World’s first artificial intelligence (AI) news anchor


The new AI anchors, launched by Xinhua and Beijing-based search engine operator Sogou during the World Internet Conference in Wuzhen, can deliver the news with “the same effect” as human anchors because the machine learning programme is able to synthesise realistic-looking speech, lip movements and facial expressions, according to a Xinhua news report on Wednesday.
“AI anchors have officially become members of the Xinhua News Agency reporting team. They will work with other anchors to bring you authoritative, timely and accurate news information in both Chinese and English,” Xinhua said.
The AI anchors are now available throughout Xinhua’s internet and mobile platforms such as its official Chinese and English apps, WeChat public account, and online TV webpage.

https://youtu.be/GAfiATTQufk

The world’s first artificial intelligence (AI) news anchor made “his” debut at the ongoing fifth World Internet Conference in east China’s Zhejiang Province.

The news anchor, based on the latest AI technology, has a male image with a voice, facial expressions and actions of a real person. “He” learns from live broadcasting videos by himself and can read texts as naturally as a professional news anchor.

The AI news anchor was jointly developed by Xinhua News Agency, the official state-run media outlet of China, and Chinese search engine company Sogou.com.

According to Xinhua, “he” has become a member of its reporting team and can work 24 hours a day on its official website and various social media platforms, reducing news production costs and improving efficiency.

Celebrity anchors are regarded as important assets at major news networks in the US. The highest paid news anchor, CNN’s Anderson Cooper, is reportedly paid US$100 million a year, while Diane Sawyer at ABC and Sean Hannity at Fox News earn US$80 million each. Celebrity anchors in China are generally paid a lot less because they work for state-run TV stations but they often earn extra money from product endorsements and book sales.

But AI anchors may one day challenge the human variety because of their ability to work 24 hours a day provided human editors keep inputting text into the system.

Xinhua said the achievement was a  “breakthrough in the field of global AI synthesis”, pioneering the synthesis of real-time audio and video with AI-created anchors in the news field. Search engine Sogou, which also does research and development in AI, is providing the underlying technology for the project.

The AI technology has a “endless prospects” because it will greatly improve the efficiency and reduce the cost of producing daily TV news reports, Xinhua said, adding that it could also quickly generate breaking news reports to improve the timeliness and quality of such reports. – South China Morning Post
China’s AI race via @SCMPgraphics  http://bit.ly/2NdeiK4 #AI #ArtificialIntelligence #Dataviz #infographic

 

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Action taken over irregularities at Bukit Kukus paired road project Penang


https://youtu.be/dMF95t2gXzg

Special task force formed to probe landslide

GEORGE TOWN: The state government has formed a special investigative committee to probe the landslide at the Bukit Kukus Paired Road construction site in Paya Terubong.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said preliminary reports by the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) and the Drainage and Irrigation Department showed there were elements of non-compliance in construction procedures carried out at the site.

He said the committee would be led by Deputy Chief Minister I Datuk Ahmad Zakiyuddin Abdul Rahman, with State Public Works, Utilities and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari as a member and an engineer from the state secretary’s office.

“Relevant agencies, contractors, sub-contractors and independent checking engineers involved in the project will be questioned,” he said during a press conference in his office at Komtar yesterday.

Chow said this was a separate investigation from the compulsory investigations carried out by the Department of Occupational Safety and Health and Construction Industry Development Board among other relevant agencies.

Once investigations are complete, Chow said the findings would be brought to the Board of Engineers Malaysia, an agency under the Works Ministry that monitors and regulates engineers.

“MBPP is not involved in the investigation as it is the project owner,” said Chow.

Action taken over irregularities at paired road project, says Zairil

A special task force detected several irregularities when conducting spot checks at the Bukit Kukus Paired Road project site earlier this month.

State Works, Utilities and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari said the task force, formed under the Erosion and Sedimentation Control Committee (Ops Lumpur), was to check for compliance under the Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan (ESCP).

“On Oct 8, a team led by the Drainage and Irrigation Department found sediments in a pond and irregularities in the check dams.

“The stockpiles were not maintained well and could affect the flow of Sungai Relau during heavy rain, causing mud floods, he told reporters in Komtar yesterday.

