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Year View| Summary| Highlights| March 2004 (Month View)

01.03.2004Monday 1 March – First day of Uni

I had my first lecture (“Operating Systems”) at midday, so caught a train into uni for that. It all seemed very normal. I’ve slipped back into the Brisbane thing again straight away, back on the train to uni again and it all seems as though I never stopped. There was one shock at uni – the main refectory no longer has free sauces, in fact, they’re charging 20¢ for those small rip-off punnets of tomato sauce. That really sucks, and I feel like firebombing the union, but I probably won’t. The computers in the union building where I used to chat in the morning have been replaced with Macintoshes now. They appear to have a realistic firewall or something blocking things, so I probably won’t be able to chat from there anymore. I fail to see why people use Macintosh for things like that – they’re simply worse no matter which way you look at it.
I had a one-off “Systems Interface Programming” lecture in the evening, and it sounds as bad as it did when Silas did it. We have to create things in various programming languages, and we don’t really get any help. There are no lectures, course notes, or textbook. There are two tutors, but if it’s anything like last year, they will not have time to actually tutor anything. Oh, and it’s pass/fail, or ungraded pass/not pass, as he insisted on calling it. Not passing anything means I won’t pass the course, so now I have to learn C and write a stopwatch sort of thing with no help, within the next three weeks, and that’s just the first easy assignment. After that, I caught the train back home again. Tonya was here along with some guy – I forget his name, and I went to bed.

02.03.2004Tuesday 2 March – Once upon a time in Mexico

My alarm went off at 7 AM, but I didn’t get up until the last possible moment, and had to walk fast to make the 7:40 train. I bumped into Matt outside the main refectory and sat with him while I was trying wake up, eating a donut and drinking ice coffee, before heading down to my “Operating Systems” lecture, which was followed by my inaugural “Software Specification” lecture. “Software Specification” doesn’t sound very good, it being set theory based and nasty.
I had originally planned to hurry home and do some washing and shopping, but Clint mentioned going to the Indooroopilly, so we did that instead. We watched “Once Upon a Time in Mexico”, which wasn’t that bad really – somehow different and kind of powerful and a bit gruesome and violent. It’s almost borderline artistic, I suppose – not the average wham bam mindless action, it’s Mexican action! We’d been told it was a terrible movie, and almost didn’t go see it because of that, but what’s good and what’s not is too subjective.

03.03.2004Wednesday 3 March – Resting

I don’t have to go to uni on Wednesdays, so I don’t, of course. It’s my mid-week weekend, which I find quite handy. It gives me the time to catch up and prepare for the eight o’clock starts I have on Thursday and Friday.
I phoned the oral surgery and changed my appointment tomorrow to 10 AM, and phoned Centrelink to let them know I’m back here, and need a fares allowance claim form and rent assistance claim form. I also got my very own personal PIN number, so I feel special now.
Joe insists that I not run a fifteen metre extension lead down the hallway, across the kitchen, and into the phone jack, so I got the wheelie bin and painstakingly wheeled it up the stairs and down the hall under the manhole and climbed into the roof. It was very difficult to do, and I got some splinters – all the wood is so dry up there. Still, I found the phone line so all I’ve got to do now is buy some cable and joiner things and make a little line to pop into here.
I went shopping – the first time I have since being back. It was quite heavy to carry my groceries back and now I feel tired.
  For the benefit of Mum and anyone else who is convinced that I’m about to die from eating only ice cream and lollipops, this is what I bought. I can only carry one backpack’s amount of stuff at a time, so it will take a few more shopping trips before I’m fully up to stock. It costs too much to buy any more than this at a time anyway:
  Two litres of apple juice
  Two litres of milk
  Half a litre of olive oil
  One jar of Dolmio pasta sauce with basil
  250 grams of butter
  500 grams of cheese
  Six vegetarian sausages
  Mixed herbs
  Multivitamins to keep me alive
  Vitamin C to keep me energetic and alive
  Three litres of soft drink
  One bunch of expensive parsley
  Half a bunch of celery
  Three bananas
  Three tomatoes
  One kilogram of frozen vegies
  Three pasta mixes
  Six packs of two-minute noodles
  Two cans of baked beans
  It cost a total of $47.75, which includes $1.67 GST.

04.03.2004Thursday 4 March – Printing and Phones

Kieran, Marcus, and my fantastic self, made our ways to POD, where we managed to print out over seven hundred pages, thirty-six pages to a page. This wasn’t very helpful, and neither Kieran nor Marcus thought buying a microfiche machine and reading our notes that way was a good idea, so we had to reprint the lot. I also had to get to the oral medicine clinic, so we left Kieran to wait for the printing, which ended up at about 750 pages for $43, and Marcus drove me into town.
I was supposed to be at Turbot Street by 10 o’clock, but it didn’t seem to matter, as I had to wait a few minutes anyway. It only took five minutes, a few students asked me questions and the same girl who did the cryosurgery last time had a look, told me it’s all ok, and I’ll go back in six months for another check-up, then a year later, and then I’m all fixed (hopefully).
Clint and I caught a bus into the city, where I bought some phone line, a phone socket, some tape and some solder. I also had a meal at Govinda’s, which was nice, before heading home where I climbed into the roof and spliced the new phone socket into the existing line. It wasn’t much fun, but it all seems to work nicely now.

