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  • Development, Linux

    Multiple monitors on a Dell XPS 13

    Last week I got a new laptop for work – or rather I got an old Laptop for work – a colleague’s Dell XPS 13. It just happened that my rather aged 6 year old workstation was due for replacement, and a colleague left and returned their 18 month old Dell XPS 13 laptop, so I took it as my replacement. The XPS 13 is a great little laptop and super fast with its 256Gb solid state drive and 8G...
  • Development, IT

    Converting an old router using dd-wrt.

    My Son is 12 years old and like most boys his age is heavily into Internet use for all sorts of pastimes ranging from games, videos & music. He has the usual range of technology at his disposal – a mobile phone, laptop and tablet but he always complains that the internet coverage in his room is poor and keeps dropping out. I’m not actually convinced that this is accurate, because we happen to have a pretty powerful asus RT-N66U...
  • Development

    Learning to touch type

    I taught myself to touch type many years ago but because I type computer code all day long, which involves lots of brackets and punctuation, I have always found that it is actually quicker to ‘hunt & peck’ my way round the keyboard rather than touch type. However, over the last few months I’m finding that my eyes are getting more and more tired from constantly changing focus between the screen and the keyboard so I’ve decided I need to...
  • Development, Hackintosh, Linux

    Probook 4540s Hackintosh

    OK – this blog is titled ‘Simon Hawketts’s Photo Blog’ but I do have other interests and this post (or probably series of posts) is not a photo related post but an IT related post. I bought a new Laptop a month or so ago as a replacement for my aging HP 8710W which was getting a bit long in the tooth. I looked around for a new model which would allow me to try out something I’d wanted to...
  • Development

    Using Zend Framework ACL and Auth to control access

    I’ve recently started using the Zend framework components to produce a site I’m working on and thought I’d document how I’ve tied the Acl and Auth components together to control access.The site I’m building consists of several services which all have access through a common user account login, but with different classes of user. This seemed an ideal candidate for using Access control lists so I’ve set them up in the following way. Each service is being written as a...
  • Development, Linux

    Unix Timestamp Conversion

    I use unix timestamps to store dates in databases because I find it an easy way to do maths with the dates. One drawback of course is that I can’t tell what a date is by just looking at the number so I was trying to find a calculator app which would do the conversion. Although there are bound to be loads I couldn’t find one which would allow me to quickly highlight a number and convert it to a...

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