Twitch: Review: JOHN WICK, Make Him Mad, Suffer The Consequences

When you're an elite assassin, you don't need to clean up the bloody scenes of carnage you create. Thus, hit man John Wick (Keanu Reeves), retired for four years, can draw upon his ample financial resources to hire an ultra-discreet crime scene cleanup crew to dispose of the bloody bodies that have suddenly littered his home. If that same crew were to follow him around throughout the following days, however, they would quickly run out of body bags. John Wick, both the movie and the man, is a lethal, emotionless, quite proficient killing machine with nearly any type of weapon available: guns and knives, of course, as well as every sort of firearm known to man, not to mention bombs and the good old reliable...

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Bifurcated Rivets: From FB

Seriously weird

Bifurcated Rivets: From FB

Does not look like ice cream

Bifurcated Rivets: From FB


Bifurcated Rivets: From FB

Good Grief

Bifurcated Rivets: From FB

Good Grief

BOOOOOOOM!: Photographer Wouter Van de Voorde


Photos by Canberra, Australia-based photographer Wouter Van de Voorde. More below.

View the whole post: Photographer Wouter Van de Voorde over on BOOOOOOOM!.

Recent additions: yi-fuzzy-open 0.1.0

Added by DmitryIvanov, Thu Oct 23 12:30:43 UTC 2014.

Fuzzy open plugin for Yi. Blog: DREMEL® VersaTip in a limited edition serves for work and also for fun


Do you like tools usable for several jobs? Gas soldering tool Dremel VersaTip 2000 in a “Decorating kit” edition certainly belongs to such record breakers in the versatility of usage.

Multifunctional gas tool Dremel VersaTip 2000 usable for technical but also creative works was introduced to you in our articles. Soldering, melting, hot-cutting, welding and wood burning (pyrography), bending of metals, application of heat shrinkable insulations, releasing of junctions locked by an anaerobic sealant (bearings and screws) and now also various creative works can be done with a special edition „Decorating Kit (DremelVersaTip2000-6)”. This set also contains a few additions to develop creativity of a user (of families :-)), namely: embossing pen, 3 embossing powders, embossing stones and 2 wooden sheets with pre-cut shapes to try this technique.

Embossing pen contains a slow-drying glue. If we put some embossing powder on to an ornament painted by this pen, it will get sticked in a thin layer. Then it´s only necessary to heat it up by a hot air from the VersaTip tool and an attractive color layer is done. Possibilities of usage of this technique are wide – after some exercise it´s possible to use it for example to mark your own „hand made“ products giving them a mark of unique. In general, the embossing lacquer (glue) can be applied also by a suitable rubber stamp (sold in specialized shops), what can give us a relatively very quality, sharp result.

To refill the DREMEL VersaTip, it´s advisable to use a clean liquid buthane. Detailed description will provide you the VersaTip Instruction Manual.

DREMEL® VersaTip in a limited edition serves for work and also for fun - [Link]

MetaFilter: Really, really old dogs

"Photographer Pete Thorne has discovered that, just as photographing the elderly can make for powerful portraits, the same can be said for old dogs as well. His "Old Faithful" photo series takes a warm and intimate look at man's best friends as they live out their golden years."

BOOOOOOOM!: Chelsea Welsh


“Caught in the Days Unraveling”, photos by Cambridge, Massachusetts-based photographer Chelsea Welsh. More below.

View the whole post: Chelsea Welsh over on BOOOOOOOM!.

Bad Science: My new book is out today. Here is the introduction. Hooray!

Slashdot: The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll writes James Swearingen writes at The Atlantic that the Internet can be a mean, hateful, and frightening place — especially for young women but human behavior and the limits placed on it by both law and society can change. In a Pew Research Center survey of 2,849 Internet users, one out of every four women between 18 years old and 24 years old reports having been stalked or sexually harassed online. "Like banner ads and spam bots, online harassment is still routinely treated as part of the landscape of being online," writes Swearingen adding that "we are in the early days of online harassment being taken as a serious problem, and not simply a quirk of online life." Law professor Danielle Citron draws a parallel between how sexual harassment was treated in the workplace decades ago and our current standard. "Think about in the 1960s and 1970s, what we said to women in the workplace," says Citron. "'This is just flirting.' That a sexually hostile environment was just a perk for men to enjoy, it's just what the environment is like. If you don't like it, leave and get a new job." It took years of activism, court cases, and Title VII protection to change that. "Here we are today, and sexual harassment in the workplace is not normal," said Citron. "Our norms and how we understand it are different now." According to Swearingen, the likely solution to internet trolls will be a combination of things. The expansion of laws like the one currently on the books in California, which expands what constitutes online harassment, could help put the pressure on harassers. The upcoming Supreme Court case, Elonis v. The United States, looks to test the limits of free speech versus threatening comments on Facebook. "Can a combination of legal action, market pressure, and societal taboo work together to curb harassment?" asks Swearingen. "Too many people do too much online for things to stay the way they are."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Open Culture: Morgan Spurlock, Werner Herzog & Other Stars Explain Economic Theory in 20 Short Films

Morgan Spurlock is a filmmaker who has long found catchy ways of getting his point across. For his breakout movie, Super Size Me (available on Hulu), he sought to illustrate just how truly awful fast food is for you by subsisting solely on McDonald’s for a month. His diet literally almost killed him. Not long after the movie came out, McDonald’s started adding more healthy options to its menu. In POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, Spurlock looked to make a documentary about product placement in movies by financing the doc entirely through product placement. (That movie gets pretty meta fast.) And most recently, Spurlock has launched We The Economy: 20 Short Films You Can’t Afford To Miss. As you might surmise, the series tries to explain economics to the masses by releasing 20 short films made by a host of different stars and filmmakers, including Amy Poehler, Tony Hale, Sarah Silverman and Maya. The whole project will be released in theaters and on VOD but the shorts have also been released in advance on Youtube. You can watch Spurlock’s segment, called “Cave-o-nomics,” above. Seeking to answer the question “What is an economy?” Spurlock dresses up as a caveman struggling to increase his material wealth by swapping spears for meat.

The clear stand out of the bunch, however, is Ramin Bahrani’s “Lemonade War.” Bahami tackles the potentially dreary issue of business regulation by telling a tale of two rival lemonade stands. One is run by a corrupt slob – played by Patton Oswalt — and the other is run by a whip smart ten-year-old girl. Though the girl doesn’t have the money or connections that her rival has, she more than makes up for it with moxie and business acumen. This, sadly, proves to be not enough. When she calls the government regulator about some of her rival’s truly unhygienic practices, she discovers the regulator is in her competition’s pocket and soon she’s driven out of business. Things look hopeless for her until a neighborhood hero, played by none other than Werner Herzog (!), comes to her rescue. With the little girl in tow, he confronts the slob and regulator with his trademark malevolent Teutonic lilt. “If Mr. Smith could go to Washington today,” he declares, “he would filibuster you back into your big bang wormhole you have slithered out of.” The two simply cower in the face of Herzog’s Old Testament wrath. If only Herzog could deliver similar fusillades against the board of Goldman Sachs.