05.03.2004Friday 5 March – Storms, Samurai and Stuff

It was supposed to storm and we’d all be destroyed, but it didn’t – at least not here, although it did get quite windy and wet for a while. Marcus and I drove through the rain to QU Books, where we both bought “Operating Systems Concepts (XP)” for $89.95 and “B Method” for $74.95, which, for those similarly mathematically challenged as me, is $164.90 all up. I hope they’re actually useful.
  I then became dropped off in the city, where I again was, and ate a meal in Govinda’s, before making my way out to Indooroopilly where I saw “The Last Samurai” and then headed excitingly home.
I finally went to sleep.

06.03.2004Saturday 6 March – A quiet and restful day

I wake and do stuff, etc.
I started my stopwatch code. If I knew C, it would be much easier. We start with the default “Hello World” application that Visual Studio creates. They make it in the most complicated C++ manner possible I believe, to demonstrate C++ features I suppose, but it doesn’t seem to be a very easy basis for writing a C application on. It took me ages just to figure out what was going on.
After chatting and coding, it is not time for bed.

07.03.2004Sunday 7 March – The Passion of The Christ

I decided to go and see “The Passion of The Christ” and “Master & Commander” while it was still showing in cinemas. The train trip into the city then out to Indooroopilly was normal and unexciting, with me arriving on time. It was quite busy at the cinemas, with queues everywhere, so I picked the shortest one and waited in that. It was ludicrous; the girl serving was ridiculously slow. All the frozen coke machines behind the counter were out of order, but instead of saying that, this girl would serve one, when it didn’t work, she’d walk outside of the counter area, out into the public frozen coke machine, wait in the queue for a few minutes, get a frozen coke, come back with it, find it was too runny, try all the other machines, finally say it wasn’t working, and serve the next person in the same manner. If you wanted popcorn, she’d walk right to the other end of the counter, get a container, walk back down to the other end, get some popcorn, go up to the other end and do something, then come back. It was so farcical that it was almost amusing, I’ve never seen anything like it before – but it took ten times longer for me to get my ticket than anyone in any of the other much longer queues, and I couldn’t get a frozen coke.
  “The Passion of The Christ” is very intense and very emotional – and while it’s not possible to say, it seems as though it could be realistic, in typical Mel Gibson style, similar to “Braveheart” I guess. I think I found one of the most emotional movies I’ve seen – at least I came closer to crying than I can remember from any other movie. I’d highly recommend it, especially to Christians or people who believe the events depicted did actually occur, although not necessarily as depicted.
  After a yummy falafel kebab, I walked down to the ElDorado8 cinemas, buying a milkshake from the Cold Rock Ice Creamery on my way past, and saw “Master & Commander”, which wasn’t too bad but not in the same class as “The Passion of The Christ”, so somewhat overshadowed by that.

08.03.2004Monday 8 March – An awful way to spend 1/7th of your life.

Having a midday lecture for the first lecture of the week is a good idea – I don’t have to get up particularly early.

09.03.2004Tuesday 9 March – Hot and Late

My train leaves now, but unfortunately, I’ve only just woken up. Seeing as I’d missed the train, I didn’t figure there was any reason hurrying, so I casually got ready and made my way down to the station, where I discovered that I could still get to my lecture on time on the next train if I ran everywhere, so I did. I should also mention that today is the hottest day in 18 centuries. I sweated 18 gallons 9 ounces – and that’s in the air-conditioned train. Once I got to the lecture theatre, after jogging down to the ferry and from there to the lecture theatre, I collapsed into my seat and made my own personal pool. I believe the lecturer said stuff, but I can’t remember any of it.My “Operating Systems” lecture, which was mostly about basic C coding concepts, finished early so Kieran, Marcus and I wandered down to the lab and had a quick look at my almost semi working stopwatch code, before heading off to our “Software Specification” lecture, which is running through a revision of basic set theory – which isn’t always that basic.
I’ve spent the past few hours down in the labs trying to get my silly stopwatch to go. There’s a few other people here also working on their stopwatches, and none of us have yet been able to implement a Windows timer using SetTimer( ) and WM_TIMER – it simply does not work. We appear to have done everything precisely right, and the tutor has no idea why it doesn’t work, so after wasting hours on it, I gave up. I’ll stick to my endless while loop and get all the drawing code working, and then I might consider figuring out some way to time it properly.
Neither Joe nor I are having a very good day. Joe arrived home at the same time as I did, and ordered pizza. I then went online and began to download some songs for Mum. The pizza never turned up, so Joe phoned them and complained – disconnecting me. None of my downloads were resumable, so I had to re-download them all, and the pizza turned up less than a minute after Joe phoned – but he promptly dropped his into the laundry sink, which had water in it. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Joe had asked for Diet Coke, and they’d sent normal Coke, so I got that and Joe got soggy pizza and soapsuds. I did enjoy my pizza though, right up until the part where I’d eaten it all, and drunk the entire bottle of coke, and was worried what would happen if I were required to move in the next few hours.
Oh dear, I think it’s late. I’ve stayed up doing very little, adding EXIF metadata to my photos, downloading songs for Mum, and generally messing around online.

10.03.2004Wednesday 10 March – Midweek Weekend

Today is my day off, and glad for that I am. I did very little, not getting up until after two o’clock, spending some time coding, and then going to bed.

