SyncToy

One of the great tools available on the Internet is Microsoft’s free SyncToy . A very simple tool, but nicely done, it keeps two directories in sync via a number of options. I use it to quickly backup my digital images onto my Linux mini-ITX system via a mapped drive.

House Prices

Wanting to move and not sure of how much houses round your area are going for? Interested in moving to an area, but don’t have a realistic idea of what price houses are? Or are you just really nosey and want to find out what your neighbours paid? NetHousePrices.com solves all of these problems for you.

It offers access to all the UK land registry data since April 2000. Just type in your location and it returns details of all sales in that area, including price paid.

TV Reception Terrain Map

Every now and again, a website comes along which is genuinely very useful. The Megalithia Terrain website produces a map which shows the terrain and distance between your house and the TV transmitter you are tuned to.

The directions on the website are pretty good, but it’s useful to have a walk-through as it’s a bit complicated.

The first thing you need is the National Grid Reference (NGR) for your house. You can find this by visiting Streetmap.co.uk and searching for your postcode. Once the map appears with the big orange arrow, go to the bottom of that page and find the “Click here to convert coordinates link”. I seemed to have problems getting this to work with Firefox, but IE seemed to render it fine.

On the next page is a list of various styles of coordinates for your location. I searched for the postcode “SO21 2JN” (actually where I work). The field you’re looking for is the one marked “LR”. In my case, this is “SU422254”. Note that down and then return to the Megalithia website. 

Now at the bottom of the terrain website is where you enter the details of the transmitter you’re using. I selected the region “Southern England”, and then the transmitter “Rowridge”, which is on the Isle of Wight. The transmitter is referred to as the “distant” station – changing the transmitter modifies the distant station NGR field. Enter your home NGR into the “base station” field and then click “go”.

This will produce a simple graph showing the height of the base station on the left (you), with the TV transmitter mast on the right.

Genius.