February 19, 2007

Bulk view

Rediscovering the Graduate House reading room

To my surprise, there’s a copy of the Battle Royale novel. That wasn’t
there before. And it’s great reading foreign papers. From The
Guardian, I learn that the British are upset about friendly fire from
US soldiers (which naturally gets hushed up in US news). From Haaretz
Weekly, I learn that the tiny community of Samaritans (who can trace
some 126 generations of high priests) has relaxed prohibitions against
marrying outside the community and taken to importing brides from
Ukraine in order to address inbreeding (there you go, the up side of
mail order brides). The Wall Street Journal is, of course, the Wall
Street Journal.

Ah, to rediscover this the month before I leave… I’m sure the
Toronto Public Library will have something similar, even if I have to
make myself reading dates at the reference library branch. =)

Random Emacs symbol: tool-bar-button-relief – Variable: *Relief thickness of tool-bar buttons.

Toronto Technology Week!

Toronto Technology Week will be from May 28 to June 1, and I am *so* excited about it! With the Mesh Web 2.0 conference and the best of BarCamp and DemoCamp lining up, it’s going to be an amazing week. I know about it, and you know about it, but every geek in Toronto has to find out about it in time to make it to all the parties!

It’ll be my personal mission to spread the world and to nudge
interesting people to organize events around then. =D Can’t wait!

Random Emacs symbol: widget-menu-max-shortcuts – Variable: Largest number of items for which it works to choose one with a character.

Emacs: 15 times multiplication table

Wayne will get a kick out of the fact that I wrote a function to help
me set up Emacs to do a little of what his Nintendo DS does…

(Just you wait until I get speech recognition, sir!)

;; Create a flashcard-type file for the multiplication table until 15
(insert
 (mapconcat
  'identity
  (shuffle-vector
   (apply
    'vector
    (apply
     'append
     (let ((list '(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15)))
       (mapcar
        (lambda (a)
          (mapcar
           (lambda (b)
             (format "%d x %d = : %d" a b (* a b)))
           list))
        list)))))
  "\n"))

On Technorati:

Random Emacs symbol: mm-insert-part – Function: Insert the contents of HANDLE in the current buffer.

Toast

It seems very inefficient to use the Broil/Grill function on the oven
to heat up a peanut-butter sandwich, but this suite has three rice
cookers and no toasters. Go figure. =) I won’t have a toaster at the
other side yet, either… I’ll add a toaster oven to my wish list.

I’m a little uncertain about the prospects of living off peanut butter
sandwiches for the next few weeks. My mom told me stories of managing
it when she was in college, though, so it can’t be *too* bad for me.
I’m looking forward to having a proper kitchen, though! I will be very
slow and very careful about buying things, but I’m looking forward to
properly doing once-a-month or once-a-week cooking.

I hope to get the paperwork for the lease together in time. Thursday,
I’m going to run around and pick up paperwork. I’m looking forward to
eating more than peanut butter toast…

On Technorati:

Random Emacs symbol: minibuffer-window – Function: Return the window used now for minibuffers.

The water boar

Neil Ernst blogged about Chinese astrology, so I thought I’d look my sign up as well. My father and I were both born in the Year of the Boar, which has just cycled around. I was born in the year of the Water Boar, 1983. The Wikipedia entry on water says, “Water is representative of intelligence and wisdom; however, an overabundance of the element is said to cause difficulty in choosing something and sticking to it.” The Pig, however, is supposed to be a conservative creature of habit that dislikes having to travel far from familiar surroundings… and I’m halfway around the world! =)

Random Emacs symbol: w3m-arrived-add – Function: Add URL to the arrived URLs database.

Fine, I’m on Facebook

I tried to stay away from Facebook for the longest time, but there, a friend managed to suck me into it… So there. Facebook me. =)

Random Emacs symbol: gnus-topic-list – Function: Return a list of all topics in the topology.