the state of our textbook today

The moment of epiphany struck me when I was reading a motivational book (not the typical “think positive and all the vibrant aura will perch on your head till Lucifer decided to smack you down with torrents of bad lucks” one, instead it made me pondering and wanting to change something). I was thinking that we can’t (or don’t) laugh when we read the textbook.. except we often laugh at our own stupidity when we can’t brain the first question posed after the explanation for certain subtopic (this situation happened all the time when I was reading physics in form 4).

Our textbooks today aren’t inviting.
The textbooks contain less joke. That’s why.
Sometimes I think I’m reading primary school books. Sometimes.

Take a good look at For Dummies series. This is SAT 1 for dummies textbook.

SAT 1 for dummies

Learning, by nature, is to enlighten and to entertain our souls at the same time. Not to bore the hell out of the learners.

“Suppose that you bumped into a burglar, and he asked you about natural exponential function, grab your phone first out of your pocket and show him Wikipedia page of the function. If he can’t understand well, ask the burglar for a pen and paper and you start doing the graphs of logarithmic and exponential as shown below”

At least don’t write a paragraph that could make a literate person thinking he’s not literate anymore.



period of (writing) inactivity

If I have die-hard fans, I’d receiving postcards (and death wishes) by now. Sadly I got none, but never mind. Few weeks lately (some say few months) I haven’t written pieces as frequent as when I was at college. True, when I’m living within the vicinity of an academic institution, a lot of things happen that spark my prefrontal cortex to write more (and to insult subliminally, too). Now, I’m at home. Too little things happen in my life aside from being gang-banged by Zeus, Shadow Fiend and Chaos Knight altogether (please refer to DotA 2).

Now I’m not writing a death rattle for this blog. Ending NightlyArt had never come across before (now it is.. lol), and please bear with me. I’ll try to post here more frequently. I know there are few people who enjoy reading my rants (and at the same time imagining me as a handsome and smart guy… but I’m taken.. eh). I feel bad, so bad because I can’t write to entertain you and making you think at the same time.

Ok. That’s all. Don’t cry.

stop dancing if you think the floor is creaky

In the previous life, I was a part of the bandwagon spreading the jibes and taunt remarks (as a part of being a loyal naysayer) against the Malaysian education system with words of criticism (.. and insult?).

“Kita takkan kemana-mana dengan sistem pendidikan kita”
“Teruk kot edu system kita. Mesti ubah!”
“Taknak dah belajar kat Malaysia. Nekad nak terbang keluar”

Before we proceed, let’s look at the minorities. The Chinese. I think they are always at disadvantages (consistently being vilified by Malays, economics and academics development models aren’t as sky-high as Malays, etc). But we don’t even fail at recognizing their abilities, in much narrower scope, in regard with their academics and economics achievements.

Let’s get back to my original point.

To my realization, regarding academics, we always have some entities to blame at when we failed to meet certain standard. Failed in SPM? Blame teachers and papers altogether for being too hard, and blame the graph for being too high. Failed in university? Blame lecturers for incompetency in pedagogy, blame PTPTN for.. I don’t know.

We are in favor of blaming others. Maybe because we are the majority here. Rule of thumb: being as a part of majority leads to complacency.

And look.. my second point makes sense now.

Quite funny to think, but this is what happen. Being as a part of the majority, we believe there’s a godlike power to drive our survival.

If you think that’s true, get yourself a mirror.

Is there a godlike power promising your with high-income wage?

If you think the floor is creaky, stop dancing before you get crippled. But if you think you are already crippled, blame the floor if that can make you feel great.

Funny, because blaming the floor won’t give you a thing. Let’s live this life by blaming the floor all the time.

Sir, if you live today at the mercy of the floor without admitting your crippled limbs, get a coffin now. Why? Because we don’t need crippled man as our human capital.

Sir, we need someone capable of fixing the floor.

the nauseating feeling. I shouldn’t have done this.

It has been weeks of successful abandonment and ignorance of piles of books and desk lamp, so what should I see it was coming whenever I try to reinitiate the motion of secluding myself chugging information and knowledge from the textbook? Nauseating dizziness and the feeling of overloaded brain.

Yes, it has been weeks (I won’t say months) I haven’t put myself under duress for the sake of studying. Few days ago, I encountered few cognitive problems the moment I was defrosting my brain. Now, what do I do?

  • Custom trigger. Sometimes when you want to deter procrastination, you created custom sets of commands or trigger, in this sense it means something that can make you pumped up to do something. My current configuration of custom command that I’m using right now is the combo of caffeine intake and dopamine stimulant (background musics from certain anime).

For background musics I use SAO Battle Soundtrack and Final Mission – Quantum Burst. So far, both help.

