Posted in books

Catcher in the Rye by J.D.Salinger

The controversial novel Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger was published 16 July 1951. It concerns Holden Caulffield who is attending Pencey Preparatory, an exclusive private school in Agerstown, Pennsylvania, on the Saturday afternoon During a football game between Pencey rival school Saxon Hall. Holden ends up missing the game. As manager of the fencing team, he loses their equipment on a New York City subway train that morning, resulting in the cancellation of a match, so his history teacher Mr. Spencer expels him until after Christmas. Spencer is a well-meaning but long-winded middle-aged man. To Holden’s annoyance, Spencer reads aloud Holden’s history paper. Holden returns to his dorm, but he is interrupted by his dorm neighbour Ackley, and then argues with his roommate Stradlater, over a composition that Holden wrote for him about Holden’s late brother Allie’s baseball glove. A womanizer, Stradlater has just returned from a date with Holden’s old friend Jane Gallagher however Holden thinks Stradlater might be mistreating Jane.

Holden then decides he has had enough of Pencey Prep and catches a train to New York City, where he plans to stay in a hotel until Wednesday, when his parents expect him to return home for New Years vacation. He checks into the dilapidated Edmont Hotel and later spends an evening with three tourist women in their 30s from Seattle in the hotel lounge. Then Following a visit to Ernie’s Nightclub in Greenwich Village,  Holden agrees to have a prostitute named Sunny visit his room. However Holden’s attitude toward the girl changes and he becomes uncomfortable with the situation, and tells her that all he wants to do is talk, at which point she becomes annoyed and leaves. Holden then has a run in with Sunny’s pimp Maurice.

After a short sleep, Holden, lonely and in need of personal connection, telephones Sally Hayes, and they agree to meet that afternoon to attend a play. Holden leaves the hotel, checks his luggage at Grand Central Station and has a late breakfast. He meets two nuns, one an English teacher, with whom he discusses Romeo and Juliet. Holden shops for a special record, “Little Shirley Beans,” for his 10-year-old sister Phoebe. The play he sees with Sally features Broadway stars Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne. Afterward Holden and Sally go skating at Rockefeller Center, where Holden impulsively invites Sally to run away with him to the wilderness, however She declines, acts uninterested, so Holden Gets Angry but apologises immediately afterwards however Sally storms off. After that, Holden sees the Christmas show at Radio City Music Hall, endures a film, and gets very drunk. Holden recalls the Museum of Natural History, which he often visited as a child. He visits his younger sister Phoebe with whom Holden shares a selfless fantasy he has been thinking about (based on Robert Burns’ Comin’ Through the Rye): he pictures himself as the sole guardian of thousands of children playing an unspecified ‘game’ in a huge rye field on the edge of a cliff. His job is to catch the children if, in their abandon, they come close to falling off the brink; to be, in effect, the “catcher in the rye”. Because of this misinterpretation, Holden believes that to be the “catcher in the rye” means to save children from losing their innocence.

Holden then visits his former and much-admired English teacher, Mr. Antolini, who offers advice and a place to sleep for the night. Mr. Antolini, quoting psychologist Wilhelm Stekel, advises Holden that wishing to die for a noble cause is the mark of the immature man, while it is the mark of the mature man to aspire to live humbly for one. This is at odds with Holden’s ideas of becoming a “catcher in the rye”. However Holden also gets very uncomfortable and embarrassed with the way Mr Antolini treats him. Confused and uncertain, he leaves and then makes the decision to go west and live as a deaf-mute and When he explains this plan to Phoebe she decides to go with him….

Thanks to the novel’s main themes of teenage angst and alienation, the novel’s protagonist Holden Caulfield has become an icon for teenage rebellion, issues of identity, belonging, loss, connection, and alienation.

Posted in books

Prayer for the Dead by James Oswald

imageI would like to read Prayer for the Dead by James Oswald. This is The fifth gripping and absorbing detective mystery starring Inspector Tony McLean. It starts with the search for a missing journalist named Ben Stevenson whom McLean knew personally, who hasn’t been seen for some time. The search is eventually called off after a body is found under strange circumstances in a cave called Gilmerton Cove deep underneath Edinburgh, which is only accessible through a labyrinthine network of underground tunnels. The victim seems to have undergone some sort of macabre ritual of purification and the crime scene perplexes the police as there is a lack of trace evidence. So Inspector McClean is asked a journalist Journalist named Jo Dalgliesh to help her in finding out what happened to Ben.

