Should anyone ask, I prefer my engines to pass the Bird Ingestion Test

I prefer all my jet engines to have passed the ingestion test.

The red vapour trail is a nice touch.

and look at what happens when a person does get sucked in for real:

He survived! Man I love YouTube. Who needs school anymore.

Should anyone ask, Cats need social networks too

Ken alerted me to catbook. It’s a Facebook application using Facebook’s F8 API. I feel better knowing that my cats now have a social network. Thanks Ken.


Should anyone ask, Cats need social networks too

Ken alerted me to catbook. It’s a Facebook application using Facebook’s F8 API. I feel better knowing that my cats now have a social network. Thanks Ken.

Should anyone ask, lasers are so passe, I want tesela sparks in my next club

All clubs should be equipped with a singing tesla coil.  May I also recommend that they play Chemical Generation  (preview) rather than the midi Für Elise.Ken - I hope “The Key” has a tesla coil installed and ready to be powered up on Saturday night.


He’s not part of the “Chemical Generation”.

Should anyone ask, lasers are so passe, I want tesela sparks in my next club

All clubs should be equipped with a singing tesla coil.  May I also recommend that they play Chemical Generation  (preview) rather than the midi Für Elise.Ken - I hope “The Key” has a tesla coil installed and ready to be powered up on Saturday night.

He’s not part of the “Chemical Generation”.

Should anyone ask, I live in the "most livable" city



#1: Munich emerges as Monocle’s most liveable city - International Herald Tribune



After much tire-kicking, data-sifting and deliberation, Munich emerged as Monocle’s most liveable city in the world. A winning combination of investment in infrastructure, high-quality housing, low crime, liberal politics, strong media and general feeling of Gemütlichkeit make it a city that should inspire others.



But, never order Mexican food here, you’re setting yourself up for failure.

Should anyone ask, I live in the “most livable” city


#1: Munich emerges as Monocle’s most liveable city - International Herald Tribune



After much tire-kicking, data-sifting and deliberation, Munich emerged as Monocle’s most liveable city in the world. A winning combination of investment in infrastructure, high-quality housing, low crime, liberal politics, strong media and general feeling of Gemütlichkeit make it a city that should inspire others.



But, never order Mexican food here, you’re setting yourself up for failure.

Should anyone ask, they will soon apreciate

It’s time for more showering and spanking.

Should anyone ask, it's hot

It’s 33 degrees
I showered the cats
they did not appreciate
My goodwill

Should anyone ask, 80 messages were rejected at 22:50



A mail server got quite happy and sent me 80 spams in just 1 minute.Mail Statistics for bunker

Should anyone ask, 80 messages were rejected at 22:50


A mail server got quite happy and sent me 80 spams in just 1 minute.Mail Statistics for bunker

Should anyone ask, one of the girls had dreadlocks


Jamie Zawinski (Famous these days for well being JWZ) writes in his blog about his club, The DNA Lounge:
Photos are up of Chocolate Syrup Wrestling, or as some call it, Future Yeast Infections of America. I don’t have anything clever to say about it this time that I didn’t say last time, so why don’t you just go read that. I can’t wait to read the web server statistics next month… you may recall that the 2005 incarnation of this event had an effect that was non-negligible. Last time, the club smelled like rotting milk for close to three months after the event, because the chocolate went down the drains, turned to glue, and then the milk in it rotted. It was truly foul. No amount of cleaning product would make it go away; I think we ended up having the drains snaked out from the street. My henchmen assure me that there is a Plan this time, and that Everything Will Be Fine. One of the girls had dreadlocks. Think about that.

I’m trying not to.

Should anyone ask, one of the girls had dreadlocks

Jamie Zawinski (Famous these days for well being JWZ) writes in his blog about his club, The DNA Lounge:
Photos are up of Chocolate Syrup Wrestling, or as some call it, Future Yeast Infections of America. I don’t have anything clever to say about it this time that I didn’t say last time, so why don’t you just go read that. I can’t wait to read the web server statistics next month… you may recall that the 2005 incarnation of this event had an effect that was non-negligible. Last time, the club smelled like rotting milk for close to three months after the event, because the chocolate went down the drains, turned to glue, and then the milk in it rotted. It was truly foul. No amount of cleaning product would make it go away; I think we ended up having the drains snaked out from the street. My henchmen assure me that there is a Plan this time, and that Everything Will Be Fine. One of the girls had dreadlocks. Think about that.

