Decent work by the director couldn't overcome a pedestrian script. 4 out 10.
I like them,.honest I do :-)
dire indeed: the George is Croydon is utterly dreadful. The Opera House
in Tonbridge Wells though is on a different class and preserves a
magnificent interior. The equivalent in Croydon was torn down years
ago. Very sad. We lost so much heritage in the 60s and 80s.
We are sat up on the stage.
I moaned about my HTC HD7 the whole time I had it. But it served me faithfully for two years until I sold it six weeks ago. And the software did get much better over time. I think the problem was that Microsoft shipped Windows 7 for phones about a year too soon.
I was replaced by a Galaxy S2 Android phone. That was sat beside the bed this evening and died. Not a chirp even when plugged in. The main faults with the Windows phone were having to have a Live account to do anything. Same with Android I suppose but I have a Google account so that made more sense. An Android phone is also great with all the apps.
But Android phones are poor at being phones. So if I end up replacing the S2 - and I suspect I will - then I think I will be back to a Windows Phone.
PS In the meantime I am back on my Motorola V66e
I have no home phone until 10th August. Who is my home phone with? O2. Is such a delay acceptable? No way.
So a BT engineer was working in the block's line cabinet today. This evening my phone has died and my broadband is now running at a fraction of the speed. Coincidence?
I don't often upload photos to this blog but I thought this one I took in Bushy Park today is quite colourful to brighten up the page. A foxglove obviously. Taken on the little point and shoot in manual mode. It's a slow lens so it's not possible to blur out the background but it has a manual mode so I slightly under-exposed it to capture the foreground but keep the background quite dark.
Over the past couple of weeks I have picked up two lenses for the camera - both second hand. One was very cheap and the other an OKish price. The truth is I don't really need both and if I keep one I ought to sell a lens I already have.
The cheap one, and the first acquisition was a big Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 shown on the right. The second was a 30mm fl1.4 prime shown below. I'd not got any other Sigma lenses. The only one I had I gave to my brother. I am not a huge fan of Sigma lenses and they can be hard to sell second hand. Ordinarilly I wouldn't touch these two but they are EX lenses - that's Sigma better lenses. So why two lenses? Well the thing it is is not clear which one is best for me and in some ways the easiest is to own both for a time and then sell whichever doesn't work out. I should be able to make a profit if I sell the 24-70 and maybe a small loss if I sell the 30mm.
They have different virtues. The 24-70mm as a zoom is very flexible but it is big and heavy, really quite heavy. It's not a lens to take on holiday. In contrast the 30mm is much lighter, although as a durable, metal-cased lens its not as light as some of the cheap plastic ones. As a prime it is, of course, less flexible because it doesn't zoom. It sits within the range of the 24-70mm so is somewhat redundant. Apart from the fact that it is light enough to take on holiday (it will be coming to Spain with me soon I think) and it is fast. Fast in that it is f1.4 so it can be used in very dark places without a flash and I take a lot of photographs in museums so I need something fast - or something with VR. (Something fast and with VR would be ideal but that is not something which yet exists in a wide-angle lens and, even if one is produced, it would probably be unaffordable.)
The 24-70 is also a decent option for macros and I didn't have a good macro lens. The 30mm might not be too bad either.
Both get mixed bad reviews. Many people love them but Sigma quality control doesn't seem to be great at all so there are also a lot of poor copies floating around out there and the danger of buying second hand is that one might pick up one of those. They will need trying out - and hopefully we will get some good weather over the next week or so to enable that.
Now I have broadband I got the TV on the Internet. It's a brilliant idea. iPlayer is just an extra TV channel - just browse to the programme you want and press play and it just does it. Properly television on demand.
If anybody is thinking about doing it you don't need anything other than standard broadband (preferably without a monthly bandwidth limit if you are likely to watch quite a bit) and a network ready TV. I have a Sony I got some time ago. There is no need to have a wifi module in the TV and certainly don't spend on an expensive proprieatary wifi dongle. The Sony one is about £70. Better to wire it directly over Ethernet. If it won't reach use a pair of powerline adapters - you can get them for about £50 for a pair if you hunt. Better still is to go for a Vonets WIFI bridge as I did for a much cheaper £15. It's a great find.
Tomorrow I need to get back to work. I have an article to sort out for Egyptological, a book to read and review and Andrea and I have started work on the business planning for our new company. When we met yesterday we agreed the design concept for the new corporate web site - simple, modern and clean.
Great song - terrible miming. TOTP is missed.
