Ken Russell 1927-2011

Ken Russell RIP.

Curiosity launches to Mars

Artists impression of Mars Science Lab Curiosity

Today NASA’s Curiosity rover successfully blasted off to Mars on an Atlas 5 rocket.

Artist concept of the rover by NASA.

The Shard and the Tower of London

Picture of The Shard and the Tower of London

The Shard and the Tower of London at 1843 on 17 November 2011.

Tower Bridge and traffic

Picture of Tower Bridge and traffic

Tower Bridge at 1845 on 17 November 2011.

I went to WordPress London 7

Picture of WordPress London meeting

I went to the seventh meeting of the WordPress London local group at the Headshift offices in Shad Thames on Thursday 17 November 2011.

During the meetup, Keith Devon gave a clear and succinct presentation on working with custom post types, and how they can be used in conjunction with templates, custom taxonomies and meta boxes.

Chris Adams (pictured above) gave an update on recent news developments in the wonderful world of WordPress, including drawing our attention to the WP Install Profiles plugin, which looks like it could be a bit of a timesaver.

David Bain also talked about the various possibilities for improving WordPress SEO.

The excellent evening concluded with liquid refreshment at the local hostelry Anchor Tap.

WordPress London meets on a monthly basis – if you’re not based in London see if there is a WordPress local group near you on the WordCamp UK wiki.

I went to BarCamp London 9

Picture the Lanyrd session BarCamp London 9

I attended BarCamp London 9 during the weekend of 29-30 October 2011 at the City University London Social Sciences Building.

I last attended the event at BarCamp London 6 in 2009, and although the format was the same for this year’s BarCamp, a digital grid was used for the first time, allowing attendees to populate the half hour sessions using the site.

If you haven’t a clue what I’m taking about, see Wikipedia for an explanation of what BarCamp is.

Here’s some of the sessions I participated in during the weekend:

Picture of pies and attendeed at BarCamp London 9
Plenty of other stuff happened during the weekend: including pies for all (pictured above), YouTube bingo, the Saturday evening quiz along with beer and wine.

Regrettably I had to duck out of the traditional crashing out overnight at the venue this year.

Many thanks to the BarCamp London 9 organisers and sponsors for a fantastic and fulfilling weekend.

75 years of television

BBC Test Card C

Today marks 75 years since the first regular high definition (as in 405 line) television service began broadcasting from the BBC studios at Alexandra Palace in North London.

The BBC’s Nick Higham has posted two videos about the anniversary: BBC celebrates 75 years of TV and Behind the scenes at Alexandra Palace, the cradle of television.

There is also anniversary coverage on:

(Test Card C illustration from the Test Card Circle.)

The importance of RSS

I absolutely agree with the points Felicia Day makes about RSS.

It’s the only way to efficiently track updates to websites.

If sites are removing RSS feeds, I am at a loss to understand why.

Dave Winer, who has been involved in the development of RSS, has also responded to Felicia’s post.