Ensure your House Smoke Detectors Meet Current Regulations (AUS)

Power Up! I researched this information after our rental-home smoke-detector beeping beeped at 2.30am yesterday morning. At the time I also asked on Facebook (in a KI Q&A group) what should be done in the short term: All my good friends on Kangaroo Island suggested the 9Volt battery needed replacing. Yes, there is one inside the device.

Here’s where the issue lies:

  1. We believe the noise was the actual smoke detector noise, not the battery-dying noise.
    That was worrying, which is why I went straight to FB to ask in the forums. I imagined someone else might have experienced this and knew exactly what to do. Many great responses were provided, and I learnt a lot. There’s no saying if we were wrong or right in our decision, but I feel we did the right thing.
  2. We only moved into the house 3 weeks ago. Which got me thinking.
    Should it be responsibility of the tenant leaving OR the new tenant to replace the battery? Maybe the previous tenant should be required to indicate on the ‘final paperwork’ when they replaced the smoke-detector battery?

Short Back and Sides Mid afternoon, after all electrical problems in our house were fixed, I found these three websites – and was amazed by the information so much that I felt it prudent that all SA home owners, landlords, and renters should read and know. As I suspected we all have obligations and rights, all of which are designed to save lives:

1. CFS \ Fire Safety \ Smoke Alarms

Home owners are required, by Regulation 76B under the Development Act, 1993, to install battery powered or hard-wired (240 volt mains powered) smoke alarms.

  • Houses built since 1 January 1995 must be equipped with hard-wired smoke alarms.
  • All other houses must be equipped with at least 9 volt battery powered smoke alarms.
    [MY TWO CENTS] If you like to keep the house, or getting the rent on it, put in the hard-wired option! [/END]
  • When a house with 9 volt battery powered smoke alarms is sold the new owner has six months to install alarms which are hard-wired to the 240 volt power supply or powered by 10 year life, non-replaceable, non-removable batteries.

Heat Generator Penalties apply for non-compliance.

2. Our State Government provide a simplistic website layout for anyone, either on a computer or smartphone, to obtain the regulatory information easily and quickly provide/explain to your landlord to prove your case.

3. The Real Estate Institute of South Australia also provide quick explanations and simple tips and traps to ensure the correct information is available.

Our issue (and a few others) was resolved within 12 hours. I hope your household wiring, smoke detectors, house alarm, and any other electrical items are repaired or replaced in a timely manner to ensure your house/contents/family are not at risk!

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Using my Graphic Design for Good


THIS IS FOR YOU
Just about every day of the week I spend at least two hours creating web graphics for web  advertisements or tshirt designs.

With Xmas just around the corner I have created a bunch of new tshirts for everyone to enjoy.
NYE Resolutions T-Shirt

But today I am showing you the advertisements I created for my wife’s business on Kangaroo Island – LSBeez Honey & Queen-Bee Breeding.

Yeah, many of you would know that I am their online sales and web-guru, but in actuality I only get paid in lodging, regular meals, and the constant love of my two beautiful children and their mother. There is not enough money in the world to cover those rewards. (But don’t get me wrong. I would love a paid job or two.)

Here they are:


GoFundMe Donation Button 800px
Donate via GoFundMe

GoFundMe Donation Button 400px
GoFundMe Donations for LSBeezKI


Ready for New Years Eve
Have a Very Naughty ChristmasLSBeez is a family-owned apiary operating on Kangaroo Island, producing premium quality honey from Ligurian bees. After suffering a terrible setback in early 2016, Sarah & Stephen Mitchell needs funds to relocate to KI to help manage the business. Your support will help LSBeez to continue producing honey for everyone to enjoy.
Donations: GoFundMe.com/LSBeezKI
Website: www.ezcreate.com.au/LSBeez/
Facebook: /LsBeez


As you can see, I love creating graphics. I started back in 1996, and I still use GIMP exclusively and extensively to design and create all my ideas. If you need graphics designed and built for online usage,  contact me via Twitter

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Dell Upgrades Causing Intermittent Buzzing

My DELL laptop, running Windows 8.1, started buzzing every 60 seconds during YouTube video’s earlier this evening (16 Feb 2015). It was annoying and I wasn’t sure what was doing it. Was it Youtube? Was it the laptop? Was it my gaming software?

Rather than being an average user (ie: wondering how much I would have to pay Richard Pascoe to fix my laptop), I researched online to determine if it was a known issue.
Colour Coded

TIP #1: The first thing you learn on most ICT help-desk’s is that Mr Google is your best friend. Heck, every job interview I have there is nearly always this question:
Q: What do you do if you don’t know the answer to a user’s query?
A: Google it.

Bingo. I had to test a few key words; Initially I was thinking it was due to Nvidia updates,  so I searched Google for ‘recent Nvidia update problems’.

TIP #2: Always seek for your issue with the word ‘problem‘ in the search. Then select ‘Search Tools‘, drop down on ‘Any time‘ to ‘Past week‘, thereby reducing search range to most recent information. If you don’t, it will default to the most common looked at page – which are often many years ago!

