Today we visited another subsidiary of A*STAR, Fusionopolis. The best description I can think of is a science works (the Melbourne kids science facility to engage young people in science) level of science, if not less, to try and engage and sell their services to possible investors of A*STAR facilities in Singapore. Admittedly it was entertaining to see some novel technologies I had never seen before like a game controlled completely on how well you could concentrate or a hospital bed that had sensors for heart rate, breathing and movement built in. The game that operated on how well you could concentrate was marketed towards primary schools, to help students that suffer from ADHD learn to concentrate and block out external distractions. Though these and other technologies shown to us were quite enjoyable the level of science explained and presented was very low, especially when considering they got us to skip the “kids” area which was filled with what appeared to be Tron like bikes. I can understand that this was all made to engage possible corporations that had a little understanding of science as well as school groups of kids, but if the level of science was that low, the least they could have done was let us go on the Tron bikes, they looked fun.
In the afternoon we got to meet up with the Biodiversity students again (the students from the aquarium trip) but this time at the Singapore zoo. We were treated to a behind the scenes look at the zoo which included the veterinary clinic, the animal’s kitchen and the roofs that seem to have a constant drip of bat feces coming from them, it’s the only way to explain the amount of poo in some areas. After that we were set free in the zoo to observe all the animals in their “natural” habitats which in general were large in size for most but I sincerely hope that the few zebras and the like het to rotate into bigger fields from time to time. To be honest I’m still not 100% sure how I felt about the elephant shows. On one hand they were entertaining and showed a way of life in south east Asia, on the other though I felt kind of dirty watching these animals move logs and do tricks like spinning their trunks and going to sleep on command for our entertainment. I guess though it would be good for the elephants to be able to get out and have some enrichment and variety to their day to day lives rather than being cooped up in an enclosure day in and day out.
Last day of study tour here I come.