Jan 22 2017

The universe has a sick sense of humor

Category: English postsIuliana @ 16:35

There is a post somewhere around here in which I’m saying that this year, I will do this and that, but especially I won’t be writing any books this year. So here I am, starting to learn German, starting to learn guitar, starting to do more sports planning for a year of travels and self improvement. And an email from Apress arrives containing an offer for me for a reviewer position. So I’m thinking, extra money never hurt anybody, and reviewing other authors’ job is not that time consuming, so I should be able to do it, right ? So I reply that yes I want the position. The contract is sent to me, it’s a typical one, I sign it and I go around doing my stuff.

On Thursday night, I receive an email containing details regarding my job as a reviewer. The email was mentioning files and deadlines and it was late, I was tired and I did not understand why should I decide deadlines, because I’m not the main author. Wrong! Apparently I am the main author for the 5th edition of this book: Pro Spring. Fuck My Life! How did I get myself into this?

So yeah, apparently I will be writing another book, even if at the end of previous year I decided I will never do this again, because it is time consuming and I want to be able to go out and learn other things and read and maybe have some sex… Oh bloody hell…

I think there is a saying about my situation: if you want to test the power of the universe, just make plans. I did make plans. Now I have to change them, re-compute the priorities.

And when I was beginning to think my life will be boring this year. ;)

Stay safe, stay happy!


Jan 21 2017

My own Git meme

Category: English posts,TechnicalIuliana @ 19:30

Tags:


Jan 19 2017

Tristă Românie, țara mea de …

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:30

… toată jalea.

După revoluție, generațiile  care nu erau majore pe atunci au sperat că vor avea șansa de a crește într-o Românie nouă, una fără comuniști. Dar n-a fost să fie. Părinții noștri au trăit într-o Românie în care adevărul te putea arunca în închisoare, dacă deranja vrun politician. Noi trăim într-o Românie în care adevărul nu contează. Nu știu care dintre astea două versiuni e mai demoralizantă. Știm cu toții că politicienii noștri fură, acum fură pe față. Cică avem legi, poliție, justiție, dar aparent legile sunt încălcate, iar de plătit pentru asta se plătește selectiv.

Avem atâtea medii de comunicare acum și fărădelegile oamenilor ăstora ajung la urechile tuturor. Oamenii ăștia nu realizează că nu sunt intangibili și că sunt doar oameni, care sunt și ei cu o moarte datori? E de ajuns un om disperat și care nu mai are nimic de pierdut să afle unde stă un politician și s-ar putea să avem parte de niște drame.

Poate nu îmi aduc aminte bine, dar pe când eram în facultate am auzit o știre care mi-a zburlit părul pe spinare. O fetiță de numai 7 ani a fost violată și omorâtă în scara unui bloc. ( unii dintre voi vor gândi ironic acum: Heh, Moldova!) Ceea ce face știrea asta interesantă este că fetița asta era fiica unui politician, care făcuse destule mișmașuri la nivelul Iașului. Nimeni nu a îndrăznit să scrie sau sa insinueze că pentru faptele tatălui ei, a plătit ea, un copil nevinovat. Dar toți cei ce auziseră de omul respectiv au avut aceeași bănuială.

Ceea ce nu realizează PSD este că oamenii ce i-au ales, i-au ales să își facă treaba. E clar că nici un bugetar sau pensionar nu se va apuca de reglat conturi, dar niște tineri fără viitor, deci fără nimic de pierdut, s-ar putea să o facă. Pentru că e așa ușor să afli informații în ziua de azi… Și poate generațiile de după revoluție n-au făcut armata și nu știu trage cu arma, dar niște chimiști să facă bombițe sigur se vor găsi, iar cocktailurile Molotov nu sunt greu de făcut. Bătrânii și bugetarii ce au ales PSD nu vor ieși în stradă să le apere cururile dacă tinerii se vor hotărâ că doar o altă revoluție violentă e soluția de a scăpa de javre.

Dar mai e mult până acolo, cum zice un prieten de-al meu, încă nu ne-a ajuns cuțitul la os. Știu că poate ce scriu eu vi se pare aberant și improbabil. Și eu sunt de aceeași părere. Din fericire românii sunt un popor laș și pacifist. Mereu au fugit de dușmani în munți și au otrăvit fântânile sau am preferat să plătim tribut. Alegând PSD am ales de fapt să plătim tribut.  Iar când tributul va deveni prea apăsător ăștia tineri vor fugi în alte țări.

Istoria se repeta.

 

 

Tags: , , ,


Jan 18 2017

The WOW Cheese Cake

Category: English posts,MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:19

The WOW Cheese Cake is my favorite type of cheese cake. It is my own creation and because it has been complimented a lot I decided to share the recipe with you guys.

Let’s start with the crust:

  1. 1 package of Lotus biscuits (200 grams one)
  2. 3 big spoons of white sugar
  3. 100 melted grams of fat butter (80% fat or more)

Blend the Lotus biscuits until they became a fine power. Add sugar and melted butter and stir firmly until everything is well mixed together. Put this into a cake pan. If the pan has detachable base, grease it, otherwise use cooking paper to cover it up. Pour the biscuit mix into it and  distribute it evenly using a glass. Put in the oven and bake it until you feel the caramel smell in the room.

