Virgin seen in suborbital space.

Virgin Galactic TestPerhaps not quite the virgin Mary or an Angel coming down to see the minions on earth, but she is called Enterprise and under the watchful eye of Virgin’s chairman, Richard Branson, she made her first flight through the sub-orbital level of the atmosphere. Bringing space travel one step closer.

The craft was taken up by aircraft rather than launched from the ground. The craft was then released and allowed to glide back to base successfully.

The commercial nature of these flights pioneered by Virgin may be dubious with a single flight merely taking you outside of the atmosphere for a few minutes of weightlessness. However it is an important step for space travel, and later when colonies exist on the moon and beyond,  Virgin Galactic are likely to be one of the forerunners of commercial traffic.

The company state they are nearly full for the bookings for their first year of operations, a number expected to be around 500, giving the company in the region of $100,000,000 for the venture. We poor people can only hope that Easyjet decide to venture into the low-cost space travel budget. Although im not sure how beneficial that will be…


News Technology

Is the goverment slowing technology?

Memory Chip PictureI recently covered the state of the Internet report specifically how the UK did not make it anywhere on the top 100 cities and has a much slower average broadband than well pretty much anywhere. Compare it to cities such as those in Japan which has most of the top 100 cities and you see a huge technological difference.

However, in latest studies by Ofcom Britons may actually not be as technophobic as the rest of the world thinks. The average Briton spends 45% of their time using some technological stuff be that the TV, Radio, iPhone, Computer or something else along those lines. The study has revealed that we have a social networking flair with the largest site in terms of mobile Internet access being Facebook.Which is sitting at more than 5 times the traffic sent to Google from the same medium.

Going with the data we cant even attribute this to younger generations taken over from the older generations. Old age pensioners are the highest growth for Internet take up service.  They claim 50% of old people now are connected to the Internet via broadband. Up from last years 43%.In contrast however the youth are best at multi-tasking such as using mobile phone, computer and watching TV whilst the older generation tends to need to focus on one goal at a time.

The figures also show that average spending on communications compared to general housing costs is around 4% or nearly £100 a month. This covers mobile phone, broadband, tv etc. With 50% of the market being covered by all in one service providers such as Sky and Virgin it is likely this has contributed significantly to the availability of services.

With information like that, one must really question is the Government responsible for slowing down the growth of technology in the UK? Our broadband infrastructure is far behind the rest of the world. Our government is using ancient browsers as recently discussed in the theme of security. Our government is perhaps reluctant to encourage technology to come to the UK as it would mean they can no longer watch our activities and tax heavily for it?

The Telegraph


Yet Another BT Price Rise [YABTPR]…

BT Logo Just when you thought that value for money was poor in the telecoms industry, especially in reference to the hated British Telecom, BT go and put the price up. That’s right, another hike in the cost of service from one of the worst telecoms companies in the world.

Last year we transferred our phone line to Sky after a year of being on contractual BT. £11 a month for a phone line that sits there and brings in an adsl connection is quite extreme considering you then need to actually pay for the adsl to be installed on the line.

When you consider that Internet voice systems can be as low as free with services such as skype, and even land line based voip solutions can exist for as little as just £5 a month it really does make you question, What are you paying for with BT line rental?

Apparently people whom are on benefits get a “special” price package, of £13.50  with £4.50 a month call allowance. So compared against their base package, for the average no cable broadband user is it really much difference ?

BT has some of the most draconian regulations I’ve ever came across in dealing with corporations and I’m proud to admit , I’m no longer a BT Customer, technically It was my partner before and before that my parents so i can say with an even cheesier grin, I’ve never been a BT Customer. Nor do I plan to be one if i can help it.

BT needs to seriously revise its strategies, roll out super fast fiber optics to every home in the uk and have a flat rate cheap line rental for broadband users (£5 at most). Doing this might actually win it public support and customers.

So when your approaching the end of your mandatory period with BT for installing of a new line, perhaps you should consider the alternatives such as Virgin, Talk Talk and Gradwell or Skype for VoIP service. Each of these can provide you with an interesting service that will almost certainly save you money.