MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017

Lifelong learning is a personal philosophy and mantra that I adopt, advocate and share whenever I am able to. Regardless of the qualifications that I have, the amount of life and professional experiences that I currently possess, I always tell and remind myself that I do not know everything in the world, there is always something to learn, a new skill/knowledge and/or upgrading my current skills/knowledge.

Most recently, I was kindly invited to a seminar, MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017 organised by Management Development and Consultancy (MDC), the corporate training arm of Management Development Institute of Singapore (MDIS). The title of the seminar was “From the Present to the Future: Getting Ready for Digital Transformation”, the speakers were highly experienced professionals in their field of their respective specialisation expertise. One of my friends Walter was one of the speakers for the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017 and it was great to catch up with him during the event!

The speakers and their topics were as follow:

Andrew Chow (Speaker and Facilitator)

Digital Marketing Strategy Overview for 2018

Search Marketing – How to be seen and searched at the right places

Social Media Marketing – Rediscover the Lost Art of being Social in Marketing

Walter Lim (Speaker)

Content Markting: Choosing the Right Content and Channels

Nick Tan (Speaker)

How to use Virtual Reality Solutions to create immersive marketing experiences?

Alvin Lim (Speaker)

How to use blogging as an effective marketing tool

Xi Wei (Speaker)

Gamification – Don’t be a noob: Raising your game in the digital world

After the introduction, welcome and opening address by June Lim, Assistant Director of MDC, Andrew took over, he had dual roles of both a speaker and facilitaor for the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017. Andrew’s experience in conducting seminars can be seen when he employed an ice breaker game for participants to mingle around, meet, introduce and chat with different people.

Thereafter, the seminar started with tea and lunch breaks in between the entire Digital Marketing Day seminar. I have been hands-on inside the digital marketing / social media / blogging fields since April 2006, I have personally seen the huge changes in internet marketing, SEO, digital marketing and social media over the past decade. Although I am being “trained On-The-Job”, the topics shared by the various speakers were always a good refresher for me and there is always something new to learn because I don’t know every thing/knowledge/skills in life. It is always good to keep myself updated, upgraded and learn new knowledge and skills in life, on both personal and professional level.

Some topics such as “Rediscover the Lost Art of being Social in Marketing” by Andrew and “How to use Virtual Reality Solutions to create immersive marketing experiences?” by Nick, got me thinking ahead for the future, how I am able to make the changes, adapt and adopt new technology, as well as rediscovering myself in the commercial world of digital media marketing / social media marketing.

At the end of the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017, it had been a fruitful and eventful learning day, networking , learning, upgrading and a refresher for me too. Do keep a look out for the various types of programmes and courses by MDC, highly suitable for working professionals to upgrade and learn new skills/knowledge.

I would like to thank MDC for the invitation to their MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017!

* Pictures courtesy of MDC *

Updates, Reflection and Thinking Ahead

This personal website/blog of mine hit a bit of a mind block recently, since the two articles published on 1st and 2nd October 2017. I had a few technology news and business articles to share for the past week, it slowed down for 1+ week, it will come back again soon!

I was reflecting upon, thinking ahead and adding to what I wrote in my 1st October 2017 article, titled “Start of Q4 2017, Final Sprint“. During the past 1+ week, it’s a bit of a consolidation, realignments, readjustments and also changes for the final quarter of 2017. All this things going on inside my brain and mind, contributed to this additional article today, a key reason why there wasn’t much news/articles published on my website/blog here during the past 1+ week.

Upgrading / Learning new skills and knowledge

Learning is life-long and never-ending, that’s my philosophy for both personal and professional aspects of it. I am looking to improve on my skills and knowledge segment, for improving my current skills set and knowledge, as well as learning new skills and knowledge.

  • Drone flying – Planning to add this skill, for my travel photography in the future.
  • Travel and Tourism Public Relations – I wanted to add this knowledge, theory and skill, not just to complement my travel photography projects/assignments, I am thinking and strategising new business ideas.
  • Workshops/Courses – Finding courses and utilising Skills Future Credit to improve myself, first course is Lightroom organised by Canon Imaging Academy.
  • Digital Marketing and Social Media Marketing – I recently attended #MDCDigitalMarketingDay at Management Development & Consultancy (MDC) by MDIS. For somebody who had been hands-on inside this segment for the past 10 years, I still have knowledge and skills to learn, keep a lookout for my upcoming article!

Thinking and Strategising Ahead

I need to brainstorm a business plan / model for travel and tourism public relations + photography + social media/digital marketing coverage.

Still very tough economic times and difficult + slow market

I have a few real life stories of business owners facing huge challenges in this very tough economic times, it’s still a difficult and slow market. I shared their pain, their difficulties and challenges, I might write more about this if my time allows.

When the economy and market returns to better levels and stabilises in the near future, we are no longer looking at big GDP growth numbers, we are probably looking at slow and small GDP growth, maybe 1-3% per year (that’s my personal humble view).

I will be back writing and publishing articles soon! Thank you for reading, following and supporting!

