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Archived entry | Matt Wilcox .net

The road goes ever on and on...

”…down from the door where it began.” Putting hobbit quotes aside, the reason for my lack of posting in the last month has been a one-two combo of discovering that my website re-design is more work than originally thought (hence overdue, hence the hobbit quote), and the fact that I’m being a little lazy and just enjoying living on my own for a bit. You may be pleased to know, or you may not, that the website has got its database transplant script done and working, and that I’m well on the way to having a completely working homepage on a completely new database with all the old content still in place. After that page is complete other pages ought to fly up, and then it’s merely the matter of deciding whether to stick with my current web host for this site, or shift to my brand spanking new Dreamhost … err … host. Regardless, it shouldn’t be any more than a couple of weeks now. *fingers crossed*

In the mean time, I’ve been up to quite a bit, but not much that warrants publishing on the web. For those that want to read on anyway:
At work we have taken up playing Poker (Texas Hold em) at dinner breaks. Most games cost a nugget to join (that’s £1), and I have yet to win a game. I came mighty close the other day, but Sam dodged my bullet (I was dealt two Aces - ‘the bullet’) and when it came down to only Jay and myself playing we ran out of dinner hour and just went all-in on a blind deal. He won the hand, and thus the game and the pot. I strive to add, I do not play every dinner-time. I’m far to stingy with my pounds, but you know what they say ‘look after the pounds and the tenners look after themselves’.

Sunday before last I joined Ben and Sammy at the Llandudno Ski Centre, where there were a load of freshers of varying abilities sliding down a hill on a pair of polished sticks, or sometimes, on their ass. It looked like fun, so next time I’ll be joining in - on Sunday however I was being ‘official photographer’ and stole Ben’s camera for the task. I’ll do my best to get some of those shots up on the web, I’m hoping at least a couple came out well.

This weekend my parents and grand-parents came over for a visit, which was great! It was just a shame the weather wasn’t so good, but, it is getting rather autmny so I suppose that ought to be expected. It was really nice to see them, especially over here smiley icon: smile

Last Monday I was over in Bangor immediately after work, with a few colleagues, and a couple of Russians, and about 30 people I’ve never seen before, listening to Phil giving an informative talk about Content Syndication, the podcast of which is well worth listening to if you know what Content Syndication is. If you don’t, you will likely hear nothing more than a confusing array of seemingly unrelated techy words and acronyms. But at least it’s in an Irish lilt, so it’s nice on the ear for you, if nothing else.

In other work-related events Andy has discovered that uniting the two seemingly unrelated worlds of CSS and StarWars results in an explosion of hits and comments. CSS: Specificity Wars illustrates the rules of CSS specificity in a geek-friendly format for all to enjoy.

Carrying on with the geeky thread, and as a direct result of Phils’ talk, I recently discovered Odeo, which I didn’t understand at first, but now that I do I think the thing is awesome. It’s just podcasting (which, as a non-mac user, I was late to the party with). Because I have my hand on the pulse of my audience, It’s likely you don’t know what podcasting is (unless my audience suddenly consists of more than old friends and family, in which case I apologise), so here’s a better description, well, analogy actually: Podcasting is like a radio show archive. It lists all the radio stations, and then all the shows that are in that station. Only you don’t listen to it live, you decide which show you want to listen to, and then download it (to play on your iPod, or PC, or whatever else you have that can play an MP3. Phone. PDA. Fridge freezer. You get the idea…). The best bit is that if you like the radio station you’re listening to, you can ’subscribe’ to it, which means whenever a new show is published on that station, it automatically gets downloaded onto your machine, ready for you to hear. Now to clarify the analogy: these are not actually radio stations, they are recordings that Joe Public have made themselves, and never were on the radio. Also, in order to subscribe you need to download the Odeo Aggregator (or maybe iTunes) - which is quick and painless, so no worries there. It being Joe Public, that means you get a very wide selection of opinion to listen to. From hardcore geek stuff to someone’s personal favourite records, to talk shows, to … well, anything you can think of. Actually, there’s a few BBC shows on there too, like the Politics show, and documentaries, Dispatches from the Field…etc.

OK, now that I’ve caught up with you a little it’s time for me to go do the dishes, and then settle down with either a Horlicks or a sup of some Glenfidich whilst reclining in my comfy chair and listening to some Winter Chill by the glow of my new fire (thank you Mum and Dad!)…
What, you didn’t think I was going to code some more did you?! smiley icon: wink


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  1. Matt Wilcox posted 21min, 6sec after the entry and said:

    While I think about it; two more points:

    1] I am writing my own website rather than using Wordpress because I have got this far, and I am too damned stubborn to take the easy way out. Plus the sense of satisfaction at the end will be orders of magnitude greater.

    2] I would like to use iTunes purely to try out it’s podcasting abilities (hell, that’s what iTunes last upgrade was all about), but, being a crappy piece of software it refuses to work on my machine - Because Apple have turned to the dark side, taking a leaf out of Microsoft’s book, and made Quicktime 7 a requirement for iTunes to run. Only Quicktime 7 will not install on my machine. You see, after choosing to install (with an American language option, because it appears Apple completely forgot that American English is a VARIANT of English, and being ignorant of the world at large neglected to give me any other variation on ‘English’ than ‘American’) It pops up a ‘Error 1324: the path Accessories/QuickTime contains an invalid character’ message and quits out. This annoys me even more than is blatantly obvious, because not only have Apple decided that I must speak Yankee and not British English, they have also taken another leaf from Microsoft’s ‘bad practices’ book, committing the cardinal sin of trying to place their s**** in my Start menu, which is exactly why that error occurs. I do not want a shortcut to the program that I don’t even want installed (Quicktime) in my start menu. That Apple take the liberty of making that decision for me grates already - that Apple’s program then trips over itself and fails to install while doing something I don’t want it to do anyway…

    Matt is not happy with Apple.

  2. Dawson posted 1hrs, 6min, 3sec after the entry and said:

    Crikey, its about time for an update!!
    Did you manage not to dribble over the Rebel on your ski trip photoing, has it increased your lust for them?!
    Sounds like everything is going pretty peachy for you at the mo which is good to hear anyway!

  3. Matt Wilcox posted 1hrs, 56min, 3sec after the entry and said:

    I am still trying to keep envy at bay. At least Ben chose a decent DSLR, but he wouldn’t have had an excuse if he hadn’t, because he had been listening to me talk the Cannon up up for quite a while. Damn but those things are good.
    It’s all going nicely so far, thanks. *touches wood* If you fancy a day trip in the spit it’d be cool to see you, as always, it’s an open invitation.

  4. Joey posted 4 days, 13hrs, 46mins after the entry and said:

    Glad everythings going well Jimi.

    I actually knew what podcasting was (after recently watching a nerdy program about it!) smiley icon: laugh I haven’t tried it out as my computer is temperamental at downloading at the best of times.

    Nice to be updated on what you’re up to anyway. smiley icon: smile

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