Recent blog entries for shlomif

Vim Tip: Going to the top or bottommost window/viewport

In the Vim and GVim text editors, one can use Ctrl+W;t (or Ctrl+w;Ctrl+t) to go to the topmost/most top window (= a section of the screen in Vim terminology) and Ctrl+W;b to go to the bottommost/most bottom one.


Syndicated 2015-05-29 17:08:46 from shlomif

Tech Tip: How to Configure Qt 5 Behaviour When Running on KDE4

Recently, I noticed that when running the VLC-2.2.0 prerelease, which is based on Qt 5 for its GUI, on my Mageia Linux 5 system on top of KDE 4, then in the playlist a single-click immediately played a file instead of selecting it, while reserving a double click for activation. After a long amount of research and thought, I figured out a way to configure Qt 5 on top of KDE.

To do so:

  1. Install lxqt-config and the “lxqt-qtplugin”.

  2. Add the line “export QT_QPA_PLATFORMTHEME=lxqt” somewhere before the desktop startup in your “.Xclients” or “.xinitrc” file (or in your “.bashrc”).

  3. Restart the X/KDE environment.

  4. Run “lxqt-config” to configure the appropriate behaviour.

This way one can use the Qt5 customisations of lxqt in KDE 4. Enjoy!


You can reuse this entry under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported licence, or at your option any later version. See the instructions of how to comply with it.

Syndicated 2015-02-28 12:12:47 from shlomif

“Out of the Strong, Something Sweet” - How a Bug Led to a Useful Optimisation

The book Fortune or Failure: Missed Opportunities and Chance Discoveries (which my family used to own, but which I did not read) gives the case to the important role of luck and chance in scientific discoveries. Recently, when working on Project Euler Problem No. 146 I came up with a case of an accidental bug, that in turn led to an idea for a significant optimisation.

The C code with the bug (which was in turn translated from some Perl code) looked something like that:

#define DIV 9699690
#define NUM_MODS 24024
#define NUM_PRIMES 8497392

int primes[NUM_PRIMES];
int mods[NUM_MODS];

typedef long long LL;

static inline bool is_prime(LL n)
    LL lim = (LL)(sqrt(n));

    for (int p_idx=0; p_idx < NUM_MODS ; p_idx++)
        typeof (primes[p_idx]) p = primes[p_idx];
        if (p > lim)
            return true;
        if (n % p == 0)
            return false;
    return true;

            for (int y_idx=0;y_idx<sizeof(y_off)/sizeof(y_off[0]);y_idx++)
                if (! is_prime(sq + y_off[y_idx]))
                    goto fail;
            for (int n_idx=0;n_idx<sizeof(n_off)/sizeof(n_off[0]);n_idx++)
                if (is_prime(sq + n_off[n_idx]))
                    goto fail;

As you can notice eventually, the problem was that in the p_idx loop, NUM_MODS should have been the larger NUM_PRIMES. This caused the test for primality to finish faster, but to sometimes return true instead of false. As a result, I noticed that some numbers were erroneously reported as suitable, but the program finished much faster.

I corrected it and reran the program which was now much slower, but this led me to think that maybe the lower limit to the count of primes can be a pre-filter for primality for the “y_idx”/“y_off” numbers, that will run quicker and eliminate some numbers. As a result, I did this:

#define NUM_PRIMES__PRE_FILTER 24024

static inline bool is_prime__pre_filter(LL n)
    LL lim = (LL)(sqrt(n));

    for (int p_idx=0; p_idx < NUM_PRIMES__PRE_FILTER ; p_idx++)
        typeof (primes[p_idx]) p = primes[p_idx];
        if (p > lim)
            return true;
        if (n % p == 0)
            return false;
    return true;

            for (int y_idx=0;y_idx<sizeof(y_off)/sizeof(y_off[0]);y_idx++)
                if (! is_prime__pre_filter(sq + y_off[y_idx]))
                    goto fail;
            for (int y_idx=0;y_idx<sizeof(y_off)/sizeof(y_off[0]);y_idx++)
                if (! is_prime(sq + y_off[y_idx]))
                    goto fail;
            for (int n_idx=0;n_idx<sizeof(n_off)/sizeof(n_off[0]);n_idx++)
                if (is_prime(sq + n_off[n_idx]))
                    goto fail;

This made the program finish in under a minute, while yielding the correct solution. The original program, with the bug fix, was still running after several minutes.

So the bug proved to be useful and insightful. One possible future direction is to merge the two “y_idx” loops into a single function that will accept an array of numbers, and will check them all for primality using the same divisors simultaneously, so as soon as one of them is found to be non-prime, a verdict will be reached.


You can reuse this entry under the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial 3.0 Unported licence, or at your option any later version. See the instructions of how to comply with it.

