Sunday, January 3, 2010

End Of The Road? No...

I'm stopping writing on this blog - for no better reason than I love Wordpress and have come to find the Blogger layouts / schemes too restrictive.
I've separated the domain from this blog page and from now on the writing will all be over at in a nice, slick, groovy but minimalist layout.
The new RSS feed therefore will be either feed:// or depending upon what you're using.

Anyway - go over and bookmark the "new"

And Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Not So Far Ahead...

Whilst the Indy looks ahead ten years, French website points us towards the very near future with these clips of what some take to be a glimpse of the forthcoming Apple tablet device (iSlate, iGuide are amongst the names mooted) which is rumoured to be associated with a 'big' media event in late January.
Not sure about this though - something about it is iffy (or a few things are iffy) - not sure I can put my finger on it exactly. But it's a very nice fake nonetheless if it is indeed a fake.

The Indy Looks Ahead. 10 Years Ahead.

UK newspaper, The Independent, stumbles slightly tackily into the next decade with a twee but nonetheless interesting vision of how far things will have changed for us all by 2020...
(Part 2 tomorrow apparently).

Sunday, December 20, 2009

What A Fanbloodytastic Day

Sometimes there doesn’t seem to be enough good news around at Christmastimes... Don’t know why - (maybe it's because we tend to try and happy ourselves up for the occasion and the world doesn't stand a chance of living up to that), but there just doesn’t. And that’s broadly been so this year too - ongoing whitewashy shambles of an Iraq inquiry, total cop-out and big finger to the planet from Copenhagen - but at least today has flagged up two stories that have really genuinely made me incredibly happy.

The first is pretty obvious - Rage Against The Machine taking the Xmas number 1 slot from some vanilla X-Factor prettyboy singing some crappy banality at the order of his master.
Thank Fuck, quite frankly. Brilliant news.
The X-Factor may be enjoyed by millions but that doesn’t make it good of course (and it isn't good - it's fucking evil) - and contrary to the bafflingly poor thinking of some absurdly biased BBC newsreader/interviewers over the past days, it does NOT set up winners in long and glittering and important careers; so far they’ve been largely shortlived. For which one can only be thankful given the tripe, pap and worthless formulaic shite they put out. The BBC people actually were pretty annoying - completely glossing over the Rage profits going to homeless charity Shelter, having been corrected on a point about making money from the single, and also accusing the song of not being about Christmas.... er, like the X-Factor song then... Muppets.

Anyway - they did it. WE did it. Brilliant. It’s not a cynical act (as described by the cynical Simon Cowell in an act of breathtaking cynicism even by his own magnificent standards) - it’s a genuine authentic act of championing authenticity over cynicism. And I hope it’s only the beginning.

I also hope it’s only the beginning for more coming out and acceptance of gay sports stars following the announcement by the Welsh rugby star - Cardiff Blues player and the most capped player for Wales and former British and Irish Lions captain, Gareth Thomas. Sport can be a macho and misogynistic animal, and of course homophobic too. Yet statistically, it’s blindingly obvious that there should be quite a few gay sportsmen out there - who knows, maybe great ones - great role models. And that one of them has had the guts to come out is great news...
"It has been really tough for me," he told the papers, "hiding who I really am, and I don't want it to be like that for the next young person who wants to play rugby, or some frightened young kid. I don't know if my life is going to be easier because I'm out, but if it helps someone else, if it makes one young lad pick up the phone to Childline, then it will have been worth it."

Let’s hope this might just be a moment of genuine shift like the Rage Xmas number 1. Today has definitely been a good day. Hopefully the reasons why it’s been a great day can lead to more great days to come.
Good on you Gareth Thomas, good on you Rage Against the machine - and good on you all who bought the single :-)

Rage Against The Machine article
Gareth Thomas article

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Helpful Dialog Box Of The Day

Many thanks to Apple's Garageband for flagging up this helpful little gem whilst I was (successfully) installing a Jam Pack.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Groovy Magazine Concept - Mag+

Mag+ from Bonnier on Vimeo.

Fascinating mag (and also 'tablet experience' in general) by Bonnier, and Berg.
If Apple's tablet device ever appears I hope it's content could work something like this...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

New Website - Scott Redding 2010

The second week of running my own business has been probably as busy as the first one (though admittedly the first week was made busy because of rushing BigZee in and out the vets - he’s on the mend now...) - and as well as signing off an iPhone application project (more of which in coming days) I ended the week with a marathon creative dev and build that was a one-day intensive project that I’m dead chuffed with. It’s going to require ongoing development and maintenance, but it’s a good cause and totally worth it.

