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Showing posts from June, 2015

Myths and Taboos

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Have a read of the book My Life in Ruins by Adam Ford. He’s an Archaeologist who has participated in digs around the globe. He ponders the period 8,000-10,000 years ago when people switched to farming from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Why would they do that? He reckons … you only have to work for an hour a day to get enough food, and spend the rest of the time lounging around creating very elaborate creation myths and taboos and things.

An interesting concept, but most of our inland (non-coastal) Australian Aborigines did not switch to farming … yet they had time to dream and construct creation myths and taboos.

Google googol

Something I didn’t know … According to Google, it derived its name from the mathematical term googol which is defined as the digit 1 followed by 100 zeros. It looks like this:
10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000.
It would look even bigger with all the commas! Back in 1920 the term googol was coined by 9-year-old Milton Sirotta, the nephew of American mathematician Edward Kasner. Kasner popularised the concept and term in 1940. Googol is a nice term. Other  names for the same number are: ten duotrigintillion, ten thousand sexdecillion and ten sexdecilliard. A googol is a simpler term. It doesn’t really have much everyday use in the non-scientific community, but it comes into play in complex mathematics, investigations into the mass of an electron or the universe. If you are starting to get excited, then follow this link

Bacon Week

This week is officially Australian Bacon Week ... who dreams up these things?
I mean we don't have a National Geranium Week do we? ... or maybe we do. There surely must be a register to show the themes, topics, subjects or charities that get recognised for a day or a week.

Back to bacon. It's the time to recognise the joy of bacon, especially properly smoked bacon. A burger is lacking without bacon (and beetroot) and there's nothing like hot bacon on toast. Add cracked black pepper and a dollop of real baked beans with a touch of chilli sauce and you have a gourmet meal; to be enjoyed at breakfast, lunch or dinner. Preparation time 5 minutes, cooking time 5 minutes and lingering satisfaction for the rest of the day.

It's a sad statistic that ~ 70% of pork sold in Australia is imported. What you buy at the supermarket is mostly imported. Don't buy it. Be wary of imported bacon. You have no idea of the hygiene and ethical controls. Only buy Australian grown and proce…

Squishy batteries

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'Squishy' batteries can be made from trees – this may be the future. Zero pollution.A new type of squishy battery has been designed. It’s made from tree pulp and is 'squishy' to touch, but is stress and shock resistant. Also, it is ideally wearable, embedded in our clothes to power own 'wearable' devices. Importantly, it is not harmful to the environment when disposed. The description gets a bit more technical so I’ll leave you to read the link below. It’s amazing how our (technology) environment is transforming as a result of technology research.
Read more here

Virtual War Memorial

What a fantastic initiative. A Virtual War Memorial website has been created and receives SA Government funding to enable students to contribute stories. Schools  are being encouraged to get students involved. School children will be urged to get involved in an online project telling the stories of those who have served Australia in war. The South Australian Government is providing $780,000 over four years to a partnership project between the state Education Department and the Returned and Services League (RSL). The Virtual War Memorial was launched as a Centenary of Anzac project. It is planned to increase the collection of online biographies and records of servicemen and women. It’s a good looking website that encourages participation. Make sure that your local school is involved. For more information, click here For more information, click here
Click here to visit the Virtual War Memorial

Goodwood Road repairs

I was delighted to hear that the State Government has allocated funding to re-seal Goodwood Road between Florence Street and Mitchell Street @ Goodwood – a distance of about 600m.
This is a bad section of Goodwood Road and I have been advocating for a re-seal for some time. According to the statement from the Minister, work is to start immediately.
I am hoping that common sense will prevail and the road will be re-sealed after the road works to under-ground the power lines – due to start later this year.

Simple beauty

I’ve been reading an interesting article on Australian architect Peter Stutchbury. A fascinating read on a remarkable man.
Talking about architecture and inspiration, here’s a quote from him …
“I’d say real beauty is found with the least number of ingredients and the most amount of thinking.”


A profound and yet so simple a statement.

What's your date of birth?