I’m trying not to.

Should anyone ask, my SYN-ACK is quicker.

Nice



YouTube - POUND (a short film by Evan Bernard)

Should anyone ask, there's finally a use for your bad holiday photos


Better than boiling oceans, today the intraweb brings you ridiculous image technology.


Warm up those CPUs, this is going to be computationally intensive.

Should anyone ask, there’s finally a use for your bad holiday photos

Better than boiling oceans, today the intraweb brings you ridiculous image technology.


Warm up those CPUs, this is going to be computationally intensive.

Should anyone ask, I hate social networking sites but everyone seems to be using them


I really don’t like the silos of information that the various social network operaters hold in their grip.  And I hate having to repeat my information and maintain “friends” on Xing, Linked-In, Facebook, AdultF^W (just kidding). There has to be money or at least ease for end users in aggregating these sites through a common protocol (I’ll propose the RFC number 37337 to cover this).Actually there’s been some progress on this. Livejournal now has their FOAF (friend of a friend) protocol to describe relationships and it’s now possible to integrate OpenID into most sites saving the YADPTR (yet another damned password to remember) problem.

So it’s with dismay that I read Apple’s about to start feeding the Silos.  The FT’s “Apple to sell music through UK Bebo network” is perhaps the best summary. Basically using these sites as a way to sell music.  Did the world forget the beauty of a hyperlink.  It can take the user to a dedicated online store. What next - Amazon selling books on the Chelmsford County Council Library site?If you can’t beat them, join them? Well perhaps…

My real peave with social networks is how they become an email substitute.  I have email for that.  It reaches me on my phone, I can archive it (my email spool reaches back to 1996),  and I can use a  huge range of readers to read it offline. So if you need to contact me, contact me outside of a social network.  My contacts page is up to date.

Should anyone ask, I hate social networking sites but everyone seems to be using them

I really don’t like the silos of information that the various social network operaters hold in their grip.  And I hate having to repeat my information and maintain “friends” on Xing, Linked-In, Facebook, AdultF^W (just kidding). There has to be money or at least ease for end users in aggregating these sites through a common protocol (I’ll propose the RFC number 37337 to cover this).Actually there’s been some progress on this. Livejournal now has their FOAF (friend of a friend) protocol to describe relationships and it’s now possible to integrate OpenID into most sites saving the YADPTR (yet another damned password to remember) problem.

So it’s with dismay that I read Apple’s about to start feeding the Silos.  The FT’s “Apple to sell music through UK Bebo network” is perhaps the best summary. Basically using these sites as a way to sell music.  Did the world forget the beauty of a hyperlink.  It can take the user to a dedicated online store. What next - Amazon selling books on the Chelmsford County Council Library site?If you can’t beat them, join them? Well perhaps…

My real peave with social networks is how they become an email substitute.  I have email for that.  It reaches me on my phone, I can archive it (my email spool reaches back to 1996),  and I can use a  huge range of readers to read it offline. So if you need to contact me, contact me outside of a social network.  My contacts page is up to date.

Should anyone ask, tetris gets dangerous

Japanese Tetris Video
Cheers Ken

Should anyone ask, Apple has an interesting ZFS upgrade path (or not?)


