Scorpio Man

Tiffany sent me this:

SCORPIO MAN: A man with a foggy clouds over him. He is sensitive and easily hurt and always feels lonely. He does not trust anyone but himself. Sounding so negative, but he has an amazingly charisma. He is a compassionate man . He absorbs other people sentimental feeling and pain. He is a good psychiatrist and he could understand complex and confused feeling. He has a hidden power that he could use it to make things happen and do things well. He does not like people who never try to help themselves before asking other people for favors. He is the type of guy who mostly achieved his goal in life. Once he sets his mind for something, he will put all his energy and efforts in it , whether or not it is a small matter or a big project. 
One of the most success man in all the Zodiac. If he is in love, you will get plenty of love from him, sometimes may be too much than you have asked for. He is serious about love and relationship and will not waste time with someone he does not love whether how pretty she is. He memorize everything well. You may say something that you already forgotten, but he will remember every words. He wants to be respected and admired and at the same time he does not like people to have power over him. When he falls in love, he really falls deep. A man in this Zodiac once in love, he will be sweeter than sugar. He does not like a plain and simple woman. A complex woman’s mind is his venture. Always be interesting and able to talk to him about every things in any subjects. He does not like a woman who sits around waiting for his call.

This is almost like reading a description of myself! It's scary.

He is sensitive and easily hurt and always feels lonely. He does not trust anyone but himself.
Sad but true. I always take things a little too personally, and read too much into things. That's why I'm trying learn to be as insensitive as possible. Getting hurt isn't awesome. Lonely? Yes... So far I've never found anyone who really understood me, but that's also because I hardly open up myself to anyone...

Once he sets his mind for something, he will put all his energy and efforts in it , whether or not it is a small matter or a big project. 
TLDR: perfectionist?

He memorize everything well. You may say something that you already forgotten, but he will remember every words.
I don't know if that's true, but that has happened many times... I remember people's names and faces and what they say but of course it's only one way... I usually recognize acquaintances but I'm sick of saying hi because they don't recognize/care about me... BUT. It is hard to judge since I won't focus on the things I forget anyway. So this is very subjective.

When he falls in love, he really falls deep.
That's why I'm scared.

A Hypothetical Treachery

So, as I was playing Skyrim, I came across the best tome ever. It was the best story I read in any of the tomes so far. The title is "A Hypothetical Treachery", and after reading it you would know why. I would like you to focus on the second part of the story, where Inzoliah and Malvasian do some intellectual exercises. It is the best part, and it highlights how typical mages act. The first part provides some background.

Source: Elder Scrolls V -- Skyrim; Wiki

Dramatis Personae
Malvasian: A High Elf battlemage
Inzoliah: A Dark Elf battlemage
Dolcettus: A Cyrodiil healer
Schiavas: An Argonian barbarian
A Ghost Some bandits Scene: Eldenwood