Then another body is found in completely different circumstances, however McLean thinks it may be the work of the same killer but cannot convince his superiors. McLean’s private life is also in turmoil He is currently dealing with a construction company who want him to sell his land to them and will just not take no for an answer and even start using aggressive tactics including a mysterious fire which leaves just one flat standing without any damage whatsoever. McLean can’t shake off the suspicion that there is far more going on than meets the eye despite The baffling lack of forensics at the crime scene. So He is teamed up with the most unlikely and unwelcome of allies, and must track down a killer driven by the darkest compulsions, who will answer only to a higher power…

Posted in computers, Internet, Science-tech

IOS iPad iPod Fake Crash Reports

iPhone and iPad scammers have hit users with iOS fake crash reports demanding payment in order to fix their Apple devices. iPhone and iPad users have reported receiving pop-up notifications telling them that their software has crashed and that they must dial a support helpline to fix it. Scammers have targeted Safari, the default web browser for iOS devices, telling users in the US to ring the helpline and pay between $19 and $80 to fix it. Users in the UK have also reported the issue, with one saying they had been asked for £20 to fix the crash.When browsing Safari, users receives notifications saying:

  • “Warning!! iOS Crash Report!!. Due to a third party application in your device, iOS is crashed. Contact Support for Immediate Fix.”
  • “There is a problem with the configuration of your iOS. Please call Apple Technical Support.”

Some users said the pop-up had frozen activity on their browser. Yhey are given one of a series of numbers to dial – including 0800 279 6211, 0800 652 4895 and 0800 310 1061 in the UK.Users of the Apple support forum said that on dialling the numbers, they were told that a third party app was stealing their data, and demanded credit card details in order to fix it.
In two such numbers a representative answered the phone as “iOS security” and claimed to be “a security provider for Apple”. The operator repeatedly asked for the iPad’s serial number and said there would be a charge to fix the problem. When asked for more details about the business such as an address and website, the operator twice cancelled the call. The scam was first reported in the US in November last year but is still being used and has spread to the United Kingdom. Apple has directed users to a support page that explains how to fix it. Here’s how to prevent the pop ups.

  • Turn your device on to “airplane mode”, either by swiping up from the bottom of the screen and tapping the plane logo, or going to Settings and toggling Airplane Mode on.
  • Delete your Safari data by going to Settings -> Safari -> Clear History and Website Data
  • Open Safari and exit Airplane Mode
  • To prevent the issue happening again, go to Settings -> Safari -> Block Pop-ups.
Posted in locomotives, steam locomotives, Trains

Sir John Fowler KCMG LLD

                     Victoria Bridge

English civil engineer Sir John Fowler, 1st Baronet KCMG LLD was born 15 July 1817. in Wadsley, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, to land surveyor John Fowler and his wife Elizabeth (née Swann). He was educated privately at Whitley Hall near Ecclesfield. He trained under John Towlerton Leather, engineer of the Sheffield waterworks, and with Leather’s uncle, George Leather, on the Aire and Calder Navigation an railway surveys. From 1837 he worked for John Urpeth Rastrick on railway projects including the London and Brighton Railway and the unbuilt West Cumberland and Furness Railway. He then worked again for George Leather as resident engineer on the Stockton and Hartlepool Railway and was appointed engineer to the railway when it opened in 1841. Fowler initially established a practice as a consulting engineer in the Yorkshire and Lincolnshire area, but, a heavy workload led him to move to London in 1844. He became a member of theInstitution of Mechanical Engineers in 1847, the year the Institution was founded, and a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 1849

Metropolitan No.1
Fowler 4-4-0 Tank Metropolitan No.1

He specialised in the construction of railways and railway infrastructure . In 1853, he became chief engineer of the Metropolitan Railway in London, the world’s first underground railway, which opened between Paddington and Farringdon in 1863. Fowler was also engineer for the associated Metropolitan District Railway and the Hammersmith and City Railway. They were built by the “cut-and-cover” method under city streets. To avoid problems with smoke and steam overwhelming staff and passengers on the covered sections of the Metropolitan Railway, Fowler proposed a fireless locomotive. The locomotive was built by Robert Stephenson and Company and was a broad gauge 2-4-0 tender engine. The boiler had a normal firebox connected to a large combustion chamber containing fire bricks which were to act as a heat reservoir. The combustion chamber was linked to the smokebox through a set of very short firetubes. Exhaust steam was re-condensed instead of escaping and feed back to the boiler. The locomotive was intended to operate conventionally in the open, but in tunnels dampers would be closed and steam would be generated using the stored heat from the fire bricks. The first trial on the Great Western Railway in October 1861 was a failure. The condensing system leaked, causing the boiler to run dry and pressure to drop, risking a boiler explosion. A second trial on the Metropolitan Railway in 1862 was also a failure, and the fireless engine was abandoned, becoming known as “Fowler’s Ghost”. The locomotive was sold to Isaac Watt Boulton in 1865; he intended to convert it into a standard engine but it was eventually scrapped.On opening, the Metropolitan Railway’s trains were provided by the Great Western Railway, but these were withdrawn in August 1863. After a period hiring trains from the Great Northern Railway, the Metropolitan Railway introduced its own, Fowler designed, 4-4-0 tank engines in 1864. The design, known as the A class and, with minor updates, the B class, was so successful that the Metropolitan and Metropolitan District Railways eventually had 120 of the engines in use and they remained in operation until electrification of the lines in the 1900s. Today these railways form the majority of the London Underground’s Circle line

