1 minute generation

I Feel Soon they'll be doing papers on social media. Whn I try to tweet or whatever the heck they call it these days to feel modern and hip, I remove spaces, pumctuations, adjectives, words, vers, nouns, pronouns and even after thinking a long time, I barely make it under the character limit. I guess it's all about the hash tag baby

Fun fact, The Hash Tag, not at all related to the hash brownie lol.

CMS Rewrite Beta

After a long rewrite, the new CMS is finally online.

Much more flexible, this rewrite should provide a lot of fun features

CMS Rewrite in progress

Site rewrite in progress

For fun, I have been rewriting the domains I control

  • Moved from mysql to postgres

  • rewrote from apache to nginx
  • I had a few wordpress sites, they are all now running home grown CMS
  • moved from centos to ubuntu

On time speeding up

According to Einstein, "if there was no matter, time wouldn't exist." As I age, I have been gaining weight. Part of me wants to blame the fact that the universe is expanding at an increasing rate... I also noticed that time flies faster. Long story short, I think that if I want time to zoom by at a more normal pace, I should exercise more and lose weight... because there are moments I think time is moving way too fast... especially on monday mornings when I wonder, where the heck did the weekend go :p

Robber buys getaway vehicle from cop

A robber walks into a police officer's home and tries to buy a motorbike as a getway vehicle with the money from the bank he just robbed... sounds like the plot of a joke or the beginning of a comedy skit.

Well, according to This article, it seems like this is just what one person did in Arkansas. Because he paid with the stolen money, after he left, the officer just checked the money and it was easy to pin things down on him.

I am no expert on crime but it does require planning. One certain, Buying a motorcycle from a Law enforcement officer in Uniform after one just robbed a bank sounds like a very risky idea to me.

Genius tries to take a selfie with python

What should someone do when they see a Python? I don't know about you and I am certainly not an expert on snakes but, if it were me, unless we are talking about the programming language, I would instantly cowardly run screaming like a baby. It seems like common wisdom is not so common and it is certainly not the path Ashok Bishnoi took. He ran towards the snake

When he saw the snake, our young hero had the brilliant idea to think it was wise to immortalize the moment by taking a selfie with a giant Python.... forgetting in the process how mortal he was.

Not only did the idiot attempt to strike multiple poses but he kept getting closer until at some point even the python went, wtf (in parseltongue of course). Seeing how affectionate Ashok was, the snake decided to give the poor candidate for the Darwin awards a kiss. As a result, Ashok was bitten in the neck.

Fortunately he survived and only his ego was bruised. But the question begs to be asked, how the heck did he think it was a brilliant idea in the first place? Maybe he got confused and he thought it was monty python. Maybe he thought it was a fashionable scarf. Maybe he thought he was immune to venom. I have no clue because I certainly would have run. Heck, I probably would have run before I actually got close enough to see the snake.

Whatever it was, I am glad he is alive and I certainly hope he has learned his lesson

Surprising life lessons learned by growing plants

Most of my life, I did not have plants but when I came to the US, I ended up with plants in my apartment and learned a few interesting lessons.

1. What other people throw can blossom into a strong sturdy tree

When I first came to the US, I ate a date and I was about to throw it away when my mom suggested we plant it in an empty pot. Simply giving it water and sunlight, after a few months, eventually a leaf came out of the ground, then a few more came out. Today, it is a small tree that is growing bigger and stronger.

Because many people throw away something, it does not mean it is worthless. Think outside the box, try something new… who knows where you’ll end up.

2. Persistence, and regularity of something simple has a long term effect

After my first initial success, when I planted second seed… initially, nothing came out. At first I got discouraged but because I had another plant in there, I still gave it water. … and as it grow, they become stronger. Even if I did not see the difference from day to day, I just kept watering the plants on a regular basis. Even if sometimes it was annoying, one tree then another started growing

To get a result, you have to sometimes initially do something annoying and persist even if sometimes the situation seems overwhelming. The same principle applies to exercising, self improvement and anything you set your mind to. Starting from scratch can be discouraging but sometimes you have to see the bigger picture. With a long term vision, a simple gesture repeated over time can yield a result bigger than expected.

3. Sometimes it takes a few tries to get to where you want it to be

After I planted palm trees, I figured I’d try planting mint (People from Morocco are big on mint tea so I figured why not). I ordered seeds and planted them. Shortly, something came out and I was excited but even if all 10 seeds I planted came out, a lot did not survive the change in weather. Interestingly, a few survived and today they are growing strong. I cut those mint plants and divided them… As a result, today I have a large put filled with multiple mint seeds.

As the saying goes, “you have to be willing to break a few eggs to make an omelet.” Failure is part of success, not everything you try in life will work on the first try.

4. The resilience of plants despite extreme conditions is humbling and astounding

One mint plant I left outside and I thought it died. Yet, when spring came, it grew back from nothing and blossomed again.

In life, we all eventually face events that bring us down, make us either doubt our capacity to succeed or even get back up. Yet, when spring comes, forests that seemed dead spring back to life. No matter what happens to you, you have to be willing to get back up, try again, try harder. As the saying goes, it does not matter how many times you fall, what matters is the number of times you get back up… because all that matters in the end is that you are standing and willing to get back on top.

5. It is important to set boundaries

One mistake I made was to mix mint with other plants and even if I really like mint, it started asphyxiating other plants. I learned that you had to give mint boundaries or it will start to grow wildly and it can become an issue.

Sometimes, even something or someone we really like can overtake our lives and in extreme cases even ruin lives. Whether it is work, relationships or any activity, it is important to set healthy/ sensible boundaries so you do not end up asphyxiated with too much of one thing.

6. Have multiple plants.

On a regular basis, I used mint to prepare mint tea. Initially, when I only had one plant, each time I made tea, I could not prepare it until the plant grew again. When I ended up with multiple mint plants, it was a lot easier to cut a little from a different plant each time and yet have them grow at the same time.

As the saying goes, “Do not put all your eggs in one basket.” This means that sometimes you have to delay gratification and invest in “diversifying your portfolio.” Have multiple plans in life, do not rely on a single one.

7. It is gratifying to build something bigger that lasts

What do I gain from planting a palm tree? From a strictly selfish point of view, nothing that directly affects my success. With that in mind, having plants that are growing independently from me is definitely gratifying. With plants and plants losing their leaves in winter, there are days when the view of desolation can be depressing. Having an Island of green inside brightens up the day.

Obviously help yourself but help others as well. Spread the positive vibes, help others. It feels good to see others succeed as well. Some might end up ungrateful but others might actually contribute back something unexpected when the moment comes.

So, I am encouraging everyone to try to grow at least one plant. Also, try new things, go out of your comfort zone... you never know what comes out of it

On synthetic diamonds gaining ground

Just read an article on how De Beers feels synthetic diamonds are an increasing threat. Synthetic diamonds are gaining popularity and I think it is a good thing

Here are a couple reasons why:

  • For one, the synthetic diamonds are of higher quality. Because they are grown in the lab, they lack imperfection. This means they can be grown to any shape or size, they are stronger, and we may even improve their quality in the future
  • They are also cheaper to produce. This means more people will be able to afford better rings and they are able to get diamonds that match their liking. D
  • Less damage is made to the environment - when you mine diamonds in a large scale, you have to dig the earth... this damages the environment
  • Less Blood diamonds - a lot of the regions where diamonds are mined come from conflict regions where a lot of people die, are mistreated or exploited and are given very low wages for a very dangerous job.
If you can get a better diamond, with a higher quality, cheaper, with less people killed or exploited, it is definitely a good thing

