Category Archives: Life Rants Updates 2005

Flickr Christmas: Santa’s gathering in Liverpool 4

Santa's gathering in Liverpool 4

How confusing could this be to some people? Thousands of people dressed as Father Christmas have run through Liverpool in a record-breaking charity bid [BBC News]. I love this. There are many interpretations of Christmas but Santa must be the one that makes the most people – across the world – smile.

Advent Flickr: Santa’s gathering in Liverpool 4, originally uploaded by Contrived.

On this day…

2005: Disturbing half-naked men in the doors of Abercrombie…
2005: Civil Partnership: It’s In The News Today
2004: The Da Vinci Code

Flickr Christmas: Snow Monsters Come Out To Play

snow monsters come out to play - Advent Flickr: Snow Monsters Come Out To Play, originally uploaded by seawallrunner.

Following on from yesterday’s snow picture, today’s advent calendar picture from the selection at Flickr is this of ‘snow monsters’ taken in the wonderful city of Vancouver. Doesn’t it make you feel of Christmas? I can almost smell the mulled wine. Fancy a glass?

On this day…

2005: Civil Partnership: It’s Not Just Romance

Flickr Christmas: Jamie Enjoys Herself

Jamie Enjoys Herself - Advent Flickr: Jamie Enjoys Herself, originally uploaded by Pink Cloud. Behind Musak’s Christmas Advent picture fest today, this great show of people in the snow.

Now one of the things we are all wishing for is a white Christmas. It’s one of those thoughts that helps make the whole season special. Will it? Won’t it. Really, none of us want snow and does it really matter if it snows on that day? But it’s all part of the magic of the season.

On this day…

2005: Civil Partnership: Locally In Wandsworth
2005: Tribute To Atlantic 252
2003: Gay Dads
2002: Invisible Maps

Flickr Christmas: Advent Is Here

Advent Flickr: "holiday" tree - “holiday” tree, originally uploaded by wcityw.
I admit it. I love Christmas and I have no shame in saying that. I just find myself with a big grin on my face at all the decorations around town. Even those houses that have too many lights on them and appear to be using half of the power from the national grid make me smile. It’s such a shame that I even have to get up and go to work at all. I could wander round looking at all the advent calendars and jolly Santas! There’s no humbug here.

On this day…

2005: Civil Partnership: George Michael To Wed
2003: A New Month
2002: Christmas Comes But Once A Year
2002: Link and Think

Boxes Everywhere

Boxes, Boxes, BoxesThe eagle-eyed Flickr watcher might have noticed from the last Sunday’s pictures Unilever commission for the Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern. It’s been undertaken by Rachel Whiteread. According to the Tate site, ‘she has created a gigantic labyrinth-like structure, entitled EMBANKMENT, made from 14,000 casts of the inside of different boxes, stacked to occupy this monumental space’ [source]. Browsing Flickr tonight I found many other people who had taken interesting pictures of the exhibition too.

On this day…

2005: Civil Partnership: What’s It All About?
2004: links for 2004-11-25
2004: Celebrity T-Shirt Auction
2003: Coolest of 2003
2002: Stuck On Me

Manchester United Legend Is Close To Death

The news that George Best’s hours are numbered is tragic. One of the greatest football of all time is fighting for his life at a hospital in London. He’s spent years battling alcoholism but couldn’t give up the drink even after a liver transplant. In a cruel twist of fate the final moments may be spent on the day the UK liberalises it’s drinking laws and bars can be open for longer. He will leave a great football legacy. Maybe there will also be a lesson for the rest of us when it comes to drinking and we won’t all become victims of alcohol.

On this day…

2006: A Blog Is Like Concrete Shoes
2005: Change Your Coffee Shop Now
2004: Regent Street, London
2003: Bye Bye Bush Baby

Change Your Coffee Shop Now

I meant to write about coffee last week when it was on my mind. There was a day, Monday – I think, where I had some time to kill before meeting PY after work. So I went into Cafe Nero and ordered myself a regular Latte. Nice, warm coffee. Then I wandered around some shops and then went into Costa Coffee and ordered another Latte. This time the taste was totally different. Unfortunately, I don’t have the words to hand to describe quite how different the two drinks were. There was a startling difference between two cups of coffee. The Costa drinks was much less bitter and had a much fuller flavour. I was blown away as I have never noticed such differences between two coffees before. I blame the thick stuff we drink at work for dulling my taste buds. Anyway, the leaflet in Costa says, ‘Others think their beans are fine after a 7-minute blast. Our beans need a full 18 minutes at precisely 230 degrees to bring out every bit of flavour – and we always make sure they get it’. It appears to be true. My regular coffee show has just changed.

On this day…

2006: A Blog Is Like Concrete Shoes
2005: Manchester United Legend Is Close To Death
2004: Regent Street, London
2003: Bye Bye Bush Baby

Most people don’t even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it?

I’ve just come across Bruce Schneier’s fascinating article at Wired News about the Sony copy-protection scheme which, essentially, installed malware on your PC without you knowing anything about it. And, the story suggests, because a Mega Corp did this other Mega Corps (or Wanna Be Mega Corps) colluded with them by not issuing security warnings from their software which is designed to protect your privacy and your PC. According to the article, Sony BMG’s president of global digital business said, ‘Most people don’t even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it? [article].

The arrogance of big companies always astounds me. Where is the respect for the consumer in all of this? In many ways it doesn’t surprise me that people look for ways to get music without the money going to these guys. Why not work with people in an open way to find solutions that work for everybody? In the end, it’s going to be the only way. And as for the security and software producers who turned the other way, I don’t think they should be surprised that people are running into Apple’s arms. Do you?

Sadly, I think companies should do the right thing rather than go for short-term profit. I believe that for long term stability and revenue growth any company should be doing the correct thing; be that correct mistakes, trying to stick to standards or just be good guys. For some companies this works. Unfortunately, real world business isn’t like this.

On this day…

No other posts on this day.

From The Sky Newsdesk

Since Sky gave Sky News a little bit of an overhaul I have been keeping an eye on the Live at 5 weblog with Jeremy Thompson which I think is an interesting behind the scenes look at the way a news programme is put together. Maybe it’s not as good as the live election gallery feed earlier this year – I wish they’d do more of that – but a nice try nonetheless and they seem to be keeping it going much better than The Guardian did with their Editors’ Weblog.

Hearing about a day from the presenter’s viewpoint – or about their thoughts on a story – can be fascinating. Take last Friday, ‘The news of the shooting of two young policewomen in West Yorkshire broke just as I was about to go on air to present Live at 5 on Friday. For the next four hours I was in the hot seat as this tragedy unfolded.’ [More at Live at 5 weblog with Jeremy Thompson]. I hope they manage to keep it up.

On this day…

2006: My Name’s Not Bond

Font Size

Warning: This is a pointless, ridiculous entry but I wanted to note how something as simple as the typography can change my whole perception of Listen to Musak.

I mentioned earlier in the month that I had been playing with the design of the site. I was looking at WordPress and Movable Type’s settings. I’ve been wondering what on earth to do about the design which was annoying me (I have no idea why) but I discovered the easiest solution. It’s all to do with the point size of the font and this slightly larger font that I put in place on Saturday has solved all my problems.

On this day…

2004: Kill Bill (Volume 2)