Syndicated 2015-02-26 18:23:14 from shlomif

Optimisation Tip: Avoid Excessive Forks+EXECVEs to Processes

This will come as a surprise to few, but performing a separate fork() and EXECVE system calls (e.g: for `factor "$n"` in Perl or popen in C), on each iteration of a loop can really kill performance. One option to reduce that would be to read individual lines from a seq 2 999999 | xargs factor loop, or avoid forking altogether.

I discovered this issue while working on Project Euler problem #141, and I should have realised that the sub-100% CPU utilisation of the program was caused by the excessive spawning of new processes.


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Syndicated 2015-02-22 13:33:16 from shlomif

Tech Tip: Make Jamendo Playback Work in Firefox on Mageia Linux

If you’re having a problem playing Jamendo tracks after pressing the “Listen” button (such as on this page) on Firefox running on Linux, then try to install the packages «gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-plugins-good gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly gstreamer0.10-mpeg gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg» (relevant to Mageia; try their equivalent in other distributions), restart Firefox and try again. The problem is that Firefox needs extra gstreamer plugins to play proprietary formats in HTML audio and video elements. Cheers!

(Thanks to “dolske” from #firefox on for their help.)


You can reuse this entry under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported licence, or at your option any later version. See the instructions of how to comply with it.

Syndicated 2015-02-05 08:34:51 from shlomif

Tech Tip: Make Jamendo Playback Work in Firefox on Mageia Linux

If you’re having a problem playing Jamendo tracks after pressing the “Listen” button (such as on this page) on Firefox running on Linux, then try to install the packages «gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-plugins-good gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly gstreamer0.10-mpeg gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg» (relevant to Mageia; try their equivalent in other distributions), restart Firefox and try again. The problem is that Firefox needs extra gstreamer plugins to play proprietary formats in HTML audio and video elements. Cheers!


You can reuse this entry under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported licence, or at your option any later version. See the instructions of how to comply with it.

Syndicated 2014-12-13 12:15:09 from shlomif

Emma Watson’s Visit to Israel&Gaza ; “So, Who the Hell is Qoheleth?”

Here are the recent updates for Shlomi Fish’s Homepage.

  1. “Emma Watson’s Visit to Israel and Gaza” is a work-in-progress Real Person fiction screenplay which aims to bring Shalom to the turbulent Gaza Strip/Israel border:

    Waitress: I hope you’re having a good time, ah…

    EmWatson: Emma… Emma Watson!

    Waitress: Oh! I heard about you, naturally. Are you gonna threaten me with a wand? Heh!

    EmWatson: A wand… yes, the bane of my existence. I’m thinking of collecting money for a public campaign to convert the weapon most associated with me to something more menacing.

    Waitress: Don’t you have enough money for that?

    EmWatson: No, not enough! Heh. And money isn’t everything.

    Waitress: So you’re not playing in films for money?

    EmWatson: Playing in films for money? Of course not! What a preposterous idea.

    Waitress: Ah, nice.

    EmWatson: I’m playing in films for a shitload of money!

  2. “So, who the Hell is Qoheleth?” - is a new illustrated screenplay that tells what I imagine to have happened to the author of the Biblical book of Ecclesiastes / Qoheleth shortly after he has written it. The timing is appropriate because Ecclesiastes is being read during the upcoming Sukkot Jewish holiday.

    Josephus: Anyway, can you share some details about your trip? I never ventured a long way past Damascus.

    Athena: Sure! It was very interesting. Most interesting.

    Athena: We travelled with our own people and some Greek merchants, all the way to Athens, and there we hitchhiked a ride with some Assyrian merchants, hoping it will get us closer to Alexandria. There were some guards escorting us, and at one point they disarmed us and threatened us at sword’s point to have sex with them or else they'll kill us and take all our possessions.

    Josephus: Wow! Rape. So what did you do?

    Athena: Well, we consulted between ourselves and after a long while of being really scared, we calmed down a little, and decided that if we are forced to have sex, we might as well cooperate and try to enjoy it. So we told them that we’ll do it willingly and they agreed.

    Josephus: How clever of you! And then what happened.

    Athena: Well, the three of us and her lover each found their own part of the woods, and we had sex. Then, after one or two times, the three men all lost stamina, while we were not completely satisfied and cried for more!

    [ Josephus laughs. ]

    Alexis: Yes! Then we heard each other’s cries and we gathered at one place together still naked with our clothes as cover, and we bitched about the whole situation - in Greek - and the men stood there ashamed.

    Athena: Yes! Anyway, we continued as couples throughout the trip and the men got better in love making as time went by, and they also taught us a little Aramaic. Then we arrived at the junction - they wanted to go to Assyria, and we wanted to head more south, and then all the 6 of us were completely emotional and offered each other to escort them on the way, so we won’t part, but we eventually cared enough about the others to let them go on their own way.

    Josephus: Wow! That sounds like love.

    Athena: Love! Yes! That’s the word. Eros in action.

  3. A new essay A #SummerNSA’s Reading has been added for summarising the concentrated “#SummerNSA” / Summerschool at the NSA effort during the summer of 2014.

