Defending the UK

fleetsin-w650

What started it

I found myself doing some reading about recent British Defence strategy and policy. It started with a blog by John Snow, questioning the British military’s obsession with supporting the US, it’s a sort of trickle down, but we can’t afford the technology any more. Military technology works because its new and different and expensive to copy and counter. Snow points at James Meek’s review of five books about Britain’s War in Afghanistan, called “worse than defeat” in the London Review of Books. Continue reading “Defending the UK”

Encrypting my Email

Matrix-FallingCode-w650x185

I am crawling towards encrypting my mail. I have adopted enigmail, a Thunderbird addon and use it to sign emails from the one Thunderbird instance in which I have it installed. It seemed sensible since I use it even on the Mac, but suddenly, I discover that as I now have access to a 1and1 SNMP server, Apple’s imail wizard now works and so I could use the prettier, or is it merely different imail client. Choices, choices! The rest of this post is a collection of links about enigmail or PGP on a Mac.

Continue reading “Encrypting my Email”

More on Splash Pages

splash

I want a splash screen on this page. See also this post. This article documents my experiments with Kento Splash Screen.

If the short code is before the More line, then it appears on the Home, if after only if one enters the page itself. (So make a tiny article that looks like part of the header and pin it? We now have some PHP, see below/overleaf. )

Continue reading “More on Splash Pages”

Unicode in Python

unicode-rotw650

It’s a very long time since I have had to deal with binary code translations, but when dealing with HTML and JSON with Python, I need to get to grips with it. The € symbol for instance requires the extended character set support and rss should be written in utf-8. This page collects the notes I made in learning about Python’s support for unicode/ascii translations. Continue reading “Unicode in Python”

Web Site Testing with MaxQ

html-w650

MAXQ is a web proxy with recording and replay features. It is designed to capture and replay tests. They are quite keen that one understands the terms of use of target sites since many prohibit automated access and these days it would seem defend themselves against it.  This article documents how to run MaxQ and make tests, but not how to successfully run them. (If that’s why you’ve come here, look elsewhere but if you have answers please comment here. ) Continue reading “Web Site Testing with MaxQ”

Banking Regulation Reform

bank-w650

I was pushed to look at some of the Banking Regulation reform performed by the last government. My focus was to look at the Vickers aka Independent Commission on Banking and the legislative response. The key proposal is practical measures to protect domestic savings from foreign risk by de-merging or separating the retail and investment banking arms of the large banks. The next stage in this article would be to collect comments/link around the adequacy or otherwise of the timetable for adoption and the politics behind it. The Banking Reform Act was passed in 2013. Continue reading “Banking Regulation Reform”

Converting dates to strings using Python

calendar1-w640

While working on converting ello.json to rss, I needed to convert the date formats, I needed to do it in Python and found the following code worked, using strptime and strfmtime. I had to augment the date string with the name of the day of the week attribute, so felt it had to via a date data type. (This is an important part of the requirement, since otherwise string manipulation would have been enough.) Finding exampes was hard, so I hope it helps, Continue reading “Converting dates to strings using Python”

Labour’s Leadership Election Timetable

leaders-201506-5-w750

Last Month, Harriet Harman writes,

As well as mounting a strong opposition to the Tories and understanding the lessons from our election defeat, we need to get on and elect a new Leader and Deputy Leader.

The NEC met this afternoon to decide on the timetable for the leadership election, ….

This leadership election will be run under the new rules we agreed last year: a broad and inclusive contest with one person, one vote. Continue reading “Labour’s Leadership Election Timetable”

London Labour’s Mayoral Candidate Selection

labourmayorcandidates-w600

The Labour Party is undertaking a process to choose a candidate to run for Mayor of London. This process is in four parts,

  1. Application Stage – now complete
  2. Nomination Stage – closes 10th June
  3. Selection Panel Stage – currently advertised as complete  on 13th June
  4. Voting – starts 12th August, finishes Noon 12th September

The misleadingly named Nomination stage is (to be) performed by members at all members meetings and by affiliated organisations according to their own rules. Candidates need five nominations to be considered in the Selection Panel stage, there are 72 Labour Party membership organisations in London, together with at least 13 trade unions plus the socialist societies, five is not a high threshold.

The Selection panel stage will be closed and opaque, and has previously caused some controversy, but its one of the reasons that the nomination stage takes place to allow a visible indication of support; perhaps they’ve learnt from the European Parliamentary selection.  (The panel consists of 6 members and may have been chosen by lottery.)

Voting will be done by all London members, affiliate members and registered supporters, will be conducted using a secret postal ballot (or on-line). There are no “colleges” so each vote is of equal worth. This is the “One Member, One Vote” closed primary promised when Labour’s Special Conference adopted the recommendations and rule changes of the Collins Review. You can join, or become a registered supporter by going to  the Labour’s Party’s join us page. Affiliated membership is via your trade union or an affiliated socialist society.

SPARQL on WordPress

w3cSPARQL-logo

For various reasons I needed to look at SPARQL again. What’s the easiest way to put it up?, Here! I’ve been working with LH-Tools and LH-RDF. I did not get this to finish satisfactorily, mainly based on my lack of SPARQL skills. May 2015

LH RDF broke this a.m., when I upgraded some stuff.  21 August 2015. A further upgrade was issued that fixed the destructive behaviour. It was fixed within 24 hours.

LH Tools offers/implements a SPARQL endpoint.

There are deactivated at the moment.

Pool Party are now playing. i,e. there’s a Pool Party plugin. Continue reading “SPARQL on WordPress”