Zairil said as per the standard operating procedure, the Ops Lumpur team issued a letter to the consultant of the project, demanding that mitigation measures be taken within 14 days.

“On Oct 12, the findings of Ops Lumpur were reported to the Erosion and Sedimentation Control Committee and the next day, an initial stop-work order was issued by the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) following the beam collapse.

“A full stop-work order was issued by DOSH on Oct 17,” he said.

Zairil said on Sept 28, his office received a report on the concerns over hill-clearing activities in Penang from the Penang Hills Watch, and replied to them on Oct 4.

“I was concerned about the complaints, as erosion and sedimentation would indeed cause bottlenecks in the rivers downstream, especially during the rainy season.

“Claims that the complaints were not attended to are untrue. In fact, action was taken immediately,” he said adding, “The cause of the Bukit Kukus landslide must be uncovered.”

Separately, Zairil said 17 slopes in the state were under repair and RM10mil had just been approved by the state government. – The Star

Giant pillars a reminder of Bukit Kukus tragedy

Impossible to ignore : The large concrete pillars that remain standing at the Bukit Kukus landslide site in Paya Terubong.

GEORGE TOWN: A row of giant concrete pillars soaring high into the sky serves as a reminder of the landslide tragedy which claimed nine lives at the Bukit Kukus Paired Road project in Paya Terubong.

The tallest of them stands at about 20 storeys and remains perched between the hills where soil erosion brought down 13 containers housing the ill-fated foreign workers last Friday.

Before the Department of Occupational Safety and Health Department (DOSH) gives the all clear for the project to resume, most of the workers at the site have remained while a few moved out to look for temporary work.

A Bangladeshi worker who declined to be named was seen carrying a cardboard box containing his personal belongings to another construction site nearby.

“The boss said there is no more work here, so I contacted my friend who recommended me for another job. I will be staying at his place.

“Once this project resumes, I shall come back,” the 30-year-old said.

At the site, rubble was scattered all over the 9,290 sq m site with the 13 green containers salvaged by cranes left in a corner.

The last foreign worker to be found was 33-year-old Bangladeshi Mohamad Uzzaal. He was pinned under a container and rescuers had to dig 10m to extricate the body.

At the height of the ops, two cadaver dogs were despatched to the scene to search for bodies while two other sniffer dogs were there to locate survivors.

A small open area beside a farm further up the hill above the site where photographers and videographers camped for five days to capture the ongoing rescue operation remains cordoned off.

On Monday, the media was taken on a tour of the site after the search and rescue operation, involving over 100 rescue personnel, was called off.

The water in the stream, which looked like teh tarik on Friday, was crystal clear now after its flow on top of the hill was diverted.

Even as the ops ended and all the missing foreign workers had been located, residents living nearby raised their concerns over the project.

Technician Tan Keng Wee, 36, hoped that the project would continue since most of it had already been done, but wanted better safety measures in place at the site.

“The traffic in Paya Terubong during peak hours is chaotic due to the narrow road passing by the hills. We need the new elevated road bypass but please make sure it is safe,” he said.

Food stall operator Mohd Subri Noor, 52, also shared his concern.

“I’m worried as many landslides have happened here. Many of them could have been prevented,” he said.

The RM530mil alternative road linking Lebuhraya Thean Teik in Bandar Baru Air Itam to Lebuh Bukit Jambul began in January 2016.- The Star

Related:   

Include Penang Forum in panel probing Bukit Kukus landslide tragedy

 

 

  At Penang landslide memorial, group questions silence of PH MPs

Consultant, contractor of Bukit Kukus paired road project slapped with …

 

Risky building on hillslopes – Nation

 

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Consultant gets show-cause letter for ‘overlooking hilltop stream’ GEORGE TOWN: The consultant of the Bukit Kukus Paired Road project…

A drone picture of the collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon leading to Balik Pulau on the left while Jalan Paya Terubong on the ri…

Precarious situation: The collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon which fell and broke after being knocked down. https://www.thestar.c…

Engineering Consultant gets show-cause letter for ‘overlooking hilltop stream”, the main cause for landslide


Video:   https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fpenangforum%2Fvideos%2F1940631839359002%2F&show_text=0&width=640

Consultant gets show-cause letter for ‘overlooking hilltop stream’

GEORGE TOWN: The consultant of the Bukit Kukus Paired Road project has been slapped with a show-cause letter for allegedly overlooking a stream on top of the hill before commencing work.

