Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Friends are dear...

I am entering the UZ Gent (University Hospital) tomorrow for an operation to cut the evil off my bowel. Both I and my family have had a couple of very scary weeks, going thru tests after tests to localize the problem. News have been encouraging so far, leading to the decision to operate it and get on with life. I am glad it's happening rather sooner than later as the idea that something is eating up slowly but ruthlessly good parts and organs of the container of my mind and soul is a unbearable thought.

The burden is huge... but the amount of sympathy and encouragement thru mails, phone calls, personal visits I had from dozens of friends and family, people I haven't heard from for a long time, has been overwhelming. Many decide to be secretive about problems as mine. I don't mind sharing. I am glad I did.

I am not too religious in the strict 'symbolic' sense of the known world religions but I strongly believe that there is a separation of 'mind & soul' and the body in which they live-in during the finite years of a person's life. I also believe in the collective power that emerges from a large number of minds and souls carrying a subject like mine in their thoughts.

I strongly believe that the evil initially emerged in my body during a period of 'lows' when my immune system was weakened as a result of negative thoughts, and when cancerous cells found the chance to take the upper hand inside my bowel. However, I believe that the dozens of minds and souls carrying me in their thoughts during the last couple of weeks and in the next few days have generated an invisible but very present healing force that will help me overwin the evil. I already witnessed the effects of such a force ever since I first spoke about my medical situation: The final diagnose proved much less severe than initial tests suggested.

It's impossible to prove the truth of my arguments above. It's also impossible to prove the opposite as well. There is no way to measure spiritual matters with physical material tools. The connection between matter and spirit is subtle and not too deterministic to withstand a scientific evidence test. That's because this is the way nature decided to function ever since the big-bang. It's a matter that you can only grasp with your own mind and soul. Even atheists believe in that... that the thoughts, not necessarily the prayers, are quite strong and can actually help. As my ex-colleague and dear friend Hans, from Holland wrote me in a mail. It's curious but I believe it to be true.

A long time assistant of mine with a razor sharp mind, who followed me in my professional career thru three different employers, sent me this (I had no idea she could even do this, but as I always say, strong brains are capable of many talents) :

Hang In There

Hello, my friend; You’re on my mind,
Because you're somehow ailing,
But your response to any challenge
Has always been unfailing....

So I’m confident you’ll win again;
Hang in there, and you’ll see;
You’ll be back on top in no time,
Tackling life courageously...

Thanks a mille, my dear friend...

Monday, November 26, 2007

Unlock your iPhone.

I don't know how much of this is formally true yet but here you go:

...In tech circles, the unlocking of the Apple, Inc. iPhone has been a constant challenge since the cellphone/iPod combo was released at the end of June. Apple's stronghold over the iPhone meant that, officially, the unit could not be used in the U.S. with any other wireless company outside of AT&T, Inc.

That all changed recently when T-Mobile Germany said it would sell unlocked iPhones in Europe, which could then then be used with any GSM wireless carrier in the world.

Well, if you're a U.S.-based customer who has been seething with anticipation over buying an iPhone but frowning at the prospect of signing a lengthy two-year contract with AT&T, you'll be glad to know that Apple's own iTunes software can unlock your iPhone in a few seconds -- provided it was purchased at a T-Mobile Germany outlet. The cost: a touch under $1,500...


Friday, November 23, 2007

Windows for ever!

Apologies for offending Windows lovers... honest to God, this clip is somethin' of an overkill, but still fun to watch, especially if you consider yourself a Mac geek!

Fight the evil!

John Hopkins Hospital circulated a list of known facts about cancer that was translated in a myriad of languages and circulates via email. I was sent the Greek version of this list from a friend that has heard of my condition and I believe this is something worth sharing among healthy and ill. I have traslated back to English to the best of my ability and understanding... I wish I could find the original English version to post here. Here you go:

"Every person has cancerous cells in his body. These cells don't show-up in usual tests as
long as they have not been multiplied into several billions. When a doctor confirms that
there are no cancerous cells in a person's body after a therapy, this means that tracing of
such cells during tests is impossible as their number is not above a traceable amount.

Cancerous cells appear between 6 and 10 times in a person's life.

When a person possesses a strong immune system, cancerous cells get destroyed and
their multiplication (and therefore the formation of tumors) is avoided.

A person suffering from cancer suggests that the person's nutritional state shows
multiple deficiencies. Something like this can be due to genetic, environmental
and nutritional factors as well as a person's lifestyle.

To remedy multiple nutritional deficiencies a person's nutritional habits need to change and
enriched with supplements that will reinforce the person's immune system.

