My Exciting New Adventure with Spotify

Next week, I am starting a new adventure! I will be joining Spotify, as Head of Social Media, APAC.

spotifylogonewI am a huge fan of the brand so this new role is incredibly exciting for me.

When Spotify was launched in Singapore last April, I immediately signed up as a premium user.  It has a massive – and growing – catalogue of more than 20 million songs. Aside from the big names from the US and UK, you can also find Singaporean artists such as PlainsunsetCorrinne May, my talented ex-colleague Tay Kexin and her sister Kewei.

Since its public launch in 2008, Spotify has been leading a revolution across the world, shifting the  music industry’s focus toward streaming as a way to combat illegal downloading. My role will be focusing on building social marketing capabilities in Asia, shaping how Spotify communicates and engages with music lovers through social media.

Other Cool Stuff 

I had the opportunity to speak with some really passionate and inspiring people at Spotify and I really liked what was shared about the company and its culture. I was told, it is a “work hard, play hard” environment (yes, it still has the refreshing start-up vibe) and everyone works as a team towards the same vision and goals.

Extra perks – some of the offices have been known to host private concerts by popular artists! I am off to New York next week for orientation and to spend some time with the team. Who knows, I might bump into some unexpected famous faces.

Some Great Memories

I also want to take this opportunity to thank the amazing people I worked with in my previous role at SingTel. As the saying goes “There is no ‘I’ in team but there is in WIN.” Together with our agency partners – especially the team at Social@Ogilvy – we had some great successes.

I had so much fun working on the award-winning #Need4GSpeed real-time social marketing campaign and had a total blast being part of the Gordon Ramsay VS #Hawkerheroes brand campaign. The bonus – I get some cool close-up shots with Chef Ramsay!

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Exciting Time Ahead 

I am looking forward to starting my exciting new journey with Spotify!  If you have any thoughts or suggestions on how we can add value to each other’s work, feel free to drop me a note. If you are already a Spotify user, you know where to find me!

Here’s a playlist of my current favourites:

My Blog Post Featured on Tumblr Radar

Something cool happened last night.

One of my paintings (yes, of a penguin) got featured on the Tumblr Radar! Overnight, that post garnered more than 4k “love notes” (in Facebook’s terms – LIKES) and hundreds “reblogged” (in Twitter’s term – “Retweets”). As I am typing this, it has grown to more than 6.6k. My Tumblelog also gained hundreds of new followers overnight.

penguins tumblr 

For those who are not Tumblr users, the Radar is an editorial post review, curated by the Tumblr team. Once on radar, the post is highlighted on other users’ dashboard for a period of time.

I signed up on Tumblr a few years ago but wasn’t active until recently. The blog was meant to be used as a ‘creative journal’ to keep & share some random sketches, ideas and paintings I do. I hardly cross-amplify the content on my other social networks, so it is interesting how things can ‘go viral’ overnight.

I just read articles/ tips about “How to Get Featured on Tumblr Radar” and my newly set-up blog met almost NONE of the criteria. And no, I don’t know any one from the Editorial team either.

So, I believe there are a few learnings and reminders I can take away from this experience:

1) Don’t start out wanting to make anything ‘viral’. In fact, get rid of that word in your mind

2) Start with creating authentic & relevant content

3) Think of the audience you want to share it with. I tagged the post with tags like “Acrylic painting, penguins, art”, hoping I can share it with like-minded folks on Tumblr and that was probably how they found the post

4) I believe consistency in content publishing is important. I try to post at least twice a week and only share content that the blog was meant for. So, don’t expect my other obsessions (food or books) to show up on that blog, unless I decided to paint my scramble eggs or sketch my favourite author

5) There are exciting happenings & conversations happening outside of Facebook or Twitter

(And as I finished typing this post, the little penguin has 7.4k “LOVE NOTES”) Woohoo!

Online Learning: My MOOC Experience

Oxford University Press inducted “MOOC” (massive open online courses) into its Oxford Dictionaries Online recently. The definition: “A course of study made available over the Internet without charge to a very large number of people.”

Friends and family know that I love books and I love studying. I strongly believe in life-long learning. Imagine my excitement when MOOC (in the form of Coursera) came to my attention last year. I like the idea behind MOOC – to bring education to the masses, allowing more people globally the opportunity to study university level courses. All the courses are free and in most cases (from what I have read so far) so are the learning materials.

I started browsing through courses and found a broad range of subjects, from medical neuroscience, song writing, child nutrition cooking to artificial intelligence.