Ten ways that could be hurting your success

  1. Not improving - Be the best you can be. The biggest obstacle to getting ahead will be yourself. Whatever your field is, you should strive to constantly improve, become a better version of yourself and acquire the skills that help you get to the next level. This applies whether you are at the bottom of the hierachy... all the way to CEO.
  2. Doing the minimum - Do the best you can do. It can be tempting to do the minimum, do exactly what you are told but one way to get ahead is think one step further... If there is one thing that can make you work smarter, do it. If you can get better results by going the extra mile, make it happen. If your current boss/company does not see any added value, someone else will.
  3. Wanting to do too much - Avoid waste. This may seem to contradict the previous item but it is very different. There are times when doing too much is wasting precious resources and it won't make a difference. For example, if all your electric needs are covered by one solar panel, installing 20 is a waste of resources, especially if you have no way of storing the extra energy. Also, if you are approaching a task that is too complex, you are more likely to procrastinate
  4. Not planning - Think ahead. One common reason I have seen to forego planning is because you get less flexibility in your life. Arguably, you get more flexibility in doing what you want if you plan ahead of time. Even if at the last minute, you decide you want to change plans you have the option to do so. However, there are times, when under pressure, it is difficult to see the road ahead. Having a roadmap helps you optimize your efforts, be more confident in getting to where you want to go.
  5. Complaining too much - We all have met that person who keeps complaining no matter what happens. Even assuming they win the lottery, they are going to whine that their whole previous life is ruined... don't be that person. As the saying goes, it is to be an optimist and be wrong than pessimistic and be right" ... it does not change the events but you can certainly change the way you react to them.
  6. Blaming others - If you screw up, own it and find ways to improve. There is a joke that goes a guy is driving on 495 and hears on the radio "We interrupt this broadcast to warn everyone there is a madman going in the wrong direction"... the guy turns off the radio and shrugs, "pff, they are all going in the wrong direction." There are times where you will need to open your eyes and do a reality check.
  7. Have confidence in yourself - Again, this might seem like the opposite of the previous bullet point... but it is different: You need a healthy dose of self esteem, enough willpower to conquer obstacles and persist until you get through the difficult parts. The first person who hired Elvis for a concert told him he would never break through... the same goes for the Beatles, Michael Jordan, and countless others. Walt Disney was even fired for a lack of imagination. Be confident in yourself, your capabilities and show people what you are really worth
  8. Not asking for help - Swallow your pride and reach out if necessary. We all want to look good in front of others, we all want others to only see us succeed but failure is part of success. It is ok not to know something and many times, the others who have had the same problems before you will be happy to share their experience, help you avoid their mistakes. Even if you are on the right track, you may actually get to where you want to be faster.
  9. Have no empathy - We've all heard it at least once, "nice people finish last" and though there is such a thing as being too nice if you let people step on you, that does not mean that you have to be ruthless to get ahead. As a matter of fact, there is a study by google that the teams are the ones where people being nice and feel safe. Be kind to one another... if not to help others, at least to help yourself. Empower others and zest greatness... it feels good to spread positive vibes.
  10. Think big - No matter how low you are, no matter what obstacles, no matter how difficult things are... Think big, aim for the moon... who knows, you may reach it. Even if you don't, all the changes that you will have to undergo to get there will undubitably make you a better person. Even if you reach your goal only partially, it can still be a succes

Windows 7 and windows 8.1 not for sale anymore

It's official, no more new installs of windows 7 and 8.1... or at least no more new licenses for OEMS. Windows 7 is dead, long live windows 10 (well at least at least until the next version comes.

Maybe next version version of windows will combine windows 7 and windows 11... and will do a bit of everything so that they can call it windows seven eleven... with a little luck, it will come with an orange red green logo with a big 7... and before anyone says, no this won't happen, I would like to remind everyone there was a windows 3.11... Bizarrely there was no windows 3.14 ... but I digress... or does pi converge.... somebody good with math help me :p.

Maybe it's time to move on from windows to something else, like "doors"... opening a new perception or paradigm to computing... some sort of singularity... wait, that name is already taken... never mind.

Bob Dylan awarded Nobel prize

Bob Dylan was just awarded the Nobel prize for litterature. Though Bob Dylan has some awesome songs, I am not really sure he would be my first choice for a Nobel prize in literature. I am starting to think the Nobel committe sometimes gets high while coming up with a decision. I never thought I'd quote John Boehner, "not sure he would be my second or third choice either."

Some decisions, I definitely like Malala Yousafzai but there are times it feels like the igNobels, I feel the parody of the Nobel Prize for pointless research make more sense. The official answer from the spokesperson, that they have awarded the nobel prize to another song writer, Homer is kind of cheesy... putting them in the same category, in my humble opinion, is quite a stretch.

Why they would do this, nobody knows... maybe "the answer my friends, is blowing in the wind."

In 2016 Muslim and Jewish New year coincide

When you drop the H, Rosh Ashana becomes Ros Asana, the arabic equivalent for Rosh Ashana. Interestingly, this year both new years fall on the same day... As if it was the universe's way to highlight how close cultures are... that in the end, people are not that different. May that be a cue to global tolerance, mutual understanding and world peace. Happy 5777! Happy 1438!

111K for an MBA

I was just reading the Stanford was getting ready to pay 160k over two years to 3 students who were willing to relocate to the midwest after they graduate and though the story can be given a positive spin, one fact caught my eye: It would have cost them 111K to attend the school. It is official the cost of education have become insane.

Yes, I understand good education can be costly but when education costs rise 80 percent in 5 years, it is definitely not healthy. Though I understand some of it is due to inflation, the cost of college has been multiplied by ten over the last 30 years, that is 3 times inflation.

It definitely does not benefit the student as most of the additional profits are not really reinvested into providing better education. Profits are not even used to provide a better education as a lot of the profits go to admin costs.

Yes, there are some huge benefits to attending college. Is knowledge important? absolutely. The problem is more and more students graduate in debt. Many low paying jobs that did not require a degree now are now staffed by indebted students who will likely never be able to pay back their loans.

Behind every successful person...

There is a common saying that says, “behind every successful man there is a successful woman,” I would like to venture that this does only provide a limited vision of reality.

First, it should be gender neutral

For every successful person, there are phenomenal supportive people willing to help. As more women have entered the workforce, it is fair to say, supportive husbands contribute too. Further, as same sex couples gain more acceptance, it is not necessarily someone from the opposite sex. But it does not give credit to everyone else in the support system… friends who cheer for you, family who encourage you on from early on are not recognized

For every successful person, there is a surprised person

We all have our potential kryptonite: As we go through life, we encounter multiple people who will make us doubt, put us down... either on purpose or unaware of what they are doing. It is important to keep grounded, avoid those people if you can and when you can’t be strong enough to persist

For every successful person, there is a mountain of failure

though on rare occasion, we do get lucky and success can come overnight... it is the exception rather than the norm. Whether it is athletes, musicians or experts in any field... they all start from the ground up and fail multiple times. As a matter of fact, we start in life not even knowing how to talk or walk... It is only after failing multiple times that we can do something correctly

For every successful person there is a vision

Persisting is one thing but you have to know what you want, if you don’t know where you’re going... how do you know you’ve reached your goal? If you exert yourself, trying a different activity every day, all you’ll end up is frustrated that you are not getting anywhere... and in the end, failure will not really help.

For every successful person, the path to success is non linear

Not only is the path non linear... sometimes it seems as our path is guided by a GPS with the setting "follow the most complicated path possible." That said, as the saying goes, “you may not change the direction of the wind but you can adjust the direction of your sails.” In other words, Multiple events will push us un multiple directions directions and it is very easy to get off course... sometimes stay off track many years without even realizing it. It is important to stay the course and do what it takes to get there by leveraging events that could throw us of course to get closer to our long term goals

Whatever happens, the most important is to know what you want, persist and leverage life's side trips the same way space probes use gravity assists to accelerate counter-intuitively first in the opposite direction, keeping the end trajectory in mind to get where they want faster

Elon asks twitter about his exploding rocket

Elon Musk asking twitter for the reason his rocket exploded.

Obviously, we could blame it on last week's hurricane. I believe it was because someone forgot their samsung galaxy s7 ... those batteries are lethal :p .

Is he looking for an resident alien tweet back and say, oh that looks suspiciously similar to what happened to me on XORG 79b, with your primitive technology, I would suggest local earthian mechanic Knextrulb.

Maybe he is expecting a rocket scientist, an astro physicist or some sort of engineer to weigh in with his expertise? Even assuming one knows the answer, why would they answer. Is he expecting a freebie? I don't know what the reason is but it definitely does not sound good

Obama in a restaurant kitchen

Now, there is something you don't see every day and I never expected : A sitting president working a restaurant kitchen

I was already pleasantly surprised when I heard that President Obama's daughter got a summer job at a restaurant. She probably could have picked any place for a summer job and they would have been glad to have her. However, I am even more impressed how her father stopped by and helped her in the kitchen. It definitel is a strong statement and should be commended.

On the accuracy of information on the web

On the growth of viral/conspiracy sites

An awesome side effect of the growing omni-presence of the internet is how it has revolutionized the way we get information. We don't have to wait anymore for a show to be on... we can go to any major news outlet's web page and get instant coverage. Further with social media like Facebook and Twitter, we don't even have to wait for news to be written, we can simply tap into feeds of information where the flow of information is instantaneous

While this has made access to information quicker and easier, on the web is a growing number of sites that do not really care about providing accurate information. Whether it is viral web sites which are aimed at making money, conspiracy websites which provide a new "hidden" insight that all news medias have missed, all tap into our "rebellious" side, our quest to seek original information or things we want to be true. Sometimes, it is someone presenting a secret recipy to success, a "life hack" everyone has missed. Sometimes it taps into our curiosity.

As a result, a lot of misinformation is routinely forwarded by people and presented as fact. Because the internet moves so fast, before the information has been fact checked, a huge outrage has been created. As people transmit information, they exagerate more and amplify it... similar to the butterfly effect: a simple irritating fact of sub-importance creates a flame war where people start trolling

What is important to keep in mind is that these sites, for the most part do that to attract traffic and make money. Some are more insidious and are run by people with ulterior motives: Sometimes, it is a company doing astro-turfing to improve their image. Other times, it is someone spreading bad information to hurt a competitor.