Penang Island City Council (MBPP) mayor Datuk Yew Tung Seang said the stream had been blocked, and this could be the main cause for the landslide on Friday.

“We found the stream on top of the hill on Saturday morning.

“You don’t need an expert to tell you that a diversion was needed in this situation before starting work on the hill.

“For me, this (the blocked stream) could be the main cause for the landslide,” he said at the site in Paya Terubong yesterday

The contractor has since diverted the flow of water

Yew also said stern action would be taken if professional negligence was found to be the cause once the investigation was completed

“This is a straightforward engineering project that needs to comply with standard operating procedure.

“We want to know why the need to divert the water was overlooked. I believe the tragedy could have been prevented,” he added.

Asked about the project, Yew said it would go on.

“I hope the project will be completed on time and in proper order by 2020.”

The RM530mil alternative road linking Lebuhraya Thean Teik in Bandar Baru Air Itam to Lebuh Bukit Jambul began in January 2016.

So far, nine bodies have been recovered from the scene. They included Indonesian worker Subaeri, 34, found at about 12.45pm yesterday and Bangladeshi Muhammad Uzzal, 33, at 5pm.

Muhammad Uzzal is said to be without a valid working permit.

Firemen found his body pinned under a container and took about 40 minutes to extract it before sending it to the Penang General Hospital for a post-mortem. The bodies of Bangladeshi workers Mithu Hossain, 30, Mustak Hossain, 25, and Md Jalil, 34, were pulled out of the rubble on Sunday.

Hill stream overflowed – Heavy rain, water on slope cause of Bukit Kukus landslide

Rescue operations at Jalan Bukit Kukus Paya Terubong

GEORGE TOWN: Water flow from a stream on the hilly area at Jalan Bukit Kukus, Paya Terubong has been identified as among the causes of the landslide there last Friday, according to the Mineral and Geoscience Department.

The department’s director for Perlis, Kedah and Penang, Azhari Ahmad, said the finding was made based on its inspection and monitoring since yesterday.

“Our team, which arrived at the location yesterday morning, conducted an observation and identified several factors that caused the landslide, resulting in all containers on the hill slope to slide down with the earth.

“The main factor that caused the land slide is the water flow from a stream near the slope, and heavy rain since Friday morning caused the water to overflow,” he said.

The department had taken immediate measure by diverting the flow of water from the stream elsewhere to avoid worsening the situation, especially during the search and rescue (SAR) operation, he said.

Azhari said further inspection conducted at 7.30am yesterday found the water flow on the slope was less, but the department will continue to monitor the situation with the help of equipment from the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (SMART) to ensure the safety of SAR personnel.

Based on observation and inspection at the scene, the department found the location of the landslide to be at the concave slope which easily collected water.

“But, we have not ruled out the possibility of follow-up landslides in the area due to the soil structure and there is still water flowing that can cause landslide.

“We have also advised the rescue team to stop operation immediately if it rains as it could cause another landslide.”

He said the department was assisting the rescue team in the SAR operation and did not rule out the possibility of it conducting further investigation to determine the actual cause of the landslide.

“We hope for fine weather and no rain so that the SAR operation can continue until all victims are found,” he said.

The tragedy occurred following heavy rain in the state since Thursday afternoon until noon the following day, causing the landslide at the container and kongsi area at the Bukit Kukus paired road construction site.

