Tuesday, November 30, 2004

More Pictures from Rome


St Peter's Cathedral, Rome
Originally uploaded by Son of Groucho.

St Peter's Cathedral, Rome. It's difficult to retain in your head how huge the place is.


Trevi Fountain, Rome
Originally uploaded by Son of Groucho.

Trevi Fountain, Rome. Yes we did toss a coin in. No we haven't been back yet, but maybe next year....

Monday, November 29, 2004

Sunday, November 28, 2004

A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words

I just think this little animation is so funny. I especially like the little dog. It was stolen from bifurcated rivets.

Not speaking German, I have no idea what this is supposed to be about, but it sure cured my constipation. Thanks to the excellent octupus dropkick!

Saturday, November 27, 2004

One for the Nerds

Having only recently installed Firefox, I have found the following extensions extremely useful:

  1. ScrapBook: This is a superb tool for saving web pages, or parts of web pages, in a searchable hierarchy that you define, like the Bookmarks tree in Firefox. This is extremely helpful for hanging onto things that you discover while surfing, but want to keep for later use, eg in a blog.
  2. Sage: This is a extension for reading RSS and Atom feeds from websites. For example, if you are keen to monitor a whole list of blogs, and they have feeds, Sage can scan them and alert you of new posts.
  3. All-in-One Gestures: This extension allows you to navigate using your mouse, including opening new tabs and new windows. Once you've start using it you'll wonder how you managed without it!
  4. Super DragAndGo: This helpful little tool is another boon for the lazy web surfer. If you point to a link and then move the pointer to a blank bit of page the link opens in a new tab. If you do the same thing with an image you automatically download the image. If you do the same thing with a piece of text it is automatically entered into whatever search you have set up on the right of the Firefox window, be it Google, Dictionary.com or whatever. How neat is that?
All these extensions installed without a hitch, and have worked perfectly. I can highly recommend them all.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Pass the Sick Bowl

Don't people like this make you want to throw up?

Terrible shame about the Guinness Book of Records thing though!

PS What the Hell is a math museum, anyway?

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Don't Bear a Grudge


I'm on holiday this week (What do you mean "Again?"), so I met Gdog in Glasgow and we went to see The Grudge. Despite some of the negative comments made by others about this film, we both thought it was genuinely scary and thoroughly enjoyable. My daughter delighted in telling me that I "screamed like a girl" at one point. Our bums definitely left our seats on several occasions!

There clearly is a fad at the moment for Hollywood remakes of Japanese films, but this movie was unusual in that the same Japanese director also directed the second film. It seems to be an automatic response in some people to say that the remake is not as good as the first film. I haven't seen the original version of The Grudge, but I have seen both versions of The Ring. I definitely preferred the new version---and you can call me a Philistine if you like!

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Come And Get Me!

For those of you applying for a new job, the way this French computer programmer presents his CV is definitely not the way to go (via memepool)!

Monday, November 22, 2004

Not Too Successful Please!

Isn't it nice that Microsoft is at last getting some serious competition on various fronts? The phenomenal success of Firefox is not just because it's a superb browser. It's got a lot to do with the fact that it's free and, most importantly, not made by Bill Gates' Boys.

Google's designs on our desktops seem another one in the eye for MS, but the clever Google guys better watch out. If they end up being too dominant a player in the market place then maybe we'll end up hating them too!

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Holiday Plans


St Peter's Square, Rome
Originally uploaded by Son of Groucho.

Sog and Wosog are hoping to get away again next Easter: possibly visiting Rome for the second time.

Some other people obviously fancy going further afield!

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Congratulations Dr Death?

Wosog went out today to buy a congratulations card for Dr Death and Wodd on the birth of their daughter Dodd. Sog thought that wording such as "Beware the End is Nigh" would be appropriate, but Wosog got something a bit more traditional.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Teatotal Bondi at Christmas!

Even the Australians are going soft in these politically correct times.

What's the world coming to?

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Baby Dodd Has Arrived

Dodd has finally arrived. Mother and baby are both well.

Now the fun begins....

Monday, November 15, 2004

Sunday, November 14, 2004

Never Again!

Sog woke today to the sound of Gdog, as we say in this part of the world, "talking to Huey on the giant telephone"*. She had turned a delicate shade of green and, without any prompting from him, voiced the immortal words "Never again!" with reference to her alcoholic excesses of the night before.

It's amazing the excuses people come up with for vomiting after alcohol excess. People rabbit on about "mixing my drinks", "drinking on an empty stomach", "it was the curry that did it", "I had a bad piece of lemon/ ice cube" etc. The fact is alcohol is a poison....but we like it! OK?

*IE Vomiting down the toilet.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Just a Virus

Patients attending people mechanics currently are accustomed to being told that practically any of the symptoms they present with are "probably due to a viral infection", and that there is basically nothing their hard pressed GP can do about them. With this in mind, I was intrigued to read on CNET news.com some predictions from the slightly wacky Kevin Warwick, Professor of Cybernetics at the University of Reading.

Our Kevin, who's a bit of a cyborg himself, can see the day, hopefully when I'm dead and gone, when most humans will be networked in some way to a computer. He sees this as a form of upgrading for humans (!), but admits that this form of cosy symbiosis might well make the resultant hybrids prone to computer viruses and hackers, just like the pc's of today.

I can just imagine the GP of the Future being visited by his third heartsink patient of the morning and saying "Well Mrs Confusion I'm afraid you've got a touch of the latest MyDoom virus, but it's not as bad as it sounds: just download this prescription from the McAfee website. But while you're here, why don't we just defrag your hard drive?"

