Ramblings about stuff

Could I beat Usain Bolt over 100m on my bike?

Question: Could I beat Usain Bolt over 100 metres, if he ran and I biked? First thoughts: it might be possible, but I need to do some calculations to get an idea of whether it’s feasible or not. To win the Olympic Gold on Sunday, Bolt ran 100 metres in 9.63 seconds. That’s an average… (read more)

Strongest active chess player with my surname in the country!

In line with the prediction I made at the end of the Kidlington Chess Congress in February, my new ECF chess rating is 159. This is my third-highest rating of all time and, given that those higher two were closely dependent on each other (both largely based on a cracking run of games I had… (read more)

First Day at School v Last Day at School

Back in September 2006, I posted this post showing Heather’s first day at school, taken before she headed off for the start of Year 1. Tomorrow is her last day at that school, the end of Year 6. Here is an updated image, compared to the old one: I note that in the first post… (read more)

Fighter Command 1940 and Daily Random Numbers

I’ve been meaning to write this up for a while, so here goes. In addition to my own personal Twitter account, I run two others as ‘projects’. The first one is called Fighter Command 1940 and it traces the history of Spring and Summer 1940 from the British point of view in World War II… (read more)

Tornado Dave and the Eye of the Storm

(This blog post is really just a way for me to gather various links/videos regarding the event and for me to make a full record of what happened, apologies if you’re already fed up with hearing about it!) What happened? By the end of Bank Holiday Monday afternoon (7 May 2012) we were all at… (read more)

Kidlington Chess Congress 2012

Update 07.02.2012: I’ve uploaded analysis and comments on my games. It’s that time of year again, the Kidlington Chess Congress: I’ve played here on each of the last three years too. See my old articles from 2009, 2010 and 2011. An empty playing hall just before the start of the final round. For the last… (read more)

Should I give up on Facebook? Google+? Twitter?

(This article will be cross-posted to my Facebook account, my Google+ account and linked-to from Twitter.) Should I give up on Facebook? Should I give up on Google+? Twitter? What about blogging? My original philosophy with all social networking was this: treat everything you post as public and there will be no surprises. Even if… (read more)

Firefox versions: someone’s CHANGED the rules

I wrote this post in June, when Firefox began using Very Silly version numbers. And so someone at Mozilla decided that the version number should now be hidden. Rather than admit they Got It Wrong, they are trying to hide their mistake. The developer who presented this change (and many others that are meeting popular… (read more)

Firefox versions: someone’s not following The Rules

In March 2011, Mozilla released Firefox 4.0: this was the first new ‘major’ version for some time. Prior to that date most Firefox users were running Firefox 3.6.16, which was the previous latest version. When a new major release such as this appears, users are typically faced with two choices: (a) stick with the current… (read more)

AV Referendum: a win for NO

On 5 June 1944 General Eisenhower, Commander-in-Chief of the Allied forces about to invade France, had last-minute doubts about the success of the operation. On the eve of the invasion he therefore drafted a contingency letter of ‘apology’ to be used in case Operation Overlord failed. In the event, of course, the landings in Normandy… (read more)