My Interview with "Lianhe Zaobao"

Below is a English translation of my interview with Singapore’s Chinese Daily Newspaper “Lianhe Zaobao” published on 11 July 2011. Click on the thumbnail below for the original scanned version.

Leaving computing for concert production

In 2007, having just graduated from the School of Computing, Nipuna Perera entered an IT company.  Recalling his first job four years ago, a humourous and cheerful Perera shakes his head saying: “Those were the three longest months of my life.”

He thought of resigning every day, but where could he go? “At that time, I felt there were only those few choices – if it is not marketing, it is banking.”

Hailing from Sri Lanka, 28-year-old Perera’s father is a banker and his mother a financial accountant. In secondary school, he studied mathematics, accountings, finance and computing, studying e-commerce computing (in NUS) in 2003. Due to his love for rock music, Perera volunteered at the NUS Centre For the Arts (CFA , in short), helping to organise student art activities/events. Formed in 1993, CFA’s purpose is to raise the cultural vibrancy on campus, and manage many student arts groups. He says: “Although it was a lot of fun, I saw this only as an interest and never thought this could ever be a job.”

Recalling his work at the IT company after his graduation, Perera said: “During that time, I was constantly frustrated, yet I didn’t know what suited me. One day, I returned to NUS for dinner and, while queuing, unexpectedly bumped into the CFA staff member who was in charge of my volunteer group. Hearing my situation, this staff suggested I apply for his job from which he was leaving.  At that time I thought, why not?”

Although it seemed late in hindsight, it was actually happened quickly. Despite a lack of relevant experience, having to start at the bottom, plus a lower salary than his IT job at the time, Perera was past caring about these. Returning home, he sent in the relevant materials, made it through the interview and entered CFA, continuing to stay on for three whole years, leaving last September.   

Compared to the three long months at his IT job, these three years seemed to pass in a flash. This February, Perera launched his artist management company “The Fallez”, aimed at finding and promoting local music talents in Singapore. Despite having left CFA, Perera still reminiscences fondly about it: “I was very happy during those three years. I got to helped out at the ExxonMobil Campus Concerts, NUS Arts Festival, and the ChildAid concert. My colleagues at CFA taught me a lot about management and I met many who shared my passions and values. To me, these experiences made up for the differences in my background. I am grateful to CFA, and especially that day when I decided to have dinner at NUS and meeting up with my senior there.”

Doing what he loves

Seeing their son’s happiness in his work, Perera’s parents did not oppose the change in his career at all. He said: “My family and relatives are mainly doctors, lawyers and engineers. That year, I was the first to go into computing, and now I am again the first to venture into the arts. In Sri Lanka, many parents expect their children to take on traditional careers. It is the same for virtually all of my friends. I am grateful to my parents for this freedom. I also want to prove to them, that besides being happy at this job, I will also strive to make it sustainable.

A friend of Perera’s who went into the IT line three years ago would now be earning two to three times what he is earning now. However, Perera feels that to do a job that one loves is invaluable. His namecard carries the symbol of a fallen angel.  He said: “The “Z” in “Fallez” is actually a fallen “N”, and a link to my name. This symbol is designed by a Malaysian friend of mine. She draws well, but is actually a dentist!”

Perera pointed out that among the many in life who are searching for their passions and interests, he is lucky to find the point which balances it all for him. What is his aim next? A PR since 2007, Perera says, “If you asked me this question five years before, I would not have been able to answer you. Now I can tell you my dream. I want to become a well known producer, and I am now working towards that.”

Unusual occupation in Singapore

when we talk about unusual occupation, many people will be thinking of the “common” unusual occupation like a professional poker player or maybe a sneaker customiser.But what i will be sharing today will be a occupation so out of this world that not many people will even think it is even possible to be able to make a living out of it. the occupation is being a mermaid.

clara nico neo , a 21 years old national university student is Singapore’s first mermaid performer. going by the name mermaid syrena , she has planned birthdays parties for kids that like mermaids a lot.It all started when clara brought a swimmable fin tail online when she ws searching for a Halloween costume and since then mermaid syrena has graced coperate events and children parties, charging for about 500 an hour.she was featured in  Yahoo! SG in 2013, Featured in Shin Min Daily in 2013, Featured in Lianhe Zao Bao in 2013, Featured in Her World SG in 2014, Featured in Stomp Straits Times in 2014 and many more.

honestly when i first saw that a girl was able to make a living out of hobby that was being a mermaid , i suddenly feel that the world has endless possibility and one day i will be able to make a living out of my hobby.But all my hope was lost after about 10 seconds. lets face it, my hobby is sleeping and i don’t see how i was able to make a living just by sleeping. i just feel that she is very lucky to be able to make her hobby into a job. many famous and successful people have said that if your job is your hobby, you will never have a work a day in your life.and those are the people that will be able to work for long hours without complains about how hard their jobs are as they enjoy doing them. for example people that make youtube contents are always saying that they don;t see youtube as a job as they have too much fun while doing it. That is why they are able to make many videos a day.some people might think that making videos are easy. yes making videos are easy but editing them takes a lot of time and effort and uploading them is also very time consuming. in order to make 2 videos a day they will have to spend at least 20 hours of editing and uploading time. which means they are literally working 20 hours a day everyday all year round. i just wished that i will be able to find a job that is my hobby so that i would not have to ever work in my life again.
[1506.07585] Excitation, detection, and electrostatic manipulation of terahertz-frequency range plasmons in a two-dimensional electron system

[ Authors ]
Jingbo Wu, Alexander S. Mayorov, Christopher D. Wood, Divyang Mistry, Lianhe Li, Wilson Muchenje, Mark C. Rosamond, Li Chen, Edmund H. Linfield, A. Giles Davies, John E. Cunningham
[ Abstract ]
Terahertz time domain spectroscopy employing free-space radiation has frequently been used to probe the elementary excitations of low-dimensional systems. The diffraction limit blocks its use for the in-plane study of individual laterally defined nanostructures, however. Here, we demonstrate a planar terahertz-frequency plasmonic circuit in which photoconductive material is monolithically integrated with a two-dimensional electron system. Plasmons with a broad spectral range (up to ~400 GHz) are excited by injecting picosecond-duration pulses, generated and detected by a photoconductive semiconductor, into a high mobility two-dimensional electron system. Using voltage modulation of a Schottky gate overlying the two-dimensional electron system, we form a tuneable plasmonic cavity, and observe electrostatic manipulation of the plasmon resonances. Our technique offers a direct route to access the picosecond dynamics of confined transport in a broad range of lateral nanostructures.

Coffeeshop at Bt Batok sold for $31m

Coffeeshop at Bt Batok sold for $31m

A COFFEE shop in Bukit Batok has reportedly changed hands for $31 million, setting a record for a Housing Board coffee shop.

The sale of Yong Xing Coffee Shop at Block 155, Bukit Batok Street 11 was finalised last month, according to Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao.

Tenants told The Straits Times they felt the effects of the big money deal when their rental agreements with the new landlord…

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200-5000L Liquid Detergent Mixing Tank &blending mixer

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Twitter’s new office in Singapore is featured in today’s Lianhe Zaobao newspaper. I like the floor tiles. Vintage, crisp and Singapore. Feels like home as these were the tiles heavily used in Singapore and Malaysia from 1920s-1980s.