Archive for October, 2012


Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 | Photos

Last week, we went to The New Conservatory for lunch. Apparently, they serve deserts, and even have a special “desert of the day.”

Apple Maps

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012 | Tech, Thoughts

Everyone knows that the new Apple Maps are rubbish, and we all want Google Maps back. This is still the case, but there is one area where Apple Maps is actually really good – “turn by turn directions”, aka the sat nav feature. George informs me that this is actually just TomTom, which probably explains it.

I don’t know if I would replace my sat nav with it – it presumably downloads maps on the fly, so what happens if you lose signal on the motorway, and how much cellular data is it using? But for getting around big cities, it looks very useful as I found it a lot better than my actual sat nav, for directions and clarity.

The power of Humanism

Monday, October 29th, 2012 | Humanism, Photos

The Swarthmore Centre have clearly tried to remove Paul’s poster from the notice board. But so great is the power of Humanism, and the glue Paul used, that they failed.

Cassandra RubyGem on Mac OSX Lion

Monday, October 29th, 2012 | Programming, Tech

If you’re trying to run Apache Cassandra with the RubyGem, you may encounter an error similar to the following.

thrift_client(0.8.1 not ~> 0.7.0)

You can fix this by editing the RubyGem.

cd /Library/Ruby/Gems/1.8/gems/cassandra-0.12.1/lib/
vim cassandra.rb

Find the line which sets the dependency.

gem 'thrift_client', '~> 0.7.0'

Change it to the following.

gem 'thrift_client', '~> 0.8.0'

Your script should now run without an error.


Sunday, October 28th, 2012 | Photos

After 13 months, the drought is over. What better way to celebrate, with some champagne (pronounced sham-pag-en I believe).

Waxy candles

Saturday, October 27th, 2012 | Life

Recently, we dined at Kendalls Bistro, a French restaurant on St Peter’s Square. They had long candles in wine bottles, where the way had all hugely overflown and run down the bottle, to the level where you can only assume it is some kind of art.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a photo of it, or could find a uncopyrighted photo that looked anything like it, but it looked something like this. Anyway, you can read my review of Kendalls Bistro over on Know Leeds.

Getting old

Friday, October 26th, 2012 | Life

Today marks the first anniversary of my 25th birthday. Thanks to the spread bet I placed, that means £100 in my pocket, and an additional £100 for each year after that I survive.

Fine tuning Facebook Events

Thursday, October 25th, 2012 | Tech

If you’re tired of Facebook inviting you to lots of events you weren’t actually invited to, using a 12 hour time format and starting your week on a Saturday, never fear, it’s easy to fix.

If you go to Events, then select the cog on the right hand side, then select settings, you are able to fine tune your options.

The Payza saga

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012 | Reviews

PayPal are quite restrictive over what they think is appropriate and inappropriate uses of their service (ie, they just don’t like certain industries), so if you work in those industries you have to use someone else. Someone like Payza.

Unfortunately, if Payza aren’t a scam operation, they seem to be doing their very best to look like they are.

Earlier this year, AlertPay (the original name of the company) re-named to Payza – because re-naming is always a good sign things are going well. Whenever I have filed support tickets with them it has taken weeks for them to get back to me, and indeed getting verified look literally months!

Elsewhere, there are no shortage of complaints. Google has loads of results for Payza sucks, so much so that the operators of the company even felt the need to start up as a counter site. They also have dozens of complaints registered on the Better Business Bureau .

Then, today, they sent an email round saying that they were stopping all deposits to UK based accounts. It said they would notify us when this was back online, but failed to provide any timescale for this – days, weeks, months, ever? Who can run a business on this? It felt very much like when Fult Tilt poker had their licence suspended and ultimately closed.

If they are a legitimate company, then there are some serious questions that need answering…

  • Why does it take them weeks to respond to support requests?
  • Why do so many requests for support go unanswered?
  • Why have they repeatedly lost their licence or payment processing abilities?

Clearly, you can’t run a business on a payment processor that emails you with 12 hours notice that they will be disabling your ability to receive payments, especially when it comes with no indication when, or even if, the functionality will ever be restored.

No wonder MasterCard shelled out a third of a billion pounds for DataCash, they’re probably the closest you can come to a trusted online payment processing provider.

Viv’s birthday

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012 | Friends

Viv held her birthday party at Blackhouse, and despite having our photography course, we finally made it down there at 9:30 – still in time to order some steak! We both had the posh surf and turf, which was great, but I wish I had ordered a proper steak with hindsight.

You would think that having come from a photography course I would be able to take a good photo. But you would be wrong.