Just a Gwai Lo

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Updated: 7 hours 22 min ago

I Came Second Place In Helping People Out for the 504 Streetcar

Sat, 12/01/2018 - 17:36

The Transit app's GO feature is a "game" where you help with their real-time data.

Published by Richard on December 1st, 2018

Three Years In My Downtown Toronto Apartment

Sat, 12/01/2018 - 14:47

Life in my tiny apartment has been good.

Published by Richard on December 1st, 2018

Thoughts on on the King St. Pilot after One Year

Mon, 11/26/2018 - 22:08

The King St. Transit Pilot marks one year in existence, and I think it was a success at the outset.

Published by Richard on November 26th, 2018

I’ve seen the Edward Burtynsky and Jennifer Baichwal trilogy

Thu, 11/22/2018 - 22:27

In quick succession, I watched Manufactured Landscapes, Watermark, and Anthropocene.

Published by Richard on November 22nd, 2018

Remembrance Day at Fort York

Sun, 11/11/2018 - 17:43

Some snapshots of a beautiful and vivid ceremony on the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI.

Published by Richard on November 11th, 2018

Three Years in Toronto

Wed, 10/31/2018 - 19:50

Some reflections on the time spent alone in Canada's biggest and therefore best city.

Published by Richard on October 31st, 2018

I'm an Opening Day Member of Toronto's Museum of Contemporary Art

Tue, 10/23/2018 - 16:49

Toronto's Museum of Contemporary Art is an affordable breath of fresh air for a general audience (until we get the Museum of Toronto).

Published by Richard on October 23rd, 2018

Listening to Albums

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 22:38

It has been easy to forget about albums, the collection of songs that would encompass an entire CD, and vinyl and cassettes before that, with the fractured attention in the online era. It has also been easy to forget about record stores, since they have largely disappeared outside of the occasional vinyl record shop these days. Every now and then, an artist will promote their album, asking us to buy it on such and such a date, when I have, for a few years now, been a subscriber to Apple Music, giving me unlimited access to whatever they happen to have on file.

Published by Richard on October 16th, 2018

I've Read From A Book for 6 Months Straight

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 01:30

A new job in a new city made it difficult to find time to read books in the last couple of years. I set out to read from a book every day from now on.

Published by Richard on October 15th, 2018

Fantasy Pools

Sun, 10/14/2018 - 21:47

Have I told you that I’m part of a baseball fantasy pool? While growing up, I played and watched baseball, and being one of the taller players, naturally I was assigned first base. I distinctly remember the time I sat on the family home’s deck and told my parents I wanted to focus on basketball instead, which was the right decision. I would cheer for the Blue Jays, and now that I think about it, the 1994 strike coupled with graduating high school and focusing on my floundering at university (which I would recover from), I lost interest.

Published by Richard on October 14th, 2018

Three Plants

Sat, 10/13/2018 - 21:53

The three other life forms in my apartment.

Published by Richard on October 13th, 2018

UNO Synth Day 2

Fri, 10/12/2018 - 21:45

The real magic from the UNO Synth will come not from being a standalone synthesizer but rather an instrument in an orchestra. After playing around with modifying the preset sounds and playing the demo patterns at lunchtime today, I figured out how to use the sequencer without the aid of the manual, and the video tutorial is very good. I have watched the tutorial on the sequencer, and the possibilities are exciting.

Published by Richard on October 12th, 2018

New Arrival: The UNO Synth

Thu, 10/11/2018 - 21:13

Toronto held a synthesizer expo in August of this year, and it coincided with a pager duty shift. That meant I was able to visit, but I couldn't hang around it long. The purpose of my attendance was to gather information, and to see if Teenage Engineering would have a booth. They did not. I talked to the Roland folks, and mentioned that I was new to synths, and told them I was looking at the Pocket Operator series.

Published by Richard on October 11th, 2018

How I Use OmniFocus Notes

Wed, 10/10/2018 - 11:38

I use OmniFocus to keep track of what needs to be done on an individual level. All sorts of projects, from buying and framing art to starting hobbies to making notes about things to look up later get jotted down in OF. If I was ever lacking in things to do, that is no longer the case, with almost 900 open actions in 117 projects.

Published by Richard on October 10th, 2018

Ward 10 (Spadina-Fort York) All-Candidates' Meeting

Tue, 10/09/2018 - 23:25

Spadina-Fort York is a federal riding, a provincial riding, and a Toronto ward, and the boundaries are identical. Being from British Columbia, and having spent most of my adulthood in Vancouver (which does not have a ward system), the riding boundaries do not match at all. The recent changes to the wards in Toronto (from 44 to a proposed 47 to an eventual 25) set the wards to match the provincial (and therefore federal) ridings.

Published by Richard on October 9th, 2018

I Own a SodaStream

Mon, 10/08/2018 - 20:19

For years (really, years and years), I was and still am a loyal Coca-Cola drinker. At every job, it would take about a week for colleagues to realize just how often I drank it. There haven't been many days that have gone by where I haven't had a Coke, which I alternate between thinking of as a mark of shame and shrugging off as an aspect of my personality. I'm not saying I can tell the difference in a blind taste test, but Pepsi cola lacks the zing that Coca-Cola has.

Published by Richard on October 8th, 2018

My Sunday Routine

Sun, 10/07/2018 - 19:14

Back when I thought I wanted to be a sysadmin, I read Time Management for System Administrators by Thomas A. Limoncelli. The sections that appealed to me the most were about routines. The routine of his that I always remember is that he gasses up his car on Sundays. Despite being a believer in the cashless society, the thing I always do now on Sundays is get cash. That way I don't have to think about it for another week.

Published by Richard on October 7th, 2018


Sat, 10/06/2018 - 14:02

The Toronto Flower Market takes place a few times during the summer, and I try to buy something there each time to brighten up my apartment.

Published by Richard on October 6th, 2018

Three Years at Acquia

Fri, 10/05/2018 - 19:07

Today marks my third anniversary of working at Acquia. This job has been more stressful than I imagined it but also with more laughs, learning and love than I imagined. Today was a good example, where an issue affected multiple customers and I ended up being the communications lead for the problem, but through teamwork and empathy we each played our part and kept things as light as possible while we figured out what was wrong.

Published by Richard on October 5th, 2018

It’s Relatively Cheap to Get Started With Making New Sounds

Thu, 10/04/2018 - 21:37

I’m not really sure what I was doing at Drone:Klub:21 beyond listening to synthesized music coming at me from all directions. It was pretty cool seeing men (let’s face it) agree on a key and a tempo and make new sounds from electrons, but I’m one of three “audience members” in four chairs provided. There were three times as many performers as listeners.

Published by Richard on October 4th, 2018