During the baking of the crust you prepare the filling:

  1. 4 boxes of Philadelphia cheese (200g ones) (if your pan is big enough use 5)
  2. 1 box of mascarpone cheese (250 g)
  3. 200 ml of liquid cream
  4. 5 eggs
  5. 5 spoons of sugar
  6. 2 spoons of coconut pudding powder

Blend all the above together until the mix is so good you would eat it raw. (there’s no other way to describe it.) Pour this mix over the cooked crust and put the cake into the oven. Bake at  160 degrees C (350 degrees F) for about 55 to 60 minutes or until the edges get yellow-brownish colur.

While the cheese cake is baking, prepare the topping:

  1. 100g Billington’s molasses sugar
  2. 50g fat butter (80% fat or more)
  3. 100 ml liquid cream

Melt the butter in a pan. Add the molasses sugar and gently still until melted. Add the cream and continue stirring until well mixed together into a soft and tasty caramel.

When the cheese cake is done baking, get it out of the oven and put the caramel on top. Wait for it to cool down, then put in the fridge overnight. (try to resist until morning, it will be worth it)

The only picture I have is of one already eaten, but it will have to do. ;)

 

Tags:


Jan 07 2017

Music and Sunshine

Category: English posts,PersonalIuliana @ 23:54

In my life I’ve had many nicknames, some of them did not flatter me, but some of them were cute as well. But recently, this meaning about six months ago, somebody gave me another that I ended up loving a lot. He called me sunshine. First I thought he thought of me as his sunshine, which was very flattering, but we cleared that up, which was heartbreaking for me, but oh well, win some, lose some. He said he associated me with sunshine because I was smiling all the time. I don’t think he realized it was because of him. He was oblivious like that, or maybe he was pretending because he had already friend-zoned me. It really does not matter now.

What really matters is that he gave me a nickname that fit me like a glove. And I loved it so much that I decided to do my best to make it representative for me for ever. That’s why the number of my new car includes it.

And every time I hear this song my heart melts and I can’t stop myself from smiling.

Maybe this is because I also love John Mayer a lot. I have no idea when he became my favorite singer. I think I discovered him in the summer of 2010 or so. I don’t remember when I heard him sing first, but I am quite sure the song was “Say what you need to say”.

Every time I listen to this song I think of all the things I needed to say and didn’t and I promise never to make the same mistake again. But probably I will, because exposing my soul through words makes me vulnerable.
And today I discovered this little gem, originally sung by Eric Clapton.

I need to learn how to play guitar to play these songs myself and give a shape to the songs in my head. This will be the year this dream will come true. It must be.


Jan 06 2017

Aventurile neștiute ale unui filtru de aspirator

Category: Funny,Romanian postsIuliana @ 0:15

Acum doi ani și ceva m-am mutat în Sibiu. Am venit aici cu un laptop, un telefon, o pisica și un maldăr de haine. Orice am avut nevoie după, am cumpărat. Prima achiziție a fost un aspirator Gorenje fără sac, pentru că pot face multe lucruri, dar să locuiesc într-o casă cu praf  nu e unul dintre ele. Am folosit aspiratorul ăla destul de mult și având în vedere că am pisică, e clar este foarte util și necesar. Numai că la un moment anul trecut, am remarcat că dispăruse filtrul de praf. Aspiratorul are doua filtre: unul din hârtie, unul din burete. Cel din burete este foarte util pentru că previne îmbâcsirea celui de hârtie și de asemenea poate fi spălat. Normal că îmi venea să îmi trag palme, pentru că era clar că am reușit să arunc filtrul ăla când am golit containerul de praf.

Din când în când îmi aduceam aminte de filtrul ăla și mai dădeam o tură prin Dedeman sperând să găsesc unul de cumpărat. Dar n-am avut noroc. Cred că le-am menționat și colegilor de la serviciu faptul că nu îmi aduc aminte când am reușit să rătăcesc filtrul și că îmi caut altul. Într-un final, în decembrie anul trecut am cedat nervos și mi-am comandat de pe emag niște filtre pentru un alt model de aspirator, pe care urma să le cosmetizez să se potrivească cu modelul meu de aspirator. Desigur, încă nu am apucat să fac asta, pentru că următoarea zi de curățenie pentru mine este ziua de 7 ianuarie, deci probabil operațiunea ar fi urmat să aibă loc în dimineața acelei zile.