Interestingly, Apple is going to need to be able to upgrade from HFS+ filesystems to ZFS.  Matthew alerted me to United States Patent Application 0070112891 filed by  Apple in the last month.  I expect this could equally be applied to an HFS+ upgrade to ZFS path.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION: In accordance with one aspect of the invention, a first file-system can be converted to a second file-system while one or more files stored on the computer readable medium remain virtually undisturbed in the same location. It will be appreciated that the second file-system can be generated primarily based on the location of the file(s) already stored on the computer readable medium. Thus, the file(s) can remain “in place” without being modified or rewritten. It will also be appreciated that there is no need for rewriting or storing the file(s) while the file-system is being converted. In one embodiment, a FAT file-system (e.g., FAT32) is converted to an HFS file-system (e.g., HFS Plus) by generating HFS data structures (Catalog, Allocation File and Extents) for file(s) already stored in the FAT file-system. The HFS data structures that are used to effectively implement a HFS file-system are primarily generated based on the number and location of the file(s). The number and location of the file(s) can be determined primarily based on the FAT file-system’s data structures (FAT and Directory). It should be noted that the file-system conversion process can be stopped before the FAT file-system indicators (partition map and boot sector which identify the operating-system) are overwritten. After the HFS data structure have been generated and successfully verified for the file(s) already stored on the computer readable medium, the HFS file-system can effectively replace the FAT file-system by modifying the partition map and writing a volume header that may overwrite that boot sector). It will also be appreciated that a HFS file-system can be converted to a FAT file-system in accordance with one embodiment of the invention. In general, any file-system used to organize and store files can be converted using the invention as the invention utilizes the information about the organization of files provided by a first file-system to generate a second file-system.

I wonder if another embodiment is ZFS?  Thanks Matthew.

Should anyone ask, Apple has an interesting ZFS upgrade path (or not?)

Interestingly, Apple is going to need to be able to upgrade from HFS+ filesystems to ZFS.  Matthew alerted me to United States Patent Application 0070112891 filed by  Apple in the last month.  I expect this could equally be applied to an HFS+ upgrade to ZFS path.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION: In accordance with one aspect of the invention, a first file-system can be converted to a second file-system while one or more files stored on the computer readable medium remain virtually undisturbed in the same location. It will be appreciated that the second file-system can be generated primarily based on the location of the file(s) already stored on the computer readable medium. Thus, the file(s) can remain “in place” without being modified or rewritten. It will also be appreciated that there is no need for rewriting or storing the file(s) while the file-system is being converted. In one embodiment, a FAT file-system (e.g., FAT32) is converted to an HFS file-system (e.g., HFS Plus) by generating HFS data structures (Catalog, Allocation File and Extents) for file(s) already stored in the FAT file-system. The HFS data structures that are used to effectively implement a HFS file-system are primarily generated based on the number and location of the file(s). The number and location of the file(s) can be determined primarily based on the FAT file-system’s data structures (FAT and Directory). It should be noted that the file-system conversion process can be stopped before the FAT file-system indicators (partition map and boot sector which identify the operating-system) are overwritten. After the HFS data structure have been generated and successfully verified for the file(s) already stored on the computer readable medium, the HFS file-system can effectively replace the FAT file-system by modifying the partition map and writing a volume header that may overwrite that boot sector). It will also be appreciated that a HFS file-system can be converted to a FAT file-system in accordance with one embodiment of the invention. In general, any file-system used to organize and store files can be converted using the invention as the invention utilizes the information about the organization of files provided by a first file-system to generate a second file-system.

I wonder if another embodiment is ZFS?  Thanks Matthew.

Should anyone ask, the future is hung with surreal wallpaper


When imagiWohnung is constructed, I expect it to be hung with Surrealien wallpaper. I like. Unfortunately each piece needs to be custom generated and so it will be expensive.I like the idea of designing my own wallpaper but have no idea of where one gets it printed.

Technorati Tags:

Should anyone ask, the future is hung with surreal wallpaper

When imagiWohnung is constructed, I expect it to be hung with Surrealien wallpaper. I like. Unfortunately each piece needs to be custom generated and so it will be expensive.I like the idea of designing my own wallpaper but have no idea of where one gets it printed.

Technorati Tags:

Should anyone ask, I don't know if this is a prize or punishment

From BBC NEWS: Apprentice contender Katie fired:


The Apprentice sees 16 contestants battling it out for the prized £100,000 job working for businessman Sir Alan Sugar.

