serious

The calm sunshine of the mind

Well, I have a working 64-bit installation here, and yes it's fast. 2000*1500 onscreen also makes things look very very small indeed, but I like it. I don't know if I'll run it this hard all the time, but it's certainly nice to have the option.

I'm busily reading Capital of the Mind at the moment, which I heartily recommend - it's about Edinburgh and the Scottish Enlightenment. I haven't reached the bit about Hutton yet, but Hume, Adam, and various others feature very heavily. As you'd expect.

Kate and Tony were up over the weekend, and it was lovely to see then - after far too long a gap. Loads of other people came out of the woodwork to see them, so I had a great time talking to people like Richard Walsh, who I haven't seen in years. Fantastic stuff. I particularly enjoyed explaining The Broons to Kate, but it was all good. They've almost promised to come back to Edinburgh soon, which is almost good enough. Incidentally, I believe I have mentioned that you're all encouraged to come visit, but I'd rather like to emphasise that:

Come visit..

Thank you. This has been a public information announcement.

The Broons bit was partly the result of seeing a copy of the Sunday Post, which august organ was leading this week on the Scottish Government's plans to annex Berwick-upon-Tweed. Probably needless to say (except that some of you won't be familiar with the Sunday Post, which is probably the butt of more humour and deprecation that any other Scottish newspaper except the Press & Journal) there was far less to the story than first appeared. Apparently some TV program is running an opinion poll which will say (unless it doesn't) that the good burghers of Berwick mostly fancy skipping across the border (possibly something to do with education fees, eye test fees, and the like), and some opportunist MSP has put down a motion on the topic. More news when it breaks, but don't hold your breath. Scotland on Sunday was reporting that Wee Eck Salmond may get his way and have Trident based south of the border. This was phrased as a terrible loss of jobs, but most of the jobs associated with the British Independent Nuclear Detergent are down in the Thames Valley anyway. It'd probably only go to Devonport, and I'm sure they'd be suitably grateful for the employment.

Last week Ed had a tribunal, which confirmed the recent order was legally justified and binding, to his considerable disappointment. He responded by going out on a pass, falling over drunk and getting a nerve trapped in his shoulder. I went to the Royal to see him and found him unable to unflex his right wrist, and until a friendly doctor mentioned that an X-ray was due to confirm that, I was quite worried that he'd permanently injured himself. Sadly, this week he's a lot more agitated than he's been for months, so I guess it's still a setback.

Also last week I went down to Gateshead with Mark to visit the Baltic, which oddly was quite warm inside, and had some very interesting and very large installations (one of which was featured in today's Guardian). The shop had a wonderful range of books and curios - I was particularly taken by (but didn't buy, for what I hope are entirely obvious reasons) a packet of useful tags for clothes and other chattels, half of them saying "Mine" and the other half saying "Yours".
Re: 64 bit since 2004
One thing I've noted is that it's only recently that domestic PCs have become more capable than the machines I was using at work ten years ago. Apart from things like word-processing, the Sanger was a Digital shop - everything was Digital Unix on Alphas. Lovely machines, but the amount of NFS mounting meant that they took about half an hour to boot.

I still have a vague yen to buy one. They're fairly cheap second-hand now, but I don't really need one and where would I put it?

Back then, my flatmate James collected Unix boxes. He had an Indigo and an HP (and I think a couple more) in his room. Later he bought a multiprocessor SGI server, but he couldn't really afford the electricity to run it so it just gathered dust in his garage for a while. Last I heard he was collecting old arcade machines instead.
Re: 64 bit since 2004
I had a massive Dec Alpha, was never stable though. Somehow it got down to London...
My car's fixed, my car's fixed! But I'm out of anal leave.

One day, I'll actually get out of Cambridge and into the fantastic realm of the "holiday" I've heard so much about.
I can't see how they'll ever move Trident: it has very specialised docks, including something called a "ship lifter"; all of which took a lot of building. My brother is a civil engineer, and was involved in (quite senior in, I think) the project.

I'm up in Glasgow about once every six weeks to see my Mum, and I keep thinking I need to fly (or train) to Edinburgh on the Friday instead, see people, and then get through to Glasgow on the Saturday.
It's still more likely than Berwick hopping the border.

Odd. I knew someone involved with the ship lift too. Small world. And yes, a visit would be good. Please do.

Edited at 2008-02-13 10:51 am (UTC)
Capital of the Mind
Top book that, thoroughly recommend it too. Though I think Irvine Welsh's seal of approval may be more influential than mine.

You could top it off with "The Making of Classical Edinburgh", if you haven't read that already...
Re: Capital of the Mind
I haven't, so I'll make a note of that. Cheers.

I've just passed the bit about the Old Town now being given over to subsidised drama, tartan and goth gear. Harsh . . . but fair.