An Introduction to Marketing from the University of Pennsylvania was the course I eventually signed up for.

It required some level of commitment to go through all the course materials each week and participating in forums, hangouts and completing the assignments. The returns, however were great! I gained new knowledge on Customer Centricity, new  go-to-market strategies and social advertising concepts that I was not aware of. At the end of the course, I scored 91/100 for the exam and was awarded a statement of accomplishment signed by the three professors who led the course. Students can download and keep all the course materials  even after the course has ended. 

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I am currently enrolled in two other courses on Content Strategy from the Northwestern Uni and interesting one on Moralities of Everyday Life  from Yale.

While I am excitedly telling many friends about my experience with MOOC, only two have tried to do the courses. Most of the reasons are – “too busy” and “I am not very good at studying”. I would like to recommend Time Management for Dummies  to the first group of people and for the latter, it is exactly what MOOC is about. It isn’t your traditional brick and mortar classroom studying as you know it.

I have also read in news reports about low completion rate for those who enrolled.

I am definitely not an expert in the education industry.  I can’t tell if this will be a fad or it could be the future of education. BUT, I know that I’ve gained valuable insights and knowledge and I plan to continue learning.

To read review of the various MOOC providers, click here 

To my Secret santas

I LOVE Christmas.

Religious beliefs aside, Christmas means alot more than just gift exchanges, bright glittery lights, yummy food and alcohol.  (I do like Christmas sales though!)

Every year, I find myself all stressed up about having to buy ‘obligatory’ Christmas gifts for family and friends. I don’t believe in gift buying for the sake of it, esp. for people I am not close to. However, not to be the grinch at parties, I often end up doing rounds of gift exchanges (mostly secret santa styled). This year, I already have 4 secret santas!

So, in the attempt to give Christmas the true meaning of  “Season of giving”, here’s what I hope my secret santas would consider:-

I don’t want any more chocs (am on diet) and don’t need any more scented candles (I just bought a new bright lamp) and definitely don’t want any stuff toy (no space on my bed/ shelves), so if you are also stressing over what to get for my ‘obligatory gift’ …. please just donate in my name (my email at pris_tan@yahoo.com) to any of the three Charities/ causes I truly believe in and support:-

* World Vision
* Singapore Zoo
* WWF

This way, no stress for you and lots of benefits for the people and charities who really need help.

Thank you, Santas. :X

NO seems to be the hardest word

Elton John could be wrong when he sang “Sorry seems to be the hardest word.”

Recently, I realised “NO” is a very difficult word for many people.

Generally, I don’t like to say no. In the past, whenever someone (especially at work) had a request, I would say yes. A part of me did not want to burn bridges and I always try to avoid confrontations. I also try to compromise and say yes to help my friends whenever they ask, because I hate to disappoint.

I also realised many people cannot accept being told “NO.”  The word “No” is almost a dirty word, people take them personally even when the intentions were good.

Over the years, I’ve learned and grown wiser, thanks to various mentors and close friends in my life who helped put things into better perspective.

I learned that every time we say yes to something, we are actually saying no to something else.

When you say yes to working overtime every day, you say no to your social and family life and personal hobbies. When you say yes to a job you don’t love, you say no to a dream you may have. When you say yes to attending a meeting you are not even sure why you are there, you are saying no to another more important task that you could have done with that time.

Susan Newman, author of “The Book of No” wrote, “By saying no, you can focus on your goals.” Saying yes to everything can damage your reputation and hurt your career (and may I add, your life too).

People (myself included) should learn that saying no is okay. Recently, I said No to a couple of requests and immediately was made to feel bad. I was worried about being rude, seen as being unhelpful and not a good person. Someone told me “maybe you should just agree and do what you are asked anyway.”

The episodes kept me awake. I concluded that there was a reason for saying No. And even after communicating the reason, the recipients pushed back. (Aha, those were always tricky). The guilt doubled!

By saying yes to something I didn’t believe in, I would have to say no to doing the right thing and upholding my beliefs.

A very wise mentor used to tell me, “People (the smart ones anyway) respect you more when you say no to the right things.” Sure, everyone may like you because they can get you to do everything they want for them. But do they really have respect for the guy or for his time?

Now, go ponder. And then learn. This is not a post to encourage people to be lazy at work or be an anti-social being. This is a post of a personal reminder and a revelation that saying “NO” is not a bad thing. Learning to say “NO” is not easy but necessary and there are many benefits that come with it. Practising how to say NO in life and at work can be a challenge but one that everyone should take up.

