Posted: Sat 29th Sep 2012@09:53

If you have arrived here looking for my blog, then you will be delighted to know that Laura and I have started a new blog at:

I will eventually move over the posts from this site to the new site. Laura's old blog posts have already been moved over.

Last edited: Sat 29th Sep 2012@09:53

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Sharing lightroom catalogues across multiple machines using Dropbox

Posted: Fri 2nd Mar 2012@12:46

I have been using Lightroom 3 across multiple machines (as allowed by the licence) and the feature I most wanted was to be able to share the same lightroom catalogue across the machines. I have a mechanism for backing up images to multiple drives, where the directory structures stay the same, and therefore each machine can access the same structure, however nothing to keep the collections in sync. Especially the publish services, which cannot be imported into new catalogues.
After a bit of trial and error, Dropbox seems to be the solution. By using the selective sync option to remove the xxxxx.lrdata folder, only the catalogue xxx.lrcat file, and backups are synced to dropbox. Simples.

It is probably best to add a blank xxx.lrdata folder to dropbox first, then selectively unsync it, then put your xxx.lrcat file and xxx.lrdata folder in (assuming you are moving it from somewhere else).

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Installing a Python package locally on a linux box

Posted: Thu 10th Mar 2011@11:01

I recently needed to install a python module on server for which I don't have Admin privileges. It took a while, but by reading the python guide, and a forum post about creating linux environment variables, I managed to get it to work. (In this case, Ubuntu Server 10.?

Step 1.

Get the package you want to install - in my case, matplotlib.


Unzip/tar/gz it:
gunzip -c matplotlib-1.0.1.tar.gz | tar xf -

Step 2.

CD into the directory, and install it to the directory of your choice. tilde (~) will install it into your home directoty, uder /home/{username}/lib/python/{modulename}

cd {unzipped directory}
python --home=~

Step 3.
Set environmental variable for PYTHONPATH so that python searches this location for packages.

I chose to use the .bash_profile method as follows.
In your home directory, open the .bash_profile file, if it does not exist, you can create it.
Add the following:


Where ~/lib/python/ is the path you set above. Save it, and logout and back in again.

You should now be able to see that it variable is set, simply by typing $PYTHONPATH

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How to Download BBC iPlayer content without a proxy

Posted: Fri 11th Feb 2011@10:54

In my previous post, I explained how to watch BBC iPlayer abroad and how to get BBC iPlayer Desktop working abroad.

This guide will shows you how to get the content on your desktop without the need to download it through a proxy service. However, you will still need to initiate a connection through a proxy.

I recommend using BigBadWeb's SSH service.

Last edited: Thu 7th Jul 2011@12:45

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Goodbye to galleries, stuff, test and gaping holes

Posted: Mon 8th Nov 2010@15:46

When I started this website back in 2001, inspired by a friend, trading under Systar Systems, who had just started a web hosting enterprse, I really didn't have a clue what I was doing. You could say, that despite spending the best part of the last 10 years learning more about the art of 'making websites', I still don't!

The big change came when I started on the Internet Computing course at Scarborough, and was inspired to start hacking together (in the tinkering sense), something a bit more sensible. Two of housemates and friends in year 2 onwards, Tom and Geffy suggested I write (as in code up) a blog, and another one, Chris, via OpenHosting, provided the means.

I was recently clearing out the drawers as it were, and found some terrible code back hiding away in obscure locations, and a huge amount of images, which, google analytics tells me, no-one looks at (apart from a few galleries of my brother's wedding photos). I decided that all of the 'test' code should exist somewhere less visible to the world, and have cleared it all out. And it is with a little sadness that I have also decided to remove the galleries from the site, they serve no real purpose, and will be better preserved somewhere like Flickr, or PicasaWeb, or Dropbox. I haven't quite decided how to do it, but I think I will reseve Flickr for the more professional type of photos, Picasa for personal snaps, and Dropbox for private photos to share between freinds.

As I was clearing I also came across some throwbacks from earlier incarnations, which got me thinking about some of the great ideas Nick and I had come up with in the past, which through the power of the wayback machine you can re-live!:

So, what is next for the 'legendary' Well, I think that I will move the blogging aspects to my other domain, and keep the domain just for emails for family, perhaps even a mostly-private family archive.

But for now, you can still get your stabeler gibberish blogposts from here!

Last edited: Mon 8th Nov 2010@15:47

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How to get BBC iPlayer Desktop working abroad

Posted: Fri 12th Feb 2010@16:17

A while back I posted a guide showing how to get the BBC iPlayer to work abroad, but recently, I wanted to try to get the desktop application to work, so that I could watch things offline. However, I soon realised that the BBC's terms and conditions forbids the downloading of programs outside of the UK.

I did however manage to get this to work, without breaching the terms and conditions. This is how:

Follow the guide mentioned above to get the BBC iPlayer website to work. Then head over to the iPlayer Desktop download page, this will only allow you to download the application if you are in the UK, or according to the BBC T&Cs, your IP address must be located in the UK, which, thanks to our SSH Tunnel, is.

Install the app (needs Adobe Air installed), which, if you are not using the SSH tunnel using IE, will fail to let you download things! Doh!

However, as you might have guessed, if you alter your internet options in Internet Explorer to use localhost and port 1080 (using ONLY the Socks proxy), in turn, Adobe Air will use these settings, and in turn, so will the BBC iPlayer desktop app. And of course, as the app is tunnelling to your UK proxy, you are downloading the stuff in the UK. :)

This works for Internet Explorer, Chrome and any other application that uses Windows default settings (Internet Options), including Adobe AIR.

If you want to get a UK SSH account (at a reasonable rate) please See here.

Hope this helps! :) if you found this helpful, you can contribute £1 to me!

Last edited: Fri 30th Nov 2012@13:37

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Lenovo Thinkvantage Password Manager - Patch for Firefox 3.5+ on Windows 7 (64bit)

Posted: Fri 22nd Jan 2010@09:25

Some error in the Password Manger add-on for Firefox means that everytime the browser opens, it gives the annoying message that the add-on cannot be registered with Chrome.

The solution is to edit one of the files in the add-on, to support this higher version of Firefox.

I have done this fix, and have provided the file to download here, as although there was an abundance of instructions on how to fix it, no-one seems to have provided the file anywhere!

Hope this helps someone out.

Last edited: Tue 26th Jan 2010@09:00

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