Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Who's Audrey Tautou? Philistines!

Due to so many people asking me who Audrey Tautou is I thought I'd explain: She's mine, right! No-one else's, mine!

Oh, alright. She's a French actress that you may have seen in the film "Le Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain", or "Amélie" as its known in the UK.

Here is a link to perform an image search in Google to jog your memory.

Half-Life 2: Wow!

These days I don't have time for playing games on my PC, what with keeping the kids entertained and all the other grown up stuff that goes on. But I recently got the Half-Life 2 bug, and I think it may develop into full blow flu.

I loved the original game, and have followed the development of the sequel with great interest. Its interesting for me, being involved in software development, to see that companies such as Valve have the exact same problems we do when developing new software. There is a great article on Gamespot that covers the history of the development of HL2. Its well worth a read and covers the development from the conception to the broken promises of release dates (and believe me I know how that feels), to the theft of the code ( Gabe Newells attempt to the hacker into in to the US to have him arrested is fantastic ), to the final triumphant thrashing of the piñata (which I have to say is a lovely idea, as is the point where the whole company stopped work for a week to play the game as it neared completion!).

Read it here: The Final Hours of Half-Life 2

So, on the 16th November 2004 Half-Life 2 was unleashed on an expectant world. I resisted for all of 5 days, until Sunday.
I purchased a copy and everything you may have heard or read about the quality of the game is true. It really is an amazing achievement. I won't go into any detail, its all over the web. All I can say is I better be very careful in the next week or two, my marriage could suffer if I'm not!

Thursday, November 18, 2004


There is a small white card sitting on the desk in front of me. On it is written, in pencil, '10AM'.

I mention this because it is not my small white card. It is a card that, as far as I am concerned, has just appeared from thin air. I came to my computer to add an entry to my blog and there it was. I wonder what it means? I keep looking at it and wondering if there is anything on the other side, but for some reason I don't want to turn it over. I like the simplicity of it...10AM.

I wonder what is happening at 10AM, or what happened at 10AM. Sometimes life throws up these little mysteries and you never quite know what will happen next. As an example, a colleague and friend of mine lost his job this week. He was 'asked' to consider his position and ponder whether he should stay. What a terrible thing to have to deal with. Most of us at work just sat doing our jobs, having a reasonably nice time, and this poor guy has his life turned on its head. It hasn't been made clear to anyone why he was asked to leave. Sometimes life throws up these little mysteries. I'm glad all I have to worry about is a little card with a cryptic message on it.

Oh, I've just turned to card over...

Monday, November 08, 2004

Stung by my Wasp!

It's been a frustrating week. My Vespa packed up so I've had to use a proper car to get to work. It's amazing how much more frustrated I feel having to drive a car to work, than I do when I drive my scooter.

The battery has packed up and the bike is only a year old. Couldn't even kick start the thing.
Fortunately one of the two local dealers was really helpful and has lent me a battery so I can get the bike into him to check out. Sounds like there is a problem with the electrics that's drawing the charge from the battery unnecessarily. Hopefully will get it sorted this week and my frustration will be a thing of the past. Still, if that is all I have to worry about I reckon I'm ok.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

John Peel

I was really saddened by the news of the death John Peel. Like thousands (if not millions) of others I grew up listening to his show. I feel like he introduced me to loads of bands like the Sugarcubes, Smiths, Wedding Present etc, etc, etc.

I loved his sense of humour, the fact that he seems so down to earth, and of course, his taste in music.

I think the idea of naming one of the stages at Glastonbury after him is fantastic.

RIP John, you were one of the good guys.


Friday, October 22, 2004

What's happening?!?

Nothing, absolutely nothing. Its Friday evening and people are leaving work heading off into Town (Newcastle for the uninitiated) for a night out. It's been a pretty dull week all told.
My wife and the girls are going to Belfast on Sunday to visit her family, so it will be a quiet week next week. Might get to catch up on some sleep at least.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

A dull day and all of a sudden...E Rocks!

