Saturday, March 27, 2004

Richard Clarke is amazing.

I reckon I need to eat some humble-pie after my disparaging earlier post. This guy is one hot operator. If he can manage to stay alive long enough, I reckon he could be the nail, no make that stake, in the coffin of the Bush administration. Wouldn't that be nice?

Rarely have I been witness to such scintillating politics. Clarke's composure, testimony and handling of his opposition in Congressional hearings are awesome. I reckon this is real history in the making, folks.

Is fusion on the up again?

BusinessWeek's article "More Bang From The Bubble?" fills you in on how one man may revolutionise science.

Some great stuff from The New Scientist:

Saving money AND saving the environment with a new source of jet fuel may be possible. Read Aviation fuel from soya oil.

Loggers are going underwater. Well, they have been for a while to reap the harvest provided by dam-flooded valleys but recent technological developments mean the job is far less risky. Read Pilotless sub harvests sunken forests.

Aurora project taking off again?

I think today NASA are testing their X-43 hyperjet again today (last year's test resulted in the destruction of the vehicle). You can read more on this potential Mach10 vehicle at and at the NASA site.

Apparently, nose picking is GOOD for you...

Nose pickers are healthier and happier according to this expert.

IDF deploys drones.

Israel is deploying tiny pilotless drones to provide battlefield intel and monitoring of "terrorists". Read about their latest deadly toys here.

China Says Won't Sit by if Taiwan Turmoil Worsens

Wow, suddenly the world is accelerating full-speed towards a very "interesting" time in history. Since 9/11, things have been anything but normal but they're rapidly approaching terrifying for everyone. Read about it here.

Remember how I said things are getting more interesting?

Remember that's another way of saying scary....

"The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are developing a database that will allow private companies to submit lists of individuals to be screened for a connection to terrorism," as it says in this article.

As Gomer Pyle would say,

"Surprise, surprise, surprise!"

"An Amish woman's claims of repeated sexual assault over 10 years has led to the arrests of four Amish people" according to the

Friday, March 26, 2004

Apparently, this is the latest craze amongst the Japanese teen girls.

Yes, those caraaaazy Japanese chicks are at it again. No more of the "Essex girl bleach-blonde and orange tan", now it's time for over-white! Bihaku (whitening) is the latest fad.

Next time you're flying anywhere

why not make use of the most excellent service offered by the
NTSB accident reports database?

You can search on almost any handy detail like, aircraft manufacturer, model, airline, date etc. I love the terminology they use.

"Collided with terrain", indeed.

Stop the insanity!

Oh brother, the USA really is getting its knickers in a twist these days over almost anything. Now you're in trouble with the FCC if they even suspect you of making some kind of obscene gesture, movement, statement, action, smell, piece of clothing, sound, eyebrow lift, puddle on the ground....

As Simon Cowell is finding out, either Senator McCarthy is walking the earth again or "Salem Witch Trials - Part Deux" is just around the corner.


If you're into planes and/or flying, you'll appreciate the pictures on this site under the heading, "PICS THAT MAKE YOU THINK?".

French Upgrade Terror Alert:

In light of the Madrid bombing, France has raised their terror alert level from "run" to "hide."

The only two higher levels in France are "surrender" & "collaboration!"

Music I'm currently enjoying.

Bon Jovi's "Best of" album. Yeah, I never thought I would say that either but it's good rock, man.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Being gay could be a crime in Tennessee county.

Repeat after me, "Land of the free. Home of the brave." Uh-huh, whatever. Talk to the hand. etc.

Read about it here.

Have they finally "found" Hoffa?

According to this news article, we may finally at least know what happened to the late Teamsters boss.

Yet another Batman film in the works and what a cast!

One of my favourite actors, Rutget Hauer is joining Tom Wilkinson, Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman and Ken Watanabe for "Batman Begins". Should be a blast.

Wow, The Z80 CPU is back!

And it's badder than ever.

Remember the Z80 by Zilog? No? Well, then you're no geek, that's for sure. Read this article to find out what you're missing.

Wow, The Z80 CPU is back and badder than ever.

Remember the Z80 by Zilog? No? Well, then you're no geek, that's for sure. Read to find out what you're missing.

Wearable technology is starting to look good.

According to this article. The whole idea of a "bluetooth-enabled helmet" has me a bit worried, though. I don't know about you but I don't like teeth anywhere near my helmet.

Got to fly around in a real classic yesterday.

The Bell UH-1 Iroquois (Huey) is a cool piece of kit.

