!DOCTYPE html> Haggis Hell Home Page

Haggis Hell Home Page

O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us To see oursels as others see us
This is the home page. It includes current weblog posts and announcements.

What is this site?

Haggis Hell is simply the personal weblog of Robert Kiraly, aka OldCoder, a software developer for 40 years. It started due to an unusual pair of gag-order cases that ran from 2012 to 2013, but it collects threads of different types now.

Pieces will jump around to different pages, but the original short links listed on Twitter should continue to work.

Haggis Hell has resumed after a pause of one year.

The Kiraly Cases will continue to be one thread. We look forward to legitimate and and reasonable steps, protected under U.S. laws, related to colorful characters such as:

Jim Kiraly (VP of Transamerica), Grace Kiraly (Christ Follower), Tom Kiraly (CFO of Hanger, Inc.), Ken Kiraly (VP of Amazon and a lead at Lab126), Michael Bonetto (a Rising Star attorney), Maggie Desmond (a noble woman, certainly), John Perrott (a Fundamentalist Family Law attorney of distinction), and other people that you'll come to know and love.

OldCoder welcomes email. New addresses will be posted when the contacts page is redone. If you write, note that he doesn't give a quacking duck if you feel he's too detailed. He's made of details and, these days, he's comfortable with the fact.

180619 Tuesday — ICE data issue

180619. ICE data issue.

If you're visiting due to the link in my ICE-related tweet tonight, to be clear, I don't presently plan to put the ICE data on this site. It'll go elsewhere.

I linked here in the tweet to provide an explanation of why I'd mentioned questions of responsibility.

The key factor, for me, is connected to a personal matter: two attempted gag orders that I fought for a year from 2012 to 2013. The fight cost me my home of 25 years.

The Law is necessary for society to function. But the cases taught me that, for the wealthy and powerful, those who view the rest of us as their property, the Law is the flimsiest of facades.

There's no such thing as accountability for those who run the show. It's for their entertainment.

Or this is was true in the past. Accountability was just a word. In the age of the Internet, if people work together, the rocks can be kicked over and the light of day can be allowed to shine on that which is hidden underneath.

I do plan to put the ICE data up elsewhere. FWIW Other people have already put their copies up. I think that we're looking at Streisand Effect on this issue.

I suggest that the ICE data be used primarily for one purpose: Ask people questions.

What is the responsibility of the people involved? Has society broken down this past year? Should the people in question decline to participate in things that they disagree with? Or should they take legitimate and reasonable steps that go farther than that?

Streisand Effect

TOR isn't a bore
Nor is it to adore
It's a tool
To freedom fuel
TOR all day and all night

Streisand Effect too
Shall ensue
Data always finds a way
Data all night and all day

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

If you're curious about the gag-order cases, they had to do with a wife and child abuser who tried to use emergency anti-violence actions against one of his victims in a wheelchair.

The abuser's goal was to force his victim to sign the gag orders. He lost and somewhat regrets his actions now. His victim, for what it's worth, has changed a great deal.

There is more about the story throughout the site. I'm working on the site this year and things will be more organized in due course.

If you have questions, try the following email address for now:


180619 Tuesday — A Short Skirt Wouldn't Hurt

180619. A Short Skirt Wouldn't Hurt.

From Twitter: 'C' pseudo-code and a rhyme in response.

Practical applications of 'C' code

Alexander “my mom fled East Germany” Payne said:

I want a girl with a {
     short skirt;
     long long jacket;

@BoldCoder responded:

sing a song of jacket long
a short skirt wouldn't hurt
he gave us pseudo-'C' the girl to see
if he finds her, I'm sure he'll flirt


For a full-size version of the image, click here.

180619 Tuesday — Science Fiction remarks

180619. Science Fiction remarks.

From Twitter.

Simon, the strongest catgirl, said:

I think my only experience with science fiction outside of video games is like, ringworld. I really need to read more books within the genre

@BoldCoder responded:

Try best #sciencefiction from all decades. Smith: Ballad of Lost C'Mell. Clarke: The Star. Sturgeon: Man Who Lost the Sea. Ellison: Deathbird. Kessel: Another Orphan. Zelazny: For a Breath I Tarry. Carr: Dance of the Changer and the Three.

Avoid series novels. Read Hugo winners.

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Science Fiction
180619 Tuesday — Is That Ham?

180619. Is That Ham?

From Twitter.

Your phone or window is too narrow to show this box. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC.
Is that ham?

Bully, the Little Stuffed Bull, said:

is that... is that ham

@BoldCoder responded:

Donald Duck Thanksgiving

180617 Sunday — A Day without Fossies


180617. A Day without Fossies.

It's time for CoderSongs
Rhymes that you'll adore
Doggerel that famous belongs
Woof! Dogs bark for more!

I like to make use of and encourage lesser-known FOSS projects. Fossies is a good example. It's a very nice FOSS directory and archive run by an older Coder named Jens. The site is located at:


Jens went on vacation for about two weeks. He didn't announce his return, but I noticed that he was back. So, I sent him a Fossies Song. Here's the song followed by his response.


A day without Fossies
Is one of total Lossies
There is no coin to toss
Without FOSS it's a LOSS

There are many places for code
Github is one abode
But each abode lightens load
And such abode means no forbode

Code all day and all night
Code all night while sun shines bright
Sleep all day and shout hooray
Reach for a bottle of code

Jens' response:

You have a good sense and very attentive eyes: Yes, yesterday evening I and my car came after 4 weeks and 5555 kilometers from Germany to the nearly southernmost point of Europe (Peleponnes, Greece) back at home.

Your surprising poem has made me very happy!

180515 Tuesday — Superman's nightmares

180515. Superman's nightmares.

From Twitter.

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Superman as Electroman

@garaujo1 said:

May 14, 1997 — This Day During Superman's Triangle Era

@BoldCoder responded:

The Electric #Superman shown in the OP is now canonically one of the “real” Superman's nightmares. Not that it's a simple matter to define the “real” Superman after 33 years of endless reboots and retcons.

