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Blog about geeky stuff, computers, physics and life.

Tag essays


Tags: English, essays
Created on Tue, 01 Dec 2020

There is nothing more final than death; I had both my grandmas die within a year about a decade ago and it's really this terrible empty feeling and all the good memories just come every once in a while and wash you away unexpectedly - time is the only healer. People left behind who have spent a long time feel the miss the most and again, time is the only medicine, no substitute can be enough to fill the void but friends and family help.

I'm quite scientific minded and of course - I wonder a lot. Although science doesn't stop belief (it actually requires it in a certain way) my mind reasons about the experience about death in a way that tries to be consistent with what I know. And that means that since we have no idea what the internal experience of dying and death might be - all bets are off. Therefore if you tell me you feel like going to heaven - okay. If you tell me you feel like there is nothing - okay. It's unknowable at this stage so any hypothesis is probably equally valid.


If you like being a pirate...

Tags: English, technology, essays
Created on Wed, 09 May 2018

Keep on reading, I am not going to judge you - I (may) do this all the time. I just want to pose you an interesting question to think about…

Take a look (if you can and at your own risk) at the most seeded audiobooks on one of these sites where Johnny Depp might find himself if he was so inclined as to make an Internet movie 😉

At the time of writing (May 2018) titles include: * "12 Rules for life" [#1 with 396], * "Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Rober Cialdini" [#3 with 226] * "Be Obsessed or Be Average" [#4 with 175] * "Anthony Tony Robbins - Awaken The Giant Within" [#8 with 126] * "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck" [#9 with 125] * "The Millionaire Booklet" [#10 with 121] * "The Five Elements of Effective Thinking" [#14 with 103] * "No Excuses - The Power of Self-Discipline" [#15 with 93] * "You are a Badass" [#17 with 93] * "Maps of Meaning" (#1's author's previous book) [#19 with 91]

The unmentioned books include "Harry Potter book series 1-7", "Th


Ode to professionals

Tags: English, technology, essays
Created on Thu, 19 Apr 2018

A professional doesn't dress well to impress and fake his professionalism. He dresses well to feel professional.

A professional is not hack-y, quick or dirty. He is a thorough and precise.

A professional is not arrogant or know-it-all. He works together with his colleagues, learns from them and helps them.

A professional understands planned work, unplanned work and plans for the unplanned work.

A professional takes responsibility but never blames.

A professional always learns.

A professional uses the right tool for the job. Not the one that is most hyped at the moment, nor the one he is just most familiar with but too complex or too simple for this job.

A professional understands his human limitations. Thus he never overworks to show off or mistreats the rest of his life for his craft.

A professional always tells the truth, voices his opinions where they are relevant to the work and protects his craft and his colleagues.

A professional understands or tries to


Google Duplex and the Struggle of the Moth

Tags: English, essays, life
Created on Thu, 10 May 2018

There is this one episode of the TV-Series LOST that I can’t seem to shake off my mind. It’s episode 7 of season 1 titled “The Moth”. I believe it’s one of the best hours of TV I have watched and the metaphor certainly comes to my mind quite often. One of the main characters (Locke) teaches another one (Charlie — who is struggling with withdrawal symptoms of heroin) that nature’s way of finding the best is through struggles. Locke demonstrates that by showing him a moth in its cocoon shortly before emerging from it. He says that he could help the moth — he has a knife and he can rip open the cocoon, helping the moth and letting him out. But the moth is not ready if it can’t break his own cocoon. The episode is worth watching as the two larger stories represented in the episode are also an expansion of the metaphor.

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On the difficulty of trying again

Tags: English, essays, life
Created on Mon, 02 Jul 2018


I don't even know how I ended up here. Something - was it an article, or a video - but something prompted me to watch some comentary on the chess matches between AlphaZero vs Stockfish. AlphaZero is Google's/Alphabet's AI machine - both the software of deep learning and through their proprietary TPUs hardware. Stockfish is (was) the best chess computer program in the world. Now, ever since 1997 match between the then world champion Garry Kasparov and Deep Blue, playing chess against computers has been useless in terms of actually beating them.

It's of course because computers are not like people - once you create great software, you can copy it, distribute it and improve it - even if it's illegal or whatever, you can do it if you want to. Humans not so much - once a human dies the best way he can (so far) transfer the knowledge of his lifetime experience is through the slow, inneficient and incomplete multi-level interface of brain-words-mouth-air-ear-words-brain. Or simi


This post starts normally talking about interviews and transitions into a life crisis

Tags: English, essays, personal, life
Created on Wed, 05 Oct 2016

Job Interviews

I will be having interviews these days. I guess I am giving up my dream of starting a startup, maybe few years down the road when I get more experience. Don’t judge me. It’s hard. So let’s do some standardized interviews, that is good and stable. Get a job that you will be happy.

Algorithms and data structures. Binary search trees, DFS, BFS, Heaps - the regular stuff. You know, the stuff that you do every day as a programmer. Not debugging or refactoring, not testing or googling. A hackerrank ™ online test which shows your capabilities best, implementing things you haven’t done in years but hey - ADS must be important. I can’t possibly have 3 good programmers around me at the time of the interview that google like crazy and help me to pass it.

