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About

In on August 1, 2006

nocto is the personal website of kirsty darbyshire. a dumping ground for anything i feel like putting on the web. i started this site in the summer of 2000. before that i had some hideous sites elsewhere. i’ll leave those to the reader’s imagination since the last remaining pages on a defunct isp finally got deleted after a decade and i can’t find my uni homepage in the internet archive (enough time has passed that i could get quite nostalgic about the flashing images).

i live around holmfirth in west yorkshire with darren; we have a cat, zan ( & had another peppa from 2002-2009), and one daughter, miranda, born february 2005. i work from home running my own company loquax limited. this beats working for a living by quite some considerable way. oh yes, it is working for a living, but it doesn’t count since you don’t have to get dressed or defrost the car windows on cold and frosty mornings. or go to meetings. you have to do a million other things you never dreamt of as an employee but this is a far, far better life to lead.

i attended imperial college, london from 1990-1993. i ended up with a degree in ‘mathematics with mathematical computation’ which is what you get if you do maths but think you ought to tag something with ‘comput’ into your degree title because you think ‘comput’ might come in handy career wise at some point, and besides you spent three years hanging out in the computer lab. i was at the university of manchester during 1993-1994 and gained an msc in ‘numerical analysis and computing’ which was pretty much what i did in my third year at imperial over again with the addition of a fun thesis. then i spent 1994-1997 pretending to do a phd at the university of newcastle. lots of fun, i learnt lots of things and after some initial disappointment with myself have never been much bothered about not actually submitting for a doctorate. (only thing i’d really like would to be able to sidestep the whole ms/miss/mrs thing.)

during 1997-2002 i worked as a programmer for a small software company in tyne & wear. in 2000 i spent 6 months working for the same company out of their houston, texas office. i spent two university vacations on the left hand side of the atlantic, summer 1992 in old orchard beach, maine and summer 1993 in vancouver, canada.

quick childhood rundown: you might remember me from one of this lot….

  • warstones infants & juniors, wolverhampton (1976ish-1982)
  • ercall junior, wellington, shropshire (1982)
  • rowde primary, wiltshire (1983)
  • devizes school, wiltshire (1983-1986)
  • seaford head upper school, east sussex (1986-1987)
  • cams hill school, fareham, hampshire (1988)
  • itchen college, southampton (1988-1990)

these days i mostly mess about with php, mysql, apache and keeping debian linux servers up and running. i used to work in java. i’m trying to forget i ever knew fortran.

for a long time i wrote nearly everything on this website myself – a huge spaghetti heap of code – but in summer 2006 i got fed up with my own stuff and decided to move over to wordpress which creates its own huge pile of spaghetti.

over the years i’ve mostly run suse linux as my main desktop operating system at home with the aid of a windows laptop. but as of late 2007 i’m working with a macbook and just a docking station so i can use the same system as my laptop and desktop. increasingly my computer never moves from my desk as my iphone is my portable computer of choice.

my google profile has a list of other places i hang out online. i’m always pleased to hear from old and new friends though i’m often lousy at replying.