Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Great Ashley Madison Hack

Dear Ashley Madison account owner:

Are you THAT stupid? You want to do those awful things secretly, and your next step is ... you give your identity to a company you never know personally? For good measure, you also declare your intention in that company´s website? I am 100% sure you deserve your current misery. Not only because you are an immoral arse, but also because you are that stupid.

Dear Ashley Madison owner, administrator, etc.:
Isn't it wonderful when people can't trust you anymore? Do you want to strangle those hackers who ruin that trust? Ah, that means you know how your clients SO feels about you. That is what we call empathy. That is what differentiate us from sociopath. That's why I can't help but smiling whenever I remember how this hack ruin your business. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Being and Stay Single

Being single is not easy for anybody's social life. You know the routine, friends, relatives, even close families often think that they have the right to order every single people. Like usual, the order is ALWAYS masquerade as questions like "Where is your girl/boyfriend?" or "When will you marry?". You know, questions that were asked in passive-aggressive tone. Most single people will just shut their mouth even though they are pissed by those orders. Not me. I already prepared an elaborate answer that shut the hell up of everyone who dare to give me those "perfectly camouflaged" order.

Middle Spot
Folks, let me remind you of 2 facts:
1) A good relationship is INFINITELY BETTER than being single.
2) A bad relationship is INFINITELY WORSE than being single.

Society remembers the #1, this is one of the reason they keep nagging, demanding that all single people have to have relationship. At the same time, society know perfectly well but ignore or forget #2. This 2 polar opposite facts bring us to the conclusion:
Being single is located IN THE MIDDLE of the happiness curve.

And, what is so bad about being in the middle? I heard "everything have to be in moderation" is today's mantra for happiness? That is not all. This sweet spot in the middle is even sweeter than you thought! Usually that is enough to deter those pesky friends & families, but in case they still insist ...

Calmness is good
There is also the problem that arise from the dynamic nature of a relationship. Some relationship can turn from good to bad in a second. And, it is not only the "bad relationship" that hurts, the downward movement from good to bad is EVEN WORSE! Just ask people who have been through divorce. So, people who stay single by intent, avoid all those dramas. They consciously choose to live in the calmness of the middle spot, without any movement anywhere for awhile. That calmness actually enhances the happiness! The only thing that can disturb that calmness, that sea of tranquility, is the pesky-nagging friends and relatives. 

It is not that all single people must stay single, to defend the "calmness" forever. Single people can also decide to take a risk, and seek for "mr/mrs right" and finally have a good relationship. But it is THEIR decision when and how to do it, not their friends, not their family. And let's speak about family.

Oh, you are their family so you think you have the right to covertly order them? You LOVE to give them a lot of "between the lines" to be read by anyone in your family that is still single? Let me ask you this question philosophical question: 

Ordering anyone to have romantic relationship is easy. Making any relationship works isn't. Unfortunately, those people who give the order are not the one who suffer once the relationship gone sour. Who do you think will receive the shits when they are forced to date or, heaven's forbid, marry someone they don't like only because of social pressure? Not you, not their family, it is THEY WHO SUFFER. 

A sensible strategy
Found this quote from Niall Horan shortly before I finished this
article..He got it right.
What? You said I am too pessimistic? I don't count the potential rewards of a good relationship? Screw that, society already screaming about those rewards ad nauseam with bullhorns. It is time to for me to scream back:
"HELLO, 50% of all marriages have ended in DIVORCE! Thinking about a relationship gone sour before it happens is not pessimistic, it is realistic and rational! Any risk manager will agree with me!"

It is the opposite, people who don't calculate that risk, even after being reminded, are the one who is ignorant, or delusional, or both. 

So, stop worrying! Being single and consciously choosing to stay single is actually a sensible risk-management strategy!

Bonus: The Oatmeal already pointed out similar phenomena about having children

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

My Dream Car

I am appalled. Whenever I asked most men about their ultimate dream car, most of them answer with sport cars. You know, like:
Lamborghini Aventador? Pff, too regular.
Ferrari F12Berlinetta? It looks like an asshole.
Porsche 911? Are you kiddin me? That car is smaller than my fist!
Aston Martin whatever? Too snobbish.
Bugatti Veyron? Zzzzz ... snore ...

Let me list the reasons why ANY sport car sucks in my city, Jakarta:
1) Maneuverability 
The streets in Jakarta are simply too crowded. That's why you have to be brave to drive in Jakarta whenever you want to move your car to the next lane in a traffic jam. No, don't even try to shout, or scream, or pushing your horn. It is just useless. You only need to hit your gas pedal whenever you see an opening, whatever your distance to the next cars Good luck trying to do that with your Aston Martin! I bet your heart would scream far whenever you think about it. Speaking about crowded streets ...