11.03.2004Thursday 11 March – Timers that don’t

Another normal day at uni, and an eight o’clock start. I stayed at uni for ages, spending time in the labs with Marcus and then again later, trying to get my timer code working – which I couldn’t.
Kieran turned up for our prac, and a bit later Matt turned up as well. Matt managed to write a mostly working line algorithm using just a red pen and a piece of paper, and in less than half an hour – impressive I thought. I wasn’t particularly worried about writing my own though, and was leaving it to the end because I knew, if all else failed, I could just write a literal representation of one of Bresenham’s line drawing formulas – which was, in fact, the recommended way of doing it. I’d already written about eight when I was messing around, some sort of worked but in strange ways – and some would have made nice screensavers, but now that I know how to do it and it works, that’s even better. I was actually in the lab trying to find out how to get a timer working, as nothing I did seemed to work. It ends up what I had was perfectly right, but I had to invalidate some part of the window before it would repaint, irregardless of whether and how I called repaint – something of a stupid way of doing it I think, and probably not something I’d have worked out by myself any time soon.
Comment by Matt – Saturday 13 March 2004, 10:12 PM
  "Later in the day, I spent a bit of time in the labs in ITEE, when Matt came, and wrote me a line drawing algorithm. If it wasnt for him, I never would have got it done, and had to hand in code that I stole off the internet - Just like the rest of the people in my class. Good thing that Matt came down, then, isnt it."
Comment by Ned – Sunday 14 March 2004, 5:31 PM
  You will find I have updated my journal entry above to include my life-changing meeting with the great and usually wrong Matt. We hope this fills you with much joy.

12.03.2004Friday 12 March – Govindas & Guido

Another eight o’clock start, with me awake and ready and all. The first lecture wasn’t too bad. The tutorial following it wasn’t too bad either – both tutors are Russian. It was the lecture following that tutorial that got to me – two hours of Guido rephrasing and rewording the lecture slides. He needs to give us a bit of credit and assume we can understand basic explanations of basic things and not pore over them for so long. I nearly fell asleep for the first hour, and then for the second hour Marcus and Kieran found me, so Marcus and I quietly read a book on C programming. It’s hard to read and understand the notes with the lecturer talking in the background!
  After uni, Marcus and I went down to the labs for a few moments, where I met Clint at the BITS BBQ and politely invited him into our tutorial group, which he politely accepted, and then I went into the city and had lunch at Govindas, before dozing my way home. I’m not sure why I am so sleepy, I didn’t even have a hugely late night.
The cleaner has obviously cleaned the place. Even my dishes are put away – which is good I guess, although I didn’t want them put away. I see no logical reason to put away dishes that I am going to use each night. The carpet is all fluffy and clean looking and the sink and washbasin are clean and stuff like that – it is good.
  I am too sleepy and stupid to write. I’ve been sorting out songs I’ve downloaded for Mum – hopefully I’ll be able to send them on Monday.

13.03.2004Saturday 13 March – Shan’s Nanna passes on

I have had an almost dramatic day, except none of it involved me. I was woken by Michelle calling out to me, because she couldn’t get in and Joe is away at some bowling thing. I had to try to get dressed, wake up, and begin thinking (in that order) in about thirty seconds while not falling down the stairs. Once I opened the garage door, I found Tim, Michelle and Tonya there. Tonya, and her cat, is moving in here for a while. Tim and Michelle stayed for a coffee, and then left.
I had a chat to Dale online, and arranged to arrive after lunch on Thursday, although I haven’t actually booked anything yet.
Ella mentioned on MSN that her Nanna passed on.

14.03.2004Sunday 14 March – Computer Market

I woke up when my alarm went off, snoozed it several times, and just got to the train in time. I wasn’t able to buy a train ticket, as I’d forgotten that on Sunday’s the ticket office is unmanned, so I had to stress all the way to Ferny Grove waiting for a big hairy ticket officer with large biceps to come and get me.
  Once safely at Ferny Grove, I located Marcus and his friend and we drove to the Pine Rivers Shire Showground and paid our $2.20 entry fee to get into the Computer Market. I didn’t actually buy anything, as the only things I need are a new CPU fan and a new graphics card fan. The graphics card fan seems very hard, and perhaps impossible, to get.
I caught a train out to Indooroopilly on the way home, to see if there was anything worth watching at the cinemas, which there wasn’t, so I became caught in the football mania instead. Piles of crazy football fans jammed the trains, and sang songs and so forth.

15.03.2004Monday 15 March – Farcical C Tutorial

My midday start was nice. One lecture followed by two tutorials. Unfortunately, Marcus and Kieran decided they were both something resembling C programmers and because I’ve actually finished my C based assignment, I must be even more of a C programmer, so we became the C programming group and were supposed to write iterators and linked lists. Kieran wrote some, I disagreed with it and he thought I was stupid, our group broke down, and all the other groups answered all our questions – probably not a very good precursor to our “Relational Database Systems” group assignment we’re doing soon, but I guess that’s the idea of group things, to learn to work in a group.

