Tag Archives: faults

Close to the Edge…

I did some of my WP stuff on Julia’s netbook last night. For those of you too young to remember them netbooks were low in power and small in size. You could use them to access the internet and nobody has produced them since 2013. I’m pretty sure the average modern phone is more powerful than a netbook and think they have been replaced by tablets. The sad thing is that my computer seems to be even less powerful than the netbook – the netbook, for instance, can show the pictures on my blog posts, but the computer cannot. It occasionally showsd one, just to tempt me into thinking everything is working, but next time it is back to a blank space and frustration.

Yesterday after noon I accomplished about 15% of what I meant to do, which was annoying, so today I have set myself a target of 100%. In addition, I want to attend to the blog and check emails.

It has just taken me eight attempts to access the emails. Why? I don’t know.Probably just that technology hates me and is trying to drive me over the edge. It is getting close to success.

I’m trying to check on an email I sent a few weeks ago, and not succeeding. I’m just getting a rotating circle and and no action. I have logged out and am now preparing to struggle to get back in.

Still waiting…

I may do something else.

Still circling…

There must be something wrong at their end. I will close down in a moment and try to log in afresh.

Ah! Action!

It’s decided to tell me it can’t perform the action I requested. I requested it to open a file to check on a sent email. You’d think I’d asked for the secret of life judging by the time it’s taking and the secrecy surrounding it.

Believe it or not, since BT launched their “new and improved” email service it hasn’t been as good or reliable as it used to be. A suspicious man may try to link the two things.

I once had my car serviced. Next day I drove about sixty miles down the motorway and sixty miles back up (I have found this is generally a good way of getting home). On the way back.we stopped at a service area for toilets then drove the remaining 20 miles home. On the ring road we noticed a peculiar smell, and when we stopped at lights we found ourselves surrounded by a cloud of white smoke. The brakes were seized on and were smoking.

On Monday I went to the garage and explained what had happened.

“Ah yes,” said the man, “when people have trouble with cars just after servicing they often blame it on us.”

I wonder why…

I’m putting a picture on, but without enthusiasm. What’s the point when I can’t see it? It’s not even the picture I wanted, because the screen moved after I pressed the button. You will have to imagine me rolling my eyes and emitting a great “tut!”

Later addition – I just went back to try the email again. There’s a great red stripe on the page now, announcing they have a problem and are working on it. I’d guessed.

My Final Word on the Subject

I’ve just realised where I have been going wrong with the new Block Editor. I’ve been approaching it from the position of believing it to be better than the previous version, and simpler to use. I based this on the fact that WordPress used words like improved, intuitive and effortless.

I also allowed myself to be confused by the idea that one of the world’s best known blogging platforms would base its improvements on making blogging easier and that as I pay £240 a year there is a contract between us that they will deliver a decent service in return for the money.

When I look into it, it seems that the changes are all about allowing creativity and website design, which are not things I’m concerned about. I want to write a plain blog and if I’m told that it will be “improved, intuitive and effortless” I’d like my blogging to be better and easier tomorrow than it was yesterday.

That’s like buying a car to use for shopping and day-trips, only to find out that the car company has redesigned it to be better at brain surgery.

I don’t need that.

So, that one is solved – it hasn’t been re-designed with bloggers in mind, it has been designed for creative people (because bloggers clearly aren’t creative) and to create work for the WP team.

So, it isn’t actually improved.

Intuitive? I don’t think so. If it was I would be able to use it instinctively.

Effortless? I now have to press buttons for things like word count that showed automatically. I have to select the Classic block where I used to go straight into the editor.  If I want to pin my toolbar to the top of the post (where it used to be automatically pinned) I now know which buttons to press to do that. None of this extra button pressing seems like less effort, so unless my dictionary has gone wrong (ie been re-designed by web developers) this is not “effortless”.

We then come on to the management of change. There was no discussion, I just switched on to find I had been forcibly placed in Block Editor. I don’t feel this is a good way of doing things. If I want to be bullied and forced into doing things I have Julia and the Government to do that. WP is supposed to be my escape from all that.

Then there is the glitchiness. During the writing of this post I looked up from the keyboard to find a blank screen and a fault message. This is the second time this week. Fortunately the post was saved in draft. I have also experienced a variety of missing buttons and other unexplained phenomena, such as things opening that I didn’t want. 

I’m going to give up at that point – the editor has shut me out twice in the last two lines and I have struggled to get the text back. That’s three times in total. This shouldn’t be happening.

I’ve also got the “Convert to Blocks” box up again now – I thought I was in blocks.

Just when I thought it was all fixed…

I don’t have a picture of an elderly man crying tears of frustration, but if I did I would use it as the Featured Image, I promise you.

Three times I got this message!

Scone Chronicles 37 – This One Has Scones!

