The final hours of this weird decade

Friday, Dec 31, 2010 – 11 PM-ish

I remember when 2000 seemed so far away, and how I would be all of 28 years old should I live to see it. I remember wondering what we would call the years (oughties, noughties etc). And the dreaded Y2K bug. And the 2000 vs 2001 pedants. Now 2010 is already come and gone, and WTF seriously we are already done with the first decade of the third millenium!?!

Being currently between houses, jobs and every other kind of milestone people use to map their life’s journeys, it’s a bit of a weird one for me. No idea what the future holds, no idea if I’ll be looking for work again or whether I’ll find the discipline to make it on my own. No idea whether I’ll ever have kids of my own. No idea what I want or expect from life really. I used to love the idea of tabula rasa, but it’s really starting to lose its appeal as my 40s loom.

I should probably point out that I am a bit drunk right now, hence a little maudlin. I plan to get significantly more drunk as the year closes, and watch the fireworks from the roof (although booze and roof don’t usually mix so great, so I mustn’t get too carried away).

Saturday, Jan 1, 2011 – 12:27 AM

Hooray! I’m still alive after climbing through the hole in the roof and watching the fireworks, which from this distance recall to mind the bombing of a city combined with the opening shot from Bladerunner. The city is now cloaked in smoke (we’ve had smokeless bullets for a while, maybe someone needs to invent smokeless fireworks?)

My first pronouncement of 2011… JujuEdit is DEAD! Sorry for the poor souls who have been holding out in the vain hope that I would release an update with improvements and bug fixes and such, but I can’t be arsed working with Windows desktop apps any more I’m afraid. I hardly use Windows myself anymore, and now that I’ve ported most of my codebase to OS X and iOS I am no longer chained to that platform. If I ever finish Drivey then it will certainly be available for Windows, but only by virtue of the fact that it won’t use any Windows API.

My second pronouncement is that I will be snogging someone come NYE 2011/12, since there’s no crappier time to not have a girlfriend than the countdown to the new year. Poor lonely me boo hoo. I need to meet a girl who’s awesome enough to make me want to be more awesome but not so awesome as to intimidate me into fearing that I cannot live up to her awesome expectations. She may or may not want kids, since I may or may not want kids… I can never make up my mind on this one. Kids are so great when you’re allowed to leave at any time (I have three adorable nieces who act as my alarm clock right now) but I’m still so damn narcissistic it’s hard to imagine committing to the long haul of actually raising them.

My third pronouncement… lose the flab! Yes this is sooo original I know but I really would look and feel so much better if I could just drop another 8 or 9 kilos.

Ah… I was just about to complain about not being drunk enough, having consumed more than a third of a bottle of vodka (I am a fairly cheap drunk; this should be more than enough) when I realized I’m kind of smiling and nodding like an idiot as I type this…. I guess it’s finally kicking in :)

My fourth pronouncement… ermmmmmmmmmmmm…. really I’m a simple guy with simple needs. I think my second pronouncement says much about what I’m really missing from life. I guess it should be something about my plans to build financial security and success and such but really that all seems kind of hollow if you don’t have someone to come home to. All you people reading this who are in relationships (statistically I think this should be most of you)– I know there are times when things aren’t going so great and you wonder what it might be like to be out there on your own being able to do whatever you like– just remember that very few of the times you look back on with fondness were times you spent alone. Don’t take your partner for granted, and appreciate the little things, the private jokes, the shared experiences, the little rituals, the comfortable if not particularly exciting sex [edit: I know “comfortable” sounds terribly pejorative here but it is not intended as such– comfortable is good!]. When you’re single you don’t get those things, and it kind of blows sometimes. Having someone who knows you and knows what you’re thinking without you having to spell it out is kind of awesome, and I really miss it.

My fifth pronouncement… I’m going to unpack my coffee machine tomorrow. Other people may not like my coffee (you know who you are) but I think it’s great. I may have a stonking great hangover I suppose but that will just make me want a coffee all the more. I miss my old house which was so beautiful and spacious (but too expensive) there was plenty of room for a coffee machine there. The thing I hate most about renting in and around Sydney is that you feel like you have to beg to get a place. Please please accept massive amounts of money so I may reside within your building and still be treated like a second class citizen! Oh please may I affix a small picture to the wall.. I know it’s a HUGE fucking liberty to expect to be able to feel any sense of ownership over my own fucking space…

I just missed out on a house even though I offered to pay 3 months rent in advance, and now it’s the new year there are going to be that many more people looking. I blame the goddamn speculative investor and fucking negative gearing for the rental shortage… unless you’re actually leasing a house to someone you shouldn’t be able to claim it as a goddamn investment!

