Lighting Charts – Which Lamp Do I Need?

Introduction

We are all trying to reduce energy costs and CO2 emissions by choosing modern alternatives to incandescent lamps. Here are some lighting charts to help you select the best lamp for your situation. Since the decline of incandescent lamps there have been many alternatives made available based on fluorescent tubes bent in many ways to condense a long tube into a confined space.

I had my first Philips SL prismatic Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) lamps soon after they came on the general market back in the 1980’s. I only recently sent my last one to recycling after deciding that even my shed could do better than have one of those long time warm-up devices.

Fluorescent Tubes

In the early days of low energy lighting there was nothing better than the good old fluorescent tube, usually confined to kitchens and garages in the British house. I still had two twin fluorescents in my kitchen until 2015. If you want the room lit without shadows that’s the way to do it. After much searching in 2003 I found some streamlined fluorescents fit for the modern era to replace my old fluorescent ‘chunky boxes’. Unfortunately they went off the market and I struggled to find a decent looking replacement that didn’t cost a fortune. There were some problems with the ones I used. They had a self destruct mechanism built-in. The plastic fixings for holding the wires in place on the frame all deteriorated under the ultraviolet light given out by fluorescent tubes. I replaced them with zip ties but they suffered from the same problem.

Lamp Brightness

To get back to the point of this article, which is to advise on the brightness of replacement lamps, I have chosen to publish a chart by espares lighting chart which seems to relate to the UK/European market and another by ovo-logo which relates to the American market and appears to suggest their lamps emit more light than European lamps, e.g. UK/European 100W ≅ 1300 lumens, American 100W ≅ 1600 lumens (see A USA Lighting Chart). Continue reading “Lighting Charts – Which Lamp Do I Need?”

WordPress Fatal Error Out of Memory

How I Resolved ‘Fatal Error Out of Memory’ For A Single Post

After much editing  of my WordPress post entitled ‘How A Toilet Silent Fill Valve Works’ , since I wrote it in May 2014, (there must have been at least 150 edits, and I changed it from a page to a post too) I suddenly had this ‘Fatal Error Out of Memory’ script on the WordPress White Screen of Death when I tried to edit it:

Fatal error: Out of memory (allocated 54001664) (tried to allocate 49253 bytes) in /homepages/22/d382273723/htdocs/wp-includes/wp-db.php on line 1380 Continue reading “WordPress Fatal Error Out of Memory”

Bionic Prosthetic Hand For The 21st Century

Introduction

prosthetic handI listened to the BBC Radio 2 Jeremy Vine show on 23rd June and heard a great article about a young woman who had been given a bionic prosthetic hand for the 21st century. Her name is Nicky Ashwell and here she is in the following video tweet being interviewed by Jeremy Vine who went on to receive this bebionic logo handshake. Continue reading “Bionic Prosthetic Hand For The 21st Century”

North Norfolk Railway Journey

The North Norfolk Railway

The North Norfolk Railway (NNR), known as The Poppy Line, runs from Holt to Sheringham via Kelling Heath Halt (for Kelling Heath Park) and Weybourne. A total distance of 5¼ miles. My wife, dog Leo and I road the rails there and back from Holt on 10th April 2014.

You can No.76034 having recently arrived at Holt in the featured image here.

The line runs along the part of the North Norfolk coast but stays inland from Holt to Weybourne. After Weybourne it runs nearer the coast on its way to Sheringham. A map of the line is available at http://www.strollingguides.co.uk/ and the line is  highlighted here on Google Earth (which must be installed to see it).

Continue reading “North Norfolk Railway Journey”

Mira Shower Thermal Switch Replacement

Introduction

This article advises how I have replaced a Mira Shower thermal switch in a MIRA Sport 9kW Thermostatic Shower on several occasions.

Originally I installed a MIRA Sport 9kW Thermostatic Shower as part of a new bathroom and had it tested and certified by a qualified electrician on 1st May 2007. I was very pleased with it and it worked well for three years until June 2010 when it developed a fault.

I found that in the middle of taking a shower the water would go cold for a few seconds and then get warm again. On the first few occasions I wondered if cold water being drawn off by other taps and appliances was lowering the water pressure to the shower and so causing it to operate incorrectly (although the low pressure light was not illuminating). As the days went by the problem got worse and my wife ended up washing shampoo off with cold water. I knew then that I would be in bad books until it was fixed.

I had to determine if this fault could be fixed or if I would have to replace the entire shower unit. For this I needed to take a look inside the shower unit.

Continue reading “Mira Shower Thermal Switch Replacement”

Dishwasher Rinse Aid Dispenser Catch Repair

Introduction

It must be nearly two years ago that I first had a problem with my Dishwasher Rinse Aid Dispenser Catch. The tab that has to be pushed towards the top of the door to open the rinse aid dispenser, so that more rinse aid can be added, had somehow broken and disappeared. I found I could continue to open it by pressing the remaining catch towards the top of the door using the handle end of a teaspoon.

