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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Legs of lead

Last night saw Daughter and I take a ride out to Tesco's. (other supermarkets are available)

That in itself is nothing to really make a noise about, but we didn't take the most direct route. She didn't go to the Gym yesterday and so needed the exercise. I, on the other hand, never go to the gym and always need the exercise. I'm out of practice and it really showed. I thought I was going to die on two separate occasions. I didn't and I know it was actually very good for me, but it hurts at the time. So what would normally have been a gentle 2 miles of flat cycling was actually more like 10 miles up hill and down dale. It also served to remind me how badly I need to get a proper bike and not one made of bambooicite.

After 20 minutes of recovery time, I cooked up a spledid quorn based chilli, caught up with corrie (its the law) and finally got to finish watching "Battle: LA" which is a guilty pleasure of a movie. It's not clever, but it is big and dumb and enjoyable. If you want to know what its about, you just need to see the cover art on the DVD and that pretty much tells it all.

Great in a really bad way - 7/10.
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This morning, I'm not sure if I can feel my legs. So rather than rest and recover, naturally I need to trapse around town in search of odds and sods for the American trip. Mrs G, daughter and I have decided on a ride on the bus (public transport is always entertaining) into Chelter's. I'm after updating the 'business casual' look and Mrs G is hopefully going to get an iPhone upgrade to a White 4. But we'll see. I'm not a huge fan of retail opportunities but for once I'm actually looking forward to it.

There's a take-out coffee with my name on it.


This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Friday, July 29, 2011

US Finance + LoL CaTz made me make this...

Meh

Base photo credit should read "JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images"
Not sure where the Cat came from - but thank you whoever you are…..


This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Expired...

We appear to have arrived at what can only be described as ...  Thursday.

Not quite true I suppose.  It could be described as many many different things. The New Friday, for example, or perhaps "Just past the middle of the week".  This particular Thursday could also be considered "Flaming Hot!" for that is what it is. Being a Brit of course the weather is at the forefront of my mind and is the beginnings of most conversation.  While this might sound like a myth, or perhaps a nostalgic view of the english, surprisingly it is also true and a fact to boot. 

In short it is a Thursday in the summer which would normaly mean cold and wet, but is in fact unusually and correctly both hot and dry.  Nice.

Floppy

Yesterday included a trip to a Starfleet office to spend some time with the Badman and prepare for our various handovers.  The first of these will be taking place next Tuesday somewhere in the Southern part of England.  The other's will be happening the following week somewhere in the Eastern part of America. So that's that stuff....

In preparation for the US piece I had to renew my US Travel Authorisation which nowadays is all done online (ETSA: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/ ). Gone are the days of filling in a green card on the plane just before you land, and gone are the days of it being free. You pay 14 dollars (some of that money goes to promote US travel) to be permitted to enter the US and it's valid for two years. Interestingly, none of that happens the other way around.  In the UK we derive no revenue from visitors at the border in this way. I note the Welsh do though ( http://www.severnbridge.co.uk/toll_prices.shtml ) ... :-)

What's more interesting though is the fact that the ETSA is only valid for two years and without a reminder you could easily show up at a US airport, only to have to fly home again.  Be warned.  

But hang about - it seems that everything relating to travel now has much short expiration dates attached to it, so if you're planning on leaving the front door of your house anytime soon - check these three just in case:

  • Passport: Only valid for 10 years now. A "One day" renewal is about £130 quid.
  • EHIC Card: Only valid for 5 years. The "European Health Insurance Card" covers EU citizens anywhere in the EU for state-managed hospital treatment. ( https://www.ehic.org.uk/ )
  • Driving Licence: Only valid for 10 years. Since it changed to a photo card, you have to renew them every 10 years, or you can pay a £1000 fine.  Your choice. It'll cost you 20 quid to update it.

It's all abit of a con. A nice way for government departments to make just a bit more money out of us - as if they didn't get enough already, but this is the world we live in. Feel free to write to your MP and see where that gets you. Let me know how it works out.

