Niall’s virtual diary archives – July 2002

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11th July 2002

Sad news

14th July 2002

Where's my productivity???

27th July 2002

Monitor blows up

30th July 2002

A pretty face

Thursday 11th July 2002: 10.55pm. Somehow or other I slept from about half six today up till about half ten, so I guess I'm not going to be sleeping again any time soon. I guess it's from this thing I had to go to as part of getting the dole - I arrived back from the UK on Tuesday to find a letter mandating my presence at this meeting. I looked at my watch, then reading the 10th, and assumed it was Wednesday. I was somewhat annoyed to wake early, get to the office only to have it pointed out to me I was a day early. Still, it did get me two mornings in the park in the sunshine (that doesn't help keeping awake either!).

Well, what a two weeks! I am sorry to report that my sister's fiancée killed himself two weeks ago or so, so I had to fly immediately to Ireland. He was a nice lad, he clearly was well taken with my sister so it was all a bit unfortunate. Directly after that of course was the wedding in the UK which was very nice plus I got to see loads of people once again. We are all definitely getting older, I can't believe how old my cousins are getting!

However, as ever, I have a fairly long list of stuff I need to do. That list never seems to be exhausted. As to whether I wake myself bright and early tomorrow in order to do them, I don't know yet - ask me tomorrow! Project wise, I now have a full copy of Qt 3.0 and really I absolutely must get back on the programming ball again otherwise it'll never get done. To that end, I think it a good idea to hold off on the television eps and movies which seem to occupy so much of my time and just try to keep focused enough to get the job done. OTOH, I have the spanish Big Brother overlaid on top of my display right now (handy feature of newer versions of ATI TV). Something's wrong with the sound in that the loud bits are too quiet and the quiet bits too loud, but apart from that I can understand most of what's going on. Anyway, I think I'm going to go eat some bread and honey because I'm quite hungry, so I'll see you all sometime later. Be happy ...

Sunday 14th July 2002: 12.36am. How the hell does it become Sunday when it was like Thursday only a few minutes ago? Dammed if I know. I should have gotten yay so many lines of code written, or at least clean the stove like I have on my list. I guess that's unavoidably tomorrow now.

We're also half way through July as well. Time is running out. Niall needs go work, get stuff done. If I don't program, then I must at least clean something. Or do other things on my list. Still, I'm not sure how the last three days have vanished, it's almost like the time didn't exist.

Well, actually, I did publish a new program, SymLink which is here. But it doesn't feel like I actually accomplished anything.

Ok, well here's to success at at least one thing on my list tomorrow! Here's hoping you're all being productive unlike me - and be happy!

Saturday 27th July 2002: 7.48pm. Since the last entry, I have become considerably more productive. It's weird - productivity seems to go in cycles as well. For example (and prepare yourselves now!), I've just finishing cleaning the kitchen. Yes, cooker, microwave, fridge, everything. And yes, I feel absolutely shattered now, but I must admit it all looks lovely - I feel pride when I go to look!

Having done something I have successively put off since I first moved in here (yes, I know it's disgusting, but this is the first time I cleaned the kitchen in a year and a half) is just the most recent in a long line of stuff I've got done. Big long list in the last few days. I've written articles, moved towards the first compile of the project, sent emails, bought the things I needed to, sent the items I needed, moved things from A to B etc. All in all, very very productive - and I'm getting up every morning at 9am (although admittedly often passing out again 10am-12 or 1pm, but then I am going to sleep every night from 3 to 4am).

One very very annoying event of the last two weeks is that my trusty ADI Microson 5G 17" monitor blew up. It seems the horizontal scan amplifier fried itself because the picture is exactly a half inch wide - perfect in every way, just very very narrow. I pulled my ancient 15" from Lyta to Kate which was my very first colour monitor as a temporary stop-gap, but it isn't happy at high resolutions - although a world-sight better than the monitors I was using at RDD. I had a whisk around for a replacement, and as always it came down to the stop-gap and quality choices. Stop-gap was a cheap Targa 17" at 200 euro, quality was a Sharp LL-T1610W 16" TFT monitor with 1280x1024 native resolution. Now, I've privately said I would not buy a TFT monitor until (a) it had above resolution or better and (b) it had a fully digital interface, and well the above Sharp has both. It also costs 800 euro (inc. VAT and DVI-D cable) from Germany all inclusive. So I weighed the options, and decided to go for it. I'm still waiting, it appears they ran out (odd that), but I get the old cheap offer price even if I have to wait a few weeks more.

This will leave my accounts a little fried. I had factored in 500 euro for emergency expenses until mid-October when some of my money returns to me (it's sitting garnering interest right now). In fact, financially, it can't be done unless I borrow some or I cancel my little trips in August - oh yeah, I'm planning Barcelona and Montpelier during August. I've already bought tickets for Ireland in September. So hopefully, my father will oblige, otherwise I have another source I can use.

What else? Well, I've downloaded quite a lot of new music, a mixture of classics like Simon & Garfunkel as well as the latest trance tunes. And err, I must remember to translate my CV into Spanish which will surely be fun as I have a meeting with the unemployment office on Tuesday. And well, not a huge amount more - I wake at 9pm, listen to BBC Radio 4, sleep a bit more, go to the park at ~2pm, read whichever book, return home to cook food and eat it and thereafter it's programming. A quality of life I am not deserving of! Well, actually I am, anything to make up for my enforced celibacy!

Ok, I'm off to cook some pasta and then I'm going to watch Austin Powers 3 which is nearly finished downloading. Cool, I'll be off, trust you're all well and until next time be happy!

Tuesday 30th July 2002: 2.34pm. Went to the INEM office (part of receiving the dole) where there is a nice young lady who helps you find work. It's kinda weird, when I first met her I remember being quite taken with her for some reason and resolved to do further study this time round. Which I did, and I was surprised how further taken I was. I had this voice nagging me from the back of my mind "ask her out!" but I managed to repress it. Afterwards, I went to the park, and kept thinking about her for most of the time there.

Now I am not stupid most of the time, I think I have the ability to learn from my mistakes. A clear mistake I have repeated is that I meet some girl, think she's great and end up getting involved with her well before getting to know much about her. Clearly my abilities at making accurate first impressions are crap with regard to attraction to women, and I have often wondered if I had got to know the disasters which occupy my history well enough, would have still gone down that route? Of course, I have now the benefit of hindsight and having learned to see signs which I possibly may not have done before - however, I have a remarkable gift to see instantaneously problem areas with girlfriends of friends of mine as well as within male friends, so it would kind of indicate the intuition is good but it's getting suspended by serious rose-tinted view plus I'm sure a smidgen of testosterone influence.

So, on balance, getting to know the woman well before engaging ones emotions with her seems sensible and likely to prevent repetition of disaster. So, therefore, I am doing the right thing.

Hmm. I feel inner conflict with that, it's the same as I was feeling in the park. Acting on my intuition works well in every area of my life, except attraction to women - therefore, do I make it a special case for not acting on it or do I continue to do so hoping my subconscious is all the time modifying and improving its spidy-sense? Hmm ...

Ok, I'm really hungry so I'm off to eat something then probably more debugging and compiling. All be happy!

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