Logitech launched G903, G703 and POWERPLAY

Logitech recently launched three new products on 31st August 2017 that would gain the attention of gaming enthusiast and esports professionals. They are the

  1. Logitech G703 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse
  2. Logitech G903 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse
  3. Logitech POWERPLAY™ Wireless Charging System

They are the high performance wireless gaming devices highly desired by esports professionals and gaming enthusiasts that is now a reality for them with the new wireless gaming mouse and and launch of two new technologies.

Let me share with my readers more information on the new Logitech Wireless Gaming Mouse and Logitech POWERPLAY™ Wireless Charging System from the press release:

Press Release 31st August 2017

After more than four years of R&D, Logitech G, a brand of Logitech, (SIX: LOGN) (NASDAQ: LOGI) today announced the launch of two technologies that make the dream of high performance wireless gaming a reality. Logitech G POWERPLAYTM is the world’s first wireless charging system for gaming mice providing continuous charging while both playing games and at rest – completely eliminating the need to dock or park your mouse to recharge. The second innovation is Logitech G LIGHTSPEEDTM technology, an end-to-end system optimization built on decades of wireless development experience that provides unrivaled connectivity and power performance. Compatible with the POWERPLAY wireless charging system, Logitech G also introduced two new flagship gaming mice, the new Logitech® G903 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse and Logitech® G703 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse.

“For decades, we’ve pioneered development in wireless gaming, and our new POWERPLAY and LIGHTSPEED wireless technologies continue this commitment to wireless superiority,” said Moninder Jain, Managing Director, ASEAN and Vice-President for Logitech G. “With POWERPLAY, LIGHTSPEED and our new G903 and G703 mice, you’ll get unbeatable precision, lag-free performance and infinite power, which gives gamers the highest-quality experience.”

Logitech G LIGHTSPEED Wireless Technology

Trusted by gaming enthusiasts and esports professionals worldwide, LIGHTSPEED wireless technology can be the difference between winning it all or walking away with nothing. Featuring a one-millisecond report rate and end-to-end signal optimization, LIGHTSPEED delivers competition-level responsiveness at speeds faster than many competitive wired gaming mice. Decades of wireless engineering experience mean LIGHTSPEED has wireless signal strength up to 16x (12dB) higher than the competition and a unique Frequency Agility Mechanism that automatically avoids problematic interference, ensuring smooth and consistent performance.

LIGHTSPEED underpins both the POWERPLAY wireless charging system and G903 and G703 gaming mice, meaning these devices can pair directly with the POWERPLAY’s integrated LIGHTSPEED wireless receiver for optimal signal strength and the convenience of charging and data over a single USB cable.

POWERPLAY Wireless Charging System

POWERPLAY reinvents the possibilities of wireless charging. A departure from existing wireless charging standards, which require the charging device to sit idle in one specific area to charge, POWERPLAY was designed from the ground up to deliver uninterrupted charging over its mousing surface – even while the mouse is in play. The wireless charging system uses a groundbreaking application of electromagnetic resonance that creates an energy field above POWERPLAY’s 275 x 320mm surface to deliver wireless power without interfering with the precise tracking and data transmission of high-performance gaming mice.

The POWERPLAY energy field is captured and transformed into charging current by the POWERCORE™ module, which attaches magnetically to compatible wireless gaming mice, including the Logitech G903 and G703.

Logitech® G903 and G703 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mice

The latest in Logitech G’s long history of high performance gaming mice, both the G903 and G703 deliver on the brand’s expectation of superior performance and unparalleled quality while also adding new LIGHTSPEED technology. Additional compatibility with the POWERPLAY Wireless Charging System provides untethered play, unlimited charging, and unmatched performance. Features of the G903 and G703 include:

  • Pixel-Precise Sensor: The Logitech G903 and G703 mice come equipped with the PMW3366 optical sensor, widely regarded by esports professionals and gaming enthusiasts as the best gaming mouse sensor on the market. Thanks to years of innovations, the PMW3366 has zero smoothing, filtering or acceleration across the entire DPI range (200-12,000 DPI). The resulting experience is incredible tracking accuracy and consistent responsiveness, even at speeds over 400 IPS.

  • Advanced Mechanical Button Tensioning: Precisely-tensioned metal springs and exclusive mechanical pivot hinges on G903 keep the primary left and right mouse buttons poised to trigger. This technology delivers an exceptionally clean and crisp button feel, response, and consistency. Logitech G improved on the design and boosted button durability up to 2.5x with 50 million click switches.

  • Supreme Comfort and Quality: Both mice deliver long-lasting comfort. The Logitech G903 features a configurable button layout and ambidextrous design that allows for left- or right-handed use and works with nearly any mouse grip style, including palm, claw and fingertip grips. The Logitech G703 features a lightweight, ergonomically designed body that was made to mold to your hand. Rubber grips on the left and right sides offer added control. You can use the mice directly out-of-the-box, or you can program the buttons with custom game commands using Logitech Gaming Software (LGS).

Pricing and Availability

The POWERPLAY Wireless Charging System are available for purchase in September for a suggested retail price of $199.00. The Logitech G903 and G703 LIGHTSPEED wireless gaming mice are expected at global retailers in September for suggested retail prices of $249.00 and $159.00, respectively.

