Get Your VAT Back

•28 November, 2008 • Leave a Comment Get Your VAT Back

Some good mathematics teaching on this Amazon page, on why changing the VAT rate from 17.5% to 15% is only a 2.13% discount, not a 2.5% one.

Amazon have managed a quick response to the VAT discount, without needing to recalculate all their prices, by displaying a discount code for 2.13% off (LOWERVAT). They haven’t exactly gone out of their way to advertise it though. You need to click on a small green link in the top right corner. Presumably anyone who doesn’t notice the discount code will end up paying the old price, meaning that Amazon pocket the 2.5% VAT.

VAT is particularly on my mind at the moment, as, at 2 minutes to 5 on Friday afternoon before the VAT change on Monday, my employer doesn’t have an updated catalogue for our upgrade facility.

BTW, look for the Amazon link in the right column of this blog. If you click it then I get a slice of your spend. (It’s only fair, I’ve told you about the discount code ūüėČ

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Unfortunate timing leaves Kelloggs looking not so Grrreeeatttt!

•18 March, 2008 • 3 Comments

Last night, immediately after watching news about another violent crackdown in Tibet, I had the misfortune to see the following advert for Frosties, in which Tony the Tiger visits Tibetan monks to help him resist Frosties. Aside from the dubious lampooning of Buddhism, the fact that neither the channel nor the advertisers sought to withdraw the advert shows a stunning lack of sensitivity.

Kellogg's Frosties Tony In Tibet

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You couldn’t make it up!

•19 November, 2007 • Leave a Comment

I just received an email from the Campaign Against the Arms Trade(CAAT) which contained this nugget:

CAAT wants you to vote for BAE – for the Worst Greenwash Award 2007.

BAE have recently become so desperate to save what remains of their reputation that they have promoted themselves as environmentally friendly. They have launched lead-free bullets because lead in bullets can ‚Äúpose a risk to people‚ÄĚ (we’re really not making this up!). By visiting, you can vote for the worst corporate lobbyists of 2007 – including BAE, shortlisted in the Greenwash category. Voting closes on 27th November.

Please do vote, if only to acknowledge the entertainment value!

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Bin Windows

•29 October, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Free Software Free Society

I had a tidy up yesterday. I’ve been running Ubuntu for a couple of months now and decided to get rid of any Windows software that I didn’t NEED. An hour of Add/Remove Programs and double checking that old CD backups didn’t have anything extant on them (they didn’t) and I was left with… iTunes. That is now the only reason I have for booting up in Windows, and that is only because of the pesky DRM. Once iTunes Plus has been extended to cover the remaining five or six albums it owes me then I’m off. in the meantime I carefully stored my legacy software. One of my Windows installation CDs spent a few hours in the bin, before I found it a grateful home with someone else – software should be free, after all! (Don’t worry – for as long as I still have Windows installed on my machine I’ll be keeping my other license with me.)

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How we work

•4 September, 2007 • Leave a Comment

How we work

Originally uploaded by bouncysteve

The pressure grows at release time. Nigel does all the work because Rich is otherwise engaged.

—- ‚Ä©Sent using a Sony Ericsson mobile phone

Simpsons Movie

•30 July, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Simpsons Movie

Originally uploaded by bouncysteve

I’m looking forward to seeing the Simpsons Movie this week. It will be good to have a communal experience around such top quality humour.

—- ‚Ä©Sent using a Sony Ericsson mobile phone

Lourdes on the BBC

•8 May, 2007 • Leave a Comment

There was a programme about Lourdes on BBC 2 tonight. I only saw the last 10 minutes, but it seemed very interesting.

pilgrims lighting candles in the Domaine

There is some information about the programme at, as well as links to other sites about Lourdes, and the programme is available to view online here.