The vinceunlimited Blog

This is the main blog page of the vinceunlimited website.

In blogs the latest articles are at the head of the page, with older posts appearing below in reverse date order. And so it will be on this page.

At present the vinceunlimited website is being re-mastered with the all the oldest posts from 2005/6 being added first, along with a smattering of newer ones from 2017 onwards.

To allow you you search for posts there is a vSearch in the left column. Look out for new post titles here. Alternatively go to the home page, by clicking on my face icon in the top left corner, to witness all new posts being added during this re-building stage.




Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.135 15 Jun 2018
The idea of a blog page on the website first appeared as an update to Version 2.01 on 25 Aug 2005
First published in this format: Version 5.008 18 Oct 2017
See individual article notes for specific dates added





December 2017

Version 5 Phase 2 Completed

So, I’ve now completed phase two of the rebuilding of my version five website.

Phase one was the preparation and initial launch back in September and this second phase was to add, page by page, an enhanced copy of the content originally published on my site in version 1.0 back in October 2003.

And it’s all done, bar the odd debugging and consistency fixing.

A total of nearly 100 pages now exist in both desktop and mobile formats. All told nearly 200 hand coded web pages.

If you have been following the uploads you will have already seen a truly eclectic mix of ideas, opinions, writing and information. Now all with added photography enhancement and detail notes. And this is just the start.

The new presentation allows you to either watch everything happen on the homepage or selectively choose to follow a style or theme.

For example follow a blog format or you can pick your type such as a geek or petrolhead and follow only the content that you have a specific interest in.

Or you can even randomly select a page, do a search for specific articles or select content based on a phrase or snippet that interests you.

So, is this all my original untouched content from version 1.00. Well, not quite. But it’s all you are getting. Things have moved on from 2003 and I have had to do just a tiny bit of editing.

Mostly it has been just grammar corrections and layout updating but I have also chosen to omit some silly links, plus those outside of the website as many now no longer exist.

Plus I have had to temper some phrases used in one article which now read a touch insensitive and I chose to exclude a full idea I previously had about a screensaver based on a then popular but now discredited television personality.

So what about phases three and onward.

Well next up, commencing very early next year, will be the website additions originally issued in subsequent versions of my site numbered 1.01 to 1.04.

Followed by selective and relevant vincepoynter.co.uk content to be added to the ‘About Me’ section.

Then I’ll be moving on to adding the 2005 onward web 2.xx versions, including my first referenced blogs from originally around 2006.

This will be followed by my 2010 onward iWeb content and then finally the 2012 to 2017 WordPress articles which include my 2014 podcasts.

Plus various interesting interim diary, Social Media content and even selective YouTube videos.

So, an awful lot to come, all to be added one bit at a time over the course of the next year and possibly beyond!

And then I can finally get around to really enhancing the site with brand new content from my extensive pending store of notes about writing and blog ideas, with more opinions, great inventions, ground breaking business plans and more planned superb content such as photography, audio and visual stuff to really make use of the new enhanced layout.

You can see I still have a raft of work ahead and I hope a few surprises along the way. So I would really appreciate you joining me on this journey to enjoy this ever growing, extensive online collection of my body of creative work.

And that should answer the question most asked of me. Why are you doing a website?

Thanks for following.

Vince


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.046 30 Dec 2017
Written and first published: Version 5.046 30 Dec 2017

P.S. Remember all pages can be interactive so please email me if you have any questions or thoughts.



October 2017

Plea For A Bike

Vince sat on a Dawes racing bike on a driveway
One of my first bikes

When I was a child and through to a teenager I, like most of my peers, had a desire to own a bicycle. It was like a right of passage. Part of life development. It seemed natural and ordinary. It represented growth, freedom and independence. It was after all the status symbol of a generation. A chance to explore wider boundaries and meet new friends.

Bicycles were certainly an expensive thing. In my world at the time it had serious financial implications for parents. As one of three children getting expensive gifts was an extremely rare thing. In those days toys were reserved for special occasions like Birthdays or Christmases and the cost of bikes were probably more than treble that were spent on those days combined.

Plus there was an element of danger. Children, bikes and traffic didn't mix well with the former usually coming off worst.

It was for the above reason my father steadfastly refused to buy his children a bike. And of the three of us I was the most upset by this. Very upset. Extraordinarily upset. Boundary tantrum upset.