Dar n-a mai fost să fie. Azi întorcându-mă de cosmeticiană, intru pe poartă și observ că toate containerele de gunoi sunt aranjate frumos la locul lor. De obicei mă uit la ele doar de la dreapta la stânga, când ies din casă să duc gunoiul și trebuie să îl sortez. Dar astăzi din nu știu ce motiv, m-am uitat la ele când am intrat în curte, de la stânga la dreapta și atunci l-am observat. În colțul din stânga al suportului pe care stau containerele, plin de praf și semințe de plante, stătea chircit filtrul meu de aspirator. Nu mi-a venit să cred. Se zice că găsești mereu ceea ce ai nevoie atunci când încetezi să cauți, dar totuși… Să apară filtrul aspiratorului la un an distanță de la dispariție? Știu sigur că e al meu, dimensiunile și culoarea se potrivesc. Nu pot decât să mă întreb decât cum naiba a scăpat de curățenia făcută de proprietară până acum? Pentru că știu sigur că s-a făcut curățenie în curte de câteva ori anul ăsta.

Așa că l-am ridicat cu două degețele, l-am spălat bine și acum e pregătit din nou de muncă. După un an de sabatical.

Morala poveștii: good things come to those who wait, but sometimes all you need is a blast from the past.


Jan 05 2017

Negative feedback management

Category: English posts,TechnicalIuliana @ 23:03
In the software development world we have a lot of processes, standards and ways to measure quality. When it comes to code quality the  standard measurement is the WTF/minute, depicted in the image on the left. The result of such measurement is usually a feedback given to you by a superior. If the feedback is positive, you will receive a pat on the back, the responsibility of teaching your mastery to others and if you are lucky, a bonus or a raise. Giving and receiving positive feedback is a easy, but life is not only milk and honey and sometimes negative feedback has to be given and received. And it can be quite uncomfortable for both parties involved. But fear not, I took a little of my precious time to write a post about it.  Because even if you are a genius, you are human and you are most probably doing at least one thing wrong. And negative feedback is not only given for the quality of your work, but for your overall behaviour during working hours as well.
This being said, let’s begin. There are three ways to give negative feedback:

  1. officially, via a review that will affect your future career path
  2. privately in a professional/unprofessional manner
  3. publicly in a professional/unprofessional manner

Officially, negative feedback is given to you in the best way possible, wrapped up as an “ability you need to improve” (or more). The fact that you are given negative feedback, means that you actually matter to the company and somebody above you in the company hierarchy believes you can improve. The first time when you receive negative feedback might be a drama, because if you are passionate about your job you cannot stop yourself from taking it personally and feel like a failure. The emotion is similar to what you feel when you let down someone you love, only in this case this someone is you. Just allow yourself to breath, to think about it and then start working on improving the mentioned point. And the most important, ask guidance in how to do this from the one that gave you the negative feedback.

Negative feedback given privately, is a warning sign. It is one of the most embarrassing ways to receive a negative feedback and it usually means you screwed up badly, but somebody wants to understand what happened and try to help you make things better. When given such feedback, try to pay attention to what it is being said to you, hold your ground and emotions in check and try not point the finger to somebody else, not without accepting your own fault in the matter. Negative feedback given privately is usually the result of some behavioural issues, usually harassment of any kind. Depending on how badly you screwed up and depending on how short tempered your manager is, the negative feedback can be delivered professionally or unprofessionally. If the negative feedback is provided unprofessionally, the same as said before applies, there must be at least one person in that room to hold their shit together, it is better that is you. Because even if the discussion is private, the outcome will be in an official review. So, obviously it is better to say in your review that you admitted your part of the guilt, you are sorry about it and will work on improving in the future. And you can also report the short tempered manager to his manager.

Negative feedback given publicly, is clearly inappropriate. It is a warning sign for the provider of the feedback and for the receiver as well. It means there is a clash of egos there, maybe some issues that were never resolved or reported. Whether provided professionally or unprofessionally, this is one of the most uncomfortable things that can happen in a company. It reveals that the two persons involved both as problem employees. Maybe they either do not know or do not care about the internal hierarchy, or they do not trust the matter can be solved by official channels. If you are being scolded publicly, just remember school. Even if you have never been scolded by a teacher, you have witnessed it and you probably remember, that answering and defending yourself in the heat of the moment, did not do much. The same advice as in the previous case applies: hold your ground, keep your emotions in check and just take it. Just let it pass. Then think, raise the issue to the next person higher on the hierarchy and show yourself open to make things work.

No matter how good at your job you are, the fact is that we are all humans. We all make mistakes and we all have our moments when our mind plays tricks with us. When you work with the same people for a long time, conflicts are unavoidable. But you must remember why you are there for: you are there to excel at your job, you are there to teach others what you know, work with your team and make work more efficient for everybody so in the end the company will flourish and so will you. Unless the negative feedback is a backlash caused by personal issues with the person providing it, the negative feedback should always be considered an opportunity to improve yourself and others too. If the matter is personal, well… in this case things get complicated, unless you find a way to put it aside and separate personal from professional issues. Not all persons have the ability to separate professional from personal issues, but you can get better at this by talking to a counselor, for example.

I’ve written the above from my professional experience. I remember my first negative feedback and I remember my last. There is one recurring recommendation managers keep giving me: to be less blunt. But from overall personal experience I know that some people do not react unless they are hit with the naked truth. The best I can do is to try to know my colleagues as best as I can, thus I can modify my behaviour depending on them. I guess, we all just have to be understanding, considerate and flexible after all.

Stay safe, stay happy!

Tags: ,