Chemotherapy is a toxic against fast growing cancerous cells, but also against fast
growing healthy cells in the marrow, in the bowel, etc and can cause organic damages to
the lever, kidneys, heart and lungs.

Radiation kills cancerous cells and in parallel it also damages healthy cells, tissue and

Initial chemotherapy and radiation reduces the size of tumors. However, extended use of
chemo-therapy and radiation does not result to further elimination of tumors.

When a body carries a high charge of chemotherapy and radiation, the immune system
may be severely damaged and the person can succumb as result of infections and

Chemo-therapy and radiation may cause the mutation of cancerous cells, so they can
become more resistant and difficult to destroy.

Effective manner of fighting against cancer is the weakening of cancerous cells by not
providing the nutrition that they need to multiply.

Cancerous cells are being fed: Sugar feeds cancer. Reducing sugar from nutrition takes
away a significant source of energy for cancerous cells. Sugar substitutes like Canderel,
NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc, are derivatives of aspartam, a bad substance. A better
natural substitute is the Manuka honey but only in small quantities. Cooking salt also has
additives that help it acquire the white color. Better alternative are herbs of the type
Bragg's aminos or sea salt.

Milk causes the body to produce mucus especially in the bowel. Cancer is being fed by
mucus. Replacing milk with soya milk without sweetener additives cause cancerous cells
to weaken.

Cancerous cells grow in acid environments. Nutrition based on meat is acid. It's better to
eat fish and some chicken instead of veal or pork meat. Meat also contains antibiotics,
growth hormones, and parasites that are damaging, especially to cancer patients.

Nutrition that consists for 80% by fresh juice and vegetables, full grain, dry nuts and some
fruit helps create an acid environment in the body. 20% can contain cooked meals that
also contain beans. Juices from fresh vegetables provide fresh enzymes that are easily
absorbed and reach living cells within 15 minutes, while feeding and enforce the
development of new cells. For the reception of fresh enzymes and creation of new cells try
to drink juice of fresh vegetables (from most vegetables incl. bean ...) and eat raw
vegetables 2 to 3 times a day. Enzymes are destroyed at temperatures above 40 Celsius
(104 Fahrenheit).

Avoid coffee, tea and chocolate that contain caffeine. Green tea is the best alternative and
has anticancer properties. Water should better be cleaned and filtered, to avoid toxins and
heavy metals that are found in tap water. Distilled water is acid and must be avoided.

Meat proteins are not easily digestive and requires many digestive enzymes. Undigested
meat remains in the bowel, decomposes and results to an accumulation of toxic

The walls of cancerous cells consist of a hard layer of proteins. Avoiding or reducing meat
consumption releases more enzymes that attack protein layers of cancerous cells and are
capable of destroying them.

Certain substitutes reinforce our immune system (IP6, Florssence, Essiac, anti-acids,
vitamins, metallic elements, significant fat acids, etc). Other substitutes like vitamin E are
known that cause withdrawal or programmed cellular death, the natural method of the
body to get rid of destroyed and useless cells.

Cancer is an illness of the mind, the body and the soul. Active and positive mind will help
the cancer fighter to survive. Anger, bitterness and negative feelings place the body in a
stressful and acid environment. Teach yourself to love and forgive. Learn to relax and
enjoy life.

Cancerous cells can not flourish in oxygen rich environments. Daily exercise and deep
breathing help carry more oxygen into the cells. Oxygen therapy is another method that is
used to fight against cancerous cells.

Don't place plastic containers in microwaves.

Do not put water containers in deep freezers

Don't put plastic foils in microwaves."

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Pet Scanners

Do you know what a Pet Scanner is? Good for you if you do. I didn't have a clue though. I had to show-up this morning at 10 am for a Pet Scan. Initially I thought I had to take my pets with me... (just jokin'). Anyways, it seems that the Scanner is a sensor that picks-up radioactive radiation that is emitted by parts of the body where high activity levels are being observed (tumors among other). With PET Scans doctors can identify hidden from other Scans (CT or Ultra-Sound) pockets of malignant activity and further help define the course of a cancer therapy. What the heck do I know?

Anyways, I was prepared for the worst, having undergone a CT Scan earlier in the week. In CT scans they make you drink an aperitif (tastes like ouzo low solution), an entire liter of the darn thing, and then inject some colorant in your blood that makes your arteries larger (?) - so they told me. That's not too bad and no physical pain involved. But then, a bit uncomfortable for non-gay men, you get some nurse pumping air in your thick bowel sticking a pump outlet pipe up your ars! Still not much of a serious physical pain other than the associated embarrassment.