Fun, fun fun. And the best bit? I got paid to do it! Life is good.....

While I'm at it, here are some good airplane links: top photos (especially this one for the guys).

Trying to keep US military aircraft out of the hands of the North Vietnamese in 1975.

I like hot rods. Always have, always will.

Some of the finest can be found here and here.

Gadgetwatch ALERT! ALERT! ALERT!

Maybe one of these will get me up in the morning (instead of the afternoon like seems to happen more and more often).

At the very least, it's a really neat piece of kit.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

I just had to stick this in here.

I think this is funny.

Saw my first WiLL Cypha yesterday.

"Eh? Wossat?", you say.

Erm, it's a car - Made by Toyota.

Weird car. Like something out of Bladerunner - only in bright orange. More here and here

I don' geddit.

The British are credited with bringing great education and even greater administration to so much of the world (not just India, you know) so why is it British education and administration are so poor now?

Exhibit A: I've dealt with the US embassy. They were great. Friendly, helpful, etc. I've dealt with the Canadian embassy. Ditto. I've dealt with the Hungarian embassy. Again. friendly, helpful etc. I even called the Laos embassy. Not exactly what one would call friendly, but they answered the phone and answered my questions.

Call the UK embassy?
Ring.....ring.....ring.....ring......ring......ring.....ring.....ring......ring.....ring... etc.

Hello Britain???!!!! When I was a kid in the '70s, guess what? We had an answering machine at home. That's right - at home. You probably don't know what this is. What a marvelous machine. You can record a message to be played to callers when you're out or otherwise can't answer the phone. Then (and this is absolutely killer) the caller can leave a message for you to play back upon your return! Isn't that just the keenest?

BTW, it's the 21st century now. I hear you can get actual real computers that do this job. And, like, they can do other things, like direct your callers to different extensions. How amazing is that? No doubt NASA developed all this great stuff to handle their astronauts' calls while they were away jumping across the moon, swimming through a vaccuum or even sucking down a fine meal of beef in red wine, roast potatoes, lightly-steamed asparagus tips and a choice Burgundy from a toothpaste tube.

Here's an idea - try calling the Hungarian embassy. They have one of those computers. Maybe it's just a relic from the good ole' days and "Ivan" stole the plans from the Americans and gave it to the Hungarians, eh?

Their machine is probably the size of a refrigerator but at least it works!

Oh yeah, if you actually visit the British embassy, the big, smiling Ghurka who checks your bags is excellent. Really nice guy but I wouldn't wanna mess, na'ah mean? Anyway, virtually every building in this country has air conditioning. Nearly every vehicle has air conditioning. Go to the UK embassy consular section and what do we find?

The shelves with the forms and info pamphlets is empty so we have to queue. On the stairs - where there's no air conditioning. Finally (after about an hour or so) get seen at a desk where we are given the form we should have been able to receive without queuing. Of course, it says we have to come back the next day.

Oh yeah, you have to get there plenty of time in advance but you then have to queue outside the embassy walls before opening hours. Yeah, it's hot and when it rains, it really rains. No, there's little protection from the elements.

Why, Britain? Why?

(while I'm at it - damnit, Britain, pay those Ghurkas what they deserve!)

Best Ice Coffees?

Black Canyon Coffee do the best ice coffees I've ever enjoyed. My personal favourite so far, is the Blackpuccino but their Blended Iced Coffee with Rum is darn good, too.

Let's hope they can successfully expand across the world and break the manacles of mediocrity slapped on the world's retail districts by Starbucks.

There ain't nothin' like over-reactin'!

Gawd bless Amerikkka.

Obviously, this is not the right way for a 12 year-old to behave but kids can do the darndest things. Perhaps someone might care to investigate the family this boy lives in and ask why he would do such a thing?

Seems to me that all the adults in America are allowed to behave like children and never take responsiblity for their behaviour while the children are getting inadequate parenting, being treated like adults by the authorities and receiving extremely heavy-handed treatment for what is, for the most part, the normal behaviour of children.

I was just wondering....

How long until "namsayin" gets into the dictionaries?

Whoah, that's COOL!!!


Transparent concrete, anybody?

The Japanese art of pencil carving.

A Hello Kitty USB hub that talks and moves as you type! I suppose that puts the "IT" in "kITsch"?

And these guys thought they are the master race?

Well, at least we know someone at BT still has some balls!

"BT is investigating claims that one of its engineers had sex with a lesbian student who auctioned her virginity for £8,400." Read this article at The Register.

Article on the lesbian in question is here.

