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Category Archives: News

And I’m spent.

I’ve spent the last few days trying to get this new site up and running, and finally it’s pretty much where I would like it to be. There are still things to be done, but all the major tweaking and infrastructure that was on the old side now works on this, plus a few extras.

With that done, I can now shut down the old domain, and think about what to tackle next 🙂

Moving Home

Not me, the site. If you are reading this then you will have noticed a few changes about the place, assuming you have been here before – and if you haven’t, then welcome!

The biggest change is of course the new domain name, rustynailed.net. There were various reasons I decided to make the change, and I decided that the right way forward would be to move my personal site to a completely new home (domain wise), along with consolidating various other accounts and e-mail addresses I’ve picked up over the years. Along with the new domain I decided on a new look, and am well on the way to having everything ‘just so’. That said, there are still some things I’m not completely happy with so I’ll be tweaking for a while yet. As ever, once things get more stable I hope to be able to post more.

If you are wondering what will become of Earthstorm.net, it will shortly be disappearing and will hopefully rise from its own ashes as something new and exciting (for me at least). I’ll post more here as appropriate.

 

Final Score

Well, the bulk of the results for the General Election are in and it promises to be a somewhat interesting and curious few days. The Conservatives, quite rightly, are saying that the results show that Labour simply does not have a right to govern, the problem is they never had one to start with. The Liberal Democrat vote is up nearly 1%, which doesn’t seem to matter seeing as they lost (at time of writing) 10.5% of their seats. It is simply ludicrous that we call this type of score keeping a ‘democracy’. As it happens the candidate I voted for was not elected. Therefore I’m ‘represented’ by someone who doesn’t share my view on many key issues. In fact the new MP doesn’t even represent the majority of voters in his constituency either.

According to the BBC the current results are as follows:

Party Seats Gain Loss Change Votes % Votes % Change
Conservative 291 95 3 +92 10,152,097 36.1 +3.9
Labour 247 2 87 -85 8,211,677 29.2 -6.3
Liberal Democrat 51 7 13 -6 6,426,742 22.9 +1.0

 

 

 

I’ve already posted a similar table below, and today I want to draw attention to something else about it which makes no sense.

If you divide the number of votes by the number of seats, you see a strange phenomenon. Those 291 Conservative seats correspond to the 10 million votes they won,  which means each seat ‘cost’ 34886 votes. Labour seats ‘cost’ 33245 votes, and a Lib Dem seat ‘costs’ a whopping 126014 votes. Again, lets look at this a different way. The 268024 people who voted Green have 1 person representing them in parliament, and the 539841 BNP voters don’t have any effective representation. Regardless of what we think about any one parties policies and views, the whole point of a democratically elected government is to reflect the views of the people who elected them. That clearly doesn’t happen in the UK.

We are still waiting for the full results, 34 seats still have to declare, and it seems certain that the Conservatives will be hard pushed to form a working government (as it should be with only 36% of the vote), and yet a Lab/Lib coalition would be in pretty much the same position with roughly the same number of seats (and a 52.1% share of the vote).

I think the question we’re all thinking is, how the hell will this play out?

HTC Desire – First Thoughts

I had originally planned to write a review of the new HTC Desire once I’d had it a couple of days, and now it’s been all of a day and a half, I’ve decided to give it a little longer before making any definitive judgements. This is because I think I really need to live with it for a while, experiencing the bad and good in a more realistic light, rather than pronouncing a verdict based on ‘new shiney’ experience. That said, I do want to write a few first thoughts if only to see if my thinking really does change over time.

The first thing to note is that the display is as widely reported, absolutely fantastic. While some reports suggest it’s impossible to see in bright sunlight, that certainly wasn’t my experience today. Sure, it wasn’t great but it was certainly usable and no worse than any other phone display I’ve seen. It does come across as blistering fast, even with what appears to be quite a few apps running. The capacitive touch screen takes quite some getting used to – it seems very sensitive, at least so far it seems a bit too sensitive at times. Battery life ain’t great, which I was expecting, and hopefully there will be some OEM alternatives appearing soon with larger capacities. Everything else has been pretty positive – plenty of apps from the Market have already been useful, and it has all ‘just worked’.

So, my first impression is that this is a great phone, and exactly what I wanted. Oh, and this blog post has been written on it 😉

Waiting for my Desire (Part 1)

Today I finally succumbed to desire, and ordered an HTC Desire from eXpansys, a company who I first heard of in the UK, and who also seem to have a German presence. When I say ordered, I mean ‘tried to order’ because they made it quite difficult for me to give them my money.

I’ve bought quite a few high value items online using my credit card over the years – a high end digital SLR, expensive camera lenses, a good quality HD TV, PC parts amounting to over £1,000, and so on. I often get presented with a Verified by Visa or Mastercard Securecode prompt, and I always use that given the chance, and I’ve never had any trouble making a purchase.

Never had any trouble until now that is. In order to purchase a mobile phone, by credit card, online, eXpansys required me to send them a copy of my passport, the front and reverse sides of the credit card, and a household bill to prove I live at the delivery address. For reasons known only to themselves, they don’t use either of the two additional security mechanisms above. They do helpfully provide a way of submitting the documents electronically, one at a time. I don’t have a scanner though, so I had to photograph my passport, then the front and back of my credit card, and redact out some numbers for security, re-size the images to a sensible size, and then send them to eXpansys. I really hope they have good data control policies and systems seeing as they now have a significant set of personal data.

Anyway, despite ordering today, my documents won’t be verified until tomorrow, and then they will dispatch my order, assuming their stock has arrived (according to the lady on the phone). Seeing as the website told me they have 100+ units in stock, I’m not entirely sure why there might be some issue about whether they can send me one.

I wait with anticipation to see if they actually manage to get my phone to me in the time they state.