Its My Birthday… Again

In just a few hours its my birthday, I’m assured its time I lied about my age. I’m going with that I’m 3869 years old, and changing my name to Methstevelah, Methuselah’s cooler brother.

Spirytus 96% Polish Vodka

Spirytus 96% Polish Vodka

Last year I bought my self a new Synology NAS Unit, this year I bought myself an Amazon Echo which I mentioned wanting to learn to code in C#. I have found Javascript maybe a better option rather than C#, but I’m still exploring.

I have worked on many JavaScript applications, so I have a basic understanding, as for Node.JS I have no idea, so maybe order a book or two for my birthday. 

I have wrote my first Skill and won a Echo Dot, and working on my second skill which is domainer related and once its more complete I’ll post more about it.

My sister got me the bottle of Polish Rectified Spirytus at 96% Alcohol by Volume, which is my 4th Strongest Alcohol in my bar. 

1, Denatured Alcohol at 100%
2, Spirytus 96%
3, Knockeen Hills Poteen at 90%.
4, Hapsburg Premium Absinthe 89.9%.
5, Balkan Vodka at 88%.

The denatured alcohol was acquired for a science project, such a hassle, its not really drinking, but given its pure alcohol I listed it.

Diet Death

Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo

I have just ruined my work out today by polishing off a pack of Sainsburys sugar ring doughnuts, but as my friend Saskia says Birthday Cake or Doughnuts in my case have no calories, so my hour on the cross trainer today is still valid 😛

A year on I have actually had the first part of my shoulder surgery, the left shoulder is done and and I’m well into rehab. I’m just starting to warm up my shoulder in the gym with some light machine work. Irony is when I say I’m doing light work, everyone is like should you be lifting that much ? My light seems to be most peoples heavy.

New Skillset

Sadly my new skillset isn’t going off this year as the training courses in both near by colleges who offer the course are full. Upside I’m £6,000 a year better off, which is what the course would cost, plus books and whatever else I would need.

College is bloody expensive.

Rich Piana In Chemically Induced Coma

Body Builder and 5% Nutrition founder Rich Piana has been placed into a chemically induced coma following a medical emergency. The 46 year old star were found unresponsive by medical staff after being called out to a potential overdose at his Florida home on Monday afternoon. 

Rich Piana at Body Power 2017

Rich Piana at Body Power 2017

Its not clear what the current situation is, or how Rich is but I do sincerely hope he makes a full recovery. While I’m not a huge fan of Rich Piana’s whole synthol and whatever-the-hell he injects or his persona but the man is a sound guy.

You can’t put a guy down who values his fans so much. I have seen the guy at multiple different shows, and he  always takes his time with each and every fan, talks to them, advises them, guides them and inspires them to be more. I have never seen him rush a fan, cut one off and lose his patience. Well apart from the slapbox incident, which was massively overplayed imo. 

What I have observed is many other stars give fans 30 seconds before rushing them off, many spend a few hours with the fans then they go hide in the green room. Anyone not in the queue at the time time just misses out. With Rich Piana, I have consistently seen him take 5-10 minutes with just 1 fan laughing and joking, taking his time. Rich has spent 10 hour days for 2-3 days in a row on his stand with a never ending queue of fans, only popping off his stand for short periods. 

When I took the above picture, Rich actually asked the next fan in the queue if he minded waiting for a few minutes while he did a quick press picture, then apologised to fan, then apologised to me for the wait. You can’t fault the guy, so hopefully he’ll recover and it will turn out to be a mistake or accident. 

I Shall Pass… My Driving Test… After 33 Attempts

Not even Gandalf can stop this Barnsley man from passing. This is fairly old story, but I forgot to publish it at the time. Christian Whiteley-Mason, 42 from Barnsley has taken his driving test 33 tries and £8,000. Mr Whiteley-Mason had lessons with 14 different driving instructors, a total 85 driving lessons, over a 25 years period.

 

Christian Whiteley-Mason Finally Passed Driving Test

Christian Whiteley-Mason Passed

Christian had 56 lessons with his first driving instructor who finally told him to quit, its never going to happen, there were one Examiner who he hate seeing who would always fail him.

