Theo Verelst Diary Page

Mon march 4 2001, 5:42 AM

I've decided after good example to write some diary pages with toughts and events.

Oh, in case anybody fails to understand, I'd like to remind them that these pages are copyrighted, and that everything found here may not be redistributed in any other way then over this direct link without my prior consent. That includes family, christianity, and other cheats. The simple reason is that it may well be that some people have been ill informed because they've spread illegal 'copies' of my materials even with modifications. Apart from my moral judgement, that is illegal, and will be treated as such by me. Make as many references to these pages as you like, make hardcopies, but only of the whole page, including the html-references, and without changing a iota or tittel...

And if not? I won't hesitate to use legal means to correct wrong that may be done otherwise. And I am serious. I usually am. I'm not sure I could get 'attempt to grave emotional assault' out of it, but infrigement on copyright rules is serious enough. And Jesus called upon us to respect the authorities of state, so christians would of course never do such a thing. Lying, imagine that.

Previous Diary Entries | List of Diary Pages | Home Page

Mon March 4 2001, 1:56 AM

I think I'll challenge the computer world the traditional way.

Fighting the challenge or the challengers

No use challenging Hewlett Packard, I may want to try IBM without their physics department, seriously, I could try their computer architecture stuff, I could probably have some fun without looking completely lame, Texas Instruments I might even dare to take on a bit without testing their hard-core chip designers down to that departments hippest or even pretty retarded knowledge, I don't think I'd like to challenge HP's differential equation knowledge, or how to make a 50 Giga Herz spectrum analyser with the traditional 140 db or so (7 figures, I used some of their stuff at the dutch telcom org when it was getting .com) accuracy, no sir, thank you very much, not at the moment.

I might try the physics angle on them, or of course simply make clear I'm very experienced programmer. And if all else fails, I don't think they hold many musicians in my possible league, which could most probably not be held against them, but that is sort of faul play in the branch of electrical engineering.

But the computer geeks is another story. Ha. Like computers, they're pretty easy enough to down on, not many will climb their way up to become the next einstein using the basic knowledge in that area, not many can even claim to be general expert enough with some serious foundation, not even knowing to realy decenty enough program enough in a structured, reliable and fundamentally sensible way, though of course there are engineers and the like who can probably pull that of on a good day, or with some effort on a bad day. Without question there are computer areas where I can be beaten hands down without even looking good enough to be permitted to try again, but they are probably few, and I have a firm impression that I can pretty much oversee what there is in that piece of the world, and am in the lucky circumstance that that even holds for the less esotheric hardware side of such ticking machines.

You mention a problem with an existing or alledgedly possible computer solution, and I can program it. Maybe it will take me a year, maybe a few days, but usually it is just a matter of sitting down with enough documentation and I'll program something together, I can't from the top of my head think of an existing area where I couldn't singlehandedly put most essentials together of in a decent enough C program.

How long does it take to program a word processor? Depends on the extend of drivers one can use as basis, and maybe how on earth one is going to get a reliable and sensible spell list of words. Not because I know some X windows text widget, or a Java text box class, or (preferably) my (Tcl/) Tk text window library, but because I know what character rom is, what blitting is, how to run pointers through a buffer, what file access functions are, how a menu library can be put together, what an input/output stream can behave like, how to builtup graphics on a screen and perform pattern matching searches, even efficiently, all that stuff.

And I have more than enough even in serious scientific programming, matrix stuff, large problems and high speed and parallel computing, iterations, alternative data mining strategies and legible experimental stuff, I've been into all that more than a bit, and have more than enough mathematical background to keep the whole game at world top level as far as that makes sense.

But in computer land, it seems a bit like the flatland comparison, it doesn't seem to make that much sense. When the selection criteria for top athletes is wether their mothers voted republican or democratic, or wether they personally know the leading computer company directors in their province, sports probably are not going to see much olympic competition and reasonableness and likeability. When contentwise performance wouldn't even have been able to put linux on the map by making such a wonderfull enough ripoff of proven unix kernel and tools while even mentioning the sources, things would probably have gone bad, splitting up the incredibly small weeny or not.

