Sunday, July 08, 2007

8 reasons why Who Sucks sucks

Who sucks suck

Who sucks? What site is that? I had a look after finding it with random browsing.
So who sucks sucks ...

1. It does not have a good search
2. It does not offer any good alternatives for anything
3. Pointing how something or someone sucks does not offer any better alternatives to the thing that sucks
4. It lacks originality
5. It's criteria for sucking are very biased - then again I don't know if it even is possible to have a sucks-themed site that is objective. So they hate and, and iPhone because it lacks flash support for websites? Buhuu.
6. It is digg whoring at every entry
7. It's made with wordpress but the whosucks logo looks like it was made with iWeb
8. It also lacks a proper whois information. About is minimal, and looking at registrant info from the domain is not that fruitful. I can assume the site was registered under no real person to avoid the hatemail that it will get (that it is looking for).

Domain Name:

Registrant Contact: Private Registrant
DreamHost Web Hosting
417 Associated Rd #324
Brea, CA 92821

There is just nothing original about it.

Friday, July 06, 2007

4 more web annoyances

And something to add to the category of why I've quit reading a blog [via Pronet advertising] : 4 web annoyances to avoid on your site

Auto-Playing Audio/Video Advertisements
Window Resize
Pop-up Advertisements
Insensitive to Photosensitive Epilepsy

Could not agree more.

10 blogging mistakes to avoid
John Chow's 10 blogging mistakes to avoid
10 reasons why I've quit reading a blog

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A moment before the sunrise it's the darkest one

From the end of March until now I have barely posted. There have been good reasons for it. What happened in life made me turn inside myself for a while, and in a week it will turn around, and I will be me again - better than ever before.

I have changed my job since end of March. I also discovered that what I started doing since was not what I wanted to do, and that a company that I like a lot wanted to hire me - today I got a confirm that they can hire me. Suddenly there is sunshine in the life again, even when it's raining like in October in June when it's supposed to be the warmest days of the year ...

I got excited, and will blog more, and more often. It is a promise.
I will work with exciting products, of which some later depending on what I can say and what not.

The sunrise of Ricardo puts an image to what it feels like now. A moment before the sunrise it's the darkest one ... now it's getting to that sunrise moment, and I can see again.

Ireland and EU-1 visa crisis gets some media attention

1,000 married couples face 'legal fiasco' - Irish Times [link] [via]

An estimated 1,000 married couples face what is being described by the Migrant Rights Centre of Ireland as a “legal fiasco” following a High Court ruling that the Department of Justice is within its rights to insist non-EU spouses of EU citizens live in another member state before being allowed to live and work here.

The European Commission is investigating the stance of the department, it has emerged.

In an unpublished ruling, seen by The Irish Times, Mr Justice Michael Hanna said the Department of Justice was intra vires in demanding that non-EU spouses of EU citizens reside legally in another member state before being eligible for residency here.


This is a big deal for Ireland. 10 % of its population are non-Irish. So it is more than 1000 couples that are influenced by this. We probably know 10 couples already - but that is working for very international companies.

Nevertheless, some media coverage is better than no media coverage.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

And a few more reasons why some blogs become way less interesting

As a few additions to 10 reasons why I've quit reading a blog - the ones that I have quit reading recently don't fit always to the reasons below.

- The blogger is suddenly having a kid, and instead of geek ramblings, now you have links to ultrasounds pictures and something else creepy
- The feed is constantly not working. When a certain blog feed had issues, and I kept seeing always one certain blog post I could not care less about, to be new, from February, day after day, refresh after refresh, I just removed it. I could not stand seeing the same post over and over and over...
- The blog is just updated way too often (the few updates a day is ok, but when it goes to a group of bloggers doing 20 updates a day, unless it's something I really dig, it's a bit too much of the same topic)

And, well - when it's been months since the last update. I know I have been not as active with this space here as I wanted to, but it has been a very frustrating time in the real life. Something happened that changed about everything possible.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Signs of Hell freezing over

I think Hell is slowly freezing over.
Proof? .. a short list of the major events.

