Setting up systems
John & Jenny
Mon 18 Oct 2010 22:21
Sevenoaks, UK 51:16N 000:12E
We are beginning to get organised now. The vehicle is pretty well ready and tested, having had it converted from LHD to RHD to comply with South African import regulations. Last weekend we took it to North Wales for two days off-road testing and went over some incredible routes. Hopefully we shall not encounter anything as tough in Africa! During last week we took it back to Nene Overland and had antennas installed for WiFi (in case we find any unsecured signals along the way!) and for the Iridium Sat Phone. The latter was a marine antenna, bought for the boat but not installed. This means we should be able to email from the car using a laptop (or the new Net Book), the Sat Phone, the car's antenna and, if necessary, an AC power supply from the on-board inverter. Yes, we have all the gadgets!
Today's job was to choose a blog site, set it up and set up the Sat Phone for sending emails. Sailing friends had recommended Mail a Sail's Web Diary (this site) and others had recommended Getjealous.com as a travellers blog site. We rather like the layout of Getjealous site and several features like the word count and the record of the number of visits, also the feature which allows visitors to send messages without having to reveal one's email address. It is a somewhat more sophisticated site than Mail a Sail but, seemingly, we cannot communicate to it using the Sat Phone - it is just too slow. We may end using both; Mailasail for daily blogs and GPS positions via Sat Phone and Get Jealous for blogs with lots of photos, maybe the occasional video etc. We have only got so far with setting up the Sat Phone, in spite of incredibly helpful advice from Drew at MailaSail. Something is stopping us configuring the Express Mail Firewall and test the connection, although it will have to wait until tomorrow to resolve it.
In the next day or two we'll describe the Mission and the Vehicle.