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Category Archives: Projects

Burnsy Woz Right

With Big Sis away for a weeks break, I decided to allocate this week to getting to grips with the video issues on the website. I had already googled and bookmarked a few how to pages and had mentally mapped out my productive days.

That’s where I went wrong, having a determined plan.

As some may know I’m pseudo consultant to the Resident Management Company that I used to run before handing it over to an agent when it got too much.  To say that the Agent have had ‘issues’ is a bit like calling pneumonia man flu.  Staff changes, lack of communication, confusing cross communication, time delays, etc have been adding to the general rumblings of dissension around here.  Consequently for every email sent, it generated two more, needing immediate attention. The Director and I decided to get to grips with everything and lick em into shape, we were going to go through the invoices of the past two years noting anomalies, we listed general running issues and we’re trying to get the next (already over-due) residents meeting organised.  

I did manage to list all the videos that need converting into three different file types (devices use different formats, desktop v tablets and phones, Apple v Microsoft v Android).  Apart from a couple of snaffoos that skipped along nicely, even managed to save the relevant back-ups.  This brought a recurrent issue, getting FileZilla to transfer the large files to the server. I’m three desk sessions into trying and I just cannot get it configured, nor find the instructions and answers online, it’s just something further than my limited knowledge and ability can handle.  So I’ll have to hope the web hosts ftp can cope with the file sizes.  It’s a time consuming process.

Each video page needs the HTML re-writing, all eighteen of them.  Some are videos I’m hosting, others are on YouTube, but I cannot start these until the video files are uploaded.  It’s already Saturday, that leaves a heck of a lot to go wrong right before Big Sis gets here at 9am Tuesday (her hubby’s car has a garage appointment first thing, so he’s using her car for work).  I’m polishing a draft for a new web article before coding that into a fresh HTML page as well.  BFF’s visit is coming up and I so want it all done by then.

Who was it who said, if you want something done, give to a busy woman, well if you find him, shoot him! 

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Posted by on September 15, 2018 in General, Projects, Tech, Website

 

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Startember 


My lists have broken, historically they helped me get organised, sorted and done, but the ‘meh’ apathy has set-in.  Is it because the list is on the iPad and a mere swipe deletes them as if they were never there, whereas writing them in longhand on a note pad and crossing it out doesn’t remove it from view, just reminds you of a failure?  It’s deeper than that, it’s a personality trait, accountability thing.

Sometimes success of getting stuff done is dependant upon the sense of satisfaction (personal and third-party) that comes along after the effort and struggle, it has to have a worth.  Sometimes it might be because someone else is relying on what you do.  Sometimes it’s something that is time sensitive.  I am fortunate that I don’t have things pulling at my time, I don’t work thus reducing the free hours for chores, projects and such, but because my days have no structure it’s neither here nor there what time I get up, go to bed, today is like yesterday and will be the same tomorrow.  Granted initially after ceasing work, having the comfort of so little pressure was so relaxing and reviving, and so needed after the stress and pressure of grief, work and deteriorating health, but now it has become a hindrance. Even enjoyable pastimes become things to merely fill empty hours, which takes the shine off the brightest activities.

But occasionally a spark of possibility needs seizing to try and wrangle the waining spirit, and ignite the motivation to get on and ‘do’, because it will bring satisfaction in a project successfully completed that others might just enjoy.  Give a sense of purpose and instead of time filling I’m being ‘productive’.

So, September is the month, BFF’s visit is the deadline.

  1. Research and write the new article
  2. Upgrade video player (current one doesn’t handle mobile devices)
  3. Rework each video file/page
  4. Upload everything to the server and publish
  5. Update back-up drives 1 and 2 (I’m not loosing all that hard work)
  6. Possibly pick up cat blanket crochet

I know, I know, I might be over reaching with the crochet, lol, but goals be goals.

Not being able to just get stood up from the desk is a major faulting factor, I could and should spend a couple of hours most days at the desk but the thought of shuffling on the chair to get to the sofa is a chore even though when I do do it, it’s not so bad, only some degree of hip discomfort.  It’s a mental tug of war. It is necessary to put myself in an outright absolute ‘have-to’ situation to give my mentals that extra decisive tug.

Right then ….. 2–6–heave!

 
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Posted by on September 1, 2018 in General, Projects, Website

 

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Lost All Logic


Once upon a few decades ago I was an avid puzzler, except crosswords I’m hopeless at them. Occasionally I’d buy a compendium of puzzles and eagerly work my way through the searches, fits, join the dots, silhouettes etc and logic grids.  With the World Cup taking over all sanity for the next few endless weeks my eyes were drawn to a book of logic puzzles to exercise the brain and fill some time.

Only thing is, I’ve lost my logic. I even made a mess of the three grid when once upon a decades ago I could handle a five grid with ease!  Maybe my concentration span has shrunk, or atrophied like my muscles, or am I just more easily distrac…….oh look, a red arrow trailing blue smoke just flew by, wow (for real, there’s an air show today at the beach).

