Sweden foreign minister criticises Saudi Arabia

Swedish Foreign minister Margot Wallström made the impolitic mistake of criticising the human right record of Saudia Arabia. She seems to be under pressure from arms exporters and the Swedish king to reach some sort of compromise with Saudi, after they called back their ambassador and stopped issuing visa’s for Swedish business men.


Writing advice from David Ogilvy

In 1982 David Ogilvy sent this memo, titled, How to Write to his employees:

The better you write, the higher you go in Ogilvy & Mather. People who think well, write well.

Woolly-minded people write woolly memos, woolly letters and woolly speeches. Good writing is not a natural gift. You have to learn to write well. Here are 10 hints:

1.    Read the Roman-Raphaelson book on writing. Read it three times.
2.    Write the way you talk. Naturally.
3.    Use short words, short sentences and short paragraphs.
4.    Never use jargon words like reconceptualise, demassification, attitudinally, judgmentally. They are hallmarks of pretense.
5.    Never write more than two pages on any subject.
6.    Check your quotations.
7.    Never send a letter or a memo on the day you write it. Read it aloud the next morning and then edit it.
8.    If it is something important, get a colleague to improve it.
9.    Before you send your letter or your memo, make sure it is crystal-clear what you want the recipient to do.
10.    If you want ACTION, don’t write. Go and tell the guy what you want.

Apple and Jobs

Steve Jobs 1980 (23:00), how apple computers started.

LISA 1983 (8:30) — trying to introduce consumer computing

Getting software on the MAC (Lotus 123, Microsoft)

The LISA computer (14:09) — trying to introduce consumer computing

Apple Adverts from 1984

Apple Advert with Bill Gates

John Scully on how Jobs got fired from Apple (8:03)

Building NeXT (20:46)

Brain Storming in NeXT (23:00)

Pixar (12:39) — owning success, when to exit by IPO

Dealing with a question on OpenDoc vs Java (5:13)

Jobs introduces itunes

Company structure / managing

Wozniak on Jobs movie

The deal with Microsoft is the most important move… ensuring Word was on the mac permanently meant it could be used interchangeably with a windows PC.. helped to make as de-facto standard / monopoly player while staving off anti-competition claims. Today Mac computers use PC hardware, sleek hardware and software built on unix system differentiates the system from windows. Apple has proved to be a hugely successful marketing/ design company with a huge cash surplus from it’s repeated successes.
Here we can see what is the difference between macintosh and Microsoft, two successful companies which don’t actually compete directly. From the start, apple has been about delivering a standardised easy to use computer, which is integrated so the user doesn’t need to know about what is inside — computing for the rest of us. Microsoft don’t sell computers, they sell software. They were happy to sell their office software on to apple computers.
In the early days, the garage built apple II computer was a success and gave a cash flow, apple was able to introduce mass production techniques (assembly line with latest just-in-time stock control) to produce the macintosh. The apple mac is first core product which makes apple a success, today’s imac looks amazing similar in construction (although the components have changed it’s basically the same design (a sealed box with monitor, CPU and power transformer).
Something astonishing is that they have been recently able to have additional success, they successfully introduces the itunes market place, which they have been able to sell their ipod. iphone and ipad.

Max Keiser on British Manufacturing

Max Keiser (RT) says only 10% of UK GDP is from manufacturing for export, and points out this is a shame since UK can do excellent manufacturing, as proved by Rolls-Royce Group plc.

World of Steel Imports and Exports

http://www.worldmapper.org/ allows us to remap the world making different countries scaled by various metrics (population, GPD, internet users, etc).

For example, this shows which countries are the biggest steel importers;

Map with countries scaled by steel imports.

Map with countries scaled by steel imports.

And this is the countries scaled by steel exports;

Map with countries scaled by steel exports.

Map with countries scaled by steel exports.

Prof. Hans Rosling has made other data and analysis tools available at gapminder.com. I talked about that here: https://bainite.wordpress.com/2009/05/17/2007-ted-lectures/

Papers Download Statistics from Elsevier: Effect of tempering upon the tensile properties of a nanostructured steel

Elsevier provides some statistics for my one of my papers.

The paper is also available here – on the phase transformations website.

Downloads from Elsevier is about 1/3 from China and 1/9 th from the UK.


Top countries Pct
China 34%
UK 11%
Germany 6%
USA 6%
Turkey 5%


Paper Download Statistics

Paper Download Statistics


Shout out for Acoustic Emission in Failing Materials – Kirkaldy Museum

The Kirkaldy museum in London have been torturing some materials using artists and test equipment.

The Kirkaldy museum preserves testing machines designed to perform mechanical tests on finished engineering components. It is the site of the testing house established by David Kirkaldy (1820–1897) a Scottish engineer who pioneered the testing of materials as a service to engineers during the Victorian period. In Southwark, London, a large hydraulic tensile test machine was constructed to measure the mechanical properties of engineering components.

The moto of Kirkaldy’s test house was “Facts not opinions”.

The Kirkaldy works tested components for the 1874 Eads Bridge across the Mississippi River, and for the Skylon that was built for the nearby Festival of Britain in 1951. It also helped accident analysis by tested materials from structures that failed, including the Tay Bridge Disaster of 1879 and the BOAC Flight 781 De Havilland Comet crash of 1954.

Eads Bridge, St Louis

Eads Bridge, St Louis (image from wikipedia)

The Skylon

The Skylon (image from wikipedia).