Speaking of which, would you buy your skincare products from Apple? Aparently Amstrad thinks skincare fits their product portfolio.


No, I’m not sure I’d relish the opportunity to work on the E-m@iler Telephone V2.0 or the Integra face care system.

Should anyone ask, I'm the undecider today.

What type of employee are you? Creating Passionate Users is a blog I read about improving user interaction when designing applications.  In this post, Kathy Sierra talks about different types of applications like they are employees.  I want mine to be the “Ass Kisser”.



Which one are you?

Should anyone ask, I’m the undecider today.

What type of employee are you? Creating Passionate Users is a blog I read about improving user interaction when designing applications.  In this post, Kathy Sierra talks about different types of applications like they are employees.  I want mine to be the “Ass Kisser”.

Which one are you?

Should anyone ask, it's Apple's World Wide Developer Conference

It’s that time of the year when Apple announces new products at their WWDC.  I’m normally not so fussed, sure I use a Mac and it’s nice to see their roadmap.  But I also like to stay behind the technology curve and save a couple of Euro (and run a more stable environment).  But I found this picture and think it sums up religious zeal of the Apple fanboy quite nicely.

It reminds me of the quasi religious images from The Gilbert and George exhibit currently on at Haus der Kunst (House of Art) here in Munich:

Apple-Option-PR to all of you.

Should anyone ask, it's Apple's World Wide Developer Conference

It’s that time of the year when Apple announces new products at their WWDC.  I’m normally not so fussed, sure I use a Mac and it’s nice to see their roadmap.  But I also like to stay behind the technology curve and save a couple of Euro (and run a more stable environment).  But I found this picture and think it sums up religious zeal of the Apple fanboy quite nicely.

It reminds me of the quasi religious images from The Gilbert and George exhibit currently on at Haus der Kunst (House of Art) here in Munich:

Apple-Option-PR to all of you.

Should anyone ask, my sister rides horses...

…and plays polo and takes photos. Here’s one taken by her boyfriend.

He’s a professional photographer.  His website has more examples of his work.

Should anyone ask, my sister rides horses…

…and plays polo and takes photos. Here’s one taken by her boyfriend.

He’s a professional photographer.  His website has more examples of his work.

Should anyone ask, the Alps are nice to walk in.

But I don’t like the cows there.  I especially don’t like subsidising the farmers there to the tune of €2/day per cow.Apart from that, the Alps are a nice place to go walking from Munich, just 1 hour away.


I’ve uploaded some more pictures to my gallery.

Should anyone ask, the Alps are nice to walk in.

But I don’t like the cows there.  I especially don’t like subsidising the farmers there to the tune of €2/day per cow.Apart from that, the Alps are a nice place to go walking from Munich, just 1 hour away.

I’ve uploaded some more pictures to my gallery.

Should anyone ask, I don't want my summer holiday ruined by boiling oceans.


Summer’s on us and most are planning their beach vacation. Us geeks are worrying over our next storage upgrade and simultaneously strategising on ways to avoid sunlight. So it was that I have been interested in Apple’s announcement/Sun’s slip that the next version of the Apple operating system will use the ZFS filesystem. Except that’s it’s hardly just a filesystem, it’s most geeks wet dream, and a good reason to miss the summer vacation. One of the cool things about it is the sheer vastness of it’s storage capabilities.  In fact it’s so vast that if it were ever to be fully used, “our oceans would boil” as we started bumping up against some quantum mechanical limits.  The “oceans would boil” quote comes from the project leader Bonwick said, “Populating 128-bit file systems would exceed the quantum limits of earth-based storage. You couldn’t fill a 128-bit storage pool without boiling the oceans.”:

Although we’d all like Moore’s Law to continue forever, quantum mechanics imposes some fundamental limits on the computation rate and information capacity of any physical device. In particular, it has been shown that 1 kilogram of matter confined to 1 liter of space can perform at most 1051 operations per second on at most 1031 bits of information [see Seth Lloyd, “.” Nature 406, 1047-1054 (2000)]. A fully populated 128-bit storage pool would contain 2128 blocks = 2137 bytes = 2140 bits; therefore the minimum mass required to hold the bits would be (2140 bits) / (1031 bits/kg) = 136 billion kg.