This is why it becomes important to validate information as you see it. If it sounds too crazy to be true, chances are it probably is. If it is posted on some obscure blog while the main media is saying otherwise... chances are it is just an opinion or a made up fact: if it is a big scandal, chances are a major news outlet will pick it up first. Therefore, double check it before you forward the information or comment on it

With all that said, there is a huge amount of awesome information on the web. I learn a lot and get access to information quicker

Either Way, happy hunting and just remember, be careful what information you trust... not all of it is created equal .

Lesson on persistence from the iron nun

There is an interesting concept called self learned helplessness which basically states that we are not born pessimistic. We are born full of hopes and willpower.

At a young age, anything is possible... we learn to walk, we learn to interact, we learn complex concepts and we don't care how many tries it takes us to get there. We don't care if we fall, we get back up. We don't care if we failed a thousand times, we try as many times as necessary

The problem appears as we age: As we encounter failure and get hurt, we gradually learn to give up. As we age, thoughts like "I am too old for this" or "no matter how hard I try I am not going to get it" starts to set in. Rather continuing to experiment, we start to cling to behaviors that have rewarded us in the past and start to stagnate

Many times, I have met people that really wanted to do something in the past and given up on it. One wanted to learn a language and said that in her twenties, her brain was too old to learn. Another person said it was too late to become fit and exercise... he had never done anything in his life and it was too late for his body to take it at his age.

The Iron nun brilliantly demonstrates that a huge percentage of the resistence we face is in our mind. After starting to run in her 40s, she willed herself into competing for 40 iron men... proving that when there is a will there is a way. Of course, one must be careful when starting on such a journey but it is not only possible but recommended. We can all achieve our dreams if we set our minds to it, put the efforts needed and persist as long as necessary... This applies to learning a new skill, becoming more fit, professional or personal success or simply living a more fulfilling and happy life

May you, like the iron nun, find your calling, push back the limits, do something awesome

The Cat who thought he was a lion

One of the keys to success in life is you have to think big... then persistence and a good dose of attitude will do the rest.

Of Course, one should remain grounded in reality and make sure that even the wildest dream has a at least a tiny chance of succeeding. However, thinking beyond the current obstacles, imagining things much larger than they are at the moment is important as well.

As they say, it is better to be an optimist and be wrong than a pessimist and be correct. Assuming the situation is terrible, then by being optimistic, you at least make the ride more enjoyable... if things are messed up, there is no point in making things worse by making yourself miserable and reminding you how bad things are. However, if there is a remote chance that things can get better, by seeing further down the road, seeing how good things can become, you give yourself the energy to persist and find alternative paths to get there.

So go ahead, think big, pick something awesome, persist and make a difference. It's fun to make the impossible possible.

New Look - more aerodynamic

I may have trimmed slightly more than I originally planned... with my beard is longer than my hair.

Hopefully, with the extra sunshine hitting my head, I'll be getting brighter ideas.

On the plus side, according to a study I just made up I'll be more aerodynamic and I should be able to get up faster in the morning :p

Dad does not snore

Just came across this gem:"Dad does not snore, he ensures the security of the whole household by letting know potential intruders there is someone in the house from far away"

Who knew? I was ensuring the security of my own home all along

Machine Learning, AI and the Internet of things

Was browsing through a forbes article about how IOT will bring about revolutionary AI. Here are my 2 cents

The article does make some good points that by becoming more and more omnipresent IOT is providing more data points. With data science being the magic buzzword and learning behaviors becoming evermore omnipresent, we can indeed see more "smart appliances" which could, in theory in a connected grid coordinate more... but this is not really specific to IOT. However, if this means an all omniscient "electric dreams" type AI, with HAL at the helm... not really.

First learning systems are relatively limited and though they can do some pretty neat tricks, with some really useful... Even in the case of unsupervised learning, they can only give great results in the fields they were programmed for. And even then, it is important to validate results, make sure that they don't just generate some beautiful hype-worthy massive dataset that are basically useless.

Furthermore, I dont expect - at least in the short term - the actual devices themselves to be very smart. First, embedded systems don't really have that much power. Second, people have expectations of the objects they use... the reason I have a backpack is to carry things, not have a dialog about what shoul go in there. The primary reason to many devices we use is practical. Finally, there is cost and maintainability... those two factors make a great case for simplification of devices

Yes, data science is awesome, yes machine learning allows to make awesome discoveries and with internet of things around the corner some really cool applications could emerge but in the end, people should expect evolutionary features, nothing revolutionary... especially in the short term

Comparing apples and oranges

There we go, with all the lightning going around, it looks like Jupiter is either pissed or drunk.. or both at the same time. Last time he was that drunk, he made hercules compete in the first olympics.. oh wait, with all the games on TV, maybe he is feeling nostalgic or something. Maybe the weather is just celebrating Hussein Bolt? I don't know, I would really appreciate a weather expert to weigh in on this.

Maybe by making the parallel, it's like I am comparing apples and oranges. I don't know, maybe I should contact a fruit expert too while I am at it. I don't know much about apples and oranges but I would say never understimate the revolutionary power of influence of apples... Adam & Eve, William Tell, Isaac Newton & Steve jobs...

Never underestimate the power of fruit I say... I thought of getting myself some apples but then again with the rain and the olympians going mad (no pun intended), I probably should stay home for now.

I just looked in the fridge and saw I have peaches... maybe I should eat one and hope everything gets nice and peachy? I don't know. Where are experts when you need them.

Seagate announce 60TB drive

After I saw Seagate's announcement for a 60 Terabyte Hard drive, my initial thought was... what the heck would I do with 60 terabytes in a laptop sized drive... then I remembered I had a similar reaction when I got my first 20 mb hard drive. I can see people heavily downloading could fill up a drive like that today. Also, having filled up terabyte sized drives before, it is not far fetched to see data piling up. This is especially with the constantly growing graphic resolutions where an uncompressed 4k movie can take many gigabytes of data.

One thing that will have to increase is data transfer rates because as of today, transfer rates are way to low for such high capacities. We'll need faster controllers, faster and larger backup systems, stronger GPUS to handle increased resolutions... and who knows what kind of applications would come next.

Winners focus on winning and many other things

There is a quote going around that says “Winners focus on winning, losers focus on winners.” Somehow it rings false and goes against conventional wisdom. According to what I have learned, winners get to where they are by focusing both on winners and losers before they focus on themselves.

One of the best way to become successful is to study successful people and replicate their winning strategies. Learning from successful people helps people focus on the important points, learn from other people’s experience and have a role model that shows what they want to accomplish is possible.

Another way to improve the odds of winning is to look at losers and see where they went wrong. That helps avoid mistakes of others, makes people know the risks and even feel better about the sacrifices needed by knowing that others have been in the same situation.

Finally, “focusing on winning” is also an important aspect of success. In other words, one has to be willing to focus on one’s self as well, do all the efforts needed, have patience to go through all obstacles/milestones and persist until success becomes inevitable. As they say, an overnight success takes years to prepare for.

It can be argued that a lot of losers focus on themselves. A lot of self conscious arrogant people will ignore wisdom provided by others, focus on their own bubble without ever having a reality check… and though, on occasion it does let through a prodigy… in most cases, it is like playing the lottery… there are indeed winners but a lot losers think they got the right combination to success do fail as well.

The whole point to going to college, learning from “winners” or people who studied their field in depth is because in order to focus on winning, it is necessary to study winners. Otherwise, what would be the point in reading a book, talking to a mentor or even study failures to prevent them.

Finally, beyond looking at winners, losers and even one’s self, it is imperative to study the environment one is in, the rules you operate under and see how to best optimize one’s strategy on a path to success.

Keep a backup offline

According to an article I just read, the number of ransomware attacks has been multiplied 500 percent in the last year.

This brings about a significant interesting change in backup strategies: because ransomware tends to silently encrypt data gradually then erasing it at once, it is becoming important to keep an offline version of your backups that stays offline a bit longer.

With growing storage capacities and the ease of connected USB drives, I have seen many places have a backup strategy to keep multiple copies on multiple drives attached to the same computer. While this does indeed make it easier to automate backups, it also makes it easier to accidentally lose all data should a malicious software wipe out all backups at once.

Online backup definitely can help in the case of accidental deletion of a file but keeping a copy of your data that is a month old offline will allow to recover at least some of the files in case of either a ransomware or corrupted data.

In addition, every once in a while, backups should be restored and tested because if you are backing up corrupt data for multiple years, you end up with not only corrupt backup data but your efforts are useless too

Source code to apollo missions

The code used by the apollo missions to put people on the moon is up on github.

