Thoughts of a geek

14 August 2009

Things I should do

Filed under: Lists, Me — Tags: , , , , , , — qwandor @ 10:59 pm

I have been a bit slack lately about getting much done. I keep thinking of things which I should do, but mostly do not get around to doing them. In the hope of improving this I list here some things which I should do:

  • Implement mDNS abstraction layer for stereo using Avahi DBUS bindings, sort out ant script, and get stereo head to a usable state on Linux. (Or, bug Stephen to do it.)
  • Write various blog posts I have been thinking about (last.fm client, friends, childhood memories, more to life, questions).
  • Work on theQuotebook, maybe look into Facebook integration.
  • Do more baking.
  • Catch up with various people I have not seen for ages.
  • Work out what to do for a chassis for the robot I am building, add the remaining wires for the motor controller, and filter capacitors.
  • Talk more to people about conceptions of God (relationship, hearing from God, basis of faith…), and maybe blog some thoughts and questions.
  • Organise a group of people to do the Skyline Walkway some Saturday.
  • Work out what I am doing with my life, what I want to do and what God wants me to do, where I am going in the mid- to long-term, what to do next year…

Feel free to bug me about doing any of these things. Or maybe other things.

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9 July 2009

On my mind

Filed under: Lists, Me — Tags: , , , , , — qwandor @ 10:48 pm

I think the things that occupy my mind at the moment, worry me I guess I could say, can be divided into four main categories:

  1. The future
  2. God
  3. People
  4. Girls

By ‘at the moment’, I guess I mean this year. And that order is not particularly significant.

Expanding a little.

The future — well, what am I doing with my life? For rather a while I had been very focussed on study, completing my degree. Well, I got the degree, I got good grades, I graduated, but what does it all mean in the end? Yeah, I got a job. A good academic record and work experience do help with that. But now, what? Was all the effort and stress and everything worth it? And what should I aim for now? Do I have anything to look forward to, or is it all downhill from here? I do not even know what I want, really, which makes aiming for it, planning, rather hard. I guess I like to have a plan.

Well, that was more about the past than the future. Some possible possibilities are:

  • Travel: But that would be expensive, for no clear benefit, aim or purpose. Where would I go? And with whom?
  • Work: Going where? Why? Though yeah, earning money is kind of necessary to live.
  • Further study — perhaps a Masters or even a PhD: But in what? I am severely lacking in inspiration (okay, this is not limited to study, but is particularly relevant to embarking on further study I think). At Vic, or somewhere else in NZ, or overseas? No option is really compelling.

Direction and purpose would be nice.
And what about God, in all of this? Apparently my aim should be to serve Him somehow. It is unclear how I should do that, what effect that should have on my decisions. Well, that leads nicely into my second category…

God — by which I mean faith and Christianity and so on. I am not sure what to say. God seems… well, distant, to say the least. Presumably that is my fault. Actually God is a bit of an odd one out on this list; He is not necessarily on my mind all that much, but He should be. I think?

People — relating, talking, spending time with people. What are friends, what should friends be? How should I treat friends, and what should I expect from friends? Who should I consider my friends anyway? Facebook says that I have 222, but I am pretty sure that it is lying (-;. People are hard.

Girls — well, girls are people too, with all the difficulties that that entails. I am not sure what to say, at least in this public context. I guess I will say nothing more.

There is of course overlap between all of these.

Soundtrack for this post: Simon & Garfunkel ‘Leaves That Are Green‘, Jonathan Coulton ‘The Future Soon‘, The Echoing Green ‘Suffer‘ (it can be found on The Best of IVM Vol. 1). And after that, perhaps some Apoptygma Berzerk. I have been listening to them a fair bit over the past week or so anyway.

1 June 2009

Happiness

Filed under: Me — Tags: , , , , , , — qwandor @ 12:45 am

Sometimes I am happy, often I am fairly neural, and sometimes I am unhappy.

When I am happy I tend to be inspired to work on things (or start new projects), to make the effort to talk to people, and even to be somewhat sociable.

When I am unhappy I tend to be unmotivated, not do much, take long walks in the middle of the night or just sit or lie around feeling sorry for myself. I suppose I think more about myself and less about other people.

Anyway, I have given a little consideration to what tends to make me happy. One of the main things, I think, is making things which other people like and appreciate. Some examples of this are:

  • I have been doing some work lately on a robot which lorne and I want to make. Trying to get an IO expander working with a Meraki over I2C, programming a PIC to talk to the Meraki, getting parts to build H-bridges, that sort of thing. Having him appreciate how cool it is, and get excited at the little achievements along the way (I2C is working, I just needed to add pull-ups! The PIC is running fine off 3.3 V now, disabling BOREN did the trick!) helps me to keep motivated. Working on a project with smart people is fun!
  • It is nice that people are using and apparently liking theQuotebook. It took a lot of work to get it to the point where it now is, and there are still many more things to be fixed, added and improved. What I have really liked though is when friends have taken the time to try things out, think about it, say what they like and dislike, and sometimes offer suggestions. Thanks to shoeshine, Melanie, Josh, Valerie and anyone else who has made suggestions or comments.
  • I like it when I bake stuff and people like it. Be it muffins, or the steamed pudding (with custard) which I made tonight and my flatmates consumed, focaccia bread yesterday, the apple scotch I made for the pot-luck we had at my lifegroup quite a few weeks ago (though it got quite burnt; I should never have let myself be persuaded to put it into the oven).

