POTD: Stairs to heaven at Masjid Abdul Gafoor in Singapore

July 26th, 2015

The Abdul Gafoor Mosque is in Little India off Jalan Besar in Singapore. * The information in this article was derived from Wikipedia’s article on the mosque.

The rear facade of the Masjid Abdul Gafoor is actually two stairs that ascend to the cupola at its rooftop. Photo taken using a Canon EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

The rear facade of the Masjid Abdul Gafoor is actually two stairs that ascend to the cupola at its rooftop. Photo taken using a Canon EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

The area in which Masjid Abdul Gafoor was built is also known as Kampung Kapor, which was a centre of business activity for Indian merchants.

The mosque also served Muslims who worked at the old race course at Farrer Park.

The predecessor to the Masjid Abdul Gafoor at the location was an earlier mosque named Masjid Al-Abrar which was built in 1846 for the South Indian Muslim merchants and Baweanese syces and horse trainers living in the area.

The name of the mosque at the entrance. According to Wikipedia, “In 1881, a deed of assignment dated 14 November 1881 created the Dunlop Street Mosque Endowment or wakaf. The two trustees were Ismail Mansor and Shaik Abdul Gaffoor bin Shaik Hydert. Abdul Gaffoor was the chief clerk at a legal firm. The wakaf was created for the building of a mosque for the Muslim community in Singapore. The deed of assignment also placed in trust several other properties including a Muslim burial ground and a house in Race Course Road. The burial ground was closed in 1921.” Photo taken using a Canon EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

The name of the mosque at the entrance. According to Wikipedia, “In 1881, a deed of assignment dated 14 November 1881 created the Dunlop Street Mosque Endowment or wakaf. The two trustees were Ismail Mansor and Shaik Abdul Gaffoor bin Shaik Hydert. Abdul Gaffoor was the chief clerk at a legal firm. The wakaf was created for the building of a mosque for the Muslim community in Singapore. The deed of assignment also placed in trust several other properties including a Muslim burial ground and a house in Race Course Road. The burial ground was closed in 1921.” Photo taken using a Canon EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

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POTD: Masjid Abdul Gafoor in Singapore Kampung Kapor

July 25th, 2015

The Abdul Gafoor Mosque is on Dunlop Street in the Kampung Kapor area of Singapore.

The visit to the Masjid Abdul Gafoor was part of an SG50 heritage photowalk organised by Canon Singapore, that also included visits to the Saint Joseph’s Church and Yueh Hai Ching Temple. I had the chance to try out the new EOS 5Ds and EOS M3 cameras. This photo was taken using an EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

The visit to the Masjid Abdul Gafoor was part of an SG50 heritage photowalk organised by Canon Singapore, that also included visits to the Saint Joseph’s Church and Yueh Hai Ching Temple. I had the chance to try out the new EOS 5Ds and EOS M3 cameras. This photo was taken using a Canon EOS 5Ds and EF 50mm F1.4 USM prime lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

Originally built in 1907, the mosque was restored in 2003.

New arrivals: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 Android tablet in Singapore

July 23rd, 2015

The new Galaxy Tab S2 comes in 9.7-inch and 8-inch form factors as well as 4G+ and Wi-Fi configurations, with 32GB memory and microSD support up to 128GB.

Prices range from S$598 to S$798 (see below). Black available from 7 August while Gold will be in later August.

At just 5.6mm thin and weighing only 389g (9.7”) and 265g (8.0”), Samsung claims that the Galaxy Tab S2 is the thinnest and lightest tablet of its size in the market, and is packed with powerful performance features to offer enhanced usability, whether for productivity and multitasking, or simply enjoying immersive content anytime, anywhere.

At just 5.6mm thin and weighing only 389g (9.7”) and 265g (8.0”), Samsung claims that the Galaxy Tab S2 is the thinnest and lightest tablet of its size in the market, and is packed with powerful performance features to offer enhanced usability, whether for productivity and multitasking, or simply enjoying immersive content anytime, anywhere.