But still I now *know* how it goes. One doesn't primarily jump on that freedom, but wants to buy a share of the computer world, and be the best secret keeper. Overdoing? Not realy, unfortunately. It seems in certain cases which are way to relevant to realy be put together like that, when there exists no resistance. In electrical engineering, and I'll not stop myself in any way at all to rub that in wheneven necessary, I'm an official, top level electrical engineer by education, electrical engineer (master), and belief that any normally sensible thinking being even in remote vincinity of such educations knows not even deep in their hearts what the score on the relations between computer science and that sort of hard education is, hierarchy-wise, it is common enough to have many competing technologies and methods and interests, but a common denominator is that at some point when things can together and are tested, at least reasonable progress has to be made, or you'll not be taken for top of the bill, or you'll have to prove your value by at least attaining to a certain level, which is often not so trivial, or dealing with a problem in a likeable way.

That type of natural selection should in most cases at least stop the whole branch of activities from becoming all too decadent, boring, or not worth another look, or major, lasting corruption which makes it overall criminal.

When I started my studies, having loads of relevant computer and electronics experience and knowledge, I was well aware of how hard it was to find something which didn't suck to begin with, or felt like simply descending into the myre. Seriously. Something challenging, inspiring, top level, usefull enough was hard enough to find, and electrical engineering at least had enough appeal to the imagination, a good stereo set would maybe already be good enough a motivation, and of course a lot more is possible, also for more than just a few lucky few who get to do the next brilliant case design.

And seriously, for those who've been there, it takes work to get through the theoretics and acquire the necessary basis to play entry level games along, in other terminology than I fancy. And other then for instance in chemestry, there is a very fundamental and exact and sound and mathematically challenging basis.

Anyhow, what is the challenge for lets say a programmer, and what else is there, generally speaking, in computerland? Getting the progam to work, of course! Obviously. One orders pizza, works through the night, skims through the * manual pages, uses concentration uppers (like a coke, a hometrainer...) the right music, and in far out cases even maybe an actually acredited girlfriend, but the - program - will - work, and I will get it to. And the proof of the pudding is easily, when it runs, it has to perform all its functions right, simple enough.

Bad game ? No of course, not, peacable enough even, unless one does DSP programming for a nuclear missiles' target tracking system. Interesting? Well, there is the catch. I can do programs I did 20 years ago in a fraction of the time, because I have more experience or much better tools and faster computer systems, though others, like a music sequencer I did on a trs80 system would still take me time. And I can take up more than few challenges I couldn't have at the time, because my theoretics weren't up to it, for instance computing what an audio equalizer circuit does in a computer simulation. Doable: read up a little on certain mathematical transforms, and do some bookkeeping (no loothing, but that in my terminology is not the highest thing on earth, sort of keeping score, a computer can do that), and make some graphical presentation.

I remember when I did a program to read a linear electrical circuit in text form, and plot the frequency response on an acorn electron 15 years at least ago, that was a long night of good work, very satisfactory. Parsing an input file, generating a complex network-matrix, inverting it using rationals (I think I did) and plotting a bode diagram of the norm of the resulting complex transfer function. Parsing and diagram plotting and formulas were passed stations in highschool, trivial enough, but generating the MNA matrix, and inverting it with complex numbers was another story. In beeb basic it was very worth the excercise, even though I didn't get any study points for the result, the satisfaction of having cracked such a usefull and general progamming problem was enough, and it could have been honorable, but I didn't speak to many people about it, and there were curriculum based assignments like parts of it, except running on big computers.

Any challenges left after that ? Ha ! Motherf* ....

Of course, thousands ! As a stage I did an assignment to measure the transmission properties of telephone exchanges, where one puts in various signals and measures all kinds of data and puts them in graphs to see if it meets the quality requirements for phone connections, that was fun. No heavy mathematical theory more than electronics properties, which for me wasn't hard, but more than a few program challenges, and a network of measurement equipment to accurately and effectively control with a program to do good measurements. More than fun enough to automatically and rapidly get the graphs which take an electronician quite some work, and allow an expert to immedeately see where there might be flaws in the connnection quality.