If I was the only one complaining, I would consider myself just plain uncapable of my profession. And maybe I am. Maybe the actual coding stars out there don’t complain on HN and can just breeze the interviews about AD


Why I got vaccinated? (part 1)

Tags: English, opinions, essays, personal, learning, life
Created on Fri, 04 Jun 2021

Edit: see part 2: what is True and part 3 - what would convince me NOT to vaccinate for progress on opinions in this article.

TL;DR: Because I care about myself, my parents and friends and I believe vaccination is the best way to protect myself and them, in order to resume any kind of "normality". I believe the risk of vaccination outweights the risk of not vaccinating, I trust the process of vaccination approval and testing by the various national and supra-national organizations, I trust the scientists and (even though I don't have to) I understood the relative simplicity of the idea of the vaccine and immune response generated by it. I find it unlikely that there is a larger conspiratorial picture for control, even if the vaccine has not naturally occured but it turns out it has been produced artifically on purpose for some geo-game or by accident by l


What is true? (part 2)

Tags: English, opinions, essays, life
Created on Sun, 13 Jun 2021

Edit: see part 1 - Why I got vaccinated and part 3 - what would convince me NOT to vaccinate for progress on opinions in this article.

I want to continue talking in this blog about truth, facts, miss- and disinformation, propaganda. Today - a YouTube video from New York Times, talking about "Operation InfeKtion":

... which is NOT about the Corona (video is from 2018). It's rather about an operation back in the 80s sponsored by the Russian KGB aiming to spread a story that the HIV virus was secretly created by the US, starting at a single newspaper story in India.

The video is extremely worth watching in this day and age where misinformati


What would convince me to NOT vaccinate? (part 3)

Tags: English, politics, opinions, essays, life
Created on Thu, 17 Jun 2021

So, part 1 - Why I got vaccinated and part 2 - What is True are my attempts to figure out how to find truth in this day and age. My conclusion: it's hard.

Today, I play the devil's advocate. My usual conversation when someone presents me with a conspiracy theory is to ask "What would convince you otherwise?". So, let's play this game on me today - what would convince me that the vaccine is NOT safe?

My response is that first, I trust the World Health Organization (WHO), European Medicines Agency (EMA), the [US's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)](https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2



Tags: English, politics, opinions, essays, life
Created on Thu, 19 Aug 2021

I've been listening to a lot of arguments lately about the "safety of the vaccine", "the lie about the Corona". My last five or so blog posts (since about 3 months ago) are all about me going as deep as I can tolerate into some conspiracies and questioning truth, reality and authority. Now, I am spending my summer vacation in the worst country in EU regarding vaccination rate (~15% fully vaccinated as of writing of this post in August 2021) but also one of most corrupt - 69th/180, and with least press freedom - 112th. Correlation doesn't imply causation of course. So let me causate it using my observations.

In my view there are three types of conspiracists. Take "The Earth is Flat" conspiracy:

  1. The first group might be schizophrenics and other categorically mentally ill people for whom is hard to discern reality. This is not a small group of pe

Discuss the argument that hackers do public service by finding and publicising computer security weaknesses

Tags: English, opinions, essays, university
Created on Tue, 10 Feb 2015

context: We have to write an essay for a course at University. But first, we have to submit a draft, then be assigned to read drafts of other people and mark them. Which in the end doesn't matter at all.

BTW, Честит рожден ден, тати!

Number 1. Oh my Random, not another essay!

Of course they do. Is there really an argument for the other side?

Let's first define hacker – a highly controversial term for the regular dumb man/woman/unidentified (henceforth referred to as a “cuggle” – a computer muggle. Muggle, in the Harry Potter universe, is someone who lacks any magical abilities and was not born in the magical world, often denying the existence of magic itself [1]). Now, cuggles believe that a hacker is bad word. They see it as someone who does bad things with the aid of computers like stealing money, blackmailing or lunching rockets by getting hold of NASA computers. While this is not unseen in real life [2] (IRL [3]), it is rarely the case when the term is u


Learning through participation as the rule rather than the exception

Tags: English, opinions, essays, university, learning
Created on Wed, 18 Feb 2015

School has never been only about learning stuff.

For few years I believed it’s the things happening in the breaks that matter. Relationships, doing stupid things and talking about crazy ideas. But that’s not completely true. I believed that because just my last memories from school are that things in the break matter. But it didn’t use to be the case. I loved learning things when I was younger.

Oh my, I would read like crazy - Encyclopedias, science books, I would draw the planets of the cosmos and remember the map of Europe. For 16 years of education, school and later University were trying really, really hard to kill this in me. My love and passions, my curiosities. I (almost completely) stopped going to school in the last couple of years. I was having my own projects and I didn’t care about the things in the breaks so nothing could keep me there. There were a few subjects like Physics that were interesting to me but by the last couple of years I started slowly falling out of


The meaning of life

Tags: English, essays, life
Created on Thu, 12 May 2016

This is the stupidest question one can ask. Why?

