Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Stupid Tiscali - Really Dumb

Tiscali seem to have a problem with Opera as for two evenings in a row now on this tiscali account I am using Opera has stopped working. IE, Firefox and everything else still works.

I can even fool whatever primitive filter they are using by asking Opera to "pretend" to be another browser, so whatever they are doing is based on the browser identity string.

My guess is someone at tiscali does NOT know what opera is and they are blocking traffic at peak times from anything most users use.

Just shows up what dumb admin they have, I'll be so glad when I'm back on NTL/Virgin Media, at least they seem to have some degree of technical nous.

I suppose the chances of somone from Tiscali seeing this and getting their act together are slim to FA, but if you are from tiscali STOP BLOCKING MY BROWSER YOU IDIOTS

(written in that cheap Opera copy, firefox, under duress)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Using Google to find music

Nothing original here, just an advanced way to search using google for those directories of music that people upload so they can listen to their music wherever they want.

It's cool, but a bit hit and miss, but always worth a try, enter the following search string.

intitle:"index of" (mp3|avi) song.title -html -htm -php -asp -cf -jsp

where of course song.title is the name of the song you want to search for.

The intitle bit looks for directories (or folders) which are open

(mp3|avi) sets which file extensions you want to look for, so you could also search for videos, or any other form of file you want.

Separate the words with . (full stop) instead of spaces as google uses a . as a wild card so will pick up "song title" "song_title" or "song-title" etc.

The list of -html -htm etc. makes sure (or tries to) to not just find file listings.

It works surprisingly well, but does sometimes pick up spam directories that lead you to mp3 sales sites, you often find empty directories where the files have been removed since google indexed them, and I once found the directory had since been protected as the owner had realised what was going on.

Hope this helps

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Sites that caught my eye this week

First off, the Müller-Lyer Illusion, How close can you get? I was pretty acurate at first, but now I come to post, I fail, go figure.

And secondly, for those who wish to rip

KeepVid makes it possible for you to download your favourite YouTube videos to keep.

Useful if you find something you think might be removed for some reason or another.

In other news, the divorce is getting messy, better not put too much detail on here in case it could be used against me :(

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Away to Wales for a week

Going to visit my Girlfriend in Brynmawr, who hooo

So before I got I just had a couple of geeky/cool (delete as applicable) things to share.

First off, Lord of the Rings as done if the characters were typical role players!

DM of The Rings

Some of the comments about why he wrote each strip are fantastic, having run role playing games in the past, I know how true they are!

Secondly a strangely addictive thing, not a game as such, sort of a web based executive toy.

Falling Sand Game

You can divert the sand, water, salt and oil with walls you can spot plants then water them and watch them grow, you can burn the oil and wax, all fun. The strange yellow bobble that bounces around grows if watered, shrinks if it contacts salt, I usually turn it off and just play at making interesting patterns.

Have fun while I'm away!

Monday, September 10, 2007

here it is then

the fark headline that had me giggling

A raptorial maw with a pharyngeal jaw; that's a moray

linked to this story which isn't anywhere near as funny as the headline above.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

right? left? isn't it all the same between friends

OK so I have extolled the virtues of the Opera browser many times, and at great length, before now.

However, there's one feature I have rambled on about which I realised just now I was a bit confused about, why? you say, well let me explain.

Somewhere between leaving the safe haven of my computer screen and reaching the safe haven of the pub, something traumatic happens to my brain while I'm in that big room with the bright light and the high blue ceiling, and left and right get completely muddled up.

Thing is, Opera has Some rather useful features on the right click menu, select some text and you can copy it, search google (or a selection of other browsers) with it, send it to a dictionary web site to get a definition of the word, try to go to it as if it was a web site, etc.

