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50 Years of Bore Surfing

Relates to Surf and Travel

Yes, today is the day we celebrate 50 years since Colonel Jack first surfed the Severn Bore at Stonebench. Being blessed with the coincidence of medium term lunar cycles, I joined Toby this morning down at Newnham for the maiden voyage of my new Atlantic Surfboards river board and to acknowledege Mad Jacks achievement. Also listen out for Wizard (who alone will be celebrating his 25th year of bore surfing next year!), The Owl and Bore Riders club co-founder Donny chatting on BBC Radio Gloucester around 2pm today.

Bore surfing has seen a very progressive evolution from the sport of a few local Severn men to a dedicated international community stretching from England and France to the Amazon and Alaska - as the pages of the Bore Riders website recount. And for a brief history of the sport in England hop over to Longwave where the 50 year anniversary DVD is close to completion.

On September 17th a celebration of 50 years will be held on the banks of the river at the White Hart Inn, Broadoak. It will be a chance for bore surfers old and new to get together and share their stories over some hot food, local ale and live music. Surfers past and present are all welcome and for any bore riders from the past we have not reached, it would be great if you would be interested in popping along. Overnight parking has been arranged for campers and vans, and on the Sunday morning the first of the biggest tides of the year will roll in. So if you want to hear the truth behind the myth of Big Wednesday, or perhaps discover the true location of the Boneyard, or maybe even meet the man who surfed the mighty Dragon, proceedings will kick off from around 6pm at the White Hart. See you there…

Posted on Jul 21, 2005 at 09:24:08.

Mighty River Board Arrives!

Relates to Surf and Travel

My 10'9" River Board courtesy of Mike at Atlantic Surfboards has finally arrived. With a colourful representation of the lunar phases on the deck - also serving as a passage to the nose(!) - it should not be too hard to spot me in the river. Also, arrival could not have been better timing with this Thursday heralding the 50th anniversary of the first attempt at Bore Surfing by Colonel Jack Churchill which coincidentally ties in with the first of a six day run of spring tides. No photos of the board yet, but hopefully the ever present cameraman will be out to capture some footage as the fourth 10 niner joins the local foray.

Wiz: hope you are on for some synchronized head-standing - assuming I can actually move in the beaver top ;)

Posted on Jul 19, 2005 at 02:42:18.

Plastic Fantastic KDE

Relates to Browsers and X11

Last week I finally installed Tiger and at the same time set up a dedicated partition for Fink to simplify future upgrades in the absence of extensive backup media. The disadvantage of this decision was that I could no longer use the default /sw directory for Fink package management - well by mounting the directory onto the partition I probably could (a course of action I choose for the OS X Users directory on a third partition) but I also wanted to store other open source material in the partition so the /sw directory would not be at the root level. This did not present any major problems other than the fact I would be restricted to only building source from the Fink tree. Just calls for a little patience - and the occassional piece of detective work!

Unfortunately progress was slow when I initially choose to build QCad being half way through a scale drawing of my soon to materialise new home - probably one of the few programs acknowledged to be incompatible with Tiger's GCC version 4. Still following a trip to a colleague's broadband fitted office I had the source for bundle-gnome and bundle-kde waiting to go. The plan was to leave them alone for a while and try and settle on a comfortable working environment in Tiger, but finally having the mammoth tetex source files that would allow me to build the monopd server was just too tempting. Of course I didn't consider at the time this would also mean building the entire KDE-games package which in turn would mean building the KDE-base package.

So around about 6 hours later (not bad for my lowly iBook!) I had the core KDE 3.4 ready to go as a full-screen replacement for Apple's rootless quartz window manager. At first I disregarded this as I had not found the binary KDE 3.1 build that inspiring on Panther, and had generally stuck with Gnome or WindowMaker if I wanted to use a full screen window manager for X11. But the Plastik theme and the countless number of improvements over 3.1 are simply delectable! Performance is excellent on Tiger and other than the erratic sound behaviour and current absence of several office applications I can see this becoming a regular set up. Most noticeable, and pleasing, is the vast improvement in the CSS and script support of the Konqueror browser which now, among other odds and ends, handles my CSS negative margins experiment from last year perfectly.

Ok, its not quite pure Linux (yet) but this laptop never ceases to amaze me!

Posted on Jul 19, 2005 at 02:26:12.

Amaya Goes OSX Native

Relates to Web Standards and Browsers

Yes, the Amaya team at the W3C just released the first native version of Amaya Web Browser for OS X last week. As well as a smooth aqua facade, all the build tools for XML development (especially XHTML, MathML and CSS) have been congregated into a readily available tool box. A little rusty around the edges but some great improvements and Amaya is rapidly evolving into an excellent authoring tool.

Here is a screenshot of the main Amaya window and supporting annotations window: Screen shot of Amaya web browser and the annotations window

Posted on Jul 19, 2005 at 01:34:49.

Greatest Philosopher?

Relates to Philosophy

While browsing for podcasts available from the BBC website, I just discovered (rather late in the day) that In Our Time is running a Philosopher series to establish the Greatest Philosopher. The shortlist is hardly surprising, despite the absence of Nagarjuna. Perhaps the greatest western philosopher would have been a more appropriate title as the only acknowledged Eastern thinker in the list of eminent philosophers is Confucius.

Still, a good collection of resources and some interesting reading.

Posted on Jul 02, 2005 at 19:06:26. [Comments for Greatest Philosopher?- 0]

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