Monthly Archives: May 2009


Amongst a small swarm of gadgets which recently invaded my life (various coupons and things being spent… more soon!) I picked up this little gem – a diddy MIDI keyboard, about as wide as a 13″ MacBook and perfect for the odd GarageBand composition. I made a really quick video which is posted on my YouTube channel.

Speedier connectivity

I’ve been thinking about making a change to my broadband arrangements for some time now. When I heard that Tiscali (owners of my long-term ISP Pipex) had been snapped up by Carphone Warehouse, it seemed like a great time to make a switch.

I’d heard very good things about O2/Be from my Twitter friends and since I’m an iPhone customer I was able to get a lower bundle price, which was even better.

The transfer process was painless – actually the hardest part was arranging the delivery of the new router! Incidentally the router itself (the “O2 Wireless Box III”, a Thomson TG585n, although I disabled the 802.11n wireless in favour of my Airport Extreme) is pretty big and ugly compared to the Netgear box I’d had before, but I had to change in order to take advantage of ADSL2+. It came pre-configured with everything except my static IP address (I had to call O2 in order to find that out). One issue was that the default time server that’s set on the box is apparently dead… I found some commands on the forums which enabled me to add some known valid time servers and that sorted it out, but weirdly the web front end didn’t give me a way to change them when logged in as the default Administrator user – hunting the forums produced the SuperUser information, which opens up a whole bunch of more useful options in the web UI (including, for example, logs!).

9 months ago I was getting a speed reasonably close to my theoretical 8Mbps max out of Pipex:

The funny thing was that when I called to get my MAC code to transfer, the Pipex chap insisted that I’d only ever get a max of 7-8Mbps off my line “it’s the official BT number, sir”. O2 were quoting a theoretical max of 14Mbps. Turns out that this is probably due to the ADSL2+ technology that O2/Be use… here’s a sample of the speed this morning, I think the peak I’ve actually achieved has been a shade under 13Mbps.

What will I do with this extra bandwidth? Well, let’s just say that Facebook and FriendFeed had better be ready for me 🙂

Broadcast on the web – ipadio

One of the first people I met at SOMESSO on Friday was Giles Bryan, who is one of the founders of ipadio. I mentioned that I was experimenting with a tool called AudioBoo on the iPhone recently… well, ipadio is similar, but there are a few key differences. It works from any phone; it records and streams live as you talk (the audio quality is not as good as AudioBoo, but the uses are arguably more flexible); and you can conference in multiple people to a call, so you can effectively have group chats or interviews live on the web from any phone.

Giles was good enough to let me have a look at a development pre-release version of their forthcoming iPhone application, and this morning we had a discussion about ipadio, some of the celebrity users, and some of the things you can do with it.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

I’m honestly not sure how often I’ll be using ipadio, but I have a “phlog” (phone blog) over on their site, so feel free to follow it if you’re interested. It’s clear that there’s a lot of interest in the online audio space so it is interesting to see these services develop.

Some audio from SOMESSO

Couple of things: