Its once again been a while since my last blog post. Just a quick update on a few recent bits and bobs (in no particular order)
• Canon 450D sold – the whole lot went for £200. That’s a pretty great deal for the guy who bought it. As a result of that…
• Finally got the Sony 55-210mm telephoto lens that I wanted for my NEX-5R. Its a great bit of kit, I’ll get a few sample shots uploaded on Google+ and Flickr when I get the chance. For those interested there’s a nice Flickr group with loads of sample shots here.
• Haven’t been playing much tennis and there’s a bit going on behind the scenes at the club which I can’t be bothered with. Might be time to move on, we will see.
• Went to see Iron Man 3. Meh. It was alright, if loaded with too many over the top extended scenes. Funny in parts though so that was good.
• Gaming – I picked up ‘Dishonored’ for the PC and I’ve been playing through that. Linear but I’m quite enjoying it. Its also been a good month for PlayStation Plus subscribers. Much to my surprise I’ve been absolutely hooked on ‘Catherine’ – a story-based logic plat former type game that’s impossible to describe and explain in a sentence – check out IGN’s review here. Its unexpectedly fantastic. Aside from that I’ve not played the new Hitman game yet. I did try out ‘Sine Mora’ though which is a nice shooter for the Vita.
• Dropped the Nexus 4. It didn’t explode into a million shards of glass as I thought it might. In fact, there’s barely a scratch on it.
• (Re)discovered that the Nexus 7 is thin and light. Having taken it out of the faux-leather case that I’ve been using I had forgotten how small the profile is on this thing. I’m writing this blog entry from it right now and its not anywhere near as fatiguing as when I use it with the case.
• Been using ‘MightyText’ for Android. It syncs your SMS (and other bits and bobs if you want) between your phone, tablet and web browser for an iMessage-like service for Android that works pretty well. Its free, grab it here.
• Had a play with a Galaxy S4. Quick verdict: amazing screen, not as big as I expected, great camera, same touchwiz nonsense that bakes my noodle, still feels like a toy but will probably hold up to general wear and tear quite well. Enough to pull me away from the Nexus 4? No chance. Not unless someone sends me one for free.
• Paranoid Android have been making a lot of noise with their latest ‘Holo’ notifications feature. It takes Facebook’s new Chat Heads feature and builds on the concept for all notifications and allows for greater multitasking capabilities. Haven’t tried it yet but looks interesting.
• Google IO soon. Great time to own Nexus devices. Shall be watching the livestream as long as I have time.
• Google Music’s instant mixes feature is awesome. Start playing a track and it’ll make a playlist based on similar music. Simple and effective. Its what I’m listening to on the N7 while listening to this.
So that’s about it off the top of my head. Time for a breakfast at mother-dearest’s fine establishment.
So, what have I been up to over the last week or so? Nothing monumental I’m afraid. But here’s a few things.
• Tennis – played for the 2nd time this year and I was hitting the ball pretty well considering I’m out of practice. I think maybe the rest has done me some good. Not playing much means it lowers the expectations I have of myself. So that’s nice.
• Had a shave – which means for about a week I’ll look 5 years younger.
• Completed my first real consultancy piece at work for my ‘new’ role. Geeky shit mostly, a 5000+ word document on why a customer’s system isn’t anywhere near as good as it could be.
• Sent off the Galaxy S3. Yes, its gone and I’m back with a Nexus 4. And its awesome now Google have made some tiny changes to the hardware and release Android 4.2.2. More on that in a future blog post.
• Moved from Catch Notes to Google Keep. Its far simpler but has a bloody fantastic widget which means I’ll actually use notes far more than I used to.
• Updated the PS Vita to version 2.10 which finally has support for folders. About bloody time.
• Guacamelee! finally got released for the PS3 and Vita. Its a game I’ve wanted since I saw a teaser trailer some time ago. More info here.
• Updated the security on my WordPress blog. Considering the attacks that are happening at the moment this was a good idea.
• Been approached to write for a new tech site thats launching soon. Don’t know how I feel about it. Seems to lack direction and has a crap name and logo but we’ll see, its early days yet.
• Ate lots – I’ve been doing pretty well with the whole losing weight and getting fit thing but this week my appetite has just taken over. Chips, McDonalds and Indian takeaway have all been murdered over the last few days.
So there’s a few things. Next week I’ll be back on the healthy(ish) food again and hopefully will get out into the courts as long as the weather improves.
Now where’s my cheeseburger…
I’ve spent most of the evening chipping away at the Linux command line getting my media PC / server up-to-date and finally made the move to XBMC 12. It’s not a massively difficult process but there’s plenty that can go wrong. I also updated a couple of download managers and the sources used for said software which, if I’m honest, has been a bit of a potch but very worthwhile.
I’m not 100% sold on the stability of XBMC 12. Maybe it has higher system requirements than the previous version or maybe it’s because its trawling through my library updating the metadata but its running like a bit of a spacker at the moment. I do quite like the new sorting options (by actor/director, etc) and the refined theme is clean. Seems I need to update a lot of my fanart though.
For anyone struggling to update XBMC you’ll need to close it (and stop server if that’s how you have it running), drop to the commandline and run the following:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:team-xbmc
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install xbmc
That should do the trick.
Just a quick update as I can’t seem to sleep. Here’s the latest.
• Wisdom tooth is out. Didn’t need a root canal so that’s good, had two fillings also.
• Got a bit of cold. So has everyone else at the moment.
• The new Metal Gear game is a bit rubbish. Played through the demo. If I wanted to play Bayonetta I’d have downloaded that instead. By the way, full game prices on the PlayStation network are hilarious. It would be cheaper to put together my own game studio and produce each game myself.
• Been listening to this during my workout: http://open.spotify.com/album/0k3QMo75iLovMxhxkYy4RB – great for those with short music attention spans and keeps the tempo up.
• Never buy a device directly from Google and expect any level of customer service. Returned the Nexus 4 weeks ago and they still haven’t refunded me. Nobody at Google knows whats going on. Time to get the law on my side later this week if this persists.
• The CyanogenMod team have fixed the only bug holding me back from using CM 10.1 as my daily driver on the SGS3. It only took an email directly to one of the head devs and it was fixed that evening. Result.
• Californication – how the hell did I miss this? Absolutely brilliant.
• My new Cineworld Unlimited Premium card came through. Now I get 3D films for no extra and I get 25% off food and drink. So now I only need to take £200 if I fancy snacks.
• Die Hard – the new movie is utterly, pathetically and completely abysmal. Hang your head in shame Bruce Willis. You didn’t need the money that badly.
Don’t think much else has happened. Time for sleep.
Haven’t updated for a while so as I’m having trouble getting off to sleep I thought this would be a good opportunity for a quick update. Here’s what I’ve a been doing over the last few days.
• Got the front tyres replaced on my A1. At long last, finally got these done. Have to say, so far so good – these Fallen tyres are fantastic in the wet.
• Took the kids to Techniquest. Very expensive and very disappointing.
• Saw Murray get skool’d at the Aus Open.
• Did a few hundred miles in the car for work. Tiring stuff when the weather is this miserable.
• Looking into VCDS mods for my car. A few more interesting bits and bobs have popped up so might be worth a bash.
• Tried Cyanogen Mod 10.1 on my Galaxy S 3. It was all going so well until sound and GPS died half way back from Pembroke. Just as well I’d remembered the way. Back to a Samsung-based ROM again for now.
Sufficiently tired now so off to sleep.