Category Archives: Thoughts on the World

Pearl Harbor

Day 16 Today we have another long-awaited organised tour: Pearl Harbor. Preparations are complicated by an additional security directive since we tried to arrange the same trip in 2016 – you are allowed no bags of any form, quite a … Continue reading

Thursday, November 14, 2019 in Hawaii Travel Blog, Photography, Thoughts on the World, Travel

Shit Hit Fan!

Something in the note on my desk this morning hinted that my day was not going to go quite as planned… Continue reading

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 in Humour, Thoughts on the World

Cross-Posting

Musings on how to streamline the photo blogging process Continue reading

Yes, Kit DOES Matter

Picasso had his blue period. I had a blurry period. There’s a common line in much of photography writing. Set aside those actively trying to sell you something, and most will at some point claim that "kit doesn’t matter”. The … Continue reading

Wednesday, June 5, 2019 in Photography, Thoughts on the World

The Spy. Why?

While this is an enjoyable read, it prompts one big question. Why did the author feel that a heavily fictionalised re-telling of this utterly thrilling true story was needed? In the preface Gross says that he wants to tell “the … Continue reading

Sunday, April 21, 2019 in Reviews, Thoughts on the World

Random? That’s a Coincidence…

My programming project of the last few weeks has been to build my own “rolling portfolio”, which shows random images from my photographic portfolio as either a screensaver or a rolling display on a second monitor. I’ve implemented a number … Continue reading

Thursday, April 11, 2019 in Code & Development, Photography, Thoughts on the World

The Jester and The Unicorn

A fable, sort of… The jester who wanted to be king asked the crowd “Do you want a purple unicorn?” Almost half the crowd said “We are happy as we are, and we don’t believe unicorns exist”, but slightly more … Continue reading

Wednesday, March 13, 2019 in Humour, Thoughts on the World

Icons, or Heroes?

I’m slowly working through, and very much enjoying the BBC series Icons. There’s been a lot of discussion about whether it makes any sense to have a "final" in which "iconic" sportsmen, politicians and scientists go head to head, but … Continue reading

Friday, February 15, 2019 in Thoughts on the World

The Favourite: A Great Opportunity Missed

I was really looking forward to The Favourite. It had a lot going for it. The period – the reign of Queen Anne, the end of the Stuart dynasty and the wars with Louis XIV – is an important piece … Continue reading

Wednesday, January 2, 2019 in Thoughts on the World

Why I Like My MacBook, But I’m Beginning To Really Hate Apple

Battery Replacement on a 2015 MacBook I realised a couple of weeks ago, much to my horror and chagrin, that I had been walking around with a potential incendiary bomb. Not that I had done anything wrong – this is … Continue reading

Monday, December 17, 2018 in PCs/Laptops, Thoughts on the World

Normal Service Will Be Resumed After Completion Of This Rant

The last day of any trip is always a bit sad, and hard work with the travel. However this year three separate organisations covered themselves in something which is not glory, and I have to get this out of my … Continue reading

Wednesday, December 5, 2018 in Humour, Namibia Travel Blog, Thoughts on the World, Travel

The British Government Reviews Its Brexit Strategy

Sorry it’s a bit fuzzy and not properly focused, but that’s nothing to do with my photography! Continue reading

Sunday, November 25, 2018 in Humour, Myanmar Travel Blog, Thoughts on the World, Travel

Fraud Prevention: Why Don’t Banks Do More?

Banks constantly tell us to do more to protect our financial details against online fraud, but we live in a world where there is often no alternative to exposing important financial information to potential misuse. The frustration is that there … Continue reading

Thursday, August 30, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

Is Theatre Killing Theatre?

Is the theatre its own worst enemy? Is it the engine of its own destruction? Let me explain what I mean. We love the cinema. We go most weeks, and most weeks we come away feeling well entertained, even inspired. … Continue reading

Tuesday, August 28, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

That Was Too easy…

There is an old plot device, which goes back to at least Homer, although the version which popped into my head this evening was Genesis of the Daleks, a 1970s Dr Who story. A group of warriors fight a short … Continue reading

Thursday, July 26, 2018 in Android, Thoughts on the World

Prediction Realised: The AlpinerX

In October last year I wrote an article celebrating the hybrid analogue/digital watch and offering some architecture and design observations from my collection of them. I ended up slightly sad about the style’s fall from fashion, but confidently predicting that … Continue reading

Friday, July 6, 2018 in Thoughts on the World, Watches

Panasonic G9. Close? Yes. Cigar? No.

