Five things on Friday #162

Things of note for the week ending Friday February 5th, 2016.

Things of note for the week ending Friday February 5th, 2016.


Well, last week was a bit of a crapshoot wasn’t it? To those of you that read the newsletter of this lovely weekly listicle, my sincerest apologies for the double whammy last week. I had



Four girls, 3000 miles, and two world records.

No big deal.

Gee Purdy, second from the left (bright orange top – screaming with joy), works at Ogilvy. From the moment the company found out she (and her team) had an ambition to not only become the youngest but also the fastest all-woman crew to cross the Atlantic – BY ROWING – everyone got behind her.

This week, they smashed it.

And this write up, courtesy of Stylist, is actually really quite effing awesome. Read it to find out about the highs, lows, whales, dolphins and an overall two fingers up to all things sexism.

Gee – I’m proud to work under the same roof as you.

This is an incredible achievement.

Blaze new trails indeed.

Topsy was such a good social media search engine that it was once even referenced in an episode of The Newsroom (yeah, Sorkin was all like ‘Yeah, Dev Patel’s character knows how to do this because X’) and now? Now it is dead. At the tail end of last year, Topsy searched its last Tweet.

And you can thank/blame Apple for that.


Anyway, if you’re now completely stuck on what to use when searching your favourite social media platform, Link Humans has compiled a handy list of [potential] replacements.

None of them are as good as Topsy but nearly all of them will get you mostly there.





I have a list of fairly airy fairy rules when it comes to FToF. One of those rules is never really letting anyone completely hijack a ‘thing’. As in, if there’s something cool out there and it has found its way to me – then *I* will be the one to write about it.

I’m breaking that this time around – but for good reason. A couple of weeks ago – an AMAZING individual thought to invite me along to the press launch/announcement of the brand new Postal Museum opening in London next year (yes, 2017).

The main attraction of which is the actual ‘Mail Rail’ line that runs under London.

At the very last minute (literally, 12hrs before) I had to cancel.


(Thanks a lot [REDACTED])

The good news is: the smart people in charge of the PR for the Postal Museum gave me a plus one which meant my long-time partner in crime, Robbie Dale, was able to go along [albeit without his heterosexual life partner].

Fun facts about Mail Rail (via Robbie):

  • Mail Rail runs deep under London for 6.5 miles and was first used in 1927 to transport our mail seamlessly and silently throughout the city.
  • The Rosetta Stone was stored in its tunnels during the First World War along with art treasures from the National Portrait Gallery to protect them from Zeppelin air raids.
  • At its peak, Mail Rail employed over 200 staff and carried more than six million bags of mail below ground each year – that’s four million letters every day.
  • Mail Rail was preceded by an 1860s pneumatic rail system where cars loaded with mail were propelled through tunnels by air. Running between Euston Station and Eversholt. Street, operators sometimes had to turn down requests from men on their way home from the pub who were desperate for a ride.
  • Mail Rail at The Postal Museum will transport visitors back in time on a 15-minute ride through a section of the tunnels and reveal the fascinating story of innovation and ingenuity that kept us all in touch. 

Thanks Robbie!

Mr Dale is also a dab hand with a camera so if photos like this:


…really excite you, then you should go check out Robbie’s Flickr album of the Mail Rail and then, once you’ve done that, go look up the Postal Museum and plan your visit (for 2017 – when it opens).

I know I’m going to.



Yep. It’s real.

Max Braun, product maker at Google, decided that he’d had enough of waiting around for the future to arrive so he just built it instead.

The above image is nabbed from this Medium post on the subject of how he did and, being only a 3 or 4 minute read, I can’t suggest enough that you go and check it out.

Super geeky. Super interesting.

Want one.




Actual bullet time footage (the stuff that put The Matrix on the map – or maybe the other way around), made with a single spinning iPhone, snapping photos of the subject as the handset twirls in the air. Like a selfie-stick, but on steroids (and with less ‘ugh’).

This is the ‘centriphone’ and it is amazing.

There’s video at the source too.

Go check it out.

Tres cool.


Bonuses this week are as follows:


And that’s me.


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Author: James Whatley

Chief Strategy Officer in adland. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x