Tuesday 29 September 2009

Things that I wish were good for me

I read some time back that Cider is good for you:

Researcher Dr Serena Marks said: "Unit for unit, the cider with the most phenolics had levels comparable to red wine."

Type of apple, exposure to light, soil composition and storage conditions all affect phenolic concentration.

Presenting her findings at the Cheltenham Science Festival last night, Dr Marks said it could have important implications for health ? and for the cider industry.

The Glasgow University scientist said: "Previous research suggests there may be an association between phenolics and protection against some serious diseases.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-460643/Drink-thy-cider-good-health.html#ixzz0SX2JoRQL

A spokesman for the National Association of Cider Makers, which part-funded the study, said: "An apple a day is said to keep the doctor away. But a glass of cider could be an even more pleasurable way to take care of yourself."

Dr Caroline Walker of Brewing Research International, said: "A diet rich in antioxidants may help to protect against disease, and our research confirms cider has the same levels of antioxidants as red wine.

"It is clear that cider has a good dose of antioxidants, and as nutritionists recommend a healthy diet should include plenty of antioxidants, it could well be claimed that a glass of cider a day will keep the doctor away."

She continued: "For those who enjoy a glass of cider it is reassuring to know it may be healthy, too. But it is important that no-one drinks more than the recommended daily intake of alcohol, which for women is two to three units per day and three to four units for men. An average-strength cider has about 2.5 units per pint."


A shame about the daily limit.

I was also quite intrigued by a posting in Facebook about beer and its slimming effects.

The Youtube video tells all!

Sunday 27 September 2009

There have been all sorts or rumors flying about about the selection of the replacement for Andrew MacKay MP.
One wonders where some of them come from
The short list of seven has now been finalised.

I see that blogger Norfolk Blogger has been getting excited over this for some time.

Richard Willis's Blog has a good deal of interesting stuff...

"I am told that Bracknell Conservatives have selected their short-list of seven to replace sitting MP Andrew MacKay who is standing down. I am seeking final confirmation but I believe that they are:

Iain Dale – top Conservative blogger, author and publisher. Iain stood in Norfolk North at the last election.

Rory Stewart – author and former Army officer. I worked with Rory in the Foreign Office after the Iraq invasion. He was appointed Governor of Di Qar province in Iraq and is also famous for walking across Afghanistan in 2002

Kate Lindsay – was previously shortlisted for Hampshire East

Julia Manning – stood in Bristol East at the 2005 General Election

Philip Lee – a Doctor and project director of Conservative Friends of Bangladesh

Ryan Robson – an investment banker and Chairman of the Centre for Social Justice’s Looked After Children Working Group.

Margaret Doyle – a Westminster Councillor"

I include the quote because there are some handy links in there.
I have collected some of my own, but please "Google" for more. All of these people have impressive backgrounds. We have yet to see who will impress the average Bracknell voter the most. I wonder if Norfolk blogger will be right in his analysis? Googling is not the "be all and end all" of people of course. We have yet to learn more about what these people have done, and how they could benefit Bracknell and the country.

Iain Dale

Rory Stewart

Kate Lindsay

Julia Manning

Philip Lee

Ryan Robson

Margaret Doyle

Remember to book your place to listen to these people and decide on who is best for Bracknell.

UPDATE - The official list is now available - HERE

Tuesday 22 September 2009

More from Daniel Hannan.

Unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy...

More High Jinks.

Build your own mobile phone?

Well not quite build, but at least load your own software. Open Source in mobile phones and devices are becoming increasingly attractive, but shunned by Microsoft it seems, as apart from Windows Mobile, all software stacks being used in Smartphones are open sources.

The IET magazine contains an interesting article about Open Source in Mobile phones. One big problem appears to be with getting open hardware to go with the open source. Or at least getting hardware/firmware that is not stitched up by IP agreements, and wonky APIs

According to Sean Moss-Pultz, CEO of Openmoko, the range of companies that want to use handsets built on open source principles is expanding. “There are many unexpected markets that we have come into contact with,” he claimed in his keynote at the OpenExpo conference in Switzerland earlier this year, pointing to the example of Oxford Archaeology, a private company that offers archaeological services, which is bringing handset technology to the world of site excavations.

There is more stuff on a Cicso blog, and at Openmoko.

One might want to add on anti spam for text messages, an RFID scanner, or enhanced Bluetooth and USB functions.

Saturday 12 September 2009

Bracknell's new MP?

See http://www.bracknellconservatives.com/primary.php where more details will be available soon.

The Primary method of selection was piloted in the 2001 - 2005
Parliament. Constituencies that selected using the Primary method
include Reading East and Warrington South.

As I understand it, voting at the event will be by secret ballot, and it will be necessary for the successful applicant to achieve over 50% of the votes cast, excluding abstentions. Therefore, if this is not achieved in the first round the applicant with the fewest votes would be eliminated and the meeting would proceed to a further ballot until an overall majority for one applicant is achieved.

You do not have to be a member of the Conservative Party. To be eligible to attend and vote at this meeting you just need to pre-register. Full details will be available on the Bracknell Conservatives Website.

Friday 4 September 2009

The voters of Bracknell will soon get the chance to select their next MP.

The Conservative Party in Bracknell is to hold an “Open Primary” similar to the one recently held in Totnes.

It is thought that Primaries force parties to choose candidates with a broader appeal. If there has been non-party member involvement in the process, voters may feel more inclined to support the winner at the general election. Daniel Hannan, who admits to being somewhat of a bore where Open Primaries are concerned, says “Elected representatives are seen, not as local champions, but as members of a separate caste. Voters regard their MPs as spokesmen for their parties in the constituency rather than the other way around. How better to address this disenchantment than by allowing everyone in the constituency a say in whom the parties should nominate?”

I rather like a lot of Daniel Hannan’s stuff, but we had better not talk about the NHS just now. Let’s just say that everyone is entitled to their own opinion no matter what party they belong to.

There has been a lot of speculation in the local press about who will apply to take on the position, and who might get selected. Now that the date for applications is past I suspect that there will be a lot of hard work going on with people reading though hundreds of CV’s. The interesting bit will be who actually makes it though to the primary stage. With the great public interest shown in the selection it will probably be very hard to select from the remaining candidates.

The Bracknell Conservative Association will whittle down the number of applications to produce a shortlist of six, who will attend a weekend selection event in mid-October. The entire Bracknell Constituency electorate will then be able to apply for places at an event and a final candidate will be selected by them.

I am sure that we will get much confusion over who is in a Bracknell Constituency voter and who is a Bracknell Forest Council voter, especially as the boundaries have changed, and the northern parishes have moved to Windsor.

Polling District and location nameCurrent Parliamentary ConstituencyParliamentary constituency at the next General Election
BA - BinfieldBracknellWindsor
BB - Farley WoodBracknellWindsor
WG - WhitegroveBracknellWindsor
WM - St Michael’sBracknellWindsor
WN - Warfield Park NorthBracknellWindsor
WP - Warfield ParkBracknellWindsor
WQ - Quelm BracknellWindsor
WV - Martins Heron and WarrenWindsorBracknell
WW - Forest ParkWindsorBracknell

Perhaps something to liven up dull autumn/winter days?