My brilliant colleague Peter Cruickshank has finished all the work for his PhD by published works. He has submitted his thesis, defended it in an oral exam, made the very few and very minor corrections emerging from the exam, and submitted the final version. So there’s only a bit of bureaucracy between him and being doctored.
To celebrate this, our prof (Hazel Hall) and her husband (Tim) invited Peter, his wife (Sam), me and my wife (Elly) to lunch last Sunday. Here are the happy people:
Peter, Sam, Hazel, Tim, Elly (photo by Bruce)
Peter and Sam (photo by Hazel)
Bruce and Elly (photo by Hazel)
I can’t do justice to Peter’s thesis here. However, writing from it may appear in future papers, and the actual thesis may appear in Napier’s repository.
My reward for all of this is nut roast with roasted potatoes, onions, sprouts and carrots. You have been warned!
Spinning at LifesCycle. We cheated slightly by travelling by bus, due to the rain. I usually prefer to cycle there and back, as warm-up and cool-down from the lovely madness. (Elly and I are on the front-left bikes of that Facebook video.)
much-needed coffee and lunch
catching up with personal and family finances, sadly neglected for a couple of weeks due to work-pressures
washing our manky spinning gear. That’s the only downside!
tidying my desk area after weeks of needing to let rubbish build up
avoiding watching Strictly Come Dancing
writing a presentation on a project I’m about to finish, so I can demonstrate the outcomes to a high-powered audience. (I think I should not say what the project is just now, but I will blow my own trumpet as hard as I can when the work goes live.)
proofreading and commenting on a tender written by my ever-wonderful better half.
This post is my digital record of the Scottish Government’s Online Identity Assurance (OLA) ‘show and tell’. The day was very informative, and provided me the opportunity to catch up with friends in civil society circles. I’m especially interested because online identity is a natural precursor to online voting, another problematic area that greatly interests me.
The post starts with a recap of what was said at the event, then notes my input at the event. Next are my reactions to the event itself, followed by my thoughts on the whole OLA programme. In summary, while I think OLA is very worthwhile, and that the Scottish Government is trying to do it the right way, I have a lot of reservations about how useful it will be for those who most need government support. Continue reading →
I prefer to pay for nearly everything using my debit card. (The exceptions are the snack vending machines at work, because they talk back to lusers with an annoying Sirius Cybernetics voice. I prefer to receive receipts, and keep them to check that the entries on my bank statements are believable. However, this means my wallet tends to bulge with valueless pieces of paper.
It struck me tonight that this is a huge waste of resources too: paper, printing ink, electricity, whatever the printer is made of, people’s time putting rolls of till receipt into machines (been there, done that, bought the t-shirt with the image of trapped fingers) and so on. And there is no need for any of this! Continue reading →
I do not use Facebook messenger. I refuse to have this on my phone, and generally ignore the the messaging bit of Facebook in browsers. It may not be logical but I resent being forced to have another app on my phone. Maybe I’m just getting old. If you want to contact me, in my order of preference
talk to me, face to face (vastly preferred). You’ll generally find me in room C45 at Napier’s Merchiston Campus, at home, at LifesCycle, at a community council meeting or cycling between two of these destinations
email me (strongly preferred)
comment on one of my WordPress blogs – so it will email me a notification
tweet me (last resort)
But please bear in mind that my phone is quite often on silent, and I’ve switched off every alert apart from for incoming calls. And don’t even mention Instagram, Pinterest, WhatsApp, the social part of Mendeley and similar, LinkedIn, ORCID, or any other social media.
Facebook does have a place in my life: the privilege of seeing what far-flung friends and family choose to share. But I’m old, and I’ll pick how I communicate. Facebook messages are not my choice.
Until this morning, my main Mac sported a 1600 * 1200 Formac DVI monitor and a 1280 * 1024 HP VGA monitor. (This monitor can also do DVI.) The Formac’s been great – it’s survived several house moves over almost 10 years, and seems as bright as ever.
The HP is a relative newcomer, and I’ve never been entirely happy about the step from the Formac to it. But the ever-wonderful Elly treated me to another Formac for my birthday. It arrived this morning, so we now have:
left: ‘new’ Formac (play); middle: original Formac (work); right: HP (other)
It’s been interesting – and quite emotional – revisiting the end of a marriage and my career in publishing, various family (mis)fortunes, my time in India and Indonesia, my MSc, the start of my community council work and research career, discovering spinning, and the beginning of my current, very happy marriage. So much of this feels as though it’s permanent, and has been part of me forever – but in reality much is less than 5 years old.
There will be lots of broken links, because some material was hosted on now-dead servers. I’ve tried to resurrect what I can, but if you find any, please let me know.
I’m trying to move my old LiveJournal bog to this WordPress blog. I apologise for any implications that I’m in trouble caused by the most recent attempt, and for any future shenanigans caused by this process