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Ramblings of an exiled Bavarian
These are the flames of love! And those are the third-degree burns of passion!
I am currently sitting in a very pleasant café inside Malmö city library, which offers free wifi, and have been in this lovely city for just under two weeks. (Quel coincidence!) We found a Swedish translation of an old children's book I have fond memories of, and Shadow is amused at the quaint 1950s wording and illustrations it contains. Turns out it was made into a movie as well! A pity it is so difficult to hunt down a DVD.

I love this library. It has an extensive graphic novel and manga section, even the children's book section contains works in over a dozen different languages, and the cakes served in the café (for only 26 SEK a piece) taste superb. Also, it was one of the first Swedish libraries to include video games in its extensive catalogue. It's a shame I cannot get a library card without being a resident of either Sweden or nearby Copenhagen.

But yes, the train journey here was fairly uneventful—except that I discovered my recently-bought jacket provides even better insulation than I had anticipated. Also, apparently I look similar to some guy living in Fulda when I wear my blue π hoodie with the hood up.

A few days ago, I bought a paperback copy each of Asimov's Foundation and his Foundation and Empire from an Emmaus-owned second-hand shop. Fascinating stuff, which I had never read before.

I think I'll end it here, as we still have a trip to the local flea market ahead of us, and it's getting darker and thus chillier outside. See you around, LJers!

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Current Location: Sweden, Malmö, Stadsbiblioteket
Current Mood: chipper chipper
Current Music: Swedes chatting in that crazy moon language of theirs

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So tz119 is leaving for Sweden just under two weeks from now, and I'm coming along for a while. We'll be sending a removal van ahead with our stuff, and taking the train ourselves. I'll probably be flying back after a week or so, though. So we'll be back to a long-distance relationship once I get back here. I wonder how I'll cope with that. I know I'll definitely be visiting during Malmöfestivalen, so that should be fun.

On a techie note, I am now the proud owner of a BeBook Neo, whose built-in web browser software amazes me with its support for animated GIF on an electrophoretic display. What a wonderful way to drain my batteries! Ebook-wise, it supports a huge variety of formats such as DJVU, EPUB, MOBI, PDF, DOC, RTF, TXT, HTML, WOLF, LIT, CHM and FB2. I hadn't even heard of some of those before! Anyway, this is why I am now reading my way through Project Gutenberg and the Baen Free Library.

Getting back to the long-distance bit, I have decided that in the unlikely event of neither of my education choices working out, I'll look into enrolling in a Swedish language course in Malmö or Lund.
That's it for now. I'm going to bed, because it's too bloody late.

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkⅠ.Ⅱ/
Current Mood: sleepy sleepy

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Happy belated new year to you all!
So I am back home again, having spent the holidays on the Canary Islands (La Palma, to be specific—a lovely place). I have lived here since June 2010, when my move from Oxfordshire took place. Several months later, I decided that one properly working laptop for two net-addicted geeks was one too few, and decided to reactivate my aging Athlon X2-4400+ based tower PC. By "reactivate" I mean installing a WinXP and Ubuntu 10.10 dual-boot system. By now, I barely use the WinXP part anymore - not least because it crashes whenever more than one hard drive is connected at boot-up.
The house I live in (which I've designated /home/bugarupMkⅠ.Ⅱ/) is now a semi-detached one again. Before around spring 2010, my family owned both this and the house sharing a wall with it, and had knocked said wall down to create a larger mansion with two entrances for our family of six. As my parents have decided to split up, however, they re-erected the wall in between, and my mother is now living next door with my younger siblings. This house is inhabited solely by my dad, tz119 and li'l old me. Last I heard, my mother is in a new relationship and has therefore requested a divorce. This surprised me a little.
Oh, also Shadow and I went on a week's trip to Tokyo on less than 48 hours' notice in mid- to late September. Our target was 例大祭SP at Tokyo Big Sight on the 19th, but we also did plenty of shopping in Akihabara, at Book-Off and at 100-yen shops (almost enough to require an extra suitcase, luckily we managed to avoid that). We spent the nights in manga cafés and Shibuya love hotels, leaving our luggage in coin lockers during the day whenever dragging it around seemed too inconvenient. It was a glorious time, and surprisingly warm for the time of year. Shadow remarked that the cicadas were noisier than she'd imagined them from Japanese TV. A pity we couldn't meet up with naruki_oni, assuming he's still in the area.
I am still mainly active on Facebook and Twitter. Education-wise, I am going to apply in Germany this year—Universität Tübingen, to be precise. I will be going for a combination of Japanese and either general or computational linguistics. Should my application not be accepted, I plan on applying for a professional education in electronics instead. The German space agency, based not too far from here, are looking for applicants to start every September, I hear.
That pretty much covers most of the news from me, except that my older sister, now living in Hamburg, tells me I will become an uncle this year. She's still trying to decide on a name for her son, but reportedly it will be something Scandinavian-inspired. There go my ideas of Sergey and Raúl out the window.

