1. The first pint of spring in a beer garden
  2. The airport pint
  3. The first pint of a session
  4. The second (and last) pint which you all know is really just an intermediate pint but you’re all pretending you’re going to go home after this next pint
  5. The work trip hotel bar pint
  6. The dumping the bags on the bed and rushing out the hotel trying to find a bar (maybe 500ml) pint
  7. The straight to the pub after work pint
  8. The Friday before Christmas pint
  9. The Sunday afternoon beer garden pint
  10. The crisp cold lager on a hot day pint

As well as being interesting, its a seriously underrated and pleasant holiday destination

Of course, it’s much easier to sound interesting after finding litter in a pre-Colombian village and writing how that tells us something about Bolivia than it is to sound insightful writing about China. But I am still going to try. This is late now, sorry, sorry, I am a bad blogger. But who isn’t, these days?

In reality there’s not really much of a difference in generalised arrogance between spending four weeks in Bolivia or China and expecting to have something insightful to say, its just more obvious when one country has 100 times the population of the other. …

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The precariat have enough problems as it is

What do Uber’s star rating system and coach tickets have in common? More than you’d think.

Tickets aren’t to stop people fare dodging, you’ll be surprised to hear, or at least, they weren’t originally. They were to stop coachmen ripping off the coach owners and stealing their fares. You could transport eight people, only tell your manager you took six and take home the difference. Ticket inspectors used to check on staff, not customers.

Uber’s star ratings work in the same way, outsourcing staff monitoring to customers. By taking tickets customers were helping bosses watch over their workers. By asking…

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In my latest foray into literary criticism I want to write about diaries and letters. I’ve done a couple of none fiction reviews, but I’m not so comfortable commenting on fiction so let me know if this is obvious or not.

In my first post I wrote about how to categorise different eras of the Discworld books as the series changed and evolved. That’s a good lead into this because the Discworld is so much more bonkers than the three books I want to talk about here: Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Frankenstein and Dracula. Now let…

Free speech is a favourite topic of the far right, so while I think free speech is great, I don’t just think its great. It’s something worth thinking about. I joked to Joe on twitter that I’d be interested in a taxonomy of the different people who care about free speech.

There are the nazis, cynically exploiting free speech to give themselves a legitimate reason to organise, and there are there those who are fooled by this. …

The Internet of Things is coming to manufacturing and supply chain and everything and that means two things.

First of all the production and processing of data will explode. Industrial motors already produce thousands of readings a day and that information (or its deltas) is going to get recorded, processed, stored and analysed. Ultimately that’s going to lead to objects, processes, firms and whole industries being reshaped and reorganised.

These changes in production will then lead to increased financialisation of production. If someone wants a magazine traditionally they would buy a magazine from someone who produces a magazine, they would…

Peter Heather’s book is very enjoyable if you really enjoy history. And it is a serious history rather than a pop history book. I love pop history books, but Empires and Barbarians is the sort of history book that challenges received wisdom and argues its case forcefully rather than just being a fun chronological history or arguing that Brexit Is Just Like The Break Up Of Austo-Hungary Or Whatever. Taking in eleven lengthy chapters, this book is a thorough look at how the diverse tribes of Rome’s barbaricum ultimately destroyed Rome and reshaped Europe into a patchwork of states which…

Photo by Nikolay Vorobyev on Unsplash

Obviously pundits think Theresa May is being statesmanly and Labour are being traitors. But I expect normal people won’t respond like this. Instead people might ask, why the hell did Putin think he’d get away with this? And that line of questioning leads down to the Tories front door.

What is more likely to be the cause of Russian murders on British soil?

  1. Jeremy Corbyn calling for “dialogue”


  1. 14 Russia-linked murders on UK soil going underinvestigated
  2. The UK underfunding its specialist military expertise in chemical weapons following the 2010 defence review
  3. Theresa May’s insistence on abandoning the Litvinenko…

More literary criticism

If you ask people who the main character in the Discworld series is they will look at you funny. There are loads of main characters in the series, that’s part of the appeal. Normally though you can get someone to break and say of course Esme Weatherwax is the main character, or Sam Vimes is, or even Rincewind. Each of these answers is wrong. I would say until The Truth there isn’t a main character of the Discworld. The only main thread weaving through the earlier books is a love of language; a full blown love affair…

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