Washable mouse tackles problem of grubby mitts
Hot on the heels of last year's washable keyboard, Unotron is now offering a waterproof mouse, to conjure up a vision of bathtime computing surrounded by bobbing rubber ducks.
The inventions do have a purpose, however. Because they can be fully immersed in a washing up bowl, they can be easily sterilised, making them suitable for use in schools, hospitals and offices that want to stop the spread of any infection.
As you might expect, Unotron is making big claims for its new mouse, reckoning it "will become one of the most significant preventative measures since the introduction of hand-washing."
Be that as it may, Downtime doesn't foresee Unotron's CEO overtaking Florence Nightingale in the public's affections any time soon.
Watmore must wonder at Blair's bafflement
Former Labour media chief Alistair Campbell's confession last week that he and Tony Blair are technophobes doesn't come as much of a surprise, given central government's less than glowing record with IT projects.
If Tony and co can't be bothered to engage with technology long enough to understand how even the basics work, arguably they aren't the best people to lead the UK's less-than-breakneck charge into the world of e-government.
And it must make the next government CIO's job pretty thankless, trying to explain to his unrepentantly ignorant bosses just what he's up to.
Did he send himself a Valentine's card too?
Politicians and e-mail: more evidence it's an unhappy mix.
Last week, Conservative MP Iain Liddell-Grainger was disqualified from a league table charting MPs' responsiveness to e-mails when it was found he had been sending e-mails to himself from a Hotmail account - and promptly replying to them to boost his standing.
An unrepentant Liddell-Grainger said he sent the e-mails to show that the table was "bunk" and "statistically inaccurate", since it only recorded e-mails sent to MPs via a particular website.
But then, being a politician, he would say that, wouldn't he?
Bungee jumping server keeps bouncing back
A New Zealand software house has taken an iSeries server to participate in a series of extreme sports including bungee jumping, riding the rapids and zorbing.
It's not known what the server thought about its adventures, though it presumably beats undertaking millions of tasks a second, 24 hours a day in an excessively air-conditioned darkened room - a not dissimilar schedule to Downtime's own working practices, incidentally.
Just what is zorbing, by the way?
Software developers in easy-listening heaven
More than 80% of software developers enjoy listening to music while writing their code, according to research from Microsoft. But it turns out they aren't all into heavy metal or other more marginal musical offerings, which has rather upset Downtime's apple cart.
They are in fact a pretty conservative bunch, preferring to listen to Coldplay, Stereophonics, U2 and Oasis. Marilyn Manson isn't even mentioned. Most odd.