Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Australia: Week One

Hey all! A quick montage of our exploits in Australia over the past week....

I only got the camera on sunday so that's why it's pretty sparse ! :)

We've also looked at a few houses over the past week but the Sydney rental market is a little trickier than what we were used to in the UK.

Have fun !

Capn' BiSScuiTT

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Resignation 2009

Below is a copy of the actual resignation letter I handed in today. I used to work for a HUGE multi-national as an IT engineer and I'm leaving these dingy UK countryside for the sandy shores of sunny Sydney.

Sadly neither my Manager or my Boss were available to accept the resignation so I had to hand it into a senior memeber of management (with hilarious consequences).

Yes: I drew the T-rex myself as a tribute to spider guy.

Date: 20th of October 2009

Dear Sirs,

Under the watchful eye of his Noodlyness, Her Majesty's Royal Service has condemned me to deportation to the colonies. Due in part to several recent acts of piracy, heresy, excessive web browsing and a recent attempt at regicide (those damn Corgi's should keep the hell of my lawn). Fortunately, I have been granted one month to get my affairs in order.

I hereby give notice of my termination of employment with your company as of today, leaving my final date of employment as the 20th of November 2009.

As a token of my appreciation for all the enjoyment and excitement I've had working with you over the last few years, please accept this picture of a Tyrannosaurus Rex which I have drawn for you.

May the sauce be with you!

Capn' Ian Bissett


Thursday, June 11, 2009

HOWTO: KDE 4 and Google Pim data (akonadi)


Wondering how to setup KDE with your favourite google PIM data ?

The following howto is based on Ubuntu Karmic Koala but you can tailor it to your distro.

  1. Install the required packages for building
    $apt-get install build-essential libgcal-dev libgcal0 kdelibs5-dev kdepimlibs5-dev akonadi-kde

  2. Get the googledata Akonadi resource from KDE's svn
    $ svn co svn://

  3. Build the module:
    $ cd googledata
    $ cmake -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/usr
    $ make
    $ sudo make install

If you hit problems with the initial cmake then make sure you have all the required packages it is asking for.

Once you've got the library installed you need to configure Akonadi:
System Settings -> Advanced -> Akonadi Configuration

Click Add and choose one of the new Google resources listed. Enter your login details and it will automatically sync.

Congrats, all your KDE PIM Apps now have access to your Google contacts and calendar.

Feel free to post a comment if you need any help / advice.

Happy Hacking!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Solaris Password change one liner

I searched for a while this morning looking for a quick and simple answer to a very simple question: "How can I set a password non-interactively for a user on Solaris 10 ?".

Under Linux this job is very simple (use the '-p' option to useradd) but for Solaris I found ridiculous posts about admins using multi-line PERL scripts or even expect scripts to change a password. Expect?! EXPECT? I didn't even realise people still used such things ?!

Any how... here is a simple PERL one liner for updating the shadow file:

perl -pe 's/^USERNAME:.*?\:/USERNAME:NEWPASS\:/' /etc/shadow > /tmp/shadow.tmp && mv /tmp/shadow.tmp /etc/shadow

Note: This oneliner requires the password to be crypt()'d first. This can be done easily as a one liner in PERL:

[bisscuitt@asimov ~]$ perl -e "print crypt($ARGV[0], substr(rand(date),2));" PLAINTEXTPASSWORD

Hope this helps someone.

Have Fun,

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Saw the Ride Video blog - Review

I've been following the Project Dylan blogs for months now and to be honest I was expecting to be let down by all the hype.

When the e-mail came out from the Annual Pass guys to win 2 free tickets for the preview day on the 13th of March you can't imagine how fast I was clicking! An instant win... what a result and very rare for me to actually win something!

The park entrance had a red carpet.. but there was nothing special laid on until we actually got near the ride entrance. Thorpe Park certainly know how to put on a show. They had scary ass (but VERY sexy) stilt walkers freaking people out AND they had a fire breathing pirate juggling body parts. The first thing that got my attention was the Head Chopper spinning, it looks awesome! The rest of the theming is spectacular and I love the way they have integrated the photo both and shop into the theming as with the other rides in the park.

