“It’s become so crowded…” – visual comparisons of street directories with One Historical Map

When looking over the Faculty of Science from the Science Library, my former classmates from 30 years ago looked over the faculty against their mental images and remarked, “It’s become so crowded”.

Our BSc class year graduated in 1990 and One Historical Map has street maps from 2017, 2007, 1995, 1984, 1975 and 1966. The webpage allows a side by side comparison and I picked the 2017 and 1995 maps. Yes, it has become crowded indeed.

Click for a larger view. fos2017_1995
Street map comparison of Faculty of Science in 2017 (top) and 1995 (below); screenshot from One Historical Map

In addition to building density, student numbers have increased too, especially amongst grad students. There were 4,977 students (4,594 u’grads + 383 grads) in 1994/5 and this had increased to 6,675 students by 2016/17 (5,126 u’grads + 1,549 grad students).

Oh well, during this time, the population density in Singapore increased from 4,814/sq. km to 7,796/sq. km. These are different times indeed.

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theory.isthereason.com (and its archives) live on!

More than a decade ago, before Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and what not extinguished the wild wild west of personal blogging, my regular blogging kakis included Ivan Chew and Kevin Lim.

Amidst a larger group of media socialists, we three would meet every couple of years or so for some intense face to face discussions. We’d share experiences and techniques, evaluate ideas and translate some thoughts into overt action.

Some of that underscores how we do things today. So beyond reminiscing, old posts allow me to extract useful lessons from the past to catalyse new effort.

Which is why I’m glad Ivan Chew left his blogspot posts at Rambling Librarian, even after he reimagined himself at artistivanchew.tumblr.com).

I shifted to this WordPress site a decade ago (10th Jan 2008), so those posts are all here. Last year, I managed to salvage and transfer my first blog on the NUS science server to a server fronted by sivasothi.com.

Then two days ago, Kevin announced he had to abandon his expensive MediaTemple host. He’s a geek so quickly found out how to shift to a server, install a WordPress template and that retained his URLs. So theory.isthereason.com, and its archives, lives on!

Screenshot 668
A passionate Kevin at the “Youtube and beyond” workshop
at the National Library Singapore, 19 Jun 2007

Native Blog Editor, Mars Edit 4.0 to maintain multiple blogs

MarsEdit is a native macOS blog editor which I have used since 2007 to maintain multiple blogs on WordPress (including NUS Blogs) and Blogspot, some with multiple authors.

Webpage editors on desktop and phones have caught up immensely and are useful for a quick fix, but MarsEdit still reigns supreme for heavy duty work.

MarsEdit can switch between rich text and HTML which I had to use with my first blog engine. While I use system-wide Typinator html shortcuts, MarsEdit does provide for this with “Formatting Macros” (Format > Customise).

The SweetSetup has a detailed review of the Dec 2017’s ver 4.0 by Red Sweater.


MarsEdit handles multiple blogs simultaneously, switches between HTML and rich text and has a pre-publication preview.