

| student elections

“The current procedures for the elections are fair to everyone. But the involvement of students is not that high and hence most of the time we have the same people as leaders for consecutive years.”



thetr bune OCTOBER 2011



Recapping the Month’s Sporting Episodes

GRAPHIC | Anshu Garodia

Tam Mei Tan

Tour De Trail 2011


our De Trail 2011 was held on the 24th of September 2011, Saturday, at MacRitchie Reservoir. The event lasted for 12 hours, from 6.45am to 6.45pm, where a total of 1,500 participants’ limits were tested. There was the Mens’ Individual Open, and Ladies’ Individual Open, where individuals were pitted against one another to see who could run the most 12km loops. There was also the Mens’ Team Relay, and the Ladies’ Team Relay events, where relay teams, compromising of either two or four members, covered the same 12km loop, to see which teams could cover the most number of loops.

“It was dubbed the Singapore Sunrise to Sunset Ultra Trail Challenge.’’

Mizuno Wave Race

The SAFRA Singapore Bay Run



he 8th edition of the 10km Mizuno Wave Run started off at 7.30am on the 25th September 2011, Sunday. The 4084 runners were taken through a 10km route that took them from Bedok Reservoir Park to Boat Vista. The categories in the run included the Men’s Open, the Women’s Open, the Men’s Veteran, and the Women’s Veteran categories. Two foreign nationals, Mark Callon, 43, from America and Beate Krecklow, 40, from Germany displayed outstanding performances in the Men’s Open category and Wom-

en’s Open category respectively. Mark Callon clocked a time of 38 min 07 sec to win the Men’s Open while Beate Krecklow, a 40-year-old from Germany clocked 41 min 15 sec to clinch the Women’s Open title. Participants also did their part for society by signing up for the race, because race organiser, VGO Coporation Limited, donated part of the registration proceeds to “Friends of the Third Age” a social welfare organisation that promotes and provides opportunities for the elderly to live and active ageing lifestyle.

Yellow Ribbon Prison Run


he third annual Yellow Ribbon Prison Run, which happened on the 18th of September, Sunday, had a record turnout of more than 9000 runners this year. A total of $50,000 was raised this year for the Yellow Ribbon Fund to help ex-offenders and their families. Acting Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports and Minister of State for Information, Communications and the Arts Major-General (NS) Chan Chun Sing was there to flag off the 10km competitive race, before joining runners

for the 6km fun run. The route for the run took contestants past the old Changi Prison Gate and into the new Changi Prison Complex. Runners were greeted at the end point by song performances, a prison art exhibition featuring original artworks by reforming inmates, and a photo exhibition on an inmate’s rehabilitation journey. The good weather that day allowed the participants to enjoy a day of fun, and at the same time lend their voices and support to ex-offenders.

n Sunday, September 4, 2011, more than 70,000 runners took part in the Singapore Bay Run & Army Half Marathon (SSBR & AHM). The event marked the 20th Anniversary of the Run. Instead of the usual route encompassing the Benjamin Sheares Bridge used previously, the new route took participants past 20 iconic Singapore landmarks that finally lead them to Marina Barrage and Gardens by the Bay. The event featured three different routes, the competitive 21km and 10km routes, and the

The Mega Tri-Singapore


he Mega Tri Singapore, also known as the longest and toughest triathlon in Southeast Asis, was held on the 11th September 2011, Sunday. The event, organized by Mega Tri Sports Pte Ltd, took place at East Coast Park, and Changi Coastal Road. There was a choice of two courses for the triatheles to take part in, the Long Course (2km swim, 102km cycle and 27km run) and the Middle Course (1km swim, 65km cycle and 18km run). The courses were also available in relay categories for the participants.

5km Fun Run. The Minister for Defence, Dr Ng Eng Hen, was there to flag off the SAFRA 5km Fun Run at the Esplanade Bridge. Participants were met with a carnival at the end point, where various merchandise stalls sold a wide range of sports related products at special prices. Coming in first in the Men’s Open category was Kiproo Lilan Kennedy, who completed the 21km route in 01:06:10.1. And clinching the Women’s Open title was Eunice Nyawira, who clocked 01:56:9 for 21km.

