, with the subject “Columns”,and your attached file named as the title of your article.Include your name, year and programme in the article file.
By Calvin Chong Chi Hung, EE Yr. 4 Sem. 1
As we trundle through life, sometimes we are so caughtup in the quagmire of work and responsibilities that welose our perspectives. We are after all, like most people,who whittle down their years slaving away trying tosearch for that elusive concept of happiness. They hoardwads and wads of cash, inanely thinking that the aggran-dizement of wealth and power would contribute to theirwell-being and happiness. The unending quest wouldusually end up in a lonely death.A fable went like this. A prolific Harvard economics pro-fessor once visited a quaint fishing village in Mexico andsaw a fisherman dozing in the shades. He accosted thefisherman and asked why he was not at sea since it was agood day. The fisherman merely replied that he hadcaught enough fish for that day and it was time to rest.The professor, shocked and bemused, retorted that hewas going to give the fisherman a pro-bono lesson in eco-nomics. He told the fisherman, “You should be out at seacatching fish three times the amount of what you arecatching now. You can sell them off and get more money,hire a helper, catch more fish, get more money and get abigger boat. Two years down the road, you can open upyour own factory, and five years down, you can get itlisted on the public trades. I can guarantee you this, tenyears from now you’ll retire as a millionaire.”The fisherman, without batting an eyelid asked, “Andpray I ask sir, what would I do with all the money.”“What?” asked the professor, “With all that money, youcan retire early with your family, move to a picturesquevillage, buy a small boat , catch some fish in the morning,have an afternoon siesta in the afternoon…” to which thefisherman replied, “That is exactly what I’m doing rightnow!”Ever so often we throw ourselves headlong into the ratrace of life without knowing the whole point of it. Some-times all it takes to be happy is to have a sip of hot greentea as the rain comes pouring down, dance in the rain asthe raindrops hit your face and feel the earth crunch asyour shoes fall upon the grassy patch. Drink in the sim-plicity of life. After all, happiness is much simpler thanwhat our convoluted minds make it out to be.
By Fazlee bin Felix, CE Yr. 3 Sem. 1
Video games have always been a part of me in life. WhenI first got my hands on Mario when I was 4, I was so mes-merized by the sheer joy of moving an Italian plumberthrough worlds to save a princess that my Mom had toliterally pull me away from the console. Seventeen yearslater, I still spend some of my time collecting creatures inball capsules and shooting away monsters to save animaginary world—and I enjoy every minute of it.However, I am well aware that some of the peoplearound me are perplexed by my rather ‘childish behavior’and could not understand how I can still play games at anage where things like securing a job and getting marriedseem more paramount. After encountering so many peo-ple with this point of view, even I started to ask myself,“Am I too old to play video games?”So, I did some research on the age demographics of gam-ers, and I was surprised at what I found. According to theEntertainment Software Association’s ‘2010 EssentialFacts about the Computer and Video Games Industry’,the average age of a gamer is 34 years old! The articlealso states that 42% of heads of households informedthat they play games on wireless devices such as hand-phones and 26% of gamers in the United States are overthe age of 50 years. A study conducted by PopCap Gamesin 2010 also reported some astounding conclusions: theaverage social gamer (those who play games like Bejew-elled or are active in Facebook games like Farmville) inUnited Kingdom and the U.S. is a 43 year old woman, andmost of these social gamers are either single or marriedwith children at home. From all these data, we can easilysay that you are not too old to play video games, andhardcore gamers are not necessarily men.If this is the case, then why is the social stigma amongstthe adult population towards gaming so prominent? Ac-cording to Micheal Drucker from Gamespy.com, some of the major reasons for this phenomenon are negative per-ception by the media, the mentality among non-gamersthat video games teaches extreme violence and move-ments beyond the realms of accepted physics, and theiracceptance of the common belief that games are for kids.Well, as we all know, we can only accept the ‘facts’stated by the media