First draft ready

July 23, 2007

Today I’m a happy guy: officially, I’ve finally got a first draft of my complete PhD thesis. From now is only scribbling and making small corrections here and there until my hand-in deadline (next Tuesday).

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Thesis

May 14, 2007

I’ve just started writing my Ph.D. thesis. Got my papers together, downloaded the template from the daimi webpage, got a plan in mind for it, time to start working. Hopefully, I will write a nice dissertation until July 31st, so that some really smart guys will say that it deserves a Ph. D. degree.

Yet another CS gig

January 24, 2007

project.jpg

Missing square

January 16, 2007

I’ve just (re)seen a famous geometry teaser and decided to share it with you. Just take a look at the image below. What happens is that in both cases you build a large triangle out of the same pieces, but in one case a square is missing. How is that possible?

Missing square

Tord’s bithday

January 15, 2007

As always happens when returning from holidays, the first weekend in Denmark is always full and this time was no exception. This post is focusing on the most important event, namely Tord’s birthday. It’s been a nice, cosy party, with good food (Tord cooked some delicious Norwegian cookies), good music (got Mirka as a DJ), good wine (according to my taste :)) and an indian-dressed-like Chris. Actually, I think those cookies were a bit too good, since Rune couldn’t stop from eating ten of them (got no clue how he managed to do that). After the eating and drinking parts me, Chris and Mirka gave some kind of “talk” of our indian trip having the pics as slides, which should be particularly useful for me since in the coming day I’m planning to spam Planet Daimi with the second part of my indian trip. The last part of the party was dedicated to explaining role-playing games (I’ve made a not-so-short movie with a Tord solo to be found at http://www.daimi.au.dk/~gabi/misc/MVI_0509.AVI – sorry in advance for being reversed).

PS. Another movie in the same directory shows Rune trying to have a “Robert and Susan” picture.

Trip to India

January 9, 2007

In a series of posts, I will try to write a point of view on my not-so-recent trip to India. For now, I will write only about the way there which was pretty far from boring.It seems somehow that every time I travel by plane something has to go wrong, e.g. got luggage lost, plane landing in another airport, a big knife in my hand luggage, overbooked flights and the examples can continue. Unfortunately, this time was not going to be any different. Briefly, my day started great with a Julefrokost, continued really nasty and ended at the borderline between tragedy and comedy. A welcome coincidence made it that just before the day of my departure (scheduled Dec 9th, 3:15 a.m. – bus to Billund) the Computer Science department organized the Julefrokost. Since I was not in any mood to return from Julefrokost to Brabrand, take the luggage and go, the plan was to get my luggage to the Uni, go to Julefrokost and afterward, around midnight, go downtown, spend some time in Tir na nog and get the bus. Well, everything went smoothly at the beginning. The Julefrokost was nicer than usual (I guess Claus deserves most of the credit for it), it had some very interesting quiz that revealed some interesting facts that not too many knew, good food, good beer and schnaps, great company, lots of Santa hats, all the good Danish traditions. However, as all the good things come to an end, I regretfully had to quit the party and leave downtown. And now comes my fatal mistake. Since I did not want to get into Tir na nog with my big luggage, I decided to let it for a few hours in a locker inside the railway station and pick it up around 2:30, just before going to catch the bus. And not little was my surprise to find out, the hard way of course, that the railway station is locked between 2:00-4:00, this particular night with my luggage inside. The bottom line is that I found myself sometime in the middle of the night, downtown Aarhus, awfully tired, semi-drunk, and with no luggage, bound to take a bus that would take me to India. A situation I could do without, certainly. However, in all this mess there is some ray of light too. First of all, I still had my hand luggage. Second, Tord came to make sure I got on the bus (and I am VEEERY grateful for his gesture), which means somebody could get my luggage out of the railway station. Needless to say, I immediately got sober and instead of some well-deserved sleep, on both the bus to Billund and flight to Amsterdam I started to make some kind of shopping list upon arrival. After some shopping in Amsterdam and a loong and tiresome 8 hours flight to India, here I am in Delhi, almost midnight, no luggage, lots of warnings from Saurabh (take care, no taxi from anywhere excepting a single spot, no drinking tap water and some other nots that I don’t remember now).

Following Saurabh’s suggestion, I hired one of the prepaid taxis from a booth inside the airport. Until exiting the airport building, India looked somehow like Europe, excepting maybe the dressing style for girls. However, once outside, the differences got huuge. First of all, I got struck by the huge amount of polution, since I could barely breathe. Second of all, my taxi was kind of a small van, which could barely accomodate three danes. Once the engine started, it sounded like one of the really old Romanian Dacia cars, meaning I had the feeling it would break down at any moment. And I was not very far from being true, since about 10 mins drive, the car started to produce a really ugly sound that determined the driver to stop and investigate what the problem was (some nice topping for my whole trip 🙂 ). To my surprise, after some 5 mins of detective work he returned from the back of the car with a pretty long chunk of the exhaust pipe. The trip to the hotel went on smoothly with no further mechanical problems (a miracle, considering the way that car looked), but I got the oportunity of getting a glimpse of Delhi in the night. Since Delhi is a XXXXL city (its population is about 20 million people, meaning almost the population of Romania, or almost 4 times the population of Denmark), the drive to the hotel took quite some time. The car drove through some really poor neighborhoods with people on the side of the road warming themselves on improvised fires, also through some empty areas, it hit some good roads which were no less than European motorways and some bad roads that looked like some bombardments took place. Also, it seems like the red color is some times optional and some times mandatory, since the driver stopped only in certain cases that I could not reverse engineer. To give the reader a glimpse of Delhi traffic, we even hit a traffic jam at 2:00 a.m.