16.03.2004Tuesday 16 March – B, C, C++, CD & VB

I went to bed after watching “Enter the Dragon” because I couldn’t go online for a while, while Tonya waited for a phone call.
I got on the train to uni. Exhilarating lectures on threads, set theory and crazy b-method syntax were followed by a trip to the post office where I posted some CD’s to Mum. Loreena McKennitt’s beautiful albums “Book of Secrets”, “Elemental”, “Parallel Dreams”, The Mask and Mirror” and “The Visit”, Nina Simone’s much less beautiful “Little Girl Blue” and “Universal Masters Collection”, an album called “Flute of the Andes, Vol. 1” by a collection of artists, and Traffic’s “Shoot Out at the Fantasy Factory” should, hopefully, now be on their way to Mum. I then made my way down to the labs, where I got my “Systems Interface Programming” Assignment 1 – a stopwatch, passed and submitted. I’m quite happy with it, considering it’s my first attempt at coding in C, excluding the nasty AVR assignment from last semester with which I was eventually happy, especially after getting more than 100% for it. I’ve been told this “Systems Interface Programming” is a hard course, and when Silas did it last year, something like three quarters of the class either quit or failed, so I’m making an effort to start its assignments early and get them done with time to spare. Not knowing much C, VB, or C++, not to mention the B and nasty relational database theory stuff I have to learn, doesn’t help either.
I discovered that the physiology refectory gives out more tomato sauce than the measly eight millilitres the main refectory gives, and still has free vinegar, soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce.
I dozed on the train home, being woken up by a sexy ticket inspector. I’ve never missed my station yet, but it can only be a matter of time. Tonya bought chips, so I had chips and salad for dinner. Joe has been at some interstate transport bowls thing, which they won today, and Dave has turned up to pick up Tonya’s cat and they’re downstairs talking now. I think that about sums up the present state of my exciting life. After today’s lecture, I can probably describe it all in terms of threads, priorities and suspended idle states.

17.03.2004Wednesday 17 March – Hot, Relaxing and Fast

I was awoken by the phone and Joe waking Tonya, several times. Every known relative and friend must have phoned her this morning. Eventually it got too hot to lie in bed, and I was forced to get up, shower, and face the day. I decided to decrease my computer’s memory management settings to a slower and potentially more stable setting to see if that fixed the unusual problems I’m having with Adobe Audition, ACDSee6 and NVIDIA’s nvDVD. I don’t seem to have any problem with any of the other programs I use, but I find it hard to believe that those three programs could possibly be as buggy as they appear to be, and figured it was worth a try.
  Once in the BIOS, however, I foolishly decided to overclock the RAM to the maximum, just to see what happens. I also, in the process, upped the system and PCI bus speeds considerably, and rebooted. Not surprisingly, the computer wouldn’t start, which isn’t normally a problem. What was a problem though, is that it wouldn’t start somewhat drastically, and that I have fancy failsafe dual BIOS, which I have set to reset the main BIOS if, after twenty seconds, the machine hasn’t gotten past the POST, and if that fails, to revert to a prior BIOS version. The problem was that I had a bad feeling I’d overclocked things too much to leave the machine on for twenty seconds so it would reset, and because there shouldn’t normally be a need for it, my computer doesn’t have a CMOS reset jumper like most do. It seemed to be looping through the low-level hardware initialization – I could hear the hard drives constantly seeking and resetting which was what worried me the most. The power LED did an interesting strobe, which I haven’t seen before and I suppose is some sort of error indicator.
  After a read through the motherboard manual, which includes a reasonably detailed schematic of the actual logical (as well as physical) layout of the motherboard, I managed to find what would, hopefully, reset the BIOS’s CMOS without having to remove the battery and lose all the RAID settings and stuff. I went and sharpened a screwdriver on a file and managed to short across the two tracks I intended to, which sort of did what I hoped, and rebooted. The BIOS was probably corrupted, because it reverted to a backup BIOS with default settings, which let me reboot the computer and enter the BIOS again, where I set everything back to how it was originally, checked that everything ran, and then rebooted again. Interestingly, this time it used the newer BIOS, but with the settings from the older BIOS, which seems a bit odd considering one is an Award BIOS and the other Phoenix BIOS, but it all worked.
  I then, having determined that all hardware was functional and apparently stable, noticed that some programs, specifically ACDSee6, no longer ran. They gave cryptic error messages, which were no help at all, and refused to quit. I messed around for ages, eventually deleting all registry references to ACDSee, along with all its databases, uninstalled and reinstalled it and some older versions before noticing that my system clock had reset back to 2002. After adjusting it to the current time and date, everything except ACDSee6 worked. I still haven’t got ACDSee to run as it used to, but that’s probably not surprising, as there’s about ten and a half copies of it installed with several different and overlapping databases and plug-in repositories.
I drove up to Smith Road, where I bought some scratch-its for Joe, $1 of lollies, and $6 chips and six potato scallops, which we ate for dinner along with some salad.
I’ve just had an argument in the #bits channel, as usual. I made the terrible mistake of asking “is anything faster than SCSI”, which, after Clint helpfully pointed out that light was, I quickly clarified to mean “is any (semi-normal or common) external computer interface faster than SCSI”. They then proceeded to say, repeatedly, that “fibre optic” was faster than SCSI, which is clearly mixing two different issues. “Fibre optic” might be faster than “copper” or “electrons down a wire”, but that isn’t an answer to my question. I tried to counter their anal-retentiveness by rephrasing my question to “available protocol”, but it was too late. Someone then pointed out that “speed” is equated to “distance per time”, but they didn’t seem to be able to understand the basic concept of context. “Speed” could equally validly be interpreted as “data per time” (which was clearly what I meant), methamphetamines, a transmission gear, the sensitivity of a photographic film to light or any number of other things, depending on the context, and the context in which I used it was pretty clear – all of which I pointed out, but to no avail. Once they reach critical mass in there, they all back each other up, begin ridiculing their opponents on unrelated (and often illogical) matters, and generally become immature and annoying, before banning whoever it is that dared to point out they are wrong or ask a simple question. It’s a bit annoying at times. At least the great “Linux versus the known universe” and “open-source versus happiness, food and wellbeing” debates weren’t involved.