You can watch more segments of We The Economy here — or find them in our collection, 700 Free Movies Online: Great Classics, Indies, Noir, Westerns, etc..

Related Content:

Watch Morgan Spurlock’s Documentary on the 15-Year-Old Who Invented a New Way to Detect Early Stage Pancreatic Cancer

Morgan Spurlock: The Greatest TED Talk Ever Sold

Free Online Economics Courses

The History of Economics & Economic Theory Explained with Comics, Starting with Adam Smith

Jonathan Crow is a Los Angeles-based writer and filmmaker whose work has appeared in Yahoo!, The Hollywood Reporter, and other publications. You can follow him at @jonccrow. And check out his blog Veeptopus, featuring lots of pictures of vice presidents with octopuses on their heads.  The Veeptopus store is here.

Morgan Spurlock, Werner Herzog & Other Stars Explain Economic Theory in 20 Short Films is a post from: Open Culture. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, or get our Daily Email. And don't miss our big collections of Free Online Courses, Free Online Movies, Free eBooksFree Audio Books, Free Foreign Language Lessons, and MOOCs.

The post Morgan Spurlock, Werner Herzog & Other Stars Explain Economic Theory in 20 Short Films appeared first on Open Culture. Blog: Freescale introduces world’s smallest integrated tire pressure monitoring system



Freescale Semiconductor today introduced the FXTH87 tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) family, which is the smallest integrated package TPMS solution available at an extremely light weight of 0.3 grams. The FXTH87 family is 50 percent smaller than competing products, helping designers reduce overall bill of materials costs. Freescale’s newest TPMS system-in-package solution provides low power consumption combined with the highest level of functional integration in one package, featuring a dual-axis accelerometer architecture, pressure and temperature sensor, integrated MCU, RF transmitter and low frequency receiver.

Freescale introduces world’s smallest integrated tire pressure monitoring system - [Link] Blog: Custom OBD II Gauge in With OEM Look

by JustinN1 @

 I built a custom OBD II gauge in the clock of my Subaru BRZ (GT86, FRS) and a lot of people wanted me to build them one. Here is how you can build one of your own. My wife is about to give birth to our second son and all the code is open source, so I have nothing to lose by posting this.

Custom OBD II Gauge in With OEM Look - [Link] Blog: Power Conversion Options for Energy Harvesting IoT Nodes



Environmental energy harvesting is a possible source of power for Internet of Things (IoT) sensor nodes but needs careful management. Unless harvesters based on solar or thermal technology, for example, are designed to be compatible with conventional circuits, DC/DC converters need to be optimized for low-voltage inputs.

Sensor nodes for the Internet of Things often need to placed well away from a reliable power source but operate for many years. Although long storage-life batteries provide one option for powering these devices, an increasingly viable alternative is the use of environmental energy harvesting, using sources such as light, vibration and temperature differentials.

Power Conversion Options for Energy Harvesting IoT Nodes - [Link]

BOOOOOOOM!: Artist Uses 3D Printer To Create A Film Without Any Film


French artist Julien Maire used a 3D printer to create 85 figurines out of a liquid resin so that light could be projected through them. The little pieces pass through a projector and an image of a man digging a hole beams onto the wall. Maire made the work during a residency at the iMAL Centre for Digital Cultures and Technology in Brussels. Although the final film has yet to be shared online I think the sculpture itself is most interesting part. Have a look at some more detailed images of the work below.

View the whole post: Artist Uses 3D Printer To Create A Film Without Any Film over on BOOOOOOOM!. Blog: DC/DC buck power modules fit tight spaces

Micrel 33163by Susan Nordyk @

Micrel’s family of low-profile step-down power modules integrates a synchronous buck regulator with an inductor into a 2.5×3×1.1-mm QFN package for the 1-A MIC33163/33164 and a 2.5×3×1.9-mm QFN package for the 2-A MIC33263/33264. The modules offer 100% duty cycle operation and accommodate an input voltage range of 2.7 V to 5.5 V.

DC/DC buck power modules fit tight spaces - [Link]

Recent additions: esqueleto 2.1.1

Added by FelipeLessa, Thu Oct 23 11:13:36 UTC 2014.

Type-safe EDSL for SQL queries on persistent backends.

Recent additions: creatur 5.7.1

Added by AmyDeBuitleir, Thu Oct 23 11:06:11 UTC 2014.

Framework for artificial life experiments.

Computer Science: Theory and Application: I need to choose 3 of the following CS subjects. Advice please.

  • Declarative Programming
  • Statistical Machine Learning
  • Theory of Computation

For the following 2, the first is a prerequisite for the second.

  • Database Systems
  • CS Project

Basically, should I choose all the first 3 subjects, or should I choose one of the first 3 and and the last 2?

submitted by Computer2357
[link] [3 comments]

Hackaday: Turning the DEFCON Badge Into a Bitcoin Miner


The DEFCON badge this year was an impressive piece of hardware, complete with mind-bending puzzles, cap sense buttons, LEDs, and of course a Parallax Propeller. [mike] thought a chip as cool as the Propeller should be put to better use than just sitting around until next year so he turned it into a Bitcoin miner, netting him an astonishing 40 hashes per second.

Mining Bitcoins on hardware that doesn’t have much processing power to begin with (at least compared to the FPGAs and ASIC miners commonly used) meant [mike] would have to find some interesting ways to compute the SHA256 hashes that mining requires. He turned to RetroMiner, the Bitcoin miner made for an original Nintendo. Like the NES miner, [mike] is offloading the communication with the Bitcoin network to a host computer, but all of the actual math is handled by a single core on the Propeller.

Saving one core for communication with the host computer, a DEFCON badge could conceivably manage 280 hashes/second, meaning the processing power of all the badges made for DEFCON is about equal to a seven-year-old graphics card.

Filed under: Microcontrollers

Recent additions: ghc-vis

Added by DennisFelsing, Thu Oct 23 10:35:26 UTC 2014.

Live visualization of data structures in GHCi Net-Google-CalendarV3-0.09

Access Google Calendars using the v3 API

Recent additions: mime-mail-ses 0.3.1

Added by MichaelSnoyman, Thu Oct 23 10:32:44 UTC 2014.

Send mime-mail messages via Amazon SES

Twitch: Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY Gets Epic New Trailer For BFI Re-Release

There are good sci-fi movies and there are great ones. And then there is Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, unequivocally the greatest work of science fiction ever committed to celluloid. As part of the BFI's three-month Things To Come: Science Fiction film project, Kubrick's 1968 masterpiece will be given a theatrical re-release across the United Kingdom starting 28 November, thanks to Warner Brothers' brand spanking new digital transfer.To promote this incredible film's latest journey "beyond the infinite", the BFI has commissioned a fantastic new trailer, which not only captures many of the best dramatic, visual and aural moments from the film, but also includes a number of quotes from esteemed filmmakers in the sci-fi genre, like Chris Nolan and Alfonso Cuaron, on just how important...

