If you want to contact me, maybe the fastest way is via WeChat or Email:
- WeChat ID (微信号) thinkweird
- Email address: thinkweird#gmail.com (replace # with @)
I’d be happy to get to know you.
If you want to contact me, maybe the fastest way is via WeChat or Email:
I’d be happy to get to know you.
I enjoyed listening to the Chinese language program (les grands) penseurs Français (法国思想长廊) by 赵越胜。The program is a great introduction to French thinkers because it is concise, clear and the content is well-structured. However, when I want to listen to all the previous episodes from the very first one, I found that the only way to do it is visiting their website and click on dozens of program pages to download the mp3 files one by one. This is time consuming, error-prone and frustrating.
Why not use a podcast app instead? Because I cannot find the complete list of all the podcasts of this program, and only the latest ones are available for download. I also checked the RFI Chinese website, and the feed subscription on it is not complete.
Is this due to the restrictions of the feed mechanism or just a stingily misconfigured setting of the number of feeds for subscription? I don’t know, but I want to get the complete podcast of this program and listen from the very beginning and it is not easy to do so. Also, RFI Chinese uploaded the wrong file for the episode called 卢梭与伏尔泰, because the mp3 file on the website feed is Asia_weekly_09-12-17_SEM49.mp3, which is not about les grands penseurs Français.
And I took my time to send a feedback through the contact form on RFI’s website. However, after I clicked ‘send’, I saw a cirle spinning and spinning forever, and my suggestions to RFI Chinese failed to go through.
Then I thought maybe I can send them a private message via twitter, however, I was prompted by twitter that @RFI_Cn was not following me so I couldn’t send them a message. No, I am giving RFI a international long distance call to send my feedback and suggestions.
As a last resort, I thought I should post my frustrations here on my blog, because if RFI Chinese cares about their listener’s feedback, they should fix their website contact form or simply leave an email address.
If RFI Chinese read this post, please kindly contact me at thinkweird (replace with.@.symbol) gmail.com.
Today, after installing Debian Testing, which is code-named as ‘stretch’, I noticed that my network interface is changed into enp0s25 instead of the familiar eth0. After some quick search, it was revealed that Systemd did this. The tentacles of Systemd have extended too far and too many. What was initially as init management program, now tends to control every aspect of the system. I am seriously considering switching away from all Linux distributions that come with Systemd. Devuan is a promising option (https://devuan.org/) and next year, instead of donating to Wikipedia as I usually do, I will donate to devuan to show my support.
Here are more complaints for Systemd:
Init has been working perfectly for me, and I don’t need whatever magic Systemd claims to have
Now I also have some complaints about Debian. When installing a program, –no-install-recommends and –no-install-suggests should be the default setting. I want to clean system and I don’t want to install unnecessary dependencies which take up the hard drive and memories.
If the colossal ship of Nokia was sunk by a mole from Microsoft, fellow Linuxer, beware of Systemd, it can damage the Linux ecosystem by its corporate agenda. Fuck Systemd.
Linux should always be a system of individual tools working happily together, each responsible for doing one thing only and doing it excellently. By no means should a monolithic system service like Systemd extend its claws in the tried-and-true philosophy of *nix systems.
Switch to Devuan.
This is a precursor of possible a long post about configuring a software firewall using virtualbox together with an open source firewall distribution such as ipcop, pfsense and t1n1wall (one of the successors of m0n0wall).
I will jot down the most important elements here and these are the results of hours of tests on various combination of configurations.
Instead of keeping just the Bridge Protocal of vmware and Bridged Networking Driver of virtualbox, I ticked another two additional protocols:
In particular, Link-layer Topology Discovery Responder is essential for connecting to the wireless network. When it is unticked, the WAN interface under ipcop or pfsense finds it very difficult to connect to the wireless router. As a result, the network property for the physical network interface on the Windows host machine looks as follows:
No. If you use bridged network, there is no need to setup VLAN.
If you choose to attach the network adapter to Internal Network, you may need to setup VLAN for the LAN to access the Internet, however, I didn’t test it. I am not so sure if you can even choose Internal Network when you want the host Windows machine to access the Internet.