As the curtain rises, we see the misty labyrinthian landscape of the legendary Eldengrove of Valenwood. All around we hear wolves howling. A bloodied reptilian figure, SCHIAVAS, breaks through the branches of one of the trees and surveys the area.
SCHIAVAS: It's clear.
INZOLIAH, a beautiful Dark Elf mage, climbs down from the tree, helped by the barbarian. There is the sound of footsteps nearby. Schiavas readies his sword and Inzoliah prepares to cast a spell. Nothing comes out.
INZOLIAH: You're bleeding. You should have Dolcettus heal that for you.
SCHIAVAS: He's still drained from all the spells he had to cast down in the caves. I'm fine. If we get out of this and no one needs it more, I'll take the last potion of healing. Where's Malvasian?
MALVASIAN, a High Elf battlemage, and DOLCETTUS, a Cyrodiil healer, emerge from the tree, carrying a heavy chest between the two of them. They awkwardly try to get down from the tree, carrying their loot.
MALVASIAN: Here I am, though why I'm carrying the heavy load is beyond me. I always thought that the advantage of dungeon delving with a great barbarian was that he carried all the loot.
SCHIAVAS: If I carried that, my hands would be too full to fight. And tell me if I'm wrong, but not one of the three of you has enough magicka reserved to make it out of here alive. Not after you electrified and blasted all those homunculuses down below ground.
DOLCETTUS: Homunculi.
SCHIAVAS: Don't worry, I'm not going to do what you think I'm going to do.
INZOLIAH (innocently): What's that?
SCHIAVAS: Kill you all and take the Ebony Mail for myself. Admit it -- you thought I had that in mind.
DOLCETTUS: What a perfectly horrible thought. I never thought anyone, no matter how vile and degenerate --
INZOLIAH: Why not?
MALVASIAN: He needs porters, like he said. He can't carry the chest and fight off the inhabitants of Eldengrove both.
DOLCETTUS: By Stendarr, of all the mean, conniving, typically Argonian --
INZOLIAH: And why do you need me alive?
SCHIAVAS: I don't necessarily. Except that you're prettier than the other two, for a smoothskin that is. And if something comes after us, it might go for you first.
There is a noise in some bushes nearby.
SCHIAVAS: Go check that out.
INZOLIAH: It's probably a wolf. These woods are filled with them. You check it out.
SCHIAVAS: You have a choice, Inzoliah. Go and you might live. Stay here, and you definitely won't.
Inzoliah considers and then goes to the bushes.
SCHIAVAS (to Malvasian and Dolcettus): The king of Silvenar will pay good money for the Mail, and we can divide it more nicely between three than four.
INZOLIAH: You're so right.
Inzoliah suddenly levitates up to the top of the stage. A semi-transparent Ghost appears from the bush and rushes at the next person, who happens to be Schiavas. As the barbarian screams and thrashes at it with his sword, it levels blasts of whirling gas at him. He crumbles to the ground. It turns next to Dolcettus, the healer, and as the Ghost focuses its feasting chill on the hapless Dolcettus, Malvasian casts a ball of flame at it that causes it to vaporize into the misty air. Inzoliah floats back down to the ground as Malvasian examines the bodies of Dolcettus and Schiavas, who are both white-faced from the draining power of the ghost.
MALVASIAN: You had some magicka reserved after all.
INZOLIAH: So did you. Are they dead?
Malvasian takes the potion of healing from Dolcettus's pack.
MALVASIAN: Yes. Fortunately, the potion of healing wasn't broken when he fell. Well, I guess this leaves just the two of us to collect the reward.
INZOLIAH: We can't get out of this place without each other. Like it or not.
The two battlemages pick up the chest and begin plodding carefully through the undergrowth, pausing from time to time at the sound of footsteps or other eerie noises.
MALVASIAN: Let me make sure I understand. You have a little bit of magicka left, so you elected to use it to make Schiavas the ghost's target, forcing me to use most of my limited reserve to destroy the creature so I wouldn't be more powerful than you. That's first-rate thinking.
INZOLIAH: Thank you. It's only logical. Do you have enough power to cast any other spells?
MALVASIAN: Naturally. An experienced battlemage always knows a few minor but highly effective spells for just such a trial. I take it you, too, have a few tricks up your sleeve?
INZOLIAH: Of course, like you said.
They pause for a moment before continuing as a fearful wail pierces the air. When it dies away, they slowly trudge on.
INZOLIAH: Just as an intellectual exercise, I wonder what spell you would cast at me if we made it out of here without any more combat.
MALVASIAN: I hope you're not implying that I would dream of killing you so I would keep the treasure all to myself.
INZOLIAH: Of course not, nor would I do that to you. It is merely an intellectual exercise.
MALVASIAN: Well, in that case, purely as an intellectual exercise, I would probably cast a leech spell on you, to take away your life force and heal myself. After all, there are brigands on the road between here and Silvenar, and a wounded battlemage with a valuable artifact would make a tempting target. I'd hate to survive Eldengrove merely to die in the open.
INZOLIAH: That's a well-reasoned response. As for myself, again, not saying I would ever do this, but I think a simple, sudden electrical bolt would serve my purposes admirably. I agree about the danger of brigands, but don't forget, we also have a potion of healing. I could easily slay you and heal myself to full capacity.
MALVASIAN: Very true. It would end up a question then of whose spell was more effective at that instant. If our spells counteracted one another and I leeched your life energy only to be crippled by your lightning bolt, then we could both be killed. Or so near death that a mere potion of healing would scarcely help either one of us, let alone both. How ironic it would be if two scheming battlemages, not saying we are scheming but for the purpose of this intellectual exercise, were left on the brink of death, completely drained of magicka, with one healing potion to choose from. Who would get it then?
INZOLIAH: Logically, whoever drank it first, which in this case would be you since you're holding it. Now, what if one of us were injured, but not killed?
MALVASIAN: Logic would dictate that a scheming battlemage would take the potion, leaving the injured party to the mercy of the elements, I suppose.
INZOLIAH: That does seem most sensible. But suppose that the battlemages, while certainly scheming types, had a certain respect for one another. Perhaps in that case, the victorious one might, for instance, put the potion up a tree near his or her gravely wounded victim. Then when the wounded party had enough magicka replenished, he or she would be able to levitate to the tree branches and recover the potion. By that time, the victorious battlemage would have already collected the reward.
They pause for a moment at the sound of something in the bushes nearby. Carefully, they climb across the branches of a tree to bypass it.
MALVASIAN: I understand what you're saying, but it seems out of character for our hypothetic scheming battlemage to allow his or her victim to live.
INZOLIAH: Perhaps. But it's been my observation that most scheming battlemages enjoy the feeling of having bested someone in combat, and having that person alive to live with the humiliation.
MALVASIAN: These hypothetical scheming battlemages sound ... (excitedly) Daylight! Do you see it?
The two scurry across the branch dropping behind a bush, so we can no longer see them. We can, however, see the shimmering halo of sunlight.
MALVASIAN (behind the tall bush): We made it.
INZOLIAH (likewise, behind the tall bush): Indeed.
There is a sudden explosion of electrical energy and a wild howling aura of red light, and then silence. After a few moment's pause, we hear someone climbing up the tree. It is Malvasian, putting the potion high up in the bough. He chuckles as he climbs back down and the curtain drops.
Epilogue. The curtain rises on a road to Silvenar. A gang of bandits have surrounded Malvasian, who is propped up on his staff, barely able to stand. They pull his chest away from him with ease.
BANDIT #1: What have we got here? Don't you know it ain't safe to be out on the road, all sick like you are? Why don't we help you with your load?
MALVASIAN (weakly): Please ... Let me be ...
BANDIT #2: Go on, spellcaster, fight us for it!
MALVASIAN: I can't ... too weak ...
Suddenly, Inzoliah flies in, casting lightning bolts from her fingers at the bandits, who quickly scramble away. She lands on the ground and picks up the chest. Malvasian collapses, dying.
MALVASIAN: Hypothetically, what if ... a battlemage cast a spell on another which didn't harm him at once, but ... drained his life force and his magicka, bit by bit, so he wouldn't know at the time, but ... feel confident enough to leave the potion of healing behind?
INZOLIAH: A most treacherous battlemage she'd be.
MALVASIAN: And ... hypothetically ... would she be likely to help her fallen foe ... so that she could enjoy the humiliation of him continuing ... to live?
INZOLIAH: From my experience, hypothetically, no. She doesn't sound like a fool.
As Inzoliah lugs the chest off toward Silvenar, and Malvasian expires on the stage, we drop the curtain.

