19 October 2003

For dinner tonight, parents have acquired this marvellous vegetable, its surface a little fractal landscape. I just had to take a picture:

(sorry no image borders – working on that today…)


18 October 2003

Poisoned is, from the looks of things, an utterly kick-ass piece of P2P software for OSX… it uses multiple networks and transparently merges them. Sweet. Now, where’s my broadband…


18 October 2003

Great post from Lance Arthur on experiences of therapy and learning to connect again. Sometimes I really feel I need to connect back to the world; I mean, I’ll talk to anyone given half a chance, but I need to hunt them down and I always speak first. Sometimes I get worried people get pissed off with me calling or IMing them all the time.

But I feel so much better than I did three years ago. I’m connected in so many more ways (though not in the ADSL sense of the word…). And every day, in this living-at-home-limbo, I go for a stroll, or a walk; some kind of perambulatory fresh air. It helps. Every little bit helps.

I’m going through adolescence all over again, but this time I’m paying someone $130 an hour to help me through it. It does sound a lot like adolescence. I always joke I went through it all at the wrong time – I arrived at University at around 14, and am now about 17. I think I’ve got over that idea, but a year and a half ago, it seemed right. You need to go through it once, though a lot of the time it doesn’t happen when you’re 16. Hell, I didn’t have time for it to happen at sixteen. It was all a delayed reaction to the world.

But it pays off, you know. Because I get to play catch up. And boy, is that fun…


16 October 2003

Via Brooke, a remarkable picture of Saturn taken from the Hubble telescope. Awe-inspiring 222kb jpg; it’s now my desktop wallpaper.


14 October 2003


Out with the old, in with the new. Changed my specs today. Quite pleased with the new look, as it were.


14 October 2003

Just a quick reminder: the first Omnivore will be going live next Monday, so if you’re interested in writing for this tasty new creative writing site, head on over there and drop us a line…

Is there any blood?

12 October 2003

So I’m standing in my friendly local indepdendent videogame shop playing a demo pod running Rainbow Six 3, and very good it is too – fantastic graphics engine, beautiful lighting algorithms, sensible control scheme and skilful gameplay (unless like me you lacked the skills). And, as I’m creeping through a sewer and trying to eliminate terrorists with my M4, a twelve-year-old voice behind me asks

“Is there any blood?”

to which I said

“Does it matter?”

Actually, I realised what I should have said, but I didn’t want to give the kid nightmares.

“Well, I’m not sure. I mean, I can’t see in the gloom of this sewer. And to be honest, it’s aiming for a more realistic tone so there’s not going to be showers of the stuff. But anyhow, at this range, a 5.56mm NATO round is probably going to go straight through a man the muzzle velocity’s so high. So there won’t be much report of blood, especially since the terrorists are all wearing black. But once they’ve gone down, they could lose several pints of blood from their multiple bulletwounds, and I guess that’d make quite a mess, but in the game the corpses disappear quite fast and I’m not sure modern fluid simulations are up to calcualting several pints of blood for several corpses on a humble Xbox. I guess if the round hit a head there’d be quite a lot, though – from the exit wound, though. The entrance wound would be clean. And it wouldn’t just be blood, but bone and grey matter, too. All over the shop. Of course, if I was using my .45 ACP pistol, there’d be more blood, as the lower-velocity rounds lodge in the human body, contorted beyond recognition, and tend to take more of a mess.

“But, no I’m not sure there’s any blood. Why, does it matter?”

Still, Rainbow Six 3 was very good. I had one of those mornings, though: wandering around an overcrowded town, dodging slow-walkers and people befuddled by Paying-In machines. And kids in games shops arguing about how good Fifa 2004 was going to be, and whether or not Tom Clancy’s terrorists bleed. I was on the way to see Alan Parker and Patrick McCabe in conversation. And that was excellent.

Savoy Centre Signage

11 October 2003

Also from Glasgow: cool seventies’ typography in concrete. It’s so of its era,and yet has this peculiar sense of cool to it. Note the “artwork” as well as the text! Anyhow, Coates eventually convinced me to upload it, so:


Queen Street Station

10 October 2003

Was up in Glasgow last weekend, and whilst standing around Queen Street Station, took some pictures of the ceiling. Bit of Photoshop jiggerypokery later and (click for larger):

things are afoot

08 October 2003

Things are afoot over at a certain new website. Go and check it out. And if you’re interested, get in touch with the proprietor. Keep watching it for updates, too…