I experienced several problems with pfsense and I don’t recommend using it with virtualbox and vmware if your sole purpose is using a firewall to protect your Windows PC with a firewall.
These two resources provides very useful information for sett
Gravity is mediocre. The Internship is a commercial for Google. This is the End is a disaster. These are all getting high scores from IMDB. When the bad things get good reviews and high scores, it means the whole industry is at risk — the trust is lost. When movie watchers know the hard earned money and precious time are spent on manipulated reviews and scores, they will stop going to movie theaters. What’s coming next Hollywood? Depression.
AxCrypt is a nightmare for my computer. It downloaded many exe files and installed Conduit Adware across the system. My Firefox starting pages are deleted and the homepage is changed into http://search.conduit.com. An ugly and intrusive toolbar is also install on Internet Explorer (IE).
A virus total scan report shows that AxCrypt is infected with OpenCandy Adware. Actually it is worse than normal Adware because it is so pervasive and intrusive — most important of all, no user consent was acquired before this heinous AxCrypt infected system with Trojan like malicious applications: Malwarebye scan reports that there are about 140 folders, files and registry keys which are infected with conduit malware. Please avoid using AxCrypt at all cost. You have been warned.
To the developers of AxCrypt: shame on you!
Gravity’s score and reviews on IMDB is dubious. For a stunning high score of 8.7 and over 48 thousand votes, I thought this movie must be very good. However, the result is disappointing. I will just give this movie a 6.0 for its visual effects but the story line is very simple and hurried to the end.
The inflated score on IMDB, just like it is on Taobao, will hurt the whole movie industry as the disappointed audience will no longer pay to watch movies with good reviews, knowing that the scores have been rigged. The good movies will suffer because they will not get the attention they deserve and are easily drowned in the noises created by illicit promotional activities. The individual’s voice will not be easily heard, although they supposedly have an equal vote with the movie ticket they buy.
In a digital age, the public opinion can be easily created and swung by a few key strokes and clicks — the monopoly of media tycoon can manipulate the statistics and the masses will buy into it and buy the mediocre products — the best ones do not even have a chance.
OK, I was wrong about the finale of Breaking Bad and Heisenberg did die. The most unforgettable line in the last episode is, when talking about why he did what he did, “I liked it. I am good at it”. This explained why he wasn’t successful as chemistry teacher, because he didn’t fulfill his destiny — to do the things he is good at. The scene when the hidden machine gun in the trunk mowed down all the gang members is a cathartic outbreak of revenge. It is well done. However, it could be even better if he used his chemistry skills to deal with the gangs.
Now here is some new information I found about Breaking Bad. Bob Odenkirk performs the lawyer role brilliantly in the movie. He grew up in Naperville, Illinois. From his biography on IMDB, he is “three credits shy of graduation” and wrote extensively for comedian shows. He also won a few Emmy awards. One day, I perhaps need to write a book to list the successful college dropouts and the unsuccessful college graduates. Bryan Cranston certainly know the importance of sticking to it. I think when he was at the lowest point of his career, he had thought about quitting and became an insurance salesman. However, he didn’t. Here is what he said about why he didn’t give up: “You know, this business is pure luck. It truly is. There is a tangible amount of luck that is necessary for a successful career, and the only way that luck happens is if you’re prepared for it and you stick with it. If you drop out of the scene, your opportunity for luck diminishes greatly. No one’s going to say, ‘Hey you’re an insurance salesman. Come and do this movie.'” “I don’t need to work, but I love to work and I will make the movie if I would want to go and see it. ” “It is also interesting to learn he drove motorcycle around the US. It was just two confused boys running away. My brother was on the verge of becoming a deputy sheriff, and I was grappling with whether I wanted to be a police officer or an actor. So we got on our motorcycles and just left California with no plan. I had $70 in my pocket, and that soon ran out. We got odd jobs wherever we could. We worked at cafés, in carnivals, at beachfront hotels selling suntan lotion, earning just enough to get back on the road. We camped everywhere, the cheaper the better. Just a patch of grass was all we needed. A few times we stayed at midnight missions, in Texas and Louisiana, and those were always scary.”
