January 27, 2006, 00:21 EST
Games of the Board and Card
Posted by Administrator

I'm hosting a boardgaming and cardgaming evening at mine tomorrow night (well, technically tonight). I originally planned for about eight or so, including myself - but thirteen are going to be there. Which may cause a problem. I'll convert my room into a second boardgaming room, and there should be enough space. I'll have to remove my computer from the table it's on, and use that table - quite a rearrangement!

But it should be fun. And an interesting mix of people are coming - normal people, odd people, and just plain strange people :) Settlers of Catan, Munchkin, Puerto Rico, Kill Dr Lucky - lots of interesting games.

January 25, 2006, 01:04 EST
Late night researching
Posted by Administrator

Being noctural leads to unusual patterns of work. My research involves the occasional very long day, such as tonight. Doing the cleaning also takes a few hours. And the experiment itself takes a few hours.

So, as you can see - I can sometimes be in the laboratory until the early hours of the morning. It's not a bad thing - the labs are wonderful at night. So... utterly peaceful. There's only a few people around, and you can go all night without seeing another human being. But the whole place is brightly lit, and homely. Plus, there's the perverse satisfaction you get from playing loud opera at 3 in the morning with your office door open, and hearing it all over the top floor of the building. I suspect that when I get round to writing up my thesis finally, I'll be pretty much nocturnal all the time. Writing during the night, and heading home to sleep when my co-workers arrive!

Anyways, enjoy the comic. We've all been in this situation!

January 23, 2006, 00:05 EST
Political intrigue
Posted by Administrator

Or at least political incompetence. I've spent the weekend watching the DVD series of "Drop the Dead Donkey", a british sitcom about a fictional TV news station. Fascinating and hilarious stuff. Not quite as poisonous as Yes Minister, but still good.

And to sound a technical note - I've had a couple of requests to syndicate this comic in the form of RSS. I could of course do it manually, on a blog/livejournal/whatever, but I'd much rather an automatic method, for ease and for doing it when I'm not at the computer :) Can anyone recommend me a method/software/trick of doing this?

January 20, 2006, 14:04 EST
html and css
Posted by Administrator

My university is kind enough to do free courses in various computer skills for any students or staff. And since the terms of my PhD requires me to do a certain amount of training in "transferrable skills", I thought it an ideal way of doing things. So, I'm doing 3 x 3 hour courses in html/css, 3 x 3 hour courses in C/C++, and a 3 hour course in Photoshop.

My C knowledge is minimal, as is my Photoshop - so those courses will be interesting. Unfortunately, my html knowledge is enough to make basic webpages, for example, this comic - so the first course of the three will be *DULL*. Sadly, it's a requirement to take the other two, which I'll actually learn something in.

I'm off to be bored now.

January 18, 2006, 00:11 EST
Family and Feedings.
Posted by Administrator

Have recently returned from a visit to my family. Oddly enough, that's where I won ToME, despite playing most of it at home, rather than there. Since I run it remotely on a computer in London and ssh in... that's entirely beside the point, but an interesting time period to have won :)

It was a good visit, it's always nice to see family... and have one of the nicest meals known to man. There is an obscure little Thai restaurant. It sits between two more popular restaurants, and is much more expensive than either. And it serves the nicest food I have ever eaten in my life. Ever. I know the odds of any of you going there are slim at the very best. But I'm still going to recommend it anyway. It was as if an angel had bled onto my tongue :)

Enjoy the comic. It's oddly appropriate.

January 15, 2006, 22:03 EST
Morgoth go byebye
Posted by Administrator

And that's that. I finally, finally won at an Angband variant today - my first victory ever. Morgoth had his brains plastered all over the walls :D The character dump is linked to in the Links section. Obviously, it's got spoilers in. I am so bouncy right now :-D

January 13, 2006, 00:04 EST
Pub food
Posted by Administrator

What is it about food served in a pub that makes it so delicious? Tonight, I had sausage, chips and baked beans. Very ordinary, entirely *boring* food. Yes, it's boring, and you don't wanna hear about it.

But serve it in a pub, on a big white plate, overpriced, and with a nice alcoholic drink, surrounded by friends... and it tastes like the best thing ever.

Perhaps scientists should do that - "pub-food in a box", with a free glass of beer, and a coupon for the Rent-A-Friend agency.

"Yes, I'd like to rent a friend please?
"Certainly sir. We have Davey, a 33 year old construction worker from Halifax, or Martin, a 27 year old bartender from Hull"
"I'll take Martin."
"Thankyou very much sir, and enjoy your evening!"

January 9, 2006, 00:28 EST
Winter vanishing
Posted by Administrator

There's still a few bitterly cold days here, but on average - they're going away and being replaced by the good old fashioned British weather. And by that, I mean rain and lots of it.

Can't complain *too* much about the rain, it's what makes England so green and full of life...

But when you've been caught out in it for the fourth time without a jacket on... it gets to you a little :)

On an Angbandy note, recently ran my best Priest character ever - got him to about level 35. I generally play Warriors and Mages, so a Priest is a breath of fresh air, and I'm not quite used to the required tactics yet. Also - the Angband Etiquette guide is an onrunning theme - suggestions are more than welcome for future strips.

January 7, 2006, 01:06 EST
Posted by Administrator

To the lovely reader who informed me of the name of the confectionary I was seeking - i.e. you, Kathryn... my thanks.

I now have a large packet of the things ready to be consumed over the next few days. Sparingly :) The stuff is called Millionaire Shortbread, or Caramel Shortcake. I knew it was something like that.

Mmmmm... caramel. My ongoing love affair with all things sweet and sugary shall continue.

January 6, 2006, 12:01 EST
Caramel topped biscuitcake
Posted by Administrator

I had one of them this morning. I'm not quite sure what the proper name for them is - but since I've seen them in many places, there must be one.

Layer of dark hard caramel/chocolate on the top. Then solid almost cheesecakebase like biscuit underneath.

And they are quite possibly the greatest confectionary invention known to man. Willy Wonka himself couldn't outdo them. So I'd like to know - what are they called, so I can buy lots more?

January 4, 2006, 07:00 EST
Back at work
Posted by Administrator

And a new year begins at the job too. It's quite interesting, being thrown straight back into the thick of things... or not in this case. I was the only person in the office yesterday for the entire morning. One person turned up in the afternoon. I get the feeling the labs will wake up properly tomorrow, but it's kind of annoying that I made the effort to get up and be in early and hard-working... and no-one else was around to notice this. That's not the reason I was in early - I'd just happened to wake up at 6am. For some reason, no idea why.

After all, as any true lazy person or slacker knows - what's the point of putting effort in if no-one's around to see it? I should be in early again today, I have time on the electron microscope starting at 8.30, so that'll give me a nice long session of analysis.

Don't tell me you were expecting news on the comic? It's only three strips so far, what's to tell?

Oh, and yes - I am this sarcastic in real life :-)

January 2, 2006, 15:44 EST
Brand Spanking New
Posted by Administrator

The comic is started up, and is officially my new Pet Project (tm). I'll be updating on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule for the near future. There's at least fifty strips stored up, so for the next few months just sit back and enjoy.

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