Well I guess it could have been worse

Got a reply from the local main dealer about my bumper situation. It isn’t going to be expensive as I thought, but still advised to check ebay. I checked ebay and about two dozen parts resourcers and breakers, not a sausage. I’d have more luck trying to source an Arden Blue unicorn horn. So it’s back to Vauxhall for the solution, which I spose is the same as saying that a good way to lose weight is my chopping your arm off. I’ll try and organise it tomorrow. The bumper that is, not the arm removal.

I didn’t go to the gym today as I currently still can’t feel my neck from yesterdays karting exploits. So I spent the evening finally repairing a dead PC that’s been sat on my bench for the best part of a month. Turned out the PSU was fine and the motherboard was up the swanny. Anyway, now have a fixed PC and a box of blown bits.

Also got round to watching the Olympic opening ceremony. Quite impressive, the parade seems to go on forever.

Spent the day working on iOS codec’s, which for once, considering it involved using XCode was actually a fairly painless operation. It even worked.

And then my bumper dropped off…..

Yesterday started out fine, got up fairly early and did the shopping, then travelled down to Clay Pigeon to set up for a 6 hour kart race tomorrow. Testing went fine, we seemed to be on a good pace. So headed home about 8 in the evening. While driving I noticed something that seemed to fly in the air then heard a bit on grinding. I pulled over a little later and thought I’d better check it out. And there half of the front bumper was now hanging off. It looked like the floor panel thing had come loose, then wobbled lots until it finally tore the bumper off. Oh well, ripped of other end of bumper and stored nicely in the boot.

Today I started out at 6AM, travelled back to Clay where we actually did the race, We qualified pretty much at the back and that’s where we stayed most of the day. We came in lots of times to fiddle with tyre pressures but couldn’t really get any more out of it. It was fun though with rain showers.

I also met a chap who can source odd car parts, he may just come in very handy.

Right, bath and wine o’clock me thinks, it’s been a very long day.

OpenAL continues to be an ass, but iOS also presents some issues

So now the OpenAL saga continues. This time when testing on an iPod touch. As it has the power of a squashed tomato, I was getting buffer under runs when trying to decode about six MP3 tracks at once. So what happens when you get a buffer under run, well it queues the buffers as normal, and yes, marks all the bloody things as processed. So the work round for this was was to check the number of queued buffers, if that’s zero then call rewind, this resets the internal marker and every ones happy.

Sharing file handles between threads…on iOS don’t do it. It gets upset. Don’t open file on thread A, then read it using the same handle on thread B (they arn’t reading at the same time, it’s just opened on one then read on another). That threw me for quite a while as it was randomly working then failing. Still all sorted now. Now the next job is iOS hardware MP3 decoding.

In server news I’ve redone my apache configs to use the actual domain names now. Also added pop3 ssl in about 10 minutes, I’ve kind of got the hang of these things now. Final job on the server I think is to configure the UPS stuff, but can’t do that until it’s in place and can’t do that until I’ve reconfigured my mother (well her laptop mail setup).

I did head out on the bike, but by the time I got to the end of the road the weather looked very miserable, so took the dog for a walk instead. Now I’m going to have a bath and watch the Olympics opening ceremony.

The dog has a new pool. This is it before she probably ends up eating it.

OpenAL – what an ass

Today I continued to do battle with Xcode and iOS, which made me even more heated in a very hot room.

What is it with OpenAL? It’s an open spec that is badly implement on every version I come across. The problem is, it’s too open and open to interpretation. The HW vendors are free to do what they want provided they adhere to the vague spec. So what you end up with is doing multiple workarounds for each platform for something which should really be platform independent. Take for example audio buffers, you queue them to a source and play them. If you call stop then all the buffers are marked as processed and you can unqueue them, nice, no problem. But what if you don’t play them? Well if you call stop not much happens, you can’t unqueue them they just vanish into a big pit of piss. You have to load a NULL buffer to the source, this then bins all the attached buffers and you can manually delete them, no unqueing. Except that’s only on iOS. On the reference driver calling stop will mark them all as processed and you can unqueue them as normal. Then you requeue them again, and what happens, well on the ref driver it works. On iOS it marks freshly queued buffers as processed so never plays them. You have to do an additional ‘rewind’ on the source to update the internal play marker that’s been shafted.

In server news I installed an old 250Gb hard drive into the box and set it up with ext3. Managed to mount it and set up a cron job to run a shell backup script. It now does a grandfather/father/son type rolling backup which I’m quite pleased with. Last couple of things are pop3 support, which I forgot about and a few bits on virtual domains. I also installed some stat stuff in word-press which I’m sure will be interesting at some point.

Once again the evening was warm so managed a couple of hours of fairly fly free cycling. And now about to settle down with the dog for some torture porn (see my other blog). If my dns ever sorts itself out, as the www is now pointing at the router address.

Oh, last nights shag, definitely rates in the top 10. That’s two entries my husband has on that leader board now:)

The joys of SSL

Last night after consuming much wine I decided to delve into the joys of SSL certificates. As I have two sites, then two certificates were required. Now being a cheap scape I looked at all the free solutions and after much research decided they were all a bit bilge. So in the end settle on two ‘normal’ SSL certificates from godaddy.com, which at the moment are doing them for around a tenner each, so worth the punt.

Signing up was a fairly straightforward process, persuading my ca.privacy address to forward their conformation email was a little bit more problematic. But after confirming I was the owner of the domains then getting the certificates was fairly straightforward.

