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[sticky post] Sep. 15th, 2015

For those just joining us, or those who've known me since before I made this entry... welcome to the unofficial home of Nidoking's brain! This is a place where I dump a lot of information every night that I really don't want to carry around in my head, or maybe I've got a CRAZY notion that it'll entertain someone other than me. *pfft* Like THAT ever happens. Anyway, feel free to take a look around and see what I've been up to recently.

The Audience Participation exercise to end all Audience Participation exercises (except those that come after it):
Respond to this entry with interview questions that you'd like me to answer in my daily posts. Each day, I'll pick a question (if there are any I haven't answered yet) and answer it in my daily post, then respond to the comment here with a link to that entry. So if there are already some comments down there, you should be able to hunt down the answers easily enough and see what I've already said about myself or the random topics these jokers like to post about. (My friends are great, but a little off their rockers at times. I, on the other hand, have never been ON my rocker to begin with, so nobody out-randoms me and gets away with it!)

I may add some links here to favorite entries of my past, but other than the Young Ones/Monty Python crossover I listed in my Memories, I can't think of any right now. Oh well. We'll see what happens as I remember more things.
Today's Bridge: Sam and Brent joined Ken and me, and we didn't quite finish a rubber, but not for lack of trying. Brent and I started by underbidding a game in spades - none of the possibilities for overtricks panned out, but ten tricks were laydown. I had a decent hand to defend 4H and chanced a double even though I knew Brent had nothing (he led the queen that he had), but Sam didn't pull trump and gave up one trick too many. They bid 3D and couldn't have taken fewer than eleven tricks if they'd tried, and then it became a battle of sacrifices. Ken bid 3S in an attempt to get us out of a 3H that probably would have been off one, ending up off four, and I bid 3C similarly trying to keep them out of a cheap two contract, off one and happy for it. There were a few other times when I bid Brent's power along with my own, but the opponents always ended up bidding over it and missing by one or two.

Today's Work: All of the build machines except mine are having problems. Mine's having problems, but I can work around them. I managed to test some stuff a bit, although I'm not convinced that the results worked quite right, and gave someone a hand with working past the thing that isn't working. It's almost a circus.

I've got enough to do this weekend that I probably can't afford to spend Saturday slacking off as usual. But I likely will. We'll see.

Probably one of my best bids ever

Today's Bridge: A significantly better day than yesterday. I'm mostly writing up one impressive hand, though.Collapse )

Today's Work: I jumped into a task that seemed like it should be simple, but was a bit more intricate than it originally appeared. I think I got it finished in the end, anyway. I'll have to find out through testing, which is a bit tricky at the moment. The difficult parts are yet to come.

I had fajitas tonight - it was probably too much, and the guacamole may not have been the freshest, but we'll see how I feel in the morning.

I even remembered to jog this morning.

Today's Bridge: I had S A-K-8-x H A-x D A-9-7-x C 4-3-2, Ken opened 2H to my left, and Jerry doubled. With visions of slam, I jumped to 3S, and he raised to 4S. Granted, we might be a bit shy point-wise, but Jerry should have plenty of power in the minors to make up his 16+, so I went for Blackwood to see if he had the ace of clubs. He didn't, so I stopped at 5S. What he actually had was S Q-3-2 H Q-x-x D K-x-x C A-K-J-9, which is a point short and a heart long of what I was expecting to get. Ken led his singleton club, so I took the ace, cashed the queen of spades, and crossed to the ace to lead my low heart. Ken took the king right away and led a diamond, which I let run to my ace. I cashed the ace of hearts, then crossed to the king of clubs (Ken threw a heart) to lead the queen of hearts. Dan C. threw a diamond, so I threw my club. With nothing better to do, I cashed the king of diamonds, on which Dan threw a club, then led a low diamond, on which he threw another club. Ken took the trick and led a heart, at which point I screwed up. I had S 3 C J-9 left in dummy and S K-8 D 9 left in hand, and had I let the heart run to my hand, I would have taken ten tricks no matter what. Instead, I ruffed with the three, and Dan overruffed, forcing my king. That left me with a losing diamond and the losing spade, off two. Then Dan started mocking me in the postmortem, as I was pointing out my own misreading of the bidding, and that pissed me off enough that I left the table. I haven't decided whether I feel like returning tomorrow or not.

Today's Work: We got our tasking for the next week and a half settled, and the building got hot enough that someone put in an emergency work order and got the A/C fixed. I guess there are lines that people aren't willing to cross at every level of government now.

I had a bit of time for LP work tonight, but not enough - I only managed to preview a video from a while back that I need to record commentary for. If I have another early day tomorrow, I may manage to get that done, but staying up late won't help with that.
Today's Bridge: We ended up in a few contracts that looked pretty bad from my side, but Jerry made them. The opponents made most of their contracts too, but missed a 4H that I think was makable with a diamond ruff or two.

