Sun 29 July 2007 @ 21:14
Sundays... gotta love em. The sun has just started to shine, and I have a great big mug of coffee here. I've been doing some work on this site in the background, mainly with things that you don't get to see. Things like the interface that allows other programs (such as Windows Live Writer
) to access the blog has been re-written again, and has a couple of small changes to go before I'm happy with it. I hope I have a chance to get this all done before we get too busy with the move, otherwise it'll get stalled by a couple of months rather than a couple of weeks.
Fri 27 July 2007 @ 04:29
This is a video I found recently. It was posted on 43 Folders and is a recording of Merlin Mann's speech at Google London recently. Its about killing the contents of your mailbox, and is well worth reading.
Sun 22 July 2007 @ 21:44
Link to 10 Articles That Changed My Life · LifeReboot.com
Found it on Digg this morning, and I haven't gotten all the way through yet. Some of them really are crap, and I hate to say it but Steve Jobs' speech was pretty cool. I hadn't seen it in a couple of years (when it was new?) but its moving stuff.
Wed 18 July 2007 @ 11:09
That really sums up the last week. Eleven and a half years after I started, I'm finally leaving AOL. I'm going to take voluntary redundancy because there simply isn't enough for me to do anymore. I had a large function to play up until the company split in two, and now that's all gone. Most of my role, and certainly all of the interesting bits have stayed with my old company. That leaves me with basically two things to do. To put that in perspective, both of them would take me a a couple of weeks of solid work, in an entire year. There's just no point in hanging around. I had maneuvered myself into the position of working in a department that doesn't know how to use nor has any need for my skills, and I'm getting bored. Its time to move on, and we're gonna do that in a way that is exciting / scary / daunting / potentially awesome.
We're going to move to Germany. I don't speak the language enough to get on in a job that uses German as the first language. That was illustrated perfectly to me yesterday when I looked at some ads for DSL with Deutsche Telekom. I had to get Anna to come and tell me what the packages meant. It turns out I don't actually know the technical language at all (except for the words in Windows). So I'm not going to be easily able to draw on the knowledge that leads me to make the decisions I make now. I won't also know where to look for stuff. Here I would just Google "DSL packages in UK" or something, if I was looking for broadband. I can't do that yet to the extent that I would be self sufficient.
I haven't worked in the real world in eleven years. I've been locked in the cozy insular world of AOL, and its proprietary software. I believe I am a pretty good web programmer, but I don't know if that's enough, or actually true. This site wasn't a small undertaking for me, and it has evolved through many evolutions in technology. However, what if I get asked to do something (in the programming languages that I understand) that is so far beyond anything I've done before that I simply can't do it?
So like I said - daunting and scary. Its going to be fun though. Munich is a really cool city, and I can only imagine that living there is even better that the yearly short visits we make. We should be there in time for the Oktoberfest. We can go snowboarding at the weekends - simply because the mountains are so close! The food and drink there are awesome too, and the cost of living is minimal in comparison to London. My redundancy payment will support us for well in excess of a year if I don't actually find a decent job.
All change then, and that's a good thing. I was starting to get stagnant here. Anna hates this city, and you know, in comparison to her home; she's completely right. There's so many things wrong with London that I don't know where to start. I'll do that posting later perhaps, but for now, I bid you good night.
Tue 10 July 2007 @ 10:53
We're back from Dublin, and the next few weeks are normal again. No trips, no more holidays (though that's definitely not a good thing), no more OOTO mails to write and not very many medical appointments to keep :-) So, the Algarve was great, and I was seriously chilled out from it when we came back. I really needed that break from everything. The last five months have been very hard and stressful, and I needed the rest. I needed the tan too - I don't think I've actually been this colour in about ten years!
So, there's an interesting decision coming up. Microsoft are going to release version 3.0 of the .Net framework soon, and my web host will be using it. There's a fairly significant amount of difference between the two, and I'm going to have to learn it anyway, so I was thinking of a COMPLETE re-write of this blog. There are now several external tools I use to manage it (case in point; this post is being written in Windows Live Writer), and it is starting to look fairly bolted together now. I was thinking of releasing the whole thing as an open source blogging package. There aren't many of them out there, and I have only found two that are in any way decent. There'd be a lot of work maintaining that though, and I would be limited to the 2.0 version of .Net. So, I think I'll do that, but with the 3.0 version. It'll give me a chance to learn it anyway. I don't know what's new yet (apart from Silverlight), or what has changed, so a quick trip to MSDN
is in order I think. That can wait until tomorrow though.
Sat 7 July 2007 @ 00:26
So, we're off to Dublin in 40 minutes or so, which gives me a chance to update this a little. The Algarve was incredible. It was so much better than I expected that I was just blown away by the whole thing. I thought it was going be full of Tourists and cheesy cafes selling fish and chips. It was, but only at the coast, which meant inland was left relatively unspoiled. Here's a preview of the villa where we were staying...
It was in its own little valley, with a farm house a couple of hundred meters to the left of where you're looking now. The villa was bigger inside than it looks from this perspective. To the right of the picture is a barbeque, and there's another one behind the house too. We did a LOT of cooking in these areas I can tell you. The food there is really nice; typically we ate fish and salad when at home which rocks. Drank a lot of beer and port too ;-)
At the bottom of the wall above you can see little holes in the concrete at ground level. They are drainage holes, but a couple of times we saw small gecko lizards going through them to the area behind. They would come down the steps and take a look at the pool area. Anna saw a bigger one inside the house too. On the roof you can see a chimney structure at the back; it was there that the pizza oven was located and I think the gecko came in through that chimney.
So we did the usual tourist things too - went to all the places we had picked out of the guide books as places to see. Possibly the most memorable was indeed the farthest westerly point of land in Europe. OK, have to head to the airport now... more as soon as we get back...
Tue 3 July 2007 @ 00:54
We're back from The The Algarve. Everything sucks when you're not on holidays anymore.