Wednesday, July 28, 2010

James Bulger

On the 16 March 1990 two year old James Bulger was murdered by the then 10 year old Robert Thompson, and Jon Venables. Since then the former has been fairly quiet, Jon Venables on the other hand has been in the news more recently. On 21 June 2010, Venables was charged with possession and distribution of indecent images of children.
Today the papers carry a story claiming gangland bosses have put a £100.000 price on his head, whether this is true or not is irrelevant really, the fact remains that the crime and subsequent event had led to a lot of bad feeling with the general public.
I think the biggest issue with the whole thing is the protection Venables and Thompson have recieved at taxpayers expense, fair enough when they were younger, but the now adults should face justice like anybody else, not have secret identities to protect them.
So much for equality in this country, if your a child murderer you'll get "special" treatment.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Speed cameras

On the tv news this morning was the news that speed cameras (the so called safety cameras) are apparently not cutting the death toll.

Surprise surprise! there are several reasons for that. One is probably the fact that speeding motorists only actually slow down past the camera (just stand near any one and watch the brake lights come on) and travel at their normal speed everywhere else.

Secondly the cameras are placed to raise revenue rather than placed where the accidents really happen.
Take Swansea for example, the cameras are clustered around the council estates, none in the Gower despite there being several fatal crashes every year, yet where I used to live there were 4 cameras within a few hundred yards when to my certain knowledge there had only been one fatal accident in 20 years, but of course that was a council estate.
The same as theres none in the Brecon beacons national park area, again lots of accidents, so many in fact theres signs warning how many bikers were killed there, yet no cameras.

One with a cynical mind might be tempted to suggest they are placed to "catch" the most people rather than where the roads are most dangerous.

And before you start saying thats just sour grapes from being caught, you'd be wrong, the last time I was "done for speeding" was when I was 18 (nearly 40 years ago) and that was the old fashioned way with a real copper by the side of the road, and fair do I was speeding at the time.

Speed cameras do nothing for real world road safety, they also don't stop bad driving, a far bigger cause of accidents than just speed alone (our motorways are some of the safest roads around yet the fastest) all they do is burden the allready "ripped off" motorist even more.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Chevrolet and rain

Here are two photos of a "Chevy" I spotted a while back in of all places Tescos car park, I assume it was on it's way to a classic car show.

Rain, well the last few days it's been extremely wet here, pouring down in fact, so much so several local places have had flooding.
I'm pretty safe from flooding where I am, I'm raised up on a slope so any serious water will run away before it gets deep enough to get into my house, indeed if my house ever floods the people lower down will be well under water.
One courious fact despite the heavy rain for days we still have a hosepipe ban, not that many will be using them. I wonder if the ban applies to the fire brigade???

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Square-ified! (or thats what I call it)

Something a little different this weekend, some images I have made... well square-ish for want of a better discripition.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Mobile phones again!

Yes I'm going to moan about mobile phones yet again, those who follow this blog will know I haven't had much luck with my mobile phones in the past.
You see first of all the signals pretty crap here in Wales. Yesterday was about the first time in months I actually had a proper conversation whilst moving without getting cut off part way through.
Then there's the phones themselves, I want a mobile phone to make calls while I'm out and about, I don't need Internet access on a 2 inch screen, I don't need an MP3 player, I don't even really need a camera (I usually have a proper one with me) The phone now is trying to hard to be everything to everyone, but failing at it's original function of actually being any good at making phone calls.
Then theres the issue of do we really want to be in constant touch? To be brutally honest I'm getting fed up with being on constant call to anybody who wants to call me, even driving home is a pain in the arse with a barrage of calls and messages making you stop to answer or read them.
Yes they are bloody handy in an emergency but the rest of the time time they can be a right royal pain!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

World cup fever

Well world cup fever is over for another year, and what have we learned?
Well we learned that those stupid horn things should be banned.
Mars bars really don't sell so well with the English flag on them.
That England can't win the world cup no matter how much the publicity machine says they will before the game.
That the team manager is always at fault even though he's not actually playing football on the day. And that an octopus proved about the best judge of who was going to win, and he received death threats for heavens sake!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

ACDsee pro 3 longer term review

Well I have been using it for a week or so now and I'm not sure whether it's an improvement or not. You see I like the new interface, and I like the non distructive editing, but I'm not fussed on it creating duplicates of everything, and the batch functions seen a lot less sensible to use, indeed I have hardly managed to get it to bacth properly at all, rotate doesn't seem to have any proper effect, once you open the pics in the editor it turns them back the way they were!
Not really impressed so far.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

War in Afghanistan at critical stage

The war in Afghanistan has reached a critical stage, U.S. General David Petraeus said Sunday.
Wow that will come as a surprise to all the soldiers fighting out there! I'll bet they had never noticed things were a bit dodgy, indeed they have been for the best part of the last nine years. Most would argue that things will probably not get much better either, Afghanistan has never been successfully invaded in it's history, even Russia with it's massive resources failed to bring it under it's control, the people there are proud and have a long history of fighting for their freedom, time is also on their side, it doesn't matter if it takes them 50 years they will wear down their enemy and drive them out.
Then there's the question of whether British troops should be there in the first place. 9/11 was the reason given, even though 15 of the 19 hi-jackers were claimed to be from Saudi Arabia (we haven't invaded there) and Osama Bin Laden seems long gone (even the video tapes have dried up) My guess is he died some time ago.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Rollerblading !

One of my less onerous duties this week was to
photograph a female rollerblading team, it was a
good laugh and they are pretty good at it too.
Here's one shots of Miranda trying to look "well hard!" and a pics of them towing each other.
Be afraid other teams... very afraid!

ACDSee pro 3 review

ACDCee pro 3 is the latest version of the software.
Now as any regular followers of this blog will know I LOVE my photoshop, that said I do use other software as well, Adobe lightroom for one and ... Yes ok I'll admit it I do use ACDSee as well. Now I find I use it as a follow up to lightroom for editing large batches, it's quicker and easier than the time consuming import and export with lightroom, for "tweeking" any images I'm not happy with.
The newest version 3 has quite a few changes, the interface looks a lot different to the old one, in some ways it's more like lightroom.
One feature I have loved since it first appeared is the light equliser, a sort of souped up shadow/highlight control, the main difference is that in ACDSee you have a load of sliders to ajust different tones rather than just shadow or highlights of the photoshop one , this gives much finer control in my opinion, something photoshop should adopt!