February 23, 2008


Filed under: Me,My Life — Allan @ 1:56 pm
Tyler thoughtfully tagged me in the “7 random facts” meme.
<sarcasm>Thanks mate, really appreciate it</sarcasm>
The rules are thus:

  • link to the person who tagged you (check)
  • post the rules here (check)
  • share seven random or weird facts about yourself
  • tag seven random people at the end of the post, linking to them
  • leave a comment on their blog so they know they’ve been tagged
So, here goes, in no specific order of weirdness:
  1. I enjoy writing code.  You probably guessed that from the title of this posting.  I got my first computer in 1984, it was an Atari 600XL and I was bitterly disappointed when I got it home and it didn’t answer questions like computers did in the movies.  It had a tape drive and since I couldn’t afford to buy cartridges for the thing, I managed to get a book of source code for games.  Which I typed in.  40-odd pages of code and you’re going to make a mistake somewhere along the way.  So we actually just ended up playing games on my friends brothers’ ZX-Spectrum.  That same year I did a programming course and wrote my first lines of (working) code.
  2. I wasn’t in Enter the Dragon or Pretty Woman, but some other guy with my name was.  In 2002 he played himself in “Playboy: Inside the Playboy Mansion”.  I’m detecting a trend here.  Downwards.
  3. I’ve co-authored 11 books, all of them on techie type stuff.  If you Google for me you’ll find them all mixed with links to our actor friend.  Writing books doesn’t pay very well at all, but at least my mom has something to show her friends.
  4. I do my best thinking when I’m driving.  I’ve been meaning to get some kind of dictaphone type thing to use in the car because the middle of the steering wheel makes a really crap desk.  If I didn’t hate my phone so much I’m sure I could work out how to do it on that.
  5. I can still remember the IP number from my first real job when I worked at the University of Cape Town.  I do an nslookup on it every now and again – UCT still give descriptive names in their DNS.  When I was there it was  Going by its current name my IP is being used for an ethernet switch now.  Unfortunately, doesn’t have anything of the web site I ran off it back in 1995.  It contained a diary type page that I updated about three times a week (dare I say blog?) and a mirror of unix documentation for people in the office to access.  It was optimized for NCSA Mosaic.
  6. I now live in the same neighborhood that I grew up in.  It’s kinda cool being able to walk around and point out old friends’ houses and what happened there in your childhood. 80’s nostalgia.  Thankfully there are no photos, as the 80’s were not a good time for fashion.  There’s a lot on that list I was guilty of, and no I won’t list them, but I will fess up to a pink tank top.  I wish I could go back in time and slap myself.  I still have my black mesh tie.  But I don’t wear it.
  7. Even though has lost my website, Google still has my first ever posting to Usenet.  4 June 1992, using a friends VAX account.
So that’s the seven facts out of the way.  Now to pass on the misery:
  1. Bruce Lawson.  Accessibility bore and proud owner o the domain. Go read his blog – you’ll learn a crapload about web standards and accessibility and have a good laugh while doing so.  Incidentally, Bruce was editor on a number of my books, so if you think they’re crap, you can blame him :)
  2. Uwe Gutschow.  Thought you could slip away over there to LA?  Uwe was my boss at Saatchi AtPlay before he deserted us.
  3. WhiskeyKitten.  I’ve only known her for about 22 years.  That’s what you get for growing up with her brother.  Go check the site for photo’s of horses.  Millions of them.  Here’s another fact about me:  I don’t like horses.  But she does. 
  4. Faris Yakob.  He was the keynote speaker at a conference where I got to ramble away behind a lecturn for an hour.  His talk was inspirational and I’ve been a religious reader of his blog since then.
  5. Leon Jacobs.  Was Creative Director at Saatchi Cape Town and is now regional CD for Saatchi in Asia.  He likes funny french cars and cats.  He also enjoys singing while playing Wii golf.
  6. Dave Duarte.  I would have expected Dave to have been tagged with this a long time ago, but a quick search on his site for “random” or “seven” didn’t turn up anything.  So consider yourself tagged.  Dave, for those of you who only just turned on the internets and don’t know, is Cape Town’s celebrity marketing geek.  I can’t recall ever spending time with Dave when he hasn’t had something interesting or clever to say, so let’s see what random gems he can deliver.  No pressure.
  7. Ash.  While spending waaaaay too much time on IRC in the 90’s, I bumped into Ash and her husband.  Her blog is all about books and living in Amsterdam.   
So that’s it.  Now to go give people the good news.


  1. […] February 23, 2008 @TylerReed @DaveDuarte @faris […]

    Pingback by Twitter Response from @allankent « TweetTrack — February 23, 2008 @ 2:16 pm | Reply

  2. You didn’t pick up that meme on my blog cos I dodged my duty the last 3 times! Eish, perhaps my time has come. THANKS bud!
    On the upside my mom picked this post up on Google alerts and loves me more as a result:p

    Comment by Dave Duarte — February 26, 2008 @ 11:23 pm | Reply

  3. Thanks. A lot.

    Comment by Leon Jacobs — February 27, 2008 @ 7:44 am | Reply

  4. I feel the need to disseminate this horrible abuse of the word meme, and what I posted at Hallqs page sufficiently gets across my point, so I’ll paste:
    Sorry, but you are entirely misdirected about what a ‘meme’ is. A survey or chain letter or pass-me-on or whatever this is has no relation to the word. In order to not look silly or foolish, you should research terms before using them. You can’t make something a meme just by declaring it so, and if this was one, it would be instantly recognized and occur regularly in the social consciousness in various forms. All your base are belong to us and LOLcats are memes, ‘list 7 weird things about yourself’ is a survey at best, and a piece of unsolicited spam chainmail at worst. Also, a meme can’t be ‘invented,’ a meme just happens. In addition, as this is about the 20th blog I’ve posted this comment to, it really makes me sad to know that people are such blindly-following, unthinking automatons that they readily repeat things as fact without so much as an inkling of skepticism. Especially you, being a fellow coder. Shame, shame..

    Comment by Locke — April 4, 2008 @ 8:37 pm | Reply

  5. I actually had an entire rebuttal typed up, but after Google-ing (ooh I hope I used the term correctly) Hallq and reading their response, I decided that there was only one way to respond. So in the spirit of your posting, I will copy and paste some text from somewhere else. Here then is Hallq’s excellent response:

    “In order not to look silly or foolish, you should try not to be a stickler about the use of internet slang.”

    Also chastised – Double Delight:

    We should start a support group – “I was chastised by Locke” – perhaps it will become a meme :P

    Comment by Allan — April 5, 2008 @ 11:54 am | Reply

  6. what a great site and informative posts, I will add a backlink and bookmark your site. Keep up the good work!

    I’m Out! :)

    Comment by online stock trading guru — January 11, 2010 @ 5:43 am | Reply

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