  • Making myself feel guilty. Simple, I surround myself with books, and I put any internet-connected devices away from my sight. It is enough to put gadgets behind me when I am reading or writing.
  • Perhaps to fix this issue completely I’d go more radical. I am quite accustomed to the scientific analysis methodology so I think after this I’ll log my study activity in the MS Excel Spreadsheet and carry out data analysis. Graphs and charts ftw!

p/s: To whine “argh I can’t study” without providing solution is visceral and emits no benefit. That’s why we need solution once the problem is identified.

coordinating efficiency, really?

First thing, I have to ask myself “am I really want to level up my skills in team management?”. If I said no, I’d be a total doofus. If I said “yes”, then I should explain my working schematics.

I’m looking forward to having a life with executive-tier efficiency coordinating a team, making sure things are done the way they should be done. Even if something is screwed, still I’m able and capable of rewriting the story without much hiccups. That sounds magical, near miracle, but I assure you it’s not, if you know what it takes to be such that person.

I believe that my brain is like a pool of ideas, a tank of plans and strategies.. but a stagnant pool might one day become shallower and could evaporated into dry, dirty muddy land. The question here is: how to make sure the pool gonna have some flow.

As for now, I’m using staging planning mechanics to execute my plans orderly and systematically (so far, yeah..) given with specific timeline. Let me show you my Asana account. I have tasks that are going to be peer-reviewed, pending task waiting for completion, back burner task which are situational, and action steps which are the imminent threats.

management crew 94fs

If you let your ideas jump directly from being a mere idea into action steps without weighing its mass, I’m not sure what will it be but to me it is not a good practice. Some ideas I don’t announce directly after it flied into my mind, rather I keep it with me until the situation is desirable.

I hope this tiny piece could inspire you.

Closing Words

For most of the time, I know I’m lying to myself regarding productivity. Let’s turn the tide.

Ouh, FYI I’m the crew of 94fs. If you think the site is cool, make yourself a space to read the articles. If you think you are hipster enough, consider reading this.

Desolator? Monkey King Bar?

My first hero in DotA 2 when I started playing it on 21 July was Sniper (my favorite hero, and now I have a penchant of using Sniper excessively other than Phantom Lancer, Spirit Breaker and Lion). My concern in this post about the late game item.

monkey king bar and desolator

Between MKB and Deso, what’s your pick as the main late-game-item? What I realized after playing a lots of games (5 matches for player vs player, and I don’t know how many I have played for co-op bot), Sniper would pick Deso regardless he is player or bot.

“The best sniper is the hidden sniper” was the comment on my style of picking Deso first on Reddit few days ago. When you got Deso for Sniper you’re firing flare-like projectiles, not tiny little bullets anymore. So one can gauge Sniper’s position right away after the projectiles being shot, and if the sniper has no Shadow Blade, good luck I bid.

Shadow Blade is quite imperative on heroes with no escape mechanism.

The best thing about Deso is it’s ability to weaken opponent’s psychology, as far as I’m concerned.

“That sniper got Deso, gank him first” is the popular phrase when opponent’s Sniper wields Deso. Its flame-like flare artillery boosts the wielder’s spirit while at the same time scares the other side shitlessly.

What about MKB then?

Bang for the buck, worth more than Deso if you know. Its attributes constitute more damage than Deso with Mini Bash (stunner) and True Strike (your attack won’t miss). Mini-Bash is something you don’t need on Sniper (because of the passive skill Headshot) but if you’re playing Drow or any ranged heroes, stunning would come in handy.

What’s your pick then?

MKB first, then Deso. That’s my new preference.

first hero I played

Playing Sniper? Harass a lot, you must. Melee heroes are your meal.

Ritchie the tiger, I am

[I was staring blankly at my text editor for few minutes, because I didn’t know what should I be writing, hence I wrote about my writer’s block so at least my fingers started working]

It was afternoon past 2pm. Felt like an angel ruffled my thinking cubicle for which I chose to check my email account, then I checked my account at SUNY Buffalo SMART status. Both admission and i20 were pending (and still pending at the moment I write this).

pending status SMART

Out of the blue, I fired my keyboard and navigated to myRIT. Again, I stared blankly.

For 2 minutes.

Because I got admitted!

RIT admission decision

2013 spring? Really? Glitch? I sent an email to Mark McFee, asking for confirmation, and here’s the response.

RIT system glitch

Again, I stared blankly, and I forgot how to jump in enjoyment (because my butts were glued so hard). So, staring it blankly I did. 2 minutes. I didn’t look at my watch, but I’m certain. 2 minutes.

So, what’s next?

what to do next

I. Can. Waive. USD300. Admission. Deposit.

I think the time has come. I should prepare my speech prior to departure, plan what should I bring to the States (keropok lekor, sambal belacan.. maybe), I should get out awhile from my room and go the nearby road rolling on it for 2 minutes with total disregard of traffic. I should request royal military to bang the sky with 21 rounds of cannonball so my departure would be heard by the taxpayers. Thanks for the money though.

Oh, who’s Ritchie?

That’s the mascot for RIT.

What am I writing?


postscript: Wait. I’m still waiting for SUNY Buffalo.