See the panel below. From Dark Nights METAL #4 courtesy of Screen Rant.

Superman's nightmares

180616 Saturday — Life's Not Grim with a Dash of Jim

180617. Life's Not Grim with a Dash of Jim.

I'd forgotten that June 17 was Fathers Day this year. So, I've updated this post to add a cheery Fathers Day rhyme. This is excerpted from a letter sent to loving family members.

Ken and Virginia, I've gone public regarding sexual misconduct on Jim's part. If I decide to post details here, I'll dare you to say just as publicly that the details aren't exactly like Jim.

On a separate note, ask Harmeet Dhillon for a copy of the primary letter that I sent her in the past few days. I Cc'd her on another one. I'm referring to the letter that's more focused on communication issues.

Attorneys, note that I've used the word “misconduct” here as opposed to “abuse”. If it's a distinction without a difference, I don't give a quack.

The ironies continue to pile up.

Addressing family members as a group, all that you needed to do was put an end to the stalking and threats on your side. The messages that I left on my birthday in 2012 were intended to be Goodbye Forever. That wasn't clear?

I'm good presently for 15 to 25 more years. Well, maybe just the low end of the range. Or perhaps I'll emulate DNA the Elderly Attorney and make it to 87. We'll see.

This site and/or others will be present, most of the time, as the years pass.

I've thought of a way, in fact, to ensure that the sites outlive me. If it works, there will be no centralized copies. Takedowns won't be possible, even after I'm gone. The sites might even make it to the Singularity.

Such future.

Pro Tip: There is no such thing as “cyberspace” or “The Cloud”. The idea is ludicrous. It's all just virtual machines, routers, and fragile temporary storage, mostly owned by corporations that come and go.

But think outside the box.

Jim Kiraly Father's Day

For those of you who do
a copy receive
a copy that you perceive
here's the sitch
Jim is an abuser b*tch

Your roles in support
are worth a legal tort
But today is Father's Day
Hip Hip Hooray

Is Jim alive or dead?
What have natural causes said?

Jim Kiraly Father's Day

If he's alive
for one goal you need to strive
Wish him Happy Father's Day for me
There is more, of course, to see

A friendly greet is in a tweet
at @BoldCoder
is the link
that's not all, I think

Does Haggis Hell ring a bell
If so, wife-beater lovers
Simple are my druthers
Let your fingers over the mouse hovers

Jim Kiraly Father's Day

Come and see
what there is to see

Nothing will make such as thee say “Gee”
But from the truth you'll not flee

If Jim from natural causes deceased becomes or is
I won't feel relief and drink cola fizz
Closure I was denied
This won't be addressed with sighed

Legitimate and Reasonable Purposes protected under U.S. Laws
Belong to me
Therefore in a
Legitimate and Reasonable Sense protected under U.S. Laws
so do thee

Good Day to you
Let joy and laughter ensue

Oh, Well

1. I've accepted the fact that Jim Kiraly may have passed away from natural causes. Or that he may be alive but may pass away before he can be brought to legitimate and reasonable justice that is protected under U.S. laws.

Jim is the heart of the story. He'll be missed.

However, after he goes to serve in his role as lubrication for Lucifer's mentula — you've earned it, Jim, relax and enjoy the honor — others will remain to provide love, support, and legitimate and reasonable research opportunities that are protected under U.S. laws.

But I've talked to a few P.I.s recently. Some of them have Law Enforcement backgrounds. I feel that it may be possible to determine, once and for all, if Jim's two residences in the Avila Beach area are, or are not, a dodge.

I say two residences because it appears that Jim may still own the property at 32 La Gaviota in Pismo Beach.

I'm supposed to be good at details. How is it that I missed the three Kiraly points illustrated by the screenshot below?

a. Harvey Levenson, who is probably just a legal artifact, has been interwoven with my father's affairs for 25 years.

b. WTH is that $418K in 1993 about? It wasn't related to a sale of the Walnut Creek property; that didn't happen until about 5 years later.

c. Does the screenshot below mean that Jim Kiraly still owns 32 La Gaviota in Pismo Beach? If so, who, exactly, is physically residing there?

Scott? Are you down there instead of in Pleasant Hill where you're supposed to be?

Note: The screenshot below probably won't be visible on phones. Rotate to landscape mode or try a regular web browser.

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Kiraly-Levenson Properties

2. I'm seeking, for legitimate and reasonable purposes protected under U.S. laws, information related to Jim Kiraly's location and involvement in local affairs.

Attorneys and others interested in the Legitimate and Reasonable Purposes List are invited to click on the link below:

Legitimate and Reasonable Purposes List


It appears that somebody has posted related useful information on the webpage linked below:


A close reading of the laws involved suggests that it's quite legal, in the context of criminal as opposed to civil law, to post that type of information publicly subject to various strict rules.

The rules *do* have teeth, but it's clear that they're applicable only in specific contexts. This is intentional on the part of lawmakers. It has to do with business and law enforcement issues.

In fact, such posting may or may not even create a cause of action in the civil arena.

These are casual observations, of course, until such time as such information is posted on a site that is under my control.

To read legal notes related to the laws which regulate the use of such information, attorneys and others are invited to click here.


As a related note, I'm offering cash for information, to be used for legitimate and reasonable purposes that are protected under U.S. laws, related to the location and activities of the wife-beater Jim Kiraly.

Information must be obtained in a strictly legal manner.

Jim Kiraly of Pismo Beach

3. In the Kiraly Gag Order cases, Jim accused me of making false statements related to sexual abuse. He didn't cite a single example. This was par for the course.

It was the same for spousal abuse. Jim accused me of making false statements related to spousal abuse, but he didn't cite a single example in this context either.

Jim was, of course, guilty of spousal abuse. I was forced by the legal actions to discuss his past. It was most likely awkward for his attorneys, though only slightly.

Attorneys don't too care much if their client turns out to have lied. Not as long as he or she is worth tens of millions of dollars.

One might wonder, since I hadn't said anything, why Jim felt the need to talk about sexual abuse.

I've decided that we're going to clear that part up.