He took his first driving test in 1992, and took it a further 32 times over the next 11 years until 2003 when he decided to accept it and call it a day. 

In 2017 Christian got a new job which required more travel, he grew tired of taking taxi’s and relying on others for rides, so he dug out his notebook and arranged a refresher course. 

He was so determined to pass, and preyed to not get the same examiner from all those years ago, 33rd time lucky he passed. 

Christian is quoted as saying “I’m so proud of myseld. Its changed my life to be honest. I delf like I’d achieved everything I really wanted to achieve, this was the one thing left I had to do”. 

They say second time pass people are better drivers, what does that make Christian ? Perhaps it makes him the next Stig ?

Arrowverse Binge Watch Order

Arrowverse

Arrowverse

My opinion is about as popular as a smelly fart in a hot yoga studio, this opinion is that the DCEU / DC Comics TV Universe is way better than the Marvel TV Universe, this could be because the TV Universe kind of mingles with the Cinematic Universe but I have massively enjoyed the DC TV Universe more than the Marvel TV Universe.

The big series is the Arrowverse which encompasses 5 different shows, which on various occasions The Flash runs out of the side of The Flash TV show and ends up in the Arrow TV show or on Supergirl. Some of the cross overs like The Flash in to Supergirl, neither The Flash nor Supergirl actually need to be watched to follow the stories but some others you need to follow them. 

Arrowverse Binge Watch Order

I saw an excellent post over on Gizmodo about the About Order to Binge on the Arrowverse. This encompasses The Legends of Tomorrow, Constantine, The Flash, Supergirl, and Arrow, although Constantine isn’t really needed.

 

  • Arrow seasons one and two.
  • Arrow season three, episodes 1-7.
  • Flash season one, episodes 1-8 (episode 8 begins the first Arrowcrossover).
  • Arrow season three, episodes 8-23 (episode 8 concludes it).
  • Flash season one, episodes 9-23.
  • Arrow season four, episodes 1-7.
  • Flash season two, episodes 1-8.
  • Arrow season four, episodes 8-23 (same deal as Arrow s3 and Flash s1).
  • Flash season two, episodes 9-23.
  • Legends of Tomorrow season one.
  • Supergirl season one.

 As the Gizmodo post says this is where it gets complicated and more difficult to follow, the image to the right from Entertainment Weekly looks kind of fun. It also kind of shows the comraderies at play in the Arrowverse along the characters.  

  • Arrow season five, episodes 1-7.
  • Flash season three, episodes 1-7.
  • Legends of Tomorrow season two, episode 1-6.
  • Supergirl season two, episodes 1-8 (ep. 8 verrrrrry technically starts “Invasion”).
  • Flash season three, episode 8 (“Invasion” part two).
  • Arrow season five, episode 8 (“Invasion” part three).
  • Legends of Tomorrow season two, episode 7 (“Invasion” part four).
  • Arrow season five, episodes 9-23.
  • Flash season three, episodes 8-16.
  • Supergirl season two, episodes 8-16.
  • Flash season three, episodes 17-23 (ep. 17 is the Flash/Supergirl musical).
  • Supergirl season two, episodes 17-22 (there’s no ep. 23).
  • Legends of Tomorrow season two, episodes 8-17.

There are a few other shows in the DC TV Universe which aren’t part of the Arrowverse which are well worth watching, such as Lucifer, Preach as well as Vixen Animated Series which is sort of linked to Arrow, and references are made in Arrow by Stephen Amell where he says he had an “Animated Adventure with Vixen earlier this year”. 

 

Amazon’s Alexa coming to Android Devices

Starting this week Amazon will be rolling out Alexa to Android users who have the Amazon Shopping App installed. It has been available on Apple devices for sometime (apparently). I have been waiting for this, but I thought Google maybe be digging in its heels and would never allow it.

While I’m happy this sort of automation control is coming, I’m equally somewhat disappointed. I was hoping Alexa would come to Amazon Music. Instead it seems its a limited version of the Echo’s Alexa, you can get sports results, weather, ask questions about people and places, get information about your flash briefing and appointments etc.

It would also appear you can install “Amazon Skills” which extend functionality, which means your mobile phone or android device will become a sort of “Echo Phone”. A few places have suggested you will gain some degree of control over your IoT/Smart Home devices so you can use your phone to turn off Echo compatible devices.

