Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Ow

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Normal Service Will Resume Shortly

Sorry

I'm in the middle of a maddening computer problem that has involved returning my computer to factory settings during which all my email for the past five months has been lost.

If you've sent me a recent email and I haven't responded, I apologise for being unable to do so.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Angel on my Shoulder


As I always suspected, Claude Raines is the Devil

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Unsettling the Settlement

The very bad news? With its open hatred of the nation it governs and its utter disloyalty to the Crown in whose name they hold power on display, New Labour plans to scrap the 1701 Act of Settlement; knocking primogeniture, the established church, the MCC, and everything up to and including meat pies into the hazard. It's the sort of thing that makes one fervently wish that Her Majesty would mark the next opening of Parliament by quietly folding and creasing the unread speech written for her by Mr. Brown as she announces with a discreet nod to the Household Cavalry that the Tower will be entertaining a few "guests" that morning.

The very good news? Mr. Brown et al won't try this until after the next election, which, given the polls, puts it on the same shelf as airborne pork.

Kiddie Cards


Meg Hillier, an under secretary at the Home Office, is quite cheery about the idea of ID cards for 14-year olds and children as young as six surrendering their biometrics as part of a scheme that the Conservatives will find "impossible to pick apart".

Some people are dismayed by this whole ID card thing, but I'm confident that it's only a temporary measure.

Unlike the Collars of Obedience that come next.

Little Chef is Watching You

Restaurant... of the FUTURE!

Airbags for OAPs

So much for growing old with dignity.

It's Bigger on the Outside

Apparently the reason why this year's Doctor Who Christmas special was cancelled is because David Tennant thought Russell T Davies's idea of having the Doctor running around in J K Rowling's imagination "sounded like a spoof".

Leaving pots calling kettles aside, this sudden burst of common sense can only be praised–especially as I've seen tins of beef consomme that had more imagination than Rowling and I suspect that Tennant had no desire to be trapped inside the reverse-Tardis of the literary world.

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Bandwidth Recovered

Right. I've got a new router installed with a new security system. Now the swine who's been downloading Lawrence of Arabia in HD every morning at 3AM can find someone else's wireless bandwidth to sponge off.

Standby

I'm having some bandwidth problems this end, so entries will be light while I resolve this.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Bentely SenseS

A concept car that combines genetic engineering, biotechnology and artificial intelligence–and those are supposed to be selling points. According to the designer Arturo Peralta,
The driver connects with the vehicle in the same way a rider connects with his horse.
In other words, I can expect it to be stubborn at the jumps, throw me into a thistle patch, then come up and bite me before giving me a sound kick and then running off for parts unknown.

And the suspension is as mushy as hell.

Monday, 22 September 2008

Bacon Thieves in Lancashire

They put this down to heroin addicts, but I'd think that bacon addicts is more likely.

Mmm... Bacon.

Eat More Red Meat

This message courtesy of the chickens down the road.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Horror Express


Yeah, that's archaeology for you. Happened to me a couple of times.

Friday, 19 September 2008

The Beginning of the End

Volvo wants to make their cars mimic the behaviour of locusts.

Great. One minute I'm shopping for a car and the next I'm trapped in an automotive remake of a Bert I. Gordon film.

Evolution Mobile Bar

A complete cocktail bar that folds into a single container.

I have just found the next thing I'm putting in the car against the day of the zombie apocalypse.

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Bottom News


From Nature News:
Genetic study investigates the origin of the anus
Cancer cure coming as soon as they can get their head out of their...

The Thinner Red Line

According to the UK National Defence Association, the British Armed Forces are on the verge of "paralysis" because underfunding has so seriously hit morale that 50 percent of personnel are considering resignation.

I've always said that any nation whose central government spends less than half of its budget on defence has lost sight of its priorities. And if you think that spending 51 percent on defence is insanely large, then you're spending too much on everything else.

"Erasing" Hard Discs with Thermite


When you really, really want to keep that data private.

Whoa!

The Hello Kitty Roomba

Where is your God now?

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Release the Hounds

Belgian "conceptual artist" Wim Delvoy makes a "marble" floor out of salami.

