One Man and His Blog: May 2004 Archives

May 2004 Archives

May 31, 2004

Coffee, vomit and European elections

Coffee VomitToday, I vomited all over a bunch of politicians. Or, rather more accurately and less sensationally, my cafetiére vomited coffee over a pile of pre-election literature.

The normal pile of bumf was pushed through the door a few days, and both our downstairs neighbours and us studiously ignored it for a good 48 hours. Finally I cracked, brought it upstairs and made myself a nice pot of coffee to enjoy while I read through their electoral lies promises. The coffee had other ideas, spilling out all over the pamphlets, as picture (right). Rapidly, they became unreadable mulch, and have now been consigned to the compost bin.

So, all I was left with was first impressions. You know what? The local LibDems come out well again. They were the only party that put the name of their candidate front and centre on their literature. All the others were too busy exhorting us to vote for the party to actually detail the candidate.

You know what? I'm old fashioned. I like to think that I vote for someone to represent me in one of several layers of Government, rather than picking a party to run my life. I know that's not a popular view right now, but I think that disengagement from the local aspect of politics is one of the reasons voting turnout is in such dramatic decline.

Candidate first and party second, if you please.

Mugabe reads your e-mails!

And while the world's attention is distracted by the Middle East:

The Zimbabwean government has proposed obliging its internet service providers to divulge details of e-mails deemed offensive or dangerous.
Read more at Auntie Beeb's online emporium.

May 30, 2004

Bird Hit

Bird meet car

Nothing cheers up an overcast bank holiday weekend like seeing some guy's sports car covered in bird faeces.

Emin 'em.

BBC News: Artist Tracey Emin has condemned people who "sniggered" at contemporary art and laughed when pieces of her work were destroyed by a fire in a warehouse.

Snigger.

News, Bridges and Schmucks

Steve Robel adopts an all-blog media diet. How will he survive without newsprint?

The French finish the world's tallest road bridge. Let's hope they build bridges better than airports.

Are British architects Schmucks?

May 27, 2004

Soho: Scooter & Wall

Soho: Another BikeSoho: Wall

May 26, 2004

Soho: Bikes

Soho: Bike

Soho: Bikes

May 25, 2004

Soho: Chinatown Tourists

Soho: Chinatown Tourists

New City Architecture

I really should have mentioned this before, but the New City Architecture exhibition opened at the end of last week. It's a fascinating exhibition looking at current and future architecture within the City of London, with plenty of models.

EG TV has done a piece on the show, which will give you a feel for it. (People using Macs or on browsers other than Internet Explorer might want to click here instead.)

Trackbacks

For some reason, Trackback pings aren't working on this site. They're all routing through to the same entry for some reason. I've no idea why just yet, but I'm working on getting it fixed. My apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

May 24, 2004

Soho: Theatres

Theatres

Napster gets Tacky

Pavement Napster

Well, it looks like the pavement advertisers are at it again. A new Napster service launched last week, and they're advertising it by spraying graffiti on the ground. How very charming.

Napster ContextI don't remember seeing this happening since the death of the dotcoms three or four years ago, and I can't say I'm overjoyed to see it back on the streets. These pictures were taken on the streets between Leicester Square and Charing Cross, and I can't help finding it slightly tacky. Maybe it's a sales pitch to rebellious "yoof". If so, I'll happily settle into middle age and grump at the advertising people pandering to those young tykes with no respect.

Mr Betteridge has some first impressions of the service for you Windows-using types. I don't know. In my day we listened to tapes, and thought ourselves lucky when they snapped or got caught up in the tape player...

Stealing That Scoop

GlennLog: Defending My Scoop:
"It's a well-established practice as a journalist that if you find out about a story from another publication, not a source or your own research, you credit that source. If you don't know that another publication broke the news, you're off the hook, too, generally. But don't go taking my scoop away."

Sadly, it's an equally well-established practice for national newspapers to happily reprint stories from the specialist business press without credit. This isn't just a blogging or web issue.

Money = Accuracy?

Journalists in the US are seriously worried that financial pressures are seriously hurting the quality of their reporting, according to a new survey. More comments when I've seen the whole report.

