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The Hottest Topics from MailBigFile, Tech and Social News.

People Get Creative With Their Parking Solutions As the Problem Gets Worse

Where MBF Blogs is situated is near Lowestoft. The town has been styled by some as the place where can be seen some of the worst parking in Britain.

Top Gear’s presented Jeremy Clarkson has been invited to visit as he got very hot under the collar recently about parking.

Jeremy Clarkson is not everybody’s favourite TV presenter, writer or driver. But sometimes he comes up with something that strikes a chord.

worst-parking-photo (1)

worst-parking-photo (2)

Read more…

The English Language May Not Reign Globally Supreme For Much Longer

Spoken language remains essential for us as social animals

Spoken language remains essential for us as social animals

This blog is for everyone interested in language. Even more so, for those interested in our English language. And the changes that technology has brought and is bring to the way we speak, write and think.

English has become the language of choice in media for most of the world. Almost every country teaches English as the first foreign language to their children. We might learn French, German or even Mandarin. But we still expect most people to understand our English!

Professor Peter Trudgill writes a column each week in the Eastern Daily Press in which he writes about English in the way she is spoke in Norfolk, particularly.

A recent one was called ‘Being able to enjoy a mardle is quite a new concept.’ (7 July 2014). A mardle, by the way, is a good old gossip, a small talk round the table or on the street corner or over the garden wall…

Read more…

And the Winner of the 2014 Coveted ISP Villain of the Year Award Is …

ISPA logo

Most industries and professions have a variety of professional bodies who host annual awards. Peer to peer assessment, in short. To win the credibility of your fellows and rivals in your business is a significant accolade.

The Internet Service Provider industry is not to be left out of all that mutual back-stabbing, er, sorry, I mean back-slapping.

The Internet Service Providers’ Association is the organisation that has taken the ground on this in the Uk and recently held their 2014 Awards, described as a ‘glittering occasion.’

I would have missed it but for a piece in the Eastern Daily Press (16 July 2014) by political correspondent Annabelle Dickson who helpfully gave us some background. Read more…

The App You’ll Want to Keep in the Box

Speed kills the interest in film, TV, drama and reflective creation

Speed kills the interest in film, TV, drama and reflective creation

Even If You’re Time-Poor, This App You Might Want to Keep in the Box

Time to sound off on MBF Blogs … feel free to join me, or disagree.

In the never-ending quest to push back the frontiers of what can be done by an app (ie make more money), developers have come up with one that sounds so ludicrous that surely nobody will be interested.

Oh, they have already? Oh well, must be me, then.

Death of the Box Set

Skimo meaning ‘skim the video’ is sold in these gushing terms:

‘You can skim a 20-minute video, in just about 2-3 minutes, right from your iPhone, using the Skimo iPhone App.

Choose any long YouTube Video (interview, talk, TV Show, just about anything, in any language) and request to create a “Skimo” of the points of interest of the video.

A Skimo is a 2-3 minute video comprising of about 4-6 clips of 30 seconds duration and is created by the Skimo Engine and is sent to the iPhone.’

The app analyses the ‘language’ of programmes and identifies the key scenes which are allegedly ‘louder and brighter’ and crunches them together to arrive at a summary.

It all started aeons ago with The Readers’ Digest where whole books were abbreviated and summarised (ie truncated and butchered) for people too busy, bored, thick to read the full version.

Since then, the idea of summaries of news, newspapers, previous episodes and recommendations has become commonplace. The art of precis was once prized in the teaching of English language.

Now this app will save you the hassle of actually watching a full box set of a TV series. Or a long film. Or a movie.
Wow, hold me back!

And the Point Is?

I can see the beauty of catch-up TV. I have often recorded and watched things later (and skipped the ads). I have been given box sets at Christmas of what may or may not be a favourite programme. I once bought my wife the BBC series Bleak House as a box.

I even treated myself to the full double series of the TV weirdness called Carnivale on the strength of one episode caught by chance late one night on some channel at the edge of the spectrum.

