Pop-up toy

August 31, 2008

The simplest things are still the most amusing, this had me captivated for at least 5 minutes!

What do you call these things??

The 19th hole

August 29, 2008

Yeah, that’s right, the 19th as in golf. What’s that you gasp, “a sports related post on this here blog!”

Now, get your breath back, if you ask me golf was once accurately described as “a good walk, spoiled.” However, I understand that amongst sporty types, the golf is quite popular. So I say, “ok golf could be fun, but do I have to walk?” The answer of course being, yes.”

Now thanks to technoligical-thingummy-ness, the answer is no! Paul’s brother, Russell, is one of the partnership behind Green, Sheffield first golf simulator and bar type place. It is quite literally, the 18th and 19th hole in one!


Green is like no other bar in Sheffield. Where else can you relax with your friends in the heart of the city centre and at the same time play 18 holes on some of the world’s most famous golf courses?

Amazing, eh!

Anyway, tonight is the launch party and I’m on the guest list baby! That’s the guest list, BABY!

I better go start getting dolled up, the Paps are sure to be there, I need to look my best 🙂


Our survey says…. you’re a winner!

August 22, 2008

I vaguely remember filling in a survey about local transport. If I recall anything, it’s that I was not very complimentary about local services.

Well, look what I got in the post yesterday, what a lucky boy, I am 🙂

I have to add that I hardly ever go to M&S, so I will probably give these away to one of my team as an incentive, whoever get the most sales/best stats, that sort of thing. So lucky for them too 🙂

Another day, another OS

August 20, 2008

Today, I got a little sidetracked in my search for a groovy new operating system. Inspired by The Lovely Jonathan, I tried out Mac OS 10. I know! On Intel-type PC hardware!

Remember the old days when the Mac peeps were all like, “oh, yeah Macs are better cos they run on superior Processors and hardware.” Well, not any more, you see the recent generation of Mac have been quite happily running on Intel processors for some time. So its perhaps not surprising that people are now coming up with ways to run the Mac OS on PC’s they have put together themselves at a fraction of the cost of a Mac. They call them Hackintosh.

I chose a DVD image called Kalyway, which is Mac OS 10.5.2. It was very easy to get it going as you can see here.

Once it was finished it was like, totally like a Mac. Which I shouldn’t have been surprised about since that is what it was! Connecting to my mobile by bluetooth confirmed this, announcing the connection as Andy’s Mac Pro 🙂

I wish I taken a picture after I changed the desktop to the grass wallpaper 😦 I have the grass wallpaper on my PC at the moment so I’m quite fond of it.

I’m not a total novice, a few years ago I used to use an iMac at work, so some things came flooding back and others, like the Dock, were brand new.

So what did I make of OS 10 ?

Plus points were the start up speed, wow it was fast. The Dock is pretty cool, I’m deffo getting me one of those for my PC 🙂

Downside? One of the things that came flooding back was the way the applications dont have their own menu across the top. Instead, whichever app is in focus has its menu on the task bar at the top of the screen. It feels disconnected and (I think) its annoying. Overall, it feels restricted, perhaps thats just me, but its all very Apple controlled isn’t it?

It’s gone now, (I’m already onto my next install) but the deciding factor? No support for my ethernet or wireless connections, plus I dont have all the apple keys on my keyboard which affects the usability.

So, in summary, MacOS 10 (or X if you prefer) isn’t the one for me, but I can see why people like it 🙂

Next stop, Mandriva……..

New Adventures in Linux…..

August 19, 2008

… or Don’t laugh at the newbie!

Since we got back from Prague things have been pretty quiet around here. There is a reason for this, and that reason is Linux.

It’s a really odd feeling for me to go back to the beginning and have to learn how to “do” computers again. Just today in work, I reflected on this when I was asked several times (not uncommonly so) to fix this or that, reconnect new profiles to old to regain access to systems etc. We have a tech coordinator guy on site but people often come to me first. Actually, I’d almost forgot that I used to do the tech-co job until about 5 years ago!

So as I said, its an odd feeling to be the newbie, but interesting and unlike when I was learning PC’s back in the day, there is a lot of help out there in the form of forums and blogs 🙂 So far I’ve tried about 5 different Linux distros, unlike Windows there are different branches of Linux. Usually these projects are separated by their aim to be faster, smaller or more compatible than other branches.

Here is a quick run down, of my adventures (so far) in Linux.

PCLinuxOS is a popular distro, and I liked it a lot. It felt very similar to using Windows, probably intentionally, and I would be using it now if I could fix the wireless lan driver problem I encountered.

Damn Small Linux is very interesting, small enough to fit on and boot from a pen-drive, meaning you can boot a “strangers” PC, so get your familar desktop to work on, use it for a time to work or surf, then save your session and leve no trace on the host machine. Pretty cool, eh?

Ubuntu is probably one of the most popular as far as I can tell, this is, I think due to it being very stable and highly compatible. I felt that this also meant it ran pretty slowly.

