Such a pity. I was all geared up to spend the day rubbing my hands and giggling as bearded...

Such a pity. I was all geared up to spend the day rubbing my hands and giggling as bearded crusties in ski masks beat the crap out of City McDonalds' outlets in some May Day anti-capitalism Demonstrations, but no. A wimpy little peaceful demonstration of people on bicycles, actually outnumbered by the number of police on the scene -- 5000 protesters or less versus 6000 officers, and the police also had vans and horses and big shiny motorbikes. Germany had firebombs, Australia had a mini-riot, but London was just too wimpy. Anarchism isn't like it used to be.
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Hooray, non-corporate news! IndyMedia appears to rock; I will investigate further. Continuing in my...

Hooray, non-corporate news! IndyMedia appears to rock; I will investigate further. Continuing in my slightly anarchist theme of the last few days, I'd also like you to know how to make your own atomic bomb, a budget version just big enough to wipe out a major metropolitan area like New York, say. Fun fun.
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A fairly amusing article in the otherwise dull Telegraph about the town of Telford being destroyed...

A fairly amusing article in the otherwise dull Telegraph about the town of Telford being destroyed by an asteroid. It's a fairly serious article about the use of asteroids as tactical weapons, but since the test case was Telford, a pointless little town in middle England, the list of items that would be "tragically lost" if the town were destroyed is funny. Ooh, controversial! A BBC story about genetically altered babies born in the United States. It's interesting. As part of a fertility treatment, the mitochondria of a healthy donor were used in addition to the egg and sperm of the parents to create the embryo; the children have the genes of three parents. Scientists are playing it down as pointless and unethical, but I'm not sure if infertile couples are going to see it that way.
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Thanks again to wondrous Ed for the very amusing stick-man kung fu. Clearly, this guy has too much...

Thanks again to wondrous Ed for the very amusing stick-man kung fu. Clearly, this guy has too much time on his hands, but it's almost as entertaining as The Matrix, to which it clearly owes a lot of its inspiration. On a less cheerful note, Slashdot pointed out an article about an impending war between AOL and Microsoft. Summary: AOL provides web-based services, and wants to be an Applications Service Provider in the impending, horrible world of network applications, where all software is rented as a service -- ick, ick! Microsoft is making Windows XP, which by including HailStorm (and .NET) is the key element in getting applications-as-services off the ground. Microsoft also owns MSN, which is set to be the major (and, tellingly, the default provider of applications in Windows XP. We all know what happens with default applications, and to their competition, ever since Netscape bit the dust. So AOL has a bunch of strategies for competing with MS. But the most worrying concept is the fact that in a war...
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Told ya. Microsoft changes to three-year licensing plan. You no longer own your copy of Office,...

Told ya. Microsoft changes to three-year licensing plan. You no longer own your copy of Office, congratulations. God I hate Microsoft. More cheerfully, the stunningly cool FreeSQL project plans to make FreeNet (the privacy-protecting, anonymity-guaranteeing, censorship-free information network) the storage component for any SQL application. Wow. I wonder if I can port this Blog to FreeNet to stop Bill Gates kicking my butt for complaining about Microsoft?
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Depressing. Douglas Adams has died of a heart attack, suddenly. He was only 49.

Depressing. Douglas Adams has died of a heart attack, suddenly. He was only 49.
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An amusing page about why Titanic was a bad movie. What's amusing is the fact that the movie was...

An amusing page about why Titanic was a bad movie. What's amusing is the fact that the movie was indeed full of flaws and really, really stupid points, but they completely fail to notice these and instead take issue with things that actually make sense or that are subjective. For example: Whether Jack really loved Rose: how can you tell? Rose didn't let Jack cling to her plank of wood: did these people even see the movie? They tried to get on, but it started to sink with both of them on it! Their biggest criticism seems to be that Jack was poor and Leonardo DiCaprio looks like a girl, so Rose should have gone for Evil Rich Fiancee :-)
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Revising is boring.

Revising is boring.
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Die, XBox, die! Microsoft's new gaming console crashes during a demo, revealing a PC-like boot...

Die, XBox, die! Microsoft's new gaming console crashes during a demo, revealing a PC-like boot screen. Funny.
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It has recently been suggested that the content of this weblog is a subset of the content of...

