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May 2008
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July 2008

Brilliant idea...why didn't I think of it

IcelandichatMy wife came back from Iceland and gave me this Buff headwear which I favour. They are always appreciated as the tokens of true love from a wife who knows what to buy for a husband who thinks he has everything. It's part of the Icelandic collection and features a print of Gullfoss, a spectacular waterfall. This company has a superb product range and this is a great example. I couldn't find the Scottish collection but I am guess the Saltire would be a good fit, no pun intended. However, there were already some Buffs that were aimed firmly at the 08 Mountain Bike Championships in Fort William. Great example of taking a solid product and really pushing it.

Clive Gillman speaks...

CliveClive Gillman is the Director of the DCA. He is an interesting guy with a challenging view of the arts in Dundee. If you thought the DCA was just a coffee bar with a cinema that showed movies with subtitles; you are wrong. The DCA is a whole lot more and Clive is the man to tell you why. In this interview, Clive is pretty clear about the role the arts can play in Dundee and it will take a lot of people by surprise.

Surprising but true.

ScotlandcantloseI love Dundee and its sense of humour. This pub sign illustrates it well. Of course, Scotland can't lose; we didn't make it to Euro 2008. Half the battle mentoring and working with small start ups is to engender that 'we can't lose' attitude. A pitch to funders, prospective investors or clients is just that; a pitch. It is not the 'do or die' moment for the idea or the company. I blame the Dragon's Den. It is a little known fact that the unsuccessful pitchers are not subject to capital punishment on the programme. They go home, have tea with their loved ones and the world keeps turning. Most take positives from the experience and reshape some of their thinking. They didn't lose; they just got some valuable feedback. Rather like Scotland.

An interesting community project


It is great to find a community project that is a bit different. I was recently introduced to someone who was leading a local project which sounded like being right on the money, as it were. And being the audio nut I am - I recorded a short interview. I learnt a lot. Listen to the interview and check out the web site for more details.

Download the Ellen McCance Interview.


MSPs ...Mac or otherwise

Michael_russellThe other week, I met Mike Russell who is the Environment Minister. Good guy and complete Mac head. However, what was most surprising was his grasp of computer technology and its ability to shape the world we are in today.In my travels, my general impression is most members of our elected assemblies, from local to national to international, struggle with the concept of binary. The whole internet webby thing is waved away as being too complicated and being for 'young people' anyway. If you find 'new' difficult or too dynamic; it's a clue. Don't go into politics.

Adult Literacy

Communicate I am the biggest critic of powerpoint around. "Adult literacy" is one epithet I have used with glee. So, can you imagine my surprise when someone hires me to come and do a 'Powerpoint Masterclass'. What is terrific about the opportunity is the subtle choice. Square peg meets round hole; let's have some fun.