1:51 AM

Ok, make that half a bottle of vodka and I think that’s quite enough for me now. I believe this is actually my first time drunk-blogging… it’s actually quite fun, although there’s always the chance that I’ll just delete most of it tomorrow. Also it’s a pain with the number of typos I am making… correcting them slows my speed to something like 25% normal.

Not sure why I use the word “pronouncement” instead of “resolution”… consider them the same thing here.

Happy new year btw!

2:38 AM

Using a dating website while inebriated in the wee hours of new year’s day is probably not the wisest idea… at least I’m not the only one. Lotta lonely people right about now…

3:00 AM

Ah fuck it, I never do this so getting totally hammered just this once is no big deal… I know I’ll regret it tomorrow but that’s the price many people will be paying. Also the fireworks were too damn short! All of 12 minutes! I climbed up to the roof you bastards!

4:00 AM

Seriously lolling in my chair now, unable to really offer much insight about anything. Except this online dating thing… I use RSVP which is this bullshit Australian site which charges a fortune just to contact someone, and one thing that really bugs me is that it wants me to respond to *all* contacts, even those I’m not interested in. Personally I think that’s bullshit, since if I contact someone and basically say “hey I think you’re cute and interesting all at the same time!” I really don’t want a response unless it’s positive. I think that if they’re not interested they should simply ignore me, and then I can go about my business and simply forget about the whole thing. WHEREAS… if I get a reply that says “so-and-so is not interested, good luck in your search”, in my mind that is tantamount to “WHAT WERE YOU THINKING YOU EXECRABLE WORM! SHE IS TOTALLY OUT OF YOUR LEAGUE AND YOU KNOW IT!”

4:14 AM

Ehh I’m done now… good night and happy new year etc


Coffee machine is now set up in my room… ahhh I need that steamed milk. Hangover was no big deal at all, mild headache which was dispatched pretty quick with coffee and paracetamol. Went to the local pool with the nieces and slept for a good portion of the day, so not a bad start to 2011.

39 Responses:

  1. ac says:

    (my) World is coming to end. Single instance of JujuEdit consumes more cpu cycles minimized than Visual Studio. See Process Explorer.

  2. Scott says:

    I am not going to offer any words of insight, there were many, many times throughout my 40 years where I have been in a similar place. I get it and I will just say, Happy New Year!

    P.S. I will miss JujuEdit, but the truth is I have not used it since 2004ish when I myself moved primarily to the Mac platform.

  3. Jason says:

    Hey Mark, as always refreshing, insightful, enlightening and honest with plenty of wit.

    Have a great 2011. Look forward to some iOS stuff – got an iPad. Just need to get some iPants to fit it in.

  4. ac says:

    BTW I’m learning C&C++ due to need to do some system coding on Windows. What kind of bribery would be necessary to avail myself of JujuEdit source. I really want to fix the couple biggest issues I have with it. There just aren’t alternatives, I’ve looked the other notepad replacements and they all have even bigger issues.

  5. ac says:

    OK I lied, I can’t afford to your price whatever it is, unless it’s some Magic the Gathering Online tickets, but owning those is incompatible with any “girlfriend goals”.

  6. ac says:

    I don’t have a GF but I if I were serious about getting one, I’ve heard some reasonable reasonings that it would be a good idea to look for one abroad, apparently from countries where life isn’t too easy, because apparently many western girls have ‘permanent’ character weaknesses due to having grown in the luxury of western nation.

    I have some friends who have followed this path and seem happy, so maybe there’s something to that.

  7. Ross says:

    Good news for all singles: 43,869,800 people changed their status to “single” on Facebook in 2010.

  8. Shaun says:

    Mightily impressed by your drunk posting ability.

    If I had half a bottle of vodka and tried to type anything, I’d probably wind up marrying the keyboard in a Vegas roadside chapel.