2) Speed
That means you can't drive faster than 25 kmph. Even in some special cases whenever the streets were empty, you would hit some speed-bumps or holes or even a simple uneven surface. That would damaged your chassis in a blink of an eye. Just imagine your Ferrari's chassis got hit from below by a sledgehammer or pneumatic drill REPEATEDLY. Here, use my tissue to clean-up your tears. You'll need it!

3) Flooding
Other than that, until today (2014) flooding is still a routine problem in Jakarta. Try to run through 0,5 meter flood with your Bugatti Veyron. Picture the moment when dirty-black-waters of Jakarta flooded the gas-guzzling engine of your Bugatti Veyron. Here, I still have more tissues!

4) Criminals
Oh, driving those expensive sport cars would also draw attention of many criminals. You know, carjacks, robbers armed with axe, even corrupt policemen. Picture the moment when you and your sport cars got robbed by one of those criminals. NOT MANLY AT ALL!! BTW, looks like even all my tissues can't help you any longer ...

5) Capacity
The most popular cars in Jakarta are family cars. You know, cars where you bring not only your wife and children, but also your bro's wife, and his children too! Try to put all of that in your Porsche. Unless your  and your bro's whole family are clown by profession, that is just simply impossible! What, your dream cars can't even be used to transport your family? Man, your dream car sucks!


That's why none of those cars can hold the candle for my favorite car: GAZ BTR-80.

What? You never heard that name before? That's because most men were too busy eating up all the hype for those USELESS sport cars. That's because most men forget that utility ALWAYS beats fashion. Substance ALWAYS beats style. Their ears become deaf whenever a true dream car, like mine, arrive. Here let me give you its picture:

Here, let me put some of its specs (from wikipedia):
Weight13.6 tonnes (15.0 tons)
Length7.7 m (25.3 ft)
Width2.9 m (9.5 ft)
Height2.41 m (7.9 ft)
Crew3 (+7 passengers)
Enginediesel KamAZ-7403
260 hp (190 kW)
Speed80-90 km/h (49.7–55.9 m/h)
swim 10 km/h (6.2 m/h)

Now, let's check those problems that make any sport car sucks again, shall we?
1) Crowded street and maneuverability
No need for arguing, screaming, or horn-pushing. A slight glance from anyone will convince them to give you ANY space! It is either YOUR WAY or the HARD WAY.

2) Speed
Read #1. With BTR-80, you just hit your gas pedal, and you'll brake for no one. Speed bumps? Holes? Uneven roads? Who cares, you are driving an 8 wheel drive armored battle vehicle!

3) Flooding
If you read the specs above carefully, you'll notice that it has 10 kmph swimming speed. Yes, BTR-80  can swim. Yes, IT REALLY CAN SWIM

4) Criminals
What kind of criminal dare to touch a combat vehicle? A soon-dead criminal, that's who.

5) Capacity
See the specs above? It can drive 10 people inside. Since the space is huge, you can also bring your whole family AND both yours and theirs motorcycles for examples.

Plus, there is a big bonus for every dad who owns a BTR-80.
Just imagine, everytime you drive your son to their school, EVERYONE would be awed. "Mercedes S Class? BMW? Lexus? Rolls Royce? You still can't beat my dad's BTR-80!"
Here, use my tissue to wipe your manly tears from your manly eyes. You'll need it.

BTW, I guess some of you will argue that Hummer already doing everything in my list. Not really.  Are you and your Hummer brave enough to run THROUGH Jakarta's traffic jam? Can your hummer ignore Indonesian road holes? Can your Hummer swim, I mean CAN IT REALLY SWIM? Is Hummer criminalproof? Can your Hummer bring you and 9 of your friends/families? NO, NO, NO, NO, AND NO!! So screw your Hummer too!

QED: Objectively, my dream car can objectively kick any of your dream car's buttocks anytime, anywhere, especially in Jakarta. Unlike sport cars, for BTR-80, style isn't exist to mask the absence of substance. It is the opposite, it is its utility, its substance that creates, permeates, and radiates style, MANLY STYLE!

Addendum 13.09.2014: I really envy this guy. At the same time, guys like him are those who give me hope for the future of mankind!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

5 Reasons to Learn Mandarin ... and My Comments

I already stated my reason why Mandarin is stupid. And again.

