Category Archives: Personal

Personal information.

Trip to Ireland

This last weekend, from Friday 25th to Sunday 27th of January 2008, I travelled to Dublin, Ireland with a few friends from work, and a few of their friends. The trip was arranged by Ben, one of the other Aussies who worked at Opera, who’s now going back to Australia to study.

After arriving on Friday night, we went out to a few irish pubs in in the Temple Bar area — an region featuring many different pubs. I stayed in a backpacker hostel called Avalon House, sharing a 4 bed room with 3 others. The room itself was small, but clean. However, the bathroom needed maintenance and the breakfast they served (toast and jam , with orange juice, tea or coffee) was not that great.

On Saturday, we walked around the city to do some sight seeing. I took lots of photos, which I will publish on flickr in the next few days. In the afternoon, we toured the Guiness Storehouse, which was really interesting. I took some photos, but only managed to get them near the beginning of the tour because my camera batteries died.

After the tour, we we given a complimentary pint of Guinness in The Gravity Bar, the 7th floor with an almost 360 view of Dublin. After we left the Guinness Storehouse, we rode back to the Temple Bar in a horse and carriage, where we had dinner and did a little shopping before going out to some pubs. Of course, as all Aussies should know, Saturday was Australia Day, and it was great to be able to celebrate it in the traditional irish way: by getting drunk! 🙂

On Sunday morning, I decided to skip the breakfast at the hostel and went out for a delicious, traditional Irish breakfast. It was very much like the kind of cooked breakfasts we would get in Australia, with egg, bacon, baked beans and toast. The rest of the morning was mostly spent wandering around the shops, before having lunch in the park and then heading off to the airport.

Life in Norway

As many of you know, I arrived in Norway on October 3rd this year, almost 2 months ago. Since then, I haven’t found much time to update this blog with new content. However, I always try to post at least one post per month, so here I am, on November 30th at 23:10 UTC writing this month’s entry. With just under an hour to go, I’m rushing to get this done.

Anyway, the last two months have been exciting. Working for Opera has been really fun and I’m starting to adjust to my new life in Norway reasonably well. Although I can’t yet tell you everything, I’m working in the Core QA department, finding and analysing bugs and working on some other really cool projects.

I have, of course, continued my involvement with the W3C HTML, Web API and WAF working groups. The HTML WG recently published the first public working draft of the HTML Design Principles. This is actually a really important document, since it outlines the core principles and design aims behind HTML5. Unfortunately, we are yet to formally publish a first public working draft of the spec itself (the editors draft is always available), we are really hoping we can resolve the remaining issues sooner rather than later.

I’m currently living in an apartment, sharing with three other Opera employees. Some photos of this place have been published on my flickr account. My bedroom is a little bit small (it’s only 1.7m × 4.7m), but somehow I’ve managed to fit everything in.

One thing I’ve noticed here, which has required a fair bit of adjusment, is that almost everything is backwards here! Seriously! Here’s just a few things to which I’ve had to adjust:

  • They drive on the right instead of the left. This is a problem because I instinctively look the wrong direction before crossing the road and it’s not easy to break the habbit.
  • People generally walk on the right as well, so I have to try to remember to move right instead of left to avoid running in to people.
  • Escalators in shopping centres are ridden on the right as well.
  • While traffic lights are red, they briefly flash orange before changing to green. For those who don’t know, in Australia, the orange is only used while changing from green to red.
  • They have zebra crossings here, some with pedestrian lights! In Australia, zebra crossings mean that the cars must give way to pedestrians. Here, at the zebra crossings without lights, cars don’t always seem to stop when they see someone about to cross, only when the pedestrian is actually on the crossing. (Maybe they’re just bad drivers, I’m not sure of the rules)
  • Pedestrian lights flash green before turning red. In Australia, it’s the red that flashes before turning on fully.
  • They have both Norwegian and English TV shows here. They put Norwegian subtitles on the English shows and no subtitles on the Norwegian shows.

There’s probably more, but I can’t remember them all.

It started snowing here a few days ago, though it’s still a little warm and it melts away during the afternoon. I’m looking forward to the ski season starting sometime in the next few weeks. Although I wear warm clothes while walking to work, I generally walk around the office during the day wearing shorts and t-shirt. The office is just too warm to be wearing long pants or a jumper, yet some people are still surprised to see me like that.

As those of you who’ve been following my twitter posts would know, I recently bought myself a 17" MacBook Pro. I absolutely love it and I’m finding myself using it more and more instead of my PC. OS X Leopard rules! Windows Vista sucks. Seriously, I’ve never seen an OS so bad and unusable. It’s unbelievable how annoyed I got with it after only 5 minutes of use on a friends laptop.

Anyway, my time is almost up to get this published before the end of the day, so that’s it for now.