Archive for November, 2007

My Perfect Alarm Clock

November 25th, 2007 No comments

I keep getting visions of the most perfect alarm clock, well for my needs anyhow. I have problems with ordinary alarm clocks – they all do the basics, like sound when it’s time for me to get up, but being a techno-geek, I can always think of better ways to do things!

I’ve seen a couple of possible candidates for a solution to this problem but I don’t think any of them go quite far enough.

What I really want is an alarm clock that is low power (this is very important – I can probably do what I want with a PC, but the noise and power comsumption would be phenomenal and that worries me). It also needs to be low noise – if this is going near my bed, I want to be able to sleep!

Next, onto the basic features! Alarm clocks are simple, and *must* be reliable (I can’t hink of anything else more important – imagine how many people would be pissed off if your alarm clock kept crashing), so it needs to be able to have a clock and at least two alarms, plus back lighting, a robust and easy to use series of buttons (I want to be able to control this when I have just woken up and probably aren’t thinking straight), I also want high-vis numbers for the clock and a wide viewing angle.

So then we get onto the good features! I want this to be network connected – either by LAN or WiFi (USB isn’t good enough as it requires a computer to be turned on) – this will allow a lot of useful features! My current alarm clock updates itself from the UK’s radio time signal so I either want that feature, or the ability to update from NTP. It will also need to know the date and understand BST/GMT, etc. I want this thing to have a calendar, and specifically something I can update using WebDav, or via an integrated website – I then want this information to be displayed on the screen once the alarm has gone off, that way when I wake up, I can see what I’m supposed to do that day. Also, with the Calendar, I want to be able to set the time that the alarm goes off on certain days and on special occassions – for example, on week days I want it to go off at 6:00am for work, but at weekends at 6:45 for rowing; but if there is a day that I can get up late or one day where I need to get up even earlier, I can then override the usual times. I also want to set rules about how long the alarm will let me snooze for – for example, don’t let me press it more than 3 times, or don’t let me snooze more than 15 minutes after the alarm went off, etc. I also want to through into the mix some weather information (in more than one location please, one for where I am, one for work and one for rowing), and I also want the temperature of the room as well. Also, making a plugin architecture would be good, but not a necessity.

Anyone have anything else to be included?

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Good Lord, It’s Been Ages

November 12th, 2007 No comments

Well, time flies when you’re having fun!

This has to be the longest amount of time that I haven’t blogged for – it’s just coming up to two months.

Haven’t had much time recently, I moved flat just over 6 weeks ago, and I’ve been so busy ever since, it’s been stupid!

Anyway, to give you a summary of what I’ve been doing:

  • Learning CakePHP – Might as well do something with my time
  • Thinking about how to create something like Facebook’s “Facebook ML” for a website (see above).
  • Fixing MythTV – And realising that to do it, I need to wipe the box and start again.
  • XML import and export in Progress 4GL – Don’t be fooled, it doesn’t escape any illegal characters
  • General Living – Has to be done at some point.
  • Becoming a child-saviour – Charity work is good for the soul

Still, I expect that there is more to come!

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