Archive for the ‘Rants’ Category

During World War II, British Airforce was sending hundreds of planes every day to the continent to combat Germans. Not many of them were returning home.

Most of the planes that were returning to the bases were badly damages by bullets and shell splinter. British engineers were carefully analyzing the data, trying to find any patterns. They observed that, statistically, planes were most likely to receive damage in the wings and tail areas. They also observed that damages to the fuel tank and the pilot cabin were quite rare.

Based on this data, they decided to add more armor to the wings and the tail section.

It didn’t help.

Their logic was right, but they failed to consider one vital thing: they were analyzing the successes, and not the failures. The most useful information was on the planes that didn’t return. It was actually the damage to the fuel tank and the pilot cabin that was fatal. And those planes that received bullets in all the other sections were just lucky.

Always try to analyze your failures! It’s important to know not only what works, but what doesn’t work as well. Avoiding mistakes is crucial during any project!

If you did bad on an essay, take it apart and see what went wrong in order to avoid the same mistakes in the future.

Don’t hesitate asking people for feedback. And try to give feedback to others as well. A rational critique is always helpful (though I often can’t get it from people… Australians seem to be excessively polite and tell people only the things they want to hear, avoiding giving unpleasant (though necessary) feedback and judgment)…

I was watching a documentary on Channel 7TWO yesterday. It was about Vesuvius, the volcano near Naples, Italy , which destroyed the city of Pompeii in 79 AD.

The program was quite interesting and informative. They were talking about geological aspects of this volcano, how often it erupts, the history of its activity, what are the worst possible case scenario if it becomes hyperactive in modern day Italy, how the government designs strategies for evacuation, etc. Very interesting stuff.

But, I didn’t like one aspect of it. Throughout the entire running time, the authors were implying that people who build cities near Vesuvius and live there are just a bunch of ignorant idiots who put themselves in purposeless danger and don’t even think about their future.

Now, let’s just try to understand why people come to these regions in the first place. It would seem quite irrational to ignore the fact that you’re living next to a bad-ass volcano, which ejaculates titanic amounts of deadly ashes once every 1.5 generations, burning everything in the 5 km radius. So, is there a rational reason for people to endanger themselves by inhabiting these ares? Yes, there is.

Once a volcano erupts, the ashes that contain all kinds of interesting chemical elements and compounds, mix with the soil and turn the region into one of the most fruitful grounds on the planet for generations ahead. Agricultural business thrives in seismo-active regions. Just in 5-10 years of collecting the reach harvest, people make more money than needed to recover from a disaster. Economy is booming because of that.

I believe that people should always use the potential of their surroundings at a maximum rate, for the sake of Civilization development (in a way that doesn’t permanently damage the ecosystem, of course).

Taking an advantage of dangerous conditions is a good skill to have, and I respect people of Naples for that.

Suppressed and oppressed.

Posted: March 15, 2011 in Just for LULz, Rants

Received this warning on my Uni email account today:
Dear Student,

Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources

QUT provides information technology resources to its staff and students for day-to-day operations. These include the desktop environment, network facilities, IT infrastructure, and access to the internet.

QUT IT resources may not be used for any purpose associated with the transmission, viewing or publication of pornography or other illicit or offensive material; personal commercial interests; soliciting donations for political parties or religious groups; publication of sites unrelated to university activities; personal observations using inappropriate or offensive language, or any unlawful purpose.

Staff who require use of the University’s IT resources for approved research and academic activities in relation to pornography, sexually explicit materials and illegal matters must, in the first instance, seek Executive Dean (or equivalent) approval prior to use.

When users renew their access account passwords, they are always reminded that the University monitors its information assets and carries out detailed security audits of systems and data as required. Network activity is logged and may be used to investigate faults, security breaches and inappropriate or unlawful use. The University reserves the right to access individual files.

There is a continuing need to be vigilant about the proper use of QUT information technology resources.Breaches of the QUT Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources Policy by staff may be treated as misconduct or serious misconduct.

Hmmm…

“personal observations using inappropriate or offensive language”


personal observations using inappropriate or offensive language”


“personal observations using inappropriate or offensive language!!????!!!111”

Does it mean that I’m not allowed to post certain kinds of rants to this blog using QUT’s on-campus Wi-Fi!?!?!?
OH SHIT!!!! What the fuck!?