Today's Work: We spent most of the day in a meeting and still need to meet again to figure out what we're doing next. It's about time we get back to doing real work.

I actually got to work really early today, only to realize that I'd forgotten to do my jogging exercises. Whoops. I knew I was leaving something out. And I had intended to increase the number of steps, too. Instead, I decreased them by 100%. I hate when that happens, although my feet prefer it that way.

I don't particularly like GOG Galaxy

This weekend's manga: Not many additions to series I was already collecting, but there were plenty of new series that sounded interesting enough, and most of them were two books in. Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders special edition 2, Alice in Murderland 5, Neo Parasyte f, Cells at Work 1-2, Complex Age 1-2, Please Tell Me Galko-Chan 2, Kiniro Mosaic 1, Dissolving Classroom, Magical Girl Apocalypse 10, Kamisama Kiss 23, Spirits & Cat Ears 1, Today's Cerberus 1-2, Say I Love You 17, Assassination Classroom 14, Magi 22, A Certain Magical Index 8, Horimiya 6, How to Build a Dungeon: Book of the Demon King 2, Fukufuku Kitten Tales 1-2, Konosuba 2, Love in Hell: Death Life 2, and Magicka: Swordsman and Summoner 6.

In addition to all of that, I bought the rest of the Dominion expansions (and we had enough time to play each of them at least once), as well as another Smash Up expansion and a set of expansion cards for King of New York, which says it includes cards to use the King of New York monsters in King of Tokyo. I haven't yet had the chance to check out what that means. I also found some games on sale at Best Buy and decided it was time to spend my Christmas and birthday money on an XBOneS. I didn't have time to hook that up either - I wasn't feeling too great shortly after I got home, so I spent a few hours waiting for that to pass so I could take care of the vital errands. That was the time during which I'd intended to get my hair cut, so that didn't happen again. I'll live with long hair for another week. At least I got the grocery shopping done.


I managed to get to work really early, somehow, so I made an early day of it and got done what I could. Now I'm trying to make a slightly early evening so I can pack some stuff rather than leaving everything until morning. I probably won't get a lot of that done, though, and most of the stuff I usually pack is stuff I'll need in the morning anyway.
Work went pretty smoothly, especially since my therapist had to reschedule the appointment to the end of the day. It meant that dinner was a bit late, but I had been marinating a couple of tuna steaks in Caribbean jerk sauce for a few days, so it was worth the wait. They turned out a bit overcooked, perhaps, but still really good. I even walked over to the local pizza place for shrimp scampi pizza for lunch. Should be a wash.
Today's Bridge: Yet another rather poor day for cards, although we started with a 3NT. We made 1NT after that, and the opponents wrapped up the rubber with four straight partscores.

Today's Work: There wasn't as much to do as I thought. I found some stuff to do, but mainly administration and getting things ready to work tomorrow from home.

Today's Dinner: I figured I'd better make my haddock fillets. I may have overcooked them, and I should likely have sprayed even my non-stick griddle, but they turned out pretty well with the usual preparation. I've got tuna steaks marinating for tomorrow and red chili salmon for Friday. And a few gherkins left.

So tired and yet so unable to sleep

Today's Bridge: Another dud of a day. I started with all four aces, S A-10 H A-9-2 D A-10-9-x-x C A-x-x, but Dan H. pre-empted 2D ahead of me, so I didn't have anywhere to go. Dan C. jumped to 4S, and ended up making it. After a queen of heart lead through H K-J-x D K-J-8-x-x-x C J-x-x-x to the king and my ace, I couldn't bring myself to lead a heart back - if Dan C. had the ten (which he did), it would give him an extra board entry to help him set up the diamonds. I hoped that he had at least one diamond and led the ace, but it was ruffed, and the remaining two aces were all the tricks we got. Removing the hearts early, while we still had trump, may have stopped him. The next hand was almost identical, but it was Jerry who had the ace of diamonds, and he led it from A-J-x at dummy's K-Q-10-x-x-x-x with the full knowledge (in my mind) that declarer had a void. Without that lead, he has to lead diamonds from dummy twice (ruffing one and losing the ace) to set up the suit on the actual distribution, which was just the number of entries he had. Jerry had one decent hand that he bid up to 3H, so with the ace of diamonds and three hearts, I raised to game - off two. The rest of the day belonged to the opponents.

Today's Work: We finished the task we've been documenting. We still need to test the output, but I'm happy with it for the moment. There were some connectivity problems with our repository all day, too - the repository itself was fine, but the administrative parts were inaccessible, at least to me. I hope that gets fixed, because we have a lot of administration to do - I found and fixed a few more issues, so we need to get them reviewed.

