Niall’s virtual diary archives – July 2003

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20th July 2003

Random thoughts

Sunday 20th July 2003: 5.26pm. In some ways time has dragged and in others it has gone very quickly. In most respects my day strongly resembles last summer in Madrid in that during most of it I spend programming. However, it definitely has a different flavour, most notably that you feel fed-up more often here than there - probably because there was more variety of occupation there, whereas here I couldn't even mow the grass this past two weeks due to the constant rain.

I have however been conducting my own private war against software patents by corresponding with MEP's and it's been useful to formalise my arguments ready for when I have to sell Tn and incur, no doubt, the wrath of the GPL cult. In fact I already annoyed some people with TnFOX's LGPL-derived license although to give them fair credit, when I explained how I was allowed do what I was doing they backed down. I only wish MEP's would respond equally to my arguments against software patents.

It has occurred to me on a number of disparate occasions during the last year or so that a subtle change in my character is making itself noticed on this web site. I tend nowadays to write about events in my personal life here rather than the political and philosophical rants I used to with frequency. It's not that those rants have stopped - it's much more that they happen by email nowadays. I suppose with the USA PATRIOT act and ever increasing awareness of how geopolitical power structures work I've become aware that sometimes it's better to keep your opinions to yourself and indeed tactically it is most certainly advantageous. I suppose I've always had a paranoid streak, but I've also begun to see better with time the effects of changes on overall systems and if you view the path between you and what you want as a system, then the multiple routes you can follow become clear and the effect of every thing you do or say along those paths.

It could also be that I'm simply getting older. However like my father has always said, while I'm less obviously radical now than when younger my radicalism has become much more refined, focused and self-consistent. It is therefore also that much more pernicious and capable of causing change. Hmm, have I just said what I said before a different way?

If you think about it, it took Jesus Christ until he was twenty-nine or so before the bibles begin to record his activities in any detail and while I'd like to think modern man matures faster than those of old, I'm probably more wrong than right. We have an unparalleled individual access to information nowadays but with that comes a dehumanisation of the information which means ultimately that it's not the same wisdom enjoined from its learning - or you can know much more, but be much less wise.

Anyway back for me to programming - I'm about to embark on testing yet again with a view to hopefully making a release at the end of next week which will be nearly the end of July. And one month left to when I set myself the task of making FOX ready for Tornado. Be happy!

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