Archive for the ‘Misc’ Category

Georgia Driving

August 23, 2010 Leave a comment
Many people think of American cars, and see the General Lee, the the Mustang from the Gone in 60 Seconds or Knight Rider’s KITT. Yet the real king of the US roads, certainly in this part of the US, is the pickup truck. If only people knew how to drive one…
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Categories: Idiocracy, Misc Tags: , ,

This Site is Moving

July 21, 2010 4 comments

There are a number of restrictions here at WordPress that have had me chafing a bit. The main one is embedding video links. When I wrote about Hulu+, I couldn’t include the relevent section of the hulu+ promo video. I can only use Youtube, googlevideo, or dailymotion videos, which is quite restrictive. As you saw on the Muon1 post, I can’t add digg, slashdot, or any other kind of social media buttons either, which is a bit frustrating.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I like WordPress a lot – it’s got a GREAT editor, and it’s ability to push to twitter and Facebook are great, and I like the stats it provides me about what’s popular. Maybe when I can get to the position of buying and hosting my own site myself, I’ll go back to wordpress. For now though, the inability to even change the copyright message you see at the bottom frustrates me no end. So, I’m moving hosting.

I’ll keep here going with a few copies of articles until the end of the year, and I presume the articles here will stay here, until WP takes them down, but for now I’m moving to pastures new.

The new site is

i’ll be adding tags on the rest of the posts, and will copy over all previous posts to the new home, so you won’t miss a thing. If you’ve linked to one of my pieces in the past, I suggest you update the links (once I’ve got it ported over). I’ll try and keep the dates the same, so you can find it easily. It’s been an interesting year, here, and I thank the thousands that have visited.

See you at the new place,


Categories: Misc, Rant

HOTlanta, and LiverCOOL

June 14, 2010 1 comment

Over the last few weeks a number of UK friends have been commenting on the hot weather in the UK. They really don’t have much on the UK. A point that was made clear today as we get the first Heat Advisory for the year. The UK has NOTHING on this baby! Read more…

Categories: Misc Tags:

Some Teleidoscope Fun

June 1, 2010 Leave a comment

After a little personal misfortune, I was going through old stuff, and found a cheap plastic Teleidoscope. It used a neat little multifaceted lens, and I took some pictures of various items using my cellphone camera (an LG Vx9100) which was about the same size as the eyepiece opening.

(Click to enlarge)

Images 1-3 are of the plate mounted ont he front of my car, image 4 is using the flag that is flying in my livingroom window (hence the slightly faded look). Nevertheless, it’s made some nice images, especially the third one.

A Strange µTorrent Support Question

November 30, 2009 7 comments

I’ve been doing support for the µTorrent client, in their IRC channel, for a few years now. I don’t get paid, and I don’t have any official position, but I’ve been doing it a while, and I know my way around things.

Today, I had perhaps one of the most bizzare support questions ever.

[16:48.00] * BB_ ( has joined #utorrent

[16:48.30] <BB_> Is something wrong with utorrent. Every time I search I am coming up with no searches.

[16:50.07] <BB_> Can someone help me please?

[16:50.57] <K`Tetch> where are you searching?

[16:51.23] <BB_> mininova

[16:51.48] <K`Tetch> thats why

[16:51.58] <K`Tetch>

[16:52.20] <K`Tetch> [16:52.07] * Topic is ‘ | Hosting 1234 torrents [This is part of the topic in the Mininova IRC channel]

[16:53.11] <BB_> what is wrong with the other one?

[16:53.19] <K`Tetch> what other one?

[16:53.46] <BB_> mininova

[16:54.00] <BB_> why isn’t it coming up with anything?

[16:54.03] <K`Tetch> those are both to do with mininiova

[16:54.07] <K`Tetch> read the torrentfreak link

[16:54.58] <BB_> so this means we can’t use utorrent anymore?

[16:55.43] <K`Tetch> what?

[16:56.08] <BB_> I read it.

[16:56.26] <BB_> says that all copyright materials were taken off.

[16:56.47] <K`Tetch> except those uploaded and certified to be uploaded by the rightsholders

[16:56.49] <BB_> so that means there is nothing to download from utorrent then.

[16:57.07] <K`Tetch> utorrent is a client, mininova is a site, they’re not related

[16:57.29] <BB_> so how do you get searches using utorrent then?

[16:57.42] <K`Tetch> it’s like saying ‘google is down, there’s nothing to use with Internet explorer

[16:57.53] <K`Tetch> you never DID use utorrent to search

[16:58.01] <K`Tetch> all it did was pass the search straight onto a website

[16:58.04] <BB_> I know.

[16:58.18] <K`Tetch> theres hundreds of torrent websites

[16:58.23] <K`Tetch> and in fact, google is the biggest

[16:58.36] <BB_> what do I need to do to get a search using utorrent?

[16:58.39] <K`Tetch> but beyond that, I can’t say, because of the ‘no content’ rule

[16:58.47] <K`Tetch> don’t use utorrent to search, most people don’t

[16:59.03] <K`Tetch> just use your browser

[17:00.11] <BB_> ok thanks for the answer.

[17:00.27] <BB_> guess I should remove utorrent then since it’s no longer useful.

[17:01.34] * BB_ ( Quit (Quit: I shall return!!!)

Utterly bizarre, and a little worrisome. Despite all the documentation out there – the sites, guides, videos, etc – he still didn’t understand the very basics of how a torrent works. Next time you go to get some support with your client, remember, the guy asking for help before you, may have had this sort of question.

Categories: Idiocracy, Misc Tags: , ,

Auto-repair Safety Warning!

November 1, 2009 2 comments

I’m an engineer by training. I also grew up with a father who was an engineer, and did his own car work when possible, so I always do my own car work when possible. In the past three years I’ve rebuilt heads, replaced valves, drive-shafts, and bodywork. Car repairs can be dangerous though, even with simple jobs, and every now and then, That danger aspect needs to be reinforced.

Even simple jobs like a brake replacement can end in disaster. When putting a wheel back on, after replacing brakes, despite being chocked, and on axle-stands (or jack-stands, depending on where you’re from) the car still fell. Luckily I was untouched. At the time, I was jacking up the drivers side to remove one of the stands, but because there was a jack involved, I had no body parts under the car. The stand did fall, and the wheel roll on it. This is the result. This is a 2-ton stand, and you can see what a mess was made of it when a 3300lb (1500kg) car lands on something. Imagine if it was your leg, or foot.

2-ton Jackstand, crushed

The crushed jackstand (right) with it's mostly undamaged sibling.

When working under a car, NEVER have your body under it with just the jack. Don’t even remove the stands by hand, use a pole, or long tool – I use a long wheel brace. Sure, working without proper support might save you ten minutes, but if the jack collapses, or the car rolls, is that ten minutes worth a leg, an arm, your life? What’s more, you never know what else you might find needs doing.

Safety first!

Categories: Engineering, Misc Tags: , ,