Friday, September 28, 2007

The strange notion of getting old but not growing up

Today I just wanted to drop by at a birthday party of two friends, just say hello, have fun and not stay exceptionally long. I was the last to leave. Twice.

Around midnight everybody left, just me and another guest stayed. Then some guests arrived late and left again after some time. Leaving me and the other guest as the last ones to stay for the second time...

Pretty weird if your the last to leave for the second time...

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Nachdem ich gerade einen Fernseh-Empfänger da hatte und die Kollegen informieren konnte... Die Chat-Mitschrift

(15:44:35) gajosimpático: schuss richtung tor, aber deutsche abwehr kein problem damit
(15:44:40) gajosimpático: schon wieder
(15:45:33) gajosimpático: jetzt gehts noch mal richtung norwegisches tor
(15:45:49) gajosimpático: wieder bei den norwegern
(15:46:03) gajosimpático: torabstoss de
(15:46:31) gajosimpático: norwegen hat den ball
(15:46:39) gajosimpático: aber mehr auch nicht
(15:46:42) gajosimpático: einwurf no
(15:47:02) gajosimpático: schuss aufs tor, deutsche torfrau hält
(15:47:13) gajosimpático: sehr niedliche norwegerin
(15:47:32) gajosimpático: drei minuten verlängerung
(15:47:42) gajosimpático: einwurf de
(15:48:16) gajosimpático: reporter faselt über teamgeist
(15:48:51) gajosimpático: schuss aufs tor, torfrau von NO hält
(15:49:02) gajosimpático: wieder richtung NO-tor
(15:50:01) gajosimpático: ausausausdasspielistaus
(15:50:31) gajosimpático: lauter hopsende frauen
(15:51:51) gajosimpático: sauberes eigentor, die norwegerin hatte echt keine chance
(15:51:57) gajosimpático: war spiel mit bande quasi
(15:52:06) gajosimpático: die anderen beiden tore waren auch sehr schön


As you might have read in the last post, I lost the password for a website. So I tried to contact the hoster... They have a feedback-form which you can fill out for questions related to your contract and technical problems and they have an expensive phone hotline.

I filled out the form. I did fill out my contract number, my client number, my e-mail-adress, my name, the domain-name, my shoe size, everything they asked for. Today I got a response.

We are sorry to inform you that we don't answer not authenticated mails, please use our expensive hotline

WTF!?!?! Why do they have the form in the first place? To make sure their clients get seriously angry before calling them? If I hadn't found out how to quit the contract by Fax and already did so yesterday, I would have done it today.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Security by obscurity

Today I got a mail from a specialist on computer security. His name appears on a web page I did for my school some years ago, he asked for his name to be removed, as his private background should not be on the web. I already forgot that the page existed and of course I have no clue what the password was... So, I mailed him that I will remove the page as soon as I find the password. Hurray for showing competence :-)

Friday, September 21, 2007

Old Skool Communication

I just returned from an expedition. I tried to send a letter (for those born after 1980: letters are a paper based form of communication, like printing out your e-mail, giving it to somebody and hoping it will arrive somewhen within a week). The problem: the post office has moved about three times since I last wrote a letter...

So I went to the all new and shiny shopping center (which will be feature of another rant soon), which is where the post office used to be. And, behold, I found a post office. Or at least something similar. Just at the back of a post bank, hidden behind the mobile phone shop hidden behind the bank, there was something like a post office counter. After having fought through the bank salespeople ("No, I do not have any money"), through the mobile phone salespeople ("No, I don't want a mobile phone, I have one already, that's why I don't have any money and passed through the first line") I managed to squeeze in. Tried to find an enevelope, but for some reason they are only sold in family packs (100 envelopes for the prize of 110). Well, also facing the enormous queue at the stamp sales counter, I just gave up the hope of interaction with a semi-human post sales-drone, and just went to the stamp machine.

Now faced with the problem, if I want to send a Maxi-Letter, an oversized letter, a XXL-letter, a huge letter or a Happy-Weekend-Letter (wait, the last one doesn't exist, happy weekend is railway...). None of the options had any explanation, nowhere any information about sizes could be found. Just these fancy names. I just bought a random stamp, went home, found an old envelope and threw the letter in something yellow I believe to be a letterbox... I hope it will arrive.