Samsung is targeting users looking for a premium tablet for multimedia entertainment and personal use.

The 4G+ LTE Category 6 capability (for the 4G+ versions) promise users faster Internet access for browsing and downloading content.

Prices and detailed descriptions from the press release below.

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POTD: Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri 2015

July 17th, 2015

Here’s wishing all Muslim friends: “Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri”!

Hari Raya ornaments for the home, on sale at the night bazaar prior to the actual day. Photo taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. It was so crowded you’ve got to keep moving. The fast 65-point autofocus of the 7D Mark II enabled many shots to be taken sharp despite the hurry. Photo credit: John Tan.

Hari Raya ornaments for the home, on sale at the night bazaar prior to the actual day. Photo taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. It was so crowded you’ve got to keep moving. The fast 65-point autofocus of the 7D Mark II enabled many shots to be taken sharp despite the hurry. Photo credit: John Tan.

It’s Hari Raya Puasa today.

After a whole month of fasting during Ramadan, today is the day that our Muslim friends have been looking forward to.

A traditional henna tattoo being done on the hands of a gracious lady who accented to letting me capture the beautiful design on her hand. Photo taken with an Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II with M.Zuiko ED 12-40mm f2.8 PRO lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

A traditional henna tattoo being done on the hands of a gracious lady who accented to letting me capture the beautiful design on her hand. Photo taken with an Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II with M.Zuiko ED 12-40mm f2.8 PRO lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

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Canon Readiris Corporate 15 OCR software enables smart documents

July 14th, 2015

Readiris Corporate 15 is an advanced software solution for users in both small and large enterprises who need to digitise their paper information for easier archiving and sharing.

Automated document processing improves productivity, and work processes, while easy sharing of information increases mobility and efficiency in the workplace.

Automated document processing improves productivity, and work processes, while easy sharing of information increases mobility and efficiency in the workplace.

Canon, a global leader in photographic and digital imaging solutions, has unveiled its first IRIS offering in Singapore – Readiris Corporate 15.

An advanced optical character recognition (OCR) solution, Readiris aims to reinvent the way enterprises in Singapore work with paper, enabling them to now convert paper into digitised documents and images for users to seamlessly search, and share information in a smarter, more productive workplace.

More details from the press release below.

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New arrivals: Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV & RX10 II cameras

July 2nd, 2015

Both the compact RX100 IV (S$1,399 from 16 July) and high-zoom RX10 II (S$1,899 from 30 July) cameras boast the world’s first staked 1.0 Type CMOS sensor with a DRAM memory chip, 40x super slow motion capture (up to 960fps), 4K video recording and high-speed anti-distortion shutter (up to 1/32000s).

Pre-order the RX100 IV from 3 July (see below).

The two new models in the Sony Cyber-shot RX series feature the world’s first 1.0 type stacked Exmor RS CMOS sensor with advanced signal processing and an attached DRAM memory chip.

The two new models in the Sony Cyber-shot RX series feature the world’s first 1.0 type stacked Exmor RS CMOS sensor with advanced signal processing and an attached DRAM memory chip.

The high speed signal processing and DRAM memory chip work together to enable more than five times the readout rate of image data and are responsible for a variety of features that have previously only been available in selected professional-level video cameras.

Breathtaking demo of the prowess of the new Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV (S$1,399). Taken with burst mode, these two shots show the water-filled balloon just before and just after it was burst. You can still see the

Breathtaking demo of the prowess of the new Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV (S$1,399). Taken with burst mode, these two shots show the water-filled balloon just before and just after it was burst. You can still see the “shape” of the water just after the rubber of the balloon burst, as well as the fine water spray emanating from the “water ball”.

These capabilities include 40x super slow motion video capture at up to 960fps, an ultra-fast Anti-Distortion Shutter with a maximum speed of 1/32000 second, high-resolution 4K movie shooting and more.

