A rough account of what I did with Emacs recently.
- September 24
- I'm taking a hiatus from detailing the minutiæ of my daily
life. Normal service will be restored whenever.
- September 23
- I picked up the book of The Princess Bride
yesterday, and about half way through it I realised that I wanted
to watch the movie again. So that accounted for my afternoon. It's
interesting to pick up on the little differences here and there;
in particular, I thought the book version of the battle of wits
didn't make a lot of sense as it has The Man In Black getting more
and more agitated as Vizzini reasons through his choice, where as
the movie version has Cary Elwes almost sarcastically working over
the same lines, and it works a lot better.
And then there was Ciaran's birthday, which involved beer, and
sake for some (not for me), and much conversing, and the brief
acquisition of someone from a hen night sitting next to us to take
the place of someone who'd left our table. You had to be there,
- September 22
- Children of Men was pretty
good, although it's another movie that could have done with some
tighter editing in places. A couple of genuine surprises, an
excellent gritty feel overall, and several cute chronological
references to the era such as the fact that Clive Owen spends
almost the entire movie wearing a "LONDON 2012"
sweatshirt with the "LON" part worn off. I wasn't wholly
sure about the use of humour in the movie, since it detracts from
the harshness of the story as a whole, but it didn't put me off
- September 21
- Laptop was partially wedged again this morning. X-Chat was hung,
sync blocked in D state, but I could access the disk just
fine, and there were no errors in dmesg or
/var/log (at least on brief inspection). I ended up
having to do a hard reset to get it back. This bothers me as it
may be indicative of a deeper problem. Of course, the laptop
is 7 years old and has probably been switched on for most
of that time.
Four Brothers could've done with
a bit more editing towards the climax, but was still a pretty good
movie. Worth borrowing someone else's copy at the very
least. Some great music, too. And Garrett Hedlund could play the
title role in Jeff Buckley: The Movie except he's maybe a
little too tall.
- September 20
- Dude, Where's My Car? has
pretty much no redeeming qualities whatsoever. It's terrible. I'm
sorry I rented this.
- September 19
- Yay one year on the job. Celebration was in order, or at least
that's what I did anyway, with the help of Lou and
- September 18
- Some more RVP hacking. As ever, new code == new bugs.
- September 17
- Did some more work on the RVP+Gaim2.0 stuff, so it's now usable
if possibly incomplete. I may have broken the file transfer stuff
in the process, mind you, so if you're using the bleeding-edge
code this is probably something to keep an eye on. Also picked up
another silly bug and noticed a few API calls I hadn't previously
spotted which might actually be of use to me.
Cleaned up the last of the mp3 weirdness. I now appear to have a
working set of files that keeps Gronk happy, which was sort
of the aim. There's probably still a bit of weirdness in tagging
as illustrated by the fact that some tracks off a compilation show
up in XMMS as "Track
17" and the like instead of proper labelling, but that's
something I can probably script easily enough.
Crank is seriously silly and probably the
movie that The Transporter 2 should
have been. Chases, exploding stuff, outrageous fights, drugs,
gratuituous nudity, and about enough plot to fill the first 30
seconds of the movie before they abandon the pretence and get down
to the serious business of, well, adrenaline. If you like the sort
of movie that doesn't require a brain, this is for
- September 16
- Watched the rest of The Third Man. I was never fully convinced
that Harry Lime was a bad guy; somehow it all seemed like an
elaborate plot device that would be revealed as a sham towards the
end. I had much the same problem when I read The Thirty-Nine
Finished off the MP3 cleanup, more or less. The only bits
remaining undone are some files that are trashed.
Lou called over and we watched Closer. It's not a bad movie;
dialogue-heavy, on account of its origins as a play, and some of
the dialogue is damned sharp.
- September 15
- Watched most of The Third Man while waiting for
Hilary and John to show up. Decent flick, although the mid-movie
surprise is somewhat spoiled by the presence of Orson Welles' name
in the opening credits.
- September 14
- Laptop at some point went far, far out to lunch. Sigh. Maybe I
should give up on this Linux nonsense and just stick to good old
On the other hand, the frozen laptop was what persuaded me to
watch Lost In Translation on TV;
it's a great movie, and I really like that it doesn't have the
obvious clichéd conclusion to Scarlett and Bill's
- September 13
- Back again.
Finally figured out why various MP3 toys were disagreeing on
filenames: somewhere along the line Grip changed its default
set of acceptable characters from including parens to excluding
them. Fixing the MP3 collection will require some prodding and
fiddling but it seems to have motivated me into actually cleaning
up the other loose ends, so.
- September 12
- Down the country.
- September 11
- UGH SQUARED. Turns out the alternative location at which my MP3
collection is stored is also experiencing drive errors. Maybe it's
some evil new RIAA thing. Self-destructing MP3 files, even if you
ripped them off your own CDs.