Friday, November 12, 2004

Searching for the Meaning of Life

The other day I was talking to Gdog about some obscure actor and the previous films he'd been in. I told her to look him up in the Internet Movie Database, and casually opined (good word, don't you think?) that the answer to any question could probably now be found on the Web.

This episode prompted me to wonder how effective the Internet would be at answering the most fundamental queries: like "What is The Meaning of Life", for example. My decision to use Google was not at all influenced by the latter's ownership of Blogger.com (honest).

A standard Google search for Meaning of Life and The Meaning of Life produced 19,300,000 and 19,900,000 pages respectively: not too helpful if you want to avoid repetitive strain injury in your mouse-clicking finger! Doing an advanced search for the same things as exact phrases narrows things down to a mere 1,080,000 and 768,000 pages respectively: still a bit of a needle in a haystack. Restricting the last search to pages in English only reduced the number to 728,000. I won't go on: the main point is that searching for The Meaning of Life in the 21st Century may be harder than I thought.

The lists include the inevitable links to the Monty Python film and an excellent Wikipedia article on Douglas Adam's "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy". There's also a rather intriguing link to FAQ about the Meaning of Life! I've not chased up all the leads yet, but as Captain Oates once said "....I may be some time." .

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Accordions from Hell II


Here's one of the little blighters! Posted by Hello

Accordions From Hell

As a fan of Gary Larson's Farside Cartoons, I can well remember one that is split into an upper scene depicting Heaven and a lower scene depicting Hell (I can't show you this for copyright reasons). St Peter is saying "Welcome to Heaven....Here's your harp", while The Devil is saying "Welcome to Hell....Here's your accordion". With this in mind, I was truly horrified to discover via Boing Boing that Roland has produced a digital accordion.

Now that's just WRONG!

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Many A True Word....

Here is my final comment on the 2004 American Presidential Election. One of my favourite sayings is "Many a true word spoken in jest". This little gem from Soapy Goldfish I think amply illustrates the point.

Incidentally, after one failed attempt I seem to have grasped Trackback. So today has not been a complete waste of time!

Monday, November 08, 2004

Is There No Justice?

Like Jasper Gerard in the Sunday Times yesterday, I was aghast to discover that Salman Rushdie's gorgeous fourth wife, Padma Lakshmi says he's "handsome, beautiful, and very sexy".

Is it not bad enough that he's smarter than me, more famous than me, and richer than me! Up till now, I'd been able to reassure myself that despite all that he was an ugly bloke who was probably crap between the sheets.

It's an ill divided world, right enough!

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Baby Sog


Baby Sog
Originally uploaded by Son of Groucho.

Hints of his true origin were present from and early age.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

A Visit to Mosog

Went to visit Mosog (Mother of Son of Groucho) last night. She's getting on in years, and her memory is not what it was. The closely guarded secret of Sog's origins is very likely to remain unrevealed. In view of his strong resemblance as an adult to Mr Marx, Sog can only assume that he was, in fact, Groucho's love child. Even though the signs were there from an early age, his apparent father somehow didn't make the connection, and the family has lived a lie all these years!

It's secrets such as these that tear families apart, and Sog and Wosog have vowed to always be honest with each other, thereby setting a better example to their beloved Gdog and Gsog.

On that serious note, I leave you tonight dear reader....

Thursday, November 04, 2004

A Trying Essay III: Success At Last!

Guess what? Gsog's essay has finally made the grade! A temporary calm descends on the Sog household.

Gdog seems to be a bit more sensible again! Spooky isn't it?

Unfortunately, we're stuck with Dubya for another 4 years....

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Why So Glum, Dante?


Dante in Florence
Originally uploaded by Son of Groucho.

This is another picture from Florence posted from my new Flickr account. Here goes...

Is There Anybody Out There? II

Many thanks to David Smith of Sitemeter.com. Deleting a little rogue tag in the template HTML seems to have brought the little graphic in from the cold.

I feel SO much better now! (but I still don't understand Trackback).

Is There Anybody Out There?

Have just installed a Site Meter, but was dismayed to find the graphic placed right at the edge of the page, which was a little irritating, and instantly marked me as a blogging neophyte. Tried e-mailing Sitemeter.com, and they very efficiently e-mailed me back. They said what I needed to do was to go into the template and "move the HTML for the counter to the position where you'd like it to go." I really don't think they appreciate how ignorant I am! Dare I come clean, and ask them to spell things out in a little more detail? If you're really interested you can check back later and see if the little blighter has migrated!

Today I decided to add Haloscan Commenting and Trackback, but, to be honest I'm not sure I completely understand what they are all about! Commenting fair enough, but what is this Trackback business? Installation went like a dream, I'm glad to say.

As far as I currently understand it, I will now be able to show comprehensively not only that nobody is visiting my site (apart from me), but also that nobody is linking to it.

Now that is progress!


Monday, November 01, 2004

Drop The Hate?

Isn't it interesting that Osama bin Laden chooses now to threaten further attacks on the USA? This appears to have had the fairly predictable effect of enhancing Bush's chances of victory in the imminent election.

Considering the fact that Al Queda is supposed to abhor the policies of the current regime, one might ask why the leader of that organisation would want to make a Bush victory more likely? The current president must be one of the most unpopular holders of the position, outside the USA, that there has ever been. A USA that continues to be led by Bush is far more likely to be the subject of continued antagonism from various factions overseas, and the hatred that people like bin Laden need to thrive will continue to ferment.