Because I forget stuff. Part of

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January 2006

Posts made in January 2006


And the now the whale has passed on. The rescue attempt got as far as lifting the whale onto a barge (and kudos to the bravery of the rescuers who got in the water with the frightened creature, calmed it and tried to save it). But in the end it was too much and en route to safety (or deeper waters at least) it could last no longer.

It gave us a brief day or two of entertainment (and how to resist saying we had a whale of a time?) Let’s hope it’s breatheren stay around to do the same (note Norway, Japan et al

Give ‘S A Hug

As I know that scheduled posting actually works, I can write this a day and a bit in advance….

It’s my birthday today!! And while reading throught the Wikipedia entry for January 21 I discovered that it is also National Hugging Day, apparently. That last link is to the Wikipedia entry. The “official” site is—but be warned, it’s a demonstration of a truely awful site which would have looked horrible even in the bad old days of the 90’s.

Anyway, surely somebody should give me a hug today…

Light Bulbs Needed Be Taxing

Apparently the wonderful UK government is now considering increasing taxes on the humble light bulb in an effort to increase the uptake of energy efficient versions. Whilst the government’s intention (reduce energy consumption) must be applauded if they were really serious they ought to approach this from the other direction—subsidise the energy efficient version so that they become as stupidly cheap as the normal 99p for a box filament version. That way everyone could still easily afford to have a light (neglecting the cost of electricity to run it of course). However, that’s not my main point. I can give them a much simpler way to boost the sales. Make them look like light bulbs. Have a look at filament verses energy efficient “bulbs” (the only place I could think of off the top of my head that turned out to have actual pictures was title=”Homebase: Lightbulbs”>Homebase). Now it’s my general experience that what you tend to get are the funny stick things which look like some alien has decorated your lamp. I notice there do now appear to be ones trying to mimic their filament cousins but just compare the two versions for a moment. They’re just not the same. They don’t have the “bulbiness” of the name. And the shape is ingrained on peoples conciousness. In fact, decades worth of lamps and lighting have been designed to work well with the standard bulb shape. Anything which isn’t that shape just doesn’t look right in some fittings (for good reason—it’s not right). Then you have to have the clear verses perl choice (it effects the quality—in the sort of way photographers and artists would talk about it—of the light from the bulb). Get that right, and people might actually want the things when given an equal price comparison, or even perhaps before then.

See That Band Waggon

Everyone and his children must have blogged this already but it doesn’t seem possible to add anything more today without saying it. A whale! In the Thames! A real life bloody whale!! In the Thames! Quite surreal. Not surprising one guy apparently phoned in (to the news channels I assume) unsure if he was hallucinating or not. Just hope they find a way to save it (personally, though I don’t believe this is the best option, I just love the site of the thing being air lifted over London by helicopter)


If for some reason you’ve been strange enough to be reading for a little while, you may recall the Lego rant. Well, I think I may be affected out of all proportion. Another Make entry has just made me gurgle a strangulated arrrhhh. Quote: has a post about some really cool LEGO’s from…. LEGO’s. LEGO yes, legos if your butchering the language, but Lego’s?? How the hell does an apostrophy get in there. For the sake of my sanity I’m just going to assume its poor proof reading. Incidently, the page with all the lego on continually refers to it as Lego® which is just bizarre. Why follow only half of the official requirement (LEGO should be all caps), especially the half which messes up the flow of text? Oh, I recongnise some of that stuff too :-)

See/Don’t See

It’s rant time again children ;-) I know how everyone loves that.

I’ve noticed an increasing trend for Puffin crossings over Pelican crossings (links to Wikipedia articles). I don’t like it. I don’t object to the sensors which supposedly work out if you’ve got distracted and wandered off, or are being a little slow in crossing (though I actually have a habit of wandering around a little while waiting for lights to change rather than standing still like some well trained robot next to the little black box). Ah, yes, that little black box. That’s the thing that gets me. The absolute, bloody stupid, sod the users in practice, the theory says this is good positioning of the walk/don’t walk signal (that sounds so American but I can’t actually think of a better description—the little red and green men). For years it was thought adequate to have these opposite, on the other side of the road, where you can see them and, if you are stood around just waiting, are probably more or less looking. Now though, we’re told, its so much better to have them right next to the activation button, on the near side of the road, at about waist height. I have heard not one good argument for this insanity.

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Marked Kings and Queens

I was reminded that I had this entry sitting in draft by Colin Lieberman’s A List Apart Article, which gives one answer to the central question presented here (this was actually one of the more interesting and useful ALA articles in some time, despite its failings—appealing to a standard which explicitly states it’s not ready to be referenced is beyond even the sharpest cutting edge, surely). I was going to wait until I’d finished the castles section mentioned but as that will probably take some time I thought I’d put it out now in a timely way, while I remember about it.

No, it’s not an entry about cheating at cards. It’s more a musing out loud about something I got thinking about recently. while building the castles section of my site. As I was writing description of the castles I found myself wondering how to mark up the ordinal number of Kings (and Queens). For instance, how should King Henry III be marked up (particularly the III part)?

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Photographs of Ghosts

Seen via what seems an awful lot of places, Lost Films caught me on its hook. The use of found photographs is well established in art, and there are plenty of sites around dealing with them (just Google it). What makes this different is they’re not found photographs but, as the title suggests, found films. Nobody has seen these before, not even the photographer, which adds more sadness, and longing that maybe one day somebody in one of them might stumble across them. The whole thing is made better by captions probably best described as quirky (even if the author has some strange ideas about how bad the English weather is), extending to poetry (this one I actually quite like, though my brain keeps telling me I’ve heard it somewhere before?)

I think the thing that got me though was not just the photos (poignant, surreal, aching and fascinating as they are) but the process. To have a skill to do something such as drag a little piece of history forwards. Makes me wish I had some gift like that; to do something, not necessarily useful but…living, human.

My favourite? Possibly this photo. I wonder if there’s someone out there who remembers a rocking horse, and a lovely, friendly cat.

Cross Posting

Sorry about any fiddling around you may have noticed. I’ve been trying to convince MoveableType to play nice cross posting from one blog to the other.

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And We’re Two

Two year’s since the first entry to this blog (back when it was still on Blogger. I’m only really mentioning this as an excuse to check if scheduled posting is working or not.

The Souness Situation

Cross posted from the other blog:

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May Contain Nuts

Photograph of my mother's christmas cakeHaving seen the mince pies my mother demanded to know where the christmas cake was. I told her to post it on her own bloody blog but apparently she doesn’t have one, so here it is, a bit late (a whole week really—this was from last year after all) but I do what I can.


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This Crazy Fool

Dr Ian Scott
Croydon (and Gateshead), United Kingdom
Bullding Services Engineer (EngDesign), PhD in Physics (University of York), football fanatic (Newcastle United), open source enthusiast (mainly Mozilla)

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