Archive for November, 2005

The Poetry Archive

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005

We launched The Poetry Archive this morning along with its little sibling The Children’s Poetry Archive.

It’s a fantastic site, at launch there are recordings of 94 poets reading their own poems and more will be added over time. Particularly interesting is Tennyson’s reading of “The Charge of the Light Brigade” recorded in 1890 on soft wax cylinders.

The bulk of my work has been on the infrastructure for storing the recordings and encoding them for Real Server to stream. I’d still like to see the content encoded in more accessible formats and opened up for podcasting and listening away from the site, but that’s a discussion for another day. Today we celebrate and I’m very proud of the site.

BBC News coverage here: Classic poets’ voices go online

Friday Politics

Friday, November 18th, 2005

Here’s an article illustrating the vicious Catch-22 hell of Guantanamo Bay. Even if you’re found innocent in a military court the verdict can be re-classified and you get locked back up with the other prisoners.

Obsidian Wings: Requiem

This is shameful. We paid Pakistani bounty hunters for captives. I’m sure there are reasons for doing this, but it obviously creates incentives for bounty hunters to claim that people who have done nothing wrong are terrorists; and if we, as a nation, are prepared to create those perverse incentives, then we, as a nation, should be prepared to take action when we realize that we have wrongly imprisoned someone as a result. We took these men captive, and held them for years after we realized that they had done nothing wrong. We have stolen years of their lives, and they are still in prison to this day.


Thursday, November 17th, 2005

Sarah’s colleague Gill Hicks was on television last night telling her story and meeting the police officers who rescued her after the July 7th bombs in London.

Gill was was caught in the King’s Cross blast and was one of the survivors closest to the bomb when it exploded. She’s shown tremendous resolve and courage both through her recovery and in letting people know about her experiences.

BBC News Magazine covers the story here: ‘Priority One’.

Free Lunch!

Wednesday, November 9th, 2005

Yesterday in the post I got a beautifully packaged free lunch from Ling Valentine.

The lunch:
The free lunch parcel! The lunch!

The mysterious mallow cone:
Mallow Cone

I ate everything for lunch today and seem to have survived, despite Ling’s dire warnings about MSG and chinese “C-numbers”. The noodles were long, thin chinese noodles in an abalone and ham flavoured soup. I ate both portions in the pack. The mallow cone was strange. The tea was good. The instructions on the chopsticks wrapper were inscrutable and garbled. To add to my authentic noodle experience, my colleague Angie read out the cooking instructions on the back of the noodle package in Chinese. I didn’t understand a word.

Thank you Ling!

Pete’s noodle-addled thoughts: There is such a thing as a free lunch! Not all unsolicited email is a total waste of time! Buy a contract hire car from Ling’s Cars or at least visit her site and read it for a laugh.

Otis Lives: Pete’s halloween party

Thursday, November 3rd, 2005

Will’s giant set of halloween photos are live!

Here’s a sample:

Captin Tim Hellvis! Ant Mikenstein

Update: In case you didn’t spot it, that’s me in the red devil costume.

Mel & Adie

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005

Here’s an official welcome for Mel and Adie, who have a brand new hosted blog here!

After 8 months travelling and living in Hong Kong I’m sure they won’t have to stoop to copying and pasting from unsolicited email to fill their blog quota.