All entries for May 2005

May 31, 2005

I love – My room

I've had a lot of good times in this room, more than any other space I've occupied in my life it has become a complete reflection of me. I know, in true fight club style, that one is not ones possessions; yet a quick glance around me shows how much I've grown to be able to express myself this year. I thought that I should record the room now before it and I are separated and must go our seperate ways into the future.

We can see in Exhibit A two of my great loves side by side; piracy and video games. These two fields are interestingly related because piracy is a big problem for video games, and yet there are some video games involving pirates which are among the best (stand up Pirates! and Monkey Island). An amazing world we live in. I really love this flag and will some day buy a flag pole and mount it somwhere like my garden to annoy neighbours and tempt theiving students. I've not really used the game development year planner for any kind of planning, but it reminds me regularly of my game developer career aspirations.

One day, maybe I'll make my own computer game with pirates in it.

Exhibit B also showcases two of my favourite things; asian cinema and sleeping. I like asian films for three reasons; firstly the ones that make it over here are largely already filtered for quality so you have a much higher chance of avoiding rubbish on a random pick (as long as you avoid most Bruce Lee films). Secondly asian cinema has some of the freshest and most interesting new films made in my favourite genres (action and horror) and a generallly different approach to film making that distinguishes them from western cinema. Thirdly I get to feel all pretentious by watching films that a lot of other people have never heard of. Ace.

I like sleeping because its nice, this bed isn't the best for it though and is (bar the decor) the one major thing I would change about the room.

I have a terrible memory, this year I have been able to cope with my wide variety of different appointments, meetings, deadlines and 'things what need doing' by using an entire wall as a notice board, visibile in Exhibit C. It's got some of the few sketches I've managed to get down over the year, I'm pleased I managed to keep sketching over the course of the year even if it was only at a very slow rate, I intended to do a lot more but life overtook me.

Recently one of the three lights in the room, which is situated on this wall blew out in a most spectacular fashion firing the glass part of the bulb across the room in a shower of sparks. Amazingly the glass didn't smash and I replaced it with a red bulb I bought way back in Febuary for the 'Screw Love' party. An event hosted entirely in this groovy room.

That really is an amazing cupboard in Exhibit D. It was able to conceal the great treasure chest project when needed and normally holds all the clothes I have on hangers and all my washing, plus tons of empty and full boxes along with various other kinds of junk. Normally the room is pretty clean, its so big I always have a place to put stuff that needs a home, but right now I still haven't got around to clearing up the exam related debris. The clothes drying rack I recently aquired has proved its worth in allowing me to maximally utilise the available space in the room to wash loads of clothes at once and dry them all well.

I even have quite a nice fireplace, its currently strewn with a few little carvings (Socrates and Buddha), various bottles of alcohol and my juggling balls. There is also a nice arty poster of the New York skyline around the Empire State building in 1931, its very phallic.

Finally we come to Exhibit E and my most frequent point of occupation. I've spent countless hours sat staring at my monitor screen surfing the internet, chatting on MSN, checking emails and blogging away. I feel most at home in the glow of the computer screen, it has the mental faculties that I lack (maths and memory) and is an amazing resource for navigating the modern world.

Everyone should have two desks, there is room for everything computer related on desk number 1 and everything paper related on desk number 2. No cramped scribblings. I have an excellent swivel chair on wheels that lets me glide between the two. Very evil mastermind.

This was my room on 31st of May 2005.

May 29, 2005

I don't know if anyone else noticed, but…

May 26, 2005


(I'm done)

May 25, 2005

Logic and seals

Tommorow I have an exam in a subject called Symbolic Logic, which no matter what way I twist it, I can't seem to comprehend. Unfortunately my course seems to have mistook me for a degree level mathematician, which I am assuredly not. I only scraped my good mark in A-Level maths by being very good at statisitcs… which is a far cry from this… madness of proof and ever expanding thesi, theorums and symbology.

Here is roughly how I feel about logic:

However just now I made a stunning break through! Canonical trees have no refutable seals! OF COURSE!

Suddenly everything is just obvious

We don't want any of those, and especially none anywhere near our cannonical tree:

It seems clear that with this insight I'm destined for a first!

May 20, 2005

AI Exam? Learn using the revision wiki

Writing about web page

Learn AI in a different way using the revision wiki:

The Learning Wiki

You still have 18 hours ish!

May 19, 2005

Regarding possesion

Found roughly this in Nietzsche and it seemed interesting…

...Regarding a woman, for example those men who are more modest consider the mere use of the body and sexual gratification a sufficient and satisfying sign of "having", of possession. Another type, with a more suspicious and demanding thirst for possession sees the "question mark", their llusory quality of such "having" and wants subtler tests, above all in order to know whether the woman does not only give herself to him but also gives up for his sake what she has or would like to have: only then does she seem to him "possessed". A third type, however, does not reach the end of his mistrust and desire for having even so: he asks himself whether the woman, when she gives everythign up for him, does not possibly do this for a phantom of him. He wants to be known deep down, abysmally deep down, before he is capable of being loved at all; he dares to let himself be fathomed. He feels that his beloved is fully in his possession only when she no longer decieves herself about him, when she loves him just as much for his devilry and hidden insatiability as for his graciousness, patience and spirituality. ..."

