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  • One month later…

    Posted on by rob

    Well, I’ve had my Android phone for just over 1 month now and I can only describe my feelings for the device as “growing stronger each day”.  Which, if you’d been reading my blog a year ago when I got my Nokia N97, is the complete opposite.

    The more I use the device, the more I love it.  Sure there are dislikes I have for device…

    — its hard for me to get use to the on screen keyboard. I’ve always had physical keyboards so still find myself making loads od mistakes, but getting much better.

    — the battery life ia really bad, but then again this really is the power of your average netbook in your pocket. I’ve not actually run it with Wifi, Bluetooth and gas fully disabled for a day to see how it does.

    — the final dislike ia nothing to do with device or android but with Samsung and the appalling failure that is the Samsung Kies software, which is required for doing update to the phone firmware. Simply but it doesn’t work for most people, and my experience is no different.

    My likes about the device? I think its easier ro simply say… With only the above exceptions, all you can do is love this thing.  It fast, has an amazing screen, awesome graphics, great audio, a phenomenal selection of apps available and simply gets better every day.

    If you want to see what I run on my android then CLICK HERE to see.  The list is a live update of the apps I have installed.  If you have an Android and don’t use Appbrain and Fast Web Installer app then you are seriously missing out on what I consider one of the most powerful apps on the Android Platform!!!

    I’ve written this post 100% from the device this time using the WordPress app.  No apps were harmed in the production of this posting and I had some green text on my screen so it means its friendly on the environment as well.

  • Long time no blog…

    Posted on by rob

    It’s been a long time since I’ve blogged about anything meaningful. It’s not for the lack of anything to blog about, just more about my lack of ambition really.

    In July I attended WordCampUK 2009 held in Caerdydd, Cymru (Cardiff, Wales). I was going to blog about this, but having read the huge number of postings by others that attended the event (A decent search), I figured there was nothing more that I could write to equal or better what others had already said. I will say that it was an awesome weekend though! Met loads of great people and even participated in the #Wordhack – Mobile Kubrick Theme project.

    In July I also got a new phone, the Nokia N97. While it’s a very slick phone, it’s far from being without faults and bugs. To be completely honest, I’ve not been surprised by this, Nokia has made it a business mission it seems to release stunning devices that were only half thought out and loosely hacked up and released, clearly done late on a Friday afternoon after everyone had been out for a pub lunch lunch earlier in the day. For it’s flag ship phone it’s a pretty piss poor showing. Think I’m being too hard on it? See here “N97 Sucks”, “N97 Bugs”, “N97 is crap”. To contrast this however, “N97 is great”. Over all I really really love the device and it’s huge potential, but that is overshadowed by Nokia’s classic lackadaisical approach to building phones of late.

    What else is new… I blogged recently about Lisa losing her first tooth… well it looks like another one is fixing to fall out soon. This is also the bottom one next to the one that fell out last month. Hehe poor kid will have a big hole in her smile for a while I think. There’s no sign yet of the new tooth showing up either.

    Holiday’s… not really planned much this summer due the appalling weather we’ve been having this year. Typically British is the common phrase you’ll hear people mention. Loads of rain and grey/black skies. I have however booked a week off in August and we’re hoping to get out and do at least a couple days of camping. I’ve found a place in Suffolk that looks nice. Loads of woods to go walking through and they allow camp fire, which is very rare here. That would be nice for the kids to sit by the fire and we’ll take some marshmallows for them to roast over the fire too. We’ve done that before but it was over the BBQ, lets face it, there’s no competition between marshmallows over a BBQ or a camp fire!.

    Not really much else to blog about right now. I’ll close off this posting for the time being. I hope to do more frequent blog postings, but then I’ve said that several times in the past and #failed at it 🙂

  • Happy Easter .. ok belated

    Posted on by rob

    Right, well Easter is actually over, but I’m doing a blog posting now really just to put the pics of the kids online more then anything.  The day was good, it started way to early though.  Man the kids were up at the crack of dawn, if only it were the crack of dawn in the UK and not for say India .. shesh.


