Thursday, June 30, 2016


This is a probably useless informative post about Fusionopolis, where I work. It's triggered by a lady who asked me for directions yesterday --- an occurrence I am usually terrified of, because I have terrible sense of direction and often end up having to apologetically tell the person I cannot help.

Anyway, the lady asked where "Fusionopolis 3" was. On my confusion (there are only "Fusionopolis One" and "Fusionopolis Two", no "Fusionopolis Three"), she clarified that she was looking for "3 Fusionopolis Way". We were then at the lobby of my office building, at 1 Fusionopolis Way (a.k.a. Fusionopolis One). I had no idea which building was number 3, but the address I could look up on my Street Directory mobile app... and it turned out to be Symbiosis, which is just another tower in the same building.


After turning around a little (as I said, terrible sense of direction) I was then able to point her to the tower entrance.

A colleague I told about this was equally puzzled that the towers had different addresses. The buildings and towers around here (and perhaps in most business parks?) are mostly referred to by name, and block numbers are not prominently displayed (if at all; I haven't noticed any) nor remembered by the population. So even though having the company name and street address is sufficient to locate it, it may not be easy without noting the building/tower name. Add to it the similar road names, Fusionopolis Way/Place/Link/... although this feature is of course not unique across Singapore (so-and-so Street/Road/Drive/Ave...).

To further complicate things, the name "Fusionopolis" is somewhat overloaded. It is supposed to be the name of a whole complex, but this has been built in phases, and people who work here have been calling the first completed three-towered building just "Fusionopolis". The building itself has the name "Fusionopolis" on the main entrance, so. =P Its proper name is now "Fusionopolis One", with a huge signboard in front of the building to remove all doubts on the issue. The last completed (also three-towered) building next to it is given a similar signboard proclaiming it "Fusionopolis Two". (Trivia: It was actually phase 2A in the planning, but as it houses scientific labs with very specific requirements, its development was delayed so much that all the remaining phases were completed before it.)

Here is an image from a flyer by JTC, the "master planner and developer" of one-north, showing the whole Fusionopolis complex. The flyer was distributed as promotional material back when the complex wasn't fully completed yet, so not all names were finalized.

Just for fun, I looked up the addresses of all buildings in the complex. There is quite a variation!

Fusionopolis One
(Phase 1)
Connexis North
Connexis South
1 Fusionopolis Way, S(138632)
Symbiosis 3 Fusionopolis Way, S(138633)
Fusionopolis Two
(Phase 2A)
Innovis 2 Fusionopolis Way, S(138634)
Kinesis 4 Fusionopolis Way, S(138635)
Synthesis 6 Fusionopolis Way, S(138636)
Phase 2B Solaris 1 Fusionopolis Walk, S(138628)
Phase 3Nexus 1 & 3 Fusionopolis Link, S(138542-3)
Phase 4Sandcrawler 1 Fusionopolis View, S(138577)
Phase 5Galaxis 1 & 3 Fusionopolis Place, S(138522-3)
Pixel 10 Central Exchange Green, S(138649)
one-north Residences 7 & 9 one-north Gateway, S(138642-3)

Here is a map I adapted from OneMap, showing all the small roads that lead to the addressing of buildings (excluding the residential complex). Why the jumps in block numbers? I don't know.

So... if you ever need to find a particular office in Fusionopolis, maybe this would be helpful! XD In the early days, the name was really unfamiliar to a lot of people, including taxi drivers. And some kept saying "Fusion-polis" instead. Now that it's been around for a while (and that PM Lee has been here twice, for televised grand openings), hope there is no more such problem.

Friday, September 04, 2015


Leaf by leaf it sheds itself bare,
this lanky tree on the roadside,

standing under a harsh sun
on soil gravelly and dry.

Unlike the big lads across the road
it has no air of longevity:

its peeling bark is paper-thin
and its branches mere twigs.

Still it seems to placidly survive,
the scant leaves clinging;

its stick of a trunk stays well upright,
rising above the weeds.

Through long days of heat and dust
and intermittent rain

it somehow manages to keep on sprouting
just enough green.

Standing in the occasional breeze
under a sky never short of light,

leaf by leaf it regrows its crown,
this lanky tree on the roadside.


The above is the poem I wrote for and submitted to NLB Read!Fest 2015 Be A Poetry on Platforms Star Poet contest. I got a commemorative EZ-Link card for the participation. :)

While searching for a theme to write on, I remembered Carpark 15, sort of my "comfort reading" that evokes the soothing memory of a pleasant, breezy late-afternoon scenery. I wanted to write something with a similar feel for the contest, hence the "tree" theme and the similar structure.

