Skip to main content
Happy New Year to you all. For me, my holiday turned out okay. Vegging out, watching movies, while the wife was still working! Bit of a bummer that.

I saw some young Chinese men have metal rods pierced through both their facial cheeks last Sunday. I visited a Hindu temple, where some kind of ceremony was being performed. As luck would have it, this facial torture was an added bonus, as it is usually reserved for the Thaipusam festival held at Batu Caves, near Kuala Lumpur, that is frequented by thousands of people. This one had a mere handful of spectators, so I got rather close to the action.

It was painful to watch, but for these chaps, they were in a state of mental bliss. The idea of the ceremony was to purge them of sins, and receive blessings from the Hindu deities. Two of them began to resemble the deities Hanuman (the monkey god) and Shiva (the 'dancing' god). That was some surprise. Their faces completely changed.

For the man possessed by Hanuman, his face puffed out to resemble a monkey, the shape of the nose flattened. For Shiva, he began to dance, while his face became rather handsome, nothing like how he looked naturally. Incredible.

When the time came for them to come back to reality, they felt the pain. But there was no blood. I guess there are certain things in this world that defy explanation, so I'll leave it at that.


Popular posts from this blog

Polymer Picker, and why 8-bit programming matters to me

Late last year, I released a BBC Micro game, Polymer Picker . Realising that 2022 marked the centenary of the BBC, as well as the 40th anniversary of the release of the BBC computer (which was designated as one of the BBC's 100 Objects ), I wanted to work on something that related to the BBC's mission of being able to 'educate, inform and entertain' . So what better way than to release a game for the BBC computer, that in a sense, fulfils those values? But, with video games being so widely available, and playable on all kinds of devices, why did I decide to create my own game for such a niche platform?  Video games are big business. They have been for a number of years. In May 2023, it was reported that Nintendo's latest edition of The Legend of Zelda sold in excess of 10 million copies in three days .  However, there remains sustained interest in video games from yesteryear. Children who grew up in the 8-bit computer revolution are now into their 40s and 50s, and

Using Beebasm for BBC Basic games programming (Mac & Windows)

In August 2021, I released Androidz Redux , a remastered version of my 1994 game Androidz . This process started a year ago, with a couple of days spent playing around with the original code, far away from a real BBC computer. The original game was published in a magazine called Acorn Computing, and has been available to play online for a number of years now. Because I wrote the game on an actual BBC Micro, I used what tools I had at the time, namely some graph paper to create the graphics, and the computer itself to do the actual coding. This is a world away from the tools we now have at our disposal. Fully rounded IDE's such as Visual Studio Code (my current favourite) make it an awful lot easier to program games. Even editors such as Notepad++ offers some ability to edit BBC Basic code. One of the difficulties with editing old games on modern systems is ensuring that you are able to ensure that the BASIC code is properly tokenised before running on an emulator/system, and indee

Rough guide to building UK election maps for D3.js

During my time at CITY A.M. I helped to build an interactive British General Election Map . This blog outlines how I created it. Let's see the map then Here's a simplified version of the map, hosted at Codepen. See the Pen D3 Election Map by Stephen Scott ( @sassquad ) on CodePen . Here, the map looks rather small, as it has been resized to fit the page. You can use your mouse wheel (or double-click/double-tap) to zoom in or out of the map, and click constituencies to view more detailed results on the left hand side. Each constituency is coloured according to party livery. This blog post gives a very general guide as to how that map was created. I'll be adding further detail about the creation of the map in subsequent posts. Acknowledgements This project was the work of several people, in addition to myself. Here are the other former colleagues who collectively made the election map possible: Michael King (back end programming of data capture system) Bill