Thursday, January 31, 2013

A week of trains and books

I’ve been dashing hither and yon all week, up and down England working on the various components of the business.  Every morning seems to start at dawn with a trek to a train station; each evening finds another platform waiting.  Fortunately, the weather has turned nice and the stations have turned on WiFi, so it’s been a pleasant series of journeys.

 

I downloaded three books onto my Nexus to see how the e-reading experience fit with travel, and was pleasantly surprised. I  put a big textbook on Data Mining (rented from Amazon rather than purchased), a light memoir from Andrew McCarthy, and a borrowed book from China onto my bookshelf.   All downloaded (or installed) cleanly and quickly: it felt like as good a library as the professor’s office that I visited.

The text formats into a nice book-sized page that is crisp and stable, and the page turns as naturally as any book without interrupting the experience.  I also subscribed to the XPat Journal, but magazines need the full 10” screen IMHO: the flow of text and pictures are don’t scale to the 7”.

It’s nice to pick up the tablet and pick up the story- I probably read more this week than I have (except at bedtime) in months.

I also did more walking in the cities that I visited, following the Ingress overlays around local landmarks (the Winter Gardens in Sheffield, for example, right).  It’s just a game, nothing high concept, and the scope of play seems limited to just finding enemy locations and capturing them.

ingress 2Still, I leveled up and, for  one day, I owned Trafalgar Square.

 

 

Fiscal cliffIn all, it’s been a rough January, with unexpected chemistry, intractable visa clerks, uncooperative ticket machines, and unsympathetic business partners. Still, the stories have all pretty much ended successfully.

Here’s to less stress in February.

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