Cleaning the Washing Machine Filter, Soap Drawer, Door Seal, etc.

Introduction

Every two weeks I am reminded by my PIM (Personal Information Manager) that I should be cleaning the washing machine filter and every four weeks I am reminded to attack any mould I find in the washing machine. Well today (Tuesday when the machine is not usually required) was the day for both. So you’re in for a full description.

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Excel Body Weight Templates To Record Your Weight

Excel Body Weight Templates
Excel Graph of Helpful Colin’s Weight 2011. (Select it to enlarge it.)

“Happy New Year! In 2012 I resolve to lose weight (again).”

Well I resolved to lose weight every year since at least 2005 and some years I succeeded. One tool I require for this is a spreadsheet to accurately record of my weight. I use Excel for this and I’ve produced some Excel Body Weight Templates for making new sheets annually.

Introduction

I record my weight on a DAILY, yes DAILY, basis. I know all those slimming clubs advise against measuring weight daily but to me that is unscientific. High definition pictures are better than low definition ones and weighing every day gives a good weight definition. Anyone would think that the act of measuring weight caused it to change. (I know Quantum Physicists have their doubts.)

Being scientific requires not just the measurements written down somewhere but a graph to give a picture of what is happening over time. I want to see if my weight is actually heading down or up or staying put. During this time I have come down from my heaviest of 15st (95.25kgs) in 2005 and again in July 2007 to 13st 4lbs (84.36kgs) in the same year. Then I rose again to 14st 7lbs (92kgs) and came down to 13st 2lbs (83.46kgs) in February 2010. Now I have risen again to 14st (88.9kgs) a weight I swore I would never see again.

(Note to self: I need to be more scientific about regulating the calories I consume.)

For me as a Microsoft Excel user for many years, Excel was my tool of choice for recording and plotting the data. The rest of this post explains my method for collecting the data and the use of Excel Body Weight Templates to start a new record annually. Ultimately it offers Excel Body Weight Templates – files that you can download to use with your Excel software so you can record your measurements in like manner.

Having decided on the tool for recording the data I then had to decide when I would measure my weight. I chose first thing in the morning, before eating or drinking, after visiting the bathroom and without clothing (I keep my hat specs on). This way I get the feel-good-factor of seeing my lowest possible weight each day. (We lose up to 1.5kgs at night due to exhaling moisture in our breath and urinating.) The point here is not to come up with an exact daily weight – it’s impossible. Our weight fluctuates up and down 2 or 3 pounds throughout the day. The point is to try and arrive at a consistent set of measurements that can be used to display a meaningful average weight situation, over time, on a graph.

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Here’s A Man Wearing A Real Invisibility Cloak

“Harry Potter, Predator – eat your hearts out.” Here’s a man wearing a real invisibility cloak.

invisibility cloak
Chinese artist Liu Bolin has become world renowned for his camouflage art.

Adopt the art of Liu Bolin and you too could hide from the boss by wearing a real invisibility cloak.

Maybe some of those silver statues in the street, with collecting bowls, could present themselves so they could only be viewed from a certain angle and become a little more colourful.

Want to see some more from Liu Bolin? Click here and here.

Credits

A Counterfeit Microsoft DVD Crops Up Again

Another Counterfeit Microsoft DVD

Remember how a few days ago I told you how I found I had a counterfeit Microsoft DVD. (See that post here). Well another one bought from another Amazon re-seller has proved to be counterfeit. It’s one I bought to install on the computers of a friend soon after I bought the first one.

Now I see that Comet is in trouble with Microsoft. They’ve been producing their own Windows recovery discs for PC’s they sold – see here at Computer Weekly.

They Monitor Mobile Phone Movements To Improve Customer Service

monitor mobile phone movements
Mobile Phone Sign in Princesshay Shopping Centre, Exeter,

This was brought to light by APEX NEWS on 4th January 2012 as follows:

One of the signs at the Princesshay shopping centre in Exeter informing shoppers that their mobile phones are being monitored.
The popular shopping centre has been accused of using Big Brother tactics after it was revealed it was using stealth technology to track the movement of shoppers via their mobile phones – without their consent.
Human rights organisations are outraged that bosses of Princesshay are using the technology called FootPath to secretly track shoppers’ movements.
Customers receives no warning that their mobile phone signal is being monitored bar a small sign on the premises.
Neither do they receive an option to ‘opt-out’ of being scanned.
Customers on all networks are scanned by Footpath, and no current mobile phone has a ‘defence’ against such scanners.
The only way to be safe is simply to switch off. – APEX NEWS

Here’s a situation where there is a tendency to think, “I don’t like the sound of this.” See articles in the mainstream press about specific shopping centres which monitor mobile phone movements, e.g. Mail Online, The Guardian and The Telegraph.

