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In 1974, Robert Nozick famously introduced the Experience Machine thought experiment in his book Anarchy, State and Utopia.

As in the experimental philosophy tradition, the Experience Machine elicits responses about what people would do, but does not consider, normatively, whether people ought to plug in. With advances in virtual reality, questions about the permissibility and morality of the EM may have practical relevance in the very near future.

Here, I argue reality itself is not prudentially valuable, and with it, present a new interpretation of the EM. …


We have been taught from young that we should help the less fortunate. We are told this is the right thing to do. For those less easily persuaded, we are asked to imagine ourselves in their shoes. Sympathy and empathy are usually sufficiently strong motivators.

The idea of helping others is not restricted to individuals, but companies as well. Corporate social responsibility has evolved from a public relations strategy to what some deem as a moral obligation. But based on what?

Before you get the wrong idea, I would like to sincerely assure you I am not advocating for not…


As I prepare to leave for China to continue my undergraduate studies, I decided to brush up upon my Mandarin. I remembered a television drama show my primary school Chinese teacher showed us, and decided to watch it to refresh my language skills. But it turned out I learnt much more than that.

The drama, Soldiers’ Sortie, or 士兵突击 in Mandarin, was released in 2006. It became a cultural phenomenon in China at that time. Despite it being a military drama, there’s no actual wars and battles. …


It is no secret that we live in a virtual, remote-meeting world now. It could even be the new normal after the pandemic.

Accordingly, there has been a proliferation of ‘how to’ and ‘best practices’ articles on conducting a successful virtual session, be it a meeting or webinar.

However, I realised that most of them give the ‘standard’ advice (still, important, of course) on coordinating schedules, ensuring effective communication via virtual means, minimizing distractions and ensuring productivity, or maintaining professionalism and courtesy. …


I learnt about the amazing progress astronomers have made elucidating how our Solar System was formed. Given that humans have seen into the furthest reaches of the universe, detected gravitational waves and imaged a black hole, you may think this is an old problem in astronomy, one that has already been solved, and the solution immortalized in many textbooks and popular science books.

Yet, it turns out the story is far more interesting. Recently, astronomers have developed newer models that not only better explain how the Solar System came to be, but also revealed just how creative they were.

Here…


In March 2015, I was in a pickle. It was the end of my junior college’s co-curricular activities (CCA) application, and I had nothing. (In Singapore, it is common, sometimes necessary, for every student to be involved in at least one extracurricular activity.)

It was my fault. I had applied for one and only one club, my school’s entrepreneurship club, the closest thing to the field of business which I had decided was (and still is) my passion and future career. I had set my mind on giving my all into this club, and only this.

And I had been…


I’ve always been fascinated by ancient military battles. But not the guts, honour or patriotism displayed by the soldiers, impressive and inspiring though they are.

Instead, they showed that wars are ultimately won not because of one’s bravery or fighting skill (mostly). Wars are almost always won with intellect rather than brute force. In short, it is strategy which determines victory.

Here are three lessons on strategy I learnt from ancient battles (of the West).

1. Don’t just fight. Pick your battles: Why Hannibal lost

Hannibal is best known for his victorious battles of annihilation, including the famous slaughter of 70,000 Romans at the Battle of Cannae. And yet, he…

Weng Yek Wong

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