I'm living a very contradictory life lately. On the one side I try to stay positive, fit and genki. On some days I cycle around the lake, sort out my personal belongings, arrange for my pension money to be transferred, find information on universities, apply for jobs and do other useful activities. On other days I wake up at 1 in the afternoon and watch Battlestar Galactica all day until 4 in the morning while eating various unhealthy snacks. I can't quite find the resolve to keep up a healthy lifestyle all the time. Need more DISCIPRIN!

That being said, my to-do list is shrinking, and I'm happy about that. I'm getting things done and creating time for myself to enjoy the finer pleasures of life (procrastinate). Before I came back to Holland I made a huge list of things that I wanted to do when I got back. In fact, every time I take the plane back from Japan to Holland I take a look at my life and make a list of things that I want to change or improve. I don't know why, but being a plane from one side of the world to the other suddenly puts my life in perspective, whether I like it or not. Unfortunately for me I lose that perspective rather quickly, and I barely spent time on the top two items on my to-do list. Back on the ground my priorities shift back, it would seem.

Progress report: sorted and threw away most of my old computer hardware. No need for old PCI graphics cards or 128MB PC100 memory modules. I threw away about 8 old hard disks, either too small or too broken/unreliable to be used anymore. I've got my desk set up, using an old PC my dad thought was broken but is in fact not broken, new and quite fast. This example quite illustrates the difference between the computer literate and illiterate: people who know their stuff still keep their 6.4GB hard disks even though they're worthless. People who don't know anything about PCs throw away a 2.4GHz PC with 2Gb of RAM thinking it's broken and worthless. Well, good for me.

I found an old printer/scanner in the attic of which the printing part no longer works, but the scanner works great. I'm using it to scan Japanese documents and then OCR them with a program called OmniPage Pro 17. So far it's a brilliant program. Ironically it's made by Nuance, the competitor of my former company.

You'll notice the airconditioning at the left of the picture. It's 32C here today, probably hotter than it ever was  in Japan during my trip.

Mickey, our evil overlord.

Side note: I've been thinking about digitizing the family photo archive. Any suggestion for film scanners or photo management software?

Posted in Daily Life , Dutch , Thoughts