18.03.2004Thursday 18 March – Burning for Burners

After an exhilarating eight o’clock start, requiring a pre-seven o’clock train, and some uplifting, joy-filled lectures and tutorials, Clint and I caught a bus into the city. It was supposed to be a bus to Milton, but the woman driver didn’t stop, despite us having pressed the “next stop” button, so we had to walk back to Milton. Clint had a CD burner to pick up from Umart, which is just a warehouse with a few people sitting around on boxes with computers giving out computer parts. It was very hot too, and I nearly died from dehydration. In fact, the only good thing that happened on the whole excursion was on the bus back to uni, which was overcrowded, hot and very bumpy, a sexy girl kept falling on me and myself and this other guy had to be heroes and save her.

19.03.2004Friday 19 March – Tired & Banned

Friday is my worst day at uni, I’m not sure why. There was no way I could stand two hours of Guido’s Relational Database lecture without notes – I could feel it sucking knowledge out of me rather than the other way around, so I went down the labs for the second hour. If they put notes online more than
Once in the labs, I checked my email, and found this log (names changed to protect the evil and spelling fixed to protect readers) from what used to be my favourite channel:
  [07:21] <NoteOP> Note 6 from ChanOP –– Sent Thu Mar 18 21:32:23 2004 AWST
  [07:21] <NoteOP> evil!...@... deleted you from #channel
  [07:21] <NoteOP> Note 7 from ^evil –– Sent Thu Mar 18 21:41:31 2004 AWST
  [07:21] <NoteOP> I deleted your access yet again. This time you don't need to lie to get it back. I noteoped the OPs. You know that I don't want you here. Please go and leave the channel the way it was before you came. Thanks. That is the decent thing to do, and you know it.
  [07:22] <victim> back
  [07:22] <victim> evil what is the problem? I have never lied at all – I don't know what your problem is with me?
  [07:23] <@random> –_^?
  [07:23] <victim> random, evil has deleted my access again, I have no idea what I have done wrong, or why she dislikes me – she sent me a note and asked me to leave the channel.
  [07:24] <@random> hmmmmmmm
  [07:26] <@random> I wouldn't know anything about it, myself. Wasn't even here.
  [07:26] <victim> neither was I
  [07:26] <victim> I went to bed at 11 my time, I was deleted and sent the notes at 12:30 and 12:45
  [07:26] <@random> Curious. . .
  [07:57] <bot> any hot bots wanna chat?
  [08:01] * evilAway is now known as ^evil
  [08:01] <@evil> Do you deny victim that you lied to anon to get your access back when I deleted you last time?
  [08:01] <@evil> And you may not appeal to my OPs here to stay. i asked you politely to leave.
  [08:02] <@evil> If I were in a channel and the owner asked me to leave, I would leave.
  [08:02] <@evil> Your problem is that you, of all people, do not accept that I own this channel.
  [08:03] <victim> I did not lie to anon at all.
  [08:03] <victim> of course I do.
  [08:03] <victim> I am on the phone brb.
  [08:03] <@evil> and also, no way would I have to be asked in the first place. I should not have had to do that.
  [08:06] <@evil> You told thei that I deleted you. You got him to try to get your access back. Thei failed. You messaged anon (while you were swimming) and asked him why he deleted you. anon gave you the access back. You took it, fast. I deleted you again when I found out that you got it from anon. I then gave in and gave it back anyway.
  [08:07] <@evil> I am still asking you to leave.
  [08:11] <victim> actually this is the truth about what happened. I assumed you deleted me (as I didn’t have noteondel on). I didn't know why because as far as I know I have never done anything to you. I asked thei if he knew why. He pointed out I didn't know that it was you that did it – I said only other person could have been anon.
  [08:11] <victim> so next morning I msged anon just after I had changed my nickname, and asked him if he had deleted me.
  [08:11] <victim> then went swimming and then to uni.
  [08:12] <@evil> That is not true.
  [08:12] <victim> when I got back, he had left a msg saying of course not, and that he was adding it back. I had two noteops
  [08:12] <victim> one from anon adding me back, and one from you adding me back.
  [08:12] <victim> I had no idea what happened with anon or you or whatever.
  [08:12] <victim> that is exactly true – I have logs of everything with everyone
  [08:13] <@evil> You were talking to thei while I was talking to him about me deleting you. That is all more lies.
  [08:13] <victim> I then put noteondel on so I would know who deleted me from then on.
  [08:13] <victim> actually no, I had no idea he was talking to you at all.
  [08:13] <victim> ask him.
  [08:13] <@evil> it is beside the point, too, as you got it back, didn't you.
  [08:14] <victim> I have no idea what your problem is with me, evil.... I don't have anything against you, afaik you have just turned around and assumed all this stuff about me, and decided you dislike me
  [08:14] <victim> I have not ever ever lied, or done any of this stuff you are saying
  [08:15] <victim> I thought you were a nice person and this channel was wonderful, and I have made a lot of friends here
  [08:15] <@evil> Well if a channel owner dislikes you and asks you to leave, what is the decent thing to do?
  [08:15] <victim> errr I figured you would get over it if I just kept on being nice, considering I have done nothing to trigger it
  [08:15] <@evil> I am not going to argue about that.
  [08:16] <victim> and unfortunately I like the other people here, chat a lot here (which I don't do elsewhere) and thought that most people here get on well with me too
  [08:16] <victim> I don't know why you are being so unreasonable and hate-filled towards me, when I have never done anything against you or the channel
  [08:16] <victim> it’s so opposite what I thought was your character
  [08:16] <@evil> I disagree with that totally.
  [08:17] <@evil> so I have said all I am going to.
  [08:20] <@evil> I can't ask you any nicer to leave. Do you accept that I own this channel?
  [08:21] <victim> ok evil, I will leave the channel, as per your request. I will come back when you aren't here, to say goodbye to the nice people I have met.
  [08:21] <@evil> No, you shall not!!!!!!!!
  [08:21] <victim> you certainly are a lot different person than I thought you were.
  [08:21] <@evil> You may not come back.
  [08:21] <@evil> and destroy things here
  [08:21] <victim> I guess the truth comes out eventually, so you will reap what you are sowing.
  [08:21] <@evil> Well stay out of my channel then. I am no fool.
  [08:22] <victim> I have done nothing wrong evil
  [08:22] <victim> you are being unfair and unreasonable.
  [08:22] <victim> but so be it.
  [08:22] <@evil> You may whisper your goodbyes. You have enough sense to find them.
  [08:22] <victim> goodbye.
  It seems the owner is a paranoid schizophrenic. The sad thing is that she used to be a good friend. I joined and tried to find out what was going on, but after an argument, was banned. She then proceeded to ban half a dozen others, who were also innocent victims.
Comment by bv – Sunday 28 March 2004, 4:15 AM
  I don't understand a word of what's going on, so I think I am best qualified to explain it to your readers.
  * NoteOP is pregnant with evil's baby and is also secretly having an affair with Roger, who later died in a tractor accident.
  * random is actually the infamous Raymond. Before you start carrying on like the magistrate about proof blah blah, can I just point out that he PUT A FULLSTOP AT THE END OF HIS LINE.
  * evil obviously has a livejournal, as he (she? stay tuned for this twist in a future installment) manages to give the impression that each line they say is bad nihlistic poetry.
  * victim may or may not be Ned himself, we never get to see his face. My running theory is that it is in fact Ned's long lost twin, his face scarred in an explosion at a swimming pool warehouse.
Comment by DK – Monday 29 March 2004, 8:46 AM
  * Sigh. Power went to her head I think, seen it all before :(