This paragraph is a formal announcement that I've offered to state under oath details of a sexual incident involving Jim Kiraly of 6329 Twinberry Circle, Avila Beach, CA; 32 La Gaviota, Pismo Beach, CA; 217 Gerry Court, Walnut Creek, CA; Transamerica Corporation; Retired Active Men; and Service Core for Retired Executives. The Newport Beach address is unconfirmed.

Information that may help to locate and identify this person who has committed numerous prosecutable crimes, including multiple violent felonies, even if he's changed his name and/or left the country, has apparently been posted by some party at this link. Notes on legal issues related to such posting may be viewed at this link.

The point of the offer is that I'm seeking to be sure that organizations which might allow Jim to volunteer for them are aware of his involvement in spousal abuse, child abuse, and prosecutable crimes of other types.

It's my understanding that, unless Jim is convicted — which is unlikely due to the fact that he'd pass away before any trial was concluded — I'll need to approach organizations individually to have him placed on different “Caution” lists.

This might be time-consuming. But perhaps I'll be able to work out some type of statement format that will work for multiple organizations. With luck, the part about a statement under oath may turn out to be the key element.


But, organizations in what area? Is the violent abuser Jim Kiraly still in the area that includes Pismo Beach, Avila Beach, and Arroyo Grande or has he fled?

Is he, perhaps, staying elsewhere in property owned by Ken Kiraly and Virginia Chang Kiraly or renting property through a trust?

Photo: Ann Kiraly, Jim Kiraly's mother, and Olga Kmeta, Grace Kiraly's mother. Jim picked up the cycle of violence from his parents Frank and Ann and continued it.

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Ann Kiraly and Olga Kmeta
180606 Wednesday — Life and Death of a Cat

180606. Mia is Portuguese for Miao.

This is a story about a cat and feelings
With feelings I now have dealings
What is the worth of a cat
Those with feelings can answer that

CodeLicker is a mid-20s friend in Brazil. He likes cylindrical objects, including animals such as daschunds and rats. He owns one daschund, his long-dog.

There is a video of the long-dog below engaged in a ferocious battle with an equally grim and determined cat named Mia.

Mia is Portuguese for Miao.

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Meow Defender

CodeLicker is working on a draft of a story about a sentient cactus.

We've discussed other possible works in the past. I rather liked the Greek Tragedy in which a pack of lions plot to get at a farmer's beloved cows, cows that he treasures more than human family members.

I have pieces of that story lying around somewhere. The only dialogue that I remember presently is this part:

<Leo> In trying to save all, he lost all
<Betsy> Eat hoof, lion

CodeLicker's own story takes place in a household in Brazil. It's a townhouse, I think, that CodeLicker shares with his mother, his sister, and his sister's son.

In March 2018, CodeLicker told me that he'd acquired a cat.

<CodeLicker> The cat was lost and followed my nephew. Nowadays, my nephew hates the cat because I like it, but the cat has come to stay.

She was 3 months old. This was on December 24. Christmas Eve. She is 5 months old now.

My mother and sister went to buy gifts. My nephew was wandering around the terrace. The cat came and started to follow him.

So, when the others came back, he said “I want to have this cat, can I, Mommy?”

Days later, he realized that he was disputing attention with the cat. And he became jealous of it.

To the point of putting it to the outside and closing the door. He wanted the cat but, not knowing what do to with it, he treated it like he already did to the dog. A target for things. Such as throwing water.

<OldCoder> Cats that are born wild don't usually behave like that. The kitten had had humans before.

<CodeLicker> I think I know where its mom is. There is a stray mother cat. Raising cubs somehow. I heard a report of a bigger cat that looks exactly like her feeding similar cats.

On Christmas Eve, my sister told me, “This cat is going to stay for a while, but don't worry. I know you don't like cats, it's only temporary”.

I thought it was related to some organization that a friend of my sister has. Their stalls for animals were full and they couldn't come to get the cat, but they'd do it ASAP.

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

Two days later, I found out that the cat had nothing to do with the organization. I asked “Where did this cat come from, after all?” And found out it had followed my nephew.

They said that I shouldn't worry about my allergies since they would find it a home as soon as possible.

I was a little p*ssed. Then I realized they'd never find it a home, and they were planning to toss it away so I'd have no allergy.

I started to control my mind in order to not cough and sneeze until I suppressed allergic reactions.

The cat tried to get to me, but I spent most of my time locked in my room. I wanted to forget the world for a while. I was busy.

It tried to follow the adults after it realized that my nephew wasn't exactly protective of it.

Now that I think of it, the cat seemed desperate. It walked weirdly towards everyone and alternated tiredness with agitation.

It wanted to communicate some idea to everyone. I think this idea was “I'm dying” “Help”

I thought “this damn thing will stay here anyway. I'd better control my mind and get used to it so that I don't contrary my family.”

So far I thought on it as “my nephew's cat” And I hadn't met the cat yet aside from eyeing it between going between a bedroom and the kitchen.

I went to look at the cat. She was on a tired phase. Actually, she was pretty much dead.

I thought, “this cat won't last long and die by itself anyway, why am I so worried that my family will start quarreling with me?”

It seemed it would endure only around 3 more days of life.

But then I thought, “I don't have to worry about any damage it may cause either. What irreversible damage a cat can do, anyway?”

I don't like cats for my allergy, but cats don't really are to blame for being born cats. So, we sat for 30 minutes. The cat then snapped out of lethargy. It stood and seemed even more agitated.

Cat Reaper

It had difficulty breathing. It was 99.99% dead.

Picture this. Imagine a cat walking. It halts in pain and sits down.

It's trying to breathe. Breathing requires effort. A smoke comes from it. The smoke starts organizing after a while. A figure starts to appear.

After a while, the figure starts becoming clearer. First, a black cloth. Then an actual black robe. Finally, a scythe. And a skull.

It's the Grim Reaper. A cat materializes the Grim Reaper.

I thought, “damn, why am I alone with this cat in this state? I don't know its issue and it seems to be dying *right now*”

The cat looked more and more agitated. That made it breathe harder. But since I probably have been born cold blooded, I thought, “So, I must act. What is the first step?”


