Periscope times


I’ve just learnt that my colonoscopy will take place next Monday, 11 July. The private GI specialist will ‘arrange the colonic transit study with the radiologist’. I assume, but don’t know, that I will have to ensure I’m completely empty in time for the colonoscopy. (I’ve asked for details.)


In the meantime, I’ve been vaguely active. On Saturday, it took two hours of banging to assemble some slot-together metal shelves for our toolshed/workshop/cellar. Yesterday I took the shelves to the shed and filled them with just a few of our tools. Part of the problem is that we’re tool-magpies: we have lots of wood tools, including a lathe and a grinder for sharpening the lathe tools, and all the tools needed to assemble and bikes. We also have inherited tools from our families. We plan to give unwanted duplicates to responsible organisations such as the Edinburgh Tool Library.

As far as travels are concerned, er, not so much. Yesterday we walked to a very nearby café, and today to a slightly further burrito bar. I need to get back on my bike, but the weather hasn’t been promising. Oh well – maybe tomorrow.


During the day, I’m working my way through Head First Java. It’s been very slow going, partly because I can’t concentrate for very long. However I’m much less uncomfortable sitting in my desk chair than sitting on the sofa. Other reasons for lack of speed are that I try all the exercises, correct my mistakes, then try to do my own things to understand what the lessons and exercises are trying to teach me.

It also took while to find out how to compile and run Java programs in the terminal. I’m not using Eclipse, the integrated development environment I used previously. Instead I’m coding in TextMate, a text editor. So it’s basically me versus the compiler – I think I’ll learn more by being forced to work out where my mistakes are, although the compiler does give reasonably clear hints.

You might ask ‘why Java? Why not C-variant such Objective-C that can be used on iDevices, or another language that’s more relevant to web-stuff?’ Well, it’s partly because I had the book already – and I like the way it teaches. (Each idea is reinforced in several different ways, and concepts are introduced slowly.) It’s also partly because there’s a Java compiler and JVM already on the Mac, partly because I like strongly typed languages, and partly because (I think) the principles of Java can be applied to other OO languages. I think the latter is probably the most important – if I can get object-orientation, then implementing it in any other language should be easier.


So my current pattern seems to be surfacing around 9am, followed by breakfast and groans as my innards object to starting up. Then I do some domestic duties, followed by a couple of hours’ sleep to escape pain. I’ll be active again for lunch and the afternoon, then sleep a couple of hours before dinner. After that, I drag my nest into the lounge so Elly and I can spend some time together. Bed-time is usually around 10:30 but I don’t get to sleep until well after 1 am, and I only sleep for three or four hours at a time, interspersed by a couple of hours of annoying consciousness. Overall, I’m feeling better than I did last time I blogged, but there’s still a long way to go.


3 thoughts on “Periscope times

    • PS I’ve just read about Mono, which appears to be an IDE and runtime for C# on Mac. Or might I be better off creating a Win7 VM so I can use better tools? (and I can restore snapshots if I mash anything). Thanks!


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