Dreams In My Head Psychology / Communication


Dreams are funny things. Some we remember, some we forget, some we actualise and some we let slip through our fingers.

Some dreams mean more to us than others, some dreams we share, some dreams we keep quiet secretly hoping for them to come true.

Some dreams tiptoe quietly past and sit silent until we pay them their due attention, others scream and shout until action is taken.

Our ability to dream and imagine sets us apart from most other species on this planet. Although other species dream we’re the only ones who realise the potential of dreaming and lucid imagination to change our selves and the world around us, this is because our mind cannot distinguish between a lucid imagination and reality.

Of course the map is not the territory, the world is not the way we perceive it to be – it is the way it is and we are but mere interpreters of the way it is.

The strangest things about dreams are the way they fade away so quickly after you wake up. When doing some research on dreams and lucid dreaming a while back I read one of the best techniques for remembering your dreams was to keep a notepad and by your bed and as soon as you wake up (within 2 minutes) write down what your dream was about.

I believe that dreams are alot like emotions. Each dream we have has a message to deliver. Some dreams the message will be obvious and others not so. The same is true of emotions sometimes when we feel sad for no particular reason we wonder what our mind and body are trying to say eventually we’ll get the message through other times though the reason for the way you’re feeling is entirely obvious.

I had a strange dream the other night. I was visiting a friend of mine in London, I don’t actually know who the person was but I had the sense that I knew them. We were on our way to the train station when we realised that one of the entrances of the station was locked and closed. There were three people outside the station. I asked one of them why the station was shut, he said something and told us to use the other entrance, he said he would show us the other entrance. As he guided us – he was behind us at this point I saw all three of us in third person, he drew a sword out of his jacket and stabbed me in the back. I can’t remember what happend much after that.

I guess the message behind this dream is something to do with connections (the train station)  that I was use to having in my life aren’t necessarily there any more and if there are things I need or want to achieve I will have to do this using alternative methods (the second entrance), which even may require me to alter the way I am now (that’s the death part).

Although I’m certain there’s a million and one way to interpret a dream, I think the person responsible for the dream is the only one who can really interpret and understand its full meaning.


Poppy Day

(Originally posted 11th November 2008)

Today was poppy day. I’m supprised the kids at work actually honoured the two minute silence.

My thoughts were very much with my Popa and my Great Uncle who took part in D-Day who were spared the Dolce et decorum est pro patria mori and lived a good long life but are sadly no longer with us.

CAP Work


I’m in the throws of writing a little two part application for work that allows users to see what computers are avaiable for work and allows us, the administrators to see who is and more importantly who was logged on when and where.

The technical details of proposed implementation can be found here.

The client will be written in Java and the server (display) in php.


Virtualisation and Gaming

For those of you that don’t know I use Ubuntu as my main operating system; at home, at work and on my laptop.

I still however have applications, mostly games, that I still have to keep a windows install handy for. At the moment at home I dual boot between windows vista and Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex.

With all the advancement in virtualisation technology recently I thought I’d take a few of them for a spin and see if I could get any decent games to run on them. The ideal situation would have been being able to boot up into Ubuntu double click a shortcut and let the virtual machine present the game without the teletubbie xp background.

My main game of choice at the moment is Oblivion which at the time of writing is a few years old so you might have been excused for thinking that virtual machines would have the technology avaliable to them to either pass the 3D rendering to the host GPU or to at least emulate a 3D device in some way.

It appears in practice we couldn’t be further away.

I tried a windows xp virtual machine with 2GB of memory and 128 MB of video memory and oblivion crashed out with an error. To be fair to VirtualBox its seemless mode was very good apart from one glitch in drawing my background and I was impressed with its seemless mouse interaction between host and guest OS.

I also tried to install Paraelles but the program itself wouldn’t actualy install. This was a shame because for the googling I’ve done paraelles seems to be the solution closest to having 3D acceleration working. I would have also though being a relatively smaller player in the VM market paraelles would want to make sure their solution installs on as many platforms and distributions as possible.

I did find a patch to fix the problem I encountered with paraelles but by the time I had done all that googling I didn’t have it in me to be bothered to patch and recompile. In a tough market like virtualisation products need to just work or people will just move on to another solution that will. Perhaps paraelles should sit up and take note? (according to my googling installing paraelles on ubuntu has always required more than average user knowledge to install so this is nothing new…)

For fairness I also tried installing Oblivion via Wine and Crossover games, neither of which worked.

I guess my days of dual booting will continue for a while to come yet, or until virtualisation solutions provide proper 3D acceleration support or the devs at wine fix the bugs that affect direct x games.

In My Head


I’m laying here in bed contemplating time. How something can come out of nothing, into existence and then leave as quickly as it came.

How we can learn from the past mistakes of others and ourselves to change the present to alter the course of the future. It’s totally fascinating.

The more you think about it the more you realise that time isn’t just a flow of hours, minutes and seconds its much faster than that its a continuous flow of perception.

I’m of the opinion that time has to be perceived in order to manifest itself. With no one to perceive time then the world just keeps going round and round. Time is in the perception of the observer.

This is why we can’t see into the future because its something that is yet to be observed but we can see the past so clearly.

Even the idea that ones own self is in a constant state of flux is incredible – a person can redifne themselves at any point in there life and as many times. A persons ideological and belief structure is constantly changing and evolving as it comes into contact with new material that supports or contradicts existing attitudes and beliefs.

I doubt we’ll ever understand the true nature of time, why it exists, how it exists and where it comes from and goes too.


Cobweb 2

I’m thinking about rewriting (read: recoding) my dissertation project as a sideline programming project.

The final version of Cobweb that I coded for my dissertation was okay, but it didn’t work particularly well. I think with some refinement and some decent HCI analysis for the frontend Cobweb could become a handy service orientated collaboration tool.

If you want to read my original dissertation its avaliable here.

I’m currently trying to decide whether to brave writing the application in C# – which I’ve never used for anything serious or to use Java which I haven’t used in anger for a good year and a half.

In My Head

Sorting Traffic

When driving, I let other traffic in; usually only cars that are newer than mine. This got me thinking – what if it was made law that you had to give way if a newer car was waiting?

People with OCD everywhere would rejoice knowing that slowly but surely the roads are transforming into some kind of order.

The banks would rejoice knowing that a nice big cash injection was on its way from people who don’t want to give way to others.

The environment would rejoice, assuming that newer cars were more environmentally friendly. This would be a great tactic if some new source of non polluting energy was found say magnetic or hydrogen cell.

The second hand car market would thrive, older dirtier cars being crushed and recycled.

The number of RTAs would go down because people would not only have to acknowledge a car but read its number plate too – leading to lower speeds and safer roads.

Of course this is all in my head – what an amazing place.