I was amazed to see an empty queuing system?! I couldn't believe my luck. From the video you can see some of the theming elements from the queue... it looks very authentic. Entering the final stage of the queue system inside the building is awesome. The staff were in a great a mood and even though they were blue shirts; they still put on a great show. After walking past a (once again quite sexy) actress being *tortured* in an original film prop, we were half way up the stairs when two blue shirts stopped us. They wouldn't let us past, and wouldn't tell us why. It was confusing at first, but it worked out pretty comical when they started freaking out the only girl in our group before sending us up to get straight on the ride.

At this point I paused the camera phone, which sadly meant we missed some important theming inside the building. Then, at the top of the stairs we approached a blue shirt at the station. We checked our bags and queued in Row 2. (Back of first carriage). The station is laden with theming making it look just like one of Jigsaw's game control centers.

The ride starts (this is where the camera comes back on). Gears and machinery is moving around on the theming by the track. Jigsaw's puppet rides out on his tricycle to meet you laughing freakishly. The countdown is zero. We've made our choice, and we are stuck with it...

Around the corner are swinging axe blades in front of the track, but before they hit the car suddenly falls on to spikes and proceeds quickly around sweeping bend. Suddenly an array of mechanised crossbows begin firing at us as we ascend slowly along the track... Then its down as we slowly corkscrew over the jigsaw lying face down on the floor and proceed to the climb outside.

At the bottom of the climb there is a brief video from Jigsaw (via the puppet of course). We are left to wait a few seconds to take in the gravity of the 100 foot drop and climb we are about the take.

The vertical ascent give you little more to look at other than the sky which really starts the adrenaline pumping. As the camera cut out we went over the summit... The configuration of the track over spinning blades of the head chopper really makes you feel like you are going to fall directly onto the them. The 100FT, 100 degree drop reaches speeds of 55 MPH.

From then on the coaster experience is not themed, but still incredible. This is an extreme ride which will leave even the experienced coaster buff like myself feeling at least a little dizzy and unsteady. Don't be too quick to leave the station building... there is lots more theming on the stairs on the way out that you should check out.

After riding 4 times my body is physically exhausted. I still ache 2 days later and I have several bruises on my shoulders from the harnesses. Either I'm getting old... or this ride is just THAT extreme! I'm going back to ride again in 3 days time!!!

Tips for riding:

  1. Check out the blood splatters just after entering the building while in the queue.

  2. The best place to ride to get the BEST experience is ROW 3 at the station. You get a little more theming and a great view from a front row seat

Conclusion: BEST COASTER *EVAR*!

Saw the ride Video Blog - Into the park

In this second video, we've arrived at the park and are walking upto the ride. You can see the awesome theming elements and also a pirate. which was fun!

Saw the ride video blog - morning before

My first attempt at a video blog... don't laugh at me.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

iConceal - how to hide TV cables

A great way to hide your TV cables!

I have an iConceal. I should do.... my dad created it didn't he. It is the bomb. Sleek, sexy, easy to fit and a sinch to add new cables later.

Most people would rip a hole in the wall. I never wanted to do that. Even with internal conduit adding new cables is a pain in the arse!

iConceal made putting my TV on the wall quick and easy.

Having my TV on the wall is great for playing the Wii. Being able to play House of the Dead and Wii Sports at eye level is the bomb!

If you were considering putting your TV on the wall. iConceal is the way to do it. If you have a Wii, then get your TV on the wall for more immersive game play!

iConceal -

Sunday, March 08, 2009


Enzo the giant schnauzer (dan's dog) won second in class today! An awesome result for your first year. Congrats guys!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


OMG... just applying Ruben for school... How did he get so old so fast !! :)

I'll tell you what though, looking at our local schools... if he gets any of the 3 prefered options we've chosen, he can't possibly loose! They'll all lern 'im proper! just like 'is Daddy ! ;)

It's all good news for once. Hurrah! I'll let you know which ones the council have chosen for him.

Have Fun,