Thursday, December 28, 2006

Hi Dad


Really cool looking star-wars inspired graffiti thang. I do like a bit of street art :-)

Featured on Flickr under the title “Hi Dad” [via: ViralMedia] probably done by Banksy

Thursday, December 21, 2006

FYI for '07 - Stuff That Must Be On Your Site

Companies in the UK must include certain regulatory information on their websites and in their email footers before 1 January 2007 or they will breach the Companies Act and risk a fine.

Every company should list its company registration number, place of registration, and registered office address on its website as a result of an update to the legislation of 1985. The information, which must be in legible characters, should also appear on order forms and in emails. Such information is already required on "business letters" but the duty is being extended to websites, order forms and electronic documents.

The change is being made by a Statutory Instrument that is expected to be passed on Thursday to implement a European law, the First Company Law Amendment Directive, into UK law. According to a Department of Trade and Industry spokesperson, the law will take effect on 1 January, one day later than the Directive requires.

The information is likely to appear in the footer of every email sent from a company, to avoid having to decide whether each email amounts to a "business letter" or not. Many companies do this already because the term "business letters" was thought likely to include emails even without this new clarification.

For websites, contrary to the fears of some, the specified information does not need to appear on every page. Again, many websites will already list the required information, perhaps on their "About us" or "Legal info" pages.

The Ecommerce Regulations, passed in 2002, require that certain information is listed on a website, including, "where the service provider is registered in a trade or similar register available to the public, details of the register in which the service provider is entered and his registration number, or equivalent means of identification in that register".

That has been understood as including the company registration number and place of registration. The Ecommerce Regulations also required a note of "the geographic address at which the service provider is established" – which many have taken to mean the registered office address.

However, the wording in the Ecommerce Regulations is ambiguous compared to the new provisions. Further, many organisations' sites currently omit the information, perhaps making the mistake of thinking that the Ecommerce Regulations do not apply to websites that do not sell online (in fact they apply to almost all websites).

Information that must be on your website

The following is the minimum information that must be on any company's website (from OUT-LAW's guide, The UK's Ecommerce Regulations).

  • The name, geographic address and email address of the service provider. The name of the organisation with which the customer is contracting must be given. This might differ from the trading name. Any such difference should be explained – e.g. "XYZ.com is the trading name of XYZ Enterprises Limited."

It is not sufficient to include a 'contact us' form without also providing an email address and geographic address somewhere easily accessible on the site. A PO Box is unlikely to suffice as a geographic address; but a registered office address would. If the business is a company, the registered office address must be included.

  • If a company, the company's registration number should be given and, under the Companies Act, the place of registation should be stated (e.g. "XYZ Enterprises Limited is a company registered in England and Wales with company number 1234567")
  • If the business is a member of a trade or professional association, membership details, including any registration number, should be provided.
  • If the business has a VAT number, it should be stated – even if the website is not being used for e-commerce transactions.
  • Prices on the website must be clear and unambiguous. Also, state whether prices are inclusive of tax and delivery costs.

Finally, do not forget the Distance Selling Regulations which contain other information requirements for online businesses that sell to consumers (B2C, as opposed to B2B, sales). For details of these requirements, see our guide, The Distance Selling Regulations - An Overview.

For help with email notices, such as disclaimers, see OUT-LAW's guide on Email notices.

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

New Derbyshire Local Site

Just finished working on an new version on UKPlus, my current baby.

It's now got nice new local Derbyshire pages and loads of other regions rolling out soon. Thumbs up to John (big gun) J and The Badger for all their hard work. Birmingham, Liverpool etc. are up and running today. Go click.

People who use the site regularly
have already begun moaning that we're giving them the option to have usable, manageable, accessible, hyper-local search/content delivered from a regional perspective and not just the 2D search we used to barf up.

My life is a carnival of thrills.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Commentary Flap

When a local rag, the Surrey Comet, posted an article on pigeon culling on it's website they probably never thought it was draw this much attention - this is story commentary at it's finest :-)

Friday, December 08, 2006

R2-4gb

This is nice. Mimoco (home of the ultra-trendy mimbots) has a pre-order yule special on. Star Wars mini USB falsh drives, up to 4gb, at none too many pennies. Very cool.

I do like my portable data storage and, if the wife is reading this, I'll have an R2 please ;-) Who am I kidding. Anyway she's investing in virtual SL real estate for me for Jesus's birthday. She's so damn cool.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Yellow Card for Motorists

Check this project from fellow cyclist Pete Miller. Nice one geezer :-)
"This magnet was tossed onto your car by a cyclist who felt that you might have been driving in a way that could have endangered their life.

They chose to toss this magnetic note because it can neither damage your automobile, nor affix itself to rubber or glass and will therefore not affect your driving. It serves to warn you.

With thoughtful contemplation and reverence for humanity, we can adjust our behaviour to allow for all people to live life.

