Archive for June, 2007

Scorpion tries hunting in supermarket’s fruit section

June 30, 2007

Innocent shopper Trevor Campbell got more than he bargained for when he visited the local supermarket to pick some supplies up. While searching through the bananas for a suitable bunch, he came across a scorpion lurking in the fruit section.

Trevor: “I picked up one bunch of bananas and then another and suddenly I saw something move and it was a big scorpion.”

Luckily he had the presence of mind to call a security guard. Together they got it into a plastic box, whereupon Trevor was charged with taking it to the police station. Trevor is used to encountering scorpions in Jamaica, where he is from.

– Nishant

Prince of Wales unable to supply vegetables up to standards

June 27, 2007

According to Sainsbury’s Supermarkets, Prince Charles has been unable to supply the supermarket with vegetables of the proper quality. That’s why he’s been dropped as a carrot supplier to Sainsbury’s.

Mr Holden, director of the organic food and farming charity, said that the Prince had fallen ‘victim’ to the supermarket’s ‘industrial processes’. According to him, the food started off well but were damaged due to long-distance transport, processing, and other procedures. Well, if the system is that bad, then how come Sainsbury can deal successfully with other small-scale suppliers?

– Nishant

More iPhone! Easy activation and 3 service plans.

June 27, 2007

Yep, more on the iPhone. It seems that Apple and AT&T have been making joint announcements regarding the upcoming gadget, cementing the closeness of their partnership over the product. In this post I bring you two announcements by the companies.

First of all, Apple and AT&T have announced that iPhone users will be able to activate the iPhone using iTunes at home, instead of having to wait in the retail stores.

Apparently iTunes will guide the user through choosing their service plan. Using iTunes, users will also be able to synchronise their songs, movies, TV shows, podcasts, contacts, and other stuff in the same way as with their iPods. This blog post says that the activation will work for both new and existing AT&T customers, and that users will be able to replace phones on their AT&T account with their new shiny iPhone.

“Syncing their new iPhone with iTunes works the same way [as syncing the iPod with iTunes]”, Steve Jobs – Apple CEO – said.

Smart idea, using an interface that many users – considering the popularity of iPods – are familiar with to help jumpstart a new product – not that it needs jumpstarting. Wonder who came up with this, Apple or AT&T?

As Will says, the iTunes activation feature will be a boon to many users, who don’t have to spend ages in the store waiting for retail employees to activate their phones. A small but noticeable change.

The second announcement brings details of iPhone service plans. Three plans have been announced, and all include unlimited Email/Web data, unlimited mobile-to-mobile calling, and 200 texts – more texts can be added to the plans. Here’s a table of all three plans.

If you already have an AT&T plan, you can add a plan that only includes the visual voicemail and web data transfer for $20 a month.

Living in Tanzania, the cost of using mobile phones here goes to a completely different scale than it does in the US, so I’m not sure whether these are pricey plans or not. But Cheynne commented that they’re cheaper than he expected.

Well, that’s more iPhone news being rolled out in the days before the launch.

Oh, and I had a laugh at AT&T declaring Friday to be ‘iDay’, and using other “i” jokes.

– Nishant

New Blog Domain!

June 27, 2007


This blog is now at – yay.

Going to will automatically redirect to the new address.

Any RSS feeds should be automatically updated. If not, you can subscribe again to the entries feed using the new URL:

Or, you can click on the nice-looking button in the sidebar to the right, and subscribe using that service.


– Nishant

UN court drags feet over Charles Taylor’s trial

June 26, 2007

This is Charles Taylor, ex-president of Liberia. ‘Hi Charles!’

Charles is a war criminal. He was indicted on the 3rd of March 2003 on 654 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity, (since amended to 650 counts). The UN doesn’t seem to be in any real hurry to convict him, considering he was only flown to Hague for the trial on June 20th 2006.

Even when the trial did start, Charles continued to be a pain in the a**. On the first day of his trial, (June 4th 2007 – almost a year after he arrived) Charles decided – since he seems to have the power to decide – not to attend his trial. Instead, he sent a letter with his lawyers complaining about not being able to receive an impartial trial. Well, committing 650 war crimes does tend to reduce your chances of an impartial trial.

Evidently the UN doesn’t agree with me. After failing to attend his trial for the second time, the presiding judge chided the court administrators, for not dealing with the defense issue. This time the ‘issue’ is Charles Taylor complaining over the size of his defense team, and then proceeding to fire his lead lawyer.

Doesn’t the UN recognise delaying tactics?

– Nishant

Duo line up for iPhone – four days early; iPhone 2 rumors; iPhone survival tips

June 26, 2007

iPhone, iPhone, iPhone, all attention on the iPhone.

First of all, as Aaron Wright reveals, two people have begun camping outside a New York store to make sure they get their hands on the iPhone when it comes out on Friday. With four days of waiting ahead, they are prepared with soft drinks, coolers of food, and chairs. Let’s hope they also have a portable lavatory.

