Saturday the 2nd was the Live 8 concert in Hyde Park. I get regular updates from Oxfam so I have been following the Make Poverty History campaign for some time; sending emails to politicians when asked and wearing a white wristband. There is still a lot that can be done so please check out the link. As such it was great to win tickets to the event and be able to take part in it, even if a small part of it (Just one of 150,000 people in the crowd). Highlights were R.E.M., though seen from very far back, The Who and Pink Floyd, both seen from much nearer the stage as huge numbers of teenagers left the site following Robbie Williams stint on stage.
Then on Wednesday the 6th the city I'm living and working in gets the nod for the 2012 Olympic games. All around London there were scenes of celebration with people partying in the street well into the night. I didn't take part myself, but there was plenty of excitement as my partner works for part of the London transport system and her department looks likely to get a number of interesting projects to improve the road network in the run up to the games.
Of course I doubt anyone is unaware of the events of Thursday the 7th. Clearly all terrorist atrocities are appalling and my thoughts are with those killed or injured. The thing that struck me with these attacks was how scared I was during the confusion of the initial reports as I attempted to contact everyone I knew elsewhere in London. With hindsight I could have been much calmer about it, as I know that the vast majority of people I was trying to contact would have been nowhere near the explosions. I guess this is true for the whole population of London, despite only around a thousand people directly affected by the bombs (and of course I'm not discounting this tragedy in any way by saying 'only' - one is too many), millions of people in London frantically contacted loved ones to find out if they were ok and let others know they were safe. Indeed this must have been the case all over the world as people checked in with relatives in London, or even with relatives in the UK. In fact as an aside I saw an interview with a gentleman in Baghdad who checked that a sister in London was safe, in stark contrast to their normal roles (not that there is anything 'normal' about bombs in any city). While not affecting my shock and horror felt at any other attack, I guess my point is that I did not know anyone in New York, or Madrid, or Bali, nor do I know anyone in Israel or Iraq or elsewhere, so although I know it shouldn't Thursday certainly felt different for me. Some might use the phrase 'brought things closer to home', but even that's not the right sentiment as there is no sense in which I thought those other events had no bearing on me.
Unaware of the events that would unfold later in the week I had taken the Tuesday off work. The main thing I worked on was to dust off the Tetris clone I posted an image from in my last journal entry, iron out a few last niggling bugs and get it ready to post as a GD Showcase entry. Although it's a project that I worked on a long time ago and was only really intended as a learning exercise the learning is all ultimately leading to my desire to gain work as a games programmer. As such its still quite a big step for me to post a playable version as I've generally kept my demos close to myself, so far only showing them to close family and friends. I hope people will enjoy it and give me some useful feedback (hopefully not too harsh or unfriendly feedback :D ). I had held back from posting it for a while following Thursdays events as it felt a bit strange or perhaps insensitive to post too close to those events. I guess that is a little irrational and, as is clear in London this week, life does move on. Please give it a try and let me know what you think.