All entries for August 2004

August 31, 2004

Booked a holiday at last!

Writing about web page http://www.los-jameos-playa.de/html/gb/index.html

Finally! After scouring the web for the last week, we've finally found a holiday.

All we knew to start with was that we wanted to go on holiday for a bit of summer sun for a week.

Best places to start searching if you are looking for this kind of thing are:

Expedia UK (very good, lots and lots of deals)
Lastminute.com (not as good as I had hoped, they had far less deals than Expedia)
TripAdvisor.com (Great site for finding reviews of hotels that you are thinking about booking)

The reason this holiday was so damn hard to find was that I kept on checking on tripadvisor to see if the hotel had good reviews. If it looked fantastic, was 5 stars, great looking pools…chances are that a bunch of people would ruin my excitment by telling horror stories about the quality of the food or the location, or the service…
I think I'm just too paranoid, 10 good reviews, and just a couple of bad ones. Of course you take note of the bad ones and just assume the good ones were written by the hotel people :)

Also, when looking for last minute flights, do actually go and check the travel agents. We thought we had exhausted our searches for flights by checking Opodo/Kelkoo/Expedia/LastMinute/etc. but when checking with the Holiday Hypermarket in Coventry, they found us the perfect flights…go figure.

So, we're off from 5th Sept to 12th Sept. It's a little scary going away just weeks before we launch blogs for real, but if I don't get a holiday now, I won't do until Xmas.


Making webstats fun!

Writing about web page http://www.visitorville.com

Really neat stats package. It visualises your website as a town and shows visitors moving around the town. Each building is a page in your site. Very neat.

Not sure how useful it would really be after the novelty has worn off though.

Check out the way it represents search engines

Looks like Wired picked up on this a few months back.


August 26, 2004

RSS attracting serious money

Writing about web page http://www.wired.com/news/business/0,1367,64716,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_7

RSS/Blog site Technorati has just received $6.5m worth of funding. It is a sign that a lot more people are starting to realise just how aggregating together content with RSS is the way forward.

If you are not already keeping track of your favourite blogs with RSS, try it out at Bloglines.com. All Warwick Blogs have RSS feeds, so once there are just too many Warwick Blogs (hopefully…) to keep track of, subscribe to your favourites with bloglines.

We eventually will have a Warwick specific bloglines type aggregator which will tightly integrate with Single Sign On and Warwick Blogs. We'll keep you all informed.


August 23, 2004

Bathroom finished!

At long long last. Bathroom is more or less finished. After 3 weeks of weekends and evenings, we've gutted and completely redone the bathroom. The before and after shots shown here so just how different it is.

It is difficult to tell just how improved it is because the before photo doesn't really do justice to just how crap it was.

The only things left to do are a few details.

  1. Finish connecting up the towel rail/radiator
  2. Put curtains/blinds back into windows
  3. Grout floor

I'm so glad it is over. I'm really proud that it is done and looking nice, but my god it has been harder and taken a lot longer than I thought it would. Can't wait to just relax and do no DIY what so ever next weekend!

More pictures in the bathroom renovation gallery


August 22, 2004

Now that is endurance

Writing about web page http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/beds/bucks/herts/3588212.stm

As we sadly see Paula Radcliffe drop out of the marathon, she could do well to take a page out of Bob Brown's book.

Bob is a super-endurance runner. He recently won a California to New York race that covers 3100 miles. He averaged 50 miles a day…that's 2 marathons a day, for two months!! Incredible.


August 20, 2004

Meetings, a practical alternative to work

Sometimes, I think there are just too many meetings in the world, and not enough of actually doing stuff. To this end, here are a couple of pictures:


August 19, 2004

Gold!

Writing about web page http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/3577356.stm

If, like me, you find facts and figures about money fascinating, then you'll love this article about the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's gold supply. A few choice facts:

  • 7000 tonnes of gold
  • 50bn worth
  • 1/4 of the worlds gold supply

I'm sure they wouldn't miss a few bars…


The Day After Tomorrow

Title:
Rating:
3 out of 5 stars

Cool movie. I can't say I care about whether or not the science is even the slightest bit realistic. What makes this great is just the sheer spectacle of it all.

The weather special effects are just incredible. The story carries the film along ok, but don't expect anything too amazing…you just don't watch this movie for the story, you are in it for the effects and epic scale of the implications.

That said, the cast isn't actually bad, but you don't really find yourself caring about who lives or dies, you just want to see the next disaster :)


August 17, 2004

Assigning Wikipedia

Writing about web page http://www.mchron.net/site/edublog.php?id=P2928

Great idea from Ken Smith. He is proposing to assign students the job of writing an entry for Wikipedia.

All in keeping with my new goal of making something of use to others in every class. Stop assigning things meant to be thrown away at the end of the semester, I tell myself, or at least cut back on that practice.

August 16, 2004

Calvin and Hobbes

Title:
Rating:
4 out of 5 stars

This book appeared on my desk myteriously after I commented on one of Steve's entries reviewing another C&H book, mentioning that I'd never read any. He was clearly horrified and hinted that I should really start reading asap.

And I'm glad I did. Calvin and Hobbes is a great comic. I love the adult in a childs body type perspective on the real adult world. You really can just imagine kids thinking some of this stuff. Bill Watterson has a great imagination, giving life to Hobbes the most laid back and curious Tiger you ever did see.

John said to me that you can probably appreciate it more once you have kids, and I guess he is probably right, but still…very good.


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