Archive for the 'Links' Category

Harrow Mosque Protests

Today was the 11th September, 9/11 – not a good day for more than one reason as most people could attest. It was an unusual day at work, mainly because hardly anyone was there! Most of our production staff had gone to a big defence show in the Docklands, London aside from me and a few others. In general I was hoping for a Friday in which I could do a lot of work for once. Every Friday normally goes tits up for me. Well today NOTHING could go wrong because there were hardly any production staff in the first place…

Well the peace didn’t last long when two mates texted me saying that all hell had broken loose in Harrow, as there was a 9/11 protest outside Harrow Mosque, which I believe is in the final stages of construction.

Upon checking various websites I realised that this protest wouldn’t be a dozen or so people waving placards around screaming at the top of their voice, it was rather serious.

The English Defence League (EDL) have already been protesting in Luton and Birmingham recently, mainly because they are opposed to Islamic Extremism. They believe the religion to be extreme in it’s own right. Today they were due to arrive at this mosque in large numbers.

On the other hand, the UAF (Unite Against Fascism) were there in even greater numbers to rally support. Now it’s fair to say that the EDL wouldn’t have stood a chance in Harrow. I’ve lived here all my life, and the town at present couldn’t be more bloody ethnically diverse if it tried. We have all pretty much got along for many years now, although tensions are high just outside Harrow, in my home town of Wealdstone – the very place I was trying to reach today so I could go home and just eat after a hard day at work with no money for food! In short, the UAF didn’t need to go looking for support – it came to them.

I sat in the 140 bus counting the number of hot chicks I saw as it passed through a busier than normal Harrow Town centre and then right outside Debenhams got stuck in a typical traffic jam. The mosque was 6mins away down the road, so I ended up getting off the bus and walking down – I had to get through the protest just to reach my town.

It was madness and it was clear that there were young kids from outer boroughs pretty much looking for trouble. I had already made my mind up that if anyone would cause trouble it would be most of the hyper-charged young Muslim kids who were here for reasons not related to the protest.

My iPhone along with Twitter kept me abreast of the news here as people were tweeting all over the shop. ControlB was a star and kept regular updates on twitter. I popped into Skippers for a bite as I was starved. The place was getting colossal amounts of business today and the chap behind the counter was all over the place. Nomnomochipsnomonom! Christmas had come early for this shop.

Transforming Ravage Flash Drive

A flash drive in disguise? Everyone (well almost) remembers Transformers from the 1980’s. Those toys that would magically transform from vehicle/aircraft into a robot – well at the hands of a skilled child anyway. One of my favourite transformers back then was Soundwave, mainly because it could accept various ‘cassettes’ that were also transformers in their own right – and Ravage was my personal favourite!


Twitter

Back in July 2008 I decided to try out a little known application for the iPhone by the name of Twinkle, developed by Tapulous. I was instantly hooked as it used the geo-location functionality of the phone to let you know when people are nearby. You could search for users within a specific kilometer radius around you and chat to them, in addition you could enlarge or shrink that search radius to suit. Seeing other twitter users who were within range of you and chatting away was horribly addictive.

Twinkle was basically a superb (and still is) location aware chat client that allows you to upload photos to your Twitter account as well as update your status. Addictiveness knows no boundaries and I was pretty much ‘Twinkling’ on the way to work whilst on the bus, as well as doing the same whilst in the office at work and then on the way home. I’d be constantly ‘chatting’ to complete strangers via 140 character long messages, similar to SMS texts if you will.

Behind all of this was Twitter. In its simplest form, it is a website where you can broadcast short messages up to 140 characters max – to anyone who has signed up to receive them (known as a follower). In turn you can also become a ‘follower’ to other twitters. Your followers for instance could be say ten of your best friends or if you’re a well known celebrity like Stephen Fry, 190,539 crazed fans. Twitter started off fast and is gaining momentum and a frightening pace. Balls to Myspace and the Facebook’s of today, they’re nothing by comparison.

Twitter went mainstream fairly recently on February 5th 2009 when a US Airbus Flight 1549 hit some birds and lost power in both engines. The plane slammed into New York’s Hudson River, with everyone on board surviving. The most incredible thing was that there was a person on-board the flight using Twitter as his prime means of reaching the outside world. How he managed to remain calm and type away amongst the turbulence is another thing altogether.

Broadband In The UK

1.21 jigawatts!

Lately I’ve been pondering about broadband in the UK and it’s present progression. For years now UK Internet service providers (ISP’s) have been under almost constant fire, by it’s customers, watchdog associations and of course the government trying to kerb illegal file sharing. Sod all that though, what really scares me is the state of our infrastructure.

We are constantly being bombarded with news of faster speeds from our two most common internet providers, Virgin Media with their 50Mbits/sec pilot scheme, as well as BT barking on about their 100Mbit/sec trials in Kent, presumably where you have to have your PC situated right next to the exchange…

Whilst this news grabs the headlines and makes gamers, and downloaders glee with delight, it makes me rather concerned. If this really does happen ISP’s will be struggling to cope with demand. Read More

NASA Announcement Due – Then again…

We’re not alone!

NASA has scheduled a media teleconference Wednesday, May 14, at 1 p.m. EDT (17:00 GMT for us Uk’ers), to announce the discovery of an object in our Galaxy astronomers have been hunting for more than 50 years.

Taken from the NASA.gov website:

"A video file about the discovery will air on NASA Television on May 14. NASA TV is carried on an MPEG-2 digital signal accessed via satellite AMC-6, at 72 degrees west longitude, transponder 17C, 4040 MHz, vertical polarization. NASA TV is available in Alaska and Hawaii on AMC-7 at 137 degrees west longitude, transponder 18C, at 4060 MHz, horizontal polarization."

See? I knew it! Aliens really do exist and they’ve found em!