So tonight I finally got around to watching at least part of one of my Christmas presents, The Corrs – All The Way Home / The Story Of The Corrs which is a two DVD set pairing a pretty extensive documentary covering the story of the band, along with one of their last concerts in Geneva in 2005 – significant in that it marked the return of Caroline – at least for part of the gig – following time out to have a baby.
Tonight I watched the documentary – the concert will be saved for a time when the neighbours are out as it really needs the surround sound speakers turned on for the full effect.
I would say that The Corrs are probably the band I’ve been a biggest fan of in my fairly eclectic music tastes – certainly I’ve probably got most of the stuff they’ve released in the UK, and a couple of rarities on import to. Having said that, even I stopped buying CD’s when it got to the multiple greatest hits albums with even more obscure remixes as the record company tried to squeeze money out of a band that weren’t recording any more. They’re also the band I’ve seen most live, from the first time as a support act, where all you could see of Caroline was a pony tail bobbing up and down behind the drum kit, through their major UK tours where I managed to see them at Wembley Arena and also in Birmingham. Ironically the point where their activity started to shift away from performing coincided with the point where I started to lose interest with pop music, hence why I only got the DVD this Christmas!
Anyway, the documentary really was extensive, starting right from the beginning with the Corrs as children, covering their involvement with The Commitments, then their early success in Ireland and Australia, and lack of success in the UK. From there we get their big break UK wise with the Royal Albert Hall Concert on St Patrick’s Day 1998, and then their mainstream success worldwide, leading on to the point where Sharon and Caroline get married, and the band starts to take a back seat to their families. The documentary was made a little before the official decision to go on hiatus that came in 2006, but it’s pretty obvious from the interviews in the documentary that this is the way it is going, with comments that the 2005 tour was probably the last. Having said that, we’ve seen Take That and the Spice Girls return, so who knows whether we’ll see the Corrs back again in the future. Whether or not they do, the music still remains eminently listenable – suffice to say that all their albums are on my iPod…
Back at Christmas I posted a big grumble about the fiasco that is Heathrow Terminal 4 – a piece that even got me quoted in the Times. Heading over to France this last week, we went with British Airways, again from Terminal 4, this time into Geneva Airport in Switzerland.
So first up, there have been changes with the notorious ‘Fast Bag Drop’… Yes, rather than sort out the problems, they’ve just dropped the word ‘Fast’ from the title. Interestingly they’ve also done the same in Geneva, but as with Calgary we’d checked in and put the bags through in a few minutes there, unlike the twenty minute queue at Heathrow.
The other hassle we had last time was caused by the lack of available gates in the terminal, and it was the same this time around as we were bussed out to a remote stand. This didn’t cause us much of a delay going out, but coming back the inbound plane was over an hour late, entirely due to the same situation. According to the crew on the plane, they had been ready to go on time, but the flight coming out to Geneva had about twenty special needs passengers. Bear in mind that all of this would have been known to British Airways, but the plane was again on a remote stand. Whereas in Geneva the special needs passengers were taken off without too much of a delay over the air bridge, at Heathrow where on the remote stand the only access to the plane is up steps, it took them over an hour to load the passengers, resulting in such a delay that our plane took off only a minute or two before the next Geneva to London flight. It had one advantage though, when we touched down at Heathrow, they did put our flight onto a free gate at terminal 4, so at least we didn’t have to contend with the interminable wait for busses.
Thankfully all our baggage arrived – although considering that on the same day the Telegraph were running a story about the airlines selling off some of the hundreds of thousands that fail to be returned in the paper that was being given out, you couldn’t blame people for being worried that they wouldn’t!
Although we can do little to avoid Heathrow or Gatwick when heading to Canada – certainly it might be worth considering the Eurostar/TGV option next time we head to TaizÃ©.
As usual I’m a little behind with watching some of the videos I’m subscribed to. However, this afternoon I got round to watching the ScobleShow video tour of CERN near Geneva.
CERN is very much science on a big scale, with the new accelerator the Large Hadron Collider running for 27km under the mountains. Not surprisingly, to support all of this research, they’ve needed a similar level of computing resources. The two people doing most of the talking on the video are Ben Segal and Jean-FranÃ§ois Groff, who were both involved in key parts of the story of the birth of the World Wide Web along with Tim Berners-Lee. Ben Segal was key in introducing TCP/IP into the organisation, and at one point in the video talks about the significant internal arguments that took place over using the North American protocol over European alternatives. Jean-FranÃ§ois Groff worked with Tim Berners-Lee on the first browser and the underlying protocol.
Alongside the history, you also get a bit of background as to the main work at CERN looking around the on site museum. The video then finishes with a look at the data centre, with a discussion of quite how much the contents of the data centre have changed. Definitely an interesting video.