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Twitch: Review: ZOMBIE FIGHT CLUB Is An Apocalyptic Assault On Good Taste

Joe Chien's follow-up to the bafflingly tasteless and salacious Zombie 108 delivers a generous second helping of the same Z-grade trash and splatter. Andy On and Jessica C are the attractive, if helpless, leads who - eventually - find themselves in an apocalyptic underground arena of the undead after escaping an overrun apartment block. But as was the problem last time round, Chien reduces character and narrative to a procession of boobs, blood and depravity that suggests he long ago fell foul of the zombie hordes himself.Zombie 108 was one of those unforgettable viewing experiences. A seemingly simple story of zombies descending on a Taipei apartment block, it proved so consistently vile, exploitative, misogynistic and tasteless that you simply couldn't look away. With each new...

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MetaFilter: "I write as a reader, not knowing what the author will say next."

Russell Edson was a prose poet whose poetry had the "the sustained wackiness of old Warner Brothers cartoons." When he passed away this year Charles Simic wrote in appreciation of his work, as did J. Robert Lennon, whose article included two audio clips of Edson reading. In interviews, Edson spoke with the same mix of seriousness and humor as he did in his poetry. Here are two interviews, one with Peter Johnson [pdf] and another with Mark Tursi. But, of course, the important thing is his poetry, so here are a few examples: 1, 2, 3. And finally, here's a video of him reading (starts after the 9th minute). [Edson previously. I especially recommend reading the linked appreciation by Sarah Manguso.] Locale-Tie-0.03

Get/set locale via (localizeable) variables Perinci-AccessUtil-0.02

Utility module for Riap client/server

Slashdot: Machine Learning Expert Michael Jordan On the Delusions of Big Data

First time accepted submitter agent elevator writes In a wide-ranging interview at IEEE Spectrum, Michael I. Jordan skewers a bunch of sacred cows, basically saying that: The overeager adoption of big data is likely to result in catastrophes of analysis comparable to a national epidemic of collapsing bridges. Hardware designers creating chips based on the human brain are engaged in a faith-based undertaking likely to prove a fool's errand; and despite recent claims to the contrary, we are no further along with computer vision than we were with physics when Isaac Newton sat under his apple tree.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

BOOOOOOOM!: Cynthia Henebry


Photos by Cynthia Henebry. Previously featured here. More below.

View the whole post: Cynthia Henebry over on BOOOOOOOM!. Perinci-AccessUtil-Check-0.01

Utility module for Riap client/server

Twitch: Warsaw 2014 Interview: Documentarian Adam Bardach Talks The Chutzpah Needed To Fool Nazis

Filmmaker Adam Bardach attended the 30th edition of Warsaw International Festival to premiere his new documentary Dancing Before the Enemy: How a Teenage Boy Fooled Nazis and Lived. The film is a portrait of his father, Gene Gutowski, who survived the Holocaust in Poland and went on to have a successful career in Hollywood, most notably as Roman Polanski's producer. Bardach has made a very personal monument to his father capturing the difficult times under the Nazi occupation in Poland when many of his family members perished in death camps. Gutowski recounts the struggle to survive and the complicated path to the liberty. Bardach revisits painful memories and places in Poland following his father while he provides eye-witness testimony of horrors from the wartime era....

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silk and spinach: Where is the database?

I have just watched an interesting conversation between Martin Fowler and Badri Janakiraman about #hexagonalrails, and in particular about the role of databases. The central question in the discussion is whether the database should be considered outside or inside the domain. While watching, I realised I had had similar thoughts in 2005!

In recent years I have considered databases to be always outside the domain. I can definitely see the attraction of an “always present” domain model, but I think it is conflating different points of view, and misunderstanding the point of Hexagonal Architecture. I was wrong in 2005 :)

The comments on the video are very interesting, particularly those by Alistair Cockburn. Specifically he makes two key points:

  1. [There is no] debate of whether the persistence is in or out in HA, it is out. So you should say you chose not to use that piece of HA, not that you used it but brought the db inside.
  2. the purpose of HA is the configurable link t0 db

By forcing ourselves to keep to database outside of the domain we respect the hexagonal symmetry , and this is the only way to guarantee complete separation of concerns. The choice of Active Record or Data Mapper then becomes a decision about how to implement the “configurable database” port/adapter.

BOOOOOOOM!: Poster Designs for the National Opera of Munich by Stefan Glerum


Love this series of poster designs by Stefan Glerum for the National Opera of Munich. More below.

View the whole post: Poster Designs for the National Opera of Munich by Stefan Glerum over on BOOOOOOOM!. AWS-S3-0.040

Lightweight interface to Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service)

Open Culture: H.G. Wells, Arthur Conan Doyle & Other British Authors Sign Manifesto Backing England’s Role in WWI


Thinkers have said a great deal about the relative might of the pen and the sword—often one well-known phrase in particular—but still, the subject of intellect versus might remains a matter of active inquiry. But what if might harnesses intellect? What if those who live by the pen pick up their writing tool of choice to endorse the national use of weaponry infinitely more powerful than all the swords ever forged? This very thing happened in the Britain of 1914: “FAMOUS AUTHORS DEFEND ENGLAND’S WAR,” read the headlines, and University of Ottawa English professor Nick Milne has more historical analysis of the event in the first post of “Pen and Sword,” a series focusing on British Propaganda at the open educational resource World War I Centenary: Continuations and Beginnings.

“In September of 1914,” writes Milne in a version of the post up at Slate, “as the armies of Europe were engaged in the Race to the Sea and the stalemate of the trenches loomed, Rudyard Kipling, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and other British authors collaborated on a remarkable piece of war propaganda. Fifty-three of the leading authors in Britain — a number that included Thomas Hardy and H.G. Wells — appended their names to the ‘Authors’ Declaration.’ This manifesto declared that the German invasion of Belgium had been a brutal crime, and that Britain ‘could not without dishonour have refused to take part in the present war.'” Other men of letters the War Propaganda Bureau could convince to sign on, in addition to Kipling, a fellow rarely called insufficiently patriotic, included “defender of unorthodox thought by unorthodox methods” G.K. Chesterton.

You can take a close-up look at the complete list of signatories with their brief bios, as well as the signatures themselves, by clicking at the image of the New York Times page up above. (Then click again to zoom in.) England may not, in the event, have lost the First World War, but the buoyancy its writers provided its fighting spirit had little to do with it. Germany “responded to the declaration by bringing together an even larger assortment of artists, authors, and scientists to sign the Manifesto of the Ninety-Three, an astounding document which denied any German wrongdoing in Belgium and bewilderingly accused the Allies of ‘inciting Mongolians and negroes against the white race.'”

Several of the British writers involved, most notably H.G. Wells, eventually developed a public cynicism toward the war. “The unity of vision and purpose the declaration so strongly implied,” as Milne mildly puts it, “did not endure.”

via Slate

Related Content:

The First Color Photos From World War I, on the German Front

Watch World War I Unfold in a 6 Minute Time-Lapse Film: Every Day From 1914 to 1918

British Actors Read Poignant Poetry from World War I

Frank W. Buckles, The Last U.S. Veteran of World War I

Colin Marshall hosts and produces Notebook on Cities and Culture and writes essays on cities, language, Asia, and men’s style. He’s at work on a book about Los Angeles, A Los Angeles Primer. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall or on Facebook.