None of this with PETs though. You are even scanned with a Four-Seasons bath robe on. No physical pains other than getting claustrophobic moving up and down the scanner ring. So be it.

I used to be death terrified with those things before. The experience proved to be just trivial. In both cases. CTs and PETs. Only problem, I couldn't get close to pregnant women and young children for a few hours afterwards. In my age, I wouldn't even know why should I!

An (unlocked) iPhone for 1,500 bucks?

You ain't serious, are yeh? Well, that's what our local newspaper printed today for unlocked iPhones, that is. When they get launched in Europe later in 2008, that's the price the ticket will show.

Is it worth it? Hell no! I mean, I love Apple to death but this is too much of an attitude. Rather buy three Zunes, and bore me to death, than one 1,000 euro iPhone. I am pretty pleased with my Nokia N95 that does twice as much, and my Touch iPod does all I need a portable device to do. In a WiFi area I can browse the Internet to my heart's desire. Even my Nokia is able to do all a mobile user needs to do. OK, with less sexy interface, but who cares? I never do extensive mails with such devices anyways, and never been a Berry fan as well.

Will there be enough morons to count down 1,000 euros for the little marvel? I doubt it... although, may be, some will, for the status aspect of it, some will charge it to the company on the back of the shareholders' money, and some will probably sacrifice a romantic weekend with the partner in Paris just to be able to afford the little shite! (I reckon the iPhone is gonna be the killer lobbyist 'under the table gift' to many Government Mandarins - plenty of them in Brussels, local and International - who up till now prefered, from hear-say, top of the line Mont Blanc's, Nokia's and Sony-Ericsson's)

It won't be me though. No sir... I could buy a new MacBook with the same money. And stick to my Nokia instead. Which, BTW, talks fluently to my MacBook nowadays, without a hitch!

Monday, November 19, 2007

How much is a life worth?

Depends whose life. If it's yours, it's usually worth a lot. How do I know that? Well, I wish you don't go through what I have been through myself last week, continuing up till this moment as we speak. That is when I saw death and life in front of my eyes, smashing my face and waking me up for good!

It all started with a trivial symptom. It soon exploded with routine blood test results. Tests upon tests following. It's not whether it's bad. That we already know for a fact! Numbers speak. The darn CEA factor skyrocketing. It's about how bad it will eventually prove to be. It's about how long your living life will still go on. Whether we shall all die one day is something that five year olds already know from the kindergarden. The question is about how long your life is still gonna be. One year? Three years? Ten? Six months?!?! Even less?!? How's that possible? Except for that little bleeding symptom, you otherwise feel just great! Other than some sudden fever... and some occasional night sweats, that is. But those... this is not the first time you had 'em, innit?

Every single morning we hear about traffic and other accidents that bring dozens of young people to their death. No-one among them, I am sure, thought of that, even remotely, when he/she sat at the driver's seat that morning to head for work. This is easy, though. It happens in a moment of misfortune, totally unprepared, and you (perhaps) see a flash and then, that's it! You're gone. Those you leave behind will have to swallow the pain... but you're gone. You had no chance to even think about it.

How about a slow process that might bring you to your death though? How about coping with a series of events that will define how bad you are, as I witnessed since last Monday? Were moments when I... fainted (my first time ever in 54 years) and moments I wanted to weep for my misfortune but had no tears left. Seeing faces of loved ones staring at you desperately is one of the heaviest burdens and pains you'll need to cope with. They all hope for the better... but they are all getting prepared... some pray and some are almost mourning. Light candles in churches and temples for your recovery. You suddenly feel guilty for the pain and distress you bring to all of them. You know that it's bad but when you are gone... you're gone... you feel nothing no more... but they stay behind with a lot of pain in their heart. You just feel guilty because you are actually doing this to people you care about.

Waiting for test outcomes, next. Painful and burdensome like nothing you know and ever experienced before. Long ago in your career, or maybe still now as we speak, you often felt distressed if you didn't manage to make your quarter, looking for excuses to your boss, right?Let me tell ya! Who f*cks a boss and all his quarters!!! This is your life we are talking about. No way of turning back. You can't just lose it and then time-travel to an earlier moment of your life, when it was still early to treat your evil and change the course of your destiny... This is no parallel worlds BS we are talking about!

How many tumors? Which organs? How vital? Is there therapy for this? For that? What do the stats say? One in two? Or, eight in ten? Where do you start looking to find the best experts to handle your case? What if someone did a fatal mistake and they forgot something vital? Happens, you know!

