Archive for June, 2007

Fads and phases in education

Good morning Mike,

You had an interesting interview just after 7:30 about education, and I found the discussion of fads and phases in teaching methods quite interesting. In my experience almost everything in education is affected by fads and phases.

I remember when I was in high school  the policy on mobile phones changed regularly, I had three different principals during my four years of high school and they all had a different policy, and they even changed their policies from one week to the next. One of them banned students from even bringing phones to school, even if they were turned off and stored in a school bag. This policy was enforced heavily for about two days, with phones being confiscated whenever a teacher saw them, then they all lost interest and the policy was changed. That same policy was reinstated about a month later, and lasted for a week.

It was a big change when I got to college and found that because students are treated like adults (and expected to act like adults in return), the only policy on phones was that teachers could request that they be turned off in class. Generally the students complied because staff were being reasonable…and the policy didn't change. If the high school policy on phones hadn't changed from one week to the next an awful lot of time and angst would have been saved.

Have a good weekend.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart

10 comments June 22nd, 2007 at 08:24am

Samuel’s Second Musician Of The Week

Now that I am much happier and I’ve got sound working in Windows Vista the way I like it, I think this is an appropriate song (and it makes up for me missing out on the Musician(s) Of The Week Award last week). Cliff Richard’s Wired For Sound.

Update: This really is a mess…this wasn’t supposed to appear until after something I haven’t written yet. End Update

I like small speakers
I like tall speakers
If they’ve music
They’re wired for sound

Walkin’ about with a head full of music
Casette in my pocket and I’m gonna use it
Stereo
Out on the streets you know
Oh woh oh woh oh woh oh…

Into the car go to work and I’m cruisin’
I never think that I’ll blow all my fuses
Traffic flows – into the breakfast show
Oh woh oh woh oh woh oh…
Oh oh oh

Power from the needle to the plastic
A.M.-F.M.
I feel so ecstatic now
It’s music I’ve found
And I’m wired for sound

I was small boy who don’t like his toys
I could not wait to get wired for sound

I met a girl and she told me she loved me
I said you love me then love means you must like what I like-
My music is dynamite
Oh woh oh woh oh woh oh…

She said-I’m not a girl you put on at a stand by
I am a girl who demands that her love is amplified
Switch in to overdrive
Oh woh oh woh oh woh oh…
Oh oh oh

Power from the needle to the plastic
A.M.-F.M.
I feel so ecstatic now
It’s music I’ve found
And I’m wired for sound

Power from the needle to the plastic
A.M.-F.M.
I feel so ecstatic now
It’s music I’ve found
‘Cause I’m wired for sound

I like small speakers (I like Smalls)
I like tall speakers (I like Talls)
If they’ve music
They’re wired for sound (Wired for sound)

I like small speakers (I like Smalls)
I like tall speakers (I like Talls)
If they’ve music
They’re wired for sound (Wired for sound)

I like small speakers (I like Smalls)
I like tall speakers (I like Talls)
If they’ve music
They’re wired for sound (Wired for sound)

Spoken:
I like small speakers
I like tall speakers
And wall speakers
Most of all I like loud speakers

Samuel

June 18th, 2007 at 08:07pm

John Stanley has the week off

John Stanley, host of the afternoon show on 2UE and 2CC has the week off. I don’t know for sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Murray Olds (aka The Buzzard) fills in for him.

And wouldn’t you know it, the first time I have a reason to use a photo of John Stanley in a long time, and I haven’t uploaded the photo of me standing next to him at 2UE earlier this year.

Have a great week off John!

Update: Don Burke??? I know he does a gardening segment on 2UE’s weekend afternoon show…but Don Burke filling in for John Stanley? I don’t think I would have seen that coming even if 2UE had sent me a letter to inform me that Don Burke would fill in for John Stanley. End Update

Samuel

8 comments June 18th, 2007 at 10:47am

The reason behind that may become apparent in the next few hours

The title of this post is a quote from the previous post. I’ll explain what I was going on about this evening, as the explanation is a bit longer than I have time to elaborate on right now.

The good news is that the reason behind it has been alleviated, however for everyone except me, that means nothing as I haven’t explained anything yet.

Samuel

5 comments June 18th, 2007 at 10:10am

Samuel’s Musicians Of The Week

I’m giving the award to The Beatles this week, for the simple reason that I would like to feature one of their songs (the reason behind that may become apparent in the next few hours).

