Friday Fun returns

Excuses: Easter, holiday, essays, deadlines, colds…
But never mind the excuses, there is fun for Friday! [Except that I managed to forget to press ‘publish’ on this, having written most of it a week last Tuesday, so here it is a week late!!]

It may only have been a four day week , but I’m sure fun would be much appreciated!

Firstly, transport related fun:
A French architect has made it his mission to make all transit maps look the same – the idea being that if they use the same design, they’re easier to follow if you’re not a local. Nice idea, but it does destroy the beauty of London’s map:

London tube map restyled

Abandoned stations are always fun, even when they’re not in London. Take these examples from Barcelona – complete with the story of how the photos came to be taken; what the history of the stations is; and what has happened in their abandoned platforms and tunnels ever since. Hunting out abandoned stations can be an extreme pursuit and not necessarily legal…

Barcelona Abandoned Station 1

Next, another of those nerdy projects involving the mapping of data. Gosh I love pretty data mapping! This time, it’s a visualisation of the most popular rush hour destinations (and the relationships with the journey’s origin) via Oyster card data:


It’s another project from UCL, and the researcher’s blog allows you to switch from annotated to non-annotated versions of the map. (Plus, a detailed explanation of how they did it for those that are interested!)

Secondly, animal and food related fun:
Who doesn’t want to see a tiny hamster eating a tiny burrito? [Warning: you will have severe burrito cravings having watched this, especially if you haven’t eaten lunch yet.]

(A tiny hamster eating pizza video has recently appeared, but I think the burrito one is superior.)

Thirdly, amusing children:
It’s always interesting to observe children’s reactions to things – especially to things of the past (or perhaps that’s just because I’m a history geek?). A recent joyful discovery has been the “Kids react to…” series on YouTube. The premise is simple: a group of kids (ranging in age from pre-schoolers to teenagers) are given an object or shown a video and their reactions are filmed. I discovered it via “Kids react to a Walkman” – in turns hilarious and terrifying as children try to work out not just how it works but what on earth it does in the first place.

Similarly, “Kids react to a rotary phone” was jointly painful and funny. There’s a whole wealth of these videos, including specific “Teens react…” and “Elders react…” series. A lot of time-wasting opportunities there!

Hopefully a more regular blogging service will resume next week as, after tomorrow, I will have completed ALL of the work needed for my Vicar School degree! Freedom!!