I was at a new supermarket in a new shopping mall yesterday when I saw something new.
There were rows of handsets that look like mobile phone except there is a grip which is slotted into what looks like a charging station.
This new technology is supposed to be "The easy way to shop", as indicated on the signboard.
What you need to do is to get one of these handset and scan the items as you shop before making payment at the SCAN2GO checkout counters.
This cuts down the queue time at checkout counter as all your purchases are scanned in advance and you just need to make payment instead of doing all the scanning at the checkout counter.
As with everything new, there were many curious people eager to find out what it was all about and try the service.
A couple came and wanted to try it. They tried to remove the handset unsuccessfully before they saw a notice.
"Please register at the customer service counter to use this service."
As the couple walked away, the lady said to the man, "So troublesome still need to register."
They ended up taking a basket.
I wondered if there will be cases of people bagging their purchases without scanning like what's happening to those self-service check out counters.
A man had buffet lunch at a hotel in Bangkok.
He liked a fish dish so much that he wanted to go back there specifically for that item on his next trip.
So he sent a message to the hotel on their Facebook Page.
He asked for their menu so that he can make a reservation on the day where the item will be served.
The staff replied that they do not have a fixed menu as the spread will be rotated daily.
He then made known his request to the staff.
As the staff was unable to tell him exactly which day the fish dish will be served, she asked him when he plans to dine at the restaurant and she will arrange with the chef to prepare the dish specially for him.
He was impressed with the extra mile she went.
When he was in Bangkok, he visited the restaurant for his lunch.
While he was taking the food, a lady walked up to him.
"Mr Andrew, you ordered the fish dish?"
He answered, "Yes."
She said, "I will get the chef to prepare for you."
He noticed the item is not available at the spread and asked, "Is it included in the buffet?"
She replied, "Yes."
A few minutes later, a senior chef served the dish to him.
Unfortunately, the fish wasn't the kind he tasted previously.
The lady and other staff came by often to ask if everything was alright and small chats.
They asked if he wanted hot drinks and stopped by to ask if he would like to have another cup.
At the end of the meal, he gave a tip of 200 baht.
A guy and his sister were buying groceries at a supermarket.
He saw a lady in her late fifties standing at the fruits and vegetables section taking pieces and pieces of plastic bags.
She puts all the items in her basket into the plastic bags individually.
This packet of instant noodle into one plastic bag. Another packet of instant noodle into another. A box of English tea into another. Another box of tea again into another.
As she walked away, her hands were holding a bunch of plastic bags.
If she wanted to take the plastic bags, she could have just took them. Nobody is going to stop her from doing that. Why was she putting all her items into individual plastic bag? To make it looked like she didn't take a lot? To make herself feels better?
He wondered how the cashier will react when he or she needs to remove the plastic bags to scan the bar code of the items.
A man was with a colleague on the train on his way home to Bedok, a housing estate in the eastern part of Singapore.
As usual, there is an announcement of the train station name when the train arrives at a station and another announcement to warn people when doors are closing.
Although he was engaging in a conversation with his colleague, he was aware of when he needs to alight.
When the train approached Bedok station and he was getting ready to alight, he head the announcement, "Tanah Merah station. Passengers heading to Expo or Changi Airport, please cross over to the middle platform..."
He was shocked and for a split second thought he has overshot one station.
He then quickly look at the station signage to confirm that the station is correct and it was the announcement that was wrong.
He quickly alighted and saw a group of people with luggage looking confused.
There was a family with two kids and a young couple.
They had heard the wrong announcement and alighted one station before Tanah Merah station.
Someone advised them to take the next train to the next station.
When the train arrived, all of them tried to get on the crowded train.
Unfortunately, the doors closed without any warning and the young couple was separated. The man did not manage to get on the train.
The man went down the escalator and saw two persons turning back to go up the platform as they probably realized they had alighted at the wrong station.
This train line is one of the oldest and trains are still operated by drivers.
This is not the first time that the wrong announcements were made.
Is the announcement automated and can the driver hears the announcement inside his cabin?
I believe the driver can makes announcement as I've heard it before.
Why then he did not correct the wrong announcement?
A man walked into a mobile phone shop and asked the staff how much would his iPhone 8 Plus be worth if he sells it.
The staff told him, "$1,100 Singapore dollar."
He said, "Thanks" and walked out of the shop.
Thirty minutes later, the man came back to the shop and said, "All the other shops quoted me the same price. If you can give me a little bit higher than the rest, I will sell it to you immediately."
After taking a look at the unopened box, the staff offered $1,110.
The phone was sold.
A man was waiting for his mobile phone to be fixed by a staff at a shop.
Another man walked in and looked at the mobile phones for sale.
He asked the staff about the prices for two models.
The staff replied him before continuing with his work.
The man walked out of the shop.
The staff turned to the man waiting for his phone and asked, "Do you know why I did not bother to serve this customer?"
The man replied, "You can tell that he will not buy?"
The staff answered, "He is the relative of the owner of the mobile phone shop at the other side of the building."
I won the contest.
(There were no other contestant.)
I got bronze.
(There were only three in the competition.)
It's the school holiday.
Many students go the the library to prepare for their upcoming year end exams.
There are many tables for the public to use but there are only two tables reserved for research work purpose. A pass will be issued by the librarian upon registration in order to occupy a seat on the reserved table.
Some students registered under the pretext of doing research work so that they can occupy the seats to revise for their school work when the other public seats are all occupied.
Are they smart or are they selfish?
There is a news today about Youtube making the biggest change to its logo in history. (Click here for the story)
Can you recognize which is the old and new logo?
It seems that the reason that prompted the change is that the new logo allows for more flexibility in its design to works better across different devices, even on the tiniest screens. The brightened icon can be used as a logo itself.
Just yesterday, I was talking to two staff from the branding department of a big corporation.
The lady said their company just embarked on a rebranding exercise.
I commented that it must be a huge and costly project.
"Everything has to change. The letterhead, the namecards, the logo at all their outlets, brochures, name tag and everything else including their overseas offices to make sure the branding is consistent throughout the whole organization.
The company also shortened its company name to an abbreviation of the first alphabets of the name. Simplified Chinese is used in place of traditional Chinese for their chinese name.
When I expressed surprised as the logo still looks the same, the lady said, "The change is very subtle you will not notice it. Only we can tell."
A government official is giving a opening speech for a charity dinner.
He spoke about the government's plans and his previous involvement in charity work in another ministry.
The speaker did not refer to any script for his speech.
At the end of the speech, a man commented, "He's good. He did not refer to any script."
A lady seated at the same table saw many people fiddling with their mobile phones during the speech instead.
A owner of a new start up company signed up for a technology talk by a corporation.
As a bootstrap company, he signed up for a free email address instead of applying for a corporate email address to save cost.
He received a call from the organizer who requested for his corporate email address.
The organizer required a proper corporate email address to filter out those who do not qualify.
His registration was declined as he didn't have a corporate email address.
A man was attending a motivation talk by a speaker.
The speaker asked, "Why you can ride a horse but not a zebra?"
Someone shouted, "Zebra is for crossing."
The whole room of attendees broke into laughter.
The speaker then asked, "Why latex is white but wheel which is made of rubber is black?"
He went on to explain the reasons.
You cannot ride on a zebra because it is not domesticated. Wheels are black because a certain chemical is added to strengthen the wheel which turned it black.
The speaker then jokingly said, "Sounds smart right."
He then shared that he spends 30 minutes every day to watch something new to him.