From BGE, Aphorism 194

This is part of a whole section on morality, here Nietzsche seems to be analysing the capitalist mentality, the desire for ownership and citing it as something fundamental in humanity. Which puts him in diametric opposition to Marx who's entire communist project hinges on the prospect of being able to reverse the possesive desires of hummanity. As always, Nietzsche is saying more than just this, emphasising the degrees of possession, different and subtler grades.

Which brings us to a wider opposition between Nietzsche and Marx. Marx is the great leveller, bringing everything down to the lowest, no heirarchies. To Nietzsche this is an anaethma, his philosophy is one of valuations. He wants to revalue morality and moral ideas, he believes that humanity is governed, and should be governed by a will to power. Indeed we see that one of the things he is thankful to religion for it is in preserving the heirarchies, keeping the proletariat, the slave, the mediocre content with his lot by giving them a purpose. Keeping them from nihilism.

May 18, 2005

An important discovery!

Kobold's are in Nietzsche!

That is all.

Today I am mostly…

Thinking the unthinkable.

What if...

Our exams didn't really matter and it was the things we learned about life the universe and everything that really determined the value of our time at univerity?

Negative conclusion

Pre-justifying your failure with, semi-idealistic, lamentations about the state of global education systems and the capitalist valuations of specialisation – bodes ill for your forthcoming exams.

Positive conclusion

In just over a week I will be very drunk.


In a bizarre twist to my university experience, in the midst of a neverending flurry of deadlines, I have rediscovered my passion for learning.

I like knowing things, and when I'm in the mood for it I'm not bad at digesting them and adding them to my knowledge banks. I can feel the little factoids lining up inside there enhancing my Knowledge Man (Campus hero) powers. Sadly for my degree classification, I have never quite mastered the tricks of style that seem to enable these facts and insights to express themselves in a form that lights the eyes, of overstressed professors engaged in an orgiastic surge of marking.

It is an acknowledged fact of many professorial types that the time spent close reading student essays approaches 0 with unnering regularity. Evidence can be obtained from the mouths of the more loose lipped lecturers and the often math.random() relationship characterised thusly:

Effort devoted to essay ≠ resulting mark

Thus we enter into an aesthetic competition of sorts except the ideal is not beauty, the ideal is a professorial style.


My researches today led me to a point that seems central to the whole of my academic university experience. Confusion.

As I have mentioned before on this electronic delivery device, I do a strange combination degree known as Philosophy with Computer Science. Its a course which at its heights was followed by two people, and its depths by just one.

This paucity of intellectual peers has led at times to a feeling of uniqueness, at others a feeling of lonliness and distance. Never having been able to share my university academic experience completely with anyone, I have led a nomadic existence. Often where others have shared common lecture times and gaps inbetween I have been rushed on to another lecture and thus found myself limited in the connections I was able to make early on. Though I must point out I was hampered in these efforts by bizarre time tables that have varied from lectures scheduled at 9 followed by 12 followed by 6 leaving an disjointed kind of day. I will refer more to timetabling shortly, but I would like first to continue my study into my own academic/social development.

It must be said of me that I was never a naturally outging or forthright person; in my friendships I move slowly. Yet at every turn I found myself isolated in this direction, my first year halls managed to place me amongst almost noone who studied Computer Science (Except Stef, 'Hey, Stef') and definitely noone who studied philosophy. As many of you will know it often tends to be the first years in your halls who do your course that you hang around with.

Timetables. The law of the majority determines timetabling at Warwick. I have seen with my own eyes the nicely scheduled timetables of the lawyers and computer scientists. The horrors that have lain in my own timetable would give them nightmares and inspire homicidal rages. I have endured lectures scheduled one after the other on one side of campus and then the other meaning that most of the lecture is missed, I have endured rooms that have should never have seen use as a teaching environment, I have endured clashes between 'options' that have eliminated all meaning of the term option (any module you like so long as its black), clashes between core modules and a range or subjects that would engender weeping in many. I could have fought my corner more strongly but all attempts in that direction were met with indifference, mostly I endured it alone.

This situation did not embitter me too much, though it certainly made the prospect of group work much more daunting. Instead after a period of gestation it fostered my natural tendancies towards self-reliance. Looking back now I can see how the need to find my own way in the environment of campus, while initially hampering me, has lent me mental skills and fortitudes that began to flower resolutely at the end of last year. Dedicating myself, and myself alone, to the tasks all around me.

I began to believe in myself.