“Either it's dead or something can be done. Maybe it is having a heart attack, for example, or it is thirsty.”

So I waited and continued observing. After a while, it looked more stable. So I thought:

“This unnamed being obviously has one or more health conditions. Maybe this agitation is a fight for its life. If it has a parasite, maybe it is fighting against it.”

“In this case, I should try simply some water. There is no food but trash, which might be even more hazardous.”

I checked for milk. The only milk I had contained sugar from sugarcane.

I recalled a Biology professor and political associate. His field is sugar. He dedicated his entire life to prove sugar is poison. So I got water instead and gave it to the cat.

Cat eating

I took my phone and complained to my mother about missing food. She told me where the food was stored.

She said the cat had eaten, but I ignored this and added more after the water.

When the cat saw the food, it meowed, so I knew I was onto something. Then I came back to the living room and sat idle again.

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

Sometimes thoughts strike me over and over and as I recall them it makes me rethink my positions.


One of them is how each second we spend in life cannot be re-spent. And how ephemeral life is.

So, since time is a non-renewable resource and life is based on it, the obvious conclusion is that life is very frail.

A resource that should be spent somehow and we can't choose to not spend.

Qin Shi tried to not spend his life and, instead, become immortal. He drunk mercury trying to do so. I don't think I need to explain the result.

I thought about what I was doing with my life.

I thought that if this cat is to be short lived, leaving it destroyed and anemic isn't the best it can have on its last 3 days of life.

Either I kill it out of mercy or try to improve its life, but abandon is the most cruel possibility. That is what an enemy would do. Leave it at its worse fate.

Since the cat was fighting for its life, sacrificing it would be disrespectful. It's like demolishing a peasant's house while he is still building it on the grounds that he doesn't have enough material to finish it anyway.


So I decided I would help to supervise the cat's passing or survival and attempt to never sneeze or cough.

After the cat was satisfied with its meal, it came to me. It stood and looked at me. And possibly at my icy rational heart.

I looked back at it in silence.

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Meow Attack

The cat meowed. It was satisfied, but I thought it wasn't, so I said: “Damn, what else you could possibly want?”

Actually, we don't use the word “Damn” in Brazil. We use “Droga”. So it was more like: “Droga. O que mais você precisa?”

It continued to meow and then it jumped on the sofa. I put it back on the floor. And said “não não não não”.

Which would be “no no no” in English. We don't have animals at the sofa on this home. Something that nowadays isn't true anymore, but at that time it was.

Well, after I put it on the floor, it pressed its face and body against me.

I got a little scared and checked its nose. I knew that gesture meant it wanted to bond with me.


But something else caught my attention. Cat noses weren't supposed to have a rough texture. It was supposed to be soft. Translate the word “áspero” if you like.

The cat's nose seemed wrong. I found out later that I was right.

“O gato tinha uma crosta áspera na ponta do nariz.”

“Insect gives disease to cat. Disease creates a skin condition up to the point of affecting the nose. Whoever that touches the nose gets the condition.”

But I stroked the cat.

At this rate I was so scared that I didn't even care about allergic reactions or not. Not scared in the sense of fear. Scared in the sense of surprise.

Like you are in a silent room and then someone appears, quietly, and start singing on a trumpet and beating a drum.

I started stroking the cat while trying to examine it.

After the examination, I thought: “Damn, this is worse than I thought. This cat is over.”

It was more than the nose issue. I didn't know what major disease the cat had. But I thought... three days is a lot... It may be dead by tomorrow morning. And maybe I'll need a hospital too.

Then I sat down on a chair. And thought, “If I'm already screwed, how it can go worse anyway?”

The cat came and jumped on the chair. I started stroking its head again and it pressed the nose on my two arms. And then I let it sleep on my lap.

I picked up the skin condition on the three places now. Two in one arm and one in another.

I checked its nose just now. The condition on the tip of the nose is receding. I got pomada to treat the condition on my arms.

This meeting happened on the 5th day. 2 months ago.

It had moved from “someone else's stuff” to “dying-soon” cat passing through to “undesired problem”.

The cat was still sick weeks later. I was surprised with its survival. I was expecting it to die.

The 1st vet removed some yellow pus from what he said was the cat's lungs. It may have been bile from her liver instead. Because, it turned out, her organs were misplaced.

The 2nd vet took X-Rays.

He said the ribs showed signs of being healed which required them to be broken in 1st place. The organs were also misplaced. These things suggested that the cat had been kicked hard as a kitten.

Up to 2 weeks ago I still thought it would soon be gone. The 2nd vet said that. But it has grown and this seems to have helped with breathing.

We'll all die someday. The cat might live for a few years, now.

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

After a while, I noticed it had became attached to me. To the point my mom said it was my cat when she caught it sleeping on my lap.

Only then reality struck me. I hadn't noticed I had a cat so far. To me, it was my nephew's cat. I hadn't seen myself as a cat owner.

About the dog and cat video:

The dog hated the cat at first. I had to spend part of Christmas Eve stopping him from howling at her.

It took 3 weeks for them to stop mutual attacks. Despite the fact the cat looked very dead it could surprisingly fight the dog.

The problem for the dog was that it was a coward. The cat simply moved its paw forward and aimed at the “all bark and no bite” dog.

The cat would usually attack the dog's head. The dog would cry and run away.

If you watch the video, you'll see the dog could obliterate the cat. But doing so would require courage.

After a few weeks, the dog realized the cat wasn't really a menace. And that the cat was going to stay. So, the dog did something different.

This time, the dog came cautiously, not barking and making mentions to attack.

The dog stood like a Mabel Cookie.

<OldCoder> I have no idea what that is
<CodeLicker> Here. This cookie.

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Mabel Cookie

The cat was drinking water. The tension built as the dog approached! Then, it deflated.

The dog walked away. The cat finished drinking and went to the dog.

The dog raised its head and then laid down in a straight position. A specific “sphinx” way certain breeds can perform.

