Monday, October 22, 2018

Pulling out

Another set of placards I thought were clever... (and funny!)


Sometimes it's difficult to see the benefit of things (like studying for A levels or degrees) from the perspective of the present, for young people today this seems ever more difficult as the world around us changes ever more rapidly and it feels like the learning of the past can become redundant even more quickly. I always advise the younger people I deal with at work to hold onto the thought that no learning, however small or seemingly irrelevant, is ever wasted and the trick is to be patient, a time will come when most of the things we know can be used, re-used or adapted to meet a new challenge. 

I was reminded of this recently at work where we're in the process of building a new software product. It's a tricky piece of engineering, in a subject area where we (as a team) have little experience. One of the biggest challenges when putting together a new product is to find an over-arching model or metaphor into which you can layer and fit the various concepts and components you need to build, this helps you to develop a set of terminology that everyone can learn and a structured way with which to describe the functioning of it to those inside and outside the team. We struggled for a while to capture this for our new product until I managed to dig up an old model for a product that I built back in the late 90s. That product is long since dead and was totally different (in purpose) to this one but it had an underlying dimensional-rule based model that suited the new product perfectly! With a quick dust off and a little re-jigging, the concepts and (updated) language could be re-used and learned by a whole new set of people to achieve a whole new set of outcomes. Of course the technology, architecture, data-storage and programming languages used to build the new product (i.e. the tools) are completely new and different and much more efficient that the original ones, but the underlying conceptual framework and terminology is about a 90% fit. 

I wonder if these same ideas will resurface again in another 20 years, when I'm long gone and the youngsters on the team now are scratching around trying to design some new product and need a bunch of solid concepts upon which to base it, what goes around etc..

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Stuck in the middle..

I rather liked this placard, very clever.. #PeoplesVoteMarch

Team celebration

Fun evening yesterday. Took the team (work) out and treated them to an afternoon of food and beery delights at the new Brewdog bar in Town in celebration of getting a new product finished on time. Here we have a small selection of the many collaboration beers on offer for the Brewdog "Collabfest 2018" festival which is on this weekend. Loved the little third of a pint tasting glasses, a really good way to get around the board (see below) without drinking too much, even so, we managed to spend about £350 between 12 of us and were all pretty merry by the end of the evening as we wound our way through the mean streets of the metropolis that is Reading to the railway station and home.

My favourite beer of the evening was a collaboration with my local brewery Siren called Brut Romance, a really dry IPA style that was flavoured with strawberry and hibiscus, they were going for a "pink Champagne" kind of vibe and pulled it off really well.

Friday, October 19, 2018

No shouting...

I saw this cartoon the other day and it made me think that a phenomenon I'd noticed recently might not just be a figment of my curmudgeon old mind. 

The thing that I'm talking about is how younger people seem to equate a verbal disagreement (that's not going their way) with "shouting". Much like extreme left wingers often shout  "Racist" or "Sexist" in order to shut down dissenting arguments, seemingly regardless of the actual position of their opponents. I've had several disputes recently with my teenage kids where it's ended up with them asking me (and my wife) to stop shouting at them (ironically often in a louder voice), when quite demonstrably we haven't raised our voices one single decibel. Is this a new thing? Are we entering an era where it's customary to deflect from losing an argument by redefining English words, like shout, racist, sexist etc. and then to use them as an ad-hominem tactic against your opponent.

I'm put in mind of the excellent Monty Python sketch about witches, a parody of many current cultural and political debates in my view, burn-em I say...

Friday Smirk

I'd say that's about right..

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Reminder from a Remainer XI

Well said Sir John Major, strong stuff, hard to argue with.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Reminder from a Remainer X

This is what I like to see. Business leaders putting their heads above the parapet and expressing an opinion on issues of the day that affect them and their employees. After all, the BBC have made sure that we've all heard the ridiculously simplistic views of people like James Dyson (who thinks it's fine to just "walk away" from pre-existing UK/EU financial commitments) and Tim Martin (who thinks English sparkling wine is superior to Champagne). In this advert it's pretty obvious that the guy running Pimlico Plumbers is unhappy about Brexit, he's not alone! 

I'm thinking seriously about heading up to London on Saturday afternoon now..

Reminder from a Remainer IX

This is the bit where the denials start (i.e. when it's beyond obvious that the whole thing is a festering shit-bag).. 

Queasy images..

A static image that looks like it's moving when you stare at it, don't gawp for too long though, I did and it made me feel slightly queasy!

Wrong type of cable?

Nothing like a bit of Autumnal rail chaos to brighten up your day. Reading station absolutely rammed this morning due to an issue with overhead cables between Maidenhead and Paddington (apparently they were shredded by one of the new trains) meaning that there were no services from the West of the country getting into London at all. The only route still limping along was from Reading into Waterloo (a local service) for which this (see picture) was the queue. I always find it best to try to relax when faced with situations like this, often you see people getting madder and madder to the point of super-nova but in the greater scheme of things it's only one day and there are plenty of nice coffee shops and bars in Reading to wile away a couple of hours* doing email while the crowds disperse..

*Update - gave up waiting, life too short, went home :(

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Reminder from a Remainer VIII

Handy list for Brexiters needing to create their own masturbatory narratives for why they made what will probably turn out to be the most culturally divisive and economically destructive decision in British political history..

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Jingle bells?

I noticed that our local supermarket now has an official "Christmas section", it's only October and still warm enough to wear a tee shirt outside but for those people that need a fix of mince pies and stollen cake they have it covered!