This is, The Home Of Batch Processing

Home | Developers | Documents | Downloads | Mailing Lists | People | Support | Volunteer

 Home | Resume | Diary | CD Recommendations | Contact Me
Books | Music | Photography | Linux

Stu's Diary - September 1999


  • 29th September 1999
  • 28th September 1999
  • 27th September 1999
  • 25th September 1999
  • 24th September 1999

Wednesday, 30th September 1999

Well, if anything bad happened today, I didn't notice it ;-)  Worst was getting soaked walking to work and back, and that just doesn't compare!

Got back late from work, so no GNQS tonight.

Tuesday, 28th September 1999

The week just gets better and better.

Found out tonight that the head gasket in my car has gone.  If I'd driven it into work and back tomorrow, that would have been a new engine :(

Yesterday - no work.  Today - no car.  Tomorrow?  I'm not sure that I want to know.  Maybe I'd better just say in bed ;-)

No GNQS work tonight, really.  Answered a couple of emails.  Tomorrow night, tho, is free to further investigate our nice routing problem.

Monday, 27th September 1999

Went into work today to find out that HP have no more work for me.  My last day with them will be Friday 1st October.  Speaking personally, more than five days warning would have been nice.

I wonder if this means they're no longer interested in hiring me permanently? <g>

(Before anyone asks, no I've not been fired.  I work on short-term contracts, and my current contract runs out on Friday.  The project I was brought in to work on will shortly be delivered in-house, and now the code freeze is happening they no longer need me as senior developer).

This is a bit of a mixed blessing.  I'm hoping that I've got enough in the bank so that I can afford to take a bit more time off sooner rather than later.  It's Kristi's birthday on Monday, so I don't have to worry about getting the time off for that ;-)  And it means that I can put a lot more effort into GNQS for a week or two in between job hunting.

But I've just (after three years living here in Bristol) finally signed up for a night class (in Cardiff - it's a long story ;-).  The work at HP was the only work in Bristol I've ever managed, so odds are my next job is going to be away from here too :(  I don't want to miss the new class, and all that traveling will (once again) impact my ability to work on GNQS.  Maybe I'd better see if Orange are looking for UNIX programmers on short-term contract ...

To be honest, I'm not sure what will happen.  Changes to UK tax laws (IR35, for anyone familiar with this) mean that, from April next year, I'll be unable to continue as a freelancer anyway.  Well, maybe I'll be able to charge some of the difference to clients, but it is not clear whether many companies will be able to afford this.  A quick look at the usual job sites tonight indicated that there are bugger all contracts up for grabs atm, and it probably won't improve this year (sigh).

Worst case is that I'll have to go back to the 'orrible world of permie employment.  (Tried it once, wasn't too happy with the experience).  I'm not too worried about finding work; from what I've seen my skills are at least better than average, and I've a proven track record.  I guess it's fair to say that if anyone is interested in hiring me, a) you can find my c.v. here, and b) I'd love to hear from you.

Saturday, 25th September 1999

Spent the day trying to get GNQS compiled on Solaris/Intel 2.6.

I took advantage of the offer from Sun (must have been last year now) to get my hands on a copy of Solaris for a very low cost.  I seem to remember at the time that one of the reasons for the promotion was to get UNIX developers porting software to Solaris.

So, how come it ships without a usable C compiler?  Grrr.

Found a pre-compiled version of GCC on It actually works too!  GNQS compiles and installs just fine, but generates some compiler warnings.  Tried to clean them up.  Looks like some of the Solaris header files are the cause of some of the problems; more investigation is required.

Finally set things up so that is automagically refreshed from my desktop machine every night.  Now I don't have any excuses for letting the web site slide.

Friday, 24th September 1999

Well, first entry in quite a while!

This summer has been dominated by the work I've been doing for Hewlett Packard's Bristol site.  It's been interesting in places, but the hours have become just too much.  I'm currently trying to re-negotiate matters so that I can work part-time for them, leaving me plenty of time to do other things.

GNQS has been a bit slow this year.  I lost the debate on how to do GNQS v4, so we're now going for the incremental approach.  My plan is to keep good notes on what we do, why, and whether it worked or not.

General life has gone a lot better ;-)

Well, this time I have finished the overhaul of the GNQS web site, and will be uploading it at the weekend. 


This site ( is copyrighted. You can view the terms & conditions here.
You can contact the webmaster here.