APPLE GRUMBLE

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It is reported that Apple is soon to release three new iPhones, one of them with an expected price tag of over £1000; but there are concerns as to whether it has sufficient in the way of new features to justify this high price.

You’ve heard of Apple – not the fruit –
They used to be thought quite astute,
In selling phones that people liked;
But now the price is further hiked,
Although the products are still nice,
One wonders if they’re worth the price.

The screen is bigger – well, maybe –
Which makes it easier to see,
And then the camera’s been improved,
With any problems now removed.

And finally, a touch of class:
The chassis will be made of glass,
Which given the fate of most screens,
Is guaranteed to make you scream!

For Cinderella learnt before,
That glass things contacting the floor,
Can get a rather nasty bash,
And end up as just so much trash.

But Apple doesn’t know the score,
They only read one tale before,
And that involved an apple where,
Some seven dwarfs were in despair,
Until a princeling with an app,
Turned round and gave the girl a tap.

This did the trick, the girl awoke,
And in a jiffy duly spoke:
“How did you find me on your own?
I bet you had to use your phone,
But I thought that the satnav app,
Was really, truly, total crap.”

“Indeed it is, I did get lost,
Then I found out for modest cost,
I could avoid this load of crap,
By use of Ordnance Survey map.

So I’ve no need of iPhone 10,
Can use maps time and time again,
And with the money saved I hope,
The two of us might now elope!”

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E-TYPE JAG

Jag_E-Type

It is reported that Jaguar has made an electric version of the iconic E-Type which would seem to show incredible foresight in whoever named it all those years ago.

We’ve all heard of the Jag Type E,
Which often is held out to be,
The whole world’s most attractive car,
And better than the rest by far.

In sixties, seventies it was made,
About one and a half decade,
And then, sadly, production ceased –
The end of that great masterpiece.

But now they’re making them again,
Though with a different power train;
Instead of pistons one plus five,
They’ve given it electric drive.

So where the engine used to sit,
The space is filled up – every bit –
With boring-looking battery packs,
That won’t appeal to anoraks,
But do, in fact, at any rate,
Allow it to accelerate,
One second faster than before,
With pedal pressed down to the floor.

So could this car turn out to be,
What everybody wants to see,
As cars move on electrically,
Abandoning the ICE*.

I s’pose that only time will tell,
But maybe if you are heeled well,
You could afford three hundred thou,
And make do with this one for now!

* Internal combustion engine

THE FLYING PAINTBRUSH

Boeing 787_outlines_the_sky_630

It is reported that Boeing has flown its latest 787-8 Dreamliner aeroplane with Rolls-Royce engines for 15766 miles and over 17 hours in a route tracing out the shape of the plane over the United States.

The Boeing people are quite smart,
And one or two are good at art,
So when they thought they’d like to show,
How far their new airplane would go,
With Rolls-Royce engines, slimline wings,
Computers that control all things,
They thought they’d get the plane to draw,
Its outline as they made it soar,
Up in the sky in the US,
Just guaranteed then to impress.

They set off in the afternoon,
Not planning to return too soon;
For seventeen hours they stayed aloft,
Flown by computerware that’s soft,
And after sixteen thousand miles,
Their faces filled with big broad smiles,
As the plane landed, “Did it?”, “Yes!”
A sign of all the team’s success.

The picture thus drawn in the sky
Which showed the route the plane did fly,
Was then released to the world’s press,
So all could print it, more or less.

This was a gimmick, that’s for sure,
But one that likely will endure,
To be recorded in folklore,
As one that’s not been done before.

They can be proud of what they’ve done,
One big achievement undergone,
For it’s quite difficult to fly,
For that time non-stop in the sky.

The plane and engines passed the test,
Because they are the very best,
So maybe the next time you fly,
You should a Boeing specify!

“But what of Airbus?” You may yell.
At this stage I just cannot tell,
But if some clever thing they do,
I’ll write a verse about that too.

Image – FlightAware.

FOSSIL DEATH!

Nissan LEAF

It is reported that the Government proposes to ban the sale of new diesel and petrol cars from 2040.

If you have got a diesel car,
You really don’t know where you are,
One time they were so very clean,
And now they’re better off unseen.

In ten short years the view has changed,
Priorities been rearranged,
And whereas once low CO2,
Was quite the wisest thing to do,
The view that is now orthodox,
Is that it’s best to have less NOx.

So up steps the electric car,
They may not go so very far,
But they are really so discreet,
While driving down the city street.

