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Monday, 12 November 2018 Dereel Images for 12 November 2018
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Braving the elements
Topic: gardening Link here

We have planted some of our snow pea plants, but they still look very delicate. Now, however, the ones still in the house are starting to flower. To my surprise, it wasn't even the first flower. There's also a pod on the plant:


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Time to plant them? No, it seems. The ones that I planted three days ago have not exactly improved, and neither have the creepers:

 
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Why? And what can I do about it?


Tuesday, 13 November 2018 Dereel Images for 13 November 2018
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The four horsemen, finally
Topic: animals Link here

Nele Kömle showed up this morning, primarily to do something with Chris Bahlo, but of course they didn't miss the opportunity to go riding. Finally we have the Four Horse(wo)men:

 
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We didn't get round to assigning names. In principle Chris should be war, but she was in civvies today. Then there are questions of colour, which are more complicated than I realized. But there was no white (grey) horse, and assigning the colours red, black and “pale” to the others is difficult enough.


The joys of GPS tracking
Topic: technology, opinion Link here

Ruth took her mobile phone with her riding and recorded the track with an app called Runtastic. She showed it to me on her phone, and the map didn't look bad. I asked her to send me the log. How do you do that? How, indeed? Despite the obvious contradiction, mobile phones are surprisingly isolated. But no, she found a way to send it to me as an email:

Ruth hat ein runtastisches Reiten über 5,83 km in 48m 18s absolviert

https://www.runtastic.com/sport-sessions/4a6e4acc-5caa-4360-9c66-7f3cea9b75ff?sharing_token=5bea382f3b90413c285a589b&share_locale=de&utm_content=session.runtastic.riding&utm_source=runtastic.lite&utm_medium=gplus.android&utm_campaign=user_generated_sharing

Von meinem Xperia™ von Sony-Smartphone gesendet

Why didn't I look at the HTML version? Why, didn't I look at the HTML version? That was HTML, but they were too polite to put the link in an a tag.

OK, paste the link into a browser. “You're not allowed to see this map. Log in or sign up”. No, sorry, Runtastic, I don't want anything to do with you. I just want to see the log, which is Ruth's private property.

Is it on her phone? It's almost worth searching for. But in the meantime I went to put up my track log for Sunday. I've done this on several occasions using GPS Visualizer and then saved the route as a Google Map. But no, that was yesterday. Now I need an API key.

What a pain! The signup took me the best part of 30 minutes (admittedly much longer because I collected screen shots and tried out various things that no sane person would do).

The first time round, the web site hung after I pressed (presumably the wrong) CONTINUE button:

 
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After that, things seemed to go around in circles. I seemed to get this page several times with slightly different reactions:

 
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And then it wanted my credit card number (“just checking”):

 
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Sorry, Google, I really don't trust you. But it's documented here that you want the number (be careful not to lose it!). So I entered my credit card number the way it is on the credit card, with spaces after every group of four digits. And like always (web programmers seem to live in an alternate universe), it flagged “credit card number invalid”.

This time, however, it proved that it was right. I had a typo in the number. Fix that, and it accepted the card number with spaces. One point to Google. It seems that it checks whatever inbuilt validity checks there are in credit card numbers (checksum? CRC?).

But it still wasn't happy:


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OK, Google, what does “optional” mean? Deduct one point from Google. So I gave it my answer-only phone number and was finally presented with:

 
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10 APIs! I'm reminded of xkcd:

Image

But then it was done, and finally I was presented with:


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There was no option to reply. Clearly it doesn't want to know much about me.

And finally I have my map, except that I can no longer embed it in a web page (or if I can, they've done a good job of hiding it):

 
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It's not clear what the purpose of the apple symbol at bottom left is, but it doesn't produce a menu. Apart from that, the map doesn't seem to be very accurate either. But I suppose that's what you get for having your GPS receiver in your shirt pocket. And the straight line in the middle of the noose? “Sorry, forgot where I was” on the part of the phone.

Sigh


Sex party next weekend?
Topic: politics, opinion Link here

While walking the dogs, got a strange phone call. In fact, any call on my mobile phone is strange. I've forgotten the name of the caller, but he said that he was from the Reason Party. What? Oh, how about a sex party? Do I know that? No, at any rate not as a political party.

It seems that somebody has put me down as a sympathizer or similar, and he didn't just want me to vote for them: he wanted me to help on election day (next Saturday). He had my phone number (obviously) and my canonical email address. I asked him to send me some information, but I didn't receive any.


This page contains (roughly) yesterday's and today's entries. I have a horror of reverse chronological documents, so all my diary entries are chronological. This page normally contains the last two days, but if I fall behind it may contain more. You can find older entries in the archive. Note that I often update a diary entry a day or two after I write it.     Do you have a comment about something I have written? This is a diary, not a “blog”, and there is deliberately no provision for directly adding comments. But I welcome feedback and try to reply to all messages I receive. See the diary overview for more details. If you do send me a message relating to something I have written, please indicate whether you'd prefer me not to mention your name. Otherwise I'll assume that it's OK to do so.


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