  4. There are new factoids in the Facts Collection:

    “Talk Like a Pirate Day” is the only day of the year when Chuck Norris only talks like a pirate, and does not actually act like one.

    On Yom Kippur (= the Jewish Day of Atonement), Chuck Norris forgives God for his sins.

    Chuck Norris once refactored a 10 million lines C++ program and was done by lunch time. It then took Summer Glau 5 minutes to write the equivalent Perl 10-liner.

  5. There are some new captioned images and aphorisms:

    Every mighty Klingon warrior has Watched Sesame Street

    Every Mighty Klingon warrior has watched Sesame Street!

  6. The screenplay Buffy: A Few Good Slayers has some new scenes:

    [ Faith is teaching Becky and the rest of the class how to throw knives. ]

    Faith: Becky, it’s nice that you hit the mark three times in succession, but you’re not always holding the knife correctly.

    Becky: OK, Ms. Harris. Can you show me how to do that again? [She prepares her phone.]

    Faith: OK, here goes.

    [ Cut to the bullseye - three knives hit it quickly. ]

    Faith: How´s that?

    Becky: That’s very nice, but as my mobile‘s video demonstrates, you didn’t hold the knife “correctly” (in quotes) once.

    Faith: Let me see. [She watches the video.] Oh crap.

    Faith: Becky, Becky… you have a lot of potential. You’re more than a pretty face.

    Becky: Heh, I knew that I have potential, but do you really think I have a pretty face?

    Faith: If my opinion as a straight, married, woman, matters, I think you do.

    Becky: Thanks, Ms. Harris.

    Faith: OK, class dismissed. Please try to practise at your free time, we’re going to have a test soon.

    [ The students rise up and leave. ]

Syndicated 2014-10-05 12:35:17 from shlomif

Muppets ; Emma Watson Tech Interview ; New Aphorisms and Factoids

Here are the recent updates for Shlomi Fish’s Homepage.

  1. The set of screenplays “The Muppet Show: The Next Incarnation” is me taking the initiative for writing screenplays for a new incarnation of The Muppet Show. Currently, there’s a mostly complete episode with Chuck Norris and Summer Glau as two ruthless Grammar Nazis, another incomplete episode hosting some of the characters of Harry Potter, and a preliminary-stages episode with Jennifer Lawrence (crossing Silver Linings Playbook, The Hunger Games, and her personal life).

    “Meet Chuck”

    [ The Muppet Show Theatre backstage. Kermit and Fozzy are there.

    ChuckN enters through the door. ]

    Kermit: Oh hello, Mr. Norris. We’re so glad to have you here, and we would love to learn more about you.

    ChuckN: Thank you, Kermit. You can learn more about me from my 500-page autobiography, which took me an hour to write, and from the comprehensive book of Factoids about me, of which I wrote every one.

    Fozzy: Funny! Funny!

    ChuckN: Indeed. Anyway, I invited a friend of mine, who is even crazier than I am, to join us.

    Kermit: Really, who is this crazy guy?

    ChuckN: Actually, it’s a crazy girl.

    [ SGlau jumps from above the frame to the upper row and then down to where Kermit and Fozzy are standing. Applause. She is wearing a grey, military-style vest with a zipper at the front. ]

    Kermit: Oh, nice to see you here, Ms. Glau.

    SGlau: Shut up, Mr. Frog! I’m here on a mission from the Grammar God. Herr Norris and I are loyal servants of Grammar Nazism, which aims to unite Grammar Europe under the reign of the Third Grammar Reich.

    ChuckN and SGlau: [in unison] Hail Grammar!

    [ Miss Piggy is walking along the upper row with a fellow pig. ]

    Miss Piggy: Well, I don’t think that Miss Mousy is prettier than me.

    [ A shot sounds and Miss Piggy's hat is blown away. Cut to SGlau, who is holding a gun in her left hand. ]

    SGlau: That was a warning shot, Fräulein Piggy. For your information, it should be “is prettier than I”.

    ChuckN and SGlau: [in unison] Hail Grammar!

    SGlau: Let’s go.

    SGlau: By the way, herr Frog: it is not that hard to be green.

    [ They go out of the frame. ]

    Kermit: Meep. I have a bad feeling about all that.

  2. “Emma Watson getting interviewed for a software developer job”: there is now an ongoing campaign to make that bit CC-by, so please pledge money if possible. Furthermore, I started adding a “What other people are saying” section:

    • «I would not hire Emma Watson. She’d be good for employee morale, but she’d also be too distracting.» - osoleve on Freenode’s ##programming.

    • «I think we would hire Emma Watson on looks alone. :)» — glange on Freenode’s #objectivism.

  3. There are several new aphorisms (some along with captioned images) in the Aphorisms and Quotes page. One of them is «A woman is a lady even if she is or was a porn actress or a prostitute. Treat her with respect, be honest to her — be a gentleman.», which is relevant to the recent celebrity photo leak.

