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Diary, February 2004


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Monday, February 2, 2004

Today, Andy donated some blood for finding the cause of Kabuki syndrome. He donated about 22 ml of blood for detailed analysis of his chromosome and analyzing his DNA. It went rather smooth. I wonder how long it takes before we hear if he also has the duplication in the p8.22-23.1 area that was found in Boston.


Tuesday, February 3, 2004

School report

This evening, I went to the meet the teachers of Andy and discus with them his school report. This was the very first that I had a school report meeting for him. His school report is in a A4-sized binder and contains a lot of information. The were quite positive about Andy. He is very active and learning new things. Of course, he still has his weak points, and they matched with what I had expected. They too did notice a great change when Andy started to take the Prednison and when he stopped taking it. His performance dropped again since he stopped taking Prednison. I thinking about asking our pediatrician about what he thinks about it.


Wednesday, February 4, 2004

Mild weather

This morning the temperature was 11.9 degrees Celsius. Yesterday a record high temperature was measured for the time of the year.


Thursday, February 5, 2004

Analyzing the game

Today, Annabel has a day of from school, because the teachers are having a study day. For this reason we could stay a little longer at the Go club yesterday evening. We both lost our games in the competition. In the middle of the game it looked like I was going to win. But then there was a small invasion, which I had seen. Just a little later I made a big mistake and lost a whole group in the corner, resulting in a lose with about 20 stones. Then I looked at a game between two of the strongest players of the club. When the game was over they started to analyze the game, first with removing some stones to recreate earlier positions, but then they decided to replay the whole game. Quite amazing that they can remember the whole game, but of course there is a story behind each move, and many moves follow each other logically.


Friday, February 6, 2004

Swimming again

Yesterday, I went swimming again. I got a pass for ten times swimming, because it 15% cheaper. I noticed that at the end I got in this same relaxing mood as when going down the water slides just by swimming mindlessly back and forth in the pool. It seems that swimming is not only nice for your body but also for your mind.

(follow-up)

Reply from the Google team

I received a reply from "The Google Team" with respect to the suggestion I made on January 27 about joining the search results from news.google.com with those from www.google.com/. I made this suggestion after I discovered that you often can find information on current issues through news.google.com before they show up through www.google.com. They wrote "We especially like your idea". Almost sounds like I am the first one bringing up this idea. Of course, I should have applied for a patent. I am really amazed that the had not come up with this idea themselves, combining the relatively static data from www.google.com with the very dynamic data from news.google.com. I wonder if they will give me credits.


Saturday, February 7, 2004

Going into the city

I went to the city by bike. I first bought some bread at the usual place and then looked around some bookshops. At Broekhuis they were having the last day of their annual sale with a 75% price reduction on selected items. I could not find the book on Linus that I saw last week, and also the book that I saw two weeks ago appeared to have been sold. Finally at 13:35, I bought one little book about Hong Kong with the title Hong Kong: A guide to recent architecture by Juanita Cheung and Andrew Yeoh, created, edited and designed by Ellipsis and published by Könemann for € 1.12, original price being € 4.49.

And at De Slegte, I looked at a second-hand copy of Gerhard Richter: Landscapes again.


Monday, February 9, 2004

Conspiracy Theory

Last weekend, I watched Conspiracy Theory on television. I did not see the first part of the movie, but jumped in at the point that Jerry went down the stair in the wheel chair. At first a little confusing, but nevertheless making it an interesting movie.


Tuesday, February 10, 2004

The Third Miracle

This evening, I watched The Third Miracle. Indeed a very interesting movie. Although I am not a Catholic (anymore), I somehow felt it easy to identify with Frank Shore. Many of his doubts are also mine.


Wednesday, February 11, 2004

The Return of the King

Today, my mother came to visit us. Of course she stayed for dinner. When I checked the movie schedule in the free city weekly, I made some remark that we should go soon to "The Return of the King". Then my mother raised the question why we did not go that night. After some thinking, we decided that she would stay for the night, sleeping with Annabel in her two person bed. So, Li-Xia and I went to see third part of "Lord of the Rings". We both found it a very impressive movie. Also how the movie ends.

(Seeing part one and two)


Friday, February 13, 2004

New computer

Yesterday, we got new computers in the office. It took some time before everything was working again. I named mine Frans. And of course, you have to get use to many small things that are different, such as a new keyboard. Also need to get use to the new TFT screen. I am using a higher resolution (1280x1024) than with CRT I was using. With a TFT you are always limited with respect the choice in resolution. Again a good example of legasy. Inside the PC there is a card that translates a digital image into an analog serial signal (with minimal synchronisation information), and inside the TFT monitor this signal is converted into a digital image again.


Monday, February 16, 2004

GODMODE

Yesterday in church, there was a short presentation of GODMODE, the youth church in Enschede. Quite a number of people from our church are involved with this. Four people were baptized that morning. We have a baptize service almost every month now.


Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Tooth

We just have been to the dentist with Annabel. It looks like her tooth are still doing okay, but it is too early to arrive at a definite conclusion. Yesterday, I was phoned by a lawyer, who is going to support me with claiming money from the insurance company related to the first accident. He thinks that the damage caused by the second accident will be considered as a result of the first. It seems that our health insurance has a different opinion. Our dentist has promised to contact the insurance company. For him it is the first time he dealing with a two accident case.

