An overhaul of this page is long overdue, and I will get to it eventually. However, other priorities take precedence for now.
A brief (and seriously outdated) bio:
I'm an ex-pat Brit
living and working in Los Angeles, California semi-retired in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. With over 40 years experience as a writer and over 30 as a scientific technical writer (one way or another) I used to earn my daily crust as a contractor in that sphere but I did have several strings to my bow so I always brought more to the table than just plain technical writing.
Current interests include the cipher variously called Dorabella, Dora Penny, and Elgar, and exploring an encryption system that seems to have been overlooked. Out of the latter has come a novel puzzle that combines music notation and anagrams and I'm trying to develop that into some form of income in my retirement. A sample website may be found at  or you can just Google 'AnagraMelodies'.
An atheist (I have my own version of existentialism) since the age of 16, I have found that in the US at least it doesn't pay to advertise that fact. Apparently we're only about 1.3% of the population and are regarded with the most distrust (presumably by the other 98.7%). Dang. Should I have said that out loud?
I am the definition of unequally yoked in that my wife is a born again evangelical Christian, but we make it work (since 1995), and if we can do it, the rest of the world sure as hell can try.
There are odd bits about me knocking around on the 'Net - I've been creating a footprint (one way or another) since the early 90s, and I have this hunch that the Internet (in fact, any form of distributed network with local storage) is the epitome of antichaos (even as it appears to be chaotic), working strongly as it does against the tendency of entropy to lead to disorganisation. So there.
I may be about to become homeless, along with my wife and two cats. It's a long story, but rest assured it's not because of drug or alcohol abuse or criminal activity - it's one of the results of this economic meltdown.
We just seem to be falling between the cracks of a system that was never that good at looking after its citizens in the first place.
If anyone reading this is trying to contact me, try emailing firstname.lastname@example.org if my email@example.com address bounces.
Update for anyone interested: We got some help from an unexpected quarter and managed to get out of the mire and even back into fulltime work, only to have the project curtailed far too soon (an incomplete response to an FDA 483 yet - you don't mess with the FDA!), thus throwing me back into the excrement far too soon.
So we're back facing imminent eviction, repossession of our car, and a host of other problems (not helped by the IRS suddenly and without warning draining our bank accounts of everything - not even leaving funds for basic necessities, as required by law. A Rescind notice was issued, but was unsigned, and by the time the issue was rectified, it was too late to be actioned since a weekend intervened. Talk about incompetence. It's taken six days to get everything back to the way it was).
Another update for anyone interested: We have essentially been living under constant threat of eviction for two years, always managing to scrape by with the much-appreciated help of friends and family.
But time may now be running out for us: people we thought we could trust and rely on let us down, and the state failed everyone miserably (not unsurprising in a culture that values self-reliance above mutual support). The eviction process will start Monday January 24 2011, and may take as little as one month, with some massive increases in the amount of rent owed, as legal fees will add substantially (100% or more).
Latest update: It finally happened. We lost our home on March 9, 2011, and we've been homeless ever since. Our shameful abandonment by those who could so easily have kept us afloat while we sought solutions is seriously depressing, as is the toxic behavior by one family member in particular as she poisons all others against us. The truth will, hopefully, eventually come out, but not before we've been to Hell and back.AncientBrit (talk) 00:38, 5 May 2011 (UTC)
Later than Latest update: After five years of being homeless and in constant danger of being thrown onto the streets we're now licking our wounds a stone's throw from the ICW in Fort Lauderdale. Still technically homeless, we are for the moment safe (although in recent years I've come to regard that term with some skepticism). Semi-retired, I now pursue development of a spin-off from the encryption technology in the form of a musical puzzle that I'm calling an AnagraMelody - when I'm not dealing with other more urgent matters. If anything is going to rescue our gammon, that's probably it. AncientBrit (talk) 10:24, 26 April 2016 (UTC)
- WriteSafe entries by me
- My current blogs:
- Effluvium of Consciousness. I like poser titles :)
- MRF – The Privacy Tool. Veil is making progress
- (There are others but nothing worth discussing just yet)
- I'm running tests on MRF using Twitter under BaldFatGit. Development of MRF
under Androidusing MS Visual Studio 2010 VB Express under MS Windows XP Pro SP3 is proceeding apace! AncientBrit (talk) 10:33, 9 November 2011 (UTC)
- In the early hours of Thanksgiving Day the desktop's motherboard went kaput, which put a stop to MRF Veil development. It's taken five months to get a replacement (courtesy of the manager of a local electronics store who provided the replacement for free - there are still some really nice people left in the US :)) and picking up where I left off is being hampered by the imminent loss of UI benefits... We are STILL not out of the woods and constantly in danger of being thrown onto the streets - every day. Life is indeed a four letter word...AncientBrit (talk) 06:11, 9 April 2012 (UTC)