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Dave's Blog

This blog is mainly about the things I know and love... technology and gadgets. There's a bit of customer service stuff in here too, both good and bad. There's also some environmental and political comment, and some very personal stuff too. These articles should be regarded as solely the opinion or experiences of the author. If anyone feels that they have been unfairly represented by these articles, please contact me. Any comments are solely the views of the commenters, and unpleasant comments will be removed.

Cabinet Shuffle

Why does the media, and the BBC in particular, keep referring to reorganisations within the UK government as a "reshuffle"? It's a shuffle. OK, it's in the Oxford English Dictionary, so who am I to argue?

Just seems stupid to me, that's all

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Take That & Party

A national treasure has been judged to have avoided paying millions in tax, and will now have to pay it back. According to the Sunday Times Rich List 2013, Gary Barlow was worth about £60m, up from £50m the year before. You would think that he could afford to pay his dues, and still not be short of a few quid. In fact, he probably wouldn't notice any material difference if he was about £58m worse off.

The irony, of course, is that Mr. Barlow has received an OBE for his laudable charity work. If everyone paid their taxes, we probably wouldn't need charities in the first place. I have an idea for a new fundraising telethon. It involves members of the general public imploring rich celebrities and business men to pay what they owe in order to support the country in which they live. We could choose an upstanding celebrity to present it (such as Jimmy Carr) and in between the various pointless fundraising bits we could show films of freezing pensioners, understaffed hospitals, and crumbling schools.

I believe that custodial sentences should be imposed automatically for tax evaders and tax avoiders. Being told to simply pay back the money is not acceptable, since it does not act as any kind of deterrent. If custodial sentences are considered too harsh, then being made to pay back at least ten times the amount defrauded would be an acceptable alternative. By not paying your fair share of taxes, you are causing honest people to pay more and causing real hardship.

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Killer Metre

As I get older it becomes increasingly easy to annoy me. This short rant is in relation to the mispronunciation of the commonly used unit of distance, namely the "kilometre" (or "kilometer" using the American spelling).

This word should be pronounced "killo-meter"; however, an increasingly large percentage of people, possibly even the majority, pronounce it as "kill-ommeter". This is simply wrong. The kilometer's partners in crime, the millimetre and centimetre, are not pronounced "mill-immeter" or "cent-immeter", are they?

I rest my case.

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Why I'm Voting Green

I will be voting for the Green Party at the upcoming European elections, and the general election in 2015. I'm a paid-up member of the Green Party, but I'm an enthusiast rather than an activist. This article seeks to explain why I think voting Green is the only option to secure our future; socially, environmentally and economically. 

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Does Google index Google+ Images Properly?

Some time ago I moved my Malvern Gallery to Google+. This was because Google+ has an excellent photo gallery system which integrates really well with Google Picasa on the desktop. About 6 months later, I'm still waiting for my images to appear in Google's search index. Even if you restrict the search to include "site:plus.google.com", only a handful of images appear. This is really disappointing, since obviously the general public shouldn't be deprived of the opportunity of seeing nice-ish pictures of the beautiful Malvern Hills.

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Read more: Does Google index Google+ Images Properly?