Older blog entries for MikeGTN (starting at number 37)


Finally, after much complaining and frustration I'm starting my new job on Monday. Being off work this time has been no fun at all, since all the novelty disappeared during my extended absence last year.

Its strange how a town can seem completely bleak and empty when just one person isn't around - even for a little while...

My OU assignment is now overdue, mainly because I was being miserable all day yesterday.


I'm aware that I always promise a release "soon" - I'm not going to do so this time - firstly because no one cares anyway, and secondly because the icons I popped in as placeholders are very ugly indeed. Made an appeal on the GNOME list for some assistance with beautification.

In any case, I'm happily able to work comfortably at a keyboard now (with thanks to my doctors and physiotherapists) and I've been twiddling with finishing touches on both bits of the project

An incredibly busy week, attempting to deal with the various government departments with whom one's fate rests when unable to work. Still, the good news is that I am allowed to start my new job at last next week. Suddenly, I've gone from having all the time in the world and nothing to do, to the complete opposite.

Spent some time chasing leaks around in Gtkdial and its cousin gwvedit. What promises to be a dull weekend might see a long promised release.


Easing myself back into working on my pet projects by squishing bugs. Had the rare and pleasant sensation of removing code to increase function last night. Aiming for a Gtkdial release next week - famous last words - its likely to be a busy enough week as it is.


I feel compelled to add something utterly pointless and unwanted to the already copious amounts of wasted bandwidth on this. I just feel that we as a community are incredibly lucky to have talent enough to have two bunches of people doing the same thing in different ways. We'd be even more blessed if we could talk to each other.


...seems to be everywhere right now. Perhaps after a few weeks of being limited in what I can achieve I'm more sensitive to it or something?

15 Jun 2001 (updated 15 Jun 2001 at 19:46 UTC) »

Heavily updated my personal website, especially the Recommended Reading section. In the process discovered the website of sculptor/printmaker Bill Woodrow which I encourage everyone to visit!


Urgh! Hayfever. Never had it until I spent an (otherwise wonderful) summer cutting grass for my local council. Thought that I'd missed it this year, but over the past 48hrs it's kicked in with a vengeance, leaving me with a raspy nasal voice and a constant irritating sniff! Had physiotherapy on my broken arm this morning - its feeling OK, gaining strength and mobility, and seems to be doing well in terms of recovery. I've felt very frustrated hacking-wise because of the slowness of my typing, but today's web-bashing seems to have gone well - maybe I'll mess around a bit with Gtkdial tomorrow.


Hmm...feel like I've alienated all my friends with constantly needing practical help, and then even more insistently apologising for the same thing. Still, hope appears to travel in waves, and there are as many (if not more) ups than downs right now.

14 Jun 2001 (updated 15 Jun 2001 at 21:11 UTC) »

ishamael: Hmm, not sure if Velouria is the *best* Pixies song per se, but the opening four songs from Bossanova are pretty incredble I'd agree.

The effects of what is technically unemployment are beginning to take effect, with a mammoth session of DSS form filling, and the return of my beloved notebook to the supplier.

On a more positive note, the broken monitor has now been replaced and my arm gets a little more useful each day.

Dropped off the network for the past couple of days, partly due to general glumness and also due to major hardware failure.

Arm is improving, and I'm itching to get back to work on things I was enthusiastic about a couple of weeks ago.

One-handed Hacking

Thought a lot about usability and ergonomics over the past week...particularly in the sense of hacking tools suitable for coders with disabilities. My situation is of course temporary, but the frustration I've experienced must be magnified many times for other people. I do understand that editors, debuggers et al are necessarily complex tools of course - its been interesting to wonder about what I would trade for usability.

30 May 2001 (updated 30 May 2001 at 07:40 UTC) »


Had a great holiday weekend, but managed to break my right arm quite badly! Hurts like hell and makes typing very hard - due to the unusual situation that my brain is working faster than my fingers.

Luckily, my friends have been fantastic - and tolerant of my frustration. Off to a distant family member's funeral today - more of a rare chance to hang out with my sister than anything else.

Fanning the flames...

Being a one-armed vi user must be so much easier than being a one-armed Emacs user...

26 May 2001 (updated 26 May 2001 at 14:35 UTC) »


Up early, but lots of hanging around doing very little today. Did however play with The GIMP a bit later. I'm never comfortable with graphics tools at all, despite watching my colleague Mr Bristow work wonders (including the immortal Bobby McFerrin's Rubber Muffin Buffer picture).

Anyway, made a new icon and some little menu legends for gtkdial which will do until the promised goods turn up. Impressed myself with the results. I am, after all, very easily pleased...


Bank Holiday Weekend, then one more day of work, then a funeral, then I'm free of my current job. Much uncertainty still remains about its replacement, but I just don't have time to worry about that so I'll place my faith in my (hopefully) new boss and her startling abilities to "get stuff done".


Open University wants me to think about next year's course choices! Its always now in May/June they do this - its the middle of the year (we operate a February-October term in the OU), when the drabs have set in, there is far more fun stuff to do elsewhere, and you are wondering why the hell you chose this course, that they ask you to choose the next one.

Think I'll ditch any pretence of doing a Social Welfare degree and select Microprocessor Controlled Systems just for fun.

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