James Mead by James Mead

Week 268

A somewhat belated account of last week’s happenings…

At the beginning of the week, we had the decorators in at GFRHQ so they could finish re-painting the walls and ceiling damaged by the leak from the office upstairs. To give them space to work, we decided to head over to the South Bank for the day – to the Royal Festival Hall initially and then to the café at the British Film Institute.

For the first half of the week I was struck down with a second bout of the dreaded lurgi which meant I didn’t get much done and Chris was left to move the office furniture back into position all on his ownsome - thanks, Chris!

One happy outcome of all the office furniture shuffling was that Tom Stuart noticed a bit of wall (previously hidden by large cupboards) that would make a great projector screen. We’re hoping we can get rid of some of the cupboards and turn this area into a more permanent “cinema” zone.

The day we worked on the South Bank, Chris painstakingly wrote up his notes on This week in Indie Web. Much of this material was gleaned from difficult to parse IRC logs. The result looks like a great resource for the Indie Web community.

Later in the week, Chris was assigned our weekly book-keeping task by Harmonia. He decided to do some work to make this task easier and developed a JavaScript bookmarklet to run on a FreeAgent transaction explanation page. The script will automatically set the VAT rate, the category and the description for some of our recurring transactions. We plan to add to the list of rules each time we come across a new recurring transaction.

I spent most of the latter part of the week trying to draw a bit of a line under the work I’d been doing on the method_log project. I started trying to write a blog post, but progress was very slow – I’ve definitely got a bit of a mental block on writing for public consumption. Hopefully this is something I can get better at if I force myself to do it more regularly.

We had few friends working in the office again this week. One new face was Chris Lowis who arrived on Thursday morning bearing some delicious custard tarts. FutureLearn give Chris a day a fortnight to continue his W3C Web Audio work. Over lunch we chatted about blogging in general and how Chris is using TinyLetter to publish his Web Audio Weekly newsletter. In the afternoon he demonstrated a little Web Audio web app and participated in a W3C conference call as the note-taker, so I was able to see their IRC/tele-conference bridge in action.

Tom Stuart also gave us a quick demo of some work he’s been doing on an interactive visualization of lambda calculus in an HTML page using JavaScript and backbone.js – it’s devilishly complicated, but very impressive! Tom also suggested having a regular event where we invite fellow techies around to demo some of their work-in-progress in an informal setting. The idea would be to get early and friendly feedback. If this is something that sounds of interest to you, do get in touch. It’s definitely the kind of thing we’d like to host in our office.

After sampling some of Chris’ birthday ale from the Ramsgate Brewery we retired to the Old Kings Head for more beer and chat. Amongst other things, we talked about money and how it works, which reminded about a book I want to read: Where Does Money Come From?.

Anyway, that’s your lot for now.

– James.

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