Ad Astra, and not much else.

I had a bunch of highly pontificational (spell check says that isn’t a word, but I’m using it anyway) things I was thinking about writing a post about today. I was saving it all up till after work when I had time to dedicate to the writing process. They were good too. I had some really good arguments I wanted to make. It would’ve been interesting, challenging and informative.

Too bad I forgot all about all of them.

I should probably write these things down. Oh well.

I’ll leave you to dream about what the world might have been like if those posts had been posted. It would be a different place, you mark my words.

Ad Astra’s this weekend. I was only planning on going the Saturday, but for one happy reason or another, it looks like I’ll be there all weekend. Which is fine. If I get bored, I can probably find a Cory Doctorow thing to drop in on, which should be neat. I might even ninja. Seeing as I never really do anything useful during masqs, this is probably a good idea.

I was looking over the pre-schedule schedule… Along with pretty much all the Cory Doctorow stuff which is probably interesting on their own, there’s also some Julie Czerneda things which are usually fun… And there’s a NaNoWriMo panel, but it’s very early some morning. And, of course, there’s all the stuff friends are doing. So I think I should be able to find enough things to fill the weekend.

I’ll bring the laptop. I might even liveblog the con. ‘Cuz, you know, I can…

(Seriously… those would’ve been some awesome posts…)

Podcast-listening Update

I’ve pretty much stopped using the PSP for podcasts. I still really like the automatic downloads over WiFi. However, I’ve been playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories. The automatic downloads don’t work when you’ve got a game running. And when you’re playing a game on the PSP, you’ve got it running all the time. You just put it to sleep when you’re not playing to save the nasty UMD load times. Switching in and out of games on the PSP doesn’t work so well.

So I’ve switched over to using the iTunes+iPod combo. It makes me feel dirty. I still want to switch over to [iPod Linux]( (or [Rockbox](; I haven’t decided). The thing I like about iPod+iTunes, honestly, is the listen count. There’s a little blue dot beside the episodes I haven’t listened to (not, admittedly, started listening to, but usually if I’ve stopped, I didn’t really want to listen to it). So it’s easy to tell at a glance whether there’s new content there.

But whatever. Here are a few more podcasts I’ve taken to listening to… Let’s get the TWiT stuff out of the way first…

[Macbreak Weekly](
: Okay, they spend way too much time talking about iPods and crap, but [Merlinn Mann]( is funny. The episodes with him and Leo on are the best. They also point out nifty Mac software, which I wouldn’t have known about otherwise. That’s one thing I have to hand to the Mac: it’s got a rich shareware ecosystem. Freeware/FOSS, not as much, sadly, but there’s lots of cool shareware.

[Windows Weekly](
: In the interest of balance… It’s actually pretty good. Not as fun as MBW, maybe, since it’s just Paul and Leo chatting about what Microsoft did this week. Still, Paul isn’t a Microsoft shill, and they talk about interesting stuff sometimes. And iPods. Even on Windows Weekly. I don’t know why everybody always talks about iPods.

[FLOSS Weekly](
: Just started up again this week. It really needs to find its groove, but one thing I think I want to get out of podcasts is listening to developers talking about development. And this touches on that. Speaking of which…

[The Command Line](
: Just a guy with a microphone talking about hackerish stuff. He’s at his best when he’s talking about his own experiences and observations. Those parts are really good to listen to. He spends maybe a little too much time essentially going over Slashdot headlines. That’s… well, okay I guess. I’ve never been a huge fan of Slashdot.

[Big Ideas](
: TVO’s lecture series is also available as a podcast. I don’t listen every week… Sometimes it’s boring. Sometimes it’s someone just droning at the front of the room, just like back in school. Sometimes they start off with “Webster’s dictionary defines _____ as…” and I hit the skip button. Sometimes it pisses me off with logical fallacies and sloppy thinking. But sometimes… sometimes it’s brilliant. Like the one a couple weeks ago that still has me thinking about stuff: [the one about the guy who invented the stethoscope]( It starts off like a boring lecture, but everything comes together in the end. And it’s fascinating.

I’m so ashamed

I ended up driving into work this morning. Third day in a row.

Driving Tuesday can probably be forgiven. It was after 2 by the time the roofer dudes left, and I had work stuff I needed to get done.

Yesterday, I was just weak. I walked to the end of my driveway, trudging through shin-deep snow with the cold wind and just knew that it wasn’t going to be a fun walk. Most people wouldn’t have cleared their sidewalks by that point. It would just be exhausting and cold and awful. And besides, I wanted to get home after work so I could get on with my evening. And in the end, that was entirely worth the karmic debt.

Today I have a slightly better excuse: I have to get to the dentist. My appointment’s in an hour and a half. Still, a three day break in my otherwise unbroken streak… It doesn’t make me happy. I’ve been liking walking to work every day, even in the bone-chilling cold.

I won’t be walking to work tomorrow, either. I’ll be driving to Toronto in the morning and then off to Ottawa in the evening. That will be a fun adventure in itself.


Dammit. My roof leaks.

I called the roof repair guy a while ago, but apparently they’re busy and I haven’t heard back.

It’s okay for now, since the ice has frozen again. It started leaking yesterday when the temperature went up a bit. There’s an awful lot of ice up there.

The ice is my fault, really. I didn’t clean out the eaves troughs in the fall. Even so, the roof is but two months old. It probably shouldn’t leak.

Hurray! Just as I’m writing, a guy showed up and promised to remove the snow and “whatever ice they could”. I took a look, and there’s no way I could move the ice. I’m hoping they have some melter gadget thing. We’ll see what happens.

*Update:* I hurrayed too soon. They appear to have no melter gadgets. They’re bashing on my roof with shovels. This does not bode well.

I suppose, being roofing guys, they can replace whatever they break. This is my only consolation.

*Update 2:* They’re gone. They cleared off a whole bunch of the ice and allowed the water to drain off. It it was me, I’d probably be [a bit more subtle about it]( They left without saying anything. Off to the next emergency, I guess. Roofing superheroes that they are.

I’m probably going to use the hot water trick to get the eaves draining again, but right now, I think I should probably get into work…

I’m just gonna do this

After months of humming and hawing, I’m just going to switch over to this WordPress blog. Like right now. Today.

I want to copy over the archives from the [old blog]( here. But for now, I’m just going to leave it where it is. I’d like to preserve the comments, which means I’m going to have to become at least passingly familiar with WordPress database structure, it looks like.

There’s lots of stuff I want to do with this thing. While it was fun writing blog software from scratch, the bloom came off that particular rose probably about three years or so ago. It’s hard to update and stuff is broken. I just can’t be bothered messing with it anymore. So I might as well take something off the shelf. And WordPress is pretty cool. I played with it for my [nanowrimo novel]( That worked out okay.

I have ideas for plug-ins and things. I think I’d rather be writing plug-ins than a bunch of stuff from scratch. But we’ll have to see whether the WordPress plug-in framework sucks or not. I’m not worrying about it. I’m just going to jump into this thing.