Sunday, December 31, 2006


Oh, UFOMystic has been giving us such gems, and they have been around for such a short time. Today, Greg Bishop points out that Carl Sagan was a pothead, and furthermore:
...she had attended one of Sagan’s lectures in the 1970s and he had accidentally left his wireless microphone on during a break. After he disappeared backstage, the people who remained in the auditorium were treated to his attempts to seduce his secretary as he chased her around the green room.
Good for him, I say. The sort of thing that I would do if I had a secretary.

Friday, December 29, 2006

'Socialized the agreement'?

Today I received an email that spoke of a group of people having reached agreement on a certain working arrangement. The phrase used was person X has socialized the network agreement with Y and Z...

Socialized the agreement? Is this a new form of corporate jargon with which I am unfamiliar? Sounds rather silly to me.

Global Guerrillas

Another blog that I would like to recommend is John Robb's excellent Global Guerrillas, which tracks the changes in strategy that are being adopted by non-state combatants around the globe. Two recent entries, When will Brazil's Gangs Make the Jump? and A failure to embrace black globalization in Somalia, are good examples of his thesis.
I'm no expert in modern warfare, thank god, but his thoughts on the nature of 21st century war seem to be on the mark. I wish his posts were longer, and I have a vague discomfort over his use of the term 'open source' to describe the warfare of guerrilla groups, but those are minor quibbles.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Chaos and traffic patterns

A butterfly flapping its wings in China can cause traffic snarlups in Boise. Well, no, not quite. But this article on chaos mathematics and traffic jams is rather interesting.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

For Tim Powers fans

If you've read Expiration Date (and you really should!) you will get this one.

It is evident from this old blog post that since 2004 Google has been researching mass ghost catching techniques -
What nefarious scheme is Google cooking up?

Thanks to G- for the link.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

UFOs, Hasids, Mourides

Looks like I can blog at work again. To celebrate this event, a few quick reading recommendations:

Nick Redfern and Greg Bishop have started blogging about UFO topics at Highly recommended for those looking for alternatives to the 'visitors from another planet' school of UFOlogy. (You may remember Greg from his excellent old zine The Excluded Middle, and the book Wake Up Down There, a compilation of the best of the latter.)

Dumneazu is a new blog to me, but one that I shall start following. The latest entry, for instance, is a highly interesting piece on the Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic community of Crown Heights, New York.

And finally, there is this piece from The Economist on the highly organized international business network of Senegal's Mourides.

Saturday, December 16, 2006


What an excellent concept. Here is how Postcrossing works:
- Register with the site.
- Request an address to which you will send a postcard.
- Send postcard to the address, including a unique identifier (also provided.)
- User gets the card, confirms receipt on the Postcrossing site, and you become next in line to receive a card.

Vampires among us

The line between work and home life is definitely becoming more blurry. When one is oncall this is readily apparent: one is expected to be ready to jump in to action, even on a weekend off. But my work won't even let me access blogger through their proxy servers. Bloody hell. Bugger you, Websense.

Anyway, that having been said, the FBI confirms that there are vampires among us. If it leads to more appearances of Buffy in short skirts, I'm all for this development.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Matisyahu article

JamBase has an excellent article on Matisyahu:
The initial shock value of the religious young man jumping and kicking and chanting with a distinctly Yiddish accent coupled with a Jamaican patois diminishes to reveal an honest, complicated, endearing artist... After seeing the man in concert three times, and later speaking with him, it's clear he embodies a humble, everyman quality...

Friday, December 01, 2006

Let them eat cake?

In a BBC news story entitled 'Zimbabwe jail over bread prices' comes this snippet:
The government introduced price controls in order to tackle inflation.
Many shops have now run out of bread.
Correspondents say shops are instead stocking buns and scones which are not covered by the government controls.

Stuff I Collect - Militaria

Stuff I Collect - Militaria WW2 WWII First 1st Allied Airborne pin OPA ration token (1 blue) WW1 U.S. Shipyard Voluntee...