I hate when producers try to create radio and TV versions of the songs that were originally made to be played in clubs and on festivals. It’s almost impossible to compress all the emotions from an 8-11-minute song into a 3-minute video. It’s the same as taking all 7 seasons of House M. D. and trying to tell the entire story and develop all the characters within a 2-hour movie. Or it’s like taking Windows 7 (without changing the controls) and trying to run it on a mobile phone with a 5-inch screen. It might be able to run, but you wouldn’t be able to work on it.

Very often, such approach completely ruins the entire experience of enjoying the song, especially if the official music video is poorly made.

Tiesto’s classic track “Traffic” is a prime example of such negligence:

The original, full length track Traffic is my favorite Tiesto’s composition, and one of my favorite songs of 2000’s. It sounds so Epic and it certainly has some empowering qualities. But the official video, which was made for MTV, kills its atmosphere completely.

Another example of how an amazing song can be ruined by a nauseating 3-minute video is the official music clip for Ferry Corsten’s “Beautiful”:

The original, album version is 6 minutes long. You can just dive into the atmosphere of the track and have a complete mind-blow (by the way, during his performance in Brisbane in February, Ferry played Beautiful, and, for me, that was the most euphoric moment of 2011, so far :) ). The video version, on the other hand, is disgusting.

But you can find some exceptions too.

For example, a radio version of Chicane’s classic trance tune “Saltwater” (released in 1999) sounds as good as the album version:

Unfortunately, adaptations of this sort are extremely rare.

***

According to my observations, there are only two ways to make good radio versions of electronic dance tunes.

First way: making the original no longer than 5 minutes in the first place. Different house and electro artists (such as Benny Benassi, David Guetta, Calvin Harris, etc) make songs that are relatively short and could be played on the radio without cuts and edits that might ruin the composition. Tiesto has been doing so too since 2009.

Second way: completely reconstructing the track, making it sound more mainstream, maybe adding some vocals, so it wouldn’t be just a collection of samples from the original song. In this case, the radio/TV versions of the songs have very little in common with the originals, but the fact that they were properly adjusted for a short-time run makes them fairly listenable.

A classic example of such technique would be the pop (mainstream) version of legendary track “Synaesthesia” by Thrillseekers. The song was (re)named “Fly Away” and contained vocals by Sheryl Deane:

Another example would be the mainstream version of Riva’s “Stringer“, which was named “Who Do You Love Now?” to suit the lyrics:

Of course, these pop-versions are only remotely as awesome as the original tunes. But, nevertheless, they are better than just cut-versions.

Always try to listen to the original tracks.

In the main news.

Posted: February 5, 2011 in Animals, ChDV's life, Music, Polls, Rants, Technology

I’m going to be brief today.

Came up to this poster. This is so true.

***

Bought a new set of earhones yesterday – Yamaha EPH-20.

I used to have Yamaha EPH-30 (2 times in a row), but the last pare broke 2 days ago, and I couldn’t wait so I bough these as a temporary solution. I’m not impressed. They don’t produce much bass, so some songs of The Prodigy and old Tiesto’s tunes don’t sound so well through these. Also, the overall quality is quite poor. I tried listening to Xpander by Sasha through these earphones, and I nearly vomited. It just sounded crappy in comparison to good old Yamaha EPH-30. I would have to buy something better as soon as possible. Jim Wang recommended me a set of Fischer Audio Eterna. I read some reviews. They look good. I will consider buying these in the next couple of weeks for around $85 (including shipment to Australia).

***

I gained 3 kg in the last 8 days.

***

I hate Australian weather! This heat is killing me. I can’t function normally in any temperature above 27 degrees C. I prefer staying at home these days, with air conditioner working on a full capacity. Unfortunately, I have to get out of here sometimes, money don’t grow on trees anywhere near our place, and I still need to purchase lots of stuff. Each trip to the city (or even to a nearby shop) is like a torture. The humidity doesn’t add any enjoyment either. I sweat like a dog, and the sweat doesn’t evaporate much, which reflects on my natural cooling mechanisms…. I’m looking at Weather Tab on my iGoogle at this very moment. It doesn’t promise anything good. This shit will continue governing Queensland for, at least, another 4 days. Hope I’m not going to die.

