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Mobile money: Here at last 2011 年 05 月 27 日

Filed under: 未分類 — 曬蝴蝶 (vanessapsy) @ 21:39:39

行動錢包 終於訴諸行動
BBC 20 May 2011
Rory Cellan-Jones Technology correspondents Technology correspondent

觀賞:Rory Cellan-Jones展示了手機如何付費使用

From today, when you want to buy a coffee or a sandwich, instead of reaching for coins or a credit card you can just brandish your phone.


The mobile wallet has arrived in Britain, in the form of a Samsung phone and a joint venture between Barclaycard and Orange.

Amazing, huh? Well, not really. While the new phone, using near field communication technology (NFC) to allow contactless payments, is a real step forward, what’s surprising is just how long it has taken to happen.

驚人的,是吧?哦,也並不盡然。雖然新的手機,使用近場通信技術(NFC Near Field Communications 近端交易技術)的,允許非接觸支付,讓人驚訝的是花了那麼長的時間才跨越真實的一步。

Mobile money is the revolution that has been just over the horizon for more than a decade. In 1999 I went to see Nokia in Helsinki.

Amongst the things they were keen to demonstrate, were various ways you could pay with your phone, including a car-wash and a drinks vending machine. The payments system was crude – it involved sending an SMS – but we were assured this was just the beginning and soon our sim cards would become our credit cards.

行動錢包革命發展比一的年代更超越眼界。 1999年,我去看了在赫爾辛基的諾基亞。
在這當中,他們都渴望證明,可以有很多不同的方法使用手機支付費用,包括洗車和飲料自動販賣機。支付系統是很簡略的 – 它涉及發送簡訊 (short message service) – 但我們確信這只是開始,我們的SIM卡將很快成為我們的信用卡。

But we waited – and waited, and apart from a few clunky systems such as phoning up to pay for parking, nothing happened.

There was a pilot scheme a few years back involving O2, London’s Oyster travel card system and some sandwich bars, but that came and went.

但是,我們等待 – 和等待,除了少數笨重的系統,例如打電話到付停車費,什麼都沒有發生。
包含02(英國娛樂中心 會場),倫敦的Oyster旅行卡系統和一些三明治酒吧在幾年前有一項試驗計劃,但來了又去。

M-Pesa is used by thousands of people every day in Kenya
The technology – NFC – had arrived, but it seemed there was not really the will from the mobile operators, the manufacturers, and the banks to come together and convince consumers that this was something they needed.

在肯亞成千上萬的人每天都使用M – PESA

(PS : 90% 的肯亞人沒有開設傳統的銀行帳戶,可是肯亞的行動電話滲透率卻是銀行帳戶持有人的三倍左右。所以肯亞出現了一個手機上面的服務叫做 M-Pesa,這個服務可以讓肯亞人用手機做匯款和繳費的服務,不用透過銀行,對於當地人民來說,他們不知道什麼叫做網路銀行,更遑論用網路銀行來轉帳或是付款,但是手機卻直接跳過了這些,讓他們同樣享有便利。所以「無線」提供了原本落後國家相當好的機會,讓他們在匯流的時代可以迎頭趕上。)

NFC的技術 –已到來,但似乎並不是行動物件使用者真正的意願,製造商,銀行一起運作,並說服消費者,這是他們需要的東西。

Meanwhile, the mobile money revolution was happening – in Africa. Travel to Kenya, and on every street you will see shops and kiosks offering the mobile money transfer service M-Pesa.

與此同時,行動錢包革命在非洲發生了。在肯亞旅行,你會看到每一條街道的商店和售貨亭(公用電話亭)都有提供M – PESA匯款服務。

In a country where only a minority have bank accounts, the idea that you can transfer money to friends or relatives hundreds of miles away without climbing aboard a bus has proved a huge hit. It isn’t very high tech – at least not in terms of what happens on the handsets – but it’s definitely turned Kenyans’ phones into mobile wallets.