1. Apple has moved their product line to have Intel processors, from consumer line to Xserves.
2. You can run Windows (or any other 'non-Mac') OS on your Mac.
3. Finland has won the Eurovision [link]
4. A New Yorker gets grumpy online because she has never met a rude person in her life. [story]

And the winner - while searching for a decent photo of Hell, Norway ... sometimes the google advertising gives funny results.

Go to Hell at low prices?

10 blogging mistakes to avoid

Time to avoid the blogging mistake #1 as listed for top 10 (or wost 10?) by John Chow. Of the ones listed, I had never heard of John Chow. How about instead of that # 10, not reading Guy Kawasaki or .. well, keeping fresh and updating your ideas?

And as again, for some own input on the subject, and as continuation of 10 reasons why I've quit reading a blog - here what I could consider some of the worst things for blogging :

1. Being abandoned or giving the feel of being it. If it's about an interesting topic, and has some good content, maybe a look every now and then to check for updates, or maybe it gets to even bloglines or google reader but no new contents in months .. could make a nice graphic here for time per readers abandonment.
2. The God-attitude of writing. "I know everything about cars/digital photography/social networking/social media optimization/photoshop//macs/something else". Good - if you actually do know that much, how about making money out of it and working in that field? Blogging gives good options for a starter for getting good feedback, but if the years of bragging on how good one is is nothing more but confabulation made by just the author, then it may become suddenly boring.
3. Summarized the reasons for quitting reading : no original content, being supposed to like the blog and the topic, buzzwords, blogging about your kids in your work related blog when you are not a nurse, no sense of humor, too much posting or no new content...
4. Poor writing skills. When your language and expressions give the reader a headache, even if it's because of your f4sh10nabl3 sp3ll1ng, still. Let the writing take its time. Formulate the phrases when you know what you want to say.
5. Negativity. People that are negative attract negative things around their life - the life, the work, everything becomes dark and stale. If you don't like negativity, then maybe time to read something more positive than a blog where the constant topics are about how one's life sucks.
6. Not growing. When all your blogging for the past four years have been about one thing only, maybe it's time to add some more interests and write about them. Bruce Schneier doesn't think only about security issues, but also blogs about squids (on Fridays) and writes restaurant reviews. So why would anyone else have only one obsession or interest? Then at least add to your interests getting more interests. Ask your readers for ideas in what to become interested in.
7. Me, me, me. My camera, my opinions, my blog, my links. Me me me. Solution? Get a life, and get some online and offline friends and other interests than you yourself and you.
8. Liking and linking what everyone else does. Google and digg whoring. And just because the boingboing editors like Yasmina Tesanovic or ioerror then you like them just because ..
9. Being afraid of writing or other reasons for no content. It's ok to have as a part your links and quick links to the funny things that you find but add some original input too, at least once every few weeks.

That's 9 until there. What would be the 10th?
Sticking to default template?
Annoying amount of ads?
Using a certain hosting site?
Word is yours.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Eleana Ramos dies 6 months after Luisel - anorexic model family ...

Six months ago the headlines and anorexia interests around the world noticed the death of Luisel Ramos, the 22 years old model from Uruguay who died for anorexia.

Now ... her sister, Eliana Ramos, 18, has died. While doing a catwalk while modeling ... anorexia. Again. Eliana was working for a company called Pancho Dotto. La Repubblica has added some pictures of Eliana on today's news. The news add that it's not 100 % sure yet if she died of anorexia but .. you could think maybe of changing the career if your sister dies? Or that perhaps the parents would have preferred that their second child would have considered other career options?

eliana ramos

La chica, que integraba el staff de Pancho Dotto, fue hallada muerta en su casa de Montevideo. Según los forenses, sufrió una "muerte súbita". [Clarin]

"Ella no fumaba, no tomaba nada, sólo Coca o agua. Y nunca se drogó", afirmó. Jairo mencionó que el médico les dio "el ejemplo de un jugador de fútbol que se muere en la cancha".
Personas cercanas a la familia indicaron que hacía tiempo que Luisel estaba bajo mucha presión: "Venía al mango hace mucho tiempo por la organización, el martes desfiló y después se quedó armando más cosas para el miércoles. Terminaba y de noche repartía invitaciones para los desfiles. Mucho estrés y ansiedad para una gurisa joven".

