Reposted Posts

I’ve finally managed to get around to reposting, all of the posts which were on my old blog, going back a full 5 1/2 years. Not very interesting mostly, other than to remind me what i was doing/thinking at a particular point in time.


The Site Has Moved

I’ve moved the site from 1 and 1 Web Hosting to Heart Internet, as I have taken out a Reseller account with them, in order to start a business.

Go to to see it (the main site isn’t up yet but it will be soon).

If you need web hosting, web design or application development or anything else of a computing flavour doing then contact me and I’ll sort them out for you (for a fee, probably).

I am Knackered!

We came back from Scotland last Sunday, and since then I’ve had a few days to do some work, and most evenings but I’m getting nowhere. I’ve not slept well all week and as a result, I’ve just been too brain dead to do anything constructive towards my project. I know exactly what I need to do first, that is decide on the exact interface for the Qgl base class to inherit from and test an implementation of it using CPPUnit and the QTest class. Tomorrow I think I might be able to have a go.

Instead of doing this constructive work I’ve been faffing as usual, although I have managed to end up with some useful stuff even if it doesn’t help my project along. I’ve set up this website to be Drupal based finally, and ported all of my previous blog posts over including photos (although I ended up installing the Tiny TinyMCE and the IMCE module to allow me to put images into the text and to give improved formatting options when entering text). I also made a few buttons to go on the site linking to my profile on various sites (Vencorps, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) and then managed to create a new block containing my current Twitter Status (I used some code from the Twitter site but had to add a space in the empty ul and /ul tags).

As I said I added some links to the various sites mentioned above, playing with these sites has been part of where I’ve been wasting my time this week too. Vencorps is an offshoot of the old Cambrian House site that I was previously a member of. I completed my LinkedIn profile again just to pass some time, but I have one more thing I’ve been doing to waste time: GPS mapping.

I’ve been meaning to get a GPS receiver for a while so that I could participate in the OpenStreetMap project at: to create local entries for the map. My phone has a GPS receiver so by using the free (beer-yes, speech-?) I’ve been tracking my cycle routes and then tracing them using the JOSM mapping tool, which lets you plot roads and then upload them to the OSM server where on a Wednesday new details are added. If you look at the are around Halliwell and Astley Bridge you should see lots of details I’ve added. As other than one road there was virtually nothing drawn in between Chorley old Road, Blackburn Road and Moss Bank Way.

I don’t know if it’s my phone or if it’s the fact that I’m in a built-up environment but some of the traces I’ve done haven’t been particularly good. I reckon to do all of the bits in detail in this part of Bolton will take me a good few months. Before I start trying to add details on the map, I can check out what I’ve done using the SportsTracker website where I upload each route and it is displayed as an overlay on a GoogleMap, if it looks reasonably like the route I followed then the track has worked and is usable. If it is full of straight lines then I can’t really use it.

My profile at OpenStreetMap is:

Anyway, it’s time for bed.

Night, night.

It’s My Birthday!

It’s my birthday today, but we’re not doing much to celebrate it as we’ve both got so much work on at the moment.

I’ve finished my website, done a very shoddy write-up and now just need to do the script for the automated telephone service.

Next I’ve got to do the lovely concept maps for the course. It’s tempting to leave out one or two lectures and see if he notices. I have decided to spend tonight and tomorrow doing as many as possible so that I can concentrate on doing as much of my Interim Research Report as possible at the weekend.

I have managed to write a functioning script in CLisp to massage the SIMS data into shape, but it’s littered with globals so I need to refactor it. I’m planning on spending some more time looking at SIMS data using CLisp for scripting.

Plus once Year 11 have gone I’ll have a look at writing a version of DT-Monitor in CLisp using a web framework if I can find one, and PHP with Zend again if not.

Not Quite as Useless This Time

Well it’s only been five and a half months this time. I’m currently up to my eyes in it with college work. In the next month and a bit I have…

1. A Project Management review to do, with respect to my Final Year Project.

2. An Interim Research Project to write, again for my Final Year Project.

3. A concept map for the whole of my HCI course.

4. A website to design and implement (without the actual functionality) for the HCI course.

5. The exam for HCI. Unfortunately I haven’t known where to start with the Website design until this evenings lecture. Although I have a bit more now, Jackson Structured Diagrams et al.

Time to go back now.

I’m Useless At Keeping A Blog

Six months and yet again I’ve not really posted.

I am however busier than ever.

I’m currently:

1. Teaching full time.
2. Writing a database program in Visual to store test results for all of our classes.
3. Doing the School website from scratch with a bit of PHP.
4. Setting up the School Moodle site.
5. Looking after my son who will soon be 2 1/2.
6. Finishing my last year and a half of my part time degree in computing.
7. Barely having time to eat, drink and sleep.
8. Last week I took 750 odd photos for Sports Day, lots of which came out really well.
9. I’ve just downloaded and am trying out akelos to see if I can use it to help generate the site at work.