However they could monitor the movement of pickpockets and shop lifters.

If you like that idea you might want them to record personal data sufficient to help them ID the criminals.


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Bonobo Chimp Can Light a Fire and Cook On It

Bonobo Chimp Can Light A Fire!

A Bonobo chimp can light a fire AND cook on it! Isn’t it amazing what apes can do these days. I’d like to see a video. Click here to see still photos of Kanzi, the Bonobo chimp, on the Telegraph website.

I particularly liked this comment on photo 10

“An old Congolese tribal legend tells that man and bonobo used to live side by side in the forests of the Congo – but went their separate ways after humans invented fire. Bonobos, the legends say, were able to make fire, but unlike the humans always put their fires out and moved on. Humans wanted to keep their fires going and so they ended up staying in villages while bonobos continued to live in the forests.”

Does this legend go back to the dawn of humankind?

Update 16th April 2014

Tonight I have seen a program on BBC1 television called ‘Monkey Planet’. This discussed the intelligence of many of the primates and showed film of their abilities. If you reside in the UK you can look out for the program on BBC iPlayer in the next few days.

One article actually showed Kanzi, the Bonobo chimp who was the subject of the Telegraph’s article, actually lighting a fire and cooking marshmallows during a picnic.

If you can’t get to see it at the BBC then watch Kanzi cook his marshmallow below:


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My Office Pro 2010 DVD’s Counterfeit

Introduction

Well, after 13 years on the Internet it looks like I have eventually been stung. I just found my Office Pro 2010 DVD’s counterfeit after two years. It looked fine and installed well on two PC’s (the package declares it is suitable for three PC’s) and it was activated on those two PC’s in August 2010. It was purchased from an Amazon re-seller and was advertised as only suitable for one PC.

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Stig of Bus Drivers In Saltburn-By-The-Sea

Stig of Bus Drivers Controls The X4

This must be the Stig of bus drivers getting his bus up this steep hill in one go without sliding all over the place. He did it in these snowy winter conditions on 9th November 2010.

This is miraculous driving of the X4 service single deck bus shown here going up Saltburn Road1 between Vista Mar and the Spa Hotel at Saltburn-by-the-Sea in North Yorkshire.

It must take a bit of skill in the summer never mind in these icy winter conditions. The road has a gradient of 25%.

The video shows several cars on the road many of which are having difficulty driving under these conditions. Some are skidding and others are being pushed, but this bus zips through them and drives straight up the incline without skidding or stopping.

Below is a map of the Saltburn-by-the-sea area where this was filmed. The location of the camera was at or near: 54°35’06.1″N, 0°58’11.5″W.

The X4 bus is seen travelling in a southerly direction along that zig-zag part of Saltburn Road between Vista Mar and The Spa Hotel.

Here is the same Arriva X4 service bus in better weather.

See the sea view from Saltburn Road near the Spa Hotel on Google Street View.

For those who want to visit here is a travel guide to Saltburn-by-the-sea.

Footnotes

  1. I have done my geography and looked at Google Maps and Streetview to check the location of this steep winding road. I found the action happens on Saltburn Road and not Saltburn Bank as mentioned in the Simjem video. That  is another road adjoining Saltburn Road to the east of this location.
  2. The Simjem video information on Youtube suggests this event was filmed on 9th November 2010. I checked the weather for that winter to be sure it snowed on that date in that location. I can’t be sure it did but knowing it is an exposed seaside town in the NE of England, and a very cold winter ensued after that date, I think it likely is correct. The weather for that winter 2010-11 can be examined here.

Gyroscopes & Cameras Help Bike Riding Robots

Watch This Video of Bike Riding Robots

Watch Murata Girl and Murata Boy. They use stabilizing gyroscopes and camera technology. These are bike riding robots which perform some amazing riding skills without falling off their bikes. Murata Girl is the one on the monocycle.


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