I start to like e-mail.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


An amazing amount of people doing a PhD comes out of it with stress related problems, either psychological or physical. Some develop stomach ulcers, some turn into near-alcoholics, some are depressed. If you are lucky, you just survive your PhD with a major frustration. Not sure if this is supposed to be like that or if it is worth it...

Monday, September 17, 2007


In spain's schools religion is now substituted by a course about citizenship and how the state works. It is thought to explain people's rights, democracy and how the law works. Some of the books also explain that homosexual marriage is allowed in spain. Which made the catholics go berzerk...

Now the catholic parents organisation tries to fight this course. In an arte interview their speaker explained that it is the parents right to teach their believes to their kids, be it atheist, be it catholic. The state should not try to teach children anything about religion. This is why the state should teach catholic religion instead of democracy. Around this point he completely lost me in his argumentation...

Friday, September 14, 2007

It's improving!

»Há dez anos havia o dobro do dinheiro, mais professores e menos alunos, o mesmo resultado, o mesmo insucesso escolar, o mesmo abandono escolar«

De Rerum Natura cites the portuguese prime minister: »Ten years ago we had twice the money, more teachers and less students, but the same failures in school, the same amount of students dropping out«

This is an improvement. Crappy as ten years ago, but now much cheaper. This seems to be a very common way of thinking these days...


Eva Herrman (a german TV presenter) saying that back in the good ole Nazi Times, Mothers were much more appreceated, families were still great and so on.

Cardinal Meissner going on that Culture which does not praise god is to be considered abnormal (»entartet«).

And you could go out on the streets back then without being molested, and they built great Autobahnen, and everybody had work, ...

Seems that the collective memory forgets pretty fast.

Gimmie 5!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

We have both, geeks and nerds.

[Note: the string of thought of this post is neither finished nor homogeneous]

Of some people you meet at university you hope that they get lost on a lonely island far far away. (Occasionally you also meet people you'd like to get lost on an island with, but this happens very rarely. One of the latter triggered this post...)

University seems to be a cradle where people can survive who, in other surroundings, would get declared mad and handed over into medical care. Science is a collection of weird people, some of them harmless, some not. Most of them don't realize how weird they are and that they sometimes annoy people or scare people (sometimes I fit into this category as well). And it will get worse, as we want more and more "elite" students. It is only possible to reach the high demands to enter these closed circles of higher education if you sacrifice your life. Pupils need to do only science in school, then as students only do science, as PhD only science, as Postdoc, as Prof, only science.

The only social contact they get will be with other nerds, exactly like them. Althugh this might be an interesting psychological experiment, this will create some seriously disturbed people, especially in physics, where (at least here in germany) 90% of the students are male.

This is the part which scares me most in the race for the best students and the "elite of tomorrow": the creation of Frankenstein's Monsters en masse.

Saturday, September 08, 2007


England 188-3 (36.2 overs) won over India 187 (47.3 overs) by seven wickets. What I really like about cricket is the descriptions and names:

Sourav Ganguly, who was peppered with plenty of short stuff, was hit on the helmet before being snapped up at second slip and Gautam Gambhir was well caught by Wright between square-leg and mid-wicket.

I have no clue [1] what this means, but it sounds like an interesting match. The full article is here

[1] Actually, a small clue, thanks to Phil teaching us a bit about it.

Friday, September 07, 2007


It's friday evening and I am programming like mad... It seems that finally motivation has caught in to get my thesis off the desk as fast as possible.

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Finally Bacalhau again! To all of my friends over here in Erlangen: start finding excuses, sometime next week I might invite you to a bacalhau...

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


It was in the early morning hours
When I fell into a phone call
Believing I had supernatural powers
I slammed into a brick wall
I said hey, is this my problem?
Is this my fault?
If that's the way it's going to be
I'm calling the whole thing to a halt

You don't feel you could love me
But I feel you could
You don't feel you could love me
But I feel you could

Just finished watching Graceland, still one of the best concert videos ever.

Monday, September 03, 2007

The End is nigh!

I am running out of "Blabla"-Parts to write for my thesis. I already wrote "The Experiment", "The Theory" and "A general Description of Stuff". Now just two chapters are left: "Stuff I actually did" and "Conclusions and Outlook". Those will be the hard part...