在這個國家裡,只有少數人擁有銀行帳戶,你可以匯款給朋友或數百英里遠的親戚而不用乘坐巴士登山的這個想法,已被證明引起巨大轟動。至少據發生在手機上的事這不是很高科技 的 – 但它絕對讓肯亞人的手機轉變為行動錢包。

Now that idea is coming to the UK, albeit in quite a limited form for now. On the Orange Barclaycard phones you will only be able to spend a maximum of £15 a time, so you’re unlikely to decide you can afford to leave your credit cards behind when you leave home in the morning.


But other operators will follow Orange, and once NFC becomes a standard feature of new phones, it’s possible that mobile payments will become commonplace too.
What we cannot know at this stage is whether consumers will be keen to see their phones as wallets. In Africa, the service meets a real need and millions have leapfrogged straight from cash to mobile currency without ever being conventional banking customers, writing cheques or using cards to get money out of a cash machine.



Here in the UK, mobile money looks like a useful addition to the way we handle our finances, rather than a necessity. Maybe we will all be buying a cappuccino with a swipe of our NFC phones in a few months, but don’t expect the revolution that we’ve seen in Africa.



A call to arms for the castle that keeps fantasies alive 2011 年 05 月 17 日

Filed under: 未分類 — 曬蝴蝶 (vanessapsy) @ 21:55:19


Jonathan Glancey guardian.co.uk, Monday 14 February 2011 17.30 GMT

Let’s support the National Trust’s campaign to preserve the magnificent Castle Drogo as a haven from our ‘margarine’ world


Castle Drogo in Dartmoor, Devon, which was completed in 1930. Photograph: Ian Leonard/Alamy

Drogo城堡在達特穆爾,德文郡,1930年完建。攝影:伊恩倫納德/ Alamy

Margarine Castle. It’s the kind of name that would have tickled Edwin Lutyens, the sweet-natured architect of the last castle to be built in England. Margarine? How could this vast granite building in Dartmoor, a modern fortress that cost £60,000 to build (£30m in today’s money), be in any way associated with an oleaginous butter substitute that those with the money looked down on from lofty social heights?


Because this quixotic and sublime country house was commissioned by Julius Drewe, that’s why. Drewe was the young man who, with John Musker, had founded Home and Colonial Stores in London in the early 1880s. By the time he asked Lutyens to create a castle for him in Devon, there were nearly 500 branches, in which the sale of margarine was a major source of income; and when work on Castle Drogo was complete – only a third of what was originally planned was built – in 1930, various mergers meant that Drewe’s retail chain owned 3,000 shops. Drewe himself had all but retired at the age of just 33 in 1899 to become a country squire. And he was free to build a castle.

因為這令人讚嘆的唐吉訶德式莊園是由Julius Drewe朱利葉斯德魯委託建造的,這就是原因。1880年代初Drewe這年輕人和約翰 Musker,在倫敦成立了家庭和群居商店。此時他問 Lutyens要為他在德文郡創造一個城堡時 ,他的商店已有近500個分支機構,其中銷售人造奶油是一個重大的收入來源,而當Drogo城堡在1930年建造完成時- 只有完成原始計畫的三分之一 ,而各種合併已讓Drewe擁有3000店的零售連鎖店。 Drewe自己在1899年以只有33歲之齡退休而成為一個鄉紳。因此,他可以自由地建起一座城堡。

Today, Drewe’s magnificent folly, founded on countless packets of margarine, is owned not by some fabulously rich descendant, but by the National Trust. The family offered it to the trust in 1974, at a time when castle and country house owners nationwide feared that Harold Wilson’s Labour government was about to introduce a wealth tax that would have seen them spreading their morning toast with margarine from a chain grocery store rather than rich, hand-churned Devon butter fresh from the farm.