Two bodies were recovered on Friday, that of Indonesian national Samsul Asman, 19, and Bangadesh worker Attrul, 35, while the bodies of Myanmar woman Khin Aye Khaing, 33, and Indonesian Bahtiar, 36, were recovered yesterday at 1.30am and 11.55 am,  respectively. – Bernama

Related posts:

A drone picture of the collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon leading to Balik Pulau on the left while Jalan Paya Terubong on the ri…

Precarious situation: The collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon which fell and broke after being knocked down. https://www.thestar.c…

Behind BJ Cove houses at Lintang Bukit Jambul 1 is an IJM Trehaus Project.  Approximate Coordinates : 5°20’38.47″N,100°16&#…

 

Related:

Danger still lurks at Bukit Kukus landslide site

 

 ‘Wrong soil used in Bukit Kukus project’ – Nation

 

Expert: Wrong type of soil used in Bukit Kukus clearing | Free Malaysia …

https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2018/10/23/expert-wrong-type-of-soil-used-in-bukit-kukus-clearing/

Rescuers sacrifice sleep to look for remaining landslide victims – Nation

 

Workers not employed by contractor – Nation

 

Penang Forum- Towards Sustainable Development in Penang

 

 

CM Chow, enough with construction tragedies in Penang | Malay Mail

https://www.malaymail.com/…/cm-chow-enough-with-constructio…

 

 

Soil erosion mitigation plans ignored, waters from stream identified as main cause !


 

A drone picture of the collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon leading to Balik Pulau on the left while Jalan Paya
Terubong on the right leads to Relau.— CHAN BOON KAI/The Star
(Above) A closer view of the collapsed beams. (Right) The affected section of the project overlooking Jalan Paya Terubong heading to Relau in the background.

https://content.jwplatform.com/players/Arqv95pp-dBiC3tzP.html

Tragic Situation: (Top) A landslide at the construction site in Jalan Bukit Kukus, Paya Terubong, caused four containers to be covered with mud – Bernama,  Closed call:(Right below) Survivors of the landslide surveying the scene

 Checks show projects did not follow SOP

GEORGE TOWN: As the search and rescue operation for seven buried foreign workers at a construction site in Paya Terubong is going on, shocking information has surfaced that not a single construction site in Penang is following the soil erosion mitigation plan stipulated in their project approvals.

The Star has learnt that the state government has launched Ops Lumpur shortly after the general election, requiring enforcement officers from the local councils to inspect and report on every construction site in all five districts in the state.

A consultant civil engineer familiar with Ops Lumpur claimed that every single construction project did not observe the soil erosion mitigation plan.

He said Ops Lumpur was overseen directly by state exco members and enforcement officers were required to visit the sites.

“Their reports shocked the state exco members. Every contractor failed to do soil erosion measures in every site.

“Now you know why streams near construction site are always yellow when it rains,” he said.

The consultant engineer said the state went after developers who claimed they were not aware and blamed the contractors.

“Civil engineers are often disgusted when they do site visits because it is common for us to see that the soil erosion mitigation plans are never followed,” he said.

The consultant said it was easy to inspect construction sites and check on the progress and questioned whether state government agencies regularly conducted scheduled and surprise visits.

“How often do they conduct spot checks? How strictly do they conduct enforcement rounds on construction sites? If we keep contractors on their toes all the time, we might not have so many landslides,” he said, referring to the latest landslide in Bukit Kukus, the site of a hillside highway from Paya Terubong to Bukit Jambul is being built.

A teh tarik-coloured stream was observed flowing between Jalan Paya Terubong and the barred entrance to the highway construction site yesterday.

It has been raining almost every day in Penang this week.

In yesterday’s incident, rescue team found one survivor and two dead bodies. At press time, seven are still missing.

The Fire and Rescue Department received a distress call about the landslide at 1.56pm.

An Indonesian worker who only wished to be known as Endo, 36, said three of his relatives from Sulawesi were trapped in the landslide and he was working in another nearby construction site.

“It rained all night (Thursday). The rain stopped at 9am (yesterday) and resumed at 1pm. At my site, all of us stayed in our quarters and didn’t work because of the rain.

“I got a call from others that my relatives are missing. So, now I’ll just wait,” he said.

Last Thursday, 14 concrete beams measuring 25m long each, crashed down from an elevated section of the highway.

No injuries were reported and a stop-work order was issued pending investigations of the collapse.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, who visited the site with several state exco members, said he reminded rescue workers to be wary while searching for the missing victims because the rain could have rendered the slopes unstable.