I reasoned that bicycle ownership would help me develop. I was a timid child, small compared to most school colleagues, a pacifist in an angry world, scared with insecurities about being considered part of it. I struggled to have close friends at school and was further alienated by being unable to be part of the cycling gangs developing. With no bike I appeared to be a loner. A loser.

It didn't help that my circumstances took me away to a remote school at twelve years old and getting there was a pain. Bus rides, long walks and being miles from friends when socialising was unbearable. It is even probably the reason I never became a rock star.

I argued long and passionately about these points with my dad but he was unrepentant. I pointed out that I, more than other children, would treat riding with respect and care to avoid becoming the jam in a car sandwich. I reasoned that by restricting this activity he was cruel, stunting my development and curtailing any after school activities. I even offered to have nothing else if only I could have a bike. But to no effect. There was no way he'll change his mind.

As a result of this I wrote a song. A duet, coupled with chorus elements served to suggest a West End musical style because that is exactly what it was intended to be. This passionate episode in my life was written to be part of a plan for a musical of my life that I was considering and working on in the 1980s. These lyrics were penned in 1989. The musical has yet to be completed.

The unedited original lyrics are reproduced in the section Songs above or can be found by clicking the appropriate tag below and despite their apparent complexity do not yet have any musical accompaniment. I will eventually get around to doing this but will first need to learn how to write music. This was a serious flaw in my plan to write that musical. So, can you help?

If the tune is great and it becomes a success I may buy you a bike. Providing you don't bloody well go on about it all the time.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.006 16 Oct 2017



Launch Debugging

Extract from Version 5 of the vinceunlimited website
Version 5 of the vinceunlimited website

Thanks for taking a look at my re-launched website. It has taken many hours to get to this stage so your few minutes of viewing are really welcome

It wasn't until I got it all uploaded yesterday that I realised there were a few bugs, as I suppose there often are with projects of this scale.

The main problem encountered was my coding. All links were shown as [typical] /linkname but in the uploading process they were saved as /linkname.htm I quickly got around this problem by renaming them all via my FTP client back to /linkname This got the site up and running. A cheeky fix but it worked.

However, as I am a perfectionist at heart and I wanted ease of use in future uploads I decided to re-code all the pages, all 107 odd desktop and mobile, to suit. I'm not sure what you did today.

Now, I shall start the actual process of updating my files so the site is properly fully populated. Watch this space.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.002 1 Oct 2017
First Published: Version 5.002 1 Oct 2017



September 2017

vinceunlimited Website Version 5 Launched

Original sketch laying out version 3 of the vinceunlimited website
The original sketch laying out version 3 of the vinceunlimited website, now finally achieved at version 5

Dan, dan, delah! Der, der, der, derrh! Tah Da! And however you might spell a drumroll. vinceunlimited.co.uk has roared into stage 5!

And it's a return to the original vinceunlimited concept idea. I have gone back to basics and have elected, once more, to learn how to and then do all the web-coding myself. And appropriately, the latest standard for web coding is HTML 5. So I've had to learn a whole bunch of updated rules.

Plus to do this properly I also had to learn the associated coding for CSS and Javascript. If you are unsure what all this means basically the HTML bit handles the layout and words, the CSS stuff seperates out the colours and styles and the Javascript jibberish allows complex page selection such as the Random Page Selector button actions on the right.

My original vinceunlimited site, forseeingly known as version 1, was catipulted onto the main stage in October 2003. It was hand coded in a contemporaneous version of HTML.

Version 2, appeared on the internet in May 2005 with coding that took my site to the next level with a better layout, a sidebar and dual colours.

I always struggled with getting HTML coding to set and wrap around images and with image links and couldn't find the time and way to code version three which was planned to look like the image above but I was saved all this effort by the introduction of Apple's colouful WYSIWYG iWeb App so this became the basis for actual version 3, in March 2010. Are you paying attention to these dates. A quiz will follow. But Apple had other ideas about keeping this iWeb pet project alive and I had to find another way to maintain my web presence.

In 2012, July to be a bit more precise, with the development of FaceBook and Twitter, personal web-sites seemed to be going out of fashion. The era of the common blog had really started. And this bandwagon was truly seized upon when I clambered aboard a WordPress site, effectively making this the fourth version of vinceunlimited.co.uk

But WordPress is mostly about piggy-backing on other people's hard worked designs and trying to disguise this plagiarism with a bit of personal customisation. I always found this awkward and unsatisfactory so decided to go back to first principles and code the thing again myself, hence this version 5.