Okay, okay, let’s get to trying again ……… do I need a pee ….. concentrate woman ….. hmm, I could go do the dishes ….. no they will be done while you’re poaching the salmon ….. concentrate ….. okay, humbug is kept in the sock draw, Peter asked the weetabix eater if he’d seen any sugar lumps.  Hmm.

The tennis at Queens starts tomorrow :o) 

 
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Posted by on June 17, 2018 in Books, General, Projects

 

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Testing technology (and my patient resolve)


*disclaimer* The following blog may sound a touch technical, it may also sound like I know what I’m talking about, however it isn’t and I don’t.

As some of you may know, I administrate a website about a musician and the work he has undertaken over the past years. I try and be diligent in my duties and keep things up-to-date for the fans and those who google interest. Over the past couple of years with a deterioration of my muscle strength and the complications surrounding using my desk for any extended periods of time, I have been lax in updating the photo section of the website. This has been weighing heavily on my mind and conscience, so I took the arrival of my new chair as impetus to get cracking and just do it. 

In order to put a photo gallery together I use an application on my Mac called iWeb, very much a user friendly drag and drop style of templates to create each album and contents, creating a cover, thumbnails, slideshows, and enlarged images. There are now some 18 to 21 albums each containing a couple of pages or more of images from various events, gigs, tours and with fans. Although I haven’t counted them individually there must be several hundred photos.  Now before any image can be dragged and dropped into the photo album it requires a little editing, usually it needs copying or resizing and all of them require the necessary copyright marking. Once added to a particular album I then add a caption detailing the event and that event date. Back up images and details are stored separately ‘just in case’ catastrophe occurs.  All very time consuming.  So for the last couple of months I have been slowly adding more photos to existing albums, amalgamating some albums, as well as adding new ones. Once I was satisfied everything was up to date I hit the ‘publish’ icon to save all the necessary files and folders to make this straightforward piece of the website work.

There was just one thing left to do, transfer all the files folders and contents onto the server for the website.

Historically I have used an FTP program called FileZila to act as intermediary between my computer and the host server so that the files and folders could be transferred over in the right order so everything was in its right place. When you are dealing with something that is so pedantic that a , instead of a . can send the web site into meltdown it is mentally exhausting on a good day. But FileZila is a very competent piece of kit, that when you have a folder containing files and folders, that contain files and folders, that contain files, it can’t be trusted to put the right thing in the right place in the right order.  There was just one slight, tincy, little, problem, the darn thing wouldn’t connect to the server and authenticate it self!  I could have cried.

Unfortunately the host server will only let me use FileZila as I use a Mac computer, however the host site has its own FTP client but it is notoriously slow, frequently crashes and cannot cope with transferring folders from the files and folders it needs it doing individually.  So for a number of hours I sat at my desk and diligently, slowly, transferred each file and folder double checking that they were in the correct order up to the host server.  Once all the files and folders were transferred, and I was satisfied everything was where it should be, I then opened my web browser and collect the link to view the photo gallery. Always a tense moment. Of course, it goes without saying, and is to be expected, but half of what I wanted to be there, wasn’t. Back to the individual files and folders checking the latest update date to make sure I hadn’t missed one (I had, just one) to then try again, and again, clear the cachet and web data, and try again again.

SUCCESS!!!

After the photo gallery was successfully updated, I then set about uploading the pages that have been updated to the main section of the website. These are created by handwritten HTML and not a template or wizard, and are far better behaved and easier to maintain, but photo albums are very technical to create from scratch.

The web to do list had been cut down to just a couple of items, and all the weighted updates were on screen for friends and search engine Google is defined which was a satisfactory failing.  But I’m not quite ready to tackle upgrading the video pages as if that is going to take some hours of diligent patience to make sure the videos comply on multi platforms.

In other news, I have finished two cat blankets and I am working on a third and have the pattern for the fourth one all mapped out. Spring has sprung, a new fresh dose of gumption has been grasped. 

 
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Posted by on April 17, 2018 in General, Projects, Tech, Website

 

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Holibobs & Burpdays


Like all things, it came to an end all too quickly. My bestest best friend in the whole wide world came up for a two week stay that coincided with my 50th birthday. Two whole weeks of glorious food, entertaining conversations, laziness and laughter, being spoilt and pampered, as well as my birthday celebrations.  We watched a number of interesting films such as To Kill A Mockingbird, Suffragette, Hitch, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to name a few, we binge watched Blue Planet as well as a lot of Bargain Hunt.

Annoyingly the weather was not bright enough to venture out, but we did take a walk to The Esplanade despite the chill wind for a fish and chip lunch, also a mooch along the High Street – The local yarn shop was successfully avoided, only because we both had crochet projects that needed to be worked on and have enough to keep us going for ever.

