Archive for the “computing” Category

    Be a good person, save the Internet

    Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

    There’s still a few days left to take advantage of Microsoft’s offer to provide free meals to the charity Feeding America if you download Internet Explorer 8 though their Browse for the Better campaign. Helping out those in need is all well and good, so if it makes you feel like a decent person then get the download to help out. But please if you are using Internet Explorer 6 then download this so that my web designs don’t look like they’ve been kicked in the face by your browser. IE6 doesn’t look at web pages and display them in the way a normal browser does, it takes random parts of the site and chooses something it thinks will amuse the reader or does it’s own thing.

    So help to save the Internet and get rid of any old copies of IE6. Even if you don’t use it get rid of it just in case one day, maybe you’ve had too much to drink and accidentally click the blue E icon instead of the Firefox or Chrome (or I suppose Opera if you have a Linux/Unix beard). Then you break the Internet and a kitten dies.

    So please save the internet and the kittens and upgrade from IE6. Then use Firefox or Chrome because they are much faster.

    For a more in-depth look at why the world is a better place without Internet Explorer 6 check out the article on Mashable – IE6 must die.

    Video editing

    Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

    I’ve recently done some video editing, some at home and now some for work and think it might be one of my next projects/hobbies. Although at the moment I’m not full of ideas of what to shoot I’ve enjoyed the editing process and gives a whole new appreciation for what is done in TV and film. My first foray was the outtakes of captainchalupa.com – it’s a classic, see it while you can, I’m not renewing the URL in October (and I can only take credit for camera work on the short film, editing there was done by a pro). My second attempt (that made it through to a final cut) will sadly not be available to the general public, being a work project. I’m hoping to work on something a little more mainstream (well as mainstream as editing at home on a laptop then posting to the internet can be, let’s say something that can be viewed by those reading this blog).

    I don’t believe I’ve ever used so many brackets/parentheses in one paragraph before. I’m sure that’s not very well respected in the literature world.

    Right now I’m still at the point of wanting to run before I can walk, I can’t wait to get the first film festival nominee cut and out of the door. I have, however, the minor issue of learning how to properly use editing software, be it iMovie at home or Adobe Premiere Elements at work. If anyone uses any decent sites for either of those post up the links in the comments.

    Web designing

    Thursday, September 11th, 2008

    I’ve had quite a bit going on recently.  Work has been very busy – my main project is a redesign of the intranet based knowledge base for the help desk.  After a year’s work the front page is finally online, it is a big relief and probably the biggest project I’ve ever worked on.   Now comes the gradual conversion of the remaining 12,000 pages on the site.

    I’ve been learning a lot more about web design, and more importantly to me, the design aspect of it.  In Stream I built the technical side of the sites, while Paul did the graphical design side and I’ve never been confident, or had any idea how to go about, putting together a design.  I’ve been picking up a lot lately and I’ve come a long way, there still a huge amount to learn but I’m a lot happier with my design skills now.  I found laying stuff out on grids is very helpful.

    I’m considering moving this blog again, I don’t want to keep shuffling around and messing up everyone’s bookmarks but this time I’m looking at keeping WordPress but hosting it myself on my own domain.  This would mean I could design my own site rather than use this template.  There’s no address yet but it’s something I’m working towards.

    Oh, and I’ll be back in England again at the start of January.

    Start your engines!

    Sunday, June 15th, 2008


    Mario Kart Wii

    Originally uploaded by Neilwill

    I never really got into any of the previous Mario Kart games on the SNES or N64, etc. but this one has really got me into it. It’s pretty good as one player but the multi-player is great – I’ve had 4 players on the one Wii and today I had my first inter-continental race. I played against my family back in England and it’s great fun! I did add in a webcam so it gives more of a feeling of playing against other people, we had that running on laptops alongside the Wii.

    Reinstalling Windows

    Saturday, April 26th, 2008


    Its that wonderful time of the year, the tree outside my balcony is blossoming, the sun is out, the sky is blue.  And its time to reinstall Windows on my desktop.