One might want to compute what happens when a finger or a plectrum hits a guitar string, and see how many little sting section simulation have to be put together as little second order coupled differential equations to quantize the wave equation, and wether with some feedback and pitch bending that can sound like a hawaian guitar because there is hardly a body in the simulation, though electrical-like amplification simulation.

Or simply try to make trains run on time, land a mars sonde with communication computers keeping it on-line with the rest of the universe, or write a screen saver which in parallel figures out wether God wrote His name on the electromagnetics waves impinging on us from space, or not. Need more ?

No, we'd better figure out via which circuit we're going to figure out the basics of the security mechanism on (ms) sql, how many books are needed to find out all the secret fixes or keys to make certain operating systems behave worth our while, or such. Realy? What am I, and adventure player? If I want adventure like that I'll go hunting gold in california or something, program my computer as a maze and be the maze master myself or God knows what other game, in short, that is not my idea of an honorable challenge.

'Go to the next office, push the cassiers 666'th button by speaking the magic words the god of this world realy is still great, and the rich must continue to maintain the rights over the production goods in cyber space, and humbly receive your next fiches for the casino of the game of life, and if you're lucky, they won't devaluate before you want to cash them without playing with your luck, and show some courtesy to the guy who invented that wonderfull shit'

No thank you, I'll after all possibly prefer to design, optimize, program, fly, and explode very military rockets instead. See if that is courtesy enough. Hopefully that won't be necessary, but seriously, some people thing they can take away all freedom, and then still be seen as sort of an heroic figure in life, which I resent, to put it mild. I might not be born to be wild, but certainly to be free, and if that takes getting back to some very basic western values, so be it. And defending them with sufficient power, threat or strenght, if necessary. I might not need the kind of strugle a arian enough, not jewish enough, more than bright and attractive enough, non-female, non-handicapped official ecg citizen has no need engaging in, but I certainly like my constitutional rights, my religeous freedom, open gouvernment, right to vote and appeal against hidden organisations and agendas and all kinds of things that made behind-iron-curtain countries inpopulair, and am not willing to in any way make it impossible to still enjoy all that.

The connection machine, is that any fun ?

As I mentioned in the introduction a few pages back, the connection machine has been made and used in about 1984 or probably earlier, about at the time I went to university.

I made video circuits from ttl chips just as unprepared experiments, did on the the first and few working MIDI interface designs and prototype, and a graphical interactive sequencer driving it, had made a synthesizer, of course my own stereo system and mixer for years, and was ready to start some of the real stuff in university...

Was that a bummer? No, I was quite prepared for the 70 percent pure mathematics that would make up for the first year of the curriculum, which proved true, and in fact it took me the first half of the first year to arrive at the point where I had to and luckily did decide to bring my study efforts and speeds up to the demand that was made on me, which basically meant I studied, ate, slept, did some course stuff, and made some music, and visited a group, and that was it, no bumming around, fixed daily discipline as routine, hardly an hour a week realy free, to make up for the fact I had failed 3 out of 4 courses twice, and wanted to make it though the first year without much delay.

So I took on about double the exam load, visited colleges (is that the right word ?) did my excercises, practica, and ended up making it through my first year of electrical engineering in the shortest possible time, in june after, with more than decent enough grades. And that was something, just after half way I had even received a computer generated notice that I might better consider changing studies, because I probably would never make it, not even after the max of two years, pick up civil engineering or something (not a quote)...

Ha, so I put that straight, and I guess had left my marks in that area, the double load thing was normally highly derecommended and in electrical engineering circles considered high risc. The challenge without that was fine enough, lots of math, some general exams, and later on of course the chip design stuff, and I chose computer graphics, philosophy, electronics, formal logic and economics courses and passed them, which is hard to beat, level wise, and at least it gave me a chance to learn fundamental math, electrical engineering like computations, and applied and general academical ideas, and at least that all was worth the tuition fee and the effort.

