MOST IRISH BROADSHEETS give a large swath of coverage to the terrible tragedy in Mumbai last week. It emerged that those terrorists were receiving instructions from Pakistan, some using Blackberries to clarify details with their handlers.  At least 195 people died in these attacks, which some experts believe were accompanied by warnings up to six months ago. In an accompanying Qik video [28 MB 3GP file], I skim the Sunday Times, Sunday Observer and Sunday Business Post, finding a few interesting items related to technology along the way. In practical terms, I think it's important to notice that many five-star hotels in Ireland now offer sumptious accommodation at half the normal booking price of the Celtic Tiger era.  On the street, petrol is now priced below the price point of Christmas 2007, cyberchondriacs now rule the waiting rooms , and some High Street retailers fear they won't sell many pairs of socks in 2009. Details follow in the shownotes and on the Qik video.
How to spend public money. In a tight fiscal environment, the media spotlight now sprays every questionable use of public money all over the place and with predictable public outcry. Unlike Germany, where Angela Merkel's prudent decision to invoke the strong German value of frugality, Irish citizens rise up for their entitlements. It's probably too late for anyone in Ireland to demand the comfort levels of past public services because there's simply no money. However, there are local government elections a few months away and by unseating Fiana Fail councillors, Irish voters will make the hustings by incumbents more difficult when the general election beckons. Not surprisingly, the measured discussion of national broadcaster Marian Finucane get no serious play on Irish blogs, when she explores the serious financial improprieties inside the State employment agency.  So far, no one has been exposed as having bought a Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte phone (£1.099 value) on government expense.
Your Diary, Their Book. According to a book Amanda and the Others published in Italy last week, the American student Amanda Knox drew up a list of things to do before she left home in Seattle. Top of the list, according to the diary, was visiting a sex shop. Knox wrote that buying condoms was one of her priorities. Most people consider their diaries private and personal. Diaries are questionable evidence in criminal cases because there is no way to authenticate them. That has not stopped the Italian magistrates from leaking the diaries. Although there is a pattern of partying hard in Amanda's background. 
Mid-life Mouse. As Alexia Golez tweets out, the mouse turns 40. The name was never meant to stick. When Doug Engelbart and his team at the Stanford Research Institute designed a computer controller encased in a carved-out wooden block with wheels mounted on its underbelly, one researcher nicknamed it a mouse. 
1. Front page news in The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
2. John Mooney -- "Now more Irish are heading out again" from the front page of The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
2. Gabriella Monaghan -- "Rooms for free as hotels feel the chill" in The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
3. Mark Tighe -- "Suspended FAS boss 'cleared' to break the rules" in the Focus section of The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
4. Sarah McInerney -- "YouTube clip nets a Hollywood Deal" in the News section of The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
5. Gabrielle Monaghan -- "Lights out for full-time boarders" in the News Review of The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
6. John Follain -- "Foxy Knox's diary reveals sex secrets" in The Sunday Times, 30 Nov 08.
7. David Smith -- "Humble mouse turns 40 and loses its touch" in the News section of the Observer, 30 Nov 08.
8. John Naughton -- "I'm sorry, Doctor Internet, but I want a second opinion" in the Media section of the Observer, 30 Nov 08.
Bonus Link: FT Weekend video [8 minutes] on technology from today.