Birthday cards in the workplace

The human resource manager does this in some workplaces, they passing the birthday cards around hoping someone writes some birthday wishes for on a birthday card. That is nice but what’s totally unnecessary is hiding the card.

We all know we are going to receive the card in due time but the card is always hidden from us. We don’t write our own cards but we aren’t supposed to see our card? So our birthdays are now surprises?

The odd things in the office.

The birthday perceptional oddity

Ah this is quite interesting, an excerpt from Fooled By Randomness by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, page 159:

The Birthday Paradox

The most intuitive way to describe the data mining problem to a non-statistician is through what is called teh birthday paradox, though it is not really a paradox, simply a perceptional oddity. If you meet someone randomly, there is a one in 365.25 chance of you sharing their birthday, and a considerably smaller one of having the exact birthday of the same year. So, sharing the same birthday would be coincidental event that you would discuss at the dinner table. Now let us look at a situation where there are 23 people in a room. What is the chance of there being 2 people with the same birthday? About 50%. For we are not specifying which people need to share a birthday; any pair works.

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Now 50% is really high chance! Bet you never thought of that. Well, you could read more at Wikipedia for the exact math of The Birthday Problem or the Birthday Attack.

June 11, birthdays for many

June 11 is one of the days where the events of my calendar just overflows. Many people had their birth dates on this day. The good people include my own brother, Kah Seng, who doesn’t yet know the existence of this blog. He is 17 this year and doesn’t want a birthday cake because it is fatty and all.

“Really don’t want cake?”

“NO!” No no no emoticon

Alright. Also on the good list is Anne-marie whom I am set to bump into once every week. Anne-marie says the most interesting things when she’s frustrated.

Happy birthday to both of them.

Poker, Beer and Wii night at Uzyn’s

Yesterday, at around this time – 3 AM – I was at Uzyn’s place with Sek Ling, Uzyn, Daphane, Ridzuan, Hendri, U Fong, Arzhou, Chinmay and… Can’t recall the other two names.

It was a poker plus beer plus Wii night. Wii had fun. Telok Blangah Heights is quite hard to find. Ridz and I jaywalk almost everywhere. I figured you can’t really go anywhere without jaywalking and the authorities kindly cemented parts of the ground to let jaywalkers have an easier time anyway.

I had Bavaria. I know nothing about beer except it makes my face red.

bavaria beer

And Arzhou’s Arweiser is there too.

arweiser

I watched them play poker. Roughly get the game but didn’t play it. I am not confident with playing cards. Spend most of my time watching the psychology part of the game which is just as interesting.

Wii are an interesting machine, takes a little while to get the hang of it. I hold the Wii controller like its a TV remote and wave it like Harry Potter. Also spent 20 minutes trying to figure out the Japanese words on the Wii when attempting to load a game. After 20 minutes, Hendri and I confirmed that we’re doing it totally wrong and we spend the past 20 minutes creating a new Wii profile.

Sweating fatty frog emoticon

On a side note, Wii Sports seems a bit more fun. There’s birthday cake too. It’s Uzyn and Ridz birthday on May 30. They’re (business) partners.

The whole event ended at around 4 plus. I got home at 5. My sleep cycle is so screwed now.

At Ridzuan’s birthday party yesterday

Was at Ridzuan’s place yesterday. It’s his birthday and I didn’t just realized ™ until I saw Facebook.

Ridz is into some web cam thing these days, he has quite a following when he points the camera to Uzyn while working. Here’s DK setting up the web cam to show everyone they can’t have the pizza we’re eating:

Maybe a blogger’s dream come true. Even parties are streamed live to the web. Yeah, we had Hawaiian pizza. By the way, most Singaporeans only heard 2 things about Hawaii, they’re a nice island and they have pizza.

It’s a potluck, I brought (or bought) chicken nuggets. The food is good, unfortunately we can’t finish them. Here’s the cake, badly mutilated with candles:

The cake is really good by the way. We talk about food, erm politics and image processing. Shared YouTube videos too. Happy birthday Ridzuan! This party, there’s around 12 people. Additionally, three laptops came anyway. By the way, it’s Uzyn’s birthday too. Happy birthday Uzyn!