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May 29, 2007

Yahoo II

Actually sometimes Yahoo cancels accounts of con artists - after few emails sent to them and few days. Not good enough!

Posted by Victor at 06:45 AM

Hardworking teenagers

It has been reported by Statistics Canada that 15-19 y.o. students in Canada work more than their peers in other countries. 50 hours a week! Is this a reason to celebrate?

Between school, homework, a job, volunteer work and household chores, teens put in 9.2 hours on school days and 3.5 hours on non-school days. While they spend more time at paying jobs on school days than teens in every country except the U.S. and the Netherlands, our teens also devote more time to school work than all other teens except for the Belgians.

The problem however is that the knowledge they gain at school (at least in mathematics, physics, computer science) is completely inadequate to the time and efforts spent. The home assignments usually are stupid and tedious and often irrelevant to the subject. Marks do not reflect the knowledge, abilities or skills, but only readiness to waste time doing these assignments and to follow all the instructions.

What is worse: the best students have very little time left to study advanced topics they are interested in (and their efforts find neither appreciation nor reward at school - and in Admissions and Awards Ofiice at our University)!

It is time to base admissions on the real knowledge rather than school marks!

Posted by Victor at 05:35 AM

May 25, 2007


I already wrote that Yahoo is a favorite shelter for Scam 419 types because their abuse team does nothing. I received email sent from natachaallou222@yahoo.com and also asking to respond to this address. I complained to abuse@yahoo.com.

Then I bounced this mail to my experimental yahoo account. My bogofilter detected this messages (and its ilk) as a spam, gmail even explains that it is not just a spam but a scam, yahoo filters detected nothing!

Then I responded from my yahoo account to this person (actually hailing from deep in Africa, the traceable route to his/her computer stopped in CI.

This person responded today. That means that yahoo has not revoked her account.

Yahoo sends spam,
Yahoo send scam,
Yahoo is used by filthy scum!

На емайлы с Яхуя
Не отвечу ничего я!

Posted by Victor at 10:21 AM

May 24, 2007

Scumnesty International and Microsoft

What is common between these two organizations?

Recently Micro$oft accused Linux and Open Software Foundation in violation of hundreds of M$ patents failing however to specify which of them and how are violated.

Recently Scumnesty International accused Israel Defence Forces in gross human rights violations during Lebanon 2006 campaign failing however to list specific cases.

Both are high on retorics and low on substance.

Posted by Victor at 04:32 AM

May 18, 2007


I purchased from Dell ... well, not the computer, but Sony Memory Stick PRO Duo 1GB because they provided the best price. Few days ago after they acknowledged my order and charged my credit card I received no shipping info. After long email exchange I finally reached my wife by phone (I am in Stanford now) and she checked the mail and confirmed that the order had been received.

My last email to Dell Customer care (the meaningful part of it):

> Dear Victor,
> Thank you for contacting Dell Customer Care.
> I have been unable to locate a customer number created for you, or any new orders placed with
the information you have provided. Please contact the Online Sales Department for this. Their
> number is 1-800-387-5752 using extension 8056.

Actually I reached my wife today (I am in the long business trip) and she checked the mail
and found a memorystick here.

Still I find it rather surprizing the bizarre way Dell tracks the customer' orders or
the customer' history given that I provided all the available information.

On the other hand, It may be not that surprizing or not surprizing at all if Dell
actually uses the Micro$oft crapware it recomments to the customers.

This story definitely is worth of my blog :-)

What can I add:

Buying from Dell: they will lose your order. This is certain. The only uncertainty is if they lose your order before filling it or after. So far I was lucky.

Posted by Victor at 10:27 AM

May 15, 2007

Vulture Shop

I had asked my wife to buy 750GB USB2 Seagate drive for $329 and she did it. What I had not asked her(but she did it anyway) was to purchase 3 years warranty for $70. Keeping in mind that the manufacturer warranty is for 5 years, this is absolutely ridiculous.