今天,Drewe的宏偉裝飾性建築,是建立在無數包人造奶油,由國家信託基金而非其富有後裔所擁有。這家族於 1974年把它獻給國家信託基金,此時遍及全國的城堡和鄉間別墅的擁有者擔心哈羅德威爾遜的工黨政府即將推出的財富稅,將寧願看到他們早上在吐司塗滿從連鎖商店來的人造奶油,而不是從農場豐富,德文郡手工自製的新鮮奶油。

So, an exceedingly rich man’s whim became part of Europe’s largest conservation charity, with each of its 3.7 million members having some stake in its future. While there is no doubt that Castle Drogo is a wonder, the stuff of architectural sorcery, it has one drawback. A very big drawback indeed. Ever since its original builders left in 1930, its roofs have leaked. Water has seeped, and even cascaded, down and through its granite walls, rusting the building’s hidden steel superstructure. The castle’s 900 windows have been in danger of breaking up, while mortar joints between granite slabs have threatened to give way, meaning that over time, the whole quixotic caboodle might tumble and fall.


Should we care? Perhaps a rich man’s folly should be left to fall into a romantic ruin, especially given that it was built with asphalt-covered flat roofs – a hostage to the English climate – instead of traditional pitched roofs. This might be seen as folie-de-grandeur on a titanic scale, but at the time the Drogo workforce had been cut to shreds – many fought and died in the first world war – and an economic downturn meant that even Drewe was cautious with money in the 1920s.

我們應該關心嗎?也許一個富人的豪華宅邸應被留下而逐漸變成浪漫廢墟,特別賦予它那由瀝青覆蓋的平屋頂而不是傳統的肩斜屋頂-以應付招惹麻煩的英國氣候。這可能被視為華麗夢幻如鐵達尼般的宏偉規模,但在當時Drogo勞動人力已被削減殆盡- 有許多已在第一世界大戰中戰鬥和犧牲 -經濟衰退意味著即使連Drewe在20年代也得謹慎用錢。

Now, though, the National Trust has launched a public appeal for £1.5m to preserve Castle Drogo for the long-term future. It has also asked the Heritage Lottery Fund for £2.5m and is stumping up the rest of the £11m that needs to be spent on Drogo over the next five years through its own revenue and subscriptions. Four in five of the three hundred or so historic houses it owns lose money, so the trust is well versed in the ways of fundraising.


At a time when public services are being cut, why should anyone spend good money on a flawed building built for the boss of the chain store that would become Safeway? The answer is that Castle Drogo, like so many great houses along with unspoiled coastlines and countryside owned by the National Trust, is there as an escape from the despoliation caused by our “margarine" world. Castle Drogo was built in much the same spirit as that of hugely popular Victorian romantic novels, or, bringing its story up to date, of that of “Harry Potter" and other sorcerers-and-dragons fantasies, in print and on film.


Castle Drogo is breathtaking. Its great stairway is cavernous, its kitchens cathedral-like. Its architecture is a thing of high intelligence, dazzling sleights of hand and cunning tricks; here is a faux-medieval aesthetic shot through with “quotes" from Lutyens’s deeply moving War Memorials, his compelling, contemporary public buildings in New Delhi, and the latest – it seems – in the design of factories and power stations. Here is architecture writ as an imaginatively illustrated storybook, a story that, ultimately, belongs to all of us. It might be flawed – although it can be put right with today’s building technology – yet £11m spent over the next few years from private and public pockets, will ensure that out of margarine will come the finest Devon butter.

Drogo城堡令人嘆為觀止。其宏偉的階梯大又深,其廚房如大教堂狀。它的架構是高智慧的產物,令人眼花繚亂的手法和精巧的花招,這裡是一個從 Lutyens感人至深的戰爭紀念碑引用仿中世紀的唯美鏡頭,他引人注目,是新德里最新的當代公共建築, – 似乎-在設計工廠和發電站。這是一個富有想像力的建築文狀像一部想像力豐富的插圖故事書,一個故事,歸根結底,是屬於我們所有人。它可能是有缺陷的- 儘管它可以藉由今天的建築技術修正-,在未來數年,至少將由私人和公眾的口袋花費1100萬英鎊,將確保人造奶油的來源最終是德文郡最好的奶油。

And, as Adrian Colston, the National Trust’s general manager for Dartmoor, warns: “If we don’t spend that £11m to save the castle over the next five years, the bill will run to £50m in the next 50." Drogo once belonged to Julius Drewe; now, it belongs both to the National Trust and its millions of enthusiastic members who will vote with their wallets to save it, and to all our imaginations. And the life of the imagination is, ultimately, as priceless as a renovated Castle Drogo deserves to be.

