July 3rd, 2003


Geek Games

Happy birthday to philonightmare!

This afternoon, I have been listening to the biggest event in world sport at the moment. No, not Wimbledon, nor the Tour de France which starts on Saturday. It is, instead, Guernsey 2003, the latest and tenth incarnation of the every-other-year NatWest Island Games. There are fifteen sports in this year's competition and 23 islands from around the world are taking part, from Greenland and Iceland in the north, through separate teams from the Shetlands, the Orkneys, the Isle of Man, Ynys Mon (the Isle of Anglesey), the Isle of Wight, separate teams from each of the Channel Islands, sundry Scandinavian islands and down to St. Helena and the Falkland Islands from the Southern Hemisphere. (akahannah, the Western Isles are set to join the association later in the year.) The constitution notes a resident population limit of 125,000 inhabitants, so Australia can't come in and pound the minnows.

There's a really good radio station dedicated to the Games called Island Games FM which you can follow online. All the DJs are ever so enthusiastic about the events and they're obviously having bags of fun. They play all sorts of music from time to time, from The Beatles and Smokey Robison to J. Lo's wannabe-gangsta rap. Everyone is ever so enthusiastic about it and it's a bundle of fun to listen to. The standard of competition isn't hugely high - people were getting excited about the men's pole vault bar reaching 3.80 metres, compared to Sergey Bubka's six metres plus; you also get blowouts from time to time, like (as ericklendl pointed out) the Sark men's (association) football team losing its four games (against those well-known powerhouse teams Gibraltar, Isle of Wight, Greenland and Froya) by a combined margin of 70-0. Sark did pick up a silver in the Clay Target Automatic Ball Trap Team shooting, though. Second of 13, before you ask.

It's not the same as live TV coverage, but the radio is more than adequate, considering the resources, and the results web site is really very good considering the evident budget of the event. The mainstream sporting media are missing out on this and it's a real shame. The best web site about multi-sport festivals at large is www.internationalgames.net - July is a packed month with the South Pacific Games in Fiji, the Great Outdoor Games (ESPN's X-Games-a-like for lumberjackin', fishin', dog-racin' and shootin'), the FISEC Games (Catholic schoolkids from 14 to 17), the World Transplant Games and the World Police and Fire Games taking us through the month. They've all got a very high standard to live up to. Forget the Olympics, these little events are much more fun. :-)
  • Current Music
    Island Games FM

Where do you fit in?

The wonderful lj_nifty is ever full of all sorts of cute LiveJournal tricks, most of which are indexed at the rather ungainly-named LJRelatedBP. (Hmm - that grammar looks incorrect but I can't work out quite how.)

Anyway, one of the most interesting things it has brought to my attention recently is the LiveJournal Browser which renders your LiveJournal friends list as a dynamic graph. What this means is, as they say, "It shows your friends, and any connections between those friends, and allows you to navigate from user to user, browsing the LiveJournal universe." In short, it produces a pretty picture with all your friends on and lines between the friends listed to show how they all relate to each other. You can play around with the graph, trying to twang people into different positions and seeing how it affects things and so on. It's great fun, particularly when you've got about 30+ Friends in there, some of whom are linked. It gives you a quick visual indication of how people relate to each other and how people do, after all, fit in.

The pictures themselves are a bit large, so best to put them behind a lj-cut: Collapse )

What else can we do with this big silly picture? A couple of days ago, vanityfair wrote "I would like to introduce this concept to all of you. I would love it if everybody introduced one of the people on their friends list to someone else on their friends list. Share the love." Happy to help and we can try to introduce people from various blobs to one another.

j4, mhw: Kay, Janet; Janet, Kay.
dr4b, songmonk: Mason, Deanna; Deanna, Mason.
the_maenad, tall_man: Tyler, Sandra; Sandra, Tyler.

Eeh, this is harder than I thought it would be. Let's stick with three pairs for now and see if any of them work.

Let's steal another viral concept - this one from hawkida, who got it from mstevens: if you would be so kind, please name something you think I'd like doing, but which I don't actually do, to the best of your knowledge.

Preferably something specific with no prior skill requirements.

Answers involving sex 'n' drugs 'n' rock'n'roll should be taken as read.
  • Current Music
    Island Games FM, getting maudlin because its time is short