***

Quickly.

***

I’m planning to release the Random SMS Trivia (Volume 3) withing the next week. Then, I will have to make a looooong break. Only 2-3 people reply to these messages nowadays, and the replies have declined in quality. So, I would rather entertain myself in a different way for the next 5 months, or so.

***

Also, I want you to read this:

http://www.djmag.com/top100/detail/2593

You might want to read this as well:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferry_Corsten

Now, watch this:

He is one of my childhood heroes. I’m just saying :)

***

Oh! By the way…

Anyone keen on going to Family Nightclub tonight (Saturday)? The entrance is quite expensive this time. It will be $35 on the door. And the club will be packed to its full capacity, I bet it.

I know I’ll be there for sure ;). If you aren’t keen on spending such money for a club visit, don’t worry about me, I’m not going to be bored there, even “by myself” :).

Send me a text if you’re interested in going. You will not regret this. :)

The Facebook we’ve lost.

Posted: December 31, 2010 in ChDV's life, Internet, Rants

The time was 12 AM, I was lying on my bed with iPhone 4, reading an article from the Time mag app about China and how it expands its economical influence in Asia. Then I read a review on Opera 11 web-browser on CNET.com. After that, I went to NASA app and started reading about A-train satellites. Thought it was quite interesting, so I went to Wikipedia and started exploring the subject in more depth for another 30 minutes, or so.

Lots of interesting stuff is going on in the World right now. You can browse different info-resources on technology, science, geo-politics, media and entertainment and find thousands and thousands of LOLs in every single area of interest.

Going through my Twitter feed also gave me some stuff to notice. I’m not a big Twitter user myself, I only have an account there to stalk a few celebrities whose life I personally find interesting, so even a simple logs of their actions might be of a certain value to me. In that way, I felt an extreme jealousy towards people who will be celebrating this New Year in Melbourne to the music of Armin van Buuren, who is currently touring the world with his Armin Only concerts. I also read a Paul van Dyk’s twit, in which he was telling that he is still deciding which track to play at 12AM on New Year in New York (damn new-yorkers!!!! I f*cking hate you!!!!). All this information isn’t important, but it has a certain quality, which makes it a good time-killer.

Then, I opened the Facebook app….

I scrolled down, reading all the status updates that were made by people in the last 16 hours. Got bored to sadness.

Facebook isn’t the same as it used to be.

Only 10 months ago, I could spend hours on this social network, reading fun things, writing hundred-word comments in the holy-wars on “Mac vs. PC”, “Xbox 360 vs. PS3”, “iPhone vs. everything else”, “UQ vs. QUT vs. Griffith”, etc. People were frequently reporting events, organizing discussions, “going creative”, entertaining their Facebook-friends in all imaginable and unimaginable ways and doing other interesting stuff. The life was fun on Facebook.

Nowadays, however, I can read the entire Newsfeed for the last 24 hours and don’t find anything interesting that I could comment on or even “like”. 97% of all the posts look like: “THe best fuuuken weeknd EVER!!“, “donno what to do for dinner“, “just saw a bird“, “so sick of work, lol“… It could be something abstract (read as “empty and meaningless”), like: “Yeaah!“, “HaHa, oH wow!“, “Loops :D“, “Pfffftttt…“, well, you get the idea. It’s quite obvious that most of these status updates wouldn’t mean anything to anyone, except for the poster and 2 of his closest friends (and even that isn’t always the case)….

Right now, I have slightly over 350 Facebook-buddies, and there are only about 5-7 of them whose Walls I can read regularly without getting into a nearly-depressive apathy.

People have become less enthusiastic about this platform in general. Today, it’s almost impossible to find an interesting or funny conversation in the comments to something. I remember the times when you could regularly observe threads with 20-100 comments and with 5-10 people participating simultaneously, and each of them is trying to verbally rip their opponents apart. It just doesn’t happen nowadays. Not in my Newsfeed.

People, I just want to ask you: Why so serious fucking boring? Where are all discussions? Where is all original content? Where’s interesting reports filled with info and wit? Where did it all go?