Kubuntu a branch of the above, and I felt it had the edge speed-wise but the pre-installed software was all a bit obscure for me, for example Konquerer browser rather than Firefox.

Xubuntu is another Ubuntu branch, feels faster in many ways but includes Firefox and other more familiar software versions than the above. So far for me it has the edge and is the version I’m still playing around with, though it also suffers some issues with my wireless card. Can you imagine the stress its giving me having an actual wire running to the router? I know! A wire!

So, like, yeah, I’m a newbie, and I’m going to try and stick with it, (does going dual boot count?) so please don’t be a hater if I offended your fave distro, this is just my opinion, right?

We did get back from Prague!

August 15, 2008

A record of our holiday (in reverse order) as Twittered by me, strangely lacking in comments about Prague itself!

I’m sure I’ll put some photos up soon, I’ve been a bit busy messing around with Linux over the last few days, a bit scary being a newbie again but also having fun with it 🙂

Home 🙂 06:44 PM August 13, 2008 from mobile web

Feeling sad, sat in hotel lobby waiting for car to airport 😦 10:40 AM August 13, 2008 from mobile web

Enjoying free wifi in the hotel 🙂 10:14 AM August 11, 2008 from mobile web

Just started boarding, better switch phone off, will I be able to twitter from Prague? 03:23 PM August 10, 2008 from txt

is now in the airport having a beer, thats how all holidays should start 🙂 02:21 PM August 10, 2008 from txt

is setting off for the Airport 11:47 AM August 10, 2008 from txt

Na shledanou

August 10, 2008

We’re off to Prague for a few days. We did the online check in last night and we are all set to go 🙂

See you soon, be good!

Charity Shmarity

August 9, 2008

We had another one of those fake charity collection things through the door yesterday. Lets take a look……

This time they have even given up on using a picture of refugees and have gone with a couple of cute kittens! What is that supposed to mean? I think it means, “Don’t think too hard about the details on this leaflet, just look at the kittens, aahh cute aren’t they? Keep looking at them, that’s right, now go get a bag and fill it up, remember the kittens? That’s right, now put the bag outside your front door. Kittens are cute aren’t they?”

Here is the pitch…

Dear Householder, We will be grateful if you could kindly donate your unwanted Ladies, gents & Children’s Clothing, Blankets, Sheets, Shoes, Handbags, Curtains, Belts, Bath and Hand Towels, underwear, Cosmetics, Toiletries, Perfumes.

Sounds to me like they want items to put on a car boot sale!

SHC COLLECTIONS LTD is a collecting company which provide people in need in Eastern European countries with affordable clothes for them and their families. It provides jobs in Eastern European countries for those sorting the clothes for distribution. It also provides business for UK export transport companies as well as creating employment in the UK factories grading the clothes and those people collecting the bags door to door. SHC COLLECTIONS LTD, Company reg. 06437255 e-mail: shccollections@hotmail.com

This is the bit that really rubs me up the wrong way. At first glance, I think, most people will think this is a charity, when in fact its nothing of the sort. One of the major giveaways is the inclusion of a company registration number instead of a registered charity number. Oh yeah and dont get me started on the email address, of course, all the reputable companies I know use Hotmail, errr no!

According to Companies House they have been running less than a year. (Coincidentally, being registered on my last birthday!)

Name & Registered Office:
N11 2JH
Company No. 06437255
Status: Active
Date of Incorporation: 26/11/2007
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Company Type: Private Limited Company

According to Google maps, the postcode is in the middle of a block of suburban houses.

So there we have it, after just a few minutes of thought and investigation, my suspicions about this company are confirmed. This is not a company that I have any confidence in!

Isn’t the Internet wonderful?


August 8, 2008

If your lucky number is 8, then it must be your lucky lucky day.

The eighth day of the eighth month of the eighth year, which translates as 080808, even if you do your dates the wrong way around*.

To go one further I was up at 8 this morning so I also saw the eighth minute of the eighth hour, 0808080808 🙂

Have a good day now!

*Yes, America I’m talking to youo!

Greedy Geek

August 6, 2008

A few weeks ahead of the new season starting here in the UK, I’ve got hold of* the first 4 episodes of Stargate Atlantis.

I got them on Sunday and had already watched them all by the time I went to bed last night. How greedy am I? Now I’m all sad that they’re gone. Oh, why couldn’t I have rationed myself to one per week, and just been happy that I was weeks ahead of the UK? Oh no, not this greedy geek!

I discovered this morning that the upcoming Stargate Continuum movie was available ahead of its mid-August DVD release.

So of course, I had to get* it. The sensible thing to do now would be to save it, maybe for the weekend. That would be good, except of course, shortly after I’ve posted this and been and brought a beer, I’ll be watching that Lion roar and the credits start rolling. Greedy geek!

I’ll never learn!

*Don’t ask me how, I’m not sure it’s even legal to mention downloading anything these days!