Monday, February 28, 2005


A colleague of mine told me about this. It's a nice little opensource program that sits in the background and notifies you when it's time to break away from your keyboard.
The Fun Part: It has excercises you can do to strech you fingers, arms and shoulders and avoid CTS.
The Even-Better part: everybody started using it at work, so every now and then, if you take a look around you, you see someone looking intensly at his screen while at the same time trying to perform the exercise shown to him...

I'll try take some pictures... :-)

Thursday, February 24, 2005


Charis set up an old machine of mine as a Linux server, to use for remote access to my home LAN, now with the DSL and all. Machine's name is Pricket (little prick? how suitable...) and can be reached at (thanxs to Not much on it yet... But there will be.

Too Many Secrets

There is a 1992 movie with Robert Redford, Sidney Poitier, Ben Kingsley and others.
The movie is called "Sneakers" and along with "War Games" (1983), it's one of the few movies that portray hackers and computer security in a reallistic manner.

There is a non-existant company in the movie called "Setec Astronomy". Turns out, that company's name don't mean anything. It's just an anagram of the phrase "Too many secrets".

Monday, February 21, 2005

Los Tres Fabulosos Paraguayos

Complete with our old army uniforms, looking like terroristas, my brother makis, myself and nikolas. Posted by Hello

Weekend Warriors...

Posted by Hello
Sunday was Paintball Day. Everybody's hurting, and I even got a couple of blood-red bruises on my legs. Was really fun, though.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Short Stories

A couple of friends asked me to post links to some stories I wrote a few years back (ok, more than a few years). So here is Compiler From Hell, Look Before you Leap and 3.5 inches Blues.

InterCable verlag

What is gonna follow, is a rather detailed account of my troubles with the abovementioned Swiss company, and the Swiss embassy in Athens (no troubles with the embassy, they were amazingly helpful).

About four months ago, I was hired to work as a programmer for a small ISV. Before my showing up there, the company had received by surface mail what looked like an advertisement by a Swiss company for FREE inclusion in their Internet Catalogue of European Businesses. A form was filled-in and faxed to them, signed by the boss...

About four weeks later, the company got an invoice for 600€. It seemed we owed InterCable money for having been included in their cdrom version of the catalogue. A closer look to the signed fax we sent them revealed that it actually said that by signing we silently agreed to be included in the cdrom version of the catalogue. If all we wanted was inclusion in the online version, we should have returned the fax unsigned.

The company immediately send an email asking for cancellation of the so called contract, only to be notified that cancellation was impossible, since more than three weeks had passed since the placement of our so-called order.

At which point the company choose to ignore them. But requests for payment kept on coming.
This was the situation when I joined in.

Google revealed a rather interesting collection of facts about InterCable. The majority of the links it produced where complaints about InterCable's misleading contracts and practices. I started reading and discovered that the best way to stop them was to file a formal complaint with the Swiss embassy in my country. So I did.

Here is the letter I initially sent to the embassy (company names and logos removed).

They were most helpful. They immediately called and told me that the matter of InteCable had come up in the past, that after the complaints InterCable usually stopped sending invoice and threats of legal action, and if I could send them an English version of the letter with all related correspondence attached.

Here is the English version I sent after their request. I then waited.

A couple of weeks later, InterCable sent us the cdrom we had supposedly ordered… :-)

Another week later I received a call from the Swiss embassy informing us that the matter had been closed and that InterCable would bother us no more. Any invoices we might get, we should ignore, cause they were probably sent before the matter was closed.

We mailed their cdrom back to them.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

At Last!

Since I recently got a raise...
I thought I'd spent it on internet services...

So, I got DSL at home, At Last!
So now I'm gonna buy World Of Warcraft, start playing and never see the sunlight again.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Η λέξη της ημέρας: πληρώ

Το παράξενο του πράγματος: η έκφραση "ο ενδιαφερόμενος πρέπει να πληροί τις παρακάτω προϋποθέσεις" γράφεται με -οί και όχι με εί...

πληρώ, πληροίς, πληροί...

Thursday, February 03, 2005


After years of depending on good luck and rarely backing up my code, I decided to invest some money on a simple raid solution. I am planing to buy 2 80GB SATA drives and a simple raid controler and set it up as a data-only partition. No OS, just a mirrored drive.

I have decided to buy the following, if I manage to get a hold of them in Greece:

Adaptec Serial ATA RAID 1210SA
2 x 80 GB Seagate Barracuda SATA ST380013AS

Any comments would be greatly appreciated...