Archive for December, 2009

FUSE launches

My new business research search-engine, FUSE. Still in beta, but fully working and searching over 700 open-access business journals and other selected free academic material. Unlike Google Scholar results, you’ll (after a little more optimisation by me) be able to assume that almost every link you click on will lead to a document that’s free […]

JoIF No.6

JoIF, the ‘talking animals’ issue — just published.

Flickr with a black background

Flickr Shades, a simple script for Firefox + the GreaseMonkey addon. It lets you configure the colour of Flickr, to get rid of the glaring white background. Fully configurable — to get to the Options menu, just point your browser to Flickr, then go: Tools / GreaseMonkey / User Script Commands. UPDATE: better solution. Stylish […]

Birmingham Future debate report

A long report from the recent Birmingham Future debate on “the city’s ability to weather the financial crisis”. The Business editor of The Birmingham Post reportedly commented on his… “over-riding frustration lies with the leadership of the city, which he insists is not strong enough to retain the best of the 80,000 students who pass […]

For sale, the OS

Ooops, hold on to that nice idea that we’ll all be getting free access to Ordnance Survey high-quality maps and mapping data from April 2010. It seems the government is planning to sell off the O.S., due to the Labour Party having bankrupted the nation for the second time in 30 years. I’d assume the […]

Digg up

Beautiful information visualisation at Digg. Just a shame that it had to be Digg that’s being visualised — does anyone do more than skim the Digg headlines in RSS, these days?

Terry Grimley profiles Peter James

Terry Grimley at The Birmingham Post profiles the keeper of photography at Birmingham Central Library… “The library’s photographic collection was already magnificent before James arrived on the scene in the 1980s, but it was a sleeping giant waiting for someone to recognise it for what it really was. Its scale is staggering, amounting to an […]


A concept video on the future of magazines.

The “Jack Kirby” PC

Mmm, perfect for the Fantastic Four HQ circa 1970…

Taking notes

Blimey. The Chief Exec of Arts Council West Midlands will reportedly get a £211,000 payout, on leaving in June 2010. And also a £33k per year pension, for the rest of her life.

Auto blog

I made two Firefox scripts to automate regular aspects of blogging.

Google search enhanced

At a time when everyone seems to be focussed on re-purposing web content for mobile, what about adapting for 24″ widescreen monitors? Why stick with a long scrolling page format for search results, for instance — something that’s more suited to the age of the long tall accounting-ledger? When the results could look like this: […]

Firefox addon: Google Custom Search 1.1.2

There’s an excellent and newly released Firefox addon, called Google Custom Search 1.1.2, made by Kai Londenberg in Germany. It quickly creates independently-hosted anonymous Google Custom Search Engines, which you can then manage and refine directly from buttons embedded in your Google search results. And just like the official Google CSEs, you get cut-and-paste HTML […]

A truce in the war on photographers?

Nice to hear. The Independent reports that… “…strongly worded warning was circulated by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) last night. In an email sent to the chief constables of England and Wales’s 43 police forces, officers were advised that […] “Officers and community support officers are reminded that we should not be stopping […]

14 books on/by Brian Eno

14 books on/by Brian Eno: 1.  On Some Faraway Beach: The Life and Times of Brian Eno 2.  Brian Eno’s Another Green World (33 1/3 series) 3.  Brian Eno: His Music and the Vertical Color of Sound (available online) 4.  Bowie in Berlin: A New Career In A New Town 5.  Ocean of Sound: Aether […]

Extract links and link titles from search results

My tutorial on how to rip a page of search result links into a .csv file, along with their vital link titles, using little more than Notepad and a simple bit of javascript. It can be used to very quickly create approximate bibliographic lists such as these.

Masters of unemployment

Paul Sangar on “certificate inflation” among employers recruiting staff… “In 2008 the government elected on the promise of ‘education, education, education’ slashed the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) postgraduate scholarship programme by a third, so good luck to non-scientists [aiming for a funded PhD] . Oh, and AHRC scholarships are not means-tested, so the […]


AWMmist, a new map-based directory for the hi-tech sector in the West Midlands. “The initial data set comes from importing existing data, but it is expected that organisations keep their data up to date themselves through the AWMist web interface. […] users are able to search for key words and will be shown a list […]

Figurines of Old Europe

“The Figurines of Old Europe” (PDF, 12Mb), a free chapter from the sumptuous exhibition catalogue for The Lost World of Old Europe: the Danube Valley, 5000 – 3500 BC, a show on now in New York.

Attention thieves

In the “age of attention”, there are attention thieves in public places… “selfishly force the rest of us to pay the cost of their choices in life aren’t just bothering us; they’re stealing from us. Most people don’t see it this way, because what they’re stealing isn’t a thing we can grab on to, like […]