[via MicroPersuasion]

May 23, 2004

Getting it together, software style

I just love it when those software guys do clever things behind the scenes to make my life better. Take the forthcoming integration of my two most frequently-used blog apps, ecto for writing and NetNewsWire for reading. Good on both the developers for making their respective babies play so nicely together.

May 22, 2004

After the Bomb

Images from the area around the site of the IRA bomb in Manchester. The city knows how to turn a tragedy into a triumph.

Harvey NicksUrbis

Travelling Man

It's ten past eight in the morning, I'm sat on a Virgin train somewhere in the Northwest, having just eaten the worst train breakfast I've ever encountered. The passable coffee is redeeming things somewhat, but not much.

This entry brought to you courtesy of Bluetooth and my mobile phone. Ain't technology a blast?

Oh, it appears we're approaching Crewe. It look surprisingly attractive this time of the morning.

May 20, 2004

In Manchester on business

Blogging may be light.

Midland Hotel & GMEX

May 19, 2004

Soho: Tottenham Court Road station, 6.15pm

Soho Underground

May 18, 2004

Soho: Signs

Soho Signs PoshSoho Sign Seedy

Madam, I'm Adam, Adam & Adam

I just realised, while doing my evening bloground, that I now have three major identity services I use when commenting on blogs: my Blogger account to comment on the new Blogger blogs, my Typekey identity to comment on MT3 (and Typepad soon, presumably) blogs and my Livejournal ID to comment on most Livejournals. All three are free to obtain and use.

The problem is that I now have a Blogger user page, a Typekey user page and an LJ user page. All of these need to be kept up-to-date.

Blimey. Any chance of standardising on one of these?

Tracking the would-be Mayors

I should have spotted this ealier:

race4cityhall: a London mayor election blog.

Urban Trees

Some great photography of public art here.

Time to put your money where your mouth is...

...or at least articulate your practical issues with the MT3 licensing in a cogent post. But that doesn't sound so good as a headline, does it?

Mena has asked for people to Trackback problems with the current MT licensing structure to the Six Apart company blog. I'd just like to reiterate my earlier point about a company being judged by the way it handles problems, not by problems cropping up. I still think Six Apart is doing a fine job.

So, although I'm broadly in favour of the new licensing, I do have an issue. I'm running three blogs at the moment:

My personal blog, which has one author and may expand up to about three weblogs over time. Non-commerical, although it does serve to promote me as a writer.

Kingdom Come, a multi-author blog, with up to 10 authors and another two blogs due to spin off out of it, from the same author pool. Non-commercial.

There will soon be a Tinworth family blog, with up to five people posting on the main blog, and two to five others on a family genealogy forum. Each of the individual posters on the first blog would have the option to run their own blogs on the same server. Non-commercial.

Major concern: do I have to licence all three installations separately? If so, that obviously significantly raises the cost bar for me. I could do my personal blog within the terms of the free license, but both the other installations would require a pay license. Ideally, I'd like to be able to do this with a single pay license, buying additional weblogs and authors as needed. As the various blogs are behind different domains, it's proved easier for me to host them separately up until now, but if necessary I could look at moving them all to one server with the domain name mapping appropriately.

May 17, 2004

Quick Links (geek edition)

For those of a geeky persuasion:

Gamethink is a new gaming blog of impeccable pedigree. It should be a great read, once it builds up a head of steam.

The All New! All Different! Howling Curmudgeons takes a combination of comic-esque typography, a fun attitude and some insightful writing and applies it to the comics world - with both fists! Better fun than most comics blogs.

Soho: Summer comes to Soho Square

Soho Square GuySoho Square Girl

No blockheads here

London is clearly a city where people adapt. For over a decade, the authorities have been blocking off this street and securing the other area, all in the name of protecting us from the latest round of terrprots, be they the IRA or Al Queda. It's just a shame that they haven't developed a more attractive solution. The concrete blocks you can see below disfigure the front of the Houses of Parliment, have rendered the area around the American Embassy one of the ugliest in London and are scattered, seemingly at random, through the city and midtown.

Ring of seats

Still, Londoners adapt and you need somewhere to eat your lunch...

May 16, 2004

So English It Hurts...

Rectory Lane, Halesworth

May 15, 2004

More MT3 Developments

For those still paying attention, Six Apart has clarified and modified some of its licensing conditions on MT3 based on the feedback the firm has received.

