Long list of covers

Torontoist posted a long list of music covers. Some are pretty good (like Jarvis Church and K’Naan covering U2’s “One” or Youth Group covering Alphaville’s “Forever Young”) and some are pretty strange (like Mindless Self Indulgence covering Rush’s “Tom Sawyer” with an industrial beat or Paul Anka covering Bon Jovi’s “It’s my life” on a style that can only be described at “music in a cruiser”).

Heroes

What if you could feel you could fly? Or that you know you could bend space and time? Or you could see an evil yourself on every mirror? Or seeing your paintings of disasters becoming real on the newspapers? Or seeing yourself getting hurt and healing in just a few seconds, without any scar? And how to tell this without sounding like some childish comic?

“Heroes” seems to take the same premises of “Smallvile” and “Batman Begins”: the story of super-heroes, from the beginning, when they wren’t heroes. But, instead of going comic-like, the authors decided to take a “real-life approach”. They don’t understand their powers, they don’t know how to control them, they don’t know why they have them or, most importantly, they don’t know what to do with them.

The only weird thing is that they all appear in New York or, for one reason or another, they come to New York. Nice coincidence, uh?

The idea isn’t new. There was another series that explored the idea of people with super-powers, like “Smallvile” and “The Last American Hero”, but the series took a more comic approach, showing the powers and putting super-villains. “Heroes”, on the other hand, start exploring the conflicts inside the special people, when they realize there is something weird with them. The point the powers appear could mean anything: they could be daydreaming or suffering schizophrenia. Even you could start doubting they have super-powers in the first episodes — and that is very well explored.

One thing is for sure: the girl that can heal quick is really freaky. Seeing her with a dislocated shoulder, with ribs coming out of her chest or with a broken neck really freaks you out. On the other hand, she is the the first to do a hero job before anyone else.

Acting is movie-like: good acting, not cheesy acting and really really convincing. I mean, if they wanted to do a movie with it, they wouldn’t need to do another screen-test or change actors or even take another director of photography. It is that simply good.

The only problem with the series appears in the sixth or seventh episodes. For some reason, the authors decided to add some “conspiracy”-like mistery, with people showing some marks after blanking out. I really thought it was complete unnecessary at this time, they could have explored their super-powers a lot longer and than add something weird in it (government, strange agency, whatever). Ok, a conspiracy could add some spice in the story, but it is stealing the good stuff in the series: the heroes and their super-powers.

Anyway, that’s a series worth watching.

Cab tips

When the cab drivers looks annoyed when you try to explain where you want to go after saying the address, he will do some screw up.

Sony Channel: out of time and with silly excuses

When the summer time started here in Brazil, almost every channel kept their programming in the original time. There is just one exception: Sony Channel.

Why would Sony keep the same old times? My guess: they still have that stupid “Latin America” control. Not that Brazil isn’t part of the Latin America, but our culture is complete different from the other countries; we even have a different language!

But that’s not a problem. They could just come and say “due the brazilian summer time, our programming will now start one hour later.” but no, they have come with some stupid “time is a matter of quantum mechanic physics and our specialists will now free the country from this mess”. Oh, cut the crap. You have stupid time control and don’t care about the country. So cut the chase and say it so.

CSI is the only thing they have that is worth seeing, anyway…

Tatoni Ristoranti

Last weekend I went with my parents to “Tatoni Ristoranti”, an italian restaurant on Bourbon Shopping.

The first thing I would like to say is that it, as Schneider Porto Alegre, have a space problem. No, you don’t have tables so near each other you can’t get up without hitting the guy next table back. The space is enough, but it seems that they don’t have enough space in their kitchen. So, the plates take a lot of time to appear. Also, it seems that, when all the tables are taken, there aren’t enough waiters to service you. In other words, if there are many people in there, your plate will take some long time to appear and the service will take some time to appear.

Now, if you have enough time, you’ll be surprised when the plates come: they taste sooooo good! I ordered a chicken “a la parmegiana” with risotto and I ate more than I could. But I couldn’t stop eating, it was so good.

If you want a nice italian plate and have enough time, that’s some place you need to go.

Languages I know

I learned to code with Basic.
I learned structured programming with Pascal.
I learned how to store data with Clipper.
I learned about memory management with C.
I learned object oriented programming with Java.
I learned function overloading with C++.
I learned recursion with Prolog.
I learned how to organize code with Python.

And I learned to say everything I have to say in big sentences with COBOL.

Mergulhando no Python (”Dive Into Python”)

I just finished reading “Mergulhando no Python”, the translated and printed version of “Dive Into Python“. Not that I’m a newbie when dealing with Python, but there is always some tricks you don’t know or just forget. And that’s something the book is really good at. Well, not only that. If you are a newbie, you could learn how Python works just reading the book.

The organization of the book is quite good too. The author don’t rush into explanations and don’t show things that weren’t mentioned before. And, when it does, he really takes the time to explain what that means.

Since I’m not a newbie, there were some things I already knew, but there were some that I didn’t knew or never realized. Like Python introspection (getattr, hasattr functions), which I never realized. Also, every interesting block of code have a note explaining some trick behind it. And the author really explains what he is doing when it doesn’t make sense doing the way he did (for the sake of teaching). Even more, a chapter about Performance Tuning have several explanations of the Python internals and how to code having that in mind.

For people who code or want to learn how to code using Python, that’s the book. The only missing bit (in my opinion) is some general explanation about Python eggs (the Python packages).

An Inconvenient Truth (”Uma verdade Incoveninente”)

IMDB:

A documentary on Al Gore’s campaign to make the issue of global warming a recognized problem worldwide.

Going to the theatre to see a documentary may be kinda strange. We all expect to see documentaries on “Discovery Channel” or “National Geographic” or anything like that. But it really is a good movie about something we never realize: how much CO2 we are “dropping” into the atmosphere and how this is affecting the planet.

The amount of information about global warming is amazing. Sometimes you don’t realize this, but the presentation shows how damaged the planet is. It is really really an eye-opener for what we do without noticing.

But the movie doesn’t focus everything on the global warming. Sometimes, the speech is cut and a piece of the live of Al Gore is shown to the public. The reason is clear: to make you feel bounded to his life, so you feel some “connection” with him and, thus, his speech doesn’t fall on deaf ears. The thing is that this, sometimes, make you feel like he is going to run for presidency again. The word around is that he isn’t going into politics again, but we never know.

Now, there is some “american” related stuff. Almost all of his speech, although pointing to a global problem, he sometimes point to problems with the american economy and, of course, the american president. He doesn’t bash the chinese governance, or the European presidents, but he does bash the american president.

I just would like to point some things that could be updated in the movie: Gore points that Australia didn’t sign the Kyoto pact but, recently, Australia started talks about a new Kyoto pack. And he could add that US$ 25 millions where lost due poor power saving options on Microsoft Windows.

Anyway, it is a good movie, even if you don’t believe that the global warming problem is a real thing. Really worth watching.

The Master, The Expert, The Programmer

Ferhr just send me a link to an incredible reading about the linking between martial arts and programming (well, not actually, but you can always link something with something else, if you try hard enough). Anyway, it is a good read to understand the problems with current “methodologies” and “programming practices”: The Master, The Expert, The Programmer. I strongly recommend that, if you are a programmer/developer, you should read this.

Divinyls in Python

Reading some Python code, I came to the following line:

    # --- Modifying operations on files
    def touch(self):

The first thing that came to my mind when I saw this code?

I don’t want anybody else
When I think about you
I touch myself
I don’t want anybody else