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Diary, June 2003

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Monday, June 2, 2003

Anticipating rain

When I left home, our termometer said it was more than 28 degrees Celsius. But this is a fake reading, due to direct sunlight shining on the censor. The sky was clear, and the temperature was nice. I guess, just below 20 degrees Celsius. Nevertheless, I put on my long coat, because the weather report said we have to anticipate some very serious rain later in the afternoon. Yesterday evening, I saw some video clip of ice (formed by hail) floating through the streets of Monmartere in Paris. This morning, there was a report of a French town been flooded with one meter of water.

Wednesday, June 4, 2003

Jesus was gay?

Tim Blair reports the story that Rollan McCleary claims that Jesus was Gay. McCleary basis his claim on astrology. It seems he also is a nudist, as he protests for the right to go nude in public.


When I bike to the office this morning, I had to take of my coat, because it was already getting hot. The weather report says that the temperatures have gone up to 28 degrees Celsius around here. At the moment the sun is gone and the sky is getting darker. Heavy thunderstroms have been predicted. We will see. Last Monday there also were some very heavy thunderstorms in other parts of the country.


It suddenly start to get very dark outside, and it starts to rain. I guess, I will have to wait until this over because I can go home.

Thursday, June 5, 2003

Cleaning the front garden

Yesterday, around seven in the evening the sun was shining, and I could bike home without having to worry about getting wet. After dinner, I spend till about ten cutting various plants in the front garden, and cleaning up everything.

Friday, June 6, 2003

Dutch being judged in the U.S.A.

It seems that nowadays, people with the Dutch nationality can be judged in America under the American law for a crime the supposedly did inside the Netherlands. Yesterday, a judge in Haarlem has decided that a Dutch person who presumely sold XTC to American tourists here in the Netherlands, should be handed over to the American authorities to be judge in America. Don't understand me wrong, I am convinced that XTC is a dangerous drug, and that everything should be done to stop it being used, and that people actively producing and selling this drug should be prosecuted. (Still, I believe that preventive education is the better way to stop this drug. If we can convince people that XTC is a harmful drug, they also would not want to buy it.) But I still think it is utterly wrong to hand over this person, because I believe that the crime (if there is any) commited by a national in our country should never be judge abroad under the law of any foreign nation. It would be different if the person involved committed the crime outside the Netherlands, or did not have the Dutch nationality. I think in this case it is even more wrong, because I don't believe that the American authorities would not allow the American tourists to be judged here in the Netherlands under Dutch law. (Remember the "Invasion of The Hague Act" that was accepted by the American government to use military power to "rescue" any American solder to every be brought before the International court of Justice, which happens to be housed in the Netherlands.) I find it strange that a Dutch government body is handing someone to a foreign nation, because this person presumely performed a crime, while they at the same time do not see a reason to prosecute this person by themselves. Although I did not perform any crime (as far as I know), and I do not have any intention to do so, I feel that my personal rights have been violated.



I just had a Random Memory about the book "Mannekino" by Sybren Polet at 14:01. It's about a boy called Guido, who at his ninth birthday decides he wants to be a milionair one at age 10. Surprisingly, he succeeds in doing this, but not without some clever blackmailing. I read this book during highschool. That is more than twenty years ago.

(I bought the book second hand,
and start reading it on June 13.)

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Lose weight

I have been trying to lose some weight in the past weeks. The "diet" I am following simply consist of only eating vegetables during dinner time, for the rest, it looks similar to what I have been eating in the past years. For breakfast, I take three slices of whole wheat bread with jam made from fruits without any sugar added. I also take one glass of orange juice with some Q10, Omega-3 EFA's, vitamines and minerals. Around eleven, I eat one apple, and during lunch time three slices of bread with another apple. Somewhere between three and four, I take some oranges. I still eat some Bio-Quark after dinner, and I still eat some whole-wheat cookies in between. In the evening, I drink one of two additional glasses of orange juice, and a lot of tea during the days, especially on working days. At the moment, I am around 83 kilo. I would consider 75 kilo to be my ideal weight, but I do not know whether I manage to get that low. My weight has been jumping around between 84 and 86 kilo in the past years.


Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Losing key

It is a hot day again. I had to take of my coat about halfway biking to office. Yesterday evening, when I wanted to leave, I discovered I had lost the key for the lock on my bike. Also after an extensive search, I failed to locate the missing key. Luckily, I did have the spare key with me, but I was rather frustrated by the fact that I lost the other key. These kind of events really make me doubt my mental sanity. Although I consider it to be permenantly lost by now, I still expect it to find it at some totally unexpected place.


According to a CNN story, it looks like Saddam is organizing a kind of guerilla war in Irak. At least he is paying people kill American soldiers. I wonder how long it still will take until more Americans are killed after the war than during the war with the current rate of casualties. At the same time Hans Blix Accuses U.S. of Smear Campaign and Iraq's Missing Weapons May Become Election Issue.

2:35 PM

We just heard a loud bang outside from an unknown source.

Calvé pindakaas

Yesterday, Li-Xia bought one bottle of Calvé pindakaas (the best penautbutter in the world!). Under the lid there was a small promotional CD-ROM related to the De schippers van de Kameleon movie. It is quite likely that I will go to see this movie together with Annabel, because she has read many of the books of the series that this movie is based on.

Thursday, June 12, 2003

Tree being cut down

When I just arrive at the office, two men were busy cutting down a tree on the parking lot. It was obvious that the tree had not fallen down by itself, but I could also not descern a reason why it should be cut down. Because they were busy with their chain shaws, it was not possible to ask them why they were doing what they were doing. The tree is close to the tree that felt down due to the storm last year October.

Shoot yourself in the foot

I read that today the Security Counsel of the United Nations has accepted a resolution, extending the immunity of American soldiers with respect to the International Court of Justice, which was installed by the United Nations. Should this be considered as a good example of shooting yourself in the foot?

Friday, June 13, 2003

School party

Tonight, Annabel and I joined the "fox-hunt" of her school. We were given a description of a route around the neighbourhood and had to locate the disguished teachers. The weather was nice, and we had a lot of fun. One teacher was dressed-up like an Abraham doll. (Around here, there is a strong tradition of putting up a Abraham or Sara doll in the front garden of someone who became 50.) The children of our group all walked up to look at it, when the suddenly started to shout it that it was one of their teachers. One fox we you missed. It was a teacher dressed up like a Turkish lady cleaning the window. What made her disguish perfect where the three Turkish children sitting around her. Afterwards, there was also something to eat and drink.

Monday, June 16, 2003

Book of Shadows

This weekend, I saw some fragments of Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2. I have to say, that I did not make much sense, not even for a horror movie.

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Reasoning dream

Shortly before I woke-up this morning, I was having a "reasoning dream", which is a dream in which I am giving an extensive oral defend of some of my thoughts, decisions or behaviour.

Nice clementines

I have to admit that the OUTSPAN® Clementines #4450, I am eating this week, are very nice.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Green smell

This morning it was 17.7 degrees Celsius outside, much warmer than I had expected after last nights thunderstorms, which left their visible marks on the streets in the form of the typical arrangements of sand, dirt, and organic material as a result of water flowing over the pavements. When I step outside, I noticed a pleasant "green" smell. It looks like, I work in the middle of the biggest wireless hot spot of Europe. (I think it is incorrect to call the University of Twente a school, as one of the article does.)

Open day

It seems that they are practicing for the national airforce open day, which will be held coming Friday and Saturday. There was just a fighter (probably a F16) flying over at a low altitude. There is an airforce airport less than 2 Km away, but usually, they do not cause much noise.



I just heard the great news that princes Máxima is pregnant. Already for some months it seems, because the baby is expected to be born in January 2004.


Third swimming diploma

Tonight, Annabel got her third swimming diploma, and very likely also the last. For this diploma she had to swim about 550 meters, of which 200 "fully" dressed with swimming suit, underwear, pants, shirt, and rain coat. She also had to swim 9 meters under water after diving into the water. I estimate that she can swim about 15 meter under water, if she wants.