Don’t get excited. I said it has scones. I didn’t say they were good scones. I’ll get that bit over with quickly, they weren’t good scones.

Julia went to order the Sausage Pie and, due to a mix up in communication, came back with scones. It’s too boring to explain fully, but after thirty years she hasn’t mastered the art of listening and I have developed a habit of nodding and going “Yes dear.”

She merged two conversations we had had in the car, one about scones and one about lunch. As she walked away from the table she said something I didn’t catch and I nodded and said “Yes”.

And that was how we ended up with Sausage Pie and Scones for lunch. You only needed to look at the scones to see that the odds were heavily stacked in favour of dyspepsia. To be fair, they were the best looking things in the sweet section. The lemon meringue pie positively radiated bright yellow malevolence and I have already forgotten the other choices – they were neither good enough, or bad enough, to remember.

The scones were large, slightly lopsided, dotted with burnt currants and dusted with sugar. When I was able to inspect them more closely I discovered they were crusty, dry and in possession of a lot of stiff, industrial cream.

Scones at Carsington Water

Scones at Carsington Water

I don’t mind large, lopsided and even the burnt currants. They are all faults I’m familiar with. On the other hand, dusting scones with icing sugar should be punished severely. It’s not necessary and it’s not adding to the taste or the experience. I don’t like crusty scones or dry scone and I think less is more in terms of cream. If I want blocked arteries I’ll ask for them, but all I really want is a garnish of cream, enough to add flavour and texture, not an inch thick dollop of chemically treated grease.

Am I being unfair? Probably, but a baker of bad scones deserves criticism. They weren’t necessarily bad just because the were home made – faulty and home made go together to a certain extent, and we all make mistakes. I have made many faulty scones in my time. It was the choices that annoyed me – the decision to sprinkle with sugar, to bake too fiercely and to use masses of badly maltreated cream.

I would have shown more faults but I couldn’t take all the photos I would have liked because I was being stared at by a woman on a neighbouring table. I’m still a bit self-concious about photographing my food, and didn’t like to carry on whilst being glared at from a distance of four feet. She was a touch on the small, round side, and it was like being singled out by an evilly-intentioned teddy bear .

Plans, plans, plans

The plan for the morning was to rise early, sneak downstairs as Julia slept and get writing. I have haibun to write, submissions to make and a new ambition to fulfil.

I want to hit my sixth WordPress anniversary with an average of 365 posts per year. I’m currently on 333 a year. I think that means I have to write 365 next year, and a further 160 to catch up. That’s 1.5 posts per day.

So, I need to examine the reasons for my deficiencies in posting.

One, obviously, is idleness, indolence, sloth or laziness. There are some nice words for it, but it all boils down to one of my defining character flaws. I don’t like hard work.

Two, which is a similar thing, my talent for procrastination, time-wasting, loafing and wandering off on the internet, either to play games or browse Wikipedia. Recently I found a new games page and I am now a dab hand at Nine Men’s Morris and, thanks to Wiki, can also discuss its history and variations.

Three, memory. I sometimes forget to post. You’d think one a day would be simple enough to remember but I have a lot to remember, such as my name, computer passwords and what Julia just said to me. Some days it’s hard just remembering how to walk and breathe at the same time.

Four. Sometimes I just fall asleep at the keyboard, leading to fifty five lines saying ggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggg etc

Or, worse, with the pattern of a keyboard impressed in my face, like one of Dr Who’s more low-budget adversaries.

Today I will attempt multiple posts.

Watch this space.

Today’s picture is the recycled Robin from the Garden Centre in Scone Chronicles 3.

The ebay Diaries (Day 6 – Part 4)

I bought some tie pins/sweetheart brooches last Saturday using the Buy It Now button. They seemed very reasonable. This should have been the first warning.

They arrived yesterday, I looked at them and I left feedback. It was only when I looked at them in strong sunlight today (yes, we had some!) that I noticed all the faults. Two of the tiepins are twisted and one seems to be lacking any sort of silver mark. I really must remember my own rules about being careful when buying.

 

Later in the week I bought an enamel badge. It’s clearly a cheap modern copy. It cost me just over £3 so it’s not even worth the time to complain. The tiepins are slightly different, but it’s just as easy to straighten them as it is to send them back.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Royal Artillery tiepin

That, I know, plays into the hands of dishonest dealers but I can’t be bothered with the bickering that ensues. In truth they probably don’t know what they are doing. That’s the levelling influence of ebay – all you need to do is press buttons on a computer and repeat what is written on a badge. The bidders do the actual work. It’s a subject I may return to.

I may also return to the question of ethics.

Note to self –

Reasonably  priced ebay lots on Buy It Now are rarely as good as you think

Reasonably  priced ebay lots on Buy It Now are rarely as good as you think

Reasonably  priced ebay lots on Buy It Now are rarely as good as you think…