Yesterday
All my troubles seemed so far away
Now it looks as though they’re here to stay
Oh, I believe
In yesterday

Suddenly
I’m not half the man I used to be
There’s a shadow hanging over me
Oh, yesterday
Came suddenly

Why she
Had to go I don’t know
She wouldn’t say
I said
Something wrong now I long
For yesterday

Yesterday
Love was such an easy game to play
Now I need a place to hide away
Oh, I believe
In yesterday

Why she
Had to go I don’t know
She wouldn’t say
I said
Something wrong now I long
For yesterday

Yesterday
Love was such an easy game to play
Now I need a place to hide away
Oh, I believe
In yesterday

(hum to “I believe in yesterday”)

Samuel

1 comment June 17th, 2007 at 07:50pm

Police Lockdown Charnwood Due To Explosives

2CC interrupted programming a short time ago to report that ACT Police have locked down and evacuated part of the suburb of Charnwood due to finding explosives in a house. I didn’t get all the details, but I’ll keep an ear out for further information.

Update 2:05pm: According to 2CC’s 2pm news, one person has been arrested and a dozen houses were evacuated in Saywell Place, Charnwood. End Update

Samuel

1 comment June 16th, 2007 at 01:11pm

Abandoned Post-It Notes

I have noticed a recent increase in the number of post-it notes that seem to be discarded on the ground in public areas such as streets and shopping centres. Many of these post-it notes contain seemingly random and useless squiggles and bits of text, probably jotted down as notes at some stage, however, more alarmingly, many of the post-it notes I have noticed contain names and their associated mobile phone numbers, and in one case even included a full residential address and the time of an arranged meeting at that address.

Many people seem to derive some pleasure from overhearing the strange details of other people’s lives when they insist on shouting them through a mobile phone in a supermarket. Whist this provides some insight in to the life of the shouter, it isn’t static, and there is no real permanent record of the conversation, and the details are usually quite vague. In comparison to these post-it notes littered with private information, the phone calls are quite innocuous.

I wonder, am I the only one who has noticed this recent surge in discarded post-it notes? And I also wonder, given the way post-it notes are used to record all sorts of important and confidential business information, how much commercially sensitive data is being inadvertently leaked in this way?

Probably even more concerning is the first thing I thought after spotting two discarded post-it notes yesterday…”I really need to start taking the camera with me”.

Samuel

2 comments June 15th, 2007 at 12:12pm

Error!

This week’s Friday Funny comes from Tarleah, and is a collection of amusing (but fake) error messages. Tarleah sent in a heap more but I think these are the pick of the bunch.

Error
Error
Error
Error

Do you have something you would like to contribute to Friday Funnies? If so, email it to samuel@samuelgordonstewart.com. All contributions welcome!

Samuel

1 comment June 15th, 2007 at 10:30am

Good Morning George Moore

Good morning Mr. Moore,

It's a pleasure to hear you again, although it's a pity you don't have Paul B. Kidd with you. You were the first talkback host I ever sent an email to (back in late 2003), at the time, much like today, you were filling in for Lawsie.

It's great to hear you in Canberra again, and I hope you're well.

Best wishes,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

1 comment June 15th, 2007 at 09:26am

If Ceilings Were Floors

Whilst having a rather annoying stomach pain overnight and lying on the floor in an effort (quite a successful one I might add) to alleviate the pain, something occurred to me that has occurred to me on many previous occasions, and probably goes some way towards proving my partial insanity.

If ceilings were floors, they would never meet the applicable safety standards because they have all of these things sticking out of them, effectively posing a trip hazard. It’s not immediately apparent just how much is sticking out of the ceiling simply by looking at it, so what I suggest you do at some stage during the day is look at the room you are in upside-down. Arguably the best way to do this is to either lie on the floor and position your head so that it is almost upside down, or do a handstand (or as close as you can get to it), then look around the room. All of those light fixtures, exit signs, fire sprinklers, uneven grills on air conditioning outlets, smoke detectors, security alarm sensors…and in some cases even the fluorescent lights aren’t level with the ceiling.

If gravity were reversed in buildings, we would have completely useless and dangerous floors (and that’s not even taking in to account the tiled ceilings that would fall in to a gap, exposing all the wiring and air conditioning ducts, in many office buildings…but it’s more fun to imagine that the ceiling is solid).

To the same extent, what if we did build buildings the other way up? It would be rather odd having the lights and air conditioning vents in the floor…and those emergency exit signs would make a lot of sense on the floor, especially as we are taught that in a fire you should get as low to the ground as possible to minimise your exposure to smoke.

