Mortal engines

Over forty years ago, my late father brought a Mamod steam engine into the home, screwed it down onto a strip of chipboard, and made it run. I can not remember now if it was a toy for me or a toy for him. Eventually, like childish things, it was put away, in a shoe […]

The big blue

On 9 July 2020, I received a new Dell XPS 8930. From about 13 August 2020, I have had a series of BugCheck events (Event ID 1001), logged in the System log. All of them, except two, were code 154. Could I find the cause? I thought I had but it was a false dawn. […]

Road to partition

The home PC (a Dell XPS 8700) failed, leading to the painfully slow backup and recovery of Windows 8.1, the upgrade again to Windows 10 version 2004 and, luckily, the recovery of data. A few weeks later, it failed again, the lock screen and mouse frozen at 3:06 am on a Tuesday morning, rebooting only […]

Locale hero

I was interested in the internationalisation (‘i18n’) of Haskell programs. The Haskell wiki has a page on the subject, referring variously to: using the constructors of a Haskell type to represent messages, GNU’s gettext, or the Grammatical Framework programming language. A starting point was identifying the user’s locale. As is often the case, that was […]


Discontent with the verbose output of version 2.3.3 of the Haskell Tool Stack when using a Solarized Dark terminal theme took me down the rabbit-hole of logging with the rio and monad-logger packages. RIO.logDebug The RIO module exports logDebug: In respect of the RIO env a type, RIO env is an instance of MonadIO and […]

The matrix

I thought I had built the hmatrix package on Windows 10 version 2004, but that was a blue pill illusion. The red pill reality was more complex. MSYS2 The Haskell Tool Stack comes with a version of MSYS2, in a folder of the folder returned by stack path –programs. Currently, that folder is msys2-20180531. A […]


David Himmelstrup’s reanimate package provides a library for generating animations programatically. I wanted to use it on Windows 10, but hit a dead end. However, I had better luck with Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) 2 and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. GSL and linear algebra reanimate depends on the hmatrix package, which, in turn, requires the […]

Moving to WSL 2

Windows 10 version 2004, rolled out from 27 May 2020, arrived on my machines, allowing a move from Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) 1 to WSL 2. However, there was a wrinkle. File Explorer integration WSL promises access to the Linux root file system with File Explorer, by entering explorer.exe .. This did not work; […]

Moving to Catalina

Moving my ‘mid 2011’ Mac mini to macOS High Sierra was not easy and it seemed it was stuck there. Apple said that macOS Mojave was not available for my machine and the same was true for macOS Catalina, launched in October 2019 and now at version 10.15.5. Then I discovered Dosdude1’s Catalina Patcher, currently […]

Bauble cutting

Another clay cutter was needed, simpler than before, but benefiting from the learning curve. A new feature was the cutting of a hole. 3D modelling As before, in Autodesk’s Fusion 360, the profile of a cutting edge was swept around a boundary curve. The profile was narrower (built on a 2.4 mm square, rather than […]