I’m 38% tech geek.

Which means I don’t possess enough tech skills to be useful to others BUT do have enough passion to want to consume it for myself (as long as it doesn’t hurt my head).

So being 38% tech geek means I love Click, the BBC’s, “comprehensive guide to all the latest gadgets, websites, games and computer industry news”.

Kate Russell Click Happiness

Someone who presents my favourite part of that show is a geek Godess, Kate Russell.

Here are 8 things that provide Kate with some happiness…

 

What’s the last thing that made you smile?

Capt Jack Kate Russell's cat happiness

My cat Captain Jack coming in from the rain and demanding to be towel-dried, then purring so loud it made him cough

 

What’s your favourite book?

Talisman-Stephen-King Happiness Kate Russell

The Talisman by Stephen King.

It’s an epic fantasy with amazing characters, I didn’t want it to end

 

What are you grateful for today?

internet

The Internet – I have loads of work to do!

 

What’s you favourite little pleasure?

running faster happiness

Running a little faster than I did last time

 

Do you have a favourite inspirational quote?

Doug Clark IBM

I interviewed Doug Clark, IBM Cloud Computing Leader last year for my book and he said “If someone tells you ‘no, this cannot be done’, you should always query that and see it as an opportunity to make a success out of something that no-one else is doing.”

 

Which person inspires you or which person do you think is inspiring?

Ada_Lovelace_portrait

Ada Lovelace – the first computer programmer and an awesome woman!

 

What one event has been memorable in your life.

Kickstarter Kate Rusell Happiness

The day I got crowd funded to write a sci-fi novel.

It’s very humbling to think so many strangers would put their hard earned money behind a belief I can deliver something enjoyable.

 

Is there something that’s happened to you, which at the time was seemingly negative but eventually turned out to be positive?

This happens all the time – in fact if I trace the lineage of events leading to all of the best stuff in my life back, they all have a rubbish life-event somewhere along the line that was essential to them happening.

For example, if I had not got divorced, I would not have been looking for a change of direction and found my way into games journalism, which in turn lead to a career on TV and finally achieving my life goal of publishing a book.

We are all a product of our experience and I am sure anyone who does that exercise of tracing the best events back through their life will find the same… the trick is remembering that fact when you are in the middle of a life crisis and letting it lift your spirits and give you hope.

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Kate Russell has been writing about technology, gaming and the Internet since 1995 and now appears weekly on BBC2 and BBC World News, reporting for technology programme Click.

A regular expert on the sofa at ITV’s Daybreak and various other TV and radio stations, she also writes columns for National Geographic Traveller magazine and Web User magazine.

working the cloud kate russell happiness

Her first book ‘Working the Cloud’ and companion blog workingthecloud.biz is the ultimate collection of online tips, tricks and resources for small businesses, start-ups and entrepreneurs who want to get ahead online.

In addition to her prolific writing and TV career Kate speaks regularly at technology events and conferences and in schools and Universities inspiring the next generation of female technologists.

She also gets involved in UK and global policy meetings to help shape the way the Internet is governed.

At the end of 2012 she was crowd funded more than 400% of her target to write a science fiction novel.

 

Kate’s website: http://workingthecloud.biz/
Kate’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ClickKate
Kate’s Twitter: @katerussell

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It’s not the simple things in life that makes us happy…

 

It's not the simple things in life that makes us happy...

 

Yesterday I took Fred and Monty to the park but on the way, we were distracted.

Fred said, “Daddy I want an apple”

“I don’t have one on me Fred”

“There’s one there!” Fred said pointing up to a tree.

Sure enough next to the park was a pretty looking apple tree, almost showing off it’s fruit to us.

I stood Fred on my shoulders. He reached up, grabbed one and passed it down to me, then grabbed one for himself.

 

its not the simple things in life that make us happy

 

I got him down and we stood there, facing each other, eating our fresh apples.

It’s as if we’d both discovered treasure that nobody else knew about.

As we chewed, we said nothing. We both had smiles on our faces, as we happily chomped one of natures finest free gifts.

This IS the way nature intended it.

No looking for a parking space at a busy supermarket, no battling with trolleys, no queuing, no fishing for money to buy a packaged import, which has been chemically treated to arrest it’s development in transit.

We just accepted the fresh fruit, as it was presented to us, from it’s grower.

They not only tasted amazingly delicious, the fleeting experience we shared was also slightly magical.

As we finished our apples and carried on walking towards the park I felt the warmth of contentment flow through me, as I reflected on what had just happened.

It’s not the simple things in life that makes us happy (as surveys suggest), it’s the learning to appreciate the simple things in life.

 

Screenshot 2014-02-27 13.06.52

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I’m subscribed to a lot of email newsletters and blogs. Most of them I delete without reading, unless their headline grabs my attention.

James Clear happiness

I can honestly say when James’ weekly email drops into my inbox I never delete it without a read through.

It always contains value and insight.

He writes about how it’s possible to use our daily routines to improve our performance and therefore achieve more.

