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+ raelity bytes
+ paul e. [LJ]
+ Rain Graves
+ gnat [use Perl;]

Syndication feeds:
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My other sites:
- Silicon Valley Scale Modelers
- Book page for Programming Web Services With Perl

Other journals I read:
= DJ Adams
= rebecca blood
= Tim Bray
= Margaret Cho
= Warren Ellis
= Neil Gaiman
= Rafael Garcia-Suarez
= John Gorenfeld
= Lawrence Lessig
= Michael McCracken
= Jeff Vogel
= Norm Walsh
= Wil Wheaton

My journal at use.perl.org:
· Restless
· RPC-XML-0.57.tar.gz uploaded to PAUSE
· RPC-XML-0.56.tar.gz uploaded to PAUSE
· RPC-XML-0.55.tar.gz uploaded to PAUSE
· Forgive Me, Bretheren Monks
· Extry Extry: Winer Leaves the RSS Advisory Board
· RPC::XML 0.54 Uploaded
· The Books of Perl
· Good Intentions Don't Equal Good Results
· Errata Tracking Page for PWSWP
· Image::Size 2.992 Uploaded
· Props to Portland PM
· Lightning Talks
· OSCON, Tuesday
· OSCON Plans Now Set

» Blogs that link here

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We will never have true civilization until we have learned to recognize the rights of others. — Will Rogers

Five By Five 2003.01.02.01:30

Inspired by a "meme" that's floating around LiveJournal, here are some fives for the start of a new year:

Five Things I Learned in/from 2002:
  1. Our government can be just as scary as any socio-politcal commentary novel would portray it, just as bumbling and inefficient as any comedic troupe would portray it, and just as blatantly corrupt as the most rabid of third-party zealots would portray it.
  2. Not everyone who claims to be my friend really is, but I lack the clarity of mind and purpose to know for certain whom, especially when two or more sides are in direct opposition. I'm also paranoid enough to worry about things that I am certain can't be true.
  3. I can say no, albeit with some internal conflict.
  4. I can't count on my talent as a programmer to keep me employed, even as I perform noteworthy feats; I can even get laid off within weeks of solving major system problems. I can, however, count on my talent to get me re-employed, even in a difficult economy.
  5. Writing a book is much more demanding than I thought it was, but also that much more rewarding.
Five Really Memorable Moments in 2002:
  1. Holding the first copy of my book in my hands.
  2. The shock, distress and immediate onslaught of depression upon being laid off by Red Hat.
  3. Attending my first real sex party, and seeing six people I knew there.
  4. Drinking at a pub in London, with the local Perl user group, at an event they threw together on my behalf.
  5. Learning basic Tango.
Five "Really Bad Things" from 2002:
  1. Falling prey to a pair of con-artists in the SoHo district of London. It's not the money I lost (only £40), it was the embarassment of falling for their scam.
  2. The 2002 elections, and the change in the balance of power they brought. Also, the passing of legislation that erodes freedoms and moves us more towards a police-state, which was made easier by negligible resistence from the Democrats (who, frankly, deserved every loss they were handed in November).
  3. Losing two friends and one distant family member. The family member (an in-law, to be clear) was natural causes. One friend was a heart attack, an unusual exit given his age. And one friend's death was accidental, and it hurt the most, as I had only just made her acquaintance I was eagerly looking forward to knowing her so much better.
  4. Losing my job, and not finding one as fast as I thought I would. Also, seeing the job I really wanted dissolve as the company implemented lay-offs.
  5. Having grudgingly chosen to take on more debt, as a result of being unemployed. I'd been debt-free (save for my car payments) for over a year at this point.
Five Things I Hope to Accomplish in 2003:
  1. Listen to more classical music. I've recently started doing this, and I realize how I'd forgotten the relaxation and comfort it brings me. I hope to "discover" a new composer or significant composition at least once a month, to expand my range of knowledge from just what I currently own on CD.
  2. Write another book.
  3. Get to know certain people much better than I currently do. I say this in lieu of having a "Five People I Want to Know Better" list because (a) I don't want to shine a spotlight on the particular people, and (b) I don't want to limit myself to just five :-).
  4. Improve my life, even if only somewhat. This covers health, diet, taking care of my apartment, several things. I don't expect to have a total turn-around in the span of just a year. I simply want to be able to look back in 365 days and see an improvement. That's all.
  5. Travel more. Of course, I'm limited by the amount of time off I'll have from my work, but I want to visit at least one place this year that I've not yet been to.
Five Things I Hope to Avoid in 2003:
  1. Falling back into any serious level of depression.
  2. Re-gaining any of the weight I've lost thus far.
  3. Increasing my personal debt.
  4. Wasted evenings. I have a habit of just wasting an entire evening watching TV or playing games, when what I really want to do is work on my hobbies or read, or program. I hope to cut back on this significantly.
  5. Other people's drama. I can still be a friend to my friends, and an aid to people I can (reasonably) help (within my means). But I can do these things without becoming entangled.
# amazon () [/thoughts]

Who Am I:
Randy J. Ray
Software Engineer


Buy my book!

Programming Web Services with Perl

I've also contributed three chapters to:

Computer Science & Perl Programming

Category quick-links:


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30 31          

Apr May Jun
Jul Aug Sep
Oct Nov Dec

Reading and Re-reading
· The Annotated Thursday: G.K. Chesterton's The Man Who Would Be Thursday, G.K. Chesterton, Martin Gardner
· The Feeling Good Handbook, David D. Burns
· Organizing From the Inside Out, Julie Morgenstern
· XML Schema, Eric Van Der Vlist
· BEEP: The Definitive Guide, Marshall T. Rose

High in the queue
· Silk, Caitlin R. Kiernan
· Coldheart Canyon, Clive Barker
· Idoru, William Gibson
· Shared Source CLI Essentials, David Stutz, Ted Neward, Geoff Shilling

Recently finished
· Planetary Vol. 3: Leaving the 20th Century, Warren Ellis, et al

Recommended favorites
· The Cowboy Wally Show, Kyle Baker
· Lost Souls, Poppy Z. Brite
· The Alienist, Caleb Carr
· Quarantine, Greg Egan
· The Authority: Relentless, Warren Ellis et al.
· Planetary: All Over the World and Other..., Warren Ellis et al.
· American Gods, Neil Gaiman
· Good Omens, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
· Neuromancer, William Gibson
· A Philosophical Investigation, Philip Kerr
· Say You Want a Revolution (The Invisibles, Book 1), Grant Morrison et al
· You Are Worthless: Depressing Nuggets of..., Oswald T. Pratt and Scott Dickers
· Cryptonomicon, Neil Stephenson
· Rising Stars : Born In Fire (Vol. 1), J. Michael Straczynski

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