Hey! Hello! I'm sorry, it's been so long since I last wrote a daily for you that I fear you may have forgotten about me. I';m still here, honest. It's Friday again and I'm back to ease you into the weekend as usual with a myriad of links and interesting things for you to read and watch. Can you believe it's 28th January already? It's utterly absurd, it feels like it was the 27th January just yesterday! Oh how time flies. Of course today is hugely important because it's the birthday of one of F1's biggest drivers ever - Takuma Sato!! Happy birthday Takuma! You should celebrate by playing F1 2010 and doing this awesome moment again. Good times.
And So, 2011 Begins... - Can you hear that? That's the sound of cars being polished, of stages being prepared, of engineers getting themselves ready for another year of F1 as the sport starts waking up from it's hibernation today. Sure, there's no testing till Monday but we get our first F1 car launch of the year with Ferrari as usual getting in before everyone else. You'll be able to watch the Ferrari F150 launch online from 9AM GMT if you're interested in seeing a duvet be pulled off a car.
More Live and Kicking than Points of View - See, I find this really odd but F1 can be an odd sport sometimes. Marussia Virgin Racing have announced their launch date for early in February as they debut their second car in the sport to be launched on February 7th, which is all fine and dandy. Nothing unusual there, until you realise that the car is going to be launched at BBC Television Centre in London. How very random, and perhaps appropriate for them to get a bit of TV time and perhaps for a certain Mr Branson to get a bit of attention for his minnow team. If only it were in Newcastle for a certain RG to visit...
Now For the Lowe Down from McLaren - I'm no good at explaining the back room stuff in F1 teams, my mind tends to get frazzled trying to work out who's doing what but it seems it's not just Ferrari who are having a bit of a shuffle about as McLaren have also set their staff employment playlist on iTunes to shuffle this winter. Paddy Lowe has become the new technical director of the team instead of an engineer director. I suppose this means he will now be doing technical stuff and less engineering stuff. Well that makes sense to me anyways! Tim Goss has also moved about the team somewhere too, like a game of musical chairs.
Not Like Any Normal Museum - I really love this piece over at F1 Badger that was posted yesterday of a very, very lucky F1 fan who had the pleasure of visiting Williams and getting to see their wonderful museum of cars from their rich history. Now only did he get to hear from Adam Parr and see some gorgeous cars but also from Sir Frank Williams himself!! Brilliant! Parr also left the visitors with a cryptic message of the 2011 car being retro that people would love... how exciting!!! Definitely worth a read, and the video in the article is really lovely.
Snapping from the Snappy Snaps - For the photography-minded out there you may be very much inclined to watch this online show from last night that aired featuring F1 photographer Darren Heath. There are plenty in the comments who love photography in the sport, and Darren Heath is very famous for producing some excellent photos in the sport. It's a very, very interesting watch and I certainly learnt a bit from hearing someone within the sport express their thoughts on F1 photographer, the competition around him and getting into the sport. He also answered a question I offered on behalf of Lou, which is totally awesome. Hurrah! Give it a watch though if you have a spare 2 hours, it's very good.
Getting Off the The Flying Dutchman - The problem with watching great players in sports is when they have the unfortunate milestone of having to retire for whatever reason, and sadly Man Utd goalkeeper Edwin Van Der Sar has decided that it's time to call for retirement at the end of this football season at the age of 40. The staggering thing is despite his age (considered old for footballers) he's still staggeringly fit and one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League if not Europe, and he's had a fantastic career. Man Utd were lucky to have one of the best of all time in Peter Schmeichel, and after a few years of dodgy keepers they finally got Van Der Sar who became a big favourite to the Old Trafford faithful. I just wanted to include this little bit for him just to give the man the credit he deserves because he's still one of the best and he'll be hugely missed by Man Utd.
Scientists are such Geeks! Brilliant, brilliant geeks! - This is so absurd, and if it were april 1st I would think it were a joke. Honestly, this may be super duper old but I only found out about it yesterday and it blew my simple little mind. It seems there is some kind of protein out there that can cause abnormalities of growth to sprout, like spikes on a hedgehog. So, scientists seriously decided to call this 'Sonic Hedgehog'. Seriously!! If you have hedgehog like spikes you have Sonic Hedgehog. I just can't get over this fact, and that it's actually called this. Even more staggeringly, the protein to fight this off as an antagonist against Sonic Hedgehog is honestly called Robotnikinin, as in Sonic the Hedgehog's enemy Robotnik. I think I may actually faint from how brilliantly geeky scientists are.
Presenting the PSP NGP GMTV BBC ITV4 CDUK - It's a new gadget!! A new gadget is here!! There it is right there!! Now I may be wrong because I got a bit confused by the name but I believe it's official name is the 'Sony NGP (Next Generation Portable)' instead of the sony PSP2 NGP. Still, it looks very good and comes with a list of essential features for this day and age of portable gaming - Wifi, touch pad controls, touchscreen, etc, etc - but I'm expecting it to be rather expensive. It looks really good though, and apparently rivals the power of what a PS3 can produce. There'd already videos of the system in action on that page linked.
And that's that for this week folks. I'm going to end with a brilliant video that's kind of topical, as it's from the official announcement of the Sony PSP back in 2006. I believe it was E3 that Sony debuted their first handheld into the gaming world, and what better way to debut a handheld than have an really awkward presentation and shout out a catchphrase to get the audience's attention only for them to be completely silent in response except for one cheer. One single, almost mocking cheer. It's so awkward, cringeworthy and wonderful. I'll see you in the comments, lovely people!