Have you ever bought an audiobook?

Economic Times in India recently reported that Audiobooks are gaining popularity in the Indian markets.

For their ability to reach out to people who cannot read and for those who want to multitask in modern day busy lifestyle, audiobooks in India are slowly getting popular, though the industry is still in its infancy.

Audiobooks have been popular among children but now famous books and novels are being converted into this format for adults too.

Three years ago, I wrote a blog post about audio books. I mentioned that I didn’t think that audiobooks were doing well in Asian markets, now it looks like it is changing. I also wrote about the reasons I love audiobooks.

I love books – in any format. I bought the iPad to try save space on my bookshelves. I got addicted and started buying several titles on Amazon Kindle and via iBooks.

Recently, when I was listening to a podcast , I got a promotional code to get a free audiobook of my choice from Audible.com. Out of curiousity (how could I resist a FREE book?), I tried!

Do you know that Audible.com is a subsidiary of Amazon? I found out that you can listen to audiobooks from Audible.com on different devices, including iPod/ iPad, Android smartphones etc. According to the website, it currently has more than 85,000 titles.

I received my free audiobook and was very happy. The customer service at Audible.com was very quick to respond to questions and was very helpful when I ran into some billing issues later on.

A useful and interesting site –  NextAdvisor.com also came to my attention recently. It allows you to check out audiobook reviews, compares audiobooks subscription plans etc.

My fellow book lovers would often argue that electronic books will never replace the hard copies and I doubt many of them have tried an audiobook. I just loved the fact that I can consume books in different formats at different time. I usually listen to audiobooks when I am running. I do drag my iPad out to read during commute and sometimes, I laze by the pool or on my couch with a nice paperback novel.

However, I noticed that not many of my friends (those who actually read and love books) are into audiobooks. I asked the Rambling Librarian why and he said “short attention lifespan for spoken words …”

So, question – Have you bought an audiobook and why do you think they are not doing as well as other format of books? Price? Reading behavior?

For those of you who want to try one out, here’s a 30-day trial on Amazon/ Audible.com,  iTunes has a good selection and check out Simply Audiobooks too.

For my Singaporean friends, the National Library has a a good selection of audiobook titles too.

Happy Reading!

Aahh… dolce far niente! A new year resolution

Ah! dolce far niente!. It means “pleasant idleness”, the sweetness of doing NOTHING (in Italian)

It is the start of a new year. Many friends have been posting their new year’s resolutions on Facebook. I believe in having goals and working towards them but somehow, like many people, I have not been very successful in keeping my new year’s resolutions.

This year, I decided to make only ONE resolution. One that sounds too simple and almost silly to make it as a New Year’s resolution.

I want to learn to find the joy of doing nothing. The two key words “Joy” and “Nothing.

Before you jump in to tell me how I should not be lazy (my mum would), I am not referring to being a beach bum, not finding employment or inactivity.

“Don’t underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.” –  Winnie the Pooh

The concept of ‘doing nothing’ sounds good to many people but something that many fail to do, especially Asians (and women). Many of us are so used to being too busy and doing too much. Learning to do ‘nothing’ or finding the joy and sweetness to just do nothing sound like an impossible task. Doing nothing is not inactivity. “Sit” around is a verb, so is “Smell” the roses but how many of us are actually doing that?

I read a great article in ELLE magazine asking readers when was the last time you really take a day off to sit on your couch, with a nice cup of coffee, read a good book and not feel guilty about not cleaning the house, not running errand, not attending to last minute work emails and just give yourself a day to just ‘be with yourself” and “do nothing much?” The article went on to say that women are prone to suffer from guilt for taking time off for themselves.

For a long time, I had been so busy with work and when I had a day off, I also had a long ‘to-do’ list – “go for gym training, go to the bank, reply ‘urgent’ emails, pick up groceries, meet up friends for dinner etc” Before I know it, the day off was gone and I was tired and upset that I didn’t get to REST!

Recently, due to various reasons, I decided to take a break from work (I realised it was a great decision I made in 2010).

A part of me is so eager to find the next new exciting role, especially when great friends and contacts are enthusiastic about sharing work opportunities. The wiser bit of me is persuading myself to just take some time off to breathe, enjoy this rare period when I can truly do the things I have always wanted to do but always too busy to.

I am convinced that doing nothing takes more effort and more determination than to rush around and doing many things.

