Sunday, April 26, 2009

O2t of Control

From Girls Aloud 2009
Having struggled to get to the O2, and then been disappointed by the lack of any show from Bob Dylan the previous night – one thing that I was sure of - there would be was plenty of show from Girls Aloud on their Out of Control Tour!

They certainly didn’t disappoint – it was all about the show, the music took a back seat in favour of costume changes, great lighting and pyrotechnics! There also appears to be a competition building on ways to get out into the audience without a runaway – tonight out did Tina’s  swing arm out above the crowd. I wonder what P!nk and Britney will do to top Girls Aloud’s flying platform.

No wonder they where putting up the set almost before Bob Dylan had departed the stage the previous night.
A big bonus was, that without resorting to GetMeIn, I’d managed to get a great seat – looking straight over the stage, with empty seats to my side with the option to move to the back of the stage as the girls used the back of their set.

The music might have been slightly vacuous, but the show was full on, bring on P!nk next Friday.

Footnote : Normal service resumed on public transport – home in 20 minutes!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Dylan’s Studio Session at the O2

From Bob Dylan 2009
Having for the first time ever purchased tickets “second hand” via GetMeIn, I was hoping another of music’s legends could continue in the mode that Tina and Lionel had – rolling back the years. Unfortunately Bob Dylan failed to light up the O2.

I can only agree with the comment about him: “lack of interest in bonding with his audience” on Wikipedia about his never ending tour – which should end…

Dylan only acknowledged the audience’s existed by introducing his band prior to his last song. Maybe the O2 was just too large for him, his lack of involvement with his fans meant he might as well have been in a studio, and have played the more polished studio sound out of the wonderful sound system at the O2 – which was wasted on Dylan’s live droning… 

All in all, a disappointing evening – made worse by the fact that the Jubilee line to Greenwich was closed – so I had an expensive taxi ride to get there, then a very late night while I waited for last boat up the Thames – I did manage to add another form of transport to my list – the Thames Clipper  - which had it been planned is a very pleasant way to depart from the O2.

Monday, April 13, 2009

New Blog writing tools

The really really observant might have noticed my HTML has improved – not my doing, I’ve started using Windows Live Writer, which corrects my sloppy HTML – adding <tbody> tags for instance. It has impressive integration with non-Microsoft blog hosting services. The most obvious give away is the location maps I can now easily add to entries. Another upside is that it is an offline editor, yet more reasons for me not getting so far behind in updating what has become a sporty, musical travelogue rather than a collection of truly random thoughts – I did say it was a holding title – which has now stuck!

Another tool from the Microsoft house I may switch to is their images stitching software ICE from Microsoft Research – below is an example of it’s unassisted work – the view of a storm rolling in from my balcony on my recent holiday to Mauritius. Now I just need to find some software I can actually use without multiple command line options and writing XML to produce some HDR images…

View from room 2048 Beau Rivage


Hopefully this end my two weeks of catching up with Blog entries. maybe I’ll try to introduce more randomness to my updates…

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Don’t stop the 80’s Music

From Lionel Richie 2009
As a last minute wish to extend a weekend of 80’s music, I checked for tickets to Lionel Richie’s second night at the 02, and managed to pick up a ticket in the front row of the prime seat just right of the stage – I couldn’t have been closer to the stage!

It is hard to dance on the ceiling of the O2 – it is a long way up – but if we could we would have! Lionel knocked out hit after hit. It may be 1985 since he last topped the charts in the UK, but add songs from his time in the Commodore and the audience didn’t slow down for the entire evening.

Contributing to a Super Computer

Having replaced my home desktop computer with what would have been a super computer when I first started using "serious" computers, I've started contributing to a super computer that is hopefully helping to identify the causes of many disease. I'm referring to Folding@Home.

By using spare cycles on desktops, graphics card in desktops and even on PS3 games console this amazing project has built what is probably the largest compute resource available today. Currently 8.6 PFlops and counting

If you have a PC that gets left on without being used for long period of time - consider installing F@H - and consider adding to team Crunch. It is more socially responsible than contributing to peer-to-peer networking, and will advance medical knowledge....

Friday, April 03, 2009

Simplicity is painting the O2 Red

From Simply Red 2009
Rolling back the years, Mick Hucknall and Simply Red revived hits from the 80s and 90s on a farewell tour, before they end their partnership – at least until they re-unite again to boast their pensions pots because money has become too tight to mention…

With a list of chart hits longer than Lily Allen’s entire track list on two albums, they managed an unusual two encores, before the house light came up – still clearly planned from the beginning. It would be nice, if for once a band did an impromptu encore, based on the prolonged applause from their fans, putting a little spontaneity back into gigging…