So when I have been extolling this menu I have forgotten that the OTHER handy feature is that you get the same menu up when you double click on some text (this is where the left right confusion enters my brain) so that's "double click" with the LEFT button, where I have been telling people it's the right button (D'OH)

A double click (left button) selects the word under the cursor and highlights it bring up the "RIGHT CLICK MENU" a further click extends the selected text to the whole sentence, and a third click selects the whole paragraph (it stops there)

So I am terribly sorry to anyone who has listened to my pub based rambling and have been trying to double "right" click to do all these wonderful things.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Great Weekend

Well it was, got back from my travels late Thursday after a 400 mile drive dropping Alison off in Wales then picked my children up Friday.

We made rice crispie buns on Saturday, and honey flapjack, which then got distributed to friends and family on Sunday.

I had Sunday and today to myself as I have quizzes to run so they can't sleep over when I'm going out on the evening, and today I have been washing their clothes and pegging out, does it seem sad that even just doing the washing for them seems really satisfying?

I seem to be really settling in to this single dad life, just got to get my finances sorted out and somewhere more permanent to live and I reckon life is going to get rosier.

Just need my girlfriend to be with me and I will be set up for life.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Somebody to Love

My girlfriend posted this on her blog


and it turns out it's a cover from 1967, here's Jefferson Airplane doing it in 1969!


This is of course why my "Whose Song is it Anyway" quiz is so popular! obscure covers that stop and make people think. (oh and Rolf Harris)

Well done and thank you to Jon for taking my concept and making it work week in week out by diligently searching for cover songs for me to use.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

The F Word

One of the most interesting words in the english language

linky for if the embdedded version doesn't work!

this is very old, so you've probably seen it before, or heard it at least, but it's a classic I found today stumbling around looking for something else. Still well funny though.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Congratulations Alison

My fantastic girlfriend completed the Race For Life in Cwmbran on Sunday in 46 Minutes in the pouring rain.

Here she is looking well pleased and beautiful, if slightly damp.

it's not too late if you want to donate! (cheeky grin)

All donations through the above site go to Cancer Research UK

Thursday, June 28, 2007

New web site launched - Way2paye

I am proud to announce the publishing of our newest web site Way2paye

This is a fully featured content management system for a payroll company specialising in payroll for small businesses and for people employing domestic staff or nannies.

It's also required a new feature, the ability for users of the site to register to gain access to extra information on the site, this is a feature that has been in the planning stage for a while, which we brought forward as this client required it.

The design is by the wonderful Daffodil Design which was then wrapped around our content management system to provide a beautiful looking site utilising TempleDene Technology.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Password Security

I spotted this article in PC World magazine which lists the ten most popular passwords. They are
  1. password
  2. 123456
  3. qwerty
  4. abc123
  5. letmein
  6. monkey
  7. myspace1
  8. password1
  9. link182
  10. (your first name)
I would expand this list to include such things as your children's/spouses name, company name and a few other common words I have encountered.

To have a secure password it should be a mix of UPPER and lower case letters and some numbers. To make it REALLY secure use some obscure characters like ^ or # or accented characters such as Ÿ. And make sure it's at least 8 characters or longer. It's easier than you think too make one up, use numbers for letters for instance, so peter becomes p3t3r or bill becomes b1ll, use a car registration plate (no not your current car) or something else you can remember or at least work out.

The reason for this is simple, that top ten list (and I would add several myself to that to make at least a top twenty) is well know to anyone who fancies trying to guess you password. On top of that password breaking software will try one of two methods:-
  1. Dictionary Attack
    Where the software literally has a dictionary of words it throws at your password one by one.
  2. Brute Force
    Where the software tries combinations of characters sequentially e.g. it tries a b c etc. then aa ab ac until it reaches it's limits.
Now you'd think that second one would guess ANY pasword but it wont, because of the time it takes to process. A simple example would be if it just tried the 26 letters of the alphabet, suppose it takes 1 second to try each combination then after the first pass with a 1 letter password it's taken 26 seconds, to do all the two letter combinations it takes 26 x 26 seconds, or 676 seconds, to do all the three letter combinations it takes 17,576 seconds and so on.

