About

Well, what can I say? I’m a geek, and have been for as long as I can remember. I’ve always been curious, not just about how to write this and that in a simple piece of code, I’ve always wanted to know how a computer works.

I started out writing simple Excel functions and macro’s at the age of nine. By the time I was 12, I had written a couple of programs in Visual Basic 6. Over the next couple of years, I got infected with the web-bug, and decided that I wanted to be a web-designer.
Sadly, I soon discovered that I had the artist’s eye of a colourblind hedgehog, and so I took a course, not in webdesign, but in server-side scripting. PHP and MySQL at the age of 15(ish). Since then, I’ve become pretty proficient in the language. So much so that I make a decent living writing PHP, JavaScript, the odd bash script and C program.

I have an insatiable desire to learn new things, so I’ve played around with Scheme (lovely), Lisp (great, prefer scheme, though) and Haskell (can’t get over the syntax). I love vanilleJS for that reason: the power of functional programming.
In a moment of utter despair I have picked up some Java, and decided to hate it with a passion. Just like I had a job that involved writing and maintaining old COBOL programs. It’s something I’m not proud of, but it taught me to love all languages that have some form of scoping all the more.
I’ve also taken courses in C++, Zend Framework, Git, and Linux. Too many courses to mention, really

My favourite computer still is an old Dell Latitude D610 laptop, that is being kept together with black tape. It’s running my favourite distro: Slackware, though I am looking for new distributions with a better package manager. The old hardware just doesn’t compile as fast as I’d like it to.
I have some other laptopts (5 or 6, I think) and a big, old school desktop machine. I don’t have a tablet, nor do I want one. It’s a complete waste of money. I have a smartphone, and even that gets on my nerves from time to time.

In terms of programming languages: I love C, have a special place reserved for PHP and JavaScript, Like Scheme and would like to get to know Perl a bit more. I have tried some Python. I found it OK, but I’m not crazy about the syntax, I need my brackets.
I firmly believe that there’s a special place reserved in Hell for all people responsible for the horror that is COBOL.

I occasionally put things up on github, and have contributed to some projects. Not as much as I’d like to, though. I’ve also been quite active on the stackexchange sites, stackoverflow and codereview in particular. But lately, I just don’t have the time, or if I do, I don’t have the patience to answer the same question over and over again. But in case you want to look at what I’ve posted on these sites, here’s my flair:

profile for Elias Van Ootegem on Stack Exchange, a network of free, community-driven Q&A sites

What can you expect to find here?

Gibberish, just me, some bloke, venting frustrations, trying to make a point but getting side tracked half-way down the post… nothing shocking, nothing you haven’t seen before and certainly nothing that doesn’t already exist.

At first, I’ll focus on programming related topics. If I can’t find anything new to say about those things anymore, I might just move it on to politics, or social studies or whatever.

It’s probably at this point where I should add this disclaimer-thing:

“This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here are mine. Not those of my employer. I reserve the right to change my opinion on some topics that I may have discussed here or elsewhere. That’s what opinions are for, after all.”

I attempt to express my opinion in a colourful and humouristic (possibly misguided) fashion. The use of hyperboles and graphic images are part of this style. They are not to be taken literally. If someone is offended by what I write, I respect your right to respond accordingly, and if needs be, I am willing to edit my posts.

Content and Copy

I hereby grant every individual, private person the right to copy, re-use and re-publish (parts of) the texts found here, unless the text explicitly mentions other rules apply.
The republishing of this content is subject to a few sensible, but crucial rules, though. It is not allowed to re-publish, copy or re-use this content in any way in the following circumstances:

  • For use in advertisement/promotional material of proprietary software or non-public events
  • Content may not be published by/for groups and organisations that might instigate irrational behaviour. For example: racist boards, religious writings, political movements, unless I give my explicit, written permission.

Bottom line: Don’t be an A-hat,  and be willing to give back. It’s a kind of GPL-approach.

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