Saturday, December 20, 2008

PS3 home - I want green hair!

PS3 home, originally uploaded by epredator.

Why the heck can I not have green hair in PS3 home or 360. Very odd, feel discriminated against!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Commiserations to Mike Golding sailing Ecover

Its not often I do yachting news on this blog!
I heard today from predlet 1.0 that Mike Golding's Ecover yacht mast had broken when he was leading in the Vendee Globe round the world yacht race. Mrs epred a.k.a elemming knows Mike's wife.
As there was a school connection they all got given this cardboard make-a-yacht so we made it tonight to commiserate.
Ecover flat pack
Ecover assembled

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Traffic Lights, obey?

This story struck me as some sort of variant on a fable, or observation on the wider picture in life. I often refer to things being fractal ideas. The amount of detail in the minutia is the same as the amount of detail in the "big picture" and you have to be able to flow between the two to make sensible judgements, not just focus on one element. Other call it system thinking.
Today I arrived at a set of temporary traffic lights, with some unattended roadworks on a back road. The idea was they created one way traffic and alternated between each direction. A good idea given one side of the road was a giant hole. However, the traffic lights had got stuck, they were on red both directions. This of course leads to two queues of traffic. In reality though it leads to 2 cars facing each other each making a decision about what to do next, the rest of the people are just bystanders as a moral dilema occurs. The rule is, you dont shoot through a red light. Its clear, its obvious, its even measurable. We can even automate the catching of people who shoot red lights with cameras and sensors. There was no such policing in this case. So just how long do we all sit there before someone realizes the instrumentation for the rule is broken?
Clearly shooting the red light is wrong, getting out and turning the lights off, fixing them etc. is tampering, doing a u-turn to avoid the lights is a possibility, or just sit....wait....hope it sorts itself out.
I would love to have a psychological profile of people done in these minor situations. The go for it driver, decides enough it enough, and then a few more follow them through. Or the driver in the queue who realizes they cant wait for the one at the front to come to the right conclusion and incents the one on from to move, lights flashing or just overtaking the laggard and leading the way anyway.
Of course there is a counter argument, if they all shoot the light then no one gets anywhere. That I guess it what happens when leaders clash and wars start.
In the end of course sense prevailed and a flow of self organized sorting out occured, small groups led by one leader go, then someone falters, and the next group is led forth from the other direction.
It feels like this is how innovation happens. People generally follow, there is a way to do things, but each person will have a limit, a point at which they can say nope, we need to do it this way.
That is of course how wars stop too.
As a mental excercise what do you do in the stand off traffic light dilemma?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Seven things you dont know about me?

LPT has tagged me in a meme of seven things you dont know about fillin name here.
This of course is hard to do as I am so public (sometimes too public) about who I am and what I do as part of the great experiment.
However lets have a go.
1. I was a consumer champion at the age of 10. My evel kneival character that rode the gyro wind up motorcycle had all the metal bendy bits in his arms and legs break. Whilst that may be true to life, it made the toy rubbish. So I wrote a letter, and they sent me a new Evel. I also collected enough tokens for a free cowboy "little big man" when I was about 8 I think. It arrived, saddle and all. Yet there was no horse in the range at all to buy to go with it. I complained, and they sent me a horse from another toy range.
2. I invented optic fibre christmas trees. When I was about 10 again, I saw one of those lovely lights all optic fibre and bristling as a sphere. Well, I thought woulfnt it make sense to mould that into an xmas tree. Drew a picture. Left it at that. About 5 years later I saw some in the shop and though drat, I really must follow things up
3. When I was 9 I out a message in a glass bottle, a corona bottle and threw it into the sea. It had some information, address, name, some puzzles and ideas in it. When I was 13 I got written to by someone who had found it. Volker Brendall was the name. Unfortunately I did not write back enough. I should have followed up on that serendipity. (just changed number 3 BTW from a very boring one)
4. I have 3 nipples, though the third one is more like a small spot, rather than a full on james bond scaramanger. Just a doctor explained it once doing an exam.
5. I will eat all food, not that squeamish, but I draw the line at dessiccated coconut, its like crunching gravel on Michael Bentines Potty Time.
6. When I grew up I wanted to be a film stuntman. That was way before seeing Fall Guy. I saw a programme about Yakuma Canute in Stage Coach and thought that was awesome. Probably why I am so willing to take risks and get beaten up :)
7. I used to really like going beach fishing back in Norfolk as a kid. In particular I liked doing long casts. The Yarmout cast in particular is tricky as you swing the line backwards over your head whilst facing away from the see. Its risky as get it wrong and you get the weights and hook in your face. It was great fun.

So thats me, I am sure there are some more lovely insights into who I am and why I am.

For not I have to pass it on to seven people
Roo Reynolds, Rob Smart, Darren Shaw, Michael Ackerbauer. Andy Piper, Jim Purbrick, Patchouli Woollahra