Identity theft is a growing problem … and people are not helping themselves. In fact, they are making it easier for thieves to steal/acquire identities. One of the key items that is often freely available is a person’s date of birth. It is freely provided in competition entries and online in social media and forms. If a thief has the date of birth and some details about a bank account there is a good chance of gaining access to the ban k account and draining funds.
For many many years I have never been 100% honest in surveys I have done (except for the Census). My age is never exact and some other personal details are almost right, but not quite. People (doing surveys) don’t need an exact profile on me. Well, actually they would like that because it is usually on-sold.
Be careful about the details you give-away about yourself.
Have a read of this story

3D smart phones

Just when I was about to buy a newer smart phone, along comes news that holographic technology is about to emerge on smartphones. We will soon be able to receive holographs on our mobile phones.
Maybe I should wait a bit for the technology to emerge and mature.
To understand the technology and where we are headed, click on this link

Just tick Accept

Every day on the Internet we are obliged to read terms and conditions and then tick the Accept/Agree box before proceeding with accessing the service on offer. Wrong! We never read the terms and conditions. Who does? We all tried once and quickly ticked the Accept box.
A guy by the name of Alex Hern decided not to use any Internet service without firstly reading all the terms and conditions first. After 7 days and and 146,000 words later, he penned his thoughts. He read and analysed all the small print, the legal stuff.
He wrote … When was the last time you read all the terms and conditions for a service you used? Have you ever read the terms and conditions? Probably not.
So why do we spend so much of our time ignoring the thousands of words of legally binding “end-user licence agreements” (EULAs, if you like) legally-binding contracts we agree to every day? Is it even possible to read the T&Cs for everything a typical person does? Is there any value in reading all this anyway?

Samsung recall

I bought a new washing machine about 6-9 months ago. It was a good brand and not a cheapie. It has performed well. Yesterday, out of the blue I received an email from Samsung explaining that some of their washing machines had a slight problem and caught on fire. This is not good in a home environment. The email provided details of where to find the model and serial numbers and listed the models affected. I printed the details and went out to the laundry to turn the machine around and check the details on the back. Luckily, I firstly checked the front panel – I was hoping the model would be shown there. I discovered that my machine is a Bosch.
So why did Samsung send me an email?
For those who are affected, Samsung assured me that the fix was simple and required a free in-home service check. If you have a Samsung then get it checked.

Good news on Coffee

I love my coffee and probably drink too much. It has to be real coffee, short & black and sometimes a macchiato – definitely not cheap and nasty instant coffee like that provided free in most workplaces. We’ve always been told to only drink coffee in moderation. New research reveals that coffee (even many cups a day) is mostly beneficial.
Check out this link

Pee time

Ever been to the movies and needed to take a toilet break? That’s just poor personal time management. You shouldn’t gone before.
But, if wanting to take a pee during the movie is an absolute must, there is a new mobile app that will help. It’s call RunPee. The app has a list of movies with designated pee-times – scenes of 3 to 5 minutes where there are no crucial plot twists, exciting action or LOL moments. It displays the time into the movie and the key words that are spoken just before the boring bit.
There are other features. Read more here

Lunch theft

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Don’t you get annoyed when you make something nice at home and put it in the fridge for later or you take a nice lunch to work and someone else, some low life, takes your lunch and eats it. It’s less likely at home, but at work the sandwich thieves can be a problem. It’s like cows on the other side of the fence; the grass in the other paddock always looks greener – and someone else’s lunch can be appealing, compared with your plain vegemite sandwich.
A fantastic and highly innovative product has been launched. It will stop those sandwiches going missing. Check out the product photo.

Big booting Bronwyn

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The Speaker of the Federal Parliament, Bronwyn Bishop, is setting an all-time record for ejecting MPs – booting them out of Parliament. Since 2013 she has ejected 427 MPs. On one day (and it must have been a bad day) she booted out 18 MPs. These are worthy records. International records. Worthy of inclusion in the Guinness World Records. Of course it is all warranted due to deliberate bad behaviour in Parliament. If you refer to my earlier blog … Labor MPs deliberately try to get booted out. They see it as a right of passage, some honour badge they can wear on their sleeve. I was told this by a Federal Labor MP. He/She was so proud in recalling being booted out by Bronwyn. Why am I blogging this again – because I love the cartoon. For more on this story follow this link


Moving trees

It’s wonderful to see a council at work. If a tree needs moving to a new place, then with today’s technology it’s not too much trouble.
View this video to see a tree get a new home
There’s potential to save many trees that would otherwise get the chop. Trees that were planted in the wrong spot years ago can now go to a new home.