Greenwich Foot Tunnel – London Highlights

Greenwich foot tunnel is a pedestrian tunnel connecting the north and south sides of the River Thames. I was thrilled to be able to cajole our little band to walk to and through the tunnel over to Greenwich.

The tunnel’s entrance does not look appealing or particularly notable from the north side, but the views over to Greenwich call out for a photo or two. On the south side at Greenwich, the tunnel exits onto the Cutty Sark ship and close to Greenwich’s main street and market.

North entrance to Greenwich foot tunnel

North entrance to Greenwich foot tunnel

Looking south to Greenwich

Looking south to Greenwich

The tunnel has a long history starting in 1899 with various works repairing and renovating different sections as time has demanded.

Inside Greenwich foot tunnel

Inside Greenwich foot tunnel

Metal sides of Greenwich foot tunnel

Metal sides of Greenwich foot tunnel

Tiled walls of Greenwich foot tunnel leading to the lift

Tiled walls of Greenwich foot tunnel leading to the lift

South entrance Greenwich foot tunnel

South entrance Greenwich foot tunnel

Looking back to Canary Wharf

Looking back to Canary Wharf

Fixing Mac Kernel Panic: IOGMD: not wired for the IODMACommand

Since upgrading to OS X 10.8, aka Mountain Lion, my Mac Pro has been suffering from kernel panics. The solution has been to replace my two NVidia GT120 graphics cards with a single ATI 5770 graphics card.

The problem appears to effect those running multiple monitors and using the Apple issued GT120 graphics cards.

For me, the kernel panics occurred while browsing the web with Safari. Often the kernel panic occurred as I scrolled down a page. It did not require a complex web page; just a web page containing plain text was enough. It was not caused by Flash or any third party plug-in.

I reported these kernel panics to Apple through Bug Reporter, and through the “send report” mechanism upon restarting. Months have passed since the problem began, multiple updates to OS X 10.8 have been released, and still the kernel panics continued.

Rather than continue to wait for a solution from Apple, I opted to bypass the problem.

Replacing the Graphics Card

Thanks to a discussion on the Apple Discussion Forum, I learnt that replacing the graphics card will stop the kernel panics. One ATI 5770 graphics card can drive up to three monitors on a Mac Pro. I only have two monitors, so was pleased to feel the new card would not be immediately pushed to its limits.

Thus earlier this week, my replacement card arrived from Amazon. I had fun swapping out the two old cards for the slightly less dated graphics card.

Swapping over took about 30 minutes and required surprisingly little effort. The small manual included with the replacement provided all the instructions I needed.

Upon restarting everything worked. I have not had a kernel panic since and am starting to regain faith that I can use the computer for longer periods without being suddenly interrupted.

Update: I later re-introduced a single NVidia GT120 graphics card without problem.

Apple issued ATI Radeon HD 5770 graphics card

Apple issued ATI Radeon HD 5770 graphics card

Two Apple NVidia GeForce GT 120 cards removed

Two Apple NVidia GeForce GT 120 cards removed

Mac Pro empty PCI slots ready for replacement graphics card

Mac Pro empty PCI slots ready for replacement graphics card

ATI Radeon 5770 fitted inside a Mac Pro Early 2009, 4.1 model

ATI Radeon 5770 fitted inside a Mac Pro Early 2009, 4.1 model

ATI 5770 offers two DisplayPorts and one DVI port for connecting three monitors

ATI 5770 offers two DisplayPorts and one DVI port for connecting three monitors

Kernel Panic

Below is an extract of the kernel panic reports I saw. The panics were frequent enough to change my behaviour and to avoid using Safari during critical work.