Yet, I have drifted from the central point. Confusion. As I have outlined above, I felt at times like an anomoly, wrapped in an enigma. Philosophy is the enigma, as a department it is listed as a 'social science' and indeed thats where its building is reassuringly located. Scratch a little deeper though and you'll notice that the Learning Grid lists it as an Art and of course you get a BA at the end of your course. Further still and you'll observe that the first scientist who gave science the primacy it has today was named Socrates. He was a very unaesthetic man wanting to rid philosophy of all trace of the artistic, instead questing ever onwards for the truth, and yet is seen in popular discourse as the father of philosophy. So philosophy as Science? My reading today was into the Nietzschean vision of a philosophy inbetween but not connecting Art and Science a place for them to come together, opress one another or work in harmony.

Confusing enough I would have thought, but studying my degree I must also learn concepts of mathematics; methods of proof, set theory, trigonometry, matrices, and the like. Am I, in fact, mathematician?

Still I am confounded again; as I am called upon to study history, and the effects of the past on the world today. Am I historian?

An then I find myself contemplating the future and the approcahing singularity where the power of machines to think out grows our own and their computational power grows exponentially. Will I be part of programming and creating this new epoch?

Who am I?

As Jackie Chan so memorably asked in his seminal film.


As poetic as it would be to leave you hanging there. I think I figured it out. I'm just a bit late in doing so.

What I want to do is make computer games and create beautiful things. So I'm doing it.

I am creator.

May 10, 2005

Arrr! There be treasure!


One of my favourite things, as regular readers may have noticed. I like the mystique and swagger of the pirate life, the lingo and the wildness.

All of it appeals.

So naturally when called upon to produce a present for a recent birthday, there was but one choice, and that be the pirate's booty of choice; the treasure chest!

Captain Deadeye's Guide to building your own treasure chest

Avast, ye scurvy dogs! If you want to be buildin' yer own pirate treasure chest then ya have to get the right weapons for tha' task.

This is me' beauty:

Cheaper than me parrot, it has all a first mate be needing to keep his planks nice and firm. Somethin' you'll be needing when you start sawing yer raw wood pieces into the right shapes fer yer chest.

Which'll look a little like this:

No good pirate leaves his cabin with out a fine blade by his side, ya never know when you'll need to slice a bilge rat from head to toe. Ha! This little number came from me favourite quartemasters over at the 'Earlsdon Toolbox'. When you've got yer pieces sliced nice and ship shape they'll be looking just so:

Thats yer basic shape of all the sides from the lid down to the base. The next task be slicing the pieces in ta fourty five degree angles so they'll stick together nicely. A nice angle measuring contraption can greatly facilitate the process and seperates ya Blackbeards from ya cabin boys. The tricksiest angles be on the lid. Observe:

Here ye want the sides of the lid to stick together at fourty five degrees but the top (and sloping edges) is t' be filled with slats and instead be needing a nice square piece taking out for the slats to fit in all smooth like.

Arr! That be the right way lad!

If ya cutting be not as smooth as ye be liking ye may need to fill in the gaps between the slats with some wood filler, something ye can pick up from the craven pigswine at ya local 'Homebase'.

When you have cut up all the pieces, including a nice bottom for the base of yer chest, ye be ready for gluing. Gluing requires a bit of patience as ye have to wait for it all to dry together, being pirates ye can speed things along a bit with some sturdy nails:

Awesome. When everything is dry ye be needing to sand it all down to be nice and smooth, like a lady be. For that special touch a nice bit of veneer can be ironed on t' the top edges of ya chest. If ye has been paying attention ye should have something like this on yer ship:

It be at this point that ye should have some fittings, ye need t' decide on ya method of locking the chest, ya hinges and ya handles. If any of these need holes making then now be the best time ta do it as the next part be the staining of the wood ta pirate colours! Yarrrr!

I be favouring the walnut stain, but ye nautical milage may vary. I went for a key lock as well which ye may be able to make out. Now if ye be impatient like me ye be moving straight on t' doing the fittings now, but ye should really be getting the wood nice and varnished at this point. Then ye be saving having to varnish around ye fittings. If everything be going right ye should be able to attach yer fittings t' ya varnished chest and get something a little like this:

Arrr! It be sight ta warm me black heart!

If ye be the right person, then ye be having a key like this:

Which be able to get the chest open. Ye be noticing the lid supported by the little chain:

Arr it be empty! A pirate be changing that fer the better!

Yarrr, that be far improved, lets be heading in fer a close up:

Ye can see the captain's log book, a bottle of pirate booze, the skull of me ex-worst enemy Captain Cutlass, a nice belt knife, a secret treasure map, assorted jewelery and lots of pieces of eight!

A right royal hoard!

I hope ye enjoyed me guide and I be wishing ye further fortune on ye travels.

* This guide ablely assisted by: Wayne of the Woods , Homebase , Skulls Direct , Dead Men Tell No Tales , Weapons Galore , Country Crafts , Hobbycraft , a few other local stores and eveyone else who helped me out with ideas, patience and secrecy.

May 05, 2005

Alright who's responsible..

For this:

You're bad people, and I love you.

I'm settling down for a night of election fun and I have my BBC provided Charles Kennedy face mask at the ready.

May 2005

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