Tuesday, 29 March 2011


Semalam diserang gastrik yang teruk. Mild sakit terasa sewaktu paginya. Mild juga di waktu tengahari. Boleh lahap breakfast dan lunch dengan bahagianya. Petang pula dijamu burger oleh encik suami. Alhamdulillah, berselera sekali walaupun perut rasa pedih yang teramat. Bila waktu malam, makan sudah tidak berselera. Tidak mampu berdiri tegak, meringkuk je kerjanya. Tak tahan, pergi Tesco (sebaik 24hours), cari ubat, teguk, tengok tv, tidur. Bangun siangnya, alhamdulillah, sudah sihat. Tak mahu gastrik lagi.

Teguk 3 sudu besar

Nak kata tak makan..makan. Nak kata terlupa makan..takde. Nak kata stress..mungkin. Nak kata tersilap makan..mungkin, makan benda berasid sewaktu awal pagi, perut masih kosong.

p/s: tak mahu peristiwa pahit berulang lagi

Monday, 28 March 2011

Sedikit motivasi #3

I find these tips are very useful, written by Matt Schonlau from the website:


  • Begin with the end in mind
    I found it always helpful to know I what my overall goal was. During my PH.D. I aimed to finish in my Ph.D. in 3 years. I didn't make that in the end - it took 4 years - but that isn't important. The important thing is that I knew in order to make 3 years I had to do a certain course load in the first and second term , I had to take the comprehensive exam the first time it was offered, I had a rough idea of how much time I had to write the dissertation. There are road blocks along the way and things turn out different than you expect. But if you know your overall goal obstacles won't through you off the course, you are just taking a detour.
  • You have no obligation to write an important or even useful thesis
    Sometimes students set out to write this all-encompassing break-through thesis and then fail because they try to accomplish too much at once. Very few researchers achieve fame because of their dissertation work. Try to write a good dissertation, not a great dissertation. Further, don't insist on writing a useful thesis. Your primary goal is to get a Ph.D. , not to change the world. There is enough time for changing the world after your dissertation when you have less constraints about what criteria your work has to meet.
  • Write!
    A psychology student told me once that he spends the entire day doing research and then forces himself at the end of the day to summarize what he found - even if he doesn't think he found anything that day. This is important for several reasons : (a) writing helps your thoughts to crystallize (b) you accomplish your daily task which will make you feel good (c) you can track your progress (d) when you write your thesis you have material to draw on (e) you won't forget what you were thinking two weeks ago. In my opinion most students start too late putting their thoughts into words.
  • Exercise regularly
    I have always found I can work better when I am physically in good shape. During stressful times such as exams, I exercise more often rather than less often. The energy I get from exercise more than compensates for the "time lost".
  • Enjoy your "play time"
    There is a time to work and a time to play. I try to work hard when I work, and not to think at all about work when I don't work. For example, every year I fly home to Germany for Christmas. I never take work to Germany. All that would accomplish is that I would feel bad the whole time about not doing the work. When you have worked hard all week and can afford to take the week-end off, try to get out and do something fun. Try not to think about work at all.
  • Talk to others about your problems
    After finishing his Ph.D. a social scientist at an Ivy League university told me once that at some point during his Ph.D. he had so much dissertation anxiety that he went to see a psychologist at the medical center. To his surprise the waiting room for the psychologist was packed and he recognized several other people. Everyone was there for the same reason. He later emailed one of the students he saw whether he wanted to talk about it . Within 10 minutes he got a reply email : the other student was just as desperate to talk about it. Most Ph.D. students at some point or another have problems - talking to fellow students or professors almost always helps. You are not alone. (The above mentioned student graduated smoothly and now excels working at a very prestigious institution).
  • Record your progress
    Sometime during my second year of my Ph.D. I started writing down every week-end what I had accomplished during the preceeding week. I took great care in this and I often reread what I had done in the past few weeks. This weekly ritual became very important to me and motivated me a great deal. Sometimes in the middle of the week I would realize that I hadn't accomplished anything to be recorded at the end of the week and I would make sure I would get something done.
    In addition, I kept a list of things to do at the white board and marked each item off once I had done it. I wouldn't erase it until a few days later though - because that gave me the satisfaction of seeing what I had accomplished already. I still follow this habit to this day.
    During a Ph.D. you often try something and it doesn't work in the end. That can be frustrating - but I feel that tracking what you have done helps to overcome this frustration. The path to success has unexpected twists and turns in a Ph.D. - and while a failed attempt looks like no progress it really is.
  • Don't find excuses - don't do too many other important things.
    Some of the brightest students sometimes have trouble finishing because they are so successful doing other things that may reasonably also be considered important. A very bright young fellow I know kept taking on temporary consulting jobs working for the UN in Brazil and all kind of other exciting and useful jobs. Working for the UN in Brazil is a great experience and you may not want to pass it up. But at some point finishing your Ph.D. outweighs taking on extra consulting jobs.
  • Choose a dissertation topic you are passionate about
    You will do your best work when you work on a topic that you really care about. This not always possible - but if you have the choice go for it. Also, it is better to come up with your own thesis topic rather than having your supervisor find you a thesis topic. You will find it easier to care deeply about a thesis topic that you came up with yourself.
  • Work on your strengths, not on your weaknesses
    I was once fortunate enough to have a brunch with the famous statistician Erich Lehman - organized by Agnes Herzberg in Kingston, Ontario. Dr. Lehman had an unusual career and had many things to say. I will never forget the following advice he gave : when in England the professors noticed that his background in mathematics was much stronger than in physics. They therefore forced him to take extra classes in physics. On hindsight Dr. Lehman felt that that was a big mistake. He didn't have any passion for physics and he claims he wasn't good at it either - so there was an extraordinary effort going into something that wasn't necessary.
    There may be situations where our passion requires us to work on something we are not good at. For example, my friend Fiona was never interested in any handyman work. However, she was a theatre major and some point she had to know technical theatre operations. And when it was relevant to theatre, she all of the sudden took an interest in handyman work as it related to theatrical set construction.
    Unless necessary though I always thought that it was good advice to work on one's strengths - because otherwise we'll be constantly disillusioned and frustrated.
  • Take charge - it's your life not your supervisor's
    I have always found taking an active role leads to better results than a passive or reactive role. It makes life more exciting. For those of us who like playing computer games - it's like the difference of playing the game and watching the game. Playing is just more fun.
  • Do what is right for you - including the choice of discontinuing your Ph.D.
    A Ph.D. is not for everyone and I think not to continue a Ph.D. ought to be one of your options. I am most impressed with Judy whom I met during my time as a student. She successfully mastered the comprehensive exam, and then decided that she wasn't really all that interested in research. I still hear her say "You know, it's not for everyone" - not disappointed but just matter of fact. She is happier now. However , I do think you should only quit because you have come to the conclusion that you do not enjoy research, not because "it's overwhelming", "it's too much work", or "I don't know whether I can do it" or "I don't like my supervisor". People can do more than they think - they just have to really try.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Are You Good At Math?