The 21km Men’s Closed category race title was awarded to Mok Ying Ren, 23, who completed the race in 1 hour 12 minutes and 10 seconds. This year’s run saw the introduction of a new event, called ‘Dads For Life’ which is an 800m Father & Child Challenge, which saw a total of 614 father-and-child pairs taking part, making it into the Singapore Book of Records for the ‘Largest Father and Child Race’.

The ONE Fighting Championship


he ONE Fighting Championship was held on the 3rd of September 2011, Satur-

“Champion vs Champion” day, at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. MMA is one of the fastest growing sports in the world today, and basically allows competitors to utilize the best techniques from any and all martial arts, like Karate, Muay Thai, Kung Fu and Silat, in order to compete in the ring. The event featured 16 World and National MMA champi-

ons in a historic event billed as “Champion vs Champion”: Asia’s Greatest Battle of Champions. The event was broadcasted to over 500 million homes on the continent by ESPN, StarSports and MediaCorp. The championship also marked the pro debut of Singapore’s first professional MMA athlete, Radeem Abdul Rahman.

“Billed as the biggest MMA event in Asia”

30 sports

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The Singapore University Games So Far The defending champions of the SUniG seek to retain their championship. So far, they are ahead of the pack. Can they go all the way?

N eel R atan M itra


nitiated by the Singapore Universities Sports Council, the SUniG was conceptualized to foster goodwill among fellow athletes from different universities. Four universities: NUS, NTU, SIM and SMU are a part of the ongoing SUniG. All together there are 19 sporting events in this competition. Midway through the competition the athletes from NTU look good to retain the coveted championship. As far as NTU’s performance in the games is concerned, both the women’s and men’s basketball team have put forward stellar performances; the men’s team winning all their fixtures and the women’s team winning two of their matches. They await their clash with the NUS team (on the 29th of this month). In volleyball, the NTU men’s team came on top beating all the three teams. The women’s team managed a second spot, losing out to arch rivals NUS in their opening match. In tennis NUS won the men’s singles and doubles title, the women’s team won the doubles title. SMU’s Anne Tan won the women’s single knockout tournament. NTU’s pair of Rik Kamphuis and David Kilpatrick managed to reach the men’s doubles final only to get lose to the pair from NUS. In water polo the men’s team won the bronze after defeating SIM. SMU clinched a tight victory of 14-12 against NTU to come second, whereas NUS dominated in all the three matches to emerge victors in the water polo competition. With a 3-0 win over SMU in their final game, the NTU women’s soccer team were crowned

The women’s team in action at the handball tournament.

champions of the women’s soccer tournament. As the intense competition continues for the overall championship, The Tribune managed to catch up with some of the athletes who shared their joy and pride in wearing the NTU colours. Rose Tan, who leads the NTU women’s handball team describes it as an exhilarating journey- “when the going gets tough the tough get going”. Despite having a young team, with senior players having only 2 years of experience in the game, the team emerged as champions. Rose believes the hard training, the perseverance put forward by the coaches and her fellow team members took them the extra mile. In a team game like handball team work and cohesiveness are essential, the fact that the team cheered each other

during tough matches, especially against NUS - the signature YES, ensured the team morale remained high. The team which started off as a group of strangers stand united today. She says,” With such good team dynamics, an ever dedicated coach, wonderful teammates and the championship title in our hands, we can never ask for more.”

“The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” Unfortunately, the NTU women’s volleyball team couldn’t get the best of NUS in the SUniG. However, the team put forward a commendable performance to be placed 2nd. Team captain Su

Proceedings during the soccer match between NTU and SMU. NTU defeated SMU 3-0.


