Mobiles, Shakespeare, Politics, Usability, Security.

Monthly Archives: October 2009

You Never Call, You Never Write...

As Shakespeare said... "[Blog posts are] a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." Today Ofcom published the responses it had for its consultation on plans for the BBC to encrypt its HD broadcasts. The blogosphere went nuts! DRM? Not on our watch.  Boing Boing mobilised its army of commentators, the BBC published two blog posts which quickly filled… Read more »

BBC, BNP and Statistics

There are 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand statistics and those who don't. ±8. Ever since I took GCSE and A-Level statistics, I've had a healthy appreciation for the way they are presented to the public. I vividly remember my grandmother shouting at the television one night. The news presenter had said "20% of people polled - that's nearly a… Read more »

Mobile Badvertising – Part 3

Another in the occasional series looking at mobile advertising gone bad. Who doesn't enjoy a good, clean game of scrabble. After a busy day reading The Times, nothing takes the edge off the day like a word puzzle. Wait! What's this? So far, so good.  A clear, professional banner.  It clearly emphasises that - although it's an advert - it's endorsed by The Times;… Read more »

Twitter Favourites

What Are Twitter Favourites? Twitter allows you to mark certain posts as favourites.  You may do this for a number of reasons - because you thought it was funny or interesting, because you want to reply to it later, or as a general bookmark feature They're Private, Right? Wrong. You can see any Twitter user's favourites - even if they've protected their tweets. You… Read more »

Universal Power Supplies

In 1998, Douglas Adams wrote a essay about the de facto Universal Power Supply - the in-car cigarette lighter. He was half right. We've settled on USB as the standard  - simply because it's ubiquitous. A few days ago, the ITU finally caught up with the rest of the world and endorsed micro-usb as the standard for all phone chargers. Sam Manchin tweeted about… Read more »

Mobile Badvertising - Part 2

It's been a while since I last wrote about Mobile Badvertising. Although we're constantly told that mobile advertising is going to be HUGE, you wouldn't know it from looking at the adverts on mobile sites. Over this occasional series, I'll be picking examples from popular UK sites. I've tried to avoid naming the sites in question, but sometimes it's unavoidable. The Lie One of… Read more »

Do People Understand How To Use Twitter?

No. Learning a new skill is hard. Evidentially, twitter is too hard for some people.  Robert Llewellyn was rightly confused when he saw this... RT @jonnyroadley: @bobbyllew Hey Bobby - your on BBC News 24!!! Here it is. Truly, I did not tweet that — Robert Llewellyn (@bobbyllew) October 23, 2009 What Had Happened? Turns out, the BBC had read a tweet to… Read more »

Linking Papers to The Web


The guardian should have qr codes so I can teeet what I'm reading in the paper — James H (@angusprune) October 22, 2009 Let's Make It Happen So, assuming each story has a URL, how would that look Turning it into a QR code using my encoder... That's probably a bit large for a paper - you could shrink it down or cut… Read more »

Humm Energy Monitor Set Up – Part 5 – Data Visualisation

After my disastrous attempt to upload data under Ubuntu, I found a Windows laptop to upload my energy usage data. The good news is that Sam from Humm is actively working on making the Adobe Air upload application work under Linux. So, how does the process of uploading your data to the service work? The Application is a real "one click" experience. It autodetects… Read more »

The Guardian - A Review

One of the things I love about Private Eye is the columns I don't read.  Corners of the magazine dedicated to the gossip of the classical music world, the perils of modern architecture, positively incomprehensible reports about big business buying into football.  I care for none of these subjects, but I'm immensely relieved that they are reported on somewhere. The Guardian's Saturday edition strikes… Read more »