I can't remember how long ago it was that some Thunderbird developer thought "wow, tabs! They're great in Firefox, so we absolutely have to implement them in Thunderbird too". Since then I've put up with them in the vain hope that either I'd get used to them, or the developers would change their minds and implement some sort of sane behaviour.

Yesterday I finally lost patience and managed to revert everything manually. This is how I did it:

  1. To make email open in a new window instead of a tab, go Options > Advanced > Reading & Display and choose "Open messages in a new message window".
  2. To turn off the overzealous search features, go to Options > Advanced > General, and uncheck "Enable Global Search and Indexer".
  3. To get rid of the tab bar entirely, go to Options > Advanced > General > Config Editor, promise to be careful, search for the "mail.tabs.autoHide" option, and set it to "true".
  4. After that, I chose to remove the reply/forward/etc. options from the bottom panel and put them back into the toolbar at the top, via the "Configure" right-click-menu option... that's more personal preference, though. Tweak away!

And now I have a usable mail program again.

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spudtater: (Default)
( Aug. 6th, 2010 01:40 pm)
Promotional video of a Fordson snowmobile from 1926; unlike today's caterpillar-tracked vehicles, the Fordson snowmobile was screw-propelled.

Awesome stuff! A bit mean to the horse around 3½ minutes in, though!   8^(
spudtater: (Default)
( Jan. 9th, 2010 09:36 pm)
So, recently I've been quite excited about Android phones, and have been meaning to get one for a while.

In a happy turn of events, my brother, who works for Google (marketing, not programming), has obtained a surplus GooglePhone (specifically, the HTC Dream) which is almost entirely working. Unlocked. Which he just gave to me.

Yays! I have installed the Android Scripting Environment, and now have sh and python shells on my phone. Geekiest... phone... ever.

Coincidentally, the Doctor Who episode that has just come on TV is the one with the Anne-droid.
spudtater: (Default)
( Aug. 31st, 2009 09:01 pm)
My computer appears to be majorly b0rk. Like, missing-partition-table-on-primary-drive b0rk. Do not want. Do not know what to do to recover all my data.

8^(
spudtater: (Default)
( Jun. 12th, 2009 10:55 am)

Further to my last post:

Google has introduced an Android scripting environment that lets you code stuff for the Googlephone on the Googlephone. [...] It sits on the Android handset itself, giving coders the power to write and run scripts in Python, Lua, and BeanShell - without help from a PC.

Google lets you code for Googlephones on Googlephones, The Register, 9th June 2009

Did I mention my next phone was going to be an Android?

spudtater: (Default)
( Jun. 11th, 2009 09:23 am)
Interesting talks at the Tech Meetup last night. By accident or design, one of the talks (given by Kate — hi Kate!) was on developing for the iPhone, the other for Google's new "Android" platform. The contrasts were extremely illuminating.

Cut for geekery )

Anyway. I think my next phone will be an Android...
"Hey! The task scheduled for 1:30 AM every day hasn't produced any output for the 29th..."
"It hasn't generated any errors, either! It's as if it hasn't run at all..."
"...oh"
spudtater: (Default)
( Jan. 27th, 2009 09:26 pm)

Instead of a bulb in our kitchen, we have an array of halogen downlighters. This is a nuisance, because they are always blowing and having to be replaced. So this month I went on to yourwelcome.co.uk and bought a selection of energy-saving bulbs. I plumped for a classic compact fluorescent ("energy saving") bulb, a faster-activating cold cathode version, and, with some trepidation, an LED-based lamp.

Today I plugged them all in, and compared them:

Results )

So, somewhat to my own suprise, I end up recommending spending the extra money and getting the LED lights. Don't be tempted to cut costs, though — most of the cheaper LED lights are no good for anything except mood lighting.

(Another option would be to mix LED and CFL lights — they complement each other quite nicely.)

spudtater: (Default)
( Oct. 14th, 2007 08:55 pm)
This is starting to really annoy me. My laptop wireless refuses to properly talk to the wireless router. But where the problem is completely beats me. Certain web sites, such as google, work no problem. Other web sites, notably LJ, work for a bit and then resolutely refuse to work for ages, even though the rest of the web is working just fine.

This has me perplexed. Anybody have any pointers as to how to find out what's going wrong?

Edit: will try advice given here
spudtater: (Default)
( Jun. 11th, 2007 08:53 pm)
I was taken to see the server room today. Ooooooooh, shiny shiny shiny.

Huge aircon units and an all-pervading hum as well. Quite hypnotic if you (*yawn*) ask... zzzzz... KILL ALL HUMANS!

Via [livejournal.com profile] brucec.

A 1986 promotional video shown to prospective students of the Computer Science department of Edinburgh University. Worth watching for a bit of giggling about old tech.

