• It's 4 in the morning...

    …and I’m going to Hawaii!!!

  • What's related?

    According to the Mozilla “What’s related” sidebar, there is one page on the Internet that is related to What is it? Emmanuel: Songs Of Burgundy. Okay, I can sort of get that, it says Emmanuel in it. But then, apparently, a related web page to “Emmanuel: Songs of Burgundy” is the NetBSD Project. What is up with this “What’s related” feature?

  • Gaylords

    Unbelievably, there is a new Worms-style Flash game at the BBC website, called Gaylords. It features weapons such as the Condom Missile, and the Rolling Tranny. Can someone please explain to me what they’re trying to say?

  • Redesign

    Now that I’m free from the shackles of work, I’m trying to redesign this site. I’m trying to do it in strict XHTML 1.0, and CSS 2, which should look beautiful if you’re using the Gecko layout engine, and okay if you’re using IE6. Except that IE6 has lots of annoying CSS bugs, including one where you can’t select text in a <div> that’s positioned absolutely… And I think it should work in the latest version of Opera. Haven’t tested it on anything else yet, but I can guarantee that it will look crap on NN4. Just like everything else does. Also, it should render well in text-based or non-visual browsers, and any mobile Internet device. If you’re interested in seeing prototypes as I test them, go here. (That directory might not hold a tested/working version at any particular time, but I’d still be interested in hearing how it renders on your platform.)

  • Hey, look where you're going!

    The Future Fate of the Milky Way Galaxy: Collision Scenario for the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxies

  • More phone joy

    I’d forgotten to mention it while I was gushing about my phone earlier, but then Aurélien mentioned he’d looked up the specs, and I suddenly remembered the one most important, most wonderful, most incredible feature: it has TETRIS. Not some naff, knocked-off clone – an actual, licensed version of Tetris. And it has a joystick to play it with!

  • Knackered

    I think I’ve cranked out about 2000 lines of brand new or edited code in the last 17 hours. My eyes ache. In the process, however, I’ve realised what I really like about web programming: it all just feels like such a big kludge. Writing server-side script that dynamically generates SQL/HTML/JavaScript, and passing variables about in URLs and things – it’s just not what the web was designed for, and for some reason that makes it a bit more exciting than simply calling Win32 API functions from a C++ program.

  • Changes

    I’m trying out a new way of labelling these posts. Also experimenting with style sheets. Neat dashed underline things for the links are courtesy of kottke. And they probably don’t work on 80% of the browsers out there. Or something. But that doesn’t matter, because it works for me. And I’m pretty certain no one else reads this stuff, anyway.

  • Hello? Customer service?

    The chapel choir that I run has an account at Barclays Bank, my oh-so-favouritest bank in the world. I am currently on a quest to find out the balance of this account.

    You see, in days gone by, I have been successful in extracting this information from them, at least a couple of times. Now, however, it seems that, in order to counter the sheer audacity of customers demanding information about their account between quarterly statements, their cashiers have been trained to invent their own security requirements for each new customer experience.

    </tr> </table>

    Past successful attempts:

    Me:Could you tell me the balance on that account, please? 👍
    Cashier:Certainly, sir.

    Me:Oh, and, could you tell me what the balance of that account is, please? 👍
    Cashier:Yes. Could you please confirm the address of the account?
    Me:Yup, it's Emmanuel College, Cambridge, CB2 3AP.
    Cashier:Okay, that's right, here you go.

    Recent, unsuccessful attempts:

    Me:Could you give me the balance of that account? 👎
    Cashier:Uhrm... well, it'll take about ten minutes...
    Me:(thinking: What?) Right...
    Cashier:Uhrm... (shrugs)

    Me:Oh, sorry, could you also tell me the balance on that account? 👎
    Cashier:Can you prove that you are one of the signatories on the account?
    Me:Erm, well, how do I do that?
    Cashier:Well, is the statement sent to you?
    Me:Yes. (thinking: But it's actually sent to "The Senior Organ Scholar" rather than "Christopher Mear", so I can tell this is going to get confusing for her.)
    Cashier:Do you have any ID on you?
    Me:Well, yes, but it's sent to "Senior Organ Scholar", you see, and...
    Cashier:</i></td>Well, let me just have a look. (taps away on terminal) I'm sorry, there's no name on the account so I can't help you.
    Me:(knowing that she is looking at a screen that says "Senior Organ Scholar" on it, which I have just confirmed to her, and thinking: What is that supposed to mean? That only somebody with no name is allowed to access the account? Or that my name actually has to be "Mr Senior O. Scholar"? How is anyone supposed to access the account if you need a name on the account, and there is no name on the account?) Right. Well, how am I supposed to find out my balance, then?
    Cashier:You'll have to get in touch with your branch.
    Me:(thinking: Oh yes, because they're much more likely to give the information to an anonymous voice on the phone, than to an actual person, actually standing in the branch, who has just paid in a cheque using the actual paying-in book for the account, which, along with a actual statement of the same account, he is currently holding) OK. Thank you.

  • Battery-powered pleasure, in the palm of your hand

    I bought a new phone. It’s small; it’s shiny; it’s in colour; it has flashing lights.