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Life, the Universe, and Everything
A number of people have complained recently that my journal sounds more like a technical manual than a day to day account of life: something that most people see as a complaint, although it's something I was aware of and was just a change in how I used my journal for a while. I'm still not sure exactly what I want to do regarding that: I have a weblog that I don't really use for anything other than cross posting to here; perhaps I should make that into something that's entirely technical, and keep this for non technical posting.

I have had a lot of interest in more entries about my life, rather than my technical interests, so I'm going to switch veins a little bit, I think.

One thing that I haven't talked about much lately is how much I've been working with both girls to teach them how to use the computer. Alicia has been learning to type: slowly, but surely, and I think it's a great exercise for her. It's helping her spelling: Logjam highlights words she spells wrong, so she gets immediate feedback on how she's doing or when she misses something. (Of course, this did lead to her telling me that "Tagline" was misspelled: apparently it's tag-line?) Previously, we had a journal that Jess, Kristan and I updated for her, but now that she's updating regularly, she's got her own account, as aliciagayle. If you're interested in reading it, let me know, and you can be added to the friends list (assuming I know you well enough to know you're not some psycho stalker from Russia or something.) However, all posts will be friends only, for reasons that are relatively obvious: Alicia is not quite old enough that she can defend herself against the world knowing everything about her (which is a difficult concept for someone who lists everything in RDF).

Julie's tasks are a bit less complex: she's been playing a very out of date game called "Stickers", available from its homepage, which I found via the Linux for Kids project. She is absolutely loving it, although a lot of times I have to take the mouse and do things for her. Still, she enjoys playing at the computer, something that I'm happy about.

Anyway, things are good, the girls are doing well, and I'm turning them into geeks at the fastest rate possible ;)

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aww cute!! can I read it? I kept meaning to ask you guys about the other one too but never got around to it etc.
(What's RDF?)

I added you to Alicia's: as for xxemogrrlxx, it's a shared journal, and I have no clue how to add access. So, you can either give me step by step instructions, or you can wait for Jess to wake up, since she's the one who set it up like that ;)

RDF is Resource Description Framework: FOAF data from LJ is described in RDF, and so are some RSS feeds (RSS 1.0). It's my pet toy: the source of much of my recent geekery. and are each examples of such geekery. should work if you are a maintainer of that journal, as should (I don't remember who is considered a maintainer of a shared journal -- I've got a feeling it might be 'everyone with posting access'.)

I totally want to read Alicia's journal.

Sure, I'll read the kidster's journal. :-)

And I have a cool new idea for a programming language that she may want to beta-test. Well, if there's ever anything to beta. You know how my programs go. Silly rabbit. Programing's for kids.

(Seriously. Didja know that SmallTalk was initially invented to teach kids how to program? And from that, we got all of OOP.)

Added, and that's the last one I do before the morning, going to sleep now.

Her typing at the moment is pretty slow: about 10 characters per minute, although I'm sure it will quickly get faster as she starts to learn where the keys are. What is really on my wish list is getting a program where julie can just bang on the keyboard, and it turns the screen random colors/puts random pictures up. I had such a program in the DOS days when we first got our computer, but I don't know if anything like it still exists. (That, and sound would be good too, except I don't have speakers attached to the linux box, and it didn't seem like something mac people would have put together.)

Have you done any work yet, or is this another thing that's "in your head" as far as progress goes?

My dad totally made something like that for me when I was little. There were two. One did letters/numbers/symbols when you hit the key (I think it also had a mode where it would display a letter and you had to hit the right one), and the other one randomly made different colored and sized blobs.

Why that was entertaining, I do not know, but hey, I was like 2 years old. I'm also sure you've heard about that before.

It is totally, completely in my head. Which makes me somewhat skeptical about my ability to finish it. It's also, like, really really ambitious, so I kinda doubt that I have the necessary technical skill. But I can try, and I did just finish some course-evaluation software for Amherst, and I'm in the process of handing FA over to another programmer, so it's something else to do with my time.

Oh, and the idea is that you wouldn't have to type to program. ;-) ;-) I know graphical programming languages have been tried before, but they only suck because they suck.

I read your journal mostly for the technical discussions. If you decide to move these posts somewhere else (and if you don't mind), I'd like a link. :)

I'll probably create a syndicated feed for it if I do; having two locations with the same content is just proving a limiting factor in many ways (not the least of which is that half the people who want to read one part of my entries don't want the other half, so I never update cause I don't know which half is paying attention.)

I'll let you know.

If you're a geek then you're supposed to have a technical manual. Real Geeks(tm) don't have a life so it's not possible to have a journal detailing it.


I'd love to read Alicia's journal:)

Chris, I'd love to read Alicia's journal. Also, thanks for pointing out logjam's functionality -- I might end up using it (coupled with some other software) to help my handicapped niece communicate more effectively.

Been done for a while, but just marking this off so I remember: Done.

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hey chris.
I'm gonna add both you and alicia to my friends.

Ayup. Sounds good. I'll add you in a little bit, I'm not logged in as her at the moment.

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