I have not been in hospitals before... never to that extent. Some check-ups from time to time... one broken arm three years ago, all in all, chicken-shit. A minor operation back in 1970 as a teenager, that's all. My view of hospitals treating cancer was still like 40 years ago... you walk in the hospital... you get out in your coffin. That's it.

During my tests I was set up for a big surprise. Young doctors, fully skilled with excellent people handling skills, telling you the truth directly as it stands and no bullshitting you, still handling you with a lot of humanity, nurses handling you as a real person, state-of-the-art medical equipment, my God, the world has changed in 40 years (please don't laugh, I know, I may be an uber-geek and know a gazilion stuff more than an average Joe about the Information Society... in terms of the health business, I am just... an aboriginal!)

Notwithstanding, it has been a good experience. I, so far, appear to be fortunate amidst my big misfortune. I appreciate that and I am more than grateful to all those helping me and standing by me from the deepest of my heart. Doctors and nurses in the first place.

Seems that my case makes good chances for recovery from what we know so far. One needs to learn to live day by day, conquering a wee bit of the hill every day that goes by. Many pass away. Even more survive it. Science progresses fast. Maybe in the era of our children, when they enter the risk age demographic, cancer is curable as a simple appendicitis. What's for sure is that we shall all parish eventually but we wish for more convenient times. Preferably, when nobody on this planet will still need us anymore, even our siblings. Pray to your God, Allah, Buddha, Zeus, whoever, for your own good and your families that it happens to you and your loved ones to live long and healthy lives...

PS. I am not giving up this blog. Maybe some gaps and less frequent posting in the coming weeks because of upcoming operation, but I hope they have wifi at the hospital; I'll be doing a lot of postings if I get that lucky with the WLAN.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Check this out... and let me know what's wrong with the macho dude and his iPhone. If you spot the blunder means you have great observation capability and should apply for a job at the Agency...

How thick reporters can be...

Read this article. I can't even believe it's a Business Week article. As I read it I am thinking whether this guy has lived the last 25 years under a rock; I am sure he did. Claiming that Apple is copying Windows for years is an insult to any reasonable person's intelligence. What can I say... I used to respect reporters a lot long ago... the more articles I read nowadays the more I get convinced that most contemporary reporters are worth their weight in sh!t...

Friday, November 9, 2007

One Prince ousts another...

There is an excellent interview at the Fortune magazine about the resignation of Charles Prince III, the Citibank chief (who stepped down after announcing a huge write-off of 6B USD due to subprime losses and then three weeks later he came back to augment that amount with another 8-11 B USD, for kicks). Saudi Prince Alwaleed, a maverick financier and businessman with a shedload of money had an interview with the Fortune magazine that CNNMoney.com published here. Makes an excellent reading and provides some insight about how monsters like the Citigroup are being run nowadays and who's throwing money on their laps.

Some trivia that you can easily find out by reading the article. Prince Alwaleed, 'self-made' maverick investor, ranked #8 of the world's richest per the Forbes list with a net worth of 20B USD, owns 3.6% of Citigroup, being its largest single shareholder. He accumulated his position, he claims, at an average 2,75 USD per share. At the current Citigroup bearish position of 32,9 USD a share (yesterday's close), Alwaleed has already achieved a return of 9x on his investment. He made in other words something close to 5 Billion USD on his initial investment. And, as the largest shareholder, he can pull strings behind the CITI mgt curtains anyway he chooses. No wonder that top C executives know their way thru the Riyadh, Saudi Arabia backstreets better than their own native village backyards.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Microsoft Launches Windows Live Services

fig1[1]This new generation of Windows Live services will be available in 36 languages and 59 countries across the world.

Microsoft has officially taken the beta moniker off the next generation of its Windows Live services, which it launched at events in New York and Los Angeles on Nov. 6.

This new generation of Windows Live will be available in 36 languages and 59 countries across the world, and is the first integrated release of the services, Brian Hall, general manager of Microsoft's Windows Live business group, told eWEEK.

read more ...

This post is done by Live Writer, one of these services. Not bad if you are a Windows user. If it works without glitches, that is. It seems it does...

Hey, that's really, really cute...

I couldn't help it than posting this drawing right away...

Don't eat where you sh!t...

Microsoft fires senior executive for misconduct.

Mystery grows as the computer software giant sacks its chief information officer citing a 'violation of company policies'

Speculation grew today over the reasons behind Miscrosoft's dismissal of Stuart Scott, its chief information officer (CIO). The company cited only a "violation of company policies".

Mr Scott, who was responsible for Microsoft's technology infrastructure, was fired yesterday after two years in the job, but the company declined to elaborate on the reasons.

A spokesman for the company, reading from a statement, said only: "Stuart Scott’s employment with Microsoft was terminated after an investigation for violation of company policies."

