As some of you may be aware I took a holiday in Norway last summer. A smaller sub-set of you may have heard my story of how I got stopped by a couple of eager “number plate spotters” as I left the docks in Bergen. It seems that my bike was the first bike they had seen with a Guernsey number plate and this was rather exciting for them. Being the good-natured person that I am, I stopped and waited whilst they inspected and photographed the plate and explained why they were doing it before heading on my way and thinking nothing more of it… apart from telling as a tale of my adventures in Norway.
Well, more than a year later and I just got an email from my dad. It seems that, whilst searching the internet for something to do with motorbikes in Guernsey, he stumbled upon this site. And, if you head over to the Guernsey page and scroll down to the bottom, you will find, in all its glory, the number plate that was photographed at the docks in Norway.
Isn’t the internet a great place to find all sorts of weird and wonderful things.
I just embarked on a project to create a piece of software to help me with my ringing. I want some software that can be used for both planning call changes and for method ringing. I also want to be able to listen to the results and play around with composing touches and quarter peals.
Further to composing methods and call-changes, I have also writen the software in such a way that it will be possible to create a catalogue of towers around the world and the sounds of the bells, so it will be possible to play back a method and it should sound as if it is being rung in a specific tower…. this, however is a long way off, and right now the software only has details of the St Peter Port church bells in Guernsey (my home tower).
The above screenshot is the initial debug output of the results of running through Plain Bob Major.
I’ve just uploaded the latest version of my wordpress translation plugin – GG_Translate. As previous stated, this update adds an administration page to the plugin that allows users to select translation engine order of preference, base language for the blog, the url format for the translation links, and the maximum number of translation links to display.
I have also checked to make sure that the available translations are up-to-date.
In the administration page I’ve addeda link for users to check for updates but I shall be replacing that with an automatic check for updates. Another feature that has been requested is flag icons for the languages, I have started working on this now and I should have a trial version on my blog before too long.
THe latest version can now be downloaded from my downloads page.
I finally got my hands on a Lego Mindstorm NXT robotics kit. I’ve had my eye on it for sometime and my parents got me one for my birthday (which in itself was a bit of saga that I wont go into right now). I collected the parcel from the post office at lunch time and, during the rest of my lunch hour, built my first robot following the simple in-box instructions. It didn’t really do a whole lot as I didn’t upload any instructions to it, I just ran the demo program that came on the control block.
When I got home I finished augmenting the basic robot with the more advanced instruction that add sensors and claws to the basic bot. I also created the simple program that allows the robot to find an object, pick it up, turn around and drop it. I modified the basic program to add an audio alert when it found an object and also loop it.
I know its not really rocket science but I had to learn how this thing hangs together before moving onto “bigger and better” things.
Heres a video I made this morning just before leaving for work. Its not terribly good quality as I used my mobile rather than my camera but I think you get the idea:
1: I first ordered (my parents just handed over the money) my Mindstorm NXT from Amazon.co.uk but the failed to send out my order when the product was released and said it would be another 2 weeks before they got anymore, and even then couldn’t guarantee it would be sent out with that batch. I then tried all the local stores – all two of them – one of which said they weren’t going to stock the NXT the other said they weren’t getting any for at least two weeks. I then tried the official Lego store but was told they wouldn’t ship to Guernsey as the couldn’t find a reliable courier (and their systems couldn’t handle removing VAT). Finally I found that Play.com had the NXT in stock and would dispatch it within 24hours although I did have to pay a little extra for it… but I think its worth it. (Please note the lack of links… none of them deserve it!!!
I’ve finally got myself organised and started working on an update to my GG_Translate plugin for wordpress.
The main feature to be added is an administration page to allow you to configure the way the plugin works, currently you can set the translation engine order and the base language that the blog is published in. I’m working on defining the link format and I might throw in a check for updates feature.
Hopefully the new version should be hitting the net in the next day or so, depending on my work load.
Its appears that my downloads are broken at this moment in time. Whilst it will appear that the download works, all you will get in the download is the following text:
<b>Warning</b>: fclose(): supplied argument is not a valid stream resource in <b>/usr/home/gringod2/public_html/tracker/download/HTTPDownload.php</b> on line <b>236</b><br />
This is due to a change that my webhost has made to its servers. I have already complained and hopefully things will be back up and working shortly. In the meantime please hang in there and if you desperately need a file you can email and I’ll whizz it over to you. My email address is aidy[at]gringod.com.
Thanks to and email from Fred I have just posted my first update to GG_Translate in quite some time. He spotted a spelling mistake which, when he corrected it caused an error and so he sent me an email. This has now been fixed and, at the same time, I removed some debugging code that should have been taken out a long time ago.
Now that I know that there are people out there using GG_Translate I will finally get around to adding an admin panel to the plugin. This will allow site administrator to specify the language in which the code is written and also choose the order to preference of translation engine. I guess its also about time that I check which languages that translation engines support in case new ones have been added.
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