Very tiny steps for the modeling world indeed.

-- Update : the correct spelling for her first name is Eleana - lazy press.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

NYT : Number of People Stopped by New York Police Soars

Number of People Stopped by New York Police Soars:

Published: February 3, 2007
The New York Police Department released new information yesterday showing that police officers stopped 508,540 individuals on New York City streets last year — an average of 1,393 stops per day — often searching them for illegal weapons. The number was up from 97,296 in 2002, the last time the department divulged 12 months’ worth of data.

After inquiries by the City Council and civil rights advocates, the department delivered four bound volumes of statistics to the Council in midafternoon. The raw data showed that more than half of those stopped last year were black: an average of 67,000 per quarter.

At the same time, the average number of people arrested per quarter as a result of such stops almost doubled to 5,317 last year, from 2,819 in 2002, and summonses nearly quintupled, to a quarterly average of 7,292 last year from 1,461 in 2002.

Until yesterday, the most recent information released by the Police Department about how and why it stops people to search them, sometimes looking for illegal guns, was from 2003, according to city officials and city and court records. Some officials have said that lag put the department at odds with a pair of legal requirements that sprang from public outrage at the 1999 fatal police shooting of Amadou Diallo, an unarmed black street peddler.

The department, which rejects such assertions, has not released numbers from 2004 and 2005, or from the last three months of 2003.

Those who review the data are now grappling with dual issues: determining why the Police Department waited so long to release any new figures, and why it is stopping more people and searching them.

The issue of these police-public encounters — called “stop and frisks” — became an emotional flashpoint after the shooting of Mr. Diallo, whose death in a barrage of 41 police bullets led to weeks of protests and scores of arrests outside 1 Police Plaza, in Lower Manhattan.

Many of the protesters contended that there was a pattern of racial profiling in stop-and-frisks. A state study later in 1999 confirmed racial disparities in such stops.

The guidelines to monitor stop-and-frisks in detail were set forth in a city law signed in 2001, and in a federal court case settled by the Bloomberg administration in 2004. Both called for the Police Department to release to the City Council, four times a year, basic data about the people who are stopped and questioned by officers, and the reasons for such encounters.

But until yesterday, it had been a year since the department reported its stop-and-frisk activity, and those numbers dated from a three-month period ending in September 2003.

In the meantime, the Civilian Complaint Review Board, an independent city agency that investigates charges of police misconduct, found that complaints involving stops and searches have more than doubled in recent years, increasing to 2,556 last year from 1,128 in 2003. Complaints involving police stops now account for 33 percent of all complaints, up from 20 percent in 2003.

At a City Council hearing on Jan. 24, Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly assured council members that his officers were not practicing racial profiling in street stops.

“Officers are stopping those they reasonably suspect of committing a crime, based on descriptions and circumstances,” Mr. Kelly said, “and not on personal bias.”

Paul J. Browne, the chief police spokesman, said later that the department’s analysis of the numbers showed that while 55.2 percent of the stop encounters last year involved blacks, 68.5 percent of crimes involved suspects described as black by their victims (or by witnesses, in the case of homicides). Hispanics, he said, made up 30.5 percent of those stopped and 24.5 percent of suspected offenders. For whites, he said, the numbers were 11.1 percent and 5.3 percent, respectively.

