#[linkfarm] Sunrise & Snowdrop Express Audaxes - Saturday 6th February 2010 - The Beacon RCC February Audaxes are now well established on the Audax calendar, attracting over 150 participants each year. The 123km routes, starting from Hartlebury near Stourport on Severn, were defined by Alan Mason, the Beacon member who was the original organiser and we think they are so good that they have remained largely unchanged. Alan aimed to find easy routes on quiet country roads that all cyclists could be confident of completing, even on a chilly winter's day when nobody is at their fittest! Have entered the Sunrise Express. Hopefully I'll get to ride it this time, as it was cancelled last year because the weather was shocking. I did set off, but failed to even make the end of my road due to the ice. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Bike hire revolution hits Cardiff - "It's a bit front-heavy. Not much good for wheelies." That was the verdict of one passerby as he inspected one of Cardiff's fetching new yellow and green rentable bicycles that are now dotted around the city [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Brum saddles up for 'free bike' scheme - The city could be among the first in Britain to adopt French Velib or Free Bicycle scheme where pedestrians can borrow bikes from self-service racks around the city and lock them at another rack at the end of their journey. That's "free" as in "for hire", rather than "help yourself". [Add a comment]
Thursday 26 November, 2009
#[linkfarm] Why I hate pedestrians - You know what I hate? Pedestrians. That self-satisfied, striding, boot-bedecked bunch of scum. Is it just me, or does the country suddenly seem to be full of them? I've never tried walking anywhere myself -- why would I? I'm a successful adult -- but it seems I can hardly travel down the street these days without one of them stepping off the pavement in front of me without looking, their face set in a holier-than-thou expression as they jump out of the way of my car in a burst of expletives. Something clearly needs to be done, and it's good that the government are starting to realise this. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Megacorps Designer's Notes for Greg Costikyan's new boardgame. I'm a sucker for this kind of stuff. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Those hacked climate e-mails: Good scientists, poor conspirators - More interesting is what is not contained in the emails. There is no evidence of any worldwide conspiracy, no mention of George Soros nefariously funding climate research, no grand plan to ‘get rid of the MWP’, no admission that global warming is a hoax, no evidence of the falsifying of data, and no ‘marching orders’ from our socialist/communist/vegetarian overlords. The truly paranoid will put this down to the hackers also being in on the plot though. [Add a comment]
Dan North, inventor of Behaviour Driven Development
Russel Winder, author, professor, raconteur, multi-core expert, and all around groovy guy
The pre-conference tutorials are
A two-day certified Scrum master course run by Jeff Sutherland and Gabrielle Benefield. Sutherland doesn't come to the UK that often, I think, so if Scrum certification is on your list of things to do you might want to get in early.
A course on testing session run by James Bach.
An introduction to the D programming language by Walter Bright and Andrei Alexandrescu. Have to stay I'm not sure of the immediate utility of this (at least to me), but I can see this being a pretty intense session that would take months or even years to properly digest. That's good, by the way. Both Walter and Andrei are extremely smart and funny guys, and I bet you'd come out of this with a brain stuffed to the gunwhales. Quite tempted.
No official news on the rest of the programme, but it can't be long now. Reading the smoke signals suggest James' and my proposal didn't quite make the cut. I'm a wee bit disappointed because I think it would have been a pretty lively session. Still, have to wait for the thanks/no thanks email to be certain. Fingers still crossed.
