Monday, 23 March 2020

COVID-19 Contingency Plans

As I write this, the Isle of Man is not at the stage of lock-down yet, but we have to try and make plans to keep civilisation going!

So, as things stand, I'm able to make calls to anyone who is not isolating. I would, however, prefer to fix software related problems remotely if possible.

So, if you need help, by all means call me on my usual mobile number: 469115. If possible, have TeamViewer installed before you call and we'll try and get logged in straight away and see if I can at least do some diagnosis. This doesn't help if it's a networking problem, but we'll cross that bridge if we come to it.

I'm also available on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger most of the time.

Stay Safe!

Monday, 24 February 2020

Language Progressions

There is always the possibility that I could get fed up with programming. My biggest problem with it - and don't misunderstand, I love programming - it the proliferation of programming languages and the apparent need to be "up-to-date" with the latest trendy languages and developments.

Programming is a fairly universal skill. You learn how to do it in one language and the principals then transfer to most other languages fairly easily. It isn't like learning a spoken language at all. The proliferation of the internet also makes it easier than ever to pick up a different language and move forward with help form friendly communities across the world.

The bottom line? well, in order to quickly and easily program some stuff for a Raspberry Pi, I'm learning Python. It seems to be going quite well so far, although some of the structures and conventions are a little bit alien to an aged BASIC programmer like me. Once again, this is a non-graphical environment. The programs being written are geared towards controlling and sensing the real world - think switches, motors, relays and sensors.

What is great is the range of modules and examples available. I can get things moving quickly and feel like I'm making real progress. Hopefully, as I get better at remembering the syntax, I'll get a bit quicker than I am at the moment and won't feel the urge to just step back and do it in BASIC!

Sunday, 5 January 2020

The Zambia Report

This one is ready in record time. I wrote the entire text of the journal for our epic trip to Zambia while I was there and finished it on the plane on the way back. To sum up:


I saw everything I could hope to see, so many mammals and such good views that I'm overwhelmed by the whole trip and the destination. South Luangwa is the best National Park I've visited in Africa, both in terms of the range of game and also in the quality and frequency of sightings - even in what is considered the quiet season.

The trip report starts HERE...

I've also finished the book of the trip and the first copies are already on their way from the printers. Here's the preview as usual.