 



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Stuffed & Mounted

Of course with a title such as the one above, the regular reader might think I was about to refer to the neliphunt that Pooh and I have caught.  Read on...

Oh, Em and might I even venture, Gee - to use the vernacular.  I was doing fine wandering between the various stalls, laden with delights from all across the country. The odd dipp of an oil, or the snippet of some cheese. A square of chocolate, a snifter of vodka and so on and so forth. And then we espied the Cider and the Sausages.....

Actually, in truth we skipped the cider. We were after all "on our bikes" and thus in charge of a vehicle on her majesty's highway - and besides, we'd already been at the vodka.... and the brandy...  But the sausages in a bap - I should have walked away.  I should have mustered up the strength to say "No thankyou" but it wasn't to be.  

Sausage

"Two of those tasty looking things please!" I was heard to say.  A nice perch on the fake lawn and 30 minutes later I was quite literally "Stuffed".  All that remained to be done was clamber aboard our trusty steeds and cycle home - thus "Mounted".

See what I did there?

...and on the way we had to pass Gloucester's latest piece of Street Sculpture, which appears to be some sort of tower, not too dissimilar to the rusty needle that they've already built, but this time without rust...  and a bit fatter...  I wonder what it "means" ?

Img_3412

Happy Days.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Lions & Tigers & Bears, Oh My.....

Those of you with a keen ear, will recognise the line from the Wizard of Oz, and one thing is for certain, this most definetly isn't Kansas anymore, by which I mean, things have changed.....

Lionsntigersnbears

If you've been paying attention, you'll know that Winnie-the-Pooh and I have been on a great adventure.  High up the hill above the village, we've seen woodland creatures of all shapes and sizes and we've run-off from the hedgerow in search of that mystic and majestic beast - the neliphunt. For our (sort of) first expedition, you'd expect this to be a ramshackle mess of a journey with nothing going right and everything going wrong. In truth, this hasn't quite been the case.  There have been moments of danger, but generally speaking all has gone very well.  So it comes as a great surprise to all and sundry about, that we have actually caught us an neliphunt which is as I speak locked up in Pooh's cellar while we decide what to do with it. I may have said too much already - although anyone with half a brain and a google search box might be able to figure it out. 

Wt

We both need a bit of a rest ofter all the excitement, (Pooh probably more than I as he's had to patiently ignore my obvious observations and listen to my less obvious one's with apparant interest) so he will be off to the New World for a break, while I have the "Change is as good as a rest" option, to cover for him while he's gone. Luckily for me, the cover means I too, will get to see the New World by way of a handover.  I think this means I'll have to be sharing the tusks with our cousins, but so far that's not being made very clear.  It's been 4 years since I've been across the pond.  I'm both daunted (Not sure how I'll get on with tusks in customs) and very much looking forward to it. While I'm not in love with it, I do realy quite like America.... a lot....  But that's in the future....

Our friends of the fruit - Mr Jobs & co, have unleashed Lion upon us.  Now, me being a tigger (and tigger's are wonderful things) I'm not in the least bit daunted.

Osxlion

Many apple folks of old have warned that being an early adopter can cause pain - and having been an early adopter of technology for many years, I am all to aware of that fact.  I only have to think of the agony of a failed recording of Coronation Street thanks to Microsoft's Media Center glitches to bring it all flooding back.  Personally, I wasn't the least bit worried about a missed episode - but hell hath no fury... as the saying goes.

Still, unpreturbed - or perhaps that should be unhindered by hindsight - I was amongst the first to hand over my 20quid to download the latest offering for the App Store.  A very interesting move by Apple to have walked away from traditional methods of software distribution.  This is a first for such a major OS, and not something I could imagine MS doing (given their control freakery).  Besides, MS probably want to justify the extortionate prices they charge - but what do I know?

