Climate Change According to Danny Healy Rae

I wasn’t going to mention how ridiculous Danny Healy Rae was in the Irish parliament yesterday except I came across this XKCD comic mocking a US senator over similar beliefs.

The News

It’s embarrassing that a member of the Irish Dáil believes that climate change isn’t real and that “God above is in charge of the weather and we here can’t do anything about it”. Maybe, just maybe he has a cunning plan after all…

The Healy Rae Cycle
The Healy Rae Cycle by Ciara

As usual, WWN have a hilarious report on the situation. 🙂

“But we’ll do our best to ensure a few grand nice days there with the Child Of Prague under the hedge. Sure didn’t it work for us there in Kerry the time we were going to our cousin’s wedding, we put the statue out and it was a fierce day the next day altogether. There’s no reason a concentrated effort by a few hundred thousand people across the country couldn’t do more for climate change than you’d ever get done by banning fossil fuels”.

BTW – if you’re having trouble understanding him, this Irish Times article has some quotes and the Examiner has reactions and of course check Twitter too.
Bonus: Danny Healy Rae will debate the leader of the Green Party, Eamon Ryan, on the Last Word on Today FM at 5pm. Get your popcorn ready!

Ireland in Brief


I can’t claim to be the author of this piece. I found it on Facebook but a quick Google search shows it in blog posts and forum threads going back to 2010.
Being a Cork man, I’ve never been to Newry. I’ll have to rely on my Dublin friends to tell me what it’s like. I wonder if that bit is still true given the collapse in the value of the Euro..

Ireland is an island to the west of Britain but Northern Ireland is just off the mainland – not the Irish mainland, the British mainland. 

The capital of Ireland is Dublin. It has a population of a million people, all of whom will be shopping in Newry this afternoon. They travel to Newry because it is in the North, which is not part of Ireland , but still pay in Euros. Under the Irish constitution, the North used to be in Ireland , but a successful 30-year campaign of violence for Irish unity ensured that it is now definitely in the UK . Had the campaign lasted any longer the North might now be in France . Belfast is the capital of Northern Ireland. It has a population of half a million, half of whom own houses in Donegal. Donegal is in the north but not in the North. It is in the South.No, not the south, the South. 

There are two parliaments in Ireland. The Dublin parliament is called the Dáil, (pronounced “Doyle”), an Irish word meaning a place where banks receive taxpayers’ money. The one in Belfast is called Stormont, an Anglo-Saxon word meaning ‘placebo’, or deliberately ineffective drug. Their respective jurisdictions are defined by the border, an imaginary line on the map to show fuel launderers where to dump their chemical waste and bi-products. Protestants are in favour of the border, which generates millions of pounds in smuggling for Catholics, who are totally opposed to it. Travel between the two states is complicated because Ireland is the only country in the world with two M1 motorways. The one in the North goes west to avoid the south and the one in the South goes north to avoid the price of drink! 

We have two types of democracy in Ireland. Dublin democracy works by holding a referendum and then allowing the government to judge the result. If the government thinks the result is wrong, the referendum is held again. Twice in recent years the government decided the people’s choice was wrong and ordered a new referendum. Belfast democracy works differently. It has a parliament with no opposition, so the government is always right. This system generates envy in many world capitals, especially Dublin.

Ireland has three economies – northern, southern and black. Only the black economy is in the black. The other two are in the red. All versions of the IRA claim to be the real IRA but only one of them is the Real IRA. The North’s biggest industry is the production of IRAs. Consequently, we now have the Provisional, Continuity and Real IRA. The Real IRA is by far the most popular among young graffiti writers simply because it is the easiest to spell. I trust this clarifies things and has answered many previously unanswered questions for you.

RIP Prince

Reports are that Prince has died at the age of 57. Time to resurrect this classic. I love the song, not so much the video..

The soundtrack Prince created for Batman The Movie (1989) is still my favourite soundtrack, followed in quick succession by the Matrix soundtracks..