Initially some of the results suggested Nvidia, but most were not recent enough. I suspected the issue might be closer to home: The laptop. So I changed to the search parameters to ‘dell audio buzzing’, the answer was revealed and verified in the DELL community support forums:
Pile of Computer Boards

1. Open ‘Control Panel\Programs\Programs and Features’
2. Remove ‘Dell Support Assist’ and ‘Dell Support Agent’
3. Reboot or Restart your machine.
4. Play youtube video to test if issue persists.

DISCLAIMER: This remedy fixed my laptop with its specifications. It may not suit every brand or computer. If you are not sure or don’t feel confident doing this yourself, I highly recommend Richard Pascoe, the Adelaide Tech Guy. I get no kickback from recommending him, we are just good friends.

Using Twitter to Get Camera Recommendations

Rear view of Professional SMC Member

Hard to believe it, I have had a Twitter account since mid 2008.

For a long time it was just something I looked at from time to time, not understanding how anyone could cross-converse in such a hectic and vibrant community. It looked (and sometimes still does) like a bazillion monkeys chattering over the top of each other, all clambering for the highest point to ensure their voice is heard.

Yet it turns out to be the best way to ask questions that a MASSIVE amount of people can respond to and (mostly) give a good response. Here is one great example:

I asked on Twitter earlier this evening…

With only one response, I chose to follow the link.

Considering many of my friends are complete arseholes, that was a big risk. Wait, wait, what I mean is they are Australian’s who like to use any opportunity to make fun of each other, which all of us, including the recipient, laugh till it is someone else’s turn. So when an Australian calls you an arsehole or a bastard, more often he is saying either “Aha, you got me!” or “Damn, you take the best holidays!”

Turns out this is a great sugggestion for a second camera. So I tried to follow with a less than 140 character reply. Considering all of the amazing features, I had to find just one or two that warranted a twitter response. So, Ric, @aqualung, this is what I have to say about the Fuji X-T1:

Read the full review of the Fujifilm XT1. I got what I wanted from Twitter. Which really is amazing.

Don’t Stop The Future: Blok IT!

Mother of a Board

I have a shed loaded with electronic waste that goes back 20 years.

I have motherboards, sound cards, old cellular phones, cabling, stenographer tape decks and much more. Somewhere in there I have a 3GB box that is twice the size of a standard shoe box – I use it as a paper weight and a reminder of a time that man wants to forget.

What I have noticed recently is that I still have most of the mobile phones I have purchased outright. This includes a few NOKIA bricks (sorry guys, it is true!). The earliest phone I remember owning was a flip-phone that always reminded me of communicators in Star Trek! Beamed straight from the series that continues to influenced the design of Tablets.

So I found PHONEBLOKS via advertising on Youtube. I quickly realised they deserve merit and entrepreneurial advertising!

Their idea is that the screen and features (ie, phone, camera, speakers, antenna, memory) are all separate blocks that connect to a standard base by way of pins and screws at the ends to keep it all secure. Therefore anyone in the world can build a phone to specifically suit their desires and lifestyle.

I reckon I would buy a PHONEBLOK. Imagine if each block embedded came in multiple colours. Sleeves and water-proof cases will still be necessary, bling is all part of the franchising of a product.

I’m keeping an eye on where this concept goes. So should everyone. The world is changing, again!

Now I am wondering what I am going to do with this shed of obsolete electronic gadgetry. Thinking of getting a strong metal muncher to make mince-meat of it all – and then somehow spraying it onto canvas or concrete to make wall art. Now that would be modern art!

Watch the video that describes how it all works and ‘fits’ together:

Copper Highway

6 Simple Reasons why Customer Service should be Real People

There are six reasons why I enjoy working in help-desk environments:
I am real,
I will listen,
I will support,
and either resolve or escalate your issue,
and I enjoy the work.

Get the Commissioner ... on the Gotham Phone

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Reasons as Thought up by Sarengazie

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I’m fighting the urge to pull out my hair and/or destroy my computer. This is not because I loft my hair or hate my computers (though sometimes, you know). It’s the non person customer service “agent” I’m dealing with on my laptop. I miss people, what happen to the people, why no people? Banks, restaurants, and even hospitals no longer have a person to help you. Technology has come a long way, Yes, but that doesn’t mean throw away the humans. We need humans. We are humans. Computers don’t get us. They can not comfort us. They are no good with assisting us in reaching a decision. Most importantly they always seem to not have the answer we are looking for. It’s like WHY DAMN IT WHY
Here are my 6 reasons why computers should no longer be customer support.

Computers aren’t perfect. Who hasn’t had a blackout shut down…

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Essential Security in Windows 8

Interesting fact: There’s no need to install Microsoft Security Essential on Windows 8:

Colour Coded According to Microsoft

In Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1, Windows Defender provides the same level of protection against malware as Microsoft Security Essentials. You can’t use Microsoft Security Essentials with Windows 8 and Windows RT, but you don’t need to—Windows Defender is already included and ready to go.

Sigh. Which means if you want to install it as a backup to catch what McAfee and Norton never can, it’s not going to be easy. Good luck to those that try. Read the related articles and links to fully understand