Huzzah! Just had an acceptance email. So much for my smoke signal reading skills. [added 24th Nov 2009]
#[linkfarm] Anonymous cyclists - Requiring them to wear a reflective tabard with a personal identification number might be one solution. Except for those of us who habitually cycle in the altogether. [Add a comment]
Thursday 12 November, 2009
#[linkfarm] Police chiefs ditch cycle manual - Susie Squire, political director of the Taxpayers' Alliance - which campaigns for lower taxes and greater government efficiency - told BBC News: "I've no doubt that the people behind this are well intentioned, but it is bonkers." ... London Mayor Boris Johnson, who is a keen cyclist, said: "I am sure it is of great value." FFS. I know who I'm going with. For the record Cyclecraft, the recommended reading for the National Cycle Training Scheme and published by The Stationary Office, runs to 250 pages. The Office DSA Theory Test is 512 pages. Oh, and the "people behind this"? Serving police officers. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] What's Wrong With The Taxpayers' Alliance - The problem is that it isn't an alliance of ordinary taxpayers at all. It is an alliance of right-wing ideologues. Its academic advisory council is a who's who of the proponents of discredited Thatcherite policies, including Eamonn Butler and Madsen Pirie of the Adam Smith Institute, academics Patrick Minford and Kenneth Minogue, and former Institute of Directors policy head Ruth Lea. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Police get 93-page guide to cycling - Taxpayers' Alliance campaign director Mark Wallace added: "This is an absurd waste of police time and thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money." Well, of course he did. The Taxpayers' Alliance think any state spending is a waste of time and money.
* smellygit said They mustn't have one round my way, all the PCSOs ride on the pavement. [added 12th Nov 2009]
#[linkfarm] On Iteration - Andrei Alexandrescu, author of The D Programming Language, provides a fresh perspective on iteration and proposes a new approach to iteration that builds on the strengths of abstractions defined by other languages and libraries. The proposed framework is sensible and expressive, yet one that is simple and obvious in hindsight. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] Submitting an add-on to AMO - Once you've developed a new add-on for a Mozilla-based product (Firefox, Thunderbird, or the Mozilla Suite), you'll want to make sure people can find out about and download it. [Add a comment]
Friday 06 November, 2009
#[linkfarm] The rise of the non-veggie vegetarian - Vegetarianism used to be simple - its protagonists foreswore the flesh of any dead animal. Today there are "veggies" who eat fish, and people who eat no meat but don't call themselves vegetarians. What happened? Ah, the fish-eating vegetarian. Or not-actually-a-vegetarian, as I prefer to call them. [Add a comment]
Over the past three or four weeks I've restarted work on Mango, dragging it into the modern age by throwing out the deprecated bits, making one or two little nips and tucks, and by generifying (if that's a real word) the library. So, I've cut a new release.
The source bundle includes a javadoc build target, and the current Javadoc is available online, but you can grab the Javadoc seperately too. It's not overflowing with words, if I'm honest, because the concepts Mango uses are pretty straightforward, but hopefully the Javadoc's not without its uses.
Entirely through my own stupidity, I managed to corrupt the Arabica subversion repository. By sheer good luck, I'd been using Bazaar as my front-end client, and so had a clone of the entire repository sitting in my working directory. Accordingly, the Arabica source code is now housed in a Bazaar repository.
The repository can be browsed and you can grab your own working copy over HTTP using
#[linkfarm] Bikes and cars: Can we share the road? - "The bikeway system was designed for the convenience of motorists -- the safety arguments are bunkum," says John Forester, a bicycling engineer from Lemon Grove in San Diego County. Forester is the father of the "vehicular cycling" movement -- a philosophy that views the bicycle as a form of transportation that belongs on the streets alongside cars. [Add a comment]
#[linkfarm] A History of Cycle Paths - It seems that the first cycle paths were to meet the needs of cyclists in terms of comfort and ease of riding. Soon after road standards improved, however, the motive for building tracks changed to one of getting cyclists out of the way of motor traffic. [Add a comment]
Took myself off on Sunday to The Regal, a slightly but pleasantly decayed art deco former cinema on Oxford's Cowley Road, to see the Dragon Gate Invasion wrestling show. Dragon Gate are a Japanese promotion, with a style fusing Mexican lucha with puroresu strong style. It's pretty fantastic and downright thrilling when you see it happening right in front of you.
I've been trying all week to put together a sensible review, but if you're a wrestling fan who's heard of Dragon Gate you can guess what I'd say. If you're a wrestling fan who hasn't heard of Dragon Gate none of what I write would make sense. Finally, if you're not a wrestling fan at all none of what I might write would make any sense at all without pages and pages of extra context and even then you'd only get it in an intellectual way and not with any emotion.
Instead, here's a tiny but representative snippet from the end of the evening. Your reaction might vary (see above), but it's impressive however you look at it.