This is a yellow card, let’s please not let things get to Red."
Very cool idea. Very good. Very worthy :-)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Good Do

Went to a big works party at KoKo in London last night. They stuck is in hotels, coaches down there for the lot of us, free bar, hired the whole place, top food etc. Here's some photos care of Dexter, here from Sian, and here from Naimi.

I'm a bit fragile this morning but avoided dancing and career suicide. By eck, they know how to throw a party. A very convivial evening :-)

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Friday, November 17, 2006

Should Have Bought It

When the current bun decided to to do the headline 'PERV HUNT .COM' (about an online paedophile register) you'd think they'd have registered the domain first.

But no. So instead someone has pointing all that traffic to The Sun's own Page 3 Rookies site, which stars 18 and 19-year old topless girlies.

Fair comment well made :-)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

"You Have 20 Seconds to Comply"



Samsung has partnered with Korea university to develop this machine-gun equipped robotic sentry. I so love tech directly from Aliens.

This puppy has twin cam pattern recognition and a 5.5mm machine-gun. The robot audibly warns intrudes before applying the perfect headshot. This little sweetie goes on sale in 2007, for $200,000, and will be "deployed on the border between North and South Korea".

I might get one for the ally way at the back of the house.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Get Down With Your Blue Self

So. Me and a lass called Angel, my personal shopper, went 'tripping the light fantastic' at the Blue Note this evening :-)

The place was rammed with (virtual) couples doing the same. People from all over the world, who probably only know each other as an avatar, getting down to Bix Beiderbeche and chatting while they do so. Now I see the social side, and it is what you make it :-)

Hell of a frock Angel. Cheers for a cool evening.

Strange though in't it. I think I'll keep all this to myself for a bit.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Jazz. Nice!


I've taken to dressing sharply and hanging out in bars playing ragtime and jazz. A bit more role-play orientated and seems to suit being 4' 4" and blue. Kinda 'Woody Allen meets cattle mutilation'.

I'm developing quite a collection of cocktails and acquaintances. People are generally friendly and supportive to this asexual newbie ET. I can see how the social side of this would get marginally addictive. There really are no boundaries because, quite frankly, that leggy brunette you're tangoing with could be a sheet metal welder from Runcorn called Steve. People say 'hi' now when I go on line and quite a few folks from work etc. are giving it a go too.

I have a date to 'go dancing' over the weekend with a lass who has become my self appointed 'personal shopper'...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Die Spinne

There's a new Spiderman 3 trailer out.

Come on Sam lad. A bit of Flint Marko and a bit of Venom. Nice.

Thank god they didn't go for a villain with a goldfish bowl on his head...

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Oolon & the Seven Predators


Met a load of Predators this evening who have adopted me as a bit of a mascot. Seven, seven foot tall monsters and me, drinking cocktails and talking about the comparitive penetration value of assorted high calibre sci-fi weaponry. We come in peace. Yeah, well, not in 'Clan Alien' they don't.

Surreal...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Billy No Mates


I'm still doing a lot of exploring. Interaction, especially group interaction, isn't something I'm diving into. The art side of this I get though. Big time...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Big Bed


So I'm flying around and I find this amazing cool house, and I go in and it's full of sex 'pose-balls' and this enormous bed. So I thought, "well, hay, there's no body here" and I start trying some out. I'm new at this. This is my first time. I gotta explore, ya know.

I'm there rutting away in comedy fashion. Having sex, this little blue alien, on this big dragon bed with an invisible partner. Giving the pillow oral and everything. Trying the lot out. Laughin' my head off. I look up, move the camera round, and there's this massive naked bloke covered in tattoos and with this ungodly erection, hands on hips, looking right at me.

I made my excuses and left pretty damn sharpish...

Friday, November 03, 2006

My Other Life

I am about to enter Second Life.

Social networking is hot for us right now, and a Snow Crash metaverse style 3-D virtual world (totally built and owned by the residents) sounds too cool not to try. Right now, it's home to 1,288,782 virtual 'people' from around the world. Surely they're not all
geeky art fag yiffy pervs?

There will be no blogging for a bit, sporadic at best, but I will report back with my findings. I will post a daily picture to keep you updated.



American Apparel
was the first "real world" company to open a store in SL. The launch of their latest shop has created a viral buzz that spread to Forbes, Business Week, etc. Naturally, that viral buzz bolstered salës for their on-line and off-line clothing.

A number of other real-world brands are in there too. Intel, Nissan, Reuters, Sony BMG, Adidas, Sun MicrosystemsCNET, and Wired. Major marketers, advertising agencies, and news outfits are all starting to take part in Second Life.

Reuters was the first news bureau to set up shop in Second Life, and there are a number of other news outlets and websites that are reporting on the daily events on 'the grid':

A gob smacking $500,000 dollars (i jest you not) is spent on 'the grid' every day. This is real money, not just the Linden dollar (the SL currency) and a few hundred peeps are actually making a full-time living on Second Life.

With these kind of numbers, this is a platform that businesses should be looking at as a potential marketing opportunity. Mechinima opportunities aside, for me SL is an interesting way for businesses to reach consumers, test marketing strategies, release new product ideas with relatively little investment and
examine social networking.