I'm afraid this piece turned out not as pleasantly evocative as Carpark 15... Then again, I suspect the pleasant imagery I associated with Carpark 15 is really just my personal nostalgia and not much what the words do. Ah well. ^_^;

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

SGD Fixed Deposit: June Promo

While visiting the websites of a few local banks, I noticed that most of them are having 12-month Fixed Deposit promotions. Apparently there is a widespread need for banks to raise some cash at this time? I'm not financially savvy enough to analyze this, but I do like to keep a tab on FD rates and know my options for the in-between of savings and investment, so I went around and checked out all offerings within my radar.

After considerations, I'm not taking any of them at the moment, but since I have collected the info, I'll just dump it here. This might be useful if you just need to park some money for a short time without risk (other than the bank defaulting, of course). Outside this sort of promotions, I haven't seen good FD rates for a while. I've included the rates of equivalent products from banks that are not having a promotion, so you can compare.

Most of the promotions require a big lump sum, more than what I'm willing to lock into an FD. Where options are available, I have recorded the one more acceptable in my opinion, and noted the alternatives for you to check out if interested. As with all things, do read the terms and conditions including all the fine prints before committing.

Bank Interest p.a. Minimum Placement Tenor Promotion Period Remarks
StanChart 1.50% S$ 25,000 12-month 1--30 Jun 2015
HSBC 1.50% S$ 30,000 11-month 2--30 Jun 2015 Higher for Premier customers
ANZ 1.50% S$ 150,000 11-month 1 May--30 Jun 2015
UOB 1.45% S$ 20,000 13-month 2--30 Jun 2015
(Step Up)
1.40% (average) S$ 10,000 12-month Not stated Option: 18-month at 1.66% average
OCBC 1.40% S$ 20,000 12-month Not stated
Citibank 1.30% S$ 50,000 9-month 1 Apr--30 Jun 2015
CIMB 1.20% S$ 1,000 12-month 1 Jun--31 Dec 2015 Options for higher rate with larger placement
Maybank (iLOVE) 1.10% S$ 25,000 12-month ?--30 Jun 2015 Options for higher rate with longer tenor
ICICI 0.75% S$ 5,000 12-month No promotion Options for higher rate with longer tenor
SBI 0.70% S$ 1,000 12-month No promotion Options for higher rate with longer tenor
DBS / POSB 0.25% S$ 1,000 12-month No promotion Options for higher rate with longer tenor

Monday, May 25, 2015

EZ Replace

After more than a year of unplanned hiatus (^_^;) I thought this might be something useful to write about --- how to neatly migrate EZ-Link-related facilities when switching cards. Applicable to Singapore residents only.

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the companies whose products are mentioned here. I am just an opportunistic user in constant lookout for extra benefits (i.e., a stereotypical Singaporean).

Background and Overview

My POSB Everyday credit card, which doubles as my EZ-Link card, expired recently. In my understanding, the EZ-Link purse should still be usable after the credit card expiry (it has a different expiry date), but it was better for convenience and security to simply switch all usage to the replacement card (hereafter called "new card") and destroy the expired card ("old card").

The switch, however, involves changes to a few EZ-Link-related functions I have on the card. I've had to chart those things to figure out an optimal order of execution, so I decide to document the steps. After all, the new credit card will expire in 5 years and this will become relevant to me again, although some functions might not survive until then.

The following is structured by functionality, while action items are numbered globally in the order of execution. Hence, there will be numbering jumps within a section. The sequencing is not really strict; some steps can be done in a different order or in parallel. The general direction is towards preparing the new card for use and retiring the old card. Actual dependencies are noted in explanations and illustrated in the summary at the end of this post.

EZ-Link Activate

I use this for transaction tracking / statistics and the free card insurance. I actually registered hoping to check card values off-site*, but that wasn't its intended function, as transactions are not immediately reflected. There are supposedly merchant offers and discounts but I've seen none of them so far.
* The tool for that is EZ-Online, but you'll need your own card reader.

(1) Add the new card to the Activate account

This step is not critical but it is the easiest to do, and it ensures all transactions continue to be tracked. Up to 3 cards can be registered in one account, so it is not necessary to remove the old card at the same time.

