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August 2012

I could have sworn it was the glorious 12th!

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I was watching the news last night about Prince Phillip having to go back into hospital because of a reoccurrence of a bladder infection.   Having had more than my fair share of similar problems, I wish him a speedy recovery.   Just like the Queen he sets a great example for others to follow.  Of course when a member of the royal family get taken to hospital it's headline news and various people are hurriedly invited to add to the story, especially on 24 hour news channels. 

One such uppercrust “royal watcher” was asked about the Prince’s health and how only a couple of days ago on August 12th the Prince had been grouse shooting (the 12th August being the beginning of the hunting season for Red grouse in the UK).  The man then went on to add in a very plumy voice “It was every Englishman’s dream to shoot and then eat a grouse on the Glorious 12th!”....which told you everything about this person’s disconnection to the real UK that most of us live in.

 

Olympic Legacy

Being a Brit and feeling so proud of the efforts of Great Britain's Olympic Athletes in the last couple of weeks, it came a quite a shock to find out from 38 degrees that the Minister for Education Michael Gove, is trying to quietly relax rules on UK school playgrounds so some of them can be sold off!         Talk about Olympic Legacy!!!!!!!!!!!!

Selling off school playing fields to developers originally goes back to the Thatcher Government, and that together with the scrapping of the legal obligation (1980 Education Act) of schools to provide a nutritious meal brought about the Turkey Twizzlers all all the other junk food served up for school dinners. These two decisions were the building blocks for Obese Britain in 2012.   Of course the Labour government that followed did'nt repeal this folly because Tony Blair was too busy trying to show how "Tory like" his party could be so the sale of playing fields continued.  Fast forward to 2012 when 1 in 4 adults in the UK are obese and school playing fields are still being sold off.  True to form the Conservatives try to push through legislation to do more sell off whilst at the same time telling the public the importance of an Olympic legacy.   According to the Gurdian Newspaper Mr Gove ignored advice from an independant panel no fewer than 5 times.Michael Gove ignores independant panel's advice    All UK people please click this link and sign the petition now.
Help stop Michael Gove's sneaky sell off of UK school playgrounds

On a different subject of Julian Assange the man behind Wiki leaks, again the Tory government have made another error of judgment. If you’re familiar with the case Mr Assange is hold up in the Embassy of Ecuador, and today he was granted asylum.

Regardless of the rights or wrongs of the case the Foreign Office made an almighty blunder in threatening to "storm the Ecuador Embassy" ..in writing no less. They have created a situation which neither country can stepdown from, and if British Police are made to go into the Embassy and arrest Julian Assange, surely this will give other countries a green light to storm into British Embassies all over the world.

I don't know who advises this bunch of morons ...but talk about shooting yourself in both feet in one day to show the world how truly mentally challenged our current Government is, when trying to make a sensible choice and keep the global goodwill generated by the Olympic Games.  I turned to Chris an he said in a plumy voice "I could have sworn it was the Glorious 12th!"


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New Coke All Over again?

Hotmail SnailFor those of you old enough to remember when some bright spark within the Coca Cola Company in the 1980’s decided to revamp the Coke recipe and hence “New Coke” was born.

For several years millions and millions of dollars where thrown at advertising campaigns to try and convince the public that “New Coke” was better.  But after a short while reluctantly, original Coke was reintroduced along side New Coke.  They renamed the original Coke “Coke Classic”.

 Now with a choice, the people chose classic Coke in overwhelming numbers and inside 2 more years Classic Coke went back to being Coke and New Coke was consigned to the dustbin of bad ideas.

 

Hotmail

Just like Coke here was a product that was classic, well liked and functioned smoothly and fast. I worked out the other day I've been a hotmail user for 16 years, back then hotmail was one of the few fast and stable email services.  Whilst many others crashed and were hacked Hotmail remained the gold standard.   Then with the advent of Google and then Gmail suddenly Hotmail felt it needed to bolt on a few extras to keep its supremacy. At first by integrating MSN, then Messenger, Skydrive and Windows Live.

Of course the problems are made 10 xs worse because just like Google and facebook it is almost impossible to speak to anyone high enough in the company to actually remedy these problems.

Indeed such are the problems that several third party companies have sprung up charging a fee to

advise people with hotmail problems, which is an outrageous indictment of how far the service has fallen!  These problems have continued to reoccur for seven long years but unlike the Coca Cola Company ….hotmail and Microsoft are still in denial.

 http://www.theinternetpatrol.com/hotmail-outage-as-server-goes-down-users-unable-to-access-email/

Hotmail have gone down this egotistical path to make it all singing all dancing provider but the real result of bolting on and integrating all these other services is Hotmail has become a Frankenstein’s monster….unwieldy, a more attractive target for hackers to try and crash,

clumsy and worse of all unable to perform it’s core function in a speedy and satisfactory way.

 

The Solution

Hotmail execs must swallow their corporate pride and the financial cost of stripping hotmail back to its core before it is too late. Separate the various pieces so that if one part crashes the rest still works.   After that I suggest pinning up in the boardroom an old but very true saying….

"If it aint broke, don't fix it!".  

 

For Your Viewing Pleasure?

16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom are two TV programs that glamorise young girls getting pregnant and thus are encouraging young girls down this slippery and difficult slope.

I'm sure the producers will try to defend these retched programs and make out they are performing an information service for girls who fall pregnant.   But the trouble is its also promoting teen pregnancy as a way to get on TV. 

 

My 9 year old daughter told me a few weeks ago that she has 3 (9 year old) classmates who where discussing getting pregnant and getting on the show when they are 16.  Now for some girls from poor backgrounds with dubious parents the idea of escaping their mundane future by appearing on a TV shows is an appealing and enticing one.

Of course I was appalled and shocked on so many levels, as reality shows continue to vulgarise our lives some more.  Of course these stupid kids don’t realise that for every girl that appears on the show there are thousands who don’t make it…even though they got pregnant just to appear on your show.

 

Thankfully, my daughter has other ambitions to go to University and become a Vet, but someone needs to shout about this from the rooftops to protect the foolish from this incredibly bad exploitation TV.  

This very poorly judged TV on what used to be just a music channel and unfortunately MTV may have grown-up as a channel….but its choice of programming is still very juvenile.

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