How to do VoIP Internet Telephony at Home

When we moved to the UK from Germany in 2013 we quickly discovered BT’s high and fiddly telephone call pricing structure which soon got me thinking about how to bypass as much of their service as I could. Cheap calls and simpler pricing was a must.

Setting up a SIP phone to do VoIP (voice over IP) seemed like a good solution to reduce call costs and also make adding further landline numbers cheap and easy, SIP being part of the VoIP family of technologies. Read more about SIP vs VoIP here.

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A Year at WordPress.com VIP – 2017

In June 2016 I joined the VIP team at Automattic the company behind WordPress.com, Jetpack, Woocommerce and other products.

Automattic is a fully distributed company where we all work from wherever we choose, and apart from the Grand Meetup where the whole company meets, we also gather at smaller meetups throughout the year.

Meetups are an important part of Automattic culture and they are a mix of work and social gatherings, getting to know each other is a key part of making distributed working work.

In addition to the team meetups, this year I flew to Brazil to visit a client, took part in a conference in Napa and did a training course in Amsterdam. The world feels a lot smaller now as I look back over the year and in 2017 I’ve met many great people from all over the world. Continue reading “A Year at WordPress.com VIP – 2017”

Posturite DeskRite 300 Review

In June 2016 I joined Automattic the company behind WordPress.com which is fully distributed meaning we all work from home, co-working spaces or wherever we happen to find ourselves. New starters all get a budget to kit out their home offices which also covers buying a desk,… a really nice desk.

I’d wanted a sit / stand desk for ages and thanks to the company was at last able to get one and for me in the UK, options seemed to come down to the Ikea Bekant or the Posturite DeskRite series.

Now, we have loads of Ikea stuff at home but quality is a mixed bag and from my research, the Bekant has problems with its mechanised legs which are prone to failure and when that happens the desk needs dissembling and the legs returning to Ikea. Pretty sub-optimal.

So I went for the DeskRite 300 because of its more solid and modular design and construction, plus easy repairability in the event of component failure. If for example the motor unit failed, it could be easily removed and replaced.

A year of use later it has turned out very well, I switch from sitting to standing three or four times a day, the desk works like a charm and as solid as ever. Recommended!

 

Dragonforce 65 Setup, Tuning and Review

Updated: 12th July 2018

In June 2017 I finally bought myself a radio controlling sailing boat having wanted one for longer than I can remember, I went for a Joysway Dragonforce 65 V.6 an inexpensive RC yacht. I regularly sail a full sized boat and having made plenty of boats and gliders as a kid was especially curious about sailing an RC scaled down version. I hadn’t had RC models of any kind till now.

Having set it up and working, I realised there were a few things I wish I’d known before embarking on building it which prompted this post.

Continue reading “Dragonforce 65 Setup, Tuning and Review”