Tuesday, 20 January 2009


The problem with writing a diary is that it doesn't take much in the way of low mood or drunkenness before you start pouring out your heart into it. What comes out of the poured-out heart may very well have needed expurging, but it should have then been cleaned up and disposed of rather then kept for the future. I have teenage or even younger diaries which I can't quite bring myself to junk now they've got this far, but which I can't read or bear the thought of anyone else reading, because they're mostly gush about boys or horses. (Apparently having spent my entire youth with a mad intense crush on someone or other, occasionally both, is why I will never find sensible love as an adult, which, to be honest, I can live with.) At the same time it's hard to suppress the urge to record some comments on life to reread later. To get round this I once started a diary which wasn't about me, but about what my friends were up to, and this was the most interesting diary I have ever kept. Alas I lost it in a computer failure, the last one before I started my current paranoid backup system.

This blog is a reasonable solution to the problem. (I'm afraid I do write it for myself to reread later, and if that seems unpleasantly self-obsessed and wierd, well I find that I can forgive myself.) I can't pour my heart out to it because people might read it, but I can record stuff that I feel a need to get out of my system a bit. When I'm feeling particularly bad I sometimes write a happy post as an effective counter measure. Unfortunately it is a public place, and I can't count on people's not reading it, so there are some things it just wouldn't be appropriate to say. Sometimes you have to be more oblique.

In unrelated work news, if you find anything wrong with our 0.6 version website you can send the info in to Stanford using the "Contact Us" link at the bottom. Then it will get into their expensive and complicated bug-recording system and be carefully logged and given code numbers and everything.

Plus, if you want to be able to use programs without installing them on your computer, to which perhaps you don't have administrative access, the portable apps available at sites like this are a very good alternative -- you can put them in the My Documents folder if you don't want to carry them around on a USB pen. I'm going to experiment with making my own portable apps later, specifically spotify. I'm guessing that I will give up after about five minutes realising it's totally over my head.

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