Have I bucked the trend? Am I just showing off? Or am I just avoiding the sheeple? These questions and less will be answered in the next few years.

For the full vinceunlimited story check out the Versions link at the top right side of this site.


Links



Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.001 30 Sep 2017
First Published: Version 5.001 30 Sep 2017



July 2006

Bloody Foreigners

I would like to blame an exciting World Cup competition for not updating my blog for a while.

Unfortunately no one team seems to have really produced anything remotely like a beautiful game which makes England's quarter-final exit against Portugal even more frustrating.

As ever with an England defeat those responsible are being lined up for critical analysis and Portugal's Christiano Ronaldo seems to be taking centre stage in the blame arena.

The vitriol being dished out by email [and presumably other media if I could be bothered to read it] is diminishing my view that he was the best player on the pitch that day.

He had no support from his lack-lustre colleagues but performed his part well, even successfully antagonising England's most short tempered player.

It may be an ugly part of the beautiful game but viewed as a world-wide sport only Englishmen seem to want to play with honour.

Is it time to join them?

I've decided to take the initiative so next time I pass my client in the office I'm going to throw myself to the floor and yell 'Compensation!'.




Today a colleague of mine complained about a noisy neighbour.

This individual has apparently been creating havoc in her neighbourhood by driving fast with loud music playing.

As if this wasn't enough this Mediterranean individual has a provocative 'Italian Stallion' bumper sticker.

I suggested she get a black marker and overwrite 'Tony the Pony'.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.135 15 Jun 2018
First Published: Version 2.03 6 Jul 2006



June 2006

According To Me

My first mention of autonomous driving and the insurance implications...

A close up photograph of toy green classic mini in a rather tatty state with red overpainted opening doors, bonnet and roof with a blue circle logo on the door
The result of an accident between a car and a small child

I have just read about a development of a technology from one major car manufacturer that encompasses radar, cruise control and the ability to follow white line markings whilst steering to effectively allow the car to drive itself.

All these technologies are already produced but this car combines them all.

The car in question is a Honda Accord - the pensioners of Britain must be wetting themselves with glee.

All this relies on effective road marking of course but nobody has yet made that quantum leap into the future to envisage who might have to take responsibility should it all go pear-shaped.

Can we look forward to the accident case where the driver claims that he was not actually controlling the car, whereas the manufacturer will be pointing to some small print in their instructions whilst the insurance company attempts to blame the road maintenance companies?

All of which means the poor motorist that was crashed into will be a pensioner himself before he gets compensation.

All of which he'll spend on a new Accord.

And the circle will continue ad infinitum…


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.125 1 Jun 2018
First Published: Version 2.03 14 Jun 2006



Four From Two

Have just completed some tidying up work on the latest version of my website so you should now be seeing this online.

You will note that it is still in the old version 2 format.

By now I had hoped that I could find enough time to create version 3, which will be the first to feature actual images.

As for four? Three dimension? Smellivision? Touchscreen? Who knows what I have planned?

I certainly don't!

Note the date, one day before the start of the 2006 World Cup [Note to Americans - this is a ball sport that all the world participates in].

Given the hype that has been bandied about the tournament I feel my website may be lost if I don't include the words football and Rooney. Just as well they kicked in just then.

Mind you your average footy pundit, eager to find out the latest score might well be disappointed if he were searching for striker information and his search engine header came up with this site, bypassing more obvious places.

My site is more off the wall than offside.

However, the penalty for missing the official England site will be new fans of vinceunlimited, which is a goal I have set myself.

Mind you if too many fans pitch on my site and it crashes it will be an own goal so the referee is out on that one.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.124 31 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.03 8 Jun 2006



May 2006

Genius Rights

Recently the press has been wondering if Sir Paul McCartney ought to retain the major share of his fortune if his spilt with Lady McCartney [Heather Mills McCartney] results in an acrimonious divorce settlement.

The argument has been made that as Sir Paul is so obvious a genius in his given profession he should have the greater share of their accumulated wealth.

Personally, although so obviously in the genius category myself I find this argument uncomfortable.

I could sympathise with the view that his share was greater than hers when they met so future distribution of wealth should reflect this.

I might even be persuaded that his assets were more instrumental in increasing their wealth during their time together so this should be considered.

But to consider only on a subjective measurement of genius is fundamentally wrong.

