Category Archives: On the road

Reality bytes in 140 chars

As you can see, I update this blog slowly. It happens because I have no much time to write long posts about really interesting things in this period. But I usually need to share little thoughts  and moments, and fast news with my friends. So I opened a microblog (in Spanish) at identi.ca, the microblogging service that uses the laconi.ca free software as engine.

I seldom use the web interface to post. To do it, I use the identi.ca emacs mode, and Gwibber (that allows me automating links compression via TinyURL). And I use the identi.ca app for Facebook to inject these microposts as current status.

I don’t know how much time I’ll keep playing with it ;-)

Highly connected nodes

It’s the leit motiv of my life these days…

fun mesh

  • I’m a member of GPUL, so I’m a free software activist -> I collaborated with ESF-Galicia (Engineers Without Borders) in their migration to free software and open standards.
  • I’m a social volunteer of OCV in Portiño->OCV funds some cooperation projects of ESF in Honduras.
  • GPUL promotes free software -> GPUL has a project of a computer classroom in Portiño
  • Lucía, is another volunteer of OCV in  Portiño-> She got a scholarship to travel and work in a cooperation project of ESF in Honduras.
  • I’m a worker of CartoLab-> CartoLab, ESF and OCV signed an agreement to develop a custom gvSIG to ESF projects in Honduras->I’ll a developer in that project-> Lucía will process the data she’ll take with the free software tool in which I work.

So, I everyday dive in a dense mesh of same names and organizations…

Only an accident…

Since October, 30th I’m the new president of GPUL. It has been necessary because Emilio went some months to investigate at INRIA in Grenoble. He needed holidays too because the great,, amazing work he made leading GPUL the last three years. I only wish I’ll be able to maintain the modernization he began in the Association. It’ll be a challenge for José Millán to replace to our panzer against administration, Chema, as secretary.

With the new configuration we’ll face next months the celebration of the 10 years of GPUL along this academic year. We’ll try to reduce the mean age in the Association in order to reach the 15th anniversary ;-)

GIStheresis

Some weeks ago I wrote about my work at the Territorial Studies Lab. After two months of a interesting, funny stage I left the Lab. Two doors from there, the CartoLab needed a geek person with some knowledge about GNU/Linux systems and Civil Engineering. I hope to be up to my new bosses’ expectations.

As it’s name points to, CartoLab develops cartography works, especially GIS related works. I think I’ll enjoy the next months :-)

Citius, altius, fortius… bloodious

I always loved sports. I didn’t played a lot because I was too bad and I had no teacher who drived me right. Like most of Spanish boys, I loved football, and I soon began to suffer with the curse on the Spanish national team (and enjoyed with the evolution of Deportivo de La Coruña). So, when this summer Spain reached the top of Europe playing football lovely and wining, I blowed up with happiness.

Now I’m enjoying with Spanish sportmen in Beijing. But I can’t forget the Olympic Games where time for peace. And  there is not peace without justice. I hope Olympic Games help a bit to China to open to democracy, even when the goverment became more oppressorto show a nice face to the world, even when the people that decided Beijin seven years ago had another intere$$$t$$$.

Ther is no peace too when one player in the Games invades the territory of another player, causing hundreds of injured and killed. Russia justified with a possible Georgian attack against civilians, but it’s difficult to prove this when some journalist died trying to show the reality to the rest of the world.

Geeks as we are

Visperas and Benji got married in June. They celebrated the marriage in Alcalá de Henares, near Madrid. Alcalá was the first planned university in the world by Cardinal Cisneros in the XV Century. Everywhere in the  city you can find cared buildings of stone and brick that evoke the Golden Age of Spanish literature. You can see some photos I took in that gallery.
Colegio San Ildefonso
About the marriage, I’ll preserve the intimacy, but I must write it was  one of the most emotive ceremonies I have attended ever :-) The baquet  had some romantic and geek details too. You can see in the photo an amount of sparse all-around-the-world geeks joined because our past in  GPUL. We were sitted at the Linus Torvalds table. Visperas’ telecom  engineering friends were at the Graham Bell table, and Visperas and Benji were at Alan Turing table :-D

Geeks as we are
Good luck for the young family :-)

I was not resting in peace

I have not too much time to update this blog. Really, I never had time to do it, but now I’m aware of this fact ;-) but I’m not going to give up now. Last months were very hard but results where positive: I passed more exams than ever, and, in two months I’ll begin to work in my final degree project as I’ll try to pass the last subjects.