with a pinch of salt, since what theyreport may not necessarily represent the whole gamingcommunity. Also, if you take a moment to really thinkabout it, board games like Monopoly and even chess areessentially violence and cruelty in disguise, teaching cru-elty to the poor (exorbitant rents for lots with hotels inMonopoly forcing players to bankruptcy) and extremeapathy towards killing (sacrificing pieces of chess for thesake of winning). I would also like to point out that someof the more sophisticated video games out there actuallyrequire a deep understanding of the laws of physics andmotion to master, like the firing of projectiles in World of Warcraft or the trajectory of the football in PES. Afterreading up to this point, I am quite sure you can see thatgamers, as it turns out, are not all kids or even teenagers.We can also gain a lot of benefit from constantly bashingon the joystick buttons. The blog tastyhuman.com lists 10benefits of playing video games:1) It teaches children about empathy and understand-ing social cues and behaviour.2) It increases cognitive skills and decision-makingcapabilities.3) It is relatively better than passively watching televi-sion.4) It alleviates daily stress and perceived mood of play-ers.5) It improves hand-eye coordination (in this case,general surgeons).6) It is a possible remedy for intense pain among sickchildren.7) It improves visual skills like periphery vision andobject tracking.8) It is a good distraction from excessive eating andsmoking.9) It can be a new way of learning something.10) It helps develop our sense of creativity and imagina-tion.In the end, we cansafely conclude thatthe fear of becomingtoo old for videogames are totallyirrelevant, as thereare a lot more adultgamers out therethan we might think.Some of the reasonsfor abhorring videogames are un-founded, and we canactually gain some-thing from playingthem. Now, if youwould excuse me, Iwould like to con-tinue on with myquest to save theworld from evilghosts and monsters.
Age Vs. Video Games
A Simple Life!
Goodwill TripGoodwill TripGoodwill TripGoodwill Tripto Cambodiato Cambodiato Cambodiato Cambodia
ByGrahamTan, the Director of International ServiceAvenue, RACUTP
Yes, Angkor Wat was amazing . Nevertheless, RotaractClub of Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (RACUTP)’s Inter-national Goodwill Trip to Angkor, Cambodia on the 13 to20 December 2010 was not all about visiting the won-ders of the ancient world. The trip was about fellowshipand service, just as the Rotaract motto states,“Fellowship Through Service”.Over the years, RACUTP has successfully carried outnumerous international goodwill trips, each with its owngoals and aims. The trip to Cambodia, RACUTP’s6
international goodwill trip was aimed at helping TaPhang Primary School, in a rural village, KanchangkoyVillage, Cambodia.Stationery and many other learning materials are hardto come by in this rural area. Clean water and electricityare also not available. Through the support of the UTPmanagement, students , and also our mother club, Ro-tary Club of Kinta, RACUTP has managed to donate 300stationery sets and 10 bio-sand filters to the school andthe villagers respectively.Besides these simple donations, participants also taughtthe school children basic English utilizing the basicKhmer they had picked up in a day. It was truly an unfor-gettable experience for participants and the school chil-dren alike. Simple games like ‘duck duck goose’ and‘eagle and mother hen’ made the farewell a heartfeltone.Other than doing most of the goodwill in the school andvillage, participants also visited the Angkor Children’sHospital, an NGO which provides free treatment forchildren. Physical Rehabilitation Center of Siam Reapwas also on the itinerary. Through these few visits, par-ticipants learned how poor the country was and howpeople have suffered due to the absence of peace.Goodwill aside, there were rewards for the participantstoo. Participants got to visit the very famous AngkorWat. A wonder of the ancient world, Angkor Wat is aplace one should not miss when in Cambodia. Partici-pants got a good view of the sunset at Tonle Sap, thegiant lake of South East Asia that every Malaysian stu-dent reads in their textbooks.The trip was an eye opener to all the 13 partici-pants. Efforts done during the trip were amazing. Thus,we hope that this will be a ripple in the ocean for notonly the club members but all in UTP to follow and con-tinue to help people in need both far and near.Group photo: the participants having as much fun touring as promoting goodwill.