Definitely salesman in the Future Shop who persuaded her to buy this warranty is kind of a vulture. However 5+3=8 and if in 2014 this drive breaks, I will come to the Vulture Shop and request a replacement. No, pliz, exactly of this size. What, you do not have 750 GB hard disks? The smallest you have is 10TB? And it is not USB2 compatible?! What do you have of this size? Memory sticks? Flash cards? or something like this? No, guys, I want my vintage USB2 750GB HD!!!! .... And this will be my revenge... in the end I would agree to 750TB USB5 hard drive in the pure platinum enclosure :-)

Posted by Victor at 10:08 PM

Spam meets Scam. II

Complains to abuse@microsoft.com and abuse@yahoo.com were rejected (bounced back) because the message contained a spam. Great! How the hell one can complain to them about spam? Or one should only complain about non-spam messages? Or do the owners of these (dis)services believe that the outgoing spam is fine but incoming is not? But then the hotmail and yahoo users (losers) should not be offended (or surprized) if all the messages from them are treated as a spam (actually my Bayesin [self learning] bogofilter got to the same conclusion).

Decent people should use gmail, neither of hotmail (hotmeal, hotmale) or yahoo (hoho)

yahoo   hotmail   gmail

Posted by Victor at 09:57 AM

Spam meets Scam

I find it symbolic that this con artist uses hotmail and yahoo respectively to send and receive his/her messages.

The con artist is engaged in "scam 419". On the other hand, yahoo and hotmail inserting their commercials in the end of their "free" messages are probably the largest spammers in the world.

So Spam meets Scam. And everyone practicing any of these activities is a scum.

From jp_kouma7@hotmail.com Tue May 15 08:37:53 2007
Received: from bay0-omc2-s35.bay0.hotmail.com (bay0-omc2-s35.bay0.hotmail.com []) by coxeter.math.toronto.edu (AIX5.2/8.11.6p2/8.11.0/UTMath 1.0) with ESMTP id l4FCbqF159702 for ; Tue, 15 May 2007 08:37:52 -0400
Received: from BLU106-W28 ([]) by bay0-omc2-s35.bay0.hotmail.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.2668);
Tue, 15 May 2007 05:37:52 -0700
Content-Type: multipart/alternative;
X-Originating-IP: []
From: Jean Paul Kouma
Date: Tue, 15 May 2007 12:37:47 +0000
Importance: Normal
MIME-Version: 1.0
X-OriginalArrivalTime: 15 May 2007 12:37:52.0169 (UTC) FILETIME=[DA90D990:01C796ED]
X-Bogosity: Yes, tests=bogofilter, spamicity=0.999747, version=0.13.7
Status: RO
Content-Length: 5205
Lines: 127

Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
Jean Paul and Pauline Kouma

jp_kouma1979@yahoo.com =20

Good Day Sir,I am Jean Paul Kouma from Sierra Leone but residing in Ivory C=
oast in Africa with my sister Pauline. It is my desire to contact you in ho=
nesty and sincerity to assist us in transferring the sum of $13,000,000M {T=
hirteen Million United States Dollars) Our late father has deposited this m=
oney with a Security and finance company here in Johannesburg.South Africa =
on my name {Jean Paul} before he was killed during the war.

We got your contact information from your country trade and business databa=
se here in South Africa. We are seeking your assistance on the transfer of =
$13,000,000.00Million I and my sister have inherited from our father late M=
ajor Paul Kouma into your personal or company's account in your country for=
our investments .I am motivated in contacting you after going through your=
business profile and i hope to gradually build trust, relationship and con=
fidence in you as we arrange further on this mutual transaction that i have=
solicited for your honest assistance.So please I want to know if you will =
be of assistance but first I want to get to know you better. I am willing t=
o offer you $2,600,000(Two Million Six Hundred Thousand United States Dolla=
rs) for your assistance after the successful transfer of this money and inv=
estment. Indicate your interest towards assisting us by sending your person=
al phone/fax numbers and address so that I can communicate with you at any =

We are waiting for your acceptance mail through our personal e-mail: jp_ko=
Jean Paul and Pauline Kouma
For the family.

