Monthly Archives: September 2016

September 2016 Round-up

So, September has had enough and has run off to join the circus, or whatever it is departing months do. Apparently there are just three months left of 2016, who’d have thought it? Leaving aside all that nonsense, it must be time for the monthly summary: the post that saves you reading the rest of my nonsense. Though you might want to look at the pictures. Some of those are quite nice.

Weight

More movement in a downward direction…

September 1: 215.6 pounds (15 stone 5.6 pounds, 97.8 kg)
September 30: 213.3 pounds (15 stone 3.3 pounds, 96.8 kg)

That’s a not insignificant drop this month of 2.3 pounds (1kg), which isn’t bad at all.

Eating

Yes, still doing that.

Exercise

Went to Wales, where I wasn’t all that active apart from the day I went to Cardiff, but I’ve had two proper walking days since I came back. Just need to do some more of that.

Posting

A slightly more active month, with this report bringing the total to 41.

Stuff

Did I mention I have a new camera? Well, I’ve got a new camera.  :tigger:

 

Weight and Stuff Report – 30 September 2016

For reasons that may become apparent tomorrow, I did my usual weekend shopping and washing today. I even did enough of the ironing to see me through next week at work. And I may get the rest of that dome at some point over the weekend, who knows.

But the main event of today was getting my new camera. I’ve been having a play, and I’m starting to get my head around the new autofocus options. The real test will be when I take it out for a proper play…

So, here’s another early test image – this is an out of camera JPG using the Acros film simulation, which I rather like.

Tigger in mono

Tigger in mono

Camera: X-T2
Aperture: ƒ/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/15s
Focal length: 55mm
ISO: 250
Taken: 30 September, 2016

Les does the new camera happy dance

Well, it’s been three weeks since I said goodbye to my Fujifilm X-T1, leaving me without an interchangeable lens camera for the first time in a decade. While I’ve really missed having it, it did give me the opportunity to get to know the dinky little X70 a lot better, and to really appreciate what it can do. But it can’t do everything that I need, so the whole waiting thing was dragging a bit.

But yesterday, while I was enjoying myself in Sunderland, I got an email on my phone from those lovely Wex people telling me my order was in stock and would I please reply telling them when I wanted it. I immediately replied with a “as soon as you like” message, which got a “OK, with you tomorrow” response.

And so, being a bit sad like that, I kept an eye on the Parcelforce tracking site much of today. I’d arranged for it to be delivered to work (where I’m not), so the plan was to go into town when it arrived and pick it up. But I decided I’d go in anyway, wander around a bit and be ready as soon as the tracking site showed it had been delivered.  And being a bit sad like that, I kept an eye on it while I was on the bus, and woo hoo, it suddenly changed to “delivered”.  :bouncy:

So, I popped into the office, picked up my parcel and came home.

Full unboxing and reviewing stuff will follow, but for now, here’s the beast:

Preciousssssssss

Preciousssssssss

And before I’ve done any setting up at all, here’s the first photo taken with it:

My usual model

My usual model

Camera: X-T2
Aperture: ƒ/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/40s
Focal length: 20.6mm
ISO: 320
Taken: 30 September, 2016

Tigger insisted on being my first subject, of course  :tigger:

Weight and Stuff Report – 29 September 2016

Ooooh, down again today, good stuff.

I took the Metro to Seaburn today. Had a walk along the coast, walked to the end of Roker Pier and back, had a walk through Roker Park where Strange Things were seen, then got a bus to South Sheilds, a Metro to Newcastle, picked up some lunch and came home.

Photos will be appearing in due course, but for now here’s one of Roker Pier. It might look like a calm day, but it was very windy!

Roker Pier

Roker Pier

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/850s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 29 September, 2016

 

Weight and Stuff Report – 28 September 2016

As I thought, yesterday’s low weight was a wossname, but I’m still lighter than before I went to Wales, so it’s not so bad.

I took myself to Edinburgh today. This wasn’t exactly planned – I just went to the station and decided where to go when I got there, based on how long to wait for a train, and what time I’d get there. This may sound a bit random, but it works for me.

It looked like a nice day here, but as the train moved north, it got duller and greyer. Indeed, it started to rain as I reached the Castle area. I’d dithered about going into the castle, given the posted entry fee of £16.50, and the queue for the ticket office. But then I saw a lovely thing: a sign suggesting that English Heritage members should just pop into the visitor information office and get a ticket there. So I did, for the much nicer price of free. Yay, etc.

I had a good wander around the castle – it helped that the rain decided to stop almost immediately. I enjoyed the hazy view from the battlements, the Scottish Crown Jewels, and more. Now I know it’s free, I’ll make a point of popping in for a quick look next time I’m in the area.

