Some Birthday Thoughts About Age and Longevity

Happy birthday, whatever the age

Happy birthday, whatever the age

A birthday is a bit like a New Year – a good time to take stock and consider the rapid passage of time and how we are doing as we age along, relentlessly.

It has been confidently announced by the National Office for Statistics that one in three children born today will reach 100 and a scientist Dr Aubrey De Grey has predicted that the first person to reach 150 years has already been born.

Well, I’m obviously too far along to be in that category, for which I rejoice. And for the young, the prospect of an extremely long life must be very appealing.

However, I say, as someone of that age that refuses to grow old gracefully but has to recognise the physical constraints of advancing years …..

All very well to live to such an advanced age, but what about affording it?

What about working that long? What about who is going to look after such ancients? What about the quality of live of the seriously old? Does living longer make us better off? Read more…

Design Is the Game Changer in Business

Adding to value to business is often intangible, but quality design is key

Adding value to business is often intangible, but quality design is key

‘Design has become a game changer in Silicon Valley…’ That is the gist of a new report from John Maeda, Design Partner at design and growth company Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers (KPCB).

Few people aware of the link between good design and successful business would argue.

Maeda focuses on the ‘rising importance of design in the entrepreneurial ecosystem.’ He argues that ‘for all of us who use a computer or mobile device, great design is changing how we live and work.’

Margaret Rhodes reviews the report in Wired and quotes Maeda as saying, ‘I wanted to connect the worlds of design, technology, and business together, so that people wouldn’t see them as three different things.’

He points out how since 2010 some 27 companies founded by designers have been acquired by bigger companies like Google, Facebook, Yahoo!, Adobe, Dropbox, and LinkedIn. Of the cumulative-funded VC-backed ventures that have raised more money since 2013, 20% have co-founders who are designers. Last year, for the first time ever, six venture capital firms invited designers to join their teams. Read more…

Courts Are Almost Last Area Set to Go Online

Is it time to update our courts online?

Is it time to update our courts online?

A report has landed on my edesk from the Civil Justice Council which recommends that online justice or virtual courts should be implemented as a trail with the possibility of further extension before too long.

Master of the Rolls Lord Dyson said in in his foreword to the report, that ‘courts have some catching up to do with other areas of business and government.’

Her Majesty’s Online Court (HMOC) could be just a short step away, similar to the system pioneered on eBay, online dispute resolution (ODR) as a well-established model. Read more…

A Few Tips on Fighting Against Spam

Fight back against as much spam as possible

Fight back against as much spam as possible


If spam is one of the problems on your website either as unwanted comments or in your email inbox, here are a few ideas to help you in the fight-back. Spam is not just a nuisance, it can give virus and other undesirable attacks a key to your data.

The best help is that you can automatically dispatch comments to the spam list if they contain certain words.

There are common words that incoming spam has in common, especially if it comes from the professional spammers or comment bots who are trying to sell something through and to you or just clog you up. Read more…

How Do You Know You’re Living in 2015?

How do we know things and tell each other?

How do you know things and tell others?

How do you know you are living now, in this actual era? Well, there are tell-tale signs.

It’s been awhile since we took a lighter view of some aspects of our lifestyles.

So, how do we know we are living in this year, what are the features of this age that defines us?

1… You accidentally enter your PIN on the microwave.

2… You haven’t played Solitaire with real cards in years.

3… You have a list of 15 phone numbers to reach your family of three..

4… You e-mail the person who works at the desk next to you.

5… Your reason for not staying in touch with friends and family is that they don’t have e-mail addresses.

6… You pull up in your own driveway and use your mobile phone, to see if anyone is home to help you carry in the shopping…

7… Every advert on television has a web site at the bottom of the screen

8… Leaving the house without your mobile phone, which you didn’t even have the first 20 or 30 (or 60) years of your life, is now a cause for panic, and you turn around to go and get it

10… You get up in the morning and go on line, even before getting your coffee

11… You start tilting your head sideways to smile. : )

12… You’re reading this and nodding, and laughing.

13… Even worse, you know exactly to whom you are going to forward this message.

14… You are too busy to notice there was no 9 on this list.

15… You actually scrolled back up to check that there wasn’t a 9 on this list.

Some other interesting ‘how do you know …?’ ideas:

How Do you Know You’re Balanced?  This one seems to be mainly about cooking and a balanced diet!

How do you know when you’re happy? This is about the feelings of life, particularly the ‘rose coloured life.’

How to Know If You’re Ready to Move In Together is pretty self evident.

How Do You Know If You’re Wealthy?  and How Do You Know If You’re Rich are also about the obvious – lifestyle living and investment choices.

Image: Duke Innovation Co-Lab