Since refilling the rinse aid dispenser doesn’t happen everyday I was happy to continue with that opening method indefinitely. However about six months ago I found the entire catch was missing leaving the rinse aid dispenser door flapping in the breeze. I searched inside the dishwasher and found the plastic part of the catch but not the coil spring. Also when I inserted the catch its retaining clips no longer wanted to spring outwards and perform their retaining action. The whole plastic catch appeared to have been eroded by the dishwashing process. I noticed that the dishwasher liquid dispenser catch looks similarly eroded, but that works on a different principal and is still O.K. The detergent and rinse aid compartment covers are made of a different plastic which has not shown signs of erosion.

After several months without using rinse aid I decided I should take action to fix the catch. Continue reading “Dishwasher Rinse Aid Dispenser Catch Repair”

Browser Choice In Microsoft Windows Ends

Browser Choice – What’s That About

In December 2009 the European Union obliged Microsoft to offer a choice of browsers to their European customers when they installed new versions of Windows. This browser choice was also delivered in updates to Windows and so the Browser Choice screen was born and has been with us ever since. See my featured image of Microsoft’s browser choice screen offering Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari, Mozilla Firefox and the Opera browsers amongst others.

Browser Choice Ends

It turns out that this requirement by the EU had a time limit of five years which has now expired. Consequently Microsoft have quietly withdrawn the option to choose other browsers and returned to providing Internet Explorer alone. People can of course continue to use other browsers with Windows as they see fit but Internet Explorer is now what comes out of the box. Continue reading “Browser Choice In Microsoft Windows Ends”

Cleaning A Nespresso Aeroccino Milk Frother

Introduction

nespresso aeroccino milk frother
The Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother with milk burnt onto the bottom.

I’ve had a Nespresso Pixie since June 2012 and at the same time I acquired a Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother (Aeroccino 3 to be precise). These devices are very nice to have and work well even after 2½ years continual use. The coffee is very nice too.

NOTE: The Nespresso Aeroccino 3 has been superseded by the Nespresso Aeroccino 4.

However there is a slight problem with the Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother but it is not insurmountable. It’s very easy to burn milk on the bottom where the most intense heat is applied. You can see it burnt on in this picture where the whisk has been removed.

This article advises how to keep a Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother clean. There are pictures portraying the burnt milk problem and advice is given on how to avoid it.

The featured image can be seen here.

Continue reading “Cleaning A Nespresso Aeroccino Milk Frother”

Backdoor Trojan Regin Spying Since 2008

A recently discovered Backdoor Trojan Regin is a computer bug found by the software security company Symantec. Its purpose is to spy on the activities taking place on computers. It can collect passwords, capture screen images and even recover deleted files.

The Backdoor Trojan Regin has been made to operate in five stages the last two being encrypted to make it very difficult to discover and understand. If any stage were to be discovered it would say little about the other stages. Two stages are specifically given over to loading each other and the other stages. You can see a block diagram of Regin’s stages of operation at this Symantec site.

Backdoor Trojan Regin appears to have been developed as far back as 2008 and by its sophisticated nature was probably developed by a nation state as opposed to criminals. It appears to have been withdrawn from use by its masters in 2011 and a new version reintroduced in 2013.

Regin infections have been found in the following countries:

  • Afghanistan
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • India
  • Iran
  • Ireland
  • Mexico
  • Pakistan
  • Russian Federation
  • Saudi Arabia

All Regin infections have been shared by these sectors thus:

  • Airline – 5%
  • Energy – 5%
  • Hospitality – 9%
  • Research – 5%
  • Small Businesses & Private Individuals – 48%
  • Telecoms Backbone – 28%

The Backdoor Trojan Regin has been made extremely stealthy so that it is very hard to determine what it is up to even after discovery. It could go undetected for years. For those interested it uses RC5 encryption which isn’t commonly used.

References

  1. BBC News – Regin, new computer spying bug, discovered by Symantec.
  2. Symantec Security Response – Regin: Top-tier espionage tool enables stealthy surveillance.
  3. Symantec White Paper on Regin.
  4. Wikipedia on Trojan Horse – Computer terminology.
  5. Wikipedia on RC5 encryption.

Hythe To New Romney By Steam Train

Introduction

It was a nice summer and I enjoyed a family day out travelling from Hythe to New Romney on the Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway (RH&DR) in Kent on 5th July 2014. We travelled on an overcast afternoon and the breeze was slightly chilly when it whistled through the carriages. We travelled  West from Hythe as far as New Romney, where we alighted to look at the model railway and take refreshment.

The original plan was to go all the way to Dungeness, part of Romney Marsh1, where the line ends. It doesn’t end in the usual sense with buffers at the end of the rails. The outbound line loops around the countryside until it becomes the line running back to Hythe. Trains don’t have to manoeuvre to make the return journey. They just keep going forward.

There is a Railway Station at Dungeness too besides a lighthouse, village, very large shingle beach and a  Nuclear Power Station.

Unfortunately we travelled too late in the day. We realised that if we continued our journey, from New Romney to Dungeness and back, we wouldn’t have time to get back to Hythe. Perhaps I’ll get to see Dungeness next time.

Learn more about Romney Marsh2.

Videos and Photographs Taken During My Trip From Hythe To New Romney:

Continue reading “Hythe To New Romney By Steam Train”