So how did it go?  Is my mac now a quivering jumled up mess of bits all over the floor, failing to boot up and awaiting new drivers for some piece of hardware I've owned for 5 years without any problems ???  (See MS Upgrades elsewhere for more on that).  Of course not. It's awesome. And it's encouraged me to spend a further sixty quid with them on a magic touchpad.  Now that my firends, is some darn clever marketing. 

My interation with the OS is now all swipes and hand gestures (no, not that one) - and it really does feel surprsingly natural. Pinching and zooming (just like the iPad, iPhon and iPod) is great, and a two fingured swipe to the right while web browsing is the most natural back button in the world. I'm suitably impressed.  On top of that, the full screen apps make great use of my desktop real estate and the whole system feels snappy and smart.  

So - no pain at all???  Well, one thing - and it's a tiny one.  Internally on my home network, I run a web server to share various things - and after upgrade - I wasn't able to get this working again.  At this precise moment I still haven't figured it out - but that's due entirely to having to work for a living and not being able to procrastinate all day long.  I'm sure I'll have it sorted on Sunday.  I am tempted to take the "clean install" approach, just because upgrades are known for doing the unexpected. I'll give it some thought.

Google+ is also with us, and I've prattled about it here already. The iOS app arrived this week, which you can pick up here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/google/id447119634?mt=8 .  If you haven't got on it yet - it's up to 20million users now (in about 3 weeks - it took Facebook three years to do that) and I'd highly recommend that you become one of them: http://plus.google.com. Feel free to add http://gplus.to/golfyball to one of your circles.

Mrs G and I have had our Wedding anniversary as well - all good... Choclate and Iron.  I didn't buy her an Iron as violence often hurts, and I would have been subjected to some if I had.  Today however, will see us off to a food festival.  and I'm starving just at the thought of it.  http://www.gloucesterquaysfoodfestival.co.uk/

Toodle-pip old bean!



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hacked off

Ironic that tabloid newspaper journalists are known as "Hacks" (someone who is paid to write low quality, quickly put-together articles) given what's been happening of late.

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With today's news of the resignation of Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Paul Stephenson ( http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-14180043 )' it's all starting to get rather murky and messy.  In fact given the stories of the amount of time our current prime minister has been spending in these people's company, it seems almost inevitable that he's going to have to go next...

If I was a conspiracy theorist, I might hypothesise that the appointment of Andy Coulson, followed by his resignation from the employment of number 10 some months before this all exploded again could indicate that his employer knew such revelations were coming.

Is there any other evidence to suggest that the current British government might "have it in" for the Murdoch machine?...  Well there was that short lived debacle with Vince Cable and a reporter on the Daily Telegraph back in December last year.  While Our Dave was cosying up to the Murdoch's it seems the other half of the coalition didn't feel quite the same way.

At first this looks like Dave has a very poor lack of judgement and Vince doesn't. But what if this was Dave's plan all along and the LibDems were his "patsy's" just in-case a paper like the telegraph might have asked the right question? 

It's possible that he could have been using the media for his own ends (really?.. A prime minister? Never!) and having achieved power - albeit via a very inconclusive route - and then had to put up with News International sucking up to the coalition (they really want to own BSkyB outright) decided it's time to take it apart. I'm sure he'd hate to see another headline that read "It was the Sun what won it" unless it was a conservative win.

In short that would make him corrupt and therefore unfit for office, and a decent PM would have to go.  Of course, I'm not a conspiracy theorist, and I have no evidence beyond what's in the public domain so it's all about as likely as JFK's magic bullet, or man not landing on the moon. Beyond that, I've seen Fox News...  so I'm actually with Vince and in a true coalition that would mean I'm with Dave too.  Hmmmmm.

One further irony here is that a person that devotes him or herself to party-political machinations is known as (you guessed it) a "Political Hack".  

I can't wait for the movie, they've already done a great job on the casting....