*** Logitech POWERPLAY Wireless Charging System will only be available in Challenger stores ***

** Logitech G703 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse and Logitech G903 LIGHTSPEED™ Wireless Gaming Mouse will be available in all retail stores **

For more information please visit our website, our blog or connect with us on Facebook.

* Information and pictures courtesy of Logitech and SPRG *

Start of Q4 2017, Final Sprint

The final quarter of year 2017 starts today on 1st October 2017, for some of you folks out there, this is also the final sprint to the end of year 2017, on 31st December 2017. Everyone of us had our own unique and special journeys during the first three quarters of year 2017, yet we might have something in common with the tough and difficult economy and market sentiments.

I am taking this time to write on a number of different topics in one article, I might expand on them that I wrote here today, if my time and research planning permits.

Updates: Running my own photography business

How was your first three quarters of year 2017 been? It had been nothing less than a very tough and challenging journey for the past nine months. Running a photography business, time was spent on building the foundations, networks, systems, marketing, branding, collaborations, partnerships and last but not least, finding the business. We are looking at 80% of time spent on the above and 20% spent on actual photography shoot and post photography shoot.

I never really talked or revealed too much into this area, not just that it is private, most of the time, many people around you don’t understand, don’t want to listen, learn and understand. There are also a handful of people around you that don’t want you to succeed, they want you to fail, sad but true (or they might change their stance and words and said they don’t mean it after they spilled the “wrong words” out from their mouth”)

There are a small group of photographer friends that can and will understand what I am going through. Listening to their own photography business journeys over the years, there is a similarity in my own personal journey. Therefore, I still have to grind my way through and make a breakthrough.

Micro influencers – a bit more differentiation into Mini and Micro influencers groupings?

Recently, there has been quite a lot of debates and discussions on the topic of influencers, from both sides of the equation, the brands/companies, public relations agencies, digital agencies etc on one side and a diverse group of influencers on the other side.

I came across this infographic article on LinkedIN written by Preeti Kumar – 7 Influencer types & How to work with them. Reading and analysing this infographic, I was looking at where I fit into – Key Opinion Leaders: Creatives, partly Micro influencers and product seeders.

On the role of micro influencers, it is probably a bigger area of growth and investment for both sides, let’s put it as demand and supply sides of things. While the quantitative part of micro influencers have been debated, some put 20,000, some put 10,000. Personally, I reckon that it is totally and suitably possible, to differentiate them into Mini and Micro influencers.

Why use Mini and Micro? What are the differences?

I am using the two words from a Forex trading lingo, mini and micro lot.

Standard Lot = 100,000 units

Mini Lot = 10,000 units

Micro Lot = 1,000 units

Translating it into digital marketing side of things

Influencer – Above 100,000 followers

Mini Influencer – Above 10,000 followers

Micro Influencer – 3,000 to 5,000 followers?

This is just something that crossed my mind and got me thinking, I have yet to analyse and put into greater details. It’s still a preliminary stage for me, if the opportunity arises to work with other digital marketers on this, that would be nice. Nevertheless, I hope to continue working on this topic in the future if my timing and commitment allows.

We must go beyond ROI with numbers and statistics, while quantitative is important, influencer marketing has a lot of qualitative, intrinsic and psychological aspects that cannot be measured by numers, revenue, statistics and numbers.

Planning to expand with/in the following areas/collaborations

Although the list above doesn’t directly translate into business for my photography business, they reinforce my networkings, contacts and collaborations on my digital marketing, technology writing and social media.

Over the past three quarters of 2017, I unlocked small achivements for myself when organisations approach me, to have a chat and see where I work together with them from there. All these are small testimonials for myself and everything that I put in for the past 10 years at least through writing, social media and photography.

Of mental health, physical health, emotions, mind and soul

A friend whom I look up upon, a very creative and talanted person in writing, photography and music, Fernando Gros, recently wrote an article titled “Creative Health Part 2 – Your Mind and Your Path”. I saw his tweet, read his article and I am kind of like being “shaken up”. In my reply to his tweet, I posted “After reading your article, it dawned upon me that I am stressed out, not taking care of my mind, body and soul.”

The truth and harsh reality is that it can be really brutally hard at times, we just have to take care of ourselves, going through regular maintenance. Not to mention, even the best engineering devices also wear and break down even with regular maintenance.

In case you missed it, Fernando published this book title “No Missing Tools”, do check out my article and have a read and you would be enlightened and know why I respect his works and views a lot.

Where do I go from here?

The seeds had been planted, watered and being taken care of. While not everyday is sunshine, there were rain, storm, bad weather that hit the growth of the plants. Hopefully, the changes and corrections were in place to make the seedlings grow better and faster, allowing me to harvest the fruits of my labour.

Being thankful and grateful

In this short time frame period of a year, there were those that have happy news while I am fighting pain, hurt and loss. Losing 6 people, 4 were relatives of which 2 of them were very close to me, the others were 1 mentor and 1 uni junior.

I may not have the most happy and joyful time during the past 1 year time frame, one of the toughest time that I went through. It made me reflect a lot and be thankful and grateful for everything that I have, the family, relatives and friends support.

