Tag Archives: Texas Instruments

It Will Be a Long Road Ahead

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Long Road

Long Road Ahead

I stopped writing to my blog some three years ago.

I was informed, as was other users, that the domain hosting service, GoDaddy, was to cease supporting and were to withdraw their QuickBlogCast authoring tool in favour of WordPress, a CMS (Content Management System). We were told that the old content, or blog,would be ported across to the new service.

After thirty-five years working for computer manufacturers developing and maintaining software, I knew this was not going to be an easy task. I remember 15th February 1971, when the UK changed their monetary system from pounds, shillings and pence to a decimal system.

Prior to 1971 the UK used pounds, shillings and pence, where 12 pence equaled 1 shilling, and 20 shillings equaled £1. That meant that there were 240 pennies in £1, (12×20).

We had other oddities like a Crown which was 5 shillings, Half-a-Crown being 2 shillings and 6 pence, a 10 bob note being equal to 10 shillings, etc etc.

In 1971, computing was in its’ infancy, and there were not many people knowledgeable to program an work on computers, those that were, were mostly employed by the computer manufacturers who programmed the machines for the individual customers. These were the days before standard software packages. It would be another ten years before I received my first PC on my desk whilst working for Texas Instruments, and it was rubbish.

So the few programmers had to work all hours to write conversion programmes to convert all the computer systems from the old system to the new, and it had to be done at midnight 15th February. If we had got it wrong, businesses would have failed, banks would have closed, shops would not have been able to sell, and no-one would be paid.

It worked.

Through-out my career, as new systems, programming languages, operating systems, hardware etc replaced old, such conversions would be needed, and a right headache they were. Even as new consumer goods have been introduced, conversion has had to take place, TV’s analog to digital, radios, FM and AM to DAB.

Things go wrong, and I was expecting it with GoDaddy’s conversion/migration.

And so it proved.

I had been writing articles or blogs for nearly 15 years, we all had to start somewhere, with 1,000 articles published on my travels, my thoughts, my courses, and loads of information from my courses, carefully crafted for all to find. not only that I had posted thousands of photographs.

When the conversion took place, all my photographs were lost, all the links between the various entries were corrupt or wrong. One entry could refer to different entries which would refer to other links. They were all wrong.

I estimate that I could correct about 5 entries a day. With about 1,000 entries that would be 200 days of solid work, no weekends, no holidays, no other work. An impossible task, so I walked away from all my hard work.

Another thing. Did I want to learn a new system, WordPress? No. How many times have I in the past devoted energy learning new programming languages, only for them to be replaced a couple of years later? How many times have I learnt how a new computer hardware system worked so I was to be the expert expected of me, only for that machine to be obsolete next year?

But I have bitten the bullet, I have had a change of heart, I have succumbed to the pressure from others to update nlpnow.com and my other sites. I have started the long correction process.

It will be a long road, some 200 days of work, but I will do it, hoping that before I finish they don’t change systems again.

Oh Poo Poo.


Rotary Club of Kingston upon Thames

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It was back at the start of the 1980’s that I was invited to join the evening Rotary Club of Peterborough in the UK, at that time being the youngest member. It was an experience that would stay with me ever since, the friendship, the support, being able to in my small way, contribute to the community both locally and internationally.

My membership was short lived, as I had finished my task of computerising the toy manufacturer Peter Pan Playthings, and was offered the opportunity to work with Texas Instruments distributor in Saudi Arabia, as Software Manager, looking after customers who had purchased a TI computer, creating solutions to their individual needs. It was a job which would see me in Saudi Arabia for over five years.

Unfortunately, Rotary Club, and any such organisation was banned in The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as was amateur radio (ham radio call sign G8YJQ) and other such hobbies or pastimes.

It was recently, that I became aware once again of Rotary, and in conversation with a member of the Kingston upon Thames Rotary Club, was invited to attend their meetings, and as time went on was invited to join once again.

Today was my induction into the Rotary Club at the Thursday lunch time meeting.

Although my work as a trainer, presenter, coach, takes me to many countries, being away from the UK, I am sure I can contribute to the club, to fellow Rotary members both in the Kingston Rotary Club and with members worldwide, including Malaysia.

A new chapter opens in my life, which I am looking forward to with eager anticipation.

Phillip Holt's Induction into Kingston Rotary Club wearing SHH

Wearing with pride the SHH and the Rotary Club Badges
after being inducted into the Rotary Club of Kingston upon Thames
by the Club President Peter Thompson

Oh, to Richard Bacon of the BBC‘s Radio Five Live late night show, and his Special Half Hour club (SHH), I can now wear with pride both badges.

Previous SHH Entries
Even more on the Special Half Hour Club of BBC Radio 5 Live
Special Half Hour, Radio 5 Live
More on the Special Half Hour badge of Radio Five Live
All Entries