Daily Archive: March 29, 2005

Sharing and giving

StawberriesOn Saturday I started to pull up all of the strawberry plants that had rooted from runners last year.  I ended up with several hundred plants in a big heap.  I decided that it would be a good idea to give them away, but my wife thought no one would be interested.  I took this as a bit of a challenge,  I am one of those people who likes to think the best of others (which is an extension of having a positive outlook) my wife in contrast always expects things to go wrong and tends to distrust those she doesn’t know.  Anyway I bagged the plants up – 15 plants to a bag – and to make the challenge more interesting decided to give the plants away but allow for donations.

My eldest daughter, Stephie, made a lovely sign and we put the 15 bags of plants in a big plastic container on the path outside the house.  The sign read – Free Strawberries – and was nicely illustrated.  Next to the container was a small wooden bowl which I put a little loose change in; to get things going.  After three days all 15 bags have gone, we …

How Skype has changed the way I do voice communication

OutlookskypeI have been pretty pleased with Skype so far.  Here is a snapshot of how I use voice communications now:

At my home office:

  • when I get home I put my mobile (Treo 600) in its cradle and this initiates an automatic auto-forward to my SkypeIn number, which also comes with free voicemail.Microphone
  • at my desk I am using my Logitech noise cancelling USB Microphone and my desktops speakers, people tell me the quality is very good – so there is no need to mess around with headphones
  • I have contacted about 30 people who I often call to try and get them using Skype,  about 20 of them have installed it.  For these people Skype to Skype calls have been very successful.
  • I still have quite a lot of people that I contact who are not using Skype, mainly because they are highly mobile so for these people I have been experimenting with SkypeOut.  The quality of SkypeOut does not seem as good as Skype to Skype, but it seems good enough in most cases.  I have suffered a few dropouts when calling mobiles (UK –> Australia) but this may have happened anyway.  The call charges were much less …