Monthly Archives: April 2008

Does The Button Do Anything?

It’s a deep question. And I agree with Le Canard Noir – I miss paternosters.

Posted in Society | 1 Comment

Dr. Cox Rocks

Physicist Brian Cox talks about his passion – physics – and the Large Hadron Collider in this engaging and informative talk at the recent TED conference. He still strikes me as a young whippersnapper, though; fresh out of school and … Continue reading

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The Fall

Leafing through the Arts section of today’s newspaper, my eye was caught by the rather arresting Daliesque image in the poster for the film The Fall. The film opens here in The Netherlands this week. The review in the newspaper was positive … Continue reading

Posted in Film | Leave a comment

The Causes of War: Women or Pigs

Jared Diamond has a story about Daniel Wemp, an employee of ChevronTexaco and avenger of his Uncle Soll, who was killed in a battle with a rival clan. Extraordinary. Go and read it.

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Conversations With Cabbies

Nigel Warburton, who blogs as the Virtual Philosopher, had a rather eyebrow-raising conversation with his taxi-driver last week. Bob, in the comments, points us to this video of Stewart Lee talking about a similar experience with another taxi-driver.    

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Tribute To Jim Gray

Jim Gray was an outstanding and influential computer scientist. He made major contributions in the field of database design. He vanished without a trace while on a short solo sailing trip on January 28 2007. I see from Pat Helland’s … Continue reading

Posted in Computers and Internet | Leave a comment

An Eminent Blogger

I see that Charles Darwin has become a blogger. Welcome to the Blogosphere, Charles!

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Honour Killing

The phrase Honour Killing seems to me to be a perfect example of the societal form of Unspeak, since what it usually means is the murder of women by their husbands or fathers. The Observer reports today that Last year 133 … Continue reading

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IPTC Photo Metadata 2008

Since 1994, the International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC) have published a standard for the metadata to be used in photos. They’ve just released a public review document – IPTC Photo Metadata 2008 – for the draft specification of IPTC Core … Continue reading

Posted in Photography | 1 Comment

Wash Those Brains

Matt Taibbi has a riveting article about the techniques used by the pastors of the Cornerstone Church. It makes terrifying reading. By the end of the weekend I realized how quaint was the mere suggestion that Christians of this type … Continue reading

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J. Carter Wood, over at Obscene Desserts, has an excellent post on the mental fences that we, or more usually, persons with power (real or imagined), attempt to erect around our mental processes. Definitely worth reading. Some fences are not … Continue reading

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Knowing What’s Nice

Something to think about from Jesus, Mo and Kurt.

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Boiling The Frogs

Interesting piece by David Byrne. Perhaps the super-rich will indeed go on partying as they always have, but perhaps they are also frogs sitting in water that is slowly being heated to boiling point along with the rest of us.

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Could Do Better

I see that Daniel Dennett and Lord Winston fired the opening salvos of their debate yesterday (on the question of whether religion is a threat to rationality and science) in written form. I must admit that I was surprised at how … Continue reading

Posted in Society | 1 Comment

Head, Meet Desk

Perhaps the person responsible for this banner was in full irony mode; but somehow, I rather doubt it. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

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Stuff of Life

This is very strong stuff.    Hat tip to Rachel.

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Hotel Skeletons

Over at BLDGBLOG, a very Ballardian post – drained swimming pools and all. Very spooky, possums.

Posted in Architecture | 2 Comments

The Universe and Morality

I do enjoy reading Ophelia Benson’s thoughts on this bizarre world in which we live. Her post "Chatting with Clerics" is a good example. Yup, Richard Harries, Gene Robinson and Desmond Tutu all have their hearts in the right place; … Continue reading

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I really don’t know why my fellow Brits are complaining – it’s that time of year when the farmers fertilise their fields. Around here, we’ve smelt nothing else for days. Get used to it, you bloody townies!

Posted in Nature | 2 Comments

Don’t Be Honest

I find it strange that a rare honesty from a politician, telling the unvarnished truth, is likely to count against him. But then, this is the US Presidential race. Why should I expect normality?

Posted in News and politics | 4 Comments