I didn't realize until later that computerwise, I learned quite a lot myself and in other areas, too, I had accumulated a lot of knowledge which later on proved probably at least as relevant as the curriculum materials, which probably were most beneficial for me as fundamental courses.

I did computer architecture and networking courses, too, and maybe the connection machine was mentioned in them, at least for instance tanenbaum's operating system book has a reference to it I'm sure. The ideas at the time about computers ranged from microprogramming, writing an assembler (all stuff I intimeately knew years before) to file system buildup and memory paging systems. The network courses would cover ethernet and tcp/ip to some level of detail, though I think I looked up the sources myself only later, which is good enough to get quite good idea of practical networking, though the fundamentals of parallel programming were left somewhat in the dark, as wel as modeling of such activities, that is post-grad stuff.

Long before the end of highschool I'd be doing designs for sample play hardware, with smart electronics for modulation and accurate conversion, and I'd bought a Yamaha DX-7 after my first years vacation work or so, had somehow gained access to schematic diagram, and after reading the study guide had hoped that at some point the range of possibilities spanning network theory section would be interesting to test out on a design like that, but that received no mercy enough at the time.

Anyow, that stuf is complicated, seriously, that was up to date technology and challenging enough science to make work right. And of course a musical instrument at the time was composed of more than a DSP ticking away computer programs, but required special chips and putting them together into a system which as a whole must be made to perform the fast processing required for producing the sounds made by a challenging algoritm.

My graduation subject turned out to be computer graphics based, which is also a mathematically and computerwise challenging subject.

But purely as computers go? Computer designers, like intel or hewlett packard, or dec or drawing heavily from or still building mainly on ideas present in literal form on PDP's from 20 years ago, both hardware as software wise, realy there is not that much news under the sun in those areas, except chip technologywise, and bulls* wise in more than a few areas. I'm not saying that those wonderfull enough boxes of a thousand dollars aren't worth buying and hooking a good monitor up to, in fact computers ticking at a few gigaherz and with hundreds of megabytes of main memory and tens of gig standard fast harddiscs are more than worth it, but apart from that, the amount of fundamental computer architecture and operating system basics which is innovative is limited. The recent success of Linux as a contemporary incarnation of an at least 20 year old OS where major parts are realy completely taken from the old originals is proof enough to back up that thesis.

But even in these days, where the army may put thousands of pentiums together as a parallel machine, where fast dsps do realtime radiofrequency computations in a matchbox for days on a small lithium cell, a computer system with 50 Giga Instruction per Second or so and 32 meg of parallel and distributed associatively accessible memory, with 65000 cells connected with a total of 1 Giga byte of total bandwidth is not so bad.

And when that the at least seriously innovative idea is carried out in practice to give it associative list processing as a native interpreted language, the thing is relevant and fun enough. Those into understanding something about computer design should have a look at the recommended MIT thesis called the connection machine which describes it. Even more fun: it soaks about 12 kilowatts or so of power.

That is something which makes computer stuff fun enough instead of something like a pyramid game crossed with a civil servant system: dangerous because it causes major inflation, no one likes it in the end, and the added value is almost certain to be little.

The first microsoft basic rom (s) , that was fun, too, I know from experience. And in fact the Z80 system I did recently running at 30 MHz with all driving signals and busses being actual wires on a board, and where the whole thing can be driven at near zero power and stepped from a second step clock to full speed in an instance, and where interupts tested by simply driving them and seeing what happens and all kinds of interfaces and many IO pins are natural extensions, is also fun enough, though I'd prefer having some AC or so logic at at least 10 times the clock frequence, preferably even more, and good alu units to make the whole thing more interesting. And then make more computer designs? I don't know! Maybe a over a giga op/s TI dsp of $50 is more than fun enough to test develop on with a good AD and DA for nice sound algorithms.