When arriving at the hotel, I felt a bit like the character played by Tom Hanks in “Cast away”. I had in my hand luggage some really neceesary things, but I also had with me things that I could do without (e.g. sun glasses), that could be carried by somebody else (the present for Saurabh), or that were simply useless (a Santa Claus hat). Since I managed to write what it seems to me like a huge post and I am not planning to spam the daimi blog, the first part of my trip to India concludes here. I’ll get back soon with the best part of the trip, Saurabh’s wedding.

to be continued…

Back to Romania

July 18, 2006

Well, after a long period of “inactivity”, I finally have the time and the mood to write some stuff in my blog. I reached home really tired, since I started my “odyssey” Thursday evening 8pm and I arrived home Friday evening 9 p.m. (8 p.m. Aarhus time), hence it took 24 hours. One should not imagine that it always takes me that much to get home, but since I don’t trust DSB anymore (and the DSB people behind the counter advised me not to count on the trains arriving on time) I had to catch the 2 a.m. train instead of 4 a.m., and before that I was to Sherlok Holmes with four pretty girls for a karaoke evening, which was really fun (hanging with the girls, of course) b.t.w. At home, after some initial days of sleeping almost non-stop, I started meeting my friends, going out, making holidays plans and so on. It’s always nice meeting old friends, chatting with them for hours while drinking the cheap, good romanian beer (or wine). Actually one of my friends sent me a link with one of the funniest movies I’ve seen in ages, and I must share it with you. It’s about learning English the really hard way (it’s set in China I think). Here it is:

http://www.tubel.ro/modules/news/article.php?storyid=105

Enjoy! (I certainly am 🙂 ).

Tyskland impressions

July 3, 2006

Last week, I’ve been to Germany to watch the football game between Italy and Australia at the WC (i.e. World Cup). Basically, what happened is that I applied last winter with a friend for tickets just for fun and since we’ve got them I had to go see the game, even though I wanted to see any team BUT Italy.

Way there

The way there rivals the return trip from Vancouver for worst trip ever. It started Sunday morning in Aarhus around 7:00 a.m. and ended in Saarbruecken around 1:00 a.m. next day. Well, first of all I couldn’t buy a seat in the train, because of an event I couldn’t really foresee, namely the Roskilde festival people that booked all the seats. If until Fredericia they appended some extra carriages where I found a seat, from Fredericia to Copenhagen I had to stand for three hours (yeah, the train was three hours late). When finally arriving in the airport, I found out SAS made overbooking for my flight, so my departure was delayed by a few hours and I had to go to Frankfurt via Gothenburg. When finally arriving in Frankfurt, the last direct train to Saarbruecken was long gone and I had to change twice, in Mannheim and Kaiserslautern. I remember that I was almost running to catch the train in the airport when I saw that Holland and Portugal were playing and the score was 1-0 (I though for Holland). So, when in Kaiserslautern I saw some dutch supporters the most natural thing to do was to ask them what was the score. I guess this wasn’t the best question to ask them, since immediately I realized from the looks on their faces that Holland lost. Fortunately, they weren’t the “hooligan” type, since otherwise I would have probably been in some trouble.

The game

Since my friend has some locomotory problems, we left Saarbruecken quite early to avoid any unpleasant surprises (the famous highway “stau”s – traffic jams, finding parking space, finding the stadium etc). As a consequence, since nothing went wrong, we arrived quite early at the stadium. It was quite a funny experience to watch the game surrounded by “aussies” supporters, which I remembered to have quite some funny “supporting lines” out of which unfortunately I remember only one: “you’re blue, you’re white/You go at home tonight!” – useful to remember b.t.w. In what concerns the game itself, as everybpdy knows, it was screwed by the referee who gave a free red card and a strange penalty in the last minute. Anyway, I conjecture Italy will not receive any goal this world cup, they have a five star defense (and now Nesta and Materazzi are back). Therefore, even if I didn’t point out Italy as the winner in our tipping competition, “Forza Italia!!!”

PS. A bunch of pics is to be found at http://www.daimi.au.dk/~gabi/pictures/set025-VM2006/

My first real post

June 16, 2006

I've just found online some funny kind of test for the "lateral thinking" abilities (Mirka should love it). You are supposed to find an expression for each point (you can take the first one as an example).

Enjoy! 

         man
1. ————
        board

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = man overboard

       stand
2. ————
         i

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = I understand

I guess you've got it.

3. /r/e/a/d/i/n/g/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = reading between the lines

4.    r
     road
      a
      d

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = cross road

 

5. cycle cycle cycle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = tricycle

 

 

            0
6. ————
          M.D.
         Ph.D.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = two degrees below zero

           knee
7. ————
           light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = neon light (knee-on-light)

       ground
8. —————————–
     feet feet feet feet feet feet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = six feet underground

9. he's X himself

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = he's by himself

10. ecnalg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = backward glance

11. death ….. life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer = life after death

12. THINK

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer think big !!

And the last one is really tough…

13. ababaaabbbbaaaabbbbababaabbaaabbbb….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Answer long time no 'C' (see)

🙂