How busy is your desktop?

Accidentally, I stumbled upon a thought provoking post with the following words:

If you’re really using your computer, your desktop should almost never be visible. Your screen should be covered with information, with whatever data you’re working on. I can’t imagine why you’d willingly stare at a static background image– or even a background image covered with a sea of icons. Unless you consider your computer a really expensive digital picture frame, I suppose.

Well said!

I haven’t thought much about this before, but suddenly I realized that I can strongly relate to the above statement.  My desktop is never visible.  And it was always a bit awkward for me to pick a background image (I know use slide show, which cycles through all images in my Pictures/ directory) or a set of icons (I have a few in the corners of my desktop, but I never click on them, cause I never see them) to place on my desktop.

I’m going to set it to a solid color right now.  And I’m going to remove the useless icons too.

What about your desktop?  Does it look something like this?

Ghost in the car

I’ve seen a ghost today.

I can’t say that I see ghost that often, but it wasn’t the first time in life that I saw one either. I used to see them more often before, but then I got married and too busy with my day job, so they weren’t paying to much attention to me.

Continue reading “Ghost in the car”

Weird consumer behavior

For years now Limassol is inhabbited with crowds of Russian people. There are so many of us that many locals somewhat speak the language, many restaurants offer menus in Russian, as well as shops have “special” price lists.

One of the sides of the strong Russian community is a number of “Russian” shops. These are rather small shops that sell all sorts of goods that many Russian people miss. Mostly those are books by suicidal novelists and food items like caviar, pelmeni, and vodka.

For years, both Olga and I were going to visit one of this shops just to see if there was anything that we’d like to buy. We always knew practically the complist price list, because so many of our friends shop in these places regularly and tell us all about them. But we never got our act together. Either we were to lazy, or didn’t care much – I am not sure.

Our shopping routine was almost rock solid for all this years. A weekly trip to Woolworth Ermes covered almost all our food needs. Nearby bakery supplied us with fresh bread. And when we felt like and adventure we would sneak into the enemy’s camp go shopping to either Chris Cash & Carry or Orphanides.

Guess what have changed last week? You’ll never do, as we were surprised ourselves. Our best and favourite supermarket Ermes opened a small section with products for that Russian market. Some of the products are imported directly from Russia – cereals, beer, bread. Others bought from European countries that have so many Russians that it is economically feasable to produce those goods – canned mushrooms, tomatos, and meat.

When we discovered this Russian shelf near the butcher’s section were were laughing out loud. They say that if gnome won’t come to the mountain, the mountain will come to gnome. True indeed.

Now we have even fewer reasons to go shopping at another supermarket. Not only we have everything we need in Ermes, but we surely have more.

P.S.: Russian beer sucks big time. Canned (salted or marinated) mushrooms imported from Germany are pretty good. Canned (salted) tomatos are superb! Just in case you were wondering.

Identical is bad

I have two identical computers under my desk. One is to my left and another is to my right. My workstation is to the left. The computer to my right is not mine and I don’t have anything to do with it. It just has to stay there.

During the last two days I spent more than two hours troubleshooting all sorts of wierd problems with my PC. Yesterday I had a problem with DVD writing. I was inserting the empty disk, but the drive woldn’t recognize it. Software was insisting that no disk was in the drive. Today I had a problem with USB storage. I was sticking it in, but nothing was happening. Not like it wasn’t recognized. More like the USB port itself was dead.

I was running all sorts of debugging, tracing, and monitoring. I almost got as far as kernel compilation. Luckily I realized the source of the problem before that.

You see, I am right-handed, so reaching to my right is easier and simplier for me. Add to the fact that for the last five or so years, my office workstation was always to my right. Needless to say that I have to be more careful and pay more attention in my new setup. Otherwise, strange things can happen to my productivity.

The worst code ever

Today is the black day in my experiences calendar. I have seen the worst code ever. I found all that mess in our corporate intranet. It has been written by one guy who long left the company and noone looks at it nomore. Other programmers avoid it like a plague and prefer to write new code rather than make changes the existing one.

It is a really really horrible mix of Visual Basic, JavaScript, SQL, and HTML. I feel that the uglyness of Visual Basic contributed to the situation, although to write this crap one must possess some outstanding skills of crapy programming. Really. After a short consideration I realized that any file out of approximately two dozen can make the whole collection of The Daily WTF posts seem like a magically wonderful Christmas Eve.

It was that bad that the only good thing about it was that there were no comments. If there were any, they would have probably be cryptic, badly written, incorrect, and adding to the whole confusion.