Monthly archives: October 2012

Bye bye Toast Rack?

The ‘Toast Rack’, built in 1960, was designed by Leonard Cecil Howitt – the man behind Manchester’s Crown Court and Blackley Crematorium.

It forms the centrepiece of MMU’s Hollings campus, which specialises in fashion courses as well as food, tourism, hospitality and leisure.

MMU chiefs are keen to commemorate the building’s history and have teamed up with the Manchester Modernist Society to record its story. The Society – an appreciation group for fans of the last century’s overlooked architecture – has moved into the top of the building to work with students on the project.

via Is it the end for Manchester’s iconic Toast Rack building? | Manchester Evening News –

I’ve never been into teh Toast Rack.  Maybe I need to take a trip there before it’s gone.

Grand Theft Auto V is due early next year

Today, we’re proud to announce that Grand Theft Auto V is expected to launch worldwide spring 2013 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

Developed by series creator Rockstar North, Grand Theft Auto V takes place in a re-imagined, present-day Southern California in the largest and most thriving game-world we have ever created set in the sprawling city of Los Santos and for miles beyond – from the tops of the mountains to the depths of the ocean.

Starting next week November 5, 2012, Grand Theft Auto V will become available for pre-order everywhere and fans can expect a host of new information to become available in November.

via Grand Theft Auto V is Coming Spring 2013 | Rockstar Games.

I may even pre-order it.  Then set aside a week or two to lose to the GTA experience.

Daily Blog 10/28/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Walking in the air: Castlefield’s own High Line Park – Gardening – Property – The Independent 1

Anything New York can do, Manchester can do better. Or so say the residents of Castlefield who are campaigning to create their own High Line Park on the top of one of the city’s derelict Victorian railway viaducts.

via Walking in the air: Castlefield’s own High Line Park – Gardening – Property – The Independent.

I’ve long felt that something like this needed doing on the Castlefield viaducts.  It was one of the things that didn’t make it into Sounds of Soldiers.

Daily Blog 10/26/2012

  • As you travel the inter-tubes in search of learned discourse, understanding and information to prepare you for the coming climate cataclysms, you will see many curious creatures, some common, some rare, who are here for the sole purpose of deterring, deceiving and confusing you. Some will pray on your admitted ignorance or uncertainty. Some will pray on your subconscious wish that climate change not be real or if it is, it will be benign. Some will seem to engage sincerely but seek only to lure you so deep into the rabbit hole you will be unable to return. Some will dazzle you with words so long and unfamiliar and thoughts so obscure and eccentric that you’ll feel you must believe. Some will simply badger and harass you until you can take no more. It is a harsh and dangerous world. This is why I wish to provide you a guide to these many and varied beings you will surely come across as you venture ever deeper into their native realm. May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out.

    tags: climate internet troll

  • People on benefits choose to be unemployed – What, all of them? Most of them? And if so, if people on benefits really enjoy making this choice, why will that change if you take the benefits away? Rich people say: “Then they’d have no choice but to work”. Except, that’s not true. Instead of working I could choose to burgle people’s houses and sell their stuff at Cash Convertors. I could choose to nick razors, meat and coffee from the local shop and sell it in the pub. I could choose to squat, I could choose to forfeit all my bills and spend years avoiding going to court before eventually saying that I will pay everything back at £2 a week and then start the process all over again. I could start a loan sharking business, I could take cash-in-hand jobs, I could sell drugs. Rich people never seem to understand that if you take away benefits you don’t take away all choice, you take away one choice, the most decent choice, and in doing so the choices that open up are almost always far more damaging to society than having people be on benefits.

    tags: politics unemployment benefits

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

A farm in the sky- World’s first commercial vertical farm opens in Singapore

Land-strapped Singapore has opened its first vertical farm — an innovation that will increase the variety of foods it has available and decrease its dependance on foreign imports.

via World’s first commercial vertical farm opens in Singapore.

Vertical farms were one of the ideas I put into Sounds of Soldiers, and there was talk of building one in Manchester, though I don’t know what came of it.


From the YouTube description-

Manborg is a creative and hilarious love letter to a VHS sub culture. Perhaps it has limited appeal to only those who know what we mean when we refer to a top loader. Perhaps those weened on a diet of CGI will fail to understand the beauty and static grace of stop animation.

Kostanski didn’t make Manborg for the masses but he has openly expressed his love of this sub-genre of cinema for everyone to see.

He made Manborg for those of us who lived and breathed it in our youths and it was a welcome trip down memory lane and a rocking good time.

Morons will be morons

Apparently Evangelo-freak* Richard Carvath is a satirical creation. That is what he means when he says his website contains satirical content, isn’t it?

