Husqvarna Automower Challenge - 1 week on

For a bit of background on this see my first post on this. But, in summary, I am a participant in the automower challenge. A week away I've been away for the last week, with Little Shop of Horrors and Audrey II (who the Automower would be no match for I'm sure ;)) Rather unusually for the North of Scotland we've had some really good weather lately (the high today was 26ºC) and a little rainfall earlier in the week - so the grass has grown well. Automower Connect Or, keeping in touch with my lawnmower (there's a sentence I never thought I'd type!) Because the Automower is new, and I was concern…

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Estate Agents...

Probably second only to used car salesmen in the list of professions I can't really abide dealing with on a regular basis. I've never reviewed an Estate Agent, nor really had the need to compare them, so I present my own experiences below in the hope that it helps others. I eventually settled on Rettie in Newton Mearns – see how we got on here Selling Houses Having recently relocated far north to the Scottish Highlands we're left with that daunting challenge ... selling the house in Glasgow. In my area there are a few agents that pop up more than others; Nicol Estate Agents, Rettie and Co, an…

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Husqvarna Automower Challenge - Day 1

For a bit of background on this see my first post on this. But, in summary, I am a participant in the automower challenge. Day 1 It's here! Many of the other participants have posted 'unboxing' videos or reviews. Mine was professionally installed by Chris of MacGregor Groundcare, so he unboxed it... therefore I have this... There, Done. First Impressions First impressions of the physical unit are very positive. The 450X Automower® is well designed and feels robust, as does the charging station (which is good, as it does ram it at a reasonable speed regularly!) One minor irritation in the desi…

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Husqvarna Automower Challenge - Day 0

I'm not a gardener, nor do I pretend to be, but I do like cool technology and when I saw the Husqvarna Automower® I was intrigued. When they accepted me to take part in the automower challenge I was somewhat surprised; I guess I'm not the normal target market for these things but what is, effectively, a grass-cutting robot is right up my street. Day 0 I can't really call this Day 1, as I don't have the Automower® yet. Today someone from my local Husqvarna dealer, MacGregor Groundcare, came out to survey 'my garden' (and entertain the dog!), which I expect was selected as one of the larger spa…

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Nuisance calls, no drama.

Have you received a call from a number starting 020 7946? I have, and it took me by surprise, because these numbers can never exist. A little background; I am, and have been for many years, very actively engaged in trying to prevent misuse of telephone networks. This is a very 'cat and mouse' game, and we have to keep up with the mice who keep trying to find new ways to get calls through, or appear more genuine than they actually are. Most recently, there has been a move from Withheld / Unknown calls to those presenting a number, presumably because of people (like me) who will ignore anonymous…

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Security Theatre, Brussels and Beyond.

Somewhat shocked by Brussels today... and, especially since I know people there just now, my thoughts are with all those caught up in it :( Although, as I've intimated to a few close friends for many years but not been stupid enough to put on a public forum, I'm not at all surprised it's happened. Airport security has, for a long time, been no more than 'security theatre' going through the motions to make people feel safe. It achieves nothing - the airport itself is as big a target (and much easier), the weakest point is surely that massive queue BEFORE security where there's a gathering of fa…

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accidental domain squatting

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Being a developer = buying domains for personal projects, never having time to use them and then suddenly you're one year further :')— Caroline Vermeir (@hellosayscaro) March 15, 2016 The above was posted on Twitter today, and I could immediately relate to it... However, it was only when I looked at the list of names I actually have, that I realised just how bad this actually is. I have (at least) 70 domain names Indeed, it's possible there are more than this, but with other registries that I've had for years and will no doubt forget about. Derivatives of my name My name (and my…

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Paxton Net2, meet Slack.

December 2017 : As of recent versions of net2, the way SMS messages are sent has been changed, which breaks this hack, an update will follow. The advice below may still help you with other hard-coded SMS solutions. This is my (somwhat hacky) attempt to make Paxton net2 talk to Slack, however the basic principles will work with a lot of hard-coded SMS solutions I like Slack, I use it for work and more personal use - even the team behind this blog engine Ghost have their own slack team for their community, sharing information and providing support in a unique - but very effective way. I also use…

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A Ghost of my former blog?

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So, having recently decided to restart a blog (or collection of random rants) the obvious first question is what software to use. This is my fourth incarnation of a blog, having started with b2, then a custom thing and finally finding my way - like everyone else - to Wordpress. I like Wordpress, but it's far too bloated for my simple blog, and I've never been a huge fan of the WYSIWYG editor) Increasingly Wordpress has grown beyond simple blogs - there's a few sites using it as a 'full CMS' and a friend of mine even runs her small online store and ticket booking for "The Wee Food Tour&qu…

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Historic Posts

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One of the things that put me off using Medium (other than the lack of ownership of the content) is that you can't set a historic date for a post. The reason for this being I had always intended to re-post some of my old posts, I'm not sure how many of them are actually of much use though, but I do have a habit of never deleting anything. Anyway, I might put some up, so don't be surprised if post dates prior to 2016 appear :)…

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