Employees at the world's largest software maker said today that the dismissal was "unprecedented," suggesting that Mr Scott's actions constituted a grave breach of the company's standards of professional conduct.

read whole story

PS. What's that problem in the US about sex at the workplace? Remember Bill C? The "I never have had sex with that woman" dude? Et alors? Come to think of it, if a World Bank President loses his job over a shag, why not a trivial character like the Evil Empire's CIO? I wonder whether such policies exist at Oracle, as Larry got the reputation of having banged most of his female VPs over time.

oPtion$ reviewed...

I can't remember another book of that size (248 pages) written in a different than my native language that I was able to suck up non-stop in less than 6 hours altogether. Is it because I've been a geeky Apple fan for so long I can't even remember? Or, is it because Lyons has a way of saying things that shake-up non-aficionados and alike? I don't really know...

I am not a professional book reviewer. I haven't read that many books from beginning to end in my entire life either. So, I poked around the net and found a really, really well written review of the book right here. Read that first and come back here afterwards.

Let me tell you what I felt about the book, anyways.

Some passages felt déja vu. Reason is, some of them are priceless pieces of prose that were engraved into my subconscious neurons first time I read them at FSJ's blog. I read some other books about RSJ (the real Steve Jobs) and Lyons did the same and from time to time he describes anecdotes of Jobs' life that are broadly known often taken out of those earlier works. Nevertheless, it wasn't bad to hear these stories, in first person, again. Lyons is quite a skilled writer and handles this seamlessly.

Outside some well known personalities like Oracle's Larry Ellison and Al Gore, most of the other folks in the book carry fictitious names. You can figure out who they are, especially if you are close to Apple, but Lyons keeps himself carefully at the sidelines as far as real names of real people are concerned. Even of those who we know were eventually indicted in the real Options scandal last April.

There are passages and dialogs written with so much humor that you'll LYAO for days and months to come. My favorites was Jobs' prank calls to Sculley asking him to become the CEO of Apple again, the handling of Hillary at a CEO fund raising meeting in Silicon Valley, Al Gore's decision to resign from the Board of Apple Inc. and his handling by the Boards' chairman (a capitalist monster called Tom Bowditch), the handling by Steve of the Asian origin Assistant US Attorney General going thru life under the family name of 'Poon' (honest to God, I had no idea what that meant and had to look it up -- see here), and a conversation among Steve, Larry and a retired VC waiting for the storm to subside at a Valley billionaire private jets airport. But the best I thought was Lyons description of the Jobs management principles, quite early in the book.

It's true that if you Google 'Jobs' and 'A-hole' together you come up with tens of thousands of hits. Nevertheless, Lyons description of his Jobness creates a peculiar and unique character who you sometimes hate and often love to death. At thirty thousand feet the Apple revival story, ever since Jobs returned to the company ten years ago, is a management wonder never experienced before. Quite often in the past we witnessed super-managers like Welch, Gerstner, Geneen driving their companies to the top . Even Gates, and Watson and Ford for that matter. I don't believe though that anyone has ever achieved what RSJ has started 30 years ago and is doing for the last 10 years at Apple. The man is material that can fill-up MBA curricula all talking about him and his methods and nothing else. Fine, he's probably got a lousy character like many say. Fine, and there are probably more who hate him than like him. But who cares? He has a mission and a job to do. And he's changing the world we live in. People don't actually like his ways? Et alors? (so what?) like former President François Mitterand said when a tabloid reporter confronted him with the fact that he had an extra marital experience long ago leading to the birth of a child...

On the other side, Lyons creates that vulnerable character who needs love and tender but he's got no-one to get it from (even Mrs Jobs), and needs to resort to shrinks with Zen backgrounds to get hugged and loved. It's there where the story becomes sort of surreal and you remember suddenly it's not RSJ but FSJ who's telling the story. Quite often you wonder though.

It's a stunning work. The best present one can do to friends and people who manage companies as a career. It's a great idea for year end gift to the scores of middle and junior managers running the business world day to day. I wish there were enough creative and competent CEOs around to take that kind of initiative. I know I used to do that for my managers not long ago with some other interesting mgt literature. It's doable, if you want to.

An Apple Tablet on the make?

Say what? Well let's look at this carefully...

Technically possible? For sure. With touch screen and finger pinching to zoom in and out like the Touch iPod. Far better than those ugly styluses that most people manage to lose (I can't keep a pen for longer than a few hours... I keep leaving them somewhere like my spectacles and can't bother to go look for them afterwards, only thing, spectacles cost a whole lot, so I always get to find them... pens, I don't give a diddlie squat).

