Hiatus

Long time no blog

I don't often post personal things here, but I thought after a 15 month gap I should put something up.

We are all well and happy here, but since late 2020 I was incredibly busy at work - working on a "Red team" review of a major UK public sector project which was in real trouble, and then working with the organisation to help plan and build a complete reset of the project. It was a challenging and interesting and a great learning experience - but it also used up all my energy and spare time not already dedicated to family, so not much side-project work or blog ideas made it out.

Then in November 2021 our other side-project happened - we adopted a child! I'm not going to share details in a public medium, but it's been a wonderful exhausting journey. I'm half way through 6 months of Adoption Leave, and things are sort-of almost calming down a bit - enough that I can start thinking about the year ahead, and maybe update this blog!

So - I might turn some draft posts into real posts at some stage; and I'm trying to get back into technical reading, when I have the time and brainpower.

Currently I'm reading Information Visualization: Perception for Design by Colin Ware - which is fascinating, an in-depth academic text on human visual perception and cognition - it's basically covering the low-level stuff that our bodies and brains do to process visual info, with an eye on how this impacts the world of visualization.

There is so much here, backed by so much research - it's not all immediately applicable to people building D3 interfaces, necessarily - you can get that from lots of other books. But if you want to know a bit more about why you might want to prefer one kind of colour scheme to another, or why visual programming languages might not ever match the hype, or how to support colour-blind users (and why some small proportion of the population can see colours that nobody else can!), or a million other fascinating facts about brains and eyes - it's a really interesting read. If very dense to read through blurry, sleep-deprived eyes.

Anyway, enough blathering - just thought I'd post a "still alive" notice. There may be more posts soon, or it may be more months of silence here!

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