On losing my primary HDD

On losing my primary HDD

Well, it just happened – i was aware of the ‘clicking’ sounds for the last few days but i didn’t bother to check what it was… it was the hard drive, stupid!
But why? And why now? Well, it turns out the power supply fan was not functioning and I guess the high temperature made matters deteriorate fast! BIOS isn’t recognizing the drive and there’s nothing i can do through software means – the HDD containing my home folder was history…
But anyway, my first thoughts were to quickly send the disk for recovery and here are some service i’ve found out (through web search) that can handle such a task here in Athens / Greece:

I didn’t contact any of them but it looks like the price for the recovery can start from 300€ but will most likely end up to 1000-1500€. So, why didn’t i contact any of those? Well, after the first few hours had passed, i had calmed down and had booted to the second HDD’s – that one’s still alive – Windows Server 2003 for the first time in the last 2 years. Then, and while installing those 2 years’ worth of updates, I tried hard to think what i had lost.

So, i’m happy to say that i haven’t lost much! Passwords are recoverable + in laptop’s browser as well. Bookmarks in delicious and in laptop. Important documents & emails in gmail (and laptop). Pictures & videos in laptop & wife’s laptop & windows HDD (hmmm… perhaps that still says something about linux device support : P). Private keys were once copied to windows for use with putty. In fact, i’m currently aware of only the following loses: some uncommitted changes to a few projects and loss of a git repo for a week old project (chesstu.be) for which i at least got the latest code from the deployment server! And that’s all for now… perhaps i’ve lost more and perhaps i’ll find that out soon but still i think i was just lucky, esp. considering i had no “formal” backups
Update: Forgot to mention I’ve definitely lost thousands of 1 0 bullet chess games played on FICS … but those are either reproducible, or just crappy!

Μου ήρθε αρνητικός ΟΤΕ, τι κάνω???

Μου ήρθε αρνητικός ΟΤΕ, τι κάνω???
Απίστευτο! Τόσο απίστευτο που πρώτη φορά μπλογκάρω στα Ελληνικά!

Κι όμως, μόλις έλαβα λογαριασμό -9.50 ευρώ (ΜΕΙΟΝ ΕΝΝΕΑ ΚΑΙ ΠΕΝΗΝΤΑ)… χαχα, τέλεια. Που όμως πάω να τα εισπράξω? Γιατί το μόνο που βλέπω στη πίσω πλευρά είναι : “τι πρεπει να γνωριζεται για την εξοφληση του λογαριασμου σας” – έλα όμως που εμείς θέλουμε το αντίθετο… Να υποθέσω οτι αν δεν με εξοφλήσουν εγκαιρως, δικαιούμαι και τόκους???

Και για να εξηγήσω το αρνητικό ποσό – είναι οφειλή απο προηγούμενο λογαριασμό η οποία κανονικά αφαιρείται από το ποσό του τρέχοντος. Επειδή όμως τον ΟΤΕ τον σχολάσαμε, έχουμε το απλό 0 – 9.50 = -9.50

15 Years ago – a sprite editor in assembly

15 Years ago – a sprite editor in assembly
Looks like X86 Turns 30 Years Old. So, here’s a screenshot of a Sprite Editor I did 15 years ago (!) written in 8086 assembly (using debug.com as an … assembler).

Sprite Editor

Of course, there’s a story behind this program… We (me, brother, parents) were on vacation at Pilio and we went to Volos to meet some friends. After walking in the town for a while, we found a park and started playing football. Then, out of nowhere a dog came and tried to bite the ball – causing it to deflate!!@$!@#$

Then the owner of the dog started swearing at us, and to cut a long story short… lots of negative feelings generated that day.

That’s how I came up with the idea of creating a computer game (named as “Kill The Dog”)

That’s why I needed to do graphics for it

And that’s why this sprite editor was done.

Tale 52

Tale 52

Once upon a time, I was studying Physics at the local university. There I quickly realized a few things:

  • it wasn’t going to be as difficult as i thought it would – but at the same time, it wouldn’t be rewarding either (perhaps that’s a … greek thing)
  • it was easy to make out the best students and see their hard work
  • i met a few geniuses that seemed to … just grasp things without much effort and also seemed to just … never study
The best example that fits into the last category was Alexis Alexiou – he wouldn’t generally participate in the lectures/classes, but he always knew what was going on + answers, e.t.c. Plus, I had the pleasure of doing labs with him (Physics III,IV, Nuclear, Astronomy to name a few). We’d also hang out and play basketball, watch thrillers and it was obvious that he was a cinema addict but in my mind, he would go on to be a brilliant physicist – after all, already from the end of the 3rd year (out of 4) he had passed all the courses needed to get the diploma!
Imagine my shock when he decided to drop out of Physics and concentrate on (apparently) his true love, cinema. But, it was the right thing to do. I remember helping him make his first short film… we used my brother’s recording camera (and i was terribly handling it) and my father’s 4-head VCR for editing / postproduction! We produced a cover for the video tape and he made quite a few copies to pass around (i think i have the uncut versions somewhere, perhaps they’ll be worth millions??!)
Alexis then signed up in a private school for movie making, e.t.c. and i eventually lost track of him – though i’d always bump on him at plateia mavilis
Anyway, his first long movie is now being shown on cinemas in Athens and so i just wanted to wish all the best to him and his career… well done Alexis (i’d still beat you in basketball though!)

Trip to Corfu – Bourlis wedding

Trip to Corfu – Bourlis wedding

Emily and I went to Corfu last weekend for a friend’s wedding – G. Bourlis!
I’ve known George a.k.a. Giozis and / or karaGiozis for the last 9 years, though he’s been living in Patra for some years now and we haven’t been able to keep in touch… But it’s always nice to see him.
So, the wedding was at 18:30, we started by car from Athens at 8:15 in the morning. Less than two hours later, we were near Patra, at the Rio-Antirio bridge. After a while, it really started raining + we took a wrong turn + we missed the ferry for Corfy for 3 mins… but we were just in time for the wedding.
There where so many people crammed inside that small village church, all waiting for the bride to arrive – and she was at least a half hour late… the happy groom didn’t mind waiting in the rain : )
Well, everything went as planned + the after-party was nice (live greek music included)! On the way back, we had the chance to see one of the bigest rainbows in our lives ( i’m mostly sleeping at day and it’s difficult to see those at night!!!)… it only lasted for 3 mins due to heavy clouds, but it was awesome.
All in all, it was a nice escape. I’ve made a flickr slideshow with all these – check it out.
Oh, and i’ve almost forgot, here’s a short video of the groom waiting:

Married (at last)

Married (at last)

Well, Emilie and i just got married! And what a day it was…

So, we’ll be heading for our honeymoon in a few hours, and it’ll be a couple of weeks before the first pictures from the wedding and the party get published (we did have a lot of crazy Greek dances from myself, my brother and friends)!

Bro’s blogging

It’s a greek only blog – and he should have started it a long time ago… take a look at http://palta.yooblog.gr/

His writings are interesting, thoughtful and very emotional. Many of them are soccer related but in such a way that they reflect life in its entirety. I simply love reading them…

Go get’em bob!