Wish me luck. Here we go. We come in peace...

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Speedy Cookie Monster

Firefox (bless em) used to block 3rd party cookies. A bit naughty this, but in 2.0 they seem to have got rid of the on/off-ability. I only just noticed and I've been recommending this to all and sundry.

If you want to sort it manually, do the usual "about:config" in your address bar, then change network.cookie.cookieBehavior from 0 to 1.

Oh, while you're at it, h
ere's something that will speed it up a bit. Normally it will make one request to a web page at a time. When you enable pipelining it'll make several at once.

"about:config" as usual.

Then alter the entries as follows:
  • Set "network.http.pipelining" to "true"
  • Set "network.http.proxy.pipelining" to "true"
  • Set "network.http.pipelining.maxrequests" to some number like 30. This means it will make 30 requests at once.
  • Then right-click anywhere and select New>Integer. Call it "nglayout.initialpaint.delay" and set its value to "0" (the time the browser waits before it acts on information it recieves).

That should be well faster. My conscience is clear.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Steve Terada Would Kick Your Ass

Every now and then you see something (other than adverts for Medical Research Trials) that makes you think superpowers might just be possible.

This is Steve Terada. Steve is a man who probably stands under freezing waterfalls getting beaten by his own gang of oriental chicks with bamboo poles. Then, he probably fights crime. Anything else would be a waste.



Sorry about the music.

Pioneer Passes

Nigel Kneale, best known for the Quatermass TV serials (and the films of the 1950s) died yesterday at the age of 84. The man was a pioneer and his work was ground breaking genius. He was Britain's first significant television dramatist.

The Quatermass Experiment stunned the BBC audience back in conservative 1953, and
paved the way for the likes of Doctor Who. A year later, and questions were asked in Parliament about his adaptation of 1984. He was still writing for TV in the 90s and Kneale was a genuine small-screen visionary whose (often fantastical) work also inspired the whole Hammer horror phenomenon.

The passing of a living legend. There are so few left.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

All Hallows

Captain (and Mrs) Depper made it over for pumpkin soup and apple bobbing this evening. A few candles, a selection of childhood sweeties, an open fire and a mash-up of cheesy spooky tunes made for a surprisingly convivial evening.

A noticeable 'time-stamp' like Halloween got me thinking. I can't believe the weather is so mild. Leaves are only just thinking about dropping and flowers are still in (2nd) bloom. We'd normally be moving Andromeda to Winter moorings tomorrow (on the 1st of November) and the weather would be battering it down and the river would be in full flood and I'd be babbing myself chugging past Thrumpton Weir.

We've so shafted this planet. Every year the seasons seem to shift again, which is more and more noticeable as the years pass by. Get ready for the big wave. I'm glad we live so far above sea level.

Anyway, "Happy Halloween, ladies".
Enjoy your Sabbat all you blessed wanna-bes. A toast to Samhain and the dead.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Choice Viewing

Back on the media this evening. It still hurts, but reading is better. Crammed a load of X-Factor in while the going was good. Squinting helps.

Watched the first 4 episodes of Season 3 Lost. Totally addicted all over again. Now Sky have bought it there's no chance of getting it on C4 again so I gotta get my drugs where I can. No point in waiting :-)

Bought a new telly (sweet for the cash) on a recommendation of one of the blokes at Evolution.

Oh, and I see EepyBird have a full video of Experiment 214 available (below). That trailer has had me licking my lips for a while :-)



Worth the burning pink conjunctiva. Total heroes :-)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Forbidden Entry & Singing Duck

I had a really cool evening last night, and a damn good day (apart from the 2 hours sat on the A6) and I'm not allowed to blog it for fear of a severe fonging.

All will become apparent in the future but, let's just say,
Lucky Jack Flynn rides supreme (qualified on Grizzly (Boo-Yar Ph@tboy!) and coulda done better but the big man took his ball home).

For your delectation, and in lew of a decent entry, here's Gus Visser & His Singing Duck.



Bit better tonight, but I'm off before I start crying puss.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Pretty Things

I'm back, but my eyes still hurt. Short posts only. Lucky the testing has been postponed as I had to come home early anyway. Looking at light hurts like snakebite in the face.

Here's some nicer lights from the folks at Graffiti Research Labs. A serene bit of graffiti art with some LED Throwies.





If you watched those 2, finish it off with a bit of NightWriter ;-)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

7 Minutes

I've got conjunctivitis and the quack says I'm not to use computers (especially computers with 2 screens) for "3 or 4 days". So much for GameCity.

I jest you not, 7 minutes (exactly) and my eyes start burning. Reading comics is the same. My life will be seriously dull for the next few days. Doubt I can do work tomorrow and it's a testing day. Annoying.


Eyes hurt now. Gotta go. See you when it's not so bad.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Don't Forget

This coming weekend, GameCity, in HoodTown...

...and fifteen shops and cafes across Nottingham will be acting as a 'heritage tour of arcade game history' and will each be home to a different arcade classic.

