Europe 1998 ???????????????????? Photos from ten years ago

Old photos from Europe 20 years ago

Normally each month I post photos from ten years earlier. I noticed that it’s twenty years since my 1998 trip to Europe. This was the first trip I blogged in excruciating unnecessary detail – and I’m glad I did, as I’ve been rereading the posts, reliving the trip. I’ve taken the opportunity to re-scan some  ... [More]

Blog sponsorship books transport

How the 20th century was almost dominated by electric vehicles, rather than petrol

It’s amazing to think that had circumstances been different, the western world might have developed its road transport around electric engines rather than fossil fuels. That’s one of the key points made by “A Most Deliberate Swindle“, by Mick Hamer – the tale of the London Electrobus company, which pioneered the use of electric buses  ... [More]

Toxic Custard newsletter transport

Design: It probably won a prize #SoCross

Back at uni, in one of my subjects we read a great book called The Design Of Everyday Things. In it, author Donald Norman highlights bad designs, often noting: “It probably won a prize”. One of the hallmarks of good design at railway stations is being able to see the information that you need to  ... [More]

Geek transport

How much would it cost to re-write the #Myki software to make it fast as other cities’ smartcards?

Refactoring is a legitimate strategy in software development. It’s where you feel the design is (more-or-less) right, but the software implementation has gone wrong, and needs to be completely cleaned-up, by chucking it out and re-writing it. So here’s a thought: if the single most annoying, unreliable, sluggish part of the Myki system is the  ... [More]


Train myths: a hundred years ago the Ballarat line was quicker – No it wasn’t

The Committee for Ballarat has an excellent campaign going to improve rail services. Unfortunately as sometimes happens, some myths crept into the rhetoric around the launch of the campaign. “In the early 1900s you could do the Ballarat to Melbourne trip by steam rail in an hour — these days it takes an hour and  ... [More]

books transport

The Example

The Example, by Tom Taylor and Colin Wilson (published by Gestalt Books), might be the first graphic novel to be set entirely within the confines of Flinders Street Station. It’s a short but thought-provoking read, combining a most-of-Western-world issue — paranoia over terrorism — with a more decidedly local Melbourne issue: the trains. Speaking of  ... [More]

Consumerism Melbourne

The Show

The kids and I set off for the Show on Tuesday morning. It had been about a decade since I’d been — ditto for Isaac, who went with a childcare group some years ago, and we’re not sure if Jeremy had ever been before. Tuesday turned out to be a good day to go. Despite  ... [More]

Film Video games

Finding Pixar

Had a day off yesterday. Took the kids on a couple of errands, and went through Fed Square to visit ACMI. I never fail to be impressed with ACMI, especially since I discovered their Games Lab. Last time I was there they had old Commodore 64 games. This time they were highlighting some of the  ... [More]