I had a wonderful birthday, with cards, flowers and gifts. I had asked for cash to buy a special piece of jewellery and my budget was exceeded. The gold and black pendant watch far exceeded my expectations and arrived on my birthday even though it was not due for another week. When I went out for a meal with the family and friends, my wheelchair was festooned with balloons, and I had a large badge pinned to my dress (yes folks, I was in a dress) so there was no hiding that I had reached my half century birthday. That’s it now, I have decided I am having no more birthdays!!

The #NotMyCat affectionately known as Mickey, he also enjoyed my BFF’s visit as he gets super spoiled with treats and food and cuddles each and every day. The introduction of cat nip was definitely entertaining verging sometimes on hysterical!

They say a change is as good as a rest, I do feel rested, and I am trying to rejuvenate my get-up-and-get-on-with-it attitude that had slipped somewhat. Mind you, I’m not keen on this having to make my own coffee lark!!

 
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Posted by on April 5, 2018 in General, Life, people, Pets, Projects

 

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Battle Plan Bidness


There are only eleven days until my BFF comes to play I mean stay, yes stay.  Always much look forwardededed to with electric anticipation. We plan tasty foods and we plan loads of films and things, we plan plans to stitch n bitch and sometimes actually manage to stitch too!  But I have a rival, someone with whom I absolutely cannot compete with, he is such a courteous gentleman, he can melt you with just a blink of his mesmerising eyes, of course I am referring to ‘Mikey’ the not-my-cat who sits on my recycling bin ‘supervising’ kitchen activities and persuading to be let in.

Her imminent arrival also gives me the impetus to get on with the to-do list.  So here we go, my list

  • Tidy/sort/chuck bathroom junk
  • Today/sort/chuck bedroom junk
  • Wash towels
  • Start big shop list of don’t forgets
  • Shift/bag loose balls of yarn
  • Tidy away untidied bedroom bits
  • Finish web album work
  • Type up pod cast article
  • Create contact page

I’ve slowly been catching up with the web work at my desk, I’m still trying to master getting up from my desk but I am no nearer success.  There’s a lazy aspect in my brain, I psych myself up, get hands and chair in place, sit ready, take a deep breath and flop as the impetus flood away and despondency makes me change my mind and I end up doing the hip aching chair shuffle to the sofa.

When BFF is here I plan to ftp the album files to the server, a task that takes numerous hours and double checking of files to make sure it’s done it all proper like. So hence the deadline to get all the updates and info ready to be published.

Really looking forward to our two weeks PJ party, even if it does include my 0-heck golden gauged half century type birthday.

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2018 in General, Projects, Tech, Website

 

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I Got Da Bluuuuues


When ever my BFF and I have to say bye-bye there is always a lump in my throat, but this time there was significant eye leakage, several sobs and yes a couple of stomach gripping knots as the taxi turned right out of my street taking her to the airport and home to hubby, daughter and two ginger cats.

It’s impossible to put my finger exactly on why, it’s part history, part friendship, part closeness, part loss, part safety, part encouragement, part silliness, and a whole heap of, it’s just fun to be together.

So what wild shenanigans did we get up to…….. well, you might not believe it, it could possibly shock some, but, well, none.  Just chatting, watching films, finding all kinds of things on the Internet,  eating good treat food, doing some stitching, relaxing, taking a walk to the beach, shopping for treats; just being removed from our expected usual everyday.

Highlight – Lazing in bed, not quite asleep when BFF remarked “What the…..oh it’s you!”  You need a little backstory here.

A neighbourhood cat has taken to sitting on my recycling bin which is just outside my back door. He peers in, looking curious, has wandered into the kitchen when the door was open. BFF opened the kitchen window and he strolled in and discovered two suckers for head rubs, chin scratches and ham, chicken and dreamies.  If the window was left open he’d just stroll in and say hello, not in a hurry to leave.  Over a day or two of repeated visits (BFF is such a softie) little encouragement was needed. He’s been nicknamed Mickey because he’s white with a black tail and black ears.  One night it was rather warm so BFF opened my bedroom window slightly, maybe four or so inches, the curtains were slightly gaped, we comfortably resettled to sleep.  Cheeky Mickey got brave from the bin top and mastered the narrow, tilted, slippery windowsill, squeezed through the gap, avoided the bits and bobs on the windowsill as well as the bookcase, jumped to the floor and neither of us heard anything until he jumped on the bed and walked up BFF!  Lol, cheeky, little devil.


We were productive, I’ve ‘almost’ finished the cot blanket, and already started a second (naughty me, should finish one before starting another), BFF knitted a couple of hats and booties for the doll. Yes, Mickey helped with the wool tension on the big ripple afghan.

Now it’s time to get back to the normal everyday, not as much fun, not as much company and not such enticing food. Familiar aches are returning. Time to reset the countdown app for her return in March. 

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2017 in General, Life, people, Pets, Projects

 

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