A little corner of the Empire on the web.

12 October, 2005

I don't know what's scarier...

Just how clueless the British police are (well the Met anyway), or the fact that this could so easily have been me The Reg: Security pros savage Tsunami hacker verdict

The gist of the story: Typing "../../../" into your URL bar can now be a criminal offence punishable by a £1000 fine, even if there are no malicious motives in your actions.

I mean how clueless do you have to be to think that one simple, curious directory traversal attempt is a full-on, malicious hacking attempt? I do that sort of thing all the time, as well as looking up servers in various places like Netcraft, pulling apart URLs to get the sense out of them, then putting a specially craft version of the URL back in. And most of that is either idle curiousity, or trying to work around the bugs in other people's websites, or work around the bugs in their navigation systems.

Via: Gerv Markham: The Future For British Geeks (2).

09 October, 2005

On the British Film Industry

So, here in the Brit-land, whenever its a bit of a slow news day and the cinema's filled up with American imports, the usual pundits sit up and start bemoaning the state of the British Film Industry. Sure we've had the odd success every now and then. Everyone points to "Four Weddings and a Funeral", and "Notting Hill" but come on, Richard Curtis does not a film industry make. You can add in the 'not quite so nice, but really good' films, like "Trainspotting" and "Lock, Stock", but we're still hardly talking multiple multiplex filling box-office smashes every season here.

Souddenly something happened, a flash of an idea entered my mind. What five things are undeniably cool, lift up any movie from great to amazing, and yet, sadly, aren't native to the British Isles?






Now I'm sorry, but try to name one classic movie of the last fifty years that couldn't have been improved by the addition of a gratuitous Ninja sneaking through the storyline, being all cool, deadly and stealthy? We can all learn from the lessons that the Zombie-filled "Sean of the Dead" tried to teach us.

Can you imagine "Saving Private Ryan" with Jedi storming the beach, leading the charge toward the German pill-boxes, lightsabers flashing side to side so fast that they're just a neon blur? Come on, you can't deny that the film's already twice as great!

Only a small change here, but what if one of the members of the Ring Fellowship in "Lord of the Rings" had a pet monkey that did tricks in the background during the slow bits of the movie?!

Those were big Oscar winning films, now just imagine the effect that a swarm of the walking, brain-eating undead would have on the average dreary, depressing, 'ain't life hard in the North' Brit flick. Think of a group of unemployed coal miners deciding to strip flesh for cash? (I was going to think up a zombie themed name for this film, but couldn't think of any combo of "Full Monty" and zombies that didn't sound like a porn film).

Do I need to go on?

So my final word to the British establishment, start using a bit more prejudice when you're funding films, vote with your wallet, vote for Samurai, Ninja, Jedi, Zombies and (most of all) Monkeys!

PS Final word here, but if there's a Zombie Ninja Monkey in the script, don't even hesitate, just grab your pen and sign on the dotted line. It literally cannot possibly fail!

PPS Final, final word - some dude with a cutlass in his hand, a pistol tucked in his rope waistband, an eye-patch, peg-leg, a parrot on one shoulder and a monkey playing with his tricorn hat just grabbed me and whispered menacingly in my ear, "Don't forget the pirates, young Jim-lad. Arrrrrr." I was just happy he didn't bit my ear off. In reflection I hope that Keira Knightley and her pirate friends can be added to the list.

01 October, 2005

Geek, moi?

So I popped into Toys "R" Us today (the "Eats, Shoots and Leaves"-er in me is really disturbed by the double apostrophes around the poor 'r') and picked up a few things:

  • Sega Arcade Gallery for the Game Boy Advance,
  • Medal of Honor Underground for the GBA
  • Target Exclusive Clone Trooper figure (well acually the UK/European version with a sticker over the bit of text on the back that says "This clone trooper was created especially for Target to celebrate the release of the final episode in the Star Wars saga, Revenge of the Sith."
  • Mustafar Sentry figure

Still, as the shop assistant in Hamley's said, when I picked up the Clone Trooper 3 Pack, "You can never have too many Clone Troopers," (and as an aside, while I was looking for a picture to link to here, its quite amusing that there are clone 3packs on eBay for $50, when you can walk into Toys "R" Us in the UK and pick one up for under a tenner)!

The geek is strong in this one ;-)