Relating Algorithms Solving Techniques to Real Life

Indeed, Algorithms is the most thought provoking class I have taken so far. Other than the obvious application in computer programs, we can apply algorithm techniques to our personal lives.

1. Divide and Conquer
Wonder how to get started when your problem is too big? No problemo. Divide your problem into smaller subproblems, solve them, combine the solutions and you'll have conquered the problem. This is the way to get rid of procrastination. If the problem is too big, you're hesitant to get started. So just solve a small part of the problem, first! As the Chinese proverb goes, "water can pierce through rock". No matter how big the problem is, given enough time and patience, you can solve all of the smaller problems, and hence, the big problem itself.

2. Dynamic Programming
To put it simply, in dynamic programming, you keep the results of your smaller problems, because your big problem might have many identical subproblems. In other words, once you have done something important, do not discard it, for it may be useful. E.g. every module in NUS requires some foundation. The trend is to forget the modules you studied when a next semester arrives, but that is a fallacy. Don't just forget everything. Your brain is huge enough to handle it. For example, my current module LSM3231 Protein Structure and Function requires a good foundation of basic biochemistry, and I regret that I did not study hard enough for biochemistry before.

3. Greedy Algorithms
Get your priorities right. In greedy algorithms, you always take the best choice available at the moment. I think this is quite self-explanatory, no?

4. NP-Hard Problems
Some problems are just impossible to solve efficiently.Don't just blindly delve into solving a problem; know when to stop.

Here's a nice comic to sum up this post:

This, my friend, is an example of a NP-Complete problem. You don't need to know what is NP-Complete to understand the comic. Just know that it's is damn hard to find exactly $15.05 worth of appetizers (Note: it may be easy enough for a small list, but take a big list...). If you can show that this problem can be solved quickly (i.e. P=NP), it means all of the NP-Complete problems can be solved quickly too. Also, you'll get a million dollars to boot (Millennium Prize Problems). By the way, many people have tried to prove P=NP. Here is an example of a crazy date who did that.

Lazy Generation

I always want to facepalm myself when people take lifts for 2 storeys or less. Today, I witnessed someone taking the lift in SoC from level 1 to level 2. Actually, it happens quite regularly.

