Day 735 – Bye bye, Leonard

Remember my excitement at these photos?

They were the ones I took of Comet Leonard during our New Year visit to Cape Agulhas. There are more on the original post above, along with a full explanation.

Well, there’s bad news for Comet Leonard and its fans today, I’m afraid:

Looks like I got there just in time, having got my shots on 29th December. And, as you can read in my post above, while they might not have been the most amazing images that were captured of Leonard, I had no specialised equipment (literally: a tripod and a camera), and couldn’t even see the damn thing with my aging naked eyes. I was chuffed enough.

Bring on the next comet, and I’ll have another go.

Day 734 – Fixing my new phone

Or: How to enable WiFi Calling on the POCO F3. Solved.
tl;dr? – scroll to the bottom of this post.

The cell phone signal is awful here Chez 6000… so I wanted (needed?) to get a phone which supported WiFi Calling, so that I could hook onto the (very good) internet here to make calls.

The Poco F3 does have WiFi Calling, but could I find a way of getting it to work?
No, I couldn’t.

Pages of online instruction booklets, forums, subreddits and Youtube videos were no help. My cellular provider was no help. With the evidence of WiFi Calling being available on the Poco F3 right in front of him, the guy even told me that the Poco F3 probably didn’t have it.
He opened a support request ticket. I have never heard back from them.
Which cellular provider was this? It doesn’t matter: they’re all equally useless.

But then I found this video:

Which told me a lot of the same stuff that I had seen before, but added an extra step.

Suffice to say, my WiFi Calling is now enabled. What a relief.

So, you can watch the video if you want (and it’s brilliantly and clearly explained), but if it’s a case of tl;dw, and for all the search engines out there:

How to enable WiFi Calling on the POCO F3. Solved.
Go to dialer on your phone.
Dial *#*#86583#*#*
Wait for “carrier check disabled” message.
Dial *#*#869434#*#*
Wait for “carrier check disabled” message.
Go to Settings > SIM cards and Mobile Networks > SIM 1
Click “Use VoLTE” and “Make calls using WiFi” switches to on.
Change “Network Preferences” to “Prefer WiFi”.

You are done. Bob can like to be your uncle.

Day 733 – Terrible and great and addictive

No, not this blog. And not cocaine, either, before you go rushing in there.

Neither of those accurately fit the description if you actually think about it.

Obviously, I’m talking about the new collab between Soft Cell and the Pet Shop Boys.
This one:

It’s not great in any way shape or form except that it’s Soft Cell and the Pet Shop Boys and also… it’s obviously great. Because what’s not to like about Marc Almond in an ice cream van or the boys playing dominoes together in a quiet corner of a late 1970s pub?

Well, it’s the music, which is disappointingly ordinary and unremarkable. It’s terrible. And it’s also great. And addictive.

The sample seems to have been lifted from Love Is A Bourgeois Construct (which has history on this blog) and the synth from Always On My Mind. And these guys have all repeatedly earned their musical full colours years and years ago: they don’t have to prove a damn thing to anyone.

It’s terrible, but it’s also addictive. I’ve listened to it 37 times since yesterday.

Day 732 – Is this even a real blog…?

Is this even a real blog if I don’t submit some sort of thoughtpiece regarding the biggest news item to hit the world in the last few years, that being the… [checks notes] Chris Rock/Will Smith incident at the Oscars last night?

Amazingly, I might have pre-empted the whole thing anyway, because if I don’t share some wise words upon the “toxic masculinity” (ugh) or the “poor taste” humour (ugh) on display, then perhaps yesterday’s post comes into play.
And if I do mention either of them, but don’t somehow manage to get a tie-in to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, then I’m doing something very wrong.

Indeed, thank goodness that this little fracas has finally removed the story of the scary temperature anomalies at the North and South Poles from all our front pages this week, am I right?

(As an scientist, I can report that it is never, ever good news when you see a graph like that.)

Anyway, I wonder which celebrity is going to be nasty to one of their peers tomorrow? After all, there’s not much time to get all that vitriol into the news cycle before Armageddon.