Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Glasgow Christmas timelapse treat

It’s amazing what just about anybody can do with digital cameras now.

Considering that is as good a reason for mentioning this short capture of Glasgow at Christmas.

Considering the amount of money I wasted back in the 1980s and 1990s, when video was supposedly becoming ‘great’, it almost hurts to look at what can be done with the latest camera-phones, let alone the latest real digital cameras, where video and still have all but merged to become one.

Timelapse footage shows how incredible Glasgow looks at Christmas

WordPress blogs don’t allow the video to be embedded, so you’ll have to use the link.

George Square Globe Wheel Tree

George Square Globe Wheel Tree 1

14/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Renfrew Street ‘Door’ follow-up surprise

I noticed an add-on door in Renfrew Street a while ago, and had assumed it was some sort of fairly robust barrier, especially given the fairly expensive mechanical digital lock attached to it.

(Sorry, I’m suffering some sort of memory failure, and search crash. I was sure I had this pictured, but can’t find in my archives or in the Blog. You’ll just have to imaging the digital lock, just below the edge of the wall.)

I think that thought might need to be revised a little.

Somebody might want to study their design.

There may be a hole or two in the Mark I version.

If it’s not obvious, the door is in line with the first truss seen in the centre of the pic.

Renfrew Street Not Robust Door

Renfrew Street Not Robust Door

Reminder of how it looks from the front/street.


14/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Oh dear – the cycling activists are going to be REALLY UPSET at this news

I can’t get away from opportunities to kick the damned cycling activists over the past few days.

It looks as if YET ANOTHER set of actual data makes a mockery of their endless whining about cyclists being ignored in preference for motorists, or similar claims they like to keep making.

CYCLE journeys to and from Glasgow City Centre have more than doubled in less than ten years, according to new data collected by the council’s Sustainable Transport team. There has also been a large increase in those walking in and out of the central area.

Figures based on the annual count of people cycling past 35 locations around the city centre area show that travelling by bike has gone up by 111 per cent between 2009 and 2018.

According to the count, which took place over two days in September this year, there were 5,712 journeys by bike into the city centre on average each day with a total number of 11,000 journeys in and out of the city centre on a daily basis.

The 2018 count also indicated that almost 53,000 people walk into the city centre on average each day, with a total number of 102,972 journeys in and out of the city centre on a daily basis.  This is a near 19 per cent increase on 2009 and also suggests that a substantial number of the city centre’s 150,000-plus workforce walk to work every day.

BIG Increases In Glasgow City Centre Cycling And Walking

On the other hand…

Perhaps I should come clean, and be more honest about these results.

I HAVE SKEWED THEM and made them invalid!

I have to confess that sometimes I cycle to and from Glasgow, past the very counters mentioned, up to THREE time a day.

So, sadly, those figures could be three time higher than they actually are.


That said, I have sometimes cycled past those counters, watched the number increase, and wondered about the total.

On the other hand, in the real world, I have also passed some of them via gates and paths that miss them altogether, so I’d guess that over all journeys, for all riders, the overall number balances out.

Interestingly, the pic which accompanied the above article must have been taken some time ago (well, look at the weather), since I haven’t looked at the Saltmarket counter recently (always in a hurry now), or grabbed a pic (I should, shouldn’t I), but my recollection is of a number much higher than the 19,998 shown. With my memory, I’m not even going to TRY to recall the last count I saw there!

I must stop next time, and take a pic.

Incidentally, I walk AND cycle here, but there’s a heck of a difference between a near 2-hour walk (and it always takes longer as I stop to take pics), and a 45-minute bike ride.

Saltmarket Cycle Counter Pic Credit ReGlasgow

Saltmarket Cycle Counter Pic Credit ReGlasgow

14/12/2018 Posted by | council, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Save yourself a fortune – go to Skye or Mull instead of Mars

There was an amusing story about Mars, and it seems that giving some areas Scottish place names is not the only reason for thinking of similarities.

Scientists have discovered soil on Mars to be similar to that found in two locations in Scotland.

The Aberdeen-based James Hutton Institute studied data on Martian minerals beamed back to Earth by Nasa’s robot rover, Curiosity.

Researchers compared the information against the institute’s Scottish soil dataset.

They found the Martian soil to be “strikingly similar” to basaltic soils of the isles of Skye and Mull.

Dr Benjamin Butler, of the institute’s environmental and biochemical sciences group, said Curiosity had successfully sent back digital mineral signatures of about 30 soils on the Red Planet.

He said: “Amazingly this data is open access, despite being probably the most expensive X-ray diffraction data in history.

“This allowed us to compare the Martian data to our own Scottish soil dataset, measured on a similar instrument, and to ask the question whether there are any soils in Scotland with similar mineralogy to those found on Mars.

Martian and Scottish soils ‘strikingly similar’

Looks like better value than the £250,000 it might cost you for a few minutes in space if you take a trip on Virgin Galactic’s ‘space tourism’ offering.

More seriously, if you have watched the progress of information gathering today, as compared to the first days of planetary landers, the advances have been little short of amazing.

And that’s without even thinking  about other successes, such as sending spacecraft to intercept comets, and return with material collected from them.

Mars Or Skye

Mars Or Skye

14/12/2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment


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