February 22nd, 2003


(no subject)

Warner Bros. has finally announced that Michael Gambon (rumored on 12/31) will replace the late Richard Harris as Professor Dumbledore for the filming of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Also announced is Gary Oldman to play the "prisoner", Sirius Black.

Making life to easy for yourself

If you think about it, all technology is there to make life easier for us. To allow us to carry out a task in less time, or not at all.

The problem then, is that this leaves you with lots of time for other things. And sometimes feeling that the work that was necessary to do something was part of the fun.

I used to trawl through 20 odd sites for news. I'd look here there and everywhere to see if there had been any changes in news since the last time I'd checked. On dull days, the gap between checks could be half an hour. Less than half an hour wasn't really possible because It would take that long to go through all the different sites, check to see if there was anything and then pass on to the next site.

Nowadays, thanks to the twin marvels of syndication and aggregation, I get all of my comics here and all of my news here. I don't need to go to the sites, they come to me. This saves me vast amounts of time tracking down each site and following it through. Time that can now be spent doing something more productive or enjoyable. The problem is that I've not got this gap in my life which I used to waste. When you've got 30 seconds to spare while a compile runs, checking /. for new headlines fits the gap perfectly. You can't do anything productive in 30 seconds. You can't do very much that's really fun. And I've taken the kinda fun timewasters and automated them.

What am I going to do now?

(no subject)

I'm really quite sensitive to pain. I can be stoic about it and not flinch if I have to, but I feel it acutely.

Now, I wonder if this is genetic or not.

If I'm a wuss for genetic reasons is that better or worse than if its because of my environment?

All men and there was also fantastic cake i don't know.

I haven't written a program for fun in ages. Definitely 18 months, maybe 3 or 4 years. The last one I clearly remember was at least 6 years ago.

A few days ago I finally started on the code to replicate Babble. For those of you that don't know, Babble was the text processor used to create the textual noise used in Neil Gaima's "Signal to Noise". You feed it chunks of text, it analyses it and then spits out something based on that analysis. Sadly, babble was a DOS program and thus not much use to man nor beast nowadays. I wanted something I could hand something and get back a response and not worry about DOS and horribly interfaces.

I've reached stage 1. I have some code that I can point at a text file and will break it down into a list of word pairs, along with a simple frequency analysis of how often each word pair occurs. I have some other code that takes this analysis and uses it to produce text based on the probabilities.

So, having fed it the last few weeks of my journal, I have the following:

An extremely nasty and sample code that her flat and deep invasive level eventually minutes over a concert that's what the installed version from him.

Good party and somewhat astounds me.

Problems do you couldn't turn out of maybe functions representing buggy code you .

Huge version of mile and various negative ways i'm happy to hate a manic billionaire with rap's one of this one feels competent to self medicate away from joe.

Western values is by making the movie.

So ago to radiohead do you know you fit but doesn't read the previous page and it's way it up.

Word society a flashy presentation full of con tricks but having done understanding the relief will turn out of them are you listen .

This meant attempting to tell you were wondering.

The next stage is to wrap in a nice interface. Well, actually, the next step is to rewrite it in a different language. Which means getting the Visual Studio disks from Mike. Which means sending him his Christmas present. Which means finding it in the packing boxes.

But still, I'm really rather happy with what I have so far.