We are currently house hunting and that is proving to be quite a painful experience because the market really has over-inflated the price of property in the UK. I look at some of the properties and I think, why would I pay that much?! But, I really want to build my first house, however the market for land is even more uncertain. The houses that I visit have proportions that are designed for a different generation and the market seems to be under the impression they can sell a property with some over inflated price based on the value if the property was renovated less some minimal cost to renovate*. One significant factor is that we are a couple that like to cook together and most kitchens are too small, thus you either compromise your lifestyle or factor in major structural changes. With land I find that people price it based on the potential, which isn’t fair because they haven’t actually put any effort into giving the land value. Land shouldn’t be worth some mythical value which doesn’t actually give you anything in return because at the end of the day it is a location plus dirt not a virtual house.

So, if someone reading this knows of some land to buy or has some land they want to sell then let me know! I will even pay 1% commission to anyone helping me secure the purchase of some suitable land. There is an incentive for you!

 

* In addition many people add in the expense of moving and selling the property plus the expense of buying their next property. More on the fairness of the property market in this article on economically sustainable housing.

On the BBC Internet Blog, Andy Quested has discussed the various issues around the addition of a test signal to BBC HD. It makes for very interesting reading, well worth it for anyone wanting to better understand their television and get a better picture.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/bbcinternet/2008/12/a_christmas_present_from_the_h.html

I actually emailed Andy about one part of his article:

 “The audio is actually two blocks of wood being banged once a second – nothing to beat the real thing!

I emailed him to say that in college one of my much respected lecturers (Morgan Jones) proposed using a spark gap as a syncronisation source. Few things in nature are more instant than a spark and the correlation between the light and the light is absolute (subject to the speed of sound, etc).

His response was that he would look at it but he also raised another issue, how do you deal with the fact that an audio compression system based on the psycho-acoustic model might ignore such a short spike of audio? Frankly I don’t know, I am not sure I know enough about compression systems, but it seems worth a look.

Bob

Trawling through the web while Angel does the ironing (it’s a hard life) and I stumbled upon a fantastic animation done using FAA flight information here.

 Watch the animations, they are well worth it! (click "Read more" to see the embedded video)

Continue reading “Fantastic flight patterns”