Junda expresses pride in donning the NTU jersey. With more than 10 years of experience in the game, she says it’s tough being a part of the NTU team which has a considerable influx of foreign exchange students raising the standards for other team members. The bond existing among the team members goes a long way according to her. She says prior to the SUniG the team trained a lot and even took part in other competitions. The strengths and flaws are known to them. Su looks optimistically to the future and says, “From here, we will use what we are good at the fullest and hone up on what we are weak at”. The sport of aquathlon goes a level higher in testing the limits of an athlete. It consists of a continuous, two stage race involving swimming followed by running. The aquathlon for the SUniG was

held at East Coast Park. Danson Cheong has been a part of this team since his first semester in NTU, with experience in racing in recreational triathlons Danson had decided to race more at the competitive level. The fact that the athletes have to train throughout the year goes to show the extreme fitness these athletes have to maintain to participate in a sport like aquathlon. According to him, this year the competition was tough. All athletes put up a great fight. As of the NTU men’s team, they managed to improve upon their previous year’s result - Danson believes this to be due to their efforts in training over the whole year. The women’s team put up a spectacular performance to retain the gold despite participating without many of their core group members, most of them having graduated last year. From a spectator’s view the sport might appear to be an individual based sport, but Danson rectifies this misconception. He says, “The team is more than just a group of disparate individuals training together - we are more than that, we are best of friends. It is through constant encouragement, both in and out of training that we are able to get through the tough training sets and other storms of our lives. For many of us, the team is a pillar of support - and this is certainly a case where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” On race day one might be on his/her own but it’s the camaraderie existing in the team which assists one to go through the training sets and prepare everyone for the day he/she will have to race alone.

PHOTO | Wang Zhenjia

thetr bune OCTOBER 2011



PHOTOS | Wang Zhenjia



32 sports


thetr bune OCTOBER 2011

Match Fixing in Sports

Match fixing is as old as sport itself. In recent times, this ugly phenomenon has become more commonplace in organised sport.

Kanika Asija


t is not limited to a single sport, be it cricket, baseball, football, basketball or hockey, there have been quite a few instances in the past where people associated with the sport have been found guilty of match fixing. It comes as little surprise that evidence of match fixing is found throughout recorded history. In the ancient Olympics competitors were required to take an oath to preserve the integrity of the competition. Nonetheless Olympic athletes selling their integrity for a bribe was commonplace in classical Greece. Of course, this is no excuse for the current state of affairs. The first recorded instance of match fixing dates back to 1919, when the Black Sox scandal occurred in North America, in which gamblers bribed several members of the baseball team, the Chicago White Sox, to throw the World Series. This incident was the basis of the 1988 sports drama film “Eight Men Out”. In the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Basketball Association (NBA), accusations have been levied against teams that finish at the bottom of the standings with the worst record, of deliberately losing games in order to get the first draft pick (to get the first choice in signing on players for next season).There have been scandals in these sports leagues in Portugal, Germany and Brazil in which referees have been involved in match fixing. Cricket has been rocked by frequent incidents of match fixing and gambling in recent years. One well known example is that of Hansie Cronje, a South African all rounder and their captain in the 1990s. He was accused and found guilty of match fixing in a one day series in India. He later confessed to having accepted bribes from a London-based bookmaker for controlling the outcome of the matches. Another well publicised scandal involved Bob Woolmer (coach for the Pakistan cricket team) whose unforeseen death after the surprise defeat of Pakistan on the hands of Ireland in the 2007

Cricket World Cup raised suspicions. A more recent case is the 2010 spot fixing scandal, where three of Pakistan’s first team regulars, Mohammad Amir, Salman Butt, and Mohammad Asif, were all banned from the sport for 5-10 years for accepting bribes from agent and bookmaker Mazhar Majeed to purposely under-perform at certain points in the 4th Test at Lord’s Cricket Ground in London, England. The NFL (National Football League, America) and the NBA(National Basketball Asso-

that some of the Turkish Football Premiere League’s top teams may have been involved in match rigging. The Super Lig, which is Turkey’s highest professional League for association football clubs was delayed for a month, from 7 August to 9 September, 2011, because of the scandal. The police suspect that 19 matches from last season have been fixed and a number of arrests have been made, including club bosses and top international players. Some of the most famous names in Turkish football were detained in relation with the case,