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkⅠ.Ⅱ/
Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music: U - Little My Star

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Conveniently, my pet hypothesis also explains why university library books are so rarely on the shelves where they should be according to the catalogues ...

Don"t tell the Secret Masters!Collapse )

The savings on transport cost justify the whole ordeal. Students are a dime a dozen, after all.

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Current Mood: artistic artistic

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I guess I'm growing old.

Also, there's a friends-only post up today. An update on my real-life status, as much as there is one.

Edit: Oh, and happy new year, for those keeping count. ;)

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkV/
Current Mood: blah blah
Current Music: T.M. Revolution - Resonance

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Rathergood.com sends Seasoning's Greetings, courtesy of the Rev. drjon, who certainly represents An Authority To Be Harkened To on these matters.

But enough Sheeping of the Memes. tz119 is currently asleep, while I am thawing this year's minimum-effort feast from the local supermarket. Maybe we'll have some rice with it. All in all, we have slightly more important things to do than dedicate the day to celebration, though we are pretty durn cheerful about it and have even done some minimal decorating for the occasion. Why, I myself slung the garbage bags over my shoulder while a festive red-and-white cap adorned my head. "Ho ho ho! Now, are you a recyclable or a non-recyclable little junk pile?"

And while I do miss my family back home a none-too-small bit, I am sure they're having a good, if a wee bit less secular, time without me as well.

I think I'll put on some solstice carols by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society (though solstice is now in the past, it is never too early to practice) and clean a little more tonight. If I'm feeling especially musical, we could play some SingStar if I can get it hooked up, or as a last resort dig out the roll-up keyboard and saxophone which have been gathering large volumes of dust. Then I suppose we'll watch a movie. I feel like Dr. Horrible again, or possibly The Producers. Possibly we'll bake some cookies as well, but at 10 there'll be David Tennant on QI — an unmissable event, especially thanks to BBC iPlayer.

That's it for now.

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkV/
Current Mood: chipper chipper
Current Music: Paul and Storm - Forgettable Side-Dish

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First off, the great Paul and Storm are wishing you a very merry Christmas Eve Eve. Though it's been quite a stressful, soggy one for me so far, the song itself is excellent. Especially since it, much like the rest of this concept album, is in the style of They Might Be Giants (in fact, it sounds quite similar to Now it's over; from Flood, which is the only TMBG album I actually own so far (though I suspect the CD is no longer readable - I wasn't particularly careful with my belongings when I bought it, and am still trying to better myself). But yes, lovely song there. Go listen. Again. The kitten says so.

In other news, I'm getting some antibiotics again. Silly skin infections, why must you plague me so? I shall stop the trip into TMI country around here, and instead head towards the lovely linkage beckoning over yonder.