After all, a successful businessman could equally argue that his money making talent is measurable in geniusness.

And what of Lady M?

Surely marrying a rich Beatle could be classed as an act of pure genius.




My own brand of genius emerged again today.

I have been tasked with assembling some notes about my client's current business practices. As part of this I have to jot down some ideas for efficiency improvements, a task that an idea's man like me can relish.

However, to me, this raises interesting questions about intellectual property ownership.

Normally IP will reside with the company, provided such IP is undertaken by the company but my circumstances are slightly different.

As a self-employed man, working through a third party my role is fairly rigidly defined.

I am certainly not directly contracted to the company I am working in and have not been employed with my novel abilities in mind. I am just contracted to do a standard day to day job efficiently.

So if I bring in my own brand of innovation the company I am working for will benefit unduly. And you can be sure there is no process to reward such special talent. I can't even complete the company staff suggestion form and claim my pony because as a contractor I am ineligible.

But if I don't exercise my full potential I will be cheating the world of my input. This is why I'll go only so far but not all out.

Again, my natural talents defused and demeaned.

So to my idea. Well after all that it doesn't seem so great. They can have it.

In many ways you have just had the best bit.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.123 30 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.03 25 May 2006
In the end Sir Paul McCartney's divorce settlement ended in 2008 with a payout of £24.3m [c.$50m] plus £35k annual childcare costs to Heather Mills [Lady McCartney], his former wife. She had claimed £125m and Sir Paul wanted to settle at £15.8m. I have no idea whether genius was considered. For either party



April 2006

Not Stirred

Thought for the day.

If the contents of a can instruct 'Shake well before use' does this mean shake thoroughly or does it mean a long time before using?

I worry about these things.

Just in case I'm going home to agitate all of my canisters - in case I might need them next week.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.122 29 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 7 Apr 2006



March 2006

Not So Free

A close up photograph of a black and white rabbit
This is what a proper happy bunny should look like

Not a happy bunny today.

I have been thinking about an email that my illustrious ISP sent me last week.

From now on there is to be a 'small change' in the way that the account is charged.

Online time will now attract a nominal one pence or so per minute.

This may be relatively small beer but it is a huge principle.

Rising prices by one pee a minute is marginal but introducing a new charge from a previously free service is a fundamental sea-change.

I am powerless to stop it so will now be looking for an alternative. Any ideas?

Other than suggesting a small beer must be a good thing for an unhappy bunny.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.134 14 Jun 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 29 Mar 2006
Do you remember when it was common to pay for online time by the minute? I was particularly miffed because the free to use ISP service that I was using at the time was branded as Freeserve and I thought that per minute charging was not exactly as 'labelled on the tin'. In fact Freeserve were bought by Wanadoo in 2000 and then by Orange in 2006. I never knew this at the time and was still using 'Freeserve' and my Freeserve email at the time of posting. I soon noticed the change to Wanadoo and Orange, as noted in my formal website vincepoynter.co.uk version 1.02 in Jun 2006. The future it seemed was indeed, as the advertising stated, Orange



No Flying Aircraft

A photograph of the back of my wife in a red tee-shirt and beige cap stood on a balcony just as a nine plane Red Arrows jet formation flies past, trailing their blue, white and red smoke
Lynda, dreaming of a fast jet ride in a Red Arrows display

Today, on one of my local radio stations [we seem to have so many nowadays] someone won a popular competition to spend a day with the RAF Red Arrows.

Ideally this would have been a chance for me to trounce the opposition with my witty entry and win this prize for my beloved.

She has always hankered after a high-octane ride with a naval airman but taking a seat with the Reds would tick most of her boxes.

However, presumably due to the elderly demographic audience of this particular station, the winner will never get to travel in an actual jet. Instead the frustrating day would include attending a pre-flight briefing and chatting idly to the technicians.

How infuriating would that be? So close yet no banana.

It would be like winning the supermarket dash and finding all the shelves empty, or playing football at Anfield after the crowd has left, or visiting a lap dancing club and leaving before the bits are bared.

Intolerable.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.120 25 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 16 Mar 2006



Bad Blog

Been having trouble getting back into the blogging groove due to allowing the work/play balance to become decidedly unstable over the last few months, which explains the gap between entries becoming a colossus.

It didn't help that I constructed an entry a couple of days ago then accidentally wiped it off my thumb drive.

But I am still here and raring to go. Only I've got a sudden bout of writer's block.

