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The Stainless Steel Rat's LiveJournal

The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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Real-life Simpsons get US debut. It transpires, for me at least, that the "real-life Simpsons" video doing the email rounds and back again was actually a promo by Sky (I'd seen it described as a homemade effort, and also as done by the Simpsons producers themselves). Anyway, the trailer is going to be used by Fox in the USA ahead of an episode written by and starring Ricky Gervais.

Armless man caught speeding in NZ. A man with no arms who used a pedal to steer has been caught speeding at a (whopping) 75mph in a 60mph limit, in New Zealand. He received a £60 (US$120) fine and was banned from driving.

Revolutionary jet engine tested. A new scramjet type jet engine has been successfully tested in Woomera, Australia, again renewing hopes that supersonic passenger travel might be a reality again. The engine reached 7.6 times the speed of sound, and would cut the journey from London to Sydney to 2 hours.

Sick building link to job stress. A study of UK civil servants shows that the so called sick building syndrome might simply be a case of job stress. My brush with civil service would put it down to job tedium.

SpaceX rocket fails first flight. A privately designed rocket that was intended to cut the cost of satellite launches failed to complete its maiden flight, rolling out of control after 3 minutes of flight. The rocket was carrying a satellite designed by US Air Force Academy cadets.

'Clive of India's' tortoise dies. A tortoise that once belonged to colonial general of India, Robert Clive, has died. It is rumoured to be 250 years old, but others place it at 150 years old. The shell is to be carbon dated.

Wikipedia study 'fatally flawed'. The Encyclopaedia Britannica has hit back at an article by Nature about the reliability of it in comparison with Wikipedia, which pitched them at similar levels.

Sky HD on track for May roll-out. Sky is launching its high-definition decoder box in May, but it comes at a price: £300 for the box, and an extra £10 per month on the subscription. Sky will also only be transmitting seven HD channels, and have not yet given a date when these will be ready. The BBC describes it as "sharper, clearer", understandable, but also as a "more colourful image", which I don't quite understand.

Microsoft delays Office relaunch. The new Microsoft Office is to be delayed to 2007 in line with Windows Vista delays. Again though, is it just going to be another lacklustre update with few new useful features?

BT goes after broadband gluttons. BT have identified a further 3000 users downloading more than their limit, who will be contacted shortly. BT haven't identified what their limit is, but it's believed to be users who download somewhere between 100 - 200Gb per month.

Critics unmoved by Rings musical. The debut of the Lord of the Rings musical, which cost £14m (US$25m) to stage, has received poor critical reviews being described as "dull".

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I've moved to an ISP who don't currently have such limits, BT are going about this all the wrong way. Not that I ever came close to their limits but it's not the point.

Especially when they charge top whack as well. Who are you with now?

Telewest Blueyonder, not the cheapest but I have my phone and cable television with them too. My basic television package, 2mb internet and telephone rental is only five pounds a month more than my internet connection alone with BT.

The 'real-life' Simpsons opening credits are already being shown over here as a promotion for The Simpsons.

Yep, it says in the article it was made by Sky (I guess I didn't make that clear). I was more bemused as I'd seen it described as made by the Simpsons producers themselves, as well as being a homemade effort.

I was moved by the story on Clive's tortoise. Anything that has to do with history and the span of time always captures my attention. What a cool creature! Can you imagine breathing in and out for 250 years? My word! If he could speak......gives me goosebumps.

You always have the most interesting news clips. That's what I love about your journal.

Aside from your sparkling personality. *poke*

Why thank you! :-)

I often read through the BBC's news, and thought why not post some of the more esoteric articles on LJ... if folks are interested of course! Some are for sure :-)

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