Friday, June 30, 2006

Begging politely

And, while this blog's getting lots of wonderful (/kind/generous) AllAboutSymbian readers, can I ask anyone who knows me and wants to help this blog along, to add to your own blog roll or links pages? Every little bit of link love helps, you know? 8-)

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Blogging from your smartphone

Excuse the test nature of this entry, but I'm generating it as part of a tutorial on blogging from any email device, such as a smartphone. If you're interested, the tutorial's over on
Normal service on rants and raves will resume just as soon as I've worked out what is normal anyway.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Not much of a (Windows) Vista

I have to say that I think Microsoft have lost the plot with Windows Vista. I can see where they're coming from, in that they've got all these programmers hanging around and they're trying to make money etc., but honestly, isn't Windows XP complex enough? Isn't XP good enough? In many ways, Windows 98 and ME was quite sufficient for hosting the work of 99.9% of computer users. XP added benefit in that it rolled in the guts of Windows NT, with enterprise-quality innards, but surely there comes a point when enough is enough. I'd much rather Microsoft directed its programmers to squashing the remaining bugs in XP (as opposed to disclosing and fixing them in a drawn-out series of updates) than invested millions of man hours in yet another new operating system.

Will Vista be better than XP? Probably. Will it need new hardware to run properly? Definitely. Does Vista offer any concrete benefits over XP? Not really. There is absolutely no way that most people/businesses will pay lots of money to upgrade their hardware and software just to be able to coo over extra transparency effects or desktop 'gadgets'. No doubt Vista will become commonplace 3 or 4 years from now, if only because replacement PCs will come with it pre-installed, but Microsoft shouldn't be under any illusion that professionals like me will give Vista the time of day as a considered upgrade.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Too big and clunky and... oh, not any more!

Having borrowed a Nintendo DS a while back, I thought it was too large, too clunky, too plasticky, the battery life was too short and the screens were too dim. Perfect fodder for a rant. Except that Nintendo have listened to its users and are launching the Nintendo DS Lite this month in Europe!! It's smaller, brighter and generally better in every single way. So consider this a rave (a good one). Highly recommended.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Alright m8?

Leaving aside the truly horrible way language is descending into SMS-speak ("c u l8r", and so on), I just hate, hate the way totally unknown people use over-friendly words. It's just about bearable when a more elderly lady calls you 'lovey', perhaps in a shop when she serves you, but when another man who I don't know and who most certainly isn't a friend calls me 'mate', I just want to shout 'I'm not your mate!' The dictionary says that a 'mate' is a friend or partner and I abhor the word being used for no reason at all.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Oh, to be young and flexible again

So I'm in my forties. It's not that old, honest, and I can stride down the street looking fairly trim. But it's all pretense. You see, I have a smallish daughter (age 7) and when she does these simple tricks on the trampoline or zooms round corners on her Heelys (incredibly cool trainers with roller skate in the heel), I suddenly feel very old indeed. I've tried the trampoline tricks - every one has resulted in my falling 'a over t' and looking extremely silly. And I wish I had the courage to get myself some Heelys - but I just know that I'd again be flat on my back in very short order.

Another example. Some kids on my block were kicking a ball around and it came in my direction. I joined in the kick around and was enjoying it for all of a minute when suddenly I slipped and landed awkwardly - and my 40-year old back put me in agony - this was last summer and it took 2 months for my back to feel normal again.

In my head I feel 25. I'm sure I'm not alone in this mental-physical discrepancy though!!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

England Flags

Now don't get me wrong, I'm as patriotic as the next man and watch England's World Cup games with the same degree of nail biting as the rest of you. But what's with all the flags guys? The whole point of the flags and banners is usually to wave them around at games and generally inspire your team. But the TEAM'S IN GERMANY! So what's the point of every car, every house being bedecked in the Cross of St George flag? Noone in the team can see it. Even on TV, they're locked away training and getting ready for the next game. Who are the flags displayed for, then? It beats me. What a waste of money and patriotic effort. If you really want to do something for your country while waiting for the next game, do some work with youngsters or pick up litter or get involved in local politics or... well, anything constructive really.