Or to put it in a less authoritarian way, can't be arsed.

Which all makes this entry the most anti-climatic blog in the whole of web history.

Which, if you think about it, is actually quite interesting.

Were it to be true.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.119 24 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 15 Mar 2006



December 2005

Bit Of A Gap

Hooray. I'm back.

It seems that I left you all alone for a while there, in fact nearly three months. At this rate I'll never make blogger of the year.

The reason for the absence has been, as it always is, work related. I was assigned a fresh role that allowed me to work locally. The lack of three or more hours a day commuting on a train meant that I never seemed to find time to update my site.

And there was you thinking that version 3.0 was about to be launched on an unsuspecting public. Mind you, if you thought that the site was about to be launched then the public was not at all unsuspecting and better described as anticipatory.

But I diversify, as ever.

The break from writing my site hasn't subdued my thoughts on what needs adding and updating and I'm always thinking about new ideas and concepts. The only trouble is that by not getting them in print when I think about them can mean that others stumble on the idea.

For example I have been giving some thought recently to the idea that the baby boomer generation, who seem to run the world, may not accept death and we may all soon benefit from everlasting life.

After all this is the generation that invented youth culture, foreign holidaying for the masses, major home ownership, the dot com age, fame, celebrity, greed, modern fitness and leisure pursuits and now cosmetic surgery to keep their youth.

They are suppressing real youth by dissolving upcoming celebrity and sexualising and thus diminishing the young, both male and female.

They hold power positions, wealth, fame, patents and property.

They make the laws to suit themselves, hence the freedom of the eighties is being replaced with the ASBO and spy-camera culture of the current decade to protect them as they get older.

In short they believe the world is theirs and don't want to pass it on, even to their own children.

Mark my word, the next ten years will see frantic developments in anti-ageing treatments and not just skin care products. Plus huge rises in pensions including suggesting the young retire much later than they had to.

Unfortunately some of this content was also considered by a journalist writing in a real paper recently. In Bryan Appleyard's article in The Sunday Times on 27 November 2005 he discussed most of these points. What a swizzle.

Down, if not out.

Still, there's no point in dwelling on what ifs when there are a host of new ideas bubbling in the cauldron. You never know, I might get some of them down in pixels by Christmas.

Christmas 2006 that is. Have a festive one, Vince


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.118 23 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 22 Dec 2005



September 2005

Well Executed

A screenshot, with lower relection effect, of the vinceunlimited website versions page, version 2.02
In those days all websites looked like this. A screenshot of my website, version 2.02

Well the 2.02 version of the site was launched with the usual lack of fanfare and ticker-tape.

Compiling a site like this is a thankless task.

However, I'm in it for the long run and recognise that all this early effort will, one day, be recognised and appreciated in the way that it has been designed.

First up I had to reconfigure this blog section so that there were useful links to my past blog sections.

Now I'm all properly set to mesmerise you with my blogging thoughts. This blogging lark* will prove to be useful to my regular readers as it may be some time before the next proper update is compiled.

There are three reasons for this.

Firstly I am being reassigned at work [no, not gender-wise] and need to settle into my new role in a professional manner, secondly I always plan to update bi-monthly to give myself a reasonable target and finally, because I want my next update to raise the game significantly. More on this later if it comes to pass.

One reason for my re-assignment is the imminent conclusion of a current task that I have been working on for a client.

The last job to be done is create an Executive Summary compiling all the raw data that I have produced over the last few months.

Whilst doing this I was moved to consider why they are called Executive Summaries. Surely an Executive, having achieved such a high rank, must be able to absorb facts and data in a manner better than others.

Therefore the summation should be entitled Idiot Summary. I feel the fact that it isn't proves the real ability of Executives.

Finally, I read in the papers today that a firm has developed a tracksuit for that automatically monitors performance and provides instructions to the wearer about training regimes and performance.

This reminded me that my intelligent shoes idea is not so far fetched.

*Is that related to other Larks I wonder?


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.117 22 May 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 29 Sep 2005
The photograph shows a screen grab from the vinceunlimited website, version 2.02. It was first added to the website in Version 3 on 29 Mar 2010



Food For Thought

Vince Poynter sat, tucking in to a Pot Noodle, with a female friend in the background
Yummy, yummy, yummy. This is going to [temporarily] fill my tummy

I purchased a Pot Noodle from Tesco today.

This is not a regular thing now but I used to have one or two when they were first introduced.

