Archive for November, 2005


Friday, November 18th, 2005

Dumped the photos from my camera taken over the last couple of days some highlights are:

Entry hill golf course on a winters morning:


My attitude to technical support:

The room spinning:

Peter Pan

Monday, November 14th, 2005

Wow, the 1988 copyright, designs and patents acts, extends the copyright of “Peter Pan” (which should have expired in 1987) indefinitely (well for the duration of the existence of great ormond st. hospital).


Book Barn

Thursday, November 10th, 2005

In celebration of 561‘s birthday, we took the day off and did things that she likes.

One of these things was going book shopping at the book barn unfortunately she didn’t manage to find much that she both liked and didn’t own.

I however am not so selective and bought a pile of books which “looked interesting”… One of these was in the poetry section and appears to be a short volume of verse published by a small/vanity publisher in Madras which appears (there are no cover marks or copyright references) to be called “A century of Simius” about which I can find no information (other than an “exists” reference on alibris (ISBN 0193270340) ).

Anyway the verse appears to be a series of whimsical verse written pseudonymously by “Simius” from 1956-1958 and published in “The mail” newspaper in Madras (a now-defunct colonial newspaper as far as I can tell). Some of them are quite funny: (apologies to the author for the unauthorised publication but i’m pretty sure i won’t be able to find you)

(The increase in “goodwill missions” by all and sundry has been the subject of recent Press Comment.)

From north to south, from east to west they fly,
Friendship their slogan, brotherhood their cry,
Love in their heart and starlight in their eye.

Angels! How disappointingly compares
The part of clods like me and you with theirs!
Yes stay a minute, friend-we pay their fares.

Ours are the taxes that finance their love,
Ours is the store that nourishes the dove,
Our slaughtered savings start them with a shove.

All found (by us) they move as takes their mood
Around this pleasaant Earth–as angels should;
No wonder that their wills are pretty good.

Well, lit this be our consolation still–
That when it comes to Missions of Goodwill,
They also serve who only foot the bill.


Its wonderful what you find in book shops.


Wednesday, November 9th, 2005

A while ago i got distracted from my thesis/job for a couple of days and wrote drinkypoos (ahem), i like being distracted and i suppose being distracted learning new things can’t all be bad.

Anyway, this evening i was distracted again so i thought that given that i have actually done some proper work today i would have a look at drinkypoos again…

So anyway i fixed a couple of bugs which nobody probably even noticed existed and then wrote a little thingymagic to visualise one’s friends drinking using graphviz.

Here are some crappy results:

I’ve hidden the identities of the nodes (bigger ones have drunk/reportedly drunk more in the last 4 weeks, black lines are mutual friends light ones are unidirectional friends) prizes go to the best attempt to label the nodes.

What i am not going to do tomorrow is finish the script to do animations of the networks showing drinking over time, (what time i don’t spend working i will be doing birthday things with 561)


Friday, November 4th, 2005

The dell man cameth to replaced the motherboard on my laptop, it turns out “motherboard” is in fact everything which is left after you have taken the screen,disk,case and batteries away, so to all intents and purposes i have a new laptop (screen was replaced in july). Hoorah.

Just need to figure out how to get them to do the keyboard and case so I can sell the thing “as new”….


Thursday, November 3rd, 2005

Yesterday afternoon my laptop started randomly switching off while i was using it,about an hour later it stopped switching on again too….

Fortunately it still has warranty, and fortunately “completely dead” is a relatively easy concept to get past dell support:

Dell: “Have you scanned the machine for viruses?”
me: “no, it doesn’t boot”

Dell: “Have you tried updating the graphics driver?”
me: “no, it doesn’t boot”

Dell: “Have you tried upgrading the bios?”
me: “no, it doesn’t even power on”

Dell: “Have you tried re-seating the memory?”
me: “yes”

Dell: “And it still doesn’t boot?”
me: “no, it doesn’t”

Dell: “We’ll send an engineer around tomorrow then.”
me: “thanks”

They initally refused to give me any support because i refused to tell them which comany i worked for (i use the corporate support because a) that is what i payed for and b) the “consumer support” line has longer queues and more layers), we eventually settled on “Self employed” and they let me through to second line.

Unfortunately they are only going to try replacing the mother board, so if anything else is wrong they will have to take it away, grrr…

I have managed to jimmy the disk into the carcass of a dead thinkpad with no screen, so now i have what looks like a very fat keyboard and a flat panel….