Jet engine water heater

Jun 17, 2010 | | 0 comments |

Our old water heater died a couple of days ago and the plumber came out to fit a new one today. They advised us to go for a powerflow heater which has a force-flow exhaust fan on it. The guy told me it would be quiet enough that it wouldn't be a problem but when they finally turned it on today - well - it's like an X-box, or jet engine. Take your pick. It is LOUD - you can hear it resonating through the whole house. I told them I wasn't happy at all with it and they went back to base and got their manager to give me a call. He was ready to put it right and has ordered a direct-vent heater - same style as the one we replaced but a different brand. They're going to come on monday and swap them over at no extra charge.
But to add insult to injury, looks like our pressure regulator on the main water line has also gone pop and the whole house is at 120psi now. So I need to get a new one of those too :-(

Let the vuvuzela blow

Jun 16, 2010 | | 0 comments |

Even if you're not interested in the World Cup - like me - you can't have escaped the number of news stories where people are complaining about the vuvuzelas. Plastic duotone trumpets that South African fans use to make noise, cheer, and support football games. Sounds like a beehive and drowns out a lot of other noise.
My guess? These are the same people who complain about the Swiss ringing cowbells when supporting the winter Olympics, or the same people who buy a house under the flightpath to a major airport then complain about the noise.
Football is a noisy sport - suck it up and deal with it.

Servers on fire everywhere

Jun 15, 2010 | | 0 comments |

Today was interesting, frustrating, and joyful all at the same time. Starting at 6:30 I began attempting to pre-order my iPhone 4. Apple's servers were already dead and AT&Ts were on the verge of collapse. Nothing was working - visions of campuses and server farms on fire with IT blokes jumping out of windows. About 9:30, a backdoor link appeared on Engadget and holy crap it worked. I got a pre-order in online and received a confirmation email. Being the curious type, I then went back and tried the backdoor link again and lo and behold - the servers were toast. The two other guys in my office trying to order managed to get their orders in after lunch - about 14:00 I reckon and the question now is - when will any of us see the phone? Theoretically, I ought to be OK - AT&T sold out of pre-orders about 12:00 our time so I ought to be on the "gonna get one" list.
We'll see.
Either way, the busiest online sales day in AT&T's history did nothing to help their image with server crashes, network outages, and in-store orders ending up being made with paper and pen.
My guess? On the 24th, the same thing will happen when everyone who did manage to order one, plugs them all in at the same time and starts hammering the AT&T accounts system for verification and setup completion.
Methinks I'll wait a bit if I get mine on that day.