Remember when (a looooong time ago) it was so difficult to download anything that there were no limits?

Mind you, what you get in those gigabytes is pretty damn good!

(Don’t worry, I’m watching that usage, I’m not willing to spend £5 per GB just by being lackadaisical (phew, tricky word!))


Out with the new in with the old


I have a Mac Powerbook G4 (sounds powerful, eh?)  It looks as good as when I bought it under the computers for work scheme (or whatever it was called) and has the power still to work as well, it is a shiny sleek aluminium (pronounced aloominum) powerful cuboid.   However, it is based around the PowerPC chip, which Apple abandoned in favour of the Intel chip in 2005.

All major software writers have now deserted the powerful PowerPC chip-based computers.

I can’t update the Powerbook to the latest operating system (Lion), Firefox open-source browser, Google Chrome has never run on it and was never designed to.  It seems broke, but it isn’t.  It is just as good and powerful as when I bought it (probably better, I seem to remember buying some more RAM for it).

So, if you want to upgrade your PowerPC, forget it, put the money towards a new ‘puter.  If the upgrade is just software for a PowerPC, that is a total waste of money. If, on the other hand, you quite like the Mac you have, just keep on using it without any upgrade, it will still work, you may get messages now and then that you should upgrade, but they can’t make you!

As for me?  I tried to install Linux, but found that even that opensource-love-peace-and-freedom-man system had very little resource to spare for PowerPCs.  I’ve reinstalled my cobweb encrusted version of the OS X system and use it just like I did.  I’ve even upgraded the Firefox browser (very easily) to the impossibly modern and go-faster-striped Firefox 10.4 with a “fork” version called TenFourFox which is way faster than Safari.

Mind you, you don’t need to believe me; I’ve got an axe to grind!

This is m’fungus.

A stinkhorn (phallus impudicus).  It only takes about an hour to expand once it breaks through the veil, but I had to wait a week for the breakthrough.

Somewhat unfortunately I was unable to take the final photograph in the series as Jane came home before me, and as the stinkhorn truly does stink (rotting flesh) she put it outdoor, opened the windows, burnt two papiers d’Armenie and made a curry.

Here it is in its full stinking glory:

They normally expand vertically, but it must have been hampered by sitting in the glass.

This is m’new tool’s use.

Pretty simple really, but very useful.

I print my own business cards on shavings from the shave horse ops.  I get as many as I can on each shaving (sometimes as many as four).  I then have to chop them to single cards. In the old-fashioned days, before the advent of The Super Card Holder Downerer, the cards flew around when chopped and the loss rate amongst the other shavings on the floor, was quite high, and even when stray cards were retrieved it involved bending – yuk!

M’new tool holds the cards in place and on the first run of about 50 only two managed to escape to the floor.  It works more or less with its own weight and the slot allows the axe to do its job and is wide enough to see that the axe is in the right place between stamps.  I don’t need to be an ace at aiming the axe as I use a maul to drive the axe, unless they are very delicate shavings in which case I just lean on the axe.

I’m posting this in the line of “Ugly jigs that work” that Peter Galbert runs on his excellent blog.

(Still waiting for developments on the mystery fungi front I’m afraid.)

Un-green wood

I’ve just finished a rather unusual job involving old oak.

The brief was to find some driftwood to fill a space over a garage door, 8 foot wide. Well I live about as far as you can get from the sea in England (90 miles East, 46 miles West – (Funny, I thought we were about in the middle!).

Anyway, I found some old oak and scrubbed it with washing soda:

When it’s been up a while, I think it will fade to grey.  Anyway, the client and I were pleased with the result.

It is fastened up properly – invisible fixings.

Saw some good old kitchen chairs on the job too. Further investigation required.