James has had and continues to have a very interesting life.

Here’s a few interesting things that’s happened to him in life so far:

He won $10,000 in a competition and lived off of that money for the next year while he started his first business.

He built that business to $20,000/month without hiring any employees.

He’s been a basketball player, trained as an Olympic weightlifter and was chosen, in 2012, as a finalist for the Travel Photographer of the Year award, for covering the September 11th Memorial in New York City (which included this photo):

 tower 7-final16 James Clear happiness

 

Here are 9 things that give James Clear a little bit of happiness…. 

 

What’s the last thing that made you laugh? 

Parking James Clear Happiness

This picture: Nailed it!

 

 

What’s your favourite book?

Complications Atul Gawande James Clear Happiness

Complications by Atul Gawande.

I love medicine and this is a thoughtful look at what it’s really like to be a surgeon and a human who makes mistakes.

 

 

What are you grateful for today?

The opportunity to do work that I love.
 

 

 

What’s your favourite film?

Shawshank Redemption - James Clear Happiness

The Shawshank Redemption.

It’s a classic.

 

 

What’s your favourite little pleasure? 

mcdonalds fries James Clear Happiness

Eating McDonald’s French fries, which I usually do about once every 2 or 3 months.

 

 

Do you have a favourite quote?

It is not the critic who counts;

Not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood;

Who strives valiantly;

Who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming;

But who does actually strive to do the deeds;

Who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause;

Who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt

 

 

Which person inspired you or which person do you think is inspiring?

My grandpa inspired me. He was a leader, a family man, and most importantly — he was happy.

 

 

What one event has been the most memorable in your life?

Fields

Walking in the fields on my grandparent’s farm.

If I was taking the last walk of my life, I think that’s where I’d like to do it.

 

 

Is there something that’s happened to you, which at the time was seemingly negative but eventually turned out to be positive?

All the time.

Whenever I make a mistake (which is often) it seems like a negative at the time. But pretty soon, I move on and people get over it, and I’m better off and wiser for the mistake.

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James Clear writes at JamesClear.com, where he shares ideas about using behaviour science to master your habits and improve your performance.

For fresh ideas on how to live a healthy life, both mentally and physically, join his free newsletter by clicking HERE

James is on Twitter: James Clear

James’s Linkedin profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jamesclear

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For years I tried, unsuccessfully, to get into radio but when I was finally offered a gig, over 15 years ago, the first person I worked with was Jason.

8 things that give Jason Happiess

I was completely new to the industry but Jason had been doing it, at that point, for over 10 years and he couldn’t have been more helpful.

We worked on the breakfast show at Red Dragon FM in South Wales, which is now called Capital. Jason was the host, along with Emma Hignett and I was the producer, come stunt boy.

I’d basically go out and about hassling the public, in all types of weather, whilst Jason and Emma sat in a nice warm studio, laughing at my antics.

Every now and again the public would get their own back.

I recall one such morning, after a particularly heavy down pour, I was requested to stand next to the biggest puddle in Cardiff.

Jase and Emma then revealed to listeners, where I was standing and encouraged them drive through the puddle, soaking me in the process.

After Red Dragon Jason went onto the BBC and now presents the drive time show on Wales largest radio station, Real Radio, Wales.

Before breaking into radio, Jason was a baker in a supermarket but realising it wasn’t for him, entered a, “Search For A D.J.” competition. The judges discovered he had the ‘decks factor‘ declared him the winner and gave him his first ever gig in radio.

Here are 8 things that give Jason some happiness…

 

What’s the last thing that made you laugh?

The last thing that made me laugh was a friend of mine trying to send me a video message and kept laughing .

I also saw the Aussie truck ad on Facebook which made me laugh out loud to the point of crying.

I also enjoy daily banter with my 18 year old son he is growing into a young man and his humour and demeanour are starting to reflect that now.

 

What is your favourite book?

To Kill A Mockingbird

The book that had a big effect on me was at school when we read in our English lessons To Kill A Mockingbird.

Great story showing just how small minded some people can be and that we are basically all human beings.

 

What’s your favourite little pleasure?

sun

My favourite little pleasure is something that happened the other day when you think you have to go to the cashpoint but find a fiver in your wallet, that and feeling the sun on my face, that really perks me up

 

What are you grateful for today?

The thing(s) I am most grateful for are my health and that of those close to me.

I am also grateful for the fact that I can still do what I love doing at work and grateful people still enjoy what I do.

 

Is there someone who inspired you?

Sir David Attenborough

A guy who inspired me was the legendary BRMB DJ Les Ross.

He had an accent from the area he broadcast to and that gave me something to aim for.

Then as I got to see how radio worked Nick Wright at Wyvern in Worcester. I learnt pretty much everything from him so it’s his fault.

I also think Sir David Attenborough, to have done what he has done in his career of not only entertaining but also educating and still have an undiminished enthusiasm for knowledge, is to be admired.

 

Do you have any favourite quotes?