Sometimes, my friends really piss me off. I can understand if it's like 4 storeys or so, but 2 storeys, and going down the stairs? Please... Lifts are a waste of time and energy for that. But I think I will never understand, because I try to take the stairs whenever possible (if taking the lift isn't significantly faster). For example, when I go home, I always take 6 storeys of stairs, because it's just faster than taking the lift. I love a good work out, and I believe that exercise is good for you. But I think people are too used to taking the lazy way out and they get so used to it, they can't take even a little bit of work out. It's all a vicious cycle in the end.

Today, something my friend said really puzzled me. She said she didn't want to walk up two storeys of stairs right before the exam because it will make her forget about things. I hope she meant it as a joke because I really don't understand it. Firstly, moderate amounts of exercise doesn't make you forget things. In fact it helps you remember better. As a bio student, she should know that the brain requires oxygen, and exercise, of course, improves circulation of blood and therefore supply of oxygen to the brain. Secondly, exercise also makes you feel good due to endorphins, which makes you feel good and raises your morale. Of course, extreme exercise will probably make you forget things! But, two storeys of stairs? Come on... I was quite peeved because we were gonna be late for the exam. On hindsight, I should have just taken the stairs! God. In the end, I was late for the exam by 1 or 2 minutes. That may be little, but every minute counts to me! Gosh, seriously. Thank god I was able to finish the exam in time. F**king hell. It was an important exam to me, because Life Science exams really suck and I really need to squeeze as many marks as possible.

A Few Short Anime Reviews for Oct 2011 (Fall Season)

I picked up on three series that seemed interesting.
Hunter X Hunter, Guilty Crown, and Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon.

1st of all, Hunter X Hunter was recommended by my friends. Also, it is definitely a must-watch for all shounen fans. No kidding. The characters are annoying but they are also awesome at the same time. I'm tempted to watch the old series, but I shall just stick to the new one. Btw, even though I don't like metal, the ending theme is f**king awesome.

2nd, Guilty Crown. I love sci-fi shows. But that is not the reason you must watch this show. The reason is Inori.

Oh my angel!!!!

 You want to give it to me? <3

Damn you, lucky Shu.

It's the overused "transfer student" crap.

Whose hand is that?


What? Pretty girl is living with me? I so did not expect that.

Good, because that's for MY EYES only.

I'll give you anything!!!!!


Are you gonna shoot my friend?!

Come on!

INORI!!!!! Help me!

Did I mention how awesome the ending is? And it seems to change with every episode! PLUS IT'S ***KING SUPERCELL! And of course we end with awesome Inori art.

I hope the tribute to Inori did not scare you away (Well you're still reading, right?). Anyways, let's continue.
3rd, Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon. Yep, it is another sci-fi show. I am a sucker for sci-fi settings in anime, regardless of whether it sucks or not. First thing to note: If you love boobs, watch this anime. The girls have ridiculously big boobs. (And also ridiculously small boobs. Talk about no boobs at all, literally. One of them got em... removed)

That aside, this anime is just plain confusing. The writers throw so many characters and so much background information on you in the first few episodes, it ain't even funny. I've lost track of the different places the anime moved to. And most of all, the main hero is gonna confess to a girl who died 10 years ago. Also, the world is gonna end. What?!

Regardless, I think I've reached the hook point at about the 4th episode. There is just a mystery so mysterious that it begs me to watch the rest of the series.. Plus, boobs. Plus, sci-fi. Plus, cool character designs. Plus, the main hero's face makes me want to punch him. Ijou.

Mind over Matter

I think I'm too anal about language use sometimes. I also think I'm too much of a busybody. For example, when people say that it's "too hard for me" or things like that, I get a little pissed off. I know it's just a figure of speech, but I can't help but feel that it will encourage a defeatist attitude. I mean, language is kind of inseparable from our thinking. I would rather "too hard for me" be reframed into "I have not tried to understand it yet" or "I need more effort to understand it". "Oh come on, it's just a little thing", you say. I agree that it's a little thing but day by day it adds up and the scary thing is, you don't even know it. If you keep telling yourself "it's too hard for me" for 365 days every year, it's like trying to row against the current. Well, that is what I think anyway. It may not be correct, and I probably nitpick too much. But still...

Anyways, I realised morale is super important as well. As evidenced by our IFG volleyball games. Our morale was up the whole time and nothing could put us down. So here are some inspiring proverbs that I chanced upon today.

Failure is not falling down but refusing to get up.” - Chinese Proverb

I chanced upon this while I was watching Parks and Recreation. Well, I think this is quite a strong version of the proverb. "Refusing" is a strong word, methinks.

The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth. -Chinese Proverb

I think this quote is very very awesome. Yes, it is just another version of "appreciate what you have". But it is put across very beautifully. Walking on the Earth... We take it so much for granted.