Time to sleep I think.

Bye for now. See you in another six months :-p

Even Longer This Time?

Yet again I can’t believe it’s been this long since I posted anything. I’m still doing my part-time degree at Bolton, including the current Semester I’ve got two years left to do so it finally feels like I’m getting somewhere.

Since my last post I’ve moved job, so I’m now teaching at K’s school, much nicer kids, much better management (not that I’m biased or anything) and just a general feeling of niceness most of the time as opposed to the stress inducing horror that my last place was becoming. This time next week I’ll be getting drunk at the Maths Conference again, with Paula, excellent!!!

The course is going well, still totally on the way to a First, although this Semester’s Courses may scupper that. Software Engineering isn’t bad, the Assignment is very doable, but it’s group work, and you just never know if someone’s going to let you down. I also have to give a Seminar as part of the assessment on one of a number of papers we’ve been given (mine’s to do with Test Driven Development), a bit of a busman’s holiday really for me. On Monday we’ve to participate in a Seminar given by AC and grade him using the criteria we’re going to be using in the actual sessions.

I’ve just realised that I actually need to sort out my Seminar this week as I’m delivering it a week on Monday and I’m away next Friday-Saturday at the Maths conference. Unfortunately my other module this Semester is Professional Issues in Computing which seems to be one of those amorphous courses with nothing to get your teeth into, just a series of one off lectures which we have to write reports on and and submit. Plus another presentation, this time as a group (me, John C and Phil) on RFID.

For myself I’ve been playing with Common Lisp, it was just about starting to make sense, but I’ve got no time to carry on playing so I’ll have to save that for the summer, along with sorting out a data entry system for TestAnalyser2. I also started thinking about what I’m going to do for my "Final Year" project, there are various things on the list related to GCSE Maths, plus a SIMS-alike system, and various Mathematical goodies (but with Gerard). At the moment I’m thinking along the lines of the GCSE Maths ones (it suggests using openGL although I might look to temper that with something like Qt4 or SDL) but I’ve still got another 12 months before I need to be starting that. But if I am doing something with that then that’s another thing I can be playing with over the summer. Other possibilities for my project are to come up with something myself along the lines of a computerized mark book/planner (think TPIM in Visual 2005 Edition), or possibly the Mental Test Generator I was thinking of the other year.

Things I want to do:

Learn Common Lisp more thoroughly to the extent where I can produce something usable in it.

Learn C# (maybe Mono) and write some stuff in it.

Write the Test Database thing for School either in 2005 or C#, connecting to an Access Database or an SQLite one. (The project we’re doing for Software Engineering should be useful as it’s quite similar in nature)

Write some form of Interactive Whiteboard/display tool so that I don’t have to use Lynx anymore. I’m getting a Clever Board in my classroom at Easter apparently so I could do with having a go at this over the sunmmer if I don’t want to be driven mad by Sahara Lynx constantly crashing.

Write a Tetris clone using SDL.

Write a Planner program using SQLite.

Even if I don’t end up doing any of the above projects, there were still plenty of others to whet my fancy.

I’ve still to do Networking and Visual Programming 2 from my Level 2s, plus I want to do Advanced Databases and OOM2 at Level 3 although OOM2 only runs occasionally and knowing my luck they’ll have moved it to Java.

Anyway I’m going to go now.


Wow, has it been that long since I last posted?

I can’t believe its been so long since I actually made a post here. Admittedly I’ve been a bit busy what with having a baby son, doing a part time degree and being a full time Maths Teacher. So basically I’ve been flat out at it for the last year apart from all of those hours spent playing Call Of Duty 2 Multiplayer games. My son is growing up fast, he’s walking and almost talking now, soon he’ll be learning to program whether he wants to or not :-p . I’ve resigned from my current job and finish next week (although they still pay me until the end of August) and I start at a new school in September. Plus after 2 years of my part time degree I’ve still yet to get a mark lower than 70%!!! 😀 If my head gets any bigger I won’t be able to get out of the door to get another beer.

I’ve been playing with Visual 2005 Express Edition for the last 6 months or so and have managed to write at least one program I’ve used in a classroom. But I was playing with it as a front end to a MySQL database to use as a Markbook/Planner for work (MySQL may be a slight case of overkill for something like this) and I tried to define some default parameters for a constructor and it threw a wobbler refusing to compile. Apparently default parameters are not allowed in managed reference classes(?) or something like that. So as I’ve to hand in my laptop at work and I’ll have only my Linux Laptop with me over the summer I thought I’d play with Qt again. To be specific Qt4 which I can also use for windows. I think that I’m going to try and get my head round the new way you go about getting "base" and "implementation" files sorted. Then I might try and write it up so that I’ve got it here! I might also describe what I’ve had to do to get KDevelop and Qt4 playing nicely with Slackware-Current (which is some derivative of the 10.2 version).

Or alternatively I might do none of these things and instead just not post again for another year. :-p

Anyway I need to go and wake up Karen.