Posts tagged 'misc'

Games Reflect Reality

Over the weekend we had some friends over who brought a new boardgame over. The game was a very strategy focused game and I had to make the first move. I was struggling to decide what move to make and said something along the following:

It is difficult to make ...

The First Tuesday After the Second Thursday in June

Happy Marches

The UK Home Office Has Renamed The Country

Last night we sat down to try and fill out the paperwork for Denise to apply for UK citizenship. Assuming she gets it, I will be the only member of my family who doesn't have two citizenships.

I say paperwork but this time it is a multi stage online ...

Pretty Refinery

At some point back in Febuary, I was admiaring the beautiful sunrise on the way into work. I took a quick photo before putting my phone away before entering the site. As usual when I looked at the photo on the screen, it was not anywhere near as nice as ...

Scotrail’s Discount

Scotrail have managed to annoy some folk by claiming that they don’t charge extra for traveling at peak times, they merely offer a discount for travelling at off-peak times. Of course both ways of looking at it end up with the same result, but scotrail want to frame it ...

Going to Nowhere

Ken Perlin wrote a blogpost last night about being nowhere, the idea of being in a place such as a train station or airport, where everyone is just on their way to somewhere else.

Well almost everyone.

My dad used to design and project manage shop refits including several shops ...

Automated Lights

We have some 'smart lights' installed in our house with various timers set up. When we first set them up, we found that they occasionally got mixed up and would be on when we would want them off. I had thought we had bottomed out all the bugs months ago ...

Future Writing

Ken Perlin wrote a blog post a couple of days ago examining how people will write code in the future. There is a discussion around whether the QWERTY keyboard will continue to be the main input method or will something else take over? Will we use gestures and graphical programing ...

The Force of Fire

While looking at the pictures of last night's fire in Notre-Dame, I am again reminded of how powerful and destructive fires are.

I have held a fire hose when it was active. I know what the force of water leaving the hose feels like. And yet, the pictures of ...

Packing Silliness

To go with my new bike, I bought a couple of new locks on amazon. One was a high security thing, while the other was what others have described as a ‘cafe lock’. The sort of thing that is very light and easy to carry and can be attached in ...

Waiting On the Platform

The two folk sitting in seats next to me are, to the casual observer, talking to themselves. Both are on their phones with hands free kits, but both are doing all the talking.

They both look mad, but then me staring off into space as I listen to a podcast ...

Simple Technology

Yesterday Ken Perlin wrote about whiteboards on his blog and asks what makes the whiteboard "such a perfect vehicle for collaboration". I think a significant part of it is the lack of complex technology.

When you go to use a whiteboard, there is usually some problem you are trying to ...

Computers Only Do

For years I have heard the phrase “computers only do what you tell them to do”. This is usually after someone complains that the computer did something silly and is intended to shift the blame back to the user for asking the wrong question.

While it is true that in ...

A Good Rule

When looking up some information in the [ wiki, I came across their page on their MQTT server1 and the rules at the top of the page caught my eye:

  • Do not use the MQTT network for evil.
  • Do not annoy other lab users (especially with sound or lighting).
  • Do ...

Two Day Recovery

I am told that in America, if you are to get two days off at Christmas, it is normal to be Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. In the UK, the two public holidays are Christmas Day and Boxing Day which makes more sense to me, the day of the celebration ...

The Darkest Days Are Over

Maybe not metaphorically, but considering we are past the winter solstice, we can start to enjoy more daylight again.

We should probably celebrate it in some way...

Text with Feeling

Ken Perlin wrote a blog post yesterday about transcribing speech to text:

Yet converting speech to text, even when done perfectly, inevitably loses something. Even if the text you end up with is a faithful transcription of your words, it fails to capture your tone and intonation.

I wonder whether ...

Learning to Walk

A couple of years ago I remember a discussion around walking robots. The general consensus was that they were a silly waste of time and possibly a bit of a con.

The reasoning was that they aren't all that good. Anything you can do with these robots can be ...

Three Cogs

When driving this evening, I saw a van that had a logo that included three gears all looks linked together similar to the image shown below.

Three interlocking Gears
I see a problem here.
Three interlocking Gears
I see a problem here.

As I am sure anyone who thinks about it for any length of ...

Happy 1st of December

You may proceed to play Christmas music non-stop for the next month and begin completing for the most colourful lighting displays around your homes.

We have.

Teaching the Hypothesis

When writing yesterday's post I remembered my own introduction to experiments at school. I loved science and I loved finding stuff out. What I didn't love was getting things wrong and I could not understand why they forced us to make a guess about what would happen before ...

No Errors ≠ No Problems

I have a program at work that generates some slides to display on various screens around the site. The program is a bit of a hack and bodge but it mostly works. I have set up a pretty good error handling system and regularly check it to see if anything ...

On Cardboard Boats

Today was the LUCS1 Canal Fun Day in Linlithgow. There was lots of stalls and boat rides and one of the main events is the annual cardboard boat race.

It was fun to watch what parts I could between the crowds, though there was also a bit of nostalgia ...

When Helping Hurts

I have just finished listening to the Frekonomics episode when helping hurts and am staggered.

The episode talks about a large study, the Cambridge-Somerville study, into social interventions and attempts to reduce gang viollence.

This was as close to perfect study in terms of it being a long term, randomised ...

Clockwork at Work

From the first of May, all smart watches and fitness trackers have been banned at work to help comply with DSEAR1. The ban covers everywhere within the refinery gates, including offices, not just plants where explosive atmospheres may occur.

As a result, I can no longer use my everyday ...