The Ponk Room Blog

Dated Title (Click to show)
2021-08-22 Raspberry Pi
2021-08-18 Vintage or Obsolete ?
2021-07-22 IFrames
2021-07-21 Placing images and captions
2021-07-19 HTML Text Editors
2021-07-14 Le Jardin
2021-07-08 Synology releases Version 7 of DSM
2021-07-04 England have been playing football
2021-07-01 To Vax or not to Vax ?
2021-06-22 Up To Date and a few moans
2013-11-10 Joomla
2013-11-10 Wordpress
2013-11-10 Try a VPS
2012-11-28 Mostar Bridge
2012-04-24 Fords smallest car

About The Blog

The list above shows tha last 15 entries. I'll probably change the selection method to a date based system once there are a few more entries. Click an entry title to see it.

This is the blog which used to be on another of my websites, now defunct (www.cobblers.org.uk). The last post was 8 years ago I moved it here without any problems. The editing functions have been brought up to date, so I can now add new entries and upload pictures. The display code (text) has been updated too e.g. the broken links are either removed or fixed.

25th June 2021

Up To Date and a few moans   

Posted On: 2021-06-22 16:32:54

Bringing the blog up to date

An owlIt has been a long time - something like 8 years - since this blog code was used. Just before I retired I started a web services business, which kept me very busy. But as I got older and slower I decided it was time to pack it in. Then after about 15 months I got itchy fingers - I had to get back to my HTML and PHP !  So I've been going through the archives and digging out bits of code and updating them before bolting them together to make these pages, Yes -- I could have a blog using Wordpress - but where's the fun in that eh ? The owl was spotted at the New Forest Show back in about 2018. There was no show last year  or this year but it should be back next year I hope.

There's still a few rough edges, but I will work on these over the next few weeks and introduce some new techniques ( like the rounded corners on the image above), but basically the blog works now

Illegible Websites

Take a look at this:. It typifies the current fashion for making web sites hard to read - i.e grey text on a white background. Why do they do this ? You would not try to read a book which was printed with grey text, woud you ?

Soundbars

These are useful things now that TVs are so thin the manufactureres cannot fit speakers inside the case. We just bought one made by  JVC. It has a remote, The bar does not appear to  respond immediately to the red "Turn On" button. A small, dim LCD which is impossible to read more then 2 metres away sends a little message, one letter at a time H-E-L-L-O  with a pause at the beginning and end and in between each letter. So it takes about 7 seconds for anything audible to happen and you press the On button again thinking it has not switched on, thereby turning the bloody thing Off. Why is there an unreadable message ? Why not just show a little red light and turn the sound on immediatlely ? Who makes these inane design choices ?

We have another Soundbar, on a different TV, made by a company called OrbitSound and this works a treat. Lovely low frequency sound too, from a unit which has a bluetooth link  to the soundbar which is below the TV. An unusual anomaly - Alexa has taken a shine to the soundbar and talks to it late at night after we have gone to bed. The first time it happened we thought we had univited visitors. Now we just let them get on with whatever it is they are getting on with..

TV Captions / Subtitles

When you are watching a french / german / etc.... programme on UK TV, it usually comes with English captions. This is a good thing, except......Most of the captions are usually white text,  placed on screen without a neutral background. So if the scene has a white or light grey background, you cannot read the white caption.  There's one Swedish series which puts the caption in a grey background box, so it is easy to read regardless of the picture content, which is useful as there is usually a lot of snow in the picture ! This placing of captions directly onto the picture is widespread. Why do they do this ?

And NetFlix captions additionally use tiny text, and are consequently, useless, unless you sit within a metre of the screen.

Buying Domains

And here's another annoyance which has grown recently. When you try and buy a domain name, you get bombarded with offers for hosting, VPS services other domains names which are similar to the one you want, free domain names etc.etc.If you just want to buy a domain name, plain and simple, try 34sp.com. There is no crap.

Windows 11

Talking of crap.. Windows 11 will soon be here.It will be a free upgrade from Windows 10 .I think most people will just yawn and say "Why ?". I for one will not be rushing to upgrade my main PC. I have a spare one which I'll  upgrade first, a few weeks after the initial launch-dust has settled. [ But now a thought occurs to me - perhaps I won't get a choice, the update will just happen ] I hope it does not turn out to be the disaster than Windows 8 was. Microsoft was suffering from an acute dose of Steve Balmer at the time, so I guess it was not surprising they produced something so horrible,,

It sounds like ,most of the changes will affect office rather than home, users. Many of the buttons and controls have been moved around, but I don't know yet whether functionality has changed.