|6.||Marina & the Diamonds|
|10.||"Weird Al" Yankovic|
|12.||For a Minor Reflection|
|14.||I LIKE TRAINS|
Powered by Last.fm
Search this Site
Just very busy, hence the lack of blog updates. Maybe one day I’ll post something more interesting here. Quite probably not for a while, though.
Doesn’t time fly? 🙂
Apologies for the lack of any real blogs in the past two years or so. I can’t honestly say that you’re likely to see many more blogs in the near future, I just don’t have that much to write about, and tend to find I have other things keeping me busy when I do (funny how kids do that to you!). But rest assured that things are good in the life of the supreme ruler, and that I’m keeping busy and mostly out of trouble!
I know I’ve promised news for quite some time – alas, I have been quite busy! I was in Australia and New Zealand in late June and early July, then I’ve been back here working, and then away to Aviemore for a weekend, and then doing more work. I’ll try to post photos from my trip at some point in the near future, along with some kind of description or trip report, hopefully! Just need to find the time to do so, though. It’s the 5th annual Transport Tycoon Forums meet in a couple of weeks, so I need to get things ready for that, as well as keep up with everything else that’s going on!
Ah well, until next time…
Really need to remember that this thing exists. I’ll post something about my recent and future exploits in the near future. Honestly.
… is what I’ve been lately. Quite a lot has happened since my last blog entry – I was back in the UK for about a month, seeing Olivia, who is doing really well. She’d grown a huge amount since I was last there, and is now incredibly aware and active and just itching to start moving around a bit more! She’s been teething for a while now, which has sadly been bothering her; hopefully her teeth will come through soon and stop bothering her so much. And I’m sure that it won’t be long now until she’s crawling (or even more) – no doubt the fun will really start then! I’ll be back in the UK for a bit in November, and then, as many of you know, I will be moving back for the foreseeable future come December, to be significantly closer to Olivia than I am at the moment. So there’s lots to look forward to, and lots to sort out as I get the fun of another transatlantic move to organise!
For the moment, though, I’m back in Minneapolis, where it is currently quite hot. We’ve not yet moved into our new office, but we should, fingers crossed, be doing that next week! It’s also the Minnesota State Fair this week, so that should be fun to go and have a look around. Nothing else going on that’s too exciting at the moment (I spent most of the weekend doing accounts – fun, eh?). Just keeping busy, as is usual.
Well, I’d best go and stick some washing in the dryer, and then I shall watch some Angel, which I am slowly working my way through after my Buffy marathon this time last year (well, it took me 6 months to watch it all, so perhaps “marathon” isn’t the term, but it was quicker than taking 7 years to watch it all I guess!). Catch you later, peeps.
I haven’t blogged in ages, I know – things have been a bit busy lately! I headed back to the US in April, and have been enjoying the Minnesota summer (except when it’s been far too hot). Just a few weeks now until I head back to the UK for a month or so – lots of travelling this year! But anyway, at some point between now and then, I shall write a more extensive blog! Promise!
Sorry for the lack of the updates on the blog – as one might imagine, it’s been a busy few weeks! I don’t think I actually even announced that we’d named our daughter on this blog – we decided on the name Olivia, her full name being Olivia Grace Rudge Littlejohn. There are some photos up here. She’s been doing really well – very active and aware, and growing far too quickly! Things have been quite hectic though, so hopefully they’ll be settling down a bit now. I’ll be heading back to the US at the start of April, for a few months – I shall certainly miss people here though, but I’ll be keeping in regular contact! I will hopefully post a more substantial blog in a while when I have a bit more time, but whether by then I’ll be on this side of the ocean or the other I’m not sure! My Twitter tends to get updated a bit more frequently, so you can always follow me there!
For those of you who haven’t seen my Facebook or Twitter pages, I became a father yesterday! Jen gave birth to a beautiful baby girl at 7.38am yesterday. She came out as 8 lb and 13 oz, and is quite long! We haven’t decided on a name yet, but I will of course post when we do.
