Author Archives: Les

WordPress 4.2 is out…

It was actually released a day or two ago, but I didn’t have the brain capacity to do anything with it at the time.

Anyway, it’s out now, with some new toys and general improvements. The “Press This” bookmarklet thingy has been given a major overhaul, and seems to be nicely usable (I’m using it to create this post, even).

Full details from the official site.

Source: WordPress › WordPress 4.2 “Powell”

Weight and Stuff Report – 24 April 2015

Weight: 212 pounds (15 stone 2 pounds, 96.2 kg)
Steps taken: 6,660

What? Back down again today? Whatever next?

I had a “fun”[1] morning, which involved getting into work outrageously early to power on all the things that weren’t supposed to have lost power when somebody did something, but did anyway. As this involved leaving the house without breakfast, after I’d got everything sorted out and settled down I got a sausage sandwich from the excellent Good Times sandwich shop on Grey Street.

After that, it was off to Teesside for more of the work postponed form last week. Once we’d reached the point where there wasn’t any more to be done while people were in the office,  we took an early finish, which meant I was home nicely early for once, which gave me plenty of time to do tomorrow’s shopping and washing. Well, the washing is still going, but you know what I mean.[2]

Today’s photo is another view of Newcastle’s Guildhall:

Guildhall

Guildhall

Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/550s
Focal length: 23mm
ISO: 800
Taken: 8 April, 2015

This one has been given a good going over in Lightroom – I was impressed with how much detail in the sky appeared when I reduced the highlights…

 

[1] With a capital FU……
[2] Any suggestion that I’m writing this tomorrow will be unconvincingly denied

Weight and Stuff Report – 23 April 2015

Weight: 213.1 pounds (15 stone 3.1 pounds, 96.7 kg)
Steps taken: 3,682

Down by the smallest recordable amount today, which is, of course, insignificant…

Fun day visiting Darlington and Teesside today, with a return to Teesside tomorrow to finish off doing what we started last week…

This is the view from the Tyne Bridge looking down towards the street called Side:

View from a Bridge

View from a Bridge

Aperture: ƒ/11
Shutter speed: 1/170s
Focal length: 23mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 8 April, 2015

Weight and Stuff Report – 22 April 2015

Weight: 213.2 pounds (15 stone 3.2 pounds, 96.7 kg)
Steps taken: 3,603

Well, the coughing does seem to be going away. I’ve still got somebody else’s voice, but at least I’m not waking up to cough several times a night. And less coughing seems to mean more weight, as I’m up again today.

Here’s a photo showing that the Tyne really is a tidal river….

Tide's out...

Tide’s out…

Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/500s
Focal length: 23mm
ISO: 400
Taken: 8 April, 2015

Weight and Stuff Report – 21 April 2015

Weight: 212.6 pounds (15 stone 2.6 pounds, 96.4 kg)
Steps taken: 2,393

Back up after yesterday’s extreme low. Quite random, or something…

Here’s a view of Hexham Abbey that I rescued from obscurity. A slight rotation and some moderately aggressive use of sliders in Lightroom turned it into something I quite like…

Hexham Abbey

Hexham Abbey

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/9
Shutter speed: 1/30s
Focal length: 27.9mm
ISO: 400
Taken: 13 December, 2014

Weight and Stuff Report – 20 April 2015

Weight: 210.4 pounds (15 stone 0.4 pounds, 95.4 kg)
Steps taken: 3,527

Down by the smallest recordable amount today for a new low for the year (again), which exactly matches the lowest weigh recorded in, would you believe it, 2008.

This is a close view of a thing that might help with getting closer views of other things. When my tuit supply allows me, I’ll explain that in more detail.

It's a tube....

It’s a tube….

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/1.2
Shutter speed: 1/200s
Focal length: 56mm
ISO: 6400
Taken: 24 February, 2015

Weight and Stuff Report – 19 April 2015

Weight: 210.5 pounds (15 stone 0.5 pounds, 95.5 kg)
Steps taken: Not many, really

Down again today to a new low for the year. In fact, today’s weight is just a teeny weeny bit over the lowest weight I recorded in 2008. And to get any lower than that, I’d have to go back to 2006. so all this coughing is having some effect…

Having evaded the work thing, I’ve been having a quiet day in – I had thought about going out, but this damn lurgy is still making me too tired.