I am not saying that my goal is not to work so that I can master the art of doing nothing, what I am saying is, I want to learn to find the joy in resting and taking absolute pleasure in idling some times (even if it’s just spending 15mins each day after work lying on my bed, staring at the ceiling and not feel guilty that I’ve not updated this blog or not reply to my work emails).

My pastor often reminds us of a great revelation he shared about the topic -“restful increase.” Key words – Rest and you’ll find the Increase. I am not going to preach here (follow the link if you want to read more about what Pastor said…).

To end this post, here are some pictures of my New Year holiday at a lovely resort by the beach in Bintan, Indonesia where I learned to enjoy doing absolutely nothing much. I eat, sleep, rest, read, stare at the sea, at the sky and strolled from one end of the beach to the other by myself, listening to my favourite music …then eat and sleep again..”

So, today marks the start of my new year resolution – in search of la dolce far niente. The next time you see me stressed and rushing around doing 1001 things, you know what to tell me!

I am guilty

It gets harder each year to gather friends to have a nice Christmas dinner. Some have business travels to attend to (yes, I know, usually planning meetings for the following year), family vacation and others are just forever busy. So, Melvin, Kevin, Walter, Vanessa and I decided to have our super early Christmas drinks last night at Red Dot Brewery.

We always know we are a group of very like-minded friends and we can talk non-stop for hours – from business to fashion, trends, food and yes, gossips (about other people)! And no surprise at all when we ended up ordering the exact same food!

Van thought it was funny and took a photo of our five plates of Fish & Chips and tagged each of us on our Facebook. Some of my friends on FB who saw the photo asked me if the F&C was on special promotion. No, it wasn’t.

Fish & Chips Christmas dinner

Anyway, as usual, we had a great time. It was also the first time Dr. Kevin Lim managed to join us since he is now back in Singapore – for good.

During dinner, Walter said I should start blogging again since I am not working now and have all the time to myself.

I do feel guilty for not updating the blog. So, last night, I edited the header and re-arranged some minor features and tell myself, ok, I’ll make it a new year resolution (an early one) to start writing again.

And yes, for friends who are not aware, I have left Yahoo! and I am now enjoying a nice little break. So, stay tuned for updates on this blog and let’s have Christmas dinners/ drinks!

Christmas shopping starts today!!

Special dedication to some amazing people …

You know who you are …

THIS POST IS DEDICATED TO YOU!

Here’s a song I found on youTube that I want to share …

I will miss each and every one of you.

Stay tuned for photo updates!

Goodbye for now…

Back with the first post of the year

It’s coming to the end of March 09 and this is my very first post this year!

Interestingly, even when I stopped blogging, there are still traffic coming to this blog. Readers still comment on some old posts. That is somewhat encouraging.

Although from Brendan’s PR index, this blog just keeps on falling. haa. I really applaud Brendan for pulling together the index, it’s a great resource for me. I enjoy clicking on the links, knowing that they’ll lead me to some interesting PR blogs. Over the last one year, I’ve made several online acquaintances from that list. Number 7 and 13 are folks I follow on Twitter and added as friends on facebook. Number 36 is a friend of mine in Singapore, currently doing his master degree in Australia. There are several others on that list that I read regularly.

So, what have I been up to the last many months? WORK! Yes, work has taken a little too much of my life, but it is getting better and I am still having a great time at Yahoo!

A recently illness (infection causing some problems to ear and nose) had caused some discomfort and more stress. Forced to cancel a trip to Taipei (what a shame!) and I’ve been spending a lot more time in Indonesia.

We are launching the Yahoo! Mobile Developer Awards that we ran in Singapore last year in Indonesia. Met some really cool developers and it is getting exciting!

There are alot of good food in Jakarta!

Big yummy prawns

(I don’t know where I ate this but the seafood are all so fresh, yummy and huge!)

The other nice thing about Jakarta is, we stay at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, and you would think it costs a bomb, but it is quite affordable. Spacious and a huge comfy bed.

room2

2 days to 2009 – Personal wrap-up

2008 has been a strange but very blessed year for me. While most of the “wrap-up” posts I read are about trends for this and that, what’s big in 08 in the world etc etc. I am going to make this post totally personal.

So, here’s a quick re-cap of my 2008!