GRAPHIC | Shourav Yathindranath

ciation) have adopted a strictly intolerant attitude towards gambling on its games and have dictated a number of rules which the players and coaches have to abide by. In Britain, however, the authorities have a more lenient stance on gambling. The Football Association in Britain has recognized the fact that gambling is inevitable and only prohibits betting on a match by those directly involved in the game. The most recent scandal that has caught the public eye is in Turkish football. It has emerged

including Fenerbahçe Chairman Aziz Yıldırım, Fenerbahçe Deputy Chairman Şekip Mosturoğlu, Giresunspor Chairman Ömer Ülkü, former Diyarbakırspor Chairman Abdurrahman Yakut, Eskişehirspor coach Bülent Uygun and Adanaspor coach Levent Eriş, along with a number of football players and local journalists. News reports said 22 of the suspects had been interrogated by the prosecutors and 18 of them were referrred to court for arrest. UEFA announced that Fenerbahce will be replaced by Trab-

zonspor, the runners up the previous season, in the group stage of the Champions League after being withdrawn from the competition by the Turkish Football Federation due to the match fixing scandal. Commenting on the UEFA emergency panel decision, their general secretary, Gianni Infantino, said: “The panel considered that the Turkish Football Federation took the right decision to protect the game, fully in line with our zerotolerance policy against match-fixing. The Turkish Football Federation has shown with this decision that it takes its full responsibility in the fight against corruption.” The Turkish Football Federation said it would announce any measures against teams involved in the match-fixing scandal at the end of the season. Another contemporary match fixing scandal is that involving the Italian football club, Atlanta Bergamo in Italian Serie A, the top professional football League in Italy. In August 2011, the club was punished with a penalty of 6 points in the 2011-12 season. Atalanta’s captain Cristiano Doni was suspended for three-and-a-half years for his involvement. The police made 16 arrests as part of an investigation into an alleged betting and match-fixing ring, designed to influence matches in Serie B and lower divisions, with current and recently retired players believed to be among the ringleaders. Several well-known players are under investigation. The Italian Football Federation has promised to cooperate with the investigation. The Italian football federation’s general director Antonello Valentini said: “The federation will cooperate with the investigation and will defend the interests of the football image as well as correctness and transparency of the football bodies. This comes after the 2006 Italian football scandal (also known as Calciopoli) implicating league champions Juventus, and other major teams including Milan, Fiorentina, Lazio, and Reggina, which were accused of rigging games by choosing favourable referees.  Juventus were stripped of two 2005 and 2006 Serie A titles and relegated to Serie B, while Fiorentina, Milan, Lazio and Reggina were given points deductions . The police are now alleging that the Naples mafia -- known as the Camorra -- is tampering with

matches to increase its take in betting earnings. Investigators are looking at the books for 150 games over the last two seasons in Serie A, Serie B and the lower leagues to see if “anomalous” betting trends are connected to organized crime and money laundering. Match fixing incidents are hardly surprising, considering that gambling predates history. Players playing solely for the love of the sport are few and far-between.

WALL OF SHAME Sporting history is stamped with the sneaky marks of match fixers, and here are a few instances of their trail. In November 2009, German police arrested 17 people on suspicion of fixing at least 200 soccer matches in 9 countries. Among the suspected games were those from the top leagues of Austria, Bosnia, Croatia, Hungary, Slovenia, and Turkey, and games from the second highest leagues of Belgium, Germany, and Switzerland. The fourth Test of Pakistan’s summer 2010 cricket tour of England was alleged to have contained several incidents of spot fixing, involving members of the Pakistan team deliberately bowling no-balls at specific points in order to facilitate the potential defrauding of bookmakers. In April 2011, a U.S. federal grand jury in San Diego indicted a group of 10 individuals on charges of running a point shaving scheme affecting an as yet-undetermined number of college basketball games. In June 2011, trials started for people allegedly involved in fixing Finnish football matches. One team, Tampere United was indefinitely suspended from Finnish football for accepting payments from a person known for match-fixing. In July 2011, as part of a major match-fixing investigation by authorities in Turkey, nearly 60 people suspected to be involved with fixing games were detained by Istanbul Police Department Organized Crime Control Bureau and then arrested by the court.