“All work has stopped here and the contractor was about to send in its report on the collapse of the concrete beams on Oct 11,” he said, adding that the place where the beams collapsed was far from the landslide. – The Star by arnold lohlo tern chern

Water from stream identified as main cause of landslide

GEORGE TOWN: Water flow from a stream on the hilly area in Jalan Bukit Kukus, Paya Terubong, near here has been identified as among the cause of the landslide.

Azhari Ahmad, who is Mineral and Geoscience Department (JMG) director for Perlis, Kedah and Penang, said the finding was made based on its inspection and monitoring since Saturday.

“The JMG team identified several factors that caused the landslide, resulting in all containers on the hill slope to slide down with the earth.

“The main factor that caused the landslide is the water flow from a stream near the slope and heavy rain since Friday morning caused the water to overflow,” he told reporters yesterday.

Azhari said the department had taken immediate measure by diverting the flow of water from the stream elsewhere to avoid worsening the situation, especially during the search and rescue (SAR) operation.

He said further inspection conducted at 7.30am yesterday found the water flow on the slope was lesser but the department would continue to monitor the situa­tion with equipment from the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team to ensure the safety of SAR personnel.

He said based on observation and inspection at the scene, the department found the location of the landslide to be at the concave slope which easily collected water.

“But we do not rule out the possibility of a follow-up landslide in the area due to the soil structure and there is still water flowing that can cause landslide.

“We have also advised the rescue team to stop operation immediately if it rains as it could cause another landslide,” he said.

Azhari said the department was assisting the rescue team in the SAR operation and did not rule out the possibility of it conducting further investigation to determine the ac­­tual cause of the landslide.

“We hope for fine weather and no rain so that the SAR operation can be continued until all the victims are found,” he said.

The landslide occurred at about 1.30pm last Friday.

The tragedy occurred following heavy rain in the state from Thurs­day afternoon until noon the following day, causing the landslide at the container and kongsi area at the Bukit Kukus paired road construction site.

Source: Bernama, Reports by LO TERN CHERN, N.TRISHA and R.SEKARAN

 

Related stories:

 

Zairil: Contractor to face action if accident due to negligence – Metro

 

 

Wake up and stop the landslides, state govt urged – Nation

 

Wake up and stop the landslides, state govt urged – Nation

 

 

DOSH: Builders told to stop work, but did not – Nation

 

CAP urges Penang govt to issue stop work order on hillside

 

October and November turning into ‘disaster season’

 

‘Put safety measures into place at construction sites’

Related post:

Precarious situation: The collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon which fell and broke after being knocked down. https://www.thestar.c

Bukit Kukus paired road hits snag before mishap, stop work order to contractor on collapsed beams


Precarious situation: The collapsed beams along Jalan Tun Sardon which fell and broke after being knocked down.

Video:

https://content.jwplatform.com/players/rQ2BJiZc-d74adXtC.html

https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/10/14/stop-work-road-contractor-told-dosh-to-look-at-work-sites-procedures-after-mishap/?jwsource=twi

Stop work, road contractor told

 

BALIK PULAU: The contractor of the 600m elevated road project linking Jalan Bukit Kukus to Jalan Tun Sardon here has been issued with a stop-work order.

The order came following a mishap on the site where 14 concrete beams measuring 25m each fell onto a slope in Jalan Tun Sardon on Thursday.

Eleven beams broke apart in the 8.30pm incident. However, no injuries were reported.

It is learnt that a crane operator accidentally knocked down one of the beams laid on the ground, causing others to fall onto the slope like dominoes.

Penang Department of Occupa­tional Safety and Health (DOSH) director Mohd Rosdee Yaacob said the contractor had been instructed to be present at the DOSH office tomorrow for a meeting.

“We are reviewing the standard operating procedures at the work site.

“For now, the contractor is not allowed to load and unload other concrete beams,” he said yesterday

Mohd Rosdee said his officers were only sent to the site on Friday as they were not immediately informed of the incident.

State Works Committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari said the contractor had been told to prepare a full report for DOSH.

He said the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) would also initiate an internal inquiry tomorrow.

The construction of the elevated road, together with the upgrading of a 1.1km stretch along Lebuhraya Thean Teik and a 1.5km stretch along Lebuh Bukit Jambul, is a MBPP project costing RM275.6mil and is scheduled for completion early next year.

