Furthermore, it is clear from the Fountainhead that like Howard Roark, Ayn
Rand expected fortune and success to come to her at the time without her
doing anything about it. In <i>Atlas Shrugged</i> on the other hand, all
-the characters including the protagonist Dagny and the antagonist John Galt,
+the characters, including the protagonist -
+Taggart</a>, and the antagonist -
+<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Galt">John Galt</a>,
are constantly travelling and networking. Like it should be. Today you can do
the same using mostly (but certainly not exclusively) Internet means.
-And that was also my problem, which I've decided to avoid now.
+And that was also a problem of mine - that I have not networked enough,
+which I've decided to avoid now.
<h2 id="david_and_goliath">David and Goliath</h2>
“The Word ‘Hacker’”</a>) - he knew the rules, and played by them,
but knew how to bend them, in order to earn his victory. There
were many other hackers since, and there are a lot of them today even if
-some of them think that “hackers” only mean no good-nick and malevolent computer
-intruders. Hackers come in all shapes and sizes - and, while a lot of
+some of them think that “hackers” only mean no good-nick and malevolent
+computer intruders. Hackers come in all shapes and sizes - and, while a lot of
them are male, many of them (including
Ayn Rand and Jennifer Lawrence) were or are female.
Was David Jewish and Goliath a Philistine? Did the battle actually happen in
its form? What really happened to David next? That is hard to know, because
-in a true open source fashion,
+in a true <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_source">open source</a>
the peoples of the Near East gladly borrowed legends and memes from other
people and improved them, or adapted them to their whims. This is similar to
how we now create fan fiction by the droves. (Only now it's in much greater
<h2 id="machines_that_can_give_questions">The Machines That Can Give You Questions</h2>
-Back when <a href="http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Pablo_Picasso">Pablo Picasso</a>
+<a href="http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Pablo_Picasso">Pablo Picasso</a>
asked for commenting about computers, he said
“But they are useless. They can only give you answers.” and in a sense he
was right, because most computers at his time were used for one-off (and
The 1986 film <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumpin%27_Jack_Flash_%28film%29"><i>Jumpin'
Jack Flash</i></a> Starring Whoopi Goldberg (which I highly enjoyed
-exemplified the power of early computer communications, though it was
-still in its infancy. The early popular Internet around the late 90s, with
+exemplified the power of early computer communications, though they were
+still in their infancy. The early popular Internet around the late 90s, with
the so-called <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_1.0">“Web 1.0”</a>
was a hodgepodge of static web sites (often at GeoCities), lots of useless or
incomplete information, search engines that were still not very good, and
-naturally, lots of fan pages of Buffy and Sarah Michelle Gellar (who was the
-Jennifer Lawrence of the time).
+naturally, lots of fan pages of
+<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buffy_the_Vampire_Slayer_%28TV_series%29">Buffy</a>, <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarah_Michelle_Gellar">Sarah Michelle Gellar</a>
+(whom I can retrospectively tell was the Jennifer Lawrence of the time),
+and other contemporary trends such as
+<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Potter">Harry Potter</a>
+or <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friends">the <i>Friends</i>
when he is old, has a malfunctioning left leg, and can be defeated relatively
easily by some of the most competent of his younger peers. However, I am
sure this is not the only battle that Chuck Norris has lost, because we
-all had many disappointments in our lives, things that didn't work like
-we wanted to, people we liked or even loved that hated us, moved out of
-our reach, or died, and opinions we held or proclaimed that turned out to
-be mistaken. Chuck Norris had those too. These lost battles are part of who
-we are as human beings and a natural part of life on Earth.
+all had many disappointments in our lives; things that didn't work like
+we wanted to; people we liked or even loved that hated us, moved out of
+our reach, or died; and finally - opinions we held or proclaimed that turned
+out to be mistaken. Chuck Norris had those too. These lost battles are part
+of who we are as human beings and a natural part of life on Earth.
started on the left foot, but that we're now on good and even friendly terms
with one another) told me about the Chuck Norris Facts Internet "meme"
and I was quickly able to come out with my own fact. After collecting a few
-original facts like that, I set up <a href="http://www.shlomifish.org/humour/bits/facts/">a page for them</a> on the humour section of my homepage having
+original facts like that, I set up
+<a href="http://www.shlomifish.org/humour/bits/facts/">a page for them</a>
+on the humour section of my homepage having
figured out that even if I had a silly quirk
of writing such factoids about people and things, then people will still take
me more seriously due to my longer stories and screenplays and my longer
old enough to have a heart attack or any other deteriorating health problems
due to old age. We are all fragile, and must realise we should not succumb
to Hubris, because even if God does not exist, then Hubris will make us do
-some really s
illy stuff, which will end up causing our downfall.
+some really s, which will end up causing our downfall.
-As surprising as it sounds, even God has a master: logic.
Ever since Aristotle
+As surprising as it sounds, even God has a master: logic. Aristotle
(which back then
+<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organon">Organon</a> which back then
was not so taken for granted - “A is A, and A is not not-A? Of course A can be
-not-A. What kind of drugs is he on?”), which mathematicians, scientists and
-engineers have used to construct greater and better technology - both physical
+not-A. What kind of drugs is he on?”. After doing that, mathematicians,
+scientists and engineers have used his logic to construct greater and better
+technology - both physical
and “concrete” (like the tall buildings in various cities around the world,
land, air and space travel, and naturally - computer and computer networks)
and mental (like the various philosophies, idea systems,
-and mythological systems, up to this very essay and this very word), logicians
-have proved that some tasks are impossible to perform and true omnipotence
+and mythological systems, up to this very essay and this very word).
