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10 things we changed our minds about in 2012 – from red trousers to big phones

By Stefano on December 23rd, 2012

We are British, and let’s face it we can be fickle. We might have a thing for an underdog one year, but the minute they start realising their potential and being successful we enjoy nothing more than taking them down a peg or two.

Here then are ten things we changed our mind about in 2012. These are things that we accepted as wisdom for at least some of the year, but revised our opinions on. Some in a negative way, but a surprising number in a positive way.

What have I missed?

1 The Olympics

Picture 10 of 10
Picture 10 of 10

So Mitt Romney was right. We can't run an Olympics. It was chaotic, the transport system tanked and that famed British negativity meant that everyone walked around during the games with a sour look on their face. Actually it turned out it was Mitt Romney who couldn't run things properly (well election campaigns anyhow) and all those naysayers who spent the weeks before the games moaning about transport, corporate sponsors, drugged up athletes and more chomped on their words. London is the greatest city in the world and we gave the world the best ever Olympics. Why should we be surprised?


Words you should never have on your Twitter/LinkedIn profile – guru, evangelist, jedi and more

By Stefano on December 11th, 2012

Everyone wants more Twitter followers and there are two ways to get them.

1 Go on to Fiverr and find someone who will magically add 1000 to your list over night

2 Create an intriguing profile, tweet about interesting things, chat with other people on Twitter and be generous in who you follow.

Option 1 takes you 24 hours, whereas option two is much more worthwhile but takes a life time.

However one way to ensure that you don’t get lots of Twitter followers is to have a profile that makes you sound like a bit of a  dick.

So we went on Twitter and asked people which words you should never use to describe yourself unless you want to be perceived as the social media equivalent of Alan Partridge – here’s what they said.

1 Guru – So you are a guru. Says who? Oh you do. No guru in the history of the word ever called themselves a guru. Other people called them that. Calling yourself a social media guru makes you sound as if you discovered Twitter six months ago and are trying to make up for lost time.

2 Evangelist – Again, fine if you are out every day on your soap box spreading the Good News. Totally unforgivable if you are just trying to come up with fancy way of describing your marketing role

3 Jedi – So where’s your light saber then? Does The Force help you to increase the number of likes on your brand’s Facebook page? Thought not.

4 Maven – So web 2.0. Most people don’t known what it is and think you are describing yourself as a bird – but you have mistaken the m for the r on your keyboard. Seer is even worse.

5 Wizard – Harry Potter has a lot to answer for.

6 Trainee (insert ironic job title like Lighthouse Keeper, Bouncy Castle Repairer etc) – You are so wacky…

Come on – share yours


Bombsight – which shows where the bombs fell on London during the Blitz – goes live

By Stefano on December 7th, 2012

If you live in London you have probably wondered at some point whether the street you live in was damaged by bombs during the war. Well now you can find out. Bombsight is a collaboration between the University of Portsmouth and The National Archives which lists all the bombs dropped on the capital during the Blitz – basically between 7/10/1940 and 06/06/1941.

It is an easy to use map system which lets you focus in on you area and then look at all the incidents. For some bombs there are more information and even the odd picture.

The group has also been working on an Android apo which use Augmented Reality so that when you point your phone at a bombsite you can see the details live.

Dr Kate Jones, the University of Portsmouth geographer who devised the project, told the BBC: “When you look at these maps and see the proliferation of bombs dropped on the capital it does illustrate the meaning of the word Blitz, which comes from the German meaning lightning war.

Apparently more than 20,000 people were killed and and 1.4m people made homeless during the boming.

My only quibble is that they ought to add the bombs from later raids to the list. Here is the data for the V1 and V2 rocket attacks.

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