Just a little pi**ed off … Geek speak time


    It has been a bit of a stressful week, computer wise. I’ve been trying for the past six weeks to get our ICT department to install Windows Mobile Device Centre (MDC). I used to use Active Synch to reinstall the handheld computers that some of the staff use. However, when we moved to Windows 7, that all went to pot. It seems that Active Synch does not work with Win 7 and MDC is the replacement. But in accordance with the ‘lock down’ that our ICT department operate MDC was not available.

    Then, miracle happen and I was ‘granted’ access to MDC. This meant that I could also connect my personal PDA and synchronise my office diary with my personal diary. You would think this would be a simple thing to do. Noooooo!! It seems that the diary Outlook 2010 uses does not like the diary on Outlook 2013, and when I tried synching the PDA with my personal diary, the damn think wiped both diaries clean. Not a problem (or so I thought) I’ll just re-synch my PDA with my works diary. Guess what??? Same thing happened. So now I’m sat there with three blank diaries. Now some people would think that is great, but I had lost everything. I managed to recreate my personal diary from a backup (all those experts were right about backups) but our fantastic ICT told me they could restore my emails (which had not been lost) but not the diary. Certain words of a blue nature issued forth when I heard this. After a few hours of manual entry, I managed to input most of the details that had been lost.

    Now, we come to the problems with my email account at home. For a number of days, my main email account has been getting very slow to upload the emails from Gmail into Outlook. Apparently, it is a known issue and accordingly, nothing can be done. It had got to the stage tonight whereby the main account refused to upload any emails since before 05:30 this morning. Many hours searching on Google came up with various options, none of which worked. I even took the drastic step of re-install Microsoft Office, which is not something to do lightly with Office 2013. This of course proved fruitless. I then had one of those ‘light bulb’ moments. If I removed my main account then reinstalled it that might work. A few minutes of breathe holding, and I had done the job. All the missing emails uploaded instantly, and I was one ‘happy bunny’, so to speak. That state of euphoria lasted about ten seconds, where upon I found that removing my account resulted in the eradication of both my diary (again) and all of my contacts. More bad language ensued and another backup restore was required. Everything is now more or less back to normal, but the whole episode reminds me of that famous saying:

“It is isn’t broken, the don’t fu*k with it”

What, when and why blog ?


     And I think you can add “How” to that list too. I’ve been blogging for a couple of years now, well to be exact, I have had a blog for a couple of years. Over the past few weeks/months, I have been thinking about what it means to me. So I have decided to put down in writing “What, when and why I write a blog. Hopefully it might be generate some interest. I can but try.

What

     Well, I suppose what I write about is me. My opinions. My perspective on life, if you please. I sometimes write on topical subjects, but it is mainly about my life at home and work and family. A lot of the stuff I write is things that anger me. And there are a lot of things that anger me! It is a kind of release, when I can put down in words the frustration I sometimes feel. But then again, I often write, just about things that have happened. Everyday mundane things, and often when I read them back, I think ‘does anyone really read this rubbish’. I’ve often wondered if I would be better picking a subject, and writing about that. That is one of the main thoughts that passes through my head, when I sit down to write a blog post.

When

     I don’t have a fixed schedule for blogging. I just do it when  ever I fell like it. Or if there is something I want to get off my chest. When I first started, I wrote every day. Not large volumes, just a paragraph or two. I soon found that trying to keep that up was difficult. Quite often I write when something has happened that is out of the ordinary. I suppose most of the time, I write late at night, whilst waiting for the youngest to get off to sleep. Mrs H goes off to bed, then for then next half hour or so, we try and get R*** to settle. That 30 or 40 minutes is when I like to write. Very occasionally, I will write something at work, and email it to myself, to write up in the blog later.

Why

     Now that is the big question! Why? Why do I write a blog? In the beginning, I think it was because it appeared to be the thing to do. After all, everyone was blogging weren’t they ? Well I very soon realised that not everyone was doing it. In fact, out of a department of around 70 people, I was the only one blogging. As I was writing something every day, it became like a kind of diary. But that was not what I wanted. I did not want to bore anyone who read my stuff, with mundane day to day trivialities. Now, one of the reasons I blog, to keep up my interest in writing. I want to write more creatively, and have been advised, that I should ‘just write and write often’.

     I was asked recently, if I get lots of comments or hits on my blog. I of over egged and said yes. In reality, I don’t get many hits and I get very few comments, but it does not stop me. So I suppose, that one of the main reasons for writing a blog is to be read. To have something to say that might be of interest to someone else.

How

     My main blogging client, is Windows Live Writer. I have used Blogdesk, which was very good, but does not work with Windows 7. I also tried a strange program (or should I be very trendy and call it an ‘app’) called Raven, or Zoundry Raven. I did not have much luck with that one. I recently had a trial at using Word 2010. It was okay, there was a lot it could do, but as a fellow blogger said “….it was like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut…..” and I think that just about sums it up. For the time being, Live Writer ticks all the boxes.

 

Is there a point ….


   I have begun to question the relevance of this blog. I started it on here with good intentions. I had previously had a Google Blogger blog, but found that a little too restrictive, in the fact that you had to login to your account to post. I then tried the Microsoft Live blog and found that too simplistic. When I found WordPress, I thought this is one I can work with. I use Windows Live Writer to post, and now can post by email from my smartphone, which is pretty cool.

   I intended to post everyday, and to post on a theme. The theme notion quickly went out of the window as I could not think of a theme that I felt I could write about. However I am still thinking on that one. It quickly developed into a kind of online diary and a place to have a whinge.

   How do I take this further ? Do I develop a theme on which to comment ? Do I stick to what I have been doing ? Do I become a ‘social commentator’ on the issues of the day ? Or do I just pack it all in ? Any ideas ?


   I would like take this opportunity for a little moan. Well not so much a moan, more a frustration really. We have started buying white bread for my pack-up, from a northern baker based in Bolton. This bread comes wrapped in waxed paper, as opposed to the usual plastic bag.

   It started when, I saw it priced at 2 for £2.00 in Asda. I bought 2 loaves and also a granary loaf wrapped in plastic. After about 4 days, the plastic wrapped bread was hard and starting to mould a little, but the white bread was still quite soft. I remember from my college days, that one of the tutors used to say that plastic causes bread to sweat, hence the mould. However, bread wrapped in paper breathes and as a consequence, keeps longer. I’m not sure of the science around this, but it seems to be true.

   So lets bring back bread wrapped in paper.

   Was that a moan or a social comment ?