If he got a grant for this, I'm putting in a request that Belgium be expelled from NATO.

Major Boothroyd, Call Your Service

Minox announces that they are releasing a digital version of their famous Riga miniature camera.

How they will produce reels of digital microfilm that can be used as plot devices in cheap B movies has yet to be determined.

Ernst Stavro Blofeld, Call Your Service

An old Atlas missile silo converted into a luxury home complete with private airstrip.

Not as good as a volcano, but with a death ray and a a pool full of piranhas, I'm sure it will do.

Sharia Law Established in Britain


The first sharia law courts with coercive powers have been given full legal status in Britain.

No doubt it is all in the name of improving "community relations", but aside from the profound effect this will have on the very basis of Common Law and that the Jihadists will see this as a victory, this is a bit like preventing a fire by throwing paraffin all over the place.

Peugeot Blade

Another oddity from the 2008 Peugeot Design Contest: The Blade.

Allegedly, the propeller in the back is supposed to "improve efficiency", though I suspect that it's real purpose is to pick off any birds that the grill and windscreen fail to take out.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

The Man with the Flower in his Mouth


Television–Very early television.

You may have to squint a bit.

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Friday, 12 September 2008

Internet Toast

A toaster that prints images on your bread.

Cure for cancer waits until after breakfast.

Nuclear moon

Nasa is considering a nuclear reactor to power its proposed Moonbase.

Nice design, but since it only generates 40 kilowatts it won't be much use powering laser defence batteries, so i don't imagine that Shado will be very interested.

Loose Lips

From CNN (emphasis added):
The dramatic drop in violence in Iraq is due in large part to a secret program the U.S. military has used to kill terrorists, according to a new book by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Bob Woodward. Bob Woodward's book, "The War Within: Secret White House History 2006-2008," came out Monday. The program -- which Woodward compares to the World War II era Manhattan Project that developed the atomic bomb -- must remain secret for now or it would "get people killed," Woodward said Monday on CNN's Larry King Live.
Nice to see you're keeping it under your hat then, Bob!

Di-Cycle

From the Netherlands, an amphibious bicycle.

Great. Now we'll see the waterways clogged with self-righteous traffic hazards as well.

Balvenie 1964 Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Balvenie 1964 Single Malt Scotch Whisky; a neat little tipple that retails for £7100 a bottle.

I'm sure it tastes like a dram of heaven, but I think I'll give it a pass. With my luck I'd turn around and the next thing I'd see would be my Scotch being decanted into a bowl of sangria.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

At Least the Vogons Deliver

Okay, so the Large Hadron Collider was fired up and the Earth wasn't sucked into a black hole.

Fine. Good. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a massive hangover and I have to take my somewhat dented Lamborghini back to the dealer, return a great deal of stuff to the shops, make a lot of apologies to various editors, and get in touch with my solicitor about when my case comes up for trial.

Bloody CERN.

Roboskip

A 700-ton robot dumpster.

Is anyone else as frightened as I am?

Aside from Sarah Connor, of course.

Men Without Chests

Dr. Sean Spence of the University of Sheffield suggests that drugs can be developed that will improve men's morals.

I really must press this one in my scrap book as a perfect example of not thinking through the implications of one's arguments.

Update: And if you think this is an isolated case, take a look at this "Be Green or it's Room 101 for you, m'lad" argument that the 148,000-member American Psychological Association is advocating.

As I've Always Suspected

Shirley Temple in a candid moment.

Tip o' the hat to Dark Roasted Blend.

Kim on Ice

North Korea's "Dear Leader" Kim Jong Ill is missing and reportedly "unwell".

Fellow reclusive "unwell" dictator Fidel "Maximum Leader" Castro said in a statement,
BBRRAAAAAAIIIIINNNNSSSSS!!!!!!
Update: North Korea says that Dear Leader is not ill.

In a sense, this may be correct.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

The Brannock Device

All hail the Brannock device; elegant breakthrough of the shoe industry.

Thus does civilisation advance.

Memory Drain

A review of the Red Lion pub in Westminster, which I include because it was the first pub I visited when I moved to London back in the '80s.

Don't worry. I shan't include London's other 6000 I had a pint in.

