A rough account of what I did with Emacs recently.
- March 31
- Dogville is distinctly odd (narrated,
minimal sets) and rather grim. It's not clear if I enjoyed it, but
it was certainly well made.
- March 30
- Hurrah, I've joined the ranks of iPhone users. Oddly enough,
this is my second i-Gadget, and I have bought or been involved of
the purchase of five i-Gadgets, and these two sets do not overlap
(I'm not counting my 18-month Vodafone contract as
UPC modem appears to have gotten a firmware update. Perhaps that
was why it caught fire and exploded the other day (ok,
figuratively rather than literally exploded).
- March 28
- Arrived out this morning to discover UPC modem online-but-not,
not sure of the timezone or the time, had restablished itself as
the dominant DHCP server, had switched off a bunch of options like
UPnP, etc. I can only conclude that this piece of junk is unable
to handle DST shifts. Just like people, really.
- March 27
- I am finding Instapaper
more and more an invaluable addition to my browsing toolbox. To be
more specific, it's proven a great way to temporarily bookmark
something in a way that none of my existing toys caters for; I
have periodically gone on bookmark cleaning sprees but there's
always some crap left lying around that I've been meaning to read
as soon I get around to it, and of course it's hidden away in a
bookmark folder and I forget it. I used tag such stuff as fodder
in del.icio.us, and keep a RSS
bookmark of the fodder folder, but then you've got to go back to
deli to delete the thing once you're done with it, and I never
found a Firefox plugin that handled that the way I wanted, and now
I use Safari anyway... now I tag "tl;dr" articles with
the "Read Later" bookmarklet (it's on the Instapaper site), and then
when I feel like reading something I just pull something off the
stack there, and let Instapaper automatically
archive it for me. Anything I want to actually delete, I delete,
and anything I want to keep for later, like a tech how-to, I put
in a folder. What an excellent tool.
- March 25
- Happy Birthday, Mom!
- March 23
- I came up with a nifty idea to solve my Fink abuse: extend Fink's VirtPackage module
to include those things that the Apple package manager knows
about. There are a few minor problems with this, such as the fact
that Fink packages are
named system-foo-bar while Apple ones are named
com.apple.bar.foo, and also (apparently) the data in
/Library/Receipts doesn't necessarily reflect the actual
state of the system. The biggest problem, however is that querying
the list of packages, and then querying each of them for version
information, is slow - a minute of wall time on my
laptop, for example. Caching might resolve this, but it's a bit
appalling that a bit of XML processing takes so damned
- March 21
- as I said to the brother...Google Video is alarmingly
- March 20
- Thank you peer pressure. I've reactivated my
ArseFace account. I was somewhat surprised to discover that
the site is very friendly to my creaky Palm T|X. I'm sure
at some point I'll include some sort of feed from there to
my "real" website.
Rather a disastrous end to the Six Nations. England almost, but
didn't quite, beat France, but it doesn't matter since we conceded
at home to the Scots. Gah. Our ability to snatch defeat
from the jaws of victory is one thing I wish we could forget how
Rewatched: Inside I'm Dancing. Still a great movie.
- March 18
- I would complain about my current travails with Fink here, but someone
would then tell me to shut up and install MacPorts instead, and,
well, that doesn't get anyone anywhere.
But anyway, the current list of complaints goes something like
That's all, I'm going back to hacking on info files
- you can't create a virtual package with a version
- you can't create a virtual package, really. you
can create a bundle that provides things.
- Perl builds
default to not doing the full bundle. Save some disk space at the
expense of massive incompatibility problems.
