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Saturday, 12th May, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 21:18:32
The disaster that took place a few days ago in the US that effectively wiped a town off the face of the map really is quite sad. While it is very sad for those that died, its a marvel that so many people escaped. The tragedy could have easily been worse if it was not for the early warning system in place. The following two images really do show exactly how complete the devastation really is.




(click the images for larger versions)


Source
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Video: Millimeters Matter
Thursday, 3rd May, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 18:03:11
This video is fantastic. A real must see advertisement.

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The Lettuce is Mightier than the Shotgun
Saturday, 28th April, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 22:35:35
Strange though it may seem, this was the case in an attempted robbery in england recently. A shotgun wielding perp tried to rob a store, but an 82 year old man with a bag of groceries managed to clock him a few good ones (wind mill technique?), after which the man fled. Classic.

An 82-year-old man wielding a bag of shopping has driven an armed robber from a village post office.

George Smith hit the man twice with a bag containing an iceberg lettuce and bottles of bleach and washing liquid.

The masked raider, who had a shotgun, fled from the shop in Speldhurst, near Tunbridge Wells, Kent, leaving the takings untouched.

Police praised Mr Smith for his bravery, but did not recommend other people followed his actions.

Officers are linking the attempted robbery to three other raids in the area since 7 April.
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Computer Fried Chips
Thursday, 5th April, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 16:24:32
As a computer nerd this is one of the funniest computer mods I have seen in a while. Basically a guy has taken a PC and immersed it in oil, started it up, and then once the oil got hot enough, proceeded to deep fry some chips in it. I wonder how they tasted :)



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PhD Topic: The Everyday Life of Bogans
Tuesday, 3rd April, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 21:06:32
I am a PhD student. When i explain my topic to people laughter isn't a result I usually get. However when I heard what this guy is studying for his I almost crashed the car from laughter. This is one lucky postgrad.
With his steelcap boots, dark jeans and black t-shirt, Dave Snell doesn't look like your average PhD student.

But then, his PhD isn't exactly average either.

Titled The Everyday Life of Bogans: Identity and Community Among Heavy Metal Fans, Mr Snell's studies focus on the friendships and sense of community between fans of heavy metal music.

The 27-year-old was this week announced as one of four Waikato University students to receive government funding under the top achiever doctoral scholarships scheme.

Over the next three years Mr Snell will receive $96,165 to go towards his studies.
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George Orwell's House is Surrounded by Video Cameras
Monday, 2nd April, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 09:43:06
I am a fan of Georges work, but the irony of this is a little sad. This image shows the location of video cameras around the streets surrounding his house. While none are looking in a window, big brother is certainly not far off.

According to the latest studies, Britain has a staggering 4.2million CCTV cameras - one for every 14 people in the country - and 20 per cent of cameras globally. It has been calculated that each person is caught on camera an average of 300 times daily.

Use of spy cameras in modern-day Britain is now a chilling mirror image of Orwell's fictional world, created in the post-war Forties in a fourth-floor flat overlooking Canonbury Square in Islington, North London.

On the wall outside his former residence - flat number 27B - where Orwell lived until his death in 1950, an historical plaque commemorates the anti-authoritarian author. And within 200 yards of the flat, there are 32 CCTV cameras, scanning every move.
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Portuguese discovered Australia
Thursday, 22nd March, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 23:18:58
It turns out that those cheeky Portuguese discovered Australia in the 1520's but decided not to tell anyone (incase they colonised it). However, the french then stole the maps of the east coast and managed to joined them incorrectly, and didn't seem to realise what it was. One way to avoid a war ;)
A 16th century maritime map in a Los Angeles library vault proves that Portuguese adventurers, not British or Dutch, were the first Europeans to discover Australia, says a new book which details the secret discovery of Australia.

The book "Beyond Capricorn" says the map, which accurately marks geographical sites along Australia's east coast in Portuguese, proves that Portuguese seafarer Christopher de Mendonca lead a fleet of four ships into Botany Bay in 1522 -- almost 250 years before Britain's Captain James Cook.
"It was even so accurate that I found I could draw in the modern airport runways, to scale in the right place, without any problem at all," Trickett told Reuters on Wednesday.

He said the shop had a reproduction of the Vallard Atlas, a collection of 15 hand drawn maps completed no later than 1545 in France. The maps represented the known world at the time.

Two of the maps called "Terra Java" had a striking similarity to Australia's east coast..
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Swiss accidentally invade Liechtenstein
Saturday, 3rd March, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 15:37:42
You can't help but smile at news items like this.
ZURICH, Switzerland - What began as a routine training exercise almost ended in an embarrassing diplomatic incident after a company of Swiss soldiers got lost at night and marched into neighboring Liechtenstein.

According to Swiss daily Blick, the 170 infantry soldiers wandered just over a mile across an unmarked border into the tiny principality early Thursday before realizing their mistake and turning back.