To operate at the 1031 bits/kg limit, however, the entire mass of the computer must be in the form of pure energy. By E=mc², the rest energy of 136 billion kg is 1.2x1028J. The mass of the oceans is about 1.4x1021 kg. It takes about 4,000 J to raise the temperature of 1 kg of water by 1 degree Celsius, and thus about 400,000 J to heat 1 kg of water from freezing to boiling. The latent heat of vaporization adds another 2 million J/kg. Thus the energy required to boil the oceans is about 2.4x106 J/kg * 1.4x1021 kg = 3.4x1027 J. Thus, fully populating a 128-bit storage pool would, literally, require more energy than boiling the oceans.


It seems that temperatures have been flaring over the issue. I just came across this couple.  He said he wanted to upgrade his storage.  She tells him not to boil the ocean.




So enjoy your summer holiday and spare a thought for all the geeks shying away from the sun and trying hard to resist the temptation to boil your ocean.

Should anyone ask, I don't want my summer holiday ruined by boiling oceans.

Summer’s on us and most are planning their beach vacation. Us geeks are worrying over our next storage upgrade and simultaneously strategising on ways to avoid sunlight. So it was that I have been interested in Apple’s announcement/Sun’s slip that the next version of the Apple operating system will use the ZFS filesystem. Except that’s it’s hardly just a filesystem, it’s most geeks wet dream, and a good reason to miss the summer vacation. One of the cool things about it is the sheer vastness of it’s storage capabilities.  In fact it’s so vast that if it were ever to be fully used, “our oceans would boil” as we started bumping up against some quantum mechanical limits.  The “oceans would boil” quote comes from the project leader Bonwick said, “Populating 128-bit file systems would exceed the quantum limits of earth-based storage. You couldn’t fill a 128-bit storage pool without boiling the oceans.”:

Although we’d all like Moore’s Law to continue forever, quantum mechanics imposes some fundamental limits on the computation rate and information capacity of any physical device. In particular, it has been shown that 1 kilogram of matter confined to 1 liter of space can perform at most 1051 operations per second on at most 1031 bits of information [see Seth Lloyd, “.” Nature 406, 1047-1054 (2000)]. A fully populated 128-bit storage pool would contain 2128 blocks = 2137 bytes = 2140 bits; therefore the minimum mass required to hold the bits would be (2140 bits) / (1031 bits/kg) = 136 billion kg.

To operate at the 1031 bits/kg limit, however, the entire mass of the computer must be in the form of pure energy. By E=mc², the rest energy of 136 billion kg is 1.2x1028J. The mass of the oceans is about 1.4x1021 kg. It takes about 4,000 J to raise the temperature of 1 kg of water by 1 degree Celsius, and thus about 400,000 J to heat 1 kg of water from freezing to boiling. The latent heat of vaporization adds another 2 million J/kg. Thus the energy required to boil the oceans is about 2.4x106 J/kg * 1.4x1021 kg = 3.4x1027 J. Thus, fully populating a 128-bit storage pool would, literally, require more energy than boiling the oceans.


It seems that temperatures have been flaring over the issue. I just came across this couple.  He said he wanted to upgrade his storage.  She tells him not to boil the ocean.


So enjoy your summer holiday and spare a thought for all the geeks shying away from the sun and trying hard to resist the temptation to boil your ocean.

Should anyone ask, fridges make great websites


Here’s an interesting approach to publicising one’s new book of short stories.  Miranda July decided to publicise here new book “No One Belongs Here More Than You” by writing on the top of her fridge.  I like this kind of ad hoc website.  Reminds me of “Cats teach French”.

Should anyone ask, fridges make great websites

Here’s an interesting approach to publicising one’s new book of short stories.  Miranda July decided to publicise here new book “No One Belongs Here More Than You” by writing on the top of her fridge.  I like this kind of ad hoc website.  Reminds me of “Cats teach French”.