I guess a big part of this comes from just wanting to feel appreciated, or at least acknowledged, by people about whom I care. For similar reasons I guess, I appreciate it when people make the effort to talk to me, email me, ask how I am, even spend time with me. Certainly, I tend to find that talking to people can make me happier, when I can manage it. Or when someone makes the effort to talk to me even though I am frustrated or irritated and unsociable and hard to talk to.

There is still a fair bit about what effects my mood that I do not understand though. Sometimes I am just unhappy or unmotivated for no particular reason that I can see; on the odd occasion I even find myself happy for no reason I can discern.

Oh, and I really enjoyed contradancing the weekend before last at the St. Michael’s fundraiser, once I got into it anyway. I am not sure how that fits in. Probably something to do with the combination of live music, positive social interaction and physical activity. Thanks, Stevie and Allan, for dragging me along.

28 May 2009

Swing swing

Filed under: Me — Tags: , , , , , , , — qwandor @ 11:30 pm

Swing swing.
Swing, swing.
It is cloudy tonight, though there are some bare patches. Stars visible briefly. The clouds move quite rapidly. I can see the Southern Cross. Now I cannot. The breeze gets up a bit.
10:14 pm now. Early, comparatively. I wonder whether I will sleep tonight.
I can hear something breathing heavily. Irregularly. Some animal I guess, but I cannot see it. Looking around for it, listening carefully. Unnerving.
Back to the swing. Music back on.

Time to stop swinging. Need some certainty in life. On whom to rely, to depend?
Here I sit. Not in the hall of the mountain king. Ouch, too loud suddenly.

The breathing seems to have stopped. Odd.
Perhaps no human will keep eir word. God does, apparently. Not quite sure what to make of it though.
God should be all I need, apparently. But human relationships would be nice too. Should be nice. Some sort of connection? I am not sure how to find it, or make it. Things seem not to work out. What does that mean? Why?
Always why. And how.
Ha, and when.

Just walking now. Downhill. Perhaps I will run later.

I really must get some decent headphones.
What would it be like to be able to control my mind more? Less wandering?More productive? More focussed, less distractable, pointlessly and uselessly sidetracked? What is important in life? What can I do? What can I even hope to do, to achieve?
Keep walking.
Cannot stop, cannot stand still, going nowhere.

Ran. Just a little.

1 May 2009

Things

Filed under: Me — Tags: , , , , — qwandor @ 9:58 pm

So there is (or was, I have missed it because I am too slow at writing) a meme going around Facebook called ’25 things’, where people write 25 things about themselves in a note, and then abuse the tagging system to tag 25 friends who are then supposed to do the same thing. Some people’s things were inane, some interesting, and some quite revealing. Anyway, I am following suit, in case anybody cares to read. Except, I am not writing 25 things, because there seems no good reason for such arbitrary targets.

Comments are welcome of course (appreciated, even). Though maybe it is best to comment in person.

The following things have been written over a period of a few months (I started writing this in January 2009), so my apologies that it is a bit disjointed, and that some points overlap others. My moods have varied a bit over that time too, as happens. Anyway, the things written below were how I thought or felt at some point in the past, and may or may not still be true.
(more…)

7 April 2009

Walking

Filed under: Me, music — Tags: , , , — qwandor @ 12:57 am

Social interaction is frustrating. Well, attempts at such.
The moon is disappearing. Hidden behind the clouds. Appearing, still blurred. Soft, in a hard world. Nature. Still cold though. Bright and dim. Pink cloud blowing past, oddly dog-shaped. Unshapen now. Light pollution. Quite a breeze tonight, here in this dark playground. Swing, swing.
Too much. The moon fades again. A little dizzy, I walk.
I keep doing this. Over and over again. Still no clue really, how to relate to people. I tend to miss what few opportunities I might have, to … well, talk I guess. To have a real conversation, rather than just basic social niceties. I guess there are exceptions.
This makes me think of the song ‘Lights of Sunday‘ by Emerald Park. Back to the original problem really.
Time to run.
Attempting metaphor, against my better judgement.

27 December 2008

Travelling a little

Filed under: Me — Tags: , , — qwandor @ 11:12 am

I will be heading out of Wellington sometime on 2008-12-31, to spend a couple of nights in Palmerston North with my cousins up there. I will then be going camping with my parents and brothers for a week or so, at Castlecliff (in Wanganui) and Mangaweka. It would be nice to catch up with anyone else who knows me and is around the area (in Palmerston North, perhaps). Are there any such people, who would like to catch up? If so, get in touch. I may not have much Internet access while I am away, so it would be best to contact me before I leave, or else perhaps SMS.

Of course, I am all for catching up with people in Wellington too, though I have not had much luck with that so far.

18 December 2008

People

Filed under: Me — Tags: , — qwandor @ 11:26 pm

People are important.
People are unreliable.
God is reliable.

Discuss.

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