This quite unremarkable fact would have gone unreported, even in my detailed blog, other than the fact behind me in the queue was a chef. I knew this fact from his dirty, white, wrap-around top and silly check trousers.

He saw my Pot Noodle and I could see his mind visibly sighing.

He was buying a pile of fresh ingredients and I'm sure was about to produce a masterclass in scrumptious eating.

My sad fast food option was clearly letting the side down.

However, I did think that if this chef was clever enough to have thought up the concept of my humble snack he wouldn't be in Tesco now looking down his nose.

It tasted delicious.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.107 26 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 21 Sep 2005
The photograph shows the author tucking into a Pot Noodle and was taken around 1985. It was added to the website in Version 5.107 26 Apr 2018



Remaining Unlimited

Following a close friend's change of job recently and his necessary formation of a limited company to serve the position I resurrected thoughts about my own position.

Professionally I work as a sole trader (self-employed) but could form a company to trade through just as many of my work colleagues do. However a call to my accountant friend dispelled any myths about saving tax and threw doubt about the promises of limited liability.

This all meant that the novel company name I created yesterday was now redundant. Shame. It was surprisingly difficult thinking up a relevant, short and memorable name that was not previously registered in Companies House and could be purchased as a .com or .co.uk web address.

But I did manage it.

Well, did you expect otherwise?


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.106 25 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 20 Sep 2005



Disaster Into Opportunity

Monday morning and the day is already living up to it's reputation.

I travel through about eight sets of traffic lights in my short bicycle journey into the city and at least twelve of them were on red.

When I got to the office the lift was once more out of action and upon starting my computer I find the office network is down so I cannot get on with finishing the important task I started for my client, even though I have now just two weeks left to do the estimated twenty-days work.

So it seems I have just found time to get my September 2005 version of the site finalised. It is important that this is done during the next fortnight as I am moving to a new assignment in October and do not know what facilities I will have to hand.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.105 24 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 19 Sep 2005



Work Musing

Have to attend a work related interview today and it has made me think again about my career.

I work in the construction industry, not through choice but fate. I despise everything about it but year on year the fiscal reward has been growing.

I dislike the way that it limits creativity, is a male dominated, brutish, dirty environment and now only concerns itself with money.

Service and pride have become lost concepts and the industry is full of parasitic consultants. I should know, I work as one!

I work mainly through one agency and they pitch my skills to suit the job - I have become a specialist in nothing more than fitting into any role they ask.

Whilst this provides interesting variations in an otherwise tedious job it does prevent me from climbing up away from my present level into further management. A role I would be much more suited for, mainly because that is where all the hyperbole I have learnt on the way would be of most use.

The flooding of New Orleans is dominating world news at present.

Personally I have never been there and had no wish to. The place is primarily the home of Jazz music which has always been overhyped nonsense and reminds me of tunes that a Country and Western band might rehearse with before they actually hit on the melody.

Awful that the situation is that the poor townsfolk find themselves in I couldn't help doing what the English tend to do in these situations, cracking a joke or two.

I suggested that, as always in these situations, the entertainment industry should show their support by staging a fund-raising concert or two. I suggested a recital of Handel's Water Music, a performance of Riverdance and a staging of the Merchant of Venice. Don McLean could adapt his American Pie song to 'Drove my Chevy to the Levee and the carburettor flooded...' and there could be special showings of Kevin Costner's epic Waterworld.

Does all this frivolity in times of international horror make me a bad man?


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.104 23 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 8 Sep 2005



Launch Preparation

It's now September and in line with thoughts that my site should be updated and added to every couple of months I'm thinking about uploading the next batch of pages.

My output is not prolific as I have to balance the work/pleasure/website proportioning sensibly. I sometimes work on the site during my daily return commute (I sleep on the way in!) but this time is often hi-jacked by a game of Spider Solitaire - it helps me unwind.

I'm ready to launch version 2.02 (this blog was launched in this version) and am thinking about the next update. The next version may be the first to contain images, although as the whole site is hand-coded in HTML I need to establish how to control image size, quality, positioning and word-wrapping first. I could use a proprietary application but that would be cheating.

Another thing I need to do is get the site advertised. Already I have registered the site's credentials with Google and Yahoo but searches for 'vinceunlimited' are producing unreliable results. Google manages to find my Opinions page and as a secondary thing my Versions page but falls short of listing the actual homepage. Perhaps my Opinions page is where readers start?

