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Whats Wrong With You People?

Oct. 24th, 2006

11:07 am - The beginnings of Mirroring

- Papa, whats mirroring?
- Hmmm.... Well, son, mirroring is when one hard drive tells another one all fairy tales it know, in order. The other one patiently writes all these fairy tales in order, and if it makes a mistake, it will be thrown away and the first one will start telling his tales all over again.

Sep. 27th, 2006

12:27 am - I wish I could...

I wish I could sit around all day long doing nothing but receiving money. I wish I could be popular and revered for just being there. Or just being. I wish my opinion would be signed into law because I have expressed it.
Not my luck. Unlike some people. Have you noticed that some people exert no effort to be at least mediocre at what they do, yet no one is firing them? Why? The best answer I came up with so far is "for being soothing example of how bad one should be to get in trouble".
There are people in all professions who survive in that profession by being professionally incompetent. I know one network security officer who, among many other smart things, suggested using a "good, strong yet easy to remember password, like your birthday". The guy still has his job. I still know his password.
My wife had jury duty today and she was chosen to be a juror on an attempted murder trial. She tells me the nice looking gentlemen who was the prosecutor failed to ask the suspect on a witness stand where he was at the time of shooting. Not that it matters much, but still, I would have been curious... The judge had to intervene during the examination several times with suggestions of appropriate questions, which somehow did not cross the prosecutor's mind. Then, the prosecutor introduced a major piece of evidence - the tape of the interrogation session of the suspect by the police officer. The sound quality was so bad that they had to distribute a transcript, after asking jurors to wait while the transcript is being copied. Clearly, the prosecutor has never listened to it. Or did he?
Above this layer of utter and unparalleled incompetency there is a category of people who are only good at one thing. Usually this thing happens to be convincing the rest of the crowd that they are useful. You see, they cannot just be an inspiration for the lazy. They lack something necessary for the job of being an example of why the rest of us lazy bastards will never be fired, so they have to go one step further beyond doing nothing. One body count unit at my current job loves to take upon tasks. She (or is it he?) never actually does anything himself (herself?), but it is always happy to get an assignment. It later passes this assignment on to someone else, who is actually semi-qualified to do something like that, but in all reports she ends up being the one credited with some sizable percentage of these tasks. No one dares to say anything negative to him out of fear of being accused of racism and/or sexual bigotry (depending on the circumstance). Not that I can recognize the gender of the ugly creature, but it's ability to instill fear of persecution has come up on more then one occasion... Not sure of the race either, but it certainly is not penguin. They are not that grey. Oh, they are also much smarter.

Sep. 26th, 2006

09:02 pm - Testing, testing, 1,2,3...

Baltimore harbor at night

I love this large image browser! Its called Zoomify.

Sep. 5th, 2006

08:41 pm - Oh god, I'm sick of Bushy.

Whats wrong with you, people?
According to CNN, about 41% of all Americans still approve of G. Bush. I do not get it. Do they like their sons dying in Iraq and Afghanistan? Do they like the fact that the country now owes other countries almost 1 year of its entire economy's output? Think about it: every one of us have to work for 10 months without being paid a penny to repay the debt he singlehandedly created. Can you afford that? I certainly don't want to.
I caught a little snippet of one of the recent Bushy's speeches about war and terrorists today on NPR: "... they made their intentions very clear, like Hitler and Lenin did." What a moron. I would understand equating Hitler and Stalin. But Lenin? Have Bushy ever heard of history? You know, like in these things called book. You know, the things where you get your facts from. Oh, right, I forgot: no need for facts when Bushy is involved.
In my book, if someone commits suicide, he's probably very, very desperate. Probably mentally sick too, but desperate never the less. What happens with desperate people when someone points guns at them? Do you really think they get less desperate all of a sudden? No? Then why in the universe did Bushy decide to fight Islamic Jihad and the suicide terrorists it produces with guns? I think it would be much more effective to first learn their language and culture, then figure out what led them to become desperate suicidal terrorists, and then fight the cause with ideological tools. Yes, good old propaganda. It works like charm. Worked on Russians: I know, I'm one of them, I've been there and then. A whole lot cheaper too. Unfortunately it requires something we lack: brains.

Sep. 1st, 2006

01:54 pm - Beware of the wild animal two cars behind.

Whats wrong with you, people? Why do drive like there is no-one else on this 4-lane highway this beautiful rainy Thursday morning? Oh, I understand that the safest way to drive is to go at the same speed as the other car. Not that car in the right lane, you idiot, the one in front of you. Yes, yes, the one that is already a mile ahead and is barely visible.
Look behind you, people. This wondrous world is full of life. Crawling, purring, walking, barking, and yes, driving. I understand that you might want to live to your next, 96th birthday, and to do that you need to take extra precautions. I would too. But why do you have to do it on my time? And on the time of other 30 people behind you? That right lane goes at your favorite speed, just get in there.
Oh, that blond is in a hurry too. Beautiful blond. Or at least, that's what any average superman in his late teens would say. I personally prefer brunettes. So this wonderful blond moves her WV out of nowhere right in front of me with a grace of a ballerina falling from the skyscraper. Decent speed she makes, faster then my 79 (I hate 5-point tickets, gotta keep it below 80). She gracefully assumes a position in my left lane a few microns in front of my bumper. And then she stops. Well, not literally, but slowing down by some 30 mph feels like a complete stop. And then she proceeds to maintain the assumed 49mph for the next 15 minutes. What was your hurry to get in front of me?
I live in a working class neighborhood in the middle of a big city. Row-houses make the car density pretty high, and narrow streets do not help either. Sometimes I have a problem finding a parking spot. My neighbors are in the same boat, sometimes they, like me, have to park good 1 1/2 minute walk from their house. When they come back from a big shopping this is not very convenient, especially if you have to make 3-4 trips between the car and the house to get everything (feeding that herd of hippos is tough!). So, sometimes they double-park. I do too if I have to unload something heavy. This is all fine and understandable. I will patiently look at my watch with my other hand right above the horn until they unload that gallon of diet coke and 5 cases of butter. But why do they have to double-park in front of an empty parking spot???
Whats wrong with you, people?

