A Matter Of Opinion, Queensway House, Birmingham - Somewhat fitting for a blog header image


  • You'll Float Too (August 12, 2019)

    Some video I found of Céleste Boursier-Mougenot’s floating bowls installation. I suspect that the gentle chimes of the colliding bowls would be wonderfully relaxing to listen to in person.

  • Easter Eggs (August 09, 2019)

    An Apple focused history of software Easter Eggs. It’s a nice watch over your morning tea.

  • Time Machine (August 07, 2019)

    Apple’s Time Machine is a neat little utility to automate onsite backups. However its machinations are, like so many of Apple’s products, completely opaque to the end user using the standard user interface and so troubleshooting can be rather difficult. Fortunately for us, this is one of those circumstances where Terminal commands can come to the rescue.

  • Photography (July 13, 2019)

    Yet another set of photographs away from Flickr. This time it’s two sets of shots from Donna Nook Nature Reserve - the first taken in 2016, the second from 2018.

  • Degree Stats (July 13, 2019)

    Finally something useful from the Government - the Department of Education now produce a document called ‘The relative labour market returns to different degrees’ or, in layman’s terms, a breakdown of average salaries for graduates after 5 years by general subject area and institution.

  • Raspberry Pi with PCIe (July 10, 2019)

    The Raspberry Pi 4 is out! And I’m not going to buy one because A) revision zero is buggered, B) the load this site produces on it’s current 3B+ host is functionally zero (so there’s very little point in upgrading it) and C) I’m currently far too busy to do any pottering around with one outside of that.

  • A Terrible Mistake (July 04, 2019)

    Look what I found in a West Midlands charity shop window…

  • Recent Films (July 02, 2019)

    Notes on films I’ve recently watched.

  • For All Time (July 01, 2019) - - [01/Jul/2019:07:54:49 +0100] "GET /robots.txt HTTP/1.0" 200 47 "-" "bl.uk_lddc_bot/3.3.0-LBS-2016-02 (+http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/legaldeposit/websites/websites/faqswebmaster/index.html)" - - [01/Jul/2019:07:55:02 +0100] "GET / HTTP/1.1" 200 1851 "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Unknown; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/538.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) PhantomJS/2.1.1 Safari/538.1 bl.uk_lddc_renderbot/2.0.0 (+ http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/legaldeposit/websites/websites/faqswebmaster/index.html)" - - [01/Jul/2019:07:55:11 +0100] "GET /assets/main.css HTTP/1.1" 200 9924 "http://www.chrisrcook.com/" "Mozilla/5.0 (Unknown; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/538.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) PhantomJS/2.1.1 Safari/538.1 bl.uk_lddc_renderbot/2.0.0 (+ http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/legaldeposit/websites/websites/faqswebmaster/index.html)" - - [01/Jul/2019:07:55:11 +0100] "GET /resources/images/home.jpg HTTP/1.1" 200 382760 "http://www.chrisrcook.com/" "Mozilla/5.0 (Unknown; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/538.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) PhantomJS/2.1.1 Safari/538.1 bl.uk_lddc_renderbot/2.0.0 (+ http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/legaldeposit/websites/websites/faqswebmaster/index.html)"
  • Come Feel the Noise (June 25, 2019)

    Oasis covering Slade’s ‘Cum On Feel the Noize”. I think it works rather well.

  • The Old Ways (June 19, 2019)

    In early versions of the Mouse program, you could enter the call sign of the AP bureau to which you wanted to connect.

  • 16 Years Later: An (almost) review of '28 Days Later' (June 12, 2019)

    Sorting through an old box of crap I accidentally came across my ancient DVD of ‘28 Days Later’.

  • DOOM (June 10, 2019)

    A trailer for the new DOOM dropped at E3 yesterday and I have to say that I’m rather looking forward to it. I’ve played DOOM - in it’s various incarnations - since the mid-late 90s and, in a world where stories seem to be ever more complex, the simplicity of DOOM is a refreshing change.

  • Linkspam (May 22, 2019)

    Mac Open Web is an interesting little link for Apple users out there; it’s a curated web directory (remember those!) of open source and small developer software targeting the open/indie web with nothing from the big players and the major corporations.

  • ISDN (May 14, 2019)

    I have now managed to screw my Amazon Advertising Profile up so much I now receive adverts for ISDN Splitters!

  • Seti@Home (May 10, 2019)

    I’ve given in and installed Seti@Home again, this time dialled back to the point where it is — effectively — indistinguishable from my computers background cpu noise. The Intel GPU instance gave me terrible performance issues on my older MacBook Pro but that can be disabled via the website.

  • A Burning Sensation (May 01, 2019)

    It’s been so long that since I’ve had to burn real, physical media that I’ve completely forgotten how to do it - especially on MacOS.

  • Link Rot (April 30, 2019)

    The internet of my youth continues to bitrot into nothingness. This time it’s the (presumed) death of lspace.org - a site that was once the premier Discworld location on the web. I must have spent hours working through the annotated Pratchett files when I should have been studying for my GCSEs.

  • Friends Don't Let Friends Bling Their Cases (April 30, 2019)

    Well this is hideous.