Fri Mar 29 15:44:58 2013
panic(cpu 2 caller 0xffffff800a451107): "IOGMD: not wired for the IODMACommand"@/SourceCache/xnu/xnu-2050.22.13/iokit/Kernel/IOMemoryDescriptor.cpp:1424
Backtrace (CPU 2), Frame : Return Address
0xffffff81009e30f0 : 0xffffff800a01d626 
0xffffff81009e3160 : 0xffffff800a451107 
0xffffff81009e31f0 : 0xffffff800a44bede 
0xffffff81009e32a0 : 0xffffff800a44cb0a 
0xffffff81009e32c0 : 0xffffff7f8a6dea04 
0xffffff81009e3330 : 0xffffff7f8a73f1c9 
0xffffff81009e3380 : 0xffffff7f8a73f13b 
0xffffff81009e33d0 : 0xffffff7f8a726901 
0xffffff81009e3460 : 0xffffff7f8a724ad6 
0xffffff81009e34b0 : 0xffffff7f8a70f764 
0xffffff81009e3560 : 0xffffff7f8a73c240 
0xffffff81009e3760 : 0xffffff7f8a73d983 
0xffffff81009e3830 : 0xffffff7f8b7ee480 
0xffffff81009e3970 : 0xffffff7f8b7edf6c 
0xffffff81009e3980 : 0xffffff7f8b7e4dfe 
0xffffff81009e3db0 : 0xffffff7f8b79120a 
0xffffff81009e3de0 : 0xffffff7f8b7952b3 
0xffffff81009e3e00 : 0xffffff7f8b11d2a4 
0xffffff81009e3e20 : 0xffffff7f8b11d237 
0xffffff81009e3e50 : 0xffffff7f8b7a218c 
0xffffff81009e3e80 : 0xffffff7f8b7918e2 
0xffffff81009e3ed0 : 0xffffff7f8b78f8a5 
0xffffff81009e3ef0 : 0xffffff800a4467a8 
0xffffff81009e3f30 : 0xffffff800a4452aa 
0xffffff81009e3f80 : 0xffffff800a4453d9 
0xffffff81009e3fb0 : 0xffffff800a0b2977 
      Kernel Extensions in backtrace:
         com.apple.iokit.IOSurface(86.0.4)[C1007599-42D0-32FF-9F2F-C63F4E6C1DEB]@0xffffff7f8b119000->0xffffff7f8b12afff
         com.apple.NVDAResman(8.1)[A26D2A3D-C06F-3A0F-BCFF-901A98C93C3D]@0xffffff7f8a6d9000->0xffffff7f8a9e6fff
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IOPCIFamily(2.7.3)[1D668879-BEF8-3C58-ABFE-FAC6B3E9A292]@0xffffff7f8a644000
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IONDRVSupport(2.3.7)[38C214C0-83C8-3594-8A4C-DC6AC3FEC163]@0xffffff7f8a6c5000
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IOGraphicsFamily(2.3.7)[74E3E50F-E50A-3073-8C96-06F854292A91]@0xffffff7f8a682000
         com.apple.GeForce(8.1)[A15BB65E-3501-340F-87CB-2FD2BAD33E35]@0xffffff7f8b789000->0xffffff7f8b855fff
            dependency: com.apple.NVDAResman(8.1.0)[A26D2A3D-C06F-3A0F-BCFF-901A98C93C3D]@0xffffff7f8a6d9000
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IONDRVSupport(2.3.7)[38C214C0-83C8-3594-8A4C-DC6AC3FEC163]@0xffffff7f8a6c5000
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IOPCIFamily(2.7.3)[1D668879-BEF8-3C58-ABFE-FAC6B3E9A292]@0xffffff7f8a644000
            dependency: com.apple.iokit.IOGraphicsFamily(2.3.7)[74E3E50F-E50A-3073-8C96-06F854292A91]@0xffffff7f8a682000

BSD process name corresponding to current thread: kernel_task

Mac OS version:
12D78

Kernel version:
Darwin Kernel Version 12.3.0: Sun Jan  6 22:37:10 PST 2013; root:xnu-2050.22.13~1/RELEASE_X86_64
Kernel UUID: [redacted]
Kernel slide:     0x0000000009e00000
Kernel text base: 0xffffff800a000000
System model name: MacPro4,1 (Mac-F221BEC8)

Amazon links on this page help support running The Work Life.

Nestled in the Mountains

The landscape surrounding Geneva is stunning. The Swiss Alpes line three sides of the city and on the fourth side is Lake Geneva. The setting ensures inspiring views of nature are never too far away.

Mountains complete the view down a Geneva shopping street

Mountains complete the view down a Geneva shopping street

A lower mountain range wraps around Geneva

A lower mountain range wraps around Geneva

Unexpected Recommendation

Automated systems tend to produce unexpected, odd, and sometimes concerning outcomes. Amazon’s recommendations in the UK and US stores tend to be useful or even unnervingly helpful. I suspect the large volume of sales ensures the system has a good corpus of previous purchases to work with.

So, when Amazon.fr recommended a replica gun after we bought an induction hot plate, I have to wonder, how is the French store doing in comparison to the UK or US stores?

Amazon.fr recommends a replica gun after buying a hot plate.

Amazon.fr recommends a replica gun after buying a hot plate.

We have noticed Amazon.fr lacks the stock and competitive prices of other Amazon stores. The left-field recommendation only goes to reenforce my suspicions that local Internet shopping has not yet taken off for Amazon.

Singing

There have been more than a few disturbed nights since moving to Lyon. Noise from the street or neighbours disrupting my much needed quiet.

I have learned to love silicone ear plugs. I can not sleep well in them but they let me rest, sleep for a while, and come out as soon as possible. I recently tried wax ear plugs but they did not match the noise blocking or comfort of the silicone equivalents.

What surprised me is the cause of noise. Obvious noises of a party I expected: chatter, occasional shouts, and music. What caught me out, and continues to leave me wondering, is the singing.

The locals, at least here, like to sing in groups in the early hours. We first heard them singing in the bars near our temporary accommodation. Older men singing in drunken unison. Powerful voices singing timeless songs.

That seemed endearing. A group of older men getting slowly tipsy during the night and then joining as one for a song before ambling home.

What then of students singing.

Graffiti covered doorway near Croix Rousse

Graffiti covered doorway near Croix Rousse

Our peace is broken by the odd party next door – or somewhere close by in our apartment building. Young students throwing a party that starts too late and goes on until shortly before the sun rises. Suitably unrespectable hours by all measures.

They started sining the other night. Without obvious reason or trigger. But not timeless classics; they sang the words of recent dance music favourites. It was both brilliant, hilarious, and captivating. Funny partly because the words were English and occasionally the group would fade as the lyrics became too difficult to sing but returning with force for the chorus. Captivating because the group split the roles by gender. In some songs the girls sang one part, the boys another part.

I think at least one song was older and taught to them as children. The university students sang this song particularly well.

I struggle to imagine a mixed group of students bursting into song at a party in Australia or UK. Too self aware or too constrained to risk making a fool of themselves. Drama students – absolutely. A group of female friends – absolutely but maybe not in a pub, club, or larger party.

Something charming about the singing but I wish it would not intrude during the earliest hours of the morning.