(follow-up)


Thursday, February 19, 2004

I lost again

Yesterday, Annabel and I went to the Go club. She just played some training games against a 3rd Dan player. Afterwards he told me that he taught her a corner Joseki. When she was ready she came over to look at my game and made some very good suggestions for me. But still I lost the game with about twenty stones. I felt quite terrible about it. I was having some trouble from the start of the game. Having no idea how to respond to certain moves. I guess my opponent must have been stronger than his recorded strength. It was after ten when we arrived home. I doubt whether we should continue to go there, because I continue losing games, and it gets too late for Annabel.

Software patents

From the FFII press release EU Council "Compromising" on Unlimited Patentability: Not only makes this me worry about my future as a software engineer, it also makes me worry about the EU being a democratic institution. What use is there for voting for members of the European Parliament when the Council rather listens to CEOs of large companies? If this law is passed, I think I better remove some my pages and files related to reverse engineering of some binary file formats.

(follow-up)

Finding Forrester

This evening, I watched "Finding Forrester". A rather interesting movie too watch. But not very believable that this could happen in reality. Especially the idea that good writers just sit behind a typewriter and write the most fantastic stories by hitting the keys as fast as possible (while talking to someone at the same time), is I am afraid, far from reality.


Friday, February 20, 2004

Cold

This morning the temperature was 1.8 degree Celsius below zero and the wind was blowing from the North-East. The kind of weather that makes you long for the summer again.

First girl I was in love with

In highschool I have been in love with some girl for many years. At most we exchanged ten sentenses during that time. I believed that she too was in love with me, but that she was too shy to tell me. In reality, I think she was rather annoyed by my continuous interest in her. Today, I was looking at some pictures of my old highschool on a Dutch classmate site, when I found a class picture that had her in it.


Monday, February 23, 2004

Speckles of snow

This morning, there were some speckles of snow on the ground when I looked outside the window. It was 0.1 degrees Celsius when I went outside. While biking to my office I was greeted by some more speckles of snow. Around ten o'clock it started to snow a little while the sun was shining and while the sky was almost blue. The cloud from which the snow fell must have been overhead. Just before one o'clock there was some more snow, but non of it stayed on the ground.


Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Snow on the cars

This morning there was some snow on the cars and the grass, but the streets were clear. Must have melted away. When I left from home the temperature was 0.2 degrees Celsius. Around eleven o'clock it started to snow again.

Mr Bolkestein

Commissioner intervenes in Microsoft case: Mr Bolkestein, a former Dutch liberal politician, also is one the driving forces behind establishing software patents in Europe.

Going to China

It is more than seven years ago that we went to China in the summer of 1996. Now we are considering the possibility of going this summer again. My mother would like to travel with us. If we go, we would probably visit Beijing and Urumqi. While we haven't even made the go/no-go decision yet, we are already over our neck into things that we have to figure out, because of the health problems of Andy. Does his health insurrance allow it? Can we bring the special food he needs? In liquid form it weights about 20 Kg. What alternatives are there? But we also wonder how he would respond to the change. The weather will be hot. And what about infections he could get. Can we bring extra medicines just in case he would need it.


Thursday, February 26, 2004

Blizzards

This morning when I woke-up, I immediately looked outside to check if there had been any additional snow fall during the night. There was still some snow, but it was the sam that fell yesterday evening between six and eight. On the news I heard that the west of the Netherlands had been struck by blizzards. Around seven o'clock there was already 300 Km of traffic jams on the highways. Around a quarter to eight this had increased to 529 Km. Only one runway of our national airport Schiphol is open. No trains are running around Amsterdam. And also the traffic situation around Utrecht and Rotterdam is terrible. The traffic police is advising people to stay home if they can. The radar images are showing a big cloud system sweeping over the country from the West to the East around a low pressure area in the North of the country. Here we still have sunshine with a clear blue sky. I wonder how long it will take before it starts snowing. Of course, it is possible that the cloud system has "evaporated" by snowing.

Snowing

Just before ten in the morning it started to snow in Enschede as well. Around eight o'clock the total length of traffic jam on the highways was 738 Km. In then quickly became lower again. It snowed till about twelve.


Friday, February 27, 2004

Macular Degeneration

Lately, Li-Xia has been complaining about seeing all kinds of spots in her left eye. Yesterday she was send to an eye doctor. It seems that there is a great change she is suffering from macular degeneration. She is scheduled for Fluorescein Angiography on March 10.

(follow-up)

A little snowing

Around four o'clock in the afternoon it started to snow a little. Although it was -2.8 degrees Celsius when I left home this morning, temperatures have risen in the mean time and the snow just melts when it hits the ground. Yesterdays snow has continued to melt away as well.


Saturday, February 28, 2004

Bicentennial Man

Tonight, I watched the movie Bicentennial Man. It really raises some questions about what makes us human, what makes us different from being a (very complex) machine. It also raises some questions about free will and the origin of identity if not with respect to awareness/consciousness. But apart from this, the movie does not explain why this particular robot became so special, although at the end of the movie, it seems that the other robot of this kind also has become human, as she violates the first law of robotics by following an order that leads to the death of a human individual.


Sunday, February 29, 2004

Fourth Birthday

Today, we went over to some friends of us because their daughter was having her fourth birthday. It was rather busy, because this was the first birthday she celebrated on the 29th. It seems that most people believe that when you are born on a leap that you have to celebrate your birthday on the first of March, but according to the astronomical calendar the 28th is most of the time the best date.

Today, it the second time that the leap day falls on a Sunday for me. It only happens every 28 years, and the last time was in 1976.


This months interesting links


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