So, it is only proper to comment on people who learn Mandarin. No, not only to comment, but also to judge. 

1) Because you were born in People's Republic of China/Singapore/Taiwan
Congrats! You just win a jackpot! Unlike any other people YOU will learn Mandarin as your native language! I assume that cut downs the difficulty level AT LEAST 60%. I really hope you consider to scrap that writing system of yours. You know, your logogram writing system ...

2) Because they have fallen in love with it!
No contest.

There is no accounting for taste. These people usually are fascinated, fallen in love with Mandarin because the beauty of the logogram script, DESPITE knowing how difficult they are. I say, GO FOR IT! It is always refreshing, empowering, and comforting to do things that you love!! All the problems and difficulties become fun if you really fallen in love with the language.

Nevertheless, we have to remember, some of these people refuse to admit the difficulties in Mandarin. They just assume that everyone will fall in love in it like them, and consider the difficulties irrelevant.
Also, many people fall into some confirmation bias. They can and have fall out of love of Mandarin once they face the staggering problems, but they refuse to admit it! I still love it dammit, and I still enjoy this! NO IT IS NOT DIFFICULT!

So be really careful when you ask opinion from people who "love Mandarin".

3) Because it is important!
The importance of Mandarin is undeniable. So is the fact that our time, energy, and money are limited. If you really want to master Mandarin, you will wasted YEARS or even DECADES. That means, you can already master say ... Spanish and Russian if you use that time, energy and money you spend on learning Mandarin. That means although Mandarin is arguably the 2nd most important foreign language, your energy can be used to learn the 3rd and 4th most important one, with less frustration and with similar, or even more, benefit.

Oh by the way, isn't it more efficient and effective if it were the Chinese who learn English/French/any other non-logogram language? Just sayin here ...

And you can't be Chinese, even after you speak and write Mandarin fluently. Seriously. Even overseas Chinese (See reason #5) have problems to be considered "Chinese" by many mainland Chinese AFTER mastering Mandarin. If you are a caucasian or african or South Asians, or any other people that distinctively NOT CHINESE, you will be considered similar to a monkey that can play piano. You know,"Nice tricks there, but you will only marry my daughter OVER MY DEAD BODY!" mentality.

4) Because your parents order you! No, order is not strong enough. Because your parents FORCE YOU!
News flash: you are a victim of child abuse. Seriously. What kind of parents forced their children to memorize thousands and thousands of symbol? What kind of parents obligated their children to learn a language that causes a pain in the neck whenever we use its dictionary? The time, energy, and money can be used for other things like ... learning Spanish, Swahili, and MANY other foreign languages!

Usually parents do that because they underestimate Mandarin. Show them this article and the links. Hopefully that would enlighten them.

5) Because you are a "Chinese"! An overseas Chinese BUT STILL A CHINESE!
In "Bahasa Indonesia" there is a word that is hard to translate to English: "Bebal". Usually people translate it into "foolish". Nope, it is different. A foolish person is a person who can't learn. A "bebal" person is a person who REFUSE TO LEARN.

Until today, Chinese culture IS A "BEBAL" CULTURE!! Every other people on earth already realized using a symbol for every single word is very stupid. That's why centuries or even milennias ago they created alphabet/abjad/abugida/syllabary. How the Chinese react to this difficulty? Chinese are smart and clever, they surely notice this, right? Nope. They say how PROUD they are of their "3000 years history." They are proud because their "heavenly language" permeates a high culture, unlike the "stupid alphabets" from the non-Chinese aka barbarians.

Yeah right. Sounds like 3000 years of refusal to learn to me. 

Now, YOU as a "modern Chinese" want to perpetuate this monstrosity and smugness voluntarily? SERIOUSLY?! Are you high?


My tips: if you learn Mandarin because reason #3 - #5 and HAVE TO learn Mandarin, SKIP THE STUPID LOGOGRAM! Just learn the Hanyu Pinyin romanization and the spoken language. The tonal nature of Mandarin already poses a challenge. No need to compound it with memorizing symbols in thousands. If reading those logograms is an absolute necessity, you can learn it AFTER you master the speaking and the Hanyu Pinyin.

Oh by the way, I don't want to put "bebal" label on any culture. That's why I really hoped that China can change and ditch that terrible logogram. I assure you, more people will learn Chinese after that. I assure you too, native speakers will learn to write FASTER than ever! Move the study of logogram into "classical Chinese", to the hobbyists only domain. Spare us, laymen, the horror.

Further reading:
Don't Learn Mandarin
Why Chinese is so Damn Hard