Final thoughts

Technology and disruptions are not going to destroy us, ignorance and complacency are going to destroy us.

We MUST start to make the changes, no matter how painful and difficult it will be or else, we might be in a spiral downfall for the next 1-2 generations.

In the midst of re-strategising and making changes to my flow, workflow, daily flow, well-being, growth and rest, while embarking on my Final Sprint Q4 2017.

Jabra introduce Evolve 75e

Jabra, a market leader in professional communications and sound solutions, recently launched a new headset into their Evolve range, for working professionals. Bluetooth earphones are getting more popular in the market today, in both leisure and professional market segments. The Jabra Evolve 75e is an example of bluetooth earbuds for the professional market segment. While the Jabra Evolve 75e is catered for the professional market segment, I reckon the leisure consumer market might be keen in this bluetooth earbuds too.

The Jabra Evolve 75e looks pretty sleek and beautifully designed, packed with pretty good technical specifications and capabilities. Let me share more information on the Jabra Evolve 75e from the press release below:

Jabra, a leader in professional communications and sound solutions, is extending its market-leading Evolve range of headsets for professional use with the Jabra Evolve 75e – for the first time adding an earbud design to the range which has sold over 2.5 million units worldwide.

Since the launch in 2014, the Evolve product range has been engineered to enable focus and distraction free working. Jabra established that the biggest inhibitors to the productivity of office workers are noise and interruptions. Research unveiled that the majority of today’s flexible workers (78%)1 say their personal productivity at the office is impacted by noise.

Therefore, the Danish sound experts were the first to introduce Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) and busylight into the office. The Evolve 75e’s design brings a familiar consumer design into a professional environment and still includes all the winning signatures of the Evolve range: wireless freedom, great sound, UC-compatibility, ANC and busylight.

The earbud form factor power bundle is the ultimate business tool for sound and freedom helping to maintain collaboration, concentration and productivity in busy, open place offices without the need for designated quiet rooms.

Enabling focus and distraction free working

Bluetooth stereo earbuds are amongst the fastest growing consumer electronics category2. Employees looking for solutions that enable focus and distraction free working, are increasingly seeking this wearing style for both their professional and personal use. As it stands, every three in ten (31%) business professionals wear earbuds in the workplace3.

The Evolve 75e have been designed to meet this development by leveraging Jabra’s unique microphone expertise, dispensing with the boom arm for the microphone but retaining professional grade call quality. The around the neck wearing style offers flexibility and mobility – improving collaboration in the office and giving flexibility to those who make work calls both inside and outside the office.

With the standard Jabra Evolve UC-certifications to be ready at launch, the earbuds will ensure conference calls are of high quality and drive UC-adoption by seamlessly and intuitively bridging the gap between mobile phone and computer.

This announcement follows the successful launch of the Evolve 75 headphones earlier this year. Now Jabra ensures a real choice for those looking for the same features and quality, but in earbud form, which is why this product is called Evolve 75e.

“The Jabra Evolve 75e offers a first glimpse into the future of workplace sound solutions. The headset has been designed to meet the needs of today’s mobile and increasingly connected worker who demands the same user experience from both consumer and professional solutions,” said Holger Reisinger, SVP at Jabra. “Jabra’s innovative microphone technology, in combination with Active Noise Cancellation, allow for full concentration whilst delivering exceptional sound quality and enabling true mobile productivity. Probably the first product of its kind, the wireless UC-enabled office earbuds are sure to drive the adoption of unified communications.”

Jabra Evolve 75e at a glance:

  • Design – Earbud form factor
  • Amazing sound – UC enabled sound quality, engineered to drive professional UC
  • Endurance – All day power
  • Enhanced productivity – Integrated busylight and Active Noise Cancellation

Find out more about the Jabra Evolve 75e at: www.jabra.com/evolve75e

1 Jabra Knowledge Workers Survey, Lindberg 2015

http://www.gfk.com/insights/press-release/bluetooth-and-multiroom-are-still-trending/

3 Jabra Knowledge Workers Survey, Lindberg 2015

Pricing and availability

The Jabra Evolve 75e will be available in Singapore from the beginning of 2018

Price: MSRP at 259 USD, 239 EUR

* Information and picture courtesy of Jabra and GLOO PR *

New areas of Tech interest: Big Data, Security, Backup

I have been writing and covering on a few areas of technology inside my personal website/blog here for a number of years. Initially, it was mainly on consumer technology products, however, over the years, I had started venturing into B2B/Enterprise technology coverage, mainly Internet of Things (IoT) in a few areas/brands such as The Next Wave and Trends (from Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai)AXON by Greenwave Systems, Future Workplace with Dell and Journey to 5G with Singtel. It had been a very interesting technology adventure into the levels of B2B, thankful to those brands/companies who gave me the opportunities to connect, learn, cover and write about them.

Over the past year, I began to discover new areas of technology interest, while it is probably more applicable on a B2B level, it can also be applied at the B2C consumer level too. One of the areas was on big data and analysis, starting with this forum that I attended recently in June 2017 – “F1 Technology and the Impact on Healthcare“. The next few interest technology fields that came up on my radar, following this particular forum that I attended were data protection, cybersecurity and backup.