Sarah is staying with me again - a good time as one should do things and relax over Easter weekend. The one thing is: there isn't that much to actually do. Events listings turned up all sorts of "egg hunts" but not much else. The weather is supposed to be rotten on Saturday so we will watch the boat race on TV - or I will.
Weather is a problem. The good weather days seem to be Friday and Sunday. I wanted to go to communion on Sunday but I am not sure it will fit in - maybe evensong. I will have a look. I don't go often, but Easter Sunday is a special day.
We will probably go down to Brighton one day and to Richmond Park another, but otherwise not do much. Get the flat straight and Sarah wants to bake. That is good as it gives me all sorts of tasty morsels.
a larger one on Flickr.
It's the West Lake in Hangzhou, China, looking into Hangzhou itself. Too wide to take in any other way. The West Lake is very famous, the "Willow Pattern" I think is idealised images of the West Lake. I do have more of the lake which one day I will get uploaded.
I had forgotten how good some of the old 10CC tracks are. Odd. But good.
Many of you will have alrready read it but for those who haven't, Andrea and I published our latest edition of Egyptological, our free online magazine about Ancient Egypt. This is far and away our biggest and best edition. For those who are not aware, a new tomb was found in the Valley of the Kings in January. It's not one which will compare with Tutankhamun. It is just a pit so it will never be a tourist attraction. The walls are plain. One burial (unless it is robbed - we don't yet know) sits buried and smashed beneath rubble. Above it is a plan burial. I say plain - it is an elite burial all the same, properly mummified and in a wooden coffin, but that coffin is plain on the outside. The only obvious grave good(s) is one small stella (stone slab). The tomb is not decorated.
It is not what one thinks of as a tomb in Egypt's Valley of the Kings. It is even more unusual when one considers that the lady was not a member of the royal family, so far as is known at present. That makes her the first lady outside the royal family whose tomb has been found in the Valley of the Kings. That's pretty select. Location, location, location and all that. Her name is Nehemes Bastet and as usual the best spot to learn more is on News from the Valley of the Kings in the KV64 tag. KV64 is the number assigned to the tomb.
Elsewhere I have been trying to get a mid-size upgrade done to one of my WordPress plugins. It's called Taxonomy Picker and is the only one I have published so far. The number of downloads is modest at about 5,000 but I hope that will grow because it is getting good ratings. I need to start marketing it. Now I know it sounds odd to market something I give away (it is open source) but I have plans ... That is a part of the present upgrade to move towards a lite and premium version so that I can charge for the latter.
So, I'm busy which is why it has been quiet around here!
I am straight and as a Christian struggle with some gay rights but in this case I hope he does bring a case and succeeds. It is right for the church to demand moral conduct according to its teachings. It is thoroughly wrong both morally and legally to discriminate against someone because of how they were born. Should black bishops not be allowed? John is celibate.
And yes, the same argument applies to women bishops. If John wins then presumably women bishops and lady Imams are inevitable. At last religious institutions could be forced to stop discrimination. That's not secularism as some would claim but actually a flowering of greater spirituality.
For all religious people I hope John does mount a legal attack and is successful. It would take religion in this country to the next level.
I shall pray for his success not for gay rights but because it advances religious life.
I really hate what Google has done with search. If I search for the
Valley of the Kings of KV64 I looking for something I don't already
know, for news. It's bad enough for Valley of the Kings and even worse
for KV64 because my News from the Valley of the Kings is the top blog on
the subject and I have written much of the material about KV64.
Google's new personalised search algorithm makes matters worse. It shrinks the world. So as well as News from the Valley of the Kings, half of the images shown are photographs I took and the front pages adds my review of Nick Reeves' Complete Valley of the Kings on Egyptological. Far from helping me to find new material it shrinks my world, not just down to things I already know, but down to things I have written. You'd have to be extremely narcissistic to like a search that works like that.
Fortunately it only works if you are logged in so I work with two browsers and only log in to Google on one of them, the other I use for searching. I can see the advantage of geo-searches. If I type in Sutton cinema, I like the fact search shows me the programme. That is useful. But not search which makes me the apparent centre of the World Wide Web.
It's irritating because there is news of a discovery in the Valley of the Kings expected in the next few days. I was scanning for it. I don't know yet whether it is relatively minor or the discovery to rival Carter's discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun many of us believe will be made one day. We will have to wait and see, although I suspect somewhere in between the two. I'm desperately busy for the next three days so I am also hoping it doesn't break until the middle of next week.