just another web log

26 Feb 2007 22:16
I signed the Software patents petition and we got a response
Here is a quote from it.
The Government remains committed to its policy that no patents should exist for inventions which make advances lying solely in the field of software. Although certain jurisdictions, such as the US, allow more liberal patenting of software-based inventions, these patents cannot be enforced in the UK.
Which is very encouraging.
26 Feb 2007 22:01
So after the 26 hour power cut everything seemed to be OK, but no internet.
Check 1: can wifi laptop see internet ? NO
Check 2: can wired machine see internet ? NO
Check 3: can wired machine see wifi router ? YES
Check 4: can wifi laptop see wifi router ? YES
Check 5: can ADSL router see internet ? CAN NOT SEE ADMIN PAGE
Check 6: can either system ping ADSL router ? YES BOTH
Note: the ADSL router connects via the wifi router to the main network switch.
Power cycle ADSL router.
Repeat checks 5 and 6, same outcome, machine is on the network but admin pages will not show.
Unplug ADSL router from ADSL and power cycle.
Repeat checks 5 and 6, now can see admin pages.
Reconnect ADSL cable.
Repeat checks 5 and 6, now can still see admin pages.
Run internal diagnostics and after 10 mins reports all is well.
Internet fully restored.
Hmmmm, but when Alex kicked out the ADSL connection I did not have these problems !?
26 Feb 2007 21:53
Friday 2 power cuts, one 2 and a half hours long the other just under an hour.
Saturday 16:00 another power cut, we fully expected this one to be resolved in 2-3 hours.
18:00 it is now dark and we are enjoying fish and chips.
22:00 Electricity company have no idea when the power will be back, Alex has been in bed but the temperature in his nursery is dropping steadily.
00:00 Alarm on the battery powered baby monitor go off, it is only 14 degrees in his nursery, so we bring him into the main bedroom and close all the doors.
04:00 Alex awakes and will not settle, he is cold, we put him in the bed with us.
06:50 Ring electric company, still no idea, if we want a generator we have to ring back.
09:00 Ring back no generator as they are digging up the road looking for a faulty cable.
09:30 Pack up and move next door, there power is out since this road works started this morning.
Find someone 30 mins away who will take us in and spend most of the day on phone arguing about the availability of electricity generators.
The people who took us in are friendly and we go for a nice lunch etc.
06:30 Electrify Co. inform us that work has stopped due to a gas leak. Nice people offer a room for the night.
06:50 Drive home and in the dark pack up everything Alex and we need to survive the night.
07:20 Car is loaded up, engine is running and ... the lights come on and the most of the estates house alarms go off.
Is it fixed ?! hmmmm the lights are flickering at the moment ...
23 Feb 2007 19:22
One of the guys I work with created http://www.gameweaver.com/ over the last two years.
It is a tile based game construction kit that builds Gameboy binaries and he plans on making it work with most mobile phones.
23 Feb 2007 19:07
Wii have a problem, while switching from the shopping channel the cursor disappeared and then neither of my wiimotes would work. Any key press resulted in flashing lights, batteries were both at full. In the end I unplugged the power for ten seconds and then tried it all again and it worked fine.
19 Feb 2007 21:59
The main reason for that post was to link to the new tagcloud.
Anyway, I had the miss fortune to use the release version of Windows Vista at the weekend.
I had advised the user to avoid Vista but it is close to impossible to by a new machine (laptop in this case) without it.
First job attach new laptop to Wifi. Windows fought me every step of the way, the worst example was the cyclic unhelpful connection and trouble shooting screens.
action "connect"
response "failed to connect"
option "trouble shoot"
action "trouble shoot"
response "reconnect"
response "failed to connect"
option "configure"
action "create new configuration with wifi setting"
response "failed to connect"
note: hang on, were did my custom connection go ?
note: I need to add this laptops MAC address to the wifi router, windows did not suggest this.
action "check wifi settings, check hardware settings, run msconfig"
response "no MAC address"
action "run command prompt"
action "run ipconfig /all"
note: that was logical.

also note that the wifi screen shows a clickable image of your computer and the internet, but clicking the internet just gives you the same connection screen and clicking the computer sends you to My Computer. No right click.

And forget all the flashy stuff gets boring in two seconds flat!