而且,正如達特穆爾國家環境和古蹟保護委員會總經理阿德里安科爾斯頓警告說:“如果我們不能用這1100萬英鎊在未來五年內拯救該座城堡,在未來50年費用將飆近5000萬英鎊。“ Drogo曾經屬於Julius Drewe,現在,它同時屬於國家環境和古蹟保護委員和其數百萬用自己的錢包捐獻致力拯救的熱心成員,以及所有我們的想像力。而想像力的活力,最終,成為裝修Drogo城堡值得成為無價之寶的樣貌。

參考資料 :


Can you judge a book by its cover? 2011 年 05 月 06 日

Filed under: 未分類 — 曬蝴蝶 (vanessapsy) @ 21:23:26


For every Wolf Hall or Life of Pi there’s a shelf full of books given generic artwork that’s simply shorthand for shoppers
文章來源: Alison Flood / guardian.co.uk, Thursday 20 January 2011 12.00 GMT


‘Just as there are dreadful books, so there are dreadful covers; ditto trashy, ditto boring and ditto brilliant’

正如有糟糕透頂的書,所以有糟糕透頂的封面;有無價值的書就有無價值的封面,同上無趣 同上精彩輝煌。

Can you imagine the fun they had coming up with this truly revolting cover? The proprietors of this excellent website collecting dire old science fiction covers have done just that, picturing the conversation that went on at the design meeting: “Ever seen a baby staring at bright flashing colours or the TV? Well draw that type of face! Except, floating disembodied through space." Indeed.

你能想像他們擁有的樂趣是來自這個真的(The Twilight of Briareus )令人作嘔的封面?這個優秀的網站經營者就只收集可怕的老式科幻封面,想像在設計會議進行的對話:“你看過ㄧ個小孩子盯著閃爍明亮的顏色或電視?除了漂浮脫離軀殼的穿過空間之外,這臉很傳神!。“的確如此”

I must admit to having a bit of a thing for vintage science fiction covers – they can be so unashamedly nutty, so gloriously unselfconsciously zany, that they make today’s collaborative, carefully pitched jackets look boringly sane. Of course, there are great jackets out there – in recent years Life of Pi, Vernon God Little,The Corrections and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, to name but a few, are all instantly recognisable; all stand out from the crowd.

我必須承認有如此陳年科幻小說封面還有點ㄦ回事- 他們可以如此瘋狂不知可恥,可以無所忌諱極其古怪滑稽,他們把今天的協作,仔細搭配書本封套看起來 無謂理智。當然,有很多很棒的書封在那- 近年來有少年PI的奇幻漂流,維農少年(這一本黑色幽默的小說,因為描繪邪惡世上的天真無辜與單純人性),強納森•. 弗朗欽《修正》一書(有關美國的社會問題),深夜小狗神祕習題,僅舉幾例,但都可從群體中脫穎而出。

But the major tendency these days is for jackets to act as a shorthand for the kind of book you’re getting. White background and child’s face? Misery memoir or Jodi Picoult-lite. Foil lettering, giant author name? Thriller. Pair of shapely legs? Chick lit. In fact, legs, shoes/and feet can cover the gamut of genres, as this great piece of analysis from Galleycat shows.

但最近書封設計的趨勢是你從封面就能辨識出這本書的類型。有著白色背景和孩子的臉?這是一本苦難回憶錄或作者Jodi Picoult的縮影。巨大的作者姓名書名用刻字襯托?驚悚片。一對勻稱的腿?小妞文學(指旨在迎合年輕女子口味、主角常為單身少女的小說)。事實上,腿,鞋/和腳能函蓋的世態的類型,因為這個部位讚嘆分析是來自Galleycat節目的傑作。

But what looks like a lack of originality can’t be blamed entirely on designers, who’ll have been briefed by the book’s editor, marketing and sales people before coming up with a range of options. And even once a cover has been agreed in house, everything is subject to change if a retailer feels an approach doesn’t work – and retailers, particularly supermarkets, are generally going to want a crime novel that looks like the last bestselling crime novel, a romance that clearly shows it’s a romance. If a major bookseller says they won’t stock a book unless the cover changes, then what’s a publisher to do? The author, by the way, is unlikely to have any say in this at all unless they’re a big name even though, a publisher friend tells me “they do get the chance to comment, suggest changes, etc and we (usually) listen to them".


