jojomojo: (southpark)
The touchscreen on my T-Mobile G2 is dying (it doesn't work unless I push the keyboard into just the right position), so I've finally knuckled down and bought a new phone (a Galaxy Note II). It's weird how I've gotten attached to the G2 given I used to completely hate phones, and in a way it's one of the last links to my life in America. I'm going to miss using it (and definitely going to miss the hardware keyboard).

Not that I'll throw the old one away; I can find uses for a miniature wifi-enabled computer with a video camera and 3G connectivity that don't involve using it as a phone.
jojomojo: (southpark)
Today is Thankstaking, or antiThanksgiving, or something; the anniversary of my long voyage from the New Country back to the wild, unexplored shores of Britain.

Work continues fine; a bit busy and deadline-y at the moment, but still doing fine. I love living in Abingdon, it's a charming little place; I'm still playing D&D every Wednesday and finding a social circle through that, and Oxford Geek Night is in a few weeks too.

I'm also playing around with writing my own LISP-like language. Surprisingly fun (and I begin to see why some LISP people rave about it, even if it still looks weird as heck to my eyes).

Not much else to say, really. Odd to think how far I've come in a couple of years.


Oct. 23rd, 2012 05:54 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
My new job's office is about a hundred yards from my first ever fulltime job's office.

Talk about coming full circle. :)


Oct. 17th, 2012 02:53 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
Have finally finished Wheelock's Latin, and Scribblers, Sculptors and Scribes. I now speak the Latin. (Well, a little bit, anyway, and my grammar could still definitely use some work; the trouble with studying alone is there's not a good way to do English->Latin composition). I've been working through this thing doing at least a little bit every day since July last year, so yay for persistence, or something. :)
jojomojo: (Default)
I've left Codethink and will be starting work at Sophos on the 29th of this month, in Abingdon. I've got temporary accomodation arranged with friends in Oxford (and it is awesome to, still, have friends there after all these years), and will be aiming to spend the week there and the weekend in Manchester taking care of Fang til the expiry of my lease in mid-December, at which place I can look for a cat-friendly place in either Abingdon or Oxford.

I'm currently taking my accumulated holiday, which means I've got a couple of weeks to just bum around the house and do nothing. This would be more pleasant if I hadn't picked up a rather nasty chest cold on my last day. Once that's sorted, I'm aiming to finish off my Wheelock (only two chapters to go out of forty; very exciting given I've been slogging through it for a year now, though my pace took a real nosedive after moving), read some Proper Actual Latin (I've ebookised William of Tyre's history of the crusader states in a form suitable for Calliope), and mess about a bit with some programming. It's nice to have some stress-free leisure; I've not had this much time without something to do since, well, uni vacations I think.

I like Manchester, and I'll miss it, but I'm also excited to be going home; and Oxford, specifically, still is home. I know that every time I visit it. I look forward to not having to visit it at all.
jojomojo: (Default)
I was a Goonswarm director for something like a year and a half. I also chilled out with our diplomatic staff. In both places I chatted more or less daily with Vile Rat, Goonswarm's head diplomat. He was one of the nicest men I've known; liberal, drama-free (a rare commodity in Goonswarm directors), intelligent, educated, all around a generally nice guy. I don't think I ever met him physically, but as a Goonswarm director you get close to people; there's only about 20 of you at a time, after all. In real life he acted as a system administrator for the US State Department.

Yesterday he was shot to death in Benghazi by a violent mob. My friend's name is being read out on television by the US president, for the most tragic of reasons, murdered because of a video he would have despised.

It's a bit hard to take in.

Rest in peace, Sean. You're missed.
jojomojo: (Default)
I baked pasties for the first time in six months! Behold (yes there are four more where that one came from).

They hold a special place in my heart; they're something I remember mum making for us as kids, something I missed when I moved to the US (while actually available in northern Michigan, they're hard to track down), and one of the major reasons I learned to cook, the other being a lack of curry. They've always been a comfort food thing for me.