It has recently been suggested that the content of this weblog is a subset of the content of Slashdot. Untrue! Some of it also comes from Ed, for which he is handsomely rewarded by reciprocal links to his home page. Apparently, the cultivation of marijuana now accounts for 3-4% of my country's GDP. That's pretty amusing. Also, Ed's friend Amy has put up a website including an article on why heterosexuals should not be allowed to marry or reproduce which I completely agree with.
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Cool! Play a clone of Risk online. Thanks to Nigel for sending me the link. The game looks pretty...

Cool! Play a clone of Risk online. Thanks to Nigel for sending me the link. The game looks pretty accurate, but the server is busy; I wonder if we can make mirrors?
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I had an interesting lecture this morning by a guy from Intel about the Pentium 4, the Itanium, and...

I had an interesting lecture this morning by a guy from Intel about the Pentium 4, the Itanium, and chip design in general. I really can say I have a much better sense of how my computer works now, almost filling the gaps between the 0s-and-1s world and programming languages. One of the things he said was that Itanium is aimed at the "high end of the server market". Which implies that Pentium 4 is not going to be the last pentium, and makes this article about Transmeta allying with AMD a lot more interesting. Basically, the Itanium and AMD's latest offering are both 64-bit, but AMDs architecture is still backward-compatible with the all-encompassing x86 family, while Itanium requires significant redevelopment of most software. Of course, it may all be a moot point if the next version of Windows runs (as seems likely) on Itanium; developers will flock to it. But I'm not sure how pleased the Linux community will be about that, you might end up with *nix running on the x86ish boxes while Windows flavours go to...
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There was also a mildly interesting article about dinosaur robots that really walk and talk. Well,...

There was also a mildly interesting article about dinosaur robots that really walk and talk. Well, walk, anyway. You know, for kids. (Points for catching that reference) Apparently the inventor hopes seeing live walking dinosaurs -- we're not talking T-rexes, or even Raptors, the prototype is 18 inches high -- will inspire them to become scientists and engineers. Well, I'm inspired. I'm also very impressed by the quality of The Skills Market. Yet another player in the crowded field of IT recruitment sites (currently ruled by JobServe), they have a very well-designed site with some robust tech behind it which must have taken ages to develop, and in particular some really nice graphing software which shows you current supply-and-demand charts for your skills. I signed up, and am surprised to say I recommend it to other people -- their traffic's a bit low at the moment, but it's a good site. This is all of interest to me at the moment because I'm looking for a job for summer; and incidentally a place to live.
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Are these people really smart, or really dumb? Scientists created nanotubes in well-ordered arrays,...

Are these people really smart, or really dumb? Scientists created nanotubes in well-ordered arrays, which is really useful for industrial applications. But it was by accident. And they don't know why they form. And sometimes they don't. But they'll be rich anyway. More worryingly, only 5 to 10 percent of illegal smuggling in radioactive materials is detected, apparently, making it more likely that a major metropolitan centre is going to get nuked any day now. You heard it here first. That's interesting in light of the fact the Dubya Bush, all-hail-the-chief of the USA, wants more nuclear power plants to solve their energy crisis. That article also goes into a good in-depth analysis of the pros and cons of nuclear fuel. On the whole, I'd say we're screwed: nuclear power is expensive and produces waste that is deadly to nearby life, fossil fuels are cheap and produce waste that is deadly to life all over the planet. Somebody invent fusion power quick. On the lighter side, some people think that you can...
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An interesting article on Reason (as always) asking why is polygamy illegal? True, it's kind of an...

An interesting article on Reason (as always) asking why is polygamy illegal? True, it's kind of an outmoded law, but since it's a religious belief, should you allow people who believe in human sacrifice to do that to? Obviously not, but polygamy is just a relationship between consenting adults (a-la gay marriage for instance) which is okay, IMHO. Also, there's a story on IDG (which I found via the excellent, all-knowing MoreOver) about Microsoft's 64-bit Windows and why it isn't likely to make much of a dent in the UNIX domination of high-end servers: It's Windows! It's the first version! It'll be buggy as shit! Itanium is released next week. Dell starts shipping Itanium systems in 3 months' time. How good is Microsoft at sticking to deadlines? High-end server == Valuable data == Security essential != Windows.
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Sadly -- especially from the standpoint of my revision -- I am once again addicted to Big Brother....

Sadly -- especially from the standpoint of my revision -- I am once again addicted to Big Brother. What a fantastic show, it's only day 7 and I already hate most of the housemates! Long live Channel Four.
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