Monday, 21 August 2017

WE NEED REALSPACE, NOT CYBER-SOLUTIONS TO TRAFFIC CONGESTION

Dear Y.B. Lim Lip Eng, Member of Parliament for Segambut,

I refer to the Free Malaysia Today and Malaysia Outlook reports about your Right Honourable asking the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) to investigate seemingly exorbitant price the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) paid for the eDrive application which interacts with the Integrated Transport Information System (ITIS), and lets users check traffic current conditions on certain roads on their Apple iPhones, iPads or Android  devices; as well as another RM198 million which the DBKL has spent over six years to maintain and rent the closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras and system.

Whilst I'll let the MACC reply to your questions, however what I would like elected representatives like your Right Honourable to do is to ask the relevant highway authorities or concessionaires what they have done in the medium and longer term to remedy and rectify the factors which cause such horrendous traffic congestion on our roads, especially during peak travel periods as this has been a perennial problem in the Klang Valley despite the Integrated Transport Information System (ITIS) which went into operation in 2005 or 12 years ago.

According to ITS Asia Pacific,  the "Key objectives of the system are the early detection of disruptive traffic incidents and, in to collaboration with first responders, to clear the blockages so that normal traffic flows can be restored expediently. The system operates 140 variable message signboards (VMS) and a wide array of automated traffic counters to provide a real time view of the overall traffic network." ITS Asia Pacific is a regional membership-based organisation of intelligent transport system (ITS) operators from across the Asia Pacific region.

http://itsasia-pacific.com/about-its-asia-pacific/examples-of-its-deployment-by-countryarea/2005-2008-integrated-transport-information-system-malaysiati-1/

So ITIS basically provides information to the public on current traffic conditions such as congestion on certain roads in real time so they can decide to take alternative routes, delay their travel time, choose a different mode of transport such as the LRT or MRT. It also lets the authorities remotely monitor traffic conditions and for incidents and despatch first-response teams to clear blockages.

Also, according to The Star, eDrive lets users see a map that shows a 5km radius of Variable Message Sign (VMS) and CCTV view of 40 locations. Those VMS signboards are those electronic signboards mounted on gantries above the roads where ITIS operates and informs drivers especially of adverse traffic conditions ahead and its extent; whilst its Parking Guidance Information System feature lets uses remotely check the current avilability of parking at 14 malls including Suria KLCC, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, Low Yat Plaza and Maju Junction.

Read more at http://www.thestar.com.my/metro/community/2017/07/10/kl-traffic-in-the-palm-of-your-hands-twomonth-test-period-for-new-app-featuring-realtime-cctv-images/#UXXAjZjL2Yw1WSvH.99

I have been writing about the information and communications technology industry (ICT) industry since September 1994, including about eleven and a half years with The Star and I recall having written some articles in which I mentioned ITIS even before it was launched.

I live in Petaling Jaya, close to the horrendously congested Federal Highway and my work required me to travel to venues within the Golden Triangle and where they are not near the LRT line, I had to drive and endure the horrendous traffic congestion in Kuala Lumpur on my return, especially if it was after 5 pm and oftentimes I looked up at the ITIS signboard and wondered what is the point of it telling me that the road I am on is congested, when I am in the thick of it and already know only too well that it is congested; especially when this is the same story, year after year, with no end in sight, even until today, and also horrendously congested until today, is the main road in front of The Star, Eastin Hotel, Phileo Damansara I and II.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

SIX DAYS OFF WHATSAPP

I was last on WhatsApp last Sunday and plan to not turn on the WiFi on the phone until tomorrow (Sunday) at least, if not later and without WiFi, the phone won't receive WhatsApp.

Life's great without WhatsApp.

IT.SCHEISS

Friday, 18 August 2017

54,103 GRADUATES UNEMPLOYED SIX MONTHS AFTER GRADUATION - WELCOME TO THE INFORMATION AND SERVICES ECONOMY!

The large number of unemployed university and college graduates has been a perennial problem in Malaysia and also worldwide, especially in the developed countries which hollowed out their manufacturing industries by outsourcing manufacturing work to lower wage countries, whilst paperback writers who sold many books and earned lots of money from speaking engagements which many bums in seats paid plenty to hear their 'words of wisdom' as if they were Moses, descendeth from the mountain, tablets in hand.

So the economic sun set on those countries from which 'sunset' industries departed, whilst the sun rises in those countries to which these 'sunset' industries went, just as when the sun is 'setting' somewhere on planet Earth, it is rising on the other side of our planet.

Well actually, the sun never sets on planet Earth. If it did, we'll all freeze to death.

The latest horror story is that Malaysia has 54,103 unemployed university and college graduates as per the first article below and the solution proposed by an Australian recruitment company in the second article following it is more or less for these graduates to keep running like hamsters on a treadmill, learning and re-learning stuff which will be obsolete in no time in order  to remain 'relevant' in our economy which aspires to be a 'knowledge-based, information economy' as we 'move up the value chain' above the 'lowly' agricultural and manufacturing industries which were solid foundations of the Malaysian economy and still are in fact.

I bumped into the former human resources manager at the company I used to work for a couple of months back and he told me that he now provides human resource consultancy to a rather obscure private university college nearby and I jovially told him - "So, you are working for a graduate factory" and he replied, "Yes, we are churning them out by the hundreds". No wonder there are so many unemployed graduates.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

A SURE WAY DIS-ADVERTISE

A sure way to put people off the products or services on is advertising websites or on digital platforms such as tablets and smartphones it to have the advertisement pop up and obscure the view of what one wants to read or watch, often requiring the viewer or reader to click on some 'X' to close the advertisement.

This never happens with print advertising where the advertisement sits passively on a page or part of a page, allowing readers to read it if they so choose if it piques their interest or even to admire the pictures of pretty or handsome persons featured in the advertisement or to even admire its creativity or art.

On the other hand, these pop-up advertisements impose themselves on readers or viewers, some of whom may be doing research for a report, presentation or an article and are in a hurry to meet a deadline.

I for one, just click away such annoying advertisements and don't even remember what was being advertised and I have not bought anything which was advertised online, though I have bought some products or services advertised in print.

This really makes me wonder what idiots those who created such advertisements are by believing that they will endear such readers and viewers to the products or services being advertised by annoying them.

Sure, these idiots may have the technical knowledge and savvy to create such pop-up advertisements but lack the basic common sense to understand that readers and viewers don't like them.

As a result, a whole industry has arisen to develop advertisement blockers or pop-up blockers and their popularity is a testimony to how annoying readers and viewers of websites and digital content find such advertisements.