Are you good at math? Help us solve these puzzles we got from SpikedMath.

We've got the answers for several easy ones... but am hoping that our blog readers could help us. Cheers.

Monday, 21 March 2011

iPad 2 for Business

Let me answer the question from the picture above. The answer is simple, "by not buying it and save the money as rolling capital".


Merafak sembah takziah di atas pemergian Bonda Yang Dipertuan Agong, Tengku Ampuan Bariah awal pagi tadi waktu Malaysia. Semoga roh Ku Ampuan dicucuri rahmat dan ditempatkan bersama orang-orang beriman. Amin.

Di bawah keratan akhbar TheStar online.

KUALA LUMPUR: The mother Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tengku Ampuan Bariah Sultan Alam Shah passed away at the Seri Kota Hospital, Klang at 1.22am on Monday.

She was 78.

Her remains were flown to Kuala Terengganu from the Subang Air Base by the Royal Malaysia Air Force’s C130 aircraft at 10.45am, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s senior private secretary Datuk Mohd Zuki Ali in a statement.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin and Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Nur Zahirah left the air base for Kuala Terengganu in another aircraft.

The King in prayers at the Royal Mausoleum

Among those present at the air base were the Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Sidek Hassan and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar.

The remains of the deceased will be taken to Istana Maziah, Kuala Terengganu for a ceremony to pay last respects and burial.

