Just outside our main window is a gutter. It is not a traditionally sought after view. Sometimes, as in July, we reap a little reward. Birds flock around the city and swoop into and out of the courtyards.
During July we are treated to a show of birds feeding just outside our window. We live in an old apartment block in Lyon, France, and like most buildings this one is adorned with pipes and retro-fitted services.
Just outside our main window is a gutter. It is not a traditionally sought after view. Sometimes, as in July, we reap a little reward. Birds flock around the city and swoop into and out of the courtyards. For a short while, our gutter becomes a stopping off point for many a bird looking for insects.
These birds are picking insects from cobwebs, from the gutters, and from around the pipes.
A month ago, a large tree fell in our local park, le parc de la tête d’or. The tree’s fall was unexpected and the result of high winds. During those days the park was closed to the public.
High winds cause the park’s closure a handful of days each year. Seeing the sign on the closed gate is aways disappointing. Given the aftermath, the closures become understandable. The park is littered with branches of all sizes. Sometimes huge. Occasionally a subsequent walk will reveal a tree with a large bare patch where a branch once protruded. The largest branches tend to be removed by the gardeners before the public return.
The tree trunk has been removed. The roots are in place, slowly decaying.
Marks show where the tree settled. A smaller tree was hit and was also removed.
Mushrooms have bloomed in the last weeks. The sudden windfall of nutrients likely prompting their appearance.
Autumn has arrived in Lyon. The temperatures have dropped and our coats are becoming necessities.
Our apartment is cold in the winter. The thick stone walls are deceptive. Their heavy mass should insulate but instead moisture and cold seep through. The walls seem to hold onto and draw in the cold from the outside.
With autumn arriving, we are beginning to fear the winter ahead. Last year was mild, the year before less so. What will this year bring?
But for now autumn is putting on a show. The leaves are colourful and the evening views are captivating.
The squirrels are active. They become increasingly daring at this time of year. Human visitors to the park are largely ignored. Last night one attracted my attention with its noisy eating of a seed. Looking around I spotted the source of the noise sitting on a high branch. It looked down at me while I looked up and took these photos.
With every major operating system update from Apple, I publish a short entry over on the DssW blog. The update invariably includes the advice not to update immediately.
Wait! Do not update to OS X 10.11, El Capitan, today.
Every major OS X update has problems. Many lurk unnoticed by reviewers and early adopters. Some, like the network changes in the OS X 10.10 update, only appear when a critical mass of devices are updated.
This year Apple released OS X 10.11, also known as El Capitan. This has not been a good update for me.
I have to update my Mac because I am a software engineer. The products and services I work on need to be developed and tested on the latest versions of the operating system.
A Week of Problems on OS X 10.11
In just the last week, the problems I have suffered include, but are not limited to:
A kernel panic on shut down due to an IOKit layer regression (reported by Crash Reporter):
panic(cpu 2 caller 0xffffff8003a3bcce): "A kext releasing a(n) AppleUSB20HubPort has corrupted the registry."@/Library/Caches/com.apple.xbs/Sources/xnu/xnu-3247.1.106/libkern/c++/OSObject.cpp:200
Disks failing to unmount safely during sleep (reported via Apple Feedback):
Accessing my USB GPS data logger locks up the USB sub-system (reported by Bug Reporter #22970080).
On select days the water fountains at the French Palace of Versailles are turned on and synchronised with music. Our path through the sprawling gardens took us to the mirror fountain (bassin de miroir).
On days when the fountains are active, there is an additional entry fee. Given our experience of two playing fountains, it is difficult to justify.
The mirror fountain performs with the music Jeux d’Eau playing from loud speakers in the surrounding vegetation. My short film does not use the original music.