Blimey today was a bit of a slog. Dunno if I'm just tired or what but it took forever for tonight to arrive. I've been looking forward to seeing H and the kids all day. Now the kids are asleep and H and I can catch up - best stop blogging then eh!!

But Waite, whats he building in there...? Tom Waites has done a new song with the Eels for their new album thats due in 2005 - get in - two for the price of one!

For more info on one of my favourite bands see the official Eels site eelstheband.

Right, I'm off to see H.

Here's a thought...

(courtesy of Harry Hill):

Hitler was evil (fact). Churchill was good (doubtful). If you were in a hot air balloon with both of them and you were losing altitude, which one would you throw out?

Isn't life great...

Hypocrite me? No, just human.

You know when you have one of those days when if you're driving you hate pedestrians, and if you're a pedestrian you hate drivers? Well, I feel like that today, in fact I've felt like that all week. There are times when you wish there was no such thing as other people. Other people just cause problems ( is this starting to sound homicidal? ). Maybe I should drop out of society?
Yeah, always had this romantic notion about becoming a tramp - but then again, I wouldn't like the smell, and I wouldn't have my house, music, vespa, computer, pda or more importantly my family.

So that just makes me depressed, and apparently depression is rage turn in, so what am I angry about? Well, when I'm driving I hate pedestrians, and when I'm a pedestrian I hate drivers.

Isn't life great...

* Actually not too bothered about these things.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Here I sit, and play guitar...

...drink beer, out in the country.

I was just thinking about playing music and thinking that my Anders, Krayg (friends of mine) and I should do something...we should you know, we should do something. We've only been talking about it for 10 years!

Anyone want to propose a name for the band? Maybe The Procrastinators.

You can't go any further south in England...

My family and I visited the Lizard Peninsula in Cornwall recently. What a beautifil and dramatic place!! Here is a picture I took on the beach next to the old Lifeboat house that closed in the 60's. If you've seen it you will know that those lifeboat men were really brave, and a bit mental I think.

Cheeky Cheeky!!

Here's a question for you to ponder over the weekend...which one of the Cheeky Girls is the Mother? My mate John doesn't know - do you?

I Want a New TV

What shall I do with my weekend? Our TV is on the blink, and the VCR. Time for a new TV I think, and a DVD/HDD Recorder - hooray!!
I will have to persuade my better half though. Quite fancy these new Philips gizmos...

32" Pixel Plus 2 Flat TV (32PF9986/12)

DVD Recorder / Hard Disk (HDRW720/05)

Wireless Multimedia link (SL400I/05)

Oh! Just remembered, the folks are coming over this weekend to help us decorate - there goes the sunshine (how ungrateful am I!). I recently lost my cave (every man needs one you know).

My PC is now situated on the landing of all places!! We are now decorating my ex-cave for my 3 year old daughter. I hope she appreciates the pain her father is going through!

ProcessLibrary.com - The online resource for process information!

Found this site that lets you look up entries from your process list. Very useful if you are trying to get rid of rogue programs running on your machine.

ProcessLibrary.com - The online resource for process information!

Keith, You're an evil man!

My colleague Keith has just sent me a link to this online Pictionary game.
You play it against real people. Talk about addictive, I doubt I'll get much work done today!


Today, I Love Google!

Well, this is my first entry in my blog, so I thought I'd be nice and share something useful before future entries descend into madness and irrational rants.

After reading a report on the BBC technology website about Googles new desktop search tool I headed over to Google and got me a copy.


Now, although I consider myself reasonably tolerant, there are days when I hate computers, days I hate the web, and somedays I hate Google (I don't always want to shop!). But today, I love google. This desktop search tool indexes email and files on your local hard disks and allows you to search using Google technology - why is this any different to other searches? Its fast, thats why!! No, I don't mean fast, I mean FAST!!

Now all the information I have gathered is literally at my fingertips - after all these years.

Go get it, you wont be disappointed http://desktop.google.com/