Confirmed so far are:
  • Virgin - Wheeler Gate
  • HMV - Victoria Centre
  • Lee Rosy’s Tea Room - Broad Street
  • Exchange Arcade - Old Market Square
  • Limbo - Heathcoat Street
  • Prohibition - High Pavement
  • Social - Hockley
  • Broadway - Broad Street
  • Wild Clothing - Heathcoate St
  • Topman - Victoria Centre
  • John Lewis - Victoria Centre
  • G-Star - Victoria Street

If there's a 'Return of the Jedi', that high score is mine.

...and, while we're remembering things...

Go on, make yourself useful on the 14th of November. Help celebrate usability around the globe, on World Usability Day.

Stick some posters up. Get people talking. Get 'em asking about Web Standards. Improve practices. Recruit an army of Welsh longbow men and take Paris. Establish a New World Order.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Shine on Google

Nice one. In their wisdom, Google's entire corporate campus in Mountain View is going to be a 1.6 megawatt photovoltaic installation. A bit 'James Bond' villain of them, but worthy.

This is going to need almost 200,000 square feet of photovoltaic arrays on top of the Googleplex and in the carpark (a cool dual-use that generates electricity as well as shading the cars parked in the sun all day so they don't need as much air con, and therefor less fuel).

Whether this was prompted by Arnies pro-solar power legislation or not, it'll be one of the largest corporate solar installations in the world and is expected to save (at todays rates) around $400,000 in annual energy costs. This means it'll pay for itself in only 7 and a half years.

Just when I start to think they are a bunch of plonkers, they go and do something like this...

Sunday, October 22, 2006

No News is bad News

Sunday afternoon. Watched a movie, Big Morris came over and we talked rubbish, the usual.

Then I'm sat here thinking 'interactivity' and 'news delivery' and I start-a-musing. Is it just me, or has Google News gone really crap? Their definition of 'news sites' seems to now include a gaggle of 'uncanny bobbo' and 'odd' Web sites that could best be classified as the online scrapings of their category. Why? Well, they've gone and tried including blogs, but only some blogs. The crap ones. Ones you'll never have heard of, and most of the ones you have heard of are just plain bad with weak weekend content or sites that exist only to draw in those AdWords clickers (you lucky 2% you) and scraped from the big boys. When I'm doing a news search, I want news site - not blogs, not left-wing conspiracy sites, or right-wing religious crackpots. News. Give me information, not shite.

To dig a deeper hole, Google's news search does Jack-all to make it's results even close to relevent. It looks promising when you do a search for a piece of 3 hour old news and
Google News returns a few hundred entries, but when 95% of those results are the same repackaged stories from Associated or Reuters, then clicking around looking for interesting news is largely a waste of time. You're better off finding a dozen or so good news providers that do unique work and going to them instead. This is why I have RSS and my own agrigator in Sage/Firefox.

The web is the news delivery system of the future. I used to work in online news delivery and, as a service, we can react quickly . As an industry we understand that those on top now will become the readers trusted information delivery service of the future.
Google is doing nothing to help (the reader or the industry) so why bother using it when we have the power of choice.

Nice evening in, in front of the fire/telly with Jema, not watching Torchwood ;-(

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Can't be Arsed

I pressure washed the back yard for 5 hours today and sod all else exciting happened. I'm now knackered, wet, and still sore from being run over. I just can't be arsed with writing anything original.



You'll have to make do with these Celebrity Chef Slow Motion Assassination Videos instead, which have very nice yolk action.

Friday, October 20, 2006

One For All

Northern Ballet are doing The Three Musketeers at the moment and, with this being a more accessible kinda thing and not all stick thin Russian birds taking it far too seriously, Jema offered to take me.

Rarely one to shy from a new experience we went to the show at the
Nottingham Theatre Royal (one of my favourite local venues) this evening. I've got to admit to being initially sceptical.

It was great. Chivalry, as it should be with Dumas, is at the fore. The Musketeers themselves were the very embodiment of the appropriate stereotypes and, while it's a bit rushed to start, it soon gets into the buckling and swashing, the outlandish masked eccentricities of the French court masques, and all that to-and-fro intrigue.

The fencing scenes are pretty well choreographed (believably exciting and funny) and the chaps dutifully butcher their way, with undeniable comic finesse, through drove upon drove of the Cardinals Guard. The sets are, as one would expect, gob smacking; English frigates sail out of port and musketeers ride on life-size replica galloping horses. The innate humour, almost a parody I though from my Richard Lester favourite, was clever and unforced.

As for ballet as a medium. Well, yeah, okay. If I'm going to the theatre I'd usually rather have an opera but hey, I was on the wifes dollar and I'm not complaining. It was jolly good fun.

Check out the tour dates if you get a chance, it's way better than panto ;-)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Zeldman on Web 2.0

Nice article on Zeldman, the Web 2.0 Thinking Game...

Web 1.0: Joshua Davis on the cover of Art News.
Web 2.0: 37signals on the cover of Forbes.

