About the only interesting safety briefing I’ve ever seen


The Jolly Roger

* Keep Safe, Well And In Touch


The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

It’s a public holiday here in Uganda, National Women’s Day.

I searched the Internet to see when National Men’s Day is to no avail. The Telegraph website has a top level tab called ‘Women’, but none for those of the opposite gender. ‘men’ are increasingly conspicuous by the absence in a growing number of places and situations, I think their main role these days is as a sperm donor, but even that is probably under threat somewhere in a medical research laboratory.

The Good – nice to see this from all three people involved, a dying breed these days


The Bad – how low can one go?


The Ugly – no peace for Greece?


Back to some work in my home office, a swim in the complex pool beckons later as the temperature nears 30C in winter near the Equator.

Leatherman Tread bracelet is the first truly useful ‘wearable’

Leatherman Tread bracelet is the first truly useful ‘wearable’

I might get one, not much different from my current watch strap, but infinitely more useful, especially when working in strange places with questionable people (H/T BBC’s John Simpson).

My own Leatherman tool is one of the earlier designs, I have had it for 18 years, SO useful.  We once bought a meat joint that was too large for our oven in out rented place in Tanzania.

“No problem, I will saw through it with my  Leatherman. ”

“No way,” said SWTSMBO, and 10 minutes later was a convert, although I still won’t let her use it. 

I have other tools.



The Jolly Roger

* Keep Safe, Well And In Touch

Look Mum, no hands! Remember Airwolf and Stringfellow Hawk?

They had nothing on this.

This is a photo of the Global Hawk UAV . . . . 

Global Hawk 000782


. . . . that recently returned from the war zone under its own power.

(Iraq to Edward’s AFB in CA) – Not transported via C5 or C17.

Note the mission paintings on the fuselage,
It’s actually over 250 missions.
(And I would suppose 25 air medals.)

That’s a long way for a remotely piloted aircraft.
Think of the technology as well as the required quality of the data link
to fly it remotely from a source thousands of miles away.

Not only that, but the pilot controls it from a nice warm control panel
at Edwards AFB, CA.

It can stay up for almost 2 days at altitudes above 60k feet.

The Global Hawk is controlled via satellite.
It flew missions that went from Edwards AFB, CA. and back nonstop.

Basically, they come into the fight, fire their AMRAAMS, and no one ever sees them or paints with radar.
There is practically no radio chatter because all the guys in the flight are tied
together electronically and can see who is targeting who, and they have AWACS
(Airborne Early Warning and Control Systems) direct input,
as well as 360° situational awareness from that and other sensors.

The enemy had a definite morale problem before it was all over.

It is to air superiority what the jet engine was to aviation.

It can taxi out, take off, fly a mission, return, land and taxi back on its own.

There are no blackouts, pilot fatigue, relief tubes, ejection seats,
and best of all, no dead pilots, and no POWs.

 Hello ISIS…I am here to assist your trip to meet Allah


When I’m cleaning windows

Actually, this is nothing to do with the late, great George Formby, or Peter Sellers doing an impression of the ukulele genius – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SA_FLKHPR88

Today the next Windows will be opened.  The link below from the Telegraph shows the various versions over the years.

My first was Windows 3, but I skipped out Windows 2000 and Vista and am currently using 8.1


I’ve dabbled with other operating systems and started when DOS 2.x was the standard about 30 years ago.

For all the brickbats and flak thrown at MS Windows by Apple fanbois and other OS advocates over the years, I still stick with Windows.  Why?  Because in the developing world where I work it is by far the most ubiquitous system, even if most of the installations are pirated versions, along with MS Office.

I tried the iPad for 6 months, then got frustrated with it as well as the Apple Business Model, and sold it here in Uganda in 2013.  On the other SWTSMBO (http://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/SWTSMBO) loves her iPad so much I’m thinking of naming it as a co-respondent should we start divorce proceedings.

My current mix of IT kit is:

Notebook: Lenovo Thinkpad T440p with Windows 8.1, Office 2010 etc

Tablet: Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 – a nice size, about A5 in dimensions

Smartphone: Samsung Galaxy Note II

Each Note model comes with a pen, ideal for taking notes on the fly, no more pocket notebooks.  The Note 8.0 now has Office for Android Preview versions of Excel, Powerpoint and Word. Both Note models as well as the Lenovo have MS OneNote which can take handwriting and synchronised across all three devices.

I reckon I’ll probably go for Windows 10 later this year, if only because I may have to help out a colleague later with it.