Here are a couple of bright, happy paintings by 4½-year-old Iris.
Because it’s been such a lovely, sunny day.
Spring has sprung on a walk on Headley Heath,
on a lovely, sunny day but with a chilly wind.
Who’d have thought this was Paul McCartney?
Best listened to through headphones or speakers, and loud!
A Paul McCartney song and Elvis Costello’s great voice.
With lots of Photoshopping I can knock off maybe 20 years, though my son’s first reaction was “That looks very odd!”. Well, son, that’s what I intended, so there!
Walking south and uphill there was still a fair amount of snow to be found on today’s shortish walk.
A couple of days ago I did a longer walk in the same area. Then, in much worse conditions, I managed to become quite disorientated. Today’s walk was to figure out how I’d managed to end up where I had – which I managed to do. When the conditions are poor and everything’s covered in snow, and when you’re not paying sufficient attention to your surroundings, it’s quite easy to lose track of one’s location - despite having, as I did, the Ordnance Survey map app and GPS on the phone! Just as well I was in North Surrey and not North Wales…
When the snow came a fortnight ago I took this picture using the telephoto lens of my rarely used DSLR camera. Heavy snow is forecast for this weekend so I’m looking forward to taking more of the same. (A day after posting this I spotted the mask on the snowman, hence the re-titled blog post!).
I came across this YouTube video and was knocked out. I’d love to do this Grand Canyon walk, but if not, this video is close enough to the real thing. On first viewing I thought the narrow path was rather scary, but each time I’ve come back to the video I’ve thought “I could do that!”. If you can watch it full screen and in HD (ideally 4K if your computer and broadband are up to it), you’ll get the maximum experience. Magnificent.
The entrance to Studio 9 of the Oaks Park Studios is not very inviting.
It looks like something one might have found in Eastern Europe circa 1950.
Stacked branches reminded me of………
……. an early artwork by my daughter
A day after the snow came the predicted thaw began to take effect. The crisp layer of snow had become crunchy snow or worse still mud so that a walk along the Hogsmill River was at times a quagmire. Collapsed and demolished snowmen were much in evidence in Nonsuch Park.
This is the scene out the window at around 7am this morning. Who could have guessed at how the rest of the day would develop….
In the churchyard on a drizzly day then home for some Photoshopping.
In this rare game of Scrabble I eventually came out a narrow winner. On seeing the WhatsApped (!) board my daughter questioned the word “shired” (played by me). I thought it meant something to do with horses but was I confusing it with “sired” or possibly thinking of Shire horses and creating a verb from an adjective? I eventually tracked down the following on en.wiktionary.org
thus validating my play of the word. That was lucky – but I’ll take the win, thank you!
I have a friend who occasionally rings me up with his computer problems. Yesterday he called to say his annual anti-virus licence was going to expire that day. He confessed to having ignored the renewal reminders!
My experience with renewing McAfee anti-virus licences is that a) renewing from McAfee is ridiculously expensive, and b) not renewing from McAfee is never straightforward. My friend took my advice and went for the second option and purchased a McAfee licence from another company (InterSecure.co.uk). Inevitably the update wasn’t straightforward and wasn’t successful, hence his call for my assistance. In normal times I would probably have gone to my friend’s home, but these are not normal times.
I searched the web for how to remotely take control of someone’s computer and came across a very helpful page on the PCMag site “How to Remotely Troubleshoot Your Relative’s Computer“. Although I’ve had a career in IT support I’d never needed to do this before and this web page proved a godsend. The section on using a Windows 10 PC to take control of another Windows 10 PC was very straightforward and uses the Quick Assist tool (found under Windows Accessories). Having taken remote control of my friend’s PC I was able to install the new licence for his anti-virus software, though it wasn’t straightforward!!😎
Remembering my mum, who died this day, 3 years ago.
I’m currently reading “The Idea Factory – Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation” by Jon Gertner. It’s a Christmas present from my Berlin son and what a great choice it was! Bell Labs became an enormous laboratory for developing ideas and inventions at the start of the communication, information and technology industries we now take for granted. This book tells the history of Bell Labs and the leading engineers, scientists and managers.
Claude Shannon was one of those scientists and who has become known as ‘ the father of information technology’. I have a vague recollection of hearing about his work whilst I was studying for a computer science course. Now, some 50 years later, he appears in this very readable history of Bell Labs. Brilliant man that he was, it’s prompted me to look for a biography, and “A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age” by Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman has been well reviewed.
The biography is now on order from Postscript Books, a new mail-order company to me and which had the best price. I’ve added them to my menu of Links / Amazon alternatives. Their About page says “Most of our books are publishers’ overstocks and backlist titles…..Postscript has developed over the last 30 years, starting in south-west London in 1987 and then moving to south Devon in 2011“. An interesting business to find.
It was a noisy, violent end to 2020 out the back.