September 3rd, 2008


what's in a name?

University College London have come up with a website where you type in your surname and it gives you that name's geographical distribution around the world. It's got a database of 300 million names of people in 26 countries - at the moment it only works with Europe and the English-speaking countries, as well as Japan, India and Argentina. It gives you the top countries, regions and cities where your name is found, as well as the most common christian names associated with it.
Of course, I typed mine in. Turns out there are quite a lot of Hutchinsons in Australia. Probably deported there in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
I was going to post this the other night, but I guess so many people had seen news items about it in the papers or on telly that the thing crashed. But it seems to be working okay now, and here it is. Have fun.
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fish tales

Today, artist Alice Newstead carried out an original kind of protest against the use of shark products in cosmetics and shark's fin soup. I was up West today and I missed this. I should warn anyone who's eating, is squeamish, or had nightmares after watching A Man Called Horse to think carefully before looking here.
Meanwhile, off the north Devon coast, the sharks immediately demonstrated what ungrateful bastards they are.
But you can always count on the dolphins to make you go aaahh! (And yes, I know dolphins are mammals, not fish.)
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