- Perl builds
seem to arbitrarily use Perl binary versioning (in my mind, the
binary versioning should be used for things that compile, while
the plain -pm modules should be the pure-Perl
After a bit of yelling at the screen I have my system Apache2
instance back up and running with Fink-provided
Apache::DBI. Hurrah. Of course, it doesn't actually work
yet because the Fink
MySQL install also comes with unusable bundles. Le
For every good movie, a bad one? Dead Man Running takes all
the good parts of the likes of Lock, Stock... and its
ilk, throws them away, and replaces them with unfunny jokes,
crap dialogue, and the most unconvincing fights I've ever
seen. About half-way into the movie I came to the conclusion
that they'd spent all their money on 50 Cent (yes, he's in it),
and had none left for stunts. Or plot. Or, you know, anything
that might have improved the movie.
- March 17
- Happy Shamrock Day, or something.
9 is one of those odd movies that I have no
recollection of adding to my rentals list, no recollection of why
I might have done so, and a good deal of satisfaction that I
did. It's a quirky post-apocalyptic piece which might be a kids'
movie if it wasn't so dark, and aside from a somewhat vague ending
it's all rather good.
- March 14
- I didn't watch any rugby this weekend, but the surprise of the
tournament was that England struggled to a draw against
Scotland. Ireland, more or less as expected, sent the Welsh
packing, and France blithely steamrolled Italy into the
- March 13
- Hrm. Interesting (minor) problem with Fink and my CVS server: in
order to make things work the way I like, I added my (real) user
account to Fink's (fake) CVS group, and the update-passwd
script doesn't seem to handle this. I wound up manually adding the
group entry by flailing at dscl for a bit. And then Fink re-ran the script at
some point and appears to have undone my flailing. Oh well, it'd
be no fun if these things actually worked like you'd
Wow, that's embarrassing: at some point I (or one of my scripts)
changed the permissions on some web pages to prevent access to
them. By my best guess some time in December last
Oh dear, there's the culprit. I updated the script that indexes
the workshop pages to use
tempfile(). Which by default creates secure files. And I
did this in October last year. D'OH.
I really enjoyed Avatar. The story is a bit lightweight, and there's a
few boneheaded details, but on the whole this is a good movie and
an absolutely spectacular visual treat. One to see on the big
- March 12
- Dear Livejournal,
Error isn't a very
polite way of talking to your users. I mean, "Error"?
Please confirm you are a human below.
Rewatched: Run, Fat Boy, Run. Utterly
predictable, and none the worse for it.
- March 10
- The Hangover was one I wasn't
going to bother with, but someone told me it's actually better
than you'd expect. And lo, it actually is. It's really slow to get
started, however, but once it gets going it's got plently laughs
with a slightly dark undercurrent throughout.
- March 9
- The Tale of Despereaux:
the trailer is a bit more promising than the movie, which has a
voiceover and a few didactic overtones, but on the whole it's
quite a bit of fun.
- March 7
- I had an odd issue with a shared Google calendar I'd created: of
all the people who were allowed access, I was the only one who
couldn't actually see it. I got it sorted out today by removing
and re-adding my own account to the calendar using another
"admin" account, but The Brother had already tried that
so I'm not sure why it worked for me.
- March 6
- Movie rewatched: Wedding Crashers. Admittedly I
wasn't paying too much attention this time around as I was engaged
- March 3
- Franklyn is... odd. I guess
it's pretty well done and all, but it's one of those dual
storyline movies, except it keeps the stories separated so long
that you kinda spend too much time wondering when and how they're
going to mesh.
- March 2
- Terminator: Salvation:
isn't particularly bad; in fact, it's a fairly acceptable action
movie by itself, with the exception of the needless Precocious
Child Who Is Vital In Some Pointless Way. What really lets it
down, at least for me, is the number of sly back-references to the
other movies: whole lines of dialogue, and visual motifs like the
motorbike versus truck sequence which may even have gone so far as
to ape the camera angles of Terminator II. Still, I guess
it does what it sets out to do: it's a bubblegum
- March 1
- Reinstalled the CVS server on the Cube. I should really package
it up as it's fairly handy to do so in a reasonably independant
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"we're one-sixth through the year" - Phantom