How Rich Are You?

(thanks to Soon Kok Siong for bringing this to my attention)

If you dont really feel rich, then try putting your salary into this page to get a perspective of how you stand compared to the 7 billion humans around you.



Global Rich List, run by Care International, shows where you stand among your fellow humans. Remember to scroll down the page for some interesting comparisons.


Anecdote: Not Following The Usual Path


A jobless man applied for the position of ‘office boy’ at a very big company.

The employer interviewed him, then a test: clean the floor.

“You are hired.” – the employer said. ”Give me your email address, and I’ll send you the application to fill, as well as when you will start.”

The man replied, “I don’t have a computer, neither an email.”

“I’m sorry,” said the employer, “if you don’t have an email , you cannot have the job.”

The man left with no hope. He didn’t know what to do, with only $10 USD in his pocket.

He then decided to go to the supermarket, bought a 10 kg tomato crate, then sold the tomatoes door to door. In less than two hours, he succeeded and doubled his capital. He repeated the operation 3 times and returned home with $60 USD. The man realized that he could survive by this way, and started to go everyday earlier, and returned late. Thus, his money doubled or tripled everyday. Shortly later, he bought a cart, then a truck, and then he had his own fleet of delivery vehicles.

Five years later, the man’s company was one of the biggest food retailers. He started to plan his family’s future, and decided to have a life insurance. He called an insurance broker and chose a protection plan. When the conversation was concluded, the broker asked him his email. The man replied: “I don’t have an email.”

The broker replied curiously, “You don’t have an email, and yet have succeeded to build an empire. Do you imagine what position you could have if you had an email?”

The man paused for a while, and replied: “An office boy!”

Moral of the Story
Don’t be discouraged if something is not in your favor today. You dont know what the future holds for you. Dont be afraid to take the path less trodden.

The Meeting Before the Meeting

This is a management tip from David De Ford.

If you constantly find yourself from being opposed by certain parties or even an individual in meetings, try to hold a meeting with these person/parties before the actual meeting. Let them know what your views on the agenda of the upcoming meeting and seek their views. Try and come up with a compromise so that the actual meeting with everyone goes smoothly.

This mainly applies to large meetings like inter departmental or inter disciplinary meetings where everyone comes with their own vested interests. And when you setup a meeting before the actual meeting, you don’t have to meet everyone from that particular department. Just invite the decision maker or his delegate of authority. In this way, you both can quickly cut to the gist of the matter and when everyone attends the main meeting, they are familiar with the main points and will not bicker on the minor points. Only those points which were disagreed upon can be discussed.

This should help make meetings a little more efficient.


How Do You Find Your Missing Camera?

If you’ve had the unfortunate experience of losing your camera, don’t fret. You can now use an online tool to locate your camera.


stolen-camera-finder helps locate your missing camera by using the serial number from the EXIF information of your picture (you have to upload an unmodified JPEG image) and searches the world wide web for a matching serial number. only works with JPEG and not RAW images (mainly due to the size of RAW files).

Then what happens?

There is no indication how fast you’ll get your camera but if finds a matching serial number on any picture posted online, it will attempt to gather as much information about the poster and send you the information. You can then forward the details to the local police.

Has this worked?

Let’s see what Kevin Hayes from Melbourne has to say about it.


And this is a map of cameras reported stolen and found.


Some of the best things in life are FREE ( I am referring to this site and not the stolen cameras 🙂  )

Left Ear or Right?

The next time you’re in a party where the music is loud and you cant hear the conversation you’re participating in, lean forward with your right ear. Studies conducted at the University of California, Los Angeles found that our ears are crossed with the two halves of our brains.

It’s a well known fact that the left brain processes speech and logic while the right brain is more musical and emotional.



Well, the right ear is connected to the left brain and therefore processes speech much better than the left ear which is more attuned to harmony (music).

So remember,

words == right ear

music == left ear


Home and Hotel Safety

This news is courtesy of a good friend who travels a lot and stays alone at hotels and at home. She saw this while on her trip to the US.

Police in the US recommends a simple safety device called the Super Grip Lock to be placed on your door lock to prevent someone from breaking in or opening your door even if they have a key.

Here’s a video showing how the device works.

If it’s not available in your local hardware store, its available on Amazon.

Virtual Assistant for the Busy Person

When a friend mentioned that he hired a virtual assistant to do some of his chores of him, I wondered how a virtual assistant can possibly help a lay person like him. But he gets someone “in the cloud” as we don’t know where this person is, most likely in India as their written English is quite good, to update his blog 5 times per week, and other ad-hoc errands like talking to the people on Fitbit to change the color of replacement strap they sent him.


He subscribes to TimeSvr’s personal plan at USD69/month. Apparently they can’t do your laundry but they can do most online and customer service related errands for you. TimeSvr can help you make arrangements to send flowers to your spouse on your anniversary, help plan the best plane schedule for your family’s (with grandma) round the world trip, find your missing UPS package and so forth.

TimeSvr also offers a business solution but for you and me, the USD69/month all-inclusive option is adequate.

TimeSvr Pricing Plans

What’s the catch?

The task must be something that can be completed within 15 minutes. If it takes more time, you can buy some extra time packets. So you get the drift.

Now if you want TimeSvr to write your next school essay for you, that’s possible but when it sounds a little Indianish, don’t blame TimeSvr!


How To Get Things Done – Buffett Style


“Decide what you want, decide what you are willing to exchange for it. Establish your priorities and go to work.”

~H. L. Hunt

This advise was given by Warren Buffett, one of the richest man in the world, to his pilot who has been flying him around the world for the past 10 years.



When the pilot asked Warren on how he manages to get things done, this was what Warren said:

  1. List down 25 things you would like to do.
  2. Circle the top 5 things that are most important to you.
  3. Break the list to two: one has your top 5 items, the other has the balance 20 items.
  4. Now make plans on how to achieve each item in your top 5 list. These plans should be concrete, step by step items.
  5. The other list with the balance 20 items becomes your AVOID AT ALL COST items. Dont touch them until you have reached your top 5 goals.

The secret in his method is not in choosing what to do. It’s choosing what not to do. This is where everyone errs. We try to juggle and dissipate our energy over so many things that we achieve average results in everything. High performance people focus on only a handful of items and excel in them.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is how Warren Buffett achieves his goals in life, don’t you think it might work for you?