20.03.2004Saturday 20 March – Paycheck

After a late wake up and relaxing evening doing nothing, I caught a train into Indooroopilly, and saw “Paycheck”. It is a very average movie – but, as usual, I enjoyed it. It was quite busy too, both at the cinema, in the cinema, and on the train back. I was nearly abducted by a group of female Swedish journalists from uni, wanting to go party in the valley but unsure where to go, but came home and went online to write this instead – of course.

21.03.2004Sunday 21 March – The Butterfly Effect

I was bored, and impulsively decided to go catch another movie. I had about ten minutes to get to the train when I decided, so it was a bit of a rush. I watched “The Butterfly Effect”, and was surprised – it’s a very good, thought provoking movie. I spent the train ride home trying to fathom the concept of no time. They say you can attain enlightenment just by dwelling on that. There was an interesting chap on the train, who was either insane, possessed, tripping, or some combination of the three, and who urgently needed one cigarette paper and was willing to pay nearly anything for it. In the end, after arguing with several people who didn’t appear to exist – at least not in a form I could see, I think he swapped a cigarette for a paper with someone, and rolled a smoke right in the train, which quieted him down.

22.03.2004Monday 22 March – A normal day at uni

I woke up at ten o’clock, arrived at uni in time for my midday lecture, attended same and two following tutorials, went and visited Kieran and saw his new, expensive, and rather pointless dual Xeon server, helped a guy in the labs, and caught the train home. It was nearly dark by the time I got home. Joe wasn’t here, but arrived not long after with Liz.
ITEE runs a news server, which we can connect to via an SSL connection, and participate in the university newsgroups. It’s been buggy ever since I came to uni, but recently got a lot worse, requesting authorisation at random times and denying it as often as not. I sent an email off to the student helpdesk, and received a reply, “[the ITEE news server] is not a currently supported service”. The problems are the result of “bugs in the (unsupported by the vendor for over two years) news cache server code” and are beyond their control, given their resources, they say. The officially recommended way to view the newsgroups is via a web interface, which is so bad that it’s only barely useable. I think this sucks – surely, it can’t be that hard or expensive to upgrade a news server to something that works, but there isn’t that much I can do about it.
Comment by Yuri Johnson – Tuesday 23 March 2004, 9:47 AM
  you go on endless rants about your everday life (and that's cool) yet you have consistently failed to mention that Philip Machanick is the funniest man on campus. I trust you will fix this soon
Comment by Ned – Tuesday 23 March 2004, 11:03 AM
  Who is Philip Machanick?
Comment by Redbeard – Tuesday 23 March 2004, 2:20 PM
  hmmm Yuri, your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.
Comment by Yuri Johnson – Friday 26 March 2004, 8:56 AM
  Philip Machanick is your Comp3300 Lecturer. If you listen very closely to any one of his lectures (particularly the ones in 24-s304) you will disover that he is the funniest man you've ever seen. Extremely subtle, though. I often find myself getting his jokes about 4 hours after they are said, usually resulting in me looking stupid and having people look at me in the labs. Now I have made you understand the brilliance of Machanick, i trust the same burden will be put on you, my son. Courage Ned, this could be your final hour....
Comment by Ned – Friday 26 March 2004, 12:13 PM
  Yes, I was being sarcastic. I’m aware of at least some of my lecturers’ names and I notice all his “subtle” humour – which is often blatant and sometimes amusing, sometimes awful. I’ve had at least two “funnier” lecturers so far, although Philip is perhaps the second closest I’ve yet had to a genuine BOFH style “traditional” lecturer – or perhaps a BOFH wannabe considering he uses a Macintosh. The second lecturer for COMP2500, whose name currently escapes me, was by far the wittiest, funniest, and I’d hazard to say, most insightful, lecturer I’ve had. He managed to describe, in a way I could understand, some complex concepts very efficiently while still managing to be amusing – and let’s face it, anyone who starts a lecture on recursion in Java by stating that both Java and recursion, and specifically recursion in Java, are awful – rocks.
Comment by Yuri Johnson – Friday 26 March 2004, 5:08 PM
  do you mean Anthony MacDonald (in reference to the comp2500 lecturer)? If so, i have him this semester, and i agree he is very exciting. But there's something inherintly funny and crazy with Machanick, almost as if he is trying to amuse himself rather than the audience. I hopr you one day come over to my point of view. But if we're talking crazy Java lecturers, you can't go any further than Roger Duke for pure insanity. Now thats good eatin!
Comment by bv – Sunday 28 March 2004, 4:03 AM
  ahahah Roger > *
Comment by Ned – Monday 29 March 2004, 9:36 AM
  No, I don’t mean Anthony, and yes – Roger would have to be the best lecturer I’ve had so far, I actually enjoyed going to his lectures and learnt lots – not something I’m sure I could say about anyone else so far.

