Alan Wanweird

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since Apr 30, 2007
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Recent posts by Alan Wanweird

My VOIP provider just modified their offering so that now for the sum of AUD$5 a month I get free calls to anywhere in a HUGE list of countries including Australia, NZ, UK, USA, France, Germany, Chile, Argentina, China, Singapore, Malaysia etc etc etc....

For some unfathomable reason however India is not only missing from the free calls list - but also isnt on the 'cheap calls' (10c untimed) list. So calls to India would cost ~17c minute...

I have no idea why Indian telephony should be so pricey?!
[ January 02, 2008: Message edited by: Alan Wanweird ]
15 years ago
...further introspection on my part suggests that I've been put off by my attempts to find information which clearly I am not supposed to require i.e. HOW to watch videos:

1) Does it come with a groovy manual to read - no
2) After downloading the pdf manual, can I find information about what video formats are supported? No
3) Try to add an mp4 to iTunes library and does it work? No... Does it give me an error saying "This video format not recongnised" or "Codec not supported"? No... it just returns me to my library but with the file not added...

Now I understand that in the "super-user-friendly" paradigm I'm not supposed to care about file formats - but SURELY apple need to tell me what the damn device is capable of doing? So far the only way to find out is to 'suck it and see' or go on a google fishing expedition... Not exactly a friendly approach is it? Videos are HARD to deal with there are LOTS of different formats and even what seems like a 'standard' has lots of latitude within it (hence the first few mp4's I made not being iPod compatible because I didnt know the rules about resolution, frame-rates, bit-rates etc etc)

I expected a paradigm shift - I just didnt expect to be kept so in the dark about how to drive the device!
[ December 26, 2007: Message edited by: Alan Wanweird ]
15 years ago
geee - a bit of a winge and you start taking me so seriously!

I'm sure I'll get used to it - its just the 'new' and 'differentness' of things thats taken me a bit by surprise...

..and like I say the biggest problem I have is not an iPod problem at all really - its a linux video-codec problem!!! (which I *will* solve... eventually!)
15 years ago
Ok I'm new to this...

I've never had a portable mp3 player device before..I've never had any "apple" device before....

I thought Apple were famed for their 'ease of use'? So far I'm quite disappointed, sure it plays music ok I guess (mp3 and crappy earphone quality notwithstanding) - but how hard is it to get music onto the damn thing?!!!

I want to just pick up files and dump them on like I would any other USB storage device - but NOOOOO I have to use the proprietary 'iTunes' software

...and as for video I've spent a couple of days so far and have JUST managed to get 1 recording of mine transcoded into a readable mp4 format and accepted into iTunes - but still cant get the damn thing onto the iPod!!!

So much for my dream of having last nights TV transcoded and downloaded ready for me to watch when I pick up the iPod in the morning and head out for the daily commute...!!! GRRRRRRR

(N.B. Problems transcoding *may* having nothing to do with the inadequacies if Apple and might well be more to do with my inability to tame the linux beast of MythTv! )

15 years ago
Important to distinguish between jetlag and travel tiredness.

I find that travelling between Australia and the UK, the 24 hour journey arriving in London early morning is of course very tiring, that whole day I'll be drifting off to sleep, but provided I can keep myself on the go until about 7pm I have no jetlag issues (i.e. I get a long sleep at night and despite feeling fatigued manage to stay awake during the day).

Returning home to Australia, however I'm for some reason less fatigued on the day of arrival (again usualy early morning arrivals) - but despite being more spritely suffer from jetlag for a number of days (fall completely asleep solidly at 4pm and wake up in at a stupidly middle of the night time.

Also worth noting as I've got older the adjustment definately takes longer! - As a 16yr old I didnt notice any jetlag (or much fatigue) AT ALL!

My daughter was 1yr old last time we did the trip and she suffered no ill-effects at all, settled into a new routine instantly (much to the relief of all around).

Flying from Brisbane to India you are likely to suffer a bit of fatigue 'cos presumably you have to go via Singapore or Sydney (or both) and every transfer takes a bit more energy out of you!

Enjoy the trip!
15 years ago
We have a project "FCL" which seems to have become commonly pronounced "Fucall".

Unfortunately the next stage of the project is "FCM".. and the way *thats* goign to be pronounced pretty much some up how we all regard the users!
15 years ago
Have you considered simply modifying the lyrics of your song/poem to make it easier? If we assume that August is selected as an arbitrary month - so with 'September' instead and then you can have 'Remember' as a rhyme!
15 years ago

Originally posted by Burkhard Hassel:
Thank you, Jim now I got it:

And the midi file.


Closer - but I'd prefer to see a 'B'(flat) semi-quaver between the 'C' minim and 'A' dotted quaver in the penultimate bar.

(translated into American):
minim = half note
quaver = eighth note
semi-quaver = sixteenth note
dotted quaver = 3/16th ??? note...

[ July 22, 2007: Message edited by: Alan Wanweird ]
15 years ago
I had 2 months bench time almost 10 years ago working for IBM in the UK. I had a holiday booked in South America later that year so I used the time constructively to teach myself Spanish! ...

It was a horrible frustrating time being so constantly aware of the totaly WASTE of the effort of gettign up each day and travelling ot the office simply to do nothing constructive. This was then offset by finally getting on some project work and having to do 80hr weeks euro-commuting out of Heathrow for a cople of months...
15 years ago
My car radio has 18?? Presets (2 x 6FM) + 6 AM...

FM1 reset 3 has the station I listen too most frequently and in fact I deviate from it so infrequently that I have no idea what the other presets are so I have to scan up or down when I want to find something else....

Wife listens to 1 hideous radio station that lives on another FM preset - but since I never switch *to* it I dont even know which on its on and we dont need to reprogram I suspect that 16 of our 18 presets are tuned to 'noise' !!!

At home my Av reciever has gazilliion presets radio stations, and I dont know what any of them are tuned to!!!
radio is just not a priority!
15 years ago
Whats a dolphin doing in Mongolia?
15 years ago
No usch thing as Tivo here in Australia (although a recent deal with Channel7 suggests they will start to offer a service)..

So its a 4 way choice here:

1) Plain old VCR, or sit in front of TV at perculisr times of day after trying to analyise the TV listings in the papr to determine where and when your shows might boe on (and its VERY hard with Aussie netowkrs playing schedule obfuscation games all the time in a constant attempt to try and reduce their audience?!)

2) Off-the-shelf PVR - small disks, limited capabilities with little or no EPG.

3) Foxtel iQ (Pay through the nose for PVR capabilities on Foxtel channels, but still have no listings for FTA tv)

4) MythTV - Infinitely flexible and with several groups of people publishing listings (legally questionable practice), you can actually rely on it to work!

I spent AU$1000 and built a 400Gb, twin tuner MythTv box working beautifully AND I can watch content from my PC in the study when the main TV is being used for Playschool, Wiggles or other moronic kiddy shows....
15 years ago
Plane repayments?
Plane maintenance?
Secretrial costs? (Whos gonna take bookings for you?)
Health insurance?
Presumably some kind of pilots licensing/registration costs?
15 years ago

Seems pretty cool - but theres no consistency - Every tiny hamlet with a population greater than 12 is listed in the UK - but in Peru theres a few towns that I visted that arent listed.... (..and obviously I got bored of ticking almost every location in UK and SE Queensland that I've ever been!)
15 years ago

I think that in this case, Michael's statements above about American English would also apply to the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand as well. Anyone from those countries want to comment?

As an Englishman in Australia - I can confirm this. Michaels analysis seemed spot on to me!
15 years ago