That syncing feeling…

January 23rd, 2011

Just setting up a new laptop here, readers, and enabling Address Book’s built-in sync with Google Contacts so as to bring all my contacts over and… aargh! What is this I see? For some reason, the syncing system has decided that the new, empty address book with zero contacts is the up-to-date version, and so has deleted all my contacts from my Google account to make it match! Woe is me!

Now, I was about to write this up as a cautionary tale of cloud computing: if I didn’t have my own local copy of my data here, I might have been in quite a pickle. But then I discovered that the good folks at Google hadn’t allowed data just to vapourise… there’s a handy option in the More Actions menu of Google Contacts, which lets you restore your lost contacts.

Phew!

Circuitry for the brain

January 23rd, 2011

Are you socially handicapped by your lack of electronics knowledge? Wishing you could remember more from school physics/IT lessons? Ever wondered what these strange transistor things are and why they were so important?

I’ve just come across a very nice site called JeeLabs by Jean-Claude Wippler - thanks, Aideen - and in particular a set of posts called Easy Electrons, which introduce resistors, capacitors, diodes, transistors, and some of the things you can do with them.

It’s not a series for complete beginners – you need to have some grasp of voltage and current and the relationship between them – but if you’ve ever wondered “Do I need a resistor with this LED, and if so, why, and how big should it be?”, or “Why is my transistor getting hot?”, then this could be useful reading.

I liked the ones about diodes and the set of posts about transistors….