* coming 2015 - possibly.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

How I Invented Wikipedia

Jimmy Wales "founded" Wikipedia in 2001.

Not only had I invented Wikipedia by that point, I'd also developed the mobile version too. Members of the jury, I give you Exhibit A: my sketch of a portable electronic encyclopaedia from 2001. The 'ZD Knowledgeometer' came preloaded with millions of articles and could be updated by connecting to the internet, where anybody could contribute. I should be a fucking millionaire.  
If I had a time machine, I'd go back to 2001 and manufacture the Knowledgeometer. That's a stupid name though, so I'd call it the ZDpedia. Or the iPedia, which would annoy Steve Jobs. I'd make sure the first article was about Jimmy Wales and that it said "Jimmy Wales is the man who didn't found Wikipedia. What's Wikipedia? Exactly. Better luck next time, Jimbo."

The ZDpedia would also keep me out of trouble, because if anybody caught me hiding in the bushes at the bottom of their garden again, I'd be able to say "don't worry, I'm from the Internet", and that would reassure them for long enough to let me escape.

"Look, I've found his wig!"
I'd also visit 2050 to see if Justin Bieber and Rebecca Black were king and queen of the world. If they were, I'd go to the 1990s and abduct baby Bieber and baby Black. I'd then take them back to the Triassic period and feed them to a dinosaur, just to confuse the paleontologists.  

If Miley Cyrus were queen of the world, I'd be okay with that. She makes Middle Reality (MR) look cool. If I've understood her world correctly, Miley Cyrus is a real person in Upper Reality (UR) who plays Miley Stewart who plays Hannah Montana in MR. Her UR friends turn up in her MR world and there's no boundary between the realities. Similarly, I am a real person in UR, and I play the Legend who plays the Bellend in MR. It makes perfect sense.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Robinson May Ball 2011: Sabine Still At Large

He committed an unspeakable crime and we enjoy shouting his name at him.

He's the one who isn't Natalie Portman.
ZD Newcomers, meet Sabine.  You might be unfamiliar with this feral creature - in a way, we all are, given the number of pseudonyms he's used over the years - but all you need to know is that it's really, really fun to shout his name at him when he's least expecting it. And pronounce it wrong. He could be in the library, on the toilet or minding his own business in his bedroom, but he's never out of range of a  "Sorbeen!"

A sighting of Charlie Sabine at Robinson College's 2011 May Ball has led officials to believe that he may soon be captured after being sentenced to death last week. A specially convened court, consisting of Lords Spencer, Virgo and Boredom, found Sabine guilty in absentia of gross sabining, sabining without a licence, failed to stop when "Sabine!"'d, being moody, sabining in the presence of a minor and impersonating a tramp. Lord Boredom seemed fuzzy when questioned on what laws Sabine had actually broken, but he said he was certain that the death penalty they passed down was the correct verdict: "He committed an unspeakable crime and for that he must be punished. Nobody remembers what he did, but it must be bad, otherwise why would we go to such lengths to stop him?" Sabine has been on the run ever since.

Happier times: Sabine endorsing sardines. He attributed his long luscious locks to fish oils.
The trail ran cold until a glimpse of Sabine at the Ball on Friday night. An eyewitness, who has identified himself only as 'Jarney', said "I spotted somebody who looked and scowled just like him. I shouted 'Sabine' loudly at him and then stood very still - I've heard his vision is based on movement - but he disappeared into the bushes before I could grab him. In hindsight, I should have reported it but I was thinking only of my own safety at the time."

Sabine's parents, who spoke to reporters outside their home in leafy Ryecroft Close, Woodley, said that their son had been misrepresented by the press. "He isn't a criminal. He just couldn't deal with complete strangers shouting his name at him all the time," said Mrs Sabine. Her husband described how Sabine's protagonists deliberately messed with his surname to tip him over the edge. "It's sah-byne. Not SAY-byne, not sa-beenay, and definitely not sabinet blanc," he explained, before breaking down in tears. "I just want him home."