The dog seemed to be trying to talk to the cat by moving its head and tongue.

The cat stood for a while watching the dog's movements. Then the cat came adjacent to the dog and sat down. After a while it got tired and slept on the dog.

The cat was an unexpected expense. But it matters because it became family. Like the dog.

The dog was found in a similar situation. Instead of being a stray, it had an aggressive owner who made it traumatized.

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Meow Sleep

<OldCoder> What was the main issue? Breathing?
<CodeLicker> It seemed to have, but I think it was just chronic anemia.
<CodeLicker> Nowadays it runs and jumps.
<OldCoder> But there was a breathing issue?
<CodeLicker> Still has.
<OldCoder> So, it has more energy, but some damage due to a possible kick

<CodeLicker> And still has a disease that contaminates even humans.
<OldCoder> Will the disease be cleared up? Or is it permanent?
<CodeLicker> People say it is temporary. It has been diminishing. But I don't really know.
<OldCoder> You took a risk and paid a price. Do you regret it?
<CodeLicker> How can I regret small prices.
<CodeLicker> It isn't like I lost a hand. It's just a skin disease.

On Sunday, June 3, when I woke up, I found this message from CodeLicker waiting for me:

<CodeLicker> Now...
<CodeLicker> 3 hours ago Mia was alive.

I tried to reach him, but no dice:

<OldCoder> Go on
<OldCoder> Please continue

I thought, at first, that the cat had died. But then I figured CodeLicker was simply responding to a remark I'd made about its potential demise.

I didn't reach CodeLicker for two days. I was online the first day, Sunday, but away on Monday. Loome had flown cross-country to visit me. I traveled to meet him.

On Tuesday, June 5, I got ahold of CodeLicker online.

<OldCoder> One of my group for the past six years visited me this week. His plane is taking off right now to take him home. It was a nice visit.

<OldCoder> I misunderstood something earlier this week. I thought you were saying that the cat had passed away.

<CodeLicker> I told you when the cat passed away, damn it.

*** I'd missed the end of the original message. Due to a reboot, the buffer had been flushed to disk and the screen had been cleared. This Modern World.

<CodeLicker> Half of the effort for the communication is on my side, the other half you'll have to do on your own.
<CodeLicker> I'm not my usual self.
<CodeLicker> I'm disoriented... Is that the word?
<OldCoder> So, the cat did pass away. I'm sorry.

<CodeLicker> Sh*t.
<CodeLicker> I can't focus my eyes straight.
<OldCoder> Disoriented is the right word.

<OldCoder> Do you have a fever?
<CodeLicker> No, my brain can't control my eyes straight.
<OldCoder> Is this a new medical issue?
<CodeLicker> Tiredness.

<CodeLicker> I'm unable to function since the cat passed away.
<OldCoder> What happened? Something from the early abuse caught up with her?
<CodeLicker> What is likely is that she died due to an electric shock.

<CodeLicker> She stepped on a wire of sorts. I can't name the thing, but it's the same of a wire related to a television.
<CodeLicker> She had a shock and since her organs were defective her heart probably overcharged.
<CodeLicker> Then she started getting sicker.

<OldCoder> So, the shock wasn't fatal, but it might have contributed
<CodeLicker> So my mother told me.
<CodeLicker> She got shocked and since that day I observed her going amiss.
<CodeLicker> But then we insisted she eat and she seemed to go better.
<CodeLicker> She ate some chicken and coincidentally went amiss again.

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

<OldCoder> Was this when she stopped eating?
<CodeLicker> We thought it was the chicken, but it wasn't.
<OldCoder> And ate the sand instead?
<CodeLicker> Yes.
<CodeLicker> Yes.
<CodeLicker> Precisely.
<CodeLicker> So I thought she was getting better.
<CodeLicker> She started eating again.

<OldCoder> But was too damaged
<CodeLicker> Then she died about 48 hours ago.

Your phone or window is too narrow for the image. If it's a phone, try rotating the phone or switching to a PC. Or click here to go to a copy that may be zoomable.

<OldCoder> Abruptly. Little or no suffering, I gather.
<CodeLicker> Her heart stopped Monday 8:40 am.
<CodeLicker> No, she died on my hands. I was resurrecting her.
<CodeLicker> I even tried electric shock.

<CodeLicker> She gave one last gaze at me.
<CodeLicker> She opened her mouth twice before the shock.
<CodeLicker> Then she lowered her head.

<OldCoder> She knew that she was cared for
<OldCoder> Do you understand how important that is?

<CodeLicker> She was trying to survive. She didn't want to die.
<CodeLicker> Neither did I want it.
<CodeLicker> She was a warrior.
<OldCoder> Yes. You both did what was possible.
<OldCoder> Ladislao, your choices create a universe. You've made the right choices.

<CodeLicker> This sounded like Greek.
<CodeLicker> I have little to no interpretative capabilities at this rate.
<CodeLicker> And I have a test tomorrow. No idea how I'll study for it.
<OldCoder> Are you able to postpone it?

<CodeLicker> Life is not about surrendering and expecting the universe to bend over backwards just because I blundered somewhere.
<CodeLicker> I need to start and then I'll be able to finish.
<CodeLicker> The cat didn't postpone its death. When the time comes, we have to try up to the last bit of energy.

<CodeLicker> My eyes
<OldCoder> You did what was possible
<OldCoder> Your eyes?
<CodeLicker> My eyes are closed now. I'm not sure if I'm pressing the right keys.
<CodeLicker> Is this readable?

<OldCoder> You typed it perfectly
<OldCoder> But reading will be difficult without the use of your eyes
<CodeLicker> O', isomg tje "f" leu as a reference.
<OldCoder> That line didn't come out as well
<OldCoder> But the others were good

<CodeLicker> I'll nap and drink water
<OldCoder> I'll be here for 12 hours

<OldCoder> What is the nature of Evil? The answer is that it is the smug mundane.
<CodeLicker> I'm not writing a dichotomy book.
<OldCoder> Dichotomy Book is what you aimed for initially
<OldCoder> Perhaps you've evolved
<CodeLicker> My book is about Cactus' life, Edy's research and the somewhat valid fear of the city.

