Lego enthusiast builds Airbus A380 with 35,000 bricks
A dedicated Lego enthusiast impressed fans with this painstaking replica of the world’s biggest passenger plane – built with more than 35,000 individual pieces.
Lego enthusiast Ryan McNaught spent more than eight months constructing the model of a Qantas Airbus A380 in his garage Photo: MASONS
The 7ft-long (2.2m) and 6ft-wide (1.8m) Qantas Airbus A380 is split in half to reveal the intricate workings of life on-board a three-storey long-haul flight.
Lego enthusiast Ryan McNaught, 37, also known as the "The BrickMan", spent more than eight months constructing the masterpiece in his garage.
His red, white and grey model boasts a range of fully automated touch screen controlled functions including front landing gear, two rear landing gear doors and airbrakes on the wing.
Ryan also fitted functioning landing lights, engines, air brakes on the wing and a tail fin on the rear wing.
Among his two-inch-high cast of crew and passengers are iconic characters from well-known films including Indiana Jones, Yoda, and the Samuel L. Jackson character from ‘Snakes on a Plane’.
Numerous support trucks including baggage carts and fuel tankers dot the ground around the airbus.
Ryan, who is a semi-professional Lego-builder and works in IT the rest of the time, reckons the entire project has cost around £3,500.
He built the Airbus for the 2010 Brickworld Lego event in Chicago, USA, in June and will ship the model over to the States before giving himself a week to rebuild any parts that may fall off.
The dad-of-two from Melbourne, Australia said: ”No one has ever built an Airbus like this cut in half so it’s a one-off.
”When I first unveiled it people were climbing over each other to have a look.
”I have built Lego since I was a kid, then real life took over. But now I am semi-professional and do a lot of corporate signage.
”I used to work for an airline so had a bit of knowledge about planes, but it is harder to get information these days because of the world terrorism threat.
”Most of the designs came off the internet and I had to adapt the scale of the Airbus because your average Lego man in quite fat for his height.
”This was by far the most challenging thing I have ever built.”
Ryan said for his next project he would like to build a cut-open skyscraper if his long-suffering wife Melinda, 36, a solicitor can put up with it.
Article from the – http://www.telegraph.co.uk
Milk in a bag at Sainsbury’s
Sainsbury’s is to start selling milk in a bag in all of its supermarkets in an attempt to cut down on plastic packaging.
Could this be the end of the milk bottle? Photo: PA
Instead of picking up their milk in a plastic bottle, customers will be encouraged to pop a bag of the liquid into their trolley.
Using 75 per cent less packaging, the bags cost slightly less than the bottles. A two pint milk bag – the only size available – costs 80p, compared with 86p for the same size bottle.
The supermarket insisted the bags are very robust and no customers have complained about the bags splitting since they first went on test two years ago. Sainsbury’s estimated that 3 per cent of its 24 million weekly customers, the equivalent of 720,000 shoppers, have already switched to regularly using bags.
Though bottles, originally glass and now plastic, have been the predominant method of selling milk since 1880, when they were introduced by Express Dairies, many other countries use bags. In China, India, Poland and Canada milk is more normally sold in bags.
Initially, the supermarket will give away 500,000 jugs, especially designed to hold and pierce the bags. Thereafter, the jugs will cost £1.94.
The company estimates that by switching from bottles to bags, it could save up to 1,400 tons of packaging.
This is the latest in a long line of initiatives from supermarkets, attempting to deflect criticism that they are responsible for the majority of packaging that ends up in landfill. Sainsbury’s has switched some of its tinned tomatoes into cardboard pouches, while Marks & Spencer has stopped individually wrapping pieces of fruit.
Initially Sainsbury’s own-brand semi-skimmed milk will be available, with its 1 per cent milk becoming available later this year. The bags go on sale at its Sainsbury Local stores this week, with the remaining 500 supermarkets stocking them by the end of next month.
Milk in a bag at Sainsbury’s
By Harry Wallop, Consumer Affairs Editor
Published: 3:14PM GMT 24 Feb 2010
Google Buzz prompts legal action by US woman
Google’s new real-time social network tool, Google Buzz, has prompted an American woman to file a class action complaint against the company.
By Emma Barnett, Technology and Digital Media Correspondent
Published: 4:00PM GMT 18 Feb 2010
Google co-founder Sergey Brin on hand for the launch of Google Buzz Photo: REUTERS
Eva Hibnick, a woman from Florida, instructed her US law firm yesterday to file the complaint against Google in San Jose’s federal court, alleging that the company had broken the law by using the new tool to share her personal data without her consent.
The complaint claims that Google has broken several electronic communications laws. Hibnick is seeking an unspecified amount of financial compensation and also an injunction to prevent Google from being able to take similar actions in the future.
Google Buzz, which allows Gmail users to update their status for other Gmail users to see and easily share content from YouTube and Picasa, is being seen as Google’s attempt to compete more closely with Facebook and Twitter. However, since its launch last week, Google has faced a barrage of privacy complaints.