Would write more, but as one might imagine, we’ve had a bit of a busy weekend! Shall provide a further update – and a name! – in the coming days. 🙂
Well, I’ve intended to write a new blog since October, but have found myself rather busy and until now, didn’t quite get around to doing so. I’m now sitting on a flight back to Minneapolis after my trip to Tahoe, listening to air traffic control on Channel 9. (First United flight I’ve been on in ages which has had Channel 9 enabled!) So it seems like a good time to write this. No doubt you’re all wondering what’s been going on in my life recently, so here goes!
As you probably know, I’m now living in Minneapolis, Minnesota, having moved here in early October. I’ve been settling in pretty well, and am enjoying it so far. Living in a large house in a nice part of the city, quite close to everything, which is handy. Plus the famous Minnesota winter has so far been reasonably tolerable for me. Lots of snow recently, and I think the lowest temperature I’ve experienced is about -25°C. It’s funny how quickly you get used to it though – -5°C now seems pretty warm to me! Of course, the downside it seems is that the Minnesotan winter drags on until about April, but luckily for me I’ll be skipping most of it – more on that later!
Anyway, yes, so far I have been enjoying Minneapolis, and work – it’s good being in the office with everyone else, and not just for the free doughnuts on company meeting day. 😉 My first few months have seen various interesting things happen, some of which I shall try to recount here, if I can remember them all! I experienced Halloween American-style, becoming the character of Shaun from Shaun of the Dead (made more convincing by the fact I’m British, of course). There are some photos lurking around somewhere, so I’ll probably upload them eventually. A week or two later, most of the developers at CodeWeavers, myself included, were off to WineConf, which this year was in the Netherlands. It was pretty fun, although I was literally just there from Friday to Monday, so it was a very brief and jetlaggy weekend!
Other things that happened after that… hmm… well, there was my first Thanksgiving, which involved eating far too much food and attempting to understand an American football game. I think I preferred the Rock Band which later took place. I also attended my first ice hockey game, which was a college game between Duluth and Minnesota. Confusingly, of course, Duluth is in Minnesota, but the “Minnesota” team is basically the main Twin Cities team. Anyway, Duluth won, and we lost. 🙁 A fun game though, something I may well see some more of at some point. That same day we’d taken a tour of the Summit brewery, which is based in St Paul. One thing that did surprise me somewhat was the variety of nice beers available here – lots of microbreweries and the like. I guess I’d got too used to the cinematic version of American bars, which naturally only includes big names like Budweiser or Miller that pay for the product placement!
Speaking of beer, every week now my housemates and I have been partaking in a local pub quiz at the Leaning Tower of Pizza. Our team, which begun as “The Flying Scotsman” and went through a variety of names (typically with the word “flying” replaced with something that vaguely rhymes), has generally done reasonably well – some relatively bad weeks, and some pretty good weeks, with us coming 2nd or 3rd on a number of occasions. We alas haven’t yet come first at LT, but we did also try another quiz at a place called King’s, at which we have a 100% success ratio – we played there twice, and came first twice! We may have to return there again soon, clearly, to make it a hat trick!
Anyway, where was I? Ah, yes, Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving finally brought what was more or less the start of winter (this November was one of the mildest Novembers since records began, apparently!), with a load of snow falling in the first week of December, which generally stuck around. And December of course brought Christmas, and then New Year. Christmas was a relatively quiet affair for me, but I was quite content with a nice steak and the Doctor Who specials. Then, after New Year, I was off to Lake Tahoe for skiing, and to see Rachel again of course. The trip was pretty fun, with me getting a bit better at skiing (I can somewhat do parallel turns, it would seem). I also rented a car for a couple of days and took some trips into California, visiting Sacramento and the Apple Hill area, which is full of, as the name might suggest, apple-growers! Rachel and I also ended up going out to a town called Hawthorne, located in the middle of nowhere (relatively speaking) in Nevada. This actually provided a quite enjoyable trip, with an interesting drive there along some scenery which was partially quite spectacular, and partially rather dull. Speaking of spectacular scenery, my flight from Reno – Denver was one of the first flights I’ve been on in the continental US where I’ve been in a window seat (most of my long-distance flights I prefer aisle seats), and I noticed just how massive and, well, spectacular the Rocky Mountains are. Alas, I didn’t get any photos, but it certainly made for an interesting view. All in all, a fun week. I shall be uploading photos from the trip as a whole probably in the next week or two, as and when I have some time.
