Well CCL Computing delivered my new 250 Gb hard disk is record time and after a bit of jiggery pokery we have Windows up and running (legitimate copy too) and most of the "standard" applications. You know - Word, Excel, KOTOR2... just the basics!
Anyway, apart from Gareth, no-one seems to read or leave feedback on this Blog... either that or you were all scared silly by the picture of the God of Wit! Looks like I'll have to revert to Hoff pictures!
Anyway I need some advice... DivX and XVid. Is there a consistant and safe way to watch movies encoded with these blighters? For some reason the Sony Laptop plays them fine straight off the bat, and the desktop won't touch them. I am reluctant to spyware my system with the downloads for these codecs, so if anyone can tell me a safe way of installing just what I need then that would be great!
Well I rebuilt the Partitions and the Master Boot Record and it is still not working.... Windows now recognises that the drive is there and that it has 3 partitions, but it still can't talk to it so I can get at my data. Just tells me there is an I/O error when communicating with the device. I reckon this means hardware death. Looks like another £50-100 out the window for a replacement.
Anyone know a good company that specialise in data recovery from dead hard disks? I think we have some piccies in the shared docs folder on the dead drive that we really don't want to lose!
I am beginning to think that we have some sort of tech demon in the house causing havoc to all our electric / electronic items. Either that or I have been watching too much Buffy. Anyway, time to set the record straight after Jase complained about the rice cooker post taking priority over his PC.
Jase's PC has mysteriously decided to keel over. It was in the middle of a virus scan at the time and attempting a reboot (never a good sign). Jase thinks it had probably found a virus and was trying to reset the system or something.
We couldn't get the thing to reboot.
Of course, this occurred on the day Jase was planning to back the system up prior to a rebuild. The corrupt hard disc unfortuantely housed all of our photos (luckily I think I had most of them on the laptop too). I think I did do a photo archive relatively recently but am not sure if I've got everything; bear in mind that most of our stuff is still in boxes in the living room or in the loft. Finding anything at the moment is nearly impossible.
Oh, and did I mention that all of Jase's game saves are on the corrupt disc? I suppose he thinks that those are much more important. He's already moaning that this means he will have to start KOTOR 2 for the sixth time. He had already started again to fix certain shortcomings from the last time I posted. I think he also had one light side game and one dark side game going.
Anyway, you know your PC is in trouble when not even Partition Magic can save it. It refused to salvage anything at all from the corrupt disc.
Jase did some surfing this morning and found this programme called Partition Table Doctor which claims it can sort the problem. He's running the initial diagnostic programme which is estimating it can analyse the problem in 31 hours. It would still need to fix the problem after that! Guess we will set that going beofre we leave the house for York.
Failing that, we can always try the patented Balint Joo approach of waving a dead chicken over the PC. Allegedly exorcises all known demons.
We've had it for 3 years now, since our return from Australia. It wasn't fancy but did the job. It wasn't elegent either I might add; it sometimes dribbled and made a sticky mess on my kitchen top. Other times, the rice would stick horribly to the bottom of the pan but it was still easier than cooking rice in the microwave or in a saucepan.
We are lost without it. A Chinese household cannot function without a rice cooker. Even Jase said "Well, we can only eat noodles for so long..."! We are going to the Chinese supermarket over the next few days to get a replacement to sort out this crisis.
Speaking of Chinese cookery, I have just been watching a cookery programme on Sky where they were making "Chinese pork chops" with a stir fry of vegetables. He added apple to the stir fry "to keep it authentic".
Since when does a Chinese stir fry of vegetables contain apple? I can understand that apple and pork is a typical Western combo but surely "authentic" was the wrong word to use when making a Chinese style dish? Not that there was anything remotely authentic about this "Chinese style" dish.
Much like those buffet "all you can eat" allegedly Chinese restaurants that are springing up everywhere nowadays. They serve poor quality pseudo-Chinese food in the worst possible way (it's like saying Pizza Hut food is Italian food). Don't eat at those places!!!
After my post about RSS feeds and tidying the look of our blogs, I was really chuffed to see that Gareth also decided to tidy his blog archives and link to his RSS feed. Hehe!
Now I can say that we are all joined up - I have updated my newsreader accordingly. If any of you our friends out there have a blog or are starting one, let us know and we can extend this joined-up-good-feeling to your site!
I must admit that I had to chuckle at James' latest post about his huge pile of marking here. Ahhh, the life of an academic!!!
