Customer Service counts for 99% of a transaction

If you like trainers (and who doesn’t?) I strongly recommend TrainerStation. Their customer service is second to none – every time I’ve ordered something from them it’s arrived the next day, and if there have been problems (like not fitting, or technical glitches) they have been absolutely on top of it and incredibly helpful. And they do retro Adidas, which is real weakness of mine….

It ain’t over ’til the loose head sings

This is the second time since the creation of Premiership Rugby ™ that Gloucester have finished the regular season at the top of the table. Last time (the first year of the competition) we got spanked by Wasps in the final. This time there’s a real chance we could actually claim the title as well as the moral victory.

It’s been a phenomenal season that really lived up to the promise that we showed last year – how much that’s been helped by an early exit from Europe and a very heavy Six Nations schedule I can’t comment. Regardless here’s hoping that we cement the success in the final two matches.

Thunderbird, PDFs, evince and kubuntu

Part of the problem (that’s perhaps a little unfair, but hey, bear with me) of an automatically updated Kubuntu desktop is that sometimes the defaults change, and you end up with a change that you aren’t happy with. Recently, and for no reason I could divine, the default viewer for PDFs in Thunderbird (mail client) changed to evince. This should, of course, be fine, but for yet more reasons I can’t divine evince can’t print. Or rather, can only occasionally print, which is frankly worse.

After about a month of muttering to myself I finally broke and tried to find out what the hell was going on… It’s not defined in the Attachments menu (in Thunderbird Edit -> Preferences -> Attachments -> View & edit actions). It’s not defined in the system Default Applications (from the ‘start’ button System Settings -> Default Applications). It’s not even defined using update-alternatives. Instead (and thanks to Tim Fredrick’s site for pointing me in the right direction) it’s defined in /usr/share/applications/defaults.list. In that file look for the line starting application/pdf and change the value to be the .desktop file of your choice, relative to the /usr/share/applications directory. In my case my app of choice is KPDF, and so I have changed my line to read as follows:



Dear God

While I wilf hideously the TV is currently on in the background, showing Channel 4’s The Human Footprint. I’ve no idea where they get their stats, but they’ve just stated a remarkable ‘fact’:

There are now more households in Britain that own two cars than own two novels

Is that really true? Christ.


I’ve been wondering for a while about tracking comments on blogs…. There’s a group of us who have been in electronic contact for years and years. It started out as a mailing list, but over the past few years moved through IRC to the current network of blogs.

What I’ve been feeling the lack of with this move to blogging rather than mailing lists is the conversation. If I comment on a blog I have to remember to watch that post to see the replies and possibly comment again. The minute I post more than one or two comments to one or two blogs I find it impossible to track the conversations that I’m involved in. This has meant, so far, that I’ve been pretty taciturn when it comes to commenting on other people’s blogs.

I was muttering about this today prior to a planning session with a customer (so much so that my mutterings made in to a User Story) and thought that a) I can’t be the only person with this problem, b) it’s a very web2.0 problem, and c) someone must have built something to solve it already.

And indeed they have… I’m currently trialing both coComment and Apologies in advance for the possible outpourings to come…. It’s all in the name of research, obviously.

Also, my apologies to Mark for not getting it (at all) when he suggested that we built almost exactly this type of system back last summer. To be fair, we built Sleevenotez instead, so it wasn’t an /awful/ mistake, but still…