Monthly archives: August 2008


Solar planes can stay in the air for days

The Zephyr is a prototype solar powered unmanned aerial vehicle which recently unofficially broke the world endurance record for unmanned flight. Obviously, it’s being developed for military use, but the company behind it are predicting civilian implementations. It’ll be a long time before the equipment is able to carry large payloads around the world, but high flying drones could be used for pollution monitoring and other forms of information gathering.

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Formula Zero- the hydrogen fuel cell racing series

Motor racing is often a testing ground for features that eventually make their way into everyday vehicles. So a zero emission karting series bodes well. The karts run on electric motors powered by fuel cells and compete to see not which is fastest but also which is most efficient. A British team placed third overall in a recent race, behind Dutch and Spanish entries.

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Tweets today

22:26 Blog: Let’s hear it for the Buffy/Wiccan feminist revolution tinyurl.com/6bt9h6 #

22:26 Blog: Tweets today tinyurl.com/5b9h3y #

08:25 Put the petal to the medal and let’s go! #

09:57 Thyme and lime roast chicken about to go in the oven. Should feed me for the next few days. #

10:26 Wednesday’s film will be Hellboy 2 @ amc @ 7.15 #

11:26 Blog: I have nearly six feet of Transformers and GI Joes tinyurl.com/5jb8md #

14:58 2 Wheels Good: The world’s most prolific bicycle thief tinyurl.com/6l8yy9 #

19:41 Still eating leftovers from the weekend. Pasta bake to go with my chicken. Can you freeze chick peas. #

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I have nearly six feet of Transformers and GI Joes 1

Damian used to give a sense of scale. I decanted all the cardboard boxes of joes and bots that were in the attic into plastic crates for transport to the studio. Not since we moved them all out of Andy’s flat have I been struck by just how many he possessed.

I need to start distributing them faster or it’ll take a couple of years to complete the bot-crossing project.


Tweets today

00:06 Scale: Woodward Dream Cruise pictures tinyurl.com/54qpsm #

01:27 Blog: Manchester zinefest 2008 at Urbis tinyurl.com/5cm43w #

01:27 Blog: Tweets today tinyurl.com/6zzvra #

12:43 Sitting on a window ledge waiting for the Pride parade to go by. #

13:16 The other reason I like my high window ledge seat is that I can stare down cleavages as the women walk past. #

13:31 Blog: The Sausage Man has traded up tinyurl.com/6y6tkg #

16:30 Blog: BOT059 tinyurl.com/67c777 #

16:30 Blog: Pride 2008 tinyurl.com/5fk7jc #

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The Sausage Man has traded up

Or someone else has bagged the plot. No evidence of steal burger, the Cumberland sausage tasted just like a normal one and they ran out of change right after me.


Can British bloggers make money?

A question posed on the BBC’s dot.life blog, which has an interesting, and only slightly flamey, set of comments. From them I have discovered netklix.com, which looks like it pays out in pennies and pounds so might be a good alternative to Google ads, and The Flowfield Unity, comics which might have an xkcd flavour. I shall investigate them both when I’m not using someone else’s computer.


Pimp my Prius

A trio of Swedish customisers have spent over $180,000 blinging up a Toyota Prius. Of course, all those mods add weight and energy requirements, so it’ll certainly be a lot less efficient than a standard version.

Plus, most of what they’ve done just serves to make a dull car ugly.

It’s about time somebody stepped up to make Prii more attractive, but this certainly isn’t the way.

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Heterosexual marriage is brainwashing!

At least, that’s one of the messages I get from a typically dumb attack on gay marriage by Orson Scott Card

When they are able to create children together, married people then provide the role models for those children to learn how to become a man or a woman, and what to expect of their spouse when they themselves marry.

When a heterosexual couple cannot have children, their faithful marriage still affirms, in the eyes of other people’s children, the universality of the pattern of marriage.

When a heterosexual couple adopts children who are not their genetic offspring, they affirm the pattern of marriage and generously confer its blessings on children who might otherwise have been deprived of its benefits.

He also manages to contradict himself at least once, implying at the end that the “biological imperative” is one man, one woman for ever and ever but earlier commenting on the “nearly universal male biological desire for diversity in mating”. So, which is more compelling to your dirty little genes? I feel it’s spreading your seed. It’s telling that Card likens marriage to property laws, because his interpretation of marriage is all about owning his wife, children and grandchildren rather than entering into some sort of equal partnership.

I’ve never read any of the man’s books, and don’t intend to.


Tweets today

22:29 Blog: Could someone redesign my blog template? tinyurl.com/6xw925 #

22:29 Blog: Tweets today tinyurl.com/5qtsxu #

08:28 They’re having Manchester weather in Beijing. I don’t know if that’s a good thing for the British team. #

12:10 Save the World: Greenbird- wind powered record attempt tinyurl.com/5pk9ed #

12:10 Save the World: I prefer the Lib Dem’s green energy policy tinyurl.com/5j6oze #

15:26 Blog: This is a test to see if I can send video straight to flickr from my phone tinyurl.com/5suwwn #

15:32 Once around the block without hitting anything and I’m now qualified to drive the students union minibus again. #

19:26 Trying to generate pauses through creative cutting and time remapping. Challenging. #

21:04 Second bottle of ginger beer is fizzier, but not much more gingery. Next time I may blend the ginger. #

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This is a test to see if I can send video straight to flickr from my phone

View from the bus.

Update That worked, but the original layout was messy and needed editing, so I’ve changed the default layout for the future and hopefully it’ll be better.