About Because sometimes its easier to post things in lists, here are some things I've discovered this week:
Some people don't know about Liverpool Direct.
Actually more clearly people in Liverpool don't know what the council's capable of. This sprang from a conversation about traffic lights at Ignite on Wednesday night when I began a verbal dissertation about traffic management. People don't seem to know that you can report such things to the local council, that phoning Liverpool Direct is something they could imagine doing.
The council's website is a encyclopedia of local information from when schools are open to where the local parks are, but more importantly for our purposes has plenty of places for reporting things like potholes, flytipping and broken street lights. There's a search box and helpful a-z list. If what you want isn't there, you can also phone the main council number of 0151-233-3000 and they'll point you in the right direction.
There's a Starbucks at Mann Island.
Yesterday I undertook this old Guardian walk around the city centre and amid the chaos of the dotted line on the map not matching the directions in place, I still as always managed to see things I didn't know about like the Londonesque gift shop on North John Street, the Bang & Olufsen on Castle Street (which I thought was entirely new but opened ten years ago). There's also a Starbucks in the Mann Island complex which has been open since December.
The reason its hidden from view is because as a franchise, it's only recently been listed on the official app and website and has to fight for recognition since its essentially in competition with real Starbucks. Even though to all intents and purposes it is a real Starbucks and in some ways feels more like the Starbucks of old, less corporate somehow, than some of the others in the city. Curious.
People have never seen Sneakers.
Also at Ignite I met a man in computer security who'd never seen the film Sneakers even though his job is, albeit with about twenty years of technological advancement and less spy tech is somewhat similar, breaking into people's places to make sure he can't break into their places. Neither of the people I spoke to knew who Dr. Werner Brandes was or the catchphrase, "Too Many Secrets".
Glancing at the trailer, the film has less to do with the sort of computer security he might have been talking about, but philosophically there is a connection. Its about access to data. The modern equivalent with Sneakers would be more about dozens of people sitting at keyboards trying to break through digital quagmires rather than circumventing heat sensors. Either way, see Sneakers. It's the best film you've never seen.
People don't know about The Guardian's digital strategy.
Following a Scandinavian model, The Guardian now pre-plans thirty-percent of its content seven days in advance. As editor Alan Rusbridger explains in this Neiman's interview, they've realised that a proportion of what we call "news" is fairly predictable and doesn't need to be thrown together the night before, things like profiles and analysis. To save on costs, it's easier to have this stuff on the shelf and ready to be polished.
We now have a fun fair:
This turned up in the field outside out home in the past couple of days. The Sky Rider plays the theme from Star Wars when it starts. Which is amazing the first time ...