New Home, meet Old Home

Something I've been wondering, and repeatedly asked by various people, is how big Trinidad is versus San Francisco. In London the equivalent question was easier, since I knew Trinidad fitted roughly inside the M25. I'd never seen a comparison with San Francisco, so tonight -- feeling a little under the weather, with not much else to do -- I made one myself: It turns out they are roughly the same size: my daily commute from SF to Sunnyvale carries me across most of the country. In other map geekery, I am only 243 miles further away from 243 miles closer to Trinidad than I used to be: SF -> Trinidad = 6738km (4187mi) London -> Trinidad = 7130km (4430 mi) and SF -> London = 8630km (5362mi) Update: I can't do math, apparently.
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What Would Tyler Durden Do?

Be awesome, at length, apparently. From a recent post on Britney's new video: Remember when Britney Spears was filming her video for "Gimmie More", and it was three days of sheer pandemonium, with reports of huge budgets and effects and massive crews like they were planning the invasion of Normandy? Well, for that, Jive Records got three minutes of some fatty spinning around a pole. Yaay. She's not even really dancing. It's not like a stripper thing. She's just spinning around and around. It's more like they put a cake on an RC car and then ran it in circles around the stage and then filmed her as she decided on a plan. Yeah, I'm really late to this party, but What Would Tyler Durden Do is the funniest way to find out about all that tedious shit you're eventually going to hear about from CNN anyway. It is to regular gossip sites as The Daily Show is to regular news.
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New Life Goal

To hear George Takei say "Oh Em Gee", sincerely. It's not a huge goal or anything, but there you go. Update: For those of you watching Heroes (and if not, why not? It's the best show on TV.) let me say: they are one Shatner short of a Star Trek convention in there. The series will jump the shark when Colm Meaney turns up.
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In Rainbows

I just paid £5 for In Rainbows. A review will follow after my ride to work tomorrow. Even if it sucks, however, I'm happy to give them some money just to indicate to the world at large that this is the right way. And as Madonna has followed suit, and Jamiroquaiand Oasis are considering similar arrangements, it looks like artists have already worked this out. After 10 years of futile struggle against the inevitable, we're finally witnessing the death of the recording industry as we know it. And I couldn't be happier to watch it die. Will some hard-working people lose their jobs? Probably, but only temporarily. The industry will still need studios, as in physical spaces to record their music, and technicians and electricians and engineers to keep those running. The people who work in CD pressing and the physical distribution of music are probably in more trouble, but an expanding economy will find jobs for these people. Who will really lose their jobs are the pointless middle-managers and risk-averse...

On gigs and killer monkeys

I have the urge to blog, which is pretty rare these days, so I better give in to it while it lasts. I don't have anything particularly deep or interesting to talk about in mind. I went to a gig on Friday with JS. As far as I can remember (and blogs are good for helping with that), I haven't been gigging* since a disastrous and abortive Scissor Sisters gig in 2004. That time, a packed and pushy crowd triggered a severe attack of claustrophobia that had me literally dashing for the exit halfway through the show. This time was completely different! A much more intimate venue (and a convenient location at the edge of the crowd) meant I didn't feel boxed in. It also helped that The Go! Team were absolutely amazing live. Usually I liken a live act to watching Michaelangelo attempt to re-paint the Mona Lisa in half an hour: sure, he'll produce a great painting, but nothing like as good as the original that he spent painstaking months crafting. But with the Go! Team, the difference between the record and the live...
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Does Microsoft really think Facebook is worth $15 billion?

From the NYTimes: Microsoft has won a high-profile technology industry battle with Google and Yahoo to invest in the social networking upstart Facebook. The two companies said on Wednesday that Microsoft would invest $240 million for a 1.6 percent stake in Facebook. The investment values the three-year-old Facebook, which will bring in about $150 million in revenue this year, at $15 billion. It's not really worth 15 billion, obviously. This is a strategic move on Microsoft's part, designed to lock Facebook to its fast-growing but still relatively small advertising business. The deal is strikingly similar to Google's move to pay $1b for a 5% stake in AOL in late 2005, another bidding war which Microsoft lost. That deal valued AOL at $20b, which it was obviously not worth even to the most optimistic bidder. Basically, the money is a blocker, a bribe to say "don't do business with the other guys". In addition to its hold on AOL, Google paid $900m to MySpace for a deal which involved no ownership stake but...
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Halloween 2007

As home-made costumes go, I think this one came off pretty well... though flatmate Ernie stole the show as Kim Jong Il. New photos up from the Digg party photobooth.