Fowler established a busy practice, working on many railway schemes across the country. He became chief engineer for the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway and was engineer of the East Lincolnshire Railway, the Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway and the Severn Valley Railway. . Other railways that Fowler consulted for were the London Tilbury and Southend Railway, the Great Northern Railway, the Highland Railway and the Cheshire Lines Railway. Following the death of Isambard Kingdom Brunel in 1859, Fowler was retained by the Great Western Railway. His various appointments involved him in the design of Victoria station in London, Sheffield Victoria station, St Enoch station in Glasgow, Liverpool Central station and Manchester Central station.The latter station’s 210-foot (64 m) wide train shed roof was the second widest unsupported iron arch in Britain after the roof of St Pancras railway station. Fowler’s consulting work extended beyond Britain including railway and engineering projects in Algeria, Australia, Belgium, Egypt, France, Germany, Portugal and the United States. He travelled to Egypt for the first time in 1869 and worked on a number of, mostly unrealised, schemes for the Khedive, including a railway to Khartoum in Sudan which was planned in 1875 but not completed until after his death.

Albert Edward Bridge, Coalbrookdale
Albert Edward Bridge, Coalbrookdale

In 1870 he provided advice to an Indian Government inquiry on railway gauges where he recommended a narrow gauge of 3 feet 6 inches (1.07 m) for light railways.He visited Australia in 1886, where he made some remarks on the break of gauge difficulty. Later in his career, he was also a consultant with his partner Benjamin Baker and with James Henry Greathead on two of London’s first tube railways, the City and South London Railway and the Central London Railway. As part of his railway projects, Fowler also designed numerous bridges. In the 1860s, he designedGrosvenor Bridge, the first railway bridge over the River Thames,and the 13-arch Dollis Brook Viaduct for the Edgware, Highgate and London Railway. He is credited with the design of the Victoria Bridge at Upper Arley, Worcestershire, constructed between 1859 and 1861,and the near identical Albert Edward Bridge at Coalbrookdale, Shropshire built from 1863 to 1864.Both remain in use today carrying railway lines across the River Severn. In the 1880s, he was chief engineer for the Forth Railway Bridge, which opened in 1890 and Following the collapse of Sir Thomas Bouch’s Tay Bridge in 1879, Fowler, William Henry Barlow and Thomas Elliot Harrison were appointed in 1881 to a commission to review Bouch’s design for the Forth Railway Bridge. The commission recommended a steel cantilever bridge designed by Fowler and Benjamin Baker, which was constructed between 1883 and 1890

Fowler stood unsuccessfully for parliament as a Conservative candidate in 1880 and 1885. His standing within the engineering profession was very high, to the extent that he was elected president of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 1865, its youngest president. Through his position in the Institution and through his own practice, he led the development of training for engineers. In 1857, he purchased a 57,000 acres (23,000 ha) estate at Braemore in Ross-shire, Scotland, where he spent frequent holidays and where he was a Justice of the Peace and a Deputy Lieutenant of the County.He listed his recreations in Who’s Who as yachting and deerstalking and was a member of the Carlton Club, St Stephen’s Club, the Conservative Club and the Royal Yacht Squadron. He was also President of the Egyptian Exploration Fund.In 1885 he was made a Knight Commander of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George as thanks from the government for allowing the use of maps of the Upper Nile valley he had had made when working on the Khedive’s projects. They were the most accurate survey of the area and were used in the British Relief of Khartoum. Following the successful completion of the Forth Railway Bridge in 1890, Fowler was created a baronet, taking the name of his Scottish estate as his territorial designation. Along with Benjamin Baker, he received an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from the University of Edinburgh in 1890 for his engineering of the bridge. In 1892, the Poncelet Prize was doubled and awarded jointly to Baker and Fowler. Fowler died in Bournemouth, Dorset, at the age of 81 and is buried in Brompton Cemetery, London. He was succeeded in the baronetcy by his son, Sir John Arthur Fowler, 2nd Baronet (died 25 March 1899). The baronetcy became extinct in 1933 on the death of Reverend Sir Montague Fowler, 4th Baronet, the first baronet’s third son.