Aug. 29th, 2006

02:56 pm - I'm from the government, I'm here to help!

Whats wrong with you, people? Why are you ok with spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on a tool and hire a worker who cannot read a safety label on this tool because you dont have to pay him $9 an hour (the one you got is ok with $8.25)? Yes, he will wreck the tool and kill himself in the process. Yes, you will end up spending another few hundred thousand on repairs and increased insurance. No, this is not an "if", this is a "when".
If that is not comic enough, why do you hire me for $100,000 or so per year plus another $25,000 in benefits and give me a monitor which works and looks like a pregnant grandfather from a bad sci-fi mini-series? In the morning, this stale burp of Taiwanese computer industry takes about two hours to warm-up before the font gets into some resemblance of a focus and I can read my morning emails. Oh, I was supposed to be at that 10:30 meeting, weren't I?
Then I have to walk around it to read a sentence longer then 4 words because the curvature on this grandfather is better then on my first wife's boobs. And these were DD's. By 4 pm it warms up to a blue glow and is so bright (at the lowest setting) that I can see my finger bones if I look at it through the fingers. Screw X-ray, work and get your medical care in one cube! I have to turn it off at the end of the day so it does not cause fire and destroy my precious high-paying job along with all the other useless gunk in this building. Next morning the story repeats. Or at least, it used to.
I ordered myself a brand spanking new ViewSonic VX2025WM. Flatter then the earth in the middle ages, sharper then my brain, more adjustable then my granpa's SLR camera, this is truly a beauty. "Well, Dennis", - you would ask - "why didn't you tell your boss to give you a better monitor before buying one yourself? Clearly, it would be in his interest to have you read the emails on time and be at that 10:30 meeting." I am glad you thought of that, because I did too, and that makes a consensus, and we like consensus around here. Indeed, I have asked. And I was told: "Oh, no problem, we will give you another monitor." And they did give me another monitor. No one mentioned a better one. The replacement was the daddy of the one I had. It was dead. It even smelled of a rotten computer flesh, the king of stench you get from a burnt power supply in a smokers-only computer room. By the time I realized my mistake, my pregnant granddaddy monitor was gone, and I was left with 0 computer hours in a day instead of 3 and 1/2.
So I went home, looked at the beautiful ViewSonic I got as a birthday present from my wife and ordered myself the identical one.
Today I got it delivered straight to my cube. I unwrapped it and plugged it in.
The highest resolution that the VGA card in this piece of junk they gave me supports is lower then the lowest one supported by my new monitor.
Whats wrong with you, people?

Aug. 26th, 2006

01:30 am - Night Panorama of Baltimore Downtown

This is Baltimore Downtown and the Harbor at night, viewed from Federal Hill.
You know, I really dont like my Nikon Coolpix 5400. On the wide angle zoom, it does not focus at all on infinity. As if its understanding of the infinity ends at about 200 yards.

Aug. 25th, 2006

03:12 pm - Tick-tick-tick.... Ta-da!

11:20 am - Human computer

Hugin is a beautiful software tool for making panorama images out of multiple shots. It works wonderfully well, and does not make mistakes. Ever. Unfortunately, I do. I just spent tons of time trying top make the cave-in go away from this panorama of Baltimore. It turns out, I have marked two completely unrelated spots on the adjacent images as the same spot. Do you have any idea how hard it is to find this problem when you have over 150 pairs of spots marked?

Aug. 24th, 2006

01:36 pm - Whats in the name?

Hello, may I speak with Mr... Msss.... no, Mr. Ra.. Mr. Rash... Rashmu.... Rashmubasen?
Hello, may I speak with Mr. David Rashmubazen?
Mr. Razumbashlen?
No, you moron, It's Rozenbaum! And no, you cannot speak to me until you learn how to read last names letter-by-letter before dialing the number, or just call me Mister, or just David, or just "Hey, whats your name".

Whats wrong with you people, why cant you stop offending me and another 45% of Americans with last names slightly more complicated then Smith, Lee or Burp? Why do you insist on saying something you are not qualified to say? I don't mind being called "Mister", or "Sir", or "Dennis", or "Mr. Customer", or "Hey", or "I am sorry, ...". I do object you butchering my utterly foreign to you and so close and important to me last name. Yes, if you figure out your mistake on your own, and apologize, I will say that its no big deal, and I am very much used to it. And I am used to it. Doesn't mean I like it. I will probably dislike you forever. Or at least until you offer me a piece of that beef jerky.

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