Take care



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Cheap Flights.... 50p

It's not ad advert, I just had to share...
Thanks Sis.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Saturday, July 16, 2011

When seals snore on the sea shore...and the Cambrian Explosion

So it's been a little while since I posted any interesting video type stuff. In fact it's been a while since I posted any interesting stuff at all, but such is the way of things. To make up for it, here's not one, but two pieces to tickle your eyeballs and lugholes (and if you don't know what a lug hole is, you really should stay in and read more - or get out and talk to people that know)

First up.. Seals...snoring... I snorted and giggled...

And then for your musical delectation, a group by the name of "Brighter Lights, Thicker Glasses" (clever stuff) one of whom is an ex-music teacher turned science teacher. Naturally he'd write a song about the Cambrian Explosion.... Who wouldn't. And even if you're not into the science, it's a catchy tune.

Have a great weekend.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Friday, July 15, 2011

Exactly...

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me
Golfyball is a Blogger, Geek, Nerd & Thinker at golfyball.com and of course at Google+
This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Torn and bloodied from the fight....

....I find myself absolutely shattered. I've spent all afternoon wrestling and scrapping with the dreaded beast but to no avail. I've been unable to best it alone. In the end I needed a helping hand from pooh to finally put it to rest. It seems that my laptop just isn't powerful enough to import the final element into such a large cost case. Bloody software.

By the end of the day the weather was turning too and rather than a nice bright evening that we've been experiencing of late, it became dark and over cast and made any further painting in the kitchen impossible. You can't paint in electric light - Essex fact.

Daughter was baby sitting for Auntie S, Mrs G had corrie's to catch up with. I had a wealth of reading list to work through. As a special treat we availed burger star of a take away for dinner. It's not right, but I can justify it with the inordinate amount of cycling we've been doing of late, the condition of the kitchen and the overwhelming evidence that it is 'not McDonald's' and is made from very fresh ingredients. It was lush in a very naughty way.
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Today sees me having to make a trip to the dentists. A filling. Nothing serious, just my contribution to his yacht fund I'm sure.

I'm hoping for a quieter day today, and if time permits I may try and jot down my thoughts on Google+. I'm particularly surprised at the number of tech heads who are leaving Facebook and twitter in their droves it would seem. I'm already hearing reports of several million new users to G+ in this week alone... And it's only Tuesday!
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Have a great day.


This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Monday, July 11, 2011

Painting the town red

A busy weekend has been had, so to fail to summarise...

A brief mention of Thursday evening, saw four of the WTC visiting Frank Whittle's pub. Cycling in the rain was worth it though, just to catch up with the lads who are consistently entertaining no matter what the circumstances.

Friday saw me landed with reviewing some work that our US cousins have been putting together. All very interesting and generally not bad. They did have (in fact still do at the moment I'm sure) a small piece missing which could cost them quite a bit of cash, so I helpfully pointed that out to them. We have a follow up meeting today (Monday), and we'll see where they've got to with it, but I suspect they'll be mostly fine for now.

This sort of work fits in just fine around the Nelefunt hunt that Pooh and I have been conducting and have nearly caught. It's a bit of a moving feast of a beast mind you, and right now we're waiting patiently for the drugs to take effect so that it might fall asleep and accidentally wake up caught. Trouble is, it's a big beasty and not sure how much of the drugs it needs to knock it out. I always vote for giving it loads, but sometimes nelefunts can sense it and will only go for smaller amounts. It's a numbers game. And a waiting game. And just for good measure, it is what it is.

We also have a new prefect at Starfleet academy. Interesting sort. Seems to go for the rule book with a vengeance. This approach is all well and good when your terraforming, or mining, not so helpful when you're exploring strange new worlds, seeking out new life and new civilisations, in short, boldly going.... etc etc.... On the plus side it does provide us with ample oppertunitys to play "MBS Bingo" (the M stands for middle management).

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I'm not having a pop. He's just doing his job. It's just that it's a job I could never see any appeal-to or need-of, for that matter.