I have 2 more days to my 1-year at Yahoo!. It has been a fantastic year for work. Despite all the ups and downs, I make alot of new friends, visited alot of new countries (I’ve never traveled so much in my life) in 12 months and learnt alot of new things. Broaden my perspectives of business in the region and learn about different cultures in Asia. For a while, I was living out of my suitcase, my boss called me the “little road warrior”. While it was alot of tears and sweat, I had alot of fun. While outsiders commented and criticized about the company, I truly think this is one of the best organisations I’ve been in; with a great culture and I am very blessed with a fantastic “multi-cultural” team and most importantly, I found great mentors.
Socially, I have cut back on time spent on blogging in the second half of the year and invested more time with my girlfriends, family and loved ones. While I sometimes feel bad that I don’t update my blog as often, despite drafting several entries (that are still sitting in the draft folder), I am glad that I chose to take time off to rest. I do, however missed hanging out with the other bloggers and discussing PR and social media/ technology topics that are close to heart.

Few weeks ago, I agreed to co-author a separate blog with an ex-colleague, mainly recording blessings and revelations of God. Completely different from this blog but I see that as more of a journal-writing, helping both of us remember the blessings of God, despite the crisis and turmoils in the world.

Financially, 2008 has been fantabulous! I am crowning myself “THE SHOPAHOLIC!” From the Gucci bags, Tiffanys, to $10 junks and I’ve built a mini library of books! I’ve spent so much this year, which I have to significantly cut down. But again, I had fun!

Other highlights in 08 include signing up with WorldVision on the sponsorship of a kid from Thailand. I am very excited about it and see that as a long-term commitment. Shall share more if i get the chance in next post.

So, what’s for 09?

I am not sure yet. I am still thinking of “resolutions” but a few key things in the pipeline – Make a trip to UK and making plans to volunteer @ Habitat for Humanity. Pay a visit to the sponsored kid at some point and looking for a new house to buy!

I am looking forward to 2009, despite the financial crisis. Life goes on and I pray that all my friends are truly blessed in the new year!

How was your 2008?

Bloggers gone missing…

I saw Mitch Joel’s twitter link to one of his blog post, asking folks on how you feel about those who are no longer blogging (or have slowed down) because they are busy with stuff? He had went on to ask if “you feel cheated?” as readers. While i figured there are several ways to look at the post and probably more relevant for certain group of people, I still am not sure I agree 100% with the post.

I honestly don’t think it’s an excuse for bloggers to not blog as much. I think blogging shouldnt be “hard work” as well. I remembered a good friend who’s one of those top bloggers telling me “don’t feel obligated to blog because you have to, blog because you want to..”.

For myself, I’ve definitely slowed down, though not stopped. I twitter and interact on facebook more nowadays. It’s not that I didn’t want to write a post every other day but when you are traveling alot, and unlike agencies who might see their responsibilities to “engage in social media”, therefore more blogging and more podcasting, there are alot of people who have endless meetings to attend, endless traveling and endless hours of late nights doing a job that has alot of other objectives to meet (beside engaging the communities), so when some of us get home, the last thing we think of is to switch on laptop and start to write a blog. Personally, all i could think of, most of the nights is – try to get some sleep (and there is family and health to consider).

There are many ways to connect and communicate. Blogging is one of them, not the only means.

Having said that, I am keeping this blog and I’m still writing when I have an opinion to make, when i have something to share or when i want to record some thoughts for future reference.

So, honestly, does a reader really feel CHEATED when a blogger stopped or slowed down blogging? As a reader, I see it as a shame if my favourite blogger stopped completely but i am not sure about feeling “cheated”… I have a couple of friends who are in digital media business who used to blog about wonderful stuff but had to stop because of overwhelming amount of work, do i feel bad or cheated? Not really…

Have you seen these blogs? – October Higlights

I have decided to try and do occassional posts on bloggers who have interesting blogs. They might not be your typical “celebrity / A-list” bloggers but nevertheless have their pool of avid blog readers.

Note that these might not even be the usual tech/ pr/ social media folks. At podcamp yesterday, I was inspired by Amelia’s and Preetam’s blogs even though they don’t blog about topics that I usually write about.

I shall start with the ones that I actually know the authors (and they are all Asians and none of them really write about the topics I usually cover). Here are the 3 for today -

1) Siew Kum Hong – He’s my colleague at Yahoo! (our senior legal counsel) and also Singapore’s Nominated Member of Parliament. Although I was never quite into politics but Kum Hong’s blog posts are often inspiring and spur discussions and thoughts from members of the public. At podcamp yesterday, someone mentioned that there are more and more MPs writing blogs and going onto facebook.

2) Pluit Solutions – Herryanto Siatono is probably not an unfamiliar name to many. He’s the founder of BookJetty and recently joined Yahoo! too. As an avid reader, I find Herry’s blog really informative.