A spokesman for the Swiss army confirmed the story but said that there were unlikely to be any serious repercussions for the mistaken invasion.

"We've spoken to the authorities in Liechtenstein and it's not a problem," Daniel Reist told The Associated Press.

Officials in Liechtenstein also played down the incident.

Interior ministry spokesman Markus Amman said nobody in Liechtenstein had even noticed the soldiers, who were carrying assault rifles but no ammunition. "It's not like they stormed over here with attack helicopters or something," he said.

Liechtenstein, which has about 34,000 inhabitants and is slightly smaller than Washington DC, doesn't have an army.
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Italian teacher cuts off noisy kid's tongue
Saturday, 3rd March, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 12:21:16
The thoughtlessness (Read: Utter Stupidity) of some people is really quite shocking sometimes.
Milan - An Italian teacher has been suspended by her school in Milan after cutting off the tongue of a lively 7-year-old child with a pair of scissors, daily Corriere della Sera reported Tuesday.

The boy has since had his tongue stitched back but is afraid to go back to school. His parents say he suffers nightmares and runs away whenever he sees a knife. They are now suing the school for damages.

The incident took place a week ago but was only reported on Tuesday.

According to Corriere, the 22-year-old substitute teacher threatened the child twice with a pair of scissors before actually chopping it off.

'Pull out your tongue. I'll cut it, and you'll no longer talk,' she was quoted as telling the child.

The teacher, who has only been identified by her initials R S, has since apologized, claiming it was an accident.

The school's principal, Anna Maria Dominici, has suspended the teacher and ordered an investigation, saying her conduct could in no way be excused.
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Pizza Vending Machine
Friday, 2nd March, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 11:47:53
This is just plain cool. Although I wonder if it actually tastes any good.
You can purchase all sorts of things from vending machines these days, from soda and candy to iPods and cell phones. But freshly made pizza? That just doesn't seem to make any sense. How can you make pizza in a vending machine? Has the whole world gone mad?! Well, guess what? It's coming. Wonderpizza vending machines provide you with a 9-inch pizza in 2 minutes without you having to worry about humans touching it at any point in the process. That is unless the secret of the Wonderpizza machines is that they have very small people inside making pizzas very quickly. In which case I would feel pretty bad about buying pizzas from them.

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Batman Shuts down School
Friday, 16th February, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 09:34:22
This is pretty funny. I wonder if the kid really saw anyone, or was just having fun. That said with all the school shootings in America I am not surprised they are on edge over security. But that then leads the question, why didn't they wait till it was dark and put a bat symbol on a flood light. Then he could have come and protected the school :)
Three schools in the north Phoenix suburb of Cave Creek were on lockdown for about 45 minutes Wednesday morning after a student at Desert Arroyo Middle School reported seeing a person dressed as Batman run across campus, jump a fence and disappear into the desert, Scottsdale police Sgt. Mark Clark said.

The student described the person as 6 feet 3 inches tall and possibly male. “We’reassuming it was male, although they did have a mask on,” Clark said.

Officers combed the desert around the middle school. A nearby elementary school and high school also were on lockdown as officers sought the caped crusader. The result - no Batman.

Source
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Top Gear Crew Attacked by Rednecks
Tuesday, 13th February, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 09:38:42
You hear about it. You joke about it. But really, some parts of America really are full of total nutjobs without an ounce of tolerance in their body. The fact these people are described as "christian" is an embarrassment. Granted, they probably aren't and its a stereotype. But still, scary stuff.

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How to Shower: Women vs. Men
Monday, 12th February, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 11:57:23
Just watched this with the wife. Much laughter occurred at the moments where it was correct :)


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Paranoia in Boston
Saturday, 3rd February, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 18:52:54
I have been following a story this week which really has made me laugh several times, for various reasons. It all takes place in Boston where an advertising campaign was conducted for the tv show Aqua Teen Hunger Force. Basically, as can be seen in this video, a bunch of LED signs were made, and were installed around the city in public places, rather high and out of reach.


What then ensued was a day of panic by some people in Boston which had not only the general public, but also law enforcement thinking that these signs were bombs. Some of the devices were even blown up by the police department. Others shot at apparently. The fact that anyone could think these items are bombs surprises me, the fact they then even got blown up somewhat scares me. That the people who are responsible for protecting the public don't appear to have a brain among them.

All that said, the ridiculousness of the situation has not escaped the two people shown in the video above, who have since been arrested. They know how totally stupid the media and law enforcement agencies have been, so they are now pumping their moment in the spotlight as seen here.


The ad's which weren't blown up have since appeared on ebay. And I am sure the tv series is pretty happy with the publicity. I am sure they are about to hit a ratings boom. The vast bulk of the general public seem to realise how stupid the situation was.
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Freaky Basketball shot to get into 2nd Overtime
Thursday, 1st February, 2007 Posted by Beren @ 08:54:26
As someone who plays (very poorly) on a basketball team on a weekly basis, I must say this shot is pretty nuts.

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