As a friend said, the thread on apollo 13 is Hilarious. With comments such as ""temporary... I hope i hope i hope", it sheds a new light on the missions. Some comments are also brilliant... considering they had no idea things would be shared at some point with the public. From quotes of Shakespeare to references to "burn, baby burn"... really awesome


On mint tea reducing apetite

Since Mint Tea is the national drink of Morocco, looked up their health benefits. Both have "reduced apetite" and increased metabolism listed.

Given how much we eat in a traditional meal, I am curious how large the meals would be if we did not drink mint tea... Probably, at the minimum we'd have 10 course meals

Never send an email while angry

the result of an interesting study in the Wall Street Journal show that you should never reply to an email while angry. Now only are people likely to amplify their anger through email but they won't even feel satisfied after the email is sent.

If you are ever in such a situation, relax, take a moment to cool down. And as the saying goes, sleep over it. It is a lot better to have a discussion after having thought things through

Security is not optional on public Facing Sites

Today I saw an interesting statistic on slashdot: Over 200000 database servers with no authentication, over one petabyte of data access. Earlier this year, there was a post about how many people accidentally post their aws keys to github without realizing they've just opened themselves to potential charges with automated network scanners. 

An increasing number of people put their servers online without any security and put passwords/keys online. A lot of hacks are a result of careless mistakes/ skipping security altogether.

Some would argue that the data on some servers is less confidential than others or a cloud server that will be up for a short time is not as much of an issue but as technology evolves, there are more and more money incentives to hacking systems, one should expect more intrusions and more sophisticated attacks.

Further, security is as strong as the weakest link in the chain and a compromise on an unimportant server that may seem harmless may end up costing much more than expected. For example, I have seen servers that were never meant to be online may end up opening wide open a whole secured network. Sometimes, temporary solutions end up lasting much longer than initially planned. As a result, since security was overlooked because the solution was never meant to last, the whole network is wide open.

Obviously, there can be no guarantees that a zero day exploit will expose a network to malicious attacks but if there is no security, it is even worse and consequences are potentially catastrophical.

Many guides to securing servers exist and this is obviously not meant as an depth security manual. As a matter of fact, the advice below should be common sense and already be in place but I have seen these basic rules ignored too many times, so here are things you should already be doing:

  • Keep your server up to date - that includes os updates and software updates. This should be obvious but way too many times, I have seen servers that have not been updated for over a year for no good reason whatsoever
  • Make sure authentication is turned on wherever it needs to be - that includes databases servers, smtp servers, no default users, restrict users to only the permissions they need (For example, if you have a wordpress website, there is no reason for it to use the root mysql credentials. A mongodb admin account that can be accessed from anywhere without a password is obviously a big no no as well)
  • if a service is not necessary, don't have it on by default - The less services you have available, the smaller the network footprint and the less likely one of the services will be vulnerable - either because it is misconfigured or because of a zero day vulnerability.
  • Make sure api key, credentials and sensitive information is not available publically on sites like github.  With many search engines crawling the web automatically on a daily basis, putting them on any directory that can be indexed is looking for trouble as well
  • Make sure you have a backup of your data and do not hesitate to bring the server offline/ reinstall if necessary - if a server is compromised, simply changing the password and putting the server back online is not going to cut it. 
  • Have sensible firewall rules - multiple times, I have seen firewalls disabled during development time and never turned back on.
  • In any application, trust no input. This can avoid the most common vectors of attacks - sql injection, css injection, buffer overflows and abuses due to invalid input. This includes validating the input both in the backend and the frontend.
  • If you are using linux, SELinux is your friend. Too many times, I have seen SELinux disabled just to save a little time in configuration. This will help mitigate damage even if a hacker gets in.
  • Change passwords regularly and they should not be easily guessed. With brute force tools commonly available, many attacks start with a weak password.
  • Have sensible monitoring of both your services and your logs. If you only have one server, then you could get by with manually auditing things but with multiple servers you'll need either a log ingestion engine or some way to automatically parse/filter relevant information

As I said earlier, there are plenty of more complete guides on securing servers but this is more of a reminder of what you should be already doing.


On the importance of Having Backup Plans

About a year ago, I saw a quote that did not sound right from Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of Theranos, "The minute you have a backup plan, you've admitted you’re not going to succeed."

It sounded wrong then but with the recent news of her fortune recently wiped to Zero it puts things in a different perspective and I certainly hope she does have at least one backup plan.

People rarely succeed on the first try and I would argue that success is all about having backup plans... plans to get backup when a failure occurs - when, not if because failure is a part of success. When they asked Edison about failure, he said "I have not failed, I have just found 10000 ways that did not work."

Whether it is Michael Jordan being cut off from his basketball team, Walt Disney being fired for a lack of imagination, the beatles who were told they had no talent at their first recording session, ... all people face failure at some point in their life and how well they succeed is determine by how much efforts they put in finding a plan b, then a plan c until things work.

As they say, "if things do not work on the first try, remember... there are 25 more letters to the alphabet" and even then, you may have to use a different alphabet. Many times, it way more than 26 tries... Kernel Sanders, when he started Kentucky Fried Chicken was told no over a thousand times before he succeeded.

Einstein is often credited with saying, "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result." Even if as we persist, repetition, we must adjust our sails, vary our strategies... move from Plan A to Z and sometimes plan 5 steps ahead.

Whether it is acquiring new skills to not become obsolete, trying different strategies to make sure success comes in the end, creating a new drug, making your data survives a disaster, a proper backup plan is key to success.

May everyone have many backup plans and persist all their way to resounding success, as in a way, finding flaws in your current strategy is one of the best ways to improve.

Coding In a startup environment

Sometimes coding in a startup environment feels like jungling a hundred balls that magically appear out of thin air at random places, some keep unexpectedly changing direction multiple times, other vanish occasionally and later reappear, others require reading a lengthy 1000 pages manual while you keep on juggling. All during that time, random people ask you to litterally drop other balls to handle their ball first and then wonder why other balls are on the ground. As balls move around, you realize that some balls are very fragile and they need a very long strip of scotch tape while others have impractical shapes so you have to trim them.

When you finally get a hang of things, someone points out you've been juggling with the wrong balls all along and you got to start completely from scratch and you only have got 30 seconds to all the new set of balls in the air or you get disqualified. All the while, you have to prepare powerpoint presentation about your progress juggling the balls, write documents explaining how to juggle balls, describing the size and shape of each individual ball, make sure your juggling strategy is optimal while reviewing other people's juggling strategy and that your juggling strategy is synchronized with your fellow neighbor juggler who seems to have a radically different approach to juggling. Meanwhile, someone will get a brilliant idea that maybe if you are having difficulties juggling, it is because you need a sense of rythm, so they decide to make everyone dance and turn off the light so that you can feel the rythm.

At that point, someone will point out that the reason you are not doing so good is that you have the wrong set of tools so as a result everyone is encouraged to juggle with pliers and a hammer. Someone will say that since those tools suck, we probably should try again with a gold screwdriver, a magnet and point to very interesting litterature about how powerful electro-magnets are in a port environment and suggest we magnetize the balls and write a program to control the magnetic field to assist you in juggling. He even postulates that with the right magnetic field, the balls may be able to juggle themselves

As a friend pointed out, the most awesome part though how somehow, things get done, shipped and everybody is happy

The Power Method

Most people agree that both success and self actualization are important. We all tend to put our own spin on the definition of a successful life. Whether we prioritize money, physical accomplishments, art, or even answering deep and thorny philosophical questions (but isn't the answer 42?).

Even if definitions of success vary, a common thread seems to emerge and this is my take; this is what I call the power method, where each letter stands for one of the following words:

  • Purpose
  • Optimization
  • Widen Horizons
  • Enjoy life
  • Redefine limits


How do you know you got there if you don't know where you are going? How do you know you have achieved success if you have not defined what you want to get out of life? Part of it involves setting goals in an iterative process, refining them as you go along and reevaluating which one moves to the top and which one is no longer relevant. However, that is only the first step and the most important part is following through… putting the efforts needed and persisting as long as it takes to get things done.


No matter how hard you work, you only have 168 hours per week. If you remove the time you sleep, your commute time, taking care of basic needs, a huge chunk of that disappears. This is why it is important to optimize your life. This includes:

  • Optimizing your time - As they say, time is money. Planning and tracking time spent will make sure you use that resource wisely and if there is a way to work smart, save time, make use of it.
  • Optimize your space - For a long time, I was convinced that even in a mess, there could be a method to the madness... that is until I actually tried organizing myself. Making sure you don’t waste hours looking for things, making sure you are comfortable will go a long way to equip you with tools for success
  • Optimize your mind - Though some will say this is not really optimization, I disagree. Come to peace with major events in your life, clear your head, sort all issues out. Only then can you focus on success, move on and shine.