Yahoo searches actually yield diddly-squat. I cannot understand why a search engine cannot find a name that is actually part of the domain URL.

I do know that search engines use as one factor the number of external links but my site is too eclectic to be linked from one set of other sources. I'll have to start requesting links for specific pages from some sites. So, if you run a site, like my content and can think of where to link your site please don't hesitate to add that link. Let me know about it and I'll return the compliment.

Meanwhile I better get back to devising content. Or Solitaire.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.103 20 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 6 Sep 2005
h2g2 can be found at https://www.h2g2.com



August 2005

Capitalist Dilemma

A photo of a very white bathroom showing the close-coupled WC, part of the pedestal mpunted basin on the left and the bath on the right
A picture of the offending item [The WC and cistern, not the leak]

Had a call from our last tenants about the cost of their water bill. Apparently the reading for the most recent five months was nearly double that of the previous six.

I might have blamed their increase in numbers due to the child production line that they have started, perhaps thinking that the toddler who scratched our window cill also spuriously ran the bath from time to time. From the state of the grease in the kitchen it is clear that they weren't squandering water on cleaning so the problem appeared to stem from the leaky WC cistern.

They reported this a few months ago and I thought that my temporary repair had solved the crisis. I had purchased a new cistern innards and was waiting for the call to say that it was still leaking but the call never came.

However water was running when we took possession. I deduce that this leak was in part responsible for the higher bill.

So, quandary time.

Technically the tenants are responsible for not informing us that the leak had re-appeared. However, as Landlord, it appeared that I failed to stem the leak the first time so feel partly responsible.

On moral grounds Lynda and I decided to pay a sum toward the bill.

So, would this act of generosity to the less well-off bode well in Landlord of the Year competitions or does our lack of capitalist leanings disqualify us completely?

At least we'll sleep at night. Unlike the tenants with their young family.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.102 19 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 30 Aug 2005
The accompanying photograph shows the actual WC and cistern installed at the author's apartment let, taken in Feb 2004 and first added to the website in Version 3 in Mar 2010



Bank Holiday

This blog is rapidly turning into a diary. I didn't envisage listing virtually everything that I do but editing the fun is difficult when there has been so much of it.

The main thrust of the Holiday weekend was spent working. The misses and I own an apartment that we rent out and this weekend was spent between tenants. As we market the one-bedroomed flat as 'prestige' we had to return it to that state in readiness for our next occupier. This meant getting all the grease out and some artwork in.

We had a break on Sunday and visited a local motor event where my niece was performing in a Junior motorcycle display team. As is usual with these things I got involved. Insofar as I sat in my sister's car when it was being jumped by a lad on his Kawasaki. The view out of the rear window was impressive, being sat in the last car in the row. I figured that if I had captured the moment on a digital camera it could have featured in the BBC's picture of the day. The experience also made me think about my autobiography structure because of the innumerable things that I get involved in. [You will have to visit the Autobiography section] to discover more.

The cricket that I mentioned earlier is picking up pace. England took a second win in the Ashes series to lead the Aussies by one with one to go. Suddenly everyone is a fan and I too was bowled over when watching the conclusion on Sunday evening but I doubt this is happening in Australia.

Finally had another browse at h2g2 and found many gaps that I could fill. Am considering registering as a contributor. Why is it I always think this way?


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.101 18 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 29 Aug 2005
h2g2 can be found at https://www.h2g2.com



Maintaining The Good Start

Although I never intended entries to be added daily the initial momentum carries me into the second entry under full steam.

However, I am already thinking that adding a [heading] next to the date may be an error. Often one of the most edited parts of my new pages whilst in preparation are the quick-fire headings. They have to be snappy and relevant whilst offering a subtle hint at the humour within the page. Not easy in a word or three.

It is a working day again but I grabbed a quick browse on the Internet within the BBC site (again) which led me to their h2g2 page. This is a growing collection of information that realises the ideas of it's founder, Douglas Adams, who envisaged such an information source in his novel 'The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy'. I'll no doubt return again to this ocean of knowledge in due course but today had a quick surf in the philosophy section where I discovered many fascinating gems.

One was a page answering the familiar conundrum about the chicken and egg (as I had already deduced it was the egg). This itself was not educational but a link to an alternative answer by Alice Kaswell amused me. In it she determined the result by posting both a chicken and egg to herself. You have to click the link [below] to read the amusing story.

