Cyberpsyche


Creating your own suncream

I've been reading recently how some sun cream can cause allergic reactions, like eczema, in some people. I head that toddlers in particular can have a reaction to the preservatives that manufactures are obliged to put into products to protect their skin from the sun. Cremes for sensitive skin with a high SPF factor can be expensive. There is though another way, that is to make your own sunscreen.

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C++, Object Orientation and Alan Kay

I seem to have a recurring conversation these days about C++, and how badly designed it is. Despite knowing the language quite well I cannot defend it, I’ve been programming long enough to have used pre-template compilers and to remember when compilers went through the “C with objects” phase. However any programmer might feel about the language it is damming is that is has never really supplanted C as a replacement language. New C projects are still being started despite it’s lack of OO. Many a major project is still being written in C.

Not Waving but Drowning


Nobody heard him, the dead man,
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you thought
And not waving but drowning.

Poor chap, he always loved larking
And now he's dead
It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way,
They said.

Oh, no no no, it was too cold always
(Still the dead one lay moaning)
I was much too far out all my life
And not waving but drowning.
--- Stevie Smith

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Notes on The Decisive Moment : How the Brain Makes Up Its Mind

BBC Radio 4's Book of the Week is interesting: Decisive Moment, The: How the Brain Makes Up Its Mind is how people make decisions. The programme which is available seven days after it is broadcast on the site has readings all week from the book. The book shares some ground with Blink! which I'd blogged about a couple of years ago, except this has a broader theme about how emotional response plays a part in decision making.

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The origins of skiing

In the northern most reaches of China, bordering, Russia, Mongolia, and Kazahkstan are the Altai mountains. The nomadic peoples of these maintains have been skiing for many centuries, perhaps longer. There is evidence that skiing may have originated in central Asia thousands of years ago. Nils Larsen has produced a film called Journey to the Source documenting how the peoples make skis and use them in everyday life.

Excerpt from Nils Larsen's Journey to the Source on the roots of skiing in China's Altai region.

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Skin Deep


I think I am lovely
Despite my broken nose
You can detract from it
By wearing fancy clothes
I think I am beautiful
Although I have cross-eyes
You can detract from that as well
By wearing fancy ties
I think I am beautiful
Even though I've got big ears
I cover them with blankets
When anyone appears.
I think I am beautiful
Although my legs are thin
If people want to see them
I say my legs aren't in
If some folks say I'm ugly
As some folks certainly will
I get out my rottweiler
And say kill kill kill.

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Agile Project Management

One thing that can be said about the success of Agile practices, in software development, is they have created many discussions on how to manage Agile teams. This has caused some companies to question what roles need to be filled in organizations to ensure project are as successful as they can be. Agile processes are a product of their time, there has been a growing trend in other management disciplines, like Supply Line management and production. Studies of organizations, in recent years, increasingly look to natural systems and self-organizing structures.

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