Caption Competition…..

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I’ve always been thrilled by the sound of hot-air balloon’s burners (i’m easily pleased).

The photo above was taken in a small town in Spain when I was following La Vuelta (1997).

I would normally steal some amazing shot from Gurgle Images to illustrate my post but have at last found my photo collection on an old USB stick.

The inspiration for this post came when I was checking out my daily newsletter from the excellent Designboom website, I hope you will be amazed by this balloon photo….

…and then visit designboom for the full story.

How I remember passwords



Some time ago, I tried to help someone whose Hotmail account had been hacked.

This person (who shall remain nameless for fear of embarrassing Nicole) used the password


Just the 6 letter word you understand, even the punctuation I added above would’ve made it slightly more secure.

For a password to be secure it should be at least 12 characters in length and made from a combination of numbers, letters (upper and lower case) and the various punctuation marks and other symbols on your keyboard.

But how does one remember such a complicated collection of characters without writing it down?

Easy! You DO write it down  -but in a secure way.

I have 30+ passwords of 16 characters that are written down in an easily remembered code. Some of the list looks like this:

Amazon  Gn R Blk Blu
Mozy  Gn Blk Blu Red
JobsToday Blk Blu Gn Red
voda gitwizard56 Blu Gn Blk Red

So my ‘JobsToday’ site’s username (deleted here) is followed by my password which corresponds to four groups of four characters which I remember because each group is represented by a colour – Black, blue, green and red.

Using the grid above, read the corner characters clockwise for each coloured box and my password would be


This looks incredibly complicated, but use this system for a few weeks and you will remember that ‘Green’ means r!?9 and the other groups will be just as easily remembered.

Keep your list as an email in TWO email accounts and write down the password (somewhere secure) of one of your email account passwords until you remember it!