March 18th, 2012


Interesting Links for 18-03-2012


The Google Contacts UI sucks

I just spent half an hour tidying my Google contacts, and gettng the list down from 370-odd people to 259, by deleting a bunch of not-actually-people and people-I'm-never-going-to-email-again, and merging together a bunch of contacts.

This process reminded me how much I hate Web UIs. There's always a lag between clicking on something and it opening up, keyboard support is minimal, and frankly the whole process is just less pleasant than using a proper UI.

Which is why I shudder whenever someone tells me that the future of applications is the web. Brrrrr.

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overwhelming firepower

I got my technology working!

Whilst tidying the flat today* we found the bluetooth keyboard that I bought so that I could write when at writing group, before I had a laptop. It worked perfectly with my Nokia N95 (and possibly also with my N80, I'm not sure when I bought the keyboard), and was very handy if I wanted to write more than a paragraph of text. My previous phone had an earlier version of Android that didn't support bluetooth keyboards (I think support came in with the tablets in version 3), and that was frustrating. I spent many hours trying to get it working, with no success. With my Galaxy Nexus it worked instantly. Nowadays I use Swype on the phone, and while it's the best touch-screen keyboard I've used it's still nowhere near as good as an actual keyboard, even if said keyboard is a teeny-tiny folding one.

So now I have a keyboard I can carry with me when I don't want to carry a whole laptop around. I don't think I actively need one at the moment, but it's nice to know it's there.

*My mother is visiting the day that we get back from holiday. Between now and then we have precisely two evenings in the country, and on one of those we're meeting the Hotel Wedding people. Tidying is thus the order of the day.

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pickup lines

In which Julie makes me cereal by accident

Julie likes cereal bars/flapjacks, but finds them too sweet. So she looked up how to make them online, and has since made a few different variations on a theme.

Some of them worked very badly, because our cooker was made in the 1800s and has a barking mad oven design that has the flame under a metal plate so that the heat all comes from a massive area of extreme hotness at the bottom of the oven. This means that cakes (for example) burn on the bottom while still being uncooked on the top. Oh, and because it's so old the temperature is dodgy, so "200°" actually means "somewhere between 180° and 220°", which also makes baking tricky. God, I'm looking forward to our new kitchen so much.

Anyway, the most recent experiment just left most of the sugar out, so that it would be less sweet. Which would be the point that she found out that sugar is one of the binding agents, and what she produced wasn't so much "cereal bars" as "cereal".

Which I have thus been intermittently eating, as it's less sugary than the cereal you buy in the shops, while being tastier than most of it too.

I'm sure that when I started writing this there was a moral to the story, but I have no idea what it was. I think I'll go with "Accidental cooking is awesome. Yum."

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