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[7 Oct 2015 | No Comment | ]
Hackference Brum

What’s the connection between Geeks and Pharaohs and Lego?
It was the weekend of 2 – 4 Oct 2015 and I was at Hackference in Birmingham. The event is a combination of a conference on the Friday and a hackathon on the Saturday and Sunday, and it’s aimed at software developers and web designers amongst others. I expect that lots has been written by other attendees and so this blogpost focuses on three key things that I gained from Hackference.
Pharaohs
I was never any good at History when I was at school, …

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[27 Nov 2012 | No Comment | ]
The secret master plan of the “disorder” advocate

A lucky strike! Radio 4 is, allegedly, one of the best sources of news and comment that we have in Britain, and yet I find myself literally turning it off when some of the presenters, filled with their own self importance, pomposity and misplaced belief in their own superior intellect, are outwardly rude and hostile to those they interview. It is therefore, only a matter of luck that Radio 4 is occasionally a tool which allows me sometimes to encounter worthy news and sometimes to hear valuable dialogue on current …

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[18 May 2012 | No Comment | ]
Digital Shoreditch

Digital Shoreditch runs from Monday 21 May to Friday 1 June 2012 and I will be there, speaking on the Inspire day.
I’ve become quite involved in the Coding for Kids trend which has recently hit the headlines in the UK, and following my son’s peformance at The London Real-Time Hackathon in April 2012, he and I decided to launch Coding for Kids Books.
And we did that because Aristotle said “consider your skills, your passions and the needs of the world; where they intersect; that’s where your calling lies”.

Our first book …

operations »

[13 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Coding for Kids

On Wednesday evening 12 October 2011 I was at the head office of The Guardian for the inaugural meeting of a new movement called Coding for Kids and the atmosphere was alive with anticipation!
Around 45 people had gathered to explore what we can do to promote the idea of “computer programming” (to use old fashioned 1970s terminology) or “coding” as we call it nowadays (that is to say writing lines of computer code). A handful of software developers were there, a handful of teachers, and ex-teachers, a few kids, some …

operations »

[11 Aug 2011 | No Comment | ]
Boris Johnson on Police in London

Amongst all of the discussion about the UK riots in early August 2011, one tweet stood out from all the rest.

Dan Hogan appears to have hit the nail on the head. And, seems to be saying what is really obvious, even if that runs counter to the “professional lie” employed by “those in the know”.
If you are reading this at some point long after August 2011 you may need reminding:

Rioting started in London on Saturday 6 Aug 2011.
On Monday 8 Aug 2011 there were 6,000 police officers on duty when …

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[2 May 2011 | No Comment | ]
Nintendo DS Emulator

You know what happens when you have a bright kid in the house? He spots something that you haven’t, and you end up having to explain it to him, when in fact, you’re really not too sure about the subject yourself! That happened to me exactly one week ago on Monday 25 April 2011 when my son was watching YouTube.
As with any 9 year old boy, you won’t be surprised to hear that he was watching a video to learn some of the best Pokemon Soul Silver “walk throughs” for …

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[18 Apr 2011 | No Comment | ]
BarCamp Sheffield 3 – The Movie

Punctuating my holiday in the Peak District and in York, I spent the weekend of 16 and 17 April 2011 at BarCamp Sheffield 3. It was a dynamic and challenging event, which introduced me to new concepts in education, to new software hacks and hardware hacks, and to what life may be like in the year 5001.
I learnt about node.js and about fractals (last seen when I did A level maths many moons ago) and I practiced existing skills (like eating cakes). There was a wonderful mix of people at …

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[11 Apr 2011 | No Comment | ]
LinkedGov Data HackCamp

Over the weekend of 9 and 10 April 2011, I was at the LinkedGov Data HackCamp in central London. Put together by Geeks of London and Barcamp London and underpinned by an idea from LinkedGov, this was an opportunity for geeks all of kinds to show what they could do with data sets (and especially UK Government data sets) which are freely available over the web.

As Hadley Beeman said “data is not sexy and we have to show people how we can make it better” and that’s why HackCamp offered …

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[25 Feb 2011 | No Comment | ]
One Sentence Paragraphs

When did the School of Good Journalism deliver the “One Sentence ” edict?

I ask, only because I have noticed a trend over the past year or so for news organisations to deliver their articles in a series of multiple “one sentence” monologues. I have remarked to the BBC about this many times. I have also caught The Guardian doing it, I have caught other newspapers doing it, and this week The Telegraph is at it, conspicuously!
Enough! At the risk of sounding like the perennial letter writer to The Times (that …

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[9 Jan 2011 | No Comment | ]
Learning Without Frontiers

Learning Without Frontiers is taking place in London from Sunday 9 to Tuesday 11 Jan 2011 and according to the web site it’s all about “disruption, innovation and learning”.
Originally, entitled “The Handheld Computer Learning Festival” I booked my tickets for this event as far back 19 Jun 2010!
I was really keen to be at the event, and last June I was in the midst of working on a Kanji Learning Game for iPhone. However, things change over time, my experience of SDK has been less than rewarding and my “Sunday …