Latest Posts

  • The Meaning of “Chop Wood, Carry Water”

    The title of this site may seem a bit weird, unless you know the full Zen Proverb:

    Before Enlightenment chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment chop wood, carry water.

    And that might still be a bit weird…

    Enlightenment, in the buddhist sense, changes nothing on the outside, you still have to chop wood and carry water.

    This is not to say that I think I am in any way, shape or form, enlightened. Far from it. I wouldn’t even consider myself a buddhist, and I’m as run by my monkey mind as most people are. But The New Tantra, of which I have done only level 1, has offered a practical way of working with that.

    So, the phrase “Chop Wood, Carry Water” is a way to remind myself what needs to be done, both practically and spiritually. It is therefore deeply meaningful to me.

    There’s more good stuff about the proverb on Zenrevolution.

  • Website Ported to Jekyll

    I think Octopress is a bit too complex for my needs, so when something broke—again—I took the oportunity to port everything back to good old jekyll. I think I like it.

    For simplicity’s sake I just use the default jekyll templates with some minimal changes, and I’ve written a Makefile and a new_post.sh script to manage stuff, and that’s it.

    There are no doubt some things that broke in the process, but going through all 700+ blog posts is a bit much to ask, I think. I’ll be doing some grep‘ing to catch the worst, and then hope that’s good enough.

    And then the endless design tweaking begins…

  • Reinvigorate your iPhone

    My iPhone 5 is getting old, but I have given it a new lease on life.

    The battery didn’t last for a full day of normal use, and most frustratingly, it wouldn’t charge unless I jammed the connector in real hard, at just the right angle. Lately not even that was enough, sometimes it would indicate it was charging, but the battery would still be draining. It was so incredibly frustrating.

    Changing the battery myself was real easy, I got a new battery and toolkit from Produkt-Guiden.dk overnight, and just did it. Very easy.

    But the charging still got progressively worse, until yesterday, where I simply couldn’t jam the connector in so it would charge.

    That was incredibly annoying.

    So I started looking for a solution, and found a list of things to try. The 7th thing to try was “check for lint”, and, lo and behold, there was a lot of lint that I could clear out, and then the phone would charge and connect to the Mac and everything, just like new.

    Man did I feel stupid for not having found that out earlier. Would’ve saved me 2 months of frustration.

    So, when electronics give you grief, check for lint first. And also, don’t be afraid of servicing your phone, just get the right tools for it before you begin.

    Just imagine I had gone and bought a shiny new iPhone 6 just because of such a small thing…

  • The Joy of LaTeX

    By LaTeX I don’t mean just latex, but LaTeX, the document typesetting system originally developed by Leslie Lamport.

    Being unemployed means I write job applications quite a bit, and I’ve used Pages.app for it, but one day, which turned in to 2 days, I took the plunge and rewrote my Curriculum Vitae in LaTeX, both a Danish and an English version, using the absolutely excellent ModernCV class by Xavier Danaux. You can peek at the TeX sources in Danish and English if you wish.

    A thing I noticed after that was that my writing process became far less “cluttered”, for lack of a better word. I just write in my favourite programming text editor, and it feels so good. No more thinking about how it looks all the time, because I can’t see that. It is the wonderful freedom of not using a WYSIWYG system. It makes for better writing, and then LaTeX does its magic and makes it pretty when you compile it.

    LaTeX is a bona fide programming language, although a bit odd compared to modern languages — so many \commands — but in practice it feels more like a markup language like HTML, 99% of the time.

    I use MacTeX on Mac, but for Unix + X.org based platforms I’d use TeX Live and proTeXt on Windows. Install what fits your platform, then go and read a bit and you’re flying.

  • So, I got fired…

    I guess the euphemistic term is “laid off”, but I am not one for euphemisms.

    It is quite a gut punch to get fired like that, even on an otherwise gorgeous august monday morning. My boss had requested a “meeting” (complete with the quotes around) the friday before, and I had a bad feeling about it from the start. And I was right like a Jedi.

    There are no hard feelings whatsoever, either way. I can’t see how my boss could have kept me, but I also can’t explain the reasons in public without breaking confidentiality, so I won’t.

    I am on gardening leave with pay until november 30th, so I have some time to find a new job. And enough time to first think real deep and hard about what it is that I want.

    I now have a golden and wonderful opportunity, and I am going to make the most of it.

    And I have updated my Curriculum Vitae now too.

subscribe via RSS