23.03.2004Tuesday 23 March – Stopwatches & Goodbye Lenin

I skipped the second hour of my “Software Specification” lecture, as it was a tutorial-style demonstration of the BToolkit we have to use to develop our horrible B-Method stuff. I have no idea why I am doing this course, except that it’s recommended in both the study plans that I’m paying attention to and compulsory for software engineers. Perhaps I should be asking why it’s recommended, because I really can’t see it being of any use to anyone ever, and the few people I’ve mentioned it to sort of chuckle, yet it’s looking like being quite hard and if I don’t really apply myself, it will drag my GPA down.
I spent from one o’clock until four o’clock helping a girl with her “Systems Interface Programming” stopwatch (using only pixel manipulation in C) assignment in the labs. I couldn’t believe it was four o’clock when we finished, but it was.
  I also had quite a long chat to the lecturer, while he tried to justify the course layout – it’s obvious he receives a lot of criticism about the way the course is structured, which isn’t surprising I guess. I can see how it’s a good idea to have a course where you’re just given a sparse (and intentionally wrong in the case of our next assignment) specification and told to implement it with virtually no assistance. Those who actually manage to learn the basics of an entirely new coding language within two weeks and successfully implement the specification, and then repeat it all for another language and specification the fortnight after, will probably be able to do the same in this fabled “industry” to which people keep referring. On the other hand, we’re at university – this is where we’re supposed to be taught things, not just told to do things. Forcing me to learn the basics of the C programming language serves some purpose, namely it forces me to learn the basics of the C programming language, but considering I’m paying good money for the privilege, I’d like to be taught how to code good C – something that is not going to happen at this university. I actually think the learning style (can’t call it teaching style because there’s no teaching) used by “Systems Interface Programming” is a good idea – but only after, or perhaps concurrently with, another course teaching us good programming practices in the languages we’re being forced to use.
  I then spent some time in the library discovering how to use their online Neuro-psychoanalytical journals with Clint, before discovering that it would take more than half an hour to buy a pizza from the Schonell and having to settle for unhealthy potato wedges with a free allowance of 8 millilitres of tomato sauce instead. We then went and saw “Goodbye Lenin” at the Schonell, which wasn’t as bad a movie as it sounds – although I’d rather not have seen it while sitting inside a cold room, the air-conditioning was a bit harsh.
It was after ten o’clock by the time I got home.

24.03.2004Wednesday 24 March – Relaxing

I spent a quiet, relaxing day at home.
I switched to using Clint’s university dialup connection, as a test. It seems that he can use it from college through the college network, which has quota limitations, and I can use it via dialup, which does not have any limitations, simultaneously. This will cut his and my ISP bills in half – an immense saving of nearly nine dollars.

25.03.2004Thursday 25 March – HECS Increase & Protest

The UQ Senate decides whether to raise HECS, and if so by how much, today. The rabid loonies at uni have, with their useful lack of anything resembling intelligence, decided that blockading the building in which the UQ Senate is going to meet until quorum expires and the meeting is invalid is the best way to avoid paying more for their “education” (for want of a better term). I decided to go along for some fun.
  There were a several hundred slavering protesters blocking the doors, a few of whom weren’t militant lesbian, but carried signs complaining about the impact an increase in HECS would have on the queer community instead. There may have been some normal students there somewhere, but I couldn’t see any. There was also a surprising lack of anti-Iraq signs, or perhaps they were just hidden behind the various unions and the gay community’s signs. I suppose we should all be thankful the rate of genetic mutation isn’t faster.
  I ended up with the twenty or so humans there, surrounded by the mire, protesting against the protesters. We were “young liberals” or something apparently, and although I don’t have any political affiliations or leanings, anything that wasn’t “them” had to be good – and it was fun (and easy) to have a bit of fun at their expense.
  They were all quite happy, thinking they’d successfully prevented the senate from meeting, although who knows whatever good that would have done – it’s all a stupid publicity stunt and just makes normal people think they’re idiots, but the senate held a telephone hook-up from another boardroom. They have now approved an across the board increase in HECS by 25%, exceptions being granted for education and nursing.
Clint and I headed into Indooroopilly and had dinner. We were considering catching a movie but there wasn’t much showing.