That is because, as you well know,
There’s no emissions on the go,
But still there is some CO2 –
It’s just it’s nowhere near you.

Then in just over twenty years,
The Government says it prefers,
Electric only to be sold,
The cleaner to the air behold.

No longer will we cough and wheeze,
Risk extinction of the species,
And with such wonderful foresight,
Then everything should be all right.

But wait! Perhaps things are amiss,
The Government is behind this,
And when HMG gets involved,
It rarely is a problem solved.

So watch this column if you would,
’Twill say if things are bad or good;
We pray that all will not be lost,
But do please keep your fingers crossed!

Image – Richard Kelly / Flickr

THE INTERNET OF THINGS

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It is reported that home gadgets that connect to the internet can be operated maliciously and can even, like a Trojan horse, give hackers access to our internet and bank data.

The internet of things is here,
A reason, you may think, to cheer,
But don’t get too excited yet –
It could be something you’ll regret.

It means that everything is smart –
Appliances for the most part –
Like fridges, heating, lights and taps,
Designed to help you – well, perhaps.

One aspect of this is you can,
Leave your potatoes in the pan,
And have them on and start to boil,
So that the result of your toil,
Is ready, almost, then to eat,
When you get home by means of feet.

Then there’s the fridge, it keeps things cold,
And I have recently been told,
That smart ones now know what you eat,
Though they’re programmed to be discreet.

So when your eggs are down to four,
The fridge will simply order more,
And you should now no longer fear,
You’ll run completely out of beer.

But such devices can be hacked,
And as they buy for you in fact,
They might also at your expense,
Be running up bills quite immense,
Supplying food to Russia where,
They’ve lots of hackers working there.

These hackers really are just spies,
They’re partial to our cakes and pies,
And when they’ve had their fill of these,
They finish off with fruit and cheese.

We know this ’cos we are so bright,
The Russians hack by day and night,
They can the biggest numbers boast,
But still they always burn the toast.

And then there’s more that they can do,
They know when you are in the loo,
And if you’re there about to burst,
They might jump in and flush it first!

To let your watchword be ‘Take care’,
When you’re existing anywhere,
For all things can be hacked and more,
Far worse than 1984.

SUPER SHOPPER

Supermarket

It is reported that supermarkets are developing systems that change the prices of products from hour to hour through the day depending on how busy the shop is and other factors.

The prices supermarkets charge,
Are pretty stable by and large,
And though in time they will change, they
Don’t vary much from day to day.

Your shopping then can be a breeze,
The trolley filling up with ease,
Because the prices that you pay,
Are much the same as yesterday.

But now big changes are in store,
It’s something we’ve not seen before,
Because the prices quite soon will,
Be always changing at the till.

They’ll go up if the shop is full,
Be lower when there is a lull,
And if there’s no-one there at all,
You can expect the steepest fall.

I see a problem here, though slight,
For if you fail to expedite,
Your shopping trip and trolley fill,
You might discover prices will,
Have changed before you reach the till,
And you might have a nasty bill.

The answer, I think, is quite plain,
You go and scan the lot again,
And if you do it once or twice,
You might just get a better price.

But on the other hand it could,
Not do an awful lot of good,
Because if folk go round again,
It really would be pretty plain,
To the computers in the store,
That footfall has gone up some more,
And though it might make you irate,
The prices might well escalate.

So what to do? What’s the best plan?
Just go round faster if you can.
And if you still can’t get it right,
Try shopping at the dead of night!

Image – Jonathan Billinger / Wikimedia commons

ONE IS AGAST!

Aga_gc3

It is reported that new AGA cookers which are fitted with electronics so that they can be operated remotely from a phone can be hacked.

An Aga’s a fantastic beast,
It can bake bread with flour and yeast,
And as I’m authorised to tell,
It will cook other things as well.

But Agas really are quite old,
Though very lovely to behold,
And now the makers, somewhat late,
Are bringing them right up to date.

They’re fitting chips – not ones you fry –
So that you can with beady eye,
Check with your smartphone if it’s new,
And tell the oven what to do.

The oven’s programmed to obey,
And will do everything you say,
No matter soufflé, roast or pud,
It will then cook it as it should.

But now a problem doth appear,
It seems some have been acting queer,
And now the problem has been tracked,
It looks as if some have been hacked.

So when you are on your way back,
And you find out there’s been a hack,
Your caviar with artichoke,
Might well have just gone up in smoke!

Image – Wikimedia commons