Should anyone ask, Kino Design will not be getting my business


Kino Design (quite why a graphic design company requires everything in flash I don’t know). On second thoughts perhaps they don’t deserve a hyperlink.Well I’ve never heard of them before and hope to never again.  Londoners are gearing up for for running the 2012 Olympics by (not building any new trains or stations) designing a hideous new logo.

You’d think that after spending £400 000 on branding they could at least come up with a logo that had the word “London” looking like it was just plonked in the middle AND spelt with a capital letter.What does it all mean, what is it? 
  • Someone on the BBC website speculates that it’s Vicky Pollard’s new tracksuit design.

  • Perhaps it represents the mental olympics in the form of a tangram puzzle.

  • There was a logo and someone dropped it on the way to lunch (complements of the Telegraph)

  • A Blue Peter paper cut exercise.

I think that Olympics minister,  Tessa Jowell, has it about right.  She is quoted as saying the new brand “sums up what London 2012 is all about – an inclusive, welcoming and diverse Games that involves the whole country."  Sure it sums up the olympics.  The disorganised mess  of random colours reflects the half-assed approach of the current government’s olympic planning.  And then footing Londoners with the bill and hassle.  Cheers Tessa.

Lets compare:Barcelona:


and the upcoming winter games in Vancouver:



Both of these say what they are for.  I haven’t a clue about he London one.  And now I have a headache from looking at that pink and yellow and must sleep.

Should anyone ask, Kino Design will not be getting my business

Kino Design (quite why a graphic design company requires everything in flash I don’t know). On second thoughts perhaps they don’t deserve a hyperlink.Well I’ve never heard of them before and hope to never again.  Londoners are gearing up for for running the 2012 Olympics by (not building any new trains or stations) designing a hideous new logo.

You’d think that after spending £400 000 on branding they could at least come up with a logo that had the word “London” looking like it was just plonked in the middle AND spelt with a capital letter.What does it all mean, what is it? 
  • Someone on the BBC website speculates that it’s Vicky Pollard’s new tracksuit design.

  • Perhaps it represents the mental olympics in the form of a tangram puzzle.

  • There was a logo and someone dropped it on the way to lunch (complements of the Telegraph)

  • A Blue Peter paper cut exercise.

I think that Olympics minister,  Tessa Jowell, has it about right.  She is quoted as saying the new brand “sums up what London 2012 is all about – an inclusive, welcoming and diverse Games that involves the whole country."  Sure it sums up the olympics.  The disorganised mess  of random colours reflects the half-assed approach of the current government’s olympic planning.  And then footing Londoners with the bill and hassle.  Cheers Tessa.

Lets compare:Barcelona:

and the upcoming winter games in Vancouver:


Both of these say what they are for.  I haven’t a clue about he London one.  And now I have a headache from looking at that pink and yellow and must sleep.

Should anyone ask, sometimes it's better to fly under the radar

This is a rather amusing article about how the Plazes CEO was busted by his own product. For those not familiar, Plazes is an application you run on your computer that shares your location with your friends.

Apparently he was due to speak at the Next Web conference in Amsterdam. Made an excuse not to speak to the many fee paying guests since he was at home in Berlin looking after his sick daughter.  But he wasn’t. He was at the Reboot conference in Copenhagen.  At least that’s what his “plazes” location was set to.

Thanks to David for this, and thank $DEITY for the “Timbuktu” setting in Buddycloud.

Should anyone ask, sometimes it’s better to fly under the radar

This is a rather amusing article about how the Plazes CEO was busted by his own product. For those not familiar, Plazes is an application you run on your computer that shares your location with your friends.Apparently he was due to speak at the Next Web conference in Amsterdam. Made an excuse not to speak to the many fee paying guests since he was at home in Berlin looking after his sick daughter.  But he wasn’t. He was at the Reboot conference in Copenhagen.  At least that’s what his “plazes” location was set to.

Thanks to David for this, and thank $DEITY for the “Timbuktu” setting in Buddycloud.