Basically it’s furthering the work of the pimping of Scott Redding’s campaign to get a 2010 Moto2 ride that I publicised previously. It’s a website called "Scott Redding 2010" and it aims to push publicity and interaction with the cause way beyond Facebook. With the “Scott Redding 2010” project I delivered a website for the Scott Redding Supporters Club to help focus attention on their mission outside of the Facebook environment where it had largely operated before. Whilst over 300 million people use Facebook, over 6.7 billion people use the internet as a whole so it made sense to ensure that the campaign to try and secure Scott a Moto2 ride for the 2010 MotoGP season reached as broad an audience as possible.

The site will serve as an ongoing news magazine to cover events and fundraising activities run by the Supporters Club, to ensure as many internet users as possible find out about the cause and to enable easy access to instant online donation mechanisms.
Like I say, a good cause, and hopefully one that will engage all those many potential fans and supporters who don’t use Facebook.

Please share the news and the link, and ideally make a donation too if you can - Scott’s a superb rider and *anything* that can be done to move his career forward is a good cause.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

GOOD CAUSE ALERT: Scott Redding Fundraiser

It has been announced that there will be a fundraising event early next year which aims to raise money to help top Brit MotoGP talent Scott Redding get some kind of Moto2 ride for 2010.

Scott, who's had a bit of pig of a final 125cc season really - a rough and undeservedly unrewarding time for someone so hugely gifted and committed - so far has nothing lined up, so it goes without saying that as a huge fan I hope sincerely that the event can help make a serious contribution to supporting his efforts.

The Fundraising event will take place at Bransons Motorcycles in Gloucester and will include an auction where they will be auctioning off his helmet, leathers, gloves,boots and other items. Scott will be there to meet people and sign autographs. Tickets are £10 and can be purchased through the Scott Redding supporters club on Facebook or can be purchased on the day.

Click here for more information on the Facebook group page...

Please help support one of our top Brit MotoGP riders in pursuing his career!


Scott Redding supporters club fundraiser.
Date - Saturday 16 January
Time - 17:30 to 23:00
Location - Bransons Motorcycles,
12-14 Spinnnaker Rd,
Gloucester, GL2 5FD

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Vote For Luke Jackson's "Goodbye London" Video

Remember Luke Jackson's "Goodbye London" video?
Course you do; it was brilliant... it was on here only a couple of months ago...
Anyway - now you can give it the credit and recognition it deserves and vote for it in the Metropolis Art Prize. Simply click here and bang your mouse down on the Thumbs Up button to cast your vote.

And if for some bizarre reason you need reminding why you should be voting for it, here it is to refresh your memory.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Stuck On Crimbo Gifts? Try Riders For Health

The festive period is just around the corner, and this year you can help save lives in Africa with Riders for Health, the official charity of MotoGP, by sending one of their Christmas gifts to a friend or relative.

With a Christmas gift you can help Riders for Health use reliable motorcycles to get health workers in Africa on the road, so they can deliver regular, lifesaving health care to even the most isolated villages.

Riders for Health also have a catalogue of virtual gifts that you can send this Christmas. By choosing to send a gift donation you can help provide a health worker with protective clothing so that they can ride their motorcycle safely, or a set of tools so they can carry out the daily maintenance which will mean their motorcycle never breaks down and they will never miss an appointment.

Just £10 could provide two weeks fuel for a health worker, which will let them cover 300km and provide health care to hundreds of families. £55 could provide a day’s training in safe riding and maintenance for a health worker, so they can deliver health services on a regular basis to even the most remote communities.

Each gift comes with a card illustrating your purchase and explaining how it is helping to save lives. You will also receive a Riders Christmas card that you can personalise and send to the recipient. You can find out more at

You can also support Riders’ work in Africa by ordering Riders for Health Christmas cards on their online shop. Click here to see the range. These cards are a great way of raising awareness of how motorcycles are saving lives in Africa. And, importantly, all the money made from these cards will go directly to support Riders for Health’s work in Africa.

Monday, November 2, 2009

El Canto Del Loco, Madrid, 30/10/09 - Concert Photos

I was back in Spain at the weekend; the prime purpose of the visit being to see El Canto Del Loco in concert on the Friday night at the huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge Palacio de los Deportes, in Madrid.
Awesome gig; amazing lights, amazing atmosphere, superb playlist - and great crowd and band interaction.
Will be writing a review up on - but for now here's some iPhone pics from the concert...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

And Let's Have Harold Shipman As "Old People's Special Envoy" While We're At It...

(*Above: Tony Blair, currently busy bringing peace to the Middle East)

I'm in a quandry. After nearly suffering a debilitating Anger Stroke over the suggestion that Tony Blair should be EU President, I'm now finding myself wildly swaying between two points of view; he should absolutely NOT be, and, actually he should...

Here, arguing the brilliantly mishcievous case for ensuring the fucker DOES get the job is George Monbiot, whilst on the other hand with the more traditional and generally popular view that he he should basically just go burn in hell - though far better expressed - is Mark Steel.