Earlier this week Google bowed to public pressure and diasbled particularly controversial features -one of which gave users a ready-made circle of friends based on their most frequent email and chat contacts in Gmail.
The Google feature was heavily criticised because it revealed to the world who each user emailed the most. Many also did not want contacts whom they emailed regularly for work purposes to be included in their online social circle.
Buzz will now only suggest who users may like to include as their friends.
The site was criticised further because users of Gmail were automatically joined to it. This forced the company to put a tab in the email facility to make it easier to turn off.
Buzz also no longer automatically connects Buzz to Picasa photo albums and Google Reader items.
However, only two days after Google announced the changes, the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), a watchdog group, filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission alleging the company had violated consumer protection laws.
Despite the changes, EPIC said privacy violations remain because Google automatically signs up Gmail users for Buzz, rather than waiting for them to do so themselves, or "opt in" for the service. The company gives users the option to disable the new service.
EPIC wants the FTC to require that Google make Buzz an opt-in service. It also wants the company barred from using Gmail address book contacts to compile social networking lists.
"This is a significant breach of consumers’ expectations of privacy," EPIC Executive Director Marc Rotenberg said in a statement. "Google should not be allowed to push users’ personal information into a social network they never requested."
In response to the EPIC complaint, Google said it already has made some changes to Buzz based on user feedback and has "more improvements in the works."
Yesterday, Canada’s privacy commissioner joined the ever-growing number of Google Buzz critics, accusing the company of breaching privacy laws.
"We have seen a storm of protest and outrage over alleged privacy violations and my office also has questions about how Google Buzz has met the requirements of privacy laws in Canada," Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart said in a statement.
Google was unavailable to comment on the latest rounds of Buzz criticism or the filing of the class action complaint.
Separately Google has acquired reMail – a mobile email search service which was available, until the deal, through the Apple App Store. The app has now been removed to tech enthusiasts’ dismay and no plans for how the service will be integrated into Gmail have been revealed by Google.
Google Buzz prompts legal action by US woman – by the www.telegraph.co.uk
Health and safety officers ban running in pancake race
Contestants in a pancake race poured scorn on health and safety advisers after they were banned from running due to fears they would slip over in the rain.
St Albans City Council Tourism Manager Charles Baker makes sure there is no running in this year’s Pancake Race Photo: SIMON JACOBS/PIN
Hundreds of spectators booed as St Albans City Council Tourism Manager Charles Baker announced the precautions at the beginning of the race.
He said: "We have a new set of rules today. Due to the wet weather conditions and health and safety regulations, in this year’s race, there will be no running allowed. Only walking is permitted. Any team that runs will be disqualified.
"It is a genuine health and safety concern. People fall over in the dry, they will certainly fall over in the wet."
Ten teams took part in the ‘Pancake Walk’ yesterday, three of whom were disqualified for not following the new ‘wet-weather’ rules.
Hertfordshire NHS Community Partnership team captain David Emery, 34, whose team was disqualified in the final, said: "This is health and safety gone mad. I have been disqualified from a running race for running."
I am A Bzz Agent and test products for them here is more about my latest trials with Shell V-Pluss diesel.
My close friends Bob and Richard came round last night for a chat and to report back to me about using Shell V-Power diesel in their cars. Richard wanted to see the new Bzz site so we spent some time looking at it as I explained what a Bzz Agent was. I asked Bob how he had found Shell V-Power diesel and had he noticed any difference in the Performance of his car he said he had and explained that the car was running smoothly and was less noisy.He said that the car had more power and was not as sluggish as it had been.I asked him how many fills he had used and he said three and was planning to fill again soon.When I asked him did he plan to keep on using Shell V-Power diesel he said yes. Richard was just as keen about Shell V-Power diesel and said that he too had noticed that the car had more power and certainly ran better.I asked him about the noise level of his car he told me that it had reduced a lot and that was a great bonus for him.It has reduced so much that even his wife noticed it! I asked him for a score out of 10 he said 9 and he agreed with Bob that he too would keep on using it. So what can I say they certainly were 2 happy people and more than pleased with Shell V-Power Diesel.
I am a Bzz Agent and test products for them here is a little about my latest test on Shell V-Power Diesel hope you enjoy:
I received the Â£20.00 voucher for Shell V-Power and Shell V-Power Diesel, plus the Â£2.00 shell fuel vouchers and I had no problem purchasing Shell V-Power Diesel for my car. As I was getting low on fuel it could not have come at a better time so I used it straight away. I have been driving for about 2 weeks now with the Shell V-Power Diesel and I have to say that I notice that the Diesel consumption is better plus the performance of the car is better overall. As my engine was a bit noisy I have also noticed that the engine now runs smoother and quieter. I phoned four of my fishing mates and invited them round for coffee. After we had talked about fishing for a while I explained to them that I was a Bzz agent and told them what a Bzz Agent was (they had never heard of Bzz and were very interested to hear all about it) I told them I was trying out Shell V-Power Diesel for Bzz and gave them a Â£2.00 voucher each. I told them some of the benefits of Shell V-Power Petrol/ Diesel i.e enhanced performance and increased engine protection and very importantly a cleaner engine. They promised to try out Shell V-Power Diesel the next time they filled up their cars and promised to get back to me. I will Bzz again shortly about Shell V-Power Diesel/Petrol after I hear back from them and I plan to give out the rest of the £2.00 vouchers to friends and family in the next few days. So far I have been impressed with Shell V-Power Diesel especially if it keeps giving me more miles to the gallon and a cleaner engine.