H.G. Wells, Arthur Conan Doyle & Other British Authors Sign Manifesto Backing England’s Role in WWI is a post from: Open Culture. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, or get our Daily Email. And don't miss our big collections of Free Online Courses, Free Online Movies, Free eBooksFree Audio Books, Free Foreign Language Lessons, and MOOCs.

The post H.G. Wells, Arthur Conan Doyle & Other British Authors Sign Manifesto Backing England’s Role in WWI appeared first on Open Culture.

Hackaday: Hackaday Retro Edition: A 286 on the Internet


While not an issue now with our 64 bit (more accurately 48- or 52-bit) processors, there was a time when 32 bits of addressing space was impossibly large. For several decades, 4 Gigabytes of memory would be the absolute ceiling, and something only madmen or the protagonist of Pi would have to deal with. This convention began, at least for the Intel/PC world, with the 386. Earlier processors like the 8086 and the 286 were quite capable for their time, but doing anything modern with them, especially getting on the Internet, is a quixotic endeavor beyond comparison.

[Caulser] over on the Vintage Computer Forums has done just that. He recently acquired a Zenith Data Systems 286 system and loaded up what is quickly becoming the litmus test for old computers on the Internet: the Hackaday retro edition

When he first received the system, it was loaded up with a rather generous (for the time) 4MB of RAM. The 20MB hard drive was dead, but with a little fiddling about with the BIOS, [Caulser] was able to get the system working with an old Quantum IDE hard drive.

There’s no Windows or even Linux for this machine, so the system is just running MS DOS 5a, mTCP, Arachne, and the relevant drivers for the NIC (that has RJ45 and BNC connectors). After upgrading the RAM to 8MB, the box performs reasonably well without any pesky ads, and given the websites he visited, he’s not dealing with any overwrought Javascript or CSS, either.

Pics of the system below.

If you have an old computer sitting around, try to load our retro site with it. Take a few pictures, and we’ll put it up in one of our Retro Roundups

IMAG0079 IMAG0089 IMAG0083 IMAG0086
Filed under: classic hacks

programming: PostgreSQL is more popular than MySQL

submitted by lauriswtf
[link] [29 comments]

Slashdot: U.K. Supermarkets Beta Test Full-Body 3D Scanners For Selfie Figurines

Lucas123 writes Walmart-owned ASDA supermarkets in the U.K. are beta testing 3D full-body scanning booths that allow patrons to buy 6-in to 9-in high "selfie" figurines. Artec Group, a maker of 3D scanners and software, said its Shapify Booth, which can scan your entire body in 12 seconds and use the resulting file to create a full-color 3D printed model, is making its U.S. debut this week. The 3D Shapify booths are equipped with four wide view, high-resolution scanners, which rotate around the person to scan every angle. Artec claims the high-powered scan and precision printing is able to capture even the smallest details, down to the wrinkles on clothes. The scanning process generates 700 captured surfaces, which are automatically stitched together to produce an electronic file ready for 3D printing. Artec offers to print the figurines for booth operators (retailers) for $50 for a 6-in model, $70 for a 7.5-in model, and $100 for a 9-in figurine.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

programming: "Did you mean?" fix for NoMethodError in Ruby

submitted by willvarfar
[link] [44 comments]

TheSirensSound: Sit Calm

Sit Calm Profile

[ Sit Calm ] is a three piece Math-rock band from Winnipeg, MB. As of the 08th of AUG [ Sit Calm ] officially released their Debut self titled EP. After jamming for no longer than a month they wrote and recorded the entire record in a matter of two days. They are on a steady forward momentum trying to push out as much content as possible. You can expect much more mathy goodness as [ Sit Calm ] is already working on a follow up release set to drop in a matter of months.

Current Line-up Include:

Brendyn Funk- Guitar/Vocals
Nick Gammon-Bass/Vocals
and Nick Fondse- Drums/Vocals


Credits /
released 21 October 2014
Recorded by Jay Voth
@ Ones & Zeroes Audio in Winnipeg MB | Artwork by: Gabrielle Funk

< < < < < [ [ BANDCAMP ] | [ FACEBOOK ] ]. > > > > >

Sit Calm - Luna

Artist – Sit Calm
Album – Luna [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Alternative-math, Math-rock, Progressive-math / Math-core [ EPIC NOISE ]


1. XI 01:40
2. Flynn 02:40
3. Nocturnal 02:34
4. Moth 03:34
Sit Calm – Luna


Sit Calm - Sit Calm

Artist – Sit Calm
Album – Sit Calm [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Alternative-math, Math-rock, Progressive-math [ AWESOME ]


1. Wombat 03:02
2. Feeble 02:19
3. Sherbrooke 02:26
4. Lockjaw 02:29 | 5. Impact 02:54
Sit Calm – Sit Calm

Sit Calm

Twitch: Check Out The Lineup And Trailers For NYC's 11th South Asian International Film Festival

I've had the privilege of covering New York City's South Asian International Film Festival (SAIFF) since 2010, shortly after I came on board at Twitch. Each of those five years has brought at least a couple of films that have made it into my year end top ten, and this year looks like a solid bet to continue the trend. The festival has honed its focus on a set of films that we've been looking forward to for a long time, and if you're in New York in November, you'd be foolish to pass it up. Here's the lineup, along with images and trailers where available.SAIFF kicks off with X - The Film on November 18 and runs through November 23. You will be able to...

[Read the whole post on]

Hackaday: Now Let’s See The World’s Largest Arduino


A few days ago we saw what would have been a killer Kickstarter a few years ago. It was the smallest conceivable ATtiny85 microcontroller board, with resistors, diodes, a USB connector, and eight pins for plugging into a breadboard. It’s a shame this design wasn’t around for the great Arduino Minification of Kickstarter in late 2011; it would have easily netted a few hundred thousand dollars, a TED talk, and a TechCrunch biopic.

[AtomSoftTech] has thrown his gauntlet down and created an even smaller ‘tiny85 board. it measures 0.4in by 0.3in, including the passives, reset switch, and USB connector. To put that in perspective, the PDIP package of the ‘tiny85 measures 0.4 x 0.4. How is [Atom] getting away with this? Cheating, splitting the circuit onto two stacked boards, or knowing the right components, depending on how you look at it.

USB [Atom] is using a few interesting components in this build. The USB connector is a surface mount vertical part, making the USB cord stick out the top of this uC board. The reset button is extremely small as well, sticking out of the interior layer of the PCB sandwich.

[AtomSoft] has the project up on OSH Park ($1.55 for three. How cool is that?), and we assume he’ll be selling the official World’s Smallest Arduino-compatible board at Tindie in time.

Filed under: Arduino Hacks, ATtiny Hacks

Disquiet: How to Build a Girl

There have been many responses to the eight-second accidental hit of white noise attributed to pop star Taylor Swift. At, Megan Garber stitched together quotes from Don DeLillo’s novel White Noise to form a review (“It is the time of year, the time of day, for a small insistent sadness to pass into the texture of things. Dusk, silence, iron chill. Something lonely in the bone.”). At, Nate Jones drew a comparison to the late Lou Reed’s Metal Machine Music. The white noise snippet was erroneously titled “Track 3,” so at, Ross Miller compared it to a silence inherent in the real third track on the record:

Swift’s actual track 3 (actual name TBD) does have actual lyrics, as teased on her Instagram account: I say “I heard that you’ve been out and about with some other girl” — all followed by an extended, anxiety-inducing, 29-dot ellipses.

