Archive for December, 2004

Sub-$500 iMac?

Thursday, December 30th, 2004

There are rumours that Apple are about to announce a sub-$500 Mac.

Suffice to say, I want one. Very much.

Merry… thing

Wednesday, December 29th, 2004

I’m most unimpressed. I got a Dandy annual.

Everyone knows the Dandy was for losers and all the cool kids read the Beano.

I also got some hairbands and hairclips and things. I can’t help feeling my girlfriend is trying to tell me something.

On an utterly unrelated note, I’ve uploaded two batches of photos over in the gallery. I also took a load of pictures today with my Dad’s EOS-300D, but frankly, they’re a bit disappointing, so I’ll probably not be uploading any of them unless I get really desperate for content any time soon. So, next week, then.

It doesn’t feel like Christmas

Friday, December 24th, 2004

It’s Christmas eve, apparently.

It always makes me feel vaguely resentful of the universe that Christmas Day just turns out to be another day, pretty much like any other. I mean, with all the buildup you get and the months of decorations and annoying music in shops and stress and fuss and bother, you’d expect something monumentally spectacular to happen when you awake on Christmas morn; but it doesn’t – there’s no fanfare or fireworks or anything like that – it’s just another grey, soggy winter’s day.

Not that I’m totally bereft of Christmas cheer, mind. I’ve been looking forwards to seeing my family again for a while, and I like presents, a good roaring fire and crap telly as much as anyone else. It’s just that because we’re conditioned by shops and the media and society in general into hyping Christmas so much, it’s always a let down when you wake up and the world is still pretty much the same as it was the day before.

Anyway. I’m going to drive to Nottingham in a couple of hours, and I’ll be out of internet land for a bit, so I’ll wish you a Merry Christmas now, and you can hang onto it until tomorrow and feel merry then.

Merry Christmas 🙂

Wrong C++ of the day

Monday, December 20th, 2004
#include <iostream>

int gFoo = 0;
int myOtherFunction(int);                                                                                
int myFunction(int a)
  return a+1;
int myOtherFunction(int b = myOtherFunction(gFoo))
  return myFunction(b);

int main(void)
  std::cout << myOtherFunction() << std::endl;


Sunday, December 19th, 2004

Busy until after christmas. Have fun, don’t eat too much.

Please be true please be true please be true

Wednesday, December 15th, 2004

Blunkett likely to resign this evening.


It’s true! He’s gone! Right, I’m off to crack open a bottle of champagne.

Not a hiatus

Monday, December 13th, 2004

That’s a state of affairs that’s likely to continue for a while, on account of how even though my diary says this week is completely empty, it’s actually fuller than a goose that has been force-fed grain to fatten it up for Christmas. Plus, you don’t really want to hear me ranting about how great my new job is all the time, now, do you? So, yes. I have a post about Japanese music bubbling away under my hat at the moment, so I may unleash that upon you some time soon.

New Job Wednesday – One Week On

Wednesday, December 8th, 2004

Things on here have been a bit quiet lately, pretty much as a direct result of my life being anything but quiet. Tonight is the first evening since I started at Transitive that I haven’t gone out somewhere to do something.

To be fair, most of the busyness has been socialising – going out with my new workmates (a large number of whom are, in fact, old Uni pals – so more of a “How have you been?” rather than a “Getting to know you” sort of deal), seeing some other people I haven’t seen for ages because of distance and time difficulties, and choosing songs to play at Lori‘s birthday next year. So, anyway, yes; tonight I am free to lounge around and do nothing, and it’s quite a good feeling, given

New job

I know a few guys from my old company read this, so I’m going to try and write this without sounding too gloaty or self-satisfied; however, it’s hard to understate exactly how fantastic a move this has been for me. So, sorry if I start rambling or anything; I’m just a bit excited, that’s all.

Basically, the working environment at Transitive suits me down to the ground – for a start, it’s very relaxed, and the company provide free (and very good) coffee, cans of drink, doughnuts on a friday and a relaxation area with pool tables and stuff (and I can use the internet without first getting approval from my line manager *mutter*); but alongside this is a very rigorous and well-implemented engineering process which enforces peer-review and extensive testing of code. The basic upshot of this is that you have a happy bunch of engineers producing high quality, well engineered code. In addition, the projects we’re working on (although I can’t talk about them) are all really interesting, incredibly technical and, frankly, very exciting.

The guys I work with are, basically, a bunch of enormous geeks, which is great: on my first day, we had a seminar on the statistics of performance benchmarking during our lunch-hour – and everyone turned up for it; I just can’t imagine anything like that ever happening at Strangelite. The company grew out of a University project, and many of the lead engineers and technical board members are ex-lecturers and ex-students from Manchester University; as a consequence, there’s still the feeling of a University research group (with a hefty dollop of Silicon Valley tech company) about the place – albeit one with a multi-million dollar budget, formalised engineering processes and commercial clients.

Basically, I pretty much love it there, and even though I can see the work becoming pretty difficult, pretty quickly, it’s a hugely exciting company to work for, and the prospect of having a continual series of new and interesting challenges is, for me, a fantastic one – especially given the comparitive paucity of such challenges in my previous job.

Why I don’t go clubbing

Sunday, December 5th, 2004

Last night served as a timely reminder as to why I don’t go clubbing. After waiting for over an hour outside The Music Box with Naomi and friends to go and see Mr Scruff, desperate for the toilet and freezing my nuts off, we finally paid our £8 a head and got inside.

On the plus side, the music was good. Mr Scruff knows his stuff, playing a quirky mix of jazz, hip hop, latin, funk, soul and other breakbeat weirdness. On the downside, however, every single person in the entire venue was a total, unmitigated wanker. I have before never been elbowed in the back, shoved out of the way, scowled at, and generally regarded like something someone had accidentally trodden in so much by so many people in such a short space of time. An attitude of “I’m clearly so much cooler than you” pervaded the whole place; no-one seemed to be there to actually have a good time – they were all there so they could be cool and impress their mates the next day because they’d been to Mr Scruff.

It reminded me quite a lot of being on a rush-hour train in Tokyo. Everyone there is only there for their own benefit – other people can, at best, be ignored and at worst, elbowed and shoved out of the way and treated like objects. On a crowded rush-hour train, this behaviour – whilst unpleasant – is at least vaguely tolerable, because no-one really wants to be there, and it’s just a means to an end. In a social situation, though, where people are allegedly there to have a good time, it’s just downright rude and idiotic.

I have, however, had an idea. I am going to prepare several sheets of stickers to take with me next time I find myself in a nightclub. They will have things like “I AM SOCIALLY RETARDED”, “I HAVE NO REGARD FOR ANY OTHER HUMAN BEING” and “I’M A COMPLETE TOSSER” written on them, and every time someone pushes me out of the way, elbows me in the back or otherwise acts like a socially underdeveloped neandertal, I can slap one on the back of their shirt. It might not actually achieve anything, but it’ll at least make me feel better.

Blogmeet forums

Sunday, December 5th, 2004

It seems that the Blogmeet forums were hacked. Of course, no bugger uses them so it won’t actually have affected anyone. I’ve taken them offline until I can be bothered upgrading phpBB2 to a version which doesn’t let script-kiddies in Brazil execute arbitrary code on my server.