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2009-03-04 20:13

Tooth fever

Boris van het Blad, our son and heir, has a shiny new molar on the way. This means he also has a fever and aggravated unhappiness. This means that he couldn't go to daycare, and that his Dutch oma was called in at short notice to babysit. (Thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster for proximous oma's.)

It also means that we are a bit kapot after just one(1) dygn of single-parenting. (Why don't other languages have a word for dygn, huh? "Day" simply won't do.)

So we're getting quietly drunk - on alcohol-free bier, we're that tired - and watching the warm-up to a Cherman foopball cup match. (Cherman pokals, like Dutch bekers and Engleesh cups, are of no possible interest to anyone anymore, which is presumably why they're free-to-air on the telly.)

If you're in the mood for more substantial reading than this whine, though, why not try a nice fat pdf textbook on Computational Semantics with Functional Programming? Montagovian Haskell, with no prerequisites!

2009-03-02 21:12

In which we have occasion to grovel

It is already March, which prompts us to observe that the number of books we've finished this month is by no means strictly positive. Sorry.

The reading we have done for the last couple of weeks has mostly been of Patrick Henry Winston and Berthold Klaus Paul Horn's Lisp (3rd Edition). We've been doing the exercises, too, in Clisp under Emacs, all on our amiable netbook, and very agreeable it is too.

Although the netbook has responded to a recent automatic upgrade by switching the keyboard to "US" and refusing to let us switch it back. (We would mind less, but on a key-starved keyboard with British decals we have trouble finding the obscurer characters.)

Whether we will manage to finish the book in March is also in reasonable doubt: the Countess is leaving us for the dubious charms of Milaan - Italy's most over-rated city, and we include Florence - for two(2) full weeks of career-enhancing guest lectures, leaving us as a temporary single parent.

Also the book has more than 500 pages and we're still only in the middle of the second hundred, and it is safe to assume this is still the shallow end: the deeper end is full of dumbed-down examples of 80's style Good-Old-Fashioned Artificial Intelligence (GOFAI), from the glorious days when Lisp programmers bestrode the world of grant-application like parenthetical colossuses.

(This is in fact the main reason we're reading the book: we disapprove of the replacement of GOFAI and its langwidges of choice with statistical machine-learnings and C++ respectively.)

Meanwhile, Boris van 't Blad has graduated to his first pair of proper outside-proof shoes and after a day of scepticisme bordering on hostility he has now decided they are fit, or at least adequate, for purpose.

The Countess deigned only after this to inform us that one of her many brothers cried every time his first shoes were installed and gave up walking for weeks to avoid them, which was probably wise at least of her.

2009-02-25 19:55

The very much end of an era

We come out of prinsessgossipretirement for the Big One: it is kronprinsees Viktoria of Zweden:

Daniel Westling r nervs men glad och Victoria avspnd och leende nr de berttar om sin krlek och frieriet.

Jag sa ja, ja, ja, sger Victoria.

Daniel Westling is nervous but happy and [kronprinsess] Victoria is relaxing and smiling as the talk about their love and engagement.

"I said yes, yes, yes", says [kronprinsess] Victoria.

It's been seven(7) years in the coming, and there's been plenty of will-they-won't-they roddelbladeting on the way. But it turns out that they will, so cue the horses, sunsets and befrocknings for sure.

(As we were writing this the story came on the Dutch TV news. They like their royals over here, and why not.)

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