Skip to main content

Come Thursday

With the prevailing fascination in ‘New media’, Facebook, Twitter, Blogs and more, for political communication, Brighton & Hove City Council being one good example, I’m interested to see that I’m sharing a platform in Caceres, Spain, in December, with Rahaf Harfoush, the author of “Yes We Did: An Inside Look at How Social Media Built the Obama Brand.” Whether I will have a chance to chat over lunch on what we can learn from the Obama campaign over here I don’t know but I’m sure her presentation will be rather more interesting than my own talk on disruptive technology and ‘Cloud’ computing, which at present has rather too many slides and is likely to subject the audience to ‘Death by PowerPoint’.

Staying with Obama for a moment, I see an old friend has been appointed Obama’s interim Cyber-security Coordinator at the White House and I dropped him a note last week to congratulate him and ask him how he was finding it. “Very interesting and very busy” was the short reply.

Come Thursday and the Dane Valley by-election, I’m sorely tempted to put a nice red-letter banner over Margate and help Labour’s campaign by flying the slogan: “BRITISH JOBS FOR BRITISH WORKERS – VOTE LABOUR” or any number of tongue-in-cheek themes, as in the present political and economic chaos at Westminster, I’m sure the party could do with all the help it can get. However, I think the weather will be against me and I suspect that many voters would prefer not to be reminded of Labour’s quite remarkable record of achievement over the last ten years.

Popular posts from this blog

Median Saleh

I mentioned in the last post, the 1981 expedition that took in Median Saleh, the ruined Nabatean city in Saudi Arabia


A temple carved from the rock from Petra's sister city.

By coincidence, one of the most important train stations on the Hejaz railway sat next to the ruins and when Lawrence of Arabia blew the line in 1917, the trains were trapped there and are still there today, gathering dust and with "Krupp" on the engine casings.


One of the trains, sitting where T.E. Lawrence left themwith Dr Paul Garnett as the passenger

Below, you can see one of the fortified train stations that Lawrence attacked along the Hejaz railway between Damascus and Medina.



More photos Medain Saleh can be found on THIS Site - Apparently you can catch a tourist bus these days, rather different from risking life and limb to cross an unfriendly Saudi Arabia twenty years ago!
A Christmas Tale

It’s pitch blackness in places along the sea wall this evening and I'm momentarily startled by a small dog with orange flashing yuletide antlers along the way. I’m the only person crazy enough to be running and I know the route well enough to negotiate it in the dark, part of my Christmas exercise regime and a good way of relieving stress.

Why stress you might ask. After all, it is Christmas Day.

True but I’ve just spent over two hours assembling the giant Playmobil ‘Pony Farm’ set when most other fathers should be asleep in front of the television.



I was warned that the Playmobil ‘Pirate Ship’ had driven some fathers to drink or suicide and now I understand why. If your eyesight isn’t perfect or if you’ve had a few drinks with your Christmas lunch then it’s a challenge best left until Boxing day but not an option if you happen to have a nine year old daughter who wants it ready to take horses by tea time.

Perhaps I should stick to technology but then, the instruc…

A Matter of Drones - Simon Moores for The Guardian

I have a drone on my airfield” – a statement that welcomes passengers to the latest dimension in air-travel disruption. Words of despair from the chief operating officer of Gatwick airport in the busiest travel week of the year. Elsewhere, many thousands of stranded and inconvenienced passengers turned in frustration to social media in an expression of crowd-sourced outrage.

How could this happen? Why is it still happening over 12 hours after Gatwick’s runways were closed to aircraft, why is an intruder drone – or even two of them – suspended in the bright blue sky above the airport, apparently visible to security staff and police who remain quite unable to locate its source of radio control?

Meanwhile, the UK Civil Aviation Authority, overtaken by both the technology and events, is reduced to sending out desperate tweets warning that an airport incursion is a criminal offence and that drone users should follow their new code of conduct. Yet this is not an unforeseen event. It was i…