Just experienced the incredible, joyous, wonderful Florence + the Machine in Vancouver. Amazing. I’m officially part of Miss Haversham’s cult now!

I’ve been a fan for ages; their music just really lifts me up. This is the first time I’ve seen them live, and they really blew me away - what a great show!

This was their first tour post-covid, so included some emotional tales about how the pandemic affected people who’s vocation - and living - comes from performing live music.


Things I learned from this gig:

  • Rogers Arena is a pretty good venue, especially if you’re on the floor, near the front.
  • Make a playlist after each gig with the setlist, so that you can relive the gig. I’ve been making these on YouTube Music, usually with the setlist from https://www.setlist.fm …
Continue reading “Review: Florence + the Machine Gig, Vancouver 2022”

In this When Will We Learn post, Drew DeVault talks about supply chain attacks against language package managers (npm, PyPI, cargo, etc…​) - and compares them to official Linux distribution repositories (deb, rpm, etc…​).

The conclusion drawn was:

The correct way to ship packages is with your distribution’s package manager. These have a separate review step, completely side-stepping typo-squatting, establishing a long-term relationship of trust between the vendor and the distribution packagers, and providing a dispassionate third-party to act as an intermediary between users and vendors. Furthermore, they offer stable distributions which can be relied upon for an extended period of time, provide cohesive whole-system integration testing, and unified patch distribution and CVE notifications for your entire system.

I think I agree with this, essentially. We do need to change the way we do …

Continue reading “Supply Chain Attacks & Package Managers - a Solution?”

Good, but I didn’t feel very engaged with the music.

I was in the Lower Orchestra section, in the 16th row - and pretty tired, that Monday evening. I like their music, but I found myself drifting off, thinking about other things.

Thinking much at all is a bad sign for me when I’m watching live music. I usually find it very engrossing & uplifting - ideally, I get carried away by the music and exist fully in the moment for the duration. That didn’t happen for me at this gig. I felt rather disconnected from the performance - perhaps because it felt like it was happening far away?

Photo from my seat, .
Figure 1. The view from my seat


Things I learned from this gig:

  • Only go and see people if you would listen to their stuff for an hour or two without …
Continue reading “Review: Sigur Rós World Tour, Vancouver 2022”

I’ve been using Linux exclusively for ~15 yrs. I’ve recently started a fantastic new job – the only wrinkle was that it came with a Windows 10 laptop. This is my first time using Windows after a 15-year break. This is how it’s been going.

First Impressions

Windows is such a mess! It’s sort of shocking how much of a mess it is. Desktop Linux is often criticized for this, but Windows is much worse, somehow! It’s really inconsistent. Half of it is “new” UI and half of it is old Win32/GDI type UI - just as bad as KDE/GTK - except worse, because you can’t configure them to use the same theme. Also, when you install a Linux distribution, it’ll start off either all KDE or all GTK, or whatever - but with Windows …

Continue reading “Using Windows after 15 years on Linux”

The last thing we need right now is new fossil fuel projects. Send a message to Minister Steven Guilbeault and key cabinet ministers, calling on them to reject the Bay Du Nord project and investing in a just transition instead: https://act.leadnow.ca/bay-du-nord-ett/

This is what I wrote, if anyone wants some ideas:

To Minister Guilbeault and cabinet,

I’m writing to you to urge you to reject the Bay du Nord offshore drilling project.

Oil and Gas is ~26% of Canada’s emissions - AND this is ONLY the emissions from production - not the emissions from burning all that fuel for transport, heating etc…​ the Oil and Gas industry needs to go away, ASAP. Fossil fuels must stay in the ground to have any chance of getting to zero.

No approvals for new fossil fuel extraction projects, ever …

Continue reading “Write to Minister Guilbeault Opposing Bay Du Nord Offshore Oil Development”

A spellbinding & breathtaking evening, with a couple of surprising jewels, in a night full of riches.

Just got back from seeing Nick Cave and Warren Ellis in Vancouver. What a joy and a privilege! I’ve missed live music so much - what an incredible night!

This is a video from that night in Vancouver, of their cover of Cosmic Dancer, which was a fantastic surprise for me. That video was taken by someone standing just in front of me!

We got two encores. The first one was Hollywood, Henry Lee & Girl in Amber - all great. Then they cleared the stage and lots of people left. Then we got a second encore!

This is Into My Arms, which he did with just the amazing backing singers, as a second encore, after half the audience had left thinking it was done - one …

Continue reading “Review: Nick Cave & Warren Ellis Gig, Vancouver 2022”

The Python Black formatter outputs to stderr, not stdout

Windows PowerShell does support aliases, but doesn't support commands with parameters in aliases - you have to create a function

How to template out JSON in Bash

I have three different text editors, that I use for three distinct use cases.

I’m a software developer, so I basically edit text files for a living, and the editing software that I use for this is fairly important to me.


For any substantial editing, either for work, or for personal projects, I currently use Visual Studio Code - generally known as “vscode”. It’s good enough: it’s extremely actively developed, so always up to date, and it has all the plug-ins you could ever want. Performance is good enough, once it’s started up.

I tend to just start my project editor once and leave it open permanently.

I’m still aggrieved that Microsoft killed the Atom editor when they bought GitHub, despite promising that they wouldn’t. It was a better editor - better UX, Tree-sitter, etc …

Continue reading “Three Editor Use Cases”