Monthly Archives: November 2009

The Atheist Fundamentalists

Just been watching the Intelligence Squared Debate on the proposition that “Atheism is the New Fundamentalism”. Speaking for the motion were Richard Harries and Charles Moore. Speaking against the motion were AC Grayling and Richard Dawkins. It won’t come as … Continue reading

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Global Warming 101

As we’re now in the run-up to Copenhagen, there’s a couple of things that I think are worthwhile drawing your attention to. The first is the Copenhagen Diagnosis report produced for the conference by 26 climate scientists. The report has … Continue reading

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Flood Prone Areas

Reading about the floods resulting from the heavy rainfall in Cumbria last week made me think about the potential for disaster here in the Netherlands. By coincidence, I see that the Dutch Central Bureau of Statistics published an item on … Continue reading

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Willingness To Help: 10; Practicality: Null Points

I amuse myself in my idle monents by browsing some of the web forums set up to help people get to grips with their computers. I do this partly out of a drive to actually try and help people with … Continue reading

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Another Triumph For The Arts

Excuse me, but I’m having another Victor Meldrew moment about a dance artist who wants to induce an epileptic fit in herself in the name of art. The statement from an Arts Council spokesperson is indicative of the levels of … Continue reading

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All You Wanted To Know About Digital Photography

There’s a new web site that just been launched, which is devoted to the topic of Digital Photography. It looks very comprehensive, and covers topics such as best practice in Digital Photography and Workflows. http://vimeo.com/7549895 The site has been set … Continue reading

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Warning – Purple Prose Ahead

Steven Poole draws our attention to a strangely fascinating opening sentence: Pigeons rustled in the beams of the Staten Island Ferry terminal as Rebecca Miller, the writer and director, ordered a soft pretzel. It comes from a New Yorker article, … Continue reading

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O Frabjous Day!

Tony didn’t get the job.

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Network Crash

Martin complained that his mobile phone wasn’t working today. It’s an old Nokia, which has proved flaky in the past, so I thought that we’d probably need to get it replaced. Still, I thought I’d take a look at it … Continue reading

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The Indian Clerk

I’ve just finished reading David Leavitt’s The Indian Clerk (or The IND1AN CLƐRK as the book’s cover would have it). I found it very good indeed. It’s a novel based on real people and real events that happened mainly in … Continue reading

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Dark Skies

I’m feeling a tad jealous of my brother at the moment. He lives in Southwest Scotland, not far from the Galloway Forest Park. And that park has just been designated as the first Dark Sky Park in the UK by … Continue reading

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Test Your Awareness

How observant are you? How many changes can you spot in this vignette?       (hat tip: Richard Wiseman)

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Never A Dull Moment

As I wrote here, we’ve got a new addition to the household: Watson, a Labrador puppy. He arrived in the house on the last day of September. Originally, I wanted to call the puppy Pi, since our other dog is … Continue reading

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Unbuttoning Bennett

A nicely-judged article in today’s Observer about Alan Bennett, whose new play The Habit of Art is currently on at the National Theatre. It’s a play that I’d like to see in person. Perhaps I’ll manage to catch it via … Continue reading

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Dutch Picture Books

There’s now an online collection of children’s picture books in Dutch, ranging from the years between 1810 to 1950. There are 650 books in the collection, which has been set up by the Koninklijke Bibliotheek , the Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam , … Continue reading

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Banner Advertising

A new twist on fly-posting at the Frankfurt Book Fair – release 200 flies each with a small banner attached with your advertising message.   I sincerely hope this doesn’t catch on.       (hat tip: David Thompson)

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One Million Years

Geoff Manaugh has a terrific interview over at BLDBLOG with Abraham van Luik, talking about how to keep hazardous nuclear waste safe for one million years.

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The Power of a Hug

Alistair reports on his experience with Amma. I know I’m an old cynic, but there is something to be said for the power of a hug. It’s a basic human contact.

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