Poop Power

The Dutch breaks ground on a 36.5 megawatt power plant that runs on chicken poop.

Now watch them do something typically daft and ban chicken farming.

Monday, 8 September 2008

The "Lost" Challenge

video

Cool Undies

The US Army is developing liquid-cooled underwear.

A brilliant idea, but unfortunately it seems to consist only of a tunic. Now if they could come up with a pair of liquid-cooled boxers, I might be able to do something about this heat rash of mine.

Kids: Join the Spies!


From The Telegraph:
Children as young as eight have been recruited by councils to "snoop" on neighbours and report petty offences such as littering.
Somewhere the shade of Churchill is weeping.

Scanrobot


Automatically scans up to 2400 pages an hour–mostly telephone directories.

C-O-N-N...

Bike Bilge

The Guardian has declared bicycles "officially chic".

Cyclist may be aggravating road hogs who block traffic, terrorise pedestrians and feel free to disobey the road rules at will because they are possessed with a staggering self-righteousness about Saving the Planet™ by dressing in Lycra shorts, logo-plastered tee shirts with the pockets the wrong-way 'round and pointless "streamlined" sunglasses in a weird fantasy that they're Lance Armstrong before putting their ludicrously over-priced and impractical machines on top of their Prius's so they can motor thirty miles out into the country where they swarm in tangled packs that make it impossible for anyone to travel more than eight miles an hour on narrow roads without shoulders and exponentially increase their chances of being run over or putting an honest citizen's car into a ditch to avoid flattening the little time-wasters, but at least they're "chic".

Space Couture

Orbital Outfitters has gone to Hollywood special effects man Chris Gilman to help design suits for tomorrow's space tourists.

They're dashing, I'll grant you, but I still prefer to go with a classic.

Sunday, 7 September 2008

X the Eliminator

video

I'm not saying that a kid's cartoon is high art, but the example shown has streets more craft and discipline than any blighted conundrum show of today that takes 48 episodes just to establish the characters and you're lucky if the plot progresses an inch before cancellation.

Bear in mind that in the '60s superhero cartoon series there was almost never an origin story, so each character had to be defined in every episode within 20 seconds.

I'd like to see J J Abrams try that one.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Friday, 5 September 2008

Kreegah! Tantor Jonseing!

A Chinese elephant has been weaned off of a nasty heroin addiction.

And I thought Amsterdam was bad.

Hot Cars=Hot Women

"Science", no doubt conducted by the Centre for Studying the Bleeding Obvious, proves that women are sexually aroused by supercars–as opposed to econocars, which have all the sex appeal of a Jeremy Clarkson centrefold.

This probably explains why my 1973 AMC Gremlin was less of a babe magnet than I'd hoped.

Slow-Motion Firearms


So beautiful that it's close to indecent.

May Their Michelin Rating Plummet


Corporal Tomos Stringer, 23, a wounded British solider on leave from Afghanistan, was refused a room at the Metro Hotel, Woking after he produced his military ID and was forced to sleep in his car.

That is one hotel that will never see my custom.

Ever.

Arctic Iron Lady

Governor Sarah Palin is "Alaska's Margaret Thatcher".

It's meant as a compliment, I'm sure, but I've always found Lady Thatcher a bit too left-wing for my tastes.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Television Tomorrow


Orientation for demobbed soldiers... of the FUTURE!

SX02

At $9,500 the SX02 flight simulator is interesting, but not that interesting.

Now if it could be configured to play Mechwarrior...

IRA "Disbands"

And in other news, foxes say they no longer have any interest in those yummy, nummy chickens.

Sharks & Cream

In a transparent cover up, the BBC tries to hide the controversial link between shark attacks and ice cream sales.

Follow the money, baby.

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

No Pleasing Some People

Oil prices drop below $109 dollars a barrel, which is surely news of crisis on the wane and better times ahead–unless you're the BBC, in which case it's a portent of economic gloom and misery.

Heads, you win...

Orator Briefcase PA System

I know a few people who act like they have one of these already.

XR3

It's a hybrid, a flat-pack, and it looks like a cross between an electric razor and a monkey's bum.

Winner of the 2008 How to Alienate Your Customers award