Getting them into Apache was again straightforward and I then had padlocks on my https pages without the browser moaning about dodgy certificates. No green bar, but for that you have to pay about five hundred quid.

Courier was easier than I’d thought, even setting it up with two ip address on two certificates. And I’ve done enough postfix edits now to get that going easily. So now, twenty quid down but no more browser or email moaning and pretty padlocks.

And two nice evenings in a row, but tonight the flies must have stayed on the cycle path as my cycle trip was fairly clear. The gym must be missing me, still it may be pissing down tomorrow.

Oh apparently I’m on a promise tonight, it is a bit warm though.

Where were all the flies today? Ah yes on the Bristol to Bath cycle path

Today I’ve been working on iOS (that’s iPhone), but on PC. Our mobile engine runs cross platform, so it’s lot easier to write using MSVC than XCode4, which really is a pile of shit. But at some point you do have to suffer the torture of XCode to actually compile it for iPad/iPhone. It’s a pain but needs to be done. Thankfully I was interrupted by having to add some animations to one of our mobile games.

I work in a fairly small room that contains my main PC, another PC, iMac, various servers and a whole network cabinet. This is quite handy in winter, a radiator certainly isn’t required. In our three days of summer it is somewhat overpowering, I guess that’s the advantage of being able to work in only your pants.

When I did finish today, I decided rather than go to the gym I’d go out on one of my bikes (peddle kind). I’ve only managed to so far get out twice this year and both times it’s pissed down on me. So today with magnificent blue sky’s it really was a pleasant evening. Managed a good twenty miles in a couple of hours at a fairly leisurely pace. Now I’m supposed to be on some kind of a diet, but I think I ate more calories in flies than I lost by cycling. They were absolutely everywhere. Every time you opened your gob the little buggers flew in, it was easier just to swallow (no comments on that one please).

So got back, de-fly’d and had a shower, then tried to get my head around the joys of SEO. In the end set it to auto and will take pot luck. Now settled down with ‘Lewis’ and a glass of Arabella. Dog is in the kitchen as Jamie is in there frying things.

Just need to set up automated backups next, then it’s on to setting up PfSense, but first some network speed tests.

Why have one blog when you can have two?

So today (well this evening, as I did do some work earlier) I’ve set up my other blog. It’s for movie reviews, you’ll have to guess the URL for the moment. So now everything is set up and working, still need to twiddle a few things regards DNS and MX records, but really now it’s all about adding content.

Oh and to be consistent, I went to the gym, but have failed to drink any wine yet…

I also did a ‘home check’ for Hollyhedge Animal Santuary as a volunteer. This just means I check to make sure they have a secure garden and live where they say they live. I get some sense of well being from it all. If your thinking of getting a dog or a cat, please don’t go to a breeder, visit a rehoming centre and save an animals life.


Hollyhedge Animal Sanctuary

The wonderful Hollyhedge animal sanctuary

Right now its defo time for Salad, and may be some of that wine.


Travel Republic – did they rip me off?

I’m still debating this. Booked a holiday, paid by credit card, checked all the small print, checked the final price, didn’t change when I selected credit card. Paid, and got stung 2.5%. What I didn’t notice was in 2pt text under the total is it gives you the extra amount. Sneaky? Very. Legal…..only just. Will I use them again…..? Will I fuck.


And so we begin

Right, so after four weeks of configuring Ubuntu and playing around I finally got here. First a bit of background. I may waffle a bit, I’ve spent all afternoon digging a hedge out of the front garden and I’m now somewhat relaxing with a rather nice Arabella white. I’ll note doubt waffle on about wine in future posts. I think I may have become an expert by proxy of how much of the bloody stuff I drink.

Anyway, I’ve been keeping a Filofax diary since I was 16, actually I got the diary at Christmas when I was 16, so that’s what the best part of 24 years. Every night before I went to sleep I wrote the day up. Admittedly the last 10 years probably consist of ‘did work, went to gym’. And the last few would probably be ‘did work, should of gone to gym, drank too much wine’. But the first 10 or so years probably contain some real juicy stuff, lots of inner thoughts, lots of things about other people, lots of feelings. All those years are safely sealed in dated envelopes stored away, so when I die they can all be chucked into a skip, as I will be ruled as ‘insignificant’, so nobody wants to read about my life, I can appreciate that as I’ve never been tempted to open them and read back through them. I guess unless you are Hitler or Einstein very few people could actually give a flying fuck about what you did, what you are, or what you perceive to be. Even your family, to be truthful really don’t give a toss.

So why now? Well time’s getting on, I’m getting more and more ancient (40) and I’m getting board of writing, ‘did work, went to gym’. So hopefully these updates will contain something of interest. I plan on continuing the paper diary until the pages run out at the end of the year, but that will be the end. Not quite 25 years, but enough is enough.

So basically I just plan on sharing my random thoughts of the day, things I’ve done or played with and generally waxing lyrical about anything I bloody well feel like. I’ve spent the past four weeks setting up this server, so will probably babble about that for a while.

You will experience bad language, probably defamatory statements about individules and companies, but I will try and keep these of a personal nature so as not to get sued, Bad spelling (although WP has a spell checker, it’s just failed to find ‘individule’ so no idea if that’s correct or not and I can’t be arsed to Google it), and bad grammar.

Anyway, that’s enough for my opening post. Next job is to do some extra WordPress configuring things. And this is the first night I’m going to let the server go live….bring on the hackers…