Thursday, October 31, 2013

Phone hacking

The phone hacking trial has started here in the UK, interestingly while 3 newspaper people are facing trail for hacking a few celebs phones the US government who hacks every body's phones are being ignored.

Spam update.

I recently posted about a dodgy tin of Spam I'd bought and was mouldy inside the can, well the update is both the supermarket I bought it from and Spam have been in touch.  I had a nice letter from both and a full refund from the supermarket Tesco (and a goodwill gesture from Spam) 

Now to be fair to both it wasn't obvious from the outside that there was any problem with the can, and I've been told that even a tiny pin-hole in the can could let in air causing the problem.  The can was one of those ring pull ones so it only needed the ring to catch something, or someone to pull the ring on the shelf in the shop and you have a problem.

So a big thank you to both Spam and the supermarket Tesco for taking the matter seriously and dealing with it, it's nice to see good old fashioned service is still alive and well!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Cwm Mawr waterfall, southerndown.

A bit tricky to find if you don't know where it is.  The first time I went looking I went miles along the cliff top before coming back to it on the beach, as theres no obvious way down (and I couldn't get around the point in southerndown bay itself due to the tide)  The way to find it is to follow the path through the gate by the bottom car park and up towards the castle tower, then circle around back towards the beach, note the paths been diverted by the lookout point due to a cliff fall but follow the divertion (not far) and on the left you'll find a small gate, this leads to a path and steps to the beach, the bottoms a bit of a scramble so take care.
Then cross the beach and small valley and you'll see the waterfall running down the rock face.

Note be aware the the tide comes in fast and theres very few places (especially further along the beach) to get off if the tide comes in, people have drowned!  Always check the tides before going onto the beach, and keep a good eye on the tide, if you've doubts don't do it.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Air crashes

I've studied quite a lot of air crashes over the years, as well as tv documentaries and books I've had the benefit of reading the proper accident reports of many crashes.  There's a fairly common theme in many.  It seems once the flight crew come off the automated part of the flight, unless it's a normal landing they tend to have issues
It seems that the crews in many cases simply can't fly the plane manually if there's any kind of problem.  I think they've got so used to the computer doing it all when it comes to a problem they forget even basic things about actually flying the aircraft, they don't watch the instruments, they often even forget which way the controls work (pulling back the stick to gain speed for example) 
In a recent case I saw a 747 had a simple engine problem and the crew lost control trying to fly on 3 engines, something the 747 is quite capable of doing.  Yet during WW2 poorly trained pilots with only a few hundred hours often flew back from bombing missions shot up and on 2 of their 4 engines, yet one would expect a properly well trained modern crew with thousands of hours to do a lot better. 
My suggestion (and it's a risky strategy)  is to have the crews fly most of the flight manually, at least that way they'll get used to actually flying the aircraft.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Spam (the food)

I haven't bought a tin of Spam for ages, don't know why, it's nice enough I suppose, so the day beofre yesterday I bought one.... Thats where it went badly, the tin I bought (and opened the next day) was mouldy as hell, well dodgy (see pics)  So somehow I can't see me buying another one in the near future.

Monday, October 14, 2013

By Any Means (tv series review)

The plot is fairly simple a sort of undercover police unit using ex criminals to catch serious criminals using 'any means'
The goodies who consist of a pretty girl, a computer nerd and a mild hard man (with a few others) take on the baddies with high tech surveillance and all sorts of clever tricks.
The series reminds me of the Hustle, with it's clever twists and turns, just when you think it's all lost the team pull it back and save the day.