I've not made them since moving back here because, well, first I didn't have a place to myself, and now that I do the oven is old and the temperature markings have worn off the oven. This is sort of inconvenient. Still, it being a damp and rainy Saturday I thought I'd risk it today and they seem to have turned out alright. I made something a bit new this time; it's sausage stuffing, made with eviscerated pork and apple sausages and extra onion, and (something I never remember seeing in the US) storebought frozen shortcrust pastry.

Talking of which, it's interesting the differences in supermarkets. Did you know, O my US brethren, that butter here does not come in sticks? Broth/stock doesn't come in cans or cartons (you can get 'vegetable broth', but it will confuse you since it's actually chunky vegetable soup), but rather in super-concentrated little plastic tubs (or cubes), and hot dogs in the standard US sense more or less do not exist (you can get German frankfurters, but they're much longer and thinner than what an American might be thinking of - or *shudder* you can get them canned). Nathan's are nonexistent; Hebrew are sadly merely National and not International. And Old El Paso have this really weird thing going on - it doesn't taste bad, but it is rather barbeque-saucy and not what I'd normally associate with Tex-Mex.

On the other hand, proper bacon is cheap and plentiful. And who needs anything else to live?

In other news, my cat knocked the catnip off my desk and huffed it like the little meth kitty he is. Fortunately, for those of you who haven't seen it already, he's utterly adorable when out of his tiny little gourd.


May. 19th, 2012 02:28 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
Trying to cancel Comcast, seeing as, you know, I don't live in America any more. You can't do it online, of course. 15 minutes on Skype navigating the phone menu (it didn't always pick up my key presses), to get a recorded message saying to 'please call during normal business hours, 7am to 8pm Monday to Saturday'. Uhh...I called at 9.30am US time...

On the plus side, I'm viewing a house in about half an hour. It's only about two streets away from where I am now, so it'd be a really easy move!

Teh Romes

Jan. 29th, 2012 12:56 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
I recently finished the TV series Rome...a bit rushed towards the end, but very good. It's fairly widely known, but the two main characters, Titus Pullo and Lucius Vorenus, were real people, mentioned by Caesar in his book on the Gallic wars.

These are his words.

I thought it might be instructive to have a go at translating it, and am pleasantly surprised to find it more or less comprehensible (apart from having to look up some vocab). I'm not going to dump a translation of the whole thing in here, but the first couple of sentences go something like 'There were in that legion very strong men, centurions, who drew near the first ranks, Titus Pullo and Lucius Vorenus. These perpetually had arguments between themselves, regarding who would be brought in advance, and every year disputed about their rank with enmity.'

Note that Pullo and Vorenus are the same rank, centurions (commanding 80 men, roughly equivalent to a captain today); and by 'drawing near the first rank' I deduce they were competing for the post of Primus Pilus, acting as the legate's XO and perhaps equivalent to a colonel. Poor old Pullo took a bit of a demotion for the television.

Here's a translation for the rest of it - basically this is the first scene of the TV series, where Pullo goes charging off into the Gauls and Vorenus rescues him, then they end up best pals.

It feels weird, incidentally, knowing there was a real Julius Caesar, gone to his grave two thousand years ago now, and yet here I am reading his words as he wrote them. I'm sort of curious what the real Pullo and Vorenus got up to.

(Sidenote, the word vaginam appears in that passage. Turns out vagina is Latin for scabbard or sheath. Logical I suppose!)
jojomojo: (Default)
This academic paper on female nerdspeak in a California high school might interest some people on here. :)
jojomojo: (Default)

Tips and tricks for getting Android 4.0.3 up and running on a Pandaboard ES (the new, beefier version of the original Pandaboard, which in turn is of the same ilk as a Beagleboard - an ARM development board targetted at stuff like tablets and phones)
jojomojo: (Default)
Posting this from ics though :-)


Dec. 23rd, 2011 05:45 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
I have finally got Android 4.0.3 built directly from Google's source drop and running, graphics accelerated, on my Pandaboard, built directly from the source. The only reason I'm not posting this direct from the board is that it's pretty sluggish but I suspect that's because I'm running the engineering debug build; I'll rebuild tonight using optimised settings (Android takes quite a while to build, maybe 4-5 hours on my machine).

