Geocoding with PHP and Google Maps

After changing hosting companies I was having problems with the message:
URL file-access is disabled in the server configuration

In the end the simple solution is to replace:
$xml = simplexml_load_file($request_url) or die(“url not loading”);

with
$ch = curl_init($request_url);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, true);
$response = curl_exec($ch);
curl_close($ch);
$xml = simplexml_load_string($response);

I’m not in Ireland…

I’ve been having problems with various web sites thinking that I’m in Ireland not in the UK – google and the BBC among others which is something of a nuisance especially when try to use the BBC iPlayer.
I tried renewing my DHCP binding to get a new IP address but that didn’t work.
It turns out that I’m not the first person to have this problem on Virgin Media and the solution is to use their webcache. The webcache address is webcache.virginmedia.com and it uses port 8080.

So now I can use the iPlayer – of course the Virgin Media ebilling system still doesn’t think I’m on their network but I’m less worried about that!