The three segments are part of the project for the construction of the RM545mil alternative road – Jalan Bukit Kukus – to help ease traffic snarls along Jalan Paya Terubong, which is an arterial road linking Bayan Baru, Balik Pulau and Air Itam.

The construction works involve linking Lebuhraya Thean Teik in Bandar Baru Air Itam and Lebuh Bukit Jambul in Penang via Jalan Bukit Kukus, building an elevated U-turn along Lebuh Bukit Jambul for those who want to make a turn and go back to Relau. – The Star

Paired road already hits snag

 

Slow path ahead: The elevated road near Jalan Paya Terubong in Penang will not be ready for another two years.

GEORGE TOWN: Work on the RM545mil Jalan Bukit Kukus paired road project has hit a snag even before the construction mishap in Jalan Tun Sardon.

The completion date on the project, an alternative road linking Lebuhraya Thean Teik in Bandar Baru Air Itam to Lebuh Bukit Jambul, will be delayed by a year till mid-2020 due to unforeseen obstacles during construction.

State Works, Utilities and Flood Mitigation committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari, in describing the project as “very complicated”, said it was constructed by three parties as a cost-saving measure.

“The Penang Island City Council (MBPP) will construct 2.8km of the stretch, while PLB Land Sdn Bhd and Geo Valley Sdn Bhd will construct the remaining 1.4km and 0.7km respectively,” he said.

Zairil said while the three parties involved in the works faced various issues resulting in the delay.

“For example, the MBPP which is working on the 2.8km stretch costing RM275.6mil, faced a delay due to land acquisition issues, realignment and relocation of cables.

“The project is 69% done and to be completed by early 2020.

“PLB Land faced issues with big rocks and boulders. The RM150mil section has progressed 36% and scheduled for mid-2020,” he said.

Zairil said that Geo Valley faced legal issues as the residents affected by their section of the project took up matters with the Appeals Board and the case was pending.

The RM120mil stretch by Geo Valley is now 18% completed.

“Once PLB and Geo Valley complete their portions, we will connect them accordingly,” he said.

It was earlier reported that the contractor of the 600m elevated road project linking Jalan Bukit Kukus to Jalan Tun Sardon was issued with a stop-work order.

The order came after a mishap on the site where 14 concrete beams measuring 25m fell onto a slope in Jalan Tun Sardon on Thursday. No injuries were reported.

It is learnt that a crane operator accidentally knocked down one of the beams laid on the ground, causing others to fall onto the slope.

Paya Terubong assemblyman Yeoh Soon Hin hopes that there will be no further delays.

“About 60,000 vehicles use Jalan Paya Terubong daily to get to Bayan Lepas, and traffic congestion is bad during peak hours.

“I hope the project will be completed safely according to specifications and on schedule for the people to use,” he said.

Once the alternative route is completed, traffic is expected to see a reduction of at least 30%.

The new link will comprise a dual carriageway with a bicycle lane, walkway and LED street lights.

A small waterfall on the hill will also be retained and construction would go around the waterfall.

Last month, MBPP mayor Datuk Yew Tung Seang said the construction on the paired road would take up RM44.2mil of the council’s budget next year. – The Star by Lo Tern Chern

Related:

Dosh: Stop-work order on elevated road project stays 

 

Public talks heading nowhere – Metro News

 

Penang Forum wants eco-review of PIL 1

 

The Tips and Procedures for Issuing a Stop Work Order

2 Things You Should Never Say To A Contractor – Residential …

 

 

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Penang bald Hillslopes a “time bomb”

 

Penang Paya Terubong Residents living under shadow of fear!

 

PAC blamed Penang Island City Council (MBPP) for failing to enforce laws on hillside development 

 

IJM hill clearing & Trehaus construction damaged nearby houses since 2014 must be mitigated quickly

Get-rich-quick ‘Bitcoin Formula’ exposed: Vincent Tan denies investing US$250m



 

Vincent Tan denies investing US$250m in get-rich-quick ‘Formula’

PETALING JAYA: Berjaya Corp Bhd founder and executive chairman Tan Sri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun (<<pic) has denied investing US$250 million in a project known as “The Formula” which allegedly promises huge profits and quick riches.