Web 1.0: Users create the content (Slashdot).
Web 2.0: Users create the content (Flickr).

Web 1.0: Crap sites on Geocities.
Web 2.0: Crap sites on MySpace.

Web 1.0: Writing.
Web 2.0: Rating.

Web 1.0: Karma Points.
Web 2.0: Diggs.

Web 1.0: Cool Site of the Day.
Web 2.0: Technorati.com.

Web 1.0: Tags.
Web 2.0: “Tags.”

Web 1.0: Bookmarking.
Web 2.0: Bookmark sharing.

Web 1.0: Pointless Flash widgets.
Web 2.0: Pointless “Ajax” widgets.

The guy's got a point...

New IE

I see the new IE is out today. I hear it's a bag of knackers. Lot of people swearing around the office. Apparently, Yahoo! and Google toolbars vanish for a start (cheers Bill, don't burden us with the responsibility of choice or anything will ya'). It's got all the corners rounded off so we can't cut ourselves. Rumours of security issues abound.

Personally, I'll wait 'till they iron some bugs and stick with my Firefox (but I guess I'll need a copy for testing and, in true Microsoft stylee, it'll be a 'critical update' anyway). Whatever happend to free will?

Anyroad, there's always the pre-release Firefox 2 to be playing with.

Oh, speaking of which, this years 'Best Use of a URL Award' so far goes to www.ie7.com. Go on, give it a click :-)

Battered

I nearly didn't make it in to work this morning. I think I hit that car a little harder than I thought.

I ache really badly today, all across my shoulders and neck and down my right leg. I got a few obvious bumps and grazes but this is like the day after having done a mental weights session. It hurts to lift my arms and it's making me feel old.

Eveytime I have a bump I forget you feel like shit the day after.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Unsaddled

Déjà Vu. I got knocked off my bike again today. Winter must be here.

Pulled straight out on me. Crunched the rear derailer and (I think) bent the forks and maybe the frame. As I passed her over at Samways the rear wheel fell off. At least the person stopped this time.

I'm feeling a bit battered this evening. Better armour up again.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Wheelchair Guy

Probably the single most bizarre damn image I've ever taken. Took it on my old 7650 camera phone and just found it while I was shuffling files around.

This is Ixilum, a luminaria, which me, Liz, and Jema visited in Nottingham a while back. It's like an ubber bouncy castle with natural light illuminating the insides, coming through the coloured PVC material.

I don't know who the guy in the wheelchair was. He'd been abandoned in a corridor by his family cos he couldn't fit in the smaller rooms. Perhaps he lives there and is also inflatable? I just don't know.

Hot Fuzz?

I thought it would be more '70s'...





...still looks funny though. But not Sean/Spaced funny.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Poison Apple

According to a hastily posted notice on Apple’s technical support site, 1% of Video iPods shipped after September 12 had an extra little something on their hard drives. Meet the virus with the catchy name of “RavMonE.exe” that spreads via removable media (watch those Flash drives kiddies).

Apple says: “As you might imagine, we are upset at Windows for not being more hardy against such viruses, and even more upset with ourselves for not catching it… So far we have seen less than 25 reports concerning this problem…. and all Video iPods now shipping are virus free.”

Ironicly, Mac users can breathe easy as “RavMonE.exe” only affects computers running Microsoft’s Windows operating system.


Now, I'm not a rumour monger or conspiracy theorist, but if I was some bloke working for a big multi-national and I really wanted to have some shits and giggles with some firm who had ripped off a load of ideas that we'd already stolen off someone else then this would
so be the way to go about it.

I love my iPod, but I'm buying a Zen next time.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

It's Amazing...

...what they sell on Ebay.

Follow this link, then look in the 'sponsored links' (right hand side).

Friday, October 13, 2006

Eskimo Disco 7-11

Secretly, I have always known that Pingu rules. Not enough Robbie for me, but you can't have everything.



Nice tribute to OK Go. Watch out for the emo penguins, blink and you'll miss 'em.

In The Hot Seat

If you fancy a grin, log on to Headline History on Thursday evening (the 19th) at 6pm where yours truely will be playing Albert Johnathan Clements, the butler at Chatsworth House during Victorias reign.

This
charade is known as 'hot-seat-chat', a relativly new feature where the kids get to interview a historical figure live, that won us another AOP award in London last night (that's 3 years running now).

You can go there now and ask a question in advance if you like. The strangest one I've had so far has been; "Do you bum the hall boy"?

Kids. Ya gotta love 'em.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Should I Stay?



Apparently, some Americans do understand British politics. Go figure.

Nice video mash-up. Ahhh, the power of the internet to comment in a way the press never could...

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Grind House Trailer



Robert Rodríguez, Quentin Tarantino, and looks like George A Romero flick? Oh go on then...

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The 2 Kings


Google has bought YouTube for US$1.65 billion, and here are a very happy Chad Hurley and Steve Chen telling the world about it.