Imagine you are given your first computer. You are told that you could pretty much do anything with it. You can play games, program, learn anything there is to be learnt about the Universe, you can watch videos or explore the filesystem. You can build stuff or entertain yourself. Or you could not turn it on at all. What do you do?

I know what I did when I got my first computer. Before I got it, I was excited - I thought I could do anything - animations or tell it to bake me a pie. All information I got was from watching "Dexter's laboratory" and imagining things. Alas, I still can't do many of these things, but I am getting better.

When I actually got it, on the 8th of February 2000, I was jumping like crazy. I was 8 then. We got it as a second hand from my father's colleague. Two guys came in to bring a bulky 15" CRT monitor, keyboard, something small like a joystick (a ball mouse), half-broken speakers, a mystery box and a bun


I want to walk naked!

Tags: English, politics, opinions, essays, life
Created on Fri, 24 Sep 2021

Walking naked is natural. Putting clothes on a person is a form of fascism. Today if I try to just walk naked, outside of my bathroom, my flat (if I live with roomates) or some very small beaches - I will be told off and potentially arrested. How come?

Clothes have an obvious primary purpose - the human body is not too well adapted to live in the extreme colds in some areas of the world. But for some complicated historical, theological, anthropological and/or societal reason almost all of the world's people and civilisations have decided that wearing clothes has at least the secondary purpose to cover mainly our primary and almost always - secondary reproductive organs.

It has reached a stage where not wearing clothes in public space is a sign of some sort of craziness or activism for some cause. Even though it can be argued that not wearing clothes is the more natural way of handling the human body, especially on the summer hot days. (I will ignore the issue with sunb


The eyes of the Internet

Tags: English, technology, essays
Created on Tue, 14 Dec 2021

Note: I'm not going to talk about these eyes today. I need more pandemic to get there.

We don't know what the Internet really is. Not really. We don't have the intuition or senses to recognize it anymore. It's not like how we know what a human is.

And we don't have laws and rights at the Internet. Not really. We don't really know what is where and what can and shouldn't be done. We don't know it like we know not to poke a human in the eyes.

So when one day someone discoveres the Internet has something like an eye, a weak, soft spot - we take all the toothpicks and nails, we take all the pins and needles, all the sharp sticks and every tool around us and we try to poke it.

And then the people making the Internet scramble to "patch it", to make glasses or lenses or more accurately - to put duct tape on the eyes in the hope it protects them.



Tags: English, politics, technology, opinions, essays, life
Created on Tue, 22 Mar 2022

Oceania was at war with Eurasia: therefore Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia.

I think of this blog sometimes as Winston's diary. One day I will probably pay the price of having it and pouring my thoughts here. I can hide it but should I?

I censor myself to think thoughts that may matter. I don't talk about ideas with people around me, other than some very close circle of people that I trust are not the secret police. I'm not paranoid (yet). I enjoy and must be thankful of the freedoms I have in "THE WEST". I must feel the privilege of being a young white male. Some days I do actually feel it now.

I'm a member of the Outer party, working for one of the Biggest Brothers humanity has known. As such, I get almost daily reminder what I should support and what I should oppose. Today I must support Ukraine and hate Russia. Yesterday I shouted that people should get vaccines and raged that the ones who don't are why we still don't have our freedoms. It was so sad indeed


Who wants to be conscious?

Tags: English, technology, opinions, essays, life
Created on Tue, 05 Jul 2022

We don't have a device that measures consciousness. That's it. Until we figure out how to make a consciousness-scale, it's useless to argue whether something is or isn't conscious. A dog can be conscious. But so can a rock. A virus, a star, the rainbow can be conscious until we figure out what the F consciousness is and how we could measure it. All other arguments would be religion for me and I'm slowly starting to get used to saying that you are "free to believe in whatever you want" but as every religion goes - I may not agree with your conclusions.

Imagine it's the day before we figured out how to measure radiation. Our human senses can't detect radiation. Perhaps some radioactive elements glow or if you wait enough time, the long-term effects are that you get a nasty disease. But, without a Geiger counter or such similar device that amplifies the nano-scopic radiation, you would not be able to weed out the materials that exhibit some characteristics of radiation but are not rea


State of AI

Tags: English, technology, opinions, essays, life
Created on Sun, 30 Apr 2023

Human in a box

It is NOT going to be an argument that AI is sentient or have emotions. Certainly not in its current form. I will go to that point later in the essay.

However, I will be putting a human in a box as a thought experiment in learning, not consciousness. It will remind some people of the Chinese room but this will be a more cruel version so that we take away any possible learning that the human has acquired in "the real world" before being put in the room.

The following description may be difficult and emotional to follow.

Imagine a human child is put in a latex suit in a dark box in space right after birth without a possibility to interact with the world in any way, other than the described below. The latex suit limits their touch perception, space removes orientation, it's dark so vision is impaired and there is no sound. The basic physiological needs are provided to them - clean air, food, and water are gi