Go forward in time to Jan 2001.
On to a trip to Ensenada, Baja California, with Paco and Gina. Paco is doing his med school internship there for a year. This should be an interesting trip, and a long drive of 3000 Km as well.
Today was a completely surreal day which involved CD burning, gargantuan amounts of Japanese food, good things falling into place, talk with old friends, Quake playing with a background of tango music, Charles Bukowski wisdom, very-late-night tacos, improptu plans for trips, picture albums, and some old and new jokes.
Life is good.
Started reading The Unanswered Question by Leonard Bernstein. These lectures are absolutely incredible. And listening to Shostakovich's cello concertos in the meantime makes for a wonderful experience.
I need to study music composition.
Dinner with the close Linux crowd from the University: Alan, Daniel, Adrián, Arturo, Violeta, Miguel, Oso, and Esteban at the Vips Altavista. Afterwards Nopal (Alan) invited us to a jazz jam session in a bar in Tlalpan, Goliardos, I think it is called. His brother plays the drums in his jazz band, and it was absolutely awesome. This got me thinking that I should learn jazz piano. Asked Nopal's brother for advice, and he recommended some good stuff. La de la. We will see what comes out.
Finished the high-level alarm queueing stuff. The GUI dialogs will be next.
Thought about ways to improve the low-level setitimer() stuff; I think I have ideas about how to make it work if the machine's clock changes unexpectedly.
My brother arrived from his vacation and was telling me about their scuba-diving trip. This looks like it could kick some major ass. I should learn to scuba-dive next year; there are some pretty good instructors in the University.
Unproductive afternoon; went Christmas-shopping with my brother. The city is absolutely crazy at this time of the year. Traffic is totally insane and the stores are chaotic at best.
Buying CDs and books as presents is dangerous, because you are bound to get something else for yourself. Complied, got Shostakovich's and Vivaldi's cello concertos, Philip Glass's Symphony # 5, and a book with some of Charles Bukowski's letters. This guy is so funny, and in the letters where he gets serious he has a lot to say indeed.
New year's resolution: write a letter at least every two weeks.
In the evening, Paco dropped by. Talked about life and new year's projects. Burned a bunch of music CDs. Paco is leaving to Ensenada for his internship next week, so this was a good time to talk.
Woke up very late. Had a delicious breakfast of fruit, dates, sesame seed bread and hummus.
Good food makes me oh-so-happy.
Went with Miguel and Arturo to hack in the afternoon. Made some more progress in the new alarm notification framework, this time the high-level GUI-side stuff. This new code is so pretty; I am very happy with it.
John Harper seems to have an idea of what may be wrong in the XSetInputFocus() code in Bonobo. Owen agrees with me in that Sawfish is also doing some stupid things by focusing windows that should not be focused when you flip desktops. Will have to investigate more carefully.
So the Popocatépetl finally had a small-ish eruption. Hopefully it will not turn into not-fun mode.
My car is covered with a fine layer of volcanic ash. Pretty much everything else outdoors is, too.
Had an excellent lunch with Joakim at Italliani's. The food was great, as usual. And we had an extremely interesting and encouraging conversation about building a city-wide wireless network that would pretty much sustain itself.
The idea is that it would be extremely cheap and easy to put directional antennas to link buildings together. And by talking to friends and to small ISPs (that are all over the city) and small companies that need connectivity, we could build a pretty cool network across the city that would be highly redundant, dynamically routed, fast, and it would screw over the ridiculously expensive leased-line providers.
So we will start experimenting as soon as we get some wireless network cards and hubs.
So Joakim said, "let's go to the computer store and get an AirPort to play with it". They had the AirPort, but they didn't have PCMCIA Wavelan cards, so we skipped it for now.
But they had SCSI CD recorders that came with PCMCIA cards, and it looked like I should buy my own Christmas present right there. So I now have a CD burner, and I am experimenting with my first CD. This should be a cool toy to have around. One reason is to backup my laptop from time to time. Another reason is to archive the insanely big pictures from my digital camera. Yet another reason is to copy music CDs.