  4. There are new humorous facts in the collection of factoids:

    • Emma Watson does not have 10 years of experience in developing Enterprise Java software. However, she has over 10 years of experience in getting shit done - well, on schedule, and at a reasonable cost.

    • Chuck Norris has 99 problems including a bitch. Summer Glau has exactly 98 problems.

    • Xena the Warrior Princess has not met Chuck Norris yet, or otherwise he would have been badly and permanently injured. (Inspired by ZadYree).

  5. There’s a new collection of fortune cookies with quotes from the sitcom The Big Bang Theory.

  6. There are also new quotes in the Fortune Cookie/Quote collection:

    • rindolf: thecha: hi, what's up?
    • thecha: not much. I am running my trisquel gnu/linux from an usb now
    • thecha: and you?
    • rindolf: thecha: I've been redditting and twittering.
    • rindolf: thecha: and I went on a walk now.
    • pulse: hi rindolf
    • rindolf: thecha: I met a father with two children. he scolded them.
    • rindolf: thecha: I asked him for their names and he said "why does it matter?" :-(
    • rindolf: pulse: hi.
    • rindolf: I also saw a lady sitting on a bench with two Pekinese dogs - one male and one female.
    • rindolf: they barked at me.
    • rindolf: Maybe she was afraid of me (their owner I mean).
    • ezrios: dogs bark at everything
    • rindolf: I also saw some bird watchers in the park earlier in the morning.
    • rindolf: ezrios: some dogs are amazingly calm.
    • rindolf: ezrios: I once met a huge Caucasian Shepherd dog who was less than one years old and called "Rambo" who was super-calm.
    • rindolf: His owner was also very friendly.
    • ezrios: a super-calm Rambo eh
    • epitamizor: cool story bro
    • rindolf: They say the dog and its owner resemble each other.
    • rindolf: epitamizor: every story is cool with the right attitude.
    • rindolf: epitamizor: - see this.
    • rindolf: ezrios: yes , amazing.
    • rindolf: ezrios: Rambo was the epitome of a tough all powerful super-muscular anti-geeky warrior/action-hero.
    • rindolf: ezrios: but the fact of the matter is that the best combat warriors in the world are: 1. Not very muscular. 2. Geeks.
    • rindolf:
    • thecha: ok i will try
    • thecha: the dog probably ws being agressive because the owners mood was affecting him
    • thecha: the owner probably was being hostile so the dog followed suit
    • thecha: and the guy with the kids should have just said the names isntead of being a dick about it
    • thecha: you go for walks often?
    • rindolf: thecha: yes, I go for walks a lot.
    • rindolf: thecha: yes, this father should learn some things after fatherhood.
    • rindolf: thecha: the children were nice.
    • rindolf: Oh! and on the way upstairs there was a very young boy with a toy gun and I pretended to wage an imaginary war with him. He enjoyed it.
    • thecha: rindolf-> who won the imaginary shoot out?
    • rindolf: thecha: he did I think.
    • rindolf: thecha: I let him win.
    • rindolf: thecha: he seemed to have enjoyed it.
    • rindolf: thecha: children can be so smart.
    • pulse: i don't think age has anything to do with smartness
    • rindolf: thecha: and it helped brighten my day.
    • rindolf: pulse: yes.
    • rindolf: pulse: I have actually grown smarter with age.
    • pulse: i've grown wiser. not much smarter
    • rindolf: pulse: ah.
    • rindolf: pulse: what's your distinction?
    • rindolf: pulse: I've grown wiser too.
    • pulse: smart is the ability to calculate things fast
    • pulse: wise is the ability to live your life ;)
    • rindolf: pulse: there are more parameters to intelligence than doing fast calculations.
    • pulse: i guess there's certain correlation between the two
    • rindolf: pulse: yes.
    • pulse: i know. there's different types of intelligence
    • pulse: but most types boil down to two things. calculations and speed
    • rindolf: pulse: ah. IQ?
    • pulse: any kind of intelligence
    • pulse: IQ is a sort of generalization of all types
    • rindolf: pulse: see - «Forget #IQ! #Sloppy → #Confident → #Smart!! #TeamGrimmie #confidence #competence #PublishOrPerish»
    • pulse: but it's also stupid
    • pulse: rindolf, hmm
    • pulse: what am i supposed to see there :P
    • pulse: i still don't know how twitter works
    • pulse: what are those hashtags supposed to be
    • pyon: rindolf: Meh, sloppiness is just sloppiness.
    • pyon: rindolf: One can be flexible without lowering one's own standards.
    • thecha: rindolf you can't let the enemy win
    • rindolf: thecha: yes, bring the Delta Team with Chuck Norris, Sylvester Stalone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and.. Summer Glau (!:-)) against this boy.
    • rindolf: there shall be blood tonight!
    • ssta: you really are obsessed with this Summer Glau
  7. Navigation blocks, similar to the ones on Wikipedia (e.g: “Template:Star Trek” have been added to some of the pages (like here.

