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Showing posts from May, 2011

TheTrain Now Standing

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I was expecting a thirty minute queue at the security entrance to Westminster yesterday evening but it was just me. The Great Hall was being laid out for President Obama's visit today and so Parliament was very quiet indeed, possibly with more armed police than visitors.

Up to the committee room for an AGM and meeting on next generation broadband, where we were joined by our Technology Forum President, Adam Afriye MP,  Chairman and MEP, Malcolm Harbour and MP's Ian Taylor, Therese Coffey and Rory Stewart.

I'm somewhat of a TE Lawrence and Wilfred Thesiger fan having once travelled across much of the Middle-east on a mountain bike and told Rory how much I enjoyed his TV documentary on that great World War I hero, Lawrence.  Stewart is a new Conservative MP and an adventurer and Arabist of that same determined character that once gave us an Empire. In January 2002 he walked across Afghanistan; surviving by his wits, his knowledge of Persian dialects and Muslim customs, and th…

Big Fella

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From what I understand may be the rules, I've a welcome gap from being a councillor for a few days, as there's a limbo period between the election and the formation of the new council. There's a real temptation to speak freely for the first time in four years but I'll resist it!

A good day at the first airshow of the season yesterday, with the Vulcan making it's very noisy and impressive appearance. Not only did it set off car alarms but almost shattered my eardrums, as I was standing on the opposite side of the runway display line when it climbed with full power directly above me.

Taking part in my own first-time display, I don't know what was more worrying, the prospect of 'cocking-up' the tight routine in front of 5,000 people of the potential to dig a small crater if I got it wrong. As it was, it all went pretty well, although I couldn't hold 200 feet along the display line in the strong wind and ballooned up to almost 300 feet as we came through…

Finding Bin Laden

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I'm not sure that the news media have realised yet that Google Earth gives remarkably good resolution of the area surrounding the entrance to the Pakistan Military Academy, (PMA) where Osama Bin had his residence off the Kakul Road, Abbottābad in Pakistan.

Aerial photography being one of the jobs I do for the media from time to time, I'm really quite surprised that BBC and Sky News didn't look for this immediately and the commercial version of Google Earth can offer much higher satellite resolutions if one is prepared to spend a few shekels to examine an image in greater detail.

What I find particularly interesting in the light of media reports of Bin Laden's medical condition is that he is within walking distance of two of the best hospitals in Pakistan. None of the media sources I have seen have picked that up yet as an item of further interest.

Less than 10 minutes after I sent the image to Dermot on Sky News, Tim Marshall pulled up an image and identified it, so a go…