Thursday, July 29, 2004

Above average Feedback (a positive one, if it needs a sign)

This week's Feedback column from New Scientist is even better than its usual goodness (and, lest we forget, wholesomeness), so must be blogged by the Fourth Law of Blogging: Not sure what the Fourth Law of Blogging is? Now, now... I'm sure one of the blogosphere elite could tell you what it was. Hmm, an idea: a questionnaire sent to the top ten bloggers of the net, asking them for "facts" about blogging which don't exist, eg. "Is it true that 'blog' comes from the Latin term 'blogum', which means 'to spout or blurt'?". Anyone want to do the dirty work? Or write this questionnaire and send it on?

And here's what to think (according to Peter) [updated due to Peter] (this is Peter's post in all but name)

[Updated after Petrecomments were provided... Maybe it's even better than it was previously!But then again, maybe not. Care to bet?] The highly elusive [to you the general reader anyway, in general] Petre has provided excellent (or certainly blog-worthy) material, which I produce below with no qualms, and with no editing, and with no further comment [except that I did correct one spelling mistake -- don't worry Peter, it was non-significant using the chi-square test!] [Update: apparently there was yet another spelling mistake.. Although undoubtedly the p-value is commensurately lower, I'm still not sure it's less than 0.05]: I particularly like the question: "What does it mean for the poor, disabled, the disadvantaged - people who are usually left out of the debate?" What are they on about? (Which is another question I like) In the article on how British debt has reach � trillion: In the Netherlands household debt is worth almost twice income, whereas in the UK it is substantially less. I like anything that mentions the Netherlands. Mainly for the picture, though the writing is somewhat interesting: On a related note: Pies: Harry and Economics: This may all be true, but it's so annoyingly written. Including: Before you were conceived, the probability of you ever existing was almost zero. After you were born, the probability was one - that is, it is a certainty. The thing to remember is that rare things happen all the time. The football effect? [Update: Unadulterated blogtasticness! No need to edit it or other such banalities]

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Providing links like a lynx who can provide links

Top-quality Peter- (aka Petre-)sourced links are just below. Where does he find the time to get them? He doesn't need to: he just lives out his life similarly to how everyone else does. What a stupid question. Come on, get a grip.

Polo news incoming!

At last, a news story about a subject close to my heart. No, it's not an update on my lungs [though I promise that is coming soon]; rather, a court battle between the mighty Nestl� and, erm, everyone else who makes sweets has ended over whether the former can copyright the general Polo shape, so that they would be able to market life-belts. Or something like that.,7494,1270006,00.html Of course they lost, because it's idiotic. Or as the judge (Lord Mummery, should you wish to give him a tip) said, to his eternal credit:

This is an appeal concerning Polos, the mint with the hole in the middle. This is an appeal with a hole in the middle. It is dismissed.
Genius. God Bless Queen and Country, hurrah and huzzah for the fine legal justice system of this country! Only kidding -- that sort of embarrassing-dad humour [which I'm polishing up on myself] from judges is a one-off (sorry for the link to a Mortal Enemy Publication). As for the poem mentioned in the article which features polos "in a context more sexual than confectionery", I managed to track it down: The reference is subtle, but the poem is good. And the birds are singing. Hurrah (redux)! A page about Polos (of the Holy Mints variety, natch) is forthcoming. On this site. Yes. It is.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Highly important news story, prefaced

Oh goodness, Blogger have a new font-changing toolbar. All very exciting, I'm sure you'll agree. To celebrate this new new [sic] era, a very topical news story from the BBC (beep, beep, beeeeeep): Glad to see my licence fee is being used wisely. In fact, in value-for-money terms, it'd probably be best if they just got rid of the expensive and unpopular politics section and stuck to the cheap (or should that be "cheep" in this case? Ah ha. Ah har. Har har. Yeah) and genuinely cheerful "human interest" stories, which by definition are interesting to humans! I think this strategy would work out well for them, not least because humans form the plurality of its audience. Oh, and then they could be privatised. That'd be nice.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

MSN anywhere at last!

