Hello 23 thingers!

June 1, 2010

Hi!

Finally got back to my blog after some really hectic days + a heavy cold!

I have subscribed to a Google reader as I already have a gmail account so that seemed the simplest thing to do.

Adding a couple of feeds was relatively easy.  The most intriguing thing I have found so far is the APOD site which publishes pictures pertaining to space.  This is not to say that I have a particular interest in outer space but the pictures are absoloutely amazing.

I have also subscribed to a Chinese news and culture site – one of my interests at the present as I am trying to learn a little mandarin chinese.

I have mostly used the search tool on Google Reader to find stuff – amazingly simple – just what I need at the end of a tiring day.

Next I intend to have a look at the ‘sharing items’ bit, but I don’t feel too confident about that!

The amount of information out there is totally mind boggling!

I am very glad to be learning about all this stuff but it is making me feel very aware of my advanced years!

Hope all is well with everyone!

23 Things – Technology Blog!

May 9, 2010

Scratched my head a long time considering this ‘thing’ but decided in the end to write a few words about something that really interests me.
I have always been fascinated by languages and the use of words. My daughter must have inherited some of my interest in linguistics as she has become a translator.
I can remember her telling me a long time ago about the supposed impossibility of creating a machine which would translate as efficiently and fluently as a human.
Most of us have heard of the babel fish from The Hitchhiker’s Guide so I thought I’d look and see how near to achieving the aim of instant and perfect two way translation our technology has brought us.
The latest technology on the market seems to be some software which you download to your mobile phone. When you select the phrase that you require your mobile phone will speak the sentence for you.
The main drawback seems to be that of course you have to persuade the friendly local you have accosted to hold the phone to his ear and then select the appropriate phrase to give the answer to your question. Useful in an emergency perhaps but a little long winded and not half as much fun as trying to make yourself understood in pigeon swahili or whatever.
My daughter will certainly be pleased that this technology has not yet reached the pinnacle of its achievement as it will mean that she will still be able to earn money for a little while yet.
There is also something wonderfully fascinating and fulfilling about being able to communicate in another language even at a very basic level. It also enables you to engage even more with a people and their culture.
What do you all think? Is the effort of learning a foreign language really worth it or should the boffins increase their efforts to develop babel fish?

Giant Butterfly Rampages Through Tavistock Library

April 17, 2010

Giant Butterfly Rampages Through Tavistock Library

One of the strangest places I have ever visited

April 12, 2010

Hi 23Things colleagues!

This is my first attempt at adding a photo to my blog – one from our last holiday in Berlin.

23 Things course

March 14, 2010

Just a quick hello to all my colleagues on the 23 Things course! I’m already beginning to develop a new view about the power and scope of the Internet – much scarier than I’d ever imagined!

Hello world!

March 10, 2010

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