<OldCoder> Do you understand the gift that you gave to the cat? There was more to it than life.
<OldCoder> The cat knew that she was cared for. That she belonged to you.
<CodeLicker> She used to scratch my door searching for me.
<OldCoder> Of course
<CodeLicker> To which at some point I stopped denying.

<OldCoder> The purpose of her life was relax, fun, be around friends
<OldCoder> Even the dog, apparently
<CodeLicker> She didn't have any children.
<OldCoder> No
<OldCoder> She was content
<CodeLicker> Probably her organs wouldn't survive the strain, though.
<OldCoder> Not a chance
<OldCoder> It would have been the end

<OldCoder> She lived...
<OldCoder> the best possible life that was possible given the start

<OldCoder> Cats and dogs don't expect much, you know. Mostly, it's about the basics, some entertainment, and their people.
<OldCoder> No cat afterlife could match what she had here

<OldCoder> The simple act of caring... something that most people aren't capable of...
<OldCoder> Most people being worth less than the cat... this act on your part was as powerful as anything that a God might do.

<OldCoder> It isn't Greek. It's the simple truth.
<CodeLicker> I don't care if she didn't expect much.
<CodeLicker> I expected more for her.

<OldCoder> You gave her what was possible.
<CodeLicker> And that's it. Whoever that did it should pay for all she didn't have of positive and all she did of negative.
<OldCoder> Yes, they should

<CodeLicker> No Sherlock required to notice also that sky is never the limit.
<OldCoder> Explain.
<CodeLicker> No matter how well I did, there is also one notch I could have gone.

<OldCoder> Not true. We're mortal.
<CodeLicker> Elementary mathematics: there is no number that has no greater one in an unbounded set.


<OldCoder> Only in stories do we fly based solely on our lighthearted nature
<OldCoder> Right
<OldCoder> Infinities abound. But not in one life.

<CodeLicker> I'm just saying that if 10 is a big number, then I have no idea how you'll feel when you figure out 100 exists. Yet, this means you will probably die oblivious of what 1000 means. You know that 10 is small, don't you?

<OldCoder> 10 is a universe
<OldCoder> There is:
<OldCoder> 9.01... 9.001... 9.0001...
<OldCoder> Microcosms

<CodeLicker> All smaller than 1000. It wasn't enough. It would never be enough.
<CodeLicker> That's axiomatic.

<OldCoder> There is a book I like that mentions an advanced alien race.

The race conquered all of its space and time and wasn't satisfied. It reshaped its N-space, its continuum, into a statue of a standing figure. Each millimeter contained millennia of Time.

The figure reached up, trying for what was out of reach. The race continued to exist in the sense that its history was embedded in the strata. It would never perish as the statue would always be there, out of the reach of Time... containing Time, in fact, as its vertical physical dimension.

But, still, it ended at the top. Infinities just out of its reach.

<OldCoder> The cat had less than 10 months... but it was happy and grateful

<CodeLicker> Problem Statement: On a positive integer, you can perform one of these steps:

1) Subtract 1 from it
2) If its divisible by 2, divide by 2
3) If its divisible by 3, divide by 3

The problem is, given a positive integer n, find the minimum number of steps that takes n to 1.

<CodeLicker> I'll remain all claims undisputed for I have energy only for this problem as of now. I have only 4 hours to understand this technique.
<OldCoder> Reviewing
<CodeLicker> No matter which choice you take, it's a bad idea.
<CodeLicker> Because the criteria of the choice changes.

<CodeLicker> I'm back.
<OldCoder> wb
<CodeLicker> I had a visit. They gave me a cat.
<OldCoder> I tested 5 approaches to the algorithm... Who did? Mia died just 2 days ago. Are you up to this?

<CodeLicker> This is some sort of last straw joke.
<CodeLicker> I'd accept a new cat... Just not this early.
<CodeLicker> Maybe one more week would be fine.

<OldCoder> It doesn't work like that. Give it away or ask for it to be returned.
<CodeLicker> No. That's even worse.
<OldCoder> It'll be difficult for you to take a cat now
<CodeLicker> The cat's well-being matters more.
<CodeLicker> It's been already displaced and travelled. It's disturbed enough already.

<OldCoder> All right. The original cat was named Mia? You hadn't told me this.
<OldCoder> Was it short for Miao? :)
<CodeLicker> Not a short but a Portuguese form for it.
<OldCoder> So, Mia is the correct spelling?
<CodeLicker> Yes.

<OldCoder> In English, the point would be Mia = Miao but it's a little different in Portuguese
<CodeLicker> Tranlate “O gato mia” in Google.

<CodeLicker> Here, in the 3 lines, we need to modify it:

q = 1 + find(n - 1);
if(n % 2 == 0) q = max(q, 1 + find(n/2);
if(n % 3 == 0) q = max(q, 1 + find(n/3);

<CodeLicker> This has this find recursion. It's bad. We need to think bottom up.

<CodeLicker> We obviously know that for n == 1 we need 0 steps, right?
<OldCoder> This is, again, fine, but the rules weren't clearly stated. And, yes.

<CodeLicker> Getting new cat to my lap.
<CodeLicker> Since we have n==1 and we just started our not-built-yet iteration, how do we calculate n == 2?
<CodeLicker> It's still dubious: n-1 or n/2.

<CodeLicker> 55555555555555555555555555555555555 <- new cat wants to send you this message.
<OldCoder> OK
<CodeLicker> Jesus, it is energic, unlike Mia who was sick.
<CodeLicker> Now I'm sadder.
<CodeLicker> I'm think on behalf of Mia.

<OldCoder> Mia needed you, in one way. This one, in another. Your friends or family made a mistake.
<OldCoder> But...
<CodeLicker> She was energic before being kicked.
<OldCoder> Right


<OldCoder> It happens to people as well as to animals
<OldCoder> And there are not always
<OldCoder> Avatars of God to fix things
<CodeLicker> I'm angry.
<OldCoder> Angry at the abuser?
<CodeLicker> Everything.
<CodeLicker> I'm angry at all she passed.

