Happy New Year to you

Back on my feet after a very bad reaction to some secret shellfish. Even so, in the balance, 2008 wasn’t a bad year – but here’s to 2009: I hope yours is fantastic.

Login problems for ancient user

According to Bloo, one of our customers is having problems getting into the game after not having logged in for “Five Thousand Years” :)

Fallout 3 “Live”

I decided to play a bit of Fallout 3 this weekend. It still doesn’t grab me, somehow, but it passes the time, and I saw on Steam (where I got mine) that there had been a patch release.

As I was wrapping things up for the weekend, I noticed the “LIVE” button and decided to register my game so I could turn off the CD Key pop-up for good. As expected, “LIVE” is “Games for Windows LIVE”.

Immediately, I ran into problems which I’ll cover below for anyone bored enough to want to hear about it. But mostly, having jumped thru the hoops, I was rather dissapointed to find I can’t play my saved games from my live profile.


I guess I won’t mind starting over – more on why below.


You will have to look closely.

C:\PROGRA~1\Playnet\Playgate>more ftplog.txt
*** fceSetString(0,21,'www.playnet.com/bv/wwiiol/downloads.jspversion= 5')
*** fceSetString(0,21,'downloads.wwionline.com')
*** fceSetString(0,21,'/')
*** fceSetString(0,21,'wwiiol12901291a.exe')
*** fceConnect
FCE Win32 Version 2.1.3 Build 1
Description:  'WinSock 2.0'
LocalHost: 'KFS64'
Server: 'downloads.wwionline.com'
ServerIP =
R: KFS64<102:294.131>

If I weren’t quite so busy at the moment, this would be an excellent time for a hearty post on the evils of data duplication.

Loser Interfaces

I mean, what the hell?


It seems this is Microsoft’s latest improvement of the old chestnut. Oddly, I found it rather inconvenient to have my machines reboot themselves. Clearly, Microsoft have made it unsafe to have auto-updates enabled, again. In the 3rd VM to reboot I managed to be hitting one of the many accelerator keys that corresponds to clicking on “Reboot Now” before the dialog went from loading to visible. I also have to give a little shout-out to the guy(s) at VMWare responsible for the Virtual Debugger interface in Visual Studio: Some of the most cryptic prompts and error feedback.  Like this classic:


Shifts Ahoy

I’m not sure I like this being valid. In my universe a bool is a bool is a bool is a bit.

unsigned char a, b, c, d ;
typedef unsigned UINT32 ;
UINT32 x ;

x = (a < < 24) | (b << 16) | (c < 8) | (d) ;[/sourcecode] "x is a shifted left 24 bits plus b shifted left 16 bits plus (is c less than 8?) plus d" Why can I shift an unsigned char 24 bits left? (Intel's compiler secretly casts to a signed int, regardless of the signedness of your input variable, GCC appears to be a bit smarter, Visual C seemed to be rather smart). Ok, I can, but why am I allowed to bitwise OR a bool? Nothing on any of the 3 compilers we use will elicit a peep out of a compiler. (c < 8) evaluates to a bool. It seems like it would make sense to restrict bools to logical OR. [sourcecode language='c++']bool a = true, b = false ; bool c = (a || b) ;[/sourcecode]

Beef stew

Decided I should aide my recovery with some good vegies, but I’m a dedicated omnivore – I have to have something with my vegies. Made the rather English choice of beef, potatoes and carrots. Braised me a bit of steak in some Sam Adams with a bit of onion, roasted some potatoes with a little salt and pepper, boiled some carrots. My technique is terrible, the beef was a little too tough and the potatoes had boiled too long and then cooked to high and burned a bit. But the carrots were great and the beer took the edge off it. And a sense of satisfaction from 

Another 10 hours sleep (6 hours, a couple of hours awake, 4 hours). No idea what to do with myself today. Done playing Spider Solitaire for now and if I try to read my mind wanders without getting sleepy. Spent an hour on code yesterday, going thru the hotfixes I made on Friday that caused so much trouble. I clearly stepped on a case of “Inheritance done in C through void pointers and ambiguity” because the code and tests all seemed to check out fine. But clearly they don’t work as a part of a complete system. Ugh.

Really ought to catch up on cleaning and etc, I guess I’d better focus on energy foods today and napping.  I’ve read that napping is the better way to catch up on sleep, but then I’ve also read that napping can be bad for you by disrupting your sleep patterns and rhythms. Yeah, well, not getting more than a couple of hours sleep a night probably isn’t good either :)

Confused? I am be.

Mmmm, sleep

18 hours total since getting home from work yesterday. I’m in that odd patch where you haven’t quite caught up but you’ve had enough that your body has started to register just how tired and drained it is. Drinking apple juice and coffee and making the odd roast beef sandwich. Trying not to sleep during the day but I get kinda shakey and have to nap for a little bit.

Hopefully by Monday I’ll have recovered enough I won’t be making the kinds of stupid mistakes I made on Friday that turned what should have been a trivial map reset into a farce :( My apologies to the GHC for my mind-numbed stupidity spoiling their first start :(

The Time Traveller’s Wife

41ds6tse8hl_sl160_ Not my usual kind of read, and perhaps a wee bit close to being a “chick flick” to be admitting that I read it here in public, but I found a fascinating resonnance with my experience of memory and the parts of scenes, the words and thoughts that the author plucks and wields.

Henry has an affliction that causes him to sporadically time travel, in the flesh. Usually backwards in time, occasionally forwards. Arriving in various odd places naked and with no idea how long he’ll be. Sometimes he travels to times and places where he encounters himself: while meeting a girls parents at christmas he travels forward 3 days to his own apartment, just long enough for his future self to tell him that he’ll be going back in shortly and that he’ll survive the rest of Christmas without incidents…