I even managed to find a bit of time to get some LP work done tonight. Just audio cleanup for the Gobliins 2 session from this weekend, particularly going through and removing all of the clicks, but it's important progress. I also want to post the next Majin video, but I'll have to get on that right away.
Today's Bridge: I drew the low card, but there were only four people. I might as well not have bothered, though. The opponents had all the power, and the only hand we played was a 3H sacrifice to stop a 3C that looked really good. They misplayed one contract and missed it by one, and the final hand was a 5D missing three aces - which were the only tricks we got. I don't know whether we had a shot at the 4H they overbid, but I guess it all worked out.

I was up pretty late last night and didn't get the chance to write an entry - my cleaning task for the day was another simple one, dousing a stained carpet in cleaning fluid repeatedly and wiping it up when I remembered it was there. It's still stained, but it's much less noticeable than it was. Another day of treatment might actually fix it. I also put a few boxes in the garbage, and bought a new keyboard and mouse combo because the ones that came with my desktop are both having annoying problems. We'll see how long these last. I also had a burrito bowl from Moe's for dinner, but my glucose was lower this morning than it's been in a long time. I have no idea how this works.
I made it over to the bank to deposit my Christmas and birthday checks, then met up with my Let's Play guest to record a long session of Gobliins 2. It's good to be back to work on that series. I'd like to get a haircut tomorrow, but I don't imagine I'll have time. Maybe if I get the groceries early like I have done the past few weeks.

I've got an important essay to write, too

We didn't get nearly as much done at work as I wanted, because we spent most of the day waiting for the document we were supposed to be updating, and since that document describes the work we're doing right now, we couldn't very well do the work without the document there to update as we went. We've already simplified a few things.

No Bridge today, obviously, but I remembered a hand that I forgot to write about yesterday - Ken opened 1D (Precision) when I had S K-Q-J H 10-x-x D A-Q-x-x-x C K-x. It's too strong for 3D (11-13), but our guide says 4D is pre-emptive. With Dan H. as my partner, I would bid 4D, inviting game with a top hand, but the only bid I could think of for this situation was 3NT. Ken's S A-x-x H K-J-x-x D K-J-x-x C x-x made a poor fit for either contract (and diamond game is definitely not going to happen), but on the club lead, I was able to claim the king, five diamonds, and three spades. A heart lead to the ace and a club back completely ruins me.

I've got a lot to do tomorrow, so I want to get to bed early. But that never works.
Today's Bridge: Ken and I gave Precision a try against Dan H. and Sam, who returned just to fill our fourth seat. I'm sad that we didn't manage to bid a near-laydown slam, but I'll analyze it to death.Collapse )

Today's Work: I figured out why the changes I made yesterday hadn't fixed the problems - I forgot to recompile the libraries where the changes were. Once I did that, all of the problems I knew of which had been traced to our upgrade disappeared. That leaves us only tomorrow to build a new machine to look like the one we just finished, and update our documentation as we go, but it should be much faster because all of the code changes have already been made. We just need to install and configure everything, and go. Hopefully.

I did a test recording with my new Gobliiins guest, and it went reasonably well. There are some things to work out on both sides, but we should have good recordings once we get started. I just need to replay the first half of the second game, because the newer version of ScummVM doesn't seem to be compatible with the saves I have. There may be something else I need to do to set that up, but it's probably simple enough just to replay the first part of the game.
Today's Bridge: We were on the defense most of the day, and the rare times we got to declare a contract, we were grossly underpowered for it. I got way too aggressive when Ken opened 2C and I forgot that he was bidding Precision with Dan. The opponents made some and missed some.

Today's Work: I thought, right at the end of the day, that I'd solved most of our problems, but things still didn't work. I want to revisit it tomorrow, but it may not actually work. It's just weird that the comments attached to the changes I found describe exactly the problems we've seen, and a few I didn't know we had. If the changes fix those problems, then my hunch was wrong. If not, maybe I didn't apply them correctly.

