Tasting expensive wine

Yep, plenty of koalas – and also lots of beautiful birds visited us in our treehouse at Wye River – a gorgeous view of the sea through the gum trees – and the lorikeets, parrots, rosellas, kookaburras and cockatoos keeping us company on our deck.  We also saw kangaroos, wallabies and emus on our drive through through the Grampians – i bet they were finding it cold, it got down to 5 degrees. We’re leaving the southern Australian winter for

Slave Domain Server Using Plesk

Plesk-based hosting can often suffer from a resilience problem: failure of the DNS for sites it hosts if the server goes down for any reason. Ideally a zone should have a number of domain name servers located in different places. A zone is basically a domain and all its sub-domains. The zone record tells other servers where to find everything for that domain – where the websites are, the main servers etc. Plesk run on a server or virtual server


Am I on Melbourne time?  Am I on UK time?  No idea, all I know is I’m not getting any sleep.  Still it does mean that I can fit lots into my days.  We’ve had 4 days in Melbourne following our 27 hour flight (1 hour’s sleep), and although it’s winter, it feels very mild.  The sun is incredibly strong, given that it’s the equivalent of the end of January.  We’ve visited some museums, including the MCG where we had

Taking off in a 777

Longest plane to fly into Newcastle Airport… … and I’ll be on it when it takes off again.  I’m flying Emirates to Dubai (then on to Melbourne) on Monday 26 July and it just happens to be Newcastle Airport’s 75th birthday. As part of the celebrations, Emirates are flying a 777 into the airport – the longest plane to land at Newcastle, and 50% bigger than the Airbus A330 which normally flies the Newcastle-Dubai route. This means that I will

Losing my keyboard input

This is something that has been bothering me on the odd occasion for years. It is intermittent, so is something I have been able to live with, but it would be nice to get to the bottom of it. Basically, there is a key combination – somewhere around the “A” on my keyboard, probably involving the control and perhaps the shift keys, and is so easy to accidentally press when not being careful, that locks up all my keyboard input.

Screengrab tools

Was on the hunt for some software that would let me take multiple screengrabs. Eventually settled on Grab them all, a Firefox extension. Here’s the story! Step 1 was to create a list of URLs that needed screengrabs. I wrote an small PHP that printed a list of URLs (one per line) which I then saved to a text file: The first tool I came across was WebShot. The GUI interface is simple, but there’s far more flexibility

DIBI 2010

Had a great day yesterday at the DIBI (Design It, Build it) conference in The Sage Gateshead. It’s a new conference, with – as the name may suggest –two tracks; design and development. I was in the design camp, while Phill went for the development (standing in for Jason after he had a nasty bike accident a week or so ago – get better soon Jason!). Great selection of speakers including (in reverse chronological order, for no good reason!) Andy

Magento – making sense of theme inheritance with a simple script

Trying to make sense of theme inheritance in Magento, I have started to put a simple script together to help navigate the themes installed on a shop. When I say simple, I mean very simple. Jump straight in and have a browse: This script is installed in the root directory of our 1.4 test installation. What it gives you is a layered approach. First you select the interface, then the theme within that interface (try default->modern for example). The

Faxing from your desktop

Occasionally there is a need to send a fax, but it can be such a rare occurrence that it is hardly worth keeping a fax permanently set up, or even keeping track of where you last put the fax modem cable for your laptop. I took a look at free or cheap online fax sending services in the UK, and many offer lots of promise in the Google search results, but few deliver once you go through their long registration