Editor’s Letter

What is the first thing we do these days when we want to find out information about anything? Answer – do a Google search. (In case you were wondering, a quick Google reveals that its unusual name is derived from ‘Googolplex’, an impossibly large number in mathematics.) Talking of which, Google is now thought to have around 2.5 million servers globally.

Despite the mind-boggling coverage, who knows the veracity of the info you are getting when you, for example, Google double-glazing U-values, or how to install your own rainwater harvesting? Some, or a lot might be (although I hate to quote Trump), ‘fake news’. You might see a couple of posts on a message board from those who have done what you’re interested in doing, but these are likely to be very context-specific. PR-polished information will also be plentiful, and potentially highly valuable – available from any number of company websites, however this also often needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. The devil is, as ever, in the detail.

Sometimes, the only answer is to go and see the products, and talk to their suppliers, in the flesh. Luckily the self-build market is well-served for good quality events across the year, wherever you happen to live. From Wadebridge to Glasgow there are regular chances to get the practical tips you want, as well as the info on sensible self-build techniques which you might not get anywhere else. The events tab on Selfbuilder + Homemaker’s website homepage (www.sbhonline.co.uk) is a good place to start – also why not try www.selfbuildportal.org.uk, as well as of course our regular Diary below. Happy surfing!

James Parker