WEEK 41 2016
Tue- Wed- Thur-
Picture of the Week
Years Ago, This Week, 2003
Years Ago, this week, 2004
Years Ago, this week, 2005
Years Ago, This Week, 2006
Years Ago, This Week, 2007
Years Ago, This Week, 2008
Years Ago, This Week, 2009
Years Ago, This Week, 2010
Saturday - A nice day, doing various things
around the house in the morning. A shortish walk, then lunch with
I'd picked up another James Asher vampire story at the library earlier in
the week (though really his wife, Lydia, gets the most time in these books).
Book #45 is therefore Darkness
on his Bones, by Barbara Hambly. It was OK, but again, broke zero new
ground in the series, except to play up the fact that Hambly has yet to
decide if vampires are supernatural or just some sort of weird virus
survivors. We do learn a bit of back story about Don Simon, the "good"
Friday - A nice day.
Sadly I wasn't feeling well, and didn't make the best use of it.
Still struggling with some app programming issues.
The good news is that the Cape, and Florida in general, dodged a
bullet. I guess, technically, the bullet
dodged them. Had Hurricane Matthew not
stayed offshore and had hit Cape Canaveral it would have been disastrous for
the USA space launch process.
I did go by the library and pick up a couple of books on C#. I also looked
at recommended books at Amazon for the same, but don't have any need to buy
anything just yet.
Another "Found CD". A tutorial for
playing Black Jack, in Spanish?
Thursday 6 October
Nice again. I ran the swamp cooler for a few hours in the afternoon,
but it wasn't needed for most of the day and night. The electric bill
should look better next month. I'll take the window a/c units out when
November rolls around.
I was invited over to watch a student try the app, very interesting.
He had many of the behaviors that we've been programming for/against, though
S says he's much better than before. Indeed he performed well on one
of the very hard levels.
The mother was there and was amused to recognize my voice from the app
prompts when I said "No Butterflies" at one point: "Hey,
I also brought over the switch and showed S some of the possible
approaches with it, and we had a good discussion about how to proceed.
Hurricane Matthew is approaching Florida. Cape Canaveral is designed
for Cat 1 & 2 levels, Cat 3 will damage it, a Cat 4 or 5 will devastate
it. We'll see. The Rocket
Garden may not survive, though many of the rockets have guys attached.
Apple's push notifications about the iOS 10 update are getting annoying:
multiple notifications per device, per day. I am
going to update my phone and main iPad, but only after a couple of weeks of
other people testing it out. Jerks.
I went in and reset all my Yahoo!
passwords the other day. I haven't decided on whether to keep the
accounts or not - it's obvious they can't be trusted to 'do the right thing'
but it's a real hassle to redo all the sites that they are linked to.
They also admitted that they scanned, in bulk, all
of the email contents (not just metadata) of every user account for
the NSA or FBI, which is supposedly illegal. Wow.
About 2am I was woken up by the sound of construction noise, generators,
hammers, power tools. I went out in the street and looked around but
it wasn't too near - probably some sort of emergency work over at the
college or the sub-station at the nearby park. I didn't walk over,
being in slippers, but just put my earplugs in and went back to bed.
Wednesday 5 October
Wednesday - Nice weather. Fall is
here, I can probably start taking sunshades out of the south facing windows.
The cats are already finding and laying in the sun puddles from gaps as the
suns elevation declines and sunlight enters the house through the windows
Working away on the app. I haven't been very productive, as in lines
of code per day, because I'm kind of scattered attention-wise, dealing with
several things. Time to prioritize and get stuff done.
Midday it got very noisy outside. I went out and discovered there were
four sheriff helicopters in the air, and their plane. A burglar had
shot a sheriff less than a mile away, and was still on the loose. The
college was locked down - I received some texts from someone locked
inside a classroom and kept them up to date on what was happening.
Eventually they caught the guy - a parolee - but the sheriff, who seems from
the reports to have been a great guy, died from his wounds.
I've been looking at ways to create versions of the app for Android and
Windows. There's native programming language and library programming,
which would involve learning JAVA and C# for respectively, which is time
There was also the possibility of using Objective-C and (hopefully) versions
of the Foundation and Cocoa libraries and doing cross platform programming
Alternately I could switch to programming in C# and use various things, most
- gnuStep - maybe,
though it seems its LGPL and there might be license issues. Also
kind of 90-ish looking UX, though not a big deal.
- Cocotron - website broken,
gitHub not updated in a year, abandoned? MIT license, which is good.
- Apportable - website broken,
project abandoned? Looks like gnuStep dependency as well.
I don't need to figure it out today.
- Xamarin - looks fairly complete
and like it's a healthy product.
My C++ work dates from around the turn of the century, btw. It's evolved a
lot since then, so C# or C++ would be about the same amount of work at this
M$ has actually bought Xamarin, which is a point for/against, I suppose.
Tuesday - A little warm, but not crazy.
We've had high winds occasionally the last week or two - the wind howling
under the eaves on occasion.
The Bluetooth switch charged overnight, and after a bit of fiddling, I got
it to work in step/scan mode, and with auto step, on a few programs,
including some I wrote myself last year.
Still looking at the UI Picker. The more I look the more problems I
see. Starting to try some programming with it.
Monday - A nice day.
Doing bills, organizing paperwork, and so on in the morning.
Working on the app in the late morning and afternoon. This is switch
stuff. S wants to try a UIPickerView so I was reading up on that, and
trying to find my Bluetooth adapter and switches. I texted her that I
knew they had to be in the office,
but in fact they were in a box I'd moved out
of the office during cleaning last week... Ah well. She
said to try an app she knows of that uses switches and pickers, so tomorrow,
when my switch has charged up, I'll see how it works.
I have to say that the UIPickerView, at least when used in an advanced form,
doesn't see quite ready for Accessibility prime time, looking at questions
and comments on Stack Overflow. We'll see.
I need to grind out a couple of bug fixes and UX things too.
I meant to strap down my water heater this weekend, but didn't get around to
it. There was an earthquake swarm down at the Salton Sea, the southern
terminus of the San Andreas a few days ago which reminded me.
I did buy a 3/4" SharkBite fitting the other day, so I can cut off the
excess pipe from the wall and more easily plumb the hot water side. It's
difficult to solder 3/4" copper in a two story house because it takes
forever to drain and dry the line.
Tim cautioned me to leave enough room at the wall to insert the fitting
removal tool the if necessary. I think 1/2" gap or so should do it.
Sunday - Cool and pleasant in the morning.
I did a bit of grocery shopping in the morning, the usual items.
I used Talcum Powder, purchased during the week, for yesterdays walk, BTW.
At S's suggestion I checked that "baby powder" from CVS was indeed Talcum,
and not Corn Starch.
The stuff I'd tried before (still on a shelf in the garage) was in fact corn
starch, as she thought.
My walk was cut short, at 8 miles (rather than 12), because my friends
wanted to go to lunch, so they just picked me up as I was walking back to
the house. I was out by the Catholic Cemetery on 70th west (coming back from
90th). So I can't really attest to effectiveness of the powder. I did
get a small blister on my little toe, but was only using the powder between
the sock liner and wool sock (and I have run out of 'toe separators').
We had a pleasant meal at Famous Dave's, though we are seeing a lot of
substitution of more inexpensive items on their featured lunches. I
don't think they are being evil - I assume they are battling hidden
inflation, just like everyone else. Despite it being the first of the
month there wasn't a lot of business.
I didn't do much of anything in the afternoon and evening, when I exercise
or work the tooth throbs. I need to get some antibiotics for that next
week. It very negatively affects my programming as well.