Feb 23 2008

118 Video

Category: In The Media,VideosChrisM @ 2:29 am

To my UK readers, this has nothing to do with pretend marathon runners with dodgy 70s moustaches…
I was watching one of the Swiss satellite TV channels, when a strange advert came on. It was a music video, with some a very distracting women, and some firefighters. All singing un un huit. Back in Britain, numbers starting 118 are the replacements for our old BT directory enquiry service; as it turns out, there was a connection.
Anyway, more on that later, for now, check this out…

As it turns out, since France followed the European trends to have 118 (or at least 118 xxx) as the directory enquiries number, the Swiss Fire Service has been receiving a lot of calls for people wanting phone numbers, rather than report a fire. So they made a video 🙂

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Jan 22 2008

Happy Birthday & FINALLY Satellite TV Is Restored

Category: PersonalChrisM @ 5:52 am

Losha’s 18th birthday is today, so a B_I_G c nomrazh denya to him.

Coincidentally, he bought round a new satellite receiver for us. We originally though the dish on the roof had been knocked off course, then a sat. guy thought the LNB itself was knackered, but it now appears the STB was broken.

Anyway more details later on, as I’m now out to join Losha and his parents for a celebratory meal…

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Nov 26 2007

A Month Of Random Contacts…

Category: Friends,KazakhstanChrisM @ 12:39 am

During the last month or so, I have been contacted by a number of people, all related to Kazakhstan strangely enough. First we had someone who has built a plane and called it Berkut (which is also the name of a vodka over here), an English guy moving to Astana who wanted some more information about satellite TV and supermarkets, an Australian guy who is moving here in December, with his Russian wife, and finally an Indian (apologies if incorrect, his surname sounds Hindu to me) architect, living in New York who designed the local Cinema City complex (he wanted some photos of it, as his current ones weren’t too good).
I’m hopefully passing the vodka on to an American friend, so the plane builder can celebrate the flight with a suitably named drink, we’re looking forward to meeting some new faces here in Astana at some point, and the architect has been put in touch with Tom, who has better camera skills than me, so should have some better shots than those captured last night at Tiflis.
Anyway, they all made contact through finding this blog, so a big thanks to the search engines out there who are spidering away 🙂

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Aug 18 2007

This Is London Calling

Category: In The MediaChrisM @ 9:02 pm

The Russian language version of BBC Radio will no longer be accessible via FM radio. Many commentators have noticed this occurring prior to Russian Parliamentary elections, and a Presidential election next year, when Mr Putin will want a little more control over what is stated about him and his policies. Although the Russian station that broadcast the BBC’s output is denying any political involvement in the decision making process, two other stations recently stopped broadcasting the BBC programs, and complained that everyone knows the BBC’s output is simply the UK’s propaganda machine. This raises an interesting question for me – if the bosses truly believed that, then why did they originally make the deal in the first place? One piece of information the BBC article neglects to mention is that the Russian language service is still also available on satellite, at the very least by people pointed at the Hotbird satellite.
PS I know this has been put in the Satellite TV category, but I do not have a separate section for Satellite Radio…

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Aug 14 2007

The Missing Link

Category: In The MediaChrisM @ 5:37 am

A couple of months ago I posted about Charlie from Lost, or rather the actor that played that role. I included a couple of screen shots from an earlier role (Geoffrey Shawcross) he played in the ‘Hetty Wainthropp Investigates’ drama. Today I caught another episode in which Dominic Monaghan looks more like a young man than a teenager, slowly bridging the gap, looks wise, between Geoffrey and Charlie. Anyway, the shots are below.

Charlie - Lost

original first image lost somewhere, somehow, sorry…

Geoffrey Shawcross Charlie Pace Dominic Monaghan Lost Hetty Wainthropp Investigates

Geoffrey Shawcross Charlie Pace Dominic Monaghan Lost Hetty Wainthropp Investigates

Geoffrey Shawcross Charlie Pace Dominic Monaghan Lost Hetty Wainthropp Investigates 2

Hmm, seeing the pictures all together, maybe it was just the haircut, but watching the Hetty Wainthropp episode today, the cars looked a little more modern, and the character now has a love interest, so I am assuming there was at least a series or two between the episodes. The BBC Prime Satellite TV channel seems to do that quite a lot with their shows – jump around, and not follow chronological order. ‘My Family’ is the most obvious example of that – people keep getting younger and older, moving out of the house to live on their own, then the next day everyone is younger and living together again. Can’t really complain, it is still just brilliant to have any English language comedy and drama to watch, without having to download them 🙂

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Jul 17 2007

Britain Expels Russian Intelligence Officers

Category: In The Media,PersonalChrisM @ 5:01 am

According to a BBC article, Britain has ordered four diplomatic staff to leave the country, in retaliation for Russia refusing to allow extradition of the main suspect in the murder of Alexander Litvinenko, Andrei Lugovoi.
Russia claims that such behaviour is immoral which is an interesting phrase to use. I can not help wondering what the original Russian word used was, and whether it has any other translations commonly used from it. I saw piece on this issue a couple of days ago on Russia Today, a satellite TV channel we pick up. The station appears to do little to dispel the rumours of high levels of Kremlin policy extension through the media in its portrayal of Western governments and non-criticism of the top dogs over in Moscow.

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Jun 08 2007


Category: PersonalChrisM @ 5:20 pm

I have just realised that a lot of the categories on this blog have been ignored somewhat recently, I’ll be trying to add to them over the next couple of weeks. Let me know what you think, or if there is any particular area that you would like to see more detail in.
Hopefully, Aquariums, Aromatherapy, Bikinis, Bracelets, Hoodia Plants, Clocks, Glycolic Acid, Grills, Heart, Low Carbohydrates, Pilates, Saffron, Satellite TV, Watches & Yoga will all be receiving a lot more posts soon.

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May 05 2007

Satellite TV Has Returned

Category: Kazakhstan,PersonalChrisM @ 12:33 pm

As you might remember, we recently had high winds, which blew our satellite dish on the roof off-target again. Luckily, our satellite guys came round this morning, and pointed it back at the Hotbird sats.
Rubber Smiley
I had previously asked Irina if we could maybe concrete the dish into position, as we’ve had these problems before. I found out this morning why that isn’t necessarily a good solution; the guys had just finished replacing a large dish that had been concreted into position. The reason? The dish had actually broken in the high winds – the stresses and strains placed upon it by the wind had no relief available by simply moving the dish, so the whole structure buckled down. Given the choice between buying a new dish after each heavy wind, and simply waiting for the guys to re-point it, I think we know the best solution.
The guys themselves are very friendly, and didn’t even charge us to sort it all out. One part I’m still confused over is the signal amplifier they connected inline with the co-ax cable. Any sort of electronic amplifier must, by definition, be active, not passive, but there is no PSU for this little adapter. I know you can have 12/13.8V DC on a sat co-ax, provided by the decoder, but I checked the menu settings, and the voltage appears to be off right now – 0 volts!
Whatever the reason for it working, I’m glad, the signal quality stats have improved, and one of the channels that previously wasn’t watchable, even when the dish was pointed correctly, now works 🙂 .

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Sep 19 2006

Satellite TV Systems – Which, How Much And Why

Category: PersonalChrisM @ 12:33 am

Although slightly biased towards the USA market, www.all-about-satellitetv.com still has a lot of technological explanations that remain valid throughout the world.

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