My stomach seems to be happy again. Cautiously spent all day at home, though.
Wrote a large amount of code for the backend part of the calendar's alarms. This is very pretty code. It is the kind of code I love to write; when you have a complete understanding of how something ought to work and you have the whole architecture in your mind, and you can just sit down and write it in one shot. And you test it, and it just works.
Wrote a chapter for the Evolution Developer's Guide describing the algorithm that we use to generate alarm instances. It feels good to have documentation for the Evolution internals.
Added proper dependency tracking for the API reference documentation and updated the sections files. It is very nice to have the API reference docs be rebuilt properly when you change the source code. Now things seem to Just Work(tm) properly.
What a shitty day. I ate something yesterday that made my stomach most unhappy. Spent most of last night in front of the porcelain goddess; spent most of today's morning doing the same or sleeping. In the afternoon started to feel better, had some chicken soup, and slept again.
My uncle Víctor passed away today. Went to the mortuary in the morning to spend some time with my cousin.
Woke up way too late; that's what I get for going to bed at 6:00 AM. Had a light breakfast consisting of fruit and chocolate milk. It is chicozapote season, one of my favorite tropical fruits. Life is good.
Listened quite attentively to my new CD with music by Julián Carrillo. This is really interesting microtonal music, and it actually sounds good! I should finish reading my book on non-traditional tunings.
Weird thought of the day: a piano with a flat-surfaced "keyboard" on which you could just slide your fingers to produce any tone would be too hard to play because there would be no clear positions for the base tones. What if some fantastic changing material were devised so that it would appear to be a normal piano keyboard, but the material would get soft if you decided to do a glissando-like motion? The keys would vanish and you could just slide your fingers to any tone frequency. Maybe it could quantize itself to smaller keys if you wanted a particular division of tones. It would get hard and soft dynamically.
Maybe the thoughts of non-traditional tunings are twisting my brain. That can't be too bad.
I now have a photographer page in photo.net. Somehow using a web service with TCL in the backend sounds very very wrong. Photo.net is insanely cool as a project, though.
Fixed a few small bugs in the calendar that were in Bugzilla. I love those 1-hour thingies; they are easy to fix and give a feeling of instant gratification...
My friend Raúl Herrera gave a kick-ass piano recital today. The program: Six pieces Op. 118, Brahms; three pieces from Iberia (Evocación, El Puerto, Triana), Albéniz; Les Soirées de Nazelles, Poulenc; three pieces, Ricardo Castro.
Everything was wonderful except for the pieces from Iberia, which gave him quite a bit of trouble. This is not that Raúl is a sloppy player; it is that Albéniz's Iberia is fantastically hard to play. The score is so densely packed with expression markings and the technique itself is so advanced, that it is a Hard Thing to play. I am still amazed that Raúl had the courage to play it.
If I am ever able to play the complete Iberia suite, an important part of my life will be complete. That is still many years off, though.
After the recital, went to Luis's house to play Quake with himself, Paco, Javier G., and Javier O. Playing Quake with a loud background of Pink Floyd is a majorly surreal experience. Eventually went home and to bed at around 6:00 AM.
More libical loving. It seems to work fine now with Eric's patch for X- parameters and properties.
Fixed a little bunch of timezone-related bugs in libical. Mailed the libical list with a long explanation of just what needs to be done for timezone support as far as Evolution is concerned; hopefully this will get the ball rolling. Timezone support looks like it will not be hard to implement.
The build system got some more loving, and it seemed to work for me. Peter seemed to have trouble still, so I am not 100% confident that it is correct yet. Stupid automake.
In the morning, practiced the start of Granada from Albéniz's Suite Española. This piece is so beautiful. It is nice to practice something that is soft, quiet, and relaxed.
A mightily frustrating day; spent all day long fixing libical issues. And there was a bug in the parsing of X- parameters for RRULE properties; this sucks. Sent a small test program to Eric. Gave up and went home as a result.