Widen horizons

  • A great way to foster success is to be a lifelong learner. By learning, you keep your mind sharp, you open yourself to new opportunities and you get ahead of the crowd
  • Though they say curiosity killed the cat, without curiosity we would not have any inventor, our world would cease advancing and very few people would push the limits. For success, it is vital to try new things, experiment, think out of the box
  • Keep an open mind - stereotypes and pre-made ideas limit one's view of the world. By keeping an open mind, it will make it easier to react when an opportunity comes up, it will prevent bigotry and open many different horizons while bringing positivity
  • Listen - Though it is important to know what you want and be confident in your beliefs, it is very important to listen to others as well

Enjoy life

The importance of enjoying life seems so obvious. Yet, many people tend to overlook it when they look at the steps to success

  • It boosts self esteem which in turn helps people want to attempt more fun/interesting challenges. It helps them persist when the going gets tough and get passed short term obstacles while keeping in mind longer term objectives.
  • Many health related issues are related to stress and mood. By having fun, you are improving your health and improving your energy.
  • By enjoying life, your mind is clearer, you can focus more and in the end are able to achieve more
  • People who enjoy life are more likable and more people will want to help them when an obstacle comes up

Redefine limits

Limits are made to be redefined and in order to succeed, you have to innovate, be a trend setter, have a positive impact and improve things behind you. For me, this involves:

  • over deliver - if you do that long enough, you will stick out of the crowd and naturally attract success
  • work smart - sometimes, to over deliver, you don't necessarily have to work harder (though to be fair, many times you do)
  • work out of your comfort zone - As they say, the "magic happens outside of your comfort zone." 

This is my definition of success, I am curious to hear what other people think.

New Year resolutions

Time for new year resolutions :)


  • 30 mega pixels with 12x optical zoom... get a sharper image about the world I live in 
  • 1920x1600 widescreen ... work on my weight by making things smaller (not my brain obviously)
  • = localhost (dns resolution) ... unleash the geek in me
  • 365 dpi (365 days per iteration or dpy days per year if that makes you mor...e happy)
  • resolution of world peace... haha, yeah right :)
  • reese-solution - buy a box of reese chocolate
  • brie-solution - buy some brie, yummy :)
  • grease-solution ... clean things up in my life :)
  • re-solution - copy paste my last year's resolution... at least I'll sound I know what I am doing

Tu te fais des idées

Ce matin, j'ai lu une excellente phrase que j'ai beaucoup apprécie... "parfois, au lieu de penser, on se fait des idées". Et, quand j'y pense, c'est très vrai et fort judicieux également... mais pour le fun, je vais jouer un instant à l'avocat du diable.


En effet, qu'est la pensée, si ce n'est un ensemble d'idées après analyse? hors analyser les id...ée est d'une certaine manière équivalent à "se faire des idées"... et se faire des idées n'est il pas la base de la créativité... ce qui fait avancer le monde? On a besoin de personnes qui se font des idées, qui voient le monde autrement qu'il est vraiment... sinon nous n'auront aucun architecte pour nos maisons (ils imaginent un monde qui n'existe pas et le créent)... mais aussi pour notre futur (les scientifiques aussi construisent notre monde du futur à partir d'idées qui paraissent souvent impossible)


J'en déduis que se faire n'est pas forcèment mauvais. Se faire des idées négatives à outrance nous empeche de voir les opportunités qui se présentent car tout nous semble impossible (un ça-sert-à-rien-tisme prolongé mène à la dépression et empêche de profiter de la vie). Positiver sans limite nous déconnecte de la réalité et nous pousse à marcher avec des oeillères tout en étant aussi dangereux (ignorer les dangers de l'environment par example). 


Donc faisons nous des idées... mais faisons nous les - bonnes - idées ... comment savoir que l'on se fait les bonnes idées? ça c'est une autre histoire... mais j'ose éspèrer, vu l'expérience inévitable que la vie nous apporte, que vous vous êtes déjà fait une idée sur cette question... après tout, au fond, on sait tous plus ou moins ce qui est valable ou pas.

On Superficiality

This is status comment gone long stemmed from a comment that got way too long... haha... essays happen I guess haha :)


As they say, "People criticize beauty for being skin deep... but what do you want, a cute pancreas?"  imho nothing is wrong with  beauty or even showcasing it. When it becomes wrong though is people obessessing to a point of realit...y disconnect when others ideals overpower your own...  but that is not specific to beauty. 


Though indeed vehicled by magazines, superficiality has been around for much longer than that and gutenberg did not unleash pandora's box of objectification. articles in them reflect the current  ideals of society and  not the other way aroun. Indeed, in order to sell, magazines need to appeal to people... and they do that through reader polling and take into account criteria that change through time. For example, surfing on the "anorexic is unhealthy" wave, vogue italy had a cover with more curvy models about a year ago. If people's mind change (and a good way to do that is through education), then magazines will change to increase their bottom line.


Though an easy target, superficiality is not specific to magazines... I have seen people reject a mate because they were shorter than them or were wearing the wrong kind of shoes... seen people litterally starve themselves to death to please other superficial people... sometimes people are with someone else without having anything to say, it is purely physical... superficial people... and these affirmations are voluntarily gender neutral because members of both sexes are guilty of stereotypes... and in a way, stereotypes about gender, race or religion are also a form of being superficial. 


IMHO superficiality is wrong indeed but that is part of a deeper problem... most people do not want to think on their own and prefer relying on others' opinions even if they know very little. Almost half the people will believe what their favorite celebrity says just because they say so. Yet, even if I think it is wrong to be superficial people should be entitled to be if they prefer life that way... as long as their way is not imposed on others, they are entitled to their way.


Going even further, superficiality means different things to different people... and in a way, because we set priorities in life, we all appear superficial to others because we do not value the same things. For example, some people consider Epicurus superficial because his philosophy consisted in living a happy life, ignoring the bad things... but that is a philosophy as valid as any other (even if I personally there is more depth in life than the one he puts forth). Countless artists, inventors and visionaries are considered superficial because their vision was different... yet, years after they are gone, we find value in what they have done.


You will say yes but these people go agains what is mainstream and beauty objectified in medias is a mainstream phenomenon... yes, but even a mainstream opinion is an opinion. You do not necessarily have to disagree with the mainstream accepted idea to have depth in your own thoughts.  


Further, what is mainstream today is not necessarily what is mainstream tomorrow. When the tide changes, do you automatically have to change your opinion to an unpopular idea to have depth in your thoughts? Personally, I think not... but I have seen enough people contradict themselves just because someone else they do not like has an opinion they used to agree with (romney's opinion on romney care is a good example... but so many others, not necessarily in politics).


That said, does it affect people in the end? not as much as you think... Eventually everyone finds people that fit their selection criteria as friends, lovers and acquaintances... Skin color, weight, height, stupidity, strength of character, degree of kindness... they all drive people's decisions... and in a way it does not matter as long as laws apply equally to everyone, all get a fair shot at life and no one is left out because of race, beliefs or being ugly.

Money Tips

  • It's obvious but it took me time to sink in. When buying shop many stores for price. Easier now with the web, from your chair
  • Before you can save money, learn how you spend it. Get a notepad+just write for a month. Patterns will emerge & you'll see waste
  • Eat at home. Yes, a bit more work but always cheaper. Plus, if careful, you can eat more healthy food.
  • Exercise outdoors & at home. Gym are nice but you under use their equipment. As a bonus, outdoors you get a great view
  • Pay your credit card debt in full by the end of the month. You can litterally save fortunes. If you can't, focus on the bills with the highest interest
  • Avoid vending machines, resort shops & places where stuff is sold at a more expensive price because of location
  • take vacation off season. Hotels & tickets are less expensive & less people = you can better enjoy the place
  • If you feel Stuck, think outside the box. Wills break barriers/See what Jack white did when he needed a guitar http://youtu.be/xCFXeChXfcI
  • Dont carry lots of money. It's harder to spend money you don't have. Obviously, here, credit cards count as money here
  • Refill ink cartridges. costs can skyrocket fast if you print a lot. ensure you can refill your printer cartridge+do it
  • ask for competent advice while filling your tax return. Sometimes a little difference may save you a great amount.
  • buy a hybrid. They have a much higher mileage per gallon, make less noise & as an added bonus, you are more eco-friendly
  • "If it ain't broke dont fix it" often wrong. repair early & you save. Sometimes can even avoid more expensive repairs
  • Keep clothes slightly longer. Yes the latest fashion is nice but you save a lot if clothes are still in good condition
  • Unplug unused appliances. Many appliances use energy even on standby mode such as computers.
  • Use a bicycle: u can exercise while getting there+in cities may be faster than cars+no gas involved (unless you fart ;)
  • Sell old stuff you do not use. It frees up storage space and brings in money
  • many stores will give you discounts if you sign up for their membership program. If you use it often, it is worth it
  • Dont put all eggs in 1 basket. Diversify investment. ie portfolio of stock better than just 1. Minimize risk+max return
  • a dollar a day goes a long way. many wait nearing retirement & lose on compound interests. Start early+do it regularely
  • Get others to purchase the same item as you & get a group discount... sometimes even free item. Example: gym membership
  • Economies of scale often apply - Grouping purchases can yield cheaper per item price at wholesale stores like costco
  • Buy used if applicable, ie not for underwear :). It save lots of money but make sure item is in good condition first
  • Plan purchases - If purchase isn't urgent. Rather than pay interests, save money monthly+put it in savings account
  • Not a tip but a #funny #quote: "Borrow from a pessimist, they don't expect it back" :)
  • Outlet malls - They may be a little far off but they are worth the trip in savings
  • it may be sound obvious, but we forget. Ask if you can get a discount/ it is the best price. It may be enough to get 1
  • Get on shop's mailing list & look for coupons/sales days. Waiting 1 week or 2 to buy desired item can well be worth it

Marre de l'allergie a la gentillesse

Pire que les Lundis brutalisés chaque semaine, je viens de voir qu'un fléau sévit de manière de plus en plus fréquente. Et comme dirait Helmut Fritz, "ça m'énerrrrrrrrrrrrve."

