Friday, October 10, 2003

Crossword compiler 

See www.crossword-compiler.com

How about creating a site that lets users collaborate to solve crosswords such as the times, telegraph, etc...

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

rubbish idea 

When throwing rubbish across the room into a bin I usually miss. What about a bin with a back board on it to increase my chances?

This morning Dorothy was thrown onto a truck and driven away for good. It's a sad sad day.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

an XML driven menu 

I've a little idea to build a utility that output's html to build a dynamic menu based on an XML document. I'm gonna have look around the net to see if any exist already.

Monday, October 06, 2003

business idea 

I want to open up an internet cafe in a busy shopping district. The idea is to focus on directing the average high street shopper away from high street prices for their goods and to market internet prices to help shoppers get better value for money.

For example, recently one of my friends purchased a Sony widescreen TV. I managed to convince him that shopping around on the internet would save him a lot of money. Indeed, the shop price was £999 and the cheapest internet price was £699. Armed with this information he confidently walked into a high street retailer and negotiated a much better price.

This idea is aimed at the non-internet savvy shopper, those that have no trust in online trading or those that cannot wait in for a delivery or be bothered to deal with returns.

There are a number of potential benefits to a high street shopper:

1. The knowledge that better value goods are available elsewhere (Educating)

2. An information point offering guidance about shopping online

3. The offer to complete online orders on a shoppers behalf (one incentive here is that if we place the order at the end of each day/week then we may be able to offer additional discounts depending on how many duplicate goods are ordered (form some sort of buying club) )

4. There is an inherent inconvenience factor when shopping for large goods from the internet - waiting in for a delivery. A shop in town could act as a storage / pick-up point on a customers behalf. However, a lot of couriers already offer this facility but the uniqueness is that a customer may combine pick-up of their order and their usual high-street shop.

As well as saving money for shoppers, the internet cafe will offer the usual facilities, e-mail, web surfing, chatrooms, etc. However, the main draw will be advertising the money that can be saved when buying via the internet. How is this profitable? Here are some ideas:

1. Approach online companies and offer to be there high-street presence. Almost any type of product can be bought cheaper over the internet. For each product type there will be 1 associated online champion retailer that pays for promotion / advertising.

2. A fee is charged for storing items, or for ordering goods on shoppers behalf.

3. A fee is charged for the usual services offered in an internet cafe.

4. Offer an internet drop-off zone for parents to leave their kids at whilst shopping

These are only ideas at the moment. If anyone happens to read this then please let me know your thoughts.

Sunday, October 05, 2003

just recovered from friday night 

Four of us went out on Friday night, Dave blew us out as he had a BIG lunch and would have been falling over by 9pm - lightweight. David Blaine was our first stop, well I wouldn't call it a stop, we just looked on with confusion, gave a wave and hailed a cab to the Strand. We drank our way past covent garden and into the Metro club. On arrival, I remember being impressed with the club but other than that don't remember much. We all somehow lost each other and made our way home safely and separately, that is, except for Marc. He was the first to leave and, not knowing where he was going, boarded the first bus he set eyes upon. After a while he got off the bus as had a sense that he was going the wrong way. From his descriptions I think he was still down Oxford Street but who knows. Anyway he phoned me saying he had just been assaulted by 2 black guys who came out of nowhere. They didn't take anything, just came along and clobbered him for no apparent reason. Marc pushed them away and ran for it, then I met him and caught a bus home from Trafalgar Square. He was a bit bruised and shaken up but mostly angry at his attackers because there was no provocation.

Saturday I spent moping around determined to do nothing, of which I'm an expert at.

Today it was Marc and Linda's first wedding anniversary. Umm, not too sure if it was as happy as it could be but at least they made it!

Tomorrow I have an interview at the job centre so they can register me officially unemployed. I'm unable to claim job seekers allowance as I have savings from a house sale which seems decidely unfair. If I still had my flat then I would have received help with the mortgage payments and been able to claim JSA. I was told that all the tax and national insurance contributions I made before university do not count towards claiming JSA, but only the last two years worth of contributions. As I've been studying for the past 4 years then I'm entitled to nowt. I feel I am being penalised because I worked hard and studied hard, I may have well have sat on my arse instead and then I could have got some government support!

Friday, October 03, 2003

Belated birthday celebrations 

Going into London's westend tonight for some drinking & dancing. We may have time to point, stare and laugh at David Blaine hanging in a box besides tower bridge. The plan at the moment is to pub-crawl to the doors of the Metro club down Oxford Street. I haven't been there before but from some reviews I've read it seems my cuppa-tea.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

Job seeking 

I have registered with quite a few online recruitment agencies including Computer People, Huxley IT, Graduate Jobs, jobsite, monster, Prospects and totaljobs. I have applied directly to Fluor and Halliburton.

I had some luck with Halliburton, in that I was offered an interview. I never got the job but it was well worth the experience. It was perhaps the most gruelling 3 hours I've ever had and, fingers crossed, it will remain so and all subsequent interviews will be a walk-in-the-park and will get me a job.

Before the Halliburton interview I had series of ability tests for Markel International. This too was good experience as I hear a lot of companies use this process to whittle down the number of candidates for a job before proceeding with to the interview stage. The tests took place in exam-like conditions and lasted about 2½ hours. You can buy books that contain sample ability tests and, with a little practice, vastly improve your scores. Once you get used to the question format and the different types of questions then finding the correct solution to a problem becomes second nature. If test scores can be improved on by a little practice then surely it makes a total mockery of its use as a candidate selection tool because anyone who has had the foresight to practice will do well. But in the end I suppose if the hoops are there then I and everyone else will jump through them. Now I know what to do for my next testing time.

Now, I am waiting with bated breath to receive a job application form from capitas for a IT trainee position in a government dept.

Hey, I'm following instructions so don't blame me if this commenting lark don't work! Let's see.

Oh, it seems that I need to add commenting functionality separately! Wait there while I investigate.

my first time. Over the past few weeks I had plenty of things to write down but now, after I've managed to sort myself out with a blog, I haven't much to say. allSorts is about ... (hopefully some interesting musings will begin to appear)

Hey, how do I or can I insert piccies into posts?

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