Kanak Bhandari thinks that it could be a stunt to get a free iPhone; the duo probably didn’t plan it like that, but it could end up happening. To gundampilotspaz, however, this early queue serves as a deterrent to going near that Apple Store; “”I don’t think being anywhere near that Apple Store would be an enjoyable experience.”

Picture taken from the above blog post. This is Greg, the first guy in the queue. Here’s a video link.

And now, according to this article the iPhone could be succeeded by January 2008, when Apple might unveil the iPhone 2. GPS, better WiFi service, and the ability to synchronise with email servers may be included. Am I the only one who thinks it’s strange that Apple is working on the successor for a product yet to be released?

Although, the iPhone 2 may not render the iPhone obsolete. Apple products seem to last for a while, even with frequent hardware updates. Case in point: I know people who are still getting by with PowerBooks, despite the MacBook Pro having been released.

Finally, this blog post at has given out five survival tips to help you get through the iPhone launch day. Although a few are actually more like alternatives to buying an iPhone, (the final tip says “Don’t buy one”), they might be worth checking out.

– Nishant

Python appears at the side of a road in Wales

June 26, 2007

This is a picture of a 15 foot long python that has been found at the side of a road in Wales.

There are appeals for the owner of this python to step forward and claim it. Kind of stupid if you ask me; if someone abandons a giant python at the side of a road, they probably wont be rushing back to get it in a hurry.

Well, anyways, I’ll do my bit. If you’re the former owner of this python, (or if for some odd reason you have a childhood dream of owning a 15 foot python) then step forward and claim it.

Here’s the RSPCA’s contact details: Telephone: 0870 33 35 999 (or +44 870 33 35 999 for calls from outside the UK). The enquiries service is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, when your call may be monitored or recorded for training purposes.

Don’t worry, it isn’t poisonous. Just highly irritable, pretty aggressive, and strong enough to seriously injure. But not poisonous.

– Nishant

According to Time Out, thousands of people live in a ‘flaccid penis’

June 26, 2007

Kingston in Greater London

I’m afraid this post is going to be less interesting than the titles implies. The weekly Time Out magazine interestingly described the London borough of Kingston, (shown in Greater London above) as a ‘flaccid penis’. Right.

After forgetting to include Kingston upon Thames in a couple of its London guide books, Time Out hastily compiled a 10-point guide to the borough, and made the following unflattering comment in the introduction regarding the omission; “Time Out did a Bobbitt and cut the flaccid penis that is the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames off the map of the capital.”

Here’s the picture again.

Well, if you turn your head a bit to the right and forget about the bit at the top, then Time Out might actually have a point…

– Nishant

Cinema lets audience members alert staff with discreet pagers

June 25, 2007

Five cinemas in New York that belong to the Regal Entertainment Group have been giving some audience members small black pagers. These pagers can be used to alert staff whenever this is a ‘disturbance’ during the showing of the movie. What kind of disturbance? Well, one moviegoer says he would use the device when people started answering cellphones during movies, or talking out loud so that others were disturbed. For now, only audience members that participate in Regal’s customer loyalty program are given the chance to wield the pager, which apparently looks like a child’s toy.

I guess that the intentions of this move are good, I don’t like the way it places some audience members above the rest. It’s basically like choosing a couple of people at random and empowering them to be custodians of the audience during the film, without them having qualifications whatsoever. Heather DeMatteis, the manager of a cinema using this pager, said “[the audience] love it”. Well of-course they love it, whoever holds the pager has the power to call down the wrath of the staff on a target of their choice.

Ah, there’s a problem. A target of their choice – what if they don’t like a member of the audience and use the pager against them? Staff will hardly know who is telling the truth, and they’ll probably believe the person with the pager over the innocent victim – why? Because he has the pager. Heck, this could even become a marketing tactic: people want a chance with the pager, so they’ll sign up for Regal’s loyalty program.

This blog post has more details on the pager, which apparently has four buttons labelled ‘Sound’, ‘Picture’, ‘Piracy’, and ‘Other Disturbance’.

Actually, hang on – the pager is being offered in 114 cinemas. This website has a list of all the participating theatres.

Hopefully I won’t be visiting any of those in the future.

– Nishant

Fashion and practicality: a jacket recharges your gadgets

June 25, 2007

As a heavy iPod user, this could be interesting. This Thursday, (the 21st of June) an Italian company showed off an extraordinary jacket at a fashion show in Florence. This jacket contains solar electronics that can generate electricity and store it in a battery, where it can be used to charge iPods, cell phones, and other devices. The jacket is designed by ‘Zegna’, with the electronics developed by ‘Solarc’.

There are two solar modules in the collar of the coat. One module is 9cm by 5.5cm, and with full sunlight generates 1 watt of power.

The integrated battery is 70mm by 60mm by 13mm, and is about 100 grams heavy. In about four to eight power it is fully charged, and when it’s full it can charge an iPod up in another four hours. There are 5 volt and 6 volt connections available, for USB and cell phone devices respectively. These two blog posts have more details on the jacket, and the picture that’s below.

The jacket will ship in late 2008, with prices yet to be stated. Unless it’s outrageously expensive – or extremely unfashionable – I can see myself wearing this jacket.

– Nishant