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High speed M&M sorting machine

High speed M&M sorting machine

M&M sorting machines are a popular project for people who like combining electronics, programming and machine building. I decided I’d try to make my own version but with a different approach to the majority of existing M&M (or Skittles / Smarties!) sorting machines out there. Most of them send a single M&M down a chute to a simple colour [...]

Who are North Korea’s 13 Twitter friends?

Who are North Korea’s 13 Twitter friends?

In the past few months North Korea has embraced social media, first creating a YouTube channel, and in August a Twitter account with the name @uriminzok, which roughly means ‘our people’ in Korean. North Korea has since been busy and has already racked up 457 tweets for its 10,334 followers. Pyongyang is however being very selective [...]

i-gotU GT-600 GPS data logger review

i-gotU GT-600 GPS data logger review

The last time I reviewed a stand alone GPS data logger it was the GlobalSat DG-100, a functional but not very stylish box for recording GPS tracks. The new i-gotU GT-600 GPS Travel & Sports Logger from Mobile Action (disclosure: they sent it to me for free) has the same SiRF Star III chipset as the DG-100, but it comes in a smaller and more [...]

Naha Kagoshima Ferry

Naha Kagoshima Ferry

To get from Naha to Kagoshima you can fly or you can get a 25 hour overnight ferry. We decided on the Naha Kagoshima ferry option. Naha Kagoshima ferry tickets It cost ¥16,200 each for the one way journey, staying in a shared cabin with 8 bunk beds. ¥14,200 each was paid when we booked the ferry at the KNT travel agent in [...]

2010-2011 UK Tax graphs

2010-2011 UK Tax graphs

Straight after putting up the tax graphs for 2009-2010, I’m putting up the tax graphs for this tax year. This time the graphs are better, and some of them include a comparison line with the previous year’s figures. As before I’ll state I’m not an accountant or tax expert so I can’t guarantee their accuracy, but I’ve done my best. [...]

Windows 7 on a 2010 MacBook Pro 13 inch

Windows 7 on a 2010 MacBook Pro 13 inch

I’m going to review what it is like to use Windows 7 Home Premium on a 2010 MacBook Pro 13 inch. This is one of the 2.4GHz models with 4GB of RAM. Some parts of this review would be applicable for running Windows 7 on any Mac, but other parts may be specific to the 2010 MacBook Pro 13 inch. Installing and setting up Windows 7 I [...]

Internet doomsday scenarios

Internet doomsday scenarios

For something we have become so reliant on the internet is worryingly open to attack. From attacks on the physical infrastructure, to the computers connected to it, to the data which is stored in it, I’m going to go through some potential internet doomsday scenarios. Mass deliberate cutting of internet cables The number of computers on the [...]

What does one million pounds look like?

What does one million pounds look like?

If you’ve ever wondered what a million pounds (£1,000,000) looks like this post may help. Unfortunately I don’t have a million pounds, but I do have one single twenty pound note. Here it is: I also have a ruler, a calculator, and a copy of Paint Shop Pro. I’m therefore going to create a million pounds out of £20 notes. To do this I [...]

Filling in the Inland Revenue self assessment online tax form

Filling in the Inland Revenue self assessment online tax form

If you need to file a self assessment tax form in the UK to work out your income tax you have a number of options. You can fill in a paper tax return, do the online return, use some 3rd party tax software, or pay someone else to do it for you. I’m going to show you what the HMRC online self assessment forms are like, from the beginning to the [...]

Wrist and arm pain when using a computer

Wrist and arm pain when using a computer

Like many people who have to use a computer all day, every day, as part of their job, I find that I regularly get a painful or numb feeling in my wrists and arms. This is my story of what I’ve done to try to make that numbness and pain go away. I’ll add a usual disclaimer, pointing out that I’m not a medical expert, this is just personal [...]

Takamatsu Japan, what to do there

Takamatsu Japan, what to do there

Takamatsu is not a city that many people think of when visiting Japan, but it is the city that I happened to find myself in for a year. It is in the Kagawa prefecture of Shikoku Island. Shikoku is the smallest of the four main islands that make up Japan and is positioned south west of Osaka. Shikoku Island is most famous for its 88-temple [...]

Samsung N140 netbook real world review

Samsung N140 netbook real world review

I bought the Samsung N140 netbook from Amazon very soon after it was released and have been working with it regularly for a few months now. I’m going to review it based my real world experiences of using it. The Samsung N140 comes in a fairly compact box. If you are used to buying standard sized laptops then you’ll notice the difference [...]

Knee pain, physio, MRI scans and lateral release surgery

Knee pain, physio, MRI scans and lateral release surgery

I've been having problems with my knees for many years. I get pain when I am in a seated position. I do a desk job which means I am in pain for much of the day. Sitting in a cinema, restaurant or car will cause me pain as well. I don't have pain when I'm standing, walking, lying down or exercising. The pain is mostly in my right knee - coming from [...]

Lipoma and cyst removal surgery

Lipoma and cyst removal surgery

About 5 years ago I started developing a lump on my leg - on my thigh. It grew to the size of a small marble. It was below the surface of the skin and seemed fairly firm and quite spherical. Lumps growing under your skin can be bad news so I went to see my doctor. He told me it was a lipoma - a harmless build up of fat under the skin. He [...]

Clothes moths attack!

Clothes moths attack!

I have spent a lot of time in the past few weeks helping a friend whose flat is under attack by clothes moths. The species in question is known as the common clothes moth, the webbing clothes moth, or if you are really posh, as tineola bisselliella. There have been clothes moths in this property for many years eating the carpets but it is only [...]