Showing posts from March, 2008

Home networking

Its really cool to have an Ethernet network in your home with little effort. There are two issues right off the bat with this one:
How do you reboot it? (Hopefully you do not have to)Where does the heat go? (The probably consume about 10 Watts which is not a lot but still the heat will be there 24/7)This networking going in cycles again, we had a single network cable with coax, these days all offices have switched 100MB networks and now at home we are going back to a single wire for the network!

Personal privacy (and Facebook owned)

Yesterdays post was a real rant, today's post is proof that I am right:

I am not one for gloating but today I will indulge myself as it lets me feel good for a little bit.

Privacy and security are things people are only just starting to become aware of. In the UK some government agency lost the bank details of some 25million people. Something which those 25million people could do nothing about (my partner included).

Some basic things people could do are:
Use an instant messenger which isn't tied to a single company (pidgin)Use encryption when sending messages (Pidgin encrytpion, Enigmail)Clean your hard drive on a regular basis, scheduled tasks are great for this (Eraser)Do not upload pictures to sites that you do not have security control over, if you don't know then ask somebody who does. (Dreamhost web hosting with 1-click install gallery software)Store passwords in a secure database (Password Safe

Facebook is evil

Computers ask black and white questions and only accept black and white answers.

When you reject someone as a friend have you now lost an opportunity to build a friendship in the future due to somebody taking offence at virtual rejection?

Clearly you cannot allow everybody you meet to be a friend, friendship is a gradient of trust. Do you really want everybody to know you just left the Russell Brand fan club? Is your friendship stronger because you have been bitten by a werewolf?

Facebook is successful because it makes it easy for people to share and reminds people that their old friends are still alive and doing things. Its the next progression from friends reunited which was hugely popular before Facebook. The next Facebook will intergrate other features that will help us share our lives this will be via mobile phone picture messaging, email and calendar intergration. The theme is really ta…

Pidgin sending custom emoticons - MSNP9

I just finished uploading the latest compile of im.pidgin.pidgin.custom_smiley

This one is MSNP9, my previous claim was false as the sending was not working.

All can be downloaded from here:

Its working great for me.

Pidgin sending custom emoticons -> beaten to it

Looks like Twain beat me to it, well done, he has the latest windows compile. This is for MSNP14 (or MSNP15, I forget which is in head currently):

I thought I had applied the MSNP9 patch but I have not managed that yet. I will have a try later.

T-SQL Round Up function Revisited

In October Last year I posted a function to round up a number. I have had to adapt that function to cater for varied decimal places. Please email me any suggestions or alterations.

CREATE FUNCTION [dbo].[udfRoundUp]
@Num1 FLOAT,
@NumberOfDecimalPlaces INT = 0
SET @Temp = 0

IF @Num1 - CAST(ROUND(@Num1, @NumberOfDecimalPlaces) AS FLOAT) > 0
/* When rounding we cannot just add 1 */
/* Calculate the round up value */
SET @Temp = POWER(10, (@NumberOfDecimalPlaces * -1))


RETURN ROUND(@Num1, @NumberOfDecimalPlaces) + @Temp


Custom emoticons on MSN revisited

Yesterday I recompiled from the monotone branch for pidgins custom emoticons. I have completed the upload of the debug and no gtk exe files.

Its using msnp9 and works for me.




Declutter the charger

Little tip for you.I have a draw full of chargers for various electrical items at home. I got fed
up with having to spend 10 minutes de-tangling them to get my phone or MP3
player charged.The solution is to put each one in a freezer bag.Perfect.

Gary Gygax

Update on Pidgin Emoticons

Kudos to Sadrul Habib Chowdhury for creating a monotone branch for the custom smileys to live in. I asked him to propagate the changes from the trunk to the branch yesterday and today I have recompiled the the windows platform:



pidgin-2.4.1devel-no-gtk.exe (The source)

Trac it here:


Eco kettle - Flawed design


In Decemeber 2007 our kettle's filter broke, I could not find a replacement for the life of me.

I decided to go the Eco-friendly way and buy a new Eco-kettle:

It turns out its a really bad idea purely from a design perspective. Let me explain.

Firstly a description: there are two chambers, the boiling chamber and a reservoir. There is a button on the top of the lid that when pressed will allow the water to drain into the boiling chamber, so you only use just the right amount. You can also lock this into position so that both chambers will boil.

Now stop and think about this, simple laws of physics come into play here. If you have one chamber that is filled with boiled water and on top of that you have water that is at about 5 degrees centigrade and you leave it for 10mins your boiled water will be lukewarm! Meaning you have to reboil the kettle.

Next look at the amount of materials used when compared to a traditional kettle, you have an extra button, a …