+Despite all the benefits that the Aristotelian logic gave us, logicians
+have proved that some tasks are impossible to perform and true omnipotence
+is not possible. Perhaps the most famous
is “Can God create a stone so heavy that he would be unable to
lift it?”. However, a more
recent and more important one is
<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halting_problem">the Halting problem</a>,
-which specifies that one cannot write a program which will finish within
-a finite time, that will determine if any other arbitrary program will
-terminate or alternatively run forever. While the formal proof is complex,
+which specifies that one cannot write a program which will:
+<b>1.</b> finish within a finite time, and <b>2.</b> will determine if any
+other arbitrary program will
+terminate (or alternatively run forever). While the formal proof is complex,
there is a short and informal proof that most intelligent people can
-understand. So the King of the Kings of the Kings, as mighty and wonderful
-as he is, also has a master.
+So the King of the Kings of the Kings, as mighty and wonderful as he is, also
<h2 id="tie_your_camel">“Put your faith in Allah, but tie your camel”</h2>
is not what it seems to be (see Descartes’
think therefore I am”</a> thought experiment, and naturally The Matrix
-concept from first Matrix film, which I have yet to watch).
+concept from <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Matrix">first
+“The Matrix” film</a>, which I have yet to watch).
Alternatively, it is possible that God does not exist, and reality is simply
whimsical and random, but still enabled the creation of life, intelligence,
and finally - human consciousness.
to write what was on my mind, and to make the story as fun as possible. And
as surprisingly as it sounds, some of the most ancient myths (e.g: the stories
in the Hebrew Bible, or those of the Greek mythology) also contained all
-that in their own old and now antiquated way.
+that in their own old and now antiquated way.
understanding, and insights, and being a whole rounded person. The world’s
greatest warriors such as Chuck Norris or Bruce Lee were not overly muscular,
and Chuck Norris had a happy and supposedly uneventful childhood. He also was
-aware that he has to stand for himself, and take decisive action (“The Gods help
-them that help themselves”) instead of letting life lead him in its own way
-("Go with the flow" or "Be a product of your environment").
+aware that he has to stand for himself, and take decisive action (“The Gods
+help them that help themselves”) instead of letting life lead him in its own
+way ("Go with the flow" or "Be a product of your environment").
So did most of the Navy SEALs.
see <a href="http://www.robcottingham.ca/cartoon/archive/tldr/">Noise
to Signal’s “TL;DR” cartoon</a>), but I recall that most of the youth
of my generation (I am 1977-born), also did not read any books,
-or read most of the history and other textbooks of my class (like I did too),
-, and instead spent a lot of time playing with friends or
+or read most of the history and other textbooks of my class (like I
+exceptionally did), and instead spent a lot of time playing with friends or
watching television or whatever, and they turned out fine eventually. Nowadays,
many kids are bound to do things that will make some of us as grown-ups
think that “the generation is diminishing” but naturally, this is folly
-(see <a href="http://www.robcottingham.ca/cartoon/archive/this-brain-this-brain-fire/">the Noise to Signal’s “Fire” cartoon and the comments about it</a>),
+(see <a href="http://www.robcottingham.ca/cartoon/archive/this-brain-this-brain-fire/">the
+Noise to Signal’s “Fire” cartoon and the comments about it</a>),
and is just indicative that you are growing more cynical.
As a matter of fact, newer generations can build on the work, knowledge,
and wisdom of older generations (“Standing on the shoulders of giants”) and
-achieve dazzling new heights. During Helenistic times, many people believed that
-philosophy was a useless mind exercise, that philosophers were contaminating
-the youth, and that they were parasites who make problems where none exist.
+achieve dazzling new heights. During Hellenistic times, many people believed
+that philosophy was a useless mind exercise, that philosophers were
+contaminating the youth, and that they were parasites who make problems
That was all well and nice, until the Romans had a lot of pain and casualties,
<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexandria">Alexandria</a> used to
-be the “It city” of the Helenistic period. While some inland cities like
+be the “It city” of the Helenistic period. While some inland cities like
Jerusalem and Damascus had a good strategical position and were important
centres, almost all the great philosophers lived and operated in Alexandria.
Wonders of the Ancient World</a> only the Pyramids of Giza still stand.
But while the other wonders were marvels of aesthetic beauty, the Pyramids
-were just giant, not aesthetic, graves, which no one would like to live in. Even
-<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uxmal">Mayan pyramids in Yucatan</a>
-look more pleasing than them.
+are just giant, non-aesthetic, graves, which no one would like to live in.
<h2 id="not_accept_who_I_am">My second biggest mistake: not accepting who I am.</h2>
song? Someone will complain. You’re wearing prescription glasses? (Like I
do.) Someone will label you as “half-blind”. You wrote some Star Trek
fan fiction? Someone will tell you it’s lame. You wrote
-Chuck Norris facts or lolcats? Ditto.
+<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolcat">lolcats</a>? Ditto.
If I didn't take the time to work on my home site, it would have not grown
to a tenth of the size it is today. And I started with some Spartan pages
-written in very old HTML with some mathematical riddles, and a C.V.
+written in very old HTML with some mathematical riddles, and a C.V..
Now my home site is positively huge and people can spend days on end reading
-everything I've placed there, and
also adding more and more text there
+everything I've placed there, and adding more and more text there
is easier for me out of practice. A lot of people have been jealous (i.e:
wishing what I created was created by me) or envious (i.e: wishing to destroy
what I did) but I knew better than to be permanently set back by them.