August 13, 2009
The actual focus of the news is Clay signing with a new record label (Source: Clayonline.com August 10 2009 news), but for me, the exciting part is of course..
The first half of 2010 seems just a bit too far away, though. Why, that could be as long as year. I sure wish he would release a couple of singles in the interim, songs which needn’t necessarily make it onto the next album but which would be released to radio and promoted through TV appearances, and perhaps even a music video? I miss seeing him perform. But I don’t suppose that will be happening. It’s lucky that patience happens to be one of my few virtues.
I last visited the Singapore Science Centre decades ago, so it’d been on my mind to visit it again. Finally made it there a few days ago, and to be honest, found it a little worn round the edges. Must be quite a job maintaining so many exhibits especially over a busy National Day weekend, but still, it was surprising to find quite a few not working in each section.
The exhibits which used infra-red technology to detect your hands and other objects (in the i-Space section focusing on Info-comm technology) were the most fun and impressive for me. It was good fun to be able to move my hands in the air and get the computer to do things. it’s not as easy to manipulate the ‘cursor’ as what you see in the movies, but hey, it works. I also thought the fish pond which ripples when you move your hands over it was really pretty.
Another exhibit which has definite potential to be a crowd pleaser — a program which shows you what you look like at various ages. It would actually be worthwhile for the centre to scout round for a program which does an even better job than the current one, visitors will surely line up for that! Personally, I’d love for this to be part of a section dedicated to forensic science, which will, I think have mass appeal as well given the popularity of the CSI series.
All in all, the Science Centre was well worth the admission fee. I can imagine young kids enjoying the interactive exhibits, and being inspired by them. This is one place which deserves to be well-funded so that the best ideas and concepts are developed and implemented. A place which translates science into fun, interactive exhibits which inspire and teach — surely no price can be placed on the value of that.
I heard from my friend, Gregory, recently, and he reminded me that I hadn’t blogged in a long time! Haven’t been spending much time in front of the computer, that’s why. But, he sure called at the right time, because recently I visited a couple of places I definitely want to comment on. First off, the National Museum of Singapore (I’ll talk about the Science Centre in my next post).
The museum didn’t impress me as much as I thought it would, which may have something to do with the fact that I was irritated by the “technology” they use to guide you through the Singapore History Gallery. Want a description of objects in the gallery? You HAVE to use a handheld “Companion” (audio cum text device). First, you key in the number you see next to the object, then wait for the description to come up on its screen. Want a desription of the next object? Repeat the process. Until they come up with better technology, they’d be better off just going low-tech and using labels.
What I thought really worked in the Gallery – the authentic voices of historical figures, and people’s memories of the past. I found the clips of Lee Kuan Yew’s speeches in the 1960s to be compelling.
And what sorta worked: the concept of an Event Path and a Personal Path. The presentation underlined the idea of history occurring on two levels – on the more macro level of nation-building and development, and on the level of the experience of ordinary people. However, the design which divided the exhibits into many little rooms made the paths a bit of a warren to navigate.
The Living Galleries were okay, I guess. Like I implied earlier, I was not in the best of moods after having to punch a million buttons at the History Gallery (okay, an exaggeration, but it sure felt like it!), so I wasn’t paying too much attention. I quite enjoyed the Movie gallery with its display of memorabilia. And the Photography gallery had lots of charming portraits. I particularly liked this one, which was almost ‘candid’:
My favourite display was in the Food gallery — the wall of bottles created to showcase local foods and spices was beautiful and definitely effective ( it would have been better, of course, if all the scent stations there worked).
The worst display: a woman’s pantsuit with the most horrid printed pattern; I didn’t read the description closely — I was that repelled by it — but I think it was supposed to represent woman’s fashion from the 1960s. Shudder! Surely they could have found something better.