How many railway sleepers are there in the UK?

A few of weeks ago, I was sitting in a local café with my good friend Adam Blackburn. I can’t quite recall how we got onto the topic, but Adam turned to me and asked “How many sleepers are there in the UK?”, not being able to tell him, he decided it would be my ‘homework’. We laughed about it a bit, and somewhat forgot about it, but I was left pondering. Read On →

Looking forward at iOS hardware

Over the last five years the iPhone has gone through numerous designs, both physical design and hardware design. Here is a quick look at the specs of each iDevice (Note that the iPhone CPUs are underclocked): [table id=5 /] So, what can we draw from that? My guess is that we need to establish whether the iPad or the iPhone is Apple’s lead device. Although the iPhone was launched first, it has recently been revealed that the iPad was conceived earlier. Read On →

Looking forward at Mac hardware

Last month at WWDC, Apple announced a new MacBook: The MacBook Pro with Retina display. Specs can be found in my WWDC 2012 post or on the Apple Specs page. But what could we broadly expect Apple’s behaviour on future Mac hardware design to be? Until recently, Apple’s portable range have been mostly like other laptops. Open them up by unscrewing screws and unclasping plastic clips. Inside you’d find the battery, hard drive, optical drive, and logic board. Read On →


Hello! We’ve moved to the right a little… The blog used to be at but because I got fed up with the design and upkeep, WordPress will now be powering the main site. Hopefully I’ve done everything right…There has already been a couple of hairy points, I’ve learnt that my backup script is broken, for example…

Has the transition to Intel gone "seamlessly"?

At WWDC 2006, Steve Jobs said the following about porting OS X to the Intel architecture “Porting an operating system to an entirely different processor architecture is no easy task and our software team did a magnificent job of taking this on the PowerPC and turning it into this on Intel architecture. So they made it look really easy and it’s gone seamlessly which has enabled this amazing transition to occur in 210 days, but under the hood and you all know, this was 86,000,000 lines of source code that was ported to run on an entirely different architecture with zero hiccups. Read On →

WWDC 2012

Late as always, Apple’s 23rd WWDC kicked off almost a month ago after selling out in just 1h43m! This years event kicked off with Siri warming up the crown and GarageBand on an iPad playing a sting after each joke. Apple touted some interesting facts about the App Store 400+ million accounts 650,000+ apps 225,000+ iPad specific apps 30+ billion app downloads $5+ billion handed out to developers We were then launched into the Mac half of the event… ** MacBook Air** Read On →

Receive iMessages on multiple devices

If you have an iPhone and an iPad or a Mac running you may have noticed that messages don’t seem to appear across devices, or that you have multiple conversations for someone. Think of email, you have one email address (e.g. and if someone emails that address, you can receive the email on multiple devices (e.g. iPhone, iPad, and Mac) so long as you’ve registered that email address with the device. Read On →

Adding Emoji (smilies) to the iPhone

Adding colourful emoticons (or smilies) to texts, emails, and messages can help to liven things up a bit. Unfortunately the Emoji keyboard isn’t accessible by default, but this post will show you how to enable it! Open Settings Tap General Scroll down to Keyboard Inside Keyboard you will find the International Keyboards menu, where you can add more keyboards Tap Add New Keyboard Scroll down and tap on Emoji (the list is alphabetical) Close Settings and open Notes Create a new note Tap the ‘world’ key, between the 123 key and the space bar Enjoy the plethora of emoticons! Read On →


Back in 2010 I complete my dissertation. The idea for my diss came to me while sitting in Starbucks in Camberley sometime during my time at Sun Microsystems, probably early 2009. The idea was quickly jotted on the back of a Starbucks serviette. Applications crash and can take down a system, if we could virtualise the application and separate it from the system then it couldn’t bring it down. This was the subject of my diss and I mostly implemented it using OpenSolaris Zones. Read On →

Just an update

Once upon a time I had the notion that I would post something vaguely interesting or helpful once a month. While working at Sun that was easy (also making myself blog about my weekly activities for later reference helped), even my final year of uni I pretty much managed it, but I now look back over the last few months and see that I’ve not posted anything really since early December, and before that sometime in October. Read On →