Thursday, October 30, 2008

Back to XP :(

I am, as we speak, demoting my work machine from Vista to XP. I am not doing this because I hate Vista, nor have there been any real problems with it - in fact I love Vista. I am doing this under duress. A client of ours uses some Cisco VPN software, that works fine on Vista. However, their management has decided that they do not wish to allow ANY Vista machine to access their network and as such block it with a firewall rule managed by the Cisco kit. As such I cannot connect and do my work. We tried to get them to accept that Vista is here now - but no joy. XP here I come again... I am disappointed.

Sealskinz Gloves

We're out again tonight in the cold and what is left of the snow. After Tue's nightmare I went and bought some new winter gloves. The Sealskinz Ultra Grip gloves are water/wind proof and thermal/breathable. Got J a pair too so hope they work!

UPDATE: they work very well, fingers take a while to warm up but once there they are very comfortable. Also VERY good when it comes to hosing bike off at the end of the night.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Well, last night's ride was cold - very cold. It started to snow about 5 mins into it. By the time we had gone 3 miles we were covered and the roads were totally white. We stopped at a pub to warm up before heading home. New shoes, tights and trousers worked very well but my gloves became useless once wet and I need something to cover my face. Unfortunately I forgot to take the camera - so you'll have to make do with this morning's webcam pic instead.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Shimano SH-MW80

It is getting colder - a lot colder. This is a problem for my mountain biking. Thankfully I got some trousers (thanks E&G) and some tights (thanks M,C&F) to warm things a little for me. However, my feet still get freezing. I chatted with the guys and they suggested some warmer shoes. So, I did some research and the Shimano SH-MW80 got very good reviews. A day later they have arrived. The Gortex keeps them warm, water/wind proof and dry and the ankle wrap is surprisingly comfortable. Luckily my Crank Bros cleats fit the pedals on them (something you are never sure of until you try) and they seem perfect. Off on a ride later to check - it is meant to be as cold as -3C so it should tell how good they are!

Monday, October 27, 2008


Went for a quick ride yesterday. M took K's bike (brave) and didn't crash once despite the brakes giving up half way round. To say it was a little muddy would be an understatement! We had to hose ourselves along with the bikes when we got home.

Birthday Weekend

What a weekend! M&C flew from Sweden on Thu night, we ate in the Tilbury. Fri morning was a trip to Bath, we ate in One Fish Two Fish. Thu morning we went to Padstow to see Grandma, we ate in Number 6 and then Sun morning we headed home, we ate a shoulder of lamb on the BBQ. A lot of travel and great fun. Incidentally, if anyone knows WHY the streets of bath were raised please leave a comment...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Too cold for bikes (and shorts)

Found a new route last night but boy was it cold! Too cold for shorts that's for sure! This new route is around 10 miles with a mix of ups, downs, mud and forest - perfect really! Well, it would have been - I got two punctures, ran out of batteries, fell off and rode through dog poo... hmmm.... all fun though hey!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Computer for Grandma

I got Grandma's wifi broadband working last night and she was somewhat impressed with what the Internet had to offer. The family has been talking of getting her a computer for ages so I took the initiative and bought an Acer Aspire One for her today - just setting it up now. It runs a lite linux (fedora core) OS which means no viruses and difficult to destroy accidentally. The desktop has icons for Internet, email and chat. It has a webcam, mic and speakers built in and room for memory cards and USB devices. I just hope the 9" screen is big enough for her...

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I'm in Plymouth

Am in Plymouth for work - went out tonight around the harbour area. Had a fantastic meal at an Italian restaurant that did the perfect medium-rare steak :)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Si and Ellie's Wedding

So, this weekend gone I gained a Step-sister-in-law as Si and Ellie tied the knot. It was a brilliant day with sunshine and warmth! Nice for Summer to finally arrive in mid-October :) Photos are uploading as we speak but you can see what's there at: Flickr Wedding Set

Friday, October 10, 2008

Suunto Core Returned

Suunto delivered my Core back to me today after 2 weeks away. They haven't actually fixed the problem... much better... they sent a whole brand new one. This is good for 3 main reasons other than the button now works. Firstly the old one had a scratch on the screen that I did whilst biking, secondly the strap was badly marked (again my fault) and lastly the rotating bezel was never quite right - this new one's is. So, overall I am pretty happy!

New Route

Only managed to get out on my bike once this week due to work and other commitments. J and I headed on a new route and only got lost twice. Highlights include my headtorch running out of batteries and me packing only the wrong size spares.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Apple TV 2.2 Update

We got Apple's 2.2 Update for the ATV. One of the new improvements is a standby option (at last). With the ATV in standby I am wondering if I'll need to turn the central heating up to compensate for the lack of heat it usually irradiates :)

UPDATE: actually, even when on standby mode it still acts as a small space-heater. The thing is incredible - how it does not spontaneously combust I do not know!

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Quick ride.... new gloves....

I've been working this weekend but found an hour to get away from my office and do some exercise. Took the bike out for an hour (to test the new Specialized Deflect Gloves I bought) in the wind and rain that we are currently enjoying. The new gloves are wind/water proof and my hands were noticeably more comfortable. I did a now familiar run but in reverse (clockwise). It still took about an hour but was much more interesting (maybe I am just bored of going the same way each time). The new SatMap did a very good job of tracking me and also showed a climb of nearly 230 feet in the middle of the run! Back to work now - I have a few more hours of system integration work to complete...