My tech coverage journey in these few areas were all related together, I was working on building a basic starter personal cloud storage solution for my photography business/photographs storage/digital marketing/social media/documents, I got a WD My Cloud 4TB a few months back too.

Next up was on data protection and backup, Acronis then came into the picture. I saw and read about them around 1-2 years back, initially I didn’t know too much about them. Coincidentally, I got to know about them more in details and what they are doing, most recently with the launch of the Acronis True Image 2018 that I discovered more about their products and services in the areas of data protection and backup.

I am going to work on an article on the Acronis True Image 2018 for my small business, for my photography business/photographs storage and also my other work on digital marketing/social media and also my documents storage. Do keep a lookout and I would update with a link here when it is completed!

During the recent 2017 Singapore GP, I also learned about the partnership between Acronis and Scuderia Torro Rosso Formula 1 Racing Team! They are the FIRST Singapore company to sponsor a F1 racing team! It’s not just about sponsorship, they are using Acronis technology in motorsports! Being a motorsports and F1 fan and also an technology enthusiast myself, it’s like an omen for me to use Acronis technology solutions!

It would be a dream come true, if I can cover more in depth and share on Acronis technology in motorsports! I can bring my camera gears to racing tracks and garages! Motorsports + technology + photography sounds like what I like to do!

Stay tuned, hopefully, I can share more on these areas of technology, big data, data protection, cybersecurity and data backup.

Oh yes, maybe more new areas such Blockchain, Bitcoin.

Singtel launched Unlimited Data, Talktime & SMS Mobile Plans

Singtel mobile users alert! I have a great news to share with you! You now can have unlimited data, talk time and SMS mobile plans! For me, currently on Data X2 plan, this new plan is a very good consideration for Singtel mobile users!

With Singtel having the fastest mobile networks and with the most recent announcements on 2 of the latest smartphone brands available in the market, the Apple iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy Note 8, this would be an ideal time to get this new unlimited data, talk time and SMS mobile plan by Singtel!

Although I am not too sure if there is a need for me to have unlimited data plan at this time, having this option to choose unlimited data plan is definitely worth a consideration! This would be ideal for professionals who are on the move a lot outside and need the huge mobile data for their work.

Let me share with you more information on the new Singtel unlimited data, talk time and SMS mobile plans:

Press Release: 15th September 2017

Singtel today upped the ante with the launch of Singapore’s first mobile plans with unlimited local data, talktime and SMS/MMS available on the country’s fastest network that provides peak mobile data speeds of 500Mbps (1) nationwide.

From today, Singtel Combo 3, 6 and 12 mobile plans will be upgraded with unlimited talk time and SMS. Customers who sign up for these plans can enjoy unlimited local data with DATA X INFINITY, an add-on available at just S$39.90/month.

Mr Yuen Kuan Moon, Chief Executive Officer, Consumer Singapore, Singtel, said, “We recognise that our customers want flexibility and control over their mobile plans. That’s why our DATA X 2 and DATA X 3 add-ons have been so well-received. And now with DATA X INFINITY as a further option, our customers can enjoy infinite possibilities for how they live, work and play. We’re pleased to offer our customers a truly unlimited mobile experience. With our nationwide network upgrade to 500Mbps supporting the latest iPhone 8 and iPhone X, as well as Samsung Note8, our customers can now enjoy the full potential of their devices at blazing speeds.’’

At launch, customers who subscribe to Combo 6 and 12 plans will enjoy a free data roaming plan each month. They can choose from any of Singtel’s extensive range of data roaming options of up to S$35 to stay connected while overseas.

Customers who subscribe to DATA X INFINITY will also have the option to share their data with up to three family members with a MobileShare supplementary plan, which is available at S$10.70/month per line.

For more information on the new Combo Plans and DATA X INFINITY, please visit www.singtel.com/combo and www.singtel.com/dataX.

Notes

(1) Available on Cat 11 and above mobile phones such as iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, Samsung Note8, Galaxy S8, S8+, S7 and S7 edge, Sony Xperia XZ Premium, LG G6, HTC U11 and more 

* Information courtesy of Singtel Corporate Communications *

New LEGO Certified Store Opening at ION Orchard

Lego fans in Singapore alert! There is a new LEGO Certified Store (LCS) opening soon at ION Orchard! Many exciting things, events and promotions are taking place during their opening specials at the new LCS in Singapore, at ION Orchard!

For those Star Wars Lego fans like me, who are very excited about the Ultimate Collector Series (UCS) Millennium Falcon, that is launching on 1st October 2017, it’s time to visit LCS @ ION Orchard and check out more details on the largest LEGO set ever!

Fellow LEGO fans, let me share with you more information and details on LCS @ ION Orchard opening on 14th September 2017:

LEGO® Singapore and Bricks World are pleased to announce the opening of a new LEGO® Certified Store (LCS) in Singapore on 14th September 2017.  Located at ION Orchard #04-15, the store will be the largest in Singapore and will provide a complete LEGO experience via a Store Calendar of events and activities.