Obviously computers can process far faster than this, but because the time adds up logarithmically this kind of attack limits itself to common letters, numbers and punctuation, and restricts the length of password it can try.

I must admit this is another reason why I think microsoft DON'T GET SECURTIY as when I created a hotmail account a while ago it wouldn't let me use puctuation in my password! so as far as I was concerned the password I created was insecure.

Now you will be asking, huh, well who wants to hack ME, the fact is they don't want to hack YOU, they just pick off the low hanging fruit in the hope it might be worth it. Have you ever sent something private by hotmail? or simply something you wouldn't want making public?

One company I worked at one of the directors thought he was so clever because when I needed his password he said "it's secret" I thought he meant he wouldn't tell me, so began to explain I HAD to know it or I couldn't log in to his computer to fix it, and he stopped me and said "no, it's 'secret' that's my password" the companies financial information, all highly confidential, was secured by an eminently guessable password! Another company used password 5 on the above list for EVERYTHING, again company confidential information was secured with something easily guessable, AND everyone in the office, some 30+ people, knew what it was!

I did point out how insecure this was and I hope they have since taken steps to fix the problem, somehow though, I doubt it.

Monday, May 14, 2007

well well

Looky here

after yesterdays rant about web sites that don't get things right by using "clever tricks" to do what could be done easier and more properly, I found this posted today on the BBC web site.


What's that phrase about great minds?

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Todays rant

Web designers who decide that instead of perfectly good, standard, ways of doing things, they will use some new trick they've discovered.

Perfect examples of this are sites which use javascript instead of links, so if you decide to right click the link to save it somewhere you just get the javascript, or maybe, because they've used odd javascript, the link just doesn't work. WTF is wrong with the good old a href= style links? they work, they work in ANY browser and they do exactly the same as your fancy javascript!

Pages which don;t display in my browser of choice (opera) again because some twonk has decided to use some fancy arsed "modern" way of displaying the pages which he found on some poncy web 2 site, guess what guys, your site fails to display, I go somewhere else, that loses you a sale! tough titty matey.

I could go on, but standards are standards for a REASON and any web developer who can't grasp that should go and takes up origami or knitting, or anything else!

Of course what they also do, on a more serious note, is run the risk of being prosecuted for discrimination against disabled people, but they never teach that at the frontpage school of crappy web design.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Alan Johnston, still held in Gaza

You will have heard the story, BBC reporter Alan Johnston has been kidnapped and is being held by some unknown group in the Gaza strip, all we can do is hope he will be released, and sign this petition asking anyone you can help, anyone with influence, to do all they can to aid his release.


There's a button on the left of this blog for you to find out more information.

Of course, this is a little specific, there are loads of people kidnapped and held in this way, and they all need our help, but every little helps.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Is this jus a bad day?

I really don't know, tomorrow is the second mediation session, I'm prepared a little for it but I just know my wife is going to refuse shared custody. What then? what do I do, fight it in the courts? or give up and move away, abandon this life here and just quietly vanish.

I see now why men do that, it's not easy, but divorce is so stacked in favour of the woman and so soul destroying. It is never the "easy option" but sometimes it's the one that hurts the least.

Not helped by the fact my DS seems to prefer the lure of the ice cream van in grandmas street than coming to see me at my dads. I know he's only 7 but it feels like rejection.

I knew this wouldn't be easy but I never realised just how hard it is on my heart. I love my children, I don't want to hurt them, and I don't know which option will hurt them the least?

Friday, April 06, 2007

Yorkshire Airlines

Fly the best, Fly Yorkshire Airlines!

Funny than a funny thing!

With a link for if the embeded bit doesn't work

Friday, March 30, 2007

Look who I just added to my MySpace

Martha Jones

Love the way their using the Internet to add details and background to the series.

Anyone found any other cool web sites relevant to this new series yet?

