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Another week has passed and more big news has come. I wasn’t joking about life’s great junction and it seems a few more people have reached theirs.

Now one thing to remember is that the choices these people make can sometimes affect other people too – such as a driver changing into your lane in front of you or your favourite watering hole closing down temporarily because the landlord decided to move to work at the brewery that owned it – and sometimes this may present opportunities to you and suddenly before you know it, it’s your turn to go left, right or straight on.

How you proceed is of course, up to you and it’s you that you should be looking out for. But it really gives you a numinous feeling knowing that the butterfly effect can even crop up in your everyday decisions.

I find this idea fascinating sometimes (and if you’re still reading this 3 weeks into the topic, I can only assume you’re either humouring me or are interested in the same manner) and how similar it can relate to media such as ‘choose your own adventure’ books and  recent video games such as much of the Telltale collection of games, DONTNOD Entertainment’s “Life Is Strange” and Supermassive Games’ “Until Dawn”. Running through these media not only allow good replayability and good value for money, but let you answer that “What If?” curiosity that many of us posses. If we were allowed a rewind superpower or the ability to quickly press “reset” on life and to replay from where we last saved, our lives would be perfect!

Or would it? I suppose it would be theoretically impossible to be right for everyone as we would have to have infinite parallel timelines to satisfy this, where in only one or a small number of the outcomes would allow us to be happy (not that we’d know unless we had a magical TV channel selection like in Rick & Morty). But even if only one or a small number of us had the power to change and re-change the world over indefinitely, would we appreciate the perfect life? Would we eventually know what perfect was given nothing will have gone wrong in so long that we can no longer appreciate what ‘wrong’ is? Who knows, but thankfully having both right and wrong in life ironically allows us one constant in our dynamic day to day lives that we so often managed to take for granted.

So whilst we might only get one go around and we often can’t see all of the outcomes first, we know that many people before us had to make this decision and we won’t be the last to either (unless a number of certain world leaders all make the decision to type in some given codes and launch some pretty world ending stuff, then that might be, but hopefully that won’t happen anytime soon!), so if it’s your turn, go ahead and give it some thought, but be sue to make it before those lights change and the opportunity passes you by.  And if you’re not the best decision maker, maybe have a look at some of the suggestions above to give it a practice – over time you might just surprise yourself.

I’ll see how my story goes and if any junctions may or may not come up for me in the meantime.

Happy Travels!


The Wisdom of Old Tom

This week has been a bit of a roller-coaster. From the rising and falling of day to day workload to the emotions about a dear colleague at work moving onto a new place and leaving our team.

On the one hand I’m happy for the new challenges moving on from the relentless workload of the last few months and the opportunity to do different things each day and happy our dear colleague can do the same. 

But at the same time we have a little sadness with the team breaking down a little bit and the knowledge that whilst we all move forwards,  the sobering reminder that the things around us are as dynamic as we try  to be and that not everything always moves at the same pace or in the same phase as us. 

We’re often told that there’s a time and a place for everything – often conveniently a short time after we’ve said something at a bad time –   but it’s meaning rooms true on many more occasions in life.  You can plan opportunities for months at a time only to nearly miss the opportunity of doing it.  Similarly you can take a risk that doesn’t work out and whilst it’s you should have waited a little longer before acting. 

Once half of the battle in life is making progress. The other is knowing when our where to take the actions that lead to it., lest you looking back on it in the future and feeling remorse. Sometimes it takes skill and experience to get a higher chance of getting it right,  other times is total guesswork and faith,  but making the choice is often better than ignoring it and remembering that justifying sitting something out is different than not bothering to decide at all. 

So have a think when the next junction comes up for you:  go left,  right or straight on.  When you consult your ‘map’ or experience from your journey you’ll be able to decide easier. Just remember that when the light turns green,  it will change again eventually,  so don’t miss your turn or you’ll never move forward (and like driving,  will inevitably drive those behind you insane for loitering). 

Happy Sunday everyone. 


At Least I’m Moving Forward

With Blue Monday fast approaching and (at least for us in Preston) a weekend of cold, grey skies and rain (and many other places facing much worse), it feels like a great excuse to curl up in a duvet, stick on the streams and to lay there and just forget the world. I’ll admit, I did it for a few hours yesterday and it felt great, until I realised I’d have to stop and do something useful with myself so I hadn’t totally wasted the day.

