eReader Dictionaries

31. July 2013 17:38 by Chris in dev, Welsh  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

I just put this up on the SSIW forum:

Might be a long shot this one ... I've just downloaded a Welsh book to my Nook eReader from the "eBooks for Wales" website and the thought occurred that it would be very useful for Welsh learners such as myself to have integrated automatic translation from Welsh to English, similar to the English dictionary that is accessible where you just press on the word and see the definition. A quick google suggested only English dictionaries are supported but perhaps others here know better, or know of better support on other platforms/ devices?Currently I have Ap Geriaduron on my Nexus 7 by side by side with the Nook but I could do without the extra data entry!

I then came across this:

which refers to a project with which an aquaintance of mine is involved: Apertium.

Maybe I should just develop one myself using the opensource tools/ data available?!


Who owns your mobile network?

31. July 2013 15:31 by Chris in ForTheRecod  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Perhaps it doesn't matter overly but often while abroad I see a brand I recognise from back in the UK and the thought occurs 'who owns them', particularly which is the company's country of registration. This may well be complicated by the fact that different parent organisations own a given brand in different countries. For example, C&A has long gone in the UK but seemingly going strong still in Germany.

Anyway, mobile is big business and this isn't going to change any time soon. I was surprised to discover a year or two back that I'd completely missed the fact that O2 brand had been sold abroad. Here's the list, as of the time of writing, of the main providers in the UK:

  • EE (Orange and T-Mobile) - EE is a 50:50 joint venture between Deutsche Telekom and France Télécom, formed in 2010 through the merger of their respective T-Mobile and Orange businesses in the UK
  • Vodaphone is British, being the Worlds 2nd largest mobile telecoms company
  • O2 is owned by Telefonica (Spanish)

Those are the main networks. My understanding is that any others are reselling the network services of the above. Correct me if I'm wrong!

Cultural Learnings of Germany for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Cymru

30. July 2013 07:02 by Chris in Holidays  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Not really.

So, the rest of the family and I are in Germany, visiting the rellies, just the four hours from Calais in Duisburg, a university city and the eleventh largest city in Germany with some 513,550 residents (don't you know) and therefore getting on for twice the size of our hometown of Cardiff. Doesn't feel like it though - less busy, but that'll no doubt be largely due to lower population density that the the size of Germany affords. Quick google:

  • Germany population 82 million, 357 square km
  • UK population 63 million, 244 square km

Handy site if you want more comparisons.

I'm not sure how much one should trust wiki answers but:

Germany is about 137,000 sq miles. France is about 212,000 sq miles. The UK is about 94,000 sq miles.

Hmmm, a) France is a big old place and b) Germany is not so much bigger than the UK than was my perception. Ignorant? Moi?

Enough of the stats; some observations to conclude for now: 

  • German's drive on dual carriageways/ motorways and there don't seem to be many cameras to stop them. Compare this a) with the towns where the speed limits often seem down to the 20mph mark and b) the UK which, based on the Cardiff-Dover run, is overly obsessed with speed cameras.
  • It is excellent to see bikes in more general use in this area of Germany, albeit we are at the height of summer, and particularly the demographic of cyclists with many more 'elderly' cyclists on the roads, or rather cycle lanes which are much more common. Puts Cardiff/ the UK to shame. Far fewer of the portly middle aged men spending oodles on their carbon road bike frames and lycra getup for 30 min weekend rides as well. Or bmxs, or mountain bikes or hybrids, for that matter. Lots of sensible tourer type bikes being driven relatively sedately around purely for the purpose of getting from a to b. Hoorah.
  • When you park your car it is the convention to do so in the direction of the prevailing traffic!

 May be back later. 



About the author

I am Dr Christopher Sully (MCPD, MCSD) and I am a Cardiff, UK based IT Consultant/ Developer and have been involved in the industry since 1996 though I started programming considerably earlier than that. During the intervening period I've worked mainly on web application projects utilising Microsoft products and technologies: principally ASP.NET and SQL Server and working on all phases of the project lifecycle. If you might like to utilise some of the aforementioned experience I would strongly recommend that you contact me. I am also trying to improve my Welsh so am likely to blog about this as well as IT matters.

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