Conn ctiv y prob ems

I’m having a few connectivity problems today. They’re preventing me from uploading a few of the photos I took over the weekend, and which were to be the basis for today’s blog post.

It’s a weird thing that’s happening. The (new) laptop tells me that it is happily and securely connected to any given wifi (I’m having the same issue on 4 different networks I have tried, so I’m guessing it’s the laptop that’s somehow at fault here), but then I can’t do stuff on various programs.

Lightroom can’t connect to Flickr. The connection to Gmail keeps dropping on Chrome (it’s ok for 30 seconds or so, then dies), but Facebook is fine and Twitter seems unaffected too. Uploading anything to anywhere sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t. But mostly doesn’t.
A quick ping of the ISP was faultless. I’ve lowered Firewalls and run troubleshooters.

Nothing so far has worked. I’m now in the process of resetting all my network adaptors. All of them.

If you see a photo on Flickr or on here later, something might have worked.
If not, you’ll just have to follow me on Instagram.

Pub quiz redux

Ridiculously busy day ahead, so just a few bits and pieces about last night’s pub quiz, penned as I enjoy my thirteenth coffee of the day.


First off, let me tell you that last night’s pub quiz was a lot of fun. Good beer, good pizza, good company, great service at Fireman’s. Our awesome threesome did really well, finishing in (a mildly disputed) second place (out of 25 teams) after a bit of chaos involving a couple of vague questions in the final round. In a quiz with just fifty questions spread over 10 subjects and 2½ hours, you might argue that there’s no excuse for vague questions, and I would agree.

What is the plural of Opus?

Turns out that there’s more than one correct answer. Never a good idea for a last round question.
(Opuses/Opera, by the way.)

And did Quentin Tarantino really direct Natural Born Killers? No. He didn’t. So if you’re going to ask a question about that film, don’t state in the question that he did. People will get confused. There will be disputes. However, that was nothing compared to the outrage earlier in the evening when the answer to one of the Sports Round questions:

What is the national sport of Bulgaria?

turned out to be:

It’s a trick question. They have no national sport.

Did you get it? No. Neither did anyone else. But really, with just five sports questions to write and a near unlimited supply of options available to you, how utterly lazy is that?

Do. Better.

But I’m making it sound like a disaster. It wasn’t. It was fun. In my defence, I did say that above.

Crossword Man was there. Inspired by 6000 miles… (!), he wants to start his own blog. I know, right? He was asking a lot of questions about blogging, most all of which made more sense than the Bulgarian one above, and one of which was “can you post a blank post?”. I didn’t know that answer, so I tried it. The rest is history. Quite why you would want to post a blank post is a little beyond me, but each to their own. Perhaps he was giving me a hint?

It was our first pub quiz in several months. I knew that something had been missing from my life; I just didn’t know what.

We won’t leave it so long next time.


Issues. I have issues.

No. Not those ones. I’ve long given up trying to sort them out.

These are software issues. Specifically around the price of software.
A short while back, I bought a subscription to Adobe Lightroom to edit my photos. It costs $9.99 per month, which was then about R129.00. Since then, Jacob Zuma has got hold of the economy again and strangled a bit more of the life out of it, so that monthly subscription is now R145.10 (and likely to be higher by the end of this post, let alone the end of this year). Still, it’s great and I like what I’ve been able to do with it.
So, R145.10 per month. And that’s just for photos. If I want Premiere Pro to play with videos as well (and I do), then we’re looking at an additional $19.99 (or R290.20 at the moment) each month.


Simply, it’s not an option.

The trouble is that I have tried out Premiere Pro and I really enjoyed using it. The integration with Lightroom was lovely and everything just made sense. Sure, it was only a first step and I still have everything to learn about it, but I really think I could go places. But not at R300 (or however much more) per month.

And so I am resigned to using free software. Which is great, but it’s also more difficult to use software. I gave Da Vinci Resolve a go on the old PC and it broke it, but let’s be fair – that was probably down to the PC rather than the software. Still, I found the UI rather awkward, and there were nowhere near as many online tutorials available. I will need online tutorials.
If someone wants to donate an annual subscription for Premiere Pro to an *cough* young, aspiring filmmaker, then I’m sure that there are many better cases than mine out there, but I still won’t say no.

In the meantime, does anyone have any other suggestions of where to find a decent video editing package (and by “decent”, I mean good at video editing and reasonably priced)?

I’m ready to listen.


Because, like most people, I enjoy weekends where I can be lazy and not do anything, I have to suffer occasional days like today, where a critical point of all those little jobs I should have done (and didn’t) is reached. It’s nothing too taxing, to be honest. A fish tank to clean here, a garage workbench to tidy there, some settings to fix on the Mavic, an important junction box to be mended so that the internet can continue to flow into the house, and quite a lot of iTunes to sort out. Again.

At least that last one can be accompanied by some decent tunage.
I’m currently enjoying some vintage Pet Shop Boys while the beagle snores on the couch behind me and I delete a huge amount of crap from my library.
It’s not exactly strenuous, but I seem to be constantly refining the way iTunes handles my music. I do wish there was a better alternative for my musical collection.

Back to it. Braai and beers to look forward to later.