Which to choose, which to choose... Oh - hang on. We don't choose. There's no bloody vote is there.

Pic; original source unknown.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Or at least there's been tumbleweed on here... my bad.
Been stupidly busy trying to have the day job - coming to an end - and also to make inroads in setting up the new business and spending nights and weekends working on its first projects.
As a result I'm 1) failing to post here anywhere near enough, 2) failing to post on my favourite forums and 3) utterly and completely shagged out.

Still a couple of nice weekends coming up...
This Friday it's off to Madrid to see El Canto Del Loco in concert at the Palacio de los Deports, which I'm giggly like a kid over.
And then the following weekend it's the final race in the MotoGP season; the Valencia GP at Cheste. Repeat giggly behaviour. I'm there as Media for BatiFans, Team Aspar and the other VROOM sites, and also to try and chase some business if poss - as well as being booked in to meet with the Official Alvaro Bautista Fanclub Saturday and Sunday.

So, er.... not many posts here again, then.... ;-)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Cause Of Spontaneous Human Combustion Discovered...

Cigarette lighter cufflinks of course. Genius.
Pic from Gizmodo.

Green Apple Turns Greener

Not only has Apple been putting more and more effort into improving its green credentials, showcasing its credentials with a dedicated section of its website - but it has now also given up its membership in the the U.S. Chamber of Commerce over the Chamber's stance on climate change legislation.
In a letter to Thomas J. Donohue, President and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Apple's Vice President of Worldwide Government Affairs, Catherine A. Novelli, stated Apple's position and submitted Apple's resignation...

Apple is committeed to protecting the environment and the communities in which we operate around the world. We strongly object to the Chamber's recent comments opposing the EPA's effort to limit greenhouse gases.
Apple supports regulating greenhouse gas emissions, and it is frustrating to find the Chamber at odds with us in this effort. We would prefer that the Chamber take a more progressive stance on this critical issue and play a construtive role in addressing the climate crisis. However, because the Chamber's position differs so sharply with Apple's, we have decided to resign our membership effective immediately.

I never need new reasons to love Apple. But what the hell... Awesome.
I'm not naive enough to believe there's no whiff of marketing about something like this - but kudos to Apple for doing it anyway. There's a definite momentum with the company's various efforts that suggests that positive spin and profile is simply part of a virtuous circle of doing the right thing. Will be interesting to see if others follow suit or what waves are made.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Oh, and congrats Leon Camier

And whilst the cars continue to disappoint, the bikes at least do not...
Which reminds me - congrats - BIG congrats - to Leon Camier on taking the BSB title at the weekend.
Awesome job, kong and well-deserved :-)

Monday, September 28, 2009


(*Even Streatham Raceway's kiddie kart track pisses on the Singapore F1 circuit.)

The most entertaining thing about the weekend's F1 race in Singapore?
Without a doubt, Bernie Ecclestone avoiding Jake Humphrey's questions on BBC by pretending to be a dribbling imbecile.
Whilst Jake (who I must admit I'm warming to) actually had the dangly bits to ask some serious full-on questions to Bernie (unlike the lamentable Eddie Jordan who simply stood next to him like a grinning idiot version of Peter Griffin's dad off Family Guy) F1's elder-eldest statesman simply disintegrated into chewing his lips off, glancing around like he didn't know where he was, and simply repeating the questions and random words back at him; presumably in a desperate effort to try and confuse the interviewer.


As was the race. Dull as ditchwater.

The thing is that it's absolutely unforgivable that the race should be boring, and certainly that it should be boring to watch. They spend kazillions of trillions of billions of dollars making it happen - and starting work on next year's track before this year's race has even happened and all those kind of ludicrous statistics. Buzzing city. Blazing lights. Blah blah, bleedin' blah... What does it look like to the millions who've tuned in to watch it around the world (and probably from other worlds according to the PR hyperbole)...?
It looks like a flat dirty sidestreet surrounded by concrete walls and mile-high fencing.
All that money, all that effort, all that time and preparation, and it looks like somewhere very grubby between Brixton and Loughborough Junction. Shameful.
Marginally less impressive than the Streatham Raceway. Which is where it should be relocated to in F1's budget-cutting moves. Nobody would notice the difference.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Microsoft's Marketing Department Needs Sectioning

“In a lot of ways, you’re just throwing a house party with Windows 7 as an honored guest...”
In a lot of ways, you're clearly mental...

& in a lot of ways, this is very very funny. Kind of creepy too though, as it appears to be some kind of portal into a parallel universe where everybody's a bad actor. And everybody's on crack.

Still, worth sharing for sheer *WTF* value.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Weather Report, Australia. Orange Alert...

(*Nabbed from The Guardian...)