  8. I have a new Résumé as a writer and entertainer, which is very short.

  9. My essay “Putting all the Cards on the Table (2013)” has been updated and is now available in several different formats, including a one HTML-page-per-section document, an EPUB ebook, and a PDF file.

  10. My personal ad (= “I’m looking for a girlfriend”) was heavily updated - it’s currently in English only.

  11. Many new scenes have been added to the screenplay “Buffy - a Few Good Slayers”:

    With Buffy

    Becky: Of course, everyone knows that Buffy is better than Chuck [Buffy Facts]. He’s been secretly fighting against her, and so far has lost all of those battles.

    Cliff: Yeah, and her gaze can turn Medusa into stone!

    Chankey: Buffy Summers is not afraid of demons. Demons are afraid of her, and for a very good reason.

    Buffy’s voice: Buffy Summers is always there when people are spreading untrue hyperboles about her.

    Cliff: Oh, hello Ms. Summers.

    [ Buffy approaches them from a different aisle in the library. ]

    Buffy: Hello, kids.

    Cliff: By the way, what is your post-marriage name?

    Buffy: It’s “Summers”. Angel and I are both called that. He didn’t find his original family name usable in this day and age, so he adopted mine. His original name was very aristocratic, and he is actually a direct male descendent of Charlemagne.

    Becky: Ooh… so you are now Milady de Summers? Awesome!

    Buffy: Heh, well, it is Faith that has an unnatural obsession with Milady de Winter — not me.

    Buffy: In any case, for your information, I fought against Chuck Norris several times and lost all the battles. In fact, that was part of the catalyst that made us realise that slayers were only humans and that men can be equally as capable slayers as women. You will hopefully get a chance to meet and even fight against Mr. Norris sometime throughout the school year.

    Becky: I see. So, Ms. Summers, what are you doing here in the library?

    Buffy: I’m looking for a book I misplaced.

    Becky: About slaying?

    Buffy: No, about cooking. A cookbook from the late 60s with a nice spinach, Broccoli and cheese casserole.

    Becky: [Types a few things on the keyboard.] Ms. Summers, I was able to find a recipe for a casserole like that from that era.

    Buffy: Let me see. [Looks] Wow! Looks great. Becky, you've got a lot of potential as a slayer.

    Becky: Why, thank you!

    Cliff: Bleh! [He puts his head in his hands.]

Syndicated 2014-09-07 16:50:33 from shlomif

Finishing Off The Open Content / Web 2.0 Revolution: (#SummerNSA)

  • Subject: Finishing off the Open content / Web 2.0 revolution

  • From: Shlomi Fish (a.k.a “Rindolf”), the hacker king of the Open content/Web 2.0 revolution (~2000-2014)

  • To::

    1. Summer Glau, Hollywood actress, known for her roles in Firefly, the Sarah Connor Chronicles, xkcd and Summerschool at the NSA, and who I suspect wishes to become the new hacker queen.

    2. Sarah Michelle Gellar, Hollywood actress and producer, known for playing the fictional Buffy Summers, who was the hacker queen of the Web 1.0 revolution (~1997-2000), in the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer (BtVS). Ms. Gellar was also the frontwoman of the show, and Hollywood’s Alpha female for that period.

    3. Chuck Norris, martial artist, actor, and filmmaker , the inspiration and subject of many satirical “facts” about him, which have become a very powerful weapon by their own right, and also inspired my NSA “facts”, and later and earlier humorous collections of facts.. Furthermore, Mr. Norris appears to be the current Alpha male of Hollywood.

    4. Megan Fox, Hollywood actress, a very inspiring person, and someone whom I suspect wishes to become the next Hollywood Alpha female.

    5. Jennifer Lawrence, Hollywood actress, a very inspiring person, and the present Alpha female of Hollywood. Also provided a lot of inspiration for the multi-sectioned essay “Putting All The Cards On The Table (2013)”.

    6. General Keith B. Alexander, retired United States Army general, and former director of the National Security Agency (NSA).

    7. Joss Whedon, Hollywood filmmaker (writer, director, etc.) who is notable here as the creator of BtVS, and Firefly, and a potential back-up director for Summerschool at the NSA.

  • CC::

    1. Larry Wall, creator of the original “patch” program, the Usenet newsreader “rn”, the Perl programming language versions 1-to-6 and their “perl” implementations and the hacker king of the Open source/Usenet revolution (~1984-1997).

    2. Edward Snowden, former contractor for the CIA and the NSA, who is notable for foolishly, but gallantly, revealing a lot of internal claims of the NSA (= NSA “intel”) and becoming a media hero and an outcast. Mr. Snowden has thought he was under a constant threat for revealing what was likely mostly a product of delusional minds inside the NSA (or false/out-of-date data as intelligence data probably often goes).

    3. Randall Munroe, creator of the xkcd web-comics, which introduced me to Summer Glau, and provided a lot of inspiration and fodder both for “Summerschool at the NSA” and for other aspects of hackerism. He may wish to further collaborate with Glau on her journey as the new hacker monarch.