Mr. Browne said that aggressive street enforcement was partly responsible for the increase in stop-and-frisks. Also, he said, “careful accounting” of such encounters by the department in recent years made the increase seem greater. “Part of it is taking guns off the street and responding to complaints where we use stop-and-frisk,” he said.

It was unclear last night how much of the increase in stops was due to suspected gun possession or how many led to gun arrests. Mr. Browne could not confirm a direct line between gun arrests and increases in stops, and said officers’ efforts to take guns off the streets were just one facet of the crime suppression the stop-and-frisk forms reflected.

The 2006 figures, delivered yesterday by two officers in plain clothes, were contained in four books of about 250 pages each. Councilman Peter F. Vallone Jr., chairman of the Council’s public safety committee, said his staff was unable to interpret the numbers immediately.

The department’s lag in releasing the numbers came to light after the fatal shooting in November of another unarmed black man, Sean Bell, and has been seized on by civil rights advocates, academics and current and former government officials. Mr. Bell’s death was not related to a stop-and-frisk operation, but it has become a valve for frustrations over relations between the police and minority residents. But members of the City Council said they had been requesting the material even before the Bell shooting.

Jeffrey Fagan, a professor of law and public health at Columbia University who studied the issue in 1999 for Eliot Spitzer, then the attorney general, said he was not surprised that the number of stop-and-frisks went up “during a period of no accountability.”

But, he added, “it is an astonishing fact that stop rates went up by 500 percent when crime rates were flat.” Police officials and a city lawyer said there were several reasons the department had fallen behind in releasing the numbers. Compiling the reports, they said, has been hampered by antiquated technology, especially since the numbers have risen. The department has been working to modernize its reporting system, officials said, and has not been withholding the data deliberately.

Some observers questioned whether producing data on street stops remained on the department’s front burner during the age of terrorism.

“I just don’t think it’s a priority,” Dr. Fagan said of the data collection.

The total number of stops includes cases in which the officers acted to prevent what could have been terrorist activity, the police said. But those stops are relatively rare, they said, and there is no separate category for keeping track of them. Searches of subway riders’ bags are not considered stop-and-frisk encounters because people willing to forgo entry to the subway can decline them.

Joel Berger, who monitored matters of police conduct as an executive in the city’s Law Department from 1988 to 1996, said: “It is particularly frightening that the Police Department is not following the statute that requires reporting on stop, question and frisks. It is the thing that happens most often and most troubles people, and the failure to report the numbers is, effectively, very alarming.”

Mr. Spitzer first dug into the issue of street stops after the Diallo shooting and found that Hispanics and blacks were being disproportionately targeted. After adjusting for varying crime rates among racial groups, his analysis found that blacks were stopped 23 percent more often than whites. Hispanics were stopped 39 percent more often than whites.

In the wake of those findings, the city signed a law allowing the Council to collect the Police Department’s stop-and-frisk data on a quarterly basis. Separately, the federal class-action lawsuit, Daniels v. City of New York, alleged that the police habitually used racial profiling in stop-and-frisk situations. When the city’s corporation counsel settled the case in January 2004, the agreement required the police to disclose data on such encounters through 2007.

The idea was that increased transparency about police stops would not only foster analysis of one of the department’s most crucial tactics for reducing crime, but also would help restore the public’s trust.

Mr. Spitzer’s study reviewed police records known as UF-250s. Officers must fill them out after making forcible stops, including those in which a person is frisked or searched. His report noted that officers did not always fill them out. The form shows the race of the person stopped as well as the reason.

Under a system begun in the spring of 1999, police officials said, forms completed at individual precincts were taken to 1 Police Plaza, where their 50 points of data were gathered. Envisioning a daunting backlog, Mr. Kelly in 2005 directed that the process be decentralized so that the raw data could be recorded quickly, at the precinct level.

Mr. Kelly told officials at the Jan. 24 hearing that the data for the remainder of 2003, and for all of 2004 and 2005, would take longer to provide. That is “because it must be compiled manually, rather than in a technologically advanced way,” according to a letter sent Thursday from the Law Department to a plaintiff in the federal case.