En effet, je viens de lire la phrase:

"Une certaine qualité de gentillesse est toujours signe de trahison !!"

Dans ce cas là, toute personne qui a une oeuvre de charité est un... démon... celui qui aide quelqu'un dans une situation délicate est un salopard... et celui qui sauve une vie est vraiment une ordure... c'est du n'importe quoi... par ce raisonement, si un inconnu me tape sur la gueule de manière injustifié, ça c'est un individu valable! Quoi faire pour paraitre correct, faut il insulter de manière incontrolée tout le monde autour de moi?

Non seulement ça m'énerve parce que cela fait la troisième fois que j'entends une phrase de ce genre cette semaine, mais je ne suis pas d'accord parce que c'est non seulement ingrat envers les gens qui tentent de faire du bien, mais c'est une version tordue du monde qui à mon regret se répand trop rapidement à mon gout.

Le problême avec ce genre de vision c'est comme on dit, "qui cherche trouve." Qui cherche le pire chez les gens, trouve le pire... qui cherche le meilleur trouve le meilleur. C'est à dire que si une personne gentille se fait taper dessus parce que simplement il est gentil, qu'on se méfie de lui/ elle, simplement parce qu'il a rendu service... il finira par devenir un connard/ une connasse, par ras le bol.

Je ne dis pas de ne pas se méfier si un inconnu avec une tronçoneuse avec un énorme sourire éteincelant te dis, "bonjour, j'ai trouvé un trésor, je voudrais que tu m'aides à le porter." Mais souvent, si les gens sont gentils, c'est simplement pour être gentils... point barre, pas besoin de chercher midi à 14h

On dit souvent qu'être gentil, c'est une faiblesse, je ne suis pas du tout d'accord... ça peut être valable pour quelqu'un qui est gentil une fois... mais dans cet environment où souvent celui qui est gentiil est non seulement pas récompensé (on le traite de faible), mais il se fait insulter (on le traite de traitre, fourbe parce qu'on dit que son comportement cache quelque chose)... dans un environement pareil, quelqu'un qui est gentil et continue d'être gentil est quelqu'un qui au contraire a une force de charactère hors du commun.

On Being a green Hulk

Feeling like hulk after moving 3 closets alone (obviously big ones lol) including one down a flight of stairs :)... so far not turning green yet. I hear it's not easy being green :)... whether it is on a point of view of color, or ecologically... but I digress :)... but I guess some curves like that.


Anyway, it's good exercise and I should do that ...more often. Though to be fair, I do exercise regularely... oh, about once every 6 months... sometimes, I even double that frequency when I'm on a roll. Though the only rolls I've had my eyes on lately are spring rolls... maybe it's because we are in spring? nah, I like food too much.


I really don't understand why to be refined you have to eat in small quantities. I say this is bull... you can enjoy good food in quantity. Don't you hate when you go to a fancy restaurant, with an expensive dish to find out, they have a pea size treat with artfully presented sauce... seriously, charge anything you want, but at least fill in the dish so I can get vitamin F (that would be F, as in food... don't you get me wrong now... the other one would be vitamin S :) )


I should get a real blog... some day :)


anyway, back to work (well at least I'm gonna try :)

Fun things to do in Casablanca

Once in a while, I get asked what to do in Casablanca by an enterprising tourist. Because I was asked half a dozen times, I just kept adding to the answer. To anyone from Casablanca... I know, there are other places... This is by no means intended to be a complete answer, but it is a good start and beats no answer... feel free to add other places as comments.

Up to recently, nothing was done to make Casablanca other than a business center. Lately, this has been changing and many hotels have been built.. and a huge Marina is about to come live within 2 years.

Some touristic things to do:

  • La côte ain diab - with Tahiti beach as the trendy beach. However, other beaches are available, including Dar Bouazza 15 minutes away from Casablanca (but you need a car)
  • Café at "Sqala" - the old fortification of casablanca... have among other a selection of moroccan pastries dishes
  • restaurant al mouniaexpensive but good moroccan restaurant
  • Habbous - like a mini medina with bazars with moroccan crafts.

However, you'll probably want to eat... so here are some restaurants:

  • churrascaria - brazilian
  • Kiotori, Kaiten, Kaizen, Kaiten - Sushi places
  • Hipopotamus, Relais de paris - meat
  • aux crevettes - a fish restaurant offering a view on the sea
  • Four a bois, Luigi - italian
  • Rick's Cafe is a nice restaurant with good food and a nice interior based on the movie. However, please keep in mind it was created after 2000 ... so it is definitely not a historical place.

At night, you might try these places to party:

  • from 8 - 1 : Bodega (spanish pub/restaurant/dance),
  • Etoile du plazza (if you want a moroccan gnawa band),
  • Churrascaria (brazilian restaurant with a band),
  • after 12:30 - Amstrong (live band, my favorite place), choc'late (club/dance)
  • Crocodile 101

    I may not know much about crocodiles, but I know that much... if you ever go out of a bar, drunk and you see a crocodile, DON'T try to pet it... and definitely don't try to sit on it :)... It would seem like an obvious course of action, but, this article, this is apparently what happened to a drunk tourist, which got bitten, field testing that idea.

    After the man tried to sit on the crocodile, it bit the man's leg... luckily for him, all is well that ends well as the crocodile did not seem hungry. It inexplicably let the man go and just left. This shows that some people can be exceptions to Darwin's law... but he certainly deserves a darwin award.

    Thank you for the brave man, making sure crocodiles have not evolved into nice sweet friendly vegetarian people like creatures with feelings.

    Village for Sale

    I guess I didn't realize how bad the economy was... Apparently in new zealand, for sale, village with a pub & 40 inhabitants, only $715,000 (http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE65O4OM20100625)

    Will that be cash or charge? Cash of course. and.. You want fries with that?

    You know the economy is doing bad when you can buy several of these villages with the world's largest gold coin (http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE65O2S320100625) ... although a bit big for the pocket, it's still enough to buy the village at face value (1 million pounds)... but the real value is 3 million pounds... for just 1 coin.

    It reminds me of a story I read as a kid... it'd be funny to walk up to a store and say, "you wouldn't happen to have change for 1 million pounds, would you?"

    Quand les mots sont trop faibles

    Quand tu m’as demandé       pourquoi donc je t’aimais,
    J’ai dit, « aucune idée ».        Farce à part, j’exprimais
    Ma grande frustration            face aux mots qui ­ rebelles ­
    Snobent mes émotions          si tendres et si belles.
    Je t’aime évidement,             même sans aucun mot.
    Chacun de nos moments        est tel un chalumeau,
    m’enflammant tendrement.     Mais comme des sumos,
    Bien maladroitement,             les mots causent mes maux.
    Accepte mon amour               tel quel, simplement…
    Cuisant comme un four.         Je t’aime, énormément.
    Oublie toutes les phrases        et ressens plutôt
    A quel point je m’embrase      et sauras assez tôt.
    Il était une fois,                     une clarté en moi
    Bien belle, toutefois,              malgré un tendre émoi,
    Personne ne la voit.              Evidement, c’est toi
    Tu me laisses sans voix          car mon âme festoie
    La terre est une étoile            et tout y brille un peu
    Car telle une jolie toile           avec grâce, tu peux
    Me montrer un chemin           de lumière sans feu
    Juste en tenant la main.         On est bien, nous deux.
    Lamartine, tout noir,              ralait. Sais-tu pourquoi?
    Il ne pouvait te voir,              ça le rendait narquois.
    Il ne pouvait t’avoir                et à son grand effroi
    Enfoui dans son manoir,         tout paraissait plus froid.
    Evidement, tu es                      jolie à  la folie
    « Ma chérie m’a tuer »,            tu m’as enseveli
    Dans tout une abondance        de charme. J’oublie
    Tout. Sans cesser, je dance...  La joie s'établit.
    Mais bien plus que cela,           c’est ton cœur noble et tendre
    Qui rend, quand tu es là,         tout bien plus doux. T’entendre
    Est une mélodie                        exquise et goulument
    J'écoute, au paradis,               passant de bons moments.
    Des milliers de raisons             m’emplissent les pensées
    Et, tel un diapason                  au ton doux insensé,
    Avec tant d’harmonie,             elles vibrent sans fin
    D’un son indéfini                      jusqu’aux plus loin confins.