And over at his account the Los Angeles–based Junk Rhythm went so far as to create white noise from scratch and post a how-to on YouTube:

All Content: Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson remember L.M. "Kit" Carson


Owen Wilson and Wes Anderson first entered the film scene with 1996's "Bottle Rocket," which began life as a short film shot in Dallas, Texas, three years earlier, when Wilson and Anderson were recent college graduates living in a small apartment not too far from downtown. L.M. "Kit" Carson, a Dallas-based filmmaker, actor and screenwriter, took them to Sundance and helped teach them about filmmaking and the film business. I asked Wes if he'd talk about Kit, and he and Owen wrote this together. My own tribute to Kit is here.—Matt Zoller Seitz

We met Kit twenty years ago. He and his wife Cynthia Hargrave had come back to Texas to put Kit's actual, biological son Hunter through school there, and we submitted ourselves to be the adopted ones: hoping to become his latest discoveries. (We weren't the first. He was a natural guru.) He was the only person we had ever met who actually worked in the movie business, and we had never come across someone who so automatically and instinctively turned any idea or experience or suggestion into a story -- a pitch. Sometimes it was only at the end of the story that you realized: this has a purpose. He's advising us. These are "notes."

He had a rustic glamor, like a sort of a cowboy-screenwriter. He never told us much about his childhood, except that the L. was for Louis and the M. was for Minor. Two old men he was named after.

What we heard about was guerilla film-making and gonzo film-journalism and Dennis Hopper in Taos and Peru. We loved Kit in "David Holzman's Diary," which we saw with him in Dallas, and we had already loved his work in "Breathless" and "Paris, Texas." He had longish, stringy, sandy hair, and he clomped through the house in hiking boots all year round. He gave us a one-on-one tutorial in script-writing and short-film-editing (and, also, a lesson in how to hustle a project into its existence). Cynthia said to us that of all the people who were lucky to have known Kit, we were the luckiest. It certainly feels that way to us. He introduced us to the rest of our lives.

We drifted apart over the years, but we've missed him, and we'll keep missing him.

He was a good guru.

—Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson

All Content: A free man: L.M. "Kit" Carson, 1941-2014


Where to begin with Kit?

L.M. "Kit" Carson, the filmmaker, screenwriter and actor, died in Dallas, Texas last night at 73, after a long illness. I knew him for twenty-some years. I never quite got a handle on him, and I don't think anyone else did, either. You weren't supposed to. He was one of those guys who just did his own thing for decades, quietly pursuing his muse, and in the process coming up with innovations that other people would integrate into their own work—not in a thieving way, but innocently, the way you'd pick fruit from a tree in the wild. 

I got to know Kit in my hometown of Dallas back in the early '90s, when I was covering the local film scene for Dallas Observer. Kit was a veteran and local hero of sorts, writing screenplays and trying to get his films made and mentoring younger filmmakers. One of them was Wes Anderson, whose short film "Bottle Rocket" Kit championed; he's a character in this cover story that I wrote about the making of "Bottle Rocket," the feature, back in 1995. 

Kit wrote the script to his friend Jim McBride's 1983 remake of "Breathless," which was much better than it had any right to be, and "Return to Texas Chainsaw Massacre," ditto. And he co-wrote the screenplay (with Sam Shepherd) for Wim Wenders' 1984 masterpiece "Paris, Texas." 

The latter is a favorite of those with melancholy temperaments. (Elliott Smith adored it.) It features one of the all-time great Harry Dean Stanton performances—plus one by Hunter Carson, Kit's son with his first wife, Karen Black. And treats home movies as a Proustian memory-jogger. (How many times have you seen that device used? Hundreds, probably. This film perfected it.) "Paris, Texas" also connects to Carson's longtime fascination with looking and seeing, and the related question of whether we really see the things we look at. It's filled with images of windows, mirrors and other reflections, and many scenes of voyeurism.

Kit was also a terrific actor—so natural that I wish he'd appeared in more films. To see what I mean, watch "Running on Empty," about two former violent '60s radicals (Christine Lahti and Judd Hirsch) who have settled down with their son (River Phoenixand become outwardly respectable citizens. Kit has a small but indelible role as an arsonist who's still living underground after twenty years. His charming yet intriguingly unstable performance suggests the life that the film's main characters might have if they hadn't traded ideologically motivated violence for domestic tranquility. I can't watch Kit in "Running on Empty" without thinking that, on some level, he identified with the character's outsider status. Because of the life he's chosen, he can never really settle down. "You know, how do you manage this?" he asks Lahti's character. "You've got a house, two kids? It's almost like you're leading a regular life." Then he takes off her shoe and starts massaging her foot.

In "David Holzman's Diary," a 1967 mock-documentary about a young filmmaker that he wrote and starred in for director Jim McBride, he created a new genre: the first-person confessional character portrait with documentary trappings. The film's unique style was directly imitated by many feature films—mockumentaries and documentaries alike—and it indirectly inspired everything from video blogs to reality TV series (though I suspect many of the folks working in that vein have no clue that Kit invented the form). 

There's also a strong autobiographical, or perhaps I should say therapeutic, component to the picture: its hero, Kit's David Holzman, is so obsessed with filmmaking that it clouds his ability to experience life. He sees everything in terms of its potential to serve as "material." The camera becomes a buffer between the world and his imagination. I don't think Kit ever succumbed to the tendencies he explores in "David Holzman's Diary"—he seemed to truly enjoy living in the real world—but the fact that he identified that part of himself, and built a boundary-blurring film around it, gives you a sense of how self-aware and honest he could be. 

My friend Kevin B. Lee, a contributor, did a marvelous video essay on the film that explains its importance.


We saw each other pretty regularly when I lived in Dallas, then lost touch after I moved to New York. We started talking on the phone again a few years ago when I became obsessed with Dennis Hopper (not for the first time) and created this video essay. It incorporates footage from Kit and Lawrence Schiller's documentary about Hopper, "The American Dreamer," which was made right after Hopper hit it big as a filmmaker with "Easy Rider" and became the first true counterculture superstar. 


Kit and I talked about the possibility of his rereleasing "American Dreamer" to theaters, or at least trying to get a good video release for it. According to Schiller, who talked about the film after a recent repertory screening, it was meant to solidify Hopper's counterculture bona fides. It's an extraordinary work in a vein that has become increasingly rare, now that nonfiction filmmakers feel obligated to model their storytelling on Hollywood features, leaning on re-enactments, fast cutting, slick graphics, and bouncy montages scored to ironic pop. There are no big revelations here, and no through-line to speak of. It's just Carson and Schiller hanging out with Hopper in his commune in New Mexico, where he's surrounded himself with stoners and hippie chicks and yes-men. The film doesn't diagnose or explain Hopper. It just watches Hopper as he takes drugs and yammers and delivers monologues and shoots off guns and edits "The Last Movie," a psychedelic anti-Western that singlehandedly halted his post-"Easy Rider" momentum. "The American Dreamer" paints a portrait of Hopper at this wild period of his life, when he was so famous and successful that he believed his own hype, and started thinking of himself as a guru and revolutionary rather than as an artist with a particular way of seeing things. It's one of my very favorite documentaries, and I think about it every time I interview another person.

