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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Perl 6

I've been reading through some of th Apocalypse design documents about the upcoming Perl 6 release, and while I'm not very far through them yet, I'm beginning to get excited about the release.

Perl always has had a "thrown together" quality to it. It's as if there started a wonder core language to which new patches and extensions were continually added, occasionally in a haphazard way. If you look closely enough at the syntax, you can almost see the dividing lines as to what "featured" were added at different times. Perl 6 does a lot to unify this mess. I may not agree with each individual design decision, but the overall direction is a good one to travel.

I'm excited about Parrot too, and if the Python, PHP, and Ruby people are willing to jump onto it, then it will become a great thing. However, if Parrot never is adopted beyond the Perl community, and is weighted down by the additional bloated support of all the other languages that are never used, then it's a disaster waiting to happen.

Per 6, I think, represents the maturation of the perl community, and I'm excited to see it when it finally comes out.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Bounty

Picked up a lot of cool things for christmas, and made a few people pretty happy while I was doing it. I picked up "Programming Python" from Dana, and now I am learning that language. With some of my gift money, I hit amazon and picked up "Mastering Regular Expressions", "Perl Cookbook", "Advanced Perl Programming", and "Lex & Yacc". These books are going to make for an interesting read, and will help out with some of my own book writing endevours.

I got some games too: Mario Galaxy and Metriod Prime 3 are the most notable, but I received a few for the gameboy as well. I feel like i don't have a lot of time to play with my thesis looming on the horizon, so I am hesitant to get started playing them.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

It's Christmas Eve, and I have some time on my hands because Dana is at work and I have nothing better to do. Once I get around to showering, I'll probably do what I can to help Dana's mom with her dinner preparations.

I don't have anything yet for a new years resolution, but there are a few things that I want to consider:
  1. Being better organized, probably by making better use of my PDA, and various calendars/scheduling programs, etc. Set up comprehensive to-do lists, for school, work, wiki, life, etc.
  2. Find a "real job".
  3. Update all my passwords/security measures to be more secure. Considering the importance of my email account, I might want to get onto a system of regularly changing my email password for maximum security. Other passwords, especially those that rely on my email address can use a static password.
  4. Change to Linux.
  5. Publish a paper or two, or three.
  6. Finish my thesis, graduate.
This is just a partial list, of course.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Semester Grades

I got my grades today for the fall semester, and I ended up with a perfect 4.0. This is the first time in my entire life that I've ever gotten perfect grades, and it's a good feeling. Maybe I can have a repeat performance next semester.

Holiday Plans

Christmas is here in 5 days, and I am going to be happy when it's over. We are spending the first half of this weekend at my house with my family, and the second half of the weekend, christmas eve, and christmas morning at Dana's house. We're going to try to be at my place for Christmas brunch, which is my parent's big to-do.

I don't know what the plan is for New Years, and I almost don't care either way. The New Years we've spent at Dana's tend to be a little boring, but then again when we are here at my house it's too loud to sleep and we need to deal with some sort of party being held by one of my brothers.

The week between holidays, and the rest of this break until school starts again, I am planning to get some major work done on my thesis. I've been having some good ideas about it, and I'm feeling confident about it, and so I have high hopes that I'll be able to get a lot of work done on it.


I've set up a personal homepage for myself using Google Pages. Google is becoming a very interesting part of my life, because it gives me an unprecedented level of integration between my blogging, email, documents, etc. There are a few issues where I wish things were slightly better integrated, but that's really a small complaint.

If Google's servers go down, I'm going to be blasted back to the stone age. It's a risk I'm willing to take though.

Update: I just want to make a mention after the fact that I don't work for Google, nor do I have any hope that I ever will (not for lack of applications, of course). I was a blogspot member before it was taken over by Google, and I've been upset with Hotmail for as long as I can remember. I also used to have a page at Geocities, but it was a pain in the butt to maintain, I didn't like the intrusive ads, and I also didn't like the Geocities page editor (although it may have been improved since I last updated over there). Using Google Pages and Google Documents isn't because I'm a die-hard Google fan (although I am slowly drifting in that direction). but instead because I suddenly have a lot of convenient links right in front of me when I do things I was doing anyway.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


I've basically completed my migration to gmail from hotmail, and I'm already thrilled about the change. I'm a member of several mailing lists, and gmail keeps them all nicely organized for me. It also has a whole set of features, etc. Perhaps the thing I like most about it is that I can integrate my gmail account, my blogger account, my RSS feed readers, and other tools onto my igoogle homepage. I know MSN has some similar functionality, but I have to say that I really just prefer gmail.

Of course, time will tell which mail client is the best, but at the moment my money is on gmail. Let's hope it pans out!