Late last night, my life changed in three hours. A kid called in to Leo Laporte and asked what language he would recommend to a young person to get them started in programming. To my delight, he recommended Lisp. He said something to the effect of: “Don’t use C or C++, use a real man’s programming language, use Lisp.” This inspired me to get back into this wonderful language. It also dovetails nicely into something else about which I wanted to rant: why I don’t want to go back to college.
I write this article under strange circumstances. On Sunday, we had a thunderstorm. It quickly escalated into a very severe storm, with wild lightning and mad thunder. With a crash, the power blinked off, and the phone went dead, and did not return. The net went with it. A hum filled the air, coming in through the open windows. A 12,000-volt power line had fallen to the ground. Sparks and arcs burst forth as the rain continued to fall, thunder and lightning continuing as well. The air resonated with the loud 60 hertz hum, and the awful sounds of the electricity sounded truly terrifying. I felt afraid to touch anything metal. From the depths of my past, Metallica’s “Ride the Lightning” played in my head. I ran around the house to try to hear more, and returned to the computer room. The brutal sounds continued. I hoped my hair wouldn’t start standing on end. Visions of electric death filled my head, and I smelled some smoke.
I celebrated my 32nd birthday on the 14th. My cousin gave me some Taza Chocolate. I unwrapped a hand-wrapped packet containing two elegant discs. I slowly ate a disc throughout the course of the evening, and felt quite fine – a real smooth buzz. I ordered a case upon returning home. First class!
Like a woman, a netbook has many layers and mysteries. I have solved two more I felt worthy of documenting as I freely write from my armchair in the living room.
the blind have had notetakers for years. i remember first purchasing a braille ‘n speak, a wonderful beloved device about the size of a vhs tape. it used a braille keyboard and had acceptable (imho) speech. more importantly, it just worked. you turned it on, and could immediately start writing. the thing worked – no crashes, no needing to reload the software in the middle of an important edit, etc.