Fun and games

One of our major bank's staff appears to be having just a little too much fun in their lunch hour. Not content with simply appointing 'fun facilitators' to get the blood pumping in the IT department, rules and regulations have had to be extended to cover all manner of jocularity.

One of our major bank's staff appears to be having just a little too much fun in their lunch hour. Not content with simply appointing "fun facilitators" to get the blood pumping in the IT department, rules and regulations have had to be extended to cover all manner of jocularity. Viz:

"Scooter racing and pogo jumping is reserved for the basketball court area;

Scooters can certainly be ridden in work areas, but with decorum;

Rockets need to be carefully fired to prevent neighbouring work areas being disrupted."

Now that we'd like to see.

Pass the tape

Microsoft is sometimes accused of failings in the way its software has been “screwed together”, but here's proof that the same syndrome extends to its physical world. More than one screw seems to have come loose in the foyer of the company’s Wellington office. Hey, but as the photo below shows, the company's always handy with emergency patches.

Keep taking the pills

Further to our

E-tale about being wrongly identified in contact management systems, our Dunedin-based online editor once gave her work credit card details over the phone. When she got the invoice it said:

Curston Miles

IBC Medications

Screwing with the brand

AOL may have decided to ditch ITS Netscape browser division, but it seems there’s some life in the yet in the Netscape brand. The screenshot above, posted on the weblog of former Netscape developer Daniel Glazman purportedly shows AOL’s new internet gadget — a “desktop companion”, tentatively called “Netscape Navigator”.

Some beta testers report that the “new” Navigator launches Internet Explorer to browse the web. It’s all a bit much for Netscape alumni;

one ex-developer accuses AOL of engaging in “brand necrophilia”.

Meantime,

Mozilla, Netscape’s successor, is doing very-nicely-thank-you without AOL. Several key developers, including ex-Aucklander Ben Goodger, have been employed by the Mozilla Foundation, and new releases of Mozilla, Thunderbird and Firebird have been shipped to wide approval.

Meet and greet

So you're an Auckland witch (one of 117 members) or a goth (65). You're vegan (48), newly single or even an expat Brit (they'll be out of the woodwork now). You can now convene a meeting -- or rather meetup -- in 604 cities, and rising, around the world.

Meetup.com has apparently been a roaring success in getting people of like minds and bodies in the US of A together, so they've taken it global. Like online dating, it makes sense in this sad, solipsistic world we've moulded for ourselves. So far it's only Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and, yes, Hamilton, but you wait, covens will pop up in every corner of the country. It's free, making money by charging venues to list and sponsorship of political groups (go Dean in 2004!).

Let me tell you about my mother

Several websites note (with nearly identical phrasing) the so-called

Blade Runner curse. "Someone once noticed that a number of the companies whose logos appeared in Blade Runner had financial difficulties after the film was released [1982]. Atari had 70% of the home console market in 1982, but faced losses of over $US2 million in the first quarter of 1991. Bell lost its monopoly in 1982. Pan-Am filed for bankruptcy protection in 1991. Soon after Blade Runner was released, Coca-Cola released its "new formula" beverage, resulting in losses of millions of dollars. Cusinart filed for bankruptcy protection in July 1989."

Well, perhaps, but BRmovie.com, which devotes its life to the film (which made Harrison Ford's name and doubtless contributed in some part to his ultimately dumping his wife and shacking up with Ally McBeal), puts any curse in perspective. BRmovie notes that since that time, Coca-Cola has seen oodles of growth, and a lot of companies not featured in BR went bust too. Plus, companies like Toshiba and Budweiser were also mentioned. Still, some may prefer to believe it the replicants' revenge for their mean four-year life span.

Trust me, I'm Japanese

This from the nation where you can hire a grandchild to come and visit you when you're lonely. In a variation of the Nigerian email swindle, Reuters reports that fraudsters have tricked large sums of money out of Japanese this year by phoning up and pretending to be relatives in trouble. The victims apparently get calls from people who say "It's me" (in Japanese, of course) and say they need money because they're pregnant or have had a car accident. Police say there have been nearly 4000 cases reported this year, totalling over $US20 million that's been handed over.

Living in the past

Searching the 1881 electoral role for people around the Auckland area, we found 30-odd journalists, 1400 miners, though no computer people. The relaunched Auckland City Libraries website includes databases of arrivals to the area, street names, art gallery works, public art (we have some, do we?) cemetery records and more. Lots of others are available to members. We also like the Wellington library. Make more use of these public resources before they take them away.

Train of thought

If only our trains went at 160km/h. Last week the UK's first Wi-Fi train took flight, smoothly transporting e-enabled (first class) passengers from Aberdeen to London. You can obviously already surf and email using a mobile phone, but a dedicated Icomera Wi-Fi network in GNER trains means it doesn't die in a tunnel. It works by way of a satellite dish on top of the restaurant carriage, which connects to the internet through various networks, meaning redundancy in case one falls over. You have to provide your own laptops and wireless cards, of course. No word on how much, or whether the plebs further the train will get access at a later date.

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