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Archive for July, 2006

Still In Australia

July 31st, 2006 No comments

OK, I haven’t posted much recently, mainly because I’m out of the loop because I’m still in Australia (in fact, I’m not even half way through my stay….)

So to keep you entertained, here’s a few observations I’ve made:

  1. Where are the beautiful people? – I think they keep the lookers just for Neighbours and Home-And-Away.
  2. Pedestrian Crossings are dangerous – Light with little man goes green, cars still come around the corner. Insane.
  3. TV has sponsorship everywhere – Literally everywhere – product placement is endemic
  4. Everything is Americanised – Much worse than the UK. They use a lot of American words, and the large American brands (i.e. Not those present in the UK) are here as well (e.g. KMart).

Finally, here’s something that caught my eye today: James Blunt is more irritating than traffic wardens

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Lettuce of Love

July 25th, 2006 No comments

I’ve just got an email from my mum ending with Kos of love Mum

I’ve never thought about it before, but do you think it’s appropriate to send somebody a lettuce to say that you love them? Or is there one giant lettuce of love out there. Damn, I’d like to see that.

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G’Day!

July 24th, 2006 No comments

This is a bit weird. This is my first overseas blog post. I’m in Australia! Woohoo!

I arrived here on Friday morning and it’s now Monday. It’s currently half past nine at night, but in the UK it’s about half past noon. This is all a little freaky.

I’m in contact with the people at work, but every so often I have to remember that they are in fact on completely the other side of the world, and not just in another room somewhere. Kind of reminds of the Kaiser Chiefs lyric “Oh my god, I can’t believe it, I’ve never been this far away from home”.

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My New Book

July 13th, 2006 No comments

The other day I finally went ahead and ordered “The Dangerous Book for Boys” from Play.com.

It’s probably the most exciting book I’ve bought. I was laughing as I flicked through the pages for the first time, when I noticed the sections on Cricket rules, building electromagnet, using the Sun as a compass, “Girls” and how to build a proper tree house.

It’s simply amazing!

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The Problem With My Office

July 11th, 2006 No comments

I’ve decided that there is a definite problem with the new office block that we have moved to.

We work in a small commercial park, and the three or so buildings are nice new buildings, and covered in smooth, sleak glass.

Every fortnight or so, there is a photographer outside taking pictures. Or someone with a video camera. The other week, people were taking pictures of a chavved up Range Rover.

It’s very off-putting.

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Unbelievable!

July 11th, 2006 No comments

This is a wonderful display of arrogance and ignorance.

I was looking on the VMWare forums for a problem I’m having with VMWare Server (it says my license key will expire soon!). Anyway, I think I found the right answer on this thread.

Now, as an off-topic note, some got slightly confused between US and European dates (simple mistake, they owned up to it). Someone asks why the US/Canada have different dates. All perfectly calm and innocent questions.

Then “David12345” kicks in with the most naive, arrogant and ignorant sentence I have ever read! If you live in the USA, then learn how things work in the USA. Just unbelievable.

Does he not realise that people from outside the USA can speak English? (And proper English at that, not just American English – Thanks Richard for that one) Does he not realise that there are other countries out there, apart from the USA, and that they all have Internet access? And that they can post to worldwide forums?

Praise be, for “nick.couchman” who subsequently points out the obvious: I’m not sure he lives in the USA…

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Objective-C

July 10th, 2006 1 comment

I’m probably going to annoy Richard with this post, but who cares!

I’ve just done a bit of research into the Objective-C language, with the intention of using it as a replacement for C++. I managed to find a semi-decent tutorial here;. And my first impressions are: I hate it.

It looks like it has some pretty good functionality that C++ doesn’t have, but it’s syntax is so hideous to describe, that it just makes my eyes hurt. In fact, for it to call itself a “version” of C, then it is C with some serious bastardisation going on!

What I am looking for now, is something I’m going to casually refer to as “C++ Lite” – I want a language that:

  • Has a C++ style syntax
  • Supports classes with inheritance, polymorphism, etc
  • Has a built in string type (i.e. Not a class wrapper around
    char*

    )

  • Has support for simple array resizing
  • Only supports pointers to objects (like Objective-C)
  • Intelligent memory handling (e.g. garbage collection)
  • Supports class level attributes (like Objective-C)
  • Well supported on many platforms (and I mean very very many!)
  • Compiles to native code
  • And probably more things that I can’t quite think of….

I think essentially what I want, is a language that I can easily recognise as similar to C++; that is suitable for Application Level development (and not System Level – which is what C was originally designed for); that is well supported; and is a “nice” language to develop with (i.e. no hidden caveats, something quick and simple).

N.B. This post is delayed, see this post for more info! Originally written on 12th Apr 2006, 13:10

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The Last Question

July 10th, 2006 No comments

The Last Question is a short story by a certain Isaac Asimov. He is quoted as saying that it is his favourite of his short stories, and I can understand why.

I read it this morning, and I’m so impressed by it. It seems to have an amazing naivety to it, for example, the idea of space ships running on coal, humans using up all the uranium in the world for their power needs, and computers no longer needing transistor but instead reverting back to using “micro-valves”, but then you have to remember that the story was written in 1956. What struck me next about the story is it’s amazing insight – there is a casual reference to an “AC-Contact”, which sounds remarkably like a handheld computer, and computer systems that are natural language processors. These are all things that exist today (albeit in a limited capacity to those expressed in the story), that when written would have been considered pure fantasy. There is an amazing realisation brought through from the story that these things will happen, which is something that I had never really thought about before, and the question remains, what will human kind do when these things happen?

Finally, there is the ending. Which is just masterful. It actually reminds me a lot of the computer in “The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy”, but that is a different story.

The introduction contained on the linked page hints to a further underlying theme to the story, which I do have theories about, but I don’t want to spoil the ending….

N.B. This post is delayed, see this post for more info! Originally written on 24th Jan 2006, 14:41

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Doh!

July 10th, 2006 No comments

Damn and bugger it!

I’ve just discovered 2 blog posts that I made that never made it to the blog. They’re sat their waiting, but because I screwed up, they never made it.

I’ll post them in a second.

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Scott Adams is Comical Genius

July 10th, 2006 No comments

I’ve mention before that I’m on several mailing lists for Scott Adams (of Dilbert game). I also read his blog regularly as well.

In the past, his covered some contraversial topics, and put religion (of all sorts) under a lot of scrutiny.

But recently, his posts are getting funnier and funnier. He’s moved away from religion and his just noting down his personal observations, and what not.

If you’re not following his blog, you really should (e.g. “Planning my funeral“)

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