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Journal of nicholas (3034)

Wednesday September 23, 2009
02:00 AM

Google can still make me laugh*+1066

Is there no limit to their geekery?

If you're wondering what prompted this, I was curious about 1600 × 1066

Wednesday September 09, 2009
11:02 AM

Phishing scams are more professional than this

Wednesday August 26, 2009
01:20 PM

Perry fail

So, tonight's tasting notes:

St Hellier Pear Cider
artificial sweeteners - yuck
Gaymer's Pear Cider
Nice. (But website FAIL, as there's no product page)

Previous tasting notes:

Kopparberg Pear Cider
strong artificial sweetners - yuck yuck yuck and oh my, FLASH!!!! Ahh-ahhhh-ahh!! hesavedeveryoneofus! Avoid. Nastiest thing you can buy at Ikea.
Henry Westons Vintage Special Reserve
Not perry, so doesn't belong in this list, but heck: really rather nice. Particularly as Tesco were [:-(] doing it for 4 for £5
Monday August 24, 2009
03:21 PM

not The News Quiz

So I turned on my radio on Friday, and now that The Now Show has finished, I was expecting The News Quiz. Only it wasn't. It was something called I Guess That's Why They Call It The News. Eh? Anyway, I decided to try it out. After about 5 minutes, I didn't think that I was enjoying it, but thought that this wasn't totally fair on it, so decided to stick it out for 30 minutes minimum.

On Saturday was doing the washing up when it was repeated. Now, usually, I will listen again to The Now Show or The New Quiz, so I turned it on. I listened for about five minutes, then turned it off. It was preferable to wash up in silence.

I talked with my father. He didn't like it either. So it's not just me.

I think that the problem was that is was neither sufficiently scripted, nor sufficiently improvised. The Now Show is scripted, rehearsed, and performed by a regular team. They can produce some wonderful surreal humour, and some biting satire. The News Quiz isn't scripted - the panel have no idea which questions they are going to ask, but in the unscripted mêlée, they can produce some wonderful surreal humour, and biting satire. This programme had neither, despite the fact that its chair, Fred MacAulay, is often very funny on The News Quiz. Doing the washing up is preferable to it.

03:08 PM

Random openstreetmap fixup request

So Kake wrote that RGL now does OpenStreetMap links. So I went to look at OpenStreetMap, for some reason ended up zooming in on Alperton, near where I used to work, and found something to be not quite right. At which point, of course, OpenStreetMap's servers decided to go down for an upgrade, before I could write this. So here goes...

If you zoom in here on the River Brent, where the Picadilly Line crosses it, you'll see Riverside Gardens, Queensbury Road, and Park Avenue. But you won't see any route mapped connecting them. Which is a shame, because there is a path from Riverside Gardens to Queensbury Road, and a footbridge from there to Park Avenue, as can be seen on Google Maps. I rather liked that bridge - I used to think of it as the Bridge over the River Brent, and walk to it in my lunchbreaks when I wanted to get away from the office, and let my mind wander and unwind. Such an exotic and beautiful location... ah the memories.

So if there's anyone in the area with a GPS, please could they fix this. In particular, have fun working out which is the official route of the footpath on the south side of the bridge.

02:56 PM

Monty Python was wrong

Three men were needed to free a farmer from the jaws of an alpaca after he stepped in to stop a "dominance fight" between two of the animals.

"The [alpaca] is due to have his fighting teeth - which are very large, sharp teeth at the back of the mouth - removed or filed for safety and it was these teeth that caused such a deep wound."

And there was Monty Python claiming that llamas are dangerous. Wrong sort of camelid.

Hopefully they'll also be wrong about "Scotsman winning Wimbledon", in the near future.

06:04 AM

We all hate version numbers.

$ perl5.10.1 -e 'use 10.1'
Perl v10.100.0 required--this is only v5.10.1, stopped at -e line 1.
BEGIN failed--compilation aborted at -e line 1.
$ perl5.10.1 -e 'use v10.1'
Perl v10.1.0 required--this is only v5.10.1, stopped at -e line 1.
BEGIN failed--compilation aborted at -e line 1.

Nope. That didn't work.


I should add, that I would like someone to find a terser, semantic punctuation-free way to say Perl 5, release 10, update 1. Because that's what it represents, an update to "Perl 5, release 10".*

* and notice also how there is no .0 there, so by the power of Newspeak, we can eliminate the thoughtcrime of regarding .0 releases as unfit for anything, including testing with.

Friday August 21, 2009
04:02 PM


The Pirate Bay has been pirated, after a copy of itself was uploaded to itself as a torrent. The meta nature of this amuses me. I'm not sure what I think of the people who did this - at one level they're making a stand against hypocrisy, by ensuring that even they themselves loose money thanks to large scale copyright infringement. Although the irony seems to be that if the sale falls through and that is attributed to this torrenting, it could be that it will mirror those figures for software and music, in that it's not actually "revenue" they were ever going to get, because (in this case) it's looking like the purchaser has no money.

Monday August 17, 2009
02:42 PM

What's in a name?

So, Oxford Airport is now "London" Oxford. Who are they kidding?

Although at least it's not "London" Lydd Airport, now "Ashford" something-or-other. I can't find a picture of the home made "London" sign at the exit, but here's one of the rail link. Then again, I'm surprised that Ryanair don't start moving their services there, what with their continuing desire to get something for nothing.

I think Jesse nicely summed the whole game up on IRC:

"London John F Kennedy Airport - It's a quick refreshing swim away from Central London."

Sunday August 16, 2009
11:23 AM

How to spam from Portugal

I've had a very polite reply back from explaining that:

We would point out that, within its activity as a provider of electronic communication services, TMN merely provides its clients with access to the Internet, which entails the activity of simply transporting information over the network. TMN is not behind the transmission of illicit information, and neither does it have any part in the selection of the information or its addressees, although it does perform the merely technological storage of the process of transmission exclusively for this purpose and for the time necessary to perform the transmission.

I interpret this "we're happy to take your business, whatever it might be". So, if you want to send spam from Portugal, TMN are for you. I'm sure someone will find this information useful, and I hope that this blog entry makes it easier for them to find it.