Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Agony and The Ecstacy

I was impressed when a group of 5 girls from our local secondary school walked along talking about the use of the word scrutiny. That's quite an impressive word for these here parts. It all went downhill though when they then had to have a long and non-decisive conversation as to whether you spelt it with a "c" or a "k"!

Saturday, November 05, 2011


I upgraded my phone yesterday. It's a smartphone and no doubt smarter than me so with luck I'll have worked out how to use it by the time it's upgraded again in two years time. However, that information is by the by. Whilst waiting for the guy in 3 to do things very slowly I read some of the advertising around the walls. Each snippet was to tell you some of the things you could do with the phone such as "why not take photo's of colleagues at work". Wow, that's cutting edge! Anyway, the one that interested me was to do with internet access, the last suggestion being "and maybe get a bit of help with the pub quiz". Now, I've done enough quizzes over the years to know there have always been people who will cheat. Perhaps nip out to the gents and phone a friend but this is the first time I've seen something blatantly enticing people to cheat. What will they advertise next? Why not video someone entering the combination into a security door? Why not photo somebody's signature so you can copy it? OK. Cheating at a pub quiz is hardly the biggest crime in the world but the principle is just plain wrong. Many people enjoy doing them and want to pit their wits against other humans, not the internet. We do internet quizzes when we want to do that. But it does fit in with the general idea these days that you shouldn't do anything too taxing when there is a way to get it done for you. I devise quizzes as well and am having to change the way questions are formed in order to stop searches on phones. Gone are the days when "what is the capital of Gambia" can be posed. Nowadays you have to use 3 part comparative questions such as " what is the connection between the European Anthem, a large St Bernard and a political history by Esteban Buch"? The answer being Beethoven but google is not good at finding the comparison between three things quickly enough. Maybe it's just me being an old codger again but it just seems that's another, if very tiny nail, in the moral standing of the modern society.