Friday night brought daughter's new "fella" to dinner and what a fine upstanding chap he is. Just as long as he doesn't think he's "in". This is something that dad's with daughters have to deal with, and I am getting better at it. To be fair, this one passed the "mate" test instantly, and he does seem to be at least half sensible. Did I mention what a fine upstanding chap he is? I'd hate to have to set the bunnies or Helga on him.

Saturday. My favourite day of the week... Along with Thursday (the new Friday), oh and Friday and Sunday.... Wednesday's are alright as they're the halfway point of the working week, so I suppose that just leaves Monday and Tuesday. Can't be doing with either of them. Subject sorted. Now where was I?

Ah yes, so Saturday. First job, the return of the car. Well over a week to get the brake calliper replaced, but worth every minute of the wait. The lack of motor only really caused me any pain on Friday when I was unable to meet up with pooh, but he was very understanding about it and claimed he'd save me some huny. (I know what bears are like though.) Both Mrs G and I have done a lot of cycling this week, and thats good for everyone. As for Mickey and the motor, when it came to the bill, it was a pleasure to pay. Sometimes it really is all about "who" and not "what". With that job out of the way, reliably, Mrs G hopped on her bike to get her hair done, daughter was off to work, so I got to try out Google+ and some of it's features.

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Got to tell you, I'm loving it. Finally a social networking application with some proper management built into it. It's still got a way to go, but it kicks the be-jesus out of Facebook in my humble opinion. Check it out here: http://plus.google.com

There was also some qualifying for the British GP, and then at the last minute Mrs G suggested a trip to that massive blue building with the yellow writing on it that's always jammed full of people buying furniture. Eye-Key-Ah. I have a love hate relationship with the place. Too many times have I found it over crowded, over priced and under performing. I often have to make a second trip to return something, or get another one, or a different one, so I'm not a massive fan. Having said that, on this occasion it all went swimingly. In fact rather too well. The place was practically empty and we bought a new lamp to replace the one that wasn't big enough. This one's simply perfect. Quite a shock I can tell you. Curry for dinner, fun times.
Now Sunday rolled around and with it yet more cycling. This is becoming something of a habit (albeit not a bad one, unlike the others). Last night after the Ikea trip and plenty of umping and ahhing we went and made a rash decision (something of a discomfort for a Capricorn* - us mountain goats think about it and pick a safe path). It's finally time to paint the kitchen!! Duh-duh-Daaaaaaaa!

And what colour would us safe path treading mountain goat types choose? Blue? White? Some sort of Beige possibly? .... Not a bit of it.... Classic Red (just like the pillar boxes). Was I nervous about applying loaded brush to wall? Oh yes. And am I happy with the result.... Mostly, very. One thing I've learned about red paint, unlike White, if you apply even the tiniest drop to the wrong place it looks like a murder has taken place. Smudged red is messy. Bloody messy (pardon the pun).

Red
So the short version of Sunday is like this: Bikes to B&Q, Buy Paint, Home, Empty kitchen, Prep Walls, sanding etc. Cup of tea, lunch, Watch the Grand Prix...

Which reminds me, what an awesome new camera angle that was. 400m cables suspend the "flying" camera over the track and provided some stunning pictures. http://thumbsnap.com/tLWZ8lwd It's not a new technology, being deployed in football, swimming, Indy car racing to name but three, but it's a first in F1.

Back to the schedule.... Another cup of tea, finally build up enough courage to apply paint to walls, nip out and buy more masking tape, apply tape, apply more paint, dinner (slow cooked sausage casserole) and then more paint. Finally round the evening off with a Crabbie's alcoholic ginger beer and "Sleeping with the Enemy" on Film 4 from back in 1990.

There is more painting to be done still. A second coat is required and there's a few right diddly bits, but a good 8 hours of drying is required first so I think I know what will be happening on Monday night.

All-in-all, a fine, full weekend. The near future brings more work with Americans, painting, a visitation from Wiltshire and planning for our 6th Wedding Anniversary, so for a start I need to figure out what sixth is (probably brick or something) before Mrs G tells me it's diamonds, or gold... ;-) Bless her for trying. Take care.