Speaking of next week (well, tomorrow), we have a big CodeWeavers company meeting here in St Paul. I’m not quite sure how we’re going to cram everybody into the office, but thankfully we do have a conference room hired for most of our meetings and the like, I believe!
Anyway, the week after next, I’m heading back to the UK! As I’m sure you all remember from my previous blog post, I’m going to become a father in about 5 weeks, so I’m heading back a week on Thursday, and shall be heading up to Scotland soon after that. One of the benefits of my job is that I can work remotely during the few months I’ll be staying in the UK, so that is at least handy. I will return to the US in April, but for how long I’m not currently sure. Either way, it’s all very exciting – really not long at all to go now!
Right, well, there are probably other things I’ve forgotten about that I should have mentioned, but we’re approaching MSP, so I should turn off the ol’ computer. Hopefully I’ll be able to post another blog a bit more quickly than I did this one!
(Of course, I wasn’t able to post this blog on the plane, so for “now” read “last night”.)
I’ve been meaning to post a new blog for a couple of months now, and I really will. Just not quite yet. I’ve got a 4 hour flight on Saturday, maybe I’ll write something up then (assuming these silly new security rules don’t mean I can’t use my laptop or something…)
Until then, hope you all had a merry Christmas, and have a happy new year!
It’s been a while since I last made a post here. Quite a lot has been going on! Indeed, I think my last proper blog was when I was in Brazil – which was lovely. Since then I’ve pretty much just been working. Anyway, the main reason for this post: I have a couple of announcements to make.
Firstly, as many of you will know anyway, I’m moving to Minnesota next month. I’ve been working remotely for CodeWeavers as a software developer for the past month and a bit now, which has been going quite well. The work is challenging, for sure, but it is generally enjoyable! Back in June, we applied for an H-1B visa for me, which would allow me to move to the US. The petition was finally approved last week, and on Tuesday I went down to London for my interview at the US embassy on Wednesday. The interview was very brief, and the visa was approved! And today I got a message telling me that my passport would be delivered back to me tomorrow! So I’ve booked my flights now for the 13th of October, giving me about three weeks to get ready. It’s going to be a hectic few weeks, that’s for sure. Lots to pack, lots to get rid of, lots to generally sort out. But it should be a fantastic experience!
And now the other news, which is perhaps more significant. I’m going to become a father in February! This will probably come a bit of a surprise to many of you – it did to both of us when we found out, but both Jen and I are really very excited about it! Such a major change is of course going to have an effect on me going to the US, but I’ll be returning regularly. Four months to go… it’ll be hard work, but it’ll all be worth it. 🙂
It’s going to be an exciting few months, for sure.
Well, it has indeed been a busy month, and one in which I have spent surprisingly little time in the UK – a little over 24 hours, really. At the start of the month, I went to Vienna to see Silvia for a few days, and much fun was had. Photos will follow at a later date, once I am back in the UK. And then, the day after heading there, I was back at Manchester Airport to fly out to Frankfurt, where I would then catch a flight down to São Paulo, from where I would finally get a flight up to Jõao Pessoa to see Dad. I’ve been in Brazil since then, and will be heading back to the UK on Sunday (arriving back on Monday). Lots of flying, for sure – some 17,000 miles or so by the time I get back to Manchester on Monday!