Commercially opportunistic? Jeez, I don't know. May be. Here's the thing. Microsoft tried it, they priced that shit in megabucks (not that they're worth much outside the US nowadays), and made a mess of it. I have the feeling that it's not much of a manly thing, a tablet that is. For broads, ok! They can even pull their left leg slightly up in the air each time they slide their finger(s) down the touch-screen. Looks kinda girlie thing, innit? Again, euhh, I don't know kids; I wouldn't bother having a desktop with some surface computing on the monitor, but you know what? It all gets the glass so finger tipped and oily dirty... I see it from my Touch iPod. There, the screen is rather small to bother my obsession for clean glass surfaces and I always carry a cloth specially woven for this anyways (I got that at my spectacles dealer). But a whole 24 or 30 inch monitor? It will look like a table at KFC after some teenagers had just had a meal with freedom fries.

I am sure el Jobso will come up with something around surface computing now that MSFT seems to make lots of noise about it. But would that be a tablet for gay males and broads? Who knows?

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


I pre-ordered oPtion$ at Amazon long before it became commercially available (which it actually did is in the last few days). I forgot all about it until this morning when I got the familiar Amazon carton wrapped goodies. As many of you might already know, oPtion$ is a parody book written by FSJ (I guess by now you know who this guy is -- I've been talking about him a lot lately). He composed the book inspired by a number of his best postings about the recent Jobs option backdating 'scandal' on his FSJ Diaries blog. The picture here right is a scan from the back-cover of that book.

I took the liberty to copy the prologue here:

"Your average frigtard probably figures I've got it pretty sweet. I'm one of the richest people in the world, and I'm hailed everywhere as the most brilliant businessman of all time. I'm lean and handsome, with close-trimmed hair and a Sean Connery-esque salt and pepper beard. And I'm famous. Like People magazine famous. Like everywhere I go people recognize me, and they get all weird around me, and you know what? I love it. I never get tired of it. If there's one thing I can't stand it's retards like Britney Spears who say they wish they weren't famous. Come on. If you really feel that way, then give away all your money, turn your wigger spawn over to Child Protective Services -- which, let's face it, is where they ought to be anyway-- and move your cottage cheesy ass to a hut in Tibet. What's that? Yeah. That's what I thought. So shut up.

What's even cooler is that I'm not famous for being some steroid-taking action movie star or illiterate dick-grabbing rapper or moronic freak-of-nature basketball player. I'm famous for being a genius, and for running the coolest consumer electronics company in the world, which I totally started in my garage, by myself, or actually with this other guy but he's out of the picture now, so who cares. I'm famous because the devices I create are works of art, machines so elegantly crafted and industrially designed that they belong in a museum. My iMac computers and iLife software restore a sense of childlike wonder to people's lives, and bestow upon their owners a sense that they are more intelligent and even, well, better than other people. I also invented the friggin iPod. Have you heard of it?

People ask me all the time what motivates me. It's not the money. There's already way too much money, so much that I can't even remember how much there is. I never really cared about money anyway. I could wipe my butt with hundred dollar bills, that's how little I care about money. I actually did that once.

To recap: I'm a handsome, famous, spiritually gifted genius; and I wipe my ass with money. No wonder people are jealous of me. I understand. I'd be jealous of me, too. Yet what most people don't realize is that in many ways the life of El Jobso is not always so fantastic. I travel too much. I work too much. I sleep too little. I rarely take a day off. I'll be honest; it's a hard life. It's like Bono always says when we're hanging out. People think being a rock star is just nothing but sex and drugs and having fun, but it's a grind, man, it really is.

But the really tough thing about being super brilliant and successful is that people get jealous, and they try to knock you down a peg. In my case the top-seeded jealous frigtard I've ever encountered was a United States Attorney named Francis X. Doyle, a big sweaty blockhead who one day decided that he wanted to run for governor of California and who figured that the best way to launch his career would be to prosecute a high-profile celebrity CEO. Why not, right? Eliot Spitzer worked this same scam, bringing charges against dudes on Wall Street, and now he's governor of New York.

