Moved to

July 27, 2010

This will be my last post on this site; I’ve migrated the whole blog to, including all the past posts and comments; and you can still comment on them there.

It’s been by far the most pain-free website migration I’ve ever been involved in 😉

If you have subscribed to one of this blog’s RSS feeds, or the e-mail version, you’ll need to update your subscription. Apologies for any inconvenience.

See you over there, I hope.


Overdue measurement microformat: useful for radio station frequencies

July 24, 2010

This post has been moved to Sorry, but won’t let me set an automatic redirect.

The Highway Code should be available as a set of linkable HTML documents, not just PDFs

July 22, 2010

This post has been moved to Sorry, but won’t let me set an automatic redirect.

Ian Emes’ ‘French Windows’ and Pink Floyd’s ‘One of These Days’ at Ikon

July 20, 2010

This post has been moved to Sorry, but won’t let me set an automatic redirect.

Guardian asks National Secular Society to comment on the ordination of women priests

July 18, 2010

Much as I support the National Secular Society, asking them to comment on the ordination of women priests is like asking me to advise on the best kind of vaulting-pole.

Please Help Me to Compile a List of UK Police Forces’ Wildlife Crime Pages

July 17, 2010

This post has been moved to Sorry, but won’t let me set an automatic redirect.

My Open Data Challenge to UK Local Government: a Wikipedia Page for Every Council

July 16, 2010

This post has been moved to open-data-local-government-challenge-wikipedia-page-for-every-uk-council. Sorry, but won’t let me set an automatic redirect.

When writing about the web, links are required

July 11, 2010

Today’s Telegraph has an interesting article about MPs (and their agents) allegedly bowdlerising articles about themselves on Wikipedia.

What it doesn’t have, though, are links to any of the articles, let alone to the edits under discussion (such as this edit).

The Telegraph needs to understand that the word “Web” in World Wide Web refers to the interlinking of articles on different sites.

Adding links to the articles and edits discussed would serve at least two purposes. It would provide evidence to support the allegations the paper is making; and it would be a convenience and a courtesy their readers.

Lists in Microformats: Suggested Optimisation

May 27, 2010

Based on my extensive experience of applying microformats to templates in Wikipedia (and other MediaWiki installations) I’ve come to the following conclusion…

For attributes which can occur more than once (such as nickname or category in hCard), lists having, or in container having, that property should be parsed as lists of individual instances of that property.

For example:

<div class="category">


<ul class="category">

should be treated as equivalent to:

<li class="category">ornithologist</li>
<li class="category">driver</li>
<li class="category">gardener</li>

BBC Balloon Release Complaint

February 1, 2010

Here’s a complaint I lodged with the BBC, on Saturday, 30 January 2010, with added links and image:

Prof. Jim Al-Khalili, on the BBC’s ‘Chemistry: A Volatile History’, (ep. 2) released a big, red, helium-filled balloon, with a string attached.

On its return to earth, the balloon will become litter. Balloons are harmful to wildlife, as documented by the Marine Conservation Society.

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 unequivocally makes it is an offence to drop ‘or otherwise deposit’ litter in a public place.

The Marine Conservation Society are campaigning to stop balloon releases, both by persuasion in the short term and, eventually, through prohibitive legislation. They are supported in that campaign by a large number of reputable organisations, including the RSPB, the RSPCA, the National Farmers’ Union, the Tidy Britain Group, Keep Scotland Beautiful, county bird clubs, various Wildlife Trusts and other organisations.

Please make it BBC policy to forbid the release of balloons, as many other organisations have done.

I’ve e-mailed a courtesy copy of the complaint to Prof. Al-Khalili. I’ll let you know what responses I get.