    Its not been running too slow but I made the mistake of trying to install something without being certain of the source and got bitten.  The AVG anti-virus found the source file and some other infected files which seem to have stopped the pop-ups trying to get me to sign up for a credit card but I still don’t have a back button in Firefox and I can’t get to any search sites along with a few others.  It’s frustrating but my own fault.  You always hear that the best protection from viruses is your behaviour on the net and I knew when I tried running setup.exe and nothing happened that I was in trouble.  I tried a system restore but all my restore points had been deleted and replaced by one called “last known good restore point”, which I can only imagine would install more junk.

    Well at least its a chance for a fresh start, should speed load times.  Most of my data is not on the C drive, just the programs so it shouldn’t be too painful.

    Importing the old blog

    Sunday, April 20th, 2008

    I hadn’t even though of importing all the old posts from blogger.com until Paul misunderstood something I said and mentioned the importing. It was surprisingly easy and now I have everything on this one site so most likely I will be using this going forward.

    Only downside is it imported all the tags as categories so I think I’ll have to manually move them across.

    iPhone

    Sunday, July 1st, 2007

    I went along to the Apple store yesterday to see if they had any iphone stuff around, just to see. There’s been so much coverage of the iphone on tech podcasts recently and I didn’t really want one what with the expensiveness and small ipod capacity. But playing with it in the store (they had 8 on display to play with in place of some ipods) its way better than I expected. Its much smaller, I’m used to my 3rd generation iPod which is big these days but this one is really thin and the glass doesn’t get all smudged and covered in finger prints as my camera screen does. The typing is really good, it has a virtual qwerty keyboard which uses by far the best predictive text I’ve seen as you write. So it looked like my fat thumbs would be hitting 3 or 4 keys at a time but the iPhone got every word correct.

    I’ll be in the market for a new phone soon, but I don’t know about paying $600 (plus tax) to get into a 2 year contract at $60 a month (plus $20 of taxes and fees) for a phone on an old slow internet service. Think I’ll try to find one of the few 1 year contracts and consider the version 2 iPhone at a later date. I was quite tempted when I was playing with it though….

    A+ Certification

    Wednesday, November 15th, 2006
    I’m now looking at doing an A+ Certification exam. Its basically an extra qualification (which seems to b every important in the States) to prove I can do tech support. Hopefully it will help in getting me an interview. I’ve found a couple of sites with info for the test and people seem to be recommending a book by Michael Meyers called A+ Certification All-In-One Exam Guide, so I went to the library to pick up a copy. Amazon has the 6th edition available next month but I wanted to get started now so I thought I’d borrow the current copy instead. It wasn’t until I got home that I realised it was a little out of date, the local library only had the 2nd edition.

    I’m now learning about the latest Windows 95 and DOS technology, and about how PCs are nearing 1 ghz in speed and have between 8-64 mb of RAM. I’m expecting a picture of Paul’s BBC Master to appear every time I turn the page.

    RSS again

    Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

    I just realised that the previous post was included in my RSS feed so it looks like it works. The old posts are still there but hopefully they will gradually be replaced by the newest ones as I enter them. So give it a go if you can work out how. Clicking on the orange button in Firebox will give you the option of how to subscribe and IE7 gives some information on what feeds are. The idea is it lets you know when I post a new, err, post.

    There seems to be a few ways of subscribing other than using the browsers. Thunderbird (Mozilla’s email client) lets you subscribe and it will arrive in a similar way to an email, which to me sounds like a good option, but now that I use gmail I don’t use Thunderbird any more. Sage seems to be a good plugin for Firefox to keep up to date with RSS.

    If you understand any of this and have some better options or can explain it better than me please feel free to reply to this and help out!

    Feed me

    Sunday, October 22nd, 2006

    I’ve tried setting up a link on the right to the RSS feed (its the orange button) – I suppose if you know what I’m talking about when I say RSS you’ll know the orange button. I’m still not 100% on it myself, but it’s a way of subscribing to the blog. If you have Firefox 2.0 or Internet Explorer 7 then you will have the option to subscribe using them, if not then download Firefox 2 and stop lagging behind.

    The problem with this subscription is that it gives you the oldest instead of the newest posts, which isn’t of much use to anyone. I’ve tried asking blogger.com about it and had no reply, I’ve tried posting to the forum but had no reply. So if anyone reading this has any idea of how to sort it out (I have a feeling that blogger would need to sort it on their servers) then please let me know.

    In the meantime, feel free to enjoy my earlier posts all over again through the RSS feed ;)