Tan said in a statement today said that the ‘The Formula’ is supposedly a share trading platform that allows trades executed through it to beat the stock market with an accuracy of 80% thereby allowing users to make huge profits.

“I refer to a current online media entitled ‘Vincent Tan gives back to the people with his latest project” wherein it is reported that I have invested US$250 million in a project known as “The Formula” with a wish to make Malaysians wealthy.

“I would like to categorically deny that I have made an investment in this project or that I am in any way involved in it and there is absolutely no truth in this report which I believe has been put out by unscrupulous persons to deceive the public,” Tan said.

Tan has reported the matter to the relevant authorities so that appropriate action can be taken and urged the public to take caution on promises of quick riches and not to fall prey to scams.

Tan said this is not the first time his name has been used in similar instances for the purpose of lending credibility to online investment scams.

On June 28 (see below), Tan exposed a dubious startup trading platform called “Bitcoin Formula” which used his name and doctored photos to promote its business.

An article claiming he had invested in and was promoting Bitcoin Formula, together with some photographs, was circulated on social media.

The article was accompanied by a few photographs, one showing Tan allegedly awarding a cheque for RM500,000 to Bitcoin Formula for winning the “Project of the Year” prize in a computer engineering “hackathon” in Kuala Lumpur, and another picture of him apparently speaking about Bitcoin Formula at a social media business summit.

Both pictures were in fact images altered with the use of photo-editing software and had originally been taken by theSun in March 2014 and January last year.

A check with the Companies Commission of Malaysia found that no company by the name of Bitcoin Formula exists.

Credit:  Kevin Deva newsdesk@thesundaily.com

‘Bitcoin Formula’ exposed

 

This picture of Tan Sri Vincent Tan speaking at the Social Economic Forum at the GK Enchanted Farm in Bulacan in the Philippines was doctored to appear as if he was promoting Bitcoin Formula

PETALING JAYA: Berjaya group founder and executive chairman Tan Sri Vincent Tan has blown the whistle on a dubious startup trading platform called “Bitcoin Formula”, which has used his name and doctored photos to promote its business.

It came to Tan’s attention that an article claiming he had invested in and was promoting Bitcoin Formula, together with some photographs, was being circulated on social media after a friend who saw it asked him if it would indeed be a good investment.

“How can it be a good investment when the operators have to resort to such dishonest ways like using my name in fake reports and doctored photographs to promote their business?” he said.

“I think anyone who invests in such a shady business will surely lose their money,” said Tan, who urged the public not to be deceived by such posts on social media.

The article about the company, that purports to promote blockchain and crypto technologies, claimed Tan had donated RM500,000 to Bitcoin Formula, a supposed financial startup by young computer engineers developing an efficient trading platform.

The article was accompanied by a few photographs, one showing Tan allegedly awarding a cheque for RM500,000 to Bitcoin Formula for winning the “Project of the Year” prize in a computer engineering “hackathon” in Kuala Lumpur, and another picture of him apparently speaking about Bitcoin Formula at a social business summit.

Both pictures were in fact images altered with the use of photo-editing software, and had originally been taken by theSun in March 2014 and January last year.

The cheque presentation photo was actually of Tan presenting a RM500,000 award to representatives of Dharma Master Cheng Yen of the Taiwan Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation after she was named Better Malaysia Foundation’s Personality of the Year in 2015.

The other image was taken when Tan was speaking at the Social Economic Forum that was held at the GK Enchanted Farm in Bulacan, in the Philippines.

A check with the Companies Commission of Malaysia found that no company by the name of Bitcoin Formula exists.

Tan is apparently the latest prominent person whose name had been used by get-rich-quick scheme operators to scam unsuspecting people, and prominent tycoons like AirAsia founder Tan Sri Tony Fernandes and “Sugar King” Robert Kuok were among people whose names have been used by these scammers.

Tan also dismissed a Facebook article claiming that he will be donating RM525 million to Tabung Harapan Malaysia.

“There is absolutely no truth to either of these reports, that I believe have been put out by unscrupulous persons to deceive the public. I hope the public do not get fooled by these fake reports,” he added.


