» devilspie(1)
This manpage is almost useless, as it was thrown together on a train.

Ross is such an honest man.

» Project West Ford

Project West Ford was a test carried out [by] the US Military […] to create an artificial ionosphere above the Earth. […]

At the height of the Cold War, all international communications were either sent through undersea cables or bounced off the natural ionosphere. The United States Military was concerned that the Soviets might cut those cables, forcing the unpredictable ionosphere to be the only means of communication with overseas forces. So, a ring of 480,000,000 […] 1.78 cm long needles […] was placed in orbit to facilitate global radio communication.

» Metrical Feet

After a day spent Primarily on haiku, Next week is done for.

Yep thanks Google Now this is exactly what I had in mind when I said “go to sleep”.

Yep thanks Google Now this is exactly what I had in mind when I said “go to sleep”.


MIUI 5 Weather App trying to find London.


MIUI 5 Weather App trying to find London.

Do you like Nine Inch Nails? Do you like terrible puns? Do you like chiptunes? If so, you’ll love this album.

I bought a new phone, and this reboot loop was the out-of-box experience. (Turns out you need to put the battery in…)

Outlook 2013 does a bit better than GNOME 3.12 did when I searched for London, I suppose.

Outlook 2013 does a bit better than GNOME 3.12 did when I searched for London, I suppose.

A brief summary of the things I saw at the Fringe this weekend

This was meant to be 6 words per act but you know how these things go …


Susan Calman: hilarious, except the parts where she really needed a group hug. Less cat-centric and more self-loathing-based than I expected. #2 or #3 of the weekend.

Henning Wehn: very hit and miss, but the hits were great. Also featured the only real product placement I noticed.


Best of Edinburgh Showcase Show: Dan Nightingale was the compère and he was very good. He got lucky when choosing an audience member to chat to – or maybe he judged very well? Either way it was a goldmine. Of the performers, I liked the Vikki Stone song I had not heard before much more than the tedious Brian Cox song I have heard too many times; and Pierre Novellie had a great bit about a bewildered tourist on the Royal Mile who didn’t know the Festival was happening asking him to explain it all. (“Hubris?”) Given a spare late night slot I’d’ve gone to see him.

Lunch in the Baking Sun outside a Bar near Holyrood: luxurious, lentil-y, almost Mediterranean.

Footlights: some good ideas and sketches but very, very unpolished.

NewsRevue 2014: within three minutes they introduced a goose-stepping drag Merkel and that wasn’t even the lowest, most racist/xenophobic/ablist/basically anything-ist point of the show. It’s a shame because the performers were excellent and the recurring Clegg character was really good, but about half of the material was just not okay. Unfortunately most of the crowd disagreed. 😟 I resent this being the costliest show I saw. Avoid avoid avoid. Happily, followed by:

Sara Pascoe: what a turnaround. A++++, best show of the weekend. A really well-constructed monologue, great blend of politics, humour and commentry on life. I like her on the radio and this was better; survey suggests those who dislike her on the radio also like this show.

McNeil and Pamphilon Go 8-Bit: kind of fun but too much puerile “banter”. It could have been half as long and more enjoyable if they’d stuck to the “comedians and audience members compete in video games” bit. Also, I’m pretty sure I could have crushed all the people who played Bomberman, and I’m not even that great at it. (On the other hand, I tried the next day and confirmed that I’m less good at Sonic 2 than a blindfolded man using his feet, so there is that.) Cool Twitch-Plays-Pokémon-inspired Audience-Plays-Pong bit though. Sadly their audience-interaction software rendered my emoji horse as “????” so I’m docking points for that.


The Torrential Rain Which Continued For Over 24 Hours, Complete With 10°C Temperatures: where were my wellies when I needed them.

Phill Jupitus: yep, pretty good. Another personal monologue, in a nice “intimate” space, delivered exactly as well as you might expect given the performer.

Bottle Mail From Okinawa: joyful dance and good percussion. I’m afraid I find the shamisen quite infuriating to listen to, which I guess makes me a bad appreciator of trad. world music :(

David O’Doherty: good, if middle-of-the-road. I like his flavour of musical comedy, where the music is little more than a prop/timing aid, more than the awkward blend of standup and musicianship a lot of acts have.

The Noodles I Ate At A Vaguely Japanese Restaurant: mayonnaise is not a traditional garnish for pork katsu, but worth it for the people on the next table describing gyoza as “nice; like eating testicles”.

Jonny and the Baptists: I know what I just said about musical comedy… To be honest I thought they would be kind of bad, but they were an amazing end to Sunday. They really know how to perform, and I appreciated the Orkney reference. A strong contender for top three.


Fred MacAuley and Co: the “co” includes Susan Calman as a co-host and a whole series of people plugging their shows. Good fun, and if you went right at the start of your stay (rather than at the end) it would be a nice way to discover shows.

Jasper Cromwell Jones: funnier than it might have been. I enjoyed being called up to the stage to act out his role in being mauled by a bear played by another audience member.

» An Untranslatable Poem

On my phone, this (nice, despite my not speaking Portuguese) poem ended up formatted as follows:





which gave it a nice Doge-esque feeling.