Why is it so difficult to find the best things in life sometimes? Even the might of Google didn't help for a long time. Basically, the problem was simple: to be able to use MSN Messenger on my phone or on my desktop at work (the latter after-hours only, of course!). Simple, you'd think. In fact, I was sure Microsoft had already implemented a solution. But no, it wasn't to be; or if it was, they were hiding its existence very well. After signing up for MSN-Messenger-by-SMS, which is plainly both rubbish and potentially expensive (though this was hard enough to find on their site), I just knew that there has to be a way of accessing it by WAP or GPRS. And here it is: Enjoy!

Monday, July 12, 2004

I'm psychoanalysed at last

Yep, I'm doing this because I'm shy, sensitive to criticism and suffering from low self esteem. As though you didn't know already! I'm sure this study also explains why celebrities have homepages (including, lest I miss this opportunity to remind you, the inestimatable, legendary, and highly talented Alan Fletcher). Maybe I should initiate a study into why researchers are looking into the personalities of people who blog. I'm sure many research councils (and news organisations) would be highly interested in my findings. My hypothesis is that they're in desperate need of publicity, lack a social life, and eat worms. Any supporting data would be gladly received. What I'm talking about:

Friday, July 09, 2004

A hilarious story which, surprisingly enough, made me laugh

A quote of the funniest lines in the article, which is a news item about, appropriately enough, the "thickest pirate in the world":

Martin also made a prediction that "this incident will become part of Trading Standards folklore". Yup, we reckon that's pretty well a certainty.
[Ooh, a blockquote!] Can you just smell the sarcasm? If not, make sure you put away all that cheese on your desk, some of which I know has been on there for pretty much years... Now can you smell the sarcasm? Nice, isn't it? The Register should receive some sort of prize. Preferably from the Daily Mail.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Guy's super-duper weblog, and its resurgence

Now that I think I've truly tweaked this blog to near-perfection (apart from the actual content, which I might outsource), I should explain what's going on, and what it all means. If time is short though [and it is], I will only write about what the new system is, and what further improvements to the network I want to make. Firstly, let's start with this blog. It's now hosted on, for stability of URL and because it's just easier to separate out publication of this and the rest of [Official Best Site On The Net, apparently]. I admit that I didn't design the outlook from scratch like the last incarnation, but rather got an off-the-hook template and changed it a little. On the left are the profiles of the team (which currently consists of me/Guido and Peter/Petre, the latter waiting for the right moment to strike with an historically important comment) [if you want a little titillation, ladies who are heterosexual and gentlemen who aren't, click through to my profile, and enjoy the picture... all the ex's kept complimenting me on how "interesting" and "haggard" I looked, you understand], and below that are the useful lists of recent posts and archived posts, the all-important RSS feed, links to the other sites, and pretty pictures which you can ignore. Further, apart from the fonts, colours and other superficial appearance characteristic (henceforth to be referred to as SACs) having changed, there's now a so-called Permalink to each post so another NTK-esque incident will now be permanently damaging to my health. At each of these Permalinks, a link to make comments is available, so use it! If you want to make comments, that is. Secondly, there is now a link to my other blog at, which is where I'll lyrically wax about funny pictures and opinion-provoking links from now on. Hence, this blog will be for serious pontificating, jokes, and possibly the occasional news on my personal life [though I hope to keep that to a minimum]. Do check out both of them, if only because I just asked you to. Clever, right? So they say. Lastly, but most importantly (certainly for the future) is the great-grandmother of it all,, which will have no broken links, has already been moved to a new host [, who seem surprisingly nice for a free host], and lots of fab content about subjects that have nothing to do with each other except that they're fab. In a good way. Much to look forward to. A new, a new Britain. Vote for Guy! And come back soon. Thank you. PS. If you've bought a gmail account off me recently, I hope you're happy with it. Googlemail kicks ass! And isn't too bad either.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

A new era, a new host, a new blog look

Now I'm not one to blow my own trumpet (though people will always allege otherwise), but what if the trumpet is someone else's? I still wouldn't blow it. But the point of all this is that, in case you haven't noticed, I would like to point out that I've completely changed how the blog looks (with a lot of help from Blogger, who just keep getting better and better), where it's hosted [on, which is also Blogger's], and best of all, the jokes will be funnier from now on. Honest. I've done my degree! Life can start again! I'm going to make an impact this time, I know it.