“We’ve been patiently waiting for years now,” Councilman Vallone, told Mr. Kelly at the hearing. “We would again request that you give us that information.”

For a time, the police gave the data to the City Council with some regularity. But the frequency of the reports slowed, and in February 2006, the department released data for the third quarter of 2003.

Then, the flow of data stopped. Until yesterday.

But city leaders came under criticism as well for failing to more forcefully demand the data. “The City Council has failed to ensure that the Police Department is producing the reports, as required by the statute,” said Christopher Dunn of the New York Civil Liberties Union. “As a result, it has not been doing any monitoring of stop-and-frisk activity, which was the very point of the statute.”

Sunday, January 28, 2007



Questions that would be nice to ask in a job interview

What's the suicide rate of your employees?
Does the company healthcare cover suicide? Or heart-lung transplants, cosmetic surgery such as liposuction, tubal, boobjob and cures for erectile dysfunction?
Have you ever had sex with an employee? Or with a customer?
What kind of shooting facilities are there in the office?
How many diversity persons are there working at the site? Would you consider hiring a 35 years old white male as your diversity person?
Who did you sleep with to become a manager?
What kind of possibilities are there to explore the possibility of collecting the protection money from the employees for keeping their computers working?
Is it true that the outgoing calls are not recorded?
I can see asking creative questions that have nothing to do with the job I'm applying for or with measuring the candidates attitudes are in ... don't you want to ask anything relevant?
Is it part of your dress code that everyone dresses as if they were working for Microsoft?
I had a look walking around the office before this interview, and man, I didn't see anyone who would look happy in their job. What reasons do the employees usually give when they leave?
Could you give examples of your micromanagement style?
What's your company policy for sexual harassment?
Do they sell beer in the canteen?
How often do you get extra paid time off for funerals?
How much underperforming do you tolerate before firing your employees?
Is swearing in the office allowed?
How many hours are there typically time to watch movies during a typical work day?
Does your company dress code allow the employees to wear a burqa?
Are those real?

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Updates on the way ...

The past few weeks have been surprising. Surprising slow and fast on the same time, confusing and making some changes, giving the air of more changes to come soon. While the other half is still in the paperwork hell, I might get some good news soon regarding work - keep thumbs up.
Winter has never bee my best time. Cold and dark just suck most of the energy out. That and being sick for the past few days make it that I don't yet have a good rant update. Maybe tomorrow though.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Lying will take you far

After some years of observing people in the work and social life I have come to a weird conclusion : lying is worth it. I should have disregarded all the good parental and moral advice about lying and just started to do it, and properly, a long time ago.

Especially in the past year, I have noticed how much some people lie. I have observed two pathological liars at the work environment - one of them got herself a job promotion with lying, after spending weeks and months in several occasions sick for a reason that isn't medically credible (but when one just keeps lying systematically, no one seems to even notice that), and the other person was a bit surprisingly close to me.

The sick and then job promotion liar according to this other liar, keeps lying constantly. The second liar helped me recognize signs of lying - where she thought she'd be hiding her own signs of lying so well. Anyway. Normally when one has four sick incidents in any six months, the person is fired. The only exceptions to this have been one boss who had really really many and who was then sick for a year in the row but that didn't matter either because of her position or someone that she knew or because pregnancy gets somehow so special treatment (even though it is one's own fault to get in that condition in the first place), and this liar. She got allergies that caused her to be sick for weeks - the great stories of medication that she mentioned included details about her allergy medication, Xanax ... even if that medicine hasn't ever been used for anything else than mental disorders and panic. Still allergic (for work?) for weeks, on Xanax and booze .. no questions asked. After coming back for work for a few weeks then a tennis elbow, from using the mouse. Which was another weeks in a row of being sick. Physiologically, anyone using a mouse except maybe as a tennis ball replacement doesn't really cause it. So you would think that weeks of rest and physiotherapy would fix it if it was present. And if it didn't fix it, at least steroid injections would. She got those, and that in the storyline just made it worse .. I remember seeing her occasionally after that at work, probably because the management started to be suspicious enough, and shortly after she landed in a new job. I am definitely curious to see what kind of stories were involved in getting this new job as I know a bunch of more compatible people than her who were running for that particular job. Unless of course what the other applicants were missing was the ability to feed BS to everybody and lie without any consciousness issues.