    Il faut oser

    vieux poème que j'avais écrit en 2001 :)
    Il faut oser!

    Etre heureux, c'est surtout question de le vouloir.
    C'est toujours vrai car on a toujours le pouvoir
    de tout changer, bon gré, mal gré dans notre vie
    le tout c'est de persister, en avoir envie...

    Même si tout parait échapper par moments,
    en nous que réside le choix final de voir
    la vie plus rose et la savourer ou plus noire,
    souffrant inutilement... Cela fait vraiment
    la différence. On passe tous par des instants
    difficiles qui durent parfois très longtemps
    mais est ce pour cela que l'on doit abandonner
    tous nos espoirs et croire que l'on est damnés?

    Non! Même si nos efforts nous paraissent vains.

    Parfois, même s'il faut attendre dix ou vingt
    ans (mais souvent bien moins), il ne faut pas se dire,
    "il n'y a rien à faire," laisser que ça empire.
    Tout peut toujours s'arranger ou s'améliorer
    pour ceux qui ont la force de perséverer
    quand il faut. Cela ne sert à rien de pleurer
    encore et encore et en vain sur son sort et éspérer
    un miracle. Qui ne fait rien, ne sortira
    jamais du désespoir, sera faite comme un rat.

    Saches que seulement en prenant ton courage
    à deux mains et en préférant avoir la rage
    de vaincre à celle d'avoir la rage tout court
    que ta vie ira enfin de l'avant. Ne cours
    donc pas dans la gueule du loup comme une poire
    vers le désespoir; vas plutot vers la gloire
    en chassant tous les fantômes de tes pensées.
    Recommences ta vie, oublies ton passé.

    Il suffit juste de vouloir, croire, et oser.
    Agis! Pour gagner dans la vie, il faut miser.
    Agis donc et ne restes pas triste et brisée.
    Tu as assez réfléchi, assez composé.
    Fais ce qu'il faut pour rendre ta vie plus aisée
    pour pouvoir enfin savourer tout sans doser.

    52 Raisons pour etre motives

    C'est le début de l'année, faites le plein en motivation et en résolutions. Pour vous aider, une liste de citations/ faits pouvant booster votre motivation...

    1. A leurs débuts, un studio a dit aux Beatles que leur son était has been et qu'ils étaient très bof. Heureusement qu'ils ont persisté.

    2. A ses débuts, Walt Disney fut renvoyé pour manque ...d’imagination. Persister donne toujours ses fruits.

    3. Un professeur d'edison lui a dit qu'il était 'trop idiot pour apprendre quoi que ce soit'. La confiance en soi est clé du succès

    4. Henri Ford a fait faillite 5 fois avant de réussir. Ne jamais se laisser décourager par l'echec.

    5. Avoir confiance en soi. Le premier employeur d'Elvis Presley l'a viré après une représentation disant qu'il n'arriverait jamais à rien.

    6. Un maitre d'Einstein a dit qu'il était un cas social lent plongé dans des rêves irréalistes. Jamais se laisser abattre par les autres.

    7. Tolstoy a échoué à l'université. On a dit qu'il était incapable d'apprendre. Ne laissez pas vos echecs vous arrêter.

    8. Au début, les studios disaient à Charlie Chaplin qu'il faisait du n'importe quoi. De la persistence et une légende est née.

    9. Léonard de Vinci n'a fait aucune école. Toujours Respecter le savoir mais souvenez vous que celà ne se résume pas qu'à des diplômes.

    10. Un professeur de Beethoven lui a dit qu'il était un compositeur pathétique. Il a su lui donner tort même s'il était sourd.

    11. Soyez passionés. Meme si Van Gogh n'a vendu qu'un tableau de son vivant, il a quand même peint plus de 800 tableaux.

    12. Il ne faut jamais reporter au lendemain ce que l'on peut faire le jour même

    13. Qui ne risque rien n'a rien. Parfois, savoir prendre des risques calculés au bon moment fait toute la différence.

    14. Le meilleur moyen de prédire le futur est de l'inventer - Richard Bandler

    15. Lorsque votre image de vous même s'améliore, votre performance augmente aussi - Zik Ziglar

    16. Avec suffisement de persistence rien n'est impossible car là où il y a une volonté, il y a toujours un moyen

    17. Petit à petit l'oiseau fait son nid. Rien n'arrive du jour au lendemain et persister permet d'arriver à ses fins

    18. Il n'y a qu'une seule façon d'échouer - Abandonner avant d'avoir réussi - Olivier Lockert

    19. Ce qui noie quelqu'un, ce n'est pas le plongeon, mais le fait de rester sous l'eau. - Paolo Cuelho

    20. Ne craignez pas d'être lent, craignez seulement d'être à l'arrêt. - Proverbe Chinois

    21. La discipline est le pont entre objectifs et le succès. - Jim Rohn

    22. Exceller ne se résume pas à une destination mais est un voyage continu - Brian Tracy

    23. Si une porte se ferme, une autre s'ouvre mais on ne peut voir la nouvelle que quand on arrête de regarder la première

    24. Le mot chance est synonyme de ténacité de ses objectifs - Ralf Waldo Emmerson

    25. Ce n'est pas le nombre de fois que l'on tombe qui est important mais le nombre de fois où on se relève

    26. Au bout de combien d'echecs devrait abandonner un bébé qui apprend à marcher? Abandoner n'est pas inné. - Tony Robbins

    27. Etre fort ne se résume pas à une force physique mais réside plutôt dans une volonté inébranlable - Ghandi

    28. Il vaut mieux tard que jamais... et il n'est jamais trop tard pour bien faire.

    29. Rien est insurmontable. Il faut just diviser chaque difficulté en autant de parcelles nécessaires pour la résoudre - Descartes

    30. Toujours se souvenir que ceux qui sont là où ils sont ont commencé là où ils ont commencé et persisté jusqu'au bout.

    31. Le meilleur moyen de commencer est d'arrêter de parler et commencer à agir - Walt Disney

    32. Avoir ce que l'on veut est excellent... mais en attendant, il faut vouloir ce que l'on a.

    33. Souvent on est plus limités par notre attitude que par les opportunités qui se présentent à nous

    34. Faire un petit effort de plus peut tout changer. Ce sont les petits détails qui font la grande différence. - Mark Twain

    35. Il faut irrémédiablement un liste d'objectifs à long terme pour ne pas se laisser frustrer par nos echecs temporaires - S. Insul

    36. Avoir une liste d'objectifs dans la vie est vital... sinon comment saurez vous que vous avez réussi dans la vie?

    37. Les obstacles dans la vie sont ces choses horribles que l'ont voit quand on enlève nos yeux de nos objectifs dans la vie

    38. Une liste d'objectifs qui n'est pas écrite est simplement une liste de souhaits.

    39. Personne ne peut savoir ce dont il est capable s'il n'essaye.

    40. Aucun grand homme ne se plaint du manque d'opportunités - Emmerson

    41. Ne pas avoir peur de l'echec. Si vous voulez doublez votre taux de réussite, vous devez doubler votre taux d'echec - Brian Tracy

    42. L'echec est la fondation du succès et c'est en échouant qu'on le construit - Lao Tzu

    43. Le temps est plus précieux que l'or. On peut toujours gagner plus d'argent mais le temps gaspillé ne se rattrape jamais.

    44. Les meilleures opportunités vont à ceux qui s'assurent que les choses sont faites en assumant leurs responsabilités - N. Hill

    45. Pour réussir, déterminez des objectifs mais souvenez vous que chaque chose a un prix... pas forcèment de l'argent.

    46. Faites la paix avec vous mêmes... si vous ne vous faites pas confiance... pourquoi les autres le feraient?

    47. Ne pas s'éparpiller. Le moyen le plus rapide pour faire beaucoup de choses c'est de faire une chose à la fois - Mozart

    48. Souvent, celui qui veut en faire trop se retrouve à faire très peu - Proverbe Italien

    49. Aujourd'hui est le premier jour du reste de votre vie.

    50. La vie est un éternel recommencement où l'on peut à chaque fois corriger ses erreurs, faire les choses différement.

    51. Le passé est dé-passé, Le futur imprévisible. Donc, il faut se concentrer sur le présent car c'est un présent.

    52. If 'O' stands for Opportunity, it's absent in 'yesterday', once in 'tOday', thrice in 'tOmOrrOw'. There's always opportunities waiting tomorrow.

