Monthly Archives: August 2016

Ubuntu phone – the end

Well, maybe not quite the end. My (second) Ubuntu phone has sat, unused, on the drawers in the bedroom for the past three months. I’ve been using my first Ubuntu phone, running Android, lately. Initially as a temporary thing, while we were away, but I’ve now become accustomed to having access to the Apps that simply weren’t available in Ubuntu Touch. 

I now have a new phone, manufactured by the same company as my (second) Ubuntu phone, Meizu. 

Some time ago, I tried to use two phones, but only because the Ubuntu phone is a joy to use. It became a pain though, so I dropped the mainstream phone in favour of Ubuntu. Ntil a few months ago, that is. 

The Ubuntu concept is making progress, but it can’t yet offer what most people expect in a phone. The whole Convergence thing is brilliant and I’m sure I’ll return to an Ubuntu phone again at some point. 

There’s also an emerging alternative, currently only running on a Nexus as a work in progress. This version of Linux sits in the background on an Android phone until connected to a keyboard and display, then becomes a full blown computer. Much like Ubuntu, although Ubuntu abandons Android altogether.

Of course, one should recognise that Android itself is derived from Linux. 

Anyway, that’s a long winded way of saying that my phone’s now on eBay  


A very long time ago, I took a picture of my second in comnand and cartoon-ised it to make a wallpaper picture for my iPhone 4. I made two versions, one grey and one purple. While I preferred the purple, I used the grey one because it worked better with the small screen. 

I’ve used it since, on a couple of phones, but it didn’t quite work. However, for some reason, it seems to work with my new phone. 

And the purple version too.

Scrap metal

Between the Free Trade Inn and the Cluny, there’s a scrap metal dealer. If you walk towards the Cluny, at one point the s in  scrap is obscured by a lamp post. You get the idea. 

On a similar note, an unstaged picture of a Tesco carrier bag. 


No, it’s not a Vic Reeves & the Wonder Stuff thing. I’m feeling somewhat dizzy because my second in command wanted to go to our local for food. 

I’d mostly avoid eating anything cooked in my local (but the food this weekend is cooked elsewhere). Seriously, it’s really nice. 

We had a lovely afternoon though. 
This weekend, our local has a Mexican food festival and I’d recommend taking a look. Naturally, I’d recommend the meat free options. 


I took this picture of the Ubuntu home page last night with the intention of posting it straight away. 

Unfortunately, though, I needed to download Linux to help me to sort out a Windows computer, a process which is proving to be painful. So, this anniversary slipped my mind. 

Mr Torvalds did pretty well. 


I really don’t spend enough time sitting in the garden. 

And, while I probably shouldn’t be pleased about it, we have duckweed in our pond. I’ve removed a little bit, but left most of it in case any hungry ducks fly overhead. 

Sodhouse Bank

Our street has quite a bit of history. William the Conqueror once had a bit of a run in with Malcolm III of Scotland (it didn’t end well for Malcolm), pretty much just outside our house. And, for a few hundred years there was an annual procession up the street. 

This procession would stop for refreshment at a pub down the road, the Old Cannon. While a nice building, the times haven’t been kind to the Cannon. I’ve only called in twice and found the pub to be pretty run down and struggling to survive. Something of a shame when you consider its past. 

Inevitably, the pub closed and attempts to reopen an turn it into a realistic business failed. It’s soon to reopen as a Chinese restaurant. 

At least the building is remaining largely unchanged. Unlike the nearby Queens Head, which closed more recently. It’s to be converted into bedsits. 

Should a ghostly Sheriff of Gateshead still be travelling the route, at least he’d be able to find a meal and a bed for the night. 


My father, as I may have mentioned, was a bit of a shit. Apparently, he left this world with around (knowing him, more) thirty grand in debt. We’re not talking about mortgage debt, but the real thing. 

Despite not having spoken to the bloke for 37 years, I’m paying towards his funeral costs. I’m doing so because I can’t leave it all to my newly discovered half sister. 

So both of my sisters and I are sharing the outstanding bill. 

If I dropped dead tomorrow, which I hope I won’t, no one would have to pay a penny. I can’t comprehend how my father didn’t bother to make arrangements. 

I have no words to describe my feelings towards the man. Fortunately, we’re no longer in the middle ages, so neither me or my sisters are liable for his debts. 

Arm protection

Thinking about getting one of these for my second in command. 

It’s a kevlar anti burn/cut sleeve. She rolls her sleeves up at work, so is prone to cuts and, mostly, burns. 

She’s resisting, but surely a yellow arm is better than damage. 


A couple of years ago, I (nervously) replaced the battery of my old 4th generation iPod. 

Sadly, while the transplant was a success, the hard drive failed a few months later. Bashing the iPod (advice from the internet) brought the device back to life, but only for a little while. After which the iPod was consigned to the drawer of cables. 

Of late, I’ve been considering a new one. But I read a useful instructable  a few days ago. Which then led to the discovery that modifying old iPods is becoming popular. 

I have now purchased some bits and pieces. Naturally, should the project fail, I may not mention my old iPod again.