    4. All action heroes / hackers and geeks / amateurs of the world.

Producing “Summerschool at the NSA” (#SummerNSA)

Your assistance is required in producing the feature film “Summerschool at the NSA” based on my original screenplay. The screenplay is made available under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-by) and its text is original. I have designated my recommendations for some of the cast, and the film should be capable of being filmed mostly or entirely in a film studio and at a relatively low cost.

Note however that I encourage any productions whatsoever of the screenplay, including by enthusiastic independent film makers, on YouTube, and including producing them as voiced animations.

I also neither mind nor discourage any hacks and deviations from the original screenplay, up to and including featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger sending Rihanna to kick the NSA’a ass, or Kermit the Frog doing the same with Fluttershy. (And you may consider both mutations as artistic challenges).

What I do not want is that nothing will get done, and that there won’t be any film - by anyone - in the forseeable future. So please get to it as soon as you can. I need you, and the world needs you.

If you create something, please mark it with the hashtag of #SummerNSA.

I have written about some profitable business models for creators of online culture, which do not involve ad revenue which is small and has proven to be ineffective. Absent from the post, is selling merchandise (see the famous “Merchandising” excerpt from Spaceballs), and putting selected Project Wonderful-like ads, which the web site owner pre-approved of and are non-intrusive. Film makers and artists may wish to deploy them either with “Summerschool at the NSA” or with different cultural works.

Implications Of The “Summerschool At The NSA” Films

The open content / Web 2.0 revolution has proven to be a blazing success and a source of decent or better income, esteem, and publicity for many individuals, small companies, large companies, and other organisations. While during the Web 1.0 era, information was hard to find, not reliable, and often hard to contribute to (what Prof. Lawrence Lessig calls "read only" vs. "read/write" in his book Remix, which I read and loved.), in the Web 2.0 era, one can build upon information, which is often cited and reliable, change it, enhance it, and perform many remixes as well as crossovers and “mashups”.

It is my belief that it was I, Shlomi Fish (“Rindolf”), who was the “Hacker King” (a.k.a “Warrior King/Queen/Monarch” / The best-of-the-best-of-the-best / The Saladin / The Qoheleth / The John Galt / etc.) of that revolution. To quote what Quark from the Star Trek franchise said about the Grand Nagus, he/she: «has the greatest business mind… always thinking ten, sometimes twenty steps ahead of everyone else.» and the kind of person who has the same ideas as everyone else only five years earlier and thus is named a lunatic.

Nevertheless, my reign as Hacker Monarch has reached its end with the writing of the screenplay, Summerschool at the NSA. The latter mixed and matched Judaism (Tanakh, Talmud, and Israelism), Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the xkcd web comic, the “99 problems” meme, the old “Publish or Perish” adage, the deeds and words of Saladin, open source and open content, some modern but not unthinkable technology, love/romance/sex/relationships, pop culture, and humour, and more into what was essentially a realism, Real Person Fiction, story. Furthermore, it featured fictionalised versions of Sarah Michelle Gellar, Summer Glau, and General Keith Alexander, who was the director of the NSA at the time. I also ended up seeing it as my modernisation of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged novel, which was her magnus opus as Hacker Monarch (while still building upon it, referencing it, and going against some of it original premises).

Like Atlas Shrugged, “Summerschool at the NSA” was eventually understood to be my magnus opus, and I passed the baton to someone else, Summer Glau, and thus mostly concluded the open content/Web 2.0 revolution with a mostly happy ending and a blazing success. Sic transit gloria mundi (STGM).

The formalities for concluding all that are:

  1. Directing/producing the feature film or films of “Summerschool at the NSA” in whatever format they shall be done.

  2. Ms. Glau and I meeting somewhere and me asking her these questions, which I'll give along with the answers I expect:

    1. Question: Are you afraid to die?

      Answer: There is no correct answer.

    2. Question: Are you afraid to live?

      Answer: Maybe I have in the past, but I no longer am. I will do and say what seems right and good, whether people like it or not (while still being careful and avoiding being arrogant).

    3. Question: Do you wish to become the Hacker Monarch, while being fully aware of the implications of this role, and taking full responsibility for it?

      Answer: Yes, I do.

  3. I will give her my blessed/cursed amulet of power, a plain brown ten-sided die, that was given to me as a present by my friends at the time, and ask her to determine what to do with it next. I urge her not to throw it away or destroy it (by seeing if it blends or whatever), since despite its low cost and mundaneness, it is a fine piece of engineering.

  4. I will declare Summer Glau as the presiding hacker queen, and step down from my role, and become a hacker king emeritus.

One implication of all this is that we shall finally and almost completely unite these worlds:

  1. The Academia.

  2. The software industry / open source / Internet / World-wide-web workers.

  3. The “content”/culture creators, both the content industry (e.g: Hollywood, the MPAA, the RIAA, and many smaller local franchises around the world) and many hobbyists, amateur, independent and/or unsigned artists and content producers.

