Friday, August 20, 2021

Night City


This morning I completed Cyberpunk earning the Temperance achievement leaving Jonny Silverhand to take over Vs body. I had already completed as many of the ending the other ending branches. Personally I've found it an amazing game, in spite of the glitches (of which there are many!).

I bought Cyberpunk 2077 back in December. I got a deal with it on stadia which included a free stadia pro edition to play on. Its a huge world you can get lost in, it might not have been the groundbreaking event that it was hyped up to be. It is however in my opinion a solid and enjoyable game. I hope that they release some extra content for it.

Monday, December 28, 2020

All you're dreaming of

After a very hectic time spent mostly at the various hospitals or trying to catch up with deprived sleep, on Christmas Eve we finally made it home as a family. 

It all started last Wednesday when Kath went in for a routine scan. They decided at that point to keep her in the antenatal ward and induce the labour. It turned out not to be an exact science and with the labour ward being very busy it wasn't until Saturday evening her waters broke.

Thom was born at 6:03 on Sunday morning, I was handed him by the midwife while Kath was still asleep from the general anaesthetic. I sat for a few moments with my newborn son and wife wondering what just happened! It was a scary few hours after a labouring through the night, Kath ended up having to go back in to the theatre again to remove a blood clot and make sure there is no further bleeding. 

Thom's also had a rough time during the birth. He was rather bruised and one of his legs was swollen. They thought that the leg got injured during the birth, and after much faffing at Wythenshawe Hospital we were told to take him to Manchester Children's. It wasn't quite the first family outing that we had expected! Hardly a National Trust family fun site. Due to Covid only Kath and Thom were allowed in, it took them a few hours to decide to admit him. Initially they expected him to stay in Manchester while Kath went back to Wythenshawe. 

Fortunately after some conversations she ended up getting transferred to the Manchester Royal too. After an MRI scan it turned out his femur was fractured near the hip joint, this wasn't visible on an X Ray as with his age the hip growth plate is cartilage rather than bone. Initially we were told he would need a surgery to pin the bone, he was first on the list in the morning. When morning came however the consultant had done a MDT with others and some literature review and decided instead to treat Thom conservatively using a harness which Thom will have to wear for a few weeks. At which point we will take him back for another scan and see where he is at.

Christmas eve both Kath and Thom were discharged, finally we got to go home! It was a lovely feeling. On Christmas Day we got up a little tired but glad to be home. My parents brought round Christmas dinner for us, and they got to meet Thom. Fortunately even in Tier 3 there is an allowance for a support bubble for children under 2. We spent the rest of the day cuddled up watching TV, Kath had never seen "It's a Wonderful Life" before!

Friday, November 20, 2020

Behind the buzzword

Feedback from the event
I did my first public ever speaking last night bit as part of behind the buzzword.  It seemed to go really well, I felt confident and got some great feedback and questions at the end.

The talk was about docker, giving some of the rational on why I think it is a great technology.

It was a virtual event using teams with something in the region of 100 attendees. Behind the buzzword is organised by Ross Townsend, and this time sponsored by carfinance 247. I'd been to one of the live ones back before the lock down.

For anyone interested I've uploaded the demo code to github and the slides are available below

Me talking docker

Thursday, August 22, 2019


Lineone internet
Way back when I was first using the internet you had to pay for an internet provider, as well as the cost of the dail up. Circa 1997 I signed up for a service called Lineone, and got my first email address. In return for my £9.99 a month I got a local rate phone line to dial and a paper manual. At the time email hadn't become the swamp of spam it is now, and mostly contain things I signed up for like a forum on my then car the Vauxhall nova!

I used my Lineone address for a while before moving onto the pre Microsoft! I kept a few subscriptions on Lineone and used it as a backup. Lineone then got taken over by Tiscali, then Tiscali by Talk Talk. Its seems they have finally decided to dump freeloaders, today I received this.

Your TalkTalk mailbox has recently been upgraded to the new TalkTalk Mail. It’s now easier to use and full of handy new features.

Designed for an easier life

A sleek new design, more logical menus and a choice of layouts make TalkTalk Mail much easier to use on your desktop.

Designed for an easier life

Adapts perfectly to every device TalkTalk Mail automatically adapts to every screen size. So whether you’re using your smartphone, computer or tablet, all your messages and appointments always look and feel great. Adapts perfectly to every device
Great new message features
TalkTalk Mail drafts now auto-save so you’ll never lose a message you’re writing. And to attach a file or photo you simply drag-and-drop. Great new message features

TalkTalk Mail is still free for our broadband customers
Unfortunately, if you choose not to sign up for TalkTalk Mail Plus, from 20/09/2019 you’ll lose the vast majority of TalkTalk Mail features. For example, you’ll only be able to sign in at to check your emails.
A few months after 20/09/2019, we will start closing down mailboxes that aren’t registered to a TalkTalk Broadband account or signed up for TalkTalk Mail Plus.
I'll be slightly sad for my original email address die but, I don't use it and no point to pay when google give me the much superior gmail supported by ads.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Not the news

Kath and I have spent the last few days down in London. The main purpose of the trip was to visit the US embassy so that Kath could obtain a visa in order to travel to New York with me in November.

We travelled to London Sunday morning leaving behind torrential rain in Manchester. Arriving around midday into Euston then a quick hop to Victoria finally on to the Pestana London Bridge. We had stayed here previously and found it to be a rather fantastic hotel. Nice and quite and also well placed for the US embassy in Nine Elms. After checking in we went for a little walk to the Dutches Belle for Sunday lunch. I had to complete a 10km treadmill run so Kath had a little snooze.

Sunday evening we headed to the Criterion theatre in the West end to watch a “a play about a bank robbery”. Kath really enjoyed it and while I had a few laughs it was a little slapstick for my tastes. Running late before the theatre we ended up grabbing dinner at 5 Guys. The burger was great but top tip don’t order more than one fries because we did it was death by chips!

Monday we headed to Nine Elms for the Embassy. It s a super smart new building surrounded by a raft of new buildings and the grandly title embassy square. Kath had to go in alone is I waited in a local coffee shop. When she didn’t emerge after an hour I headed back to the hotel and went for a swim.
American embassy in London
American Embassy
She finally found her way back around 12:30 and we jumped straight onto the tube out to Putney Bridge to meet Paul and Saskia. They arranged a picnic in the local park. It was rather lovely sat in the Sunshine with Prosecco and some nibbles. After the Prosecco ran out we moved the party to a local of theirs. I even managed to help fill out a form first real use of my professional membership in a while must get to those CPD courses soon.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

You and me (but mostly me)

I’m currently sat on a train heading to London so that Kath can get a US visa so that we are able to travel to New York later this year. Managed to get cheap Virgin First Class tickets cheaply so enjoying a larger seat and a free coffee.

We had an excellent day out yesterday starting out with drinks in the lovely Winter Garden at the Refuge. We sat and enjoyed an old fashioned pre show.

The main event of the day was a trip to see the Book of Mormon at the Manchester Palace Theatre. It was the most funny show I’ve ever seen and I would highly recommend it!

Ivy gin and tonic
Post show Kath had made a dinner reservation at the Ivy in Spinningfields. Neither of us had been before and you have to book weeks if not months in advance. I wasn’t sure if the food would live up to the hype, fortunately it did. I had a tuna carpaccio starter. Followed by blackened cod served on a banana leaf. We started with a Ivy special gin and tonic at the bar, then had a bottle of Cava with the meal. The food was exquisite so many flavours, and the service was pretty special too. I mentioned to the waitress that it is Kath’s birthday next week and she brought out a little cake
Happy birthday Kath