While we're on The Register, this is kind of entertaining, too.

Well, I suppose, a 44 year-old BT engineer didn't "cure" our hapless lesbian student of anything but her virginity. In this article, she says "It was horrible. I hate the way men kiss."

But if she's a lesbian, how does she know how "men" kiss? Does she periodically get a guy to kiss her "just to check"?

"Nope, nope! I don't like his kiss, either!"

And another thing: what's the definition of virginity for a lesbian? It can hardly be the same as for a heterosexual woman, can it?

But let's return to the original subject of this story. Allegedly a 44 year-old divorced father of two from SE London who worked as a BT engineer, paid this woman UKP 8400 to lose her virginity to him.

She put her virginity up for auction on eBay and then on her own website. She accepted the money. She has sold her story to the newspapers.

Now she's being portrayed as some innocent victim of a horrible monster who made her feel bad and she cried afterwards.

I bet rape victims everywhere are dancing for joy. What wonderful "journalists" and editorial direction the News of the World has.

Another lesson in how not to manage the public?

It says in this article,

"In the latest incident, a No 436 bus was gutted after flames were seen pouring out of the engine at the back of the vehicle as it travelled past the Hilton Hotel on Park Lane.

Passengers were evacuated before a fireball engulfed the entire length of the 60ft bus on Saturday evening.

Within a matter of minutes it was left a burned-out shell with only the metal chassis remaining.

A fire service spokesman said: "There is obviously a mechanical fault there."

later in the article,

"A TfL spokesman said:....But he said the buses would not be withdrawn."

Monday, March 22, 2004

Remember my tirade about Gillette?

Way back on, oh Tuesday?

Well you can read about that stupid razor here.

Meanwhile, in the "I want one of those." department,

the Roku Soundbrige Network Music player is a seriously sexy-looking piece of kit.

While Samsung have announced they are developing the first mobile phone with a 2 megapixel camera AND optical zoom.

While waiting for those, you can enjoy the WeWa WMP-3000 Butterfly MP3 Player.

Trial of Sami Al-Arian:

Bungled or Cover-Up - You Decide

"The opinion seems to be that there was severe "bungling" on the side of the prosecution in the cases of Sami Al-Arian, the Florida professor accused of running an Islamic Jihad cell in the U.S., and Capt. James Yee, the Muslim chaplain accused of mishandling classified information at Guantanamo Bay. But a closer look seems to bear evidence that the mishandling of these cases might be intentional."

Read the full story.

Reminder: classic gaming is really taking off.

Just have a look at Google. I still think the ultimate was Robotron.


No, I never heard of it, neither.

Apparently, it's all the rage. (ab /.)

Hey folks. It's terrorism, right?

That means, it doesn't really matter (well, maybe to a couple of million people) if al-Quaeda really did manage to buy suitcase nukes or not. Just the threat of it is enough to nearly paralyse the USA. That's why it's called terrorism.

I don't know what all the fuss about nukes is for though, anyone with half a brain can figure out easier and cheaper ways to bring to its knees a large modern consumer society with centralised resources, heavy reliance on communications infrastructure and an inability to tighten its belts.

While we're at it, let's give Mr Blair our undying (bad choice of words, I know) gratitude. After so many years of terrorism on the UK mainland, it was finally ended only for the British PM to quickly turn us into the number 2 target for terrists.

Thanks, Antonio!

Jimmy Carter gets up and shouts the obvious.

Maybe people will listen?

Sure there are a lot of people who believe that the recent war in Iraq was based on, at the very least, flawed arguments. However, enough people in the US and UK remain generally supportive of their national leaders that the existing level of dissent has not amounted to the threat it should. I wonder if Jimmy Carter's interview with The Independent will make any difference?

Watch for the ensuing legion of (mis-?)information to start appearing in the media in an attempt to discredit Carter. In the meantime, you can enjoy this particularly twisted "journalism" or you can read his White House resume here.

Of course the EU is good for Europe.

Of course it's working tirelessly for the greater good. Of course all the highly-paid representatives and bEUrocrats are doing their best to stamp out corruption.

Tell that to this journalist. Good to see his rights being observed so carefully. You can read plenty more on corruption in the European Union.

You see, the beauty of the European government is that citizens of each nation are too busy with their own country's problems to be anything but ignorant and apathetic about the EU. Until the people of Europe pay attention, corruption is gong to be rife in the EU and all those billions of tax euros are going to be wasted.

"In a democracy, the people get the government they deserve." - Samuel Clemens 1835-1910