* actually, I'm not a Capricorn, I'm a Pyrex... That's right I was a test-tube baby.. Boom-boom.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Google+ has arrived

Already loving circles. That one feature alone, is a vast, seriously huge, improvement over Facebook. Today I'll figure out the rest of it.... :-)

http://plus.google.com/102182856404931683867



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Google -

Googleminus

Feels like a long wait when you've got a lot to do.....



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Throttling G+

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In a Google+ post, real actual Google employee Dave Besbris, engineering director of the social network, explains the throttling approach:

First, we want to make sure our infrastructure scales so the service remains fast and reliable. Second, we want to ensure that bugs are fixed while there are still a relatively few people in the field trial.

Things are going well with the systems right now so we feel comfortable enough to open up invites for a brief period. Our goal is to double the user base in the field trial. (Sorry, we're not giving details about how many folks are in the field trial yet).

So, in a few minutes, we'll open up invites again. 

We continue to throttle invites, so please don't mass invite folks as it won't work. If you invite a handful of your most important friends and family you're much more likely to get these folks into our system.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Monday, July 04, 2011

Define "Frustration" in terms of Google+

Google+ Help

Someone is sharing with me on Google+ but I can’t join. What gives?

That’s great that someone wants to share with you! And while you can check out what they wanted you to see, you can’t quite yet join Google+. Google+ is in limited Field Trial. During this time, when something is shared with you by someone on Google+, you'll receive it via email but won't be able to comment or engage with the content like other Google+ users. You'll be able to join Google+ as we let more users in over time.

In the meantime, you can poke around hereto see all the cool things that you’ll be able to do with Google+.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Toasted Wheels

That was unexpected. Not at all part of the plan.

Saturday rolled around and Mrs G and I cycled to town to do a couple of little jobs. It was a beautifully warm day and no sign of any rain. By lunch time we were both starving and so took a trip out the far side of the city to a new-ish place in the docks... "On Toast". You'll never guess what their main food line is of course, but it is the only one of it's kind in the country and is the home of the "Mars Bar on Toast".

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I briefly considered it and then plumped for the "Hawaiian" which is actually a Ham & Pineapple toasted sandwich. Mrs G had the Canadian which is Brie & Cranberry by mistake. The owner misheard the order and graciously replaced it with Brie & Bacon on his second attempt. Free refills on the coffee and a great seat looking over the docks makes this the perfect little snack shack and I have no doubt when they launch it as a franchise it'll crop up everywhere and be gratefully received.

On the way home I suggested a quick look in "Go Outdoors" which is like B&Q for out-doorsy people. Tents, Boots, coats, rucksacks, fishing gear, climbing gear and bikes to name just a handful of their offerings. What I wasn't expecting to do was buy another bike, but that's what happened.

You may recall that I bought a couple of bikes a few months ago, one for Mrs G and one for myself. Now somehow or other daughter has pretty much commandeered Mrs G's wheels and so Mrs G often either takes mine or ends up walking. Well, this just won't do really, so now she has her own - or will do once it's ready - and very pleased about that she is too.

Sunday has seen a visitation from cousin P with G, K and little A (or Boo as she's referred to). Daughter has become her new best friend, which was very funny and very cute, unlike Barney who is clearly no longer a child friendly cat. He is "of an age" and doesn't enjoy being prodded or poked any more.

Granny and W joined us all for lunch and Granny had planned to be home in time for the Wimbledon Men's Final. She likes a good natter, almost as much as she likes tennis (although there is nothing, and I mean nothing that she loves as much as tennis). He nattering resulted in her not leaving in time and having to suffer the glory of the Final in Full HD. She was very comfortable with it and we were all (except Mrs G - who physically detests the game) happy with the result. Well done Djokovic. Nice job.

There were a couple of emails but nothing too demanding, so the work situation is definitely on the wain. Monday sees me handing back the tennis related job (which I'd barely started, but this is the way of resource management) and trying - and failing - to reduce our costs for Pooh and I's big adventure.

