Roland’s missing Bassline synth…

January 4, 2011

Roland is well known for it’s TB-303, TR-808 & TR 909 synths and drum machines, but it also made others in this numeric series: the SH-101, MC-202, and so on. However, it never made a ‘404’ of any sort, which leads me to create this HILARIOUS info-graphic:

Pat is partly to blame for this joke – though he’s sensible enough not to actually make a picture of it and upload it to his blog.

Times Crossword for iPhone

April 15, 2010

1a) Finally, The Times Crossword iPhone  app that I’ve been working on has appeared in the iTunes Store! (4)

2a) Actually we’ve launched first with the Concise Crossword, and the Cryptic above will go live in the next week or so. (6)

3a) But both are a very reasonable £2.99 for 50 crosswords. (1)

1d) The good thing about the Concise crossword is that it’s actually doable by mortal human beings – unlike the bloody Cryptics which I still can’t get my head around. (5-6)

2d) Get it from iTunes by clicking this exciting Universal Resource Locator link

3d) It was #1 in New and Noted yesterday in the iStore, so hopefully that will drive a few sales (4)

4d) If you’ve bought it – let me know what you think of it! (2-3-4-3)

Looking for some uranium?

August 26, 2009


Any website that has uranim for sale using an animated gif like the above is ok in my book.

Also check out their maiming super-magnets:

Two Supermagnets can very easily get out of control, crush fingers and instantly break ribs or even your arm if opposing poles fly at each other.”

What a super website!

Maximum Security Toothpaste

May 26, 2009

As used in the Guantanamo Bay Bad Place:


But I bet you still can’t take it on aeroplanes…

from Times Online

Geeking and Popping

March 7, 2009

Armed with only some sinewaves, a vintage valve oscilloscope, the Flippers and an incurable fascination with visualising sound a thing has been produced. It is a sort of musical thing with a sort of visual thing.

It’s been accepted into the virtual festival GeekPop.

You can see it here:

It’s like an amazing rock video without the rock. You’ll love it because it’s lovely.


Finally, the 21st Century arrives…

February 23, 2009

Robots are awesome, and for this reason alone Honda have pumped millions into developing a bipedal robot over the last twenty years.

Today their latest, called Asimo, came to visit us at work so we could see him in action:



As well as serving drinks he did some running, kicked a football (gently) and was able to be led around by the hand. The last was particularly impressive as that wasn’t ‘preprogrammed’ as such, it would respond to the direction it was moved in.

A cliche to say, but it’s amazing how wired we are to respond to humanoid shapes, imparting them with human emotion and intention. (Funnily enough, this was undemined somewhat by the child-like sound of it’s computer generated voice. It wasn’t the right voice for the job)

It’s certainly come along way since their first robot ‘EO’ in 1986:


Will we really have one in the home of the future as the presenter claimed? Maybe – at least it seems a little more plausible that those imagined in the 1950s…

Oscillating with joy

February 19, 2009

The People: So, what did you do on Valentine’s Day?
Oli: I went to Warwick South Services on the M40. at 9:30am to meet a  man I met on the Internet.
The People: Hmm.
Oli: To collect the oscilloscope I bought off him off Ebay!
The People: D’oh, you tease.

Was worried it wasn’t working to begin with, not having ever used one before, but with a bit of advice from Gabriel Oscilloscope Vendor, it all turned out ok.

It’s for a video I want to make to accompany a piece of music submitted to the GeekPop Festival, whcih you can just about hear tinkling away in the background.

Yes, I could have used a digital oscilloscope on the Mac, and which I do have several flavours of, but like analogue synths there’s something much more satisfying about knowing that there is a real stream of electrons being deflected by the audio signal, and that it’s really flourescing the crt display. It looks great actually, not done any justice by crappy Youtube compression. 

Not only that, but this oscilloscope is so old it actually have valves in it – gawd knows what it does to my electricity bill when I switch it on!