I recently spent a week in Singapore. I think I could safely say that it was one of my least relaxing vacations so far, but that’s entirely my fault. I didn’t even have my wife and kids with me, so I can’t blame anyone but myself. It was also one of the most enlightening and encouraging experiences I’ve had the pleasure of living through. (more…)
After publishing his own personal programming history, Ziggy asked if I might like to write my own. Since I don’t do a lot of writing, was referred to in the article, and mostly since he asked me to do so, I decided to go ahead and see what I could remember.
The first action similar to “computer programming” that I can remember is assisting my dad (a career computer programmer and information systems developer) in programming runs of EPROM integrated controllers for trackballs that he was developing as a side business. It wasn’t actually programming at all: my job was to plug in a chip, press the “up” arrow twice in a terminal emulator and run the command from history to erase it, press the “up” arrow twice more and run the command to write the firmware to the chip, unplug the chip, drop it in a chip tube, and repeat. I feel like I probably did hundreds of them (in fact, it was probably only dozens), and I loved every minute of the monotony, just because it got me closer to “working” on a computer.
Woke up this morning, soft morning light filled the room.
Ate a quick filling breakfast, pet a tiny cute animal while looking out the window as the sun came out from behind the clouds.
Watching different sized rain droplets out of the garage as they fell at distinct angles in the wind.
Got on my motorcycle, drove in the sun as the rain fell.
Rainbow and freeway and wind and powerful engine.
Got to work where I’m learning about how to command giant industrial robots.
Sold my motorcycle to a good owner for a good price.
Cleaned my desk, inside and out.
Talked to a guy about Japan for a while, where I soon will go.
Had dinner with my second cousin.
Came home and talked to my wife over the internet.
Sometimes things just seem to “go wrong”. My suspicion is that this is a result of putting off solving problems until they build up and overflow into non-related areas. Here’s an example from today.
I need to shoot in a part with the laser tracker in building B. Sadly, the genius laser tracker guy is out of the country (doing laser tracker stuff), and the backup genius is also overseas. There’s a few standby marginally competent laser tracker guys on the project, but they can’t figure out my part.
So we went to get help from another project. (more…)
Some like to sweat. Some run for fun. They like to run in the hot hot sun.
I do not like to work this way. If I must run, I’ll run away.
Instead I like to learn and think. I like to think and think and think.
And when I think, my thoughts, they stink! But when they don’t, I use some ink. (more…)
Name: Theodore Valorous Spooner
Weight: 3.56kg (7lb 13oz)
Length: 51cm (20in)
Trivia: We had trouble coming up with a good name. I was fascinated with Väinämöinen for a bit, but Anna talked me out of it. Were thinking about Alfred for a while too. The colorful hat and blanket (and booties, but no photos) were made by my very talented mother.
To friends and family, enemies and strangers, all alike, one and all together,
From the Spooner family of Paul and Anna, together with our children Leahana, Charlette, and the One who has no name.
We welcome you to this, our Christmas letter. (more…)
Talking to the internet is like talking to an old guy with Alzheimer symptoms. You have to know where you’re going, and say the same thing over and over. If you get bored of it, the old guy gets mad at you for being rude to him. If you give up, the internet will forget you existed at all. And then you die, and you’re forgotten anyway.
So, basically, what I’m saying to you, dear reader, is: If you want to know what I think, read through the archives.
No, there isn’t anything new in there. But you’re not going to find out the latest news on this blog anyhow. There are quite a few things I want to say again, but I’m not saying them twice. We’ve worked hard to keep this blog insightful and meaningful. If you’re looking for entertainment, perhaps best to look elsewhere.
Over at shamusyoung.com, someone left a comment that it would be cool to write a program in the form of a story.
This is both easier and more difficult than it sounds. (more…)
I’m writing a novel. Well, the ending to a novel anyway. This novel to be specific. It was 46.6 kilowords when I started, and now it’s nearing completion at 96.3 kilowords. But I’ve mostly added to the end, so technically that’s writing the ending, right?
Anyway, I was working on it today and figured I’d do a spell check. Word gave me a good grilling, but when I was through I learned the correct way to spell “Bureaucrat”. So that’s something.
I added a few words to the dictionary, and when I closed it down Microsoft Word asked me if I wanted to share my additions with Microsoft. The following is what I decided to send them (about 1/3 of the original amount). Enjoy! (more…)