All 10 entries tagged Money

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February 28, 2008

BACS: The "C" is for "Crap"...

Here are two scenarios:

  1. I use my computer to access my bank's computer-based Online Banking system. I log into their computer and the computer presents the interface. I have already passed the authentication process, so the computer should be happy that I am who I say I am. I tell the bank's computer to send some money to another computer to settle a bill. It does so, but it takes three fucking days.
  2. I physically go to my bank (or the nearest cash point) and physically remove some physical money. I then get in the car and physically drive (let's approximate to a maximum of 8 hours, which it about how long it would take to travel the roughly 600 miles from the top of Scotland to the bottom of England at 70 mph in a straight line) to the physical headquarters of the company that issued the bill. I physically hand them the physical money to settle the bill.

How the hell can I get physical money across the country faster than the banks can send virtual money in the form of electricity!?

If we assume the electrical signal travels at the speed of light, then if it takes 3 days for the money to arrive, that means the signal has had to travel about 2 million times around the equator (I love Google) before it eventually reaches its destination...

I've already established my identity with my bank's computer by passing the log in screen, I have the money available in my account, I'm assuming it's just computers that are handling the transaction, so what takes them so long?!

It's ridiculous.

UPDATE: Just found this on Wikipedia:

The BACS system, and in particular the time taken for money to move between accounts, has been widely criticised by consumer groups as inefficient and archaic, especially as it is the system used for money transfers made by telephone or internet banking. This compares unfavourably with other developed countries, particularly in Scandinavia, where the "Elle" system ("Early Late / Late Early") allows money transferred before lunchtime to reach a payee's account on the same working day, or money transferred after lunchtime to reach the payee's account the following morning.

April 21, 2007

You know you're still bored when…

A friend of mine recently acquired the funds and the stock availability to get himself a Wii. He doesn’t have a wireless router, so we were discussing the practicalities of the wired option.

Anyway, that’s not what this is about; during the conversation he mentioned that, since you can’t turn it off-off, he unplugs it at night to save electricity. This is fair enough at the moment since he can’t get it online, so isn’t losing anything, but it got me thinking about how much power a Wii actually uses. I knew it has the smallest power requirement of the current generation, but how much is not a lot?

I couldn’t find any clues on the power supply or the box (it’s a nice box, so I kept it, ok?) but even if it said, it probably wouldn’t give me standby power.

So, a quick trip to eBay, and about £10 total, got me an electricity meter (similar in appearance and use to the timers that switch appliances on and off to let burglars know you’re on holiday); as I said in the title, I was bored…

So, I now know the power consumption for most of the mains-powered appliances in the house. So here’s a summary:

  • Wii (on) 18W
  • Wii (orange standby) 10W
  • Wii (red standby) 1-2W
  • TV (on) 60W (it was either 50, 60, or 70; I can’t remember which; I was expecting 100s, though…)
  • TV (standby) 1W
  • Kettle 2kW ish
  • Henry 300W ish
  • Sky+ (on) 25W
  • Sky+ (standby) 20W then drops to about 15W after a minute or so of not recording
  • Fridge-Freezer 0W most of the time, but I can’t remember if the compressor was 10s or 100s

So, there we are; it costs roughly 1p to boil the kettle, about £1 to leave the telly on standby for a year, and approximately 5p to play on the Wii for a whole day… asuming my maths is right; either way the Wii doesn’t use much power…

March 20, 2007


(No, don't get excited; it's from a spam email.)

I've just recieved spam saying I've won €750,000, which is really stupid...

What would I do with 750,000 Euros? I can't spend Euros here...

December 21, 2006


Are there any currencies that are actually decimal – where the main unit is divided into 10ths rather than 100ths (a “centimal” currency?), or 1000ths in some cases?

December 17, 2006

Lingua Latina Occasionibus Omnibus

Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam.

I really must try to remember what I did with that book…

December 08, 2006

Oh yes, before I forget

Follow-up to The things I go through for a hundred quid… from The randomness of tomorrow, today!

I pointed out to Gamestation that they hadn’t given me anything for Sonic & Knuckles, and they were happy to rectify the problem. Since it was technically unboxed (I had the sleeve, but had misplaced the tray, strangely…) it was only 50p, but the money wasn’t the issue – it was the principle of the thing…

December 06, 2006

The things I go through for a hundred quid…

I’ve just traded-in all my old consoles to Gamestation in preparation for the Wii; I’ve only used the GameCube for the past few years, and I’ve bought a lot of the old games for the GBA and DS.

I had a devil of a job last night untangling all the wires and digging out all the bits and pieces dotted around here and there; I was knackered by the end of it. Then I had to lug them across town. Still, at least I got some money out of it; it’s more than I had when there were just sitting around gathering dust…

For the lazy among you, I got £112.20 (excluding the GameCube – I got the GameBoy attachment for it but forgot the cover for the expansion port, and they won’t take it without the cover; I’ve found it, though, and I’ll take it back in when I go for the Wii).

For those of you that like details, here’s the receipt and a list of what I don’t have anymore…

Consoles etc. sold in readiness for the Wii

  • N64 console, cables, and controller
  • 1 x Official N64 controller
  • 1 x Third-party N64 controller
  • SNES console, cables, and controller
  • 1 x Third-party SNES controller
  • MegaDrive II console, cables, and controller
  • 1 x Official MegaDrive controller
  • Pokemon Stadium 2 (Boxed with manual)
  • Pokemon Stadium (Boxed with manual and Transfer Pack)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Boxed with manual)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Boxed with manual)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (Boxed with manual)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball (Boxed with manual)
  • Batman Forever (Boxed with manual)
  • Doctor Robotnick's Mean Bean Machine (Boxed with manual)
  • Sonic & Knuckles (which doesn't appear to be on the list - I'm going to have to Have Words with them...)
  • 15 x Unboxed N64 games with pristine manuals:
    • Banjo-Kazooie
    • Banjo-Tooie
    • Diddy Kong Racing
    • Donkey Kong 64
    • Lylat Wars
    • Mario Kart 64
    • Perfect Dark
    • Pokemon Snap
    • Star Wars: Battle for Naboo
    • Star Wars Episode I Racer
    • Super Mario 64
    • Super Smash Brothers
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
    • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
    • The Word Is Not Enough
  • 13 x Unboxed SNES games:
    • Cool Spot
    • Donkey Kong Country
    • Donkey Kong Country 2
    • Lemmings
    • Mario is Missing
    • Sim City
    • Starwing
    • Super Mario Allstars
    • Super Mario Kart
    • Super Mario World
    • Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island
    • The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
  • 1 x N64 Transfer Pack
  • 1 x N64 Rumble Pack

February 03, 2006

Money doesn't grow on trees, you know

It does if you're talking about banknotes…

November 14, 2005

Definition of an Overdraft

An overdraft is a quantitative measure of how much money you don't have.

November 26, 2004


Follow-up to Whoops… from The randomness of tomorrow, today!

It's extortion I tell you!
I'm a student, you can't expect me to have things like 'money'.

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