Playing Superman

So, did my second skydive today and it was even better than the one a few years ago. This time I actually remember the first ten seconds – check out the vein on my head when I’m upside-down here!

Thanks to the guys (especially Tim, my instructor) at Skydive the Beach Sydney for looking after me so well (and to Karin for the present!).

UPDATE: You can watch the Quicktime movie of the dive (9.8MB) in all its glory here.


Another great piece of headgear thinking from my mate Nik Roope at Hulger. the WEARHEAD*PHONES are part of a show called Hearwear at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, which aims to re-think hearing aids.

Basically a radio mic and a bluetooth headset, you can not only use them as a hearing aid but also a VOIP or iPod headset. Pretty much everything all in one. Rocking street-style looks too. It’s a bonus that so many people are happy to look cool in old-school headphones these days and that most mobiles have headsets.

There is a piece about the show from the BBC here. Nice to see it getting some mainstream attention.

Nice Viral Big Ad Campaign for Carlton Beer

Continuing a very amusing trend for sending up crap advertising, Carlton Beer just released this Big Ad campaign. Visual effects by my old-flame (geddit?) Animal Logic.

Thanks to my students for this one, which just goes to show that viral really does work (it was posted on our forum) and I’m getting old as I didn’t get there first.

Comment problems

There seems to be some problem with comments on my blog. Some people manage it whilst others never get posted. They all go through an approval process as I was getting so much spam, but even so, some never make it. I’ve toned down the spam control a little, but I’m sorry if some never get through.

The most assured way is to get a (free) Typekey account and log in that way. It should remember you after that and it will also allow you to sign into other blogs. If you’re really keen to get in touch then mail me, especially if your comment doesn’t appear. I won’t write the address here, but it’s andy, at, and then then name of my domain,

UPDATE: Despite several hours trying to track this problem down, it appears the sure-fire way of a post working is to preview it first, then post. I’ve really no idea why this is happening and need to get on with some real work now. I will try to sort it out later.

London Bombs

Phew. What a weird 48 hours that was. As far as I know everyone I know is okay, though I have many friends in London that I haven’t heard from, so I hope you’re all okay if you happen to be reading this. It certainly puts things in perspective and also makes me feel a long way from everyone here in Australia.

I can’t help feeling this is somewhat of a tipping point, not necessarily for terrorism or for the fundamentalist cause but more for the fact that Londoners seemed to make it all seem so everyday. I don’t mean to detract from those that have lost loved ones or been injured, but the fact that people got on with their lives so quickly is an important weapon. Once terrorism becomes less of a terror its power diminishes. So there you go terrorists, you’re just a minor nuisance. I hope your suicides were worth it (and it seems likely you might be dead either now or soon doesn’t it eh?).

Richard has some good words on this (thanks to John for this link).

Google Scholar increases book sales

I work at a University as most of you will know and the issue of “Google culture” amongst students when researching comes up all the time. So it’s good to read this story from the Stoa Consortium that the access to Google searchable books also leads to people buying them. It’s always the same with new technologies like this, so I’m always surprised people are surprised by the results, but there you go…

Flying Carpet

At last a decent carpet in an airport. I’ve always wondered who chose the hideous designs for public spaces, but this one by Iranian artist Seyed Alavi uses aerial photos printed onto the carpet to give the sensation of flying. Brilliantly simple.