<OldCoder> There's nothing to say to that
<OldCoder> But you don't know what actually happened to her originally; only the likelihood
<OldCoder> Either way, the cat had no further choice to make. Her destination was set. The trajectory; that decision was yours.

<CodeLicker> All the sh*t she went through...
<CodeLicker> If only I could find who attacked her.
<OldCoder> It isn't possible.
<OldCoder> You don't even know 100% for sure that she was attacked
<OldCoder> She might have been hit by a car or a baseball

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More Meow

<CodeLicker> New cat rebooted my PC.
<CodeLicker> We don't have baseballs, and my country is actually a hellish continent-sized nation.

<CodeLicker> As you can clearly see, we are bright but dysfunctional people, prone to corruption and evildoing.
<CodeLicker> Too bad you don't know our philosopher that lives in your country, Olavo de Carvalho.
<CodeLicker> Once he said that the main difference between Brazil and any other country is that you have sanity standards.
<CodeLicker> I.E.: you have a sane majority, or maybe even a sane but notable minority, and insane people.
<CodeLicker> We have the latter.

<CodeLicker> oooooooooooooooooo00990 <- Another message from her.
<OldCoder> IC
<CodeLicker> Anyhow...
<CodeLicker> To the algorithm.

<CodeLicker> The if's guard non-ready access.
<CodeLicker> memory[K~] will only be accessed if it was previously calculated.
<CodeLicker> Since options are i - 1, i/2 and i/3 there is no forward option.
<CodeLicker> It would be otherwise if we had, say, n+1 somewhere.

<CodeLicker> So...

q = 1 + find(n - 1);
if(n % 2 == 0) q = min(q, 1 + find(n/2);
if(n % 3 == 0) q = min(q, 1 + find(n/3);

<CodeLicker> Sorry. All pauses are due to new cat.
<CodeLicker> It has some similar traits, but some different ones thankfully.
<OldCoder> We agree, I think, that this was presumptuous of your family or friends
<OldCoder> You're kind to accommodate them

<OldCoder> Whose idea was this?
<CodeLicker> 3rd party.
<CodeLicker> A co-worker of my sister... Most likely the wife or her boss.

<OldCoder> They intended well, but it wasn't a good idea
<CodeLicker> At least she was the one who brought it as a surprise.
<OldCoder> Right. But the attempt at a distraction...

<CodeLicker> what is done is done so I am preventing this cat can end up on a demise if I focus too much on the mistake.

<CodeLicker> I am avoiding to complain to my family because they might be capable of getting rid of it because of me since I am the member most affected by Mia's death.

<OldCoder> Will you focus on the fact that you did all that was practical for Mia?
<OldCoder> It's my philosophy that loss is easier to bear when one does that.

<CodeLicker> I didn't. I had plans for Mia.
<CodeLicker> Tour around town as soon as she recovered from the shock.
<OldCoder> That might have been fun :)
<OldCoder> The cat hadn't been out much

<CodeLicker> She at least had the view of my building.
<OldCoder> Cats are thankful for little worlds
<OldCoder> They don't mind indoors life. Some love the outdoors, of course.

<CodeLicker> Hey, she knew the outside. Only it was cold and broke 3 of her ribs and displaced her organs and she met diabolic people.
<OldCoder> Exactly
<OldCoder> Outdoors is risky, but some cats do seek it

<CodeLicker> I have a skin condition from Mia.
<CodeLicker> My immunology is down due to her death, so my immunity is temporarily suspended. I'm like the rest of the family now.
<OldCoder> It'll improve, perhaps
<OldCoder> Regarding the cat: No regrets
<CodeLicker> I think I'm getting it as a permanent disease.
<CodeLicker> Like she had.

<OldCoder> Nothing is permanent that is temporal
<CodeLicker> Blood disease.
<OldCoder> Unlikely. But get it checked.
<CodeLicker> It was permanent on her, according to the vet.

<OldCoder> You said it was an insect. Insects aren't permanent.
<CodeLicker> No.
<CodeLicker> I said the disease was caused by the insects.
<CodeLicker> I had an idea that removed all of them.
<OldCoder> Get it checked

<CodeLicker> 3 meticulous and rather painful baths on her with normal shampoo. All baths of cats are painful, but I did 3 in a row.
<CodeLicker> I removed all insects.
<CodeLicker> Then, alcohol everywhere.

<CodeLicker> Anyway...
<CodeLicker> The disease continued on her blood, even if it was brought by pillbugs that I removed.
<CodeLicker> Not really pillbugs, but similar insects.

<OldCoder> Go to sleep
<CodeLicker> I'll fight the coffee in my veins now. Took a last glance at Mia.
<CodeLicker> I didn't help her. She helped me.
<OldCoder> CodeLicker
<OldCoder> Ladislao
<CodeLicker> I only parasited the teachings she had to offer.

<OldCoder> You did more than help her
<CodeLicker> She taught me how to value things.
<OldCoder> You gave her a life
<CodeLicker> That's a lower bound retribution.
<CodeLicker> floor(retribution) = life.
<OldCoder> It's a solid floor.

<CodeLicker> I guess she pardoned me, though.
<OldCoder> She loved you
<CodeLicker> She scratched my door Saturday.
<CodeLicker> I let her in.

<CodeLicker> I can't wear my blouse.
<OldCoder> Hm?
<CodeLicker> She slept on the sleeve.
<OldCoder> Heh. Cats do that.
<CodeLicker> She could only sleep sat down with chin up by her last days.
<OldCoder> Chin up?
<CodeLicker> Yeah, to get air.

<CodeLicker> I was in denial. She was pretty much dead.
<OldCoder> She looked at you, at the last. They say that animals know.
<CodeLicker> Yeah, this was Monday.