  9. mark says:

    You would be less impressed if you had actually seen me typing… imagine someone furiously knitting a piano and you might have some idea. the DELETE key got a hell of a workout.

  10. I seriously hope that JujuEdit 1.441 continues to work fine in Windows 7, because I still can’t see myself using any other editor. Too many little things about JujuEdit such as cycling through files of a given extension, regex-based syntax highlight application, comprehensive syntax highlight rulesets, combination text and hex editing (I can throw literally any sub-2 GB file at it, and it will open instantly, binary or text, short or small, so it’s my universal file viewer … OK I lie, ignore the cases where it goes into Chinese)

    I’ve still never seen anything like it. I’d not considered JujuEdit 2 on my incomplete 2011 wishlist, but now it’s been torn down before I even pinned it up.

    I don’t know if you got your snog, but this has already proved that 2011 is going to suck just as much as 2010 ever did, if not more.

  11. mark says:

    @Daniel I feel like I’ve let you down the most here. You’ve always given fantastic feedback and reports, and have been so incredibly patient. I’m sorry, this is a crap way for you to find out, but I guess I’ve been avoiding admitting it for a while now.

    The only really major impediment to using the current release in Win7 is the dodgy context menu option in the installer, but as long as this is de-selected during install it should remain usable.

  12. ac says:

    So what’s up with not being able to hand over the project for someone else to maintain? I can speculate in the meantime… like maybe it has something in ít that doesn’t stand the light of the day. If you simply have lost the source then it’d be nice to know.

    I think the main fix I’d bother to do that way is the one Daniel mentioned about it randomly opening in 2 byte-view mode that makes it really slow until switched to 1 byte mode.

    I’d also add larger-file support (as I use this as hex viewer a lot since I need to work in both text and hex a lot) and look at why it is consuming resources on background.

  13. mark says:

    re handing over… it’s partly a light of day thing, partly an ownership thing, and partly a problem in that it’s built on a lot of libraries I’ve built up over many years, which would be a huge pain in the butt to separate out for one project.

    I am looking at moving to OS X as my primary development platform, something I never would have expected to do. I just barely use Windows anymore myself, and the only reason I’ve been running it at all this last six months is for Visual Studio.

    I can still build JujuEdit, and there are even some fixes in there, but there are also some terrible half finished UI issues relating to unicode support which make it rather unpresentable in it’s current state.

    Unicode support in win32 api was done in the worst possible way IMHO… had MS simply embraced UTF8 it would have been virtually painless.

    re your background resources problem, i would suspect it is related to the syntax hilighting, which uses regex and in certain circumstances can result in an empty string match causing it to never “finish” the hilighting loop.

  14. @ac — I asked about the possibility of having the source code a while ago, too, to no avail. Sadly I don’t really know C or C++ (it’s PHP and Perl for me), so I’d just be glad of the miracle of getting the current version to build at all. I guess I’d better save the contents of the bug tracker before that, too, disappears. There’s still a lot that needs doing to JujuEdit yet — whether I’d be able to implement them is another matter :P

    The first fix should be getting it to support a full 32-bit window icon ;-)

  15. Jed says:

    how about we find some hot gal who will snog you to release jujuedit?
    snog for C++ anyone?

    PS i use Jujuedit on Win7, love it. woriks fine. no changes req from me

  16. mark says:

    hmmm… I’m not sure how these 2 things have become conflated here.

    For the record, this is NOT a hostage negotiation!

  17. Michael toye says:

    Mark, happy new year! You’re only resolution should be to *do* things that make you smile.
    Btw, I settled into using TextEdit and Notepad++ – both capable editors.
    Also I need some ‘visiting Oz’ tips Mark – can you suggest culturally oriented things to do whilst not diving?

  18. bryan says:

    try okcupid! ;)

  19. mark says:

    @Michael- thanks :) And what is this “culture” you speak of?

    @bryan- okcupid has very few Australian members unfortunately. Everyone here uses RSVP which is this creaking Web 1.0 pay site that charges about $8 just to send someone a message and *still* hits you with banner ads! If I could go back in time and destroy it by starting my own superior service first, I would.

