Weight and Stuff Report – 22 November 2014

Weight: 217.7 pounds (15 stone 7.7 pounds, 98.7 kg)
Steps taken: 9,104

No change today for a change.

Let’s see now. Breakfast, shopping, all as usual.

It was rather dull and overcast, so I decided not to attempt anything photographic today. Instead, I went into Newcastle, starting at the Laing Art Gallery, where I paid actual money to get in to see a couple of exhibitions. One is of portraits by Jonathan Yeo, a self-taught artist who’s developed his own style, and created an impressive body of the great, the not so great, the good and the cross the road to avoid. Good work, well worth a visit. The other is a collection of photographs of the actress Vivien Leigh, covering her life and career, together with magazines, publicity materials and the odd film poster.

One of Vivien Leigh’s most famous movie roles was Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With the Wind, which makes me wonder if there’s some Cunning Planning going on, or just one of those coincidences that pop up now and again. Because also on at the Laing is a piece called Gone With the Windan installation by Claire Williams which, actually I don’t need to describe it, because unlike most things in the Laing, photography is not only allowed, but encouraged. So of course, I didn’t have an actual camera with me, but the iPhone, plus a bit of tweaking, didn’t do too bad a job:

Gone With the Wind

Gone With the Wind

Camera: iPhone 5s
Aperture: ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed: 1/15s
Focal length: 4.15mm
ISO: 320
Location: 54° 58.5897′ 0″ N 1° 36.4977′ 0″ W
Taken: 22 November, 2014

After that, I went to the Baltic, where I enjoyed Jesse Wine’s odd ceramic thingies and a curiously mixed display called They Used to Call it the Moon, which includes some odd things, but also some very nice things, such as some of Stanley Kubrick’s documents relating to 2001: A Space Odyssey. These include his original letter to Arthur C Clarke suggesting they meet to discuss making a film…

Oh, and you know how I said it was dull and overcast? Guess what it totally wasn’t when I left the Baltic? Yeah, clear sky and sunshine. Shame it was a bit late to go home, get the camera and go somewhere, really…

And after that, I paid a quick visit to the MetroCentre to see if something was on sale yet. It wasn’t.


Weight and Stuff Report – 21 November 2014

Weight: 217.7 pounds (15 stone 7.7 pounds, 98.7 kg)
Steps taken: 4,747

Up just a teeny bit today.

Had another fun[1] and challenging[2] day at work. The good news is that our backup processes work and we can recover data. Lots of data. The bad news is that there’s far too much of the damn stuff and we need to get people to archive the old stuff.[3]

But never mind, here’s a luxury train carriage:



Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/7.1
Shutter speed: 1/3s
Focal length: 18mm
ISO: 6400
Taken: 7 November, 2014

[1] Not
[2] Yeah, that’s the word. Right.
[3] I’m sure people still have files from the server before the server before the server before the current one. If I look, I’ll probably find some WordPerfect 5.1 files somewhere…

Fujifilm X-T1 – Firmware news

Fujifilm, as I’ve mentioned before, seem to have developed the odd notion that improving cameras that they’ve already sold and actually listening to what customers ask for is a good business plan. Well, it is, but it’s not one that most camera manufacturers seem to be keen on.

As previously announced, there will be a firmware update for the X-T1, with an expected release date of 18 December. As expected, this will include the new electronic shutter with a maximum speed of a quite nippy 1/32,000sec. Yes that’s one thirty-two thousandth of a second. This is going to be great for shooting with wide apertures in bright light. It also includes the new “classic chrome” film simulation, meaning that first generation X-T1s match the new graphite edition ones.

But there’s more – too much to list here, but there are some items that look like the wishlists I’ve seen on a forum or two.

It will now be possible to customise the Q menu screen so it shows what you want where you want it.

Want to change the functions assigned to the AE-L and AF-L buttons? Yup, that’s there as well.

There’s a load more, which you can read about in the Fujifilm announcement.


WordPress 4.0.1 – Security Update

For any readers with WordPress sites who aren’t following the various alerts, be aware that there’s a security release out now. If you have autoupdates enabled, and you’re running 4.0, you should be sorted out in due course. If you don’t have autoupdates enabled, or you want it done right now, check the dashboard of your site, or get the download from the official source.

In a not quite usual move, there are also patches for 3.7.4, 3.8.4 and 3.9.2, but you are still advised to upgrade to 4.0.1 as soon as possible.

WordPress 4.0.1 – official announcement

Weight and Stuff Report – 20 November 2014

Weight: 217.5 pounds (15 stone 7.5 pounds, 98.7 kg)
Steps taken: 4,147

Hmm, down a bit today.

