Dear Obama…

Congratulations on what you have achieved so far to get to this point. You should be proud, and many are proud of you. What has impressed me today is not just the support and passion you’ve inspired in your own country, but the belief and hope that other people around the world now have that you will make a significant difference to how America acts, and is perceived.

I wish you all the best of luck. Please don’t fuck up



CCTV on the Cowley Road

And so we are now “protected” on the Cowley Road. I’m not keen personally. I don’t think they protect us that much. However if we’re going to have them, the feed for the cameras should be online for all to see. We should know what can be seen, and we should be able to benefit from them. We could see how busy the road is, see if there is a queue for the O2 Academy, see if our favourite randomly open pub is actually open. I think it’s a matter of open-sourcing our lives, if others get to see them, we should get to share that too.

Cowley Road CCTV to go live today (From The Oxford Times)

Lily Allen plays gig just for Oxfordshire

Interesting little concept this, Lily Allen is going to play the O2 Academy (aka the Carling Academy Oxford, The Zodiac and The Venue), and limit the audience to people that can prove they have an Oxford postcode. Tickets are £15

Lily’s gig just for us (From The Oxford Times)

An unfortunate sense of timing

For once, news about why we’re safer than we used to be – Boing Boing

Note the date, this is from yesterday. You’re probably aware by now why this was unfortunately, thankfully thus far it looks like it has been a mix of fantastic skill by the pilot and every ounce of good luck going that has resulted in no loss of life. Steven Johnson has also responded to his own post already: About US Airways Flight 1549

Satan’s Garageband

I’m just reblogging this, found on Graham Linehan’s wonderful site. It is a commercial for Microsoft’s Songsmith, their new music making software. I’ve not tried it myself. I’m in no position to judge how well-made and effective it is as a piece of software. However the likelihood of me ever trying it is vastly reduced in a mere four minutes.

Now in the title I referred to Garageband, but I think there is also an element of Wii Music in it. That is a simple music game/program for all the family to use. It was promoted beautifully in American by the Reverend Run. Now watch this, to see how to market your product to the insane.

What is this?! Why aren’t you just FIXING VISTA?! « Why, That’s Delightful!

Graham points out that this might be intended to be White People do Trapped in the Closet. In which case, it shouldn’t have been a full application, it should just be a small embeddable add-on to a website. Widget, Widget, Widget.

Bill Drummond Says, Bill Drummond Says

I’m a bit of a fanboy for Bill Drummond, former member of the KLF, former manager of The Teardrop Explodes, Echo and the Bunnymen, and Big in Japan. More for his chaotic good side and his appreciation of the effectiveness of a good bold font really though, although he absolutely has been involved in some wonderful music.

Anyway, a message reached me this evening through somewhere in my google reader account (I’d honestly say if I could remember) that he was recorded giving a lecture in Liverpool last year, and that it had recently been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 (not a usual haunt for me, I must confess). It was part of their Free Thinking festival in Liverpool, and there is a recording of it available on iPlayer now: Bill Drummond on Night Waves.

It’s about 50 minutes long, and well worth a listen soon (I think it will be taken down on the 15th January 2009, and then it may be elsewhere on the BBC site, or nowhere at all unfortunately, so go and listen now). There is a wonderful little exchange which sums up for me why I like him so:

“You know how it is, you get an idea, you book some advertising space in a major newspaper, you announce that art is dead, and then you wake up the next morning and think “Why did I just do that?”

“So can I ask, with this latest project, which you’re telling us is the future of music, why should we trust you?”

“Whilst I’m passionate and truly believe in this project, I would warn that it is no more mature or thought through than anything else I’ve done”

Also in digging around afterwards, I found a 7 minute video of him recorded just before the same festival, talking about music: Bill Drummond: How to be a musician.

Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t include a link to my own fanboyish writing about him, which was written in a notebook on a train either to or from Wolverhampton: Bill Drummonds Dead Bill Drummonds Dead. The more ardent Julian Cope fans will note my repeated theft of his song titles.

Incidentally, Chaotic Good is how I once read Doctor Who described as in a book about Dungeons and Dragons in the early 80s.

New Oxford Guide to Local Independent Shops launched

This is a great idea, a guide showcasing 85 of Oxford’s best independent shops. I like to support Oxford businesses where I can, and this can only help me.

It looks like there is a site coming to too, so that will be worth keeping an eye on.

Book keeps Oxford independent (From The Oxford Times)

Best top ten list of 2009

violet blue ® :: open source sex | top ten sexy geeks 2009

(Article is safe for work, however the ads and links in the sidebar really aren’t)

I think I was robbed. Also do watch the MC Chris – Nrrrd Grrrl video at the end of the article, kudos for being the first rap track I’ve heard to include a reference to Animal Crossing.

Rip Torn pleads not guilty to drink-driving charge

Rather sad bit of news this, the magnificent Rip Torn is up on a charge of drink driving in Connecticut. The police report sounds pretty damning, and seeing as he doesn’t appear to have a driver’s licence now due to a previous conviction, it looks like he could be in a lot of trouble if he is found guilty.

Rip Torn is something of a hero, as to my mind he responsible for one of the most spectacular characters in all of sitcom history, Artie from The Larry Sanders Show. I was angry that Alec Baldwin seemed to be doing an impression of Artie on 30 Rock, so I’m slightly sated by the news that Torn is now playing his boss on the show. As a fan, I’m just a bit sad that he’s got himself in trouble again.

30 Rocker Rolled by DUI – E! Online