Archived Posts from this Category
Archived Posts from this Category
The geek in me wants to rush out and get a Nexus 7 tablet – the 32GB version when it launches before Christmas. But the rational half of my brain keeps saying, “do you really need one”?
In theory it could be used for couch websurfing, or as an e-book reader, or for watching videos when I am travelling, or for playing games.
But I do have a Samsung netbook that works fine around the house. And I like having a screen with a hinge that supports itself so I don’t have to hold it. The Netbook also supports multiple user profiles, so the missus can use it as well. As I have a Kindle I don’t need another ebook reader. That leaves games and videos when I am on the road.
Putting aside the fact that I don’t travel too much these days, videos and games would be nice to have. I have a decent library of ripped video content and watching some of it in hotels or airplanes could be nice. But then the question is why use a tablet, why not just do it on my work laptop? Like the netbook the laptop would have more horsepower and storage, and the benefit of a self-supporting screen. On the flip-side most airline economy seats are so small it is difficult to open the laptop fully, so a 7″ tablet would be better there.
That leaves games. Games would be one of the few things that work does prohibit us from putting on our work machines and as PC gamer I have always missed them on the road. Except my preference is for good meaty strategy games something not well represented on tablets. There are some starting to appear though, so this one is a possible justification.
What I am wondering is, is there another use for a tablet, something I have missed, or something new I don’t use devices for today, that I am not thinking of that could justify purchasing one? For the most part they are not work devices. Beyond reading email (have a laptop and phone for that anyway), note taking would be a killer app for me. Except the capacitive pens people offer are crap. Only Samsung has a good solution there, having licenced Wacom’s digitizer technology. But I have overlooked anything else?
Lifehacker did have a post last week suggesting you think of new devices in terms of what you give up to purchase them. I need some new Ecco shoes. Would that be a better bet than putting a 4th gadget in my travel bag (after the phone, laptop and kindle) or am I just rationalising too much?
I really need to figure out what I am doing with the site here. I want to post, but every time I look at the place the broken formatting bugs me. And unfortunately with the way my life is at the moment (moving back into house in one part of Dublin, trying to rent out another, buying a car, expecting child 2 in a few weeks, searching for a new job) I just don’t have the time to devote to this.
Maybe next week if/when I get my PC out of storage I will just blitz the theme back to some sort of minimalist canned template. I mean fundamentally all I want are:
A keyword/tag cloud, and some meta links are nice to haves.
That’s all not too difficult really is it? And once I have that in place then I can get back to ranting and raving, and explaining how I could run the world sooooo much better than everyone else.
A Mexican politician is in trouble after flunking a question on “three books that have left a mark on your life”. It is not actually as straight forward a question as it seems. How many people feel that particular books have made a mark on their lives? And can you narrow things down to 3?
I had a quick think and picking the first 2 was easy. Coming up with a 3rd took me a few more minutes. It’s a good thing I wasn’t put on the spot in a live interview. Anyway, my three are:
Now not all of these are readily re-readable, and they may not be the best for covering their subject matter. But each one profoundly change my mindset and opened my eyes. And if they didn’t change my mind directly they have led me to other books that have made me who I am today.
Aren’t books great that way?
I am a bit stuck at the moment. I have a bit of a cold (cough, mild sore throat, block nose, etc) but I don’t know whether I should make a run to the Doctor. I have been this way for about 8 days since my sinuses started to act up last week. The usual advice is “if symptoms persist” see your Doc. But then again, most things get better if left for a while. What to do, what to do…
The worry of course is that this is/becomes something more serious. I have had sinus problems travel down to become a chest infection. And a persistent cough turned out to be pneumonia and pleurisy a few years back. So there is a strong argument for taking these things seriously. But then again, you feel like a bit of a hypochondriac visiting a Doctor, to be told you are fine, and the following day feeling pretty much normal.
What to do, what to do…
Well my great plans to post daily didn’t really pan. Out there are a load of reasons. I won’t go into them here. Lets just call them “lame excuses”. I will try and get a bit more stuff out the door though.
The other question is what am I doing for the next 30 days, or remaining 20 of August. Hard to say, as the whole family is back to Ireland at the weekend. Ditching sugar or biscuits, or alcohol occurred to me, but I think I will save them for later in year (certainly I can’t forgo alcohol until my holidays are out of the way!) .
I am tempted to ditch the internet though. How about, restricting my use to email, and this blog. All the rest, RSS feeds, discussion boards, social media sites, I could give them the door. That would be a challenge. Let me sleep on it though. A move like that could be a bit drastic!
