Sunday, October 05, 2008

War bussing and a brewery tour.

Some diverse photos above; please click on any one for a larger version. I took a day off work this Friday, and went along to the lovely Kentish town of Faversham to go on a tour of the Shepherd Neame brewery. They are both the oldest and also the most profitable independent brewers in the UK, and produce some truly excellent real ales such as Bishop's Finger and the award winning Spitfire premium bitter. You can see a full set of photographs of the brewery tour, taken during during a working day by visiting my Flickr photo site. I would highly recommend the tour as an entertaining and informative day out, even if one is not interested in beer. I learned a lot of history and science - and even nearly bumped into Brewery Managing Director, Jonathan Neame during my visit!

The third photograph above shows my new Asus Eee PC 901 sub notebook computer, next to my work laptop in order to give scale. The work machine is the only one I have which runs Windoze, and then only because they pay me to! I am getting used to the new mini machine; Yesterday on the 99 bus back from Dad visiting, I fired it up and set the wireless to discover networks - I am absolutely stunned at how may people do not secure their home wireless networks; in the space of twenty minutes I discovered around two dozen. This kind of thing is sometimes called War Driving, but since I was using public transport, I felt that War Bussing was a more appropriate term. Please note, I was not hijacking their bandwidth, which is rather naughty - just seeing their network ID and its' security status. Now that I have the Eee PC, I will be installing a wireless hub in addition with my existing Ethernet hub and hardware firewall. Be assured it will have strong encryption and a decent password! You have been warned.

I am pensioning off my old Dell laptop to live in honourable retirement with Shirley, to use for her college course work. I have wiped the hard disk and installed G OS - a heavily customised version of Ubuntu Linux which looks and feels like Apple OS X and has a huge amount of Google software pre-installed. It really is ideal for the person who is not really interested in the technicalities of running a computer, but just wants to watch YouTube clips, visit social networking sites and the like, with a much reduced chance of encountering any software nasties when compared to a PC running XP or (gasp, horror!) Vista. See a screen shot here.

This weeks' video clip is from Shaun the Sheep; a really amazing animated series from Nick Park of Wallace and Gromit fame. See what you think.


  1. Ya gOS is cool. Very simple front end and Ubuntu core to ensure the latest and greatest. I just ordered the Asus Aspire One for Jo. It has a little known distro called Linpus Lite. The design of the GUI by Asus is perfect. There are 4 categories of activities and is almost too straight forward. Judging by the amount of interface hacks for it on the web, I'm guessing that most feel rather restrained. I don't think Jo will encounter that problem but she will however encounter me trying to steal it :) 8 second boot time!

  2. LOL!
    Beer and PC'