"The camera is always a questioning instrument," you hear Carson telling Hopper from somewhere offscreen. "It is an observer, it is an outside thing, an abrasive thing that comes in."


Kit was a character among characters. He had huge, wise eyes, a ski-slope nose, long hair, and a face that I always thought of as Gallic. I liked to picture him hanging out in a cafe on the left bank of Paris in the twenties, or maybe in the '50s. He had a lovely tenor speaking voice with just a hint of rasp. 

I remember him carrying a little notebook or sketchbook with him, though maybe I just think that because he was always writing on something. He was a compulsive writer. Sometimes he'd be talking to you and suddenly he'd get an idea that he figured he could use at some point, and he'd pull out his notebook or a napkin or a restaurant check and write it down; if you paused the conversation, he'd say, "No, go on, I'm listening." He liked to wear a baggy jacket with lots of pockets—it looked like something a combat photojournalist would wear—and he smoked stubby filterless cigarettes. When he talked to you across a table at a bar or restaurant he'd sort of hunch over and lean in. 

Kit had a great wicked grin, and an explosive laugh. Whenever I cracked Kit up, with a funny line or with an observation that prompted an "Aha, yes!" response, I felt as if I'd won something. He was a magnificent conversationalist. He always came at things sideways, but in a way that made sense when he finished his thought. Sometimes you'd make an argument for or against some movie or novel or painter, and Kit would begin his response with a song lyric or a fragment of poetry or a line from an editorial he'd read that morning, and you'd think, "Where is Kit going with this?" and then, "Oh, right, of course." He and his wife, Cynthia Hargrave, were so attuned that they often seemed to be communicating telepathically. When they were in the same conversational circle they'd finish each other sentences; sometimes their heads would move in the same way, or they'd both have more or less the same reaction to a statement at the same time: two grins; two frowns; two "What the hell is he talking about?" puzzled looks.

Kit didn't care what box he fit into, except inasmuch as it made it harder for him to get things done or made. He didn't seem to think in terms of boxes, or categories, or formulas. He instinctively opposed that sort of mentality. When embarking on any project, his first impulse was to ask what he could do, or what the artist he was mentoring could do, to make the piece unique, surprising, perhaps confounding: anything but The Usual. Naturally this made it hard for him to get funding for his own movies, because, as they say, it's not "show friends," it's show business, and businessmen prefer projects they can easily categorize and sell. Kit was never the kind of artist that one could sell. You could appreciate Kit, but you couldn't sell him, anymore than you could sell one of those magnificent Texas sunsets with orange-brown clouds that stretched from one horizon to the other. 

Kit was so completely and inarguably his own man that whenever I spent time around him or talked to him on the phone, I'd come away questioning my choices and sensibilities. I'd think, Does Kit approve of what I'm doing? Or does he think I'm wasting my talent? And: Am I as free as Kit? Will I ever be as free as Kit? Am I brave enough? 

Is anyone?

Slashdot: New Microsoft Garage Site Invites Public To Test a Wide Range of App Ideas

An anonymous reader writes Microsoft today launched a new section on its website: The Microsoft Garage is designed to give the public early access to various projects the company is testing right now. The team is kicking off with a total of 16 free consumer-facing apps, spanning Android, Android Wear, iOS, Windows Phone, Windows, and even the Xbox One. Microsoft Garage is still going to be everything it has been so far, but Microsoft has simply decided it's time for the public to get involved too: You can now test the wild projects the company's employees dream up.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

s mazuk: things that have drawn my blood today

  • cheese grater
  • umbrella

Computer Science: Theory and Application: Learning Comp Sci Fundamentals vs Applicable Skills?


Lately, I've been wanting to learn more about computer science to further my own skills and knowledge. Inevitably, I got down to the question of do I want to learn fundamentals (algorithms, compilers, data structures, etc....) or do I want to learn practical skills? (Masters in CS vs Masters in SE)

On that note, are algorithms ACTUALLY that important in the professional world outside of acing interviews? When I've asked people this, I've gotten mixed responses. Some say that everything they learned in cs undergrad is very important. Others say they've never had to even think about a red black tree again in the working world.

Some background info about me that might help: I've been out of undergrad for 2 years and have worked as a web software developer for those 2 years. I studied engineering in undergrad, so I didn't study comp sci. I don't particularly want to do research or get a PH.d, my goals are more of working on cooler stuff, more complex and challenging problems in comp sci. And giving myself a solid foundation of knowledge so that I am not tied down to one specific type of CS job (i.e. web development).

Thanks in advance for the replies!

submitted by kevinl24
[link] [10 comments]

Potz!Blitz!Szpilman!: Iiu Susiraja

Iiu Susiraja, Haista nakki, 2012

Computer Science: Theory and Application: Getting Started with Machine Learning

submitted by rohshall
[link] [1 comment]

Slashdot: Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?

First time accepted submitter dkatana writes Having some type of fiber or high-speed cable connectivity is normal for many of us, but in most developing countries of the world and many areas of Europe, the US, and other developed countries, access to "super-fast" broadband networks is still a dream. This is creating another "digital divide." Not having the virtually unlimited bandwidth of all-fiber networks means that, for these populations, many activities are simply not possible. For example, broadband provided over all-fiber networks brings education, healthcare, and other social goods into the home through immersive, innovative applications and services that are impossible without it. Alternatives to fiber, such as cable (DOCSYS 3.0), are not enough, and they could be more expensive in the long run. The maximum speed a DOCSYS modem can achieve is 171/122 Mbit/s (using four channels), just a fraction the 273 Gbit/s (per channel) already reached on fiber.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Hackaday: How To Reverse Engineer, Featuring the Rigol DS1054Z

frontend For a few years now, the Rigol DS1052E has been the unofficial My First Oscilloscope™. It’s cheap, it’s good enough for most projects, and there have been a number hacks and mods for this very popular scope to give it twice as much bandwidth and other interesting tools. The 1052E is a bit long in the tooth and Rigol has just released the long-awaited update, the DS1054Z. It’s a four-channel scope, has a bigger screen, more bells and whistles, and only costs $50 more than the six-year-old 1052E. Basically, if you’re in the market for a cheap, usable oscilloscope, scratch the ~52E off your list and replace it with the ~54Z.

With four channels of input, [Dave Jones] was wondering how the engineers at Rigol managed to stuff two additional front ends into the scope while still meeting the magic price point of $400. This means it’s time for [Dave] to reverse engineer the 1054Z, and give everyone on the Internet a glimpse at how a real engineer tears apart the worth of other engineers.

The first thing [Dave] does once the board is out of the enclosure is taking a nice, clear, and in-focus picture of both sides of the board. These pictures are edited, turned into a line drawing, and printed out on a transparency sheet. This way, both sides of the board can be viewed at once, allowing for a few dry erase marker to highlight the traces and signals.