ITV fined £1,600 for animal cruelty over I’m a Celebrity rat stunt
ITV has been fined £1,660 for animal cruelty over an I’m a Celebrity Get Me Of Here stunt which saw to contestants kill and eat a rat.
By Aislinn Laing
Published: 7:49AM GMT 08 Feb 2010
Gino D’Acampo and Stuart Manning from I’m A Celebrity Photo: ITV
The stunt was performed by last year’s winner television chef Gino D’Acampo and Hollyoaks actor Stuart Manning after they were sent into ”exile” for part of the series.
They were given meagre rations of rice and beans, so they caught, killed and cooked a rat to give them "more protein".
D’Acampo, 33, said in the show’s video diary room the Bush Telegraph: ”I saw one of these rats running around. I got a knife, I got its throat, I picked it up.”
A court in Sydney heard that the rat was initially stabbed with a knife but took a minute and a half to die and suffered unnecessary pain in the process.
D’Acampo and Manning were originally charged with animal cruelty themselves.
But the charges were dropped after ITV admitted that production staff gave them permission to take the rat’s life.
The court heard that the producers only considered whether eating the animal would make them ill, rather than whether they were breaking any laws.
The company was fined $3000, around £1,660 pounds, and ordered to pay $2,500 (£1,390) in costs.
An ITV spokesman said it had apologised for the mistake which led to the incident.
"The production was unaware that killing a rat could be an offence, criminal or otherwise, in New South Wales, and accepts that further enquiries should have been made," he said.
"This was an oversight, and we have since thoroughly reviewed our procedures, and are putting in place a comprehensive training programme to ensure that this does not happen in future series."
From the http://www.telegraph.co.uk
Old plate turns out to be rare £100,000 Royal service piece
A woman who took an old plate to the Antiques Roadshow in a Tesco carrier bag discovered it was worth £100,000.
By Richard Savill
Published: 1:42PM GMT 08 Feb 2010
Wendy Jones with the plate Photo: BNPS
For years, the antique had been on a rickety support on a sideboard of Wendy Jones’s home without anyone suspecting it was of such high value.
Mrs Jones only took it to the show because her husband was taking some
But she was startled when the 22-inch oval-shaped plate turned out to be the most valuable to have appeared on the BBC programme in its 30-year history.
The plate was commissioned by the Prussian East India Company for King Frederick II, who set up the company in 1750.
It was made from hard paste porcelain and decorated with the alms of the Hohenzollern family, the order of the black eagle, and the Maltese Cross.
The plate was made between 1750 and 1755, and there are pieces of the service in museums across the world.
Mrs Jones said: “The plate actually belongs to my son because he was left it by his grandmother.
“He didn’t have room for it in his London home so I had it.
“One day it fell off the stand and crashed onto the sideboard but luckily it wasn’t damaged.”
As she left the house to go to the show in Aberglasney, Wales, she grabbed the plate and put it in a single Tesco’s carrier bag. They can easily split,” she said.
“When I heard how much it might be worth I was shocked.
“On the way to the show the plate was on the back seat of the car, but on the way home I kept hold of it all the way.”
She added: “We are not sure where the plate came from but my son’s paternal grandmother did marry into a German family.
“And the plate was made for the King of Prussia, so that’s possibly how it ended up in our family.”
John Axford, from Woolley and Wallis auction house in Salisbury, Wilts, who valued the plate, said: “It is a fantastic piece of a very rare Royal service.”
From the http://www.telegraph.co.uk
Man banned from carrying daughter on shoulders in Tesco
A father was banned from carrying his daughter on his shoulders during a shopping trip to Tesco.
Martin Dunkley: The guard told the 48-year-old taxi driver to take six year-old Natalie down for health and safety reasons. Photo: MASONS
Martin Dunkley was confronted by a security guard when he tried to enter a branch of the store in Cambridge.
The guard told the 45-year-old taxi driver to take six year-old Natalie down for health and safety reasons.
But he refused and decided to shop elsewhere.
A Tesco spokeswoman urged Mr Dunkley to return to the store and talk to the manager about his concerns.
She added: "We take the safety of our staff and customers very seriously. Each store can make these decisions on an individual basis. We have no blanket policy on this issue."
The incident comes after other Tesco stores recently banned customers from wandering around stores wearing pyjamas, then from going barefoot.
Oolong, the rabbit that became an internet hit by balancing things on its head, lives on
A book has been published dedicated to a rabbit who became one of the first cult web stars. The personal blog caught on as word spread about the quirky images and, despite being entirely in Japanese, over 2.5million people visited the site.