No exciting Teesside trips today, but we did have some new thingies installed to replace some old thingies.[1]

This is All Saint’s church, Newcastle, seen from the Tyne Bridge

All Saints

All Saints

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/5
Shutter speed: 1/480s
Focal length: 55.6mm
ISO: 400
Taken: 15 November, 2014

[1] Technical details omitted for reasons of company confidentiality. Either that, or it wouldn’t be all that interesting.

Weight and Stuff Report – 19 November 2014

Weight: 218.7 pounds (15 stone 8.7 pounds, 99.2 kg)
Steps taken: 8,029

Up a wee bit today…

After Monday’s ever-so-slightly wasted Teesside trip, I had another one today, which was much more successful. Everything worked as it should, and tests were done.  :yes:

Of course, this took a while…

So I got to the station just in time to see a direct train to Newcastle leaving  :wah:

But I didn’t have to wait too long for a non-stop train to Darlington, which was due to get in in time to catch a non-stop train to Newcastle.  :bouncy:

So, of course the train was held up waiting for a free platform  :wah:

But the Newcastle train was a few minutes late and I was able to catch it  :bouncy:

And then I went home.

This beach looks popular…

Nice day on the beach

Nice day on the beach

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed: 1/90s
Focal length: 122.6mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 15 November, 2014

Weight and Stuff Report – 18 November 2014

Weight: 218.4 pounds (15 stone 8.4 pounds, 99.1 kg)
Steps taken: 2,014

Shock, horror, etc, up again today.

It’s been great fun[1] getting to work so far this week. Due to everybody deciding to do all their roadworks at the same time, traffic in and out of Newcastle is a wee bit[2] slower[3] than normal. Which leads to late buses that take quite a while[4] to get into town. Mutter. Getting home was nearly OK for once, until the bus was held up for a while. Mutter.

Onto happier things. This is part of the NRM’s collection – not the fully displayed stuff, but the stuff you can wander around and appreciate. There’s lots of it. Lots and lots:

Wonderful Things....

Wonderful Things….

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/13
Shutter speed: 1/6s
Focal length: 18mm
ISO: 6400
Taken: 7 November, 2014

[1] For an arbitrarily “aaaaaaaaaargh” value of “fun”
[2] Possibly understatement
[3] I’m sure I saw a sloth pass it on the footpath at one point
[4] A couple of geological ages may have passed while approaching the Redheugh Bridge

Crashplan makes Les happy (again)

Update: Edited this to correct my recollection that the Crashplan family service covers five computers. Silly Les forgot it’s actually ten computers.

I haven’t mentioned my choice of online backup provider, Crashplan, for a while. That’s not because they’ve done anything to upset me, it’s just that the service basically just works. Install, configure and forget. I initially signed up for a single computer account, but was lured into upgrading to the “family” account, which lets me backup my iMac, MacBook Air and the Mac Mini (not that there’s much on the Mini, but hey…) and would let me add another couple of eight computers if I had them.

I was made even happier when I found that getting a new computer and copying all my data over didn’t require a whole fresh new backup, as you might reasonably expect. Oh no, just tell the software that the new machine is a replacement, and it does a scan, and carries on as if you still had the old computer. Nice.

But they’ve just been exceptionally nice. It’s not unusual for companies to run special discount offers to attract new customers. Nothing wrong with that, and I generally only mutter a little bit when I carry on paying full price for something that new customers are getting cheaper. But the guys at Code42 seem to have an unusual attitude, which I think goes something like this:

Hey, why not try being nice to our existing customers?

And that’s what they’re doing at the moment. They’re offering a special deal for existing customers only. It’s described as a special upgrade deal to encourage people to upgrade from single user accounts to the family deal – and it’s a pretty good deal, as it’s half price. A year’s unlimited backup for up to five ten computers is available for $75 rather than the usual $149.99, which is a very good deal. Oh? You’d like more? Well, you can have two years of the same thing for $145 instead of $289.99. What’s that? You’ve already got the “family” plan, so there’s nothing to upgrade to? That’s OK, you can just extend your current contract for a year or two at the special discount rate.

Noticing that my account would be up for renewal in February next year, I thought it would be silly not to take advantage of another two years service at half price, so that’s what I did.

Weight and Stuff Report – 17 November 2014

Weight: 217 pounds (15 stone 7 pounds, 98.4 kg)
Steps taken: 5,834

And right back down again after the weekend bloat. Most odd.

Had a “fun” day which involved a ride on a cattle truck train to Teesside. I was there to oversee our supplier setting up a new thingy which unfortunately didn’t work because BT are the source of all evil in the universe. Well, something like that, anyway. So I’m going back on Wednesday, what fun…

Let’s look through the round window[1]:

Through the round window...

Through the round window…

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/45s
Focal length: 122.6mm
ISO: 200
Location: 54° 46.4038′ 0″ N 1° 34.4932′ 0″ W
Taken: 11 October, 2014

[1] Age-related test for UK readers