  20. Simon says:

    Yes shockingly cogent ranting there Mark. I just read John Allison’s blog post called “Goals”; talks about achievable targets and such.
    You must know of him: he’s been doing webcomics since forever, and it’s so cheering to see how astronomically his work has improved over the years. It shows the value of achievable goals, practiced scrupulously. THIS is what I’m planning to remember for myself in 2011.

  21. @Simon — maybe. Creativity is not robotic and you cannot program yourself with inspiration and ideas. Likewise, you cannot program anyone to appreciate your work (and if they don’t, then eventually you have to ask yourself why you’re continuing).

  22. Sitakali says:

    @ac: I understand that there are cultural differences between women in different countries, and that some of these differences are favourable for certain men. But to suggest that Western women are actually inferior and have “character weaknesses” is pure and simple racism. And the way I feel is exactly the way somebody feels when they have been subjected to racism.

    I can’t help but assume that some of these character flaws have to do with our more (not completely, but more) equal status with men. I find many men who “prefer” Asain women only like the ones who are more submissive, less talkative, and generally are more likely to make the man feel comfortable with doing whatever the hell he likes without consideration for his effect on the woman.

    Really, if Western women are so inferior, wouldn’t Western men be the same? What on earth makes you think that you deserve one from the “Superior Race” when you have just as many character flaws? Everything about what you said disgusts me to my core. But I suppose the fact that I’m telling you how I feel as a human being is one of my Western character flaws.

  23. @Sitakali – Sure, but would *you* snog Mark to release the JujuEdit source code? ;-)

    I couldn’t imagine having a submissive, quiet girlfriend–how dull–but then, I’ve never one, talkative, quiet or otherwise, and it probably shows. Then again, lovers never last, but a text editor should be your best friend forever.

  24. Sitakali says:

    I’m sorry, Daniel, but I am no longer in a position to snog-bribe Mark.

  25. ac says:

    To me the unicode support in the last public release is good enough, and I would assume that’s the case for most people still using it. So if you have capability to build it with a tiny fix or two mentioned earlier that would probably be enough for many users as well, as rest have likely settled with other editors already instead of waiting some unicode fixes (?).

  26. The Unicode has two noticeable flaws. Firstly, Unicode paths are not accepted. Not a huge deal to me but it gets old fast.

    Worse, though, search and replace doesn’t understand Unicode properly, so I can’t replace, say, ‘–‘ with ‘–’, because all I get is a little square (oddly, ‘£’ does work in Replace, but not Find). It seems to be generating broken Unicode when converting from my local codepage (presumably 1252), presumably because the Find dialog box is in ASCII: I can *type* “–” just fine in a document, but not search for or replace it. (Worse, Microsoft’s own 1252 document is wrong because en and em dash are drawn completely wrong — no idea where Google dug up such a lousy document though and why it’s still on MSDN)

    Unicode fixes would be most welcome, although they’re fine to wait until 2.0. There are a lot of little UI fixes that would make a huge difference, such wheel press/wheel drag scrolling support to get through longer documents. Also, little things like Sort Lines would save irritating round trips with Excel or pasting into a sort session in cmd, but again, as I mentioned to Mark in the bug tracker, this would likely be an ASCII-only feature for now due to the complexity of sorting in Unicode.

    In case the bug tracker (that I think only Mark and I presently have access to) disappears, I’ve taken a copy of every single bug we’ve filed, in case fate should ever smile on me and a means arrives for work on such an adorable little editor to be resumed.

    One bug that has been fixed already, is how Save does ***NOT*** warn before overwriting another file!! Very, very dangerous. I find myself monkeying the keyboard any time I need to save something to the desktop where I fear the name I’ve chosen isn’t going to be unique, to avoid wiping out something.

  27. Actually, the one thing JujuEdit needs more than anything, is properl documentation. I’ve tried to use Run Command under Edit Configurations for the first time, and I can’t find or guess how to specify the path to the file, in the command line. I’ve tried $1, %1, ^1, \1 … nothing.

  28. ac says:

    I’ve looked at if there were other good jujuedit-like editors (with 64 bit support, hex editor and instant open of multi gig files) out there. First one I looked at came with this line:

    “’s Ed Burnette called EmEditor the “World’s fastest text editor””

    Well a quick simple benchmark later and I find that JujuEdit:
    1) opens faster
    2) scrolls both text and hex faster
    3) emeditor doesn’t even have proper hex editor, it seems to be missing the address lines.