3) Timothy Go - Tim is a fantastic friend and a great news anchor on Channel News Asia. We used to blog on Livejournal (he still does) and I moved to wordpress and set up this blog. Expect to find a wide variety of topics in his blog, from behind the scenes of his work to his travel adventure (yes, he travels more than i do) and follow up to some cool events (that he always get invited to the chi chi and glam stuff).

Have you read any interesting blogs recently?

About Podcamp Singapore 08

Today, I had to drag myself out of my bed (on a cold, rainy morning) to attend the PodCamp 2008 in Singapore, organised by the Singapore Management Universities (SMU).  It is rare to have weekends to sleep in since I am either busy with events/ work or travel, I did have second thoughts about attending.

However, once I was at the event, I was quite pleased that I got out of bed. Although there were no oversea speakers this year, the sessions were quite interesting. I gathered quite a bit of information and was inspired by a couple of the speakers.

Every hour, two sessions of presentations/ discussions happened concurrently in separate rooms. I had a hard time choosing which ones to sit in. A lot of the speakers are old friends and some are “online acquaintances”. Since I was there to learn, explore and hear from everyone, I chose the ones with speakers whom I have not really had much interactions with in the past. I ended up in the following sessions:-

1) Melvin and Walter’s combined session (phew, no need to choose). As usual, the two never fail to impress.

2) Charlie Pownall from Burson Marsteller on the topic of e-fluentials and shared a survey the agency did in US. Pretty insightful but would be great to have a look at the Asian scenes.

3) Preetam Rai - The guy whose brother works in the same company as me and have been an online acquaintance for a while now. Today’s the first time we met in person. I really enjoyed Preetam’s session. I have been looking for interesting bloggers in Asia and Preetam shared his recommended list.

4) Michael Netzley – Again. Another online friend who I have always wanted to meet. Michael’s session was very inspiring – about wikis and educating the Gen-Y. Earlier this year, I stumbled upon the wiki Michael set up with his students as part of SMU’s social media course. I find the wiki very informative. Definitely a great effort by the students.

5) Finally, Amelia Wong shared her experience as a food blogger. Apparently, the pretty lady can bake some really delicious cupcakes. I can neither bake nor take beautiful pictures, so I am just going to admire her work for now and perhaps try to persuade Jon to copy the recipes and bake me a birthday cake!

For more details on the different sessions:-

Claudia has done a very good job – live-blogged at the different sessions. Robin and his team who put together this year’s podcamp had also written about it if you want more references.

The session that I missed and really wanted to sit in was the one on podcasting in Singapore by the tech65 guys

Overall, I thought the 6 hours at podcamp 2008 today were well-spent! And I kicked myself for forgetting my camera battery – have to wait for Mark to upload his photos as I was using his!

Plainsunset @ the Yahoo! Mobile Developer Awards

Since I was 4 years old, I had always wanted to be a musician. I played the keyboard and piano for 14 years but the music dream didn’t really come true. Ended up doing arts and design and somewhere over the years, started doing something else, completely different. So, here’s where I am now. No complaints though. I love what I do now.

Last evening, I was at Zouk and for the first time, heard the local indie/po punk band – Plainsunset played. When Jonathan and my very cool colleague Ray (who also plays in another local band, Kate of Kale) first told me about Plainsunset some weeks ago, I had never heard of them. I was actually surprised that Jon has their albums. I heard their songs from his iTunes collection and thought they were quite good and last night, hearing them live was pretty awesome!

Ok. I didn’t really go to Zouk for the bands.

It was more for work. And that’s where the other group of local young talents are found. At the Yahoo! Mobile Developer Awards (YMDA) part.

I am trying not to pull anything from the press release into this post. You can find out more yourself, if you are one of those developers who are exploring to develop cool applications for mobile.

Briefly, the competition is about encouraging young developers from tertiary institutes to innovate and create mobile-optimised applications using Yahoo!’s latest mobile development platform - Yahoo! Blueprint based on real business briefs from 4 corporate sponsors, including DBS Bank, Kellogg Asia, Malaysia Airlines and travel portal UEEEU.com.

The party last night was to award 4 winning teams and one Best in Show.

DBS bank widget won the Best in Show

What impressed me most was the quality of submissions from the young developers who created what we called mobile widgets . Check out some of the screenshots of the winning mobile widgets.

IZ Reloded’s who joined us at the party had done some video interviews and shared some pictures of the event.

Looking at the local bands and the young developers, I have to say, we have some really talented people in this city.

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