Activate SSL (HTTPS) for Blogger Custom Domains

Blogger has enabled secure browsing of blogs which are hosted at a custom domain - i.e. not at

As Google themselves say here:
It helps check that your visitors open the correct website and aren’t being redirected to a malicious site.It helps detect if an attacker tries to change any data sent from Blogger to the visitor.It adds security measures that make it harder for other people to listen to your visitors’ conversations, track their activities, or steal their information. Importantly, Google is taking steps to give priority to HTTPS websites in search results.
Furthermore, by July 2018, the Chrome browser will highlight HTTP websites as "Not Secure".

The change is quick and easy, and will not result in any downtime for your blog.  Existing links will continue to work, and can be automatically redirected to the secure pages.

Synology GitLab Backup and Restore

GitLab has built-in backup and restore capability, but it is not immediately apparent how to use backup and restore on the Synology NAS installation of GitLab.  The following instructions may also be applicable for other Docker based GitLab installations.

This post will explain how to protect your data in the GitLab repository.  This is protecting against a catastrophic RAID failure, and also accidentally corrupting/destroying the repository.  Please ensure you have backups stored off-site, and ideally multiple versions of the backup data.

With any backup/restore procedures it is important that you are able to test/validate the ability to recover your data before you need to do so.

TIP: Check out my quick fix if you get the dreaded GitLab 502 error.

Fitbit / Google Fit sync on a Synology NAS

Fitbit does not natively integrate with Google Fit on Android.  However Prevaeen Kumar Pendyala has developed an excellent open source Python based utility to perform the data synchronisation.

You can read more about his utility here:

And download the code, and access his installation instructions here:

The code will work on any computer, and detailed instructions/video are provided for installing on Windows, MAC or Linux.  The purpose of these instructions is assist with deploying on a Synology NAS.  The benefit of using your NAS is you don't have to remember to turn on your computer.

Fix monitor calibration under Windows 10 Creators Update

I use a calibrated monitor for editing photos, and recently I've had photos where the colours were clearly wrong and couldn't be fixed without complex adjustment layers.

The problem was most evident in portraits.  For example, this image taken in sunlight:

Instead looked like this, where her hair has turned an orange/magenta colour, and she also has what appears as a feint orange rash on her forehead.  Note this is a photograph of the monitor, and I've tried to adjust white balance, contrast and saturation to reflect accurately the colours I was seeing.

What had gone wrong?
Image fault on my Dell U2311H monitorSensor problem on my Canon 7D Mark II DSLR(9 year old) ColorMunki Photo spectrophotometer could have developed a faultPhotographic software playing up.

F*ck AdRev and your fraudulent copyright claim

I made a YouTube video of my daughter back in 2010, and it briefly went viral.  To date it has reached 113499 views, 438 likes (6 dislikes) and 86 comments still listed.

Today I received a copyright claim by "AdRev for Rights Holder".  It states that they have a copyright claim for the music "Medieval.-16004-RFR - Manuel Kempter".

Julian vs Gregorian Calendar

Julian calendar The Julian calendar was introduced in 45BC by Julius Caesar, taking over from the Roman calendar.
Under the Julian calendar each year has 365 days, except for a leap year every four years which has 366 days.  This averages to 365.25 days.  This however does not approximate the actual tropical year (e.g. based on the cycle of the seasons) close enough.  Specifically the average year was slightly longer than it should have been (365.24219).

So how bad is the Julian calendar?
365.25 - 365.24219 = 0.00781 days 0.00781 * 24 * 60 = 11.2464 minutes It was gaining about 11.2464 minutes per year.  Hardly consequential - right?  Well, that results in an increase of 1 day every 128 years or so.  By now (2017) it would be 13 days out.  Though after 46,766 years (or so) the Julian calendar would be correct again...
Gregorian calendar The problem was (mostly) corrected with a new calendar introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582 to reform the Julian calendar.  That calendar, the Gre…

Adding GPS location to raw photos

I have a lot of travel photos taken on my DSLR that are missing the GPS location.  Having the location is handy for friends and family to see exactly where the photos were taken from.  Over time your own memory fades too.
Most of my photos are in raw format (Canon CR2), and I can use Picasa to set the GPS location, but only after the photos have been processed and saved as JPG (or TIFF etc).  If I add the location to the raw image, then it saves the location to metadata that only Picasa recognises.

If I go back and reprocess the raw photo, then the new JPG will have lost the location information.  What I needed was software that could add the location to the raw photo.

I looked around for alternate software, and did try a few things.  Usually they didn't work on raw files, or were just clunky to use.  Many applications are also designed for taking coordinates from GPS loggers - which I don't have.

Furthermore, I don't want to have to type in GPS coordinates directly, inst…