Archive for October, 2006|Monthly archive page

Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Part 2

If all my trivia-gathering and Internet-trolling could lead to one good thing, this would not be it. A contestant on the Who Wants to be a Millionaire show, Chase Sampson was in the hot seat, ready to answer the first question. How will he fare? Watch it!

(Contrast with my idol, John Carpenter)


Top 10 Copycat cars

As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I’ve gathered 10 cases of ultimate flattery in autos here, where the industrial design of one is blatantly copied onto another. Here you go, the showdown of the look-alike cars (and a bus):

1. Daewoo Matiz vs Chery QQ

This one was so extreme, some parts of one car fit into the other (e.g. door panel, bonnet etc).

Daewoo Matiz vs Chery QQ

2. Vauxhall Frontera vs Landwind

Frontera vs Landwind

3. Honda CRV vs Laibao SRV

Check out the semi-Audi front logo too!

Honda CRV vs Laibao SRV

4. Mercedes C vs Geely Merrie 300

The Geely was shown in an auto exhibition. I don’t think it was eventually produced looking like this though.

Mercedes C vs Geely Merrie 300

5. Neoplan Starliner vs Zonda A9

Starliner vs Zonda A9

6. Rolls-Royce Phantom vs Hongqi HQD

Rolls-royce Phantom vs Hongqi HQD

7. Smart vs er. Chinese Smart

Smart vs Chinese Smart

8. Toyota Prado vs Dadi Shuttle
Prado vs Dadi Shuttle

9. Nissan XTrail vs Greatwall Sing

Nissan XTrail vs Greatwall Sing

10. BMW 7 vs BYD F6

For this, the copying is not so drastic except the lights, but it does get brownie points for imitating the badge as well.

BMW7 vs BYD F6


11. Bonus! Toyota Logo vs Geely Logo

Toyota logo vs Geely logo

Toyota sued and won though. goes Live!

Gems Sty goes .com!
Three months ago, I started this blog to document the interesting tidbits I stumble across – the gems of the Internet. I wondered whether it’d quickly fizzle into disuse and abandoned as the interest and momentum weaned. 3 months and more than 100 posts later, the opposite has happened – it is gathering momentum, more people are reading it, and I’m still getting a kick out of posting.

Thank you, readers! 3 months may not be much – but in the online world, 1 man-year is probably equivalent to 7.35 blog years or something. So thank you for your support, and hope that you’d continue to find these stuff interesting. And if there’s anything that you’d like to suggest or improve, do voice up! Not only do I get tremendous encouragement from comments and suggestions, it’d also affirm that there are actually other real people writing what I write.

The sharp-eyed among you may have noticed this for the past few days – this site now has its own domain –!

Well for now it’s just cosmetic ego-massaging, but I see it as the first step onto bigger things. Apologies to people from mainland China who still cannot access this site directly – this site is still hosted by WordPress. The RSS feed is now at Do update your bookmarks!

Once again, thank you!

[11 Nov update: I’m having troubles with RSS feed for, and I have reverted back to as the primary domain. would still work though – it’d redirect you here.

Treadmill Dance

Treadmills, to me, equate monotonous boredom.  And so I was delighted to see an excellent piece of dance choreography that leverages the treadmills for a number of dance moves, making exercise on treadmills seem like a fun activity – no less thanks to a great matching tune, “Here it goes again” by OK Go.

Concrete Pipe Hotel

concrete pipe hotel

I had fond memories of my primary school, where abandoned concrete pipes like these would lie around in the field. We would climb onto it, in it, skip around it, hide in it. The thick, solid pipe seemed like an impregnable fortress – while we shared jokes and secrets within the echo-y walls. Perhaps the designer went to a similar school too!

This is a ho(s?)tel in Austria, designed by art college graduate Andreas Strauss. Organized into clusters of threes, they nestle in green fields beside the Danube River. Facilities like shower, bar and cafeteria are in a central location. The hotel currently works on an honor system – you leave behind however much you think is fair for the duration of your stay.

Now I”m just wondering – is there a little big plug that’d cap the sky-hole should there be rain?


Red Guinness!

red guinness
Woo! RED Guinness! Perhaps it’d be a hit in the next Chinese New Year! Personally I find it a little queer though – the whole image of the stout, rich, malty and dark Guinness seem a little frivolous – almost like it’s trying to snatch some market share from the likes of Baccardi. Apparently the taste is still the same though.

Maybe Dracula would switch.

Notebook and Pencil

notebook and pencil

A notebook and a pencil. Or maybe, a notebookandapencil.

Dutch Design Prize 2006

Bicycle stand with pump

The Dutch Design Award winners for 2006 are out!  There are more than 15 categories: transport, product, illustration, interaction, well basically everything. Head over to the site – you can also see last year’s winners there. For those of us who have not quite mastered Nederlandse, Babelfish Translator can help – well at least somewhat!

[Pictured above – Winner for Public Space Product – A bicycle bump has been integrated unobtrusively into a standard bicycle parking beam.]

Virtual Virtual Tourism


Instead of touring physical landmarks on Earth, Synthravel organizes tours to online places – places in online games such as Everquest, World of Warcraft, Second Life etc – so you don’t have to have a game character to see what it’s like, and there’d actually be a tour guide bringing you around to the more interesting places (you can request).

Now is this surreal or what? Many years ago, some predicted that tourism would decrease as they are replaced by online tourisms – we can see that that hasn’t happened. A virtual experience is no match for a physical one. But what about a virtual experience of a virtual world? Hmm. Subversion of the greatest order.


A very poignant video. Reminds me at times of echoes in a room. At times, sunflowers in the field. At times, dark alley with trash cans. A video that provokes reflection.