Anyway, this is Neptune:

Neptune

Neptune

Camera: X-T1
Aperture: ƒ/5.6
Shutter speed: 1/350s
Focal length: 110mm
ISO: 200
Location: 54° 46.6273′ 0″ N 1° 34.5386′ 0″ W
Taken: 21 February, 2015

 

Doctor Who – 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition Blu-ray

This is another much-delayed review. This set of four Blu-rays has been sitting on my pile of things to watch for, err, quite a while now. Well, probably since September, when it was released. It was a “limited edition” thingy, so if you want to buy one now, you’ll probably have to pay very silly money to get it. But never mind, I’m here to tell you all about it.

Inside the cardboard outer box you’ll find four separate Blu-ray boxes, each with a nicely created image of one of the Doctors involved in the 50th anniversary fun and games.

Extras are plentiful, and include some bits that weren’t on the original releases, so I’ll be mentioning some of those.

Disc 1: The Name of the Doctor

This was, of course, the final episode of the seventh series, in which we finally learned why the Doctor kept running into different versions of Clara, and were introduced to an unexpected extra incarnation of the Time Lord in the glorious form of John Hurt. Good stuff all round, and it makes sense to have it with the other episodes in this set.

Extras include a behind the scenes piece, a quite long documentary called Doctor Who: The Ultimate Guide, which looks like it was made for the US audience, judging by some of the talking heads involved. It won’t tell you much you didn’t already know, but it’s nicely put together.

But the highlight is The Night of the Doctor,  that unexpected mini-episode released online. In this, we get the return of Eighth Doctor Paul McGann, who gets the excellent line

I’m a doctor, but probably not the one you were expecting

before turning into  John Hurt. It’s short, but very sweet.

Disc 2: The Day of the Doctor

This is, of course, the Big One. I’ve talked at moderate length about the original Blu-ray release, so I’ll just mention the extras included on this version. In addition to the behind the scenes bits and some trailers, the fun comes from some cinema intros, which those of us who saw the episode at home will have missed. Strax does a very fine Sontaran piece which is suitably silly.

Disc 3: The Time of the Doctor

Once again, I’ve covered this in detail previously, so just a quick mention for the extras. This includes one of the peripheral shows that appeared around the anniversary – A Night With the Stars: The Science of Doctor Who, in which the ubiquitous Professor Brian Cox has a lot of fun with some science stuff which sort of vaguely relates to time travel. Sort of. Good fun, and it does include Matt Smith. And there’s a Farewell to Matt Smith piece, which does what it says on the tin.

Disc 4: An Adventure in Time and Space

I don’t think I mentioned this at the time, so I’ll rectify that now. For quite some time, Mark Gatiss had been wanting to make a drama about the early days of Doctor Who, and as the fiftieth anniversary came around, he was able to persuade the BBC that it would be a good idea. And that’s what we have here – a nicely presented, more or less accurate story of the creation of the series, concentrating on producer Verity Lambert (first female producer at the BBC), director Waris Hussein (first Indian director at the BBC), Head of Drama Sydney Hewman and the first actor to play the Doctor, William Hartnell. Sets are recreated, events are compressed, some people are omitted, in the usual way of drama, but it’s all here. As William Hartnell’s failing health threw the future of the series into doubt, an brilliant and unprecedented plan was created, and a new Doctor appeared. Which is why we’re still talking about Doctor Who now.

It’s all very nicely done, and well worth watching if you haven’t done so already.

Extras on this disc are particularly good. In addition to the expected behind the scenes bits, there are closer looks at how some of the classic scenes were recreated (Daleks on Westminster Bridge, for instance) , a tribute to William Hartnell and some deleted scenes. All good stuff, but there’s more. There’s Doctor Who at the Proms 2013, a nicely entertaining concert featuring music from the series with added monsters, the Doctor, Clara and some silliness from Strax. Not to mention a Dalek threatening to exterminate the conductor for overacting…

And finally, there’s the delightfully silly The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot, which was good fun when it was released online, and looks a lot better on TV.  In this, you’ll see Peter Davison, Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy trying to get themselves parts in the 5oth anniversary special, not to mention Steven Moffat being silly, Russell T Davies being Russell T Davies, and learn the shocking truth[1] about John Barrowman. It’s a lovely bit of work which deserves its place in this anniversary set.

So there it is. A nice collection. If you’ve got the separate discs and the seventh series set, it’s distinctly non-essential, but it is a nice thing to have.

[1] Or not