The idea of playing around with connected computers, making programs on them, and playing around with user rights is not my idea of fun, I've played with that decades ago, making objects which communicate with eachother is fun enough, but seriously, the idea of programming C++ without knowing what computers are like, and what Clib also provides in that language is not that much fun. Sending messages instead of doing a decent design and functional decomposition allowing complete control over errors is usually not so sensible, and doesn't get andrenaline levels up, unless there is some fun to it. And having big generally usefull and easily and standard interfaces libraries wasn't even invented with the advent of X windows 15 years or so ago, but before.

A free staroffice, even with sources as they say compilable under a free compiler (cygwin), that is fun enough.

A good and decent enough extensible free operating system with good looking tools and applications, and working multitasking and multiuser possibilities is fun enough, too.

I guess that is an important bottom line, wether such things are fun enough, otherwise no talent is going to waste much of her or his time and effort to a subject in the end, and the area gets taken over by the lesser gifted and inspiring, which is not good for mass consumption, usually, and brings in wonderfull staw persons from the devil knows where to run things and wonderfully incorporate them into the powers which will luckily never be that much.

When there isn't enough fun in the whole area of computers they might end up as some of the stuff I've recently noticed, including but not limited to the o so childish desire to control peoples' connections without reason, making resources not available at unpleasantly chosen moments, messing with software and software parts to give them certain behaviours not originally intended, and basically opening the whole game up to the curruption which makes it such that certain very known forces try to make any partaker betray themselves so they may buy and sell and mess up further the remains of something messed up from the start, so everyone searches for what it in normal thinking should have been. Where have we heard about that game before... Sigh. I know, the wonderfull accident that threw certain powers of darkness from heaven, including mohamed and allah must be remembered and somehow creaps into way to many inhabitants of this blue sphere hanging in space as third from the sun, and its unequaled stupidity is worldwide visible but probably kept in place by the almighty God as warning to make clear what is what.

Anyhow, having many people use computers is fun enough, and they are probably in need of basics mainly instead of advanced things, but it is not good practice to make informatics or computer science god over the guys who invented both the damned or blessed machines because they'd know better how live with all that should work. What, did their mummies give them some vision or something? Computers having become big business makes them and their software of course one of the main potential vehicles to accumulate power and esteem, and all rich and powerfull know it. So what happens, historically?

Oh boy.

Snap your fingers or Walter Carlos

I downloaded a lot of old music, starting with chuck berry, bo didley, the stones and the beatles, and had fun listening to the fragments the other day. Always good to get a good knowledge of the founders and main performers of important music areas.

Did you know that the keyboardist of Rose Royce also played with the Tempations? I've listened again to some of their songs, which I knew long ago because I'd bought an album containing Love don't Live here Anymore, and snap your fingers is still a top song, inspiring. I didn't know they also performed live, sounded good.

Another important listening source from the and my past was Walter, currently wendy, carlos, clearly with switched on Bach and I think another album. Cannot be skipped in a serious contemporary music course. A hard thing to compete with when starting to play synthesizer and with multitrack recording, but then again having high standards won't hurt, normally. At least I had an idea of what all the wires and circuits in an analog synthesizer would be up to, and that the machines could be played with effect, when I started to learn most everything about the various circuits, and the basic sound generator patches, especially after I had my own synth.

Without question, snap your fingers, car wash, or lets say the commodores' brick house are better examples of the skills and instrument use and mastery of modern musicians and their instruments. But as innovation goes, the carlos pieces are obsolutely unique, both technology as well as musicianship wise.

Recapping highschool level history lessons, or: were the reds realy only wrong ?

I've been wondering about a lot of things lately including wether certain people in not completely irrelevant places have even the least notion left of what I vividly remember as important historic values from highschool and lets say somewhat intelligent student circles, preferably with some understanding of the left and it raison d'etre, possible alledged.

I am under more than the strong impression that more than a few people I can meet or see wouldn't even agree anymore that it is desirable to even value to concept of freedom. Living freely, having opinions in freedom, and uttering them in freedom, striving for freedom, and liking the concept of thinking about being or becoming or trying to become more free.