Windows Vista has a welcome to windows screen and on of the options is upgrade windows, thats right from the first moment microsoft are trying to get you to upgrade to mega expensive ultimate windows vista.

hate microsoft, hate windows vista

18 Feb 2007 23:09
Judging by the power of the tagcloud, reviewing anime DVDs is the biggest thing since I introduced tagging here.
18 Feb 2007 22:58
Tagcloud is now ready (see bottom of page).
I still have stuff to tidy up, especially the consolidation of the random tag names.
08 Feb 2007 21:58
Do you remember the four day windows install ? Well I have been following it up and after some fun (in the snow) windows booted in 20 mins but took almost another 30 to get past the hardware detection.
Why did it take so long ? I was running Windows XP in an emulator and unfortunately that emulator was running in another emulator !
So my machine was running qemu to run DSL (Damn Small Linux) and in that virtual machine I was running qemu with the hard disk image continuing Windows XP.
It was a 'proof of concept' thing and it shows how powerful qemu is.
But although running a virtual machine inside a virtual machine might seem counter productive all systems do it some extent or another.
The web browser you are viewing this post in is using hard disk calls that are virtualized by the OS, which is a good thing, the hard disk might a CDRW or USB flash drive the browser never needs to know.
All the words are made of characters loaded from font files that are displayed on the screen and again all this is transparent to you the user.
But imagine what your machine would be like if each application had direct hardware control over everything. Well the Amiga in its days was so under powered that demo scene writers had to do everything themselves to get any kind of performance.
Of course the main reason this worked for the Amiga was the consistent hard ware base. PCs on the other hand have a multitude of different hard ware components from Graphics cards to sound to bus controllers to mice.
The trade off has to exist but where is it to much ...
05 Feb 2007 22:38
Did you know all you need to do to create an ISO file from a CD in Linux is
dd if=/dev/cdrom of=/tmp/mycdordvd.iso
very cool, dd is a very old command and was/is used commonly to backup floppy disks and byte for byte hard drives
05 Feb 2007 22:07
After a quick two hours in the local A&E we came home to a five hour power cut and a cold house.
For some reason my UPS did not stretch to the full five hours so on booting it up I was a bit annoyed to find the GRUB prompt the final step.
There was no error messages and no boot menu and the 'help' command did not give me many clues.
I booted with the Knoppix DVD from Linux Format (handy) and checked all the drives were OK. Everything seemed fine and all the GRUB files were linked and in the right place, I noted the grub.conf settings and rebooted.
Back at the grub prompt I used the [tab] completion to set root/kernel/initrd.

root (hd[tab],[tab])
kernel /kernel[tab] root=/dev/ram0 init=/linuxrc ramdisk=8192 real_root=/dev/sda4 udev
initrd /initr[tab]

And everything loaded correctly then a quick

root (hd[tab],[tab])
setup (hd[tab],[tab])

and everything works as it used to !
Note: when using [tab] completion locate the partition of type 83 for Linux not 82 for Linux swap.
04 Feb 2007 15:24
in C# you can make lists of enumerated types, like colours so later in your code you can use colours.green etc.
But if the following code is built using VS2005 (Microsoft) then the answer is for any request for a colour is green, but with Mono (open source) the answer is red, which is what you expect.
Microsofties can add [Flags] to fix the issue in VS2005

enum colours  {

03 Feb 2007 23:41
Tag cloud is written in pseudo code but I have no time to really code it ...
03 Feb 2007 23:40
I had been playing "Destroy all Humans" on the Xbox but I have now completed it.
Very good game, great humor and fun missions, lots to do but fairly easy, but not quick, took me over a 50hrs.
03 Feb 2007 23:36
we had an Internet outage a couple of days ago, after some complex fault finding it turns out that the ADSL plug had been loosened by Alex this was after I specifically stapled the cabling to the wall in the nursery, now duct taped!
03 Feb 2007 23:06
One thing I never got around to noting last month was the course I spent a week doing in London.
C# in .net - It is what recruiters keep asking me for and it sounded like fun and it was !
Free vend drinks, unlimited chocolate, pizza, tai food, oh and the lectures/labs were good also.
The lecturer did mention mono in his introduction but any questions were meet with "I do not know anyone who has even installed mono", so guess who installed mono on the lab machine and began asking awkward questions ?
In fact I was quite out spoken for most of the lectures and I am happy to same i learned a lot, even filling in the OOP holes from my self taught Java and C++ days.
I found that most code worked exactly the same with mono but a very simple but specific program compiled with Microsoft's C# compiler gave a different result to the same program built with the mono C# compiler.
Code later.
03 Feb 2007 22:58
Well windows took over 4 days to install and then blue screened on first reboot, could not repair.
I then tried the same install disk in a 'slightly' different environment, took only 40 mins to install but then told me the license was bad.
Ditched that CD and used a known good XP CD and installed in 30 mins, now can I create the steps to get this XP in the 'other' environment ?
loading results, please wait loading animateloading animateloading animate
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