Sunday, March 28, 2010


Here is an exciting action packed video of my hotel room in Portugal. This cost me 12 pounds a night. It was huge. In fact when I got back to Germany, I was depressed because my flat here is 2 to 3 times smaller than the hotel room. Then I remembered the reason why I live in a small flat is because it is easy to clean.


Below are some photographs of the hotel pool in Portugal. I only saw 2 people in the pool over the full week. Early Sunday morning I did hear a lot of splashing and shouting. Party animals I thought. There was a pool side bar, so I did vaguely think about spending all day drinking there. But the lack of people would have made it depressing. (Drinking all day would be bad of course).

Sinister concrete fountain

Here is a picture of what I think is a fountain that was close to my hotel in Portugal. This is not exactly a wishing well. Some water comes out of steel grill. What is the point? It was not as if the water was used to help plants grow

Monday, March 22, 2010


Somewhat confusingly I write this post from Portugal. I am staying in a cheap hotel in a town called Portimao. It is very touristy area, but has a certain style about it. I have been here for a couple of days now. I have just been lazing around and reading. The weather has been warm, but not really hot, however I am walking around in a t-shirt and shorts. I am not totally warm, but it is a holiday (and the thing to do if you grew up in the North-West of England).

It is off seaon at the moment, so the place is empty. There are lots of places to drink here, but I don't like being the only person in a bar. Every night there are football games on the TV. For example, yesterday ManU versus Liverpool. After that there was a big European game. So the sound of sport is played out in every empty bar.

Although it a famlity type area there are a couple of sex shops and a strip bar. Perhaps the strip bar is full of people in the evening.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

no spare time for Wolfenstein

This is not a science blog, but I was amused by this link. I did see that paper on the Wolfenstein parameterization of the CKM matrix, but I decided from the abstract that it was probably crap, so I ignored it.

Of course after climategate it could be that I am a narrow minded scientist, but there are only so many hours in the day and many more worthy things to worry about. In the unlikey event of it being an important result, I am sure someone will let me know.

a fighter's heart

I just finished reading "a fighter's heart" by Sam Sheridan. Sam tells stories of him training in various martial arts. He starts off training in Muay Thai, but he also worked on his ground work in Brazil (where else). He also hangs out with some dog fighting people.

He also spent some time meditating, but he was bored by that, and only got into it just before he left.

I liked the parts about failure the best. He was sparring in a boxing gym, and the opponent He had a bad injury to his ribs that had stopped him training, but he was better. His opponent hit him in the ribs and he freaked and totally lost the fight. He had a lot of negative dialogue where he started worrying, and he lost focus. This used to happen to me all time. (If I every fought Sam I would train a lot of body shots to the ribs, but maybe he is smart and actually has problems with getting punched in the head. I know that this makes me sound like a bad person, but this is the way fighting works).

He did seem to get injured a lot. I felt sorry for him. He went to train in Brazil, but he injured his shoulder, so he couldn't train.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Nice try Tory, but I still hate you.

I finally understand what it means to be bought off by politicians. Download speed is an important quality of life issue. However being able to download a movie from Itunes in a minute will not make up for being under Tory rule. Even living in Germany, I am starting to feel ill with the idea that they will be back.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

This means this

I have just finished reading "This means this, this means that a user's guide to Semiotics". I have been listening to Baldi on the BBC iplayer. Normally I hate priests, but Baldi is also a lecturer in semiotics, and he solves crimes. I wanted to be cool as well.

The book had a picture or some banner text on every page with a couple of paragraphs discussing it. For example, see the picture attached. Does this picture represent my feelings about Semiotics? But perhaps, if you knew that I was a particle physicist, the picture might represent my goal of the unification of forces to one single force. Maybe it is my view of string theory? Or more likely I just copied it from the Internet to make this post longer without having to write more text. This post must be enough to make me Prof. of Semiotics.


Yet more snow in Germany! While I was watching TV, I saw a TV program that asked what is your favourite between the American and Japanese version of Godzilla. They then illustrated the question by showing Godzilla destroying the Sydney opera house. How much more international can you get?

Thursday, March 04, 2010

in the beginning was the command lin

I can't help feeling that Neal Stephenson is one of us. Stephenson is a famous science fiction writer I have just read "in the beginning was the command line". This is a short book about operating systems and computers from a users perspective. Although it is over 10 years old, I really enjoyed reading it. Most of it is still relevant

One point that book makes is that people don't buy Microsoft windows for rational reasons. Somehow it is a bizzare group delusion. Once that dream is over Microsoft will have problems. (I am not sure how getting a "free copy" of windows with every PC you buy, effects the group delusion.)

Nasty Torys are almost back...

Although I have not bothered to vote in the last few elections, I am starting to dread the next election when those nasty conservatives will get back into power. It is difficult to describe how much Thatcher and her cronnies were hated. This recession has been bad, but somehow this time around the goverment actually did something, rather than say "when my father didn't have a job, he got on his bike to find one."

The omens are not good. We are back in dispute with Argentina about the Falklands. Perhaps there will be another war once Cameron gets into a difficult patch after a few years in office.

I was sad to see that Micheal Foot had died. He was the last of the generation of a particular type of politician and journalist. I remember how the Sun attacked him for wearing a donkey jacket at a memorial. So Murdoch has won again, we are only allowed people like Blair or Blair clones like Cameron as leaders.

Since this post is turning into a bit of a rant, I really am unhappy about the closure of the 6music radio station. As per usual it is a Tory based attack on culture. 6music plays lots of interesting music, it is really sad to have it taken from us. I have joined the relevant facebook group and I will write a strong letter to the BBC trust. That shit Murdoch!

Just to lighten the mood, the video is of Bono falling off a stage.