Happiness is a warm gun hot soldering iron.

Things are getting along quite well in the new lab. Large pieces of aluminium have been turned into small pieces of aluminium (and a lot of swarf), spectrometers have been upgraded and calibrated, and I’ve just finished building some constant current regulators for low currents.

The current regulators don’t work how I thought they should, but they seem to work nontheless. I should try and work out what is or isn’t happening, so I have some idea why things are not how I planned them.


I first saw this poem on a poster as part of the Poems on the Underground project run by London Underground. I only saw it once, and could only remember a couple of lines – making it hard to search for.

This morning I suddenly remembered much more of the poem and so was able to find it online. Yay!

Quark by Jo Shapcott

‘Trancendental,’ said the technician, ‘to stumble on a quark that talks back. I will become a mystagogue, initiate punters into the wonders of it for cash.’

‘Bollocks’, said the Quark, from its aluminium nacelle. ‘I don’t need no dodgy crypto-human strategising my future. Gonna downsize under the cocoplum or champak, drink blue marimbas into the sunset, and play with speaking quarklike while I beflower the passing gravitons.’

Bound and Submitting

If a title like that doesn’t bring the hits in, nothing will.

The Thesis, my Magnum opus, is now finished, bound up and submitted. And I’ve just spotted a couple of typos in it. Bugger. Nothing severe like my last thesis, where I got the year wrong on the very first page. I didn’t spot that until 20 min before the viva.

After the viva and corrections I’ll stick a copy online for anyone that really wants to read about lasers making things go bang[1]