Category Archives: Icles

A Miscellany. A Gallimaufry. An Icle. It goes here.

Heavy Hitting Twitter Traffic

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(Click to enlarge)

Every now and again, people discover a post I wrote back in 2006 that discusses the Fedex logo, and presents an interview with its designer, Lindon Leader of Leader Creative.

A Twitter user tweeted the Fedex article, and before I knew what was happening, a flock of followers were hammering my server. I had to install a WordPress plugin called WP Super Cache, that presents viewers with a frozen static HTML page instead of the normal version that WordPress generates for each visitor. That spike would have been four times higher had I not acted.

Meanwhile, there’s a steady but calmer stream of fascinating comments being posted on older articles. Many of the comments are from people descended from the artists featured in Articles & Texticles, as well as owners, past and present, of pictures shown here.

Have a peek at articles about William Orpen, and Ivan Choultsé for starters.

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I Spied a Spider…

This tiny fellow had made a web on one of the panes of the back door.
What you see below is an extreme close up of the spider, who is very very tiny indeed. It was a really tricky shot because the camera’s auto-focus was easily confused by the foliage beyond the hammer pattern glass.

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If you click this small image, you’ll see a big version that shows more of the spider’s point of view.

Imagine looking at that background with four pairs of eyes! It’s like some LSD hallucination.

It reminded me of Doctor Peter Witt’s experiments in the 1960’s, when he administered tiny doses of drugs to spiders. His research has been updated recently, as you will see in the video below.

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Godless Castors

While scouting around for some wheels to fit a media trolley I’m building, I came upon this unmissable offer:
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Needless to say, I ordered a pack of four forthwith.

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“I am Piter Kokoniz, from Latvia”

Who the hell is “Piter Kokoniz, from Latvia”, and why would he want to post the same comment on over 924,000 blogs when he’s clearly not trying to sell anything?

The weird bit is that PK has a stalker called Raiul Baztepo, who frequently comments yes there is a pattern here, on the same blog posts, and they both use forms of words that are so bland as to be suitable to just about any theme, and be unremarkable at the same time. A study in blandness, you might think. Yet there is a sort of vulnerable appeal in their form of words that is beguiling enough that the spammers often receive kind, welcoming replies to their comments.
I think it says something good about human nature that blog authors show such compassion and respect for their visiting commenters.

Here’s Piter’s schtick:

Hi ! :)
I am Piter Kokoniz. Just want to tell, that your posts are really interesting
And want to ask you: what was the reasson for you to start this blog?
Sorry for my bad english:)
Thank you!
Piter Kokoniz, from Latvia

Raiul Baztepo comments:

Hello!
Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
PS: Sorry for my bad english, I´v just started to learn this language ;)
See you!
Your, Raiul Baztepo

They are no slouches, these two. Piter has racked up 924,000 comments, and Raiul is trailing along behind him with a score of only 11,500.
And people respond to their bland blandishments, too. Is this perhaps the point of the spamming? Are these two (presumably completely fictitious people) trying to collect thousands of sympathetic blog owners URLs? And how could they possibly profit from the bloggers responses?

Carry on reading this article: ->> Continue reading

On Doing Things Properly

It is best not to set out thinking I will make a coffee table today, because this is probably not what you will do: more likely, you will be planing sticks of timber, trying to get them square and true, and then cutting joints and boring holes. So reduce your day’s tasks to what you are actually going to do: I am going to make this board flat today, or, I will sharpen this plane blade now, for then you are focused on what you are doing. This is important. So much frustration and anguish comes from running down to the hardware shop, buying new tools and wood, and then feeling a fool when you can’t produce the lovely smooth things you see in the woodworking magazines. So stop. It’s not a new piece of wood you need, nor a new tool, but simply an awareness of what you’re actually doing.

Quoted from “Woodworking/Setting up a home workshop“, an open source Wiki book. It is written by Sam Wlson, a man who, in July 2004 made the decision to completely stop travelling in all cars.

(I found this excellent nugget of wisdom while searching for How to make things stop.)

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Holiday Ideas For All Our Cash Strapped French Readers

Mon frêre ainé m’a envoyé ces images…
Exotic location #1

Exotic location #2

Exotic location #3

Exotic location #4

Il dit: “…en cette période de crise, si on peut se permettre un petit voyage ……
Profitons – en….;-)

Ses coordonnées:

Translations: http://www.proz.com/profile/108604
Paintings: http://improvise.free.fr/gallery/gallery.html
Compositions: http://members.sibeliusmusic.com/paulhirsh
Panpipe videos: http://improvise.free.fr/video.htm
Blog: http://houdiniinthedesert.blogspot.com/

Bonne Année, Paul, et merçi!