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Diary, October 2002

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Tuesday, October 2, 2002

The most incredible programmer

On page 158 of the book "Agile Software Development Ecosystems", Jim Highsmith talks about the most incredible programmer. He writes: I find this a highly unbelievable story. Maybe it is simply an Urban Legend. In an attempt to verify this on the Internet, came across the Homebrew's 26th Birthday Commemoration, which explains how Steve Wozniak once typed in BASIC in hex during a presentation, presumely from a print-out. Or was it Robert T. Morris Jr who was also known for being able to program very fast. I also found AEXX archived news for December 2001 on which somebody, who stayed up for 66 hours, states: "One day, I'm going to make an incredible programmer".

Friday, October 4, 2002

Old diaries

This evening, I read through large parts of my diaries numbered VII, VIII and IX, starting with the week of November 19, 1997 till March 13, 1980. It always gives me a strange feeling when I read through old diaries. It is almost as if I am reading the diaries of a stranger. Often I cannot make much sense of what I wrote then.

Monday, October 7, 2002

Pattern 118: Roof garden

This pattern suggests you make a roof garden at the same level as a floor that does have rooms that are used in daily life. In most cases that means that roof gardens appear on the roofs of the first floor. To have a reasonable sized roof garden along a room on the second floor, you need a rather large first floor, which because of it size must have some dark areas. For this reasons this does not seem to be a generally applicable pattern.

Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Pattern 58: Carnival

I totally disagree that a city needs a fixed place for carnival. A place such as suggested into this pattern, would quickly disolve into a place where drunkness and immorality would reign. I do think there is place for annual festivals in a city. These should be held in public places and be such that they can be attended by people from all ages (especially, young children). I have noticed that parents often find a lot of joy in attending fun activities which are geared towards children. (Also the idiots fair I attended earlier this years comes to my mind.)

Pattern 62: High places

I fully agree with pattern. It made me remember the many times I climbed winding stairs of the "Domtoren" in "Utrecht" and looked over the city from a height of 112 meter.

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

The cabinet falls

After a lot of internal struggles inside the LPF (Lijst Pim Fortuyn) the cabinet finally fell today. Although this was to be expected, it is really a shame to the people of the LPF that they made it come this far. We will have elections again in December or January. If a few days ago, elections were held, the LPF would only get 3 places in the parlement. It is likely that this figure will even be lower now. It is very unlikely that they will play any role of importance in Dutch politics in the coming years. It is not likely that any other (new) party, with the same ideas, will draw enough votes to become part of the government in the coming four years, I think.


Monday, October 21, 2002

Are we mere machines?

With respect to consciousness being an illusion, here a quote from Brooks:

Wednesday, October 23, 2002


I read through the Metamath book, not understanding everything, but most of it. A very interesting approach. See here for an overview of mathematical proof systems.

tags: Metamath (next)

Friday, October 25, 2002

Tetris is NP-complete

After all, it has been proven that Tetris is NP-complete, and thus not an easy game, even if you know all the shapes that are coming in advance.

Saturday, October 26, 2002

Strange sound

The sound of a plasma wave near Jupiter.

Monday, October 28, 2002


Yesterday, we had the strongest storm in twelve years. Luckily, Li-Xia had already convinced Annabel that she should not visit some friends from church, which live in Hengelo. During the afternoon, I told her that during a storm like this, there are always some people who die because of trees falling down. On the eight o'clock news we heard that about six people died because of storm related accidents, one of them was a person in our own city who was hit by a tree.

It seems that two of the people who died, were attracted by the fasinating spectacle of the storm into life treatening situations. One person was reported to have been blown into the sea, close to the Wind Organ near Vlissingen, which was constructed by Gert Rietveld.

While biking to my office this morning, I did not see so many fallen trees. One of the thirty trees on the parking lot before our building had fallen down yesterday around 10 past one in the afternoon, I was told by someone. Before the entrance of our building there was a huge pile of leaves, about one feet high, I guess. Just under the window of my office there were some brances of a tree, which apparantly had fallen down over the road judging the tracks on the grass.

Police demanding access

This evening, I heard the news that the head of all police Chiefs of the Netherland, Mr. Minze Beuving, is requesting that Dutch Internet providers should keep logs of visited web sites and email addresses up to one year for all their members. The most shocking about this is not that it would be a grave violation of our privacy and incure high costs, but that it really shows that people in the government have not the slightest idea of how the Internet works.

Interesting links

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