Archive for June, 2005

Sin City

June 30th, 2005

Why does it have to be so long?!?

I could write a couple of pages to slag off this movie but instead I'll just say this one thing. It was insanely boring. I think that says just as much.

2/10

todo list update

June 28th, 2005

+ numerodix redesigned and refactored
+ fixed brakes on bike
+ mailserver bug fixed

crap advertising

June 28th, 2005


I know, I know, but I just came across a terrific example surfing today. The most severe case of bad advertising I've seen in 2005. It's an ad posted in Gazeta Wyborcza, probably the most respectable Polish daily, ordered by some Christian interest group (hell, religion is so hip these days).

Since the font is so tiny, I'll help you read it. It says "Is the load hard to bear [ed. as in do you have a heavy conscience?]? Go to confession before Easter".

Whenever I see something like this I tend to stare in awe and wonder who would actually pay for this to be made? Do people just order ads without knowing anything about how they will turn out, and then they're forced to pay what it cost to make them? Is there no iterative process of development (yes I know I'm rehashing software development theory, feck off)? Or do people actually want ads like this one? Could it be? Does anyone actually think this is a good one?! Did someone get a pat on the back for this one?

not the sharpest knife in the drawer

June 27th, 2005

So today I officially started my summer job at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. Till now I've been using an empty office, the guy who had it moved to Oslo (wouldn't we all want to..). In the office there are 3 monitors and two desktops. I had been using my laptop all this time, cause it was the easiest for me. I also worked a lot from home during the project but now that I'll be at the office, I decided it would be more comfortable to have a desktop computer. So I asked if I could use one of the two in my office, and the boss had no reason to object. I was gonna put Ubuntu on it for a fast install, but the socket on the cdrom didn't seem to match the IDE cable. So I go talk to a co-worker and I explain the problem about the socket on the cdrom drive being too wide for the ide cable. "You mean like... scsi?" "Right" Hell, I had never actually seen a scsi drive, it never occured to me that's what it was, I thought it was some wacko non-standard crap.

So I burnt an Ubuntu installcd and went from there. The install took a while, considering the computer isn't state of the art (dual Pentium3 500MHz w/ 512MB SDRAM). But when it was time for X to come up on the screen, all I got was a blank screen. Xorg didn't kill the session and report an error, the image just wasn't there. I checked the logs and there was nothing anywhere to suggest a display problem. Now, I'm not good with hardware because I'm not at all hip on hardware. To me hardware is just an obstacle in order to get to the software. But while I was moving the case around a few months ago, I noticed it was connected to two different monitors. I didn't think much of it at the time, but now it suddenly struck me. For some reason this baby had two video cards. So I plugged in the other monitor and what do you know, there's X. Weirdo. I switch back to console, it's back on the monitor in front of me. So I got X on one, console on the other, but not at the same time.

After a while, my co-worker comes by to check that I got it working and we start chatting. "You know if you'll be working here for a while, I really recommend one those 21 inch flat monitors we have.." Well, duh. "Well, I'm just satisfied using what is already here." Now get this, from the time I first took the office, there was this big box from DELL lying in the window. I never even thought about opening it, figured I'm just a temp, I'm not gonna mess with their stuff. So my co-worker spots it and walks up to the window. "Dude, this IS one of those flat screens". Turns out back when they bought them, every office got one. It had been just lying there in a box all this time. So I start unwrapping it and now I got my own uber-cool 21'' beauty.

trying to have a conversation

June 24th, 2005

I never get tired of observing how humans have severe difficulties at staying on the logical path.

Friday, 14:03. I call the print shop to find out about how I can get my project report printed. "Hi, I would like to print a lengthy text in book format, it's about 315 pages and I'll be needing it in 4 copies." "Well is it black&white or is it in color?" "Most of it is in black&white, a few pages are in color." "A few pages? What does that mean, a few? That doesn't tell me anything." So I try to make up for the 'appaling blunder'. "Okay, let's say 30 are in color. Do you know how long it will take to print?" "Well that's pretty straightforward." Yeah, great answer there, chief. But that doesn't tell me anything, so I keep trying. "What if I bring it by in half an hour, how long do you think it will take?" "You can't bring it in on a Friday afternoon and expect to get it done immediately." Oh my god, really?? I understand it's gonna take some time but I'd like to know what kind of time we're talking about. Time for a coffee? Time for a long nap? Or for a two month vacation? "Yes, I realize that, but do you think you can get it done today?" They're open until 18. "I can't say, if you bring it in, we'll put it in the queue and we'll see how long it takes." What is the queue a black box? Don't you know what's in it? Don't you work at a printer? Don't you have any idea of how long it will take to process what's in the queue? "If you're lucky, maybe we can get some of it done today." I realized this is all I was gonna get.