Monthly Archives: November 2005

My day

My day today started with a meeting with this man: He is the leader of the largest opposition party in one of the former Yugoslav republics. My day ended with a meeting with this man: He is the leader of … Continue reading

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Back from travels

Am taking the afternoon off at home, having arrived jetlagged from New York, two hours later than planned, at 3 pm. Quite a good trip, all things considered: Saturday – conference in Berlin, considerably enlivened when in the first session … Continue reading

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Animated history of the alphabet

Hat-tip to : http://janpeters.net/pics/stuff/alphabet.gif Much more digestible than the Robert Sacks book!

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November Books 16) The Darkness That Comes Before

16) The Darkness That Comes Before, by R. Scott Bakker Had been meaning to get around to this for ages. Hmm. Perhaps it’s the consequence of reading it on a transatlantic flight at the end of my second working weekend … Continue reading

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November Books 15) Up Through an Empty House of Stars

15) Up Through an Empty House of Stars: Reviews and Essays 1980-2002, by David Langford When I grow up I want to be David Langford. I think his “Critical Mass” column in White Dwarf must have been the first regular … Continue reading

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November Books 14) [Doctor Who:] The Dying Days

14) [Doctor Who:] The Dying Days, by Lance Parkin Encouraged by , I went through a probably unnecessarily convoluted process of transferring this Doctor Who novel from the BBC website to my Palm T|X, and read it in bed over … Continue reading

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Geek Books By Women meme

The top 21 as scientifically determined by : The Earthsea Trilogy – Ursula Le Guin Ash – Mary Gentle Cyteen – CJ Cherryh Harry Potter & the Philosopher’s Stone – JK Rowling The Warrior’s Apprentice – Lois McMaster Bujold Nylon … Continue reading

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A reminder

For those of you who (like me) are still only getting email notification of about half the commetns in their livejournals: http://www.livejournal.com/tools/recent_comments.bml gives you the most recent comments posted to your journal – most recent 50 if you’re a paid … Continue reading

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Geography

F and I had a conversation last night about all the places round the world where I have friends (i.e. colleagues). After we had gone through Africa, he asked me if I had any friends in Asia. I said yes, … Continue reading

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spam

Received this morning: Dear Chief Executive Officer, Canadian election is just around the corner, you will soon have to reach millions of voters. [Spammer & Co], a Canadian software company is offering [product], an automated dialing system that allows you … Continue reading

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Outta here

Right folks, on the road again; tomorrow to Berlin, Sunday to New York, home on Tuesday. And now I’m going to bed.

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Sort-of job interview

So, I had a chat with a lobbyist firm this afternoon. I’ve known them for a while, but never quite got to deal with them much. My former assistant now works for them (her London job proved less attractive). For … Continue reading

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November Books 13) The Wind’s Twelve Quarters

13) The Wind’s Twelve Quarters, by Ursula K. Le Guin Under heavy work pressure at the moment, so I’m returning to basics. I’ve read the collection a couple of times before, but it was nice to be reminded of, say … Continue reading

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Worthy of note

A full night’s sleep without interruptions.

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My party’s former deputy leader is WRONG, WRONG, WRONG

From an old friend of mine who was present at the meeting: I attended Lisburn City Council’s full council meeting held tonight at Lisburn City Council’s magnificent Civic Centre on Tuesday 22 November 2005 at 7pm. A wonderful Christmas tree … Continue reading

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Wiring up the entire country

Macedonia Deploys World’s First Country-Wide Broadband Wireless Mesh Network The Republic of Macedonia has decided to deploy an Outdoor Wireless System (OWS) to create a country-wide wireless mesh network. The 1,000+ square-mile deployment, which is funded and deployed by Macedonian … Continue reading

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An interesting list

“The largest foreign investor in Russia is Cyprus (18.2%) followed by Luxembourg (16.7%), Holland (16.1%), Britain (10%), Germany (9.7%), the United States (7.4%), France (3.6%), Switzerland (2.3%), Virgin Islands (2.2%) and Bahamas (1.9%).” (source.)

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SFWA Grand Masters

I see that Harlan Ellison has been named the next SFWA Grand Master. I’m not an especial fan of his, but I predicted last year that he was the obvious next candidate (admittedly I made the same prediction the previous … Continue reading

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Traffic

It’s always when I particularly want to get to work quickly that the traffic is at its worst.

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Home from the war zone

Today’s Doonesbury reminded me of my first visit back home to Belfast after I started working in Banja Luka in 1997. Landmines, rather than carbombs, were the big deal in Bosnia then; the golden rule was never to drive onto … Continue reading

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Book spam

Has anyone else been spammed by someone calling himself “Kenneth J Harvey”, with an email message pimping his latest novel, accompanied by laudatory squibs from J.M. Coetzee, Alistair MacLeod, and Joe O’Connor? Mr Harvey, I don’t know you, and I … Continue reading

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Geek Books revisited

OK, I know none of you reading this are geeks. None at all. But putting prejudice aside for a moment, let’s just try a poll: Sorry that it has to be in two sections – they only let you do … Continue reading

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Weekend in the office

Yep, my backlog of last weekend has now backed up to include this weekend. At least a) the Afghanistan paper is now orbiting other people’s desks; b) the Azerbaijan paper is due for publication on Monday; and c) have nearly … Continue reading

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November Books 12) Magic for Beginners

12) Magic for Beginners, by Kelly Link Tales of “kitchen sink” magical realism, set in small-town America, some of them drifting a bit further from reality than I could follow, but others very good. No time to write more about … Continue reading

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The Geek Canon

The Guardian’s list of top 20 geek books: bolding the ones I’ve read. 1. The HitchHiker’s Guide to the Galaxy — Douglas Adams 2. Nineteen Eighty-Four — George Orwell 3. Brave New World — Aldous Huxley 4. Do Androids Dream … Continue reading

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November Books 11) Smoke and Mirrors

11) Smoke and Mirrors When I was a child, adults would tell me not to make things up, warning me of what would happen if I did. As far as I can tell so far it seems to involve lots … Continue reading

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Guardian/Chomsky

The Guardian has apologised to Noam Chomsky and withdrawn the 31 October interview from its website. [Edited to add: See more from .] [Edited again to add: See further Drew Forrest in the South African Mail and Guardian.]

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Ambassadors and relatives

Last weekend’s Observer reports that Francis Campbell, the new British Ambassador to the Vatican, “will be the first Irishman to represent the UK abroad since the partition of Ireland in 1921”. The Zenit newsagency goes a step further, saying he … Continue reading

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AAaarghhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!

I DON’T BELIEVE IT! The new set-up for my Palm T|X has wiped my entire appointments calendar, for some reason. Luckily I still have the old one at home and can backup from that, missing only changes made in the … Continue reading

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SCI FICTION tribute

Just in case anyone reading this has not already seen it: The SCI FICTION website has been publishing excellent science fiction stories, both old and new, since 2000. It is to stop publishing at the end of this year, alas. … Continue reading

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