Posts in Category: Odds

How to win the lottery…

lottery ticket

lottery ticket

… easy, pick the winning numbers!

The trouble is there are 45 million combinations!

So, why not share your numbers with everyone else to ensure we all use different numbers.

If enough people do it, then we’ll ensure someone wins!

Note – this is not a syndicate. The winnings will not be shared. The idea is just to ensure that someone wins!

No details will be recorded – so we can’t hassle the winners.

You either tell us the numbers you’re going to use (anonymously) or we give you numbers that no one else has selected (i.e. like a lucky dip).

Ok, it’s just an idea at the moment… so, who is in?

Cassandra … as a Service

Cassandra is a database designed for scalability and high availability, without compromising on performance.

Is that what you are looking for?  But want to avoid the headache of setting it up?  Of maintaining it?

Then you might be interested in this new Cassandra as a Service option

Follow the above link and register your interest.

Hemocyl (part 2)

The site was updated to use a secure link for payments, so I decided to take the leap and buy it. Packet arrived today.

The directions are to take 2 per day for 2 weeks and that should cover you for 6 months. If you don’t hear from me again, I blame the tablets…



One week into taking them, still alive :).  I “think” they seem to be helping – the discomfort generally seems to be reduced.  Obviously still a long way to go before we know if they last for 6 months.

Hemocyl – is it legit?

Wonder if there are any reviews by real people using Hemocyl out there? Everything found so far are just adverts.

NOTE: The purchase process is NOT secure, ie not https – that rings alarm bells for me – and not even a paypal option.

Article in London Evening Standard. Not sure its factually correct – I dont think you take 2 tables twice a year…

Yahoo Question on it – here

Anyone interested in a “shared purchase”, eg pay a quarter/sixth each, we each get a month or so to try it out?


Ebbsfleet / MyFootball Club – needs a little help

Ebbsfleet United needs a little help

Hence this pledge:

To donate (£21.73), use this paypal link:



Thank you!

MySQL and Postgres quick start…

Every 6-12 months I need to setup a new mysql and/or postgres database – and by then have forgotten how to do it (again). So hopefully by writing it here, I will remember or at least know where to go in future.

Assumed this is on Ubuntu… and that mysql/postgres installed already.


Create the database

sudo mysqladmin create [dbname]

Create a user for that database, using the mysql tool (user has no password, can only logon from localhost)

sudo mysql

mysql> GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON [dbname].*
       to '[new user]'@'localhost';


Create the db

createdb [dbname]
Create the user

sudo -u postgres createuser –superuser [new user]


As usual, work in progress, to be updated/added to as I learn a little/need more.

Backbone.js on Rails book – for $20 …

Hey you awesome Rails grafter,

Wondering if anyone is interested in getting this ebook/pdf?

Its currently $39 until 1st August, but they have a group (10 copies) option for $199 – which seems to have no restriction on who the 10 are (ie not the same company etc). Hence $20 per person.

So, the point of my post – anyone interested in combining with me on this? Its done via github accounts – the book is being written on there.

My thoughts are I’d pay the $199 and then you pay me $20.

If interested, please mail me direct via chris at kimptoc dot net.


PS Paypal is fine :)

PPS Names  9 – yay, ordered it!

PPPS +2 extra… wonder if there will enough for another group order :)  … or maybe one of the 9 will change their mind :(

Also thanks to Riccardo for the SD Ruby Backbone presentation link. Also found a Peepcode ($12) screencast too. Obviously there is also the official Backbone site too :)

NOTE – and this book by Giles


Installing Heroku client on Ubuntu 10 under rvm

NOTE: If you are not using rvm, this may work more smoothly, but I want to use rvm, hence the pain :(

FIRST – make sure your Ubuntu box is ready for Ruby. If this is not done correctly, you may need to re-install ruby several times, which can get quite frustrating :(

sudo aptitude install build-essential bison openssl libreadline6 
libreadline6-dev curl git zlib1g zlib1g-dev libssl-dev libyaml-dev 
libsqlite3-0 libsqlite3-dev sqlite3 libxml2-dev libxslt-dev autoconf 
libc6-dev ncurses-dev subversion

Then install rvm

#Install RVM and ruby 1.9.2 on Ubuntu 
sudo apt-get install curl build-essential libssl-dev libreadline5-dev 
bash < <( curl ) 
# Add to end of .bashrc file ... 
if [[ -s "$HOME/.rvm/scripts/rvm" ]] ; then source "$HOME/.rvm/scripts/rvm" 
; fi 
# Open a new terminal 
type rvm | head -n1 # Should see "rvm is a function" 
rvm notes # to make sure of a good install 
rvm install 1.9.2 # Installs ruby 1.9.2 
rvm --default ruby-1.9.2 # Makes 1.9.2 the default ruby 
ruby -v # Should see the 1.9.2 message

Now you should be able to follow the quick start guide, and “gem install heroku” should install it and its dependancies…

Gem dependancies:

  1. rest-client
  2. mime-types
  3. launchy
  4. readline (although I thought we’d tried the readline workaround below)


  1. Heroku Groups
  2. Ruby openssl issues –
  3. zlib issues –
  4. readline –

What if.. you could deploy a Rails app from Dropbox to Heroku…

[twtpoll id=”13twuv”]

Playing for Success – at risk?


Hello Mr Bullock,

I understand that given the recent budget cuts that the Playing for Success program in the Lewisham borough is at risk of being closed down.

If this is the case, I would just like to make a plea for it to be kept open.

Every term, around 75 children from the borough, your borough, are taken through a 10 week IT focussed training course, which helps build their confidence in themselves, in these tools and in their education in general. It has been doing this for several years now and the students enjoy it enough that the ones who take the primary version of the course are keen to come back and do the secondary version.

Its not the most perfect training course, its run on a shoestring, largely by volunteers, myself included (sorry, did I disclose I have a personal interest).

It does not solve all problems, for example this term we have had a few of the students drop out of the course because of badgering from their “mates” that it was not “cool” to do the course – but it is something, that some students can attend, can work towards completing – they get certificates presented from the Millwall FC team, at a presentation along with all the other students for that term.

I appreciate these are “tough” and we all need to tighten our belts, but even more so, I feel that closing down programs like this will mean less help for the most at risk in our society.

I look forward to response on this matter.

Chris Kimpton