Archive for the 'WTF?' Category

Secrets of Mayan flower remedy healing: channelling the crystal tarot for wealth and success

Some of you may know this already, but I can now announce it publicly. 2014 approaches, and promises to be an astrologically significant year as Jupiter turns retrograde, just as Saturn reaches the mid-point of Scorpio and as Mars enters Libra.

The primary effect of karmic Saturn spending virtually all of 2014 in fellow Water sign, Scorpio is that I don’t have enough money. Therefore, I’ve been doing some serious study and am now a Reikimaster (7th dan) Aromatherapy Chakra Realignment Lifecoach.

If you’re rich and consider yourself “Quite Spiritual”, you’re invited to one of my workshops. The first, which will take place on the Spring Equinox near Glastonbury Tor where the leylines meet, is Secrets of Mayan flower remedy healing: channelling the crystal tarot for wealth and success.

In this two day Meditative Chakra Healing and Negative Energy Banishment Retreat™, you’ll learn:

  • some regurgitated bits of the Upanishads that I found on free Kindle books that explain how your Soul can never be destroyed but, by conflating it with some misunderstood terms from pop science books, is Quantum Mechanically “remembered” in the fabric of SpaceTime, meaning that your spiritual essence forever vibrates in trees and flowers.
  • how the secrets of the Ancient Tarot’s “High Priestess” card affects your karmic balance
  • how to use some attractively polished stones to raise your Magnetic Resonance during Magnetic Pole Reversal, which can otherwise block your creativity by flooding you with “Negergy” – a kind of negative energy that I personally discovered during my time at an ashram in Spiritual India (Thank you).
  • how the power of song can free the shackles of your spirit bringing a feeling of lighthearted one-ness with your fellow Truth-Seekers and the Universe, through a process of Astral-hyperventilation™.
  • how to visualize what you want to create – and you will electromagnetically attract the object of your visualization.
  • how to commune with Angels in a group meditative attempt bring about World Peace, Prosperity and Increase.

This warm, friendly, creative, meditative space costs just £499+VAT. Mung Beans and Scrumpy are provided (bring your own roach material).

Please indicate your interest below. (Note, we don’t take Bitcoin as that’s pie-in-the-sky nonsense).

I’ve got the most beautiful pants (in all of Worcestershire)

Here’s an ancient traditional folk song that I wrote a few years ago to entertain the kids, and came back to me while jamming with the little oiks last night. Daughter’s on ukelele; son is way too cool to be in a stupid video, so is cameraman.

If you’re reading this, George Martin, and want to score it for orchestra and give me a massive recording contract, leave a comment below.

(Note to Americans: “pants” means underwear and not trousers – which are correctly called “trousers”.)

I’ve got the most beautiful pants
in all of Worcestershire.
Wherever I go folks say “hello”,
and everybody wants to know
at which Parisian fashion show
I bought my beautful pants.

I’ve got the most beautiful pants
in all of Worcestershire.
Whenever I pass folks say “what class!
The haute couture cloth that covers his arse”,
and all the young bucks come up to ask
where they can buy those pants.

I’ve got the most beautiful pants
in all of Worcestershire.
Wherever I stay folks say “hurray!
They’re bright and bonny and blithe and gay!”
They’re frequently washed, but they never turn grey -
my marvellous colour-fast pants.

I’ve got the most beautiful pants
in all of Worcestershire.
When I come near, the chicks all cheer
and fathers lock up their daughters in fear,
for maidens don’t price their virginity dear
when I’m wearing my wonderful pants.

IE 6 mobile standards compliance tests

So, I was challenged on my assertion that the new Internet Explorer for mobile that is going to be unleashed in China next year is based on the web developer’s mortal enemy and the virus-writer’s best friend, IE 6 for desktop.

I was wrong, people said: IE 6 mobile isn’t IE 6 desktop back from the dead and dripping goo and pus like a George Romero zombie; it’s an accident, a coincidence of the numbering system. Microsoft are good guys now, they said, committed to web standards.

After all, look at the claims for it:

Internet Explorer Mobile 6 [is] a full-featured browser for Windows Mobile devices that brings the same high-quality browsing experience to the user as desktop browsers. Internet Explorer Mobile 6 supports desktop-quality rendering and has the best compliance support of all versions of Internet Explorer on a Windows Mobile device to date.

So I downloaded the emulator and ran a few tests.

Conditional comments and * html

Firstly, I tested a simple page to see if it picked up Conditional Comments targetted at IE 6, and whether it picked up CSS rules aimed at the valid, but nonsensical * html elements.

