Year: 2012

  • Lament for Web 0.1

    With every passing day, my Facebook feed is spending more and more time informing me that old school friends “like Amazon”. (No shit, really?) In the background, it’s fiddling our feeds, showing and hiding entries according to what it thinks is relevancy, and also what it thinks is profit for itself. Game spam is constant. On the other side of the fence, Twitter is trying to force out the third-party clients that made it great, so that it can monetise its users more easily.

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  • Political Manifesto for the "Adults Suck" Party

    There is serious ongoing consideration of whether young people aged 16 and 17 should be allowed to vote in the upcoming Scottish independence referendum, and politicians and news outlets alike are wondering if the same could happen for our General Elections too. I find it a little confusing and very inconsistent, for one simple reason: it seems logical to me that before we can trust someone to make good decisions for an entire country, we must first be able to trust them to make good decisions for themselves.

    If we trust young people enough from age 16 that we are happy to let them vote, we should surely trust them to make many other decisions that this country does not currently allow them.

  • Rainy Evening Statistics: When to Harvest Sloes?

    This morning I half-heartedly posted on Facebook:

    Today’s Game Theory problem: pick an ideal date for picking sloes, bearing in mind current warm/wet weather predictions for October and a population density of 10000/sq.mi. of other potential sloe pickers. (10 marks)

  • Looking Stupid — For Charity!

    It’s nearly November again, and that means two things. Firstly, my glum acceptance for the tenth year in a row that I cannot write a novel given a whole lifetime to do it in, let alone a single month. It also means I have the wonderful opportunity to look silly for charity. (More silly than normal, anyway.) Yes indeed, I have been coerced into growing a ridiculous moustache for the duration of November, in order to raise money for the charities Prostate Cancer UK and the Institute of Cancer Research. Yep, it’s ‘Mo’vember.

    I will be starting clean-shaven on November 1st, and keeping my moustache intact until the 30th, whereupon I will probably take a photo for posterity before shaving it off and feeling the most relieved I have ever felt. But until then? Let the horror commence.