Australia has been engulfed by dust storms as wild winds sweep millions of tonnes of red dust from continent's drought-ravaged interior and dump it on the coast...

Storms of red dust produced a supernaturally orange and glowing sky over much of Australia's east coast as the country experienced a day of freak weather conditions.
At Sydney airport, where visibility was cut to 400 metres, flights were cancelled while several international flights were diverted to Melbourne, where flights were also delayed. Flights were also delayed at Brisbane airport in Queensland.

As dust ravaged the east coast last night, heavy rains lashed Adelaide in the nation's south where streets were flooded.
Then as morning dawned, two tremors shook Melbourne. Later in the day, hail stones as big as cricket balls pelted parts of New South Wales where heavy rainfalls are now expected and flash-flood warnings have been issued.

The Bureau of Meteorology said it was the worst dust storm since the 1940s, with particle pollution up to 10 times worse than the previous record and was predicting another storm would hit in the next day or two.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Has Eddie Jordan Just Libelled Fernando Alonso?

"The World Motor Sport Council concludes that Mr. Alonso was not in any way involved in Renault F1's breach of the regulations."
FIA statement, 22_09_09

"Alonso clearly cheated"
Eddie Jordan, on 'PM', Radio 4, 22_09_09

Now when I compare those two statements - and bear in mind that Eddie Jordan's was a reaction to the FIA statement and ruling - I'm left with the distinct impression that surely Fernando Alonso could make a tidy few quid by ringing his lawyers right now.
Jordan has been an utter pillock on the BBC coverage this year - one of the few truly awful things about the BBC's basically decent F1 product - but by any standards this is surely a total clanger.

The context in which he made it was that he was saying that Frank Williams should still be angry because his driver came second in the 2008 Singapore GP (which Alonso won, and which was the race that "Crashgate" / Nelsongate" etc revolves around)...
Now saying that Alonso's first place might be sullied by the fact the scandal surrounding the machinations of Briatore, Symonds and Piquet Jnr is one thing - but it is a very very different matter indeed to maintain that "Alonso clearly cheated", especially when the FIA (mad and inconsistent bunch of freaks that they are) have just exonerated him 100% in the matter a mere 2 or 3 hours earlier.

To me it's just another sign that Jordan should shut the hell up and go away for good. (Unless of course he actually meant to say anything remotely like what blurted out of his mouth...? In which case he should be telling us exactly *how* Alonso clearly cheated, surely - or presenting his evidence to the FIA...?)
But it'd be hellish funny to see Alonso's lawyers take him to the cleaners on the way.

If you think I've misheard something that patently would be too ridiculous to say then check out the programme on the BBC's iPlayer here at about 38 mins 20 secs in...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Great Awesome Amazing Incredible

Say Hello to the most important bits of last week's Apple Keynote. The adjectives, apparently. ;-)
Er... great!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Vroom Vroom...

I'm setting up my new business at the moment, as I'm currently in the middle of a redundancy process and need to get my head around "Life After Teletext", where I've been for 11 years, busily getting complacent and institutionalised.
Getting a similar job is pretty much out of the question (as in it's both unlikely and to be honest, probably undesirable) so I'm looking at freelancing more than anything - the skills and experience are there; but it's going to take a lot of hard work and persistence too.
There's some interesting projects that I'm aiming to pursue, primarily because they'd be things I'd love to do and would be brilliant if they worked out - but I'm also keeping my feet firmly on the ground and prepping to do my fair share of "grind" work too; the kind of thing of which the best you can say is that it "pays the bills..."

One of the major upsides to what I'm planning is that pretty much everything I can do on my Macs, but there's two things that have sadly meant I need to get Windows up and running...

One is that, as a web designer amongst other things, I really need to ensure that anything I build looks and works fine cross-platform, so I need to check it in PC browsers on a Windows OS. The other is that I bought a special application called "Business in a Box" which is basically an adaptable business and legal document resource. Had I wanted just the English version then there's a Mac one, but as I wanted the English AND Spanish combined edition it's got a bit more complicated, as it's not available for the Mac and requires a PC version that is a bespoke app that allows exports to standard "Office" formats.

So basically I've just had to shell out on the Business in a Box software, plus Office for PC, plus Windows for PC, plus Parallels to run the whole fat lot on top of the Mac OS.

This had better all be bloody worth it!!! It's yet another disappointment to my team too, who've been devastated by the sight of me buying project-planning and accounting software recently. By the way, the best project planning software for Mac is unarguably OmniPlan by the wonderful folks at Omni Group, who also produce OmniGraffle which is pretty much indispensable for things like sitempas and wireframing.

By the way, the new business is called Vroom Media.
There's a main information site here...
And a more detailed portfolio site here at Vroom Vroom...
Plus there's a page on Facebook here...

If you need some nifty design work doing, and you're a nice person and a prompt payer then get in touch ;-)