Apr 16th

From: News Thump

By Colin L

Climate change sceptics to start denying ‘existence of moon’


Climate change deniers

Senior climate change sceptics have announced their intention to start denying the existence of the moon.

“It’s about broadening our portfolio of really good ideas,” announced Simon Williams who has a doctorate in Climateopathy, which he downloaded from the internet for 50p one Sunday afternoon when it was raining.

“The evidence that we’re morons and just plain wrong has been building for some time now. Which has been fabulous in terms of growing our business.

“But going forward, we have to think how we can compete with the growth of lunatic ideas in other sectors.

“I mean hats off to the Anti-Vaxxers for instance. The work they’re doing in giving measles a chance to spread is fantastic. It’s just a shame Smallpox was eradicated before they had a chance to do some real harm.”

NASA scientists were amongst the many to react tiredly to the announcement. “The moon? But it’s there. It just is. How the hell can they deny that?”

But Simon Williams was unperturbed. “I can think of literally loads of books from before the 20th century which don’t mention the moon at all,” he said.

“And if that doesn’t prove the moon’s a recent cultural invention, then maybe I just have no clue whatsoever about the nature of evidence or scientific enquiry.”

NB:  Expletives Deleted

Mar 13th

Universe May Split

By Colin L

Universe May Split As Time Travelers Converge in Chicago

Earlier a large group of independent time travelers appeared at a political rally at the University of Illinois at Chicago, leaving many investors in the universe wondering if a split could be in the future. Splits are maneuvers where a company or universe increases the number of shares or universes outstanding – as a way to lower the per-share stock price, or ridiculousness of the universe. A company will split its stock as a way to encourage investors to get in at a perceived lower price, while a time traveler will split the universe as a part of an attempt to rid the world of some stupid asshat who’s ruined the future.

Time will tell why so many people from so many periods saw fit to arrive at once, but judging by their actions at the packed arena they are possibly trying to stop a mad lunatic from gaining control of the country. According to market experts, one thing they won’t be able to stop is the inevitable split of the universe into hundreds of parallel entities which may grow even more outlandish.

“We’re looking at hundreds of time travelers in the same place at the same time,” says market analyst and time travel expert Conner Johnson, “There’s no way a major split isn’t in our future, and that’s great news for universe speculators! An investor in the universe technically doesn’t gain anything when the universe splits, but it’s psychological. With more universes there’s more chance for greater levels of stupid BS. We could be seeing significant growth.”

While it appears the lunatic canceled the event, the mere fact these travelers were in the same room together has likely already spun us into a parallel universe where said lunatic wears a stupid red hat everywhere.

Sep 4th

From: The Daily Mash

By Colin L

Google rendered unusable after font change



SEARCH engine Google has been abandoned by users unable to decipher its new logo.

Computers have been hurled out of windows in confusion and anger, with many people rejecting modern life altogether and choosing to live in a cave.

Google fan Nikki Hollis said: “I wanted to look up what my opinion on Taylor Swift was meant to be today but instead of my Google homepage I was met with these strange, menacing hieroglyphs.

“I haven’t been home since but I imagine they’re still there on my computer screen, glowing with unfathomable, arcane menace. I don’t know what I’m meant to do now.

“Ask Jeeves? You ask ruddy Jeeves.”

Cryptologists have warned the series of curves and colours may represent an ancient Mayan curse, and if enough people try to utter its message it could invoke The Unnamed One into being.

Hollis added: “Why can’t we have winsome cartoons about artists I’ve never heard of? Where was the harm in that?”

Apr 2nd

Missing Maps

By Geoff J

Going mapping this evening.

Will download an aerial photograph from a satellite of say, an area with town and villages in Africa.

Using special programmes, will then outine by digital pen the rivers, roads, main buildings and other buildings. The programmes enable me to add notes, queries or doubt(s) of my interpretation(s), etc etc. 

Missing Maps is is a scheme which enables ordinary folk to make maps with others - the maps are then used by aid agencies, eg International Red Cross, to deal with emergencies in areas where hitherto no maps exist. 

Some maps are created whilst emergency operations are in hand: other maps are worked on in anticipation of the likelihood of a typhoon, earthquake, tsunami etc.

At the moment about 950 projects are underway in many parts of the world. Several thousand volunteers are members and make themselves available when they are able to work on one of the various places needing a map.

When a call goes out for help from an aid agency several dozen volunteers may be working on their "locked" exclusive zone of the affected disaster zone - so as to get the maps ready in "double time".

Typically the map is available as soon as it has been prepared, checked and authenicated (all online). Later if time permits it will be checked on the ground but often, I am guessing, in an emergency any map is better than none.

An example given to me was as follows: a local resident walks into a aid hospital with symptoms of ebola. He says he walked from a village to the north half a day away. If there is no map the aid agency cannot know which village.

I guess the agency put out a call for a map and say 40 volunteers get busy in 40 zones to the north. They quickly spot the roads and bridges over rivers and the say 10 villages through which the man walked. Need I say more ...?

Dec 30th

Dear Frank.

By phillip J W

Frank Atkinson the man who was the inspiration & creator of the Beamish Open Air Musum of the North East has died.
Born 1924 Frank was the spark & the leaverage behind the creation of one of the North East's most popular living open air museums of working life.
Without Frank Atkinson - his persistance & his personality this living resort of 19th cent. life in a mining town would not have begun its development. 
This museum has been open to the public since the '70s & has attracted millions of visitors from all over the world.
It's ethos to continue building original dwellings & working properties of the period continues to this day.
It's latest arm is an entire street of homes & shops from the 1950s. 