The deal, the first to value one of the new crop of user-participation websites at more than $1 billion, combines two of the most popular internet brands:
Google, synonymous with Web search and rapid innovation, and YouTube, the Silicon Valley upstart that spearheaded the video-sharing craze. As Chad says, "The 2 kings" :-)

I'd be happy too if I was in my twenties and suddenly found myself a multi millionaire. Good on em'. Decent chaps.


Monday, October 09, 2006

Giant Slides

If you go to Tate Modern you can now have a crack at 5 'giant slides' that go from the 5th floor of the gallery in the Turbine Hall.

These buggers are more than 182ft long and Carsten Holler (the 'artist') says this is a "playground for the body and the brain". He also says that slides can help combat mental health problems. Yeah mate, okay, whatever gets you a grant.

Anyway,
I'm off for a go next time I'm in the smoke, before Health and Safety shuts it down. Pity the rest of Tate Modern is full of pointless pretentious cock.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Pro Flickrin' Myself

I've been adding shed loads to my Flickr account and not doing my blog. I paid for 2 years and every damn thing. Go take a look, if you can be arsed.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Torchwood

This is so not fair. BBC3, great, we can't get BBC3.



Freeview isn't available in our area. The only phone line we can get is a BT phone line (that's living in the sticks for ya) and we can't strap a Sky dish on our gaff (not that I'd want to for esthetic reasons) cos the house has got a bloody preservation order on it. I hope there's a solution before 2012 when they cut the analogue off...

Looks like it's time to download BitTorrent again.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Pigs New Game



In case you didn't know, my good mate Pig has given up his life of late and has done sod all but work. Pig works for Evolution. Pig is Lead Designer on a game called Motorstorm. Motorstorm is the big release title for the PS3.

Lookin' pretty damn good my friend. Might even make up for having no mates left by Christmas :-)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Ultimate Halloween Toy

Are there any squeemish people or women who get freaked out by dead fluff around?

No? Are you sure?

I don't want you to make the same mistake I made. The wife thinks I'm a freak now.

Well, even more of a freak than usual anyway.

Totally and in all ways absolutly sure?

No freakers? Freaker free?

Okay then, you can
CLICK HERE.

You were warned.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Web 2.0 Loveliness

I bloody love the internet.

I just spent, with their spanky uploader, a couple of hours faffing with my Flickr account. The Sunday Telegraph is running an article on Katie Fford and they wanted some pics of the boat, so I found myself trawling old images looking for stuff to mail them on Katies behalf. This put me in mind of Flickr.

It's been a while since I went and had a play with their interface, which is a discrace considering I'm supposed to be lecturing in
Interactivity at Derby Uni this year, and it's a thing of total beauty. I really must get arround to signing up for a full account and using it more. Dexter, and other mates, have some stunning stuff up on the site and it's a great avenue for thier art that, only 5 years ago, would likely have never been seen by such a diverse audience. I've been a bit too occupied with YouTube and the like of late, and not given Flickr the attention it deserves.

Just out of interest, here's my top 10 web 2.0 sites (or the ones I use the most) - Blogger (I guess), Last.FM (music goodness), YouTube (ya know, movies), eBay (which is 2.0 I guess), Wikipedia (my 1st info stop), Digg (news I give a shit about), del.icio.us, stumbleupon, BitTorrent (yeah, well, ya know), and Upcoming. Some I give more attention than others. Okay, a lot of the above I view through RSS (Sage, in Firefox) but I still check them constently for changes and it's that kind of info delivery I need from that kind of site.

Actually, Seth has a good list, by visitor, of what's hot and what's not in the world of web 2.0: HERE. Can you tell I'm starting to get lecture notes together ;-)

I bloody love the internet.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Commuter Rant

I could swing for someone right now.

Not only was it drizzling on the way home but I got a soddin' 4" concrete screw in my back tyre. Then some deaf dumb arse pedestrian steps off the pavement right into me and pushes me out into the middle of the road. Then, on the back roads, some berk in a people carrier pushes me into a hedge at 20mph cos he can't be bothered to slow down to let some other bloke past and I get another soddin' puncture! Did he stop? Did he shite.

Finally, I get home an hour late (having got into work an hour early so I could get home an hour early) to find my stupid dumb toothless feline gumming a mouse around the lounge.

I picked up a camera from BBC Derby today (they want me to do a 'where are they now' thing for the Video Nation stuff I did a few years ago on Andromeda) so I'm off for a rant!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Action Cats


Batteries and cat sold seperatly.

Cheers Pig :-)

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Save Top Gear

Please go sign this petition...
Since Richard Hammond's crash on Wednesday 20th September, numerous politicians, action groups and random people in the street have called for Top Gear to be pulled off the air at last, stating that it sets a bad influence.

Jeremy Clarkson has written an article here.

In it he states that Hammond did get training, and that it looks like the main cause of the accident was a burst tyre (which, obviously, no one can prepare for) AND he says that Hammond knew the risks and still went for it.

We who sign this petition may be fans of Top Gear, might be fans of the Presenters, or might just think that this quality program is well worth a small portion of their TV License fee.

