Fairly lazy weekend

And much better for it. Did some clothes shopping, a much-needed update to my wardrobe. Small meal out at the Red Star Noodle Bar, which just does great food. I have to be careful not to go there too much, or I’ll start finding it boring.

Anyways, more shopping on the Sunday, then watched England’s glorious progression towards World Cup glory, and Portugal & Holland’s descent into World Cup hell, with one of the finest comedy performances by a referee in football history. 4 red cards, 16 yellow cards, in a game that only had 25 fouls.

Trying to do a lot of geek book reading this week, bring my brain up to date a little.

Funny how the week can fly by sometimes

and not touch the sides. Haven’t felt like writing much this week really. Nothing bad, just not in the mood at the moment. Probably need to sit down and make myself write a little this weekend, get my head back into it. That is what I shall do. That and take loads of photos of random things for no good reason. A plan. I think I shall do that, and also start to tidy up and tie together a few of my sites. Have a few domains now, could do with a couple of sessions of setting up proper email addresses for them, getting basic sites or blogs in place, and then actually get round to writing a few things. I will explain each one as I get them going properly, different names for different ideas. One I can do quite easily is flotsky.org, which I got to just point here. Wanted to learn how to set up a non-uk domain. Which I have now done.

Opera 9 Released

And you just won’t find me using it, other than for a bit of testing. It is a shame, I can remember a couple of years ago when Opera was the best thing since bread. Not just sliced bread, bread. A wonderful thing. It genuinely did change the way I browsed, introduced me to keeping masses of tabs open all the time, all sorts of things.

However, it just didn’t move on. I hadn’t used it in ages, and so I came back to it to try out the beta. It runs like a dog, in terms of loading pages. I keep hearing how it is fast, well, it just isn’t firefox. It just doesn’t load a page as fast for me. I do use Fasterfox and Adblock, which may be a part of it, but I got really bored waiting.

It is utterly true that many of Firefox’s best features have come from or borrowed from Opera, however they are in my browser of choice now, and work better. That is the advantage that the development work done en masse on Firefox has brought. Opera stuck to its old business model for far too long, and fell far far behind. It is, on the desktop, a dying browser. I’ve seen usage drop from almost 10% to well below 1%, whilst Firefox has gone exactly the other way. It is the best on mobiles at the moment (and I use it there), but Mozilla has a mobile browser on the way, and their brand alone could cause Opera big problems in that market as well.

So much as I would like to like Opera, it isn’t going to happen.

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Just finished reading JPod

JPod - I got the red figure, so did two of my friends

I have just finished reading JPod by Douglas Copeland. Good read, is definitely about geeks from a somewhat geek perspective, but is more accessible I reckon than Microserfs. Mrsfb complained heavily about that being just a world she could not access, nor wished to. I think JPod is somewhat different.

For one, there are of stylist tricks and riffs I haven’t seen him use before, especially the heavy use of himself as a character. Definitely reminded me of Kurt Vonnegut, the extent to which he gets involved. I think also it maybe seems more accessible as this is now a world that has geeked out more in the time since Microserfs. People’s Grandparents are using ebay and dating online now. These are still ubergeeks of which he talks, but they are far less removed from most people’s world now. Or maybe that is just me…

Anyway, very enjoyable, apart from where he lists circular breads of the world, and misses out one of the finest, the Stottie Cake.

And whilst I am in a photo mood, here is my work from Saturday afternoon:

check out my kebabs

Second Child Syndrome

I’ve mentioned it before, but my friend Emily’s blog Second Child Syndrome is really worth a look. We’ve yet to experience the joy of crippling our finances and ruining our social life, so what she has gone through, and is going through is a different but very interesting world to me. Despite my tone, we do want to, so it is genuinely educational, but over and beyond that it is a very well-written blog, which isn’t something you hear said that often. Go and have a look for yourself.

Plenty to do, too hot to do it

It is just too warm to do anything today. Was dozy at work from the heat, then when I came home could barely bring ourselves to do owt. Am determined we should be motivated and get out for a wander or two this week.

Later today I have a course in Java, which I am hoping will be a good first step in it all. Another of the skills I need to start getting under my belt.

I have fallen away from my todo list somewhat, and I think I need to get back into doing that. Will force myself to get up to date on it again tomorrow at some point.

Getting on for halfway into JPod. The thing I most relate to in it at the moment is the main character’s clothing crisis. I need to think about mine, I am long overdue a Summer update. A little short of t-shirts at the moment, and we really can’t have that.

dreaming the 2.0 dotcom boom

Very odd dream last night, which I will put down entirely to reading Douglas Copeland’s JPod late on yesterday. My whole mind was flooded for most of the night with a vision of a new website. Possibly ripp.com. It was like a flickr, except more than that. For one it was all images, not just your own. Maybe you could see a feed of the top images in the world or something. Anyway, there was a killer USP that made it a must-use service. Can I remember it? Not a hint. I can still see the design when I focus, but anything of importance is just hazy.

Lazy weekend, cooked a nice barbeque for us on Saturday evening, including my killer lamb kebabs (killer in the sense they are really tasty, rather than undercooked). Watched plenty of World Cup football and the British GP, the latter of which was slightly dull. Alonso just got ahead, and that was the race almost.

Anyways, back in work, ready to face the week ahead. Well maybe after another coffee.

Modern Blogger is Rubbish

Blogger has gone to seed. I was doing some coding work last night on a little project in both Blogger and WordPress, and the differences were very noticeable. For one, the Blogger servers were being just rubbish, and sometimes I couldn’t log in. I was told at one point I had JavaScript disabled, and then a quick refresh proved I didn’t.

These sorts of problems are not frequent really, but happen every month or two. And do seem to be down to volume. Google just don’t seem to be expanding the service at all.

And that goes for technical development as well. Have a look at WordPress sometime. Categories for posts. A much clearer interface for editing your template, rather than one huge single text file. Plugins. A sidebar widget that is being developed at the moment, to make editing this important area of blogging real-estate much easier.

Then come back to Blogger, and realise that you are not only missing these, but that there is nothing that has been added for well over a year. Just stagnation. Oh alright, we got a few new templates, but that was it. I want all the above things, and more, I want a WYSIWYG template editor, made in lovely swishy AJAX, I want lots of integration with the other Google services. Show the public events on my Google calendar? Yes please. Lots of potential there, but it just isn’t being realised. I’d even pay for it, I’d have a pro account if it meant I got better service and features. However I just don’t see any progress coming at the moment, so I am probably moving this to WordPress in the next few months.