Space X launches and lands a reuseable rocket

Yesterday, Thursday 30th March 2017 at 22:27GMT Space X launched a Falcon 9 rocket. This rocket had previously launched an orbital payload and successfully landed. Following the successful orbital insertion of a geostationary payload yesterday's rocket then successfully completed a boostback burn and landed on an autonomous drone ship in the Atlantic ocean.

Let's just take a moment to understand what happened, because it's unbelievable.

Space X launched and landed a rocket in one mission, then used it again in a second mission to launch a payload - then relanded the rocket again.

Let's let that sink in...


Gravity Waves Detected!

LIGO from the air

One of the most astounding discoveries you'll see in your lifetime. The last tenet of Einstein's Theory of General Relativity confirmed.

Until now we've only seen the cosmos through the electromagnetic spectrum. From today we can hear and feel the eb and flow of space-time itself.

Just think of that, it's mind-bending! The very essence of what binds our universe together, that bathes and surrounds us, and now we can reach out and know it!


D-Day: Operation Overlord 71 years on

At some point in your day today please take a moment try to get a sense, however small and fleeting, of what it must have been like sailing in those little boats across the calm sea to throw yourself upon beaches of Normandy.

And think of those in the skies and on the seas who had gone the night before into the maelstrom, that you might have a sliver of hope of making it up that beach.

And then to those in the planning offices, the spies, the code breakers, the factory workers, the merchants, the farmers, the families and all the other walks of life - all working for months towards this single moment in time upon which so much rested.

Search your imagination for the merest glimpse of the all consuming totality of it all.

Then perhaps give a moment to think of all those that came before and after them, in that war, in those before and in those since - and realise what we enjoy today is in no small part due to those who have had courage enough to fight so that we may live in peace.

Into the Jaws of Death 23-0455M edit.jpg

"Into the Jaws of Death" by Chief Photographer's Mate (CPHoM) Robert F. Sargent

Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.


Brexit / EU Referendum: UK immigration figures 2016

This post is an attempt to cut through the rhetoric and vitriol concerning UK immigration and the upcoming Brexit/EU referendum. Using data from the ONS quarterly migration report I have extracted just the actual figures for you to use as you see fit. This is a 'best effort' undertaking and I may have made mistakes - notify me in the comments. Comments politicising this data will not be approved, save such things for your Facebook timelines or whatever.


Oracle PR Bomb

It's reasonably rare for a company to shoot itself quite so accurately in the PR foot, but 'User701213-Oracle' has achieved that spectacularly with a recent blog on Oracle's corporate blog. Naturally, someone with some PR sense has finally got involved and the blog has been pulled down. I've mirrored the full text below... No, You Really Can’t By User701213-Oracle on Aug 10, 2015 I have been doing a lot of writing recently.


10 Reasons why Margaret Thatcher is Britain's most hated politician

Margaret Thatcher Photo with Union Flag

Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990, is one of the most divisive figures in British Political history.

Ever wondered why she is so hated by some and loved by others?

Unquestionably strong and successful in her political career, she has garnered love and hate in near equal measure, though some say she merely highlighted the divisions already present in society at the time.

Thatcher – Why is she hated?

A good friend of mine, Aisling, was gracious enough to respond to my Facebook request for information with a fantastic post by Mike Harding, which list 42 reasons why people hated Thatcher.

I can’t hope to cover all of the points, and many are actually different aspects of the same thing, but these 10 reasons below go a long way to explaining the strength of feeling her legacy has left.

Jump to a reason…

Looking for a specific reason why people hate Thatcher? Click on a link below to jump directly to the relevant section…

  1. She supported the retention of Capital Punishment
  2. She destroyed Britain’s manufacturing industry and her policies led to mass unemployment
  3. She presided over interest rates of 15%
  4. She voted against the relaxation of divorce laws
  5. She abolished free milk for School Children
  6. She precipitated a Social Housing crisis still being felt today
  7. The Poll Tax
  8. She sowed the seeds of NHS Privatisation
  9. Section 28 – Thatchers quiet homophobia?
  10. The Irish Hunger Strikes