Life of Ben (Blog)

GTA2 Retro Gaming Reunion (20th November 2016)

A couple of days ago, playboy52 e-mailed me to say the GTA2 online scene was picking up again. That is to say, there are sometimes 4 players active in the Game Hunter chat client made by the community. That’s all you need for fine retro gaming entertainment.#

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Family and Cycling in Fleet (13th November 2016)

We’ve had a quiet time and a nice dinner. Got some IT done for the old folks. ;)

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Black Mirror Series 3 (No Spoilers) (29th October 2016)

Just saw the first episode on Netflix and it was outstanding. To avoid spoiling it, all I’ll say about the premise is that it’s a plausible short story based in the not-too-distant future. Slow to start but I was utterly absorbed for most of the duration. 5 stars!

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2nd USA Presidential Debate (22nd October 2016)

The highlights for this on BBC were just about watchable. Kept the TV volume low and I expect the edit cut out much of the bickering.

Hillary Clinton is the obvious choice when compared to Donald Trump. Her very prepared segments were delivered excellently; reminded me of old footage with JFK at times. Seemed to use long words intuitively simply because they were the best fit, then caught herself and recalled the simpler words and soundbites which have no doubt been extensively researched and briefed.

The show of a president is an important part of the role. They address the whole nation every week, quite unlike things here in the UK. The effect of that on national morale, national attitude and therefore the character of the nation is not comparable to Prime Minister’s Questions.

As for the actual decision making and operating of the presidency, nominations for the Supreme Court is another role we don’t have here.

As they pointed out, there are key responsibilities of a president which will affect the nation for perhaps quarter of a century. As the Democrat candidate and throughout her responses, hers would be an inclusive and uniting leadership to oversee a time of calm.

When translated into the daily operations of a real-life White House, the alternative personality of her opponent does not bear thinking about.

Etsy on Privilege & Allies (22nd October 2016)

In their blog article Being an Effective Ally to Women and Non-Binary People, Etsy make perfectly clear this subject. It’s a more tangible way (to a developer) than I have seen before, too.

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Save Southwark Woods (31st October 2016)

We visited the SW corner of the cemetery where expansion has been planned into a wooded area. Trees and green space are under threat across London. Our city desperately needs these areas to be protected and more to be created.

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Let Your Developers Concentrate (21st October 2016)

From the GeekWire interview with Joel Spolsky of StackOverflew:

Spolsky played down those surveys, saying programmers have “a desire to use the latest, cool new thing” and tend to move on from programming quickly, so that their ranks are filled by “new kids showing up with newfangled things they just invented, usually reinventing the wheel.”

Penge Medium Short Cycle (9th October 2016)

The format for Penge CC Sunday Morning Rides is to meet at SE20 Cycles and roll out around 8am. That’s barely 3 miles from here and there’s no trains to worry about.

There are 4 basic routes and they are allocated to the same week within each month. This was week 2 so it used the week 2 medium pace shorter distance route.

We were back at SE20 Cycles by about 11:30am, even with 2 or 3 people having their chains off on the hilly bits and an impact puncture.

THINK! Again (7th October 2016)

A rather disappointing advert from Department for Transport has triggered a protest letter from Cycling UK.

Below is my extended version of the e-mail their system sends. Feel free to use this if you agree with it. Edit or amend it as you see fit. Or use the original version they provide. Or even write your own.

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Prudential RideLondon FreeCycle (30th July 2016)

Wanted to try riding at fast commuter pace but it was immediately clear this was not going to happen! Central London became a tarmac towpath for the middle of the day. Inspiring to think about, rather pacifying to participate in.

Missed out on the static bicycle racing as they were keeping it set up for kids at one location. As for the other location, I couldn’t it find until the final minutes – everything closed at just 4pm.

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