Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Family Time

Christmas is a time when families get together.

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Happy Christmas

Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, goodwill toward all humankind (Luke 2:14 AV alt.)

(I found this image while doing a websearch on a quite different matter at blackconsciousthought.blogspot - for invited readers only.)

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Brain teaser

A brain teaser - and quite literally so!

(Found on the web but the source can no longer be found.)

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Barcode - 4

Here is another barcode based upon the name of this blog. This time it is a 'Code 39 Extended' barcode. If you want to find out more about this and other types of barcode, you could visit Neodynamic.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

You can't fool me

I heard recently that the Tesco supermarket chain had taken action against somebody for writing down the prices of products in one their stores. This more or less coincided with me successfully taking a photograph one morning without even being noticed. As you can see, not all bargains are as good as they claim to be.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Is it really Christmas?

There's a Christmas market in the town where I work. I went through it the other day to see what was there but saw nothing overtly Christmas-y - certainly nothing 'religious'. There was a hut with a sign claiming that it was 'Santa's Grotto' but this looked most unconvincing. Then I saw another hut selling burgers. There I think I saw the most Christmas-y thing of all: venison burgers. Santa's reindeer have been slaughtered and turned into burgers already.

Sunday, 27 November 2011


A version of this tessellation appeared here a little over a year ago - on Monday 20th September, 2010. I came across it again recently and prepared a blue-on-blue version. I thought I'd post it to see how it looked within the colour scheme of this blog. Perhaps more will follow.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

St Peter's 'Square'

This is a scan of an old photograph taken in Vatican City in 1989. I've been there twice and on both occasions have wondered why St Peter's Square is circular - or perhaps more accurately - oval. (See: Google Maps.) Either way, it is curved as the photograph shows. It is certainly not a square. In fact, from above, the whole space in front of St Peter's Basilica is somewhat keyhole-shaped. Could this be a deliberate reference to St Peter being promised the keys of the kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 16:18-19)?

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Neutrino Joke

Recently some work done in association with CERN has suggested that Neutrinos might have been observed traveling faster than light (See: The Guardian, 22nd September 2011). Amongst other things, this tends to turn the whole idea of causality - or cause and effect - on its head. Hence, a geek joke currently doing the rounds goes:

The bartender says 'we don't serve neutrinos'.
A neutrino walks into a bar.

Friday, 11 November 2011

Barcode - 3

Here is another barcode based upon the name of this blog. This time it is a 'Code 16k' barcode. If you want to find out more about this and other types of barcode, you could visit Neodynamic.


Not only is today's date a palindrome (in the way I have chosen to write it) but all the numbers are also the same. This, so far as I can tell, only happens once every hundred years. Something unique in most people's lifetime is surely worth noting.

Of course, today is also Armistice Day commemorating the signing at the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" in 1918 of the armistice which officially brought World War I to an end.

(I am, in fact, writing this entry on 27th March 2011 and scheduling it to appear on 11th November, lest I forget. I wonder whether, when we get closer to '11-11-11', somebody will come out with some mystical significance for this date. Perhaps it will be the date for the end of the world … again.)



Thursday, 10 November 2011


Monday, 7 November 2011

Caught in mid-air

I was wandering through Google Maps the other day, following a railway line across parts of London in which I used to live and found that an aeroplane had been photographed in mid-air in the region of Seven Sisters Road, South Tottenham.

My guess is that the plane is one of the newer Boeing 737s belonging to Japan Airlines. Furthermore, this picture must have been taken fairly recently since this livery appears to have been adopted only this year.
(Google Maps Link)

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Another observation about the clocks changing

I came across this intriguing thought while listening to the radio the Saturday morning before the clocks went back. Somebody contacted the show to say that they had been born at 1.50am the night the clocks went back. That is, just ten minutes before the clocks were put back. That meant that an hour later there was another 1.50am. How does one distinguish between the two? There could be two people each born at a different 1.50am and so differ in age by an hour.

That the clocks change in the middle of the night is surely to minimise confusion where possible. However, there are things that will nevertheless happen during that hour even though most people will be asleep.

While on the question of there being two of all the times between 1am and 2am of the day the clocks go back, on the day the clocks go forward there are no times between 2am and 3am. Nobody has ever been born at, say, 2.50am on such days.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

SAD Times

Here's something because the clocks are going to be put back by an hour this weekend. British Summer Time (BST) comes to an end; dull old Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) begins, again.

I used to be affected by seasonal affective disorder (SAD). It's not so much of a problem these days. However, when I was working just outside Vienna a few years ago, I did feel that the sun went down a bit earlier during the summer than I would have preferred. I was then on Central European Summer Time - although I didn't know that that was what they called it at the time. The European time zone stretches a considerable distance. When the sun is going down in Vienna, it's still up in Vigo although there, it's the same time as in Vienna. What is more, Vigo is further west than London which is an hour behind.

A friend's husband is badly affected by SAD. The moment the clocks go back (to GMT), he goes into a form of depression which lasts until the moment they go forward again (to BST).

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Rubik's Cube - Variations Upon

There is an enduring fascination with Rubik's cube. Invented by Ernő Rubik in 1974, I first saw it in Macy's department store in New York in 1980 when its popularity was beginning to take off. It is still popular over thirty years later.
As if it wasn't seemingly hard enough already, versions with different shapes within the cube format have been appearing in recent years. I say 'seemingly hard enough'; it has now been established that any combination of the cube's facets can be solved in 20 turns or fewer.