So what have I been up to in Brazil? Relaxing and enjoying things mainly. Been down to the beach quite often, out for a swim and then back for a couple of beers. Went out on a boat to the reef last week, which was quite pleasant – got a bit sunburnt though, which was not. Generally, taking things easy – I start work soon, so this was probably the last chance I’d get to head somewhere for a “long” holiday. Again, photos will follow when I get home.
In other news, the updated Locomotion Depot should be launching soon – hopefully later next week. The new site will integrate better with my existing Transport Tycoon Station, and with the future Saved Game Repository (which, yes, is still under what might be considered “eternal development” ;)). And of course, next Saturday it’s the third annual Transport Tycoon Forums meet, this time in York, which should prove to be interesting!
Right, well, that’s me for now, I think. See you back in the UK!
Well, I think I’ve meant to write this blog for about a month – things have been a bit busy since then! The main news, of course, is that I am now Mr Owen Rudge BSc (Hons) (St And). It was my graduation this Wednesday past, and a pretty good day it was, too. The weather, while foggy at first, brightened up and was really quite nice by the end of the day. I’ll stick some photos up when I have time. Then on Friday, it was the Graduation Ball – the final social event of the year. It was nice to see everybody one last time, although of course it’s not going to the case that I’ll never see anybody again (and you’re all quite welcome to visit me in Minnesota come October :P). Since then it’s been a case of packing and tidying, which I am taking a bit of a break from just now.
Before this past week, I also had a trip up to Banchory to see Jen, where we also went to visit Balmoral – all quite fun. Photos will again follow at some point. I then spent a few days in Inverness with Ann and Graeme, before returning down to St Andrews again. And before that week, well, I can’t quite remember any more. Lots has gone on, anyway.
Lots will be going on in the near future, too. Tomorrow I’ll be heading down to North Wales with all my stuff, dropping Silvia off at Edinburgh Airport on the way. Hopefully I’ll be able to fit everything in the car so I only have to do one trip, but it’s possible I may then have to head back up to St Andrews, and drive down again on Tuesday to take the last of my stuff. We shall see. Then on Wednesday, I’m off to Vienna for a few days, visiting Silvia, before heading back to the UK for all of a day on Sunday, before departing for Brazil on Monday for a month! All a bit mad, really.
Then come August I shall be starting my new job with CodeWeavers, remotely until October when hopefully, pending the approval of my H1-B visa, I will be moving out to the US. So lots to be sorted out and organised.
The past four years have been fantastic, for sure, and quite the experience. But now new horizons beckon, and the future looks bright.
That’s time there, ticking away rather quickly. I had my last ever exam today! (Well, for the foreseeable future, at least.) It’s rather nice to know that I am done with academia. The past four years have been quite the experience – very interesting, of course, and I have learnt much, both inside and outside of the lecture theatre! So anyway, for the next few weeks I get to relax a bit and generally enjoy things, before my graduation at the end of June.
I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it on the blog before, but I currently do have a job lined up for after my graduation, working for a company in the US. I’m hoping to start working remotely in August (after visiting my Dad in Brazil during July), but the long-term plan is to move out to the US in October. So the other thing I’ll be doing over the next little while is applying for a visa. Specifically, the company has to apply for the visa (an H1-B visa), and I will no doubt have to provide lots of paperwork and the like during that process. In a way it’s quite lucky really – the past few years, demand for H1-B visas has been incredibly high, with something like 3 times as many applicants as there were places last year. This year though, with the recession and so on, there are still some 20,000 visas left, going down at around 1,000/week, so there are still lots available just now. Hopefully I’ll hear more about this over the coming weeks.
Right, well, I’m rather tired, and have Ashes to Ashes and Prison Break to catch up on. Night, all!
Oh, and I know I still have lots of photos to upload from various trips and so on. I shall try to do that over the coming weeks, too. 😉
You’re probably familiar with the likes of TinyURL, which converts a URL into a shorter form. Well, DickensURL lets you convert a URL into a piece of Dickens’s finest prose. I highly recommend visiting http://dickensurl.com/55/%27No_one_is_useless_in_this_world,
%27_retorted_the_Secretary,_%27who_lightens_the_burden_of_it_for_any_one_else.%27, for instance.