The Aristocrats is, in places,
hysterically funny, and you really have to watch the DVD extras -
although I'd have loved it if they had more of the cutting-room
stuff. I didn't actually recognise a lot of the comedians, even
with names. Definitely worth a look, but not for the faint of
Curiously after a reboot and an fsck, the alleged trashed files
appear to be okay after all. Perhaps the filesystem simply got
into a weird state in memory.
- September 10
- Ugh. Had some sort of oddball hardware event on my fileserver
which has apparently trashed a bunch of random files - including
bits of my MP3 collection, and oddly enough the ssh keys. The
weird thing is that those are on two different drives. Fortunately
there's a second copy of the MP3 collection elsewhere so I can
just rsync back to the mothership, but I hope this isn't
indicative of some impending mainboard failure on the
fileserver. Because that, as they say, would suck.
Met up with Lou and Daire for lunch, followed by aimless
wandering, followed by lounging to music, followed by a trip to
the cinema. Right At Your Door seemed
like it had a winning premise - dirty bombs detonated in downtown
L.A. - but really, it seems like they didn't bother expanding the
script any further. About the only thing that even vaguely
deserves attention is the throwaway reference to Fox News not
knowing anything, but really it simply wasn't a good movie. Don't
- September 9
- More work on RVP+Gaim2.0. For some reason it's insisting on
setting up a uPNP tunnel which is causing things to Not Work. I
don't remember it doing this before, either. Looking at the
network code I'd been using, there's no way to avoid it as far as
I can tell, either - uPNP is automatically attempted if you ask
for the IP address, and explictly requesting the local address
means you skip all the user prefs. Gah.
I thought that Brokeback Mountain was based
on a short story, so I'm not sure why it runs to just over two
hours. It's pretty and all, but once you get past the OMIGOD GAY
COWBOYS angle it's pretty much an average movie. Still, I didn't
feel like it was a complete waste of time, even if I did
wander off to do other stuff twice while it was on.
Found a silly bug in the RVP code which would result in fake
groups being created in the buddy list. I've actually been looking
for this for a while. This and other bits and pieces of work today
means I've now pretty much got a working 2.0 version, which is one
less thing for the to-do list.
- September 8
- Left RVP+Gaim2.0 running for the day. It failed to crash. That's
good, at least.
Met up with Cathal for food and drink.
- September 7
- Finally figured out how to reimplement my "which window are
you working in" hack for the metacity window manager using
Pulled the latest Gaim-2.0 beta so I could try and fix up whatever
doesn't work with it in RVP. Unfortunately it's been a while since
I tried building against the 2.0 codebase so there's a bunch of
new broken stuff that I have to cope with. The single
biggest problem is actually a function that was synchronous and is
now asynchronous, meaning I've got to move a whole chunk of code
off into a callback. Grr.
Eventually I got it to compile and run, albeit with large chunks
#ifdef'd out. Still, it's a (re)start.
- September 6
- Mainly catching up on a stack of email that's been accumulating
since the old HD started flaking out. Much as I like SquirrelMail, it's not
exactly my favourite choice for writing long missives to friends
on Serious Topics™.
Called in on Lou, who's in the middle of unpacking stuff. Reminded
me a bit of moving into my current digs and the whole "move
the stack of stuff so you can find a seat" deal.
- September 5
- Hurrah! HD arrived! Of course, once again I recall that I know
next to nothing about LVM, so I have to stumble through recreating
the root volume on the new drive before I can restore it, and then
Fedora annoys me by not having a working grub-install on
the rescue disk. Really now.
While the laptop was backing up/restoring, I watched The Constant Gardener
which really wasn't as spy-novel as I expected and I found some of
the "edgy" camerawork to be just plain distracting. Not
a bad movie, all told, however.
- September 4
- Still no replacement HD. Went to Scotts, despite misgivings, and
played a few songs.
- September 3
- Last.FM's shiny new all-in-one
player is nice, but, er, where do I plug in my MP3 collection?
Maybe that's fixed in the next release or something. Plus, the SVN
url they give for the source is wrong.
Spent most of the day either shopping or pubbing. With the
emphasis on the latter. Thanks for the help with both,
- September 2
- Met with Lou and Ray for lunch, then ran into Ruadhrí in
the Secret Book and Record store (pretty much my sole source of
music) then went to Maplin to be ignored in my quest for parts to
fix a broken amp. When the counter guy finally payed attention to
me it was just long enough to tell me they were out of
stock. Didn't even try to offer me an alternative. Yay helpful
Went down to Greystones for Hari's "End of Summer"
barbeque in the evening, which included a bit of a jam session
featuring acoustic guitar and african drum. Much fun was
- September 1
- Happy Birthday, Donal!
No sign of new harddrive, so no hacking of note. Or partying, for
that matter, although this isn't related to the
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Irish Summer continues - more rain.