Music and Video Control

I haven’t found any mention of Amazon Music or Prime Video controls which would be excellent. I primarily listen to music and watch prime video whilst I’m in the gym. The ability simply say “Alexa, Play my Lifting Heavy playlist” or “Alexa, Play my CardiNO playlist” or skip that slow track when you’re half way through a sprint or run would be amazing. 

Equally being able control volume, and change tracks without having to physically touch your phone means you won’t miss a beat while working out. The implications for personal trainers who use bluetooth speakers are huge, they could tell Alexa to load the certain Circuits or change to a faster track, to start and stop timers an more. 

Even though I can’t find evidence of music and video control, that doesn’t mean its not there, and if it isn’t I’ll be the first to rave at Amazon to get it sorted, fitness is a huge market and an excellent penetration point. If they haven’t gone there, then frankly heads needs to roll. 

Its one of the major functions I miss of having a Samsung, the Air Gestures, so you can wave your hand left and right to change music track and up and down to alter the volume. Given the number of phones which have Proximity Sensors it amazing how few companies actually use them. Alexa could be a massive overhaul and improvement to this, lets hope its coming.

I also anticipate that Amazon may produce their own version of an Android Laucher, like N Launcher or Nova Launcher so they can convert nearly any phone into an Echo Compatible device, that seems to be where I think they are going. 

Given that Alexa can work out which speaker you are nearest too and deliver information to that speaker, its aware of where you are, moving this feature into your phone could be interesting. My friend regularly uses an Echo Dot at house parties and tells me he uses the Alexa Remote to control the device since it often can’t detect his voice over the noise, so having your phone able to fill this role would be cool. 

GoDaddy Consolidation of Domain Monster into 123-Reg

It would seem since GoDaddy acquired Host Europe for £1,500,000,000 (1.8 BILLION dollars) they are consolidating their brands, starting with DomainMonster. The list of companies under HEG (Host Europe Group) is considerable, it includes Webfusion, Domain Monster, Domain Box, 123-Reg, Heart Internet, Domain Factory and recently the Paragon Internet Group which includes hosting companies such as TSO Host, VidaHost and HostRoute, and a few more brands too. 

DomainMonster Consolidation

DomainMonster Consolidation

I received an email from DomainMonster aka Host Europe aka GoDaddy which says:

“We wanted to give you an update on the plans for DomainMonster since our last notification in April.”, it continues “As a customer of Domain Monster, you still retain your domains, products and services through Domain Monster, as well the login to your control panel and the ability to purchase additional domains.”.

“We are, however, no longer accepting new customers to join Domain Monster. We are working on plans to migrate your products and services through to 123-reg, and will update you with further information as work moves forward.”.

There is one line which really made me giggle, it almost clearly says you should expect the same crap services that the other customers of 123-Reg must endure.

It continues “Until that time, you are still a DomainMonster customer, with the same systems and teams in place, providing the products and services you use.”.  If ever there were a time to jump ship as a domain monster customer, NOW is that time. 

123-Reg Suck

I have very strong views about 123-Reg, where I am happy to call them dishonest and inept, the long story cut short. I paid to register a considerable number of domains via 123-reg before I got my own Nominet tag. I paid my money, the domains was in my 123-reg control panel. I carried on registering dozens of names over a month or so. One day I found a buyer for one of my domains (A girls first name), I went to check the name and found despite it being in my control panel on 123-reg, it was registered to a different 123-reg customer a few days after I registered it.

I checked my invoices, I had paid for it, and it had been added to my control, but 1 or 2 days later someone else had registered the same domain with 123-reg. 123-Reg tried to blame is on me, saying my address details were incorrect, but I pointed out I had 100+ domains using the same details and they were ok. They tried to blame Nominet who refuted it and said my details were acceptable, so they basically just lied repeatedly to cover up the fact they screwed up. At the time there were loads of people talking about delays in registration and names not being registered at all with 123-reg but they never acknowledged it. 

I went through my domains, and found roughly 5-10% of those I had paid for and registered were either unregistered or had been registered to someone else at a later date and 123-reg never fully refunded me.