Thursday 20 April 2006

Technology problem

Yesterday, my laptop automatically downloaded updates from I reviewed the updates and installed them all. Nothing unusual there.

But now I have a problem which, prior to that installation, I had never experienced. If I try to open or save any file in any Office application, the file directory window pops-up as normal, but if I click on any folder in that window, the application locks up and I get an “application not responding” error.

I use Office applications about, oooh, 50 times a day. So this is a serious problem. Suggestions? (If anyone says “buy a Mac”, I’ll tear them limb from limb). I’ve reported the error to Microsoft and also requested email support.

EDIT: I’ve performed a system restore back to the restore point created when I booted up yesterday morning, and all now seems to be working correctly. When Windows Update offers up the updates again, I’m going to decline them, I think.

FURTHER EDIT: updates installed, problem solved. Thanks to Mr LMG (see comments).

Wednesday 19 April 2006

Give money

Following some silliness over at Gordon’s site, I’ve finally updated the support grayblog page.

Tuesday 18 April 2006

Flawed logic

I’m not sure that I follow the logic that is suggested in this news report that a speed camera in road works is not there to reduce speed but to increase revenue.

Have you ever walked on a motorway? I have. I had the misfortune to breakdown on the M27 once and had to walk about 500 yards to an SOS phone (this was in the days before mobiles). It is not a pleasant experience.

Each year, many people are killed on the hard shoulder in similar circumstances. The news article gives figures for the number of road workers killed and injured each year. I never feel any envy for the blokes putting out cones and signs when people are passing them at 80 – 90mph.

Speed limits in roadworks are there for the benefit of those people working to maintain the roads you drive on. There is a simple and effective way of reducing the danger to them and avoiding getting a speeding ticket and penalty points – SLOW DOWN. There, it’s not rocket science. Leave ten minutes earlier, check the web for roadworks information, use any of the dozen or so mobile advice services (they are free on my phone).

Incidentally, I saw a very effective use of technology recently to overcome the perceived problem of bunching and "panic braking" (which is caused only by those who think it is smart to speed up between cameras, because the speed limit only counts where you might get caught, obviously). On the roadworks on the A1(M), they have erected the cameras that read your number plate when you enter a section of road and read it again when you leave (the section of road in this case being the three miles or so that are currently being resurfaced) – and, by so doing, calculate your average speed on the section. I only saw one speeding driver (who deserved his ticket) – everyone else was observing the 50mph limit without bunching or panic braking and the traffic was moving freely – probably adding only a couple of minutes to the journey time. Perhaps this type of camera should be more widely used instead of the familiar Gatso.

Rant over.

Monday 17 April 2006


For those that were concerned about His whereabouts, Vaughan is currently exploring that which is humdrum.


Black arm-bands all round.