Thursday, June 19, 2003

Pregnancy of Máxima

The news of the pregnancy of Máxima leaked out a few hours early through an email she send to her friends. Some rumours already had been circulating. I am happy that I heard the news only after it was officially release, because, I firmly believe that couples have the right to decided by themselves when and to whom they make this kind of news known.

Saturday, June 21, 2003

Open day

We went to the open day of the Dutch Royal Airforce. We took the bus to the city center, and had to queue for the free shuttle to the airforce airport. There we still had to walk some distance, which took longer than expected because it was very crowded. When we arrived, a stunt team flying around. This was followed by a noisy solo stunt show. Then it became a little more quiet. We watched some more planes to take off, including a DC-10. Then we walked along the static display. I took a picture of Annabel before the Uiver. (This is not the original one that one the won the London-Melbourn race in 1943, but one that has been restored in the image of the original one. However, it is the oldest, and at this moment the only, flying DC-2.) Just before we decided to leave, there was a solo stunt show of a Dutch F-16 pilot showing some astonishing maneuvers. I tried to video tape it, but I am afraid it will not look very impressive. Then when we were walking back to the shuttle stop, an Italian stunt team took of and we were considering to go back, but concluded it was better to go to the city. Li-Xia was feeling tired, and Annabel wanted to go to McD because they were having some special activities for children.

Same bus?

On the way back home, Annabel suddenly remarked that we were in the same bus as when we went to the city. I asked her how she knew this. Then she remarked that rubbish in some whole in the floor was the same. I was rather surprised that she came to this conclusion. I had also looked at this hole, but I was not absolutely sure. I looked around the bus, and did not find a single thing to deny her statement. Even the notice on the wall behind the drivers seat was the same. When I remarked this to her, she said that all buses had the same notice, suggesting that that was not a special think. However, I thought it was rather special, as the notice was saying something specific for Hengelo, and not Enschede, a think which I remember having found rather particular when we took the bus. I even considered the possibility that the bus was temporarily hired from Hengelo because of the open day, which afterwards did not seem to be a very valid reason, as I did not see any regular busses being used in the shuttle service to the airport.

Monday, June 23, 2003

A little rain

It was 17.4 degrees Celsius when I went outside this morning. Because it was raining a little, I put on my long coat, but it stopped raining soon, and before I arrived at the office, I had opened my raincoat.

SARS graphs

There is something wrong with the SARS graphs. Not that the graphs are incorrect compared to the published figures, but there is something strange with the figures. One would expect that the form of the graphs would be everywhere the same. But there are some striking differences. It seems to me that the graph of Canada is the most realisitic. Not one single outbreak, but a chain of outbreaks. Also the graph of Hong Kong seems to be realistic. If you compare this graph with the graph of the Peoples Republic of China, I get the stange feeling that the latters is dropping much faster. That means that people in China recover much faster. Or does it means that at the highest point it was over-diagnosed and/or that it is now under-diagnosed. Yet, the most exceptional graph is that of the United States: almost constant, and no deaths. I have no explaination for this.

Closing Twenthe airport?

Last Saturday, we attended the Royal Dutch Airforce open day at Twenthe airport. Today, the news came that it is probably going to be closed down as part of the cut on the defence spendings issued by the new government. That means that it like also was the last open day we had here in Twente.