It was another fairly late morning, with a delay to fill up my low tire, and then a very late day at work, followed by a drive home in heavy (but melting) snow, with a stop on the way home for gas. So it was a very short evening, and I want to try to get to sleep earlier than I have been. I won't, but I want to try.
Today's Bridge: Kevin showed up, which usually coincides with me drawing out, but I drew the top card today and got to be his partner. It was a very hit or miss day.Collapse )

Today's Work: One of the problems that came up yesterday was worse than we originally thought. We spent all day trying to wrap our heads around it and never really got anywhere. I spent most of that time just trying to run the program in the debugger. I managed to do that, at least, and I think it might be worthwhile to try running the old version and the new version next to each other to see where the difference is. That will be a job for tomorrow.
Today's Bridge: We had a very disappointing, but still entertaining day. When well-bid slams go awry...Collapse )

Today's Work: I checked out the parts of the build that we've left out until this point, and it turns out that we don't actually seem to need them at all. We're having problems in the area we thought one of them was for, but that's another cause entirely. We'll have to figure out how much time to devote to fixing that now as opposed to getting back on our feet and tossing that on the pile of stuff we have left to do. It's all in a day's work.
I went a bit outside my usual realm of culinary expertise tonight - I made Thai coconut curry chicken with a mixture of bean sprouts, water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots to stand in for the usual rice or noodles. I think something in the mix was a bit too strong a flavor, but overall, it worked well. I've got another set of the same vegetables to go with sesame chicken later this week. It's probably a bit expensive to do the same thing regularly, although I could probably get by with about half the serving I made. I miss having easy access to regular-sized cans of stir-fry vegetables - those would probably work really well.
I might have cheaped out on the cleaning task this week - I put the board games from the living room down in the basement (except for the giant box of Dominion) and threw out a few things, including the giant box from the air purifier in the basement. It's been taking up space for a while, and with it gone, I can hopefully more easily move the sofa to try some carpet cleaner under it. I only hope it'll work after the stain's been there for so long. I did the grocery shopping before breakfast again, then did the laundry while cleaning up both commentaries from yesterday (including re-editing one of the videos in post) and playing a bit more Twilight Princess - I'm past the prologue of the Arbiter's Grounds.
I spent a good portion of the day playing Twilight Princess, but I recorded commentary for two videos and finally posted the one that's been sitting unlisted all week. I also posted a thread for Majin on lp.zone, in case anyone wants to follow it and doesn't want to pay for an SA account. I'm hoping I can do grocery shopping early tomorrow, like I did last weekend, and I've got enough leftover food to make a decent meal and a half.
Today's Bridge: New player Scott sat in as my partner against the Dans. As is typical of new players at our table, he didn't declare a hand today, but he got to defend a few where I don't think we had any defense, and he was dummy for a rather impressive hand. I had S A-6-5-4-2 H A-Q-J-10-x-x C K-x, so I overcalled Dan H's 1C with 1S. Scott responded 2S, so I jumped to 4S based entirely on the distribution. Unfortunately, our power wasn't well-placed - he had S Q-9-7 H 5 D A-Q-x-x-x C x-x-x-x. I took the second club trick and assumed the heart finesse would work, but I didn't have a dummy entry to take it. So I cashed the ace and ruffed a low heart, ruffed a club back, and ruffed another heart with the queen - I should have stuck with the nine, given that I was sure Dan H. had the king and it hadn't appeared, but I didn't want to risk giving up a cheap overruff. Having accomplished that, and used up the majority of my dummy entries, I cashed the ace of diamonds and ruffed a diamond, then led another heart and ruffed with the nine. Dan H. didn't overruff. So I led a diamond, which Dan H. ruffed with the seven, and I threw my last heart. I ruffed the club return, and Dan C. overruffed with the ten to lead another diamond. This time, Dan H. ruffed with the three, allowing me to take the six, and the king and jack fell under the ace for my tenth trick. Going over the position at the end, I determined that ruffing with the king was always a non-losing move - the worst case is that my remaining trump are A-J and I get both no matter what. If I have A-6 or J-6, ruffing with the king is worth an extra trick to the defense.

Today's Work: I finally figured out why the newly-broken feature was broken, and it was the result of a change we'd made - we commented out the line that made that feature work because it was giving us an error and the person who'd worked on the upgrade before us had just commented it out. It turns out that, while removing that function did make the error go away, it was a rather important line. So I figured out what I needed to replace it with and made the change. We can't be too confident that everything works perfectly yet, but I have a good feeling about it, and even if some things are still broken, we're at a good place for now.

It was a pretty early day, but I got held up at work, so it was a late evening. I resorted to Taco Bell for dinner, which isn't good for me, but I should have plenty of time to get stuff done this weekend. I have a lot of LP work to do, and a few things to post.


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Yes, I'm THAT Nidoking. Sometimes I write fanfiction... often I waste all my time playing video games and watching anime. But it's not a waste if I enjoy it, right? I can quote from a movie, video game, anime series, or British comedy apropos of just about any situation, and one of my main goals in life is to entertain people. (The other big one is amassing as much anime and manga as I can... see below for a progress report.) That's me in a nutshell. ("Help! I'm trapped in a nutshell! What a bloody great nutshell this is!")
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