Chalkahlom pilau

Mon 25 August 2014
"Good evening dear. Would you like to eat a meal cooked with this red powder sent from Hungary by a chap I've only ever met on the internet?" I didn't introduce the meal like that in actual fact, and if I did I might have been sent out ...

Scottish independence

Tue 22 July 2014
On September 18th 2014 people resident in Scotland will be asked "Should Scotland be an independent country?". I am not in favour of independence as currently proposed, partly because I am concerned that it is really driven by nationalism, but also because I think the possible benefits are not (yet ...

Life - rocks, gravel and sand

Sun 18 May 2014
Many years ago (about 13 if you must know) I was standing waiting in a colleague's office when I happened to notice a sheet of paper pinned to the wall. On it there was ...

Mortgages and mathematics

Wed 08 January 2014
I've had to think about mortgages lately. At first this seemed like a boring chore, but it generated a bit more interest (pun alert!) when I noticed that most mortgages are based on a mathematical series. What's more, I found it hard to find a clear explanation of ...

Mazes - Minecraft on the Raspberry Pi

Sun 05 January 2014
Minecraft for the Raspberry Pi has been with us for about a year now. It's cut down quite a bit from the normal version, being much closer to the pocket edition available for phones ...

Robot arm, Raspberry pi and wiimote

Sun 08 December 2013
Last week my 8 year old son was tasked with making a robot for a school project, but one made from toilet roll tubes, aluminium foil and possibly an LED or a wee speaker to ...

Space debris

Mon 18 November 2013
I was recently asked to speak on the radio about space debris. This was prompted by the release of the film Gravity (1), and the re-entry of the GOCE satellite (2). You can listen to the interview here (Copyright: BBC, broadcast on Radio Scotland, 16 November 2013). At the beginning ...

Welcome to my new blog

Fri 15 November 2013
Welcome to my new blog. All the content of the old blog, which was hosted on Google's Blogger, is now here (except for the comments). The old blog can still be found at oldblog.mcnalu.net until Google see fit to make me remove it, which may be never ...

Lending is good and bad

Mon 09 September 2013
I was once told by a person I very much respect that I had an aversion to taking out loans. I suppose in the climate of free loaning (free as in loving, not as in beer) that persisted until about 2007 I did seem loan-averse to most. I thought it ...

Firefox OS ZTE phone

Mon 26 August 2013
The other day I received one of the limited number of ZTE Open phones running the relatively new Firefox OS. The specifications of ...

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