Please don’t say that people have grown out of Facebooking, or that everyone is just busy with their study/work/personal & real life issues, or anything like that. This argument is just childish and snobby (in a bad way), and it doesn’t explain the essence of this issue. All the fun that is still left for me to enjoy in my Newsfeed is created by people who are extremely busy and always loaded with mastodonic amounts of things to do, even during the holidays. So this explanation just fails, and it fails miserably.

I don’t know what happened to the good-old Facebook. People, where is your Internet-stamina? Where is your Facebook-enthusiasm?

I run a simple experiment about two months ago, by posting one simple question: “What is your favorite colour?”. Just think about it: how much time would it take you to click/tap on a comment space and type in a 3-7-letter word? Just a moment… maybe less. I had more than 40 people online during  the time when I made this post. And different people were logging into Facebook for the next couple of hours, when my post was still visible to the majority of my F-friends. So, I could potentially get over 150 answers on that day…. We can consider the “laws of reality” into these calculations and round the estimated number down to 40-50 of possible unique answers. Guess how many comments did I get……. 5. Including my own answer and a micro-rant that followed…..

I was trying to think of possible reasons why people not answering to that. I wasn’t able to come to a single rational conclusion….. Are people that fucking lazy nowadays so they can’t type in 4 characters? Do people think that high of themselves so they don’t bother to comment on such random thing? Maybe people see that nobody comments on it, and don’t want to become the first and only to comment on a status update posted by a loser? Or maybe people don’t want to “join the mob” and be “like everyone else” by telling what their favorite colour is? What is going on with people nowadays? What happened to YOU, my dear reader?

Well, I, personally, always comment on things that I think I have something to say about, regardless of whether the original poster is my closest friend or a person I don’t even remember meeting. I always look at the informational content first. On semantics, if you would like to say it in that way. And I don’t mind if a “random” Facebooker from my “friend-list” would do the same for me. I wouldn’t get offended if anyone will jump into my Facebook-convo. I guarantee :). I perceive Facebook primarily as a platform for sharing the information, and then, secondarily, as a “social network” and everything else. Let’s imagine that I have a problem of some sort. For example, an alien ship lands on our backyard and some weird creature crawls out of it and starts staring at me, intensively blinking with its 4th eye. The first thing I do is, of course, going on Facebook and telling everyone about it. And what would I need the most in that kind of situation? That’s right! I would need somebody, who spend 8 years studying these creatures and their culture, to tell me that blinking with their 4th eye is a code for “I want to hear a blue pillow smashing the grass 368 cm away from my spaceship”, so I could get my blue pillow, throw it on the grass 3.68 m away from the alien’s spaceship, so the creature could stop annoying my cat by its presence and leave the Earth satisfied. I wouldn’t care wether the person who gave me such useful information is my ex-, or my close friend, or a coworker, or some random dude to whom I said “Bless you” after he sneezed in a line at Woolworth 3 years ago. I’m not really that interested in our past experiences as long as you give me the info I’m currently in need of (well, I’m interested in who you are, of course! I don’t treat people as tools :). At the end, I’m human too :). I’m just saying that I don’t really care whether I know you really well during  that kind of situations when I need the answer to something). Unfortunately, as it seems to me, not many people share such view on the purpose of Facebook with me :(. And that’s sad.

Well, anyway, the end of 2010 is near. (I just randomly switched the primary topic of this post).

Many things have happened since 01.01.2010. Many LOLs we saw, many hilarious stuff we’ve experienced.

Today I want to quickly raise the memories of all the “fun” stuff I’ve done on Facebook in 2010.

Here is the short list with the links to the most memorable Notes written by me.

So, in the last 365 364 days, I…

I also went forward to the future (to the year 2068, to be exact), by mistake, from where I was reporting everything I see around me (I still own Facebook a proper report on this journey).

From non-fun stuff (the stuff that originally wasn’t posted to generate LOLs or cause any mischief), I would like to highlight:

There is a few other Notes that I’ve wrote. If you’re interested, you know where to find them.

I will continue trying to make Facebook little bit more fun and interesting to be on, and I’ll be so happy to see you doing the same thing. Just post things, tell the world about interesting stuff, share your opinion and knowledge on different issues. Make the social network alive :).

Okay. This is my last 2010 WordPress.com post.

Happy New Year, people!!!!

I’m tired after work and I feel like shit.

P. S. WordPress.com app for iPhone is pathetic.