Category Archives: General

What’s wrong with the BBC news page?

Do they test stuff on the live site?

It seems so.  Yesterday we had a javascript error all day.  Today, there’s a huge, obscuring Apple test banner.

Since our Internet access here at Digitas is a bit wacky, people think we’re in Belgium (Google does anyway), and the BBC gives us adverts.  After always complaining that the USA treats outsiders like second-class citizens (fingerprint scans, crappy plane seats), it’d be disappointing to discover we did it too.  I mean, unless it was specifically targeted 😛

Surely the BBC tests things properly first, right?

 Faulty Apple banner on BBC News


Finally I can Cut+Paste in Flash

Ok, so I’m old fashioned.  Not to mention, right-handed.

I prefer to use PC keys for cut, copy and paste, which are shift+del, ctrl+ins, shift+ins respectively.

They don’t work in Flash.  Usually, when you try to cut (shift-delete), you actually delete, which is very frustrating six minutes later when you can’t paste.

So I’ve installed AutoHotKey (, and added this as a script:

+Del::Send ^x
^Ins::Send ^c
+Ins::Send ^v

This now works everywhere 🙂

Useful Keypresses in browsers

What’s the best keypresses for browsers?

I’m keen on the following:

  • Alt-D Go to Address Bar
  • Ctrl-Enter Add the www. and .com to your word in the address bar
  • F11 – Ok, it takes you to full-screen.  Not very handy.  But!  Tapping F11 twice makes a non-resizable popup window resizable (IE only).

Any other good ones?  I’d be keen to know the keypress to bring up the IE Dev Toolbar.

PHP on upgraded Vista

I’ve just upgraded to Vista.  Apart from the random crashes (proper crashes, mind you – power off, no bluescreen) when you’re doing something intensive, the only problem is the moving of your documents.

Helpful error message in phpMyAdmin:
Cannot start session without errors, please check errors given in your PHP and/or webserver log file and configure your PHP installation properly

To get PHP to work again, you have to edit php.ini and replace references to your Documents and Settings folder (DOCUME~1 or similar) with the new Users folder (better name, should have done it before though, MS, tsk tsk).

And since your Local Settings don’t seem to work, you’ll have to lay out your own directories underneath.

IE8 and Meta selectors

Ok, everyone else is talking about the new IE Meta tag Microsoft announced here:

[sourcecode language=”html”]


My first thought?  Unusually, it seems, I thought “great!”.  I was just thinking that it would be cool to add a “browser” attribute to the doctype, but this is a better solution.

I envisage a number of these at the top of my document from now on, merely stating the latest versions of all browsers which the site has been approved on by QA. (Think not just IE and FF, but mobiles, playstations, ipods, etc)

Continue reading IE8 and Meta selectors


Just reading a book on running technique, “ChiRunning”:

“… the ChiRunning technique is backed by the laws of physics.  One scientist even told me, ‘I wouldn’t do this if it didn’t work in terms of physics.  It makes perfect sense to me, as a scientist.’  When your body is out of sync with these laws, it becomes less efficient, requires more fuel, experiences greater fatigue, and is more susceptible to injury.”

Sad but true.  Breaking the laws of physics is a risky business.

Hello World!

Hello!  Welcome to the new site.
I’ve decided to make a sweeping update to the site to incorporate a blog and some play areas.  It’ll be a work-in-progress, and will balloon with more content shortly (when I have some time).
I’ve built my own look and feel (and drawn my own feet), around one of the standard templates, and I’m using WordPress.  MoveableType wouldn’t install (Perl sucks anyway), and Blogger just seemed limiting.  This, I like. 🙂