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Monthly Archives: July 2006

never one to turn down a chance to express an opinion

My me-time this past weekend wasn’t a total waste for the rest of humanity. I made a lot of changes to the site, and worked on the redesign. Tough questions were asked, like do I put a picture on my front page like an nerdy academic, or remain faceless, like a trendy blogger? In the end, I compromised, by putting up a picture that doesn’t look all that much like me. I’m a bit more of a CHUD in real life.

The big change, though, is that I used a few of the huge number of WordPress plug-ins to add info about my media consumption habits. Now you can see what I’ve been listening to, reading, and watching. I actually kind of dig it when I can go to other people’s web sites and find out stuff like that, so hopefully some of you out there will dig it here. I’m especially looking forward to having a forum to write glib little mini-reviews of movies I’ve seen, since I tend to do that on a pretty regular basis anyway.

meet the new job, same as the old job. or possibly completely different

Tomorrow I start working in the office of a startup down in Yaletown. I’ve been affiliated with the company for a couple of years now, and I’ll be going in to help out a bit with the Machine Learning parts of the operation. What exactly that operation is, you understand, I need to stay tantalizingly vague about, but rest assured, I may or may not be integral.

It’s just for a few weeks, but I think it’ll be pretty cool. Two of the people I’ll be working with, Mike and Reza, are from my lab. And I think it’ll be pretty cool to actually be downtown in an actual working office environment. I’ve done a bit of consulting-type work here and there since I started grad school, but it was always a matter of doing the work at home in-between my own research. This is a chance to get back to the regular software development grind that I rejected to go to grad school, but which I secretly sometimes miss.

alone in die Kommune

The house where I live at some point acquired the nickname of die Kommune, and while it’s not usually too noisy, it’s rarely entirely quiet. But right now, all of my fellow Kommunists are out of the country — David is at a wedding in London, and Abhi and Tamy are in Boston for the SIGGRAPH conference. The place seems rather eerie when I’m here alone. The nerdly grad-student industriousness grinds to a halt, the DVD player and PlayStation rest, and I get to walk around in my underwear and use the living room to sort out my books and DVDs.

All-in-all, I have to say, it’s pretty good. I have a tendency toward, shall we say, “lonerishness” — a tendency which I’ve outflanked by living in a shared house (I’m not one to brag, but I am a right cunning autotactician). It’s kind of refreshing to let my reclusive side take over and spend a weekend alone, reading, jogging and playing guitar.

breaking the site was the easy part

Reconstruction of my blog proceeds apace. Turns out when I exported my old blog, I managed to delete all comments, a fair number of the pictures, and some behind-the-scenes details that you don’t care about. I do apologize to everyone whose comments were deleted — a lot of times they were better than the posts they were commenting on.

If it’s any consolation, everything you’ve ever put on the web since about 1999 exists right now in hundreds, perhaps thousands of databases and its permanent existence is as certain as anything any human being has ever written. Not only that, but thousands of people are working right now to make sure that it will all be stored, recovered, copied and properly attributed to you. Forever.

It’s possible this doesn’t make you feel any better, but in fact kind of depresses you. Rest assured, such feelings are a sign of your own impending obsolescence.

New Host, Same Old Eric

Hey, I’m back.

So I’ve switched my host from which seemed to delight in randomly disabling scripts and breaking installations (and had no tech support) to, which I am fully confident is perfect in every way and will never cause my precious self a moment of stress or a word of complaint. Sure, it’s $3 more a month, but isn’t that worth it?

Moral: sometimes cheapest isn’t best.

At the same time, I switched my blogging software from Movable Type to WordPress. I have no good reason for doing this.

Moral: sometimes our motivations are mysteries even to ourselves.

I’m going to work on importing at least my most recent blog posts and get the site looking and working like I want it, but it will probably take a few days/weeks before I get everything going perfectly.

There’s no moral there.