This article was also published as a guest article on "The Online Photographer". My Panasonic GX8 arrived pretty much on the day of official availability and has been my primary camera for almost three years, including two major photographic trips, … Continue reading

Friday, June 8, 2018 in Micro Four Thirds, Photography, Thoughts on the World

OK Google, Here’s Another One…

Having established that there’s a real, valuable use case for Google’s phone-call-making AI (making outgoing calls which have to be routed via complex menus, lengthy queues, or security gatekeepers) I got thinking. When I was in my early 20s and … Continue reading

Thursday, May 24, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

They’re All Missing the Point

Since Google’s demo of an AI bot making a phone call a few weeks ago, the reaction I have read seems to be completely polarised. About half the reviewers are blown away, believing it to be unleashing AI wonders/horrors which … Continue reading

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

How Hard Can It Possibly Be?

I really should have known better. In last week’s piece on random music player algorithms, I made the rather blasé statement "I can live with it for a while and I can probably resolve the issue by downloading another music … Continue reading

Wednesday, April 11, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

Inferring Algorithms: How Random is Your Music Player?

“You’re Inferring that I’m stupid.” “No, I’m implying that you’re stupid. You’re inferring it.” – Wilt, by Tom Sharpe My latest contract means spending some time on a bus at each end of the day. The movement of the bus … Continue reading

Sunday, April 8, 2018 in Code & Development, Thoughts on the World

To BD or Not to BD

Should I buy the Blu-Ray? So you have a collection of several hundred DVDs, you’ve finally managed to remove almost every VHS tape from the house, and you’ve bought a shiny new TV and disk player. Which, if any, of … Continue reading

Thursday, January 11, 2018 in Thoughts on the World

An Odd Omission

Let’s start with a common use case… "I have a television / hi-fi / home cinema system which has several components from different manufacturers. I would like to control all of them with a single remote control. I would like … Continue reading

Sunday, January 7, 2018 in Android, Thoughts on the World

The Decisive Moment

My old mum has recently moved from her house to a smaller retirement flat, and is still in the process of sorting out some of the accumulated lifetime’s possessions. On this visit, I was presented with a large carrier bag … Continue reading

Sunday, December 17, 2017 in Humour, Photography, Thoughts on the World

The Hut of Alleged Towels

The Crane Hotel, Barbados has a hut whose purpose is to take in used beach towels, and dispense fresh ones. It has no other purpose. It is staffed during daylight hours by a helpful young chap, but on our recent … Continue reading

Saturday, November 18, 2017 in Barbados, Humour, Thoughts on the World, Travel

Architecture Lessons from a Watch Collection

I recently started a watch collection. To be different, to control costs and to honour a style which I have long liked, all my watches are hybrid analogue/digital models. Within that constraint, they vary widely in age, cost, manufacturer and … Continue reading

Saturday, November 4, 2017 in Agile & Architecture, Thoughts on the World, Watches

Integration Or Incantation?

I was travelling recently with Virgin Atlantic. I went to check in online, typed in my booking code and selected both our names, clicked "Next", and got an odd error saying that I couldn’t check in. I wondered momentarily if … Continue reading

Sunday, October 29, 2017 in Agile & Architecture, Thoughts on the World

Singing With Each Other

We went to see The Hollies at G Live in Guildford last night. While the words and melodies were those we loved,  and the instrumental performances were good, the trademark harmonies sounded, frankly, a bit flat, and I wondered if … Continue reading

Sunday, October 8, 2017 in Thoughts on the World

Collection, or Obsession?

I have decided to start another collection. Actually the real truth is that I’ve got a bit obsessive about something, and now I’m trying to put a bit of shape and control on it. I don’t generally have an addictive … Continue reading

Tuesday, August 15, 2017 in Thoughts on the World, Watches

Back to the Future

I’ve opined before about how Microsoft have made significant retrograde steps with recent versions of Office. However this morning they topped themselves when Office 2016 started complaining about not being activated, and the recommended, automated solution was to do a … Continue reading

Monday, August 7, 2017 in Thoughts on the World