    Pourquoi la question si a-t-elle une si mauvaise reputation?

    Suite à un commentaire qui comportait une déformation de "Avec des si et des mais, on pourrait mettre paris en bouteille" en "Avec des si et des mais, on pourrait mettre casablanca en cannette"

    Mais en fait particulièrement dans le cas de mettre casa en bouteille, la question 'si' est importante. Si jamais on voulais mettre casablanca en canette, co...mbien d'aluminium faudrait il? comment soulever toute la ville et la mettre dans la canette? avec quels instruments... une pelleteuse? et de quelle taille serait elle? et si on y arrivait, la ville serait elle intacte? A supposer qu'elle le soie intacte, que ferait t on des habitants... et pire encore si elle était détruite, que ferait t on des habitant? Et si on le faisait, qui payerait pour tout ça?

    La question Si, née quanone, mariée à la logique et l'imagination est d'une utilité indéniable. Elle permet aux architectes d'imaginer des merveilles, aux artiste de créer des chefs d'oeuvres, aux scientifiques de faire des progrès phénoménaux qui sauvent des vies tous les jours. Le monde avance parce que tous les jours depuis des millénaires des gens se posent la question si "Si on faisait les choses différement, Si on améliorait les choses, si on voulait attendra la perfection"

    Et... si on avait pas la question si, que deviendrions nous? on perdrait notre humanité

    Merci à la question "Si"

    What if Solar System was a network?

    I guess I had a wild geek moment while I was reading a post on slashdot where a guy said, "If the solar system was a network, the system would be very fragile... if you take off the sun, the whole system collapses within 8 minutes"... which got me thinking, what if indeed the sun was a network...

    Of course, we can think of ourselve as "the center of the universe" :)... I believe it's already been done... but I believe even the Vatican is not adamant about that these days. :)

    The universe's backup system seems fine to me. Of course I'm not a Universe Backup Strategy Expert... but here's my take... I believe the universe is built in a redundant star topology system... with them often organized in clusters. Light emitted is sent as a continuous optic backup beam, in all directions, using a mega thermo cooled void serving as a conduit (think supra conductors) called the ether (the complete name being the ether - net).

    It's not fiber optic, it's better than fiber.... at such distance collisions dont really matter because "information is emitted in all directions at all angles)... as matter of fact, gravity bends some of the rays so it can go through. The emission of data is made in all wavelength, using all possible particles in the dictionary (and not yet in the dictionary). Just the milky way could be thought of a raid 100,000 million system.

    Who's to say black holes dont serve as a mega parabolic antenna, trapping all data flowing in its direction). Theoretically, with the proper sensing technology, the proper error correction algorithms, all the solar system could be recreated some place else.

    the Dope Method

    Dope - verb, to take something (generally a substance) to boost your capabilities.

    The D. O. P. E. method is is my personal way to give substance to your life, get it to be more gratifying, obtain better results, get it to be more where you want it to be. Each letter of the word stands for one important word. I made it for myself but I know a coupl... e of people I told it to loved it... I thus share it for everyone's benefit.

    D - Direction - Whatever you decide your life to be, you need to set goals for your life... know what you want, otherwise you eventually end up bored with life, not knowing what to do to improve things (sometimes thinking you are stonewalled)

    O - Organization - Organize your time (you only have 168h per week and that includes time to sleep, to eat & go to the bathroom, it fills up very quickly if you are not careful, your stuff (desk & room), your mind (unresolved issues hurt you and prevent you from succeeding). Throw away extra stuff; make sure you define limits, plan & respect what you decided. Make things as efficient/ optimized as possible.

    P - Persistence - We rarely obtain what we want on the first try. Many times we give up very close to reaching the goal... it is important to keep

    E - Elegance - as mark twain puts it, some small details make all the difference... make sure you do things right, do things all the way. Also, have a little class in life, be nice, play nice (without letting people step on you). Finally elegance includes excellence... pick something where you want to shine and become the best in that field... at one point, when people are so good in their field (that includes activities such as finance, communication, engineering), you become a virtuozzo in your field and you gain recognition from others.

    Camel FAQ part 1-25

    Youness El Andaloussi
    Illegal Disclaimer: This page is not Y2K, if it turns you into a nuthead, makes your left ear itch, bores you to death, or even breaks your computer, go blame someone else. Your rights may vary from state to state, please consult your astrologer, your lawyers and whatever your common sense dictates you before you attempt anything.

    ousa.gif (195 octets)  france.GIF (172 octets)

         About me

    wpe3F.jpg (729 octets)         Youness El Andaloussi's
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    The Infamous Morocco FAQ 2000
    Version 3.0+ gros béta

    If you find this information useful, and put it to comercial use, please know that you are a pathetic loser. If so, please send a registration fee 100,000 dirhams, dollars british pounds or even Euros) to Youness@ElAndaloussi.NET . I also accept additional questions, jokes, DIP'M (Desert International Payment Magic...)

    Introduction          Part 25          Part 50

    Part 25 - questions on and after november 1999

    BallWood.gif (1119 octets) What Happened to parts 2...24 and 26...49

    The decimal system is unfortunately very not flexible, and if you want to insert a new part, you are forced to renumber all subsequent parts to ensure referential integrity. Therefore, this FAQ is organised using the Extremely Reliable and Redundant Ordinal Ranking system (Patent Pending), or ERROR System for people in the know.

    Rather than incrementing by one every time, I increment by 25... that way, when version 4.0 of the FAQ comes along, I can simply can put the most recent entries on top without being forced to renumber the rest of the document. You may ask... what happens when you have to add more than 24 parts to the original documents... that's a good question, but it is not a priority as the problem has not surfaced yet... by the time this happens, I will hopefully have come up with ERROR 2.0

    BallWood.gif (1119 octets) Are the rumors of an Internet multimedia camels true?

    Rumors have been going for years now, but according to an unofficial source at Microsoft which prefers to remain nameless, that Windows CE, a product designed to open new markets for Microsoft was originally designed to assist camel navigation, hence the CE (Camel Edition). As development progressed, Microsoft saw new applications for its navigation system and saw it could help people navigate on the Internet too, therefore the product was renamed Component Edition... but be not mistaken, it is only a marketing decision... you have to admit the number of clients using a camel is much more limited.

    So when does the Microsoft Camel come out? That's a good question and if anyone has more information about it, please let me know. A good suggestion is to subscribe to Microsoft MSDN and as soon as the software is ready for release, you will receive it... please not that you will have to provide your own camel.

    BallWood.gif (1119 octets) Are camels vulnerable to trojans and virus

    As a general rule, plain food should not cause any harm. However, even though a camel's MIME (Mouth Ingestion Multipurpose Engine) is very versatile, it is strongly not recommended to give too unusual foods to a camel. That of course includes poisons but also plastics, clothes and others. If there is sufficient interest, I might put up a list of things not to give a camel.

    Camels are not vulnerable to trojans as horses are a different specie, besides they operate on a different geographical region and therefore the problem should not arise. As camels from their height have a broad outlook, it has been suspected for a while that they were vulnerable to the Melissa/ Outlook Virus... But after further studies, it has been demonstrated there is no camel named melissa and they are only vulnerable to the LOL virus (Lasts Only a Lifetime) virus.

    BallWood.gif (1119 octets) Are camels Y2K Compliant

    Y2K compliance is very important these days and it is important to know if camels will be able to run safely only days before the millenium. We are proud to announce that tests have shown their internal clock will not be disturbed that particular day and since camels themselves don't store any dates at all, there won't be upgrade your camel any time soon, unless you want to add multimedia capabilities to your camel, in which case we might suggest you look further into the Microsoft Camel (see previous question)

    BallWood.gif (1119 octets) What to do with a depressed camel living abroad?

    Camels are so cute that sometimes you just can't resist bringing back one home with you. Of course it is hard to bring a camel back to where you live and negociating to get a camel onboard the airplane is not an easy thing, but it is well worth the trouble. Camels are lovely animals which bring about so original stories

    The problem is, a camel was never designed to live in a big city, therefore it is vital to help the camel adapt to its new environment. The following rules will help you keep a healthy camel:

    _ Camels need space, it is not recommended to let the camel sleep with you in your room
    _ Put sand in a camel's room - He won't feel homesick as it will remind him of the desert
    _ Get him on the internet, he'll be able to talk to other camels around the world


    You can go back to my home page or if you are really looking for the frequently asked questions about morocco, you can go the real Morocco FAQ but not by me though.

    This page was accessed a lot of times since oct. 16, 1995, don't ask me how many, I don't know how to count in pounds or feet

    Page Created: Oct 16, 1995
    Updated in
    : Nov 11, 1996
    Last Modified:Sept 18, 1999


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