I'm back in San Francisco! Woo hoo!
I am sooooo glad I sold my Viant stock as soon as I was able to - Divine (the company that recently acquired them) just did a 1 for 25 reverse stock split.
I leave Slovenia this weekend.
Billy the Egomaniac is pretty funny - same style as Jhonen Vasquez's Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, except it's about the Smashing Pumpkins.
Pax made me laugh earlier:
jamieflournoy: Windows networking sucks. It's faster to use SSH to copy a file and then use VNC to move it onto the windows machine, than it is to just copy it over a VPN connection using windows explorer
There are more pictures in http://media.white-mountain.org/2002_Slovenia/ now.
Taking pictures in Jama Pekel ("Hell Cave") without a tripod was challenging and a lot of the ones I took were too blurry to keep. :(
Yes yes, I know, I tried using the flash, but that's problematic - see 300_cave_interior_damn_flash.jpg (120K JPEG image). I tried bracing the camera against a wall or railing; I messed with the camera settings, but it's just bloody dark in there, you know? I need a tripod. Still, I bracketed like crazy, and managed to get some good pictures anyway.
Seeing some of the rock formations reminded me a lot of Roger Dean's cover artwork on Yes albums. Compare Green Towers, Relayer, and Freyja's Castle with 303_weird_pools_orange_walls_are_rock_hard.jpg (130K JPEG image), 313_looks_like_a_roger_dean_painting.jpg (201K JPEG image), and 316_treelike_shapes_on_wall.jpg (130K JPEG image). Clearly he was influenced by stalagmites and some of the other organic looking rock formations in caves.
The tour guide said that the orange vertical curtain in 314_one_inch_thick_curtain.jpg (119K JPEG image) is about 2.5 million years old.
Don't miss this one: 307_result_of_water_dripping_at_angle.jpg (215K JPEG image). It's really organic looking. It's the result of water dripping from the ceiling, hitting an angled wall and spraying small droplets onto the pictured spot. Unlike a normal stalagmite that results from a constant stream of drops, each splash is slightly different so the pattern you see is the result of chaotic behavior. Neato.
I played squash with Igor and Natalija on Monday night. Squash definitely exercises muscles that biking, running, and skiing don't. I'm still a bit sore (and it's Thursday). Actually I wasn't sore on Tuesday; it caught up with me yesterday. Walking up to the fourth floor where the PIA office is was not easy. :)
The squash court is actually an addition to Sandi Vihar's house, built for his daughter Petra Vihar, the number one women's Squash player in Slovenia. I had been introduced to Petra and a friend a few days earlier while Igor, Natalija, and I were walking around the lake (105K JPEG image). Actually there are three lakes; there was originally one but intensive coal mining caused the land to sink and created two additional lakes. We were walking around the one called Škale. Anyway, afterwards they told me about her mad squash skillz (143K JPEG image). Unfortunately, I didn't get to see her play; she was on her way out when we arrived to play.
If you open this document in Netscape 4.x for Windows and resize the window, the browser will crash.
I've noticed that a lot of dark-haired women here (of all ages) have dyed red highlights. Not just a few, a LOT, especially in Ljubljana.
It rained last night. Today there are a zillion slugs on the sidewalk.
There are more pictures online now, this time from Bled and Bohinj.
Here is my favorite new Slovene word: Okrepčevalnica. Pronounce it oh krepp cheval neetsah, and make sure to slightly roll the R (kinda half r, half d). The meaning is something like "refreshing snack bar". In a sentence: "I like the cevapcici made by the Albanian guys at Okrepčevalnica Mladost in Velenje."
Perhaps tonight I'll try the Mladburger. ;)
I have in my possession an empty can of Red Bull energy drink with Slovene printing on it. It's pretty cool. I'll bring it back.
Now I have 288MB of RAM in my laptop. Aaaahhhhh. No more save-quit-launch-edit-save-quit-launch cycle.
It's 5:05pm here, and the weekend has just begun. In Slovenia the work day starts at 7am and ends at 3pm local time, but I had some more work to do before taking off. It's ice cream time :)
James (one of the developers here) will be taking me on a tour of Slovenia tomorrow including Bled (check out that URL!). I'll take as many pictures as my camera batteries and memory cards will allow.
I'm trying to get a memory upgrade for my Thinkpad (my main computer over here). They had a PC for me but I figured that having the right keyboard, plus all the software I needed, would be a good idea. It was, but I have learned that this laptop doesn't have enough memory to really be my main machine. I'm not coding at the moment but I am running a bunch of different apps at the same time. I already switched back from Mozilla 1.0rc1 to IE 5.01 because Mozilla takes about 40MB and IE only takes about 8. That has helped a lot. But it still sucks because Mozilla is my main HTML editor and I was switching from Netscape Mail (which is a very good IMAP e-mail client, far better than the awful Outlook) to Mozilla, so I don't really get 32MB back all the time.
Despite what you may think, Slovenia is actually quite modern, it's just that it's small (~2 million citizens?) and has only existed since 1991 when they split from Yugoslavia. They have cute cars and cordless mice and GSM phones like the rest of Europe, and soon they'll be a part of the EU. Still, I was surprised that there is a PC repair shop in the same building that sells memory upgrades suitable for my laptop. Almost. It turns out that it fits and the BIOS can identify it, but refuses to actually use it. 32768KB OK is not what I want to see. :( So it looks like I'll be ordering it. Until then, it's gonna be all about defragmenting my hard drive and quitting one app before starting another. Old-school. :)
Luigi keeps making this wicked Turkish coffee that really leaves me wired. The first time I wasn't sure what the stuff in the bottom was so I drank the whole thing. Oops, it's unfiltered coffee grounds! Some of you noticed that I was up from 6am to about 3am last Tuesday. Now you know why.
As Kim said about this, some things are worth $15 a year.
I'm back from Prague. What a tourist trap! I guess some of it may be due to the Prague Spring but jeesh! More photos are online in the Photos from Slovenia area.
Right now I am in a cybercafe ("internet office" they call it) in Prague. Fortunately the Czech keyboard layout is not too different from the US layout. I just wanted to catch up on email and let you blog lurkers know I have pictures from the last week online now:
Pictures from Slovenia (and London, and soon Prague, Venice, and Paris).
Kid Loco is playing in town tomorrow night and I'm going to try to see the show. I'll let you know how it goes.
I'm currently sitting in an easyInternetCafe in London near Soho and Covent Garden. I have a running travel log and about 150 digital camera pictures on my laptop, but it's not with me right now, so I'm going to wait until tomorrow night (when I'm in the office in Slovenia) to upload all that. The short version: Everything is going well so far. London is fun.
For some reason my AOL Instant Messenger buddly list is empty here. Is AIM so stupid that the buddy list is kept on the client side instead of on the server (which is how Yahoo messenger does it)? Or is is just acting funny for me? Lame.