Weekly review

Slow and steady progress on my Emacs book – 2351 words so far. I
should find a way to accelerate. Maybe putting together a detailed
outline for _three_ chapters, so I can work on one script each. It’s a
little difficult organizing so many different ways to do things,
though… Waah! Next week: Finish a detailed outline and get to 5000
words.

My transcript arrived, so the only thing I’m waiting for now is my
work permit. I hope to get it by the end of the week. I’ll also need
to renew my SIN. Speaking of paperwork, it turns out that I have to
get a medical exam and register at some overseas employment thing in
the Philippines before they’ll let me leave again, so I’ve added a
reminder about POEA to my March planner.

I made significant progress on the interviewbot I’m making in Second
Life for Stephen Perelgut. It can read questions from a notecard,
interview people who click on it using either a special channel or a
general chat prefix, save the answers in-world, report the answers
in-world, and e-mail one person’s answers offword to a specified
address. Next week, we need to check if it works, and to load-test it.

As part of my plan to give back to and be part of the community, I
attended the Toronto Public Library public consultation meeting for
their budget cut. Watching the meeting facilitator tactfully draw out
neutral points from attendees’ political rants was instructive. A
recurring comment was that the provincial government should give more
to Toronto. I felt some participants were a little resentful of new
immigrants, or at least they felt that the library shouldn’t have
programs to help people learn English as a second language (or third
or fourth). Some people also questioned the public computer access
that the library offers. It was a learning experience, and I learned
some interesting things from the library’s presentation. I’m not sure
if I’m going to go to one of those public consultation meetings again,
though: lots of people just like complaining about politicians. I’ll
observe the next board meeting on Oct 15 to see if that’s worth it for
me.

W- and I practiced photography this week. We tried taking a picture of
the cityscape from the bridge at Front and Bathurst. The CN Tower and
the moon weren’t very remarkable, but we did have fun taking long
exposures of incoming trains. We have also decided never to shoot in
ISO 1600 if we can help it, and are learning how to use the flash more
effectively. We practiced using the fill-flash in bright sunsight
technique described on Strobist (link at the end of this message).
We’d have good results if I weren’t so self-conscious about the
current state of my skin. I’ll go to a dermatologist as soon as my
health plan kicks in. Next week, I’m going to start carrying powder.

Took another driving lesson. Next one’s still in November. I’ll be
taking up emergency maneouvers in winter—oh joy. *terrified!*

Went for another library run. Most of the productivity books are
alike, but I found some nuggets worth keeping. I’m still trying to
figure out a good booknotes workflow. Any tips? Next week, my goal is
to take notes from at least three books.

Tea today was good. Ian and Joe shared a lot of insights about
large-business sales. I’m glad to hear that our get-togethers are
helpful for them, too. Intellectual conversation is apparently a rare
thing in this world. <wry grin> Let’s have more of it, then!
Next week, my goal is to organize my tea workflow.

Little revisions to my website here and there. I browsed through my
past entries and realized that I write a lot about my life in the
process of thinking through things, but probably little that’s more
relevant to other people’s lives. My goal for this week is to pick a
few topics, outline a few areas I want to explore and write about, and
plan my reading. That will let me develop more depth and be more
useful. Recurring topics include networking, contact relationship
management, personal productivity, personal finance, and Web 2.0. Next
week, I want to have a personal editorial calendar. ;)

Life is good.

Random Emacs symbol: w3m-scroll-right – Command: Scroll to the right.