I am a Cinephile

I love both watching films and talking about them afterwards. I can't write long form film reviews (though I do write short ones), but that doesn't stop me ranting about films in a more general sense.

Goals for 2017

I don’t really do new years resolutions. They just don’t seem to work for me. I don’t see that there’s anything that special about January 1st. It isn’t even the first day of the year for a reasonable portion of the planet. Expecting to make sudden and positive life changes on that day just seems to silly and destined to fail. Especially given that I’m probably hungover. That said, setting goals for the year ahead does work for me, though I realise it’s a fairly arbitrary distinction.

Previously I’ve set vague goals,

Read this post

Some Thoughts on Gamification

If you're playing any sort of a game, the question "Am I winning?" is usually quite easy to answer. "Is my score higher than the other guy?" usually covers it (though if you're playing something like chess it might be a little more complicated than that). If you're playing a computer game the fact that your character is still alive may well be enough to settle this question in your favour.

In life, though, it is a much harder question to answer. It may well be true that, to the healthy mind, it's not something which

Read this post

Categories and Goals

It's good to have goals. Even if you fail to meet them. Sometimes especially when you fail to meet them. It's quite widely publicised that at Google we're expected to score 0.7 (on a scale where 0 is a complete failure and 1 means all targets were met) when assessing our OKRs (objectives and key results). Generally this is good. It means you're always striving, always raising your eyes, hitting the top of the tree by aiming for the sky.

In my personal life, though, this probably isn't the best approach. Be that as it may, this year I

Read this post

I Disagree with Film Critic Hulk

While Film Critic Hulk's argument generally seems quite well reasoned, I find it a little difficult to stomach someone attempting to lecture me on the theory behind the form of anything in ALL CAPS, and at such length. Also, he makes the unforgivable (in my opinion) mistake of representing his opinion as fact. He states the film falls flat, not that he believes it falls flat. No one, apparently, thought to mention this to the legions of people who rated Les Mis so highly on IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes.

At the end of the day in film, just like any

Read this post

New (ish) Year, New (ish) Blog

2011 was an interesting year for me. A lot changed. I turned 30. After 10 years of residency I moved away from Edinburgh, a city I love dearly, and took a job in London. With Google. As a result, I no longer work with Autonomous Underwater Vehicles for a living. Instead I build web services. Quite the change, I'm sure you'll agree. In the early months of the year I finally completed the corrections to my PhD, and then in the summer: I graduated. It took 6 years (all together) but I am now Dr. Nick Johnson. I also lost

Read this post