Welcome to the Poorhouse - a pointless bloggy site with news, views and opinion on stuff.

Horray - stop seeing those awful Facebook applications

Rejoicement! The Poorhouse has previously mentioned his distaste of massively long lame-application-filled Facebook pages, where the only interesting bit - the wall - is right at the bottom. It's a particular problem when corporate race-booking. It's hard enough to disguise Facebook as work as it is without massive colourful pirates shouting "Shiver me timbers!", a picture of a toilet roll counting how many people you peed on and the lads-mag-esque illustration that is the output of FilthBook. You know who you are.

Solution? Use your web browser to hide it all.

Done with bank charges? Now reclaim your PPI ripoffs

The Poorhouse has previously mentioned the wonders of reclaiming unfair bank charges amongst these pages. Here, the Office of Fair Trading opined that the charges for doing things like going over your overdraft limit should be more to cover the bank's cost for your actions rather than pillage you for hundreds more pounds you don't have, and many, many people managed to get significant money back from their banks as a result.

But once you're done on that, there's more reclaiming of unfair abuse by financial institutions to be done if you're a victim of Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) mis-selling. Given it is a £5 billion industry with 20 million such policies in force in Britain at the minute, and some of the mis-selling tactics seem to end up in people not even knowing they have a policy let alone what it costs them, it might well be worth your while to check.

A more honest Facebook

What, more about Facebook? Anyone would think the Poorhouse is not-so-slowly turning into a sad addict of < href="/new_words_needed_mostly_for_facebook">fooking and falking with pictures of his pals. Surely not. Well, to be fair, it does have Scrabble on it.

Anyway, this isn't actually about Facebook. More Arsebook. Enough with this nonsense about showering your beloved's walls with adulating praise for the world to be impressed by. Arsebook is "Arsebook is an anti-social utility that connects you with the people YOU HATE". Delightful.

New words needed, mostly for Facebook

We need more, better, words. Presently, for the Poorhouse anyway, to do with the spiral of pointless, potentially humiliating time-wastingness that is Facebook.

More specifically, verbs are in demand. It has been discussed elsewhere (including by the very educational Linguistic Mystic) that "Facebooking" is itself a verb. But it's very unsatisfactory, being too long-winded by far for describing a process that often takes 5 seconds but is repeated 20 million times a day per person - arguably costing just businesses in Australia a nice $AUS 5 billion pounds per year.


To aid the next step in the robot takeover of humankind, naive researchers are letting these cyberbrains get a sense of humour. Yep, when the Terminator really does come into existence and start enslaving us all at least it will have the electro-nous to give witty Arnie-Schwarzenegger style one-liners.

The New Scientist reports on research by Julia Taylor and Lawrence Mazlack of the University of Cincinnati to program a bot to understand that most refined techniques of humour; the pun. Soon your computer might chortle out loud when it spies on your emails and finds that, for instance, they've brought out a portable stereo which looks like a big chocolate cake, which is, inevitably, called a gateaux blaster.

No surprises there then - office workers hate each other

Office labourers! Prepare to be shocked. See that sweet, innocent, charming old lady sitting next to you who spends all day chatting about rainbows and bunnies to you, in between handing you replacement staples? Well, the sad truth is there's every chance she hates you.

In what can, in the Poorhouse's experience anyway, only be termed confirmation of what you already knew, a survey of 2500 office workers by jobs2view has determined that, really, there ain't a lot o' love floating around in your average bureaucratic paper-shuffling 9-5 building.

Download and save Youtube videos for posterity

Youtube, time-wastering site of the decade (Facebook aside), is stuffed to the gills with vital, important and amazing video clips, not to mention a billion huh huh videos taken by 13-year-olds on their dodgy phone camera.

However, for those lost, lonely times where you need to view say Spiderpig (*) whilst away from the cyberhighway it is not entirely intuitive as to how to download it for offline use in a non-flash format there is a chance your computer, PDA or mobile might be able to repetitively play until your colleagues kill you.

Insurance that actually pays out when it should

Just to prove the Poorhouse isn't just a negative nelly, here's a recommendation of sorts for that most boring of purchases, insurance. Whoo. With topics like this, it would almost make this site more interesting just to not update it ever.

The advantage of this company - namely travelinsurance-web.com - and basis of the random Poorhouse recommendation, is that it actually paid out on its insurance when it should have, without so much as an long-winded argument let alone the normal legal threats necessary to extract even 20p of the thousands you are owed from your average insurance company.

Elton John's silly "experiment"

Elton John, famous for being a rather weird hater-of-plenty (and a musician), has recently latched on to a new arch-nemesis to spout off piles of vitriol about. Yep, it's that most hideous and pointless of inventions: the Internet.

Millions of times less important to the everyday lives of people than, say, eternal reissues of "Candle in the Wind" for whatever lovable celeb just died, he's decided that the world doesn't really need technology. Whyso? It ruins the music scene apparently, not to mention stopping people communicating.

Alumni tat

The Poorhouse really doesn't feel like he owes his ex-university anything in respect of academic life and does his best to repeatedly pollute the "alumni surveys" with his life-failures. Nonetheless it doesn't seem to stop the most tedious of glossy "Your university" magazines popping through the door on a regular basis. Really, what are the chances that one would be interested in the lives of any random person that ever attended the same university as yourself that you weren't already at least facebook friends with?

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