Friday, December 30, 2011

Hans Rosling's 200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes!

How the income and life expectancy has changed in 200 countries for 200 years

Hans Rosling's famous lectures combine enormous quantities of public data with a sport's commentator's style to reveal the story of the world's past, present and future development.

Now he explores stats in a way he has never done before - using augmented reality animation. In this spectacular section of 'The Joy of Stats' he tells the story of the world in 200 countries over 200 years using 120,000 numbers - in just four minutes.

Plotting life expectancy against income for every country since 1810, Hans shows how the world we live in is radically different from the world most of us imagine.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Example of a letter of reference

This is one of homework that I did a year ago :)

Example of a letter of reference

Dear Sir/Madam

This is a letter of reference for Jane who is applying for the position of an activities supervisor at the children’s sports camp.

I met Jane 10 years ago in middle school. She gave me a good first impression by talking to me first with her sense of humor in a friendly way so that we got close soon and become the best friends since then. She was our class president and the leader of a volunteer club, and succeeded in leading the groups with her charismatic leadership and great abilities to entertain people. She also has a younger brother and a sister so she is accustomed to dealing with children without any trouble.

She is excellent at almost all kinds of sports, especially swimming, cycling, and volleyball, and has been in school team as a volleyball player for 3 years. In addition, she regularly participates in marathons and won the Boston Marathon last year. She also goes running every morning, so needless to say, she is extremely fit.

She has been studying Physical education at university and wants to become a sports teacher in the future. Therefore, this job would be very useful for her. Moreover, all these skills and interests she has would be helpful in making the sports camp more fun and better.

All in all, she would be the most suitable person for the position and I am really pleased to recommend Jane to you.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Korean Family Titles - Oppa/Unni/Hyung/Nuna

I would like to tell you a story that I experienced a few days ago.

I have a Malaysian friend who has got interest in Korean dramas these days and one day, he called me 'Hyung'. The moment he called me in that way, I was really embarrassed but I knew that he had no intention of teasing me and just misunderstood Korean culture so I just laughed at the awkward situation.

Then what is wrong with 'Hyung'?

There are several kinds of family titles in Korea, which play a very important role in building up as close relations as family relationships.

I am going to introduce four Korean family titles, Oppa/Unni/Hyung/Nuna. These titles will be useful if you want to get close to a Korean friend.


This part which deals with Oppa and Unni(or Onni) is especially for girls.


1. 오빠 [oppa]

OK, let us start with 'Oppa'. 'Oppa' is what girls call their older brother and what girls call their older male friend who is close to them or who they want to get close to. Korean guys like a cute girl who acts like a little sister so 'Oppa' is always ranked as the first word which guys want to hear from girls.

Here is Rain. He was born in 1982 and he is definitely older than me - I was born in 1987 - so there is no doubt that I have to call him 'Rain Oppa' if I meet him in person.


2. 언니 [unni or onni]

There is another word, 'Unni(or Onni)', which is what girls call their older sister and an older female friend who is close to them or who they want to get close to.

She is one of my favorite Korean actresses, Han Yeseul, who was born in 1981. She is older than me, so what do you think I will call her? Yes, the answer is 'Yeseul Unni(or Onni)'.


Now, it is time for boys. If you are male and use 'Oppa' or 'Unni', your Korean friend would be so confused whether you are female or male. The words you must use are 'Hyung' and 'Nuna'.


3. 형 [hyung]

It is also simple. 'Hyung' literally means older brother which boys call and it is also used for boys to call their older male friend.

How about these guys? You may recognize that it is a picture of a popular Korean idol group, Super Junior. Let us suppose that you are male and younger than them, then what should you call them? Yes, you should call them 'Hyung'.


4. 누나 [nuna]

This is the last one, 'Nuna', which is what boys call their older sister and older female friend.

For example, I prepare a picture of Girl's Generation, also a popular Korean idol group. Supposing you are male and younger than them, you would call them 'Nuna'.


5. Name or 동생 [dongseng]

Then what if you are older than them or the same age? Then you can call them their name. Dongseng is also used to call younger friends.


You would remember the story that I was called 'Hyung' by my Malaysian friend and now I think you can correct this. How did he have to call me? Yes, I am his 'Nuna', not 'Hyung'.

In short, just do not forget 'Oppa' and 'Unni' to call your older siblings or older friends if you are female. And if you are male, call your older siblings or older friends 'Hyung' and 'Nuna'.

It is not so difficult that I want you guys to remember these and use them to your Korean friends. Thanks :)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Example of a Birthday Speech

I got an assignment about a birthday speech in Public Speaking class a few weeks ago but it was quite hard to find any example on the Internet. So I'd like to share my speech example with those who are looking for any sample or example of a birthday speech :)

Oh, I referred to several samples but I lost the list of the web sites that I got them from. I'll upload the list soon!

Birthday Speech

Firstly, I would like to say thank you all for coming tonight to celebrate my boyfriend Tom's 30th birthday, hope you are all having a good time.

It is hard to believe that time has flown so fast like an arrow since I celebrated his 29th birthday together. Since then, a year has already passed and today is his birthday again so I would like to raise my glass and propose a toast for who he truly is:

Tom he is a man who looks at life positively in spite of the struggles and obstacles he faces, who strongly believes in true love and practices what he believes, and who always follows his dream.

Tom loves his friends, he loves contemporary art and music, he loves strong espresso coffee, he loves having an apple with a cup of tea at night, he loves cooking and feeding me, he loves bothering me affectionately.

So on this day, on his birthday, Tom, I, as your girlfriend, just want you to know how happy I am to have you. You are a wonderful, beautiful person, and you make a real shining difference in every life you touch.

Thank you for being you Tom and I wish your health and happiness. I love you, Tom, and happy birthday. Cheers.