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sa 3 ja 15

PC TipsPerhaps obvious but if your wireless mouse/keyboard gobbles batteries get some rechargeable batteries and a charger.  Rechargeable batteries comeRechargeable AA batteries in different flavours determined by the mAh rating, that's milliampere-hour, the higher the mAh rating (2000 mAh for a AA is getting high) the longer the battery will last before it needs to be charged ... and the more it will cost.  There are also precharged  rechargeables that will hold a charge when not in use sometimes up to a year allegedly, relevant when you want to hold ready to go spares.

th 9 oc 14

New tv channel ITVBe on Freeview channel 26 launched yesterday and is the new home of TOWIE ... you don't really need to know anything else do you?

tu 16 se 14

PC TipsBlackberry dried outLast week we dropped our Blackberry down the toilet.  Fortunately the toilet wasn't in use so after a few seconds hesitation we picked it out and removed the battery.  A quick wipe with soft toilet paper and then we left it keyboard down for twenty four hours.  A bit of hesitation when the battery was replaced next day but it did eventually fire up satisfactorily.  The important bit here was promptly taking the battery out, if there's no battery then phone damaging current can't flow through short circuits caused by the eau de toilette.

th 4 se 14

Our Freeview tuner didn't need us to tell it about the channel changes yesterday afternoon, perhaps the the most significant is BBC News has moved from 80 to 130.

su 27 ap 14

Freeview tv station True Entertainment has found the version of M*A*S*H without the bloody awful laugh track and though a marked improvement we'd forgotten how mawkish, in that American way, the series could be ... maybe someone will think to bring back Hill Street Blues?

sa 21 de 13Winter Solstice - the shortest day

New channel to us Freeview 61 True Entertainment is showing M*A*S*H ... but the version with a laugh track.

tu 20 au 13

PC Tipssnapfish and PhotoBox packagingsnapfish is Hewlett Packard with a different shirt on and is the print service associated with flickr.  We ordered a 10 x 8 from snapfish and it arrived in an envelope so flimsy that the print was creased.  We ordered a 10 x 8 from PhotoBox and it arrived uncreased in a substantial corrugated cardboard container.

sa 31 au 13

PC TipsAt 1am on a Sunday morning some weeks back our power went off and we convincedUK Power Networks ourselves it was them not us and went to sleep.  Waking at seven concerned about the deep freeze we eventually found the new RCD had tripped but on the way discovered this useful wheeze, text POWER and your post code to 80876 and UK Power Networks will text you during power cuts.

sa 13 jl 13

PC TipsIf your Freeview isn't clever enough to do it on its own a good idea would be aLeo McKern as Rumpole of the Bailey channel scan because new station Drama on 20 launched this week and it's showing Rumpole of the Bailey. (Remember Leo McKern as a Number Two in The Prisoner?)  We also found three BT Sport channels, two are scrambled and the third keeps telling you it's going to launch this summer ... they'd better get on with it then.

fr 19 jl 13

PC TipsSean Kelly ... no, not the one who won FOUR green jersiesIf the fan on your computer starts to get busy it's because the cpu (central processing unit) is getting hot and bothered emphasised by this weather.  If you're uploading the entire family album to Facebook, doing a defrag and watching Storage Hunters online whilst Google Drive clunks away in the background then give the cpu less to do by watching Storage Hunters on the telly ... though we do realise Freeview is still problematic in some parts of near the coast particularly so in this hot dry weather.

fr 2 no 12

PC Tipsterrorist on drugsFor some reason professional ID photos have to make you look like a terrorist on drugs, don't know why.  For the same cost you can take the pic and email the file for printing, Photobox will post you eight imagesnice man you'd buy a car from (they need cutting up) for less than a fiver.  You need to check what's needed, passport regs are particularly rigorous; neutral background, no smiling, no fun, and if a nearest and dearest is the official photographer after they take the first snap tell them to take a step forward and snap another ... then another step ... and another.

we 11 ap 12

PC TipsWe're late adopters and got our first satnav just a month back.  We first used it in hot blood to find Milton Keynes and it wentBenhall's got a school?! all nervy on a roundabout near Bedford plus it didn't know about the tunnel under Hindhead ... though it is difficult to get lost in a tunnel.  We should have first used the supplied usb cable to connect it to a pc and see if there's a map update, the first update with our Garmin was free ... we haven't used the satnav yet to find Benhall.

fr 30 ap 10

Therese Coffey with panini and chipsCoastal Suffolk Conservative candidate Therese (it's French) Coffey lives in Westleton so she can't get Channel 5 or Freeview and no doubt rubbish broadband.  When she asked BT why near the coast broadband is so rubbish so close to BT's research centre they said Oh, their broadband is rubbish too.  We found out yesterday at the Martlesham Black Tiles that Therese has stood as an mp once before, her rescued dog Rizzo is very patient, when she ordered the panini she hadn't realised it came with chips, and is very aware this time round she's not a shoo in.  More pix on Facebook

fr 7 au 09

PC TipsAt £200 the new Blackberry Curve 8520 is affordable Blackberry Curve 8520apparently; well it's half the price of the Palm Pre (not available in the UK yet) which we were hanging out for but got a poor review on the Gadget Show and perhaps the 8520 would hold the data we need and the £120 iPaq we bought wouldn't.

we 28 ja 09

PC TipsOur first PDA was a Sharp something or other and we were very fond of it, it had a rounded case which was nice to hold and a four line text only monochrome display with no back light.  It DOA'd after falling from a great height ... twice.  Fondness became the real thing when the Sharp was replaced The Palm Preby an early Palm Pilot.  The Palm was such a clever, useful and successful product that inevitably the accountants took over and the creative people left to start Handspring.  Handspring always seemed to be driven by financial imperative rather than creativity and though we now use an elderly Handspring Treo it's design is an unhappy compromise.  Time passed and Palm bought Handspring ... more time passed ... but now the Palm Pre is tipped to rival the iPhone and it runs Linux not Windows!

mo 16 jl 07

PC TipsIf you're finding Freeview rubbish at the mo it's the hot sultry weather affecting reception and if, like us, you can't get Five US (we're suffering NASCAR deprivation) but can get BBC Asian Network try The Bhanghra Mixtape, even if it would be better with more bhangra and less mix.

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