Archive for July, 2006

Athens

So in a few hours we are leaving Athens. We got in yesterday and had a pretty productive day. We arrived very early in the morning (3am) and then slept in the airport until daytime. then we went to the acropolis. Pretty awesome. there is a museum on the top that had some really cool stuff.

After that we took a midday nap. In the evening we walked around the national gardens and went to a showing of Othello in an ancient greek theature. unfortunately, it was in greek. so it was an experience more than enjoying the play. Today we are going to go around the city for a bit and then take a flight to san torinini. looking forward to sitting out on the beach.

Budapest and Parting of Ways

So we are now in budapest. today was an interesting one. with lots of downs and a couple ups. I´ll go through the parts one by one.

Yesterday, we had a nice final dinner in Prague and then headed over to the train station to catch a night train to Budapest. The train was a bit late, but we got on and managed to secure a car with only the five of us. We went to sleep, ready to awake in Budapest. We were awoken at 4:30 by an immigration officers asking for passports. we all furninshed them and everything seemed fine. Unfortunately, the guy returned with further questions for orges. It turns out that we were in slovakia and orges didnt have a Slovak visa (he didnt think he needed it since we were only arriving in budapest). This didnt suffice, and unfortunately the guards kicked orges (and we along with him) off the train. After questioning orges for a while, They said they were sending him back to the czech republic. Unfortunately there wasnt much to do. orges needed to go back and we needed to get to budapest. orges took the train back to prague where he will spent the next two days chilling before his flight home (he got there safe).

we continued on to budapest after going through bratislava where our new train was delayed by 3 hours. after arriving we found budapest to be incredibly hot. on top of all that, i tried to get cash out of an ATM and the ATM ate my card. After much messing with it and the help of some nice local shop salesman, we got the card out safely.

We made it to our hotel which thankfully is very nice. We then went to budapests famous baths. Finally our luck started to change. It was awesome. Very relaxing thermal baths helped us to forget the other problems of the day. Right now, i am in an internet cafe that we ran accross after walking around the city. The city looks beautiful and we are looking forward to exploring more tomorrow. Its almost a shame that we wont be here longer, but were looking forward to athens as well. more to come when i can.

Prague Sightseeing

Today we went to the miniature eifel tower that overlooks prague. the view was incredible. It was a bit of a walk up there since the tram to the top of the mountain was broken, but i thought it was well worth it. We tried to make it back to the Jewish Quarter in time to see the cemetary, but it closed before we got there. we will try to make it there tomorrow. Tomorrow is the last day in prague. we take a night train to budapest. i think budapest will be different and a lot of fun. we have heard mixed reviews about the experiences that people have had in budapest. but it is orges’ last days, so it will be fun. it has been hot here so far. hopefully it will cool down. Can’t post pictures yet, as the computers here won’t allow it. hopefully will be able to post soon.

Prague

We are here in Prague. its 11 am and we just finished breakfast. The trip over was pretty uneventful which is good. after a long plane ride we arrived in london where we easily met up with cdub and orges. We had plenty of time before our next flight, so we walked around downtown london for a while. We went into this pub where we met this very colorful english man who quizzed us on american actors from the 50’s. he was very dissapointed with our lack on knowledge. after that we headed to gatwick and then off to prague. We arrived late and then took a bus and the metro to our hostel. we soon realized that, like germany, everyone speaks english. even the random guy vending metro passes at midnight outside the city center. We got to the hostel and went to sleep. today, i think we are going to the castle and check out some of the other main sites. should be fun. i’ll post some pictures later when i actually get some.

Europe!

PragueTomorrow we leave for Europe! Here are a couple of snippets from the travel websites. We are traveling to Prague, Budapest, Athens, and Santorini. The trip should be nothing short of amazing. I will upload pictures to /photos as much as i can while i’m there. Mith, Mike and i depart from SFO at 11 tomorrow morning and arrive in london at 10 am on Tuesday. From there we are flying to Prague.? We spend a couple days in Prague before taking a train to budapest.? 2 days in budapest and then to Athens.? Athens will probably be ridiculously hot, so then we go to Santorini.? After a couple day stint on the Greek Isles, we round out the trip with 2 days in London and then back home.

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GigaSpaces

GigaSpaces – Write Once, Scale Anywhere

I met this guy at lunch yesterday who was an architect for our IT department. We got to talking, and he started telling me about the scaling problems that we are having with our databases. He was of the opinion, that after a while, normalized relational databases just hit their limit. When you have to do hundreds of table joins in order to get the data you are looking for, you just get killed in performance.

He started telling me about GigaSpaces. The concept being a type of “Net” of machines that can be dynamically added and removed from a database. The machines would each “donate” their idle memory to the larger system. This kind of a net would provide an application almost limitless memory. In this type of a setup there would be almost no need for disk storage, and if you had that, then there would be no need for a relational database. just copy your data as many times as you need. sort it anyway you like. I’m not sure that i wholy understand or agree with the concept, but it certainly seems powerful.

What if an OS could support memory sharing across boards and over a network. Certainly you would take a performance hit from the LAN, but as LAN speeds increase this may be more feasible than having RAID’ed disks. Regardless it is interesting. Just some food for thought. I am certainly no hardware or OS expert, but the concept is interesting to think about at least.

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Theme finished

Binary Blue | 4null4.de – Sarcasm’s paradise

So after much trouble attempting to translate my new theme from German to English, i finally have it in a state that i am happy with. i have a feeling there is going to be some lingering german around somewhere, so if you see it let me know.

Overall, i’m pretty happy with the theme and the way the site is shaping up. now i’ll start concentrating on getting more pictures up on the /photos page. It will probably be a progressive task since i have a lot of photos that are just sitting on my hard drive. Let me know how things look.

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New Blog

This is my new blog.? I’m hoping to be able to consistenly post new thoughts and ideas here.? If nothing else its nice to have a home page where i can link to my pictures and other neat things.? I’m still amazed at how easy it was to set this whole thing up (and cheap).? After about 14 hours of being on the web, i couldn’t be happier with bluehost (the hosting provider).? I was able to set all of this up (check out the photos link, in less than 2 hours).? not bad for delivering all of this content.

Anyway, now that i am mostly done with the setup, i can start to tweak the details.? Add pictures to the photos site and get dad up and running with the main home page.? anyway, should be interesting.? stay tuned for more to come