    Thankfully, Yuki’s dad is here staying with us and he was looking after the kids.. Yuki and I managed to sleep in until nearly 9am, which was nice.  In fact, we managed to sleep in until nearly 10am Friday and Saturday.   I can’t even begin to recall sleeping in that late when vast amounts of alcohol was the direct cause of it.  So can’t really complain much.


    Anyhow, the day started with breakfast as usual.. then we sent the kids up stairs with their lao ye (grandfather in Chinese, it’s more specific then that, but trust me, you don’t want me to open that can of worms here and now 🙂 ).  Yuki and I took to hiding all the stuff for the kids.. candy, chocolate eggs, bunny’s, all sorts of rubbish haha.  Then it was time to unleash the kids..

    First, here is a quick tour of the hiding places of all the candy

    Here’s a video of the “hunt” under way .. I love Emma’s comment at one point “I’ve got so many…”

    Here are a few pics…




    You can see all the pics and videos taken today by CLICKING HERE.

    Enjoy the pics and videos.  I hope to do more blogging in the future.. I’ve been pretty slack at getting out updates, but life has been full of upheavals that… well… frankly made blogging a chore. 

    Besides, I’m booked to attend WordCamp UK in July.  It’s the second year for the event and the first year I’m going … it’s a weekend full of meeting other bloggers, some who do it for a living but most because they enjoy it (I assume anyhow).   With enjoy luck this event will encourage me to blog more, or even just give me loads of ideas to make my blogging better (which frankly wouldn’t take much, I know I suck at blogging).


  • Looking forward to WordCamp UK 2009

    Posted on by rob

    It’s still a bit early and not all of the details are available as yet .. but I’m waiting with bated breath for all the details.. I’ve actually already booked my hotel room.. didn’t want that to be the primary reason I couldn’t get there.

    I’ve been using WordPress now for what.. nearly 3 years I think.. maybe only 2, can’t remember. But I’m dead impressed with it… I’ve been watching all of the WordCamp events around the world and waiting for one to come up here.. I know they had a 2008 one in the UK, however I missed that completely for some reason..

    Check out the WordCamp UK website:


    And follow them on Twitter too: http://twitter.com/wordcampuk

    I hope to meet loads of people there.. sounds like it should be great fun!


  • WordPress Mass Account Import

    Posted on by rob

    While working on a couple of WordPress projects for two sites I host (www.cambridgerepeaters.net & www.cambridgeshire-raynet.net) I had the need to do mass account creation.  These were 30+ accounts at a time, not a thrilling prospect to do that via the normal admin interface.  Searching the net was nearly useless, until I found a WP plugin called “Import Users Plugin for WordPress”.  This worked, but was very simple and didn’t suit my needs.

    So, after looking at the script and figuring out how it worked (I’m not PHP coder but I can get by in a pinch), I managed to hack the script to do what I wanted.  The script as provided above only allows for the email address and login name, the 2 required bits of info to create a new account on a WP system.  However, I needed to be able to specify:

    • first name
    • last name
    • password

    Another nice thing to have on the import is being able to set the WordPress user role (access level), so I shoved that in as well.  On the plugin page I posted a comment about my updates and a link to the new modified script:

    I’d like to submit another modified version of this great script. The changes I’ve made to the script allows for adding first and last names, setting a password and setting the role for the imports. I’m also using the more powerful method of account creation, “wp_insert_user” this allows a lot more in the way of adding nice things to the script and new account.

    The import file or manually entered format is:


    All fields except username and email are optional, but all fields must be delimited, ie:


    Fred has everything assigned while Sam will be emailed his generated password and his role will be set to whatever was selected from the drop down box on the form.

    I’d be interested in any comments on my changes. There have been quite a few changes, I suggest a diff of mine and the latest modified one.

    My modified version can be found at:


    I hope people find this useful, I think it’s a function that’s needed by far more people then you might expect.  In my mind, it’s something that should be part of the core code for WordPress.  I can see more modifications coming to this script as my projects progress.  While looking into changes for the script I’ve found other things that would be nice to have at the time of import too…

    Watch this space…
    Updated script

    2009.06.17 @ 2013GMT

    Version 1.1.13 – Added user URL to be imported into user details (not the default assigned blog for WPMU)


    Note the new format when using this version:

    The import file or manually entered format is:


    All fields except username and email are optional, but all fields must be delimited, ie: