I’ve spend most of my day sorting stuff in my appartment in Germany, in case I have to leave it in a few months. It’s weird to look at all the stupid stuff you accumulate. Post cards from a couple of friend and family in holidays, old student card, student association card too, obsolete identity paper, maps from places you’ve being. Oh, cool, a train map from Tokyo. Dang! This stupid stuff will be useful again soon.
Shoes, 7 pairs of them. And I still have to battel against my mother for not buying new ones. But I couldn’t find my sport shoes. That’s not cool, I’ve promise a Japanese living in Tokyo that I’ll bring my sport shoes so if we both find the time we could do a tennis. Actually, he insisted on the tennis after I made the mistake to say I did Tennis once… 10 years ago, while I was still at high school.
Books, all read but 3. One I never really get in, I wanted to return it to the friend who gave it to me. But for some reason he convinced me to keep it. Another, a collection of most stupid real stories, some "Darwin awards", I’ve read a couple of pages then stopped. Maybe I’ll take it on my trip to read a couple more, killing time. The third and last, a book from Ursula LeGuin in English I failed to read because too much vocabulary was not understandable to me. I planned to read it once, seeking in a dictionnary the french meaning of the words. But I don’t have a paper dictionnary, and each time I’m only I’m busy with something else, or don’t have the book with me.
Computer Science magazines. Most of them I’ve trown them to trash bin. It’s so seldom to have one with real substance which will make it a piece of history. I kept 2 of the many, although. The first because it has on its first page a joke about music industry drama against illegal music download on internet, back in 2002. The drawing shows a man dressed as a priest and shouting "Somewhere, someone knows when you’re downloading mp3, and you’ll pay for it, one day…" At the time, I believe the music industry was illegally creating files of people they notice have suspicious download activities online. What a futile quest, but also a piece of ‘cyberculture’ history.
The second, much newer, dated march this year, contains an article about Windows XP ‘flaws’. Not really a piece of computer science history, but a piece of personal history. Indeed I’ve being closely involved myself in one of the two ‘flaws’ exposed in the article. An unfortunate change in SP2’s cache manager behavior to optimize hard drive access, namely a locking for synchronization to avoid that the two different writers of cache manager write each of them once the same block of data, this optimization also caused to the particular file system driver for windows my team of engineers is working on, caused it to actually slow down, because the synchronization caused writes from the lazy writer to be interrupted with gaps (the lock attempts from the second writer) and the non-sequential write are awfully slower than sequential writes on optical storage unit which our file system driver uses. It has being quite a fuss this thing. Now Microsoft has made an hotfix, but the end-user got to pay MS’s support to get the fix. As our product is intended for end-user, nobody will accept to pay for the fix. So instead our engineer team spend a considerable time to write clever algorithm to re-order the, quite chaotic, writes from the SP2 cache manager. God thanks all this will be forgotten history with Windows LongHorn. I should say, Windows ‘Vista’.
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