Brunch #8 – 3 December 2016

BRUNCH #8 – 3 December 2016

‘Twas some weeks before Christmas, and the freezing weather had not yet hit, but it was probably cold and windy, I can’t quite remember the weather as I was off to Durban that very day, shorts and flip flops in the case.

Fresh and delightful around the Delaunay table were Miranda, Jill, Kerilyn and newcomer to the gathering, the lovely Janka, editor.

Diving in to our multi-faceted conversation (in no particular order), reminds me of how fantastic, talented and inspiring you all are.

Happy New Year, and very best wishes to you and yours, for a very good, healthy and happy year – no matter what comes our way!

Next breakfast less than a week away #9 – 14th Jan, same place, same time. Email me if you’d like to come (one day I’ll figure out a calendar button)

Sian xx



No media-related chatter is complete without VR flavour, and although this is now way out of date, Janka alerted us to a fantastic-looking event – VR Summit (6 Dec). Looks like VR Royalty and I hope to be at the next one, thanks for the heads up!

Saw/heard/experienced a beautiful piece by Visualise at VRLO – simple piano in a beautiful City church, it was all about the binaural sound. With the sound coming from the room, it felt like a completely natural experience, as natural as anything can feel in a pair of giant goggles.


Now, I don’t know how I know this, so you may need to ask further direction, but the very interesting-looking Future Laboratory, may be getting into video production. Sorry to be so vague! Janka was this from you? Kerilyn?

Getty Images too commissioning long form – again I’m not sure exactly what that means, but it’s very interesting looking at the Getty library – now looking after BBC Motion Gallery, Bloomberg and Nat Geo.


I may be the only person who didn’t know this, but sad news of the Searching For Sugarman director’s suicide

Post-brunch, my Christmas break featured a lot of film and a couple of box sets. A Moody Christmas was excellent off-beat Christmas entertainment, neatly done. And The Crown, which I thought I wouldn’t like, is excellent.


Uber – friend or foe? Well, that depends on how you feel about data use in general. This story’s been brewing for a while, since Uber evolved into a big data company, now a whistleblower/lawsuit claims there’s more to it than making our lives easier. Go figure.

The Cloud. I mean, who thought of this term? Who? There is nothing light, fluffy or ecological about the data centres required for massive computing power. The big ones suck more power than a village! Microsoft is experimenting with Project Natick – underwater data centres – early days, sounds dangerous to me (bag humbug)

Post-brunch, this is an intriguing and beautiful visualisation by the NY Times – Duck Dynasty vs. Modern Family TV maps.

I really must read this book – Who Owns the Future . Mentioned by Jill a few times now. Although it’s 2013, and three years seems a very long time with the way things are flying around these days, I think I would find a lot to like in there. The concept of ‘Siren Servers’, companies making fortunes out of our data that we give away for 10% off our next purchase, and the fact that Facebook is actually a big data company, and as for Amazon… worth a read to say the least.  And yikes, check out this 2016 update, CIA predicting social uprisings using same super computers – Sirens indeed.


Happily, the tech and the terror is soon swept away in the conversation. Like VR, no brunch is complete without a mention of Babies, the documentary. A delight introduced to us by Kerilyn many months ago. Cameras at baby level, no schmaltz. A treat. When your job entails watching this, you know you’ve hit a sweet spot. Be sure not to say a word if you’re taking your driving test (see below).

Nesta has now re-branded itself as an ‘innovation foundation’.

And back to babies, Imogen Heap for Cow & Gate, a song made to make babies happy.


If you’re in fair Germany, check out Janka’s brother’s Munich urban arts gallery/museum! I don’t understand a word I’m ashamed to say, but the museum video looks great, I’d love to go.

I was going to say closer to home, but seeing as though it’s over, it’s definitely further than Munich. London’s Hayward Gallery/Vinyl Factory’s Infinite Mix in a disused building was amazing. If it’s every repeated, run to it, or if there’s ever another Hayward Gallery/Vinyl Factory colab. I loved this – Cyprien Gaillard’s 3D plants, they look alive. Doesn’t look as good without the specs – funny that. The venue was lush. The Store, 180 Strand is uber slick, good vibes. Sitting on a £40k sofa was nice. It’s opening again in Jan but once the ‘luxury flats’ or whatever go up in front of it, the River view will be gone, so not sure if it’ll still be 5-star. Worth a try. Good coffee, nice people.

Tower of London ceremony of the keys is a top outing. Other-worldly, steeped in tradition and history, not too long and brilliantly bonkers. Here Marg’s sound collage of the event – who needs photographs.

Miranda’s South American holiday sounds absolutely incredible. I’d never thought of a tour before but what a great way to have grand adventure without having to do heaps of research and pre-planning. Homestays sound awesome – but altitude sickness does not. Spectacular Iguazu Falls and butterflies sound incredible. I’m feeling quite boring now with my London-Durban-Estepona beaten track (triangle) of late. Mmmm time for an adventure this year?

Jill has a top tip for the best café in Rome, with coffee so good you’ll have a hangover if you have more than two, but I clearly did not spell it anywhere close to correct, as Google returned zero results. Whhhhat. Maybe it’s that much of a secret. Jill you’ll have to fill us in!


Nobody likes to talk about this kind of stuff, let alone do it, but that’s what I was going home to do (before packing shorts and flip flops) – write a will (shudder). It’s a gruesome task and the only reason I share it here is that there seems to be a little ‘disruption’ in the will-writing sphere. You can now do the (highly unpleasant) online, where it’s not only cheaper, but much more flexible. I used Your Will Be Done (£20 + £25 if it’s complicated and needs a solicitor, and you can change it without charge as your circumstances change throughout life).

Top tip if you’re being put through a driving test – do not admit to having a good job, and for wardrobe, think hard-up chic. If you look like you can afford it (again and again), you probably will fail. What’s this, corruption in the UK? I am shocked to the core. Not really.

So we were chatting about how safe (or otherwise) South Africa is, and when talk turned to the popular London past-time of scumbags nicking phones and laptops out of your hand (as you stand looking for the Uber driver, or sit working at a pavement café). Or another technique of pushing an open newspaper in your face. Watch out ladies – it had happened to 3 out of 5!








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