David Preston

Musings of an old bloke.



A 'Wow' & Two 'wtf?'s - My Day Using Google

Posted about 2 months ago (13 February 2015 4:05 pm) by David Preston

I use Google a lot - most people probably do. Usually nothing worth even a raised eyebrow comes of it but today has been significantly different. The big G has thrown me a series of curveballs all day.

First off, some background - this morning I bought tickets to watch Chic at the Apollo in Manchester next month. The resulting emails arrived in my Gmail inbox and were duly archived. Google Map with personalised contentSomewhat later I realised I had no idea of the Apollo's location in Manchester, so I hopped on Google. What I saw on the Google Maps page made me smile. The email had had the date and time of the gig, and Google had read (and understood) this information and presented a reminder on the page. That's definitely a 'wow'. I fully expect that my phone will remind me about the gig as well, when the time comes, although I want to leave that as a surprise so I haven't checked.

Google postcode serpsNow the first 'wtf'. I was googling a postcode and noticed the description (in the image). WTF Google? Your own robots.txt file excludes your own crawler? I did try to have a look at the Google Maps robots.txt file but it was a 404. Which is a bit of a wtf in itself.

Google Cricket World Cup widgetSecond 'wtf' is a cracker. Google is currently (at the time of writing) showing a Google Doodle to mark the start of the Cricket World Cup. When you click on said image, it takes you to a SERPs page about the competition, headed by the widget shown in the image. Which is all fine and dandy until you notice the note at bottom right (highlighted). "All times are in British Summer Time". Google, you're drunk.

It's February. British Summer Time (daylight saving time elsewhere in the world) doesn't start until the last weekend in March, when the clocks go forward one hour. So, the times in that widget, are they really GMT+1? Or is the note just bunkum? WTF?

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Categories: Uncategorised

Tags: Google

From the Archives

Posted about 6 months ago (2 November 2014 1:28 pm) by David Preston

I was clicking through some folders of old (very old, actually) stuff, and found and old website that I had at the beginning of the century. It was a blog in all but name, even though I referred to it at the time as my Angling Diary. The files I found ran from November 2000 to June 2001. I used to fish a lot around then!

I thought it would be a bit of fun to reproduce it here, even with some of the tiny, horrible, pixelated photos, for which I apologise.

You can find all of the posts in the category From my old Angling Diary.

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Categories: Uncategorised

Southport Air Show 2014

Posted about 6 months ago (27 October 2014 6:43 pm) by David Preston

The Red Arrows The Red Arrows

I had a day out at the Southport Air Show a few weeks ago. It was held over a weekend, the Saturday suffering from pretty gloomy weather with low cloud. I went on the Sunday, when conditions were much more suitable.

Here are a few photos.

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Categories: Out & About

dpreston.com Now Powered by ProcessWire

Posted about 6 months ago (24 October 2014 6:45 pm) by David Preston

After years of neglect, during which time server upgrades and Wordpress awkwardness almost rendered this blog completely inoperable, I finally made the leap to change its backend to ProcessWire.

I first discovered ProcessWire a couple of years ago, and have built several sites with it since, mostly small ones but the odd biggie.

The following ProcessWire modules are in use -

And kinda surprisingly, that's all.

The front end of the site uses a couple of ready made CSS files -

The daft idea originally was to avoid JS as much as possible, but it snuck in all over the place eventually.

It's going to be permanently 'in beta', and used as a testbed where appropriate fun.

Let me know what you think in the comments section.

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Categories: Web Development

Tags: Processwire

Prime Minister Follows Parody Darth Vader On Twitter

Posted about 3 years ago (25 May 2012 12:00 am) by David Preston

I’m not sure if this is good, bad, cool, uncool or just plain weird. The official Twitter account of the British Prime Minister follows a spoof Darth Vader account!

Well, I suppose Cameron is something of a parody of a Prime Minister anyway, so why not?

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Categories: Uncategorised