Above is scam; below is spam
Explore the seven wonders of the world

Posted by Victor at 08:51 AM

May 14, 2007

Electronic vs Paper

In our University several subscriptions for paper or electronic Math. journals disappeared (we cancelled? not renewed? Our Central Library staff is so ignorant and arrogant, that one cannot predict what happens next.

So, I want to discuss electronic vs paper.

I would like to express my personal opinion, which is extreme: I find electronic versions much more convenient: one can access them instantly from home,..., one can search them, copy and paste. Many journals and some books edited in pre-TeX epoch are now digitalized and one can access them either free unconditionally or free if there is a site license.

I find that TeXnical quality of papers in arXiv is better than in the electronic
copies of print journals.

One needs to remember some extra money costs associated with print journals: binding, keeping them, and moving them too; also these journals tend to be borrowed/lost exactly in the moment one needs them which is never the case with e-journals (well, sometimes web site could be down but the library could be just closed). Also going to vacations one can take in laptop much more copies of e-journals than of print journals would fit into an average track.

However with journals not free but subscribed one must take into account the following:

Both librarian and webmaster can run things poorly.

While paper journals belong to a particular library, the site license belongs to the whole University. Thus one needs to compare the price of site license and a single paper subscription. If the same journal is in few libraries then some negotiations are needed to replace some of paper subscriptions by site license and share the savings. Finally, one needs to make sure that if we replace our paper subscription by a site license, it will be OUR license which means that decision to continue with it, or cancel it, or replace by something else would be to our sole discretion.

Note that the relative prices of electronic vs paper can drastically change in the future.

There is another difference between electronic and paper subscriptions at least with some journals: electronic subscription can give you access to (may be) all volumes of some journal but only during the subscription year.

With PJM my attempts to get full text from UT IP address result in the same error message even if I am looking for 2002 year paper; 2001 year papers are available even from my motel IP (which definitely has no subscription).

So, if in 2007 we subscribe electronically for Galactic Journal of Mathematics we (probably) get all its volumes from 1089 BC until now, but if we cancel subscription in 2008 all this wealth disappears. Unless we download everything and save it on hard disk(s) and run our little Department server. Not sure if it is legal but I cannot recall signing anything which prevents me (individually) from keeping legally downloaded article as long as I need it. Copying and distributing it may be another matter.

It could be different with other journals: say our turpion.org subscription for Russian Math. Surveys (translated to English Uspehi Matematicheskih Nauk) covers relatively recent volumes but not really old ones, but Stanford has also subscription for old volumes (however one can consider this as two different journals, and subscription for each covers the whole range of years).

Practical conclusions: if our University is subscribed electronically to some journal and you think that you may use some article in the future, save it now, without waiting when some smart guy from the central library cancel subscription to save mony for Library Science Newsletter or Marxism-Mazohism Daily.

Also if you visit some University which has an electronic subscription to some journal we do not, and you think that you may use some article in the future, save it now! If you do not have the laptop with you, save it and sftp or just email it (again, it is no different from making photocopy and taking with you).

Finally, it is possible that the exactly the same article published in the journal we have no access is published in arXiv or on web page of the author. So far I did not hear that mathematical journals restrict this, but I heard that in the social sciences many journals are much more keen about the author rights and require an oath from the author that an electronic copy of the submitted paper was never published and moreover will not be published as well.

Posted by Victor at 08:20 AM

May 12, 2007

Mr. Chao. II

More about "Mr Chao"

Разъяренный "Мистер Чао"
Пишет новый дадзыбао:
Кто сказал что Чао плох?
Тот, конечно, просто лох!

Сам Профессор Виктор Иврий
"Мистер Чао" посетил,
Съел чего-то он с Чо Мейном,
И задумчиво сказал:

Нет, конечно, "Мистер Чао"
Не шикарный ресторан.
Но я тоже, скажем честно,
Не эстет и не гурман.

Пусть Мелроуз вместе с Зворским
Посещают "Гранд Хосе"
Сотню долларов там тратят
На какой-to фрикассе.

В "Чао" я иду пожрать,
Не эстетство показать!

Posted by Victor at 11:03 PM