Fun times.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous

Saturday, July 02, 2011

A Social Invitation to Google Plus

If ever there was a way to put the kiss of death on a new Social Network site, then surely it must be for me to blog about it. So I apologise in advance to Google. I didn't want to kill your shiny new social network, but you made me do it.

What am I blathering about? Well if you haven't heard yet, Google are in the process of launching Google+ (http://plus.google.com). By my reckoning this will be their third crack at the social network Market, or fourth if you include the 'never-saw-the-light-of-day', GoogleMe. They tried with Buzz and they tried with Wave both of which were...OK.... But neither of which killed Facebook.

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When they launched GoogleMail back in 2004, those of us that were lucky enough to get an invite (and that meant a gmail.com address - as opposed to a googlemail.co.uk address) were able to invite our friends to join. These invites became so sought after that people started selling them on eBay, such was the demand for a new email service. It appears that a similar situation might be arising with Google+. Sure enough, invites to what will surely become known as G+, are available on eBay for around 75USD. This is the very strange world that we live in.

The problem with trying to kick Facebook where it hurts is gaining momentum in the first place. Giving access to a select few is fine for Beta testing, but when you add in invites, you open yourself to a whole other level of trouble. Your invited early adopter will sign up and login and find no-one else in there to socialise with. A few of them might even write reviews sharing how underwhelmed they are by it all, and before you know it, G+ will have gone the way of Wave. Sort of defeats the whole idea of a Social Network.

From my perspective I hope they open it up to the rest of us as quickly as possible. I want to see it do well. As I've said many times before, I'm sick of the lack of control within Facebook, both for the end user and from it's apparent developers. The sooner a viable alternative is available the better.

Back in the real world.... Today will see cycling (still no car) and possibly the purchase of a magic touch pad for my mac in preparation for OSX Lion which will land in the next couple of weeks. Lion with include a whole load of hand gestures to it's revamped, iOS like interface, and so a touchpad will be the perfect compliment. Having worked all the hour god sends lately, I think I can justify a new bit of kit.

Daughter has recovered from her tonsillitis, and that means she's speaking again, or more realistically she's demanding again. I wouldn't want her any other way.

One final rant, and this one is for the Post Office. What a bunch of thieving @&£)(:/:£)@&;/'s

Mrs G bought a lamp (25 quid and a fiver postage and packing). Sadly when it arrived, it was just that little bit too small, and didn't look right. Fair enough. A return. Re-boxed in it's original packaging and off to the post office.

"The cheapest recorded delivery please" says I, to the nice lady behind the counter.
"That'll be £9.72, please" says she, with a perfectly straight face.
"Surely you jest" says I, "9 and three quarters of our best English pounds just to send a lamp that I received for half that cost? There must be sum (sic) mistake?"
"I'm sorry sir, but first class recorded delivery for 2.15kilograms is £9.72"
The penny dropped and I replied, "ah ha. I see your mistake. You've selected first class, when for the purposes of a return parcel, second class will more than suffice. A simple change I'm sure, my good lady"
But to my horror she went on to declare "because your parcel weighs more than 1kilogram, it cannot be sent by second class"

Now, I'm a fairly simple man, but pray do tell me, what the FECK! has the weight of the parcel got to do with what class it can be sent as? I don't care if you stick on the back of a donkey, or in a wheel barrow or strap it to the shells of a heard of snails, as long as it gets there. There's no rush, and it doesn't need to be presented on a red velvet cushion with gold braiding. I was of a mind to break the dam thing in two as you can imagine. I'd almost be better off keeping it and selling it at a car boot sale for a tenner. In the end we've given the post office 15 quid and have nothing to show for it. Mugged.

0image

With that, I'm off to open an account with DHL in my local staples. It's got to be cheaper, but what pains me is it's stories like this that will be the death of the once great Royal Mail. Greedy fudge-wits.

Have a great weekend.



This post originally appeared here: Posterous
 

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