What are the highest paying IT jobs?

April 28, 2017

Salaries to rise for top 10 IT jobs in Singapore

Sri Narayanan | April 28, 2017





New initiative to share excess harvest

April 15, 2017

ST, 2 Apr 2017, New initiative to share excess harvest


We thank Miss Lee Kay Yan for her feedback (A little foraging for fruit and plants won’t hurt; March 28).

In early March, the National Parks Board started an initiative to share excess harvest with the public, as part of efforts to reduce horticultural waste.

Termed “Harvest Corner”, extra herbs and horticulture material generated from gardening sessions by volunteers are gathered and made available to members of the public.

This pilot project, which began in the Spice Garden at Fort Canning Park and will continue to run every Friday, has seen positive response from park visitors.

Members of the public who wish to learn more about our flora in Singapore can also download our DIY walks e-guides.

What’s Happening (Jan 2017 to Jun 2017) [PDF]

OneInbox, digital mailbox service for public, to end in June

April 15, 2017

ST, 6 Apr 2017, OneInbox, digital mailbox service for public, to end in June


Five years after it was introduced, a digital mailbox for the public to receive government correspondence is being shut down in Jun 8, 2017, owing to low take-up rate and the costs to maintain it.

Called OneInbox, the service lets Singaporeans sign up for the free digital mailbox to view e-letters from public agencies such as the Central Provident Fund Board, Housing Board and Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (Iras). The notices range from GST Voucher letters to Medisave deductions.

OneInbox was said to have cost the Government as much as $5 million to develop. The tender was awarded to local systems integrator CrimsonLogic. The targets were 250,000 users by the first year, and up to 800,000 in the third year.

The Government Technology Agency (GovTech) would not say how many eventually signed up for the service, part of the e-government masterplan, which then included the revamp of the eCitizen portal. But a report in June 2013 said just 3,000 users had signed up.


ST Forum

7 Apr 2017, Reasons given for OneInbox termination not convincing

13 Apr 2017, Low demand for ‘mailbox-only’ digital service


More Info

Are there digital channels that I can use to receive Government letters electronically?


April 15, 2017

10 Apr 2017, askST: Are there adverse effects or long term risks in sleeping next to a wireless router?

Reader Ron Chua wrote to askST: “Are there adverse or long-term risks in sleeping next to a Wi-Fi router?” He also asked about the risks to pregnant women.

Tech reporter Vincent Chang answered the question.

It is safe to sleep next to a wireless router as it produces radio waves that, unlike X-rays or gamma rays, do not break chemical bonds or cause ionisation in humans. In other words, radio waves do not damage the DNA of human cells. Damaged DNA can lead to cancer.

While the radio waves from a router operate in the same 2.4 to 5GHz electromagnetic spectrum as microwaves, the router operates at much lower power levels than microwave ovens.

These waves also deteriorate rapidly, losing their strength as they travel away from the router. Compared to other sources of electromagnetic radiation, wireless routers rank much lower than devices such as mobile phones, especially as the handset is often used against the ear.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), scientists have found “no adverse health effects from low level, long-term exposure to radio frequency”.

WHO also says that exposure to radio waves at typical environmental levels “does not increase the risk of any adverse outcome such as spontaneous abortions, malformations, low birth weight, and congenital diseases” for pregnant women.

Is palm oil unhealthy compared to other oils?

April 15, 2017

9 Apr 2017, askST: Is palm oil unhealthy compared to other oils and should one avoid consuming it?

Reader Sujatha Das wrote in to ask if palm oil is an unhealthier option compared to other oils and, if so, whether it should be avoided.

Food correspondent Eunice Quek finds out.

Ms Bibi Chia, principal dietitian of the Raffles Diabetes & Endocrine Centre, says that palm oil costs less than other types of edible vegetable oils, as palm – for the purpose of extracting palm oil – is widely grown in Indonesia and Malaysia.

She says: “Due to cost and proximity, food manufacturers in our region often use palm oil in snacks and other processed foods. It is also the most common oil used in hawker centres and fast food places.

