Monday, October 31, 2005

Ben Hammersley: Hot BBC Archive Action

This is just so awesome. The complete BBC catalogue of over 1 million past programmes going online - I wonder how many of programmes you will be able to download! There is a wonderful snippet of what is to come here Showing John Peel's rise to fame graphically. All very cool indeed.

Well done Ben the BBC and everyone else who is involved, this is really revolutionary stuff.

Monday, October 24, 2005

UpYourBudget Treasure Hunt Blog

Here is Hugh trying to redeem Budget Rent A Car system. Budget is the victim of one of my person embargoes ever since one of their franchisees took me to court over a broken rear screen in an estate car that I rented. I hotly disputed the case and gained a personal victory when the judge threw the case out of the court (Up yours, Budget). The Judge stated that glass insurance should cover all glass rather than just the front windscreen. What made it worse was the hostility and nastiness that emanated from Budget in the months leading upto the case. So I guess they lost several thousand pounds from me over the years with my embargo.
UpYourBudget Treasure Hunt Blog

Albertsons gets bid from Kroger

From Reuters - "Albertsons Inc. has received a preliminary takeover bid from larger grocery store rival Kroger Co. (KR.N: Quote, Profile, Research) , while its drug store unit has attracted bids from three pharmacy chains, sources familiar with the situation said on Friday".
So no mention of Tesco at all since Terry squashed the Albertson rumour and no speculation in the press about who else Tesco could be interested in.

Friday, October 21, 2005

First Posting from Flock

Here is the first post using the quill pen tool in Flock. The new browser thats in Preview beta!Very clean interface and highly integrated with the online favourites tool, which I'm using more these days.Interestingly their preferred search engine is yahoo rather than google in firefox. Flock also has a nice box for entering tags directly in.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Commons Debate on Cambridge Mental Health

Very interesting debate in the House of Commons on 18th October 2005 started by our MP David Howarth on the current state of Mental Health provision here in Cambridge (UK) and a reply by the government spokesperson Caroline Flint.

Some points -
Cambridge's population is expanding but payments to trust are based on historical populations.

Poor mental health is associated with being a tenant as opposed to being an owner-occupier ( from nationmaster the German male suicide rate is 21.8 per 100,000 (43% Home ownership), USA19.8 (65% home ownership), UK is 11 (69% Home ownership),

Students are classified as rich because they are disqualified from claiming benefits.

Proximity of a mental health hospital should reduce costs but in fact costs increases due to migration of population to use facility (wonder how this is measured?).

Government replies indicate that Cambridge City PCT's allocation will grow by 29.1 per cent.—£27.8 million—to £123.4 million which seems an awful lot for a population of say 120,000 people (that is £1000 per person!)

Apparently David will be meeting Mrs Hewitt on Tuesday, October 25 from the CEN

Monday, October 17, 2005

Not Gaming, But Exer-Gaming

Spot on article about using real landscapes when using exercise machines at gym. Wouldnt it be cool to race Lance Armstrong,whilst pedalling your gym bike, in The Tour de France game? Or go jogging in the Grand Canyon. Can't be long before this sort of stuff happens. Maybe I should get building one!

oPaul Kedrosky's Infectious Greed: Not Gaming, But Exer-Gaming

The first three seconds...

"A person watching a silent two-second video clip of a teacher he or she has never met will reach conclusions about how good that teacher is that are very similar to those of a student who has sat in the teacher’s class for an entire semester" Powerful stuff must get Blink by Malcolm Gladwell

The Unreasonable Man: Food a recipe for school success

Interesting article on relationship between behaviour and nutrition, taken from a BBC report. with results from a double blind study on prisoners done in 2002 by Bernard Gesch.
An idea occuring to me that is that maybe aggresive behaviours would have an evolutionary benefit in starving populations.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Digging for diamonds compared to comment spam

So for the poor bloggers who worry about comment spam etc. How about the diamond producers who have to crunch their way through 100 tonnes of stone to find 35 carats (7gram's) of diamonds at The Blaauwbosch mine in South Africa.

According to my calculations thats 0.01ppm or in blog speak 1 good comment for every 10 million comments posted!

So some way to go!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Goodbye Treo welcome Nokia E61

The Nokia E61 looks awesome and seems to have a MP3 player with miniSD card but no mention of a calender application etc. Does Symbian support the Palm calendar I wonder?

+ E60, E61 and E70

New Health Search Engine

An article on Healthline a new search engine for medical advice. I just love this bit "and paid 1,100 doctors to create these maps and the underlying medical taxonomy. "That was part of the $24 million we burned through," Will be interesting to see how fast they burn through the next $13m.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Business Opportunities Weblog | How Much is Your Blog Worth?

How much is my blog worth?
Not a lot apparently at $1,693.62., is worth $564.54, is worth $2,258.16
However, Scoble's blog, is worth a healthy $2,096,137.02
and Hugh's blog at, is worth $963,669.78

Obviously I need to work harder at this......
Business Opportunities Weblog | How Much is Your Blog Worth?

Loic Le Meur Blog: Meeting Steve Ballmer in Munich...

I just love this classic:-
Loic "Are blogs important for Microsoft ?"
Steve Ballmer "Oh yeah, we now have about 20 million,.... , how many do you have ?"
Loic "about 10 million"

Amazing this blog world and Loic you look very cool in a suit and tie!