Should anyone ask, I’ve been doing lots of swimming training

I am currently training at the former Olympic pool in Munich.  It’s about 5km from home and takes 10 minutes by bike to reach.  It’s made up of 2 Olympic sized pools (1 for warming up with only 4 lanes and 1 for competition with 8 lanes), a dive arena, and a great shower, sauna, changing complex.  Never too busy and the people that train there are quite friendly.  Recommended if you feel like swimming.On Friday a free-diving class takes place.  Robin has the details if you feel like attending.

Should anyone ask, I've been doing lots of swimming training

I am currently training at the former Olympic pool in Munich.  It’s about 5km from home and takes 10 minutes by bike to reach.  It’s made up of 2 Olympic sized pools (1 for warming up with only 4 lanes and 1 for competition with 8 lanes), a dive arena, and a great shower, sauna, changing complex.  Never too busy and the people that train there are quite friendly.  Recommended if you feel like swimming.On Friday a free-diving class takes place.  Robin has the details if you feel like attending.

Should anyone ask, I served 2 mistresses



A friend’s message about going up to Berlin to see an opera reminded me of my first Opera in Berlin. I’ve been searching to try and remember which one it was. It took place around the start of July 2004 when I’d been studying

German for a grand total of 1 week. It could have been “Die Entführung aus dem Serail.” What I do remember was that I was blown away by the visual quality of the production. The performance was a wonderful introduction to my love affair with Berlin and Germany.

Alas, now I’ve given myself away as serving two mistresses: so please don’t tell London. I still have strong feelings for the city. Mostly good and the bad ones are reserved for the politicians who have spent so
little supporting the infrastructure that makes London a liveable metropolis. Like the Tube that is desperate need of an upgrade. But for now I will talk about the good. I’ve spent 10 years of my life in the heart of the city: Soho, Barbican, Madia Vale and in a loft on Clink Street overlooking the Thames.

As a child coming from a small conservative suburb in South Africa, my love affair with London was instant - I remember writing a letter (probably my last postal letter ever written) to the Mayor of the City saying how much I liked it (I still have his response filed away somewhere). It was where I wanted to stay forever. Soon after I arrived, I set up my own business doing web-design and ran that for 2 years. I partied every weekend, lived the London music scene, and was of the firm belief that should I ever venture outside zone 6 of the Underground I should have a passport with me. I was not British. I was a Londoner.

At the time I was really interested in architecture and London, with it’s combination of old and “new British architecture” sated my cravings for design. Most of all though, it was the people that I knew then that made the place so much fun. But people change and my priorities changed. When I go back it’s to another city. Not the one that I fell in love with. That’s not to say that I don’t have feelings for London and won’t move back there at some point. It’s a perfect place for business. Which other city is so international that within the first minute of conversation, “Where are you from?” inevitably comes up? How I miss meeting people with such a worldly perspective in my current location.

I moved away from London because I wanted to know that it really was the best city for me. I appreciated my time in San Francisco putting this theory to the test and when I moved back to London, I was convinced, it was the best. But San Francisco has sown the seeds of doubt over my London convictions. Sure London had a social scene that suited me better but the weather elsewhere could be better. And my 4 years in San Francisco had shown me that it was possible, indeed not too difficult, to live elsewhere. Adding a foreign language for extra credit, and I was putting this to the test after being back in London for only 2 years. I moved to Munich, via Berlin.

Like a broken up couple after a long romance, I still visit London regularly. We are still good friends. But a trip is not the same as the timelessness of an infinite number of weekends together that one gets from living in a place. I go back and have to hurry to catch up with old acquaintance and often will not tell others that I’m there should
they expect a 30 minute rushed chit chat that adds nothing to a friendship. It’s always nice traipsing around old haunts and seeing how they have changed. It’s nice seeing the new architecture and latest music and art. But I’ve changed and new “international” people have moved into London and old “international” friends have moved onward to
test out new cities for themselves.

So yes, I still love London, just in a different way.

