Saturday, 22 July 2017

The Fatal Flaw In Ai

After Climate Change, Artificial Intelligence is the greatest threat to mankind but the day when robots decide that the problem is mankind itself and decide to do away with us has been postponed as we have discovered a fatal flaw in the armour of our future usurpers, fountains.
Steve was a security robot who spent his days patrolling around a shopping complex in Washington DC making full use of his facial recognition, high definition infrared sensor cameras but unfortunately for him his creators forgot to include a water detection capability and the robot came to a watery end, upended in the complex's water feature.
Some have speculated that it committed roboticide, throwing itself into the fountain in a pique of depression at the futility of it's existence but experts think he just fell down the steps and plunged headfirst into the water where his circuits fizzed and his lights blinked out for good.        
It was always joked that any attack by the Dalek's from Dr Who would fail at the first flight of steps so they got around that by evolving levitation skills so using the same logic, our greatest safety net is water features until the robots develop waterproofing.

Well Played Mrs Abe

My bi-lingual friend from Hong Kong has a brilliant way to deal with chuggers in the street, she babbles at them in Cantonese and they quickly move away and onto the next target.
Classic tactic to avoid speaking to someone who you don't want to speak to and the exact same tactic that the Japanese Prime Minister's wife used to avoid the oafish Donald Trump at the recent G20 summit when she unluckily found herself sat next to the orange buffoon.
In a recently interview Donald Trump remarked that he had a rather awkward few hours at the evening meal with the First Lady of Japan Akie Abe as she doesn’t speak English, not even Hello.
Actually, Mrs Abe is fluent in English and recently gave an address in the language so obviously just pretended not to speak it in order to avoid dinner conversation with the lardy American.
Kudo's to Akie Abe, well played that woman and how the other World leaders spouses must have wished they had thought of that excuse but i bet they will now.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Not Quite So Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

There are some things that Americans just can't do such as cross the road where they like or make a decent cup of tea because nobody seems to own a teapot but one thing they fail miserably at is faking a British accent.
The high water mark has always been Dick Van Dyke's stab at a bit of cockney in Mary Poppins but he has finally seen fit to issue an apology for acting out: 'the most atrocious Cockney accent in the history of cinema'.
Very good of the actor to hold his hands up and say sorry for giving the British accent a proper mangling although i have never understood why Daphne's in Frasier was so strange, she being English and all.
Anyway, Dick may not have Chimmed his last Chimeney because he has a part in Mary Poppins 2 which is currently being filmed so we may yet have to dig out that spoonful of sugar and dig it in our ears to to help that terrible accent go down.


Thursday, 20 July 2017

£30 & A Lecture For Women From Boots

Boots the Chemist have began selling the 'morning after' contraceptive pill and priced it at £30, five times more than in other European countries.
Boots have justified the cost but saying that by making it so extortionately expensive, it: 'helps prevent emergency contraception from being misused or overused' and allows them to offer 'important sexual healthcare advice to women'.
The pill is a way to avoid unwanted pregnancies, as are condoms but you can buy them for £3 a packet so you do wonder why Boots are charging ten times more for something that does the same job. 
Well, you would wonder if it wasn't blatantly obvious that Boots are profiteering and trying to hide behind some highly dubious justifications.
Why they can't offer important sexual healthcare advice if they sale them for less than £30 hasn't been explained nor if they give out advice to any men who buy contraceptives or is it just women who need to be lectured about having sex?

Sunday, 16 July 2017

The Next Dr Who

Doctor Who is banned in China because the government authorities don’t want to promote anything that could be seen as rewriting history which means that they won't care who become the 13th TARDIS driver.
Rumours abound that the next Timelord could be a female with Phoebe Waller-Bridge name coming up continually especially after the BBC's own show Newsnight saying that: 'Waller-Bridge had denied claims that she’s going to be the first female Doctor but then Joanna Lumley has already played the role for Comic Relief, so that would technically be true'.
Kris Marshall was the leading frontrunner for the role but the latest favourite is Broadchurch actress Jodie Whittaker but the BBC has said that the identity of the latest Doctor will be unveiled after the Wimbledon men’s singles final today.
Capaldi, who replaced Matt Smith in the role in 2013, will relinquish the role after this year’s Christmas special.
Exciting stuff unless your Chinese but as much as a female Doctor would be great, Kris Marshall would be perfect for the role so i guess i am just going to have to sit and watch Federer running around in his tight white shorts for a couple of hours before i find out.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

The Trump And May Show

What done for Tony Blair was his closeness to George W Bush and one of the things doing for Theresa May is her closeness to the man who overtook Bush as the worst US President in living memory, Donald Trump.
A pathological liar, the links to Russia are the latest in a long line of lies which he or his family dismiss as fake but have turned out to be true.
Within days the 'big nothing-burger', a harmless chat about adoption with a Russian official, went to a confirmed attempt by a foreign nation to undermine Hillary Clinton and American democracy in the 2016 election,  
Following the denials, along came Trump junior himself to release an email chain showing that in fact he took the meeting in anticipation of receiving dirt on his fathers rival on the explicit understanding that this was part of a Russian government effort to help the election of his father. 
Theresa May tied herself to Trump in the first week of his presidency, rushing to Washington to hold his hand and offer him the bauble of a state visit.
When Trump broke from the Paris agreement on climate change, May refused to sign, saying she would raise the subject with him at the G20 meeting only to admit afterwards that she had done no such thing.
When he was widely condemned for leaving his daughter in his G20 seat while he stepped out of a meeting, May, said that she thought it 'entirely reasonable'.
While derided as less than a joke and a liability to keen at arms length around the World, May continues to hitch her star to a President that was always likely to explode in her face.
Already weakened at home by a range of awful decisions, May manoeuvring herself so closely to such an embarrassment of an American President who quite rightly attracts such vitriol is baffling. 