From that article above, check out Prince on the guitar in this song, WOW.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 Marshamallow Update

So, I’m back in the Samsung TouchWiz fold. I was a fairly happy user of Cyanogenmod for a few months which allowed me to use the latest version of Android on my Galaxy S5. It worked almost the way I wanted it to. There were a few issues related to the notification light, the capacitive button lights and bluetooth. I discussed the lights issues in my previous post but only briefly touched on bluetooth.

This doesn’t happen to everyone, but on my phone, if I was using a bluetooth speaker the audio would break up from time to time. This would happen if the phone was moved, the screen turned on, or if I interacted with it in other ways. It was really annoying as you can imagine.

In the last few weeks Samsung have started rolling out the official Marshmallow update for the S5. Last Friday the update for Sri Lanka appeared online. This is important for me because it’s the same model used in Europe and many other countries, SM-G900F!

It wasn’t long before discussion on XDA started, and a ROM I used before, DevBase, was updated with a 6.0.1 release. I like this rom because it has the core Samsung software but has stripped out other bits to save space.

About Phone

Installing a new rom or firmware takes a while but basically comes down to these steps:

  1. Backup everything, just in case. I used Titanium backup for individual apps and a nandroid backup of the whole phone.
  2. Copy the new firmware onto the phone.
  3. Reboot into recovery mode (volume up+menu+power) and do a factory reset. That doesn’t delete everything on your phone which I always found weird, but useful because it doesn’t delete the firmware..
  4. Flash the new firmware from recovery and tell the recovery to reboot into download mode.
  5. Boot up a Windows machine and Odin, connect my phone, and flash the bootloader and modem.
  6. Reboot phone and restore apps.

Flashing a new firmware is never without stress. You can soft brick your phone meaning the device won’t boot properly. That happened to me, but after flashing the bootloader and modem again it worked fine. It also takes an age to get things back the way they were before. That’s the kicker. It’s back the way it was before, for the most part so from a cursory glance it looks much the same as it ever did.

So, what’s better now? Bluetooth is perfect now, charging notification lights behave correctly, as do lights on the capacitive buttons. Battery life is the same as before, excellent for an almost 2 year old device. I replaced the stock Samsung lockscreen, notification system and task switcher with Good Lock, which I find is a lot better and faster. You can find it on the US Galaxy App store, or here if you don’t have access to that.

There was definitely more free space on my internal storage when I was running Cyanogenmod. I haven’t tried moving any apps to the SD card yet but there’s about 2GB of space free now which isn’t bad since Google Photos chews up almost 1GB of space. I also flashed URWSoft Barebone Cleaner to free up more system space, but the rom I used was already fairly light already so it didn’t make much of a difference.

I did have trouble with Quickpic and Syncthing deleting photos from my external SD card, but I’m using a very old version of Quickpic, and I think Syncthing had the same problem with Cyanogenmod. I’ve put them on the internal storage for now. I never leave photos on my phone for long anyway.

Homescreen
Of course I’m not using Samsung’s default launcher. It’s Nova Launcher all the way!

Megablast Banjo Remix

Here’s rather impressive remix of the Xenon 2 Megablast main title tune created by a talented banjo player!

Long time readers may remember I used the original music in a video for a short but fun game of Bad Company 2. We joined a game with nobody on the other side so we had fun with the crates, grenades, bullets and smoke. Looking at the date on the video I can’t believe that was almost six years ago!

How to turn off annotations in Youtube Videos

Youtube annotations are those sometimes useful but more likely annoying messages that appear over videos on that site. You’ve probably seen them when a video asks you to “Like and Subscribe!” or “Visit here for my merchandise”. They can be annoying.

The good news is you can disable annotations each time by clicking on the video settings through the cog symbol, but there is an easy way to disable them permanently.

Go to https://www.youtube.com/account_playback where you’ll see this page:

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 17.38.12

Simply click on Show annotations and in-video notifications to unset it and save your settings. Annotations be gone!