Palm oil is high in saturated fat – about 52 per cent – compared to canola oil, which has 7 per cent saturated fat. Although “not as bad” as coconut oil – with 92 per cent saturated fat – she says that high intake of palm oil will increase bad cholesterol levels, which could increase the risk of heart problem and stroke.

“It is recommended to limit the amount of saturated fat you eat to less than 7 per cent of your total daily calories. If you need about 2,000 calories a day, less than 140 calories (or 16g) should come from saturated fat,” says Ms Chia.

Palm oil is also often hydrogenated to make it suitable for certain foods, such as confectionery items, which increases trans fat content. Her advice is to limit the amount of trans fat intake to less than 1 per cent of total daily calories. “If you need about 2,000 calories a day, less than 20 calories (or 2g) should come from trans fat,” she adds.

She also suggests limiting consumption of oily food when eating out, as palm oil is often used. In addition, one should read labels and avoid foods that have palm oil or hydrogenated palm oil as one of the first three ingredients listed on the label.


April 1, 2017

Resveratrol and Cancer Prevention

April 1, 2017

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Dr. William Li, President and Medical Director of the Angiogenesis Foundation shared that we can eat to starve cancer. Cancer is just 5-10% attributable to genes, while the remaining is Environment and mainly due to our diet. Resveratrol in Red grapes & Red wine inhibits angiogenesis by 60%! That is what we should be having in our daily diet. Resveratrol is thought to limit the spread of cancer cells and trigger the process of cancer cell death (apoptosis). Resveratrol has also been known to reduce the activation of NF kappa B, a protein produced by a compromised immune system that can affect the growth of cancer cells.

Originally studies were conducted to investigate the “French Paradox”, a term coined by Dr. Serge Renaud, that the French seem to have lower rates of cardiovascular disease with a diet relatively high saturated fats. He found that a diet high in red wine correlated to a lower incidence of cardiac diseases, which was found to be very high in resveratrol. Continued studies of resveratrol conducted by Howitz and Sinclair found that in yeast, fruit flies, and small fish there were significant increases in lifespan. Later studies in mice found that there were drops in tumor formations, reductions in the incidents of neurological diseases, and protective benefits to the cardiovascular system.

Read the rest of this entry »

Singapore Electricity Tariff Revision for Q2 (2017)

April 1, 2017

Singapore Electricity Tariff Revision for Q1 (2017)

TODAY, 1 Apr 2017

For the quarter 1 Apr to 30 Jun 2017, electricity tariffs will increase by an average of 6.1% or 1.20 cents per kWh compared to the previous quarter. This is due to a 12.0% increase in the cost of natural gas for electricity generation.


AVA – New licensing conditions for pet shops and farms

March 29, 2017

CNA, 28 Mar 2017, Tighter licensing conditions for pet shops and farms to take effect in April: AVA 

The changes, which take effect from Apr 1, were made to improve the housing, healthcare and management of animals, enhance their traceability and improve the accountability of pet businesses, said AVA.

Some of the revised regulations include:

– If two or more dogs are kept together, they must be compatible, and each dog must be able to move, turn around without hitting the sides of the kennel, stand upright, lie down and stretch.

– All retired breeding dogs must be kept separately from breeding dogs and segregated according to their gender.

– Puppies must be microchipped by nine weeks old and kittens microchipped by 12 weeks old.

– All breeding dogs must undergo an annual health check by a licensed veterinarian.

Members of the public can contact the AVA via its 24-hour hotline, 1800-476-1600.

See here for the full list of revised licensing conditions


NTU freshmen guaranteed 2-year stay on campus

March 17, 2017

TODAY, 16 Mar 2017, NTU freshmen guaranteed 2-year stay on campus

Currently, the monthly rental fee for a single room ranges from S$340 to S$425 per student, while those staying in twin-sharing rooms each pay S$245 to S$320. Prof Kwok said that with more than 90 per cent of current demand met, there are no plans for the time being to build more residential halls in NTU. In recent years, demand for residential places has also gone up or are set to go up in other universities.

NUS charges the fees on a weekly basis: Those staying in single rooms pay a weekly rate of about S$110 to S$145 per student, while the weekly rate for a double room is S$75 per student.