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We live in litigious times, so I should say that content reflects only my opinions!

Saturday December 20 2003


Poking about looking at what's going on with A/V gear at the moment I found a nice piece of kit on SatCure's site. Incidentally, I have dealt with this business myself in the past and they are highly recommended as a source for all kinds of bits and pieces. Short SCART leads to minimize spaghetti pollution and interference behind your equipment rack are one of their invaluable products. But on to the deal: they're selling PACE Puma twin-tuner freeview hard disk recorders. Ten hours of recording time and the ability to watch one digital terrestrial channel while recording another has to be handy. If you're dead set against cable or sat, then you'll probably want something like this sooner or later.

I'm forced to say that you can get the same unit for more or less the same money from a number of other places, but it's good to support independent dealers - in the long run it means better deals and service.

Posted at 1:50 pm by Jim Woods

Cooking with crisps

Some really vile scram here. I promise you, this is a frightener... There is other frightening food on the site too. And if you have really, really good nerves you can visit the splendid Gallery of Regrettable Food.

Posted at 4:36 am by Jim Woods

Friday December 19 2003

Guilt is rampant

I really don't have a hell of a lot to say here at the moment. Christmas shopping is now within an ace of complete, and wrapping phase is imminent. I am not as other men; my wrapping skills have gradually worsened over time, degrading from a born flair to a tendency to destroy the object of the festooning. I suppose it's all part of the fun.

I have also had a bloody good drink, and played my guitar. But you knew that.

Posted at 11:03 am by Jim Woods

Thursday December 18 2003

Webcam joy

Ah, Narbonne. It's in south-western France, and therefore sunny and cheerful. It's old, it's pretty as a picture and the female rail station announcer sings it out so as to cause dire trouble with the male trouser. What's not to like? Additionally, the town hall has this brilliant webcam which you can control yourself, steering it about and zooming in on happy French people generally having a much better time than you. More beast than a fat black beast.

Posted at 1:56 am by Jim Woods

Wednesday December 17 2003


I've certainly mentioned this one before, albeit a long time ago. The venerable Chaos Computer Club, of Hamburg, which I'm senile enough to remember being very prominent back in the eighties, have mounted another one of their excellent "using an entire building as a matrix display" exhibits. Anything to do with lights is good for me. Some consolation, perhaps, for the sad AWOL-ness of my own Christmas illuminations.

Posted at 11:17 pm by Jim Woods

Today's results

Sleep caught up on: most of it.

Daylight consequently experienced: vestigial.

Emails: 41 in the last 12 hours.

Emails not spam: 1 in the last 12 hours.

Fart-neutralizing cushions discovered while surfing the net: 1, but it does appear to be for real.

Posted at 7:41 pm by Jim Woods

Tuesday December 16 2003


Excellent one-and-three-quarter-hour excursion! Father's Christmas presents dealt with, sister pretty much so. Mother pending, but that's the lot of mothers everywhere isn't it. Ex-wife still requiring gesture - perhaps not the first one that springs to mind - and uncle and aunt needing festive attention. Having negotiated Oxford High Street on bicycle, freezing cold, with dangerous carrier bags full of breakable tat streaming from the ends of my handlebars I now feel that I am more than half way through the onerous onanism that is the seasonal shop. Bully for me, perhaps literally as 'tis jazz night.

I have to say that I feel a lot happier with the shopping under my belt at Christmas. It means that all outstanding funds and time can be devoted to rather more entertaining pursuits, and it means I don't have to do the whole lot in some God-forsaken service area on Christmas morning. Which is good for everyone.

Time, nearly, to get the coloured lights up and f*ck with some landing patterns.

Posted at 8:09 pm by Jim Woods

Christmas shopping

Time I did some, to avoid last minute panic. I will write more here when I've broken the back of it...

Posted at 3:01 pm by Jim Woods

Sunday December 14 2003

Got an Archos MP3 portable?

Thought not. I haven't either. So you'll be interested in this site with lots of hardware mods and open-source replacement firmware then. I know I was.

Seriously though, it's a great resource if you do happen to have one of these things. I "evaluated" another brand of MP3 jukebox recently, but got rapidly pissed off with the dashboard of my state carriage being festooned with power and audio cables to enable me to use it in my environment of choice. So I've gone back to my original in-car entertainment fail safes - BBC Radio 4, James Last and Paul Mauriat tapes and singing to myself while rocking gently. Works every time.

I see they caught Saddam. I look forward to seeing how they completely f*ck the situation up. The range of possibilities includes: Continuing to behave in such an inept and jingoistic way that Saddam begins to look like the victim of the situation, imprisoning him forever without trial (and resultant closure) and being forced to admit at some future point that in fact he is Elvis. Personally, I favour buying him a semi-detached house in New Eltham and limiting his diet to McDonald's. Let the bastard feel someone else's pain. Logic dictates that a representative selection of Kurds be given ten minutes alone with him, but this is an unlikely eventuality too.

I certainly don't think he deserves anything half as nice as an MP3 jukebox for Christmas, although were it to be filled with progressive rock and current chart smashes some kind of justice might be served.

Relevance - it's all in the mind.

Posted at 5:15 pm by Jim Woods

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