Below are more details from the press release.

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New arrivals: ASUS LolliFlash – LED flash for smartphone selfies

June 30th, 2015

The ASUS LolliFlash is an ultra-portable external LED flash for taking smartphone selfies in dim light. The LolliFlash comes with dual-LED light and multi-colour filters for a fun photography experience.

Available from today at S$17.90 at ASUS Online Store.

ASUS LolliFlash dual-LED light with three colour filters for taking smartphone selfies. Shown here with an ASUS ZenFone2 but compatible with any Android smartphone.

ASUS LolliFlash dual-LED light with three colour filters for taking smartphone selfies. Shown here with an ASUS ZenFone2 but compatible with any Android smartphone.

Many smartphones today ship with an LED flash for the main camera at the rear for taking photos in dim lighting.

The filter sleeve merge the light from the two LED light sources.

The filter sleeve merge the light from the two LED light sources.

Most smartphones, however, do not have a front-facing LED for taking selfies with the front camera.

The new LolliFlash from ASUS addresses this need for avid selfie photographers.

The LolliFlash is a compact dual-colour LED light that can be easily attached to any mobile phone to provide ample light in low light conditions, promising realistic skin tones in every photo.

Small and lightweight at only 8g, the wireless LolliFlash can be placed anywhere on the phone.

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New arrivals: Veil XT for iPhone 6 & iPhone 6 Plus

June 29th, 2015

The Veil XT is an ultra thin, full coverage case for minimalists and retails at S$39 each.

Retailing at S$39 each, the cases will be available in several colours including classics like Frost and Wisp Black, as well as new colours, Aquamarine and Pink.

Retailing at S$39 each, the cases will be available in several colours including classics like Frost and Wisp Black, as well as new colours, Aquamarine and Pink.

Lamch & Co has introduced the Veil XT line of cases by Caudabe, a leading brand of premium, ultra thin mobile device accessories.

Veil XT for iPhone 6 & iPhone 6 Plus.

Measuring a thin 0.35mm, The Veil XT is perfect for minimalists who prefer not to bury their sleek iPhones behind layers of bulky plastic.

The Veil XT provides a tight and precise fit around the iPhone while maintaining the iPhone’s thin form factor and providing protection from scratches and bumps.

The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus versions of The Veil XT also feature a 0.7mm ridge around the camera cutout, designed specifically to protect the iPhone’s protruding camera lens.

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POTD: Who designed & built Eiffel Tower in Paris, France?

June 28th, 2015

Photo of the Day: The Eiffel Tower is named after engineer Alexandre Gustave Eiffel. His company designed and built the landmark in Paris in 1889.

View of the Trocadéro framed by the bottom of the Eiffel Tower. Taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

View of the Trocadéro framed by the bottom of the Eiffel Tower. Taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

According to Wikipedia, “the design of the Eiffel Tower was originated by Maurice Koechlin and Émile Nouguier, two senior engineers who worked for the Compagnie des Établissements Eiffel”.

This was the dude who brought the Eiffel Tower into this world - Alexandre Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923). The bust was unveiled in 1929 and is now at the base of the Northern leg of the Tower. Taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

This was the dude who brought the Eiffel Tower into this world – Alexandre Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923). The bust was unveiled in 1929 and is now at the base of the Northern leg of the Tower. Taken with a Canon EOS 7D Mark II with EF-S 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. Photo credit: John Tan.

The tower was to serve as a centrepiece for the Exposition Universelle to celebrate the centennial of the French Revolution.

Incidentally, the first time I visited the Eiffel Tower was in 1989, smack in the middle of the bicentennial celebrations of the French Revolution.

Gustave Eiffel bought the rights to the patent for the design which the original designers had taken out and eventually saw the Tower to completion in time.

As with all things new, the design met with opposition and criticism right from design stage till after completion – but history has proven that the design is technically robust and aesthetically appealing.

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