Tag: computing

May 7, 2012
There’s been much in the papers recently about David Cameron’s ideas for “saving our children” from porn. This is not a new idea on his part, but he’s recently raised it again, presumably to distract people from the drubbing his party has just got in local elections.

The lastest idea is that all UK ISPs should be forced, by law, to adopt an “opt-in” policy for adult material. In other words, when you sign up with an ISP, you will have to explicitly say that you want to be able to view porn, otherwise it will be filtered out.

June 9, 2011
May 11, 2011
Is anyone else (who reads this) playing with Arduino? It’s a kind of open source electronics kit.

I’ve just ordered the StartFun Inventor’s Kit to get me going, which is a heap of varied components together with an Arduino Uno controller – an easily programmable microcontroller. It looks a lot of fun, and it is possible to build quite a bit of stuff with a minimum of soldering, which suits me. It means I can play away developing my prototype, then call in a friend with a steadier hand when I have something worth building.

May 9, 2011
Upgrading to Firefox 4, I expected there to be a little pain, as I got used to any changes they made.

But whose bright idea was it to reverse the order of “Open in a new tab” and “Open in a new window” when you right click a link?

February 25, 2011
I mentioned in my previous post that as my HTC Desire is a work phone, I will not be using it for calls while I am in the States, due to roaming costs. Which is why I wanted to look at VOIP again.

I have had a VOIP/SIP client on my phone for some time – SIPDroid. It is a popular client, and I could use it to make calls through my work VOIP phone system. However, it would never ring when a call came in, which limited its use.

February 18, 2011
August 19, 2010
July 5, 2010
June 26, 2010
I use forum software (phpBB) to run my Board Game group’s website. One of the problems with doing this is spammers trying to sign up to the forum so they can spam it. Although I have safety precautions in place – no-one’s posts are made public until I am sure they are a real person – the sheer numbers of spamming attempts used to make this a chore.

The spammers use automated software to detect the type of forum software a site uses, and act appropriately in signing up. The demonstration of this that I saw was amazingly sophisticated – the spamming software first signs up for a new hotmail/gmail/whatever email account, then goes through a submitted list of likely forums, registering with each one, using that address. It then tests to see if it has posting access – if it does, it posts spam, if not, it then waits for (and responds to) any security/registration emails the forum software sends, all automatically – then having been approved, it posts spam.

May 28, 2010
May 2, 2010
Had a very pleasant day visiting and . and it was also great seeing everyone else who came along. The weather wasn’t good enough for the planned BBQ, but we all ate well just the same. With boardgames before and after lunch and some impromptu music later in the evening, it was a good day.

Until I discovered that my Eee, which I was planning to use this week, had broken and wouldn’t boot. Handing it over to , he eventually diagnosed a file corruption problem – possibly caused by an unplanned loss of power. The solution was to reload the original OS from ROM, and then download and reinstall my various software updates.