Internet Traffic Management in the UK

From the early days of Broadband in the UK we have been suffering some sort of traffic management in the name of protecting the ISP’s network.  Now what does this actually mean?  In short it means that certain traffic is restricted so that it cannot transfer as quick as different types of traffic, the most common throttled type of traffic is peer to peer traffic (p2p).  This has been stated in the terms and conditions in most ISP’s however most would deny the fact it is being done on your connection when complaining about speed (in my experience).

Under the new plans drawn up by the Broadband Stakeholders Group, is to officially have a traffic management program in place where all broadband services priorities traffic depending on what it is, for example if I was downloading a Linux Distribution and someone else was watching a program on BBC IPlayer my download would take second place to the streaming of IPlayer because a download would be deemed less important for speed against something like streaming from BBC IPlayer.

Although I believe that everyone should be equal on the internet and no one should have more priority then anyone else, as it goes against the ethos of the internet and what it was made for.  I do agree with this move if it is put in place properly due to the fact that as we rely on the internet more for services we need to make sure that everyone gets the best possible service.  With my example earlier I would prefer for my download to be slightly slower if it meant that when watching a TV program on any of the on demand services it wouldn’t be disrupted by the need to buffer.

The downside of this sort of system however it can exploited, for example once put in place there would be an ability to offer a premium services which wouldn’t be fair because it then becomes whoever pays the most will get the best.  So on that basis I think that definitely goes against the idea of the internet without any of the benefits it would offer to the end user.

So in conclusion I will be all for this move as the development of the internet structure for the UK isn’t developing quick enough to cope with the higher demands that the content now has on the internet.  However it does have to put in correctly and made sure that it is not exploited.


Missing Laptop

The saying that you don’t miss something until its gone is so true.  I have been fortunate for years to own a laptop and a desktop all be it over time changing them as and when I had a problem with them or just wanting an upgrade.  As I have now finished University and have no really need for a laptop I have donated mine to my brother that is still in University as he has a need for a laptop, thinking that I can live with my desktop I only use my laptop in the house anyway.

Was I wrong or what?  Ok so there isn’t anything that my desktop can’t do that my laptop could except move and it does have more power but without a laptop I feel lost for some reason.  Some days I wouldn’t use the laptop and only use my desktop other days I’d use both and some days it would be just the laptop, I think part of it that I can’t just pick the desktop up and locate into a different room.

Oh the freedom I’m starting to think an unnecessary purchase is on the card 😉


To be honest going to see this film I was thinking not another war movie, but I was pleasantly surprised at this one to be honest.  Most of the material has been done before with quite a few clichés in the flim for good measure, however that being said I would recommending going to see this movie.

Although the opposition is not the normal opposition you would find a marine going up against I felt that you got quite a good insight to what special operation marines have to deal with, along with the extra added bonuses that you get from watching a film to make it that little bit more interesting.  That being said although the main plot was well put together in my opinion this film did lack the development with sub plots.

The first half of the film I thought was quite slow and didn’t really seem to catch my interest, but as the film developed the action become more and more which added to the speed of the film and turned it from a film that I wasn’t really enjoying to something I really enjoyed.  I would give this film a 7 out of 10.


WicketPixie Theme Review

WicketPixie theme for WordPress is developed by Chris Pirillo.  I don’t normally review themes as they don’t really hold much to review being the fact they are normally just the design.  This theme however is so much more with plug-ins integrated into it and allows you to start making your blog more then a blog out of the box.

The major factor for me was the way I was able to easily integrate my twitter stream into the top of the home page, then to give it its own page so that my possible readers can spy on me and know exactly what I actually do with my day,  giving it that bit of extra personal connection with the audience.  The second big thing for me was the use of Google Ads already preconfigured was great all you need to do is go into your ad-sense and make the ads to the relevant size and type and paste the code for the areas of the template you want to have ads.

The other features that the template also holds is to embed a Ustream Account so that you can have a live video feed going and it will be displayed on your blog.  The other major features are the ability to configure the blog to display your Youtube videos and Flickr Photos, it will display them below posts and on the page displaying random ones every time it is loaded.

Although I really like this theme, some of the plug-ins need to be activated in the plug-ins manager for WicketPixie and need to be installed in the plug-ins section, this is a minor hassle but one that can be rectified really quite easily.  The only real problem I had was configuring the Google Custom Search for my ads and I have opted not to bother with it.