Inspector Barnes, of Robinson College Police Department, took a different view: "Nobody wants to have their name shouted at them when they're using a public toilet, especially if it makes them sound like a famous brand of malt loaf. Yes, Shuai might find it funny, and yes, a Soreen may be delicious and fruity, and full of squidgy energy, but Mr Sabine is none of those things, and he shouldn't need to be. Nevertheless, what he did - whatever it was - was completely unacceptable."

"He can't keep getting away with it," he added menacingly.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

10 Years

bbc.co.uk, June 2001.
On 16 June 2001, the interwebs changed forever. Back in those dark days of 56k dial-up modems and wires trailing across the living room, when YouTube was still four years away and the BBC site looked like this, we founded our first site and the internet entered the ZD Age.

In the intervening ten years, we've moved around a bit - geocities.com/zdlaxdsmip, /zdsystem, zduk.tk and now zduk.co.uk - but our loyal audience (all twelve of you - yes, even you at the back!) have followed us every step of the way. You have helped make us into the global powerhouse we are today:      ZD is now the 7th biggest Middle Reality site in the world.
How we used to look.

To celebrate our anniversary, we've trawled that young-whippersnapper-of-a-website YouTube and brought you three classic videos from the Archives. Enjoy...

Ronaldo v Corsa - A Cristiano Ronaldo lookalike racing a car in his CK boxer shorts: what more do you want?

Yeoh Technology - ZD's greatest achievement? This critically acclaimed reworking of Ayo Technology tells the tale of a doomed love story and a hungry Singaporean's quest for food.

The Hirst Rat - no fancy cinematography on this one; it's just cousin Dingly trying to retrieve his flip-flop ("gaming thong") from a river and failing terribly.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

ZD's Guide to Flirting 3

Lesson 3 - Boring Flirting

At Cambridge, we used to have 'swaps', where a male drinking society from one college would invite a female drinking society from another college over for a formal dinner and sex.

Not pictured: orgy.
I was sat at the end of a long table on my first swap with a pretty girl, a girl with a nondescript face and my  friend Lord Boredom, who has a nondescript personality. I said hello to the pretty girl and then ran out of things to say. She asked me what I studied but I mistook her attempt at small talk for a genuine interest in my subject and started to tell her - at length - about my recent essay.

My story trailed off as she gazed in open-mouthed horror at my social ineptitude, and I finished with the immortal chat-up line "but Lord knows more about law than me. Talk to Lord about law." She had realised I was a no-hoper by this point, so she started to talk to Boredom about everything except law while I just got drunk by myself.

I didn't sleep with her, but Boredom had even worse chat than me (the clue's in the name) and I helped myself to her food whilst she was crying, so it worked out okay in the end.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Lorraine is Cambridge Bedder of the Year

Robinson College bedder Lorraine has won Swiss Laundry's Housekeeper of the Year competition 2010.

Lorraine's 'patch' includes A Staircase, home to the famous Romsey Tower where a number of notable ZD members resided in 2008-09. Lorraine is awesome and this award is well deserved. Jane, Romsey Terrace bedder during ZD's time at 35 Romsey in 2007-08, came bottom of the rankings.

Lorraine pictured with her favourite Romsey Tower residents.

Bellend's Guide to Flirting 2

Lesson 2 - Introductory Flirting

I have a friend who is only interested in finding a girl that he can play war games with, to a high standard, but so that he will always just win in the end. He also has the feet of a hobbit. For these reasons, he is unlucky in love.

In Freshers' Week 2007, he decided to take advantage of the fact that he was now a second year by chatting up a fresher called Catherine. I wandered over, aiming to ruin his night, but he seemed to take my presence in his stride and began to introduce his new found ladyfriend to me:
"Wanna play footsie?"

(drunken slur) "Bellend, this is Chesca."
"No, that's your sister's name."

(visibly panicked) "Er, no, er, I meant Chloe."
"No, that's my girlfriend's name."