(10) Remove the old card from the Activate account

Statistics are up to past 3 months only, so Activate will have nothing useful on the old card when it has been retired for 3 months. It is not really necessary to remove until you need the slot to register another card, but it's a good housekeeping practice, I suppose. One less string of digits to compare in the event you forget which card is which.

EZ-Reload (Auto Top-Up)

I use the auto top-up facility charged to POSB Everyday credit card, because the current rebate for EZ-Reload on that card (2% --- $1 for each $50 top-up) outweighs the top-up fee (25c). The fee itself has been waived for some time now, "until further notice".

At the moment there are cards with higher rebate rate, but I don't want to get one more card just for this, when I can use Everyday for other payments with pretty good rebates too.

To clarify, it is not necessary to use the credit card itself as the EZ-Link card in your travels. Auto top-up of any EZ-Link card will earn the rebate when charged to the credit card. I use the same card just to keep my wallet slim.

(2) Apply for EZ-Reload on the new card

The credit card number (which identifies the credit account) remains the same upon replacement, but the physical card will be embedded with a different CEPAS Card Application Number (CAN), which identifies the EZ-Link purse. It is the purse that EZ-Reload is linked to, so the new CAN needs to be registered for EZ-Reload.

Clearly, the registration should specify the new credit card to charge to. The difference is only in the card expiry date, as no other information is requested. In fact, while the old card was still linked to EZ-Reload, the EZ-Reload system noticed the approaching expiry date and sent me a request to update the credit card information.

As specified, wait for confirmation within 5 working days after registration, before the EZ-Reload facility can be activated.

(3) Activate EZ-Reload on the new card @ GTM

Follow the instruction in the confirmation e-mail to activate EZ-Reload at a General Ticketing Machine (GTM) located at MRT stations.

If you do not plan to use the card for travel before this step (which is my assumption here), there is no need to manually top it up. The EZ-Reload facility will kick off on the first usage, when the EZ-Link purse contains exactly zero value.

(7) Terminate EZ-Reload on the old card @ TransitLink Ticket Office

According to TransitLink staff, the remaining value in the old card's EZ-Link purse cannot be refunded if the EZ-Reload facility is active. (As a refund will zero the purse, I suppose it will confuse the auto top-up system?) Go to a TransitLink Ticket Office to request termination of the facility. Cash refund can be requested (also at a Ticket Office) after 6 working days.

Travel Smart Rewards (TSR)

I think of this as some sort of rebate scheme for MRT travels. This MoneySmart article is a good tutorial on this. TSR's official FAQ with the advanced details is accessible only from within an account, which means one has to create an account first.

(4) Claim TSR winnings that are marked for crediting to the old card, if any @ AVM

If there is any winning with the status "Will pay to travel card xxxx" (where xxxx is the CAN of the old card), bring the old card to an Add Value Machine (AVM) to claim it*. We generally want the amount to already be in the EZ-Link purse for refund at one go, in a later step.
* The claim function is under "INSINC Rewards" from the AVM main menu, INSINC being the former name of TSR, apparently. I had some confusion in my first claim attempt (as a late entree to this game), so I thought I'd mention it here.

Winnings with "Pending" status will remain in the TSR account, so not to worry. After the active card is replaced (in the next step), future crediting will be to the new card.

(5) Register the new card in the TSR account

Right before starting to use the new card, register the CAN of the new card at the Settings page ("Request a new card number"). While it takes time to verify the new card, travels made on the card will be counted from the point of request, so start using the new card on the first weekday after the switch (since weekend travels do not earn points anyway).

Do not cancel the old card in the account (the button for that is appropriately in warning red). If it is cancelled, travels on that card that have occurred but not yet reflected (it takes several days) will not earn points. The old card will automatically be removed when the new card has been verified.

As far as I can infer, there is no harm bumping out the old card (in step 5) while it still has unclaimed winnings (before step 4); the winnings will remain there waiting to be claimed, as long as you retain the physical card to do that. But I prefer to make a clean break and do them in this order.

Any Other Business

(6) Put the new card to actual use

Test the new card for travelling and all other things you use it for, to make sure everything works as before.

(8) Get a cash refund of the remaining value in the old card @ TransitLink Ticket Office

About 6 working days after terminating the EZ-Reload facility, go to a TransitLink Ticket Office to request a cash refund of the remaining value in the old card's EZ-Link purse. In my experience, the staff asked to see my new card before she proceeded, I'm not sure why.

