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Showing posts from March, 2008

computer virus timeline

Here is an interesting story from Joe Wells written in 1996 about computer virus. The following text is actually documented in the IBM Research Archives but contains the early timeline of notable computer viruses of their time.

Where were you in January of 1986?

I remember exactly where I was on January 28. I was driving a truck up the California coast, delivering pet supplies to pet shops. I had stopped briefly in Nipomo and was watching television with the store owner. We watched as Challenger lifted off from Cape Canaveral and exploded. My computer experience at the time was limited to programming assembly language on a Z80 and a Commodore 128. I didn't get a PC until I started an online research service in 1987.

1986 - Up from the ooze

In 1986, the first PC virus was created. It was the Brain virus from Pakistan. Brain was a boot sector virus and only infected 360k floppy disks. Interestingly, even though it was the first virus, it had full-stealth capability.

In December of 1986, …

earthly facts

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Some plain facts about our planet taken from some old magazines of 2000 AD:

Coastal/Marine: Home to 2 billion people, coastal areas play a vital economic role and also feel the full brunt of human impact. Two-thirds of all fish harvested depend at some point in their lives on coastal wetlands, sea-grasses or coral reefs, all of which are fast disappearing.

Freshwater: These are the most critical of ecosystems since all organisms need water to survive. Human water consumption rose six-fold in the past century, double the rate of population growth. People now use 54% of available freshwater, and additional demand will further jeopardize all other ecosystems.

Agricultural Lands: One-third of global land has been converted to food production, but three-quarters of this area has poor soil. So far, harvests outpace population growth, but the future is clouded by the loss of land to urban development, soil degradation and water scarcity.

Grasslands: This system, which covers 40% of the world’s l…

what muji do you have

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"It's just a pencil, right? You write with it and rub it with an eraser."You will agree with me, I know, but our colleague, an American volunteer was dissatisfied with my remark. He said, “It’s not just a pencil. You are holding a Muji pencil.” I was annoyed by his curt remark, and decided to take it a step further. I said, “What’s so special about Muji pencils? Aren’t they made of lead-rods enclosed within cylindrical wooden sticks?”He must have sensed a satire, so he replied seriously, “Do you really know what Muji products are?” At this time I made a guess that Muji was the name of a brand but as I checked the pencil, nothing was written on it – no labels at all. In fact there was not even a marking of any sort – just a plain pencil. Later at night, I Googled to find that the name ‘Muji’ belonged to a company Ryohin Keikaku, a Japanese word meaning “No Brand Quality Goods”.Japanese goods are obviously high quality – but Muji turned out to be extra nice because of thei…