March 2022



Although it’s looking ready to snow outside as I type, we’ve had some glorious summery weather in March, which means plenty of time outside running around for the boys.

But the picture that grabbed most attention was this one:

People thought we’d got another sausage dog, but it was just the boys hanging out with their friend Amber at the dog sitter’s.

On the Road Again

The dogs were at the dog sitter’s because I was in Barcelona for Mobile World Congress (MWC) showing off a demo of end-end encrypted Internet of Things IoT. It’s my first overseas trip since Jan 2020, and the first EU stamp in my passport since Brexit (after queueing in the ‘other passports’ lane when I’d have previously whisked through the automated gates) :(


Three no longer do their ‘Feel at Home’ roaming, which mostly doesn’t matter to me as I’ve ditched them for the family mobiles. But I still have a Three data SIM in my iPad Mini. So I got a GigSky eSIM for the trip, which was £7.19 for ‘Data Plan Europe 1024 MB 15 Days’. The provisioning process was super easy. It worked right away in the UK (so I could leave the Three SIM behind and avoid any possibility of costly mistakes), and service was great in Spain. I kept it running for the remaining days once home, and it seemed good. Recommended – will use again.

Carry on speedy boarding

While we’ve all been not travelling it seems that all the short haul airlines (whether they claim to be ‘budget’ carriers or not) have changed their carry on policies. Where before you could carry on something that would reasonably hold a few days clothes and essentials, the cheapest sticker price now gets you a carry on that’s approximately a medium sized ladies handbag. I consider myself a master of travelling light, but I wouldn’t attempt anything more than a day trip with the reduced bag allowance.

To get an actual carry on bag included you have to buy a premium ticket (or just pony up for a bag, which oddly costs even more). The net effect is that the ‘speedy boarding’ line is now almost everybody.

MAME stuff

The RC2014 Mini pull request I wrote about at the end of Feb eventually got merged, and I’m thankful for the patience of the dev team shepherding me through the process. I’ve subsequently had two more PRs merged, one for TMS9995 and another for a C64 ‘turbo’ ROM. They should all appear in MAME 0.242, which I hope will be in the next few days..

As promised I wrote some posts about Decoding the MAME Rosetta Stone and my Journey to the RC2014 Mini Driver for MAME.

I’ve got more RC2014 related things planned, but some boards for TMS9995 just dropped through the letterbox from Alan Cox (@EtchedPixels), so they might come first (if I can find all the bits I need).

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