That’s the dangerous thing about vegging out – once you’re down on your pad of choice, you’re usually done for the day, which is why many try to get stuff done before they flop out after work or lectures as they know how hard it is to start again afterwards.

If motivation is waning for you, remember the end goal and try to see that flop out as your treat. At the same time though, don’t try to kill yourself with exertion!

I feel proud of the things I’ve managed to achieve so far in my year of doing. After many delays in the vision of making tech support a little bit more remote controlled to benefit both ourselves and the stressed out people we sometimes need to keep waiting whilst we undo the mess another has made or perhaps due to them being a fair distance from where we are at any one time, we’ve finally got a number of rooms functional in the centres (still waiting on the configuration files for our more complex setup we had built for us in a Lecture Space last year though…) and myself and my dear colleague are rapidly trying to learn our way around it all so we can be ready to deploy it.

I’ve also had the opportunity to dabble in alternate realities of both the augmented and mixed variety (VR is still on the bucket list!) with development for mobiles and tablets starting this week in a basic form with our new styled room guides and experiencing, albeit with some tweaking, patience, without any texturing on it and it flying around the room as I tried to get the hang of the transform controls, one of the models I built of our classroom chairs that makes a debut in some of our earlier testing content for Digital Signage, my eLearning package for our AV Training program come to life through the “3D Viewer BETA” app on the Hololens Developer Edition headset


Holoens in Context

Kind of what it looked like in context

Not bad for someone at a junior level eh? Better yet, I’m also going into next week with half an idea of what the week should look like in the ideal world.Whether it’ll happen or not is another story, but you never know what’s around the corner until you come to it (unless you have a periscope).

Now understandably, I realise it’s easier said than done sometimes. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows. I know I’ve got to make some pretty big decisions soon for all sorts of reasons. It reminds me a lot of Hoobastank’s song of whom the title of this week’s post is based on. Whilst the actual interpretation of the song itself is yet to be revealed by the band, I interpret it in a similar manner to the ideas I based a song on for a uni assignment named “The Middle of the Day” (still available to listen here). But if we stand still, we’ll never know the outcome and may spend forever cursing the missed opportunity. So take the risk, make your choice and thank yourself that you moved forward a little bit today.

Chin up, we’ll get through tomorrow if we’re prepared to get it all done before we veg out and we’ll be back in the saddle before we know it.

Good Luck!


The Year of Doing

So I’m sure a week and a bit in you’re probably sick to death of hearing ‘Happy New Year!’ every 5 minutes and you’re at that state where you’re either revelling in your new found activity you’ve chosen to take up or you’re regretting those weird, wonderful and/or drunken resolutions you pledged to do on the big night (I for one still stand by my tweet that I will learn AD&D this year starting with Boulder’s Gate and go on to face the more gruelling chambers in the main RPG story-lines in time).

This year, I’m trying to push myself into doing more of the wild and crazy things I consider. Last year was one of healing, moving and adapting – where many things were pushed back due to financial or work commitments and when the time finally came back around, the motivation to get back to it was replaced by laziness or procrastination. This year for me will be “The Year of Doing”. Now I know that’s a little cliché as it’s what everyone does say before things inevitably fizzle out, but this time I’m not focussing on the success, I’m focusing on the getting up off my arse and making those wheels turn. If it fails, it fails, if it succeeds all the better. The important thing is whatever was hypothesised or proposed, it was done or at least attempted to be done. As motivation to help fuel this, many things have been announced on the main Rose Tinted Archer blog and if it’s big and project related, I’ll keep on telling you all, so you can hold me to keep you informed!

I hope to apply the mantra to my everyday ideas and decisions too (which is convenient being at a bit of a crossroads on a couple of things in life), and if you’re like me and can struggle with motivation sometimes I encourage you to do the same. Write down what you want to achieve this year in a format similar to a bucket list – it could be big or small, from making that big move to a new place to starting your new diet to asking out that person you pass in the library every week for a beverage. Try to keep it realistic though as you’ve only got 12 months to do it in (or at least start it) and you’re going to have to try and stick to it! If you think you’ll break easily, maybe add a forfeit to keep yourself motivated – almost like a swear jar collection or a regular treat or yourself in your house which you either give to charity or reinvest in your resolution. If you want even more motivation, flip it so you have a reward of sorts to enjoy at the end of the year and each time you fail, you remove a portion of it.

Whatever you’ve chosen to take on this year I hope you manage to keep to it and I wish you all the best for the 51 weeks ahead.