Overall I am very happy and will continue to use and donate towards the development of this template.

Final Nail in the Windows Coffin

Microsoft Windows the operating system that is considered the normal for the home user, but what about the alternatives?  Anyone that knows me and likes technology knows that I have a serious fascination with the world of Linux.  Which is the other major operating system that can be loaded onto a PC.

The trouble you have with Linux however because Windows has such a high percentage of the market most software developers and hardware for that matter aim their products at the big operating system because they have such a big market share (However I hate to admit it good business.).

I had a few reasons why I wouldn’t convert to Linux and the main was the fact that the few laptops that I had tried it on were prone to overheating, that was later shown to be because of a hardware problem, along with at the time my addiction to playing World of Warcraft which wasn’t supported by Linux.

The final nail in the coffin for me however was the latest infection I gained and it meant that my computer came down to a crawl and I was no longer able to boot to my recovery partition to reinstall Windows XP Media Center.  I sat there thinking well what to do now?  The answer was to install a spare copy of Windows 7 that I had.  I installed it to find that it does have all the drivers for my hardware except my graphics doesn’t load every single time.  Banging my head against a break wall I thought sod this and installed Ubuntu as a dual boot so I still have Windows at my disposal and to be honest I can’t see myself going back in there.

The reason why I like Ubuntu/Linux so much is because of the whole ethos about it, everyone is working on it to make better and everything just works, I don’t have any problems with graphics and Ubuntu has everything I need except World of Warcraft.  Although its wrong to say there are no viruses for Ubuntu it is very hard to get them and even if you do you need to give them root access to install.  Unlike Windows though there is a software centre with a wide range of software avaliable for the operating system and they have been properly tested by the developers to be safe in most cases (Some are tested by the community and not the developers themselves).

I also don’t quite know what it is but Ubuntu seems to help me focus on what I want to achieve rather then finding other things to do without doing what I was meant to.

Tags and Search Engine Optimisation

As a self taught Web Designer, I won’t pretend I am the best or that what I know is completely right however when looking at the subject the first thing I considered was how does Google work?  How can I make sure that my site is out their for people?  There are a lot of answers to that however this particular article is going to be referring to keywords and how the major blogging platforms WordPress and Blogger deal with them.

My first venture into any form of Content Management System (CMS) was Joomla and it kind of conformed to the standard of having meta data and you could set it for each individual article out of the box, as I slowly made my way through that CMS it was brilliant however too big for some of my projects as the client would only really want a well designed blog.  With that in mind I went over to WordPress and realised oh no meta data.  Obviously you could set it for the home page editing the template however for the individual pages a found myself wondering what do I do for the posts, here comes plugins the one I use is called All in One SEO Pack.

It gave me all the options I could possibly want for my Search Engine Optimisation on WordPress but when I thought about it I wondered why did such a well known and used platform not have anything in place already for SEO.  Then while playing around with a mates Blogger account I realised that Blogger was the same.

Looking around Blogger the only thing resembling keywords was the Tags known as Labels there is no plugin for it.  Suddenly the penny drops the two platforms do have keyword functionality straight out the box its their tag features that are used for keywords which also holds more advantages.  The big advantage is that at the bottom of the post there will be a link for the tag and that will search your entire blog for articles with that tag making it easier for the search engine to get around your entire site.

I couldn’t believe I hadn’t worked this out sooner, so to anyone out there with their blogs hit the tags and start using them, however don’t over use them.  The rule is between 5 to 10 tags maximum otherwise it is considered spamming and the search engine will mark you down.

Happy tagging

What’s your Work Rate like?

This blog post was brought along through the experience I have had personally while working for people and also seeing what is happening currently with the people that are putting in new the new kitchen and bathroom.  The question that I have found myself asking is if you know that you could possibly be made redundant how do you act?  The reason I ask this is because the guys that are currently doing my kitchen and bathroom are very likely to be made redundant because their firm has lost the contract.

This is effecting everyone differently which I expected but it had me thinking of how I would react in this situation because although they have a high chance of being made redundant the fact that the company they are working for is nationwide it lands itself to the idea is that they could be lucky and could just get relocated.  Now one of the painters has seemed to have lost it (luckily he’s working up the road) and is not getting the job done quick enough along with not talking to the right people about what is happening and luckily for me the group that are in my house are keeping it professional and doing the best they can.