So Doyle and his tiny sidekick, a young lawyer named William Poon (I swear I am not making this up), decided to take down El Jobso. They sat up there in their ugly office in San Francisco, pecking away at their Windows laptops, plotting and scheming, making phone calls to the SEC and leaking information to the press. Fatman and Robin, we used to call them. Or Inspector Clouseau and Kato. I wasn't their only target. These idiots went after dozens of companies in Silicon Valley. They concocted a fairy tale about greedy executives lining their pockets and cheating investors, and of course the nitwits in the press bought the whole story and ran with it, because let me tell you something, if there's any group of people in the world who are suckers for a story about evil rich people, it's the filthy hacks in the media. These spiteful, hateful, small-dicked losers spend their entire lives in a constant state of jealousy and resentment. Here's their job description: Interview people who are richer, more successful, and more interesting than you are, then take cheap shots at them in print. They're parasites. They're leeches. To overcome the shame of what they do, these conniving bastards convince themselves that they're saving the world by exposing all those rich, successful, interesting people as phonies. Which is ridiculous. But whatever.

No doubt you've heard, what happened to me. You've read the stories about the big scandal at Apple. The fact is, you've heard only their side. You've heard a distorted tale based on leaks and lies, fabrications and falsehoods created by prosecutors, government flunkies, and media hacks. Now it is my turn. And believe me, my lies and fabrications and falsehoods are way more convincing than theirs. "

Go get this folks... it will really cheer-up your otherwise dull lives...

The Google Phone Alliance

When we first heard the news about an upcoming mobile phone from Google we all thought it was about a real hardware thing... not a contract, or 'platform', or 'alliance' of some sort. Turns out we were all wrong, particularly those nitwits who spent good hours of their lives designing concept phones like what they thought Google designers would come out with (see photo left). It was about an alliance, just like Microsoft had attempted in the past with its Mobile Windows disaster to only see it falling apart like a house of cards. In the last few days, the best article I read about the Google Phone adventure was at the FSJ blog (click on my favorite links at the left column to get there). If you really feel blue and hate you even woke up this morning, read FSJ's account of the Google-Phone. Man, oh man... keep some clean underwear by your side while reading it...

Off this posting, here's a taste of FSJ's (Daniel Lyons) take on initiatives based on Consortia and Alliances... how right on the money he's again!

"...Consortia don't work because nobody can ever agree on anything and everyone always wants to push the group in ways that advantage themselves and disadvantage everyone else. Reason #2 -- the only companies that join consortia are the ones who are too stupid or shitty to make a great product on their own. It's like, Hey, we've got forty spazzo companies that can't fuck their way out of a paper bag; let's put them all together and maybe they'll magically become some kind of big bad powerhouse. More likely it'll just be some scary ass Frankenstein monster, walking around drooling and tripping over its own tongue..."

Monday, November 5, 2007

Twitter, Take Two!

Obviously I was again kinda late to 'discover' Twitter. It seems there are about half a million Twits active today. New members are being added at the rate of about 2000 a day! An interesting site to learn about all this is Twitter Facts that has done some interesting analyses of the Twitter phenomenon.

One analysis explores the 'long tail' behavior of the stats relating to Twitter. Let's call a person with a Twitter account a Twit. Three interesting concepts are being analyzed: the followers (number of Twits following the postings of one particular Twit), the following (total number of Twits that one particular Twit regularly follows) and updates being the total number of postings a Twit has published. Twits with many followers are called "whales". Twitter Facts discovered a long tail behavior in almost all types of statistical graphs (followers, following and updates) which in itself is quite interesting and probably relates to the ways humans socialize.

One of the most popular whales, Brian Shaler published a short article about Dunbar's number. See here an excerpt:

Thanks to popular social networking services like Twitter, Facebook, etc., users can communicate with others much more efficiently. Before this technology, an avid socialite would have a limit to the number of people he or she could communicate with. Now, there is no limit. On Twitter, the “whales” (people with large numbers of contacts) have thousands of followers. On Facebook, they are hitting the maximum limit of 4,999 friends. With high efficiency communication platforms, there is practically no limit to the number of people a “popular” individual can communicate with.

What happens to someone when they talk to thousands of people at a time? If you wait in line to talk to this person or if you are a small voice in a large crowd of people clamoring for the attention of this person, are you going to be able to have a meaningful interaction? With all the noise, will you have a strong enough signal to hold a conversation of much significance?

Makes you think what the point is for someone to be following more than 150 people, Internet facilitated or not. If Dunbar was right then something is wrong with some Twits following hundreds of other Twits. And if they are stupid enough to get notified with SMS about new postings then I'd like to be their mobile operator...

One interesting site is TwitTown.com that publishes ranks of twits based on their number of followers. Visit them and take a look at the top ranking list. See how many celebs appear there of whom I guess there are plenty of wannabe fakes. For instance, Bill Clinton must be one like this...

On the other side, Barack Obama and John Edwards seem legitimate. I am not so sure about Steven Colbert though. He seems pretty crazy to be citing his own one-liners for kicks. Like "Hey, America, are you thinking what I'm thinking? You soon will be." Posted last April... quite prophetic if you think that he recently made public his intent to run for President... If Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger could make it, why not Colbert. Or Jon Stewart for that matter?

