A trip to Cornwall

We had a couple of days overlap between the end of Martine‘s week off and the start of my fortnight off, a rare occurrence, so we had a quick trip to [wikipop]Cornwall[/wikipop] to visit my sister.

After a long slow crawl down the [wikipop search=”M5 Motorway”]M5[/wikipop] and the [wikipop search=”A30 Road”]A30[/wikipop] (everyone else seemed to have had the same idea :-() we strolled along the [wikipop]Gwithian[/wikipop]/[wikipop]Godrevy[/wikipop] beach…

…and across the cliffs to see if we could spot some [wikipop search=”Common seals”]seals[/wikipop]. There was a lone mother seal relaxing on the beach in the afternoon sunshine while a couple of youngsters played in the sea…

Seals (click through to the big image to spot them)

The [wikipop search=”St Ives, Cornwall”]St. Ives[/wikipop] September Festival was just starting but we managed to only catch a lunchtime open air poetry and music session. The sunshine seemed to bring out more poets and musicians than planned for so the whole thing overran by an hour or more. So numerous were the participants that we could not recall all their names. There was [wikipop]Charles Shaar Murray[/wikipop] accompanied by Buffalo Bill Smith…

Charles Shaar Murray & Buffalo Bill Smith
and Anna Chen and Rod Bullimore and Kelvin Bowers and Steve Jones with the whole thing coordinated by Bob Devereux who also did his thing…

This was followed by a (not very) hot chocolate at the Tate
We knew it was the Tate because it was more presentation than substance 😉

All too soon it was time to return; so Martine planned an ambling route home over [wikipop]Dartmoor[/wikipop] where we avoided the wild ponies…

…back up a quieter M5…

and home again.

A trip to Oxford

As we both had a day off, a rare coincidence, we went to the station…

and caught the first train that turned up; which took us to [W:Oxford].

We went for lunch at the Pieminister place in the covered market

After which we explored the cavernous Blackwell’s book shop and then the Museum of the History of Science with its splendid lighting on the stairs…

but when we came out it was pouring with rain so we had a hot chocolate…

headed back to the station…

and home.

(Martine’s view of the day)

Cimy Header Image Rotator and a Twenty Ten Child Theme

The previous post about rotating the header images in the Twenty Ten theme has been quite popular

but it was bad advice because as soon as you update your WordPress and/or theme files your changes are overwritten and lost. The solution is to move the changes into a child theme where they will overwrite the files in the original theme even when updating.

To make a child theme we simply create a folder in the WordPress themes folder (in the wp-content folder) and give it a name: mychildtheme (or whatever you want to call it).

We then save a plain text file called style.css into the mychildtheme folder. The style.css file reads:

/*
Theme Name: mychildtheme
Template: twentyten
*/

@import url(“../twentyten/style.css”);

#cimy_div_id {
clear: both;
border-top: 4px solid #000;
border-bottom: 1px solid #000;
width: 940px;
height: 198px;
}

Where the Theme name and Template are required to indicate the parent and the child. The import URL grabs the original style.css file to be altered by our style.css file. We then include the #cimy_div_id section that we had originally used in the header.php file.

Create a new plain text file and copy the contents of the header.php file into it. Replace the

<img src="<?php header_image(); ?>" width="<?php echo HEADER_IMAGE_WIDTH; ?>" height="<?php echo HEADER_IMAGE_HEIGHT; ?>" alt="" />

code with the


<div id="cimy_div_id">

<noscript>
<img id="cimy_img_id" src="http://yourDomain.com/somePicture.jpg" alt="" />
</noscript>

</div>

as before (we no longer need the styling here as it is in the style.css file), and then save this as header.php into the mychildtheme folder.

We can now preview and activate our mychildtheme as you would any other theme within WordPress. Our modified header.php will be used instead of the default header.php and our style.css will be used to make changes to the default styling. You can add further changes to the styling by adding to the style.css file in the child theme. The Firebug extension for the Firefox browser is a quick way to experiment with making changes before adding the code to your style sheet.

Dragonfly: almost emerged

We spotted a dragonfly trying to emerge from its nymph skin but the nymph had not attached itself securely to a reed….

…and so it struggled to free itself…

Get the Flash Player to see this video.


Once freed it sat recuperating for a while; so I stopped filming and it immediately took off into the summer sky…. somedays nothing seems to go right.

Me (not) Mobile?

Have just enjoyed the 60 day trial of Mobile Me. Having a house full of Macs which will be joined, I do not doubt, at some time by an iPad all that syncing and sharing stuff is just the job. Mostly I was using the picture gallery which, combined with a dinky WordPress plugin, provided a quick link from here to there.

The trial expired but no payment was charged. Instead an email complaining that something was wrong with my card details…

…which was strange. I checked the details and all seemed, as far as I could see, to be correct but still it was rejected…

…which was strange because the details of the same card are stored at the Apple Store where it is used (far too) frequently…

One of their suggestions was to purchase a box from the Apple Store, have that delivered by snail mail, discard the disc and packaging into the recycle bin, and type in the included activation key. [W:Cloud computing] eh! It’s the future!

In the past I have purchased QuickTime Pro and Aperture activation keys from the Apple Store but alas a Mobile Me activation key is not availabe.

So, for now, I have given up and rolled my own using the Gallery software.. Perhaps not as pretty as Apple’s but it does the job. A bit of PHP in the widgets over there (->) adds an image and a link. A bit of FTP adds a straight through connection.

The email said they would keep the account active until the 12th June which is just after WWDC and some rumours say… that Mobile Me will be free anyway. Hmmm!