Of course, some people will characterise this as back-pedalling or panic, but I've always thought a company should be judged by how well it responds to negative feedback. This strikes me as a pretty fair response.

May 14, 2004

Soho: Friday Night Drinking

Friday night in Soho

Broadwick DrinkersDean St DrinkersLupo drinkersThe Ship drinkers

Wanted: newspaper editor. Ability to spot fake photos a plus.

Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan has been sacked.

It appears publishing photographs that about 80% of the public take one look at and go "they're fake" is a bad career move. Ah well, he'd been there eight years. A change might be good.

Photo Friday: Parts

Building Parts

Parts of two buildings, at different stages of the construction process

My entry to Photo Friday: Parts

Goodbye to Soho

Broadwick Street skyline

I have a project. My place of employment is moving from the heart of Soho to the heart of Holborn in about three months. So, I'm going to document as much of Soho as I can in those three month. Every day I'm in Soho, I'll endeavour to take at least one picture that catches a little of life there.

The countdown starts today.

Broadwick Street Flower StallPret LunchbagsBroadwick St

Another good MT3 discussion

Dean of Heal Your Church Web Site offers a solution to the criticisms level at the MT3 licensing structure.

More from the MT backlash backlash

Ian Betteridge joins the small, but thoughtful, band of people defending Six Apart's strategy on MT3. He makes some pretty good points about sticking with 2.61 if you don't like the terms of 3.0D.

I find it interesting that a significant proportion of the people defending 6A's move are people who write for a living, one way or another. Perhaps that suggests something about the hobbyist mentality of many bloggers, and their subsequent disgust when a company - which they saw as run by fellow hobbyists - goes pro.

Eating or pleasing customers?

Timothy Appnel takes a measured and favourable look at the mew MT licensing terms. It could still be argued that Six Apart have gone from one extreme to another (from 50c to $lots revenue per copy of MT downloaded), but he also makes a number of interesting points.

I suspect much will count on how 6A respond (or not) in the coming weeks to some of the obvious problems that have cropped up.

[via Population One]

May 13, 2004

MT3 is here, for a price. So?

So, MT3 is out there. For very light users (1 author and 3 blogs), it's free. For everyone else, it's now pay software. Six Apart's rationale is here.

Not surprisingly, the internet first reacters are howling with the predictable outrage at actually having to pay for something. Others are pointing out significant problems with the pay structure more thoughtfully.

Personally, I'm not terribly shocked by any of this yet, but I'll be watching the fall-out with interest. And yes, I'll probably be paying.

(It's worth noting that at least one man predicted some protesting, even if he didn't mention price.)

The photographer as abuser?

The BBC posts a fascinating analysis of the US Iraq torture photos written by an award-winning photographer. Thought-provoking stuff.

May 11, 2004

Trouble ahead for the WTC site?

David Sucher points out that all might not be well for the planned redevelopment of the WTC site in New York:

City Comforts Blog: WTC Update

The Great Tower of Deptford

Seager SiteSeager Tower

This nifty little mixed-use (but mainly residential) tower is due to rise into the air near Deptford Broadway soon. Certainly, the relevant planning decisions seem to have been granted. Strange as it may seem, Deptford is something of a hotbed of regeneration right now because, as someone pointed out to me at a mixed-use drinks reception recently, it has bags of potential. In this case "potential" means great swathes of redundant industrial land, and a good selection of buildings that could do with being knocked down as soon as possible.

A tower seems a brave move in the area, but in the context of the coloured blocks that make up the interesting, if isolated, One SE8 development, not as out of place at it might have been once. No doubt there will be the normal clashes between disgruntled locals and incoming yuppies, but soon Deptford will become the new Southwark and will be full of trendy restaurants and a branch of Starbucks. We've got them in Greenwich and Blackheath already, and you know how they spread...

The design of this tower comes courtesy of John MacAslan & Partners, and you can find out more at the firm's website. The developer is Brookmill Estates.

(This post in response to a promise made to Inspector Sands of Casino Avenue)

May 10, 2004

Beta Boogie

Another beta update today. As usual, e-mail me if you encounter any problems.

Feed me Lewisham news

I'm finally becoming better informed about what's happening in my own neighnourhood. Why? I found a useful feed of news from Lewisham.