Maybe it was hearing about Zombie walk yesterday in Dublin, or maybe it was worrying about the consequences of the US’ upcoming self inflicted economic meltdown, but I found myself reading about Survivalism on Wikipedia. This is the whole idea of being prepared for the worst if/when civilization takes a tumble. As a movement I guess the extreme is a paranoid stockpiling several years of food in his bunkers beside the gun collections as he waits for the end of civilization from one of various means (Y2K, nuclear war, peak oil, economic collapse, zombies, etc).
There is a more rational side to survivalism though. In a lot of places around the world people are advised to have temporary stockpiles for the worst. The standard seems to be to have a Bug Out Bag (BOB) good for you and your family for 72 hours. You would fill it with food, basic medicine, and nick-nacks like radio, flash light, batteries and so on.
Personally I have 2 questions about a BOB. What would I need one for, and then what should go in it? Living in Ireland we are pretty spoiled when it comes to the risks of the natural world. We don’t have to worry about earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunami, governmental instability or invasion. Our storms rarely cause much significant disruption and people tend to get good notice to be prepared. Can you remember the last time you had difficulty getting bread or milk after an Atlantic blow? It’s probably only snow that we need to worry about. It’s rare enough an event that if we get a big dump the country can go to pieces. And remembering the big snow of 1982 I can see how having 3 days of food stockpiled would remove one thing to worry about.
The next thing then is what to hold. I’d start by putting all my camping gear into one or two boxes, for quick transport to the car if I did need to do a runner. Then there is the question of food. You can get lists and so on talking about the general items – radios, batteries, food, drink etc. But the practicalities of it intrigue me. Take water – 3 litres per person per day for drinking, and 2 for washing. Family of 4 for 3 days – 60 litres. But can you really leave it there for 6 months without it spoiling? Then there is food. What would you pick that will feed you for 3 days, is not too bulky, is relatively easy to prepare, and will keep for about 12 months? The militaries of the world have done plenty of work there, and you can get MREs with enough food for one for a day or so for about €10, cheaper if you buy by the box. Except while I am not fussy I don’t think the ladies of my house would be too keen on eating that sort of food for 3 days. I can see my BOB containing pasta, cereals, tins, and dried fruit. Better make sure there is a good can opener, and plenty of loo roll in there too then so.
Sometimes I do jobs that mean I need to have protection…
That’s me, second from the left. In case you were wondering.
It will hardly have escaped your attention if you are an occasional visitor here that the number of posts has dropped pretty dramatically. There are a few reasons. Work is one, the wonderful time sucking daughter is another, and I’ll be honest and say Twitter isn’t helping either.
I do want to change things though. I enjoy writing here. So I really should make the time for it. And to be frank there are a load of ideas or nonsense I have which Twitter’s 140 character limit make impossible to share.
So what to do? Well taking an idea from Matt Cutts I have been trying to achieve some personal task every month or so. Last month it was get to bed before midnight every night. It was a miserable failure. But sometimes I manage it. Killing two birds with the one stone, this month, I will endeavour to write an average of 250 words per day on this site. Don’t expect a post every day, but I will get something up every few days.
Not of course that there may be anyone left reading this site to pay attention. That being the case I suppose I should put up something provocative and see do I get a reaction
Sod, 207 words and I am struggling already. See, I blame Twitter…
I suppose I can add a few words on Rosemary. She is coming up on 14 months now. And she has been and is as wonderful a baby as you could wish for. As of last weekend she had given up crawling and now walks full time, or at least tries to. This is her enjoying a break at a cafe in a palace near our apartment here in Vienna.
I tell you this, it is far from Habsburg palaces her parents were raised!
It was Rosemary’s birthday the other week. We had two parties, one in Austria, and another on the day in Cork with her Irish family.
The internet doesn’t need another post about the joys and delights of being a parent (never getting lie ins, running whenever you hear a loud noise, and all that), but I did was to post something. So here is a photo of the birthday girl.
She looks a bit more girly than usual in that shot.
Hi everyone. First, thanks for sticking around during the service interruption. For some reason (probably my laziness) the old theme got blitzed and it wasn’t possible to see anything on the site.
I have put this temporary theme up until I get a backup of the full one from my other PC. That shouldn’t take more than a day or two. Normal appearance will resume the.
What have we missed in the mean time? The arrival of summer in Vienna, the child’s first birthday, loads of travel and my general take on nonsense and shite.