I haven’t watched the last episode of Breaking Bad, but I am pretty sure Water White did not die in the finale. The producers and script writers have two choices: one is letting Mr. White put up a good fight and kill all his enemies and died a heroic death. The rationale behind this ending is Mr. White has late stage cancer and he will die anyway. The second ending is Mr. White will kill all his enemies and walk into the setting sun as Heisenberg — with his tell-tale hat.
I think the second ending will be favored because if Mr. White is dead, there won’t be opportunities to produce a possible sequel and even a movie on this brilliant story again. The death of Heisenberg means the loss of commercial interests, so he will not definitively die in the denouement.
In all circumstances, Mr. White will join hands with Jessie and annihilate the new meth cooks in a violent way. After the revenge, he will reclaim his money and leave for good, leaving behind the suspense that he would come back one day in a sequel TV series.
The focus of the last episode will be his revenge with the gangs, reconciliation with Jessie, temporary reunion with his family, and most of all, the redemption of his name — he is still Heisenberg!
When I am reading the little and old book called America in Perspective, which collects over 30 essays written by foreigners to describe American way of life. The excerpt written by Richard Muller-Freienfels offered very penetrative insights by characterize as a country of mechanization and standardization. Although it was published in 1927, the descriptions are still exactly true in today’s America. I couldn’t help but dogear the page and jog down his insights as follows:
In a purely external sense, the mechanization of life is conditioned by the size of the country… A vast network of railways covers the land; the telegraph and the telephone, both largely American inventions, have reached a high degree of development… Above all, the motor-car is not a luxury, but an article of everyday utility, which is obvious from the shabby conditions of most of the cars one sees… In the eyes of the American all these things have a positive value… This general mechanization of life is, of course, due to the co-operation of a number of factors. The lack of domestic servants, which I shall presently consider as a social factor, has of necessity resulted in the mechanization, even in the home, of many tasks which in Europe are performed by human labor.Everyone who has visited the United States will be able to recall similar characteristics, all of which go to prove the same thing, namely, that the whole of life has been mechanized in a far greater degree than with us.. the prevalence of practical thinking, of the concentration of the intellect on the practical, useful, and efficient, and the obverse of this attitude is the repression and suppression of all that is merely agreeable, emotional, and irrational in the personality. This rationality, as a form of thinking and willing, expresses itself in constructions and instruments and machines which impress the purposeful will of humanity, with the aid of the inorganic forces of Nature, on the outer world. The machine is above all the typical creation and manifestation of the utilitarian and practical reason. It is pure practicality, embodied rationality.
The mathematization and technicalization of life is connected inextricably with a further trait of Americanism–with the typicalization, or, to use the American expression, the standardization of life. Nowadays one may also call this Fordization, since Mr. Ford is regarded a peculiarly representative of his country. Standardization is a consequence of mass-production, mathematization, and mechanization, for it implies the unlimited mass-production — for the most part by mechanical means — of a definite type of product … At all events, an observant eye will note the conspicuous appearance of the same features everywhere, in spite of obvious differences. This typification will be seen in the most prominent features as well as in the least conspicuous.
In every sizable town, there is a WalMart, Home Depot and Blockbuster. A visit to McDonald’s will show you the array of devices and equipment which makes fast food delivery even faster. It appears to me that for every problem, there is a technical solution and for every illness, there is a magic pill for it.
One unifying character of American society, which encompasses all the characteristics in this dazzling diversity in this country, is the inherent belief individualistic capitalism. Everyone is a business and you need to run it as you do with a business. You make personal choices and accept consequences. No one, even the parents, cannot run the business for the child, because they cannot face the liabilities of infringing upon another individual’s business. The consecration of individual capitalism began as early as when the egg is fertilized. As to the question of how closely this celebration of individual enterprise is related to the fundamental changes of Christian belief system, I am not so sure. But I know it does have a connection and has manifested itself ever since the first English immigrant steps on the new continent.
I hope to write a book on this topic one day.