Sunday, January 24, 2010

Words you don't expect to hear

"Soy milk - thanks Mum." Overheard at the Coles Supermarket, Broadway
NSW yesterday as it was excitedly spoken by a young child.
On the subject of soy milk, it seems one brand was recalled late last
year because of high levels of iodine - but because it tastes better
than other brands, especially in coffee, there's reportedly been a
"black market" trade of it out of a cafe in Sydney.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A matter of perception

There's an old Jewish story about a woman who complains to the Rabbi about her worries - and she appears to not be the only one - so he tells the townfolk to put their worries in a bag and bring them to the town well. He then instructs them to leave theirs and take someone else's. At the end of the week, everyone is clamouring to get their own worries back. I would do well to remember that the next time I complain about the woman at the bus stop chewing my ear off (not literally of course) about all manner of things - because it could always get worse! Yes, yes, there's no direct correlation between the story and the observation - it's sometimes just nice to share stories.

Please explain

What does a goat with a green frog sitting on its head have to do with the Trading Post? I must be right out of step with the modern advertising psyche but for the life of me I can't work it out what the banner poster us about - just attracting attention or does it hold some other, deeper message?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Sweet ...

It's not one of the easiest building materials, but chocolatiers in China are doing what they can to have chocolate more widely accepted there by erecting a smaller version of The Great Wall, and the famous TerraCotta Warriors, in chocolate. Up to 80 tons of chocolate have been used for displays to be shown in the World Chocolaye Wonderland
exhibition and trade show being held in Beijing this month. Hopefully this will give the Chinese market a real taste for chocolate.

High cost of hope

Following the devastatIng earthquake in Haiti last week, with the country's infrastructure in ruins, humanitarians are hard-pressed to get aid to the country and distribute it. One of the main problems is landing aid in the country especially as the airport is reduced to one airport and the country's main port has been damaged. The airport has been taken over by the US which said over the weekend that priority for the 400 flights a day would be in the order of: search and rescue, military and then humanitarian aircraft. It's an incredibly hard call to make - whether to look for injured and dying - especially when the country's medical and aid facilities are already stretched beyond capacity - military troops to keep order in a country where it is quickly disintegrating because people are hurt, hungry and overwhelmed by their situation, or to land food and other aid. It's a call even Solomon could find difficult to make.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Exceptional results

If you do a search of books formatted for Kindle from Amazon, you'll find more exceptional than mundane results - literally. There were only 2 of the latter - one about end of life communications, the other about physics. There are loads of "exceptional" results - from customer service to IT training to making the most of "you" and your life.

Taking a load off

A study released today reports that the weight of a woman's handbag has dropped dramatically over the last 2 years with the introduction and adoption of "new-generation multi-purpose gadgets". I have to agree - these days I've been known to take just the iPhone and leave the camera, mini laptop, Palm, and Bluetooth keyboard at home. This has got to be good news for my backpack which used to weigh in at over 5 kg. Of course, there are some things you still have to carry - like pen and paper for those times when you just have to "write" something (and I'm talking A4 size here - not "nana notebook").

Developing story

US military helps develop internet. China and the US develop trading relations. Google becomes key internet player. China censors internet. Google threatens to withdraw from China. The White House holds talks with Google. Who else thinks there's more to come with this story?