A plea from OXFAM

War in Iraq is getting closer every day. Your voice is needed before it becomes a disaster for Iraq’s people. Take action now to prevent this crisis:

Oxfam is enabling you to email Prime Minister Tony Blair at: http://oxfam.org.uk/iraqactnow

The people of Iraq are still suffering the effects of bombing during the 1991 Gulf War. Twelve years of economic sanctions, and their own government’s policies, have made things worse.

Nearly two-thirds of Iraqis – more than 15 million people – depend entirely on food rations distributed by their government. Any attack, particularly if it destroys roads and bridges, could stop the food reaching those people. They would go hungry.

When Oxfam aid workers first entered Iraq at the end of the 1991 Gulf War, they found a public health disaster. There was sewage in the streets because air strikes had destroyed the electricity supplies which powered sanitation and water
systems. Twelve years later, much of that damage has still not been repaired. Similar attacks now could make things even worse.

Those who propose war have not yet shown that any threat from Iraq is so imminent that it justifies the risk of so much human suffering. For more information see:

– Email Prime Minister Tony Blair at:

Thank You

Nuclear Dump in Reading?

Was just looking at that upmystreet.com website for my house in Reading only to discover the chilling information that there is possibly a secret nuclear dump on Wokingham Road (The main road near my house)… Alledgedly, there has been some sort of cover up by the council and BP. There are some interesting articles on the subject.

Corporate Watch #1
Corporate Watch #2
Independent Article

See, how else would I have found that out! Try your own postcode on it and get chatting with the neighbours 😉

Right, better get my anti-radiation suit sorted out….

Mobile Positioning

Over the next couple of years, our mobile phones are going to be transformed into personal positioning devices using GPS systems embedded inside them. Apart from letting you know your location to the nearest few metres and being able to locate the nearest bar, train station or cafe, these devices will combine with the wireless internet to open up a wealth of information.

The virtual world will for the first time be able to connect to the real world with the use of this co-ordinate system. For a simple example, you may be standing outside a bar or restaurant that you have never visited. Referring to your phone, you will be able to see what people have posted on this bar. It will be almost as if they have left a note in the virtual world outside the the bar. This is the most simple application and a BBC article talks about this.

However talking about a few more years into the future, there is a burgeoning industry based on this development. Headmap
has two free pdf books that you can print out. They talk about communities of people actually changing the landscape that we see around us – in the way that people apply ‘skins’ to made their webbrowser or music player look different. You would be able to walk around (wearing your futuristic headset) and look at the world in a completely different way. Sounds a bit far fetched but you can see how it will allow communities to interact again.

Just think about the last time you spoke to the household who lives two doors away. Or how many people do you know who live in the next street. We have no opportunity to interact with these people, even if they may be able to provide advice, skills and knowledge.

In the nineties the internet was blamed for turning people into global hermits like someone in London turning for advice to someone in Melbourne. This decade will be the turn of the local internet, using the resources which globalised the world to solve local issues. [For instance www.upmystreet.com now lets you type your postcode in and chat about questions relevant to the community. Like planning permissions, problems in the local park. Stuff that you would have trouble addressing unless you knocked on everyone’s door – and people don’t like their privacy being abused]

Daily Mirror is Anti-War

The Mirror published an article by John Pilger yesterday, entitled “Blair is a coward”. Worth a read. The Anti-War crusade is taking shape now. Hope the ‘war’ doesn’t start before the 15th.

On a lighter note, it’s snowing in Reading today which means that the 1inch of snow made the whole traffic infrastructure collapse. People took hours to get to work and countless others didn’t bother getting out of their beds. I’ve been informed that it hasn’t snowed in Sheffield – something very bad is going on with our weather system if it’s snowing down South and not in Sheffield….