The second liar taught me how to see when someone is talking BS.

Both liar would fit to the categories of pathological, chronic and habitual liars. Both liars main points are usually to make them appear nicer, to make the reality appear nicer to them, to get something (money, pay rise, sell things, get what ever you have they want), avoiding being caught of lying (by telling more lies), avoiding embarrassment and so on.

What they sometimes forget that once they start to treat you as their trusted friend, and reveal the amount of total lies ... you will have hard time believing anything they say. Or what they do and say may look totally nonsense. Once you get a lot of results of lying just keep lying and everything will be fine ... and then just keep lying. So the second one went to a holiday, landed in a week holiday to a job offer with 50 % more salary. She thought about it for a while, decided being bored with her actual job then, and quit. Telling some people about taking that job she was offered, other people that she'd get to the other side of the world to study, and went to live in a boring country 'while the visa would be processed for a maximum of two weeks' months ago. I don't fully get it but it will be a lot easier to believe what I see. So for most people to just ignore what they say and concentrate on what they do, believing in what they say when they have done it.

Another good example of how far you can go with lying is observing the politicians... of any country.

I think my new year's resolution would sort of have to lie more and better. And not have any moral problems lying so that the lying is even better.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Enough paperwork BS, again

Six more weeks or so, before the Department of Justice will have to give an answer.
And to send our paperwork back.
Can't wait really.

Six months without a passport, driver's license, marriage certificate.... can't travel anywhere even inside the country where you would even stay overnight, no way of getting out of the country (did I mention my parents are over 70 and sick?), can't drive the car without the driver's license (not that we could afford a car with one lousy salary for two), and part of us who can't work before getting the papers back, can't get a PPS (SSN) number before those papers are back .... being forced to not do anything during the day for so long time is getting on the nerves. It's not really getting on the nerves, it's been very much on the nerves since last August. Really, enough of this paperwork BS. And really, it sucks.

And even more BS if the non-EU part of us would have had a working visa here to start with...

When we'll get that paperwork, then will be months and months for other paperwork perhaps, but just can't wait to get out of here. We are both going thru some interviews - thankfully I have a stable job - he here, I there... would be nice to get the things running again. Life feels too stale when you can't get a weekend break, when you can't afford to rent a car for a weekend, to buy a new toy like an iPod when you happen to see something that you like... it becomes stale, and having a seasonal depression and all this happening during the winter will not make it much better either. There are moments when the work sucks (no matter which work, any of them), when you need a break, want to go out, can't afford to .. and the other part is glued in front of the computer for all day, with the lousy network speeds not allowing to even basic browse on a broadband... days become repetitive, drag on to work, not for the pleasure of it but because of the need of an income, do the job, serve, get back home, another lousy night without being able to get anywhere... days go by, making it one by one a day closer to getting the papers, getting those damn pieces of paper, stamps on passport, more visa applications...

May this be a better year from now on.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

2006 in a few lines

2006 in very few lines :
Depression most of the time, while trying to survive the daily BS in life
Marriage - finally. No more of the 90 days BS either way
Visa hell - 6 months two on a lousy salary .. and well, this after finishing the 90 days hell
Reorgs - how much worse can everything get reorganized?
BS - way too many levels
People - social networking when I really want to be alone
Gadgets - nothing really exciting
Home - the third year in same house
Money - at least still used to life in student income ...