No matter who we are, we firmly believe that Top Gear should be kept on our screens and should be allowed to make more seasons of high quality, top speed enjoyment.
...as most of you know, cars don't exactly push my buttons. That said, I watch good quality entertaining TV whenever possible.

Okay, so the
petition will likely be ignored by the Beeb, or they have no intention of cancelling the show anyway and this is just Clarkson/internet hyperbol. It does, however, show the support of the masses to the presenters if nowt else. Just to be on the safe side, and in the words of a greater being: "When the avalanche begins it is too late for the pebbles to vote".

Saturday, September 30, 2006

South of Matlock

Pig and I went out for a stole today. To blow some cobwebs away and formulate Pennine Way plans for June next year.

From Matlock, we headed up to Riber Castle then south across the hills to Crich, lunch at The Midland and then back up along the disused Cromford Canal to the aquaduct, a swift pint of Crag Rat at the White Lion Inn and then back down the hill next to the cable car station.

We did plan to do about 16 miles, but we set off a bit late and had to be at a social this evening so we had to cut it short.


Nice walk though. If a bit pedestrian. The weather was good for it. I forget what's on the doorstep sometimes, and that we live in a World Heritage site.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Drinkies?

Robert Downey, Jr. is gonna be Iron Man!

Awsome choice. Especially considering the blokes background and all. I think he could look spot on with a goatie beard and a Martini in his hand.

I heard a while ago that
Terrence Howard is in talks for the part of War Machine too.

See Ain't it Cool News for the full skinny.

A Load of old Bosch

M&Ms (dark chocolate) have a fantastic little online campaign!

The crack is, to find 50 'dark' movie titles in the disturbingly Hieronymus Bosch style painting.

Totally
brilliant, and it just cost me a morning (well, just over 2 hours). Good job I got a day off.

Have a go, and if you get stuck you can highlight my answers (below).

12 Monkeys, 39 Steps, A Clockwork Orange, Alien, Beetle Juice, Blade, Blue Velvet, Children of The Corn, Childs Play, Dark Water, Eraser Head, Friday The Thirteenth, Halloween, House of Wax, Jaws, Leprechaun, Lost Boys, Nightmare On Elm Street, Piranha, Pitch Black, Psycho, Pumpkin Head, Rear Window, Rosemarys Baby, Saw, Scream, Seven, Signs, Silence of The Lambs, Sixth Sense, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Birds, The Butterfly Effect, The Candy Man, The Creature From The Black Lagoon, The Crow, The Dead Zone, The Fly, The Grudge, The Hills Have Eyes, The Howling, The Invisible Man, The Mummy, The Omen, The Ring, The Shining, The Village, The Wickerman, Twin Peaks, War of The Worlds.

Enjoy. Some of them are whore hoppers from hell.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Extreme Pen Twiddling


That's 5 solid points spent in legerdemain...

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Marvel Universe Online

I should probably get a divorce immediately, in preparation at the news today from Cryptic Studios...
Today at X06, Xbox’s annual official industry event in Barcelona, Spain, Microsoft Game Studios announced further details around its eagerly awaited project based on the Marvel universe of Super Heroes. Microsoft and Marvel Entertainment confirmed that Cryptic Studios has been named the developer of “Marvel Universe Online,” the highly anticipated massively multiplayer online (MMO) video game exclusive to Xbox 360 and Windows Vista.

“The vision behind the alliance of Microsoft Game Studios, Cryptic Studios and Marvel is to expand the MMO genre and create an epic ga
ming experience exclusively for Xbox 360 and Windows Vista gamers to experience together online,” said Frank Pape, senior director of business development, Microsoft Game Studios. “Cryptic Studios is widely respected for their established track record of innovation and understanding of the MMO space, and they are a perfect fit for the creation of the best possible experience in ‘Marvel Universe Online.’”

"As an independent developer, Cryptic Studios has the freedom to make games and forge partnerships that we are truly passionate abo
ut," said Michael Lewis, president of Cryptic Studios. "Cryptic Studios and Microsoft share a common vision for online gaming and commitment to quality titles. Together we will create a new exciting game that captures the uniqueness of the Marvel IP."


David Maisel, executive vice president, Marvel Entertainment added, “The huge Marvel fan base has been eagerly awaiting new information on our massive multiplayer online game. We are proud to have a premiere developer such as Cryptic Studios who has had such incredible success in the online gaming world developing this game. Marvel, Microsoft and Cryptic are committed to creating the definitive interactive Marvel universe experience via this massive multiplayer online game.”

Cryptic Studios is known as the developer of the renowned MMO titles “City of Heroes®” and “City of Villians™,” and bring a history of excellence in MMO design and best-of-breed community support to the development of “Marvel Universe Online.” “Marvel Universe Online” will unite gamers in a cross-platform experience, allowing for Xbox 360 and Windows Vista users to play alongside one another. Marvel’s repertoire of Super Heroes have evolved from the pages of comic books to become driving forces in entertainment, from the silver screen to television shows and best-selling video games, including “Spider-Man,” “X-Men” and “The Hulk” franchises. As part of an MMO gaming experience, “Marvel Universe Online” players will be able to interact simultaneously in a truly unique atmosphere featuring all their favorite Marvel characters, creatures and villains.
...I'll probably never see the wife again. I'll probably never see anyone again who isn't wearing a costume.

