August 2009


I had some spare bandwidth – a lot actually – this month so I decided to download some video tutorials from Newtek.com to brush up on Lightwave. I got about half a gig of them and I’ll look them over tonight and tomorrow to brush up on Lightwave. I haven’t been using it too much lately, and if you don’t use it you lose it. There are tons available and I just went through them and downloaded what took my fancy.

There’s also an update for JimmyRIG available which adds some features. The Pro version is dragging its heels and I’m getting a bit impatient with it.

The Credit Card statement arrived today. I bought a few things in the American currency this month and I note that the exchange rate steadily rose throughout the month, going from 1.57 to 1.60 in a couple of weeks. I hope to get the cheque off this week and once it’s cleared I can look at getting a few more Bob Shaw books if they’re still available. Also I have a couple of domain renewals due. I’ve delayed their payment so they are on next month’s statement.

Not the best of times this week. I tried to add my second laptop to the network and lost my whole internet connection for a couple of days. It was all my fault as I tried to install the software for the router on the laptop. It ended up ruining the whole network and connection, and no matter what I did I couldn’t get the thing back up again.

I downloaded instructions from Madasafish and setup a whole new connection and whole new network by doing everything through the router. So, both laptops on the network now. Only thing is the second one hasn’t been upgraded for a while. As I type it’s downloading 587MB of updates.

I don’t know if it’s successfully downloading 587MB of updates. Internet Explorer wouldn’t connect to the internet even though FireFox, AOL and Email had no problems. A few bits of twiddling with the options and it soon found yahoo.com. Windows Update gave the same problems and I’m hoping that with Internet Explorer online Update will be too.

The car was MOT’d this week and the price was extortionate. The worst part is that there was relatively few problems with the car, most of the bill was labour. Fair enough a service was included and all work was done to ensure it passed its MOT but still. …

Lastly and most painfully I chapped my finger at work this week. Bloody painful it was and it caught a nail, drawing blood. It’s only a tiny cut but it’s still a cut, and it’s underneath the nail. So it looks like I got purple nail polish on one nail. It doesn’t hurt any more but the finger is still a little tender.

I updated Norton Ghost and it required 50 MB! That’s more than a lot of full programs. Talk about bloat ware. And the damn thing rebooted without permission. I was lucky I was running Firefox and could restore the session but that’s not the point: it’s my computer and my decision when to turn it on and off, not the decision of some lazy programmer who can’t be bothered to program in a cancel button. And I’d just spent some time pruning the hard drive of unnecessary programs before Ghost ran its weekly backup. Took off a few programs including PagePlus 9; it’s a great and simple to use program but I installed it in April and never used it once.

I tried my old Windows 98 computer a few times this week just to see if it was still going and it seems to be on its last legs. The CMOS battery has gone; the time and settings are no longer accurate. The memory counts up to 64 MB on start-up but Windows sees 200 plus. The graphics card seems to be on its way out too. The screen freezes or the computer reboots. After around ten minutes and half a dozen re boots it seems to be ok.

There’s nothing of value on it – I actually used Ghost to create a backup of the drive and can run it on my Vista computer within Virtual PC – but there’s a fair bit of hardware in it. Sadly there is little that is of use. The computer was built about eight or nine years ago. It’s not even a half decent system nowadays. 1.3GH processor, 240MB of ram ( after an upgrade one of the chips never read properly from the start but worked ok) and 30 GB hard disk. It’s great for Windows 98; it would probably run XP okay but would cough and splutter if Vista was installed on it. None of the components would be able to be reused; the memory is really old, ditto the processor. I could use the hard drive in some way but that would be about it. The graphics card is PCI which isn’t supported much nowadays.

So I bought JimmyRIG and then I visit a site I visit only every couple of months or so and they’re running a special offer on the software they sell. Including the free items they’re giving away with the software it’s pretty close to half price so I bite.

I’m now the proud owner of Life Forms 4 and two Power Moves packs. I’ve used the software before – I had a limited edition version 3 from a magazine cover – and it’s pretty good. What’s not so good about it is that it’s a Windows 95/98 program, and is not working too well with Vista. I’ve installed it to a virtual disk and it’s still giving a couple of problems. I registered the software straight away so I guess I’ll email for support if the problems persist.

It’s a bad month for me to spend all this money; my web sites are due for renewal this month. I’ve a reminder set for the main one and the secondary one is about twenty days or so later.

Totally boring recently. I’ve done nothing of interest yet I’ve managed to spend a fair bit of money (on JimmyRIG). About the most interesting thing I’ve done lately is change the light bulb in my living room. It’s one of those long life ones and slowly dimmed last night before dying with a small pop.

I’m considering getting some more Bob Shaw hard backs. There are a few at pretty reasonable prices ( a fiver, but postage is damn near twenty quid) but they are in far flung places like Australia and South Africa. in Rip Off Britain they are close to three figures, sometimes above.

Still got a few books to catch up on. Iain M Banks novel Matter still at the bottom of the list.

I logged into my domain to make this post before realising I should be using Windows Live Writer. The website was running slowly, which in my experience is a pre curser to it disappearing from sight for a few hours. I’ll keep an eye on it. If it does go under again I’ll user tracert and send the results to the Support Department at Madasafish.