2007 — 8 Mar: the hurrieder I go...

...the behinder I get, or something.

To alleviate my Bank's touching concern(s) about my debt with them, we drove into town to pay the damned bill. So now I know, for example, that Forbidden Planet are busily, and rather pointlessly, moving all their stock from one side of the shop to the other. I sympathise completely, of course.

I also now know that Scott Winant is a producer of genius, and a pretty fair director who can assemble a fine cast for an oddly engaging film called 'Til There Was You. It came as part of a "3 for £15" deal in HMV — well, it would have been a shame just to walk past, don't you think?

But mostly, I know I'm too tired to continue; it's after midnight, and the rest can easily wait 'Til1 the morning.

The unhappy (W)rite(r)s of Spring

If I'm to believe what I read in the Guardian: "a typical professional writer in Britain earns a third less than the national average wage of £23,400, and only a fifth of authors, such as those scripting soaps and others at the top of their tree, earn all their income from writing." Words fail me. For comparison, the median national income in the United States is $55,000 — just over £28,000.

Recent spree department

Mr Postie dropped off The best of technology writing edited by Brendan I Koerner. I'm not sure if the opening paragraph from this piece exactly qualifies, but it certainly caught my eye. See what you think:

Crying, while eating
I found a picture of my girlfriend on a Japanese fetish site the other day. Yes, that was definitely her, cramming a piece of sausage into her mouth as tears streamed down her face... This was all my fault. I'm the one who put that video online. They never told me Internet celebrity would be like this.

Daniel Engber

Also turning up yesterday, either grabbed in HMV or via Postie, were:

For my NZ ex-colleague, let me add that I've seen all but the Alan Bennett, and have read the playscript and listened to the radio version of that. All today's items (with the possible exception of the "technology writing" anthology) therefore receive the Mounce implied endorsement. Happier now, Ian?

Minor "Oops" department

  1. The new Epson V350 flatbed scanner's optical resolution is 4,800 dpi, not 4,000 dpi. (If you are reading, Big Bro: "Oops!") And it can also handle two mounted 35mm slides in one pass. Or a film strip of up to four images. But, of course, it has only a single scanning sensor, rather than one for each primary colour plus an infra-red one to subtract surface blemishes.
  2. The even newer Helios DVD player has proved slightly more capable than the DVDO iScan HD+ upscaler. The player can output its upscaled video signals via both the "HDMI" (digital) lead and the component (analogue) lead (simultaneously). Sadly, it seems the upscaler can only handle 480i/480p and 576i/576p via its component inputs. Since I would lose the will to live if I had to re-plumb the connections yet again before the summer, I shall therefore leave the Helios set to output 720p via HDMI to DVI on the upscaler, and watch the BBC's "true" HD broadcasts on the Humax satellite in mere 576p. I have far more material on standard definition DVDs to squeeze the maximum visual quality out of than there are likely to be BBC HD broadcasts worth watching...
    Sudden nasty thought: I could always try the VGA output, I guess.

Perhaps I should display a horribly retina-searing button in future?

Errors and Omissions Excepted
Day 125  


1  That damned apostrophe is going to play havoc with my DVD title collating sequence. I think I'll quietly ignore it.