CompCon 2013

July 9, 2013

While I’m logged in to WordPress, I should perhaps blog about this…

For the past few months, myself and a bunch of us at the ANU Computer Science Students’ Association have been working on putting together a conference for Australian computer science students.

We present to you CompCon 2013, the inaugural national conference for computing students! It’s on 28-30 September 2013 at the ANU in Canberra.

We’re currently looking for speakers – we’ll be getting a CFP up tomorrow. We’re looking for talks and workshops on any computing-related topic, whether it be technical, research or professional/community.

We’re also looking for delegates – tickets will be going on sale this week at the early bird price of just $35, so get in quick!

For more info, check out the website (where you can sign up for the newsletter) or our Facebook and Twitter accounts.

A Belated New Year’s Resolution

February 16, 2013

“Now we’re going to have a quick get-to-know-you exercise. We’ll go around the room, and I’ll get each of you to just quickly introduce yourselves. What’s your name? Where are you from? What degree are you studying? And what’s the last book you’ve read?”

“I’m Andrew, I’m from Port Macquarie, doing my first year of Arts/Science, and, um, I don’t really read books that much, so I can’t actually remember to be honest.”

“Oh, don’t worry about that – we’ll fix that up by the end of this course!”

The above exchange was paraphrased from one of my first year politics tutorials.

It’s been three years since.

I still don’t read books. (Admittedly, I have read one book so far this year – Tim Keller’s excellent The Prodigal God – but that one’s rather short.)

As a highly-edumacated soon-to-be Arts graduate, I see this as a problem. (More pressingly, as a student who has just received, for the first time, a book review assignment, I have to learn to read these book things lest I be left unable to make sensible critique of World War II historiography.)

So, my New Year’s Resolution for 2013 – albeit, a resolution made in mid-February – is to read a book a week. Possibly two weeks, if I’m reading particularly heavy stuff.

My first target is a book I started reading a few months ago, but alas I stopped halfway – Hofstadter’s modern classic, Gödel, Escher, Bach.

We’ll see how we go with this.

A Test Post

March 12, 2009

Brendan Scott asked for this, so here it is…


October 22, 2007

I got a CPC464 the other day. Very nice, except the monitor’s a bit fuzzy and half the tapes don’t work. Otherwise, very cool. Except for the fact that you can’t just buy CPC464 tapes nowadays.


I’ve worked out I have > 24 hours of exams in the next four weeks. Starting in two days. Right now I’m blogging rather than studying.

Getting a new PC

Russell: ECC RAM would be nice, I’ll see if that’s an option. If it’s too expensive though I’d probably just take out an RTB warranty, as I can live without my machine for a few days.

wjl: sounds interesting. I’ll consider getting a barebone and buying the rest of the parts myself. Depends on price of course.

Leon: where would you get a $400 system like that from? Of course once I add in a bigger HDD and a non-integrated, non-nVidia graphics card, extra RAM, a new monitor, it would be closer to $1000.

For anyone wondering why I don’t want an nVidia graphics card, it’s because they’re the ones which are behind on the open-source drivers front. AMD’s announcement of specs to developers and their plan to help in the development of an accelerated open-source driver are the main reasons I want to support them.

Kathy Sierra

March 27, 2007

I heard about the abusive comments and death threats made to Kathy Sierra (note: contains rather graphic language) and would just like to say that I agree with her: death threats and other forms of violent threats are NOT protected speech.

Starting a teenagers forum

March 6, 2007

Well, I was bored recently and decided to start a forum for teenagers and funny stuff.

The name was inspired by a recent conversation I had where the words grass and bananas came up at the same time…

Broken English Considered Harmful

March 3, 2007

I really hate the way the English language is being misused nowadays, usually in teenagers’ blogs, SMSes and such.

Teenagers nowadays are talking in short bursts – does that mean that eventually they will only think in short bursts? The Ancient Greeks are well known for their philosophers and scientists, and Ancient Greek is a rather complex language (with five different tenses or something) – does the complexity of the language affect complexity of thought?

I know that other languages have qualities which are ‘strange’ to English speakers. In Chinese, my parents tell me, gender is less important. ‘He’ and ‘she’ aren’t really used, it’s more ‘person’. My mum, whose native language is Hokkien, *still* occasionally confuses male and female when speaking.

Does language affect thought? And if so, how will this generation’s use of language affect their thought?


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