Thursday, March 29, 2007

You tube fun! Doctor who trailer

Has it really been a month?


two things then for your delectation and delight today:-

First up, a trailer for Time War a wish list production (I pinched this from Paul Cornell)

you tube link for them as need it
I wish this was a genuine project in the pipeline!

And to follow up, a nice take on Who's on First!

you tube link for them as can't see it embedded (looking at you Jon)

Normal blogging will resume sometime soon, when I'm not so busy!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

So True

Saw this in someones signature on mumszone, thought it was to good to not go unshared!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

New business news!

I suppose I should have blogged about this before, but now is as good a time as ever, I have just launched my own business.

TempleDene Consultants

Specialising in content managed web sites with a twist, we manage the site for you if you find the easy to use interface daunting, or you simply don't want the hassle of doing it yourself.

This is brilliant

Found this on Paul Cornells blog, and it was funny enough to share with you all

Mr Meredith

Go click on the song Dr Who thing! well worth a play.

I like the other two songs as well, if he's ever touring and in Leeds I am off to go see him!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Blogger upgrade

Well this works well doesn't it

When are the idiots at google going to start making stuff that works in all browser, I have to post this in some crappy out of date piece of shit called internet explorer rather than my nice shiny Opera or I have to use the HTML editor!

Also I now have to check my web mail account with google to see if any comments are posted! I liked having them just arrive in my mail program inbox thank you! to my OWN e-mail address!

HATE this! I was FORCED to upgrade.

I've just about finished my blogging software, only the comments part to do, I know, long time in the pipeline, but I have been busy with more important things! I will be moving myself to there as soon as it's finished! at least I know that works!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Word of the day

Thanks to a slip of the keyboard, a close friend of mine has just invented a new word.

Boased :-
Def : When someone is boastful about something because they are biased.

I liked it, so I thought I'd share.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Happy News

I can't contain myself any longer

after all the unhappiness and shit I have been going through, with the big D word and everything.

I've met someone else!

Someone very special!

I am in love!

Now this may seem very fast and possibly unseemingly fast considering the D word hasn't finalised yet, but I think if you have a chance at something special, a new chance, a new lease of life, you should grab it with both hands and make the most of it.

Some of you know more details I know, but I just wanted THE WHOLE WORLD to know, or at least that small part of it who will read this.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Dealing With Depression

This forum web site offering support and discussion for people who have depression, and further more support and discussion for those people who have friends and family who are suffering. The web site is supported by volunteers and is free to join and participate in.

This new resource is very important to me, please pass it on or link to it where you can.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Climate Change (again)

Want to know if you'll be underwater when the sea rises?

This little site flood.firetree.net will show you.

I'm alright but two companies I used to work for will be underwater, oh dear, what a shame! (snigger)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Remember that mime to "Torn"

I posted it a while back

Well I found a new version, in which Natalie joins David Armand on stage for the later part of it.

God knows how she could sing along with a straight face.

so for your pleasure, delectation and delight, here it is.


P.S. I forgot those embeded things don't work for everyone, so here's a linky to it as well

The Torn Mime

Arrgghhh, laptops

Well OK maybe not laptops, but a certain hardware manufacturer who shall remain nameless at least!

Why is it when Microsoft have a perfectly good screen for selecting screen resolutions this particular company should come along and add a new option on the menu to do it instead, and disable the windows one to a point where it

a. says you have to re-boot to change resolution

b. undoes any changes you make in the STANDARD windows dialog box when it does re-boot!

I fiddled for ages yesterday with two indentical laptops one of which was set up right, and the other which had the wrong resolution, even got down to checking driver version levels before I spotted they had sneaked an extra option on the right click menu.

What the fuck is wrong with using the standard windows interface that everyone knows about? awkward bastards.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The BIG D word

Well my Divorce is now underway

I am stuck here because of custody issues at the moment, but we're both hoping to get through everything and keep things friendly, or as friendly as we can given the situation.

I am not going to lay blame anywhere, things just haven't worked out.

Who knows what the future may bring however, I am positive about it though.