Horrible mistake by NS Portal admins/writers

Check out this page. Some idiot from the NS Portal actually used a picture of Steve Jobs in an article about Microsoft Powerpoint. This is totally absurb and unacceptable. So someone shot them an email. Here is the email replicated in its (almost) entirety.

“Dear in charge,

I refer to your article posted at http://……. in which Microsoft Powerpoint is being highlighted and discussed.

As representative of the No. 1 Mac-using tertiary institution in Singapore, I wish to point out that your picture of Steve Jobs, the CEO of Apple Inc, in the article, is not just inaccurate, but totally unacceptable as well. Steve Jobs never, never uses Microsoft Powerpoint in his presentations. He uses an Apple software called Keynote, which is many ways is much much better than Microsoft Powerpoint. The use of his picture in the article both reflects the inability of the article writer who obviously does not have the required knowledge to tell the difference between Keynote and Powerpoint, and makes us doubt the credibility of his article as well.

Such a mistake is totally unacceptable even if it is made in an environment, which, one can argue, is free from any knowledge of Mac software since the armed forces uses exclusively Microsoft software, instead of promoting open-source alternatives. However, usage of Apple software and hardware is now growing at an increasing pace, and Keynote was even used during PM Lee’s National Day Rally. As such, it is therefore unacceptable to have commit such a mistake, especially when you represent the Armed Forces.

I hereby request you to replace the picture as soon as possible. I believe I speak for all the Mac users in Singapore, as the following post in the Mac User Group Singapore’s forum at http://www.macusersg.org/forums/index.php?topic=42458.0 has indicated general displease with the article.

It is exactly mistakes like these that makes our Armed Forces a laughing stock in front of Singaporeans. I hope that you can quickly correct your mistake, and try to prevent something as humiliating as this from happening again.

Yours Sincerely,


*Edit* Apparently the guy who posted the above msg (read: ME!!) didn’t realise that OpenOffice was in use since last year. Seriously, who will know? I personally saw Microsoft Office ’97 throughout the whole of my NS days 3 years back. And I have never heard of any plans to switch to OpenOffice then. Not everyone’s in Army or NS all the time. Apologise for the mistake though.

*Edit Again* The NSPortal Editor posted this reply;

“Hi all,

The article is a contribution that talks about the value of the command of a good presentation skill and the term โ€˜PowerPointโ€™ was used by the writer as a generic reference term due rather than as a product per se and Steve Job was an admirable international figure well known for making fantastic presentation and being featured to make a point and we regret any unintended misunderstanding.

NS Portal appreciates your readership and would like thank you guys for their feedback and support. We have advised the writer to make the necessary amendment to avoid future misunderstandings.

Warm Regards,
NS Portal Editor”

Edit again, and again: Apparently someone told me using Steve Jobs’ picture in the article itself is illegal. I think it might be true, especially for a high profile site like NSportal. Then again, will I know? I’m no lawyer.

Official Disclaimer: All my comments and posts posted in this site is made in my capacity as a Mac fan (or some say fanboy), and not in my capacity as President of the Mac User Group of NUS.

  • Sooty

    “Such a mistake is totally unacceptable even if it is made in an environment, which, one can argue, is free from any knowledge of Mac software since the armed forces uses exclusively Microsoft software, instead of promoting open-source alternatives.”

    AFAIK, SAF uses OpenOffice.org now

  • wee


  • Justin

    I’m a Mac user myself, but this is typical zealotry that gives us a bad name. The SAF’s use of Microsoft software? Keynote isn’t open-source either.

  • There is another irony to it.

    Most SAF computers use Open Office software.


  • RELAX!

    wah lau this guy should relax lar… I didnt know Mac club was a subsidiary of the Anal and Uptight Fanboy Club..

  • Jermyn

    guess what..
    they changed it

  • jp

    Yes! Absurb and unaccebtable!

  • It is not as egregious a mistake as this guy’s ranting it out to be. It shows incompetence on the part of the author but that’s pretty much it. There was no need to go on a verbal tirade of Mac vs. Microsoft vs. Linux…well unless ure a fanboy…hmmmm

  • darkholme

    Kudos to the email writer for spotting the mistake on the website. I’ve noticed that the picture has since been replaced by a more generic image.

    Just wanted to say though, that I felt the email writer was a tad harsh in his/her comments. After all, everyone makes mistakes once in while and granted this is really a major boo boo, maybe we can forgive those unenlightened non-Mac users? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Anyway, just wanted to point out one mistake in the email. MINDEF/SAF does not use exclusively Microsoft software. Presently, the main office productivity tool used is OpenOffice (please see http://www.pstm.net/article/index.php?articleid=699), and a couple of other open source technologies are also being used – Freemind and Open Workbench. So yeah, MINDEF/SAF isn’t Microsoft exclusive ๐Ÿ™‚


  • Ryu

    Wah my god! Didn’t know I got tomorrowed until I was informed by someone. This is the first time that I have so many comments here!

    To all who pointed out that OpenOffice is now used all across SAF: Sorry about the bad mistake. As you can tell, I no longer have any relations with the SAF since my ORD almost 4 years back. I was using Office 97 on Windows 95 all the way (till 2004!), and from what I know then there were absolutely no plans to switch to OpenOffice in the “near future”.

    To all who pointed out that I am a fanboy: Yeah. I’m one big fanboy and proud of it. So? There are some of us who totally don’t mind the tag you know. ^_^

    To all who pointed out that my email was too harsh: Yeah, I was quite rash in posting that email when I saw the article, so am relatively apologetic for my tone in that email. Sorry to it in SAF who is hurt by those comments. ๐Ÿ˜›

    I’m pretty wowed by the information on open-source stuff in SAF! Kudos to them for changing the entire IT landscape in less than 4 years! Then again, who will know if they are not just trying to save more money? One of the reasons they even thought of scraping Windows 95 only in 2004, was that support will be terminated by Microsoft, and if they could keep Windows 95, they would, or so i was told by my authority. ^_^

    Makes you wonder where all the extra money from the increased GST and other crap goes to?

    Oh I forgot. Our ministers got pay hikes. Much much higher than their US counterparts.

  • thanks for sharing! ,now i know ๐Ÿ˜‰

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MacRyu is the Mac Blog by Singaporeans and for Singaporeans. It was started in April 2007 as a side project of the then President of the Official Mac User Group of NUS, Ryu, and grew to become possibly one of the most popular Apple-related sites based in Singapore. MacRyu hopes to provide you with more Mac-related info, thoughts and stuff, from the Singaporean perspective.

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