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search engine queries

Yup, it’s that time of the month again.

Firstly, what might be my all-time favourite, even better than ‘tugged eggcorn’:

squiggly lines in digital cameras are they ghosts?

Some of the others, in no particular order:

rachel whiteread is crap
decadent west blog
i will magnify the lord bible quotation mary
browning gather ye rosebuds
katatsuburi soro nobore fuji no yama
japanese halloween masks
masks that are in films
heraclitean still point

[edited down a bit to avoid providing extra Google-bait]

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last.fm

I joined last.fm, a site which streams customised internet radio. The idea is that it learns what music you like (by eavesdropping on your computer, and via your recommendations and radio choices), and uses people’s choices to build up stations. If you’re a non-paying member, you can choose stations like ‘Similar music to Kylie Minogue [or whoever]’ or, via a tagging system, ’80s’, ‘dance’ or whatever. If you chuck some money at them – £1 a month, which seems pretty reasonable – you can get a personalised feed based on your own preferences.

It seems like a neat idea but so far I haven’t been impressed. The ‘similar music to’ feature throws up things like De La Soul, N*E*R*D and Willie Nelson as being similar to Marvin Gaye (but also, to be fair, Stevie Wonder and Nina Simone). The first two things that came up when I wanted music tagged with ‘dance’ were Oasis and Beck. And if I choose to listen to 80s music, it isn’t because I want to listen to Limp Bizkit or the Beach Boys.

On the positive side, it’s a nice clean site, the audio quality is good and the range of music available is fairly impressive, if not spectacular. Maybe they just haven’t got enough information yet to make the searches accurate. Maybe it works better if you have a personalised feed. But I doubt if I’ll stick around long enough to find out.

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Amazon is getting on my tits

I find it incredibly annoying that Amazon has started inserting advertising (or ‘sponsored links’ as they prefer to call it) in your search results. I accept that large chunks of the web can only survive because free services are paid for with advertising, and that seems fair. But Amazon is a shop. It’s trying to sell stuff to me. I’ve already spent more money there than I care to remember. Why the fuck should I have to scroll past extra advertising while I’m shopping?

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search engine queries

The pick of the search engine queries used to find this site during September:

nelson cricket anecdote
chipotles canned sainsbury
england cricket jerusalem listen
pseudo-ku
banana shallot photo
rik auden
maradona gastric bypass
richard gere films
dead land
kedgeree
maskless diving
poetry perfidious albion
old american pinup
what are the kennings in the seafarer poem.
processions that lack high stilts

What a lot of disappointed punters.

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you gotta love open source

I just downloaded The Gimp as a substitute for Photoshop. And so far it looks pretty damn impressive. The interface is a bit Windows-y (Unix-y?) for my liking – not because there’s anything wrong with that, but because I’d prefer all my software to be consistent. And it’s a tad geeky (a menu called ‘Script-Fu’? Puh-lease).

But as an alternative to ordering £500 worth of Photoshop from Apple, a five-minute free download takes a lot of beating.

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New banners

You may have noticed that the site now has randomly chosen header images. And a photo credits page (link on the left) so you can find out where they’re from.