Unconventional Career advice

Great presentation of unconventional yet inspiring career advice - a lot of slides to click through but very interesting:


So welcome back Coldplay. A new album out in a few weeks - what better way to get the global promo machine going than to give away the first single. Like millions of others I downloaded 'Violet Hill' today from coldplay.com - also managed to hear it played by the consistently sycophantic Jo Whiley and the more reserved local legend, Ralph 'big man' McLean. It's actually pretty good and it will be interesting to hear it alongside the rest of the new album. It's hard to resist observing that giving your single away free seems a pretty small gesture when compared to the blinding light that is 'In Rainbows' - an album I am still listening to in its entirety on a regular basis. I know it's more complicated to 'do a radiohead' - record company, contract, blah, blah, blah. But I guess the problem for Coldplay is that pretty much everyone is obscured by the greatness of Radiohead. It will be interesting to see what that other rock behemoth U2 will come up with when it comes time for another installment from Mr Bono et al - possibly this Autumn.

According to the Sunday Times Rich List the members of Coldplay are worth about £30 million quid each - although Chris 'my wife's a movie star' Martin might have a bit extra under the bed. Not bad when you consider that Parachutes has not yet reached it's 10th anniversary.

Caution: addictive websites ahead

Just discovered some ridiculously addictive websites which use google maps technology to let you watch the world.

Flickrvision allows you to watch as people upload photos across the world!

Wikipediavision allows you to see where in the world people are making changes to Wikipedia articles!

I'm a huge fan of flickr so I think I like flickrvision best, but I'll admit it's interesting to watch as someone in Utah makes an edit to an article entitled List of UFO sightings!

Finally there's twittervision which allows you to read and watch people's twitter updates. If you are into twitter you'll enjoy this. If you don't know what twitter is it probably won't mean very much to you at all.

Fascinating sites and of course a little scary in the big brother, the world is watching your every move, sort of way!

Oh Wesley!

Found guilty of some serious tax evasion and about to be sentenced to three years in prison Wesley Snipes produced this gem of an apology/explanation:

"[I am] an idealistic, naive, passionate, truth-seeking, spiritually motivated artist, unschooled in the science of law and finance". Nice one Wes!

Do you like Chilli?

Belfast circa 1883
Originally uploaded by stuart.noble
Got a chance to take pictures of a cowboy and a cowgirl in Belfast this week. They were special guests at our chilli night - or is that chili...no agreement on how to spell it! Anyway a great time had by all - not sure I will be eating chilli for a while!

Daily dose

This picture is taken from a blog called daily dose of imagery. It's a blog by a photographer from Toronto called Sam Javanrouh and...well it pretty much does what it says on the tin; a new picture or dose of imagery each day. I visit daily dose every couple of days and I'm always impressed. His pictures are incredible, always something surprising or just plain beautiful. If your enjoy photoblogs daily dose is both an endless source of inspiration as well as a site to simply enjoy while surfing the net.

"It's a cold paradise"

"A cold paradise" - this is how surfing legend Kelly Slater describes Ireland in the surf documentary Wave Riders. This afternoon Julie and I, along with my Mum and Dad had the pleasure of attending the UK premiere of Wave Riders which was playing in Belfast as part of the Belfast Film Festival. No cinematic release has been confirmed yet, but there was talk of a UK release in the Autumn.

I've seen a few surf movies in my time and this is by far the best with stunningly beautiful cinematography combined with a really strong story. I have no doubt it will do well as it manages to weave, Ireland, surfing, big waves and fascinating threads from the history of surfing into one skillfully crafted narrative - and there's a great soundtrack to boot. Keep an eye out for it in the autumn!

As it was the UK premier the team behind the film were there to introduce it and answer some questions at the end. As my Mum noted it made for more of an occasion than simply watching the film and heading for the car as soon as the credits roll. A great reminder that for every 2 hours we spend in a cinema munching popcorn, a large group of people have lived with the film for months if not years. Anyway - the team behind Wave Riders deserve every success and I hope they enjoyed showing it on the big screen in Belfast.

Are you a digital nomad?

Interesting piece in the latest edition of The Economist about the implications of wireless technology. Part of a wider special report, the article uses the term 'digital nomad' to describe people who no longer have an office and instead use laptops, mobile phones and blackberries to do their job in hotels, airports, coffee shops, at home, on trains and in parks. Armed with their mobile office, digital nomads criss-cross our cities searching for wireless hot-spots rather than water and colonize the comfy seats in coffee shops and hotel lobbies. The long-term implications for how we live and work are fascinating.

I have also discovered that I am a digital nomad! In my own experience, aside from giving me an inflated sense of my own importance (Oh look another piece of spam!), it is true that having e-mail on the go in the form of a blackberry has enabled me to work in a radically different way from those who did a job like mine just a few years ago.

For the most part I'm a big fan of being a digital nomad as I think the pros outweigh the cons, but being able to work anywhere at anytime presents some serious challenges. While many of us are delighted to be liberated from the cubicles that Douglas Coupland has likened to "veal fattening pens," technology that opens limitless workspaces has the potential to create a new bondage; the exec on 'holiday' with her blackberry on the beach or the worker in the home-office who struggles to see where work ends and home begins. Obviously the idea of saving on office costs will be hugely attractive to the accountants, but wireless working also requires a entirely new idea of accountability between employer and employee. It's a bit like the essay that's due in 4 weeks. I don't recall my professor showing much concern about where I wrote my essay, just as long as it was submitted on time. There's also the whole question of how being a digital nomad shapes your relationships with colleagues or has an impact on team dynamics. It doesn't necessarily have to be bad news, but it does require some thought, attention and not a little imagination.

If you're a fan of pondering the human implications of technology rather than just thinking about bandwidth the Economist's special report is well worth a read.

Mind your language

Photos of a government publication that arrived in the mail this week:

Hmmm - what other languages might that be? Chinese, Polish, Urdu, Arabic, and...oh yes, don't forget "Ulster Scots":

Politics Home

Good news for UK politics junkies. Interesting new politics site launched this week.
Politics Home contains an incredible amount of information and is well worth a visit. Along with the usual news-feeds Politics Home's USP is built around polling. Their PHI 100 is particularly interesting as it polls the views of 100 "key political insiders." Coming soon is the PHI 5000 which will poll 5000 'real voters' on an issue

recent photos

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

High heels and hoses

shoes and rubbish
Originally uploaded by stuart.noble
Went out to take some photos early on saturday morning. While wandering around a lonely stretch of Belfast's shipyard I noticed a pile of industrial hoses. Closer inspection revealed 3 high heeled shoes amongst the hoses.

In the money - again

News today that U2 have just signed a promo deal with Live Nation for $300m. This calls for another pic from the U2 fan wall of love in Hanover Quay.

My favourite piece of graffiti is the way someone added 'Bo' to No.

We've been watching heroes recently...

You've got to love this guy!