There are over S$28,000 of prizes to be won on the opening weekend via Sure Win Scratch Cards and Family Lucky Dips.

The LEGO® Certified Store at ION Orchard will be the seventh store to be managed by Bricks World in Singapore.

“The opening of this new store as a Flagship location further strengthens our presence in Singapore and supports our aim of providing more attractions on Orchard Road for Singaporeans and tourists alike,’ said George Papasolomontos, Managing Director, Bricks World.  ‘The space and set up in this store will allow customers to experience a more complete program of interactive LEGO activities, similar to that in the US and Europe, through the Bricks World LEGO Certified Store Calendar launched in July 2017’.
 
Creating a Record Attempt Challenge in Singapore!  In 2014, Associate Professor of Maths, Steven Miller from Williams College, Massachusetts, challenged his class to set a record by building a 3152 piece LEGO® Super Star Destroyer in 10 minutes or less. They spent weeks strategizing the best way to collaboratively build and managed to achieve a record of 10 minutes and 21 seconds.

The new LEGO® UCS Millennium Falcon, launching 1st October 2017, is more than twice that size at a challenging 7541 pieces – the largest LEGO set ever.

Bricks World is inviting schools, colleges, groups or teams of LEGO fans based in Singapore to try for their own record attempt in 2018.  Interested participants need to send a proposal to Bricks World (register@bricksworld.com) by 30th November 2017, teams appointed to take part in the record challenge will be notified by January 2018.

Additional Information:

LEGO® CERTIFIED STORE

LCS AT ION Orchard
2 Orchard Turn #04-15, Singapore
Official Opening: 14th-17th September 2017
Time: 10:30am to 9:30pm

OPENING SPECIALS

VIP Opening Event – 50 VIP Bricks World members will experience the store at an exclusive preview opening on 13th September 2017.  An invitation only event, the program will include special offers, an engraved Pick a Model London Guard (6194484), the opportunity to be the first to view and pre-order the new UCS Millenium Falcon (75192), an exclusive goody bag and the chance to own an exclusive LEGO branded Retail Store (41045) set.

Sure Win Scratch Card – Win over S$28,000 of prizes.  All consumers who spend $100 or more on any LEGO® products in a single receipt from 14th to 17th September will be entitled to a scratch card and stand a chance to instantly redeem many sure win prizes that include:
1 of 5 LEGO Ghostbusters™ Firehouse Headquarters (75827) sets
1 of 5 LEGO Disney Castle Sets (71040) sets
1 of 10 LEGO Winter Holiday Train (10254) sets
1 of 10 LEGO Chess 2017 (6175440) sets
1 of 102 LEGO Captain Jack Sparrow & Captain Salazar Brickheadz (41593+41594) sets
1 of 34 LEGO Shark Suit Guy Keychain (6178213)
1 of 100 LEGO Ninjago Bundle of 3 Minifigures (71019)
1 of 102 LEGO Classic Blue Creativity box (10706) sets
1 of 102 LEGO City Jungle Starter (60157) sets
1 of 102 LEGO Star Wars™ First Order Transporter Speeder Battle Packs (75166)
1 of 26 LEGO The Joker™ Battle Training polybags (30523)
1 of 102 LEGO Vampire and Bat (6137132) sets
1 of 80 LEGO Brick Calendar (6175435) sets
1 0f 80 LEGO Piggy Coin Banks (6112760)
1 0f 100 LEGO Keychain Hot Dog Guy (6139393)
1 of 40 LEGO Pencil Pot (6106640)

Redemption is limited to 1st 250 consumers each day. Terms and conditions apply.

LEGO Branded Retail Store (41045) – The first 50 customers each day to spend over S$150 are entitled to an exclusive miniature “LEGO® Branded Retail Store” (40145) set

Family Gift with Purchase Lucky Dip – make a purchase in-store, and children up to 16 years old can take part in the Lucky Dip to receive a small gift. One redemption per child.

Exclusive Opening Offers – get up to 50% off a variety of products.  Exclusive Opening Offers only during the opening period.

Mascot Appearances – Come say hi and snap a picture with life-sized costume characters: Lloyd, Master Wu and Nya  14th September 10am, 15-16th September 7pm, 17th September 12pm.  Kai mascot appearances 16/17th September 1pm and 4pm

Terms & Conditions apply to the above offers

* Information courtesy of LEGO Singapore and Bricks World *

Acronis True Image 2018

The business world today for working professionals today, the leisure/internet/social media world today for the rest of us, everyone of us are living in a more highly connected with internet and social media era. The number of users on the internet, social media platforms, social media apps and blogging, whether for work or leisure, they are huge and it will only get bigger and wider.

With the vast numbers of people using the internet and social media and this number will only get bigger, this poses a risk for the internet and social media, security and privacy. Cybersecurity (for your works, documents and data) is now an even more important and crucial area that requires immediate attention and action for businesses and also for individuals nowadays. The dangers of ransomware is getting more prevalent recently, anybody and everybody using the internet and social media is a target.