(desperate flailing) "Catherine! Her name's Catherine! Oh, she's gone."

He turned around to stop her, but she had walked away very quickly. He then turned back around but I too had walked off.

The next time he tried to flirt with a girl, he ended the night by vomiting over a doctor whilst sprawled over a mobility scooter in the entrance to a chapel, so perhaps his time with Catherine should be considered a relative success.

Bellend's Guide to Flirting 1

Lesson 1 - Aggressive Flirting

I was once in Life, a nightclub in Cambridge that is now called the Venue or the Place or something equally stupid, watching Tim Westwood DJ and talk about big dogs and his Uncle Snoop. I don't know how Life got such a big name DJ to play, but Westwood lives in Norfolk with his mum and it's convenient for him to get home so maybe he did it for a reduced price.

I was walking over to the toilet and noticed that two attractive girls were stood between me and the toilet door. They were looking at me and smiling, and as I got closer they moved so that I couldn't get to the toilet very easily, so I squeezed past - unsure if one of them had tried to trip me up - and went to have a wee and tell the Freshen Up Guy that I didn't need any counterfeit aftershave or urine-soaked chewing gum.

If I hit them at pace I could probably take them both out.
I left the toilet and the girls were still blocking my path. They were smiling but I couldn't work out if they were flirting or being dicks so I didn't take any chances. I sped up and dropped my shoulder so that I bodychecked one of the girls as I walked past, but as I was a successful rugby player and rather drunk I hit her harder than expected and she smashed against the wall before sliding to the floor. Her friend shouted something at me that may have been "clucking banker" but it was loud and Westwood has just dropped the bomb so I couldn't hear her properly.

I didn't sleep with either girl that night.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Srebrenica to Shameless: Karadzic's Wife Found in Manchester


Ljilana Zelen-Karadzic, wife of Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic, has finally been tracked down to the Chatsworth Estate in Manchester. Ljilana, or Lillian as she's known to locals, had evaded authorities for many years despite frequent television appearances on Channel 4's Shameless. After the dramatic on-set raid, Ljilana told our reporter that she has not seen her husband for 11 years, and that she chose to live in inner-city Manchester as it reminded her of her home town of Sarajevo circa 1995. Ljilana is the second high profile Serb to be captured in recent weeks, following Ratko Mladic's arrest in May.

(L) Manchester brothel owner; (R) Serbian genocide wife.
Her husband, best known for orchestrating the Srebrenica massacre and for having the hair of an eagle owl, was unavailable for comment this week, possibly because he's on trial for war crimes in The Hague. Frank Gallagher said something about a "fhookin' parrrty" and then passed out.

(L) Bubo bubo; (R) Radovan badman.

Hit Your Wife, Get a Cheap DVD: Happy Father's Day!

"You didn't hit her hard enough, Dad; here, watch Rocky for some tips."    
This unfortunately placed advert was brought to you by Chris Sewell.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Boy sells his kidney for an iPad

I've always thought that people sell their souls when they buy Apple products, but even ol'Mephistopheles himself couldn't have dreamt of a 17 year old boy selling his kidney to buy an iPad 2.
Look Faustus, this one comes with 3G!
The Chinese youth apparently received 20,000 yuan (around £1900) for his organ, which he promptly spent in the nearest Apple shop. His mother's suspicions were aroused when the idiot returned home with a bag full of shiny gadgets and a whopping great scar across his abdomen, and the police were duly informed. Personally, I'm of the opinion that if you're going to sell your body - quite literally - for a gadget, at least get something good like an Android tablet!

It's the first I've heard of consumerism actually consuming a consumer, but I suppose it illustrates the efficiency of the free market. Jokers have said that Apple should release an iDialysis app, or that the kid should've waited for an iPad 3, but he's still got another kidney to sell - and a couple of livers in case he fancies an iPhone 5. Oh, wait.

Not pictured: a good deal.

 What would you sell? Your kidney for a Kindle? A toe for a Nokia 3310? Or your mother for the HTC Desire? Comments below, people.
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