A great Twit favorite is iJustine, of course. In her early twenties, she's been quite a web celeb with her blogs and YouTube clips. IMHO her most hilarious clip is the one where she sobs and pleads to the world to leave Steve Jobs and Britney Spears alone...

Another Net celeb is Dave Winer, the legendary inventor of 'Blogging' and 'RSS'. And of course, another FSJ. And the Asian character who carries a camera mounted to his ear and keeps filming his life 24x7... and finally, a fake Borat...

If you decided to become a Twit, try TwitterWhere, that will help you discover other nitwits like yourself in your neighborhood. It's not terribly accurate but it works.

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Now tell me... can you be more Turkish than the guy on the shot? Great shot BTW, with his head and ears at the golden corner (the thirds rule).

Recently, we Greeks started to like them Turks... for as long as we beat them in soccer games... We also support their entrance to the EU against all odds and against Sarkozy's and Angela's desires. We also trade with them and do cool business... you see, they are used to be taken advantage of by sly Greek and Jewish traders for centuries, that is... I had an uncle, retail trader, like this who they deported to Greece in 1963 after they found out he was stealing anything that moved for years, under their nose. What Turks are good at are winning battles and wars... but traders? No way!

Here's to you suckers! Greeks, Turks, Armenians, Jews, Kurds, Libanese, the whole lot of you... you are all born brothers among yourselves but still keep on lusting each other's blood... deep red as in the flag above...

Are you a twit?

TWIT used to mean "This Week In Tech" and it was (maybe still is) a Podcast about the tech news and gossip of the week, examined by a series of usual suspect reporter celebs in Silicon Valley, led by the legendary, and useless if you ask me, Leo Laporte. The only guy I liked on that panel was John C. Dvorak, who at least has always something meaningful to say.

This TWIT is quite different though. It's you and me and everybody else who's geeky and crazy enough to subscribe to the Twitter, the one line blogging social networking facility that can be fed by Instant Messaging clients and SMSs from cellphones.

Imagine you are killing time at an airport waiting for your flight to depart and you are... playing with your Nokia, or iPhone for that matter. You see something happening around you, funny, serious, whatever, and you suddenly feel an immense "desire" to send a message to the world and talk about it. An one-line message, so to say. Like, "a guy just walked in front of me with a monkey and the monkey smiled at me...". How exhilarating experience that was. You gotta tell people about it... What'd you do? You join Twitter!

Twitter members are sending messages to the Twitter Public space for everyone else to read via their PC and/or cellphone text message reception facility (a.k.a. SMS). As a Twitter member, you answer to the question "What do you do?"; the idea is then to enter a short text message of, say 100/200 characters maximum, telling something about what you are doing and experiencing at the moment. Anything your heart desires... as an example, check the kinda BS I am posting to Twitter in an attempt to "try" the system and discover the "deeper meaning" of such an emerging social networking phenomenon.

The idea is to invite friends who care about what you are busy doing in any given moment of the day, and even get "alarmed" on their cellphone that you've just posted something new... I wonder, unless you are called something like "Bill Gates" or "Sarkozy" or "Al Gore" for that matter, why should more than just a handful people (your wife, close friends and maybe children) should give a didlii squat what you are busy doing, anyways...

Nevertheless, you'd be surprised how many people, with nothing more useful to do, have put in their favorite lists scores of insignificant Jon Doe's who keep discussing their miserable lives in single line blogs on Twitter. It's so bad that Twitter came up with the Twitter Poster, a display of avatar photographs of the most active Twits, with the most popular among those shown by larger size avatar icons. The larger your avatar is displayed, the more followers you got. There are Twits who are being followed by thousands of brain-dead morons in a sort of newly bread one-line textual voyeurism.

There maybe one single occasion where Twitter might be somewhat useful. (Trust me, I consumed a great deal of gray matter inside my scull in order to come-up with this one...) Suppose something critical is happening to you and you just can't reach people you need to reach; you know they follow what you do, because they told you so, but you just can't find their coordinates to message them something urgent (too far fetched, I know...). Ok, then, you twit the message and you know they'll probably read it in the next five minutes it will hit their antennas... It could be a matter of LIFE AND DEATH, that is... noooot??? Gimme a break!

Anyways, that's Twitter. Invented by a big shot someone (I forget who) who became a multi-millionaire first time by inventing another popular social networking initiative (I also forgot which one) that he then sold to either Yahoo, Microsoft or Google... Apparently he's thinking of selling again...