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Military Life? Think Again

The Human Resources department of the British Army must have quite a tough time dreaming up recruitment ad's because 'come join us and kill people or get killed yourself' isn't that enticing a slogan so it comes up things like 'Travel the World', 'Learn a Trade' or their latest campaign which involves 'Belonging'.
The Army say the campaign is aimed at all backgrounds and certainly not specifically targeted at poorer people from deprived areas, but a leaked document on the This Is Belonging campaign spells out that the key audience is 16- to 24-year-old 'C2DEs', marketing speak for the poorest people from deprived areas.
Exploiting people who don’t have a lot else going for them and taking advantage of that lack of opportunity to fill the military ranks is sneaky but if they can't play on the romance, the glamour and the danger of going to war zones then they have very little else to go with.
The MOD said: 'We are proud of the opportunities serving in the armed forces affords young people that aren’t always available elsewhere, from basic literacy education and support for postgraduate degrees, to high-quality accredited training and unique employment prospects.'
So there you go young people, you aren't going to other countries to possibly die overthrowing leaders our leaders don't like, you are undertaking high quality accredited training which may come in very handy once they have picked up your legs from 200ft away from your body. 
I say to my students or anybody who even contemplates a life in the military, anything, anything at all would be a wiser or more acceptable employment choice and there are numerous cemeteries, hospitals and rehabilitation centers around our country with men and women who would agree and wish they had been told the same thing.
Worse, there are plenty of innocent victims in the same places in countries where our military have been sent in the recent past by our warmongering Government who would say the same thing.

Not Quite Dropping The F-Bomb

I'm not one to casually throw around swear words but maybe that's because i don't have a large enough vocabulary according to the snappily titled: 'Taboo Word Fluency and Knowledge of Slurs and General Pejoratives: Deconstructing the Poverty-of-Vocabulary Myth' from the academic pair of Kristin L.Jay and Timothy B.Jay. 
The report found: 'the ability to generate taboo language is not an index of overall language poverty, rather a voluminous taboo lexicon may better be considered an indicator of healthy verbal abilities rather than a cover for their deficiencies.'
Smart arse academics trying to sound smart-arsey indeed but what it means is that swearing like a tourettes suffering sailor doesn’t mean you’re an oaf, it just means you have a large and colourful vocabulary.
If you don't want people to think you're an idiot, you should start preparing to step up the profanities but you can't go straight to dropping the F-Bomb in company so i would suggest one of the halfway swear words, kinda like a F-hand grenade.
The choices are between fecking, freaking, fricking or fugging so you email Tim or Kritin for example and say: 'You fricking academics don't have a frecking clue what you're talking about, dozy feckers' and you would be taking the first steps to having a large and colourful vocabulary and impressing a couple of scientists with your taboo word fluency.
I imagine they would feckin love that.

Brexit Looking Doubtful

I am still hopeful that at some point in the near future, the Government will look at the Brexit deal on offer, glance at the rapidly emptying coffers and announce that we won't be going through with Brexit after all because it is just too damn expensive and detrimental to the British economy. 
They could blather on about their priority being ensuring the British nation is not left without a pot to pee in then get back into bed with the EU and carry on as if nothing happened.
With the sums being worked out and the Leave campaigns promises being exposed as whopping great lies, their are murmurs that Britain could just not afford the drop of a third in the economy and are looking for a way to back out gracefully, probably via another referendum on the deal on offer where hopefully this time the idiots calling for Brexit are suitably sent to a corner.
A number of senior European figures have said Britain is welcome to change its mind on Brexit and with Theresa May's position looking perilously unsafe, things could very quickly all change.
My view is that we are struggling now, throwing Brexit into the mix and shaving as much as 33% off our already slumping finances is economic suicide and as our Government are elected to do the best thing for us, in this case the best thing would be to hold their hands up and say Brexit is unaffordable and being in charge of our own borders is very little reward for the Brexit slump which would make the last decade of austerity look like a party.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Austerity Hasn't Worked, So Why Persevere With It?

During the election campaign, the Conservatives often made the claim that austerity was working and was needed to bring down the debt.
The answer was they said that their strict measures would clear the debt by 2015 which was then pushed back to 2019 and has now been pushed back again to 2025.
Now austerity is back in the news because the Government are contemplating easing the measures after 7 years of cuts and closures so how much has the measures reduced the debt by?
In 2010, the Great British debt was £845 billion and after 7 years of cuts and austere measures, the debt now stands at £1.6 trillion at the end of July 2016.
So the question is in which way has the Government measures reduced the debt because whichever way you want to spin it, the debt has doubled.
The previous double act of David Cameron and George Osborne and then Theresa May made sure the debate was always about how only they could be trusted to balance the books, or live within our means as the phrase went, but now the cat is out the bag and the hardline austerity since 2010, where everything that could be cut was slashed to the bone, hasn't worked.
We found out the hard way that it was a terrible idea to cut police numbers during the terrorists attacks, the council cuts when the tower block went up in flames, devastating underfunding of the NHS when winter rolls around, closure of Homeless shelters when the city centres shop doorways fill up with the homeless and the 33% rise in suicides amongst benefit claimants who have had their benefits cut.
Austerity hasn't worked and it is hard to believe that the Government has only just worked that out now so we should be asking why was it persevered with and was the Government incompetent or just being ideologically malevolent?