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

Saturday February 5 2005

Given how much

utility, stability and all-round netty joy I derive from using Mozilla's Thunderbird and Firefox, I've played around with Sunbird. This is a standalone calendar application, which is to say a straightforward appointment tool. As far as I can tell, it's a good tool if you use this sort of software to keep track of your life. Personally, I still like to use a desk diary and also a Filofax (which made me a yuppie twenty years ago, and charmingly retro now). Were I make the leap to electronic organization of my affairs though I'd almost certainly adopt a Mozilla solution. The one time I entered everything into a pocket electronic organizer it crashed and munged all my data, and it did it while I was away on a three week European road-trip, so I wouldn't be an easy convert. And I don't use Outlook, so various cheapo devices I have since owned could not be properly synchronized to a PC for backup purposes. My new NEC e616v phone has a PIM, so maybe I'll investigate that a little. Still more comfortable with pen and paper though.

I wish I could remember which product it was that was advertised by picturing it next to all the stuff it was designed to replace.Actually, I think it was a Psion of some sort. There was this Psion, all neat and the size of a big old cell phone, and next to it was a pile of stuff - diary, address book, business cards, notelets, a calculator and a few pens and so forth. All I cab clearly remember is looking with delight at the old-fashioned solution, the pile of stuff, and thinking "great - so organic, so redundant, so... PROPER). So that's where I'm at. Mind you, I did have a Psion Revo myself. The idea of a pocket computer did quite appeal, and when they were discontinued I picked up a brand new one, for a quarter of what they usually cost, from that most unlikely source of bargains the BT shop. Fun. I lasted three weeks with it, then sold it on to my least computer-literate friend. He's been using it for all his organizing for the last two or three years, and loves it to an almost fetishistic degree. And this a man who has no working email address, likes vinyl records, and bought his first cordless phone a few weeks back. There's just no telling what technology will appeal to who.

Posted at 8:48 pm by Jim Woods

I have been busy,

and remiss in writing here. This geezer has been building a very fine hearse with flame-throwers and so on. He gets the cool points, and I get to link to it.

Posted at 8:26 pm by Jim Woods

Tuesday February 1 2005

The switchy magnificence,

the patchy glory (did that come out right?) of the whole thing! This is the product for me, and indeed for all the legions of cable-entangled, wild-eyed home entertainment fetishists. Home entertainment - it's a job! I would just love an AV patch-bay like this JVC. And for why?

Because constraints of space (needs to be solved soon) and interconnection make things difficult for those of us who work with sound and also have a healthy interest in watching films and listening to records. I often need to connect up multi-track recorders at home to listen to recordings I'm working on for others, or to duplicate demos and so forth. I also have some stuff I just use for fun. If I could fit all this in my racks and get it all interconnected, here's how things would be:

Yeah, I know, I love lists - but bear with me...

Sources: CD player, universal DVD/SACD etc etc player, 1-3 video recorder(s), Sky satellite box, TiVo, turntable, 1 or 2 cassette decks, MiniDisc deck and if we want to be silly 8-track. I still have a lot of good stuff on 8-track. I need a couple of spare tape loops for multi-track stuff too of course.

All this goes through a good old Sony home cinema receiver, and through a surround speaker setup with really good front speakers for general monitoring and listening use.

Now, you may think this list of kit excessive. But it's not. For a start, I could easily add cable TV, a DVD recorder or two, a freeview box and maybe some extra stuff. Oh yeah, a CD recorder. It would all get used. If people may bung you a piece of music in any common format, and you might want others in turn to hear it, then you have to be able to make some duplicates. So really you need two or more of any commonly used media player. You most definitely need at least a couple of tape decks and a couple of video recorders, and - as I do it - a PC that'll run fast CD copies on the fly.

It makes me ill to think about it sometimes. And that's disregarding my own viewing habits. I haven't started on all that, have I?

But you need a lot of stuff, and you need to hook it up via one of these. So I'll poke about for some prices.

Posted at 7:35 pm by Jim Woods


One Of The Few Blogs I Read (tm), is back in updated, consolidated and prettified form. For some reason this makes me feel vaguely guilty. Running a proudly shabby (well, I prefer to call it charmingly retro or funkily lo-fi) blog is that one must periodically resist the urge to tart it up, and be always vigilant against the pernicious forces of style and glamour. Rather like driving around in my old car, in fact. I started doing the same thing here, didn't I? And then what happened? I decided that as usual my hatred of any kind of coding overcame my diligence and we heard no more about it. Cool.

Me(ish) is nice though. You should have a look, and view some pictures there.

Posted at 3:04 am by Jim Woods

Monday January 31 2005


I bought a lot of - nectarines, or something. Small orange fruit a bit like satsumas. Rewarded for this blow for good health by having a great lump come up under my chin. Played two gigs, had a curry and tried, without all that much success, to catch up on watching the television my trusty TiVo had snarfed. What I didn't do in the last few days was write here.

Posted at 3:11 pm by Jim Woods

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