In Kuala Terengganu, the State Secretary’s Office said in a statement, that the public would be allowed to pay their last respects to Tengku Ampuan Bariah between 1pm and 2.30pm Monday.

Tengku Ampuan Bariah will be later buried at the Royal Mausoleum at the Al-Muktafibillah Shah Mosque’s compound in Ladang.

Tengku Ampuan Bariah was yang born in Klang on Aug 31, 1933 and married Sultan Mahmud, who was then called His Royal Highness Yang Di-Pertuan Muda on March 22, 1952 in Kuala Lumpur.

She was conferred with the title “Tengku Puan Muda” by the late Tuanku Al Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah on April 7, 1954 and appointed Tengku Ampuan Besar Terengganu on Sept 20, 1979. - Bernama

p/s: seluruh negeri Terengganu berkabung

Sedikit motivasi #2

Often, physically stepping back from the source of stress can help gain a new perspective, but I think the key is not to let information in as a distraction, and let the brain engage with the problem in a relaxed way. In any kind of research, things will go wrong at some point and we can’t always control everything, but we can always choose how to respond. The point though is that it needs to be a concious choice, not just reverting to habit.

Petikan dari, Dealing with research stress (www.3monththesis.com)

p/s: tanpa ku sedari, diriku TERstress dengan PhD

Maggi goreng

Lighting terang dieditkan

Ala-ala bungkus

Maggi goreng ala-ala bungkus untuk sarapan pagi. Kunun nak bungkus tapi telur kecik, maka jadi hiasan atas sahaja. Teringin makan mee goreng tapi malas buat mee, maka guna sahaja maggi noodles kosong dan digoreng biasa.

Friday, 18 March 2011

House inspection

Awal minggu kami azrulfara terima surat dari pihak city council mengatakan, mereka ingin melakukan 'inspection' pada Selasa bebaru ini. Mereka ingin periksa rumah di sekitar Pulau Anglesey adakah sesuai untuk disewa oleh tuan rumah - dari segi keselamatan dan keluasan. Berdebar lar jugak takut dapat pegawai council yang cerewet. Manalah tahu, tak pernah di'inspect' sebelum ini. Terfikir2 mungkin mereka ingin double check sama ada kita ini betul2 students atau tidak (bukan students kena bayar council tax), sama ada kita ini betul2 tinggal berdua atau lebih. Tapi tiada apa yang perlu kami risaukan. Tuan rumah patut risau jika mereka tidak menyediakan alarm system yang betul, perlu adanya emergency exit dan pemasangan heater/boiler yang selamat. Kebetulan, pada awal minggu, ada engineer dari gas system datang rumah periksa heater/boiler dan memberi kami sijil keselamatan (untuk ditunjukkan pada pihak council).

Seorang pegawai muda city council datang pada waktu tengahari. Saya persilakan dia duduk tapi tak mahu katanya. Tick borangnya sana sini dalam keadaan berdiri sebab katanya dia basah kena hujan, maka dia tak mahu duduk. Dia periksa keluasan bilik. Stor pun dia suruh bukakkan (tak tahu apa signifikannya). Bilik air dia intai tanya di mana exhaust fan, tapi kami kata kami hanya buka tingkap bilik air untuk pengudaraan. Dia masuk dapur, tanya ke mana arah backyard, adakah ada laluan keluar sewaktu kecemasan atau tidak. Ya, ada tangga menuju ke arah belakang perumahan. Dia puji sebab semuanya lengkap, maka kerjanya senang. Lalu dia ucap terima kasih dan pulang. Itu saja!

Laluan kecemasan di belakang rumah kami

p/s: mereka amat mementingkan keperluan health and safety (bukan sahaja di research lab tapi juga rumah kediaman)

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Artificial coral reefs

Mereka membina patung-patung (untuk keunikan laut mereka tersendiri) untuk menggalakkan pertumbuhan terumbu karang. Sekali tengok, macam menakutkan, macam cerita hantu2 dalam air :|

p/s: larva karang (corals) memerlukan sebarang substrat keras untuk tumbuh dan membiak menjadi individu/koloni baru.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Sedikit motivasi

Which is more effective: working continually for 12 hours at a slow pace, or working for 4 hours in bursts of concentrated activity? If your average productivity per hour is close to zero (and be honest about this), 12 multiplied by almost zero is still almost zero. At the end of the day, when you look back at what you planned to do compared to what you actually got done, how do you
feel? Exhausted and demotivated.

