When the uni­ver­sity launched its rebrand­ing last year, I was quite pleased: a glossy bro­chure explain­ing the kind of image the uni­ver­sity wants to pro­ject to the pub­lic, a new logo, new momentum for change on super­fi­cial and deep­er levels.

Now it’s all ruined. Take a look for your­self (click to enlarge):

Yes, this is the new Uni­ver­sity of Sydney web­site tem­plate. I kid you not. A gen­er­ous per­son might call it “func­tion­al”. A less gen­er­ous per­son might… well, let’s leave this blog G-rated. It’s grot­esque. It has all the charm of a late 90s web­site. It car­ries none of the per­son­al­ity that the uni­ver­sity aims to pro­ject, and all of the air of design-by-com­mit­tee and oh-look-I-learnt-css-in-24-hours. There’s no warmth; the design ali­en­ates.

For bonus marks, it even dis­plays in Arial on a Mac.

(For com­par­is­on, here’s a screen­shot of the web­site as at 5 Janu­ary.)

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Ok! Packing’s nearly done and I’m just about to scoot off to the air­port. Me and Dan will be trav­el­ling to the USA, Europe and parts of Asia over the next few months — can’t wait!

25 Nov 2009 | 2 comments

Optus, Optus, Optus. You really like screw­ing over your cus­tom­ers right? I really didn’t appre­ci­ate hav­ing to work out why my home net­work print­er stopped work­ing right in the middle of exams — because you screwed with DNS to earn a few easy quid. (Same goes for you, Tel­stra.)

19 Nov 2009 | No comments

Berkoff v Burchill [1996] 4 All ER 1008 at 1019 per Mil­lett LJ:

It is a com­mon exper­i­ence that ugly people have sat­is­fact­ory social lives — Bor­is Kar­loff is not known to have been a recluse — and it is a pop­u­lar belief for the truth of which I am unable to vouch that ugly men are par­tic­u­larly attract­ive to women.

Trivia: Lord Mil­lett has a Chinese name, 苗禮治 (miu4 lai5 ci4), pre­sum­ably because he is now sit­ting on the Court of Final Appeal in Hong Kong.

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'If you like your sex life, don't stick a firecracker up your arse' -- David Rolph's media law life lesson #7

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Photo taken by Dan

Photo taken by Dan

Lip­stick on a pig?

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The point is that cap­it­al works — from a new police sta­tion to a new port — deliv­er a flow of ser­vices stretch­ing over 20, 30 or 40 years. Bor­row­ing to cov­er, say, half the cost of the work is a way of shar­ing its cost between the present and future gen­er­a­tions who will bene­fit from its ser­vices.
(full art­icle)

Ross Gittins is a geni­us — this art­icle is prob­ably the best explan­a­tion I’ve seen of why the gov­ern­ment should bor­row to pay for infra­struc­ture.

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The Uni­ver­sity of Sydney is rebrand­ing from 2010, with a new logo, a new state­ment of pur­pose, and a new domain name (www​.sydney​.edu​.au).

I missed the staff present­a­tion on it today (doh!) but the “Brand Book” is up on the Brand web­site for uni­ver­sity staff to view. It’s nice and glossy, and con­tains state­ments of what the uni­ver­sity stands for, what the uni­ver­sity believes in, and how the brand is developed on a more prac­tic­al level.

And it has the new logo too! How­ever, I’m led to believe that there are ser­i­ous leg­al con­sequences for me if I post it up here, so I won’t. But I must say that I have a pos­it­ive impres­sion of it — it’s a logo that acknow­ledges the past, while present­ing a fresh­er image of the uni­ver­sity. Although some might con­sider it a heresy to change the logo at all, I can ima­gine some much, much worse altern­at­ives — I’m just relieved they haven’t gone for some­thing min­im­al­ist, abstract or just plain-old Web 2.0.

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“If we do not des­troy ourselves, we will one day ven­ture to the stars…”

And who said sci­ence can’t give mean­ing to your life, and can’t imbue you with a sense of pur­pose?

Part of me still wishes I did that phys­ics major.

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Mix cows, six thou­sand people, truck­loads of impor­ted turf and lots of yummy food and you get the first ever Break­fast on the Bridge. Me and Ru Jih were lucky enough to score tick­ets to the event, where Sydney­siders were invited to pic­nic on the icon­ic Sydney Har­bour Bridge — closed to traffic — as part of Crave Sydney.

(Click on the images to enlarge.)

No end in sight... people queue to get onto the bridge

No end in sight… people queue to get onto the bridge

On the way up

On the way up

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