So I went Christmas shopping, and got stuff for siblings, parents, girlfriend and housemate. Oh, and me.

It’s terrible. At least this time I spent more on the presents than I did on me, but these are all things I’ve been meaning to buy for ages, but I really should stop it. I keep accidentally buying things people are getting me for Christmas…

Today, to pick a random example, I bought the first four Lemony Snicket books, a new JC Grimwood paperback, the fifth Preacher book, and Catch22, which I’ve been meaning to read forever and was on offer. Then I left Borders. I went into Game and bought Tropico Gold to replace my original CD that got scratched. I walked into HMV and bought Monopoly Tycoon (Which is a CitySim based around the Monopoly world). Yesterday we went to Sainsbury’s and I accidentally bought a couple of James Bond DVDs (Two for the price of one. Evil, I tell you. Old fiery-eye himself could learn). I failed to accidentally buy the Buffy six box set, but on the other hand failed to buy myself some new pillows or – and since this was the other reason for going out I’m quite miffed at this – go in to book an appointment for some new glasses.

The shadowy threat I’ve been hinting at for the last week has come and gone, leaving just a dark stain of it’s presence. The company that is retaining the company I’m contracting (horrible word. Verbing wierds language) for decided to stop doing so, thus the project I was to move to got delayed, thus my contract was not going to be renewed when it ends on the 23rd December. This is bad, because I like working where I’m working, and kind of object to being kept hanging – not by the company who hired me, who have been helpful and hopeful throughout – but rather the fact that it had to happen at all. It’s been resolved in a non-optimal but unpessimal way in that my contract will indeed cease on 2002-12-23, but will restart again mid to late January, and I can coast until then. All the above has made my new year’s resolution to pay more attention to my cash-flow so I can survive weeks like this without panic attacks.

Hence the influx of media, BTW. Now I know work will continue at some point, I’ve allowed myself some spending 🙂 Reviews on the above will happen – it’s the promise I made myself when buying them.

Oh, and hello Livejournelers, you are once again back with us after my sabbatical. For those of you unaware of this saga, it goes like this: Livejournal has the ability to add RSS feeds as LiveJournals, so that people who pay LJ.com money can add them to their Friends List (So it appears on a list of the most recent entries you’re interested in). Somebody (Either Sam or Rho) set up Aquarionics as one. I don’t mind this, really. I wouldn’t publish an RSS feed if I didn’t want people to use it, but my problems with this implementation are threefold. The first is that by default all syndicated journals have LiveJournal’s internal commenting system enabled, so people can make comments on the items in my RSS list. Now, I’d really rather this didn’t happen, since I have my own commenting system (all right, so you can’t post to it currently, but that’s not really the point) and I’d rather not have my comments spread across three or four sites.

Secondly, there is apparently no method of changing an RSS feed’s details. Aquarionics’ feed moved from /rss/all.rss to /meta/all.rss. The original was only linked to for a week, but apparently the address was taken from the announcement post by whoever did it, which should teach me to modify links, so I’ve now hacked Epistula so that /rss is exactly the same as /meta, but it’s a horrible kludge.

Thirdly, LJ’s engine automatically produces RSS feeds of all journals (just add “/rss” to the diary URL). This includes syndicated accounts.

So I raised an Issue on LJ’s support forum. The problem is that because it’s an Open Source venture, we have to wait until some enterprising hacker with some CFT decides to fix it, or until the paid maintainers do. Since it’s not a problem for the people who use LJ, just a problem with the people whose feeds are used by them, I doubt it’ll be fixed anytime soon, so I kludged it, and downloaded the source. Time to brush up on my perl…