Petikan dari, Work-Life Balance and The On/Off principle (www.3monththesis.com)
Kena bentang poster untuk tahun kedua

Monday, 14 March 2011

Caca marba

Lama juga tak kunjung ke blog sendiri. Bloghopping saja, tapi sekadar speed reading. Lebih banyak habiskan masa untuk tak pasti apa.

Cuma sibuk dengan rutin harian sendiri - bangun, masak, lab, office, makan, rumah, masak, makan, tengok tv, tidur. Itu sahaja aktiviti sepanjang hari sekolah.
Hari tidak sekolah pula - bangun, masak, lab, kemas rumah, basuh baju, masak, makan, kuar high street/lepak bersama kekawan, main game, makan, main game, tidur. Pagi hari minggu jugak perlu spendkan masa di lab. Huhu.

Tapi rasanya sepanjang 2 minggu lepas, masa banyak dihabiskan bersama rakan senegara yang akan pulang for good pada minggu hadapan. Makanya, asyik berkunjung ke rumah atau keluar bersamanya, sebab nanti takut rindukan dia. Huhu. Kak S, kami tak mahu Kak S balik, bolehkah? Nanti tiada lagi masakan sedap2 dan gosip hebat2 :(

Musim sudah masuk spring officially. Tapi sejak minggu lepas, entah angin sejuk dari mana datang, makanya suhu di North Wales kembali sejuk sepertimana di musim sejuk (Berangin dan suhu antara 4-8 deg Celcius). Hari minggu baru kelihatan sunny days.. dan juga hari ini. Suhu masih lagi lebih kurang.

Terkejut di pagi Jumaat tetiba membaca status rakan-rakan di Jepun mengenai earthquake (masa cek fb tu belum tahu pasal tsunami). Kemudian, kami terus membuka tv dan tengok BBC melaporkan mengenai bencana tersebut. Sedihhhhh. Bertanya serba sedikit khabar kekawan (kekawan encik suami kebanyakannya) di sana. Alhamdulillah, mereka semua selamat. Cuma doa dapat kami utuskan dari sini.. semoga mereka sentiasa berada di bawah lindungan Allah s.w.t, dikuatkan diri dalam menghadapi musibah itu, dipermudahkan segala urusan mereka dan selamat sihat sejahtera sentiasa. Amin.

Cherry blossom sebelah rumah

Beberapa kerat pasu bunga landlord depan flat kami

Tujuan ke lab hari-hari

p/s: saya sebut universiti itu sebagai sekolah dan hari biasa (weekdays) itu hari sekolah

Friday, 4 March 2011

Halal dan Asian food

Sebahagian hasil belian di Manchester (dan Leeds)

Beberapa hari lepas ke Manchester, servicekan kereta. On the way back, singgah Rulshome (bandar Pakistan di Manchester), membeli-belah stok makanan halal. Borong ayam dan daging lembu halal untuk stok berbulan-bulan. Kedai pakistan di Bangor jual ayam sikit-sikit, daging lembu memang tak jual langsung. Itu hari supermarket Lidl ada jual ayam halal, tapi baru beberapa bulan, ayam halal tidak dijual lagi. Huhu. Kembali terhad lah pilihan ayam halal di sini. Singgah juga di Wing Yip Manchester, supermarket besarrrrrrrrr jual pelbagai asian food. Terjumpa biskut HUP SENG, ambil lar sebungkus, boleh cicah dengan Milo. Sedapppppppp. Oh beli juga Kaya brand Nona, lupa letak dalam gambar. Terjumpa biskut keras tu kat Leeds, pun beli juga sebab berangan cicah dengan nescafe. Sedappppppp. Kedai cina di Bangor pula tiada stok bihun dan makanan jepun (di Tesco pun takde). Maggi ada lar juga sikit2 di Bangor ni tapi nak beli banyak2, harga lebih murah dan banyak pilihan perasa. Milo tak pernah pula nampak di Bangor, tapi rakan-rakan kata ada. Mungkin suatu ketika dulu lah. Duk negara omputis yang pelbagai resepi dan makanan, nak jugakkkkkkkkkk makanan mesia.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

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