Sunday, May 21, 2006

Re-reading books

I just finished The Metaphysical Club, a very interesting book that I recommend. Apart from its main tale of the evolution of pragmatism, it has many fun side stories, including the beginnings of some universities (Johns Hopkins, the University of Chicago) and some background on academic freedom. Anyway, good stuff.

After finishing, I was thinking about what to read next, and decided on Portnoy's Complaint, which a friend bought for me a while back. It's a new read for me, and for a while I've been wondering what the proper ratio should be between reading new books and re-reading old ones. For many good books, I imagine I would get much more from a second read than from the first; this certainly holds for film. On the other hand, I always feel that there are tons of good books that I haven't read yet, and I should be working on those. I guess the same dilemma holds for movies, but since I can watch a movie much faster than I can read a book, I haven't given it as much thought.

Anyway, any thoughts on a good ratio? Or is going with your gut the best thing to do?

Sunday, May 07, 2006

FreeNX rules

I just got FreeNX installed for remote access to my school Linux computer from my home Windows machine, and it is amazing. I used these excellent instructions for Fedora, which worked almost perfectly. The only kink was that my existing installation of Cygwin interfered with the Windows NX client; Cygwin does not enjoy having two versions of its DLLs loaded simultaneously. To fix the problems, I renamed the DLLs in the NX client bin directory, so that the DLLs from my standard Cygwin install were used. Everything works great now, and the system is far more responsive than just using a local X server.