Sat, 27 Aug 2005
.: pronunciation is important ::

I finally got to meet a few people I hadn't met before, including aseigo. He's taller than I expected, at least. According to him, I don't look anything like what he thought I'd look like, but I sound exactly the way he thought I would. Along with Thomas Zander and Rainer Endres (and someone else whose name I can't remember) we left at around 1AM to go find a bar. We asked a couple of locals where a good place to get a drink would be, and they gave us some directions and told us to look for the 'Marabu' or something similar. After about thirty seconds of walking, aseigo was already calling it the 'caribou' and I had to correct him. Once we arrived in the area that they said it would be at, there was a building with with a bright neon pink heart sign that said 'Maribé.'

At this point, before entering, we had a couple of theories. One that we figured was likely was that the locals had sent us to a gay bar, which would have amused us. Rainer didn't want to go in, but I ventured in with aseigo and Thomas and the kid whose name I can't remember; I saw a bar with alcohol behind it and a bartender, so I went back to the door and motioned to Rainer that it was ok, it was just a bar, and everything looked fine.

Rainer took a step in and then decided that he was going to go to the restaurant next door instead; I hadn't eaten or had anything to drink since much earlier, so I decided to join Rainer instead of staying with the other guys. Rainer ordered a beer, and I got a soda. About fifteen minutes later, aseigo and crew came out to join us and they were laughing pretty hard.

Apparently, the Maribé is actually a brothel.

I think that even funnier than finding that out (which was pretty funny) was the fact that aseigo even saw the sign by the stairs that said 'Services' with a man and a woman on it, and he didn't get it until the woman told him that the price was 20 EUR.

Update: It's worth noting that the Marabu was actually right next door to the restaurant that Rainer and I decided to go to; aseigo just couldn't resist the pink neon heart sign.

[04:13] | [personal] | # | G
Thu, 25 Aug 2005
.: proxima ::

Spain is pretty damned cool.

Well, ok, more accurately, Spanish women are pretty damned cool. I'm pretty sure I've seen more cleavage since I landed in Madrid than I have since I moved to Boston.

The trip has been exciting so far. There were two legs on the flight over - the stopover in Frankfurt was pretty uneventful. I was surprised by the fact that Lufthansa provided metal utensils for the in-flight meals; it impressed me, but at the same time, I had a realization. I shouldn't be impressed by metal silverware; I should be disappointed by plastic silverware. And on the flight from Frankfurt to Madrid, I was depressed - I guess the metal silverware is only for the cross-Atlantic flights. Anyway, once I landed, I wasn't too worried about navigating the Frankfurt airport; I've been there before (the last time I came to a KDE conference, actually) and in general, I find airports to be reasonably simple to navigate, even if you don't speak the language.

The airport in Madrid was also pretty easy; figuring out how to get on the metro was not too hard, but it took a bit more walking than I expected it would. Once I was on the subway, I figured out pretty quickly that 'proxima' is Spanish for 'next' and I was set. The route that I had planned out actually worked exactly as I hoped it would. I got off the metro at the right stop for the train station and almost bought a ticket for the right train on the wrong day. Once I made it to the train, I figured I was pretty close to safe.

The train arrived exactly when expected, and there were lots of taxis outside of the train station waiting for us, which was good. The taxi driver I rode with didn't speak much English and had no idea where the place I wanted to go happened to be; he got directions from the central office, though, and somehow I managed to find the student residence where most of us are staying.

That's the last of this entry - there's more to follow, I promise.

[20:31] | [personal] | # | G
Wed, 24 Aug 2005
.: akademy 2005 ::

Tomorrow is going to be interesting, I think.

I'm landing in an airport I've never been to, in a country where I don't speak the native language, and I have to make it from the airport to the train station (which is not attached to the airport, but is at least two subway stops away). Once the train arrives at the destination, I still have to make it from the train station to the place I'm actually staying, which is of course not exactly close by.

Since I'll be in Spain and my phone won't work there, the best way to contact me is either IM or email; I won't be getting any voicemails until September 3 at the earliest.

[05:27] | [personal] | # | G
Fri, 12 Aug 2005
.: you exactly told me it was a magical goodies creator ::

Adam: I have a tax-free holiday every day of the week; it's called "Living in New Hampshire."

(There's no sales tax in this state, for the readers out there who are confused.)

Work on the tdfx EXA support is still ongoing; I have the framebuffer addresses properly set up now, but my blit and solid fill routines are completely hosed. At least I have an idea of how things are *supposed* to work now.

[12:12] | [tech] | # | G
Wed, 10 Aug 2005
.: way to go, sparks, you broke the monitor and you're dead ::

Lots of things going on lately.

First off, most recently, I started hacking on EXA support for the tdfx driver - it doesn't do much yet, except for display things wrong and crash, but hopefully I'm not too far from it working properly.

Second, I finally coerced a graphic designer friend of mine into coming up with a new layout for my site. It's not live yet, because I'm not quite happy with it, but it's pretty close to ready (I think) - take a look and let me know what you think. (Yeah, I know, it's slow. It's using multiple layers of translucent PNGs, some of which are position: fixed. I prefer to think of it as "an opportunity for KHTML optimization.")

Third, I have been hacking on the Qt4 BitTorrent client from Andreas, and it's really cool. There's a very small, slow memory leak in it, though, which I have to find and destroy.

Other than that, not too much going on. I'm excited about aKademy - only a couple of weeks away!

[13:33] | [tech] | # | G