Tag Archives: images

Other people’s holiday snaps

… are rarely as jaw-droppingly amazing as the ones the Cassini probe keeps beaming back from its jaunt through the Saturnian neighbourhood. [via the indispensible Metafilter; image borrowed under fair use terms and not covered under CC license, contact for takedown if required, yadda yadda]

The mountains of Iapetus, moon of Saturn - Cassini probe

Mimas, moon of Saturn - Cassini probe

Shots like that make me feel like a kid again; that’s the sensawunda kick, right there. And I needed that today, so I thought I’d share. 🙂

Things you really should know …

if you have upgraded (or are about to upgrade) to WordPress 2.5. To be fair, most of this should be obvious to anyone accustomed to learning software by getting their hands dirty, or who has been using WordPress for more than a few months – almost everything is still there, but it has been shuffled around and prettified somewhat.

While it does explain how to squash some of the media uploader bugs (hint – the Bad Behaviour plugin), it doesn’t explain why the new image insertion protocols are so weirdly different. Yeah, that’s me – all stuck in my ways. Gimme back my automatically-created thumbnails, you bastards – The Dreaded Press requires them!


if you’re going to talk about the Middle East.

The title is “What Every American Should Know About The Middle East“, but I can’t think of a huge number of Brits who couldn’t do with taking the three minutes it will take to have some completely misfounded notions defused.

Of course, as with all such things, the people who most need to read it are the ones who won’t or can’t.


Indulge your hardware fetish: supercomputer picture gallery

This is a minority interest post, I’m guessing.

If you aren’t kind of fascinated (or or utterly and irredeemably geeked out) by huge racks of the most powerful computer hardware on the planet, you’ll have no interest in the picture below, or the others like it in this gallery of supercomputer images at Guardian Unlimited.

MDGRAPE3 supercomputer

[Image: hardware from the supercomputer MDGRAPE-3 at RIKEN in Japan; image credit – RIKEN.]

[tags]computer, hardware, supercomputers, images[/tags]

Friday Photo Blogging: industrial decay

A lot of workplaces have some sort of unused space. Mine has about the same amount of space unused as it has used; the entire upper floor of the building sits dusty and rubbish strewn, paint peeling, waiting for a return to utility.

No. 12 Store 032

The building, properly known as No. 12 Store of Her Majesty’s Dockyard Portsmouth, has stood here for a century and a half … I sometimes wonder if it feels that this is some kind of retirement post, a fobbing off of the senescent and surplus to purpose.

No. 12 Store 019

Still, if you’re a fan of the aesthetics of industrial decay (as I am) there’s plenty of degraded surfaces to take pictures of …

No. 12 Store 011

Breaking the silence

Sincere apologies to those of you who have an interest in reading my ramblings as well as my link dumps, but I quite deliberately did no formal blogging this week.

I have instead been catching up on a large number of individually insignificant (but collectively overpowering) little tasks, as well as keeping on top of my short-term review deadlines and doing another week of full-time hours. End result – little output of consequence here at VCTB. But I should be that little bit more prepared to deal with my workload in weeks to come.

Which is good, because I need to attack my first ever tax return … :0

Actually, the last two weeks have taught me a lot about workload … or rather, made it plain to me that I hadn’t realised quite how easy it is to take on too many things at once.

Hence the attempt to clear the decks, to use a naval phrase; I’ve been letting things collect in thickets of incompletion, which is an exceptionally unwise thing for a (partially) self-employed person to do. I’ve not finished everything, but I can see over the metaphorical heap – which is a considerable weight off my mind. Now all I need to do is maintain this state of affairs …

But it’s always satisfying to see your work announced. Martin McGrath runs down the contents of the forthcoming issue of Focus, with my “Basic Bootstrap Branding” article included, and SciFi UK Review announces the contents of Interzone #212, which has an editorial written by yours truly, in addition to all sorts of stuff that is actually worth reading. Yay, me! 🙂

Books and magazines seen

Er, none, basically. Not entirely surprising after last week’s bumper selection … and nor a cause for consternation, as I have quite enough to read already.

That said, I got a teaser package via Orbit for Yen Press[temporary site, apparently], a new manga imprint; lots of promotional bumf, and a wee sampler booklet.

Coda – a break of routine

And to shock the nation – nay the entire globe (OMG!!) – I will not be having The Friday Curry tonight, as I am going to a Turkish restaurant instead.

I have already had to deal with a number of telephone calls from astronomers and prophets expressing concern over the potential of the planets misaligning and the entire universe folding in upon itself like a used tissue, and so I shall say the same to you as I said to them – what happens happens. 😉

Anyway, folks, have a good weekend. Hasta luego.

Show the world your stack

In case you didn’t catch it on BoingBoing earlier, someone has started a Flickr group specifically for showing off your ‘to be read’ stack of books:


Books I want to read


Originally uploaded by The Shmoopies.

I think I’ll be obliged to share, as soon as I can get all the relevant books into one place. I imagine Niall (and many others) will struggle to find a camera with a lens that can encompass the their whole stack, though … this reminds me of the brief flurry of fun we had with the sorted spine titles game.