Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Overcoming the limits of multiple inheritance in dojo

I've written a short cookie in dojocampus about doing multiple inheritance in Dojo, you can read it here.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Great quotes from excellent movies

"Do you not get it, lads? The Irish are the blacks of Europe. And Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland. And the Northside Dubliners are the blacks of Dublin. So say it once, say it loud: I'm black and I'm proud" - The Commitments

"In the quiet words of the Virgin Mary... come again? " - Snatch

"We're on a mission from God." - The Blues Brothers

Excellent quote from one of the greatest cult movies

Some quotes make so much sense if they are in the right context. This one is one of the best in this category of quotes:

"...Were so glad to see so many of you lovely people here tonight, and we would especially like to welcome all the representatives of Illinois law enforcement community who have chosen to join us
In the palace hotel ballroom at this time. we do sincerely hope you'll all enjoy the show, and please remember people, that no matter who you are, and what you do to live, thrive and survive, there are still some things that make us all the same. you, me them, everybody, everybody..."

from the intro to "Everybody needs somebody to love" by Jake and Elwood Blues

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Raven, by Edgar Allan Poe (first published in 1845)

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; - vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Lenore -
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Nameless here for evermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
`'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door -
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; -
This it is, and nothing more,'

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
`Sir,' said I, `or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you' - here I opened wide the door; -
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before
But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, `Lenore!'
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, `Lenore!'
Merely this and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
`Surely,' said I, `surely that is something at my window lattice;
Let me see then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore -
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; -
'Tis the wind and nothing more!'

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore.
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door -
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door -
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
`Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,' I said, `art sure no craven.
Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the nightly shore -
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning - little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door -
Bird or beast above the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as `Nevermore.'

But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only,
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered - not a feather then he fluttered -
Till I scarcely more than muttered `Other friends have flown before -
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.'
Then the bird said, `Nevermore.'

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
`Doubtless,' said I, `what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore -
Till the dirges of his hope that melancholy burden bore
Of "Never-nevermore."'

But the raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore -
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking `Nevermore.'

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o'er,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o'er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.
`Wretch,' I cried, `thy God hath lent thee - by these angels he has sent thee
Respite - respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost Lenore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil! -
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted -
On this home by horror haunted - tell me truly, I implore -
Is there - is there balm in Gilead? - tell me - tell me, I implore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us - by that God we both adore -
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden, whom the angels named Lenore?'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!' I shrieked upstarting -
`Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken! - quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted - nevermore!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

My take on the economical rescue plan

The bottom line of rescue plan of the US government and other governments around the world basically revolves around giving money (and lots of it) to financial institutes and other businesses. I didn't read anywhere about the issue of the source of this money.
As I see it, there are four possible sources:
  1. Increasing the deficit in the budget
  2. Raising taxes
  3. Shifting money that was targeted to other causes (like education, health, etc.) to become the money for the rescue plan.
  4. Printing more money

The first option means increasing the US debt, which means a very cloudy future (debts should be returned eventually)

The second option is just making life even harder today

The third option means more unemployment and loss of future success

The forth option means inflation

All of them are bad. So just to summarize, the core idea in the plan is taking money from the future, invest it today and hope that somehow things would work out for the best, because if not, both the present and the future would be lousy.

But I may be wrong here

Friday, August 8, 2008

A cooking question

Is it true, that whenever one of the ingredients of a dish is either an apple, honey or cinamon, you can always add the other two and it would just improve the dish?

Thursday, August 7, 2008

My tidbit about the original dream team

I heard some people say that this years the American basketball team to the Beijing olympic games, is the best ever. These people forgot a few things about the real dream team - the one from 1992 (Jordan, Magic, Bird ...). So I'll remind here just one point, that people tend to forget. In the final they had beaten the best non-American team ever - Croatia with Drazen Petrovic and Toni Kukoc - the two best european players ever (I'd take them any day over Dirk Nowitzki), alongside with Dino Radja, Stojko Vrankovic and Zan Tabak. This Croatian team could be considered the "european dream team" and would have beaten most of the other American teams that were sent to other olympic games.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

My article was published on developerWorks

see here

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Incredible what they are doing with AOD

See here what they are doing using an acousto optic deflector, looking at many neurons at a very high frequency.

Douglas Adams take on design

A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Why usability will be important 20 years from now

In 20 years from now, all of today's children, that were born to a world with cellular technology and internet will be be in their 30's and 40's.
These are the people that will consume technology, use software at home and at office, and will become users of all the new things that are going to be invented till that time.
For this generation, computers are inseparable part of life in the same way as for this generation having 300 channels in the television is normal, and for the older generation having phones and cars.
Assuming that till that time most of the niches will have numerous software packages dedicated to, the thing that will be the differentiator is their level of service, and in the software world, this means the interface with the user is basically its service level.
Having s software that serves its users in a more natural way, that basically reduces the mental burden of the users to a minimum, with a small as possible learning curve, and with maximum efficiency from the user's point of view (minimum work for maximum results) will result in a larger user base, which will eventually translate to a winning software.
You may say that this is the case today, but in 20 years from now, the users will evovle, and would expect nothing less then a perfect usability, in the same way that we are today expect nothing less then a perect service when we buy something somewhere.