Still, success! Turns out I had no chance to live because Google set me up the bomb regarding the Pandaboard ES; their source tree supports the original Pandaboard but needed some changes made to even get as far as installing the bootloader on the ES. Those changes got pushed on, ooh, Tuesday sometime and I only found the relevant newsgroup thread about it today.

Finally I can mess around with Android and see what I can customise. Might look into porting Qt/Android to it, too, if it doesn't already work.
jojomojo: (Default)
I just finished my supplementary exercises for Chapter 20 of Wheelocks Latin, meaning I'm now precisely halfway through the course. :)
jojomojo: (Default)
So, I finally got my Oxbridge MA sorted out last month, and the certificate arrived today. Given the actual ceremony when I graduated for my BA (see post title, for example), I was kind of expecting something a bit more antique.

Still, if I wished to be very pretentious, technically I could put letters after my name now.
jojomojo: (Default)
It's a tiny little mini-army, 500 points, but here they are.

Company HQ 50 points
+voxcaster 5
+grenade launcher 5
+power weapon 10
+medipack 30
+standard 15
= 115 points

Platoon HQ
30 points
+boltgun 2
+commissar 35
= 67 points

Infantry squad
50 points
+grenade launcher 5
= 55 points

Infantry squad
50 points

Heavy weapons squad
60 points
+2 lascannon 30
+missile launcher 10
= 100 points

Veteran squad -
70 points
+2 melta 20
+1 plasma 15
+voxcaster 5
+bolt pistol 2
= 112 points

for a total of 499 points.

I also have the option of swapping one squad out for two bodyguards for the company commander (erroneously shown in that picture) and four grenade launchers.


Oct. 16th, 2011 03:36 pm
jojomojo: (Default)
I never realised that at the back of my apartment complex is a little gate, leading onto a quiet residential street, which comes out on Packard next to Morgan and York. It turns a ~20 minute walk into a 5 minute one.

In other news, apparently the entire universe shops at Trader Joe's on a Sunday afternoon.

In other other news, pizza is a great way to use up leftovers as long as you have somewhat catholic tastes. I wonder how my feta, olive, curried beef, bell pepper and pineapple pizza will turn out.
jojomojo: (Default)
I've just worked my way through Chapter 12 of Wheelock's Latin now, out of 40. That introduced the perfect tenses, including the pluperfect which I remember just having learned at the end of the two years' Latin I did at school (and promptly forgot most of) - so, I think I'm about back where I left off.

Two years in, what, 4 months isn't too bad, I think; though being a motivated adult instead of a lazy teenager and practicing a little every day helps. I think my fourteen year old self has the edge on me in grammar (working on my own and exclusively translating Latin->English, it's hard to keep stuff like cases properly in mind) but I probably beat him on vocabulary. Wheelock has a nice habit of using actual texts (somewhat simplified), so it's more useful vocabulary for a historian too. I'm sort of impatient to finish the book and actually get reading real stuff, but unfortunately languages can't be hurried.

It's odd what sticks in the memory. I must have been working particularly hard on a couple of days back then because I've remembered the imperfect tense endings and the declination of hic/haec/hoc all my life, but simple stuff like the present tense I had to relearn.
jojomojo: (Default)
I have constructed a dinner. I am quite proud of it. Chicken shawarma, home-made falafel - these I'm particularly happy about since I've found them tricky in the past - Greek salad, home-made bread, hummous (not home-made, I got lazy on that one), and home-made strawberry wine, freshly bottled today. It's even healthy to boot, especially since I only made a homeopathic amount of chicken (though as usual far too much of everything else)


If nothing else, I can thank my move to the US for making me learn to cook. :)
jojomojo: (Default)
Mad sleepy *yawns* Probably back home by 9pm tonight then it's straight to work tomorrow. It's been a good trip :) Photos to follow at some point.
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