Credit:  Amar Shah Mohsen newsdesk@thesundaily.com

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BLOCFEST www.blocfest.asia SOUTHEAST ASIA’S INTERNATIONAL BLOCKCHAIN EVENT Blockchain and beyond Brothers Hway (left) and Tze-…

 

Blockchain Festival & Conference Week, Kuala Lumpur 26~27 Sept 2018


BLOCFEST www.blocfest.asia

SOUTHEAST ASIA’S INTERNATIONAL BLOCKCHAIN EVENT

Blockchain and beyond

Brothers Hway (left) and Tze-Co say networking will be a big part of the Blocfest conference. — ART CHEN/The Star

Educate yourself on blockchain technology which is transforming businesses around the globe.

What began as an experiment in buying Bitcoin for a holiday led two brothers to explore blockchain technology and eventually organise a blockchain conference – Blocfest 2018 – which will feature more than 30 ­international speakers.

Gwei Tze-Co, 49, started investing in Bitcoin four years ago, ahead of a trip to Brazil to attend the 2014 World Cup.

“I was planning to go to Argentina after the World Cup and read that the currency situation was so bad there that you could use Bitcoin instead. I bought some but didn’t end up using it,” he says.

But that initial investment got him hooked on blockchain and cryptocurrency, especially Ethereum.

Meanwhile, Gwei Hway, 43, who is a ­programmer and has worked in tech firms for the last 20 years, was drawn to ­blockchain and cryptocurrency because of his brother’s fascination for them.

Tze-Co says in Malaysia blockchain is still an emerging technology though a few good projects by local founders have been launched.

“However, lots of people just use blockchain and cryptocurrency for hype. To put it bluntly, there’s a lot of scams and many Malaysians are falling for them,” he says.

He says that a conference with legitimate speakers sharing their experience could go a long way in educating people on how blockchain can make a difference in their businesses.

He adds that once a person better understands blockchain technology and especially how it’s used in business, it will be easier for him or her to identify the fake ones.

This is one of the reasons the brothers are organising Blocfest through their company, Blockchain Asia Sdn Bhd, which is scheduled to take place at the Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, on Sept 26 and 27.

The two-day conference will focus on the potential of blockchain technology in South-East Asia and feature speakers from various ­backgrounds, including ­blockchain entrepreneurs, developers, global investors, academics and ­enthusiasts.

Discussions at the conference will be divided into three streams – Regulatory, Academic and Enterprise.

Regulatory will help you understand the current regulatory landscape and what’s in store in the future for blockchain; Academy will tackle academic concepts and their impact on blockchain; and Enterprise will highlight technological aspects of blockchain and potential use-case scenarios.

Hway expects half the attendees to come from enterprises which aren’t too familiar with blockchain technology but are exploring how it could be relevant to them, while the remaining will be investors, academics and experts in the field.

“Networking is definitely a big part of the conference, and as many solution providers will be present in the exhibition halls, we expect a lot of companies to ink deals or find partnerships,” he says.

Joining the conversation will be ­regulators from countries that have begun to explore the issue, including Taiwanese Member of Parliament Jason Hsu, better known as the Crypto Congressman due to his staunch ­support for the technology, and a ­representative from the Philippines’ Cagayan Economic Zone Authority which spearheads the country’s financial ­technology efforts.

Tze-Co says there have been talks to get Malaysian regulators to ­participate and share their thoughts on the laws required to facilitate blockchain in Malaysia but the discussion is ongoing.

Other key speakers that will be at Blocfest are cryptofinance ­platform Fusion’s founder Dejun Qian, blockchain veteran and ProximaX Ltd founder Lon Wong, anti-counterfeit system Wabi’s CEO Alexander Busarov, and dating marketplace Viola.AI’s CEO Violet Lim.

In addition to Blocfest, ­attendees can also take part in several other events during the KL Blockchain Week, which will be held between Sept 24 and 27, including a ­hackathon.

Those interested in attending Blocfest can get 40% off VIP ­tickets priced at US$450 (RM1,860) or normal ­tickets priced at US$375 (RM1,550) by keying in the promo code BLOC40D ­during checkout but this offer is only ­available for a limited time. Visit www.blocfest.asia for more ­information.

Credit:Qishin Tariq The Star online

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