Re-pimping that which deserves sharing.

The Plastic Hippo

Sit down and take a deep breath; Walsall Council made a mistake.

As the enormity of this shocking news becomes clear, Walsall residents with a sensitive disposition are urged to keep calm, stay strong and be assured that those responsible for the mistake will face the full force of retribution and merciless punishment. For the first time ever in the history of human habitation in this fair borough, an error has occurred that will leave a permanent stain on the impeccable and infallible reputation of Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council. A person, or persons unknown, decided not the grit the roads when it was snowing.

But fear not; this indefensible aberration will not go unpunished. Those responsible for embarrassing our beloved, wise and recently financially enhance politburo will be severely dealt with and will soon learn that a mistake is not acceptable. These errant and lazy gritting crews and their counterproductive…

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The Reremouse


Here in the West Midlands we are very privileged to have areas of a unique and nationally important habitat that is in decline:  Lowland Heath. In particular, Walsall Countryside Services are the custodians of what is left of the former Staffordshire Heaths, an area of heathland that once stretched from Sutton Park to Cannock Chase!  Currently, what remains of this habitat is represented by parts of Barr Beacon, Shire Oak Park, Brownhills Common and Pelsall North Common.  *They are all LOWLAND heaths, even Barr Beacon, as they all come in at under 300m above sea level.  All of the above sites are managed by Walsall Countryside Services in what is called a ‘Higher Level Environmental Stewardship Agreement’ – a 10-year plan devised through working with Natural England  to decide what is the best way to manage the sites in order to consider biodiversity, protected species, rare habitats and of…

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BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

I’m aware that recently, there has been some scaremongering and showboating locally about Walsall Council and Natural England’s long term plans for heathland management on Brownhills Common.

I outlined what this would entail in a post on the subject some weeks ago.

Since then, it has come to my attention that certain elements of the community are actively spreading disquiet and opposition to the scheme. This is silly, ignorant and damaging.

I grew up, like most of us did, roaming and exploring the commons around the town. I love them with all my heart, as my work here will attest. Now I’m older, I also appreciate the rare quality of what we have here in Brownhills, and the many rare and threatened species that dwell in the environs of the open space we cherish.

In order to protect and support the wildlife – from the rarest to the…

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Better Giants

Back in the mists of Internet pre-history, there was such a thing as a Sharp PC-500. Ever heard of bubble memory? If you’re any younger than me, you almost certainly haven’t. Be glad. That screen? 80 char x 8 ln can be a little weird to work on. A printer built into the back of a laptop? Actually, a great idea in principle but the resultant luggable was rather heavy and vulnerable to failures. But my first steps as an 8-year old proto-geek were taken using this computer, on which my father taught me how to first create a font for Tolkein’s Angerthas, and then do the necessary hackery to teach the computer how to use that font in WYSIWYG and print display. While doing so, he also told me about this Friday’s giant.

Child of one of the greatest celebrities of the day, a mathematical prodigy and…

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So wish I’d happened on this before I failed uni. once again.


In a world as fast-changing and full of information as our own, every one of us — from schoolchildren to college students to working adults — needs to know how to learn well. Yet evidence suggests that most of us don’t use the learning techniques that science has proved most effective. Worse, research finds that learning strategies we do commonly employ, like rereading and highlighting, are among the least effective.

(MORE:How to Use Technology to Make You Smarter)

The scientific literature evaluating these techniques stretches back decades and across thousands of articles. It’s far too extensive and complex for the average parent, teacher or employer to sift through. Fortunately, a team of five leading psychologists have now done the job for us. In a comprehensive report released on Jan. 9 by the Association for Psychological Science, the authors, led by Kent State University professor John Dunlosky, closely…

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