Mobile madness

A photograph of the outside of a Vodafone shop.
Where have all the customers gone?

Apparently, the UK has more mobile phones than people these days.

On one hand, that’s not surprising when you consider that Vodafone, O2, Orange, and T-mobile all have shops within 200 meters of one another on my local high street. Strangely however, the biggest of them, Vodafone, hardly ever has any customers in it.

People must be buying their phones some other way.


We had spinach for dinner this evening (among other things), and not for the first time I found myself wondering: Why does cooked spinach leave a film that you can feel on your teeth?

Well it seems it’s all down to those annoying oxalate crystals.

Isn’t the Internet simply amazing?

Blue Jean Chef

My sister, aka the Blue Jean Chef, has a new web site designed by yours truly.

It’s the first time I’ve used the new-ish open source blogging tool (aka Content Management System) called WordPress, and I have to admit that I was impressed. I found it easy to setup, and there are lots of plugins freely available to customise it to your needs.

It’s so good in fact that I’m seriously tempted to switch from MovableType to WordPress myself.

My links

I’m experimenting with, a “social bookmarks manager”.

So here are links to some of the web pages that I found interesting recently (the annotations are mine):

UK front pages

You may be familiar with BBC New Online’s UK Front pages web page. Or then again, you may not.

BBC Front Pages screen shot.
BBC Front Pages

In any case, I’ve grown tired of clicking on each newspaper’s link sequentially so I’ve created my own page that displays all of the available front pages at once.

You can access it at

Note however, that the images come from the BBC’s web site and are therefore ultimately beyond my control. For example, the front pages were available for 1 January 2005, but not 2 January 2005. Could this be the result of someone at the BBC not working on Sundays? Use at your own risk.

Update (2 Oct 2005): The BBC ceased providing images of the UK’s newspaper front pages in early August 2005, so my “summary” page no longer works. A similar service is currently available at, but few British newspapers are included in its database.

Crossword puzzles

On the last day of 2004 BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour featured an interesting report on the history of crossword puzzles (RealPlayer required). Did you know that the first crossword appeared in 1913? Or that the first collection of puzzles gave Simon & Schuster its start?