To cure my bad mood, went home, ate, played the piano. Flagellated myself by practicing with the metronome. Sigh, Anna was right; my timing does suck if I do not pay attention. Khachaturian sounds much more regular in the "allegro marcatissimo" now.
Followed the score to the Suite Española by Albéniz while listening to a CD. The first two pieces look like good candidates for practicing. Hell, the *first* one alone looks like it is going to take me some time.
Went to Tepoztlán for the weekend. Had a peaceful time; it is good to hike up the Tepozteco mountain and see the scenery while clearing up your mind.
Saw Garage Olimpo. Shocking movie about torture in Argentina.
Imported libical-0.21 into the GNOME CVS, added a bunch of our patches. Sent the patches to Eric for inclusion in the main branch of libical. Sigh, hopefully for the next version of Evolution we will be able to rely on external package tarballs. Not for this one, though.
Heard on IRC: * Radagast defends himself with his fully automatic, double-barreled Boesendorfer catapult.
Woke up later than I wanted.
Mitsuru Okada submitted a cool patch to fix a subtle bug in gdk-pixbuf where an offset value was not being taken into account. Committed. Also, fixed compositing of images against solid checks in nearest-neighbor interpolation mode. Opaque images are happy in EOG again.
Last night Luis Javier, Joakim, and myself went to watch Boys and Girls. Pretty enjoyable and funny movie.
Watched Unbreakable with Joakim tonight. Kick ass.
Changed the fucking tire that got deflated yesterday, took the car to the tire shop to get it fixed. Got to El Cambalache to have lunch with Chema, Miguel, Joakim, Arturo, and Toño; they were almost ready to leave but there was time for me to have a nice bife de chorizo.
On the way back to Joakim's house, something made me
very sad. On street intersections in Mexico City
sometimes there are people that hand out little sheets
of paper with advertisements for random useless stuff
like institutional carpet cleaners or industrial
refrigerator repair (or tarot readings for business
managers). Well, on the intersection of Insurgentes and
Parroquia a couple of cute girls were handing out...
Once again it is confirmed that humankind deserves a quick and painful extinction.
JP sent me a Purify report of the calendar GUI component; we fixed a bunch of stuff. Purify rocks my world. If it only were free software.
Decided that Shosty's string quartets were too good to not have all of them, so bought a boxed set (Teldec, Brodsky quartet). Awesome.
Woke up rather early. Having nothing better to do, I went with a fine-toothed comb through the score to Khachaturian's toccata to see where my bad habits have screwed up the pedaling, fingering, dynamics, and the whatnot. Practiced for a bit trying to fix this. Ooooh. It sounds much better now. Discovered some nice implications of the voicing at the same time.
Listened carefully to my Ginastera piano CD (ASV, Alberto Portugheis). This guy is amazing. I am getting to like contemporary piano music quite a lot.
Last night, dinner with Miguel, Ana, Arturo, Violeta, Joakim, Mancha, and Patrick. Lots of interesting and amusing discussion. It is good to see Miguel again.
Today, plenty of technical discussion over breakfast with Joakim, Arturo, and Miguel. It seems like things are getting ready to kick major ass.
Shostakovich's string quartets absolutely rule. This CD was a good purchase.
Put the Mixquic pictures up.
Yesterday I got a wide angle adapter and a small 2x telephoto adapter for my digital camera. These toys are neat!
On a whim, also got a little book on the Arabic alphabet and grammar. I want to learn this beautifully-written language.
Saw Charlie's Angels. Absolutely enjoyable movie. Lots of skin, gadgets, explosions, and Bill Murray; what more could one want?
Called Pedro Valencia, an old friend of mine whom I had not seen for quite a while. We went to the OFUNAM concert, which was fantastic. Some French dude played Ravel's piano concerto for the left hand, and it was totally amazing. They also played Poulenc's concerto for two pianos, great, and some random inconsequential stuff.
Go backward in time to Nov 2000.Federico Mena-Quintero <email@example.com> Mon 2001/Jun/18 17:36:09 CDT