Waynes rating 7/10  well worth a watch

Lollipop men/women (school crossing patrols)

In the news today 65 year old Bob Slade a lollipop man in Manadon Vale Plymouth has resigned after being threatened with suspension for 'high fiveing' the children using his crossing, his friendly gesture was distracting him from watching the traffic it's claimed.
I suppose it's true he's there to look after the children and not to get possible distracted, but I can only assume someones complained.  So someone believes he's not taking the safety of the children in his care seriously enough.
I've never met or seen Mr Slade, but personally I've seen lollipop ladies and men who frankly are down right dangerous, there was one who used to be talking to the local road sweeper while the children crossed on their own, and another who didn't look before walking out in front of traffic.
To be honest I've always wondered why we allow old and often infirm people to be school crossing patrols, it's well known that as we age our faculties go, our eyesight, hearing, the ability to judge speed and distance etc, all pretty essential things for a person taking our children out in front of traffic.  Yet instead of putting younger fitter more alert people to look after them we use old people, many considered too old or infirm to do their normal jobs.  It's madness!   At least my children are now grown up, but maybe it's time we really looked at using the right people for the right jobs.

Friday, October 11, 2013

White House Down (film review)

The plot is simple, a group of terrorists take over the white house and only an off duty Washington cop stands in their way.  Think Die Hard in the white house and your close.
The films a little slow starting but then gets into an all action pace with, bombings, shootings car chases and plane crashes.  Special effects are good and it's interesting seeing what the inside of the white house is supposed to look like.
For me the film was a bit over the top, with the baddies unable to miss every other target but our hero, there were also a number of fairly big plot holes and inaccurate details (an RPG will not penetrate the frontal armour of an A1 tank for example) but if you like your action/adventure and don't take it too seriously it's ok, although I really hate the cheesy ending (you can see it coming miles away).

Waynes rating   6/10

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Paciffic rim (film review)

The plot is giant Godzilla like creatures are coming through the earths crust under the sea, to fight them giant robots manned by ninja style crews are sent out to save the earth.

Think Godzilla meet Transformers and your close, many of the scenes reminded me of the fight scenes in things like power rangers with the giant monster/robot bashing hell out of each other.  Ok the special effects are miles better but you get the idea.

Sadly the film didn't work for me, it was all too silly for my taste, but would probably appeal to most 14 year old boys.

Waynes rating 3/10  give it a miss if your grown up.

After Earth (film review)

Tough hero space ranger Cypher Raige (Will Smith) and his young inexperienced son Kitai Raige (Jaden Smith) are stranded on the abandoned earth of the future where everything is hostile.  With his father badly injured Kitai has to travel 100km to reach a rescue beacon, their only hope for rescue and saving both their lives.
Basically the story of the boy growing up to save his father.

The special effects are well up to scratch, and much of the scenery stunning, Jaden Smith shows his acting talents.  Sadly I didn't connect with either of the Smiths, Will's character a crusty patronising wooden father, seemed very much at odds with his sons terrified over the top nervousness.  By about half way through I didn't really care if they escaped or not, and personally I'd like to have seen the film made with the son injured and the father doing the tough stuff.

I can see why the film had mixed reviews in the press.

Waynes rating 5/10

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Note to film producers/directors

Please note, a grubby field in Los Angeles with an orange filter over the lens does not look like Africa, Africa is not freaking orange, nor for that matter is Miami (CSI Miami please note) putting an orange filter on just makes it look like you couldn't get the colour balance right.
Ireland, also please note;  Ireland is not all small rural villages where people smoke briarr pipes,and wear waistcoats. And using houses in California  doesn't work either, the houses are totally wrong..
Wales no longer consists of small terraced vilages with gangs of coal covered men in mining helmets walking about singing, that died out back in the 1920's.
For heavens sake look on bloody google at the places your supposed to filming, just for a change try and get it right, I'm fed up of seeing places that are obviously not the place it's supposed to be  The same with history, for gods sake it's all written down, just bloody look it up instead of getting it wrong, just look at Braveheart, it's all bloody wrong, the Scots weraing kilts and covered in blue wode, fine except kilts came in after the battle and wode was used by the picts 800 years earlier, all you had to do was look it up!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bear Grylls escape from hell

Well what a disappointment!  I'd waited for the new series after Bears falling out with Discovery channel but this was nothing like the Bear Grylls we're used to. it was a boring hammed up reenactment of other peoples survival stories with clips of bear dropped in, it reminded me more of Ray Mears series than what we've come to expect from Bear.
Sorry Bear you've lost it, I for one won't be watching any more of this crap.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Gower again

I visited the Gower coast again recently and took some pics, here they are.