<CodeLicker> I didn't give her health, that's a fact.
<CodeLicker> I gained more than her. Even her death.
<OldCoder> Gained more?
<CodeLicker> Her death enhanced my look on life.
<OldCoder> She wouldn't mind

<CodeLicker> I moved to my bedroom. I was in living room.
<OldCoder> OK
<OldCoder> I'm here
<CodeLicker> Putting a video now and setting television to auto-sleep.
<OldCoder> Should go to sleep. You have a test today.
<CodeLicker> My brain only sleeps over excess of stimulus.
<CodeLicker> I need something to hear.
<CodeLicker> Normally, Bruce Lee movies.

Two weeks later:

<OldCoder> I thought that an online associate might have died, but he came to say Hello recently
<OldCoder> Mr. Business is alive
<OldCoder> There is a medical issue and he's in a wheelchair, but he's alive

<CodeLicker> No idea about what to say over the cat.
<CodeLicker> Probably related to my fever.
<CodeLicker> Good he came back to say hello, I guess.
<CodeLicker> How many fingers do you have?
<OldCoder> I have a conventional finger count

<OldCoder> She improved your life and you improved hers. She was pleased simply to be there.
<OldCoder> Isn't this true?

<CodeLicker> I don't know.
<CodeLicker> I guess after she died I came to realizations that I didn't want to see.
<CodeLicker> Specially seeing how the new cat behaves.

<CodeLicker> Perhaps the most viable and beautiful gems can only be filtered from raw rock at stunningly high degrees of heat.
<CodeLicker> So she had a very specific personality that made me love her.

<CodeLicker> But at the same time it was forged under the fire of pain.
<CodeLicker> And I didn't want to see this pain. I made everything to attenuate it... To no avail... Perhaps she just validated my efforts with gratitude.

<CodeLicker> On the other hand, she learnt to deal with it and seemed to want to live.
<CodeLicker> The only failures I had are taking too long to love her and never bringing catnip.

<CodeLicker> I hope there is a cat heaven filled with catnip and born-dead fish, so that no fish suffers.
<CodeLicker> And in there she has both lungs functioning, her intestines are in the correct place and her heart isn't cardiac.

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Cat Heaven

<CodeLicker> I'm really not decided on this question.
<CodeLicker> She seemed to not be suffering, only feeling pain.

<OldCoder> She was content
<OldCoder> She had emotions similar to those of people. Including the feeling of having a place, of belonging, of feeling love and of wanting to offer it.
<OldCoder> She was real in a sense that some normals are not real

Technical note:

The two cat videos are animated GIFs created by me using normal videos made by CodeLicker as a starting point.

I don't have the scripts that I wrote for the purpose handy, but they worked something like this:

I used mplayer to dump frames to PNG files, then mogrify to crop the frames, then convert to convert the cropped frames to GIF format, then gifsicle to combine the GIF files into the final animations.

To view the final animations, I used viewnior, though a browser would have worked as well.

140313 Thursday — What Happens to Older Developers?

This post is old but will remain on the front page for the time being.

140313. Jeff Jenkins posted these questions and others recently at Ask Hacker News:

What happens to older developers? Is there a plateau in pay? Is there a drop in pay switching jobs after a certain number of years? Is becoming a specialist rather than a generalist the answer?

To read the original post, click here. Note: The link was valid as of March 2014. However, it may have broken since then.

This is my response:

Developers who go on long enough are expected to obtain high-level titles by their 50s or to retire at about that time.

I'd like to discuss an issue that you might not have thought about: What's going to happen if you lose your job?

Employment in the 50s can be problematic. If somebody is skilled and employed, and has a high-level title or is a specialist or has useful connections, they should be able to obtain a new position.

Otherwise, they might go from well-off to homeless. It happens. I'm 55, my resume is pretty good, and I was worth $1M a decade ago. I'm a transient now. I've got some medical issues, no medical care, and no dentists. Potential jobs are largely unskilled physical labor, which I'm not able to do.

I'm taking a shot at tutoring. However, I don't expect that to provide more than gas money. The head of an admin assistant firm said that I can't be a secretary unless I already am one.

Two people considered sending me to care for elderly relatives, but we didn't proceed. My title at one of those positions was going to be “poop scooper”.

Don't let this happen to you. For what it's worth, here's my advice:

1. Don't fall off of the employment ladder.

2. Become a specialist. Try to remain broad enough, though, that you don't become obsolete.

3. Build a network of people. Make it a large one.

4. Diversify your investments.

5. While you're employed, don't let medical issues, even minor ones, go untreated for long. If you lose your job and your assets, you'll lose medical care too and the issues may become serious.

6. Be kind to people. But don't be a fool. Most people that you help are not going to return the favor.

Regarding specialists, I did recruiting for a while in 2011 and I can confirm that the filters are weighted against generalists.

I've spent about 35 years myself as a generalist. My jobs called for it. The place where I spent most of my career took any project that came along, code of any type. At a dot-com that followed, after the money ran out, I handled all of the technical roles; IT, websites, development, support, documentation, etc. I was able to do a bit of everything.

Later on, none of this made a difference. There are few job listings that say “a bit of everything”.

After the dot-com shut down, 2003, I made $1M in the stock market. Lost most of it afterwards and reentered the job market. Learned that middle-age generalists were not in high demand.

In my case, there were other factors that won't apply to you. It's a story for another time. But if you're a generalist who falls off of the ladder in middle age, you can expect things like this:

“With a resume like that, why isn't he a CTO? Why doesn't he even have a job?”

You'll be asked questions about algorithms that you haven't thought about for 30 years. Or you'll go through coding tests under adverse conditions that don't allow you to show what you can do.

Plan ahead. Understand that the best-laid schemes of mice and men often go awry.

My own resume is located at:


These are my links. Yes, the technical site needs Twitter Bootstrap :P

  1. Technical site (oldcoder.org)
  2. My GitHub
  3. My LinkedIn
  4. My Twitter
  5. OldCoder Nerdcore Song

Regards, Robert (the Old Coder)

It Happens to Everybody
The illustration is distributed under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike 2.0 Generic. For attribution purposes, the rights holder is Ell Brown. For more information about the license, click here.

To download or zoom, click here.
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Old Age
© 2018 OldCoder (Robert Kiraly)