Friday, March 30, 2007


C5 in the newspapers again

There's an article in the Daily Echo about a student who's got a C5, along with a video

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Virtual PC 2004 wouldn't boot!

I tried to fire up Virtual PC 2004 and it wouldn't boot! I tried several images, ranging from a fresh install of XP, a blank install with updates, a version with VS.Net Express Edition - but they all gave the same error:

NTLDR missing

I restored images which didn't work, at which point I was guessing there was something wrong with the configuration of VPC. I hadn't changed anything so was at a lost and turned to the web for answers.

Happily, I found this link very quickly. The problem is that VPC was trying to boot up off my USB pen drive/memory stick.

How impressive.

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Thursday, March 22, 2007


Punishment Essays

My teachers at St. Bede's showed a stunning lack of imagination when it came to punishment:

On the gripping hand, maths/Computer Studies teachers were known to smack you round the head with a textbook if you couldn't teach yourself from it, geography teachers sat kids in oil drums for asking "Why do we have to colour in ANOTHER map?", French teachers made some kneel on pencils for thinking "Ce lecon est merde", and Bertie Noone's "Persuader" was plain inspired.

Unfortunately, such techniques are no longer legally available to me. As Sergeant Greenwood says, "Ten years ago I could have stuck your head through that wall, but now I have to find other ways".

I'm having a lot of success making them dress up in white plastic aprons and cleaning tables at lunch time. I've also had not inconsiderable success in getting some to write me punishment essays on Sir Clive Sinclair's greatest inventions including the Sinclair C5 and the A-bike. The only fly in the ointment is that I think a few of the "naughty" ones are beginning to take an interest and are starting to mess about to see what else he invented...

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Fun Park

I spent most of the weekend either popping into Sale on my A-bike or playing Fun Park. For a 16k game it's great!

I think I've managed to get to the point though where there are no more developments to be made in terms of rides/attractions so I might have to start a new game..

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Thursday, March 15, 2007


Commodore is back...

Sorry for the profanity in the title, but an article on the BBC web site caught my eye.

It looks like they are just selling beefed-up PCs to games players, but how cool would it be to have some form of Sinclair-branded kit on the market again?

Can't see it happening, as Amstrad would probably have to be involved and a PC with a Sinclair badge on just wouldn't be the same...

Saturday, March 10, 2007


Fitted motor cooling fan kit

I got round to fitting the kit to my C5 this afternoon before my Dad came over. Here are some pics of the job in progress:

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007


Dad's first solo trip

My Dad came over in his C5 tonight to watch the return leg of Man Utd v Lille in the Champions' League. Afterwards, I rode up to the top of my road with him on my A-bike.

The original lights on his C5 look plenty bright enough. He'll probably get some LED bulbs from Mark at C5 Alive as spares, but with a leisure battery and the range he gets out of it I don't think he'll be in any major hurry to upgrade.

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Sunday, March 04, 2007


New ZX Spectrum games on order from Cronosoft

I've ordered my next set of new Spectrum games from Cronosoft:

Izzy Wizzy
Iron Sphere
zblast SD+
Fun Park 16K

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Friday, March 02, 2007


A-bike has arrived

I had to come home from work at lunch time today so that I could take Lucy to the doctor's - she's had a high temperature for a few days and started coughing last night, but this morning she started developing white ulcers on her tongue so with it being the weekend, and how badly she came down with chicken pox, it was decided for me that I should get her in for a second opinion.

Anyway, while I haven't been able to go out on it due to looking after her, my A-bike has arrived and I've managed to put it up! I need a bit more practice with the folding procedure but it does seem fairly straight forward. I had a quick go in the garden and it felt a little wobbly at first but OK once you get a bit of speed up. The brakes seem to work fine, except there was a metallic rubbing sound from the back end. At first I thought it was the chain mechanism, but eventually traced it to the washer that helps hold the rear brake cable in place: it was rubbing against the rim of the rear wheel.

I loosened the nut and tried to get the brake band to move away a little but had no luck. I also tried undoing the two torque bolts (as also done here) but to no avail. I resorted to loosely putting a cable tie on to hold the cable slightly outwards and it's worked a treat. I might have another go sometime at doing it properly, but I really can't be bothered sending it back for somebody else to do. Pity though.

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Driving games affect real driving?

After reading an article on the BBC, and speaking with my Year 13 pupils, I can believe it...

Thursday, March 01, 2007


Life on Mars and St. Bede's College

John Southworth sent me this link tonight.

He said he was looking for locations from the Life on Mars programme, and stumbled across the link to pictures of my old school, where his wife taught me Art!

It's strange to see the place again - so many memories.

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