Unless your voyage on the sea of reverse engineering takes you to the island of despair and desoldering individual components, you’ll be measuring the values of individual components in circuit. For this, you’ll want a low-voltage ohms function on your meter; if you’re putting too much voltage through a component, you’ll probably turn on some silicon in the circuit, and your measurements will be crap. Luckily, [Dave] shows a way to test if your meter will work for this kind of work; you’ll need another meter.

From there, it’s basically looking at datasheets and drawing a schematic of the circuit; inputs go at the left, outputs at the right, ground is at the bottom, and positive rails are at the top. It’s harder than it sounds – most of [Dave]‘s expertise in this area is just pattern recognition. It’s one thing to reverse engineer a circuit through brute force, but knowing the why and how of how the circuit works makes things much easier.

Filed under: how-to, tool hacks

Planet Lisp: Lispjobs: Senior Software Engineer: D-Wave, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada

D-Wave is looking for exceptionally motivated people who love to see the impact of their work on a daily basis, who will do whatever it takes to ensure success of the company, and who want to be a part of something special.

D-Wave is working to radically change what it is possible to do with computers. Our mission is to integrate new discoveries in physics and computer science into new breakthrough approaches to computation. We are committed to commercializing quantum computers. The company’s flagship product, the D-Wave Two, is built around a novel type of superconducting quantum processor. D-Wave Two systems are currently in use by on-line customers and by customers in the field such as NASA & Google


D-Wave is seeking an experienced Software Developer to join the Processor Development group. The successful candidate will work closely with physicists to develop and optimize measurement routines used to calibrate D-Wave’s quantum processor. You will be self-driven, but comfortable working closely with others. You will share responsibility for designing, implementing, testing and maintaining the suite of software necessary to support the testing and operation of D-Wave's quantum computing hardware. The software is implemented in Common Lisp (SBCL) and is an integral part of the quantum computing system. It is used for a variety of purposes including calibration, operation, testing and benchmarking.


  • Work closely with physicists and other software engineers to develop any and all aspects of quantum processor calibration, operation infrastructure, performance optimization and profiling
  • Analyze and optimize existing software and newly developed routines for performance and reliability. Develop and support software related to architecture, usage of libraries and functions, the best ways of solving a problem or implementing a new feature, and layer efficiency and performance optimization
  • Software development, support, and troubleshooting systems hardware including fridge control and processor electronics
  • Full life-cycle support of software products from development, test and validation, production deployment, through to decommissioning
  • Configuring and upgrading quantum processor control servers and software development servers


  • Masters Degree in Computer Science with 4+ years relevant experience, or Bachelor’s degree and 8+ years experience.
  • Experience developing and optimizing software in compiled languages; ability to consider both algorithm choice and how your code is compiled when tuning performance.
  • At least 4 years of professional software development experience including software design, code and test, and maintenance
  • Familiarity with Common Lisp is a definite asset
  • Comfortable working alongside one or two other scientists or software engineers, such as in a pair programming

    We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those who are selected for interviews will be contacted. It is D-Wave Systems Inc policy to provide equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, physical or mental disability, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state/provincial, local law.


Lindsay Andrea <>

Talent Acquisition Specialist, Human Resources

D-Wave Systems Inc.

604.630.1428  Ext. 119

MetaFilter: "My father directed his stupid humor at me."

Louise Bourgeois Peels an Orange. A short film about her father, a little girl, and an orange.

the waxing machine: siner-pica: Vernon Reed Comet Zero 1985 Motorola


Vernon Reed
Comet Zero

MetaFilter: Sexagenarians

Playboy models from Miss March 1954 to Miss January 1979 on meeting the male gaze then—and now. (NSFW!) "There is, according to Playboy magazine's official style guide, no such thing as a former Playmate."

At the invitation of New York magazine, Dolores Del Monte (Miss March 1954), Helena Antonaccio (Miss June 1969), Marilyn Cole Lownes (Miss January 1972), Janet Lupo (Miss November 1975), Laura Aldridge (Miss February 1976), and Candace Jordan (Miss December 1979) recount their experiences as Playboy centerfolds and bunnies, and have some new pictures taken. Aldridge recalls, "My ex-husband [Alan Aldridge, who did graphic design for the Beatles] might be the only person who didn't think Playboy was cool. He thought Hugh Hefner exploited women." (NSFW.)

Tea Masters: Truth in advertising

The advantage of going from blogging to selling tea is that I spend time searching and selecting teas I find fantastic. But the disadvantage of selling tea instead of just blogging about it, is that it blurs the line between describing and promoting it. Nevertheless, I think that most readers can see that I take real pleasure and interest in good teas. Also, I give the opportunity to purchase small quantities (25 gr or sometimes even by the gram) that let you evaluate the teas at a reasonable cost (and I give free sample(s) with each order).

The Internet gives readers and customers the possibility to voice their opinions on forums or directly as comments or reviews on the blog and boutique respectively. I encourage you to share your feedback online. Your voice counts because, unlike me, you are not sellers, but simply wish to share your experience to help others make the best choice. A good review is a way to express your pleasure and support. And a bad review is a red flag that can help me correct a problem I may have overlooked.

Tea leaves are not the finished product, but the tea brew is. That's why I spend a lot effort to explain and show how to prepare tea in order to get the most out of it. But what ultimately counts is your experience of the leaves, not mine. That's another reason why your reviews are so useful.

I was very glad to read Ryan's comment of my 2006 raw Lincang puerh a few days ago:
"This is one of the best young raw puerhs I have ever had the pleasure of trying. Its is incredibly sweet, complex, and refined. It is extremely present and active on the palate and leaves a powerful aftertaste. The quality of this young raw puerh is unparalleled to any other puerh I have ever purchased!"
Ryan also commented on my 1979 high roast Hung Shui Oolong from Dong Ding:
"The aroma of this tea is truly exquisite! It smells incredibly sweet with notes of molasses and dried fruits. It has a thick and smooth mouth feel, and has a very complex flavor profile. This tea is one of the best aged oolongs I have ever had."
Today, in an email, my tea friend Paola wrote to me that : "The imperial jasmine is unbelievable.  REALLY the best I have ever tasted. Did not know such a jasmine tea existed." It's not a review (yet), but I was still very pleased to read it.

And since this article is about advertising and marketing, let me also tell you the 2 meanings of my boutique's logo:
The Chinese calligraphy (and the stamp) both say Cha zhi Le. This means Tea Happiness. But it also has a personal connection, because the translation of my last name in Chinese is Le (Happiness)!

Open Culture: Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey Gets a Brand New Trailer to Celebrate Its Digital Re-Release

If you’re in the UK, get ready for Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. 46 years after its original release, it’s returning to theatres near you in a digitally-restored format, starting on November 18. (Find dates and locations here.) To celebrate the re-release of this “philosophically ambitious, technically innovative and visually stunning cinematic milestone,” the British Film Institute has created a new trailer (above). Down below, we have the original 1968 trailer (which I prefer) and some good background items on the film itself.

Related Content:

1966 Film Explores the Making of Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (and Our High-Tech Future)

James Cameron Revisits the Making of Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey

Stanley Kubrick’s List of Top 10 Films (The First and Only List He Ever Created)

Stanley Kubrick’s Very First Films: Three Short Documentaries

Rare 1960s Audio: Stanley Kubrick’s Big Interview with The New Yorker

Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey Gets a Brand New Trailer to Celebrate Its Digital Re-Release is a post from: Open Culture. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, or get our Daily Email. And don't miss our big collections of Free Online Courses, Free Online Movies, Free eBooksFree Audio Books, Free Foreign Language Lessons, and MOOCs.

