Category: Current affairs

  • The Brexit alien insurgency theory

    I’m not much of a political commentator and this post is driven by a need to make sense of what’s going on in the wider world, Brexit and beyond. Plus, y’know, jetlag ‘creativity.’ I’ll also caveat this as a #firstworldproblem; I appreciate that there are other people playing in far less pleasant democracies than I. […]

  • Red boxes and digital government

    I’m looking at the digitisation of government quite a lot at the moment for work and red an amusing piece a colleague flagged to us and was amused (but not surprised) to read: “Nick Herbert, Tory minister for policing and justice until last summer, claimed that he had been better supported in Opposition; indeed, he […]

  • That Greenpeace / VW campaign (con’t)

    I continue to be a bit perplexed when it comes to the anti-VW campaign Greenpeace is mounting (latest here), for a number of reasons. Greenpeace is upset because… VW advertises its eco-line, Bluemotion, heavily but… Only sells about 6% of their cars under this badge… And charges an ‘unfair’ premium for them VW is lobbying […]

  • The evolution of the Billy bookcase

    Having recently written about the impact digital books were having on my Billy bookcases I was amused and fascinated to read in the Economist that Ikea is redesigning the archetypal bookcase for the display of ornaments and for use with glass doors. Good on those crazy Swedes.

  • Cambridge ‘best Uni in the world’

    Huzzah for my alma mater in the global round-up, in which Cambridge pips Harvard to the post for the second year running. Love the Guardian’s take on it: looks at the list, compares the fee-going universities with those that traditionally don’t and drives a political point home. Whilst I’m massively in favour of free education I […]

  • Rail price rises have me steaming

    Prior to becoming an out-of-London-commuter, rail ticket rises never bothered me. An "8%" rise amounted to 10p or so on a tube ticket and whilst the incremental creep on that has made it feel more expensive over the years, in practical terms it never seemed material. An 8% rise on my current railcard costs, however, […]

  • Now is the summer of our discontent…

    My family around the world are looking on the riots in London with concern for us and disbelief that this could be happening. Riots are not something you associate with one of the most developed nations of the world. But times are tough, and the few catalysts have been sufficient to create an atmosphere of […]

  • Citizens of the world

    My cousin Sumisha, studying in Australia, writes a fascinating piece on dual citizenship for her student union paper – dual citizenship is illegal in Malaysia, Iran and 58 other countries, apparently. As someone that holds a different passport to his wife and daughter this is an issue close to my heart, and, apart from the […]

  • Awesome maths geekery

    I loved this story. Google bid random mathematical numbers for the Nortel patents, including Pi billion dollars. Fantastic. Trying to imagine Dr Evil demanding that in a blackmail demand, and I can’t quite do it – so it must be true that Google isn’t evil… At the auction for Nortel Networks’ wireless patents this week, […]

  • Bersih 2011–fighting for electoral reform in Malaysia

    Malaysia has been a bit late to the anti-government protests shaking the Islamic world. Understandably so; protests in Malaysia are always clamped down on hard (technically it is illegal to form any kind of public meeting without a permit, which is never granted for political gatherings, so protesting is tricky), Malaysians are by nature conservative […]