Now I can understand the stress that they must be under with families and so on but to me I’d want to carry on doing my job as well as I could on the off chance that they would keep me on or even consider the future 6 months down the line they might gain another contract and there would be a possible opening for me.

I know that in my last employment, I didn’t leave it like that and it is a saw point however to me I needed to do it because it was a small company that had no intention of employing me again no matter how well I did the job.  I’d be interested to know how you’d react or think you’d react?  Would you take pride in your work and keep working to your best abilities or just think I can’t be bothered and go into melt down?

Unknown Movie Review

Where to start with this movie? You have a guy that appears to be going to a conference with his wife in which he’s going to be giving a presentation on a scientific break through.  Of which there is going to be high members of society and the science world there. However he leaves his brief case at the airport and has to go back and get it only to be in a card accident and loose his memory or so we think.

He wakes up in a hospital wondering where his wife is and not knowing what hotel he’s staying at finally works it out after watching the news about this huge conference.  As he goes into the hotel he finds his wife and she’s with another man who’s protending to be her husband.  Everyone around him seems to think he’s nuts as he has no identification, however as the story unfolds he becomes to realise that he’s actually an assasian and was on a job but because of the bang to the head he was actually believing his cover story.

On the way to this conclusion he becomes friends with the Taxi driver that is actually an illegal immigrant and they help each other out.

But the question is what does he do with his new found knowledge of himself and does he stop the plan?

So that’s the basic plot but what did I think of the film?  Well one of the reason for describing the plot so much in this review was in the hope you could see what I saw after and that was the fact it was actually a sort of remake of the Bourne Identity.  That being said the movie is actually really good, the twist and turns were really well done I thought and it wasn’t until after the movie I realised what the movie reminded me about.  The acting I thought was really good and the sub plots in the story kept you intrigued, I would highly recommend this film especially if you like the Bourne Identity.


Charlie Sheen Fired from Two and Half Men

When I read the headline on my phone my instant reaction was how can they have Two and Half Men without Charlie Sheen?  This question isn’t a reflection on the other actors and actresses in the hit TV Show its just Two and Half Men is Charlie Sheen.  It is not often that you find such a good show for comedy and have in the back of your mind that this could actually be happening to the person portraying the character.

When I further read the article CBS aren’t sure what they are going to do with the TV Series yet but for the time being it will remain suspended which it has been for a few weeks as all this hit the headlines.  Although I don’t condone what Charlie is doing part of me feels that if he was still able to do the work then they should of carried on letting him film, as the TV Series for me is just brilliant.  The problem I get is ok it doesn’t look good when an actor has an addiction, but Charlie is now looking for help and he seems to think he’s making progress, as for worried about the image that Charlie gives I do not understand because his character is what he’s doing so aren’t the network already giving the wrong message already if they are concerned about his behaviour?


What are my Aims for Total Reach?

Well to be honest, I have tried multiple things with Total Reach and nothing has really come of it.  That being said even though I always had an aim in mind, it did kind of dry up a bit quick not because I lost interest but because I don’t think I could deal come up with enough content for that particular subject.

I started blogging with the intention to make money but as I soon realised although it is possible to make money and a lot of it in blogging you need to be good and you need to have something some one wants, of which my self evaluation on that is low so I have never considered my work to be that good.

From these early beginning however I did realised that maybe I was doing it for the wrong reasons although the internet has turned into what we do in the real world and that is too make money, I started to consider that the internet wasn’t put here to make money it was put here to share information and close down the barriers of distance between people.

With that in mind what does a blog really mean and what should go in it?  Well I decided only you the blogger author can really decide for yourself, my plan is now to use this blog both for constructive work, bring you the latest Technology news that matters to me and reviews along with personal stuff.  This has been brought on by the fact that I was posting random useless facts to Facebook and all of a sudden some people like it and some people didn’t, so the aim of Total Reach will be to add the latest Technology news and any other random bits that I want to share with the world today.  Rather then sticking to the one subject as it will mean the content won’t dry up and brings variety to the blog.

I will say though I will try and use categories efficiently however so that if you only want to read about a certain subject then you are able to.

Useless fact for the day :p:

A hippo can open its mouth wide enough to fit a 4 foot child inside

Please note we don’t take any responsibility how true these facts are.