Marv\'s Blog

yeah, like that’s going to happen

February 7, 2006

Disable Firefox features ?

My 3D Design and Animation lecturer reckons he’ll be able to disable firefox’s text zoom feature on his “widescreen” site. Ha. Ha I say. Like I think I told him, the only way to do that would either be easy to reverse or done as an extension to firefox. So basically, pretty impossible to do.

His site by the way, uses iframes for layout and flash for navigation. Ha.

yet more annoyances

January 12, 2006
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Yet again, I’m getting taught bullshit.

Last time I checked, JS wasn’t a protocol, it was a language. Also, we’re/I’m still getting taught to do things incorrectly. wooooooo. Quotation marks are apparently optional on (x)html, attributes are camel-cased, and it’s okay to put typos in presentations.

Windows Migration pt13/ Apple Migration pt1/House Migration pt1

December 2, 2005
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My dealings with Novatech are now complete.

The refund has been received. I won’t be shopping with them again.

Information from sources.

My sources tell me 3 Novatech laptops went up for sale recently on eBay. They said that the laptops possibly were (the previous 2 fault ones, plus the final one i sent back) mine, and that they’ll be looking into it. I don’t think there’s anything dodgy going on, it’s just an interesting thing to find. Apparently not many people want to keep their Novatech laptops once they’re done with them, but Novatech will try to take yours off you before you are.

Apple Migration: I am now using an Apple iBook for the first time.

A friend of mine sourced me an iBook. Tweaked to the core. This baby will last a full days’ study on a single charge, and a whole day if I do bugger all. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it Novatech, laptop batteries do last more than two hours on a single charge when they’re used for things as simple as recording audio and word processing.

I’ll be keeping it till I get a new one next term.

I’ll be moving into my own place.

So I’ll be moving into my own place soon. Yay for me. I sign for the keys on Monday, assuming the guy from the Uni did what I asked him and he emailed the people.

Annoyed at the thing I have to get taught at University.

November 28, 2005
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Aside from restructuring into semantic (X)HTML, this post appears as it does in the post I made on the Uni message board. Damn WebCT sucks.

obsolete/incorrect info in session 10 power point presentation

I am annoyed and frustrated about being taught obsolete and semantically incorrect techniques.

  1. Frames generally create accessibility, as well as usability problems; they should be avoided, and if scrolling content is needed, div tags with the overflow specified in CSS will fix that problem.
  2. Styles should be applied to tables with CSS, not (X)HTML attributes.
  3. Internet Explorer uses an invalid DOM.
  4. div and span tags aren’t so much layers as blank elements intended to be styled by the designer or end user. span tags can be made into block level elements and div tags can be made into inline elements, as can pretty much every other (X)HTML element.
  5. Since IE uses an invalid DOM, code should be written for everything else (the stuff thats standard based) first, and IE second. Or just Firefox, as IE is a big obsolete waste of time.
  6. Layers and Tables do not reduce the accesibility of web pages to visualy impaired users. It is the incompetent implementation of layers and tables that makes them inaccessible.
  7. Tables should not be used to control layout of a document. That’s a waste of code and creates accessibility problems, unless you know what you’re doing. Then it’s just a waste of code.
  8. Nested layers are good, nested tables are really, really bad.
  9. CSS permits user defined formating of any XML object.
  10. CSS can be applied to ANY (X)HTML object
  11. CSS files do not have to be stored with a .CSS extension. Web browsers couldn’t care less what it’s called as long as it is written in CSS. Preferably valid. Preferably without IE’s invalid bloat.
  12. Fixed pixel fonts should never be used. They are inaccesible, and should only ever ever be used if the design of a page requires it, in which case, alternate stylesheets should be provided. Many websites do this out of courtesy for their users. IE’s text zoom facilities suck. That is a syntacticalyl correct statement.
  13. CSS is not a dynamic language, it does not update all pages it is associated with, the changes are only reflected once the relevant pages have been refreshed in the browser.
  14. Most of Macromedia’s DHTML implementations create invalid javascript code.

The Government Are Arseholes

November 17, 2005
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or Why I’ve missed Uni.

Here’s the situation: I need medication otherwise I have to be in constant pain all day.

Here’s the problem: I can’t afford to buy my prescriptions.

Here’s why the Government are Arseholes: The people from the NHS told me that the Government has a fixed limit across all courses for how much they think students should be spending on books (not materials or software or hardware), regardless of what course they are on.

Here’s what this means to me: According to what the Government think I need to spend on books (not materials or software or hardware) I am earning more money than I need, even though my only source of income is my Student Loans. It also means I have to pay for pretty much any medical thing I’d get off the NHS (although some of it is subsidised I still have to pay money), and I have pay for the full amount of my prescriptions.

Why I can’t afford to pay for my prescriptions:

  1. Arriva fucked up and sent me my bus pass about 2 weeks late, then failed to send out the plastic sleeve it goes in
    • This resulted in me missing my NERAC assessment.
    • This also resulted in me missing about a week of Uni because I had to buy tickets the previous weeks when I was expecting my pass to arrive.
    • Note that they only sent me my bus pass when I complained to them several times (on the phone and email) about not getting it.
  2. Novatech screwed up my order- the whole thing with having to wait over a month for them to send out a working laptop.
    • The stress from this made me ill enough to miss a few days from Uni.
    • They’re still giving me the run around with regards to further refunds.
    • I would not recommend ever buying anything from Novatech unless you lived in Portsmouth, as it’d be cheaper to get your stuff by walking into the shop, cheaper to get it fixed, and cheaper to get them to listen to you. In fact I wouldn’t recommend getting anything from them at all.
    • *Had to spend money on phone calls needlessly.