By failing to prepare you are preparing to fail Ben Franklin

My favourite quotes are Fail to prepare , prepare to fail which I have always used in my working life but it is true in all walks of life and I love the Churchill quote, “When you’re going through hell, keep going”.

 

What is one of the most memorable moments you’ve experienced in your life?

Jase & Ricky

There have been far too many memorable things that have happened to me.

Doing the job I do I have flown in helicopters something I never tire of doing, broadcasts from abroad, been caged with a Tiger, been driven at high speed in a rally car, ridden a speedway bike, played football alongside some sporting legends, covered sporting and social events and met some people whose most ardent fans never get close to and to have been paid for the pleasure is a bonus.

 

Name one event that happened to you, which at the time was seemingly negative but turned out to be positive?

The negative that turned into a positive for me was being sacked after working for a long time at one radio station. It was one of the worst feelings that I have ever experienced as it was a job I loved.

However I found some work at the BBC that was a little different and a style of broadcasting that I hadn’t done befere and gradually my confidence came back .

I felt it helped me evolve as a presenter broadcaster and a person and to keep my head above water professionally.

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Jason has presented 2 series for ITV Wales and recently worked for Eurosport on the speedway grand prix.

You can currently hear Jason, weekdays on Real Radio Wales weekdays from 4pm – 7pm.

Jason’s Twitter is: @jason_harrold

 

You can subscribe to this blog HERE

 

 

In what seems like another life now, I used to host a topical panel show on BBC Radio Wales called, “What’s The Story?”.

It was produced by Ruth Jones’ production company, Tidy Productions.

Essentially, it involved 5 us sitting around a table for two days a week, going through the newspapers and talking rubbish to each other.

Out of this, we’d hope to coming up with, what we thought were, funny gags or ideas for the show.

The show was then recorded, in front of a live audience, on a Thursday night and broadcast on the Friday and Saturday.

dean burnett

One of the best gag writers on the team was Dean Burnett.

Dean has an interesting background, he’s a doctor of neuroscience, a lecturer, a tutor and comedian who writes the science / humour blog ‘Brain Flapping’ for the Guardian.

He’s a lovely guy and currently lives in Cardiff with his wife and son.

Here are 6 things that make Dean happy?

 

What’s the last thing that made you laugh?

The last thing that made me laugh, aside from the various bumblings my son does, was a piece in the Daily Mash entitled, “Tattoos must reflect owners’ averageness”,  about by my mate Nick Pettigrew.

tattoogirl250

 

What’s your favourite book?

KilnPeople(1stEd)

My favourite book, being a sci-fi nerd, is probably David Brin’s ‘Kiln People’, about a weird future where people can make fully conscious clay copies of themselves, sort of like disposable clones.

It’s a very upbeat portrayal of the future for a change, written in very interesting ‘multiple first person perspective’ style, and creates and explores a completely new field of science.

 

What your favourite film?

UP

Probably a Pixar, like Up or Ratatouille.

Although my wife and I have a guilty pleasure in ‘The Associate’, a little known Whoopi Goldberg vehicle from the 90s based around Wall Street.

Screen Shot 2013-10-04 at 13.41.03

It’s utterly ludicrous, but all the better for it.

 

What are you grateful for today?

Dean and family

Today I’m grateful, as with nearly every day, for my wife and baby son.

It sounds corny, but I genuinely think I’m a very lucky person who’s achieved / obtained a lot of things, but would give all that up for them, no worries.

It’s seen as uncool or cheesy to express fondness for those close to you, apparently. Screw that.

 

Who do you think is inspirational?

A lot of my in-laws are inspirational.

My wife is Indian, and a lot of her family conform to the ‘came to this country with nothing, worked extremely hard and made a success of themselves’ mould.

Hence I strongly object to the knee-jerk immigrant bashing people like to indulge in these days.

Brian Blessed

In terms of famous people, I’m going to say someone like Brian Blessed is a big inspiration.

All that he’s done, all the charity work he does, and is still a larger-than-life character that people find very entertaining.

Anyone who gets an entire round on QI dedicated to them is cool in my book.

 

What one event has been the most memorable / most enjoyable in your life?

dean lecturing

Not sure if it’s an ‘event’ or several over a very short space of time, but in July 2011 I officially became a doctor, found a decent job after 18 months unemployed and found out I was going to be a dad, all within about a 3 day period.

Hard to forget something that intense.

 

Is there something that’s happened to you, which at the time was seemingly negative but eventually turned out to be positive?

I was once semi-fooled into doing an interview for a local paper which made it look like I was in agreement with some bogus science nonsense, accompanied with a ridiculous photo of me splashing in puddles.

At the time it was terribly embarrassing and seemed to do serious damage to my hopes of being a respected neuroscientist, but since then I’ve used that event and the anecdotes that resulted to further my science-humour writing, and now I have my own Guardian blog and am regularly asked to do talks, articles etc. so it all worked out in the end.

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You can read Dean’s, “Brain Flapping” blog here: brain-flapping

Dean’s Twitter is: @garwboy

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