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Two party system

It is long ago that I wrote something about politics, but some recent statements from Wouter Bos, gives me reason to do so. He has expressed the thought that he prefers a two party system, above a multi-party system with coalition formation. In the past months D66 also has expressed their wish for a district system as a means to improve the democratic process. It is rather obvious that any district system set a limit to the minimum number of votes required for a party to enter the senate. The limit is mainly determined by the number of persons each district may send to the senate. An extreme district system (where each district may send one persons), automatically, leads to a two party system. It is likely that any district system in the long run, will always lead to a two party system. It furthermore seems that a two party system leads to a concentration of power, and I believe that such concentration automatically leads to a less democratic system. For this reason, I also believe that a multi-party system is generally speaking more democratic than a two party system. It is indeed true that with a two party system, decision making usually works faster, but I doubt whether fast decision making always implies a stronger democracy. I cannot escape the idea that those desiring a two party system as simply driven by their desire for power, and not by ideologic motives. For the same reason, I am still happy that we do not elect a president in the Netherlands, but it worries me that current proposals for a constitutions for Europe does included an elected president. This too, I am afraid, will lead to an undesirable concentration for power. Power attracts the corruptable.

Multiple interfaces through multiple inheritance

I just realized that there is a way to create multiple interfaces in C++ by the means of multiple inheritance. Sometimes, you are in the position that an objects needs to have two faces. This often occurs when the object is part of interface between two worlds. In each of the worlds it needs to have it's own set of methods, which should not be all visible in the other world. But still their might be methods that should be visible in both worlds. The solution to this problem is to make use of multiple inheritance (with virtual class inheritance). However, it remains an open question if the amouth of instrumentation that is needed, weights up to the benefits in all situations. Multiple inheritance does have its problems.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003


Yesterday, I finished reading the book "Mannekino" by Sybren Polet. About six years ago, Frank Herrebout wrote a script based on the book. It was only translated into German, I believe. It is a rather interesting book about a very smart nine year old boy, who manages to earn a million, with the help of some adults, which he has to manipulate to do what he wants. The book is mostly about his interaction with these adults. The book uses a rather experimental style: sentences that break in the middle, white areas, lines with dots, non-linear story line. At the end it becomes a little chaotic, but the final chapter makes sense again. This gives the impression of the story being a memory with vague spots and missing parts, jumping forward and backwards.

Thursday, June 26, 2003


A spider has been walking along the top of my monitor for more than an hour now. It's a very small spider. This has made me think about the computational power of the spiders central nervous system.

Friday, June 27, 2003

Noise from the AKI

It is hot outside (I did not even put on a coat this morning) and it is Friday afternoon. Usually, that means noise outside. The noise is coming from the AKI. I have considered to enlist myself, just for fun.

(follow-up, name of the band, and more sounds)

Saturday, June 28, 2003

This afternoon, Li-Xia, Annabel and I went to see the movie "De Schippers van de Kameleon". This movie is based on a famous series of books for boys. Annabel already has read a lot of the books from this serie. It is about a twin who own a very remarkable boat, which does not appear very special, but is very strong and fast because it has the engine of car. Although the author wrote about sixty books, the boys never became one year older. Also, girls did not play any significant role. The movie however, does have a girl as one of the main characters. We all did enjoy the movie. It is a typical Dutch movie, so, I wonder if it ever will be shown outside the Netherlands, except maybe for Belgium, as the series might also be known there.


Sunday, June 29, 2003

The war on drugs

This evening, I watched some part of a documentary about the war on drugs in the United States of America. It was a rather shocking documentary. It seems that this "war" has resulted in a billion dollar industry of putting people behind bars. Even people that never used, bought or sold drugs end up behind bars for sometimes over twenty years, just because they knew someone who was dealing drugs and somehow were considered to be giving support to a drug deal. At the same time the "real" drug dealers can get away when they appear as witnesses in cases against other "drug dealers". Prices for drugs have been dropping, while the quality has increased in the past ten years, which can be seen as a proof that the whole drug industry is florishing. It was estimated that there are over 100,000 informants active in the U.S.A. only for drug related crimes. In a certain sense, the U.S.A. is becoming like the soviet union during the cold war. As usual, the U.S.A. is forcing its totally ineffective drug policies on other countries. Recently, they put a lot of pressure on Australia, when they wanted to implement the "Swiss" system of taking care for people that got addicted to drugs. The Dutch government also has been giving in with respect to handing over people to the American government, when they are suspected of drug related crimes.


This months interesting links

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