New Blog

I have decided to wean myself off google services and migrate my blog to pelican. Pelican is a static website generator written in python with theme support. There are many advantages to using a static website. From my perspective the main advantage is that there are fewer things that can …

The UK General Election 2019

On Thursday many people in the UK get to vote for our government, for the third time in the last 4 years. Although I have lived here for more than half my life, I don't get to vote. I first came to the UK in the 90ies to study. Initially …

Preparing for another Strike

So we are going on strike again. In addition to the pension dispute which is still not resolved, we are also striking for better pay, working conditions, workload and the gender pay gap. Both issues are hugely important. But at the same time, it is ridiculous that they need to …

Research Software Engineering Conference, Birmingham 2019

Day 1 The conference started with a keynote by Andy Stanford-Clark, IBM UK Chief Technology Officer, on IoT, AI and Quantum Computing. The talk was very much fun. Although I must say I am still not convinced by IoT and I am somewhat worried by AI. The issue of needing …

AI Crystal Ball

I went to very interesting talk by Howard Covington from the Alan Turing Institute on Glimpsing our AI Future at the Bayes Centre, University of Edinburgh. The talk was very interesting albeit short on technical detail and maybe somewhat worrying. This is a summary of what stuck in my mind …

Brexit, People's Vote and Indy 2

We are still waiting to find out what Brexit might mean. Although, more and more voices from all directions are warning that it is going to be an absolute disaster that will affect everyone in the UK. I went to the People's Vote rally on Saturday in Edinburgh. It was …

FLOSSUK Conference

The FLOSSUK conference was held in Edinburgh last week. I attended the two day conference and the hacking the raspberry pi workshop. The conference was excellent. Abstracts of all talks are on the FLOSSUK website. What follows are some notes from the talks I particularly liked. Reproducible Build Talk by …

Strike for USS

We are now halfway through the 14 day strike over changes to our pension scheme. A further 14 days of strike are on the table depending on the progress of the negotiations between the union, the employers and the pension fund. At the centre of the dispute are different views …

Life in 2017

Life in 2017 is pretty shit. It's not that I can complain about anything in particular, it's more a general feeling of utter crapness on all sorts of levels - some expected, others totally unnecessary. Level I: Family life is busy and the boys keep us well occupied with their various …

Save the Royal High School

One of the finest buildings in Edinburgh - the former Royal High School - is under threat to be developed into an exclusive 5 star hotel. The Royal High School is one of the finest examples of the Greek Revival style and is of international importance. The economic merits of the proposed …