There was another reason to be busy: I began to work in the Territorial Studies Lab. I’m updating the databases of the provincial GIS. We use GISEiel, a derivate of gvSIG (so it’s free software), against postresql databases. It’s not a very complex work but it’s very interesting to familiarize and reflect about how the territory was built.

Some of the following posts are about the lost events and thoughts in this ending summer.

The straight way

As I had arrived to Segovia at night I missed great part of the Castilian landscape. Back to Galicia by car, I could appreciate its plainness and I could imagine the field of gold it becames in Summer.

A nice wallpaper

(yes, this photo is very similar to a well-known wallpaper ;-))

We crossed too Duero riverside and Bierzo vineyards, and we could see how the Civil Engineering overcame the Piedrafita do Cebreiro pass to build a highway that joins Galicia and León.

Piedrafita highway

Rescue the princess

Castilian towns are different than Galician ones (concentrated vs. scattered land occupancy). I could prove it along my route, and I could see it in situ when I arrived to Segovia.

Segovia is well-known because it has one of the most importan Roman aqueducts. But there are more treasures: Mozarabic architecture in the streets, the church where Isabel the Catholic was crowned, the late-gothic cathedral, and the wonderful Alcázar.

Alcazar de Segovia

Building territory

Last weekend I went to Segovia to visit my friends Belen, Quico and their little children Carlitos and Julia. That was a fast, intense travel.
high-speed train bridge

I got the Talgo train at La Coruña the Friday morning. The Talgo is one of the great products of Spain. It’s a confortable, fast and versatile train. It has only a fault: it has double glasses, so I had some problems to take photos. And I had reasons to take lots of photos. One, there is a beauty transition to see between the Galician mountains and the plateau of Castile. The other reason is all the great works (bridges, tunnels) for high-speed train and highways. You are lucky if you are a civil engineer in Galicia nowadays.

Thunder (very long distance) road

It was by coincidence. Today I had a nice dinner with my friends of the Civil Engineers School Raquel, Olga, the two Silvias, and Nacho (Silvia’s boyfriend) who is an Industrial Engineer. We didn’t meet all at the same time and place since a year ago. In fact, today we missed Juan in the meeting.

They gave me some presents because they couldn’t meet me in my birthday. One of them was the book “Bruce Springsteen on Tour 1968-2005″ by Dave Marsh. It was a meaningful present for many reasons.

Today I celebrated a rare anniversary. 15 years ago, I register for first time to the Civil Engineers School.Too much time.

If it was a mistake, it’s too late to lament. Of course, in these years I didn’t choose the easy way. I rebuilt my mind, and I made lots of experiments following new routes. So I delayed my degree. I hope in 15 years I’ll write they were useful.

But I will never lament the good people I met in these years, in my School, among our neighbourgs of the Faculty of Computer Science, and my mates in projects of the Cooperation and Volunteering Office. It was not wasted time only for meeting them :-)

Café Delicias, 7:00 a.m.

Even when I heard the morning news in the radio actually I listened in my mind the fuzzy experiments of Thelonious Monk Himself, and Bill Evan’s Alone too. Yes, alone, having a double cup of coffee and a smoking a Camel cigarette maybe can be a strange way of celebrating my 33th birthday. But, in fact, it was only a moment to think about this point of my life.

It’s simple. A year ago I wouldn’t imagine me studying for the December tests. I wouldn’t imagine me leaving the laptop at home all the day, and trying to forget anything but Civil Engineering (with the exception of the Portiño educational project, of course). Ok, as computer addict I fall in temptations too like creating the Hermes Project (I’ll write about this later). But it’s only an exception.

The best sypmtom that demostrate I’m trying to drive on new highways is my social life. A year ago I easily would get bored in a party in my Civil Engineers School. And I would fear to be alone going out in Coruña. But Thursday night and yesterday I went out until the sunrise and I had no moment of loneliness. Really I met with a great amount of good guys in my School :-) And, thanks to “a new hazard in Milano” Fran, I re-discovered a new temple of non-jazz music, the Playa Club.

So, what is the moment I get the blues? Maybe, thinking about her. My love dances around me, my love walks by my side, my love flies away from me

Love the rain

Today when I went off the train in the evening, it began to rain. I had 1 km. down to home, so I put my headphones and shooke off the glasses.

The water drops run on my face, but I didn’t hear the rain. Rather I didn’t hear that rain. Because it was sounding in my ears “Here’s that rainy day”, then “A time for love”. These are the first tracks of “Bill Evans Alone”(1968).

The rest of the album… well, with a nice mug of tea, a cigarrete and… sneezing a bit ;-) But I felt free in that lonely walk…