1. Spent the evening at a colleague’s birthday party in a private bikers club in a Reykjavik suburb, drinking (water, of course), eating tasty food and playing poker, a strange game which seems to consist mainly of the following:

    • Give people some cards
    • Put some cards on a table
    • Move some bits of plastic around a few times — the bits of plastic are different colours, and make nice sounds if you click them together
    • Arrange your plastic into piles and click them together whilst sipping a cocktail (or water, depending on whether or not you are a bodybuilder/Buddhist/bodybuilding Buddhist).
    • Do poker with your face (to do: what is this?)
    • Intermittently tap the table
    • Nonchalantly toss some plastic into the middle of the table, or, if you’re hungry, toss your cards towards the dealer and go get some food — this is called folding but DO NOT FOLD THE CARDS it is confusing and not literal
    • Repeat 2-5 a few times, then show people your cards. Say some numbers out loud (optional: confused pause), and then one of you has won. Sometimes this is because a card has a bigger number than another, or because of the shape, or because of the picture.
    • The winner gets all the plastic, unless they ran out of plastic half way through, in which case they get that much less — use little piles for this purpose.
    • Repeat from beginning

    Thanks for a great evening everyone :)

  2. Has a go at making a chicken mushroomey cheesey sauce thing (inspired by an amazing Italian place here). Surprisingly it wasn’t unsuccessful — needs a bit more cheese next time though.

  3. Jovian Salak: Barnaby Walters such nice weather! UK is predictably bad...

    Jovian Salak the weather here is predictably unpredictable :) It was gorgeous when I took that two days ago, since then it has been freezing, murky and (in the last few hours) snowing a lot. All good fun!

  4. Walked along a nice bit of beach-ish area near my flat. Realised that whilst I’m fairly experienced at creating UIs where the creation of sound is the end result (musical instruments), I’ve never really given much thought to the use of sound in other UIs.

    The house lights across the bay twinkle a lot — perhaps because of the heat. It’s cold outside here, but inside all the buildings is really toasty, thanks to ubiquitous geothermal power.

  5. Moved in to my more permanent apartment. It feels strange to move my stuff into a room rich with the owners identity — photos, clothes, book/film collection.

  6. That Icelandic register things is a great example of technology making bureaucracy redundant. Ironically, having said that, there are some prime examples of technology mindlessly being applied and increasing bureaucracy and waste here…

    I’m looking at you, fancy touch screen machines who’s only function is to spit out a bit of paper (average life span maybe 2 mins?) which tells me when a desk is free to serve me :/

  7. The completeness of Iceland's National Register has eliminated the need for the country to conduct a regular census: population statistics can be obtained by simply querying the database.

    Iceland are way ahead of the rest of us. (emphasis mine, source)

  8. Dad wants me to take photos of the Icelandic… glaciers, geysers, volcanoes, northern lights, mountains, beautiful desolation supermarkets. Seriously.

  9. Got the last few bits of rubbish out of what was my workshop, saw Jovian Salak (have fun in Nepal!), packed most of my luggage and got all the bits of paper required to get to Iceland together. Leaving tomorrow at 12 noon, flight at 8 in the evening. Probably spending the hours at the airport watching studio ghibli films.

    , and all that good stuff.

  10. Good grief, I should have known that in the week before I go to , and I’m packing up my workshop, I’d get loads of emails about work :/ Politely turning them all down and suggesting alternatives until I get back.