This is despite the fact that some of these worlds appeared to be at a constant dispute with each other. This merging of these worlds is similar to the merger of the AT&T UNIX/BSD worlds and those of the early PDP-10-based ARPA-NET and NSFnet hackers that happened at the early 80s, and that in turn led to the open source / Usenet revolution.

There will likely be a lot of time to reflect upon my history and achievements during my reign as hacker monarch of the world, but I think the future is more important than the past. I have a lot of potential advice we can use to continue to battle the remaining man-made problems (e.g: bloodshed, suicides, deaths due to arrogance and carelessness, possible present and future environmental problems, unnecessary red tape and regulations, unnecessary hatred, antagonism and distrust, and vandalism) and some questions for further inquiry. However, it's now also up to the new generation of activists of the upcoming post-open content / post-Web-2.0 revolution (whose nature is yet to be discerned) to build upon the work of the activists and action heroes of the open content revolution, and take the world even more forward.

So let me just give some pieces of advice to Ms. (Summer) Glau, which are mostly relevant to other people as well.

Advice To The Upcoming Hacker Monarch
  1. Don’t be too arrogant and/or careless - I don’t want you to get killed prematurely, and it seems God punishes more people for that rather than for being bad.

    Note that Hubris in moderation is still very important as almost all ancient and modern technology (from fire, through Aristotle’s Logic and science, through the Lever, through modern architecture, through automobiles and air and space travel, to computer and computer networks, to this very essay and very word) are product of mankind wishing to defy "gravity" and show his environment that he is not bound by its rules.

    Furthermore, courage and spite is required as a way to avoid the “fear of living”: never fear what some other people think or do not think about you. Furthermore, accept criticism and even encourage people to prove you wrong or even offend you. Like the mightiest Klingon warriors say when they were proven wrong: “What a great day it was for me to die! Thank you for this excellent battle.”.

  2. Don’t feel superior. Even if you are the hacker monarch, everyone else is or can be the most powerful man on Earth, and the Messiah. Even the smallest and most fragile inanimate object, serves an important purpose in God’s (= The King of the Kings of the Kings) world.

    You can never travel the path or survive alone. You need each and everyone and everything out there.

  3. Be Yourself: remember that whatever you do or whoever you are some people will always complain. Please all→Please none. Aim for perfection in imperfection. Remember that You’re awesome.

  4. Take a good care of yourself. Have a lot of “Wine, Women & Song”: Good food and drinks (that taste good and are what you desire at the moment); Good company - of any sex ; and clean, creative, enlightening, fun - however amateuristic or of apparent low quality.

    While it’s OK to be busy for short periods of time, don’t become a wage slave who doesn’t eat and drink well, doesn’t socialise, and doesn’t have time to enjoy themselves.

  5. Seize the day! (= “Carpe diem”) Don’t wait for a special ocassion to enjoy yourself or contribute to the world - or usually both. Every day is the unbirthday of your friends, your fans, everybody, and of you, and it’s a good day to remind them that you love them.

    Every day can be the best day of your life so far.

  6. Don’t be pseudo-Utilitarian: if you made one person a little happier, then what you did was a blazing success. “He who saved one man, has essentially saved the world entire.”.

  7. Never deny that you are the hacker queen: proudly admit it. Too many hacker monarchs did not acknowledge their own self-worth. Don’t repeat the mistake of Larry Wall and of me, and play “The Invisible” who is arguably the worse kind of hacker monarch.

  8. Be a hacker / action hero: bend the rules, violate them, surprise people, defy social norms, dogma, inertia, prejudice, enthropy and gravity, all in order to earn your victory and - be happy and proud doing that.

  9. Be an alpha female (= see “Wesley Snipes” in this essay by Eric Sink) or a beta female (= “Denzel Washington”) or a little bit of both, but don’t be a Gamma↔Omega female.

  10. Get an active online presence. See my plan for that and the comments I got. One further note is to avoid Shaike Ophir’s “The English Teacher”’s definition of monologue as “One person talking to himself”, which I noticed many celebrities succumb to. The more you reply and interact with the people who reply to your online posts and comments, or otherwise interact with them, and collaborate (engaging in a true dialogue), then the fewer redundant answers will be given, and the better quality the discussion will be.

  11. Be honest and enlightened and constantly stay honest and enlightened. Honesty and enlightenment are processes and one must constantly be committed to become more and more honest and enlightened, or else they immediately became dishonest, cynical and stagnate.

  12. Practice the basics of the philosophy of Saladin, a very noble man, a strategical genius, and one of the most notable hacker kings in history.

  13. If you’re in a dilemma or run into some trouble, remember that I and possibly other hacker monarchs emeriti (such as Larry Wall) and your other friends who are hackers and geeks, are always there for you and can give you a fresh perspective on the situation.