The test page is

p {color:red}
* html p {color:blue;}
<!--[if lte IE 6]>
<h1>Conditional comments think I'm IE6!</h1>
<![endif]-->
<p>Red for non-IE6, blue for IE 6</p>

So, IE 6 (or below) will show a heading, and a paragraph in blue. A modern browser will have no heading and the text will be red. The screenshot shows that IE 6 mobile believes it to be the same as IE 6 desktop on both counts.

screenshot showing heading and blue text

IE 6 mobile and the Acid tests

29% of all internet users in China only ever use a mobile phone to acess the Web. But Microsoft’s “new” mobile browser doesn’t quite have the standards-compliance that Chinese people deserve.

The Acid 2 test:

a very bad attempt at rendering acid 2

and the Acid 3 test:

a very bad attempt at rendering acid 2

IE 6 mobile and CSS support

A big problem for web developers was IE 6 lamentable support for CSS, so I ran the CSS selectors test. The results say “from the 43 selectors, 10 have passed. 1 are buggy and 32 are unsupported”.

selectors test result

Even IE 7 passes 13 of the 43 selectors (“4 are buggy and 26 are unsupported”).

So what IS IE 6 mobile?

Well, it appears that the heart of it is chucklesome old IE 6 desktop, with a few extra bits grafted on from IE 7 and IE 8′s JavaScript engine. So it’s cross between a zombie and a Frankenbrowser.

To verify, I opened up the back of my mobile and hiding behind the battery, clinging onto the SIM, I found the true face of IE 6 mobile, its lips mouthing “Ni hao” in anticipation of its imminent Beijing exhumation.

zombie

Joking aside, this is a terrible situation. 20% of the world’s population are being offered an ancient, discredited browser. Who knows whether we’ll imminently see China’s phones paralysed by viruses—after all, the U.S. government’s Computer Emergency Readiness Team advised

there are a number of significant vulnerabilities in technologies relating to the IE domain. It is possible to reduce exposure to these vulnerabilities by using a different web browser.

We need web standards. And China deserves them, too.

Sneezecount

My old mate and wrox refugee, Pete Fletcher, is an odd one. His latest project is “Sneezecount“, which sees him counting his sneezes, recording the time, date, location, relative strength of the sneeze and what he was doing at the time.

And I thought my Spam letters were pointless…

Communal showers

I’m new to the world of communal showers, because for years I managed to avoid P.E. at school by presenting a forged note from my mum and then slipping over the fence to the local greasy spoon café to play Asteroids and smoke.

But now I’m a member of a gym, and so I find myself regularly in a shower, in the nude, with other men. I often work out with my mate Matt, and have absolutely no inhibitions about being naked in front of a friend of 27 years. Equally, I have no shyness about nakedness in front of a group of complete strangers.

But occasionally there are people from work in the changing rooms. They’re perfectly pleasant chaps who I’ll say a cheery hello to at the coffee machine, but I find myself unexpectedly ill-at-ease being in the buff in front of them.

Legions of grateful ladies will attest to the fact the dimensions of the Bruce Juice Introducer® are nothing to be bashful about, so I find it odd that I should feel this way.

Are you comfortable getting your bits out in the presence of co-workers? Does my discomfort reveal deep psychological trauma—or, even worse, issues? Do tell.

Infallible cure for earworms

Naturally, my music taste is impeccably eclectic, sophisticated and erudite. My favourite bands are better than your favourite bands in every possible way.

But sometimes, even I get infected with earworms: some ghastly mass-produced crap like The Spice Girls or Take That finds its way into my brain and will not let go. This week, for example, my car CD mix of Burial, Amritakripa, The Pop Group and Natacha Atlas has remained entirely unlistened-to as I guiltily polluted myself with the latest earworm—“About You Now” by The Sugerbabes (for chrissake).

But I’ve cured myself, through the simple remedy of going to YouTube and overdosing on the self-made videos of angst-ridden teenage girls singing it in their bedrooms.

Actually, I still found myself thinking, that last link is pretty good. So I needed a magic bullet. Here it is:

Hey Presto! Earworms are gone.

Hello Kitty – what is she singing?

When I was in Bangkok, I bought a lovely Hello Kitty alarm clock that sings to me in what I assume is probably Chinese (or Japanese).

Anyone know what it’s singing, and what it says when I press the button to stop it?

WCAG 2 released

You wait ages for exciting stories about web accessibility, and then two come at once.

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s announcement about amazon.com reworking their site to be accessible, comes the news that the revised Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) finally became a candidate recommendation today.

The news came as a bit of a surprise to the web accessibility community, as it was rumoured that the last draft received a considerable number of comments that needed addressing before the guidelines could become a recommendation.

The Swedish accessibility expert, Olaf Pirol was appointed by the the WCAG working group to go through them. After a 48-hour stint on the guidelines, checking comments, removing a couple of success criteria, and adding two or three others, Olaf declared WCAG 2.0 good to go.