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Showing posts from July 15, 2009

Surtees Death Calls F2 Safety Into Question

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The tragic death of Henry Surtees at Brands Hatch yesterday must raise serious questions around the application of safety in some of the sports junior formulae.

The accident itself was something of a freak, Surtees suffering fatal injuries after being struck on the head by a wheel from another car which had crashed in a seperate incident. Surtees' car then continued unsteered and unabated straight into a tyre wall, the driver's foot apparently hard down on the throttle pedal.

Freak accident or not it, its highly unlikely that this kind of incident would have had such tragic consequences in F1 thanks to measures in place to improve safety. Wheel tethers are mandated at the highest level and, whilst wheels still detach in some of the higher speed accidents, the F2 car that Jack Clark was driving was travelling at a relatively sedate speed by the time it hit the tyre wall. I would have expected the tether to keep the errant wheel attached to the car. Its also of note that the F2 …

F1: Haug Abandons Decency And Taste In Lauda Row

Niki Lauda can be a bit of an outspoken character at times, even out of touch with modern F1. That doesn't excuse the disgraceful depths that Mercedes boos Norbert Haug has descended to in an unseemly row over Lewis Hamilton's 'park' request at the German Grand Prix.

Lauda called the request as an indication of Hamilton's lack of commitment and pointed out that driver's of his era just got on with it. Haug retorted that Lauda should 'remember when he pulled into the pits and out of a race'.

The race in question was the Japanese GP of 1976, held in torrential rain just a few months after Lauda had been grieviously injured in an accident at the old Nurburgring in similar conditions, returning to the cockpit just six weeks after being given the last rites in hospital.

At Suzuka Lauda decided that conditions were too dangerous and he wasn't prepared to risk his life any further than the end of the first lap, pitting and climbing out of the car, handing his…

Amazon, Orwell And Delicious Irony

Kindle owners take heed: here's a story which should have you seething with outrage.

Kindle owners who purchased the seminal George Orwell novel 1984 found their books missing from their readers today. Had they all accidentally deleted their copies by mistake? Or perhaps a hardware problem had done it for them? Nope its worse than that.

Apparently the book's publisher 'changed its mind' about the release of the book in electronic form and revoked its license. In response Amazon deleted the book from its store and removed all copies that had already been sold from its customer's devices. That's one good reason for never going down the Kindle route.

Apple's Sanctimonious Advertising

I'm sure it can't just be me can it? Apple's previous iPhone advert 'There's an app for that, only on iPhone' was particularly annoying given that every application in the advert had an equivalent on Windows Mobile and Symbian (probably other platforms too).

The newest advert is criminally insulting: Copy and Paste? Copy and F*cking Paste, you've denied users access to copy and paste for a year and now its a virtue? Copy and paste isn't even listed as a feature on any other platform because its taken for granted that no-one would be so bloody stupid to launch a smartphone without it.

Worryingly the iSheep generation are lapping it up. I had an iPhone user tell me all about copy and paste today like it was the greatest thing ever invented, "I bet your fancy phone can't do that" he said to me indicating the Touch Pro 2 I was using to fire off an email.

I think I should despair, but I really can't be bothered.

F1: Piquet Pushed Out, Bourdais Booted.

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The driver line-up in Hungary may be a little different than we've become used too, if reports of driver changes are to be believed anyway. It looks like two of F1's underperformers will lose their race seats as the teams head into the second half of the season.

Sebastian Bourdais has been under pressure almost from the minute he re-signed with Toro Rosso, with Nurburgring rumours suggesting that he wouldn't be seen in the car again. Given the Frenchman's record its not hard to understand why Tost and Berger would look to put Alguesuari into the car in preparation for next season - making the Spaniard F1's youngest ever driver, finally eclipsing Mike Thackwell's nearly thirty year old record. Paired with Buemi, Toro Rosso would have an exciting line-up although somewhat lacking in experience - a not insubstantial problem given the testing ban and the need to extract the maximum from Friday and Saturday running on race weekend.

For Nelsinho the problem is going t…

iTunes Update Kills Pre Sync

Well there's a surprise, or perhaps not. Apple has released an update to iTunes which blocks the Pre from syncing music by verifying that a valid Apple device has been connected.

I can't say that Apple has done anything particularly wrong here, at least no more than Palm has in piggy-backing on the iTunes connection itself.

Will Palm patch the Pre to re-enable synchronisation? I suspect not. But if they chose to do so it would probably make some sense to mimic a real iPod rather than a generic device making it so much harder for Apple to break it next time around.

Toshiba's Windows Mobile Jinx Strikes Again

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Well I said that Toshiba couldn't buy a break when it came to smartphones and so it has transpired with its latest, the TG01. O2 in Germany has had to halt shipments of the device after it turned out that the micro SD card shipped with the phone packs a virus. I'm not sure that Toshiba can be particularly blamed for the problem, as the virus has probably been introduced at the OEM's factory and if not there then more than likely came from O2's master copy. However it is going to hit Toshiba's reputation once again, which makes the job of selling the TG01 against the iPhone (which has been pretty bulletproof thus far) even harder then it already was.