For example, through this feed I now know that the Lewisham branch of Cancer Research UK is being plagued by shoplifters. My father died of cancer a couple of years ago, and I've been donating all my unwanted goods to the shop since then. This news, to put it mildly, pisses me off.

The site also has links from Greenwich and Southwark, as well as parts of London not in the southeast.

BBC blows Blogger's Trumpet

BBC News covers the new-look Blogger. Somehow, I doubt the launch of MT3, when it's done, will get the same coverage. Still, at least they have a pretty comprehensive list of links to blogging systems on the right, although Typepad is a notable omission.

May 6, 2004

An Urban Dark Age?

With May's GRID on the presses, my sections of the weekly beast we call EG running smoothly (for now), my mind is turning towards plotting out the next few months for both. I had a brief chat with Sir Richard Rogers at a recent breakfast meeting (I did the typical journalist thing of not paying enough attention to the invite, turning up half-awake and bleary eyed and finding myself talking to the Lord Mayor of London before my first coffee), it occurred to me that I need to read around urban theory a little more.

When I find some of my favourite built environment blogs are all talking about the same book, as is a blog I don't normally associate with urban development issues, I can take a hint. I think I should check out Jane Jacob's Dark Age Ahead.

Off to Amazon with the corporate credit card...

More thoughts and reactions once I have it. Any other suggestions for my bookshelf?

May 5, 2004

Meanwhile, in Devon...

Big Build

Another day, another beta

A new version of the Movable Type 3 beta means that the archive links on the right should be working just fine now.

As ever, let me know if you encounter any problems on the site.

May 2, 2004

Face to face with celebrity

A Malaysian journalist writes about interviewing celebrities.

Personally, I have to make do with famous architects and the like. Mind you, once upon I time I was interviewing celebrity chefs, which was interesting in its own way...

Super snapper source

Find of the day, via the ever-entertaining Inspector Sands of Casino Avenue, is Photoblogs.org.

It's a great, and rapidly growing directory of blogs which have a strong photographic element. Enjoy it now, before the rapidly growing number of blogs make it unwieldy...

Flag of the Sunday shopper?

Sainsbury's carpark

May 1, 2004

Bank Holiday Essay: Formats

Small is beautiful, or so my wife and I tell each other, she because she's short and I, uh....

Moving swiftly along, the publishing industry certainly seems to agree with me. My evidence? Glamour magazine, The Independent newspaper, two Marvel Age digests and a copy of Brief Lives: Chaucer by Peter Ackroyd. What do these three things have in common? They're smaller than their normal publishing formats.

Continue reading Bank Holiday Essay: Formats.

Photo Friday: Natural

Natural

Beta Issues

If anyone's tried to use the Monthly Archives on the right, they don't work. This is an issue with the current version of the MT Beta and should be resolved soon. I've added category archives which work just fine.

If you find anything else on the site which isn't working, drop me a line.

The way to an edited RPG review blog?

A voice from the distant past on Wraith-l resurfaces to reply to my comments on RPG reviewing made some time ago.

Lea responds to my ideas thus:

Adam argues for "a single source of good, edited, commissioned reviews run by skilled people and provided by a team of experienced gamers and writers." I'm not sure this is practical. It takes time and effort to deliver the kind of analysis that Adam wants, something that few experienced gamers and writers, with many other calls on their time, would be able to commit to.

That's not to say that few people could or would deliver good reviews or criticism. The problem with Adam's proposal, I think, is that it puts the onus on a small circle of people. If the community wants "Basements and Bugbears" reviewed, the editors have to commission someone to review "Basements and Bugbears." This is hard work for both the editors and the reviewer

This is, of course, the main argument for a professional RPG mag, with a team of writers who are paid for their work. However, since the RPG market seems determined to make such an enterprise completely unprofitable, that isn't going to happen. Luckily, Lea has a technology-based solution to the social problem at work here.

Continue reading The way to an edited RPG review blog?.

Quick Links: Brum, Tunes and a Cardinal Place

A walk through Brimingham.

A friend's musical experimentation.

A post about Cardinal Place (just in case any of the LandSec people who read this blog drop by).

Archives

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About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from May 2004 listed from newest to oldest.

April 2004 is the previous archive.

June 2004 is the next archive.

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