Running a small photography business (with home office as my administrative/back end work base while doing my assignments/projects/works outside), as well as being a social media enthusiast, doing some digital marketing work, an Information Technology (IT) enthusiast, cybersecurity has moved up the ladder on my topics that I am covering and writing more (my other tech interest topics are IoT, 5G networks, IT trends, fin-tech).

Let me tell you a true story, my own personal story on my journey in building up my data protection and backup system for my small photography business + social media + digital marketing + data protection workflow, it took me a bit longer than expected (1 year+), partially procrastinating, partially not knowing where/how to look for and start. My friend HP from Hpility SG (where I currently have a working partnership with him and his blog-portal) introduced me to Acronis, I shared my requirements on what I needed and he mentioned to me their Acronis True Image suits what I need and want for my current setup.

Thereafter, I knew more about Acronis and their Acronis True Image backup software program. I am setting up my Acronis True Image 2018 and I hope to share my stories, experiences in the Acronis True Image 2018 setup with my own personal cloud storage.

Today I am going to share more information and details on the Acronis True Image 2018, for those planning to find a backup and data protection software program for themselves on an individual basis or home office basis:

Press Release – 28th August 2017

Acronis, a global leader in hybrid cloud data protection for business and consumers, today introduced Acronis True Image 2018. The new release includes major updates the program’s backup and recovery capabilities, and is the first personal backup software to incorporate artificial intelligence-based technology designed to actively protect data against ransomware.

“As the first company to offer full image backup for consumers, Acronis pioneered intelligent backup for home use,” said Serguei Beloussov, co-founder, and CEO of Acronis. “Acronis True Image 2018 continues that tradition as the first and only personal backup software that uses artificial intelligence to defend consumers against one of the fastest growing threats to their data.”

By combining the company’s artificial intelligence (AI) based ransomware defense, called Acronis Active Protection™, with a new generation of enhanced backup and recovery capabilities such as active disk cloning and automated WinPE boot media creation, Acronis True Image 2018 represents a new standard of “intelligent backup” for individuals, families and small businesses.

Reliable backup and recovery

During a survey of Acronis customers during July 2017, 95 percent of respondents said they choose and recommend Acronis True Image because the backups are so reliable. The 2018 release improves on those core backup and recovery capabilities even more, with enhancements such as:

  • Active disk cloning: Users can create an exact replica of an active Windows system without stopping and restarting using bootable media, making migration to a faster or larger disk even easier.
  • An updated media builder: Automatically creates boot media for a WinPE environment, so users can quickly resolve driver configuration issues and recover their systems to the same or new hardware.
  • Continuous backup to the cloud: Users can update their backups as they work on files while securely storing an off-site version in the cloud.
  • Virtual drive conversion: Users can test the recoverability of the full image backups, or run their system in a Hyper-V virtual environment to test various applications without risking the primary system, and move complete system image as a virtual drive to another computer.
  • Faster incremental backups: Up to three-times faster with new Changed-Block Tracker technology that tracks image changes in real time.
  • Automatic mobile backup to NAS devices: More than a quarter of Acronis users have network-attached storage (NAS) at home. Now they don’t have to think about backing up a mobile device, since the process starts as soon as the mobile device connects to the same Wi-Fi as the NAS.

Acronis True Image 2018 also addresses the needs of the next generation of users by expanding its support for social media with automatic backups of Instagram accounts, including photos, comments and statistics, such as the number of likes, tags or comments a post gets.

Easy control

A new visual interface addresses the preferences of 83% of Acronis customers who reported that they want more information and insights into their backups. Graphically displaying backup activity and statistics, it allows users to manage their backups at a glance – including how much data they have stored, the types of files in storage, and the status of backups.

Secure data protection

The ability to restore a system or individual files is critical following a ransomware attack. Acronis True Image 2018 not only makes recovery automatic, it takes the initial protection a step further by preventing ransomware from corrupting a user’s data in the first place.

Using machine learning models, Acronis Active Protection recognizes unusual patterns of file access. These models are generated in Acronis’ dedicated Cloud AI infrastructure, which processes data from hundreds of thousands of malicious and legitimate processes to build those models. Those models are incorporated directly into Acronis Active Protection, allowing Acronis True Image 2018 to protect a system’s data independently, without the need for an internet connection.

When Active Protection detects unusual activity, it checks the process using both heuristics analysis as well as those models of expected and unexpected behavior. If the process is identified as potentially malicious, Acronis True Image 2018 alerts the user of the suspicious activity.

With real-time monitoring, Acronis Active Protection verifies all processes so approved activities are allowed to run, while potentially dangerous behavior is detected and stopped. Then, if any files are encrypted during a ransomware attack, Acronis True Image 2018 automatically restores those files from backup.

While cybercriminals increasingly target backup files to keep users from restoring their system without paying the ransom, Acronis’ technology specifically defends backup files as well as the original data. Ransomware damages are expected to top $5 billion this year, and Acronis’ unique self-defense of backup files is Acronis True Image 2018’s way to ensure a user’s data remains untouched.

More than 60 percent of Acronis customers surveyed said they worry about ransomware. A new Security Dashboard gives users complete visibility over Acronis Active Protection so you can be reassured that their data is protected. It lets them track the number of processes that have been flagged as potentially dangerous, see which ones were blocked, and manage a whitelist of trusted applications.

