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Alarm clock goes at 8:05, wake up properly at 9:00. There's no need to rush into work today because I have flex-time, and I expect to have to stay late today, to run a telephone meeting with lots of Americans. Listen to bits of Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time on Radio 4, about The Anatomy of Melancholy, while catching up with the SJ Games forums and LiveJournal on the web.

Get up at 9:25, walk to the bus stop. I can't drive, and these days I feel a lot more actively discriminated against about that than I used to: the assumption that every adult has a car, and anyone who doesn't is an unperson has been popular since the eighties, but now it seems to inform public policy as well as private prejudice.

Arrive at work at 10:05. I'm a computer programmer, and at present, I'm working on testing my employers' products on new versions of Windows and Mac OS X, and running one of them through an error-finding tool, "Valgrind", on Linux. The testing is all going OK, so start the next chunks off. Valgrind has found things that need investigating, so feed the rest of the software through it to have that phase finished, and then prepare to start finding the problems and fixing them.

But first, I have to look at the test cases that failed overnight, in some detail. I also find I need to arrange for a computer to be set up for a visitor to the office next week. Just arranging things - finding and assembling resources, asking the right people to do things that are within their jobs - isn't so hard, but it's astonishing how many very smart people have trouble getting to grips with it. Probably that's why so many workplaces are clogged up with forms and procedures, to try to get people to do things.

I also have to attend a meeting to help sort out what piece of third-party software we will use for the front-end on our product's install DVD. The original choice looked risky for security; another option was OK on that, but some people weren't confident about the company that produces it; a third option had been found this morning and looks like the best bet.

With that done, it's time for lunch (Chicken baguette, no butter, fresh-squeezed orange juice, an apple). I usually only take half an hour's lunch break, to shorten the working day. A camera I bought on eBay has arrived, and I take a few minutes to check it out. It's a 1937 model of the Rolleiflex twin-lens reflex. I've always wanted a Rolleiflex, since I learned photography using my father's "Microcord" - a 1950s British copy of the Rolleicord, a cut-down Rolleiflex intended for amateur photographers. It seems to be working fine once I figure out the controls, and I leave eBay feedback.

Two books have arrived from Amazon: a short translation of Confucius, and an SF novel, _Getting to Know You_, by David Marusek.

And back to test cases ... They are all OK. Now, the Valgrind problems. These are harder: two are different cases of the same problem that I have to hand over to the relevant specialist; the other three can be dealt with easily enough. And another group that uses the piece of software I've been running through Valgrind has reported some problems; one is fixed already, although establishing /why/ needs help from a colleague, but the other two need work tomorrow.

It is time to go home; mail this diary to my home machine to carry on with it this evening.

The evening is a lot less busy. Supper is a chicken casserole ready-meal, selected for low fat content, followed by fresh raspberries and a small amount of ice-cream. My diet allows about 30 grams of fat a day, or else my liver plays up. The symptoms are not too bad, being fatigue and sleepiness, but that makes work hard, so I stick to the diet, except for the occasional Friday evening.

With that eaten, home e-mail needs reading. There’s correspondence about organising events with friends, games that we play, and so on. Then to bed, reading some more of the SJ games forums, telephone my girlfriend, and sleep. Not an unusual or exciting day, but not a bad one either.

Websites accessed today:

http://www.dilbert.com/fast
http://www.sluggy.com/
http://www.schlockmercenary.com/
http://somethingpositive.net/
http://phdcomics.com/comics/comics.php
http://www.dorktower.com/
http://kingsofwar.org.uk/
http://www.blogs.mod.uk/
http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/
http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/
http://www.irregularwebcomic.net/
http://www.reallifecomics.com/
http://www.shortpacked.com/
http://nodwick.humor.gamespy.com/index.htm
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/ootslatest.html
http://xkcd.com/
http://www.sandraandwoo.com/

http://ebay.co.uk/
http://boingboing.net/
http://bubbleheads.blogspot.com/
http://blog.usni.org/
http://www.espncricinfo.com/

http://www.csmonitor.com/
http://www.cnn.com/
http://news.bbc.co.uk/
http://www.techeye.net/
http://spaceweather.com/ 

I read comic strips, defence and counterterrorism blogs, news, cricket, eBay, and an assortment of other stuff. It's a significant part of life.
 


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