If you've read the family site you will know that we are going to York soon to say goodbye to Jase's Nana. We will be away from the weekend until Wednesday next week.
Jase was showing me his Google homepage last night, which he has configured for reading all the news and blog sites in which he has an interest. I thought it was a really good idea, but quickly realised that you cannot find the link to our blog's site feed (this is the blog web address for your chosen newsreader to look at which then automatically updates the reader when your blog updates). Blogger uses a system called Atom.
Techno babble? I certainly thought so.
However, there is a link here which explains things better.
Now, with no knowledge of any web languages, I managed to change our websites' templates to include a Site Feed link. You click this link and copy the address into your newsreader and (as if by magic) your newsreader will update every time we write a new entry into the blog.
Whilst I was there, I also changed the way our sites archive our older posts.
Gosh, does this make me at least an honorary geek? Move over Balint and Pradeep!!
I've just been scanning Yahoo news over lunchtime and it appears that the above named lady came second behind Keira in the FHM sexiest women poll. I have never heard of her! Curious I clicked the link on the Yahoo webpage and suddenly my work screen was covered in Breasts! Oops! Won't be doing that again! Apparently she is "big in Page 3 circles", whatever that means!
Given the title of this blog and the content so far I reckon I ramble fairly nicely, not managing to stay on any particular topic for more than a week!
First up here is a newspaper cutting that amused me this morning. It was the video title at the end that cracked me up!
Secondly, if you enjoyed Neverwinter Nights or Baldur's Gate then pop over to GameSpot and check out their Neverwinter Nights 2 videos. The latest one that I watched had a few minutes worth of real game content and the commentator gave some really interesting tidbits of information on the general gameplay - such as 1 main character and 3 fully controllable companions (a bit like KOTOR), great new graphics engine, DnD v3.5 ruleset (not that I know what that means any more!), cooperative multiplayer support (bloomin' good job too) etc etc.
GameSpot is definitely my favourite website for Gaming news etc. I must get round to adding a link on my sidebar. Shame it is blocked from my office!
Finally, how are you doing with Google's DaVinci Code puzzle? Only 2 days left!!!!
Its Monday morning so it must be time for a Blog update... (Thanks for the KOTOR post Rena).
The trip to the park was great - see Rena's blog for more on that. She has also been working like a slave uploading our photos onto Flickr so you can look at more cuteness (Lauren not me!).
This weekend turning out to be a Sophia Myles weekend for me... She was in Dr Who and Tristan + Isolde, both which formed part of our viewing menu. It was bugging the heck out of me where I had seen her before and I finally placed her in Underworld, where she was cute but completely overshadowed by a certain other lady in PVC! Various interview thingummies on the web keep calling her the "New Kate Winslet", which I think is a bit unfair as I think she is better than Kate.
Anyway, Dr Who was great again... lousy bad guys but a great character driven plot... written by Steven Moffat who also wrote my favourite British Sit-Com "Coupling". I am enjoying this season much more than the previous one and I reckon that David Tennant is brilliant as the Doctor.
For those of you who worry about these things I finally have three lightsabers for my Jedi in KOTOR2, although I need to find some more appropriate colour crystals! Pink and Yellow are so last year!
Anyway I am off to smile at the new photos of Lauren, so more later.
I know Jase has been a bit quiet on his blog lately. This has been for a number of reasons but mainly that Lauren has been unwell, as most of you will know from the family blog.
However, he has also not been playing Oblivion or X3 in favour of a return to Knights of the Old Republic 2 (KOTOR 2: a Star Wars Universe game, set in times before any of the films take place). He now has 3 Jedi in his main party.
However, it isn't all roses. He was moaning about the fact that he has only 1 lightsabre between the three of them and now has no lock-picking skills between them (due to poor skilling up choices whilst leveling). Also, there was one part of the adventure where the main three got trapped and a fourth character had to come and get them all out of their predicament. Unfortunately, as he had stripped all the non-main characters of all their clothes and equipment (to give to the adventuring three) the fourth character had to perform the rescue wearing only a cute thong and with no useful weapons!
Life is tough in the adventuring world! Funny though, the above scenario was reminiscent of a James DM campaign...
I think he is waiting for the Oblivion patch to sort out a few things. That and the fact that there are things to do in the house and episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer to watch on our Sky+ box (Sky were showing them from the beginning and I have been persuaded to watch them for the first time). I am going to try to get him to hang up some curtains and some bathroom cabinets today, after our outing to the park (it's really nice weather today).
That's if I can drag him away from the computer...