Lets find The Brood, and waste us some sleazoids!

It better not be shit, or I will have to go Hungerford on their sad sorry asses.

Pitching Lucas


Personally selected by 'The Bearded One' himself for the coveted George Lucas Selects Awards, Pitching Lucas also won the 2006 Star Wars Fan Film Audience Choice Award.

These guys owe my company a new keyboard.

I just sprayed mine with coffee.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Herds of Wandering Dutch Robots

Theo Jansen is a scientist turned artist that creates remarkable wind powered robots called Strandbeests.



These robots are super low-tech with no electronic components and designed using the simulated evolution program made by Jansen over 17 years ago.

His goal is for these robots to one day live in herds, on beaches along the Dutch coast.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Parental Hassles

To add to all the other stuff that's happened this year, it looks like my mam has MRSA. She's heading back into hospital, quarantine, as soon as they find her a bed.

It's gonna be lazy blog posing for a while. Expect lots of YouTube and please bear with me.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

I Might Try This With Frogs

Damn nice animation. Damn nice. Really, damn damn nice.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Gangsters Paradise

I'm neglecting the blog a bit of late. And the cat. And the bike. And the wife.

Instead I bin hangin' wi my Grove St crew. Makin' some wad. Earnin' some respect. Obsessivly playing a computer game. Yada, yada.

As we have soddin' months to wait for the new Grand Theft Auto on PC (the bloody PSP version comes out next month), I thought I'd catch up on what I've been missing in the way of San Andreas.

Oh my, it's good.
Good enough to invest in a drip and a catheter.

I may be gone for some time. Homies.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Dr Who “Goaded to Death”

I'm speechless at this one - Read here.

What is the world coming to?

Like a Fish Needs a Bicycle

This is an art project by a chap called Seth Weiner. It's a vehicle called Terranaut II.



This intriguing little vessel is driven by the motions of a parrot cichlid in a fish bowl. A camera mounted above the tank tracks the fish's movement and relays that information to a computer, which then drives the robot in the direction the fish was traveling. With this contraption, Polly the Parrot (fish) is capable of exploring land in a way he never dreamed possible. Polly does appear to just go around in circle though, which may have something to do with his bowl being round and him having bog-all long term memory.

This is insane. As my collegue BubbaFett pointed out "...a set of robotic arms and fish could become our overlords!". Surely this is the beginning of the end.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Everbodys Turn in the Barrel

My bestest and most favouritest day of the whole gosh darn year!

"
International Talk like a Somerset Farmer Day!" Woo-hoo! (matey)

I've been at work an hour. I'm bored of this already...

Monday, September 18, 2006

Little Solders in Christs Army



WTF?

Speaking in tongues, weeping for salvation, praying for an end to abortion and worshipping a picture of President Bush [well, perhaps 'worship' is a weeny bit strong, there's a cardboard cutout of Dubya in the room, which is still pretty damn messed up admitedly] — these are some of the activities at Pastor Becky Fischer's Bible camp in North Dakota, "Kids on Fire," subject of the provocative new documentary, "Jesus Camp."
And again I say, WTF?

Sunday, September 17, 2006

b3ta Meet in Derby

Sat 14 Oct 2006, 17:00 at The Bless - [map]

The first ever Derby b3ta bash. See here for more info.

I may well 'pop by'. I do like an excuse for drinkies ;-)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Friday, September 15, 2006

Wedding Anniversary Ride

As it's our wedding anniversary today (5, count them, 5 years) we both had the day off and went to Alton Towers to shoot zombies and try the 2 new rides.

Rita, Queen of Speed: great name, fantastic logo, really fast (0 to 100 in 2.8 secs) but too short with no inversions and we had to stand in line for over an hour cos the bugger broke down and we were in the que for the front (as usual)...

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: kids ride but still inexcusably disapointing. They don't even pipe smells at you. The glass elevator ride at the end is the highlight, but I'd sunk into apethy by then and so had all the other adults making up todays crowds...

Did the usuals, like Oblivion (click for video), Nemeis (click for video) and Air (click for video), which are all still the daddy. Runaway Mine Train is still closed after the accident but Duel and Hex are still the 'cleverest' family rides and the most fun.

I didn't know before today that the 'chained oak' story behind
Hex is a 'true story'. We got chatting to a guy who worked on it and he gave us directions to the actual tree - there's a quick ameteur vid here.

We had a good wander around the gardens (the weather today was great) and the towers themselves and, even though it's been a couple of years since we were last here, there seems to have been very little done in the way of noticable restoration. Makes you wonder how much Tussauds spent on Rita compaired to how much they spend on work on restoring this stunnin' Staffordshire landmark.

Ate pizza, played video games, and enjoyed the day together :-)