My Space

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It’s a little over a year since I registered and wrote my first post. With that, I think it’s time to look back at the original goals for this site and to share a few thoughts.

The Hardware

I originally decided to use a Raspberry Pi 3B+ as a host. The Pi has performed well and, after a year, I remain happy with that decision and do not plan on moving to another solution. The single caveat to this is that I plan on moving away from using a Micro SD card for permanent storage to a full blown SSD.

In the future I aim to explore PeerTube (or similar) and, at this point, I may have to move to a more powerful board than my now superseded 3B+.

The Software

The Raspbian/Nginx/Jekyll stack has worked well and I plan to continue with this configuration – albeit with a little more automation. My move to SSL via Let’s Encrypt was easy to set up but seemed to upset Google for a month or so. In hindsight, I should have implemented SSL from day one.

The Connection

I continue to use Google as a domain registrar thanks it it’s support for IPv4 Dynamic DNS however I am considering moving to Mythic Beasts both to reduce my dependency on Google and due to their support for Dynamic DNS for both IPv4 and IPv6. As Virgin Media does not yet support a native IPv6 connection this will be a low priority move.

The Virgin Media connection continues to be reliable enough to self host. While the April bounce to upload was nice, I’m not certain that there would have been any material difference if the previous 20Mb/s speed had been maintained. Should I start to self host video (rather than use Youtube) then I suspect additional upload will be required.

The Content

Jekyll has worked well for me; I produce a reasonably modern site without the hassles of maintaining a WordPress (or otherwise) stack. Personal and professional commitments mean that I have not been able to update as often as I would like; there are a number of projects and a number of images I would like to have uploaded that I have not yet had chance too. In spite of this lack of content, I remain happy that I have control of content availability and location.


All in all, I believe this has been a good first year and, barring any unforeseen circumstances, I plan on continuing to run into the 2020s.

The Apple Memory Hole

The (Unofficial) Apple Archive is a newly launched collection of historic Apple media and video.

It must have been a tremendous amount of work collect and catalogue and, for me, the most interesting years are 2004 and 2005 – the years that lead me to purchase my first Mac (and yes, I did buy into PPC after the intel transition was announced!). I doubt it’ll last – Apple’s lawyers must be itching to write takedown notices – but while it’s there it’s an interesting place to poke around.

I still have that old first machine somewhere and I should dig it out; last time I checked (perhaps 5 years ago) it seemed to run ok. I do hope it’s still in something of a functional state.

New Year, New Steel: A Glassworks Update

Right click on the plan image and open in a new window to see a larger version.

A post Christmas update on the Glassworks development in Barnsley. A fair bit has happened since my last update in November; the mild winter weather and weekend working has allowed the installation of the steelwork to continue apace.

The now customary long shot of the south-west entrance taken from the Cheapside Hill. From this location the most visible change has been the installation of the purple insulation on the building by the entrance. Behind, we can see the increasing bulk of the car park (right) and the upper levels of the cinema (centre and left). Cheapside itself remains somewhat tired looking.

A closeup of the Cheapside steelworks. With a Q1 2021 target for opening it won’t be long before they start to install the external cladding. It’s also worth noting that the framing for the roof of the covered arcade appears to be just awaiting its glass.

The bowling alley and restaurants from the north side of Kendray Street. The steelwork continues to creep towards the Eldon Street end of the site. The bowling alley is to be run by Superbowl UK.

The bowling alley site frame from the corner of Kendray Street and Midland Street.

The bowling alley site from Midland Street. On completion of the project, Midland Street will be closed to traffic south of where the grey breeze block utility shed is located. A smaller plaza – bound on the north by Midland Street/Barnsley Interchange, the east by a new pedestrian footbridge over the railway, the south by the cinema and the west by the bowling alley – will cover the former road.

Saturday working on the bowling alley steel.

The site of the future public square is now level with the surrounding area. Behind and to the right you can see both newly installed windows and the continued installation of insulation on the west side of the new arcade. To the left, the east flank of the shopping centre/cinema continues to crawl north. In the rear centre, the structural steel for the roof of the arcade has been installed, linking both side of the arcade. At the back looms the structure of the carpark.

A slightly closer shot. The structure for the arcade roof is clearer here.

Steelwork being craned into place. You start to get a feel for just how parts of the site will loom over those at ground level.

Saturday working on the cinema end of the main site. Plans indicate there is still quite a lot of structure left to install here.

A panorama of the site.

From left to right:

Cinema/restaurants/shops structure
(Back) Shops structure
(Middle) Location of new public square
(Front) Future location of the west end of the new footbridge over the railway
Completed library
Kendray Street
Bowling alley and additional restaurants
Existing transport hub

Coffee Boy, a new occupant of phase one situated on the corner of May Day Green and Cheapside. It appears to be a minor coffee franchise with a Starbucks feel. I cannot vouch for the quality of the coffee.