An E-Book Buyer's Guide to Privacy. This was posted almost immediately after I joined the EFF myself, lured by the promise of deliciously exclusive anniversary XKCD clothing. I have yet to regret my decision. I support the Open Rights Group; as well, but suspect a multilateral approach to digital rights may be the best thing for a wandering soul such as I. Hence I am also looking at the German FoeBuD e.V., but as my wallet has been slimming at a worrying pace this month, my donations to their cause may have to wait a little bit. Now I just have to wonder what equivalent national organisations exist in Japan, and whether they would take my funny moneys.

Speaking of good causes, I've been wanting to get started on Kiva's microloans for well over a year now, but always seem to conveniently forget when I find myself with a bit of positive cashflow. Quite annoying.

Also, I am a regular reader of the infamously glorious Pharyngula and slightly less infamous Bad Science, and have been for quite some time. If only I had another 24 hours in each day, I might even take ajollypyruvate up on her suggestion to finally join the Straight Dope Message Board one wonderful day.

In more LJ-centric reading, the great jwz has a post on Reading Facebook in a feedreader. Partially, at least, this is relevant to my interests. I say partially mostly because I don't actually mind the shoddy web interface most of the time, but also because I'm not much into using feedreaders. Yet. I do recognise its shininess, though, so linked it gets.

Anyway, I am also happy to report that the drama llama is slowly getting fed up with staring accusingly at our living room floor, and I've caught it staring longingly out the window. Perhaps it will soon time for it to move on.

In closing, Many belated Solstice Greetings! Surely it is never too early, though, to consider being one of the lucky few who shall be eaten first? The product behind the link seems like just the thing to turn you into a marginally more attractive morsel when the stars are finally right!

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkV/
Current Mood: busy busy
Current Music: Dog Sweater

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Trouble being, of course, that I'm a first-year undergrad, barely managing my introductory JavaAlice and Processing course as it is. And next year there'll be C and Unix to explore, which promises a lot of fun. So I suspect this is yet another case of me attempting to branch out too early, before I have decent roots in the ground. Shan't have a lot of Copious Spare Time anyway, but AI is definitely perceptible in the blurry nebula of my far-off interests, right next to kernels and the hardware-software interface. [Also, this year I've definitely been getting more interested in astronomy. Curse you, Makoto Shinkai, Mami Kashiwabara, Carl Sagan, Arthur C. Clarke, The Space Fellowship and Phil Plait! I don't want to save up for a telescope, durn it. (Admittedly, though, I'm in a pretty decent location for stargazing.)]

So yes, any book recommendations for me to shove on the shelves and look at longingly every so often? I should point out in advance that comments from non-friends will be screened. Cannot be bothered to check my defaults right now.

Also, the laptop randomly shut itself off while I was typing the entry. Thank the devs for saved drafts, I guess. In terms of causes I currently suspect:
  1. Partially crystallised battery due to AC woes as of late
  2. Dust in the fans leading to overheating
  3. Silly hardware incompatibilities
  4. Some of the above
  5. All of the above.

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Current Location: /home/bugarupMkV/
Current Music: ‽Cartel

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Geeks in Love. Both Neil Cicierega and Andrew Kepple continue to be Persons of Excellence in my book, and shall be spared their lives when I am finally crowned Chairthing of the Bored.

In other news, I still lack a red and white uniform, though the neckbeard at least is coming along nicely. Maybe the St. Nick Cabal will have to go without my services this orbital period. In any case, have some officially mandated holiday cheer on me.

Also, Paul and Storm. Also, buttsone of my favourite graphical artists, without whom etc.

In unrelated olds, Specifics continue to be important. Especially in extremely non-worksafe art commissions.

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Current Location: The Meme Workshop
Current Music: The hammering of innumerable forest elves on the Dark Lord's latest armour

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From the glorious jwz: Ceiling rabbi is watching you poop.

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Current Location: Jehova's Witness Protection Programme(TM)
Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: squeeeeeaky door seals.

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