Friday, October 07, 2005

Google Reader (aggregator)

Here is googles new aggregator - import subscriptions not working for me currently


Online Marketing at the Crossroads

My notes from yesterdays forum organised by Latitude and New Media Knowledge.:-
Paul Doleman kicked off with Nielsen woes with lawsuits and Saatchi demanding lower TV advertising rates and that interruption marketing isnt working (Their handout showed that CPC for casino has dropped from £7 to £3 (no wonder there are so many splogs!)

Alan Moore started off with "The revolution won't be televised" and "Companies are from Mars Customers are from Venus" quoting statistic that buy cycle on mobile phones is now to 6 days.
Interuption versus engagement marketing success of Pop Idol making £122m for ITV also 30% of people who texted USA show ere first time texters, Guinness visitor centre, Weekend Warriors all about participation.

Adriano Cronin-Lukas - Confusing landscape, online underworld, big difference between network and channel, voluntary conversations,. Kryptonite saga, How FedEx blew it, How Tom Coates uncovered the Cillit fiasco.
Blogging cheapest publication tool. Henry Copeland - consumer generated media is a oxymoron
Bypass gatekeepers, building brands on individuality

Dominique Busso - VNU 60 magazines, 17 territories teamed up with Gizmodo for Europe, difference between freshness (blogs) and quality (editorial)

Alex Bellinger - Podcasting personal engaging portable, personal voice personal choice, need to develop audio personality, building engagement, Simonsays, Podscope to search, audio clip comments possible

Quite lively dscussion obviously a lot of interest in blogging getting underway.

People met; Jon Danzig, Damien Senn, Robin Brownsell,
Thank you to Hannah at NMK for inviting me.

Event took place at The Adam Street club which seemed a great place to hang out. (Anyone out there to invite me to join :-) )

Revolution Health Group Announces Initial Acquisitions;

The new generation of health care starting up. Revolution Health is obviously a company to watch.

Retail-based convenient health care centers that provide fast, affordable treatment for routine medical conditions with RediClinics.

They also bought a stake in InterFit Health ( ), one of the USA's largest providers of retail health screenings and immunizations delivered in retail outlets and at employer worksites. For example, this fall, InterFit will offer low-cost flu shots to shoppers in every Wal-Mart and Sam's Club in the United States.

Interesting that they have also bought Wondir a question and answer site.

I wonder how long before we get Tesco clinics here in the UK. It all seems an excellent idea to me. Maybe I should float some of my other health ideas with Revolution Health.

Cambridge Blogs Website

Adrian has just pointed out to me that I havent mentioned my latest venture here.

This venture is a follow on from Our Social World. The primary intention of OSW was to introduce Cambridge businesses to blogging. This largely failed although the conference was succesful in different ways, especially in finding out about other Cambridge bloggers.

My latest idea , CambridgeBlogs is to create a list of all existing Cambridge blogs and to generate a river of news style feed of all postings from Cambridge. I then want to host a Cambridge bloggers event at say CB2 or maybe at my house. From this we can spread the word to other Cambridge businesses.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Chalkface at CHASE

Last night Ian Grove Stepehensen of The Chalkface Project gave an interesting talk at CHASE. These are some notes I made.
Have 400 titles aimed at secondary schools. No new titles now all new stuff is elearning.
Virtual corporation with 4 full time employees.
Started elearning with iamclever then paperless-school written in Java. Current site is yacapaca
Software developed with folks found used Elance. Developers in Kharkov, Yerevan, Barnaul and Calcutta.
Uses Jabber, bugzilla (not pretty but works very well) and now writeboard to communicate with teams.
Main market isnt textbooks (UK value £200m) but marking (£3B)
Experimenting with digital and offshore marking.
essays somewhat easier than marking university level
Mention of e-rater

Some discussion about formative and summative assessments. A bit disappointing that no examples of marked work were shown but overall an interesting talk.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Random Roger's Big Picture: We No Longer Need Oil

Here is the nub of the worlds future : "I will call on Puru Saxena's nugget about per capita consumption of oil. US per capita consumption is about 25 barrels per year. China's and India's per capita consumption is less than one barrel. What do you think will happen to global demand for oil when their demand rises to 1.5 barrels per year?" Answer is Oil demand rises by about 12%
Note population of USA is 295,734,134 China 1,306,313,812 India 1,080,264,388

Monday, October 03, 2005

Modes of operation..

This is just so true Kim Cameron's Identity Weblog: "I guess I'm in input mode." some days there are just so many interesting things to read and no time to write. Certain books have this effect on me, they are so good I cannot finish reading them the minute I read a page it sends my brain into thought mode. Examples of the genre (for me) are:-
The Innovators Dilemma - Clayton Christensen
The Art of Seduction - Robert Greene
Mind Hacks - Tom Stafford Matt Webb

Sunday, October 02, 2005

First BBC programme on blogging! Radio Five Live - Julian Worricker

I was a guest speaker with Suw and Saira on what I believe is the first BBC programme to give blogging a 30 minute slot. (The programme is available here until 9th October 2005). It was well put together by Clare and I think offered a very balanced view on the subject.
I'm not sure how long Robert and Hugh etc have been blogging for but I guess its better late than never for the UK mainstream media to start discussing blogging.
I was incredibly nervous sat in a studio here in Cambridge all on my own with one of those old fashioned BBC table microphones.

Web applications unplugged

Could Morfik be the company that Robert is hoping Microsoft will buy? It certainly is a very interesting product "offers developers the opportunity to create web applications that run on the desktop after being unplugged from the web" This would mean for instance that a product like gmail could run even with the web disconnected this would be a major breakthrough for developing internet nations where net connections are so difficult to obtain.

Story obtained from Memeorandum and then from Rob Reg in Roberts mudpit
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