Blog

running out of time...

Well, it’s all going a bit crazy at the moment. I’ve booked my flights home (see dates on the right-hand side under Upcoming events) and I’m thoroughly scared by the whole idea! And I have loads to do before I leave. Although there is a fair chance I’ll be coming back to finish the work, I need to leave it in a reasonably decent state in case that does not happen, so that the folks here know what I’ve done and so some other geek can take over. As well as work, there’s lots of leaving-the-country faffing to be done, and I have to make time to see Dave and Jenny while they’re here (that’s the fun bit though!).

Anyways, I’m sure it’ll all work out fine (it always seems to). I’m hoping to be back in Edinburgherer on about the 19th of July, when I get to panic about finding a place to live and a job to work in! Super! Still, despite all the upheaval, this year has most definitely been worth it.

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Posted: 2004-05-28

Travels

in a nutshell

Many years ago, I created an online database of links related to the RISC OS platform called Nutshells. I thought it might be useful, but of course it quickly went out of date and I never had the time to update it. Well, I may have found a solution. I’ve just re-launched it here, with essentially the same interface, except that it now allows all visitors to edit the site contents (rather like a Wiki). Hopefully, this will allow the whole thing to be kept up to date with very little effort (at least on my part!). I’ve submitted an article to Drobe about it, so I guess we’ll just have to see what happens.

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Posted: 2004-05-20

Websites

kiwi tunes

Inspired by Graham’s efforts, I thought I’d tell you about some rather fine music I’ve discovered round these parts (click through for more information about the albums). The New Zealand music scene is pretty varied and lively - it’s not just Crowded House (thankfully!). No idea how many NZ artists manage to get exported back home (not many, if any), but I suspect they’ve tried to send Scribe over.

I’ve been keeping track of the songs that have cropped up during my travels, and I’m planning to create a compilation album for them (like I did for the summer of 2002). This will almost certainly include The Boy With The Aubergine Hair from The 88 and Nu Steppa from One Drop East.

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Posted: 2004-05-13

blah blah blah

Well, crikey, gave a first-year lecture today. My boss couldn’t be there, so he asked me to cover for him. It was all a bit scary, and I fluffed it at the end, but I think it went reasonably okay. It was good talk practice at any rate. Bit of a mumbly bumbler though.

On a somewhat unrelated issue, I must say I’m really impressed with Wikipedia. Its a free online encyclopedia written by randoms, but quite a lot of it is rather good. I’ve been looking at A New Kind Of Science, Langton’s Ant, Algorithmic information theory, Random number and Bayesian Probability.

Time for beer and quiz.

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Posted: 2004-05-11

Science

it's certainly been eventful of late

Well, crikey. Things were pottering along quite nicely and then all sorts of ups and downs appear from nowhere. I went out to meet the other Andrew Jackson for coffee yesterday (which was good), after which we walked over to a cafe called Lido (which was also good). On the way there, however, some idiot threw an almost-full can of Speights out of a fourth floor window and it hit me on the head (which was not good - but at least it was a glancing blow. If it had hit me straight on I think it would have knocked me out).

I wandered home after Lido, still slightly stunned, only to find when I got there that I’d lost all my keys somewhere along the way (definately very not good indeed). So, wandered back in to town and met up with work folks for a beer before going to see some improvised comedy at the Bats theatre (which was pretty good) and managed to completely forget about my loss of keys. Couldn’t get in touch with my flatmates, so ended up crashing at a friends place. As well as all of this, due to overspending on my...

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Posted: 2004-05-07

clever google

Just to balance up after yesterday’s entry, I thought I’d tell you about a rather nifty new feature of Google. The search engine now has the ability to act as a calculator, so you can do stuff like this: 1+1 is….

The really clever part is that the Google calculator understands units and knows a fair number of physical constants, so you can ask it stuff like this:

2.883kg*c*(1.21 kph + 88 mph)/(2.0*pi*1 A.U.*6.3m/(s^2)) in lb

And you get the right answer. Pretty cool, in the extremely geeky sense of the word cool.

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Posted: 2004-05-05

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