As usual in Edinburgh, I stopped for lunch at the lovely St Giles Cafe Bar on St Giles Street, just off the Royal Mile, where I had my usual – their house special. This is the St Giles Waffle, a quite wonderful creation consisting of a warm waffle (nice) topped with bacon (always a good move) and Brie (melting nicely), with some cherry tomatoes (juicy) and salad leaves, drizzled with maple syrup (tasty). A lovely combination which is almost worth the trip on its own.

I then wandered a bit more, stopping to say hello to Greyfriars Bobby:

Greyfriars Bobby

Greyfriars Bobby

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/400s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 28 September, 2016
Location: 55° 56.8232′ 0″ N 3° 11.4872′ 0″ W

OK, let’s take a closer look – this is a cropped version of the photo above:

 

Greyfriars Bobby up close

Greyfriars Bobby up close

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/400s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 28 September, 2016
Location: 55° 56.8232′ 0″ N 3° 11.4872′ 0″ W

After a we bit more wandering, my legs told me they were about to drop off, so I headed back to the station and got the next train to Newcastle.

Weight and Stuff Report – 27 September 2016

This is probably another one of those temporary anomalous wossnames, but today’s weight is two whole pounds down on yesterday’s. Remarkable!

This is a close view of some of the panels covering the Royal Mint Experience building.

Mint panels

Mint panels

Camera: iPhone 6s
Aperture: ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed: 1/2500s
Focal length: 4.15mm
ISO: 25
Taken: 22 September, 2016
Location: 51° 33.2333′ 0″ N 3° 23.2502′ 0″ W

Weight and Stuff Report – 26 September 2016

Aaaaaand I’m back, with a slightly lower weight than when I left.

I had a nicely uneventful and punctual journey home, so nothing to report there.

Here’s a moody view of Cardiff Bay:

Cardiff Bay

Cardiff Bay

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/10
Shutter speed: 1/350s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 21 September, 2016

Stuff Report – 25 September 2016

Well, apart from that bit of web server fun, it’s been a quiet relaxed day, with nothing else to report.

Here’s the Pontsticill Reservoir, seen from the station on the Brecon Mountain Railway

Pontsticill Reservoir

Pontsticill Reservoir

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/6.4
Shutter speed: 1/300s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 24 September, 2016

Mutter, borkage, mutter

Well, that was fun. I just tried to log in to this site and found that I couldn’t get into the admin area. No useful error messages, of course, just web browsers claiming that the server didn’t want to send any data. Webserver error logs? No help at all.

So, back to the kind of WordPress troubleshooting that used to be needed all the time, but hasn’t been needed for so long that I had to think about it.

This kind of error is usually caused by a misbehaving plugin, and the traditional fix is to rename the plugins folder on the server so WordPress can’t see them any more, and so disables the lot. Renaming it back again let me start enabling them one at a time to see what was breaking things.

And it seems that the breakage was being caused by Akismet (spam blockage) and Jetpack (adds numerous features), both from WordPress rather than random developers. Now this normally happens if a plugin is updated, but neither has been updated for a few weeks.

But what has had an update or two is the web server. Looks like one of the recent updates is conflicting with these two plugins, which is a wee bit annoying…

So, for the time being, both are disabled until I can work out what’s going on.

Update

OK, digging into the kind of Linuxy stuff I rarely need to investigate pointed out that any attempt to activate Akismet or Jetpack was causing segmentation faults, which are caused (or so my limited research tells me) by a process using more memory than it’s supposed to.

Digging further suggested that changing a value in php.ini would be the answer. So, I increased from 128M to 256M, restarted Apache and….

It worked!

Now as to why it suddenly started doing that, I’d have to say errr, dunno. Not sure if something had reset php.ini to a default value (I have a vague recollection of setting this value higher some time in the past), or if both plugins had suddenly started to use more memory (which seems unlikely), or if it was just random oddness.

But anyway, normal service has resumed.

Stuff Report – 24 September 2016

Today’s fun was a ride on the Brecon Mountain Railway, through the lovely scenery of the Brecon Beacons. More photos later, but for now here’s another bit of HDR fun[1] showing the quite wonderful American-built narrow-gauge engine:

Brecon Mountain Railway

Brecon Mountain Railway

Camera: X70
Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/125s
Focal length: 18.5mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 24 September, 2016

Oh, and today is day 16

[1] Odd. I’ve had Aurora HDR Pro for ages, and hadn’t really done much with it until this week. Just beginning to appreciate it before the shiny new version arrives in about a week’s time