26.03.2004Friday 26 March – Gold Coast

I spent uni doing uni things, and then went home after. Profound.
My train was supposed to leave at six o’clock. I was ten minutes early, but just as I was arriving at the station a train arrived. I ran for the train, just jumping aboard before it left, and without time to buy a ticket. I then stressed that the ticket gorillas would come along and eat me, but I managed to get safely to Beenleigh without being caught. It sort of disorientated me though, as my train was ten minutes early, or perhaps my watch was ten minutes slow, and when I went to buy my ticket at Beenleigh for the Gold Coast, the man behind the counter told me the train I’d just arrived on (and which had just departed) was the train I wanted. He was only joking, but coupled with the train mistiming it managed to confuse me. Ironically, the six o’clock train that I was supposed to have caught arrived ten minutes after I did, and just before the Gold Coast train left. The rest of the journey was unremarkable.

27.03.2004Saturday 27 March – Relaxing

I relaxed far from computers and online journals, making sure I didn’t think of all the assignments I had rapidly approaching, or the time I would lose going to Dale’s wedding.

28.03.2004Sunday 28 March – Relaxing

I had a very nice and relaxing day, which despite the fact that I slept for a large proportion of it, actually made me sleepier.

29.03.2004Monday 29 March – Duran & Tonya

Amazingly, just as I was walking into my street, I met Duran, who I haven’t seen since Cooktown. Apparently, he and his sister are living nearby. I then had a normal day at uni, where I did normal uni things and so forth. Once home again, I tried to book flights to and from Dale’s wedding. It’s remarkably difficult, and I also realised that my “Operating Systems” assignment, which is due on Tuesday next week, but has a twenty four hour early hand in bonus so is effectively due on Monday next week and which I haven’t yet started, will be due on Wednesday this week for me, as I’ll be away from Thursday onwards. This is not a good situation. After hours of working out times and deciding it was impossible, I finally managed to book flights down to Dale’s wedding, and a tentative train/flight combination back, after which I then collapsed into bed stressed.
  Tonya has also moved in. When I got home from uni, there was a hired truck out the front, which had all her stuff in it. The entire place is full of stuff. I didn’t realise she’d have so much.

30.03.2004Tuesday 30 March – Merge Sorting & Cheese

Clint, Kieran, Marcus and I had our first “Relational Database Systems” group meeting. It was the expected waste of time. We were planning to discuss something, Kieran and I argued about something else, and Kieran noticed later that we’d totally forgot something, which partly invalidated what we’d argued about anyway.
I didn’t leave uni until a quarter to ten, after eating a Schonell “Lollobrigida – Lots of Cheeses (5 types), Oregano, Sun-dried Capsicum” pizza with Clint. I’d been down the labs frantically coding, or trying to figure out how to code, my “Operating Systems” threading assignment. I managed, after discussing with a few other people in the lab, to get the reading and sorting working. I can now read n files with n threads and sort those files with another n threads. I now have to figure out how to merge the sorted files together into an output.
I arrived home.
I went to bed.

31.03.2004Wednesday 31 March – Women, Wine, Breasts, & Threaded Merge Sorts

Normally today would be my day off, but because I’ll be away Thursday, Friday and next Monday, and because I’m slack, I’ve got to finish my horrible “Operating Systems” threaded merge sort thing – so to uni I go, nice and early, to get this horror over with. Well, that was the theory – in reality I slept in, did my washing, acted as an electronic rendezvous between Michelle, Tonya, and Joe, and didn’t get to uni until midday.
  A group of schoolgirls got on the train, and proceeded to draw on each other’s breasts with a waterproof marker. This seemed somewhat unusual to me, but girls are odd anyway. I managed to escape being autographed, perhaps because I don’t have very large breasts, and they managed to escape the police who were apparently looking for them, so all was well and the sun smiled down on us.
  Once at uni, I embedded myself into one of the computer labs, and didn’t emerge for several hours.
I went and saw the lecturer for some help, which was a bit helpful but only in a theoretical way. I then ran out of time trying to figure out how to do stuff, and ended up implementing a fully working solution – but one which fails “to exploit maximum parallelism”, as the specification says. I’m hoping I get good marks, because it does work nicely (or seemed to when I tested it) and I’m such a nice person, but I haven’t used enough threads. As Michelle said – may dolphins bless my programs.
I arrived home to find the house a shambles. The corridor has beds in it, on their side. The kitchen has furniture in it. The bedroom opposite mine has wet paint in it. The bedroom beside that is full of Tonya’s stuff, and the bedroom beside that is also full of Tonya’s stuff. The bathroom is full of Tonya’s stuff. Outside was full of Tonya, Dave and Amy – who has flown down on a spur of the moment thing. I had to help make nachos, drive to the bottle-o (which netted me $15 before (and after) tax), and pretend to be a normal semi-social person. I’ve also got to get ready for my flight tomorrow morning, shower, shave, pick my nose, and get to sleep – all in time to wake up for a horribly early train into the airport while there’s loud music, drunken women, puppy, and the cat, outside. Hang on, that’s supposed to be “pack my trunk”, not “pick my nose”.
Joe is home now, and the party continues. Music has this annoying tendency to sound strange from a distance. I can only hear some frequencies, and it sounds spastic. I still haven’t got around to packing anything either – I should start that now.
Comment by mrhetero – Monday 31 May 2004, 11:23 AM
  Edited: Poster is a moron
  Rough translation: “You said girls are odd, does this mean you are gay?”
Comment by Filthy – Monday 31 May 2004, 11:26 AM
  Edited: Poster is a moron
  Rough translation: “I hear crack is good, have you tried it yet?”

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