I read from DBS Live Fresh card FAQ that there is an option for "deferred refund" to the credit card tied to the EZ-Reload facility, instead of cash refund, but for some reason it wasn't applicable to my case. The TransitLink staff strictly told me to terminate the EZ-Reload facility first, and get a cash refund 6 working days afterwards.

The same FAQ also mentions that the TransitLink staff will destroy the old card after refund, but in my case, the staff returned the card to me. To be very safe, I would still suggest doing this after you are sure you do not need the old card anymore.

(9) Destroy the old card

As banks always advise, cut up the old card when you have no more use for it. Here's a tip on properly cutting up and disposing of old credit cards.


Thursday, March 13, 2014


With moving out in mind, since some time before Chinese New Year I've been (not spring cleaning, but) spring clearing. As in spending the spring (well, the Sundays up to now) clearing out not-really-needed stuff. Which I've got a lot of. Ha.

So I've been looking up local recycling channels for various materials, especially those that cannot fit into the neighbourhood recycling bins* and those that I think could be better channeled somewhere else. Here's sharing a few channels that I think are useful, as a quick guide; you can definitely find more via Google.

Save That Pen
[Reuse/Recycle] If you've somehow accumulated from conferences / exhibitions more free pens than you can use, or maybe you / your kids have outgrown those color marker pens, this program will help you get them reused, or failing that, pass them on to the recycling bin for you.

StarHub e-Waste Recycling
[Recycle] For electronics. I'm not sure how updated the list of collection points is, but at least the bin at StarHub Customer Service @ Plaza Singapura should still be around for some time, I believe.

Salvation Army
[Reuse] Stuff that are still usable can go here.

Tzu Chi Community Recycling Points
[Recycle] This seems to serve the same purpose as the paper/plastic/metal/glass/other recycling bins, but there are volunteers manning the collection points if you need human intervention to maybe clarify your categorization doubts or the like. I also hope they have a more discerning sorting process, for cases where the stuff can go to a better channel.

* By the way, if you need to locate these bins, there's a handy app on OneMap. Find "Themes" on the top bar, choose "Environment" > "Recycling Bins".

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


I think of the word reliable (100).
I think of the word reliant (100:0).

I think of the word division (50:50).
I think of the word collaboration (x:y, x+y=100, x>0, y>0).

Then I think of how my hundred does not equal your hundred.
I think of how one's hundred makes up x < 100.

Then I think

Fifty percent from you and fifty percent from me
is contribution.

But to do this together
means a hundred percent of you and a hundred percent of me.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Benefit of the Doubt

I want to be understanding
But all I understand are my own assumptions
Because I don't know how to ask the questions
Because I don't know if I should ask at all.

I can't say I don't want to do this alone
While I still believe in doing it my way
I can't say I want to rely on you
While I don't trust enough to let go.

I want to give you the benefit of the doubt
But doubt is somehow the operative word here
Not just of you but of me
Because I can't figure how else things should be
Because I can't figure what the question really is.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Tech Trans

So, today's the day I finally left WinXP behind. The free Win7 upgrade (pushed into a partition) didn't make me; hearing about the end of support for XP didn't make me; but now we're developing some Windows library and I figure it's pretty foolish to keep coding and testing on XP, which until today was what my main development PC ran on.

Come to think of it, when XP first came out, I also stuck to Win2K for quite some time. When I first upgraded to XP, I still set the look to Classic. All those square edges looked much neater to me. =D Now, though, they just look old-fashioned. (Or maybe it's the colour?) Which goes to show it was all inertia...

Anyway, I just spent the last few hours installing and configuring stuff on the Win7 partition. It wasn't so daunting as I've installed a number of programs since the actual OS upgrade a long time ago, and some of the other programs can still be run from the XP drive. Migrating Outlook used to be what I hated most about changing systems at school or work, but it's quite easy now that we use Exchange; almost everything stays at the server.

Another recent abandonment, an unwilling one, was iGoogle. This is a greater loss! Now nothing is forcing glimpses of daily news and trivia on me. I checked out a few recommended replacements, but I wasn't motivated enough to create a new account for any of them*. I resorted to bookmarking Google News and Chrome Apps, but then I rarely remember to click on them. -_-0

* It was kind of a wake-up call too, of how much of my online life was hinging on Google and its convenient synchronize feature. Dangerous!

Ah, the nature of technology. Moving on...

[Edit:] I forgot to update that I have since managed to get my paws on The Long War. NLB, you're awesome. (我們永遠支持你!)

[Edit II:] The Long War turned out a rather tedious reading for me, though. =( I ended up not finishing it.