Twitter: 140 Characters to 280 characters work around

So while tweeting on my photography account on twitter, I noticed that it had the new 280 character limit, with excitement I checked my personal one bit sadly still 140 character limit.

Being the geeky type I thought I’ll have a poke around and come across a really simple work around that let’s you tweet with the 280 characters even if your account only let’s you use the 140 characters limit and this is without any code at all.

Here’s the simple steps:

1. Make sure you open send new tweet on your 280 character account.

2. Write your tweet

3. In the change who you send your tweet as part, select any other account you have that doesn’t have the new 280 character limit.

4. And now send your tweet… Simple

I have tested this the other way round, it it doesn’t work unfortunately as it sees the 280 character account as a 140 one (or something like that).

I tested this on an Android device (OnePlus 5 8GB 128GB version running Android 7.1.1 (normal Oneplus Stock ROM), so it will be interesting to see if anyone with a iOS device can do the same.

Update: A couple of people have let me know that this doesn’t work on iOS and gives the error of ‘Failed to send tweet’



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Vote or else

A sign with a white background saying 'Polling station' with a black arrow pointing. It also has a sign showing that it has disabled access

I keep seeing a lot of people on Facebook and Twitter moaning about politics but don’t vote as they believe it won’t make a difference which is really a load of rubbish.

The below graphs show how much difference that non voters could make if they really voted.

So really today may of just been local elections but you should make your voice heard and get out there and vote.o

You really have no right to moan about politics if you don’t take part!

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Bixi: The first touch free remote: Review

The Bixi Box

So a while back on Kickstarter, I decided to back a hands free remote designed to use gestures to do things such as turn lights in and off, answer phone calls while driving and change music on your mobile as while as having input from IFTTT.

Yesterday I received my first Bixi as for some reason they’re sending out my second end one in the second end batch which doesn’t make a lot of sense.

The Bixi and its packaging

My first thoughts on it was that the box was very nicely done but feels cheap, not really want I expected from a £55 device. The device was nicely presented in a soft foam backing with the outer ring on it and a spare ring which is a nice touch seeing it looks like it can easily be lost when your charging the device. Also it comes with a handy magnet for securing it to other surfaces.

The Bixi

So to the device it self, the build quality is disappointing to say at least. It feels cheap, when you first remove the outer ring to turn it on, you can’t help but to notice the sharp plastic around it. I wish it was dulled a bit. The power button it self is slightly resessed in to the body which makes it a pain to turn on and to turn the device off (more on that later).

The charging port it self is a mirco USB which is kinda nice to see as it’s the most common USB port these days, so your phone charger lead can be used (it doesn’t come with one).

Turning the device on

Turning the device on is easy, you just press the power button and it lights up on the display and you go into the Bixi app and click on ‘find your device’ which then connects via Bluetooth. Very easy and simple.

Using the Bixi

Using the Bixi is a bit of a pain I’ve found, it’s all gestured controlled, you left to play a previous track, swipe right to skip to the next track and so on. The same with lights, or making it act as a trigger for your go pro that is once you’ve connected them to the app which is very easy to do (just your username and password).

The app thro, is very simple and easy to use. As you can see, the device is in the middle showing its name (which you can rename and mine will shortly be renamed after a planet from firefly as all my devices are) as well as the battery level. You can tap the two ‘spaces’ on either side of the device to add task to it such as music or to your smart lights and so on.

Battery life wise, it takes around a couple of hours to get a full charge from empty which is quite good. I’m yet to test to see how long it lasts for and will update accordingly.

Tuning the device off

Good luck on this one, Bixi’s website says you press the power/reset button three times and the display will blink to day its turning off but the unit I have seems like it much rather stay turned on. I’m hoping that it’s a software issues which will be fixed in a update.


Overall, the Bixi does show promise, the whole idea of a hands free remote using just gestures is a good idea, one that takes some getting used to.

The benefits of having one is useful, like having one in the car is great, it’s just a wave over the device and it answers or declines a call, one on the bike handles to start your go pro recording as well (if you don’t have a go pro remote) to having one simply in the kitchen for when your listening to music and want to skip a track but then again… Alexa can do that (and a much more better job).

So really to sum up, I would save your money, it’s not the best device out there, it feels cheap, hard to get used to and at the moment quite buggy. Whether that is because it’s just come out and new updates will come out and fix these problems or like all new technology, it’s going to take a while to get used to.

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Train Travels

A Great Western Railway Class 43 waiting to leave London Paddington Train Station bound for Bristol Temple Meads
A Great Western Railway Class 150 waiting to leave Bristol Temple Meads Train Station
A East Midlands Class 222 at Leicester Station
A Great Western Railway Class 153 waiting to leave Swindon train station running the trans Wiltshire service
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Speaking out on increasingly worrying news

​I’ve been trying to write something about the past week about the news coming from Donald Trump’s America about the recent travel ban for people who come from seven mainly Muslim countries (and not just that, it includes green card holders ect) and I’ve been to shocked by this, about how it can happen in 2017 and especially after our history.

So here’s the short version instead of a massive rant: the new US travel bans are unjustifiable ( and so is Theresa May’s refusal to condemn them ( and not to speak out that this is not right for so many reasons.

All Refugees should be welcome and immigrants should be welcome as well (especially seeing that the United States was built on immigration and being the land of the free). Refugees and immigrants should be welcome without barriers in the US, in the UK, in fact anywhere that can support them.

I know I’ll properly get some hate from UKIP voters who are convinced that Britain Should Be For The British and that’s it, but that’s not who I’m talking to. I’m talking to the undecided folks. The folks listening to the rhetoric, and thinking “I don’t know, maybe it’s for the best.” It’s not.

We turned them away‘ is not something that looks good in the history books and we made a promise not to let history repeat itself and not to let it happen again (I’m talking about the Holocaust here) . With people agreeing with this travel ban, we’re letting this happen again and letting history repeat it self again.

So please in summary, look out for people less fortunate than yourself. Donate time or money, whichever you’re able, to effective charities. Be heard. Use your platform. Shout out and challenge it.

More prominently, do not let intolerance win

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Trying to repair a 1930’s Violet Wand

Now I’m quite a fan of all things old and shiny, but also sometimes a fan of collecting old and unusual things from online auction houses much to the dismay from my wife to be. While traveling in the car I spotted a vintage Trojan Violet Wand dating back to 1930’s being sold for only £60 as a spares or repairs job. Now these devices are really well known in the BDSM scene and are also collectors items. I thought ‘why not, it be a fun project to restore and maybe sell’. Fully restored ones can go for at least £300/£400 depending on the name, the items that come with it and also how well its been restored.

On a first look, the case and the unit look really well condition, almost too well so not being a idiot,, me and a friend decided to take the power unit apart to see about the wires but also to understand the unit a bit more.


This shows the main switch to select between the 110 volts and 240 volts, but also the main coil. The wires all need rewiring, the solder needing redoing, basicly anything that can come off or looks like it might kill someone needs redoing.



We attached an old microwave cap to replace the old one on the unit as we didn’t trust it. After a quick power up, it started clicking but not making the wand attachment glow. The cap we replaced was rated as ‘0.18uf 2500 volts’ so quite a beast. We think either that the mircowave cap was too highly rated or the coils were broken.

So now it’s back to the interwebs to try and find a cap rated for this, replace it again, test, hope its the cap, if not its going to be a pain to recoil the main unit and then the handle.

If you know any history on this unit or the fixing of wands, get in touch.

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