I recently read this quite interesting book called Never Split the Difference, about negotiations. The author was a hostage negotiator and I came across a YouTube video of him somehow and I found the subject quite interesting of how he almost uses ‘mind control’ to lead the hostage to give up the hostage. There is something mesmerising about hearing and watching Chris Voss speak, so I ordered the book.

The book covers some interesting areas around human psychology, the brain, human behaviour and communication. I found it a fascinating read and there is a handy crib sheet at the end summarising each chapter. I feel this will help me to become a better negotiator in all areas of my life. 9/10

02. April 2019 · Write a comment · Categories: Books · Tags:
The Man With No Face

A quick review of a book I’ve just finished reading on my new Kindle Paperwhite on my commute – The Man with No Face by Peter May.

It is a pretty well written murder mystery based in Brussels in the 1970’s. A Scottish reporter is sent there to investigate a political murder – very apt in light of the current Brexit situation. What struck me as interesting was the very fine attention to detail that Peter includes to help create the effect in the tense situations.

Overall I enjoyed it, being an easy read and a pretty good story 7/10

A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove: The life-affirming bestseller that will brighten your day

I can’t remember how I came across this book – maybe the book club at work or some random link, but I really enjoyed this book – it was very easy to read yet conveyed quite a good story of the turnaround of a “classic old grumpy man” to someone who has a bigger heart than it first appears, but still he doesn’t suffer fools easily. Quite a few sarcastic moments and it does a good job of stirring up emotions without going too deeply.

Afterwards I watched the film in Swedish with English subtitles, and it was good, a very different filming style to most mainstream films, but I felt it was a bit rushed and didn’t explain in half as much detail about the main character Ove.

Overall I’ll still stick with book first, then film, if you don’t have time, just watch the film! Book: 8/10

Following my recent discovery of a new hobby (bouldering) I have been looking for places in or near High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. It seems we are central to a few places, and handily a few are close to my commute to/from London. For a total beginner, shoe hire was essential, so I have included these prices where possible:

Bourne End Junior Sports Centre – Climbing Wall

The most local to High Wycombe and unfortunately it isn’t very well detailed on their website, but they are responsive by email/phone- I have not visited yet but hope to do so in the coming weeks. 🙂

Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday – 18.30 to 21.00

Call Pete on 01628 528110 or email Office@bejsc.co.uk

£5 entry

More »

Since I posted this post (Transitioning to AWS), I completed the Udemy course, did plenty of hands on and proof of concepts to enable me to learn, I soon after discovered Azure. This was totally by chance – I went to a Cloud Meetup group in London where both AWS & Azure solutions were discussed, and curiosity got the better of me. I started by using the free credits by Microsoft on the trial account (which are only valid for 1 month), but immediately I was hooked. I was creating Virtual Networks, Network Security Groups, VMs, Load Balancers, reading how to create hybrid clouds, how to migrate from on premise servers to Azure using Azure Site Recovery, and how to automate deployment with ARM templates. Instantly this felt much more mature and a better rounded solution than AWS. Microsoft really has come a long way since Azure was first launched.

So this lead me to investigate the certification route, and I have decided to take the following exams:

70-533 – Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions – Exam LinkBook (Released Feb 2018)

70-534 – Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions – Exam LinkBook (Released April 2018)

So with new books not due to be released for a few months, we can only assume the exams will be going through a refresh – I will guess by removing or reducing the amount on the Classic Portal and focusing on the new Azure Portal.

 

So what am I currently doing with Azure other than labbing? Well I’ve moved my production servers to it already, I am working with a local charity to move some ageing Windows and Linux servers hosted in their office and in a DC to design a solution and migrate to Azure, and I am working with a small MSP to help them satisfy an Azure migration requirement/opportunity with a customer, and enjoying it.

Every day I take the metropolitan line from Chalfont and Latimer to Moorgate starting from about 7 to 8 am. Here is a quick diary of delays I have experienced.

Remember if your journey is delayed for more than 15 minutes you are entitled to a full journey refund -login to TFL and follow the Service Delay Refund link.

Note – only delays on the journeys which have affected me are listed:

Friday 27th October

Train: 07.41

Delay: 20 minutes

Refunded: yes

Signal failure around Wembley area. Train terminated at Harrow. Next running train terminated at Wembley. Took Jubilee line to Finchley road, changed back to Metropolitan line

I’m quite liking my Huawei Honor 9, and even EMUI 5.1 (see review here), but one thing I am really missing from my Oneplus One is the double tap to wake. That was such an awesome feature which soon became prevalent on many other handsets, so imagine my dismay, shock and horror when I couldn’t find the option on the Honor 9 / EMUI 5.1. Seeing as I was routed I quickly tried the steps detailed here (adding a line to build.prop and changing a line in /system/emui/base/hw_easywakeupmotion_config.xml files), but no joy yet  – it seems that the option isn’t exposed through the GUI unfortunately :/

So my trusty Oneplus One has finally given up the ghost after 3 years of uninterrupted service. The battery started to lose charge, requiring charging about 3 times a day if I dared had the screen on, and then the charge port decided to work intermittently,, meaning I think I sweated this asset enough and it was time to upgrade.

The Oneplus 5 was just out so this made it on to the short list, as well as the outgoing Oneplus 3T. I considered other various offerings around the similar price mark, and while I would have liked to have 128GB on board, I’d consider expandable storage as an option too. I like to carry a lot of films and music around for the train journeys which don’t offer much signal, or at least of a good enough signal to stream.

The price of the 128GB Oneplus 5 was eye watering, it sure has increased from the initial budget launch of the Oneplus 1 to now the mid range of smart phone, so this opens up to other contenders as well. More »

I’m quite new to cryptocurrencies, but understand the high level theory, and have never had any need to buy any of the now famous Bitcoins for any reason, however recently I have tried to purchase some Monero (XMR) but wanted to pay in GBP. This has proved more challenging than I first thought it would be! Quite a few exchanges will convert Bitcoin to to XMR, but I couldn’t really find any that would take a direct payment in GBP and convert to XMR, especially at a reasonable rate. So I had to buy Bitcoin in GBP, then convert to XMR. Here is the route I took: More »

After my last Erisin ES9746A Android head unit died whilst performing a hardware mod to improve the rather poor sound quality I hung on and waited for one of the new Intel Sofia 4 core based units – the first to release with an OEM E46 look was Joying, with their JY-BL12N2 model.

I have collected some useful links for this and other Intel based units below, mostly from XDA.  Note these are not MTCB/MTCD units, despite the threads residing under thoes sections!

 

E46 JY-BL121N2 General Queries – also includes info on the reverse / gearbox switch

Large general thread on Intel units – New Joying Android 5.1.1 2GB Units available very soon !

Steering wheel key customization – V3 (NO KILL) – stop processes killing on hibernate and key reassigning

General Roll Up / tips and tricks thread

Joying Feb 22nd 2017 Update – info on the latest update

 

Overall I am happy with this unit – it is lightening fast compared to my old dual core MTCB, the screen is much higher resolution and importantly the on board DSP is way better than the previous MTCB!  I have rooted, installed Viper4Android to tweak the sound further, and plan to add a reverse cam and DAB USB receiver next.