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The random ramblings of a Star Trek-obsessed schools ICT Systems Manager who likes a good moan.
This is a place where I can whinge about life, and express my love of my family, 80's music, retro computer gaming (especially on my Commodore 64),
 oh and Star Trek. I'm very open with my opinions and I like a good moan. If you don't like what I say, then you might want to consider not reading this blog.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

All Aboard.......

For Kierans first Christmas, we got him a Hornby Thomas the Tank Engine trainset - we knew he was too young for it at the time, but it was a bargain, and for the past couple of years I have been promising to build him a trainset - At last I bought the materials needed and have indeed started work on it.

First of all though, I had to plan the layout and size of the trainset - I settled for a nice 6ft by 3ft - not too big, but at the same time still a reasonable size for Kieran to play with (and yes, it will fit in his bedroom!!!). I used a fantastic little program called XTrkCad to design the track.





I popped down to our local Homebase store here in Evesham last Friday and bought the bits and pieces needed to put it all together - the wood, screws, joints, etc.




I couldnt get one large sheet of wood, so I had to settle on three 3ft x 2ft boards.





The next thing I started to do was lay the track (with the help of Michelle). Fortunatly I was able to purchase tons of extra track and track-ballast from Ebay several months ago.



Now, in the two days since I started work on the trainset, here is what it looks like now :-

Ignore the bottles of wine - I've been using them to prop things up (like the tunnel portals), and to show me where certains things are going to go.

Kieran absolutely loves it even in its unfinished state - I can't wait to see his face when it is finally finished.

As I progress with the project, I will post here new pictures.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

London Transport Museum

Despite Kieran having chickenpox, we still decided to visit my family and friends back in Laindon. Yesterday we took Kieran into London to visit the London Transport Museum. He absolutely loved it, and I have to admit it, so did I...


Kieran driving a double-decker bus


Kieran and Grandad beside Steam Train


Buses


Kieran and Nanny driving an Underground train on the Simulator.


An old 1938 stock Underground Train



Inside an old 1938 Stock Underground train


Kieran driving another London double-decker bus

Friday, March 21, 2008

Holiday Time / Last Ninja Video

Well, the easter holiday is finally here. It's been a short, but very hectic term at school since Christmas but I'm so glad I've got the next two weeks off from work. We're popping down to Essex on Sunday to stay with my parents for a few days, and hopefully catch up with my friends.

Anyway, in the meantime, I'll leave you with a little music video that I have put together (and published on Youtube) for a Commodore 64 remix that I wrote a couple of years ago. Hope you like it.


Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Future gaming champion!

There are those who would probably moan at me for letting my 3 year old son play computer games.... but I don't care - it never did me any harm!!! Since getting a Playstation 3, it seems that Kieran will not leave me alone without taking the controller away from me and having a game.

His favourite games at the moment are Formula One Championship, Ridge Racer 7, Gran Turismo HD Concept (Demo) and Super Rub a Dub!

Not sure what he is going to think of Grand Theft Auto IV!!!!! (Thats a joke by the way).

Anyway, I hope you like these pictures that I have just taken of him playing Gran Turismo and Formula One.




Kieran's ability at using a game controller (and indeed, a mouse on a computer) has amazed both Michelle and myself. I know that it is important not to let him play on it all of the time, but it has certainly helped in his hand/eye co-ordination development, and of course he finds it really fun too.

Monday, March 03, 2008

PS3

After a few months trying to decide whether I can be bothered to get a Next Gen console, I finally decided to take the plunge and bought myself a nice shiny new PlayStation 3 yesterday. It was one of those 'game pack' deals which included the console, controller and two games - Ridge Racer 7 and Resistance Fall of Man.


I also bought an HDMI cable with it so that I can connect it to our 40" HD flatscreen television for proper high-definition gameplay.....

My first reaction after playing Resistance was "WOW!!!", and to say I was impressed with the gameplay (and graphics) would be a major understatement.

It was a tough choice between getting an XBox 360 or a PS3, but if I were to get an Xbox (which has been out now for around 3 years), it would be like buying a new computer that was 3 years old - not someting I'd want to do. Other factors include the reliability of PlayStation consoles - I've heard so much about the imfamous 'Ring of Death' on the Xbox, whereas in all the years I have owned a Playstation console (I have an original Playstation, Playstation 2 and PSP), I have never had anything go wrong with any of them......... Touch wood!

I just can't wait for Grand Theft Auto 4 next month, and Resident Evil 5 (whenever it comes out!!!)