tiistai 25. maaliskuuta 2008

 
Checking out the Helsinki City Marathon 2007. It was such a warm day, and the event was interesting.
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keskiviikko 19. maaliskuuta 2008

my deepest tribute to Arthur C. Clarke (1917-2008)

British Arthur C. Clarke is gone. He was magnificent, and his memory will live with us forever. My deepest tribute to Clarke and close family.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_C._Clarke

tiistai 18. maaliskuuta 2008

 
Sandra is a PC server, running Ubuntu Linux. It's located in a shed. The ambient temperature is around 0-1 centigrade currently, so the temperature is pretty low. I'm running tests and seeing how she fares. There's approximately 1250 watts of heating power located in the 15 cubic meter surrounding the machine. 250 watts comes from the power source of the PC, and 1000 watts for a coffee pan :)
I'm working on the insulation to make the environment more PC friendly.
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maanantai 17. maaliskuuta 2008

 
Another Picasa'd picture.
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the evaluation of Finnish IT projects on a national level

This statement by the NAO (National Audit Office, 'Valtiontalouden tarkastusvirasto' in Finnish) does not give high credits to the impact of public-led information technology projects. It states that
- the concrete impacts on local geographic levels have been mild, compared to
the substantial financial bets placed in these projects
- the goals set in these IT projects have not been met satisfactorily

The goals set in 2003 by the Council of state were among others:
* to increase the capability of citizens of Finland in using information technology
* to ensure that citizens would have unhindered access to fast network connections

To see the complete report in Finnish, check out:
http://www.vtv.fi/index.phtml?menu_id=2&chapter_id=8382#8382

For a quick overview of NAO in English, see this page:
http://www.vtv.fi/index.phtml?menu_id=3&lang=3
 
Testing Picasa2 color and contrast adjustments. It's a good tool.
Takes the blogging to new level, easily. You can scan a set
of pictures on your harddrive, then do the effects, cropping and
other adjustments, and place the picture in the blog directly
from the same user interface.
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Sudoku keeps the brain flexible! :)
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lauantai 15. maaliskuuta 2008

 
Shooting out and exploring in Helsinki downtown.
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Sorting out the invoices and stuff to be filed. It's pretty boring but keeps the company
running.
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This is a pretty typical snapshot of my car when I'm going out with it,
I often carry good reading so if I make a coffee stop I won't have
a boring time.
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Gulping ThinkGeek.com 's mana potions, they're excellent! A good doze of caffeine delivered in
a stylish glass bottle. Keeps the dungeon master awake. :)
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keskiviikko 12. maaliskuuta 2008

 
The home office, a couple of months ago. This is the place I do most of my work.
Computers are growing in number in the next couple of weeks; today I bought one
bulk PC server, tomorrow going to get one PC more, plus one as spare parts. Then
there's going to be one more laptop. Then I'll have a server plus couple of work
laptops. It is useful because I get more of a screen at one view; and there's
a lot of communications, testing, developing going on right now.
Relying on one PC alone would be too risky.
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With friends in Helsinki, it was a nice picnique. The sun is setting, and it's getting a bit more chilly.
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En route!
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ISO certified diamond store in Thailand.
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A public access database is booting.. Or hung. This happens. It's the reaction time that counts.
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IT is an interesting field of business. It's
full of promises and continually upgrading
new products. From the viewpoint of a system
administrator and a systems integrator IT
is also plain hard work: it's about taking
care of existing installations, making sure
sites are working every day, reacting to
troublesome situations, and reporting to
the bosses. It would be easy to bring
much better (software) products to the market,
if only the old ones would not be so
bolted into use; old software sticks like
elephants in tar. The truth is that innovations
are slowly spreading into use, and many of
the good old tools are fighting a fierce
battle for existence and living room.
Web 2.0 and Internet are probably slowly
changing the application-centric model into
a scene where there are more automatically
updating tools located in the network.
So people will work IN the network, not
with the network. But there are always risks
involved with moving into a network -- and
the least of these risks is by no means the
fact that when outsourcing (=moving into
using ASP provider's tools) the tools'
ownership is transferred from the client
to the subcontractor. This is a major
factor: it creates somewhat a feeling of
risk, and feeling of losing independence.
There's an old saying of "rolling your own",
or do-it-yourself attitude, if the readymade
product is not satisfactory. Especially hackers
like to knit code and systems themselves.

The amount of information has increased
and is probably continually still increasing.
Programs are getting more complicated.
Business processes are in a constant flux.

Many basic tasks are candywrapped in
a new form: for example as basic a thing
as the email has been candywrapped many
times. There's Hotmail, Gmail, the Finnish
IOBox (in the 2000s), and thousands of
other free or for-cost email systems in the
WWW. Many people have at least two email
boxes to read.

I found out recently that there were 194
unread mails in my university email account.
Most of them are not personal - they are
instead generated by computer systems.
They're notifications of different things
happening in the digital environment.
Some are discussions in email lists, some
are communications from the changes that
taken place in yet other systems. So we're kind
of flooded with messages about events. This
is nothing new: if you take a walk in the streets,
you'll see huge number of messages about events.
Every poster hanging in the city walls are
messages. They're advertising different kind
of things. It's this environment of messages
that is getting virtualized.

I once did an experiment of leaving the email
untouched for 3 months. What happened?
Nothing. I thought beforehand that this kind
of reckless action would constitute at least
and arrest
or a capital punishment. But no, nothing happened.
Isn't it miraculous? Keep this in mind, when
you're being bombed by too much information.
You don't have to read it all. Nobody can, in fact.

In a big company the process of checking a single
fact can blow into an email thread which consists
of about 50-100 messages, and the thread
travels through the company's employees for
months. You can get a reply 6 months after
you sent the mail. It's kinda like a tunneling
piece of information, propagating its way
in the networks and collecting opinions, facts and
debris during its journey.
The answer can be eg. an estimate of a certain
financial figure. What's the value of an estimate,
3 months after you requested it? A thing worth
thinking!

I discussed earlier this thread thing with an
insurance sales man. We were in a party, and
casually started chatting. He said that
communications is all in all; that's what
digital and many substanceless products are!
They are mostly communication.
Projects, insurances, software: all communication.
It's an interesting viewpoint, one that really
had an impact on me.

The value of information is subjective, and
there's a fuzzy and situation-dependant
function which defines this value. Information
is often time-critical. Old information is called
history. They say, that information increases
the pain we experience. On the other hand,
correct and current information also reduces
the guesswork which would have to be done
in a certain situation.
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The colors of autumn in Finland. They're just something you would not miss for any price.
The autumn brings calmness and people react to it quite strongly sometimes. I do, for
example. The autumn means a period of concentrating on the future challenges, and
the closing of summer.
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YT at home.
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Getting guided with GPS navigator in the car.
This was the first one I bought, a Garmin Nuvi 250w
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It's the beautiful countryside near my home.
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My early prototype of the Mobile Office concept.
Just adhoc, but it was a great feeling. This inspires to go on with the vision.
Getting hands-on experiences is important for shaping the product.
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Yours truly is getting the max pulse measured in a hill.
Using a polar pulseometer. ;)
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It's evening, and the Ford has its doors open. I often think about things
after having driven somewhere. It's really relaxing and inspiring.
They say that people in general have great ideas while driving; it's just
that these ideas should be utilized also! I think so many times we have
great ideas, but that's all they are - they won't become memes.
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"On The Road, Once Again (part XVIII)"
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Beautiful house somewhere in Finland.
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A scenery of Finnish nature, taking a break while traveling to north.
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