Pricing and Availability

There are three editions of Acronis True Image 2018 available to accommodate customer use and preferences. All versions include Acronis Active Protection against ransomware and cover an unlimited number of mobile devices.

  • Standard is a perpetual license that is offered without any cloud storage or access to cloud-based features for customers who prefer to store their data on local drives only. Pricing starts at 69.99 SGD for one computer.
  • Advanced is a one-year subscription that includes 250 GB of cloud storage and access to all cloud-based features. Pricing starts at 69.99 SGD per year for one computer.
  • Premium is a one-year subscription that includes exclusive blockchain-based data certification and electronic signature capabilities, as well as 1 TB of cloud storage. Pricing starts at $99.99 per year for one computer.

Advanced and Premium subscribers can purchase additional cloud storage within the application. Advanced Licenses can upgrade to a maximum of 500 GB. If more storage is needed, Advanced users can upgrade to a Premium License, which offers cloud storage of up to 5 TB.

Instagram backup launches today in limited markets and will be available worldwide on September 4, 2017

Acronis True Image 2018 is available for purchase at acronis.com/en-us/personal/computer-backup/ and through major software resellers and retail stores worldwide.

NOTE: For small business owners who need to protect more than five computers, or companies that have multiple workstations and servers, Acronis Backup 12.5 scales to protect thousands of computers and provides convenient tools for group management of environments of any complexity. Details are available at acronis.com/en-us/business/backup/.

* Information courtesy of Acronis Asia Pte Ltd *

999th Post: Happy SG52

I was initially planning to write this post after SG52 National Day Parade on 9th August 2017. Things didn’t go to plan with work, planning and disruptions for the month of August, I am also reaching my own personal milestone for my personal blog/website here, this is my 999th post and it has a special theme to it.

Celebrating SG52, Singapore’s 52nd birthday in 2017, I was looking back at our growth, changes and challenges as far as I can remember. In most recent years, the world is facing some huge, fast and furious disruptions and changes to how they work and live. There were times whereby the pace was so relentless that some segments of the community might not be able to catch up. Running a small photography business at the start of year 2017, coupled with my reading, observance and analysis of business, finance, economics topics, I had a big taste of the difficulties in doing a small business in a highly competitive world faced with market saturation.

There are a number of areas/topics that are affecting and impacting us, from economics, industrial, business, technology, sociology, the following topics are just close to my heart and brains.

Technology Innovation and Disruptions

As an avid consumer of technology products, a tech lover, I have seen first hand on how innovation and disruptions took place over the past ten years, been there and still inside there. These two matters are really huge, it can help us to grow or it have (if not might) replace us (partially and hopefully not totally replacing us) in what we are currently doing, in our work, in our leisure life.

Technology innovations have also make us more lazy and stupid, that is not good and it’s dangerous for us.

Complacency

This issue to me is something that strikes a deep concern and fear. Complacency affects everyone of us at least some points in our life/studies/career, a very dangerous situation to be in. Once we fall from it, we have to pick ourselves up and make a come back again.

It is a very worrying issue when we seem (or are already very) complacent from where we are right now, oblivious of the regional and world situations.

More graciousness or more selfish?

This topic was brought up recently during a kopitiam lah kopi session a.k.a coffeeshop chit chat with a very old classmate from my primary school days. I have seen more groups and societies starting and doing many initiatives for different groups/causes in the society.

At the same time, I have also observed more selfish and rude actions/behaviours in society, happening all around us.

Are we more graciousness or more selfish? Are we growing more towards on both extreme ends of this spectrum?

Situational awareness – microeconomics and macroeconomics

How are of our situational awareness in our domestic front (microeconomics) and regional/international front (macroeconomics)? Do we know the competition and challenges that we are facing domestially and internationally?

Or we having a don’t care, don’t want to know mindset?

Stagnation

Have we stagnated? Looking at the various industries, this is not going to be a clear cut answer, probably some industries have stagnated, some are doing pretty alright, which are the ones to expand and grow for the future of Singapore?

On a personal basis, have we gone on to improving ourselves in our skills and knowledge? Do we want to cross learn other subject areas to improve our overall self, not just for professional career, for your own personal self improvement and enrichment? Having a paper qualification might not account for too much after some time in the workforce.

Final thoughts and views

What I shared and written above, are just the tip of the iceberg. We are facing many many more issues in other different areas that are not brought up here in my article.

It takes two hands to clap, the entire Singapore has to stand up and be part of the change, innovation and action. There are many many many things to do and it must not be done by one side or group of people only. Only when everybody is united together can we ensure the future of Singapore. The theme for National Day Parade 2017 is One Nation Together, is perfect for the article that I have written here.

While I count my blessings and be thankful for what we have here in Singapore, I also reflect, think and plan for the future of Singapore. We need to innovate, adapt and change for the future of Singapore. By everyone of us coming together to do the above, innovate, adapt and change, in their own respective fields, expertise and interests, we can continue to grow for the future of Singapore.

Time to find opportunities/growth in an era of lesser opportunities/growth.

Happy 52nd Birthday Singapore!