Scholars living in glasshouses

Summary:This is not about Alice in Wonderland but about a Singapore government scholar by the name of Eng Kai Er. It seems Eng, who graduated from Cambridge University, is a 2007 A*Star National Science Scholarship (NSS) recipient doing her Ph.

This is not about Alice in Wonderland but about a Singapore government scholar by the name of Eng Kai Er. It seems Eng, who graduated from Cambridge University, is a 2007 A*Star National Science Scholarship (NSS) recipient doing her Ph.D. in Infection Biology at Karolinska Institutet, Sweden. She was charged in court for walking around nude in Holland Village, a popular watering hole in Singapore.

For the benefit of non-Singaporeans, government scholars are the cream of the crop--the best and the brightest--upon whom expensive scholarships and an accelerated career track are showered upon. I guess the best is expected from such individuals, so any sign of deviance would hit the headlines.

Therefore, it was quite a surprise when Web sites and newspapers revealed detailed identity information of this "streaker". However, the purpose of this posting is not to debate matters about scholars and their behavior.

A lot more information about Ms Eng was highlighted, such as her Mensa membership and the fact that she represented the country in competitive skating.

While such erstwhile achievements were posted and made available long before her indiscretion, it was her latest feat that brought such achievements to the nation's attention. It is also a feature of today's technology that allows information to be archived and easy searched.

In the past, Ms Eng might have been given a small column in the papers for her efforts after being unassumingly described as a civil servant, but technology has now made her very newsworthy.

As technology changes, so must human behavior. As Microsoft employees buying books on Amazon found out, the process of information aggregation now allows information to be trolled to produce richer information. With digital copying and lower storage rates, information can easily be stored indefinitely, as Edison Chen discovered.

With this awareness of technology change, surely some change in behavior is required.

Topics: Microsoft, Amazon, Enterprise 2.0, IT Employment, Singapore, Storage

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