i have been back at work for a week now, and it does not feel like i have been
away at all!

the good thing is that i have broguth back some interesting new ideas which i
have been able to use straight away and have proved quite interesting (and

as you may have seen from the cams the weather has been pretty good this week,
just hope it continues over the weekend so that the bbq can come out.

one of the problems i had when learning java was thinking of “projects” with
which to learn. someone at ibm has come up with robocode
, it looks pretty interesting and could well be a good way of honing
java skills.


i spoke to the company who told me i have won the prize and it all seems ok.
they have to raise some internal paperwork which will take 2 weeks and then
want to present it to me somewhere. so in the meantime i can start thinking
about where i want to go… oz perhaps?


i got home at 4ish yesterday and spent a few hours trying to stay awake. it was
a long old journey but i’ve got to say i was pleasantly surprised by ba.

the conference itself was very interesting although a lot of the techies i had
hoped to meet didn’t turn up as they are working on version 6 of domino at the

i got a great surprise when i got home yesterday, apparently i entered a
competition recently (not one of these “well done you’ve won a million pounds”
things but a genuine competition) and won gbp2,000 holiday voucher. so no
sooner than getting home from a jolly and i can start thinking about the next

last day

last night was very funny. smashmouth weren’t particularly good but i found it
endlessly amusing that these guys were trying to appear like hard rockers after
being introduced by a 40 year old programming executive from ibm.

after the party i headed back to the hotel which is four blocks (about 1.5
miles) from the conference centre. san francisco hotels cost an absolute
fortune so mine is in a pretty rough area, it’s fine during the day but last
night was particularly bad. i have never felt threatened before in the states
but i was glad when i got into the lobby last night.

last session this morning finishes at midday so i have a the rest of the day to
play with. thought i might go to the museum of modern art to try and get my
brain back in gear. four days of sessions cramming information into your head
is enough for anyone.

nearly finished

well, it’s thursday afternoon, just the rest of today and tomorrow morning left
for the conference to run. its been pretty good so far, some interesting new
technology, finally got my head round some fairly established stuff (web
services – i finally get it).

you may have noticed that the cams are not updating at the moment, my adsl
connection seems to have dropped and i can’t get it back to i get home,

tonight should be pretty good fun. the band “smashmouth” are playing at the
conference. even if they aren’t very good it’s going to be interesting to see
what happens with 4,000 geeks at a rock concert (myself included).

anyway, i’m off to a session about apache tools for web services and xml! (god
i know how to live well!)

san francisco

well, i’ve had a couple of relaxing days in the city just doing the whole
tourist thing. now the conference is just about to start so it’s early mornings
and late nights for the next four nights.

i’ll put a full report in when there aren’t 50 other people trying to get onto
the pcs!

this is way things should happen

i have just checked in for my flight to the states using the internet. now this
is the sort of thing that should be happening on the web! it means i only have
to get to heathrow 45 minutes before takeoff, i already have my seat booked and

of course we’ll have to see how it works out first.

they got what they deserved

having effectively relegated us on saturday, man utd got knocked out of the
european cup last night. can’t say i was overcome with grief!

i am reading a book called stickleback at the moment which is hilarious. to do with
contractors and working in the banking industry. subjects which are all too
close to my heart at the moment.

i got it on one of my strictly rationed trips to amazon. they are rationed
because it is very easy to spend hundreds of pounds without realising
it. with a 10 hour flight at the weekend it was a good excuse to go and stock
up on my trashy novels.


i’ve got a really busy week coming up. it’s my sisters 21st birthday, i am
going to a conference in the states and i have a pile of work to get done
before either of those. it’s going to be a lot of late nights and trying to
grab a few minutes wherever possible.

we lost the football yesterday but there is still a (small) chance of escaping
relegation. we have to beat liverpool away (!) and derby have to beat