Simon’s Backup Weblog

And still they come…

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 28, 2007

Remember that giant paper clip I got in the post last week?

It’s now been joined by a pocket calculator. A pocket calculator that’s bigger than my laptop…

Oh, and there’s a new URL. Owned by the same people. I’m pretty sure that it’s the teaser for an online office platform, and I’m pretty sure I know which one now…


Shiny Shiny Shiny

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 28, 2007

While I’m recommending neat stuff, our favourite glass jewellery designer has just updated his web site.

We met Kevin on his stall outside the Ferry Building in San Francisco, and go back to see him regularly. He makes beautiful pieces of lampwork glass, using coloured Murano glass, and has designed his own silver clasps. Each time we meet him he has something new, and often they’re quite unusual and beautiful.

I took some photographs of some of his work a while back.

I regularly wear a couple of his pendants – they’re beautiful work, and the red goes really well with the deep green of New Zealand jade. I also have a couple of bead earrings for special occasions. has a selection of necklaces, earrings and bracelets.

He’ll do custom work and can send it to most places. Contact details are on his web site.

I hope the person who has the black pendant I lost in Seattle a couple of years ago has taken good care of it

Revenge is sweet.

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 28, 2007

Oh yes, it is. At least if you’re a dead Aztec.

We just discovered Montezuma‘s, the hoe of rather delightful organic chocolates. The bar of Geranium and Orange is slowly being eked out as it’s far too good to eat in one go.

Highly recommended.
Oooh, they have shops in Brighton and one in Spitalfields…

Wonderful Vistas…

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 27, 2007

Hamad Darwish, one of the photographers for Microsoft’s Vista screen backdrops has posted his complete set of images online. There are some beautiful landscapes there – and all at 1920 x 1200.

I’m especially fond of this one…

I just love the shapes of the water, the rock and the sand – it reminds me very much of low tide at some of the beaches back home on Jersey.

Pimp my words: Quad Core Wars

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 25, 2007

Another IT Pro blog post, this time looking at the next generation of processors from Intel and AMD:

The end of January set the scene for a year in which new processor technologies from both the main hardware vendors look set to battle for the server crown. Intel’s new Penryn processors move it onto new 45nm processes, while AMD’s Barcelona offers single die quad core as a drop in replacement for many existing servers.

While Penryn is only just starting to sample, and is unlikely to ship until the later half of the year (though there are rumours of earlier ship dates), Intel’s Clovertown quad core processors are already shipping. AMD is hoping to leapfrog Clovertown’s performance with its new Opterons, and expects Barcelona to offer 40% better performance than the equivalent Clovertown. With Intel having stolen back the performance crown with its Core 2 architecture, AMD needs to offer big performance gains to win back flagship customers like Sun.

Read more.

Pimping my words: Do I have your attention?

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 25, 2007

More thoughts on FOWA, in an IT Pro blog post:

Last week saw hundreds of web developers fill a Kensington conference centre for the standing room only Future of Web Applications conference. The speakers came from the ranks of the Web 2.0 illuminati, and the topics covered everything from finding venture capital to building and managing communities. Microsoft and Adobe demonstrated their latest tools and platforms, and Fotango unveiled its Zimki hosted web application platform.

However, once you sat down and listened to the speakers, there was one theme that kept cropping up. It was there in Yahoo!’s tale of how they used Flickr as a glue to hold their new acquisitions together, and Kevin Rose’s description of how Digg detected attempts to game the site’s ratings scheme. The key was “attention data” – the ability to use site metrics to generate additional metadata about a piece of information: who’s looking at it, what have they looked at before, who’s linking to it, who’s blogging about it, who’s commenting on it. Site metrics are mashed up with user information to develop a picture of what the information is being used for, and how trustworthy the users that are working with it are.

Read more.

Blackberry Pearl lessons #1

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 24, 2007

I thought it might be worth documenting the out-the-box experience with my new BlackBerry Pearl.

E-mail worked right out the box – and one of the first things I had to do was setup my account with T-Mobile’s Blackberry service. This has to be done using the phone keyboard, so remember your username and password carefully. Luckily my default choice of usernames was available! Once setup you should complete the customisation at the website. I’ve hooked up my Gmail and email accounts.

T-Mobile’s provisioning for Blackberries on Web’n’Walk is slightly broken – expect to wait 12 hours or so to get online fully with an activated Web’n’Walk account. Once online you’ll need to manually switch the browser from the somewhat broken default T-zones configuration to the much more friendly Web’n’Walk version. This will let you use the Blackberry Help site – so you can download additional themes, games and applications from RIM.

There are versions of Google Maps and Yahoo! Go 2.0 for the Pearl. However they won’t work until you manually set the APN in the Blackberry’s TCP settings to “”. Again something that isn’t provisioned by T-Mobile.

More notes to come.


Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 24, 2007

The budget 4GB CF cards I ordered from have just arrived. Not the fastest I’ve had, but still a lot faster than the slowest – and as I usually take landscapes or macro shots rather than action, I’m not too worried about speed.

However, I am now flush with capacity.

My camera reports that it can now take nearly 900 full resolution low compression JPEGs, or over 200 RAW images. As I’m learning more about Photoshop (there are some lovely features in the CS3 beta) I’m taking more RAW images, so that amount of space should be quite useful.

Smile, now, please…

Pimping my Words: Pre-Shaving Yaks A Speciality

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 24, 2007

Here’s my round up for The Register of last week’s Future of Web Applications event in London.

Carson Systems’ Future of Web Applications (FOWA) conference returned to London this week with an impressive lineup of speakers – and a very Web 2.0 look at the world.

Sessions covered everything from finding venture capital to Amazon’s developer platform, via building effective online communities. Once you got past the feeling you were back in the days of the dotcom bubble (with startups pitching ideas from the stage), there was plenty to learn – and several significant announcements and demos.

Read more here.


Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on February 24, 2007

Following a link from , I came across this rather lovely Flickr pool: HTML jokes.


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