Archive for November, 2011

Nokia N8

Posted: November 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

As I have to go away for work in the next few weeks, I hoped that I could swap my rather basic Nokia 6303i Classic work phone for something a little bit more sleek. In a department full of cool tech, I was hoping for at least an older Android of some kind.

But no.

From the depths of the cupboard emerged a choice of a Nokia C7 or a Nokia N8. A quick Google revealed poorer reviews for the C7, so the N8 it is.

First impressions are good, right up until the OS loads and you're presented with Symbian….. yuck. Symbian on my 6303i is fine – it's "appropriate", it works and is usable. Symbian on a touch screen device just feels wrong.

Still the camera is exceptionally good – beats my HTC WildFire camera into the ground with a blunt lettuce! Battery life – the usual superior Nokia standard and I suspect that the GPS is actually psychic… Normally I get a GPS location with a decent view of the open sky, but this managed to get a lock standing in my kitchen!!!

I also like the ability to download entire maps to the device so i don't have to waste battery & bandwidth updating my map display as I move around. Means I've managed to download the maps for my next couple of trips already. No need to incur roaming data charges and have to sell body parts to pay them off.

So as a work phone, it does the job. It makes me wonder what Nokia could have done if they had dropped Symbian and started working with Android.


XBMC Current

Posted: November 23, 2011 in Watching

Just thought I’d post a couple of pictures of the curent version of XBMC. Now using the Aeon Nox skin as it shows off some of the great fan art much better than Hitchers Alaska Revisited skin.

Photos aren’t the greatest, but they’ll do for now.


Main menu – movies


Main menu – TV Shows


Main menu – Photos


Movies – Fan art


Movies – Fan art


Movies – Fan Art


Posted: November 23, 2011 in Home Media
Tags: ,

After failing totally to get either VMWare or VirtualBox to run an instance of VortexBox, I suddenly realised that what I thought was a box with 2Gb of RAM actually was pottering along with a meager 1Gb, and some of that was being used for video. I've now upped it to the motherboard limit of 2 whole Gb and the instance of VortexBox now at least runs under VirtualBox.

Now I just need to finish configuring it all so I can re-purpose the physical VortexBox for an unRAID trial.


Posted: November 22, 2011 in Hardware
So I bought a small SSD (~30Gb) to use as the main drive for the XBMC box in the lounge. Now I know that I need TRIM support… but that isn’t in the Ubuntu 10.04 minimal version kernel I used to build the original XBMC box. So I thought I’d rebuild from scratch and just jump up to 10.10 to get TRIM support from the newer kernel.

As usual though, it’s never easy… the kernel supplied with 10.10 has a kind of semi-LIRC included… this means that none of the remote controls now work… After lots of reading and trying various options, I now have a working remote again.

Thinking that I might revert to the older 120Gb HDD and Ubuntu 10.04…. And that I’ll try OpenELEC on the SSD to see if it gives me anything new….

Anyway, the new SSD means that the drone of HDD and fan is now reduced to just the drone of the fan and I’ll get to that one day.

Sorry – couldn’t find it when I first wrote this, but I used an article on Mike Trellos blog to help with the SSD optimisation.