And that’s my Link of the Day for today.
Two weeks tomorrow, I shall have had my last ever day of classes at university. Then I’ll have my final two exams, and I’ll be done with university. Mad, eh?
Got my senior honours project handed in last week, and gave a presentation on it yesterday. Overall I’m quite pleased with it, and I think the presentation went quite well. The project itself is a GUI-based configuration file editor for the Apache web server, and it is my intention, once the project has been graded and so on, to release it for anybody to download from this very site. As it is currently implemented, it is quite functional and makes setting up an Apache server really quite easy. It’s portable, too, running on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Keep an eye out on the site in the future if you’d like to try it.
Off to North Wales for the weekend tomorrow afternoon/evening – taking some of my stuff down in advance of me taking lots of stuff down in May/June, and it’ll be nice to see Grandad again, if only for a few days.
And that’s about it for me just now.
Well, the past couple of weeks have been the Easter holiday (or “spring break” as I guess we’re meant to call it these days, since it doesn’t actually fall over Easter any more). It’s not been much of a holiday for me at all, alas, as my senior honours project is due in next Friday, and lots of work has had to be done. (Some 115 revisions committed to my Subversion repository since the 28th.) Things are looking a lot better now than they were before, though, so that’s something. I’m very much looking forward to getting this all handed in and done with, though, for sure.
In other news, time is ticking on, and in just over a month’s time, it’ll be exam time again. Provisionally my exams are on the 18th and 19th of May, and then that’s me done until graduation at the end of June. Hard to think my university career will soon be at an end…
I figured I’d post this in case anybody else out there on the Internet is having problems. I’ve been looking for drivers for my Prolific PL-2303 USB to serial port cable – specifically, 64-bit drivers for Windows XP x64/Vista x64. There are some on the official web site, but they didn’t like to work for me. It turns out some bright spark decided to create two incompatible devices, the PL-2303 and the PL-2303-X (also PL-2303-H, PL-2303-HX), but give them the same USB vendor and device ID. If you happen to have a PL-2303 and can’t get the drivers to work, I found that the drivers here worked for me. (Thanks to the links in the comments on Rob Garrett’s blog for those.)
And please, to any hardware manufacturers: if you’re going to create incompatible devices, please don’t give them the same device ID.
Well, I went and got myself a Flickr account in January, as I mentioned before. (On that note, I’m still to upload my California/Nevada photos from January – I did start uploading them a while ago with the Uploadr, then it kept timing out and being a pain, and I haven’t yet got around to retagging and reuploading them.) I also seem to have ended up getting a Twitter account. I’d never really been a fan of it before, but it’s mainly during the past few days with the union elections that I’ve found it can be quite handy. So I may well end up updating that a bit more often.
In other news, my senior honours project is due in on the 17th of April. This means I have a lot of work to get done. I’ll probably be relatively quiet until then!
(or KSFO if you are RPharazon and prefer ICAO codes…)
So, today was my last day in the US, and I’m sitting at gate 94 of San Francisco International Airport waiting for my flight to Heathrow. We should be boarding in about half an hour, and I’ll arrive in London around about 1pm tomorrow, I believe. I have an essay to finish on the plane, which will be fun. On the plus side, SFO actually seems to have power sockets readily available (unlikely LHR), so I can go onto the plane with a full charge on my laptop (which should last about 4 hours) and the wifi here is priced pretty reasonably, too.
Today was a rather good day. We were in San Francisco doing the touristy thing, and the weather was fantastic – we went up to Twin Peaks, and got lots of good photos – last time I was there, in June/July 2006, it was foggy, and the photos were not so good! Ate at a very pleasant Italian restaurant/café, and visited the Exploritorium again to see the bits I missed with Rachel. All in all, a nice day.
Anyway, I think I am going to have a look for a drink before getting on the plane, I’m thirsty. See you in the UK.