  • Go Faster Stripes (April 25, 2019)

    Apparently Virgin Media has upgraded the upload on the link that this little site sits behind from 20Mb/s to 35Mb/s. That means that all none of you who actually read these entries should be able to access things a little quicker.

  • Towards A Cleaner Mario Kart (April 24, 2019)

    I have a long history with Mario Kart; after Super Mario World, it was the second computer game - on any platform - that I bought. A cutting edge title, it used the Super Nintendo’s Mode 7 to scale and rotate 2D graphics to generate a sudo-3D play area. It was - to my pre-teen eyes - a visually stunning game combined with fantastic gameplay.

  • Watchers on the Web (April 05, 2019)

    So as part of the generally good HTML5 spec, the authors have added an absolutely awful un-feature called ‘hyperlink auditing’.

  • An Alien short for the 40th anniversary of the first film (April 02, 2019)

    Alien turns 40 this year and, to me, remains the pinnacle of horror movies and ranks amongst the top tiers of the science fiction pantheon.

  • RSS Feed (March 20, 2019)

    It’s just dawned on me that, after my discussion about NetNewsWire last week, I have yet to enable a feed for this site.

  • Twitter Deathwatch (March 20, 2019)

    After looking over some stats related to Twitter, I have created a Twitter Deathwatch page to track its demise.

  • NetNewsWire (March 12, 2019)

    Huzzah! NetNewsWire - the first RSS reader that I ever really used in anger - is back as a modernised and updated open source project! A lack of external sync services marks it out as still quite far from a usable initial release, but, as soon as some of these are added I shall look at moving away from the moribund Reeder and back to NNW as my desktop RSS reader of choice.

  • Clarus the Dogcow (March 11, 2019)

    A 512 Pixels article (and video) on Clarus the Dogcow; Apple’s unofficial mascot from back when computers were still fun and not just second cousin to your fridge.

  • Linkspam (February 19, 2019)

    A short but sweet link on why someone has gone back to running a personal website - rather than rely on the mess that is social media and external hosting.

  • Photography (February 19, 2019)

    Two more sets added - Porthleven at Dusk (Winter 2016) and Llyn y Fan Fach (Summer 2018) - and I’m now up to 72 images migrated from Flickr. I have years of backlog to get through (far more than ever made it to Flickr!), so it’s fairly likely that I’m going to blow through their new limit of 1000 images in short order.

  • MSDOS 6.22 (February 13, 2019)

    I’ve added a new section and created the first content to go in it - a short tutorial on running MSDOS 6.22 in QEMU on a Raspberry Pi. Alas, it’s a little rough and ready, but quality should improve as I get more practice.

  • Slow-mo Flicker (February 11, 2019)

    So June should bring us this year’s WWDC with all the usual chintz and glitz that we’ve come to expect. This summer, however, one thing I would like to see in IOS 13 would be a form of flicker reduction for slow motion videos. The video below - a short piece of some rain on a wet platform - is a prime example of this; a dull video of raindrops on standing water is reduced, thanks to overhead artificial lighting, to a headache-inducing mess of flickering images.

  • Photography (February 08, 2019)

    So I’ve migrated another set of photographs away from Flickr. This time it’s a set of shots taken in the autumn of 2017 around the lovely Kynance Cove in Cornwall.

  • Brucie Bonus (February 08, 2019)

    In the long distant past - before he spend his time pissing Kevin Smith off - Bruce Willis apparently released a single; a cover of ‘Respect Yourself’ by the Staple Singers. It even reached the dizzying heights of no. #7 in the uk singles chart.

  • Amazon Lockers (February 07, 2019)

    Apparently the fastest way to make an Amazon package appear in a locker is to head out, do your jobs near and around said locker and then head home. The package will then be delivered as soon as the first shoe comes off.

  • Prettier Blog Listings (February 06, 2019)

    The Jekyll’s introductory tutorial suggests using…

  • Photography (January 30, 2019)

    As part of moving away from other people’s flaky, terms-of-use changing sites (cough… Flickr!) I have started to add various image galleries to this site.

  • Jekyll Problems (January 29, 2019)

    The Jekyll’s introductory tutorial encourages you to create all pages with a header block that includes the key pair ‘title: A Page Title’. An unfortunate downside to this is that, under the default theme, every page is now added to your site’s auto-generated header - something that, as your site grows, you are unlikely to want to do.

  • Well That Escalated Quickly (January 25, 2019)

    I’ve long understood that working with java can be a bit of a chore, but recommending the NHS page on suicidal thoughts seems a little over the top. Still, if our all knowing overlords at Google deem it necessary, then who am I to argue?

  • Owning the Means of Resolution (January 18, 2019)

    The first two blog posts on this site have concentrated on the technical aims of starting this website - to improve and expand my linux, nginx, and other associated skills.

  • Adventures in Jekyll (January 15, 2019)

    As part of relearning both linux and nginx, I need to create and manage a content on this site. For this I will be using the Jekyll static templating application to pre-generate the pages I serve. I will be using generated but static pages for two important reasons:

  • Hello World! (January 14, 2019)

    This is the homepage for www.chrisrcook.com - a toy website to built to ease me back into linux/nginx use.