We loved Downton Abbey but only just managed to stop the family buying us the box sets. We loved it but not necessarily to watch it all again. For Fathers’ Day I got a box set of Breaking Bad Series 1 before one of the kids ‘borrowed’ it off me.

In the VHS past (remember that?), I was given a set of the Director’s uncut Godfather movies 1-3. We have watched countless movies in their entirety in the comfort of our home.

What I can’t see is why you’d want to condense several hours into 20 minutes of viewing.

Joy Destroyed to Save Minutes

The point is that for many the joy of watching a box set is that it takes a long time. Can take a very long time and may be a piece of indulgence that you can ill afford in today’s hurried world.

But the key is enjoyment. At you own pace. Relaxation, down-time. ‘you-time’ to do your own thing. It’s like dashing through a country en route to another and think you’ve see it. It’s like algorithms choosing what it thinks you will like. Make your own mind up? There’s a thought, these days!

Are our lives really so busy that we can’t be allowed to enjoy a long something. Why does everything have to be reduced to a lowest common denominator?

And if the argument is that it’s to save time .. what are we doing with that saved time? Watching another pre-digested film? Talking to real people in real time???

Sound off and reply back. Please. Unless you’re too busy watching a Skimo version of The Forsyte Saga…

Image: Frank Vincentz

How To Tell – The Human Giveaways In Our Behaviour

How do you know if someone is afraid, rich, barking mad or hates you?

How do you know if someone is afraid, rich, barking mad or hates you?

Unsure what message a correspondent was trying to make to me, but I was sent a link to a film clip, How to Tell If Somewhere Is Lying To You!

Fascinating – blinking, breaking eye contacts, hiding body parts, hand movements, blinking, licking lips, heads move, audible cues, rising vocal pitch … all good psychological stuff and demonstrations of what are probably natural (normal?) human reactions.

If you’ve had it with never getting a straight answer from a particular person try How to Make Someone Tell the Truth.

Other How to Tells

How to tell if someone really loves you.

Or this version.

If you ever need to know if someone is rich, How to Spot a Rich Person and How to Tell If Someone Is Rich offer some useful tips.

In response to the often-asked question, How Do You Tell If Someone Is Crazy? or totally insane or whether you are dating a psycho the main answer seems to be that there are many definitions of crazy, insane and psycho.

Let’s hope that’s some comfort. If you’re still in doubt, take The Insanity Test which I found really useful if not accurate!

I Hate You, I Hate You

Buzzfeed (as predicted) comes up with a useful 20 Ways to Tell If Somebody Secretly Hates You.

They suggest constantly getting the evil eye, or being left aggressive notes, your things always getting broken by accident, all the mean practical jokes are against you, you get refused service a lot, people gossip about you a lot, you don’t get party invites, you’re the only one not tagged in a photo, you always go home alone and you’re last to be picked for the team…. all sure signs.

It’s obviously more difficult to cope with if someone in your family hates you, or a relative hates your partner, so Carolyn Tytlet comes up with some ideas on How to Tell If Someone Hates You starting with how to spot the hostile attitudes.

Even sadder is How Do You Know When You Hate Someone in which one of the best descriptions from a contributer reads:

  • when you just can’t stand to be in the same room as them
  • when you look at them and want to slap them
  • when you want to vomit at the sound of their voice
  • and you just can’t muster any good words about them no matter how hard you try.

then you hate them!

Some Other Useful Sites to Help With Life’s Problems:

How do you remind someone politely that they owe you money? to which the obvious best suggestion is ‘never lend money in the first place.’

How to Collect Money from People Who Owe You offers non-confrontational solutions.

How to Find Out If Someone Has Stolen Your Identity is sadly topical and relevant.

How to Tell If a Girl Is Trying to Steal Your Boyfriend is also useful for some from time to time and can be changed to fit either gender

How to Tell If Someone Has HIV? Almost impossible without a test, so know you know.

 How to Behave When Someone Is Afraid of You  which may happen a lot to you?

Image: Katharine Moriarty