  • "...with gateways to other networks in the UK, Europe and beyond!"
  • Computer science seemed to be all about solder in those days. (Could be worse; could be vacuum tubes.)
  • I like plotters. Far cooler than printers.
  • No disrespect, but is it really wise to be punching a hole in that wire when it's lying on your knee?
  • I call it an "ethernet".
  • Look at the refresh rate on that screen of text! Stunning.
  • EdUni people will notice that the shop in the King's Buildings Centre appears to have not changed its layout in over twenty years — except for a slight downsizing of the shelves of cigarettes!
  • This is my "OMG its teh eighties" cardigan...
spudtater: (Default)
( May. 16th, 2006 01:09 am)
Random stuff I found digging around on the internet. Not at all up-to-date or newsworthy, but I thought I'd share a couple of gems.

Election machines, anti-Bush videos, press freedoms )
spudtater: (Default)
( Jan. 11th, 2006 11:38 pm)
Another hectic day at work, involving three different people trying to get my help at the same time, followed by the entire internet going down. (Or the router, which is almost the same thing). After a frenzied phone call to Telewest, it all miraculously started working again. Typical.

Virus scans, football supporters & memory issues )

And that's quite enough of that. How are you today?
spudtater: (Default)
( Sep. 14th, 2005 02:08 pm)

My mum was round to do computer shopping (she purchased a portable external hard drive) and decided to contribute to my birthday present (i.e.1 teh computer) by buying me a shiny shiny 17" flat-screen monitor.

Wooooo...

Additional nonsense )

[1] "Id Est"; lit. "That is,"

spudtater: (Default)
( Sep. 1st, 2005 01:10 am)
It arrived! This morning, way before I expected it.
Have been playing about with it all today, putting it together and trying to salvage old data from my last (now defunct) computer. Sadly one of the disks was completely beyond hope, taking with it my email inbox (aargh) and more annoyingly a lot of my recent programming. Will salvage what I can from university computers. This time I'm going to set it up to make automatic backups of anything I might miss!

My mp3s, though, (all 5GB of them) are now safely backed up on [livejournal.com profile] gominokouhai's hard disk. Much gratitude to [livejournal.com profile] scattergather, without whom it would have taken me about twice as long to do this!

Anyway, I can very definitely recommend Novatech.co.uk, as they're cheap and fast, with a well-designed web site, and a lot more reliable than the russian roulette service you get with dodgy companies such as Ebuyer.com

Unfortunately, I can't find the Windows XP disk I thought was around here, so I can't properly set up my computer yet. I expect to be acquiring one soon notinanyillegalwayofcourseI'magoodboyhonest.
spudtater: (Default)
( Aug. 27th, 2005 05:22 am)
cyborg name )

I will be getting a new computer! (Assuming everything goes alright.)
It's an AMD Athlon 64 3000, so a touch higher spec than what I was originally looking at, but managed to fit in a DVDRW, 1024MB RAM, a passable graphics card and some matching peripherals1 and still stay well clear of the £300 mark (before VAT, anyway).

[1] Men do understand accessorisation, it's just expressed differently...

Edit: Forgot to mention: ordered this from Novatech.co.uk. We'll see how it goes.

spudtater: (Default)
( Aug. 22nd, 2005 03:59 pm)
Am looking at this computer. Happy fun good price, and with a DVD-RW as well!
Not sure about the motherboard, though. It has on-board audio and video chipsets, and I'm not sure it will work well under linux. Video is an SiS 741, which will work according to the hardware HOWTO. Audio is a bit of a "mystery card" melarkey, though; all it says is that it is "AC '97 compliant", which doesn't sound very specific. Hrrrmmmmm...
spudtater: (Default)
( May. 5th, 2005 07:16 pm)
  • Have voted. I encourage you lot to do likewise. If you really see no good in voting, I encourage you to submit a spoiled ballot, as they will be counted and noted; this sends a far more definite message to politicians, who otherwise might just blame low voter turnout on "apathy". (Pah!)

    As you might expect, I voted for the Lib Dems. Even if they do have a low probability of getting in in this constituency, I refuse to vote tactically. Nothing will ever change if we all do that.

  • I have a very shiny new hard disk; 160 Gigs, soon to be filled with audio and video goodness. Bought it from Ideal for the stunning price of ¬£55, which works out to less than 35p per Gig!

So I make a purchase today, and it comes to £225; just over my daily withdrawal limit. I decide to try to get it through anyway on the new Chip-and-PIN system.

Bankers. They must die. )
spudtater: (Default)
( Jan. 7th, 2005 09:10 pm)
I put my mobile phone on the table next to me, and now I keep trying to use it to move the mouse cursor. (This laptop doesn't have a proper mouse.)

So, I thought, why not? Have an optical thingy on the back of your phone, so it can work as a mouse. Plug the phone into the computer (USB connector doubles as phone recharger too![0]), and it automatically goes into mouse mode; hold it upside down, using the bottom three buttons (#, 0, *) as mouse buttons.

"Why not just use a regular mouse?" you may ask. Well, laptop-sized mice have been tried many times. But few people can be bothered to carry them around; it's one more gadget. But people already use their mobile phones for everything, so why not for mousing too?

Stupidity or genius?   8^)

[0] Not to mention ringtone transferrence medium. See? I am truly in touch with the needs of the unwashed masses.

Edit: Nah, Bluetooth is the way to go with this. With definite switch-on-switch-off mouse mode so that it doesn't drain power in your pocket or interfere with random computers. And with optional cable connection for when your battery's low.
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