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All items from March 2018

16 Mar 2018 : Cycling stats #
Faster, slower, duration
30, 1, 30
15, 0, 30
12 Mar 2018 : Spring time at Howe Farm Zoo #
The house Joanna and I are currently renting is right on the edge of Cambridge. The city centre is due  south east, but to the north and to the west it’s just fields and the odd motorway as far as the eyes can see (which it turns out, according to Google Maps, is the Cambridge American Cemetry 2 miles away).

The view according to Google.

The view according to Google Maps

The view according to my window.

The view according to my window

Because it’s so close to the edge of the city, it’s really quite rural and as a result we share our house and garden with large numbers of other animals. It’s not unusual for rabbits, squirrels, deer and pheasants to wander around the grounds (all 100 square meters of it). What’s more, the boundary between the outside and inside of our house is distressingly porous, with insects and arachnids apparently enjoying free movement between the two.

Last night my programming was interrupted by a vicious buzzing sound. It turned out to be a queen wasp, awoken from its slumber over the winter and now angrily headbutting my light shade in a bid to head towards the sun. I’m not keen on wasp stings to be honest, so extracting it was quite a delicate exercise that involved gingerly opening and closing the door, dashing in and out of the room, turning the light on and off and chasing the wasp with a Tupperware box. I got it eventually and dragged it out into the cold; I’m sure it’ll return.

I take this to be a clear sign that spring has arrived. The turning of the seasons are the four points of the year I love most, so I’m excited by this. Other signs that we’re reaching spring include the spiders that have started stalking me during my mornig showers, and the arrival of beautiful clumps of daffodils on the lawn in our garden. So, roll on spring I say. Let’s get the dull winter behind us and start to sprout.

Daffodils in the garden

6 Mar 2018 : Beauty and the User Agent String #
Thanks to OSNews for linking to this great article about the messed up history of the Browser User Agent String. There's a moral in this story somewhere, but only if you can overcome the immediate feeling of despair about human progress this article induces.