    And that one is $40 if I understood right and at version 10.

    Next I’m looking a Vedit but the UI in screenshots doesn’t look too promising.

  29. ac says:

    Vedit ($90) not much better than emeditor, it got lot of bells and whistles but basic hex editor blows again and the text editor mode it can’t even display normal text properly, the letters have extra pixel space in between. On plus side, it didn’t show any activity on background, unlike emeditor and jujuedit. This is really critical in notepad replacement since any activity trashes the CPU cache which I don’t have much of and I need near-realtime latency performance from my apps which involve audio.

    Possible solutions to my jujuedit problems: Create a hook that suspends the threads unless its on foreground, trace what causes it to switch to 2 byte view on startup… though I don’t think that can be fixed without modifying the executable. The 2 gb limit would remain though so I think I’ll just skip these solutions and keep looking for alternative editor for now.

  30. ac says:

    No closer to finding JujuEdit replacement:

    EditPad(Pro) : Slower to open, doesn’t act like notepad (can’t open to separate instances).

    TextPad : No switch between text&hex mode and hex mode is read-only.

    EditPad is probably closest to a real alternative as long as you’d run it in background at all times and open all files in tabs inside it. But it’s not a notepad replacement when it’s like that!

  31. JujuEdit’s hex editor isn’t all that great, to be honest — I find it more useful as a hex viewer, that is to say, I can grab any random file that I can’t identify, right-click > JujuEdit, and I’ll see something, text or hex. I don’t have to worry about whether it’s text or binary, and have to change program if I made the wrong choice. Things like switching endianness helps if the UTF-16 text in the file isn’t all even or odd address aligned.

    Despite its flaws, I plan on continuing to use JujuEdit as it’s easier than trying to replace it :) Especially if I wanted to rebuild all of my complex syntax highlight rules in someone else’s highlight rule system.

  32. Also, with these alternatives, you need to consider whether they have all the little goodies like File > Delete, alt-pg up/down to cycle files of a type, syntax highlight based on on regex match against filename. JujuEdit does a more than it says on the tin.

    The death of JujuEdit is really quite tragic, as it’s a wholly different philosophy of file editor to anything else I’ve seen, and it’s never going to see all the fixes and improvements that it needs and deserves.

    (Blame any typos in my posts on the messed up tracking in the text box in this new theme)

  33. TC says:

    JujuEdit has been a life-saver on a number of occasions when I had to deal with really big files. I’m building a new Win7 development box and JujuEdit has made the cut for the first-pass must-install tools.

    That being said, my day-to-day text editor is EditPlus. It was with me far before I heard of JujuEdit, so maybe those here in mourning might consider it. Well worth the modest license fee.

  34. EditPlus appears to be everything I was trying to avoid — garish and horribly overcomplicated but regimented program. The syntax highlight system is the same tired old inflexible garbage that every other uninspired developer churns out — even though JujuEdit’s regex-based highlight system is a crawling horror, it is nonetheless extremely flexible and gives me significant power and freedom to highlight code exactly as I want it down to subtle nuances in code, and I’ve even got an entry to remind me that in Perl, =~ is correct and ~= is wrong (I still can’t remember which way around it is, but I get it right without thinking now). Even the file extension to highlight mappings support regular expressions.

    I don’t have the desire to trawl through hundreds of dreadful editors in the hope of replacing JujuEdit, because it’s just impossible.

  35. ac says:

    Well I couldn’t stand the issue with randomly slow opening files. Here’s attempt at fix. Not tested much & there’s a drawback that switching to non-ascii modes stops working.

    Comparing files patched.exe and original.exe
    00032553: B8 8B
    00032554: 01 47
    00032555: 00 18
    00032556: 00 C7
    00032557: 00 45
    00032558: 90 FC
    00032559: 90 01
    0003255A: 90 00
    0003255B: 90 00
    0003255C: 90 00

    it just changes a value that tells the ASCII/UTF/UNICODE to always say ASCII…

  36. ac says:

    Actually don’t try that patch, it doesn’t work well enough. I tried to do something better but after several hours couldn’t find the right location to make the 1-byte setting stick until user changes it. Did learn few new tricks so atleast it wasn’t complete waste of time.