Today, Ricky is playing the role of clueless homophobe who thinks he’s clever because he’s using cheap cultural references rather than coming out and saying what he means. It’s a tired cliche, and several years out of date, so not one of his better characters.

Sephton for Manchester Central: Matt’ll Fix It for you
Now then, now then… Matthew Sephton, my erstwhile rival for Salford and Eccles (GE2010) is the Conservative Party candidate for the Manchester Central by-election to be held on 15th November.

If you’re a Manchester Central voter, Matt probably thinks he can fix it for you… you name it, from crime to unemployment to redefining marriage, Matthew Sephton is out to win your vote.

What’s the single most important thing every voter needs to know about Matthew Sephton?

IMO I’d say it’s the fact that he’s the leader of LGBTory – the Conservative Party’s affiliated group for homosexual-perverts.

Matthew’s a gayboy, and it seems to me that his main political passion is for pursuing ‘gay rights’ causes.

Do you wanna be in Matt’s Gang, Matt’s Gang, Matt’s Gang, do you wanna be in Matt’s Gang?

Oh, yeah?

Well, if you do wanna be in Matt’s Gang, be very clear that Matt’s gang is LGBTory. A vote for Matthew Sephton is a vote for the pervert-politics agenda exemplified by Stonewall.

Parents in Manchester Central should ask Matthew – a teacher – about his views on ‘sex education’ for little boys and girls. What kind of ‘educational’ pictures and videos does he approve of?

Voters should also ask Matthew why until recently he was banned from donating blood. What behaviour was it that Matthew engaged in with a man/men that caused him to be banned?

And voters should also ask Matthew about his views on redefining marriage.

Labour will win this by-election by a very comfortable margin, but for the record the candidates (source: Wikipedia) are: Lucy Powell (Labour); Matthew Sephton (Conservative); Marc Ramsbottom (Liberal Democrat); Chris Cassidy (UKIP); Peter Clifford (Communist League); Alex Davidson (Trade Unionist & Socialist); Lee Holmes (Peoples Democratic Party); Loz Kaye (Pirate); Eddy O’Sullivan (BNP); Clive Searle (Respect). Tom Dylan (Green Party) is also reported to be a candidate (source: MEN).

I haven’t bothered giving you a link to the original post, because Carvath has a habit of taking them down so his stupidity is only visible for brief periods at a time. It’s here as a record, in case anyone in the future is foolish enough to think he’s credible but sensible enough to do a search on his background.

Update I was right to not bother with a link- he took the post down whilst I was writing about it.

*Just trying out Dickie’s favourite tactic of sticking two words together to make some dumb attempt at a statement that’s really meaningless.

Daily Blog 10/24/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Daily Blog 10/22/2012 1

  • An analysis of official statistics for Labour MP Karen Buck has found that between 2011-12 and 2014-15 £35bn of housing benefit will be spent on private landlords, £13bn more than the previous three years…

    Research by the National Housing Federation found that over 1 million people of working age will need housing benefit in order to be able to pay the rent by 2015…

    Research by the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations showed in the past ten years the cost of housing benefit spent on private tenants across the UK has increased 153 per cent, compared to a 21 per cent increase for council and housing association tenants.

    tags: benefits politics housing

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Petrol from air?

A small British company has produced the first “petrol from air” using a revolutionary technology that promises to solve the energy crisis as well as helping to curb global warming by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

I can’t be the only one who wants to see the numbers before getting too excited. How much energy goes in and how much is produced? Depending upon efficiency etc. it could be a good way of storing energy generated by solar or wind when it’s not immediately needed by the grid.

Daily Blog 10/19/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Trimming the playlist

I did something drastic yesterday- I removed the music collection from my computer.

I didn’t just delete it- I may want to dip into it later to pull out online purchases etc.- but I did cut it and paste it to a backup disk. It had reached over 16,000 tracks and was just too cumbersome. I didn’t know what I had and couldn’t shake the feeling that some of my music still hadn’t made it onto the pc. The sheer scale of the playlist was putting me off sitting down and listening as well.

So now I’m ripping my CDs as FLAC files using Winamp. The files are significantly fatter than the MP3s they’re replacing and it takes around an hour per album, but it’s going to be a more honest reflection of my music buying habits. It’s also going to be far better sounding when I get round to buying myself a DAC. And, because the current selection is limited, it’s making me go back to that ancient tradition of listening to whole albums rather than just hitting shuffle and hoping for some interesting juxtaposition.

Daily Blog 10/18/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Daily Blog 10/17/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.