I do have to admit though, that it wouldn’t make much sense to have carpeted ceilings.

Samuel

1 comment June 15th, 2007 at 08:33am

Samuel’s Footy Tips

And now that I’ve remembered to score the last round, I will post my tips for this weekend…and seeing as it is time for the annual split round in the AFL, the AFL half of the weekend after.

NRL Round 14
Bulldogs v Broncos
Eagles v Rabbitohs
Sharks v Warriors
Panthers v Roosters
Cowboys v Storm
Eels v Dragons
Tigers v Titans
Knights v Raiders

AFL Round 12
Blues v Hawks
Kangaroos v Crows
Bulldogs v Dockers
Cats v Lions
Power v Bombers
Tigers v Demons
Swans v Magpies
Eagles v Saints

Samuel

June 15th, 2007 at 06:22am

Samuel’s Footy Tips: Results

Looks like I forgot to do this at the other end of the week, and it’s safe to say that I was unable to replicate my previous decent NRL tipping performance.

Weekly Results
NRL Round 13: 2/6 (33.33%)
AFL Round 11: 3/8 (37.50%)

Total Scores
NRL: 47/98 (47.96%)
AFL: 48/88 (54.55%)
Total: 95/186 (51.08%)

Samuel

June 15th, 2007 at 05:22am

Daylight Saving Grows By A Month

I was going to run this story yesterday but never got around to it.

Daylight Saving in Canberra will be extended by a month, starting next year, according to a press release from Chief Turnip Stanhope (I reserve the right to dislike him).

Next year Daylight Saving will start on the first Sunday in October and end on the first Sunday in April the following year, which is an extension of about about a month (although the difference would be slightly different each year) over the current system where it starts on the last Sunday in October and ends on the last Sunday in March.

This will make Daylight Saving a bit more sensible as it will be closer to having an equal amount on both sides of the summer solstice.

I do have to wonder how much further it will be extended though. Will it eventually grow to the point where it exceeds half a year? Which would effectively cause our official timezone to be an hour ahead of its current location, and the non-Daylight Saving period to be called “Daylight Wasting?”

I hope it doesn’t grow again, although I fear that it is inevitable, and we will see it happen some time in the next decade.

Samuel

3 comments June 14th, 2007 at 11:31am

Rain

Good Morning Lawsie,

Just thought you might like to know that it's raining down here in Canberra and has been since about 4:30, and the weather radar shows the rain stretching from about half way between Yass and Cootamundra, all the way to Bega through Cooma, and up the coast to Wollongong. Hopefully this nice level of rain continues and spreads out even further across the state.

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

1 comment June 14th, 2007 at 09:26am

Discussion about cars

I sent the following email to Simon Marnie, who is filling in for Adam Spencer on ABC 702 Sydney's breakfast show. (In case you're wondering, I don't have my radio with me and I'm exploring various webstreams…it's given me an idea for the next round of radio reviews, after I finish the current set!)

Good morning Simon,

Just flicking around the various Sydney radio station webstreams to see what each station is talking about, and I happened to stumble on your conversation about cars. So far, the only sensible thing I've heard is the car sharing scheme.

The limited registration idea is absolutely stupid, if you have two cars, the chances are that you need both of them. What happens if one car breaks down on a day when the other car isn't allowed to be used because of the limited registration? If you're willing to pay a reduced registration fee in exchange for non-use days then obviously it's your own fault if you happen to need the car on a non-use day…but it's a silly idea all-the-same because the fact of the matter is, if you have two cars, you have them because you have a use for them…if not, you sell them, and that is much more sensible than some limited-use system.

How about, instead of limited-use, you share the car with others on days when you don't need it. Preferably this would be people you know and trust…this would have the same effect on pollution as the limited-use scheme by reducing the overall number of cars required, but would be much more practical.

Apart from that, your scare-mongering about Climate Change is, in my view, unfounded, but you're more than welcome to your own opinion, and I'm sure the Climate Change debate is one we can save for another day.

Enjoy your day in Sydney!

Regards,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart
Canberra

Update: Due to a peculiarity in the timing of my changes of webstream, almost every time I switched to 2GB, Alan Jones was reading the weather report and sounding quite alarmed by the fact that the Bureau of Meteorology are forecasting “possible small hail” for Sydney today. It was also amusing when at one stage I switched from 2GB to 2UE during a sport report segment of the breakfast show (not the news), 2GB mentioned a sports person and their sport, and a second later, so did 2UE! It was rather amusing to hear actually. End Update

June 14th, 2007 at 07:26am

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