Newsletter 135 – December 2007
——– MANTEX NEWSLETTER ——–
Number 135 – December 2007 – ISSN 1470-1863
Art, Music, Culture, and Technology
as seen from media city, Manchester UK
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Gadgets, gizmos, and electronic kit
We’re featuring the latest and bestselling
items you might want to consider as Xmas
present – for yourself or your loved ones.
This is an in-depth study of the famous and
infamous people who have chosen to live of
the fringes of society.
They were artists, musicians, poets, writers,
and some no more than rich eccentrics or
poverty-stricken wastrels who have ‘poured
their art into their life’.
Figures range from Byron, via Rimbaud and
Oscar Wilde, to Alfred Jarry, Modigliani,
and Dylan Thomas – who drank himself to death.
And it’s not all men. Women from George
Sand, Josephine Baker, and Nina Hamnett
are all featured – even up as recently as
fashion designer Vivienne Westwood.
0— Pub quiz – Question #1
Who was the Greek goddess of Retribution?
0— Asus Eee PC – the amazing new laptop
Amazing because it’s so cheap and so small.
An ultra-portable fully-fledged 900MHz
notebook with 512MB memory and a 4GB hard disk
for two hundred quid!
It runs on Linux or Windows XP, and bundled
software includes Open Office, Firefox,
Skype, email, and Internet radio applications.
Add a camera and WiFi plus a fifteen second
boot up time, and you’ve got a winner.
0— Pub quiz – Question #2
What is the chief port of Uruguay?
I’ve lost count of the number of friends who
have phoned me complaining that their Norton
anti-virus software was giving them problems.
My response has been the same each time.
Ditch it and install the f.r.e.e version of
the excellent Grisoft AVG program instead.
This is a doddle to install, works without
a hitch, and updates itself automatically.
You need to install AVG first, then remove
Norton, by UNinstalling – not deleting.
Give it a try. I guarantee you won’t want
to go back to Norton.
0— Pub quiz – Question #3
Ag is the symbol for which chemical element?
0— Pub quiz – Question #4
What is the oldest university in the USA?
Thanks to a very generous grant from the
Arts Council (of Transylvania) we have been
able to extend the Howard Hodgkin Rooms in
our digital art gallery.
Several new art works are on display – some
from his fruitful period of the 1970s and 1980s.
0— Pub quiz – Question #5
Which newspaper sent Stanley to find Livingstone?
0— F.r.e.e phone calls with Skypephone
You don’t need a computer to make f.r.e.e
phone calls anymore. Use a Skypephone instead.
It’s a new mobile phone which delivers f.r.e.e
Skype calls and chat to any Skype user worldwide
whilst on the move, the Skypephone is the first
fully integrated Skype mobile handset.
Available in three stylish variations, with
key features such as Internet browsing,
2.0 MP camera and music player, plus the
It’s f.r.e.e with a contract or UKP 49.99 for
pay-as-you-go. Talking and chatting to friends
and family anywhere, anytime, for f.r.e.e
is only a Skypephone away.
0— Pub quiz – Question #6
Which river flows through Washington DC?
0— Designing Web Navigation – new book
James Kalbach has a new book out on
everything you could ever want to know
about designing navigation systems.
Not just for web sites either. He also
takes into account content delivered to
mobile phones, handheld PDAs, and even
car navigation systems.
It’s a beautifully printed book with full
colour illustrations on almost every page.
Another top class publication from the
stable of O’Reilly Associates.
0— Pub quiz – Question #7
In printing, what do the letters UC signify?
Amazon have launched a new eBook reader
just in time for your Xmas stocking.
It’s called the Kindle and needs no
wires or a connection to a PC. You buy
a book, and it’s downloaded in 60 seconds.
It can hold up to 200 books, and there are
88,000 titles to choose from – plus newspapers
and magazines. Books priced at around $10 –
that’s five quid to you guv.
Read ‘War and Peace’ on one charge of the
battery – and the device itself comes in at $399
0— Pub quiz – Question #8
What is the term for a squirrel’s nest?
0— F.r.e.e Mobile Phones
Skypephone are giving away mobile phones
in a simple competition.
The winner will get three Skypephones,
second place will get two and coming in
third will bag you one.
All you need to do is say why you want
a Skypehone. It’s that simple. There is
one major requirement though.
Your reason for wanting one must be expressed
in a linkable format. For example, it could
be a blog post, a forum thread or simple webpage,
a picture on Flickr, or a link to a YouTube video.
The only rules are:
– The content needs to be original
– Tag all your videos, pics, posts with 3mobilebuzzcomp1
– When submitting an entry remember to include the URL
of the site which brought the competition to your attention.
And that means – Mantex Blog
– Deadline for submissions is midday on Monday 17th December.
All entries must be sent to the hallowed keeper of prizes,
enforcer of rules and judge of all –
0— Pub quiz – Question #9
What is another term for a wildebeest?
The device is a phone, but it also takes
pictures, plays audio and video files,
has built-in GPS mapping, synchs with
your PC, and does just about everything
except clean your shoes.
0— Pub quiz – Question #10
What was the name of the Elephant Man?
0— Reader’s Letters and Corrections
David Malarkey writes from Croydon
(which he says is famous – for being Croydon)
“Well, coincidence abounding! I’m reading
your excellent pub quiz (and failing as usual)
while listening to Radio 4’s Brain of Britain.
Up pops a question about a double Nobel Prize.
Linus Pauling is the answer to that question.
Can your answer, Marie Curie be entirely right?
Marie got the Prize in Physics and Chemistry
and Linus in Chemistry and Peace. I’m not entirely
sure which ones are more closely related.
Pauling later became well-known for his
non-prizewinning advocacy of vitamin C in
huge doses and I think he was featured in
ads for some supplement or other, but I’m
not sure of my ground here.
Admittedly Marie did die from her work
(and she had to share it, too) All water
under the bridge now. We need more Peace
laureates these days.
What amazing synchronicity, anyway.”
John Rostron writes from Benfleet, Essex, to say:
“How could you!
#7 What does a manometer measure the pressure of?
A manometer is “instrument for measuring gas pressure:
an instrument used to measure the pressure of a gas”
Microsoft Encarta Premium Suite 2004.
Encarta also makes the point that the ‘mano’ bit comes
“from Greek manos ‘thin, rare’.” The Oxford Dictionary concurs.
You are perhaps beguiled by the fact that a manometer
may use a liquid as part of its measurement?”
We were indeed beguiled – and the question setter
has been given early retirement – involuntarily.
0— Pub quiz – ANSWERS
#1 Who was the Greek goddess of Retribution?
#2 What is the chief port of Uruguay?
#3 Ag is the symbol for which chemical element?
#4 What is the oldest university in the USA?
#5 Which newspaper sent Stanley to find Livingstone?
ANSWER: New York Herald
#6 Which river flows through Washington DC?
#7 In printing, what do the letters UC signify?
ANSWER: Upper case
#8 What is the term for a squirrel’s nest?
#9 What is another term for a wildebeest?
#10 What was the name of the Elephant Man?
ANSWER: John Merrick
0— Coming soon
Virginia Woolf: A Critical Memoir
The Translator as Writer
Vita and Harold – letters
The Edwardians – a novel
Hachette French Dictionary
(c) Copyright 2007, MANTEX
All Rights Reserved
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M20 6GZ UK www.mantex.co.uk
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