Although the shorthand obviously helps shoppers in a hurry – and can even, if a publisher’s clever enough, get a teenager to pick up a classic novel – it can also missell what lies within. Witness Lionel Shriver’s anger at being given a girly cover, or the justifiable disappointment of OZKT29B, about the cover of Andrew Davies’s The Gangs of Manchester: “While the book is a serious, scholarly affair the jacket is a mock-up of the Gangs of New York film poster." Well, yes.

雖然速記在匆忙中甚至可以明顯幫助消費者做出選擇-,如果出版商夠聰明,也能讓青少年選取一部經典小說- 它也能在範圍內錯賣。目擊萊昂內爾施萊佛對關於他的書被賦予一個少女的封面感到憤怒,或正當性合理理由的對” OZKT29B(留言版)”失望 (What do you want to talk about?Post your suggestions for subjects you’d like us to cover on Comment is free. Want to write for us? Follow this guide),關於安德魯戴維斯 ”曼徹斯特幫派”的封面:“雖然這本書是一個嚴肅的,學術研究事件,但封面卻模擬成紐約黑幫電影的海報。“嗯,確是。

And it might be more prevalent today but it’s not like this misselling is something new: I’m currently reading Harnessing Peacocks, an old Mary Wesley novel I picked up in a charity shop. It’s the usual biting, acerbic, amusing writing I expect from Wesley, but the Aga saga-style cover provides no clues that Wesley’s heroine is, in fact, a prostitute. Instead it’s Joanna Trollope-esque, cosy, safe – far removed from what the book actually is. Its publisher at the time obviously decided that taking this route was the best way to lure readers in (and, in fact, today’s version isn’t much more honest, taking a Picoult-ish, triumph-of-the-human-spirit sort of approach, which I’m sure Wild Mary would have rolled her eyes at).

這在現今可能很流行,但它不是像銷售不適當的某物給某人這般新:我現正閱讀"駕馭孔雀",這是我在一個慈善商店揀選的一部老瑪麗韋斯利小說。這本有著我所期待作者一貫諷刺,尖刻,有趣的寫作風格,但阿加傳奇式的封面未對韋斯利的小說提供任何線索,實際上,有點糟蹋濫用。相反,它的喬安娜特羅洛普風格式的,愜意,安全-遠離書實際的樣子。其出版商在當時顯然決定採取這條路線是最好吸引讀者的方式(而且,事實上,這本書現今的版本也未必是更真實,採取 Picoult式的,有那麼點人類精神勝利式的方式,我敢肯定,Wild Mary這本書也會受到關注)。

But, even though it’s immensely fun to look at some of the dire jackets out there (and this one, for Manhunting, makes me especially happy), I don’t want to dwell on the negative. Just as there are dreadful books, so there are dreadful covers; ditto trashy, ditto boring and ditto brilliant. This blog picks out some gorgeous creations; OZKT29B loves the Wolf Hall paperback cover, and I am besotted by these Penguin science fiction jackets, as I’ve said before. Which book covers do you really love? And go on then – show us the worst you’ve seen as well.

但是,即使在那裡看看一些極糟的封面非常有趣,(這之一,擄獲男人,讓我特別高興),我不想老是停留在消極面。正如有可怕的書籍,也有可怕的封面;有沒用枯燥的,同樣也有輝煌精采的畫面。此博客挑選了一些華麗的創作; OZKT29B愛狼廳平裝版本,而我沉醉在這些"企鵝科幻外衣",正如我以前發表過的文章。哪本書的封面是你真的喜愛的?繼續並 –也告訴我們,你所見過最糟糕的。

This article was commissioned following a suggestion by OZKT29B. If you would like to propose your own topics for us to cover, please visit the latest You tell us thread.