Flickr: too late to complain guys

October 24, 2005
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They’ve had long enough.

Ages ago I uploaded a bunch of photos from college onto my Flickr account, and told some of the people from college to get on and check them out, and spread the word to the others about them. I kept them set to private for the purpose of allowing them time to request them to be removed. Time’s up I’m afraid.

Judging by their slow reaction, I’m not going to bother keeping the photos private next time I upload them, I’ll just have to get a premium account so that I can have all the photos at once. There’s more than the basic account allows for and i want to be able to see all of them at once.

Forgot to add: the link to the photos is Flickr tag EDHCC.

Posted in EDHCC, Flickr

Windows Migration pt2

October 11, 2005

The laptop don’t work.

So my laptop got delivered while I was at Uni today, but there’s a problem. The laptop don’t work.

I ordered the laptop without an OS installed, and the computer just refuses to boot from any CDs (Ubuntu, Win98). There also appears to be a bit missing off the front, but I’m not sure if it is actually missing or if it’s just weird design.

Tech Support is closed at the moment, but if what I try doesn’t fix it (I am not going to open the case, I’ve had it less than a day and it’s still in warranty so I’ve no need to) I can’t get it to work, so I’ll be ringing them in the morning, or having them ring me.

Blog Shares.

I claim this blog in the name of me.

Listed on BlogShares

DGIC 2005-10-11

October 11, 2005
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DGIC 2005-10-11
DGIC 2005-10-11,
originally uploaded by SignpostMarv.

Helpdesk staff hard at work.

David Goldman Informatics Centre 640×480

October 10, 2005
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David Goldman Informatics Centre 640x480
David Goldman Informatics Centre 640×480,
originally uploaded by SignpostMarv.

First photo of Uni, although technically I didn’t take it- at least not in the sense of holding the camera.

Technically it’s the second, but the first one sucked.

Windows Migration pt1

October 9, 2005
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I’m switching to XP Pro.

I’m switching, not because I want to, but because I have to. Windows 98SE just doesn’t cut it anymore. The kickass music player looks to be requiring Win2K or WinXP for the unicode support (and other things I presume). 3D Studio Max, which I need for my BSc course, requires them as well.

Also it turns out requires XP or 2K. Since M$ is dropping support for the 2000 OS soon, I thought it’d be a better idea to go straight for XP Pro instead of Win2k or XP Home, since I needed that extra flexibility with regards to screwing up the around with the system. Plus the Uni would be happier if I had XP.


My copy of the Academic Upgrade license still hasn’t arrived from Genstar yet, so it’s all prep work at the mo’. My laptop hasn’t arrived either, but thats besides the point as it’ll be blank and useless without XP Pro anyway.

Before I’m reading to migrate I’ll need to get all my and files in order. All the latest software updates need to be on hand as well. I’ve got an ethernet card on order with my laptop so that I can transfer files between the computer I’m on at the moment and my laptop. The entire contents of my music collection, my video collection, my image library and the software library probably won’t be going with me, as it takes up most of a 40GB hard disc already (the laptop is 60GB, but with XP’s bloat there’ll not be much room left.

The plan is to use the laptop as the main computer (possibly getting a keyboard+monitor switch, and the current computer as a storage and development server till next term.

Next term is when the fun starts.

I know I’m getting a little ahead of myself, but I thought I’d let you know what I’m planning:

  • Purchase of a barebones system from , and the remaining parts needed to make a RAID 0+1 based storage & network server that is compatible with XP Pro and Linux (in case I decided to make the switch).
  • Purchase of networking gear (router/switch + cables) to create home wired Gigabit network (wireless may be easier, but wired is faster & more secure).
  • Installation of on current computer to create a hardware firewall for the home network.
  • Purchase of better computer chair. If the DSA claim won’t provide me with a chair suitable enough, I’ll be going shopping.

Term One Student Loan distribution.

This term my money is going on:

  • Board (to mother).
  • Bus passes (to Arriva).
  • Laptop (to Novatech).
  • Gigabit card (to Novatech).
  • Crossover cable (to Novatech, but if their suppliers don’t get their arses into gear I’ll be getting it from elsewhere).
  • XP Pro (to GenStar).
  • 512 MB RAM (to Crucial).
  • Second Life (to Linden Research, Inc.).

Most of the stuff for term one is to help with my Uni work, or is required for it. The only exception is the subscription to Second Life. The reason I’m putting it on the list at all is that it’s the perfect place to showcase 3D modelling, and it has it’s own scripting language. The idea is the more computer languages I learn, the easier my mind will be able to handle coding projects in one specific language. Kind of how driving different types of vehicles improves your handling of others.

The reason I’m subscribing as opposed to having just a basic account is for project I’ve had in mind for a while- I’ll not say exactly what it is, but it’s the kind of thing a geek/nerd might find really cool, but my girlfriend thinks is just ridiculous. I’m not sure if it even exists already in Second Life, but that’ll be one of the things I’ll be finding out when I play.

My Second Life Project.

It involves scripting, 3D modelling, photography and texturing- project management as well of course- all of these are part of the core modules for my course. So while I’m spending my recreation time in Second Life I’ll be learning and improving my ability to complete the course (and hopefully get a distinction at the end of it). Who knows, if it doesn’t exist already, I might make some money of it if other people want it. But I’m not in it for the money, I think the finished product would be really cool to have on my own house/back yard (I’m not sure how big I’ll be making it).

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