Work

It’s been a fairly quiet week. I’ve been on support since Wednesday, and all I really got done for the team before that was finishing off the Pact testing I’d started. So now we can enable continuous deployment for our app, yay.

Nothing major has happened on support, other than the mimemagic gem being yanked from RubyGems and being replaced with a GPL’d version. Then that version got yanked. And replaced with a version which had a bug and crashed on start-up. And the maintainer blocked new contributors so I couldn’t report the issue. But eventually we were able to upgrade all our apps to a version with the fix which is MIT licensed.

And now a new version of Rails has been released dropping mimemagic entirely.

Books

This week I read:

  • Volume 5 of Black Wings of Cthulhu edited by S. T. Joshi, an anthology of modern Lovecraftian stories.

    I wasn’t too impressed with this one, the earlier stories didn’t really grip me and it seemed to take a while to get to the good stuff. The ones I particularly liked were:

    • In Bloom by Lynne Jamneck

      Where a woman turns into a plant-person, and doesn’t really mind at all.

    • A Question of Blood by David Hambling

      This takes a good Lovecraft trope—an aristocratic “well bred” type discovering something less-than-human in their ancestry—and brings it out of the distant past and into the present. It’s got a good Herbert West feel, which it quotes at the beginning.

    • The Organ of Chaos by Donald Tyson

      Humanity has fallen in some sort of apocalyptic event which drove everyone mad at the same time, and it’s taken a long while for fully sane people to re-emerge. They’re still a minority. The story follows two such sane people, travelling America trying to record what’s out there, as they stumble upon the home town of an insane cult.

    I don’t really like the tendency for modern Weird stories to include Lovecraft himself as a character. It feels like the author is trying to make the story Lovecraftian by association rather than by actually drawing upon the themes Lovecraft himself used.

Miscellaneous

My utility bills rose a few months ago, and rose again when I submitted my latest readings a few days ago. I went back through my bills and plotted the meter readings on a graph: I’ve used as much gas in the previous 3 months as I did in the 6 months before that!

Maybe my flat doesn’t need to be at 22.5C all the time…

I think I’ll take weekly readings, rather than quarterly, for a while as I try to bring my usage back down.

Roleplaying Games

Miscellaneous