Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

The last post of 2005

This will be my last post for this year. I hope you all enjoy the arrival of the new Gregorian year and that you have a happy and prosperous 2006. Onto some bullet points…

  • I replaced the CMOS battery in my dad’s old laptop today. We’re due to sell it soon and the CMOS battery has died, so it won’t remember settings between boots. On a modern computer this actually isn’t much of a problem – it just takes slightly longer to detect the hardware and has to correct the time and date on each bootup – but since it produces an error message each time it’s not really in a state to sell to someone. Replacing it was quite straightforward once I’d worked out where it actually was – underneath the fan unit, as it happens. It takes the same battery (CR2025) as my dad’s scientific calculator.
  • I also downloaded Ubuntu 5.10 (Breezy Badger), ready to install on my laptop. It’s to replace Hoary Hedgehog which I haven’t used for in ages and have forgotten the password for. I’ll let you know what it’s like.
  • I made another minor design change today. If you are not using OpenID or TypeKey and you save your details, you should get a small welcome message above the comments box. I’ll make the PHP code available if anyone is interested in deploying it on their own sites – I think it’s quite cool.
  • My parents have ordered a PVR – Personal Video Recorder, like a Tivo or Sky+ box. This one has two Freeview tuners in it, allowing you to watch one programme while recording another. It has an 80GB hard drive and can record at least 40 hours of TV. Although they have NTL cable, most of what they record on VHS now is on the Freeview channels and NTL haven’t announced their PVR system yet. We looked at DVD recorders but a PVR would be more suitable since most of the stuff they record tends to get watched once and then taped over.
  • We watched the film version of The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy today. I’d made the mistake of also seeing some of the episodes of the BBC TV series beforehand. Personally I think the TV series is better, mainly because I generally prefer the acting (though Zooey Deschanel’s Trillian is an improvement in my mind) but also because the story differs somewhat. Having also read the book and listened to the original radio series, I was expecting the same storyline, but bits have been changed or left out, which was slightly disappointing. All in all it was a good film but I’m not sure if it would have been worth paying for.
  • And talking of films, we didn’t see Narnia on Wednesday – it was sold out. We saw The Producers instead, which I thoroughly enjoyed. If you can, see it – it’s hilarious.


  1. i paid 50cents to see Hitchhikers – well worth it in my opinion 🙂
    Happy New Year – have a great 2006!

  2. Happy new year. Telewest are releasing a PVR with 3 tuners (or was it even 4) soonish (soon in telewest vocabulary means anytime in the next decade). I’d give you a link but i can’t be bothered to find one, that’s probably the fact that its half 1 and i’ve had a few too many. Anyway, yeah, the telewest PVR is called TV-Drive for some reason, and it’s also HDTV ready. Reason I say this is i expect NTL will role out the same thing as seen as they have merged/are merging.
    Their box has already been rolled out on a trial basis in london, along with some HDTV content via their Teleport streaming service. Dunno what its like, I expect there’s only 2 elderly gentlemen and a german shepherd with it at the moment.

  3. My blog is now gone.
    However, How much is the lappy worth?

  4. Couldn’t comment with OpenID. I use as server. Are only LJ ids OK?

  5. Any OpenID server should work, not just LJ. I didn’t see any errors in my logs so I’m not quite sure what happened.