    ( An independent person is not someone who does everything on their own using feudalism taken to extreme. As long as he or she takes full responsibility for the outcome of their actions, they can ask or even pay for help or advice. )

  14. Finally, remember - Sic transit gloria mundi! You will most probably not be the hacker monarch forever, because one day you too will create your magnus opus, and a younger (at least in spirit), more awesome, action hero will displace you as hacker monarch, because they want it more badly than you. And they can be a man or a woman or a group, fact or fiction, animal, vegatable, or mineral, etc. And then you too will become the Hacker monarch emerita and actually feel relieved about all that.

Have a lot of fun, stay smashing and awesome, and hack on!

Hail, Saladin! Hackers of the world, unite!

References and Further Reading
  1. “The Eternal Jew” - an early attempt at codifying “Rindolfism”, which is my personal, one man, dynamic philosophy.

  2. “Putting all the Cards on the Table (2013)” - a multi-sectioned essay, that was written in March 2013, a short time before I wrote Summerschool at the NSA, and which was inspired a lot by Silver Linings Playbook, Jennifer Lawrence, and the fact that she won the Academy for it (at age 22).

  3. Summary for “Putting more cards on the table (2014)” - points for an essay that is an update/ammendement to the previous one.

  4. “Saladin Style” - a short, irresponsible essay about Saladin’s innovative and inspiring strategy and philosophy, that still has direct implications today.

  5. My works of fiction, humour and action heroism and my essays

  6. About “Rindolf” and “Rindolfism” - a page about my nickname and personal philosophy and my hopes and expectations for the future of me, Summer Glau, and everyone else.

  7. My Twitter feed, where I posted many thoughts and insights about “#SummerNSA” and other things. I have some other presence on social media sites.


This work is copyright by Shlomi Fish and licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution licence version 3.0 (or any later version). See my interpretation of it.

Syndicated 2014-08-31 12:13:12 from shlomif

Buffy - a Few Good Slayers; Summer Glau and Emma Watson Facts; and More

Here are the recent updates for Shlomi Fish’s Homepage.

  1. Buffy - a Few Good Slayers is a new Buffy fanfic screenplay based in a forked branch of the Buffyverse.

    [ Text on the screen: Sunnydale High School Orientation Day ; Sunnydale ; California

    First few chords of Miley Cyrus’ “Party In The U.S.A”. Rebecca “Becky” Shepherd is shown walking in the high school lobby listening to the song playing from her smartphone that is tucked on her belt. She is wearing a My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic shirt, and has a name tag that reads "Rebecca Shepherd (Slayer)". ]

    Cliff: Yo, Brony girl, stop!

    Becky: Hey, sorry for not paying attention [she pauses the music]. What’s up?

    Cliff: Chankey here [points at Chankey] and I are looking for a slayer to complete our team. You don’t seem exactly like slayer-material, but since all the other slayers we talked with were taken, I guess we should settle on you.

    [ Becky smiles. ]

    Becky: Sure, I’d love to be team with you. Let’s register.

    [ She uses her smartphone to register. ]

    Becky: OK, done.

    Chankey: [in an English accent] Smashing!

    Becky: Chankey, is it? Are you British?

    Chankey: Yes, Miss Shepherd.

    Becky: “Becky” please.

    Chankey: Yes, well, I am of Indian descent and carry an Indian name. I have photographic memory, and did extremely well in my studies. I was supposed to start studying in Harrow School (the notorious public school, or what you Americans will call a “private school”) because I had many friends there, but then became aware of some demonic activity in Greater London, and was indoctrinated as a watcher-wannabe here.

    Chankey: I don’t have any friends here.

    Becky: [Grabbing his hand.] I’m sure you’ll make some.

    Chankey: Yes.

  2. There are new pages with some factoids about Summer Glau and with factoids about Emma Watson:

    • Summer Glau does not have to hurt you if she doesn't want to. Chuck Norris kills everyone in sight.

    • Summer Glau can lead a horse to water, and then it will drink out of its own volition.

    Some photos were also added to the facts pages to spice them up.

  3. There’s a new feature about “Emma Watson getting interviewed for a software developer job”.

  4. How to Get Help Online is a new feature about where and how to get help online. It has a 2014 edition.

  5. “Why I Do Not Trust Non-open-source Software”

  6. Page about the new “Back to my Homepage” logo

  7. The old page, “Stop Using Internet Explorer!” now has a note as being deprecated and a page with some essential updates

  8. There are now EPUB versions of the screenplays for free and direct downloading or viewing. Share and enjoy!

  9. I added the section about Rindolf “Aim Very High” Hitlower:

    Not only is Rindolf an evil Reindeer but he is the notorious insane tyrant and mass-murderer, Rindolf “Aim Very High” Hitlower. As you may have guessed, people said that my nickname “Rindolf” reminded them of “Adolf Hitler”, and even though I was offended by it for a long time, I eventually decided to take it to my advantage too. Recently (Late June, 2014) I’ve told people that I decided that in my personal and professional life, I will aim very high in the hope that I will hit the aim or perhaps a little lower, and so settled on this nickname.

Syndicated 2014-07-09 05:17:37 from shlomif

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