Category Archives: Fun

Bruce Schneier would be proud of this security issues …

Lately I ordered two games in UK, like everyone does as they are much cheaper for us Austrian than buying them around here in a store :-D. The store of my choice has already promptly delivered a first package, so I was quite sure that this won’t pose a problem this time. BUT: After placing my order I got a “security mail”:

[…] Due to increased security for online orders, we ask for proof of address to be sent to us before we can dispatch your order.

This is a standard request on international orders, to protect us and our customers from fraud.

Please forward a copy of your bank statement or a utility bill (gas, water, electricity etc.) by email to info@xx-xx-xx-xx.co.uk or alternatively by fax to +44 xxxxxxxx39. […]

My answer was short and sharp: I don’t have any bills as this is my work address and I wouldn’t send one if I had one. First of all they already got the money (via paypal) and secondly this was already the second order. I also sent them a link to my homepage 😉

[…] Thank you for your email and your attachment.

I can now confirm that your order has been taken off hold and was
dispatched on 13/08/2009 ,

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your patience and
understanding in this matter.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any further enquiries […]

So it worked even without the scanned identity proofs 😀 To have an additional good laugh on internet security check out the Bruce Schneier Facts (A good one: “P = NP in Bruce Schneier’s very presence.”).

Appendix: Of course I will not tell you which shop this is. I’m not even allowed to do this. It says so in the email signature. Have a look yourself:

The unauthorised disclosure, copying, alteration or other use of this
message and/or any attachment(s) is strictly prohibited. The originator
does not guarantee the security of this message and will not be
responsible for any damages arising from any alteration of this message
and/or any attachment(s) by a third party or as a result of any virus
being passed on.

Registered Address: MyMemory Limited, FREEPOST 500, St Helier, Jersey,
Channel Islands, JE1 1FH. The information transmitted is intended only
for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain
confidential and/or privileged material.

Hally Poter Goblet of Fire or “why I like ordering things in Asia …”

Hally Poter Goblet of Fire

Just checking back on the dealextreme website once in a while to see if there were any new and interesting gadgets I found two really funny (at least to me 🙂 ) things. First of all I found a very interesting game on a 44 games in 1 cartridge named “Hally Poter Goblet of Fire“. I wonder if that game resembles a rather well known kids story 😀 Just click on the image on the right hand side and note the first game in the list ;). The product the image belongs to is here.

Secondly I found an interested on an image belonging to this product: “The export, commercial use or leasing of this product are prohibited“. *LOL* Find the image here.

Best of compiler construction

In general one should not post errors of other … but well I just give the best answers, no questions, no names … and of course: it’s a good laugh 😀

Notation for describing graphs is not quite clear to some people. I also miss the mother nodes: […] nodes in the dependency graph are depending on father nodes, sister nodes and brother nodes […]

Asking for advantages and disadvantages of a certain approach I got within the same answer: […] advantage: program is faster, disadvantage: program would be slower […]

Please note that I assume that these answer come out of the stress of the people writing the test and not the missing knowledge.

Compiler Construction & Lord of the Rings

Recently I had an idea on compilers and code generation. Generating assembler code (I’m talking about MIPS code) and with it labels I thought: Why not using cool names for labels? Instead of

LB_WH002_001G:
beq $a1, $v1,  LB_WH002_002G
add $a1, $a1, $v1
j  LB_WH002_001G
LB_WH002_002G:
...

One could be more creative and use for instance Names from Lord of the Rings like:

THE_SHIRE:
beq $a1, $v1,  MORDOR
add $a1, $a1, $v1
j  THE_SHIRE
MORDOR:
...

While this definitely does not increase readability of assembler code I still think it doesn’t lessen it much. Instead it introduces “geekiness” to assembler 🙂

For those who are not creative themselves and need a lot of labels I recommend the numerous fanrtasy fantasy name generators available on the internet like this, this or this one.

Slogan Generator …

Sometimes we just need to be pushed into creativity for marketing. A nice tool is the slogan generator. For the semanticmetadata.net blog it generated

“If You Can’t Beat Semanticmetadata.net, Join Semanticmetadata.net.”

and

“You Too Can Have a Semanticmetadata.net Like Mine.”

However I think I won’t use those slogans 😀