Should anyone ask, I served 2 mistresses




A friend’s message about going up to Berlin to see an opera reminded me of my first Opera in Berlin. I’ve been searching to try and remember which one it was. It took place around the start of July 2004 when I’d been studying

German for a grand total of 1 week. It could have been “Die Entführung aus dem Serail.” What I do remember was that I was blown away by the visual quality of the production. The performance was a wonderful introduction to my love affair with Berlin and Germany.

Alas, now I’ve given myself away as serving two mistresses: so please don’t tell London. I still have strong feelings for the city. Mostly good and the bad ones are reserved for the politicians who have spent so
little supporting the infrastructure that makes London a liveable metropolis. Like the Tube that is desperate need of an upgrade. But for now I will talk about the good. I’ve spent 10 years of my life in the heart of the city: Soho, Barbican, Madia Vale and in a loft on Clink Street overlooking the Thames.

As a child coming from a small conservative suburb in South Africa, my love affair with London was instant - I remember writing a letter (probably my last postal letter ever written) to the Mayor of the City saying how much I liked it (I still have his response filed away somewhere). It was where I wanted to stay forever. Soon after I arrived, I set up my own business doing web-design and ran that for 2 years. I partied every weekend, lived the London music scene, and was of the firm belief that should I ever venture outside zone 6 of the Underground I should have a passport with me. I was not British. I was a Londoner.

At the time I was really interested in architecture and London, with it’s combination of old and “new British architecture” sated my cravings for design. Most of all though, it was the people that I knew then that made the place so much fun. But people change and my priorities changed. When I go back it’s to another city. Not the one that I fell in love with. That’s not to say that I don’t have feelings for London and won’t move back there at some point. It’s a perfect place for business. Which other city is so international that within the first minute of conversation, “Where are you from?” inevitably comes up? How I miss meeting people with such a worldly perspective in my current location.

I moved away from London because I wanted to know that it really was the best city for me. I appreciated my time in San Francisco putting this theory to the test and when I moved back to London, I was convinced, it was the best. But San Francisco has sown the seeds of doubt over my London convictions. Sure London had a social scene that suited me better but the weather elsewhere could be better. And my 4 years in San Francisco had shown me that it was possible, indeed not too difficult, to live elsewhere. Adding a foreign language for extra credit, and I was putting this to the test after being back in London for only 2 years. I moved to Munich, via Berlin.

Like a broken up couple after a long romance, I still visit London regularly. We are still good friends. But a trip is not the same as the timelessness of an infinite number of weekends together that one gets from living in a place. I go back and have to hurry to catch up with old acquaintance and often will not tell others that I’m there should
they expect a 30 minute rushed chit chat that adds nothing to a friendship. It’s always nice traipsing around old haunts and seeing how they have changed. It’s nice seeing the new architecture and latest music and art. But I’ve changed and new “international” people have moved into London and old “international” friends have moved onward to
test out new cities for themselves.

So yes, I still love London, just in a different way.

Sould anyone ask, there's nothing like directory enquiries.

My day started out with me calling to wish a friend happy birthday.  Except that it wasn’t and only takes place on Saturday.  Instead we ranted for 30 minutes about how bad the mobile phone carriers are, the problems of having to work with them and so on.  We even had a go at various directory enquiry services and how difficult it is to determine the costs of calling each one.  I shouldn’t have been so hasty in my criticism of them.After 8 years of loosing contact with a good friend, I spent some time googling her.  I’d lost her contact details but remembered which borough of London she lived in. It felt weird to be searching on someone after all this time. She does PR and her name was on a couple of press releases but no longer worked at the companies involved.  I could have tracked her down in 2 minutes had I realised that some people still list their phone numbers.

My heavily criticised directory enquiry site revealed her number and her address in no time, and I’m looking forward to having coffee with an old friend next time I am in London.Sometimes old school technology is best.

search

Powered by Blogger.

Follow by Email

Should anyone ask, on building strong teams

My thinking about building strong teams My work goal is: work with smart people, on interesting problems, that improve our lives. So I start...