It seems that just like in the middle ages or before WW II, people can be very taken up in all kinds of social and spiritual rules and logic, which is more important to them then normal thinking modes and seeing other people in some light of normallness. Of course I know that all kinds of spiritistic and occult influences and people and rites breed such anormality, which is pretty damning. But to realy again see people having continuously more attention for the eucharist (gmpf) mary in the sky with children, or some great little charismatic fuehrer lying everyone who wants to know through some kind of life, is sadening, and something I hope I can keep little people away from. Seriously, what a miserable state much of what I encounter must be in.

What would normally happen if one would utter 'sich heil' or something into some crowd? Maybe a few percent of quickly and ashamedly withheld rightharms quickly raising to a 45 degree angle up, maybe a reasonable amount of surprised looks, a significant amount of annoyed or hurt responses, and maybe some answering machine gun fire noises. Yes, I guess that would be normal, about 50 years after hitlers total and utter defeat, also in this country, and so many jews being brutally slaughtered for nothing but demonic reasons.

What happened to enlightenment, the revolution that has been all over europe, too, the declaration of independence equivalent of so many former colonies, the human rights statements, the bloodily fought for constitutions?

Why do people still have so much faith in a system like Clinton's people circumference has bought up, so that normal responses are replaced by the moranicness and downright evil intent of believers in curse, motherf*, enlightened spirits without checking their source and motivation and alledged christian nature, omens, beastly constructions, means of inhuman oppression and betrayal of persons and lives, and all such clear proves of incapabilities of dealing with normal, let alone free lives.

The idea that I would simply sit down and thing about opinions, buying behaviour, relationships, work, politics, and come to some conclusion and normally stick with that unless reasons come up not to are of course not to be found in the generated, babylonic, satanic word, which not for nothing has be saved in every single way almost before anything is worth it, primarily but Christs' work, and also be believers and His servants. But that being as it is, I would have, probably american inspired, ideas about free enough life and opinions which are completely in lines with the official laws in this country. And the amount of normalness I find around is often quite minimal, which is almost alarming. And of course I'm crazy. Yeah, right, my mother can put me in the nuthouse after having wanted to go aside to look at certain evils and taking a new position, and then all I've ever done, and all I officially an qualified for is down the drain, she can rest assured that my place can be sold, my live soaked up by her and the ones teaming up with such a treasurous kind, and certain system will pay their 50 talents, and the wheel has turned again, the system has been sacrificed to, and a seriously capable and good person been put aside, as some wannabe leaders have said it would be better, because we can't stand openness, freedom of speech, or suffer the losses of some exposure and unequal loss of name and dishonest honor.

Crazyness. European standard crazyness, I'm sure, but still, to little or big motherfuckers trying to take over the whole game 50 years ago are not getting their way in some stasi or ss way over my back in these times.

But you are crazy! It has always been that way, and will allways be that way, you should know that, thinking about going against that is already a certain sign of crazyness!

Well excuse me, I think Luther and Calvin existed, as well as even Marx and Churchill for all I care, and I'd want to remind you that the end result of that great power experiment halfway previous century again ended the same as most european revolutions ended officially and powerfully enough: by the defeat of the hidden illuminati, havers of the evil eye, buiders of the allseeing eye and the great beast that must swallow up everything so the great dragon can rule with as as part of it, or believers in the great momma in the sky. They lost, revolution and war won. Period.

And the official and completely open continued existance of a constitution which warrants freedom, respect of privacy and personal (computer) data, opinions, utterances, and choice of work, is a major proof of my right, that it is not that crazy to want to live such ways. Even when so many again seem to want to be so deluded, maybe out of guilt, maybe because of the greed for great gains or power or confirmation, I can see more than enough reason to believe that freedom is possible, and even defeat of the hidden and open parties against such idea. And the idea that I may not utter strong suspicions or proven facts of major criminal acts and clans is constitutionally wrong in holland, it is my duty to persue and expose and report them, by law.

And officially one may not take a persons money or possessions pending even criminal charges, if that would be so, and I have the right to be informed about formal bussiness around me, unless I'm a subject under special secret service surveilance or something, I guess.

And persuing certain ideals not in line with sane thinking may already result in a long, serious, deadly, dragging on ugly and miserable war, europe can know.