Rhodri Marsden is the Technology Columnist for The Independent; he has also written about crumpets, Captain Beefheart, rude place names and string. He's also a musician who plays in the band Scritti Politti, and won the under-10 piano category at the 1980 Watford Music Festival by playing a piece called "Silver Trumpets" with verve and aplomb.
27 December 2014 12:00 AM
The ducks first appeared at number 13 Coronation Street in the late 1970s and became an icon of the show
20 December 2014 12:00 AM
The first electric Christmas tree lights were installed in the New York City home of Edward Hibberd Johnson this weekend in 1882
18 December 2014 12:00 AM
The same size and shape as an iPhone 5 but with no functionality whatsoever, the NoPhone was intended as part joke, part art project, part social statement
13 December 2014 12:00 AM
* This weekend 35 years ago, Scott Abbott, a sports journalist for the Canadian Press, challenged his friend Chris Haney, a picture editor for the Montreal Gazette, to a game of Scrabble. Haney arrived at Abbott's house with a Scrabble set which, he calculated, was the sixth he'd bought, thanks to repeatedly losing tiles. An exasperated Haney suggested they invent their own game. "How about trivia?" suggested Abbott. One hour later, over a couple of beers, they'd designed the six-spoked wheel of Trivial Pursuit.
10 December 2014 09:17 PM
Neither 'bim' nor 'gomping' will pass into common parlance, but I love them
06 December 2014 12:00 AM
* A touring showman by the name of Gardner Colton administered the laughing gas. John Riggs, a Connecticut dentist, wielded the pliers. Horace Wells, another dentist whose wisdom tooth had been causing him distress, braced himself for the extraction. But as Horace Wells's tooth left his body, he felt "not so much as a prick of pain"; 170 years ago this week, anaesthesia met dentistry.
Have you been ticking things off the "50 Signs A Couple Has Made It" list? Then you're dooming yourself to permanent unhappiness...
04 December 2014 10:20 PM
04 December 2014 12:00 AM
At this time of year in particular, we find ourselves relying on customer reviews to help us make tricky consumer decisions online
02 December 2014 07:44 PM
Microsoft's Clip Art provided simple images for decorating documents with. Now it has been declared obsolete, and DIY leaflets will never be the same, says Rhodri Marsden
29 November 2014 12:00 AM
* Mr Eugene Hodges arrived home from work on 30 November, 1954, 60 years ago this weekend, to find his front door besieged by strangers. When he finally got indoors, he discovered why people had been travelling from all over the town of Sylacauga: his wife had just become the first human being confirmed to have been hit by a meteorite.
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Millions of Britons struggling to feed themselves and facing malnourishment
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Nigel Farage: Ukip leader named 'Briton of the year' by The Times
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk
- 1 President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
- 2 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 4 Sir Winston Churchill’s family begged him not to convert to Islam, letter reveals