Jan 20 2012

Friends back in Astana-whoever…

Category: TweetsChrisM @ 2:45 am

Friends back in Astana-whoever is in G&R next,please thank a barman 4introducing me2 Long Island Iced Tea.Mum, John & I sampling my attempts

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Oct 21 2011

Just about to finally leave th…

Category: Tim's Photos,TweetsChrisM @ 2:04 am

Just about to finally leave the hospital! Thanks to all our friends & family for your lovely msgs. http://t.co/7UJkrx4E

Chris And Tim Merriman in Singleton Hospital, Swansea, Wales

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Nov 02 2006

New Experience

Category: Friends,PersonalChrisM @ 10:45 am

A friend dropped their PC off today, to sort two issues…

First was easy enough, their portable (USB) hard drive required more juice than his motherboard/PSU could supply. Unfortunately, the drive didn’t come with a separate AC/DC power supply, although it sports a socket for such a transformer. Given the state of finding normal power/audio/video accessories over here, I’ve suggested an easier solution, but less expensive than grabbing a new PSU for the PC. I double checked, and as long as it is of the powered, rather than passive, variety, a new USB hub should solve the problem. Unusual for a USB hub to be the solution to a problem, rather than the cause, but there we go. This way, the USB is only used for data to/from the PC, the power is supplied completely separately by the hub itself.

Next we have a fun issue, where, seemingly at random, the windows GUI flips out and reverts to Windows 98 flat style. No particular software or activity seems to trigger it, so I finally got round to obtaining a Russian Windows XP disc, and will have a go at restoring explorer.exe and ntoskrnl.exe to their original states. If all else goes wrong, he hasn’t reinstalled XP since he got the PC, and some of his friends pride themselves on their l33t hacking & ‘virus’ writing skills, so I’m backing up his entire personal data collection over night (damn D-Link router runs @ 100MBit, not 1GBit, I’m now too lazy to disconnect and patch up direct one to one…) Also running anti virus scans on full depth once xfer is complete.

Had a nice meal and drink with him and his parents (friends with the in-laws), and introduced them to Angel Delight (Andy & KZBlog, you know your days are numbered :P). Already got Igor hooked up to Marmite…

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Oct 19 2006

Alex Is Back

Category: Friends,PersonalChrisM @ 1:28 am

Helloooooooooooooooooooooo Alex. Really glad to hear from you again. Don’t feel bad about the delay in comms – most UK friends haven’t contacted us in ages, some since we left the UK! Anyway, will mail you when I’ve finished off current batch of work this evening…

Back to stuff other people might find intersting…

I was looking at some random USB gadgets, and found this page, which actually grew from the original, but that page is in Japanese, so check them both out for the fuller picture. A quick summary is that someone decided to crank up the heat generated from their USB coffee cup warmer to the point that it now fries meat!

Next we have some interesting news about a batch of Video iPods that came pre-installed with some delightful code for PC owners. Apple deny any deliberate subterfuge on their part.

Finally, whilst checking out pages to place links on for my clock website, I discovered this little gem. I’ve considered petitioning Irina to get a similar setup in our living room, but gave up quite quickly. I think I’ve been lucky enough to get this nice PC desk…

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Aug 18 2006

A Little Later Than Intended

Category: Kazakh Driving,Kazakhstan,Personal,PicturesChrisM @ 3:12 am

OK, as promised, here is some more info, from Mum & John’s perspective.

This is basically a cut’n’paste job from an e-mail they sent to family and friends (with permission I hasten to add ;>)

“”For those of you ancient enough to Radio 4 be familiar with Alistair Cooke’s “Letter from America” this is likely to seem a pale comparison. Certainly less erudite and not as well crafted – but hopefully it will inform and maybe even amuse, though the political comment will be markedly absent!

This is Carol’s second visit to this amazing country and my first. As we flew in at night the lack of any settlements for hundreds of miles prior to landing in Astana was perplexing. It was hard to comprehend such vast tracts of land without population. Then Astana appears on the Kazakh Steppes resembling a modern Emirate city. Disney could not have bettered it! When Carol was here last she arrived through the back door, via the old capital of Almaty, then a twenty three hour train journey across a hot and dusty terrain. She made the trip for her son (Chris) & daughter in law’s (Irina) marriage. Jokingly she had said as she left to Irina’s father that he was to have a new airport built on her return. He did – and a pretty impressive airport to boot! It is so refreshing to see architecture which is not afraid to be adventurous, particularly in the teeth of such extreme weather conditions. Thankfully on this trip it has been kind to Carol & me, between 21°C & 30°C. The temperature can famously vary between -30°C in the winter to +40°C during the short summer months.
Continue reading “A Little Later Than Intended”

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Jul 23 2006

Update for Kazakhstan category

Category: KazakhstanChrisM @ 12:06 am

Several posts have been edited. Assuming you’re family or friends, please check your inbox for more information.


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Jul 17 2006


Category: Friends,KazakhstanChrisM @ 2:12 pm

OK, this category has been set aside for any friends & family who are thinking about coming over to visit us here in Kazakhstan some time.

Feel free to check out the other posts, which are about my business sites. Right now, SkyDiving-News.org is the only one I’ve created myself, but there will hopefully be more to come in the next few weeks. I want to say a BIG thank you to MattG for all his help so far. He has made some excellent videos to guide me through the processes required to setup the sites, and all the other technical gubbins therein associated, and also spent a lot of time replying to my badly formed e-mails requesting more details.
Please feel free to leave comments or requests for more info here. If I don’t get back to you quickly enough, try e-mailing me. (Please don’t forget this area isn’t private, anyone on the net will be able to read it ;> )

To those already committed to coming (Mum&John, closely followed by ChrisD) , a BIG BIG thank you, I still have a huge dopey grin on my face just thinking about you coming over.

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