Oct 13th

A bit of history

By Ann R
Last year I joined the 'Friends of Hereford Cathedral' as I think that it is good to support buildings like this.  Every so often there are talks or outings and it was with them that I spent my recent holiday in Kent.

On one of our trips earlier in the year it was announced that there would be a ten week course starting in September with the title 'The History of Hereford', this would be aimed at anyone who was interested in becoming a city tour guide, however anyone could attend.  At £48.00 for the ten weeks I thought that it was a bargain and, as I am new to the city, it would be a good way to learn about its past.

I should add that I am not sure if this is run by the 'Friends' or if it is something separate.

Anyway, the course started on 29 September and we were given a brief outline of how it was thought that Hereford came into being, various theories about how it was named etc.

Last week we had a lecture on Castle Green, which is a few minutes from where I live and nowadays is just a grassy area, but many centuries ago there was a motte and bailey castle on that site.

Today we heard about the Civil War, the city was not very Royalist so it seems.

The jury is still out on whether I am enjoying it, the subject matter is interesting but I do wish that when people do public speaking that they would address the audience and not continually speak to the screen.  I am lucky in that I am not hard of hearing, but it must be difficult for those that are.  (Just one of my many niggles lol).

Before you ask, no I will not be putting my name forward to become a city guide.  I wouldn't have the patience.

I keep scribbling notes each week and then spend the rest of the day looking things up on the internet.  I am certainly learning where places are in the county and also the names of people that have shaped the area.  So, thinking about it, I think that I must be enjoying it! 
Aug 6th

Hoop Loop Keeper

By Sam K

My “Hoop Loop Keeper”.

I have several hoops which use keepers to hold the loops in place but none of the keepers last the life of the hoops. In previous years when a keeper broke I had to buy a complete new hoop or form a loop keeper with an elastic band. As the elastic band was not as sturdy as proper hoop loop keepers they soon broke, very frustrating.

Last week when I broke the loop keeper on one of my smaller hoops I thought: one must be able to buy hoop loop keepers separate from the hoops. I trudge round some of the local shops which I thought may stock hoop loop keepers. All I got was funny “what on earth was I talking about” or “are you loopy” looks. On Saturday I visited Milton Keynes and dared to go into a rather posh shop in the shopping centre. I approached a well dressed (collar and tie) male assistant and asked “do you stock hoop loop keepers”.” Yes sir, Walk this way please” he said (I tried but I cannot wiggle my hips like that). We came to a small counter and, lo and behold, there was a galaxy of hoop loop keepers, never seen so many keepers. “Do you know the texture and size of hoop loop keeper you require, sir”. There my jaw dropped –“texture, size all I want is a common hoop loop keeper”. “The texture and colour are important, sir, we do not do plastic only best quality leather and only in brown or black”. As for the size: It appears that the width of the keeper should be two millimetres wider than hoop and the inside depth equal to the sum of the depth of the hoop and loop added together. Fast exit>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

On the way back I did a little detour to a corner shop in Stony Stratford. “Yes mate” said the jeans and T shirted proprietor, “if we have not got the hoop loop keeper you want in stock we can get one in.”

Went home, did a hoop loop keeper measure and phoned my Stony Stratford “mate”. Yesterday I picked up 2 x 24mm and 1 x 22 mm hoop loop keepers. So now I have a spare keeper for the original hoop and also a spare keeper for another hoop which I feel is near the end of its life. Cost, with bulk buy discount - £1.25.

Feb 18th

Research - street harassment

By Katrina M
Dear members,

My name is Katrina Moysey and I am a Geography student at Kingston University. I am currently undertaking research involving womens experiences of street harassment. I am exploring womens experience of harassment whilst in a public place.
I am doing this is two parts. I have created a survey for women aged 18-24 to ask their experiences and views. I have also created a survey for women who are over 60 years old and I am particularly interested in their experience of street harassment and how the forms harassment have changed throughout their lives. 
Definition of Street Harassment – An interaction in a public space that restricts your movement or makes you modify your behavior in an attempt to avoid the possibility of being verbally and/or physically harassed (INCITE)

This research goes towards my dissertation. If you are a women who is over 60 who feels they would like to fill out my survey, I would be extremely grateful for your time. 

The survey is anonymous and takes between 5-15 minutes. 

Survey link-https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/8CQN35B  

Thank you for your time  
Sep 19th

What does 'community' mean to you? Research interviews under way

By Dave H
Hello all,
You may remember some time ago I was asking for volunteers for some research looking at the nature of community in the modern world. Well thank you to everyone who responded to that request.

Myself and my colleagues from Sussex University are currently interviewing people from DropBy and from our local area (around Newhaven) to see how the notion of 'community' has changed and what part websites like DropBy and Facebook (I know they are worlds apart) play in maintaining a sense of community in our lives.

More to follow....

Dave Harley

Jul 15th

What does community mean to you? Research and new online questionnaire.

By Dave H
Myself and some colleagues from Sussex University are currently doing a study which looks at people's experiences of community  and the part that technologies play in defining what we consider to be 'community'.

 If you think you might be interested in taking part please complete this  short online questionnaire: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/37D3TZC  and if you leave your details on the questionnaire we'll contact you for a  follow up interview.

Ideally we would like to hear from people who are retired and live in the south of England.

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