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The magnificent Painted Turtle

I tend to shy from offering advice on photography, as I don’t see myself as any sort of expert, and I’m certainly no professional. But, as in all things, there will be things I know which others don’t, and vice-versa. And, since others have told me they’ve found my notes useful, I thought I’d share them here.

Some of these points are obvious, some are learned. Some will be obvious to some, and new to others. While the points are all from the view of a DSLR user, many will be generally applicable.

For some examples of what can be…

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GraphQL is a powerful, flexible technology that can revolutionise your approach to APIs and massively accelerate their development.
There’s just one problem: it’s incredibly difficult to fully understand.

In the last 3 years I’ve worked on three major API-based projects; an internal GraphQL API for a mobile game, the public, REST-based IX-API standard, and an internal GraphQL API for my current employer. Each of those, even the RESTful API, has made me appreciate the power and potential of GraphQL.
But dear gods, the learning curve is nothing short of a cliff.

The thing is, it’s not for a lack of…

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Credit: Jordan Harrison on Unsplash

It’s been my great pleasure this year to work on one of the most interesting and challenging projects of my career — the international collaboration project between LINX, AMS-IX and DE-CIX to create and implement the IX-API specification.

In brief, the IX-API project is intended to provide a common, consistent, and easy-to-use API specification to order large-scale network connectivity from IXPs programatically, without the risks and delays of human-to-human interactions. If you’re not familiar with this area of technology, you could do worse than to consider this “AWS for Networks”.

Spoiler: It turns out that that’s quite difficult.

There are…

Before we narrowly voted for Brexit, we were told of its promise, and of the vast benefits it would bring. Even after issuing the Article 50 notification, we were told it would be the “easiest negotiation ever” in which we’d “hold all the cards”.

We’re not hearing a lot of that now. Virtually no-one is claiming *any* benefit from Brexit, and as time passes we’re being told, by all sides, that it would be worse and worse. We passed “Not the end of the world” months ago and we’re now somewhere around “National Emergency”.

Of course, a lot of pro-Brexit…

Dear ***,

We keep hearing about how Labour’s leaders want a General Election so that they can deliver a “Worker’s Brexit”. I don’t know if you’re aware of just how transparently cynical the electorate find this claim — a naked and likely doomed bid for power over principle. Everyone (except, apparently, your party leadership) is well aware that there is only one offer available, and the EU27 won’t suddenly offer us free unicorns just because it’s Jeremy Corbyn asking. …

The following piece was initially written in 2016 in response to a piece of “We won two world wars, we don’t need the EU” idiocy, but never published in a public forum. Since various chumps have now started recycling that outdated argument, it seems only fair that I pull this out of the archives to respond.

We, i.e. Britain, did not “win two World Wars”. We were members of the vast alliances that won the wars, and that took 10 years and tens of millions of lives. And frankly, the Second World War was a far closer call than was…

Dear [MP’s name removed]

We now know that Vote Leave broke the law in their referendum campaign.

We know this campaign was based on lies, deception and xenophobia, and had improper meetings with foreign government agents.

We know that the ongoing Tory civil war is deliberately pushing us to an ultra-hard or no-deal Brexit — and that even May’s fantastical best case makes us a satellite state of the EU.

We know this will be no “jobs-first Brexit” and that every one of Jeremy Corbyn’s “red lines” will be crossed.

We know that for all the talk of “betraying the…

It doesn’t matter that the task’s being performed by a bunch of clowns who couldn’t deliver a postcard, because there’s no way anyone’s getting that carcass through a letterbox.

Nonetheless, numerous hecklers are standing around shouting about how they’d do it better.

Rees-Mogg is haranguing anyone who gets too close about how, in a better past, plesiosaurs would voluntarily swim right down one’s moat.

Johnson, having given up on pushing, is now standing atop the rotting carcass, lecturing the sky on how he could have solved this problem by now. He is slowly sinking.

The remainder of the cabinet is…

Some time ago, a friend of my wife’s invited us for a drink. I ended up finding some of the best beer and conversation I’ve had in my life.

It wasn’t just that first venue — to be honest, I can’t even remember which we went to that time. It was the whole London Craft Beer scene, which lives, thanks to passion and skills of its creators, in numerous drafty railway arches and remote industrial estates across the capital, and in the overflowing cupboards of myriad craft aficionados whose biggest drinking problem is storage space.

So what’s so great about…

Back in December, I wrote an article called “Why is Brexit still moving?”. 10 weeks later, I thought I’d take a look back and see how true it still holds.

I had 10 potential or contributory explanations back then:

1) “The Will of the People”

Does this still hold? The evidence is now against it. Leaving aside the fundamental flaws in the claim as dissected previously, the country seems to be turning ever more strongly against Brexit. Polls are showing support for a second referendum or an outright Remain vote. …

Richard George

Multilingual development and DevOps, with occasional politics and craft beer. Like the work? Contribute at

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