Nick’s Blog

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Sunny, warm, and weekend soon

by Nick on Apr.08, 2011, under Blogging

Could it get any better?

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Humax 5050

by Nick on Sep.08, 2010, under Blogging

This device is a digital PVR with a fair sized hard disk capable of recording from digital channels. I would like to write a full review but really there is enough information out there to let you know what the machine is technically capable of. So really I’m only going to summarise the things I like and the things I dislike about the device.

Overall the device is an improvement on the Panasonic device that I’ve owned for years. For a start you can schedule two digital channels for recording at the same time and watch a third. However the Panasonic device was never intended for digital recording and is already 8 years old.

Given the intervening years I would have expected some major improvements but ignoring the three tuners for a moment and that it picks up programme information over the air there is little to recommend the device. Let’s start with setting the device up. (continue reading…)

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Getting back in touch

by Nick on Dec.03, 2009, under Blogging

Many, many years ago I worked in the UK for a company in Birmingham. I was only there for around eight months but I still have great memories of the time and especially how friendly my colleagues were. A good example was on the first day when another colleague accidentally walked off with my coat and keys to the car making driving home impossible. Possibly this is the reason that to this day I never leave my coat on a shared coat stand. (continue reading…)

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Zwarte Piet (beloved characature or symbol of racism)

by Nick on Nov.18, 2009, under Blogging

Much of what I’m writing here is based on the article in Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zwarte_Piet).

In the mid 1990′s my wife and I moved to the Netherlands. It was late in the year and it was not long before we encountered Sinterklaas and his helpers Zwarte Piet. For those not familiar with the story here is a very short summary. In mid November Sinterklaas arrives on a steam boat from Spain bringing toys and helpers. Over the coming weeks these toys are distributed to the children by the helpers as the children leave shoes, carrots (for Sinterklaas’ horse), and drawings.

The arrival of Sinterklaas is televised and much is made of his presence in the land over the following weeks until finally on the 5th of December big presents are shared during a family evening. Over the weeks there are often parades and Piet can be seen handing out sweets to the children and often being a little mischievous. (continue reading…)

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Wave again everybody

by Nick on Nov.04, 2009, under Blogging

A while ago I wrote about how Google was going to save the world with a new thing called Wave.  At that time it was not possible for me to have a go with Wave as it was restricted in numbers. But then suddenly a few days ago I got an invite and promptly created an account. I had to create an account because you cannot use a non Google mail address with Wave.

I then uploaded a massive list of mail contacts and eventually Google reported that three of them had accounts. Probably (actually definitely) more people have accounts but because people wanting to give it a go must use Google mail they have created addresses that are not in my list. (continue reading…)

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IISPassword. The page cannot be displayed.

by Nick on Jun.17, 2009, under Blogging

I had just enabled the PODS plugin because I wanted to control access to certain parts of the blog to certain visitors. First thing it did was tell me that I was running to low a version of PHP. So I tried another plugin and that did not complain but it did screw up various parts of the admin page (luckily the content seems to be intact). An example is that as I write this, down the left hand side of the screen I am seeing the following error message.

Warning: file_exists() [function.file-exists]: open_basedir restriction in effect. File(\\server\home\users\web\b667\account\blog/wp-content/plugins/edit-tags.php?taxonomy=post_tag) is not within the allowed path(s): (c:\windows\temp\;c:\tmp\;c:\php\sessiondata\;c:\php\uploadtemp;c:\php\4;c:\php\5;c:\php\extras;\\boswinfs01\home\users\web;c:/windows/temp/;c:/tmp/;c:/php/sessiondata/;c:/php/uploadtemp;c:/php/4;c:/php/5;c:/php/extras;//boswinfs01/home/users/web;.;./) in \\server\home\users\web\b667\user\blog\wp-admin\menu-header.php on line 118

So my hosting company allows me to upgrade to a later PHP. According to their site it is 5.2.5 now rather than 4.4.8. I then enabled PODS and immediately received an error saying that I was not allowed to log in. Accompanying the error was a link to another site that seemed to be selling something called IISPassword. Google the error message lead me to http://support.yeahhost.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=15&nav=0 and there they say that the problem is cause by the presense of the file .htaccess.

So I renamed the file and tried again. This time it worked on the first page but then failed on the second. The reason being that .htaccess was being overwritten with each request. It appears to be copied from the file /blog/wp-content/plugins/pods/htaccess.txt so I renamed this file too and finally I was able to get in but now every page carried the error that the htaccess.txt file did not exist. Disabling PODS removed this error and now my blog is back to semi-normal. I still have the error down the left hand side but perhaps this is caused by something else.

It is a shame that PODS did this because it seemed to offer quite a lot of what I was after and now I’ll have to trawl the Internet either to find a solution or an alternative.

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“Hi, gr8 post thanks for posting. Information is useful!”

by Nick on Jun.15, 2009, under Blogging

I wrote a fairly bland blog with quite little that could really be of use to anyone and yet I received the following comment.

“Hi, gr8 post thanks for posting. Information is useful!”

(continue reading…)

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