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Monday, December 1
The most sense I've read all month

Hello, I'm not dead yet! Been superSUPER busy recently but I'm keen to get back into the blogging (just as soon as this latest batch of brain-zapping coursework is over and done with).

In the meantime, this, from the latest Zen customer newsletter, made me smile:

Even the most educated readers and writers can fail to get a
complete grasp of English grammar. The book: 'Eats, Shoots and Leaves' has
evidence that a surprising number of people struggle to define parts of speech
and few have any idea about, say, passive and active verbs. Why the book's
peculiar title?
It's from a joke: A panda walked into a cafe. He ordered a
sandwich, ate it, then pulled out a gun and shot the waiter in the foot. "Why?"
groaned the injured man. The panda shrugged, tossed him a badly punctuated
wildlife manual and walked out. When the waiter consulted the book, he found an
entry that read: "The Panda is a large black and white mammal native to
Eats, shoots and leaves". We see signs in shops every day for
"Banana's" and even "Gateaux's". Competition rules remind us: "The judges
decision is final".

There are many punctuation guides explaining the principles
of the apostrophe; the comma; the semi-colon. These books do their job, but
somehow punctuation abuse does not diminish. Why? Because people who can't
punctuate don't read those books! 'Eats, Shoots and Leaves' adopts a more
militant approach and attempts to recruit an army of punctuation vigilantes,
telling them: Send letters back with the punctuation corrected. Do not accept
sloppy e-mails. Climb ladders at dead of night with a pot of paint to remove the
redundant apostrophe in "Video's sold here".

The BBC Skillswise site has an alternative guide for non-activists.

Now, I'll avoid pointing out the glaringly obvious mistakes in the paragraphs above (I quoted them verbatim from the newsletter, so don't blame me!) but I cannot believe the depths to which Britons' grasp of their OWN language have sunk - often peoples' poor language skills verge on the abhorrent! (And there's a new word for you.)

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Dragged out of Christopher's memory and pasted
into his blog at 12/01/2008 04:13:00 PM. Roughly.
Blog ID: 6981626480838175867
| Permalink

Saturday, April 5
Feel old? Yeah, so do I.

I just cleaned about 10gigs of MPEG-2 video files off my PC (DVB-T rips)... At about 2 gig per hour, they soon build up. Three DVDs later, 10 gig more free space! Woo and yay.

My first PC had a 10 gigabyte hard drive in it, and I just remember thinking "cor, I don't think I'll ever fill that up..." How wrong could I be: my fileserver (other machine) has more than 1 Terabyte of (mostly filled!!!) storage in it, with more planned.

And to think my old Acorn A3000 has a hefty 2Mb of video memory, and something like 16Mb total system memory... Hardcore. I loved how you could dynamically alter the memory allocated to the graphics card so you could up its allowance to play games :D In fact, my latest dabbling in the wonderful world of computers is a project to build my own Linux-powered SAN - it'll be a steep learning curve as my commandline Linux knowledge is currently far too limited! (Example: I had to google to find out what rm -rf does... In short, don't ever use it unless you have a least a couple of free days afterwards.)

Oh, and I was rushing out of work on Friday afternoon, my foot slipped off the (huge) doormat they have and my foot went kinda-sideways off the edge of the mat. Quite painful, and I had to drive home with it - and now it's giving me gip every time I put weight on it. Not pleased about that.

Found another grey beard hair this morning too when I was looking in the mirror. Great.

I feel old before my time :( I was up at 4am today too, because I went to bed at about 8:45pm on Friday night! Pass me my slippers...

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Dragged out of Christopher's memory and pasted
into his blog at 4/05/2008 09:20:00 AM. Roughly.
Blog ID: 420113903992953304
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Tuesday, December 4
Vista drops its kill switch, pirates wonder what all the fuss is about

Noticed that Microsoft's removed (or is going to in the next Windows Update, anyway) the kill switch which crippples Vista if the machine fails its WGA. Too many false positives spoil the OS.

More about this on the relevant BBC article (and other articles around the web for that matter, I just like the BBC site).

All the pirates proper are wondering what all the fuss is about - piracy of Vista has continued unabated since its launch, with patches and workarounds galore for the WGA checks and suchlike, so why is Microsoft even bothering to do this now? They've utterly failed with Vista, they should just drop it and revert to a previous point revision in the SVN where, at the very least, the Start Menu worked - and then build AROUND those smaller features, instead of making section developers have to recode their own sections due to the whims of the core dev team. And to think I thought XP was a mess until I used Vista...

Christmas is nearly upon us, so look forward to seeing me looking grumpy in a santa hat again. December just wouldn't be the same without it.

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Dragged out of Christopher's memory and pasted
into his blog at 12/04/2007 04:35:00 PM. Roughly.
Blog ID: 2060156806331041534
| Permalink