Wallace and Gromit in MK

My friend – you left us too soon :(

I don’t usually talk about emotional stuff on our blog but needed to vent somewhere.  Our friend, Echo, who had been fighting leukaemia sadly passed away on 19th May, she was just 29 years old. We found out whilst on holiday for my birthday which kind of put a damper on things 🙁

Olly and I only knew Echo for ~ 2 years, since we moved to Leicester and I started in the chemistry department. Echo was a PhD student in Chemistry but in a different research group to myself. A testament to her strength of character is that she left her home country (China) to come to the UK to pursue her PhD, and was writing up her thesis when she found out she was ill.

Echo was a positive, quirky person, always making everyone laugh and smile.   She would come out with some of the funniest things….. such as asking whether Olly’s pot-belly was real or whether it was a fake belly!!!!!!! Even the last time we spoke we were laughing about how she had taken up knitting as a hobby in the hospital.

Below are some of my favourite pictures of that I have of Echo that capture her cheeky fun loving ways.  Rest in peace. xxx

Gorgeous chemistry girls all dressed up for my 28th bday

Alan disrupts things and makes everyone laugh!

We eventually managed to convince Echo that apple bobbing was a great British tradition.... she had a go at it!

My favourtite photo of Echo!

Echo as Chun-Li from streetfighter!

From her 29th birthday....Echo fell asleep in the pub after drinking too much!

Echo's alcohol tolerance was never much!

don't tell our boss we bought a dog in to the office and it peed on the carpet!

Echo and Archie in the office

New look web pages

As you may or may not notice I have rewritten my entire website. Given that the old version was written when I was just learning HTML4 about six years ago I figured it was time for a bit of an update. It’s also given me a chance to have a play with some of the new HTML5 and CSS3 features as well as move a few things around. Notibly I moved the holidays pages to a blog category – there was starting to be too many.

In terms of the HTML5 stuff, I have employed the new structural tags <header>, <nav>, <footer> for now, with the likes of <section> to follow soon. One of the more noticable things is the use of the new <video> tag, in using this I am slowly converting all my video to Ogg Theora. This does mean that I am not supporting IE in the first instance, I may or may not get around to fixing it someone asks me nicely.

There’s a few other HTML5 bits and pieces around, my favourite may be the new <form> behaviour. They have rewritten it so you can upload many files at once and a lot of the validation of user input is done on-the-fly. I have a nice CMS that I use to manage my photos now with all these implemented 🙂

Obviously there is a nice sprinkling of CSS3 styles around which will work in modern browsers – even IE (if you are using IE9 and have compatibility mode turned off that is).

Let me know if you have any problems with the new style (things not displaying properly etc).