me and jen

An open letter to makefesters, Liverpool MakeFest 2017

Last weekend on July 24th the third annual Liverpool MakeFest occured. The day ran smoothly, with little issues at the start. Out of all the exhibitors that were currated by us we only lost a few in the week leading up to it, these things happen but we had more than enough pitches, free standing exhbits and activities in marquees to fill the venue, Liverpool Central Library. It was such a good day that it’s taken me most of the week to come down from the high of it all and I don’t think I am properly there so please excuse the trumpets that are about to go off- rest assured I’m blowing not just my own- it’s only because it’s raining that I’ve decided to sit down and write, anyway… It’s been nearly seven months since Jen, Denise and myself started talking about it. Jen and I were meeting weekly in the first fews months, with the exception of April when we rested for a bit of it, and with exception to May and June when we sandwiched our regular day volunteering to organising MakeFest with late nights, early starts and weekends too. We did the first curation for…


Communicating DND, in a nice way.

A while ago I listened to Professor Daniel J Levitin give an LSE lecture, The Organised Mind: thinking straight in the age of information overload, which I’ve recommended to a number of people since. I’ll take this chance now to generally recommend a sub. to the LSE public lecture series to anyone reading this. Among many of the topics Levitin brought up, I’d like to write briefly about focus. Here’s what I do… I’ve adopted a number of productivity measures: checking emails, pomodoro techniques, kanban, and various others- even public academic writing accountability. Some have stuck, some haven’t, some are adopted ad-hoc. Here’s what I am going to do… I came away from the lecture knowing I needed to implement a daily “chunk” of time that exceeds anything else I do- something truly indulgent. I’ve opted for a three hour (minimum) chunk where anything that creates a notification is turned off. I’ve been trying to do it for a while, but I always break the chunk so I need to improve and I believe writing this post equals something I can hold myself to. My current full time concern is finishing my post-grad. thesis (like yesterday) whilst having other pursuits (that keep me sane) so I want a way to communicate when I begin a chunk as it won’t start at the same time…


WordPress horrorshow

So it’s with some regret that I login here to write a quick post and then I end up writing this post. For reasons common to most people who administer their own hosted wordpress I’ve only just ran some updates which has spoilt my blog- to some degree. The main spoil comes from the theme update which is now not the theme I installed but the theme on steroids, to the extent it has a lot of wasted features and some features I can’t find the off-switch for (see the image placeholder in the blog page). The regret is naturally not keeping my own site updated. <grumble /> Naturally this is a recurring theme which I’d rather do without. I’ve been convinced for a few months now that I will flatten this site and do away away with dependencies of trad. blogs (such as wordpress), php, mysql, plugins, updates, etc. and go for static site generation. I’ve been getting experience with Jekyll so that’s a likely contender. As is Hugo.