2013 — 11 February: Monday

Good grief, no rain. What's gone wrong?

Meanwhile, why is it suddenly a "scandal" if 30,000 to 40,000 people per year have to sell their homes to fund their care when old? Only a Tory guvmint would cast the problem in quite that light, I suspect. How typically British simply to suggest twitching the money limit up in a way that solves nothing1 long-term, too. Or rely on "awareness" of insurance policies that can be taken out (and paid for how?) when going into care to "cap" future contributions? Do I see yet another insurance mis-selling scandal in the making?

Where do people think the money for all this actually comes from? That Commission on Living Standards (see yesterday) gave four examples of "households" at different income levels. The lowest "Case Study D — full-time care worker with one child" supposedly has an 'equivalised' annual income below £10K. We need lots of them... Here's a thought: Perhaps we can recruit all the about-to-be-sacked Romanian horsemeat traders?

Or stop funding aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, tax havens, and banking bonuses? (I have a chum whose theory is that aircraft carriers are necessary so that captains can progress to admirals. Submarines apparently don't count as "significant" commands.)

I always like...

... to get a glimpse of the UK as seen from "furrin" parts. Today, Australia:


Well, it's certainly a different view, granted. But I hope the BBC isn't intending to bowdlerise Basil.

I'd been thinking...

... I'd better nip out on a quick supplies run before my post-lunch visit from my networking (El Reg has an interesting piece on Ethernet, by the way) and NAS consultant. One look at the sleet was enough to convince me my time would be more warmly spent trying to fix the errant spacebar on my sparkling clean keyboard. Unless I hit it dead centre it no longer yields a space character, which is all I ask of it. Is that too much?


Apparently so, yes. [Pause] And that sleet? It's now nasty great fat flakes of snow. Yuk.

As I sup a warming cup of coffee it (further) occurs to me that dear Mama has long since burned her way through the new proposed higher limit of £75K on a person's "contribution" to their care home costs. But then the small print on those proposals say that the guvmint (strictly, the local authority) will only step in to pay a "fair" going rate. If, therefore, you fancy a fancier level of care home care (and who doesn't?) you still have to fund that yourself.

Perhaps the most efficient way for Big Bro and me to have collected any of the "nest egg" she always insisted she was hoarding purely for "her boys" would have been to park what I've heard Peter's g/f refer to as "the parental unit" in a cardboard carton under a disused railway bridge... and (I'm told) that's not really "on", is it?


That's the first time...

... a networking and NAS consultant has swung by Waitrose on his way over to pick up a small batch of groceries for me and successfully helped me set up access between the dinky new media streamer and the NAS so I can now play video and audio files without grief. He's less sanguine, however, about my chances of being able to set up 1080p video access from BlackBeast to the Kuro plasma at the same time as it's driving both my 24" displays. Or, at least, not with my current (blissfully-silent, passively-cooled) graphics card that (recall) regards both DVI and hdmi as old-hat legacy ports and restricts you to two, max. Neither of my present screens has a DisplayPort and nor (of course) does my Kuro.

"Why do you need to do that?"
I don't need to, I just resent the fact that it doesn't seem to be possible.
"If it's not worth spending £200 to £300 or more on a new card and/or a smart display signal hub2 to you then I'd give up now if I were you."

Besides, as he also pointed out, the root of the problem may well be the triple-damned HDCP as implemented on the Kuro. This is by no means the first time it's demonstrated a degree of snobbish signal pickiness way above its pay grade. Bah, humbug.

It's cold and wet out there, but the snow didn't settle. Time for a cuppa, methinks.

Curling up...

... with what I hope will be as entertaining in book form as its author was in the (radio) flesh a few days ago:


Thanks, Mr Postie. I'm sure you'll warm up at some point.

Robotic worm food

A quick check of my server log shows me that human visitors have snaffled 98MB of bandwidth from molehole this month, and (in)human visitors have feasted on the same amount. Small beer by Madame Google's standards — her Googlebots being (at 58MB) the single hungriest snaffler. Which reminds me: I'm hungry. It's 18:38 and I make that tea (meal) time.

Evening double bill

Having started with the Cirque du Soleil show "Alegria"...


... there really wasn't anything suitable to follow that by except the 1997 oddball documentary of "four obsessed eccentrics" by Errol Morris, was there?

Errol Morris


I've spent the last hour trying to find anything the media streamer can't handle. Nothing has failed so far. Excellent. That will do for now. G'night.



1  The so-called 'hotel' food and accommodation costs (as opposed to the nursing costs) will remain the individual's responsibility, and — if dear Mama's case is typical — constitute the bulk of the expense.
2  I was actually reading about the Display Port 1.2 MST Hub only yesterday, but it still seems to be vapourware.