Another article within the philosophy section briefly described transhumanism, which is the convergence of humans and technology to give us more than our three score and ten. Whilst reading this I had to suppress an urge to add a comment in a similar vein about an idea I have been working on. I'm often suppressing urges like this. It's been my nature since very young. Question and answer sessions following lectures normally see me asking probing questions.

In simple terms my particular idea envisages a future time when due to progress humans can live forever but as their reproduction would soon swamp the world a choice would have to be made between longevity and procreation. Most parents claim they would sacrifice themselves over to protect their offspring but if it came to it would they? And if they were given a choice of kids or long life what would they choose? I think this could make a fascinating subject of a film so didn't post it on the site.

It just goes to prove that when I spend time reading and regurgitating the thoughts of others I am not preparing my own. Just like the writing of this blog prevents me from developing fresh new pages on my site. So a genuine philosophical question arises, the sort that becomes harder to answer the more it is considered.

Is this website better without this blog?

Of course there are many other side issues developing here.

I'm reminded that yesterday I came to the conclusion that virtually no-one has an original idea and even the most original thinkers and raconteurs are merely re-stating in their own manner all things that they have previously absorbed. Or at least that's what I do!

Each person has a stack of knowledge that is in part passed on to a variety of others.

A few months ago I thought I might try to record all I know in some sort of database for no other reason than my ego thinks it would be useful to others. I was going to add it as a sub-section of this site, entitled 'The Knowledge'.

I procrastinated as it is a major undertaking that may take some time to develop into a useful database and the sapling versions would be hollow. Further it would, by its nature, lack humour, the underpinnings of this site, so it is still on the back burner. Barely alight to be honest and now almost extinguished by the discovery of Mr. Adams' BBC offspring.

My version had one feature not on the BBC site which is that I envisaged all my facts to be graded.

I figured that each subject should have three categories. Firstly, the basic explanation, almost a precise brief dictionary expression. In the second category there would be a few facts and interesting related asides, the sort of fact that would impress at a dinner party without appearing to be an anorak. Then finally the third level would be the full anorakal description.

So I have a choice. Develop my original idea - this will take literally years and may be superseded long before it matures. Secondly I could invite the formal BBC site to take on my grading idea. And thirdly just get on with my work again.

I'll take three.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.100 17 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 26 Aug 2005
The BBC no longer maintains the h2g2 link. It is still live and can be found at https://www.h2g2.com
Wikipedia was launched in Jan 2001 and had about half a million entries by the time my article was posted from around 750 contributors. The lack of my mentioning this source leads me to believe I wasn't fully aware of this information source at the time of original posting
The Alice Kaswell link is https://www.improbable.com/airchives/paperair/volume9/v9i4/chicken_egg.html
I have not finished with my idea about human longevity and am currently working on a book called 'The Southampton Conundrum' which explores some ideas in this field.



Blog Off

Vince Poynter sat in a old aircraft trainer cockpit
Finally the blog is launched on an unsuspecting airfield somewhere overground

So here we go. I've mused, considered and procrastinated enough it's time to launch my blog.

Nowadays it seems everyone is at it. Well at least those with a website. According to a recent BBC webpage there are over 14 million blogs so my humble effort is going to have to be sharp to cut the mustard. Not that mustard needs a sharp blade but you get my point.

I launch this blog at a pretty inconsequential time. It's a Thursday and as is the norm for my working week I've travelled to London. Due to the aftershock of the recent terrorist attacks the city was unusually quiet when I ventured in. Either that or everyone is staying home to watch the fourth instalment in a cricket match with Australia for a trophy small in stature but large in importance to some. By the time you come to read this you will know the result, or more likely not care so I won't bore you with it.

I started this blog as it seems a good way of passing on all the snippets of information and ideas that spring to my mind on sporadic occasions, plus to recount all the amusing anecdotes that invade my existence. In fact the launch was eventually spurred on by a couple of great stories but as is the way with these things now that I've put fingertip to keyboard I cannot for the life of me recall them. I suppose in a way that's exactly what this will be all about. Just that now the framework is ready I'll now be able to record the notes before they disappear.


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Author: Vince Poynter
Version 5.099 16 Apr 2018
First Published: Version 2.02 25 Aug 2005
The photograph is of the author sat in a trainer cockpit at The Yorkshire Air Museum, taken by the author's wife at the beginning of Aug 2004. It was first added to the website in Version 3 in Mar 2010