Monday, July 14, 2014

I've moved!

I've brought my blog under the umbrella of my website, where you'll find historic - and new - posts for your delight and edification.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Using TripAdvisor review widgets in WordPress

TripAdvisor reviews are the life-blood of any hotel, but if your website is run on WordPress, you'll be hard pushed to add their widgets to your site (WordPress doesn't like the <script> side of the widget).

For a while, the workaround was to use the TripAdvisor RSS feed for your property, until TA stopped even that a few days ago.

The solution is fiendishly devious: pull the code from a simple html page on your server using an IFRAME in your post or page. Specifically:

1. Get your review widget code, and save to a file called say ta_review.htm
2. FTP the ta_review.htm page to your web server.
3. Insert an IFRAME in your post/page (don't forget to switch to HTML view). Something like this:

<iframe src="" height="600" width="500" frameborder="0"></iframe>

4. And Robert is truly your mother's brother.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

A Siddington bike ride

I think you might be interested in this track: Created by Google My Tracks on Android Name: Siddington Activity type: biking Description: - Total distance: 20.33 km (12.6 mi) Total time: 1:20:49 Moving time: 1:19:21 Average speed: 15.09 km/h (9.4 mi/h) Average moving speed: 15.37 km/h (9.5 mi/h) Max speed: 41.26 km/h (25.6 mi/h) Average pace: 3:59 min/km (6:24 min/mi) Average moving pace: 3:54 min/km (6:17 min/mi) Fastest pace: 1:27 min/km (2:20 min/mi) Max elevation: 227 m (744 ft) Min elevation: 141 m (463 ft) Elevation gain: 501 m (1644 ft) Max grade: 572 % Min grade: -25 % Recorded: 01/06/2014 5:04pm

Monday, May 26, 2014

Liam goes bowling

Friday, May 23, 2014


A rare clear day on top of one of the UK's highest mountains.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Kong Kong

Just watched Peter Jackson's version of King Kong. Truely appalling on so many levels. Summed up by the quote "I have a map of an uncharted island..."

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Remarketing overload?

It's a little tiresome to be remarketed to badly. I see ads for service I use and am signed-up for. So why remarket to me?

Fortunately, you can opt out of remarketing. Go to  and scroll down to 'Opt-out settings' for both types of Google ads.

On a related subject, we know that signing-out of Google stops tracking our search history, but even then, you need to opt-out of Google's web history tracking by going to when you're signed out.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Arm Wrestler

Liam takes on Grandad... and wins again.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Walk of the week: Shutlingsloe

At 1,660 ft it's one of Cheshire's highest hills, and it does have an impressive profile. The day we went the weather was miserable, but the walk, and the view, was still impressive.

We walked from the car park at Trentabank Reservoir, and it's a steady climb up through the pines on a wide track for the first half hour or so

After that, the trail leave the Macclesfield Forest and crosses the open moor. Again, the trail is good, and soon you're walking along flagstones all the way to the top.

Despite research, I've still to find out who laid this impressive line of grave-stone size stones all the way to the top. I'm not complaining, it makes the walk easier, especially when I had to carry Liam a way (fortunately, he got off and skipped his way to the top!).

But an hour after setting off we made it to the top, and even with the low clouds the view was impressive. We'd have spent longer on the summit but the wind was fierce. Total time: 2 hours.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Myth of Google Adwords Quality Score

Good article about the Quality Score metric in Google Adwords:

It shows that QS is a reflection of the reflection of the relationship between keywords and ads, rather than the 'quality' of the landing page. In particular:

The Right Way to Improve Quality Score

If you have high cholesterol, you probably want to do something about it. And that something, if you’re smart, involves improving your lifestyle. Eating better. Exercising. And so on.
Similarly, if you suffer from low quality score, you want to do something about that as well. You want to improve the most important things about your AdWords account:
  • Write compelling ads, that connect tightly to keywords, make the right promises and stand out from the rest of the search results page.
  • Continually test and improve your ad copy so your ad is more likely to earn money from Google than your competitors.
  • Segment your audiences so you can adjust messaging to connect with different groups’ mindsets and language.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Professor

Liam's reading and writing is developing so well he's been moved into an advanced group at school. Which didn't go down well with him. Because he has to sit next to A Girl. "And I don't like Girls".