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MetaFilter: Dogs reenacting U.S. Supreme Court oral arguments

If there is any justice in the world, this will revolutionize the way you consume Supreme Court news. Fed up with the Supreme Court's refusal to allow cameras at oral arguments, John Oliver has proposed an alternative to existing television coverage that relies on artists' renderings of the justices. Oliver has released more than ten minutes of raw footage of dogs dressed up like the members of the Court, and has challenged news outlets to use the footage to create less-boring recreations of oral arguments.

So far, this challenge has resulted in recreations of the Aereo and Hobby Lobby arguments.

Computer Science: Theory and Application: Intro to A.I. Logic Question

I am in an intro to A.I. class, and we are currently studying propositional and first order logic. There is one type of problem that I don't really understand how to solve. Here's an example:

"Express the following sentence in propositional logic.

Exactly 3 of A,B,C, and D are true."

I'm not really sure how to express the sentence when an exact number of variables are true.

Any help or insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks :)

submitted by linkazoid
[link] [6 comments]

Open Culture: Download The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe: Macabre Stories as Free eBooks & Audio Books

With Halloween fast approaching, let us remind you that few American writers can get you into the existentially chilling spirit of this climatically chilling season than Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849). And given that he lived and wrote entirely in the first half of the 19th century, few American writers can do it at so little financial cost to you, the reader. Today we’ve collected Poe’s freely available, public domain works of pure psychological unsettlement into five volumes of eBooks:

And five volumes of audiobooks as well (all the better to work their way into your subconscious):

And if, beyond perhaps reading here and there about pits, pendulums, ravens, and casks in Italy, you’ve never plunged into the canon produced by this troubled master of letters — American Romantic, acknowledged adept of the macabre, inventor of detective fiction, and contributor to the eventual emergence of science fiction — your chance has come. If you feel the understandable need for a lighter preliminary introduction to Poe’s work, hear Christopher Walken (speaking of American icons) deliver a surprisingly non-excessively Walkenified interpretation of “The Raven” at the top of the post. Below, we have a 1953 animation of “The Tell-Tale Heart” narrated by James Mason:

After watching these videos, you’ll surely want to spend Halloween time catching up on everything else Poe wrote, after which you’ll understand that true scariness arises not from slasher movies, malevolent pumpkins, or tales of hooks embedded in car doors, but from the sort of thing the closed-eyed narrator of “The Pit and the Pendulum” means when he says, “It was not that I feared to look upon things horrible, but that I grew aghast lest there should be nothing to see.”

The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe permanently reside in our twin collections: 550 Free Audio Books: Download Great Books for Free and 600 Free eBooks for iPad, Kindle & Other Devices

Related Content:

Watch the 1953 Animation of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Narrated by James Mason

Download a Free, New Halloween Story by Neil Gaiman (and Help Charities Along the Way)

Watch Goethe’s Haunting Poem, “Der Erlkönig,” Presented in an Artful Sand Animation

“A Haunted House” by Virginia Woolf

Watch Nosferatu, the Seminal Vampire Film, Free Online (1922)

Colin Marshall hosts and produces Notebook on Cities and Culture and writes essays on cities, language, Asia, and men’s style. He’s at work on a book about Los Angeles, A Los Angeles Primer. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall or on Facebook.

Download The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe: Macabre Stories as Free eBooks & Audio Books is a post from: Open Culture. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, or get our Daily Email. And don't miss our big collections of Free Online Courses, Free Online Movies, Free eBooksFree Audio Books, Free Foreign Language Lessons, and MOOCs.

The post Download The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe: Macabre Stories as Free eBooks & Audio Books appeared first on Open Culture. Short: Staring Contest

New Cyanide and Happiness Short.

programming: Pimping your psql

submitted by compnski
[link] [41 comments]

Greater Fool - Authored by Garth Turner - The Troubled Future of Real Estate: October 22

DOG SOLDIER modified

Al Jazeera, of all outfits, called me Wednesday afternoon from New York to comment on lax security in the Canadian Parliament. That turned into a theme after the gunfire. “Ottawa Attacks Shatter Canadian Innocence,” read Bloomberg’s headline. I guess we’re playing with the big boys now, in the same week that six of our old jets deploy against ISIS.

Financial markets can handle a lot of stuff, but not surprises. The TSX lost a few points on news a soldier had been shot at Ottawa’s War Memorial. It lost a lot more on reports of bullets in the Centre Block. Then, on claims of multiple shootings (the cops at first said three), plus the Quebec ramming days ago that killed another soldier, things hit the fan. Just a day after adding more than 200 points, the market shed 235.

That was not all that was worth fretting about. Oil crashed more than 2% on Wednesday, and a sad prediction of this pathetic blog last month – that crude would hit $80 a barrel – was realized. This is a big story for Canada. It’s a manifestation of the trends I’ve been yammering about for some time – less demand and more supply is exactly what deflation means. Next comes lower prices, less investment and lost jobs.

Calgary, Edmonton and Fort Mac have intense times ahead. I hope your daughter didn’t just buy a Cowtown condo from poser cowboy Brad Lamb.

The Bank of Canada jumped into all of this, citing the oil plunge as a likely reason interest rates now won’t be rising too fast in this country. No good news there, as the fedsters also said they’re worried about hormonal housing markets in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto. The real estate bloat, of course, has been caused by absurdly low rates. What a dilemma we’re walking into.

And did I mention the dollar is at eighty-eight?

So, there you have it. Terrorist attack on Parliament. Oil price crisis. Deflating economy. Unaffordable houses. At least Doug Ford is losing.

For the last two years I’ve been suggesting your exposure to Canadian assets – whether that’s ETFs owning the Toronto stock market, or a house in North Van – be contained. Don’t fall victim to home country bias and have a portfolio full of maple assets. Incredibly, 70% of all Canadian investors with equities have only Canadian companies. Not only are they undiversified, but they’ve now hitched their wagon to the wrong star.

Meanwhile, today – and the poor, dead soldier on ceremonial duty – should count for something. We’re in harm’s way, which is unavoidable when you face up to evil. This is one more thing you need to factor into your personal strategy, and I will address that in coming days.

By the way, I turned Al Jazeera down. No interest on my part in talking about the guys who failed to keep a dude with a gun from the front door of Parliament. I know many of the guards, and have walked through those brass doors beneath the Peace Tower hundreds of times, smiling at them. That is a public building, through which rivers of tourists flow daily. In recent times security has been beefed up, and vehicles prevented from cruising past ambling MPs. Gone are the days I could park my bike beside the PM’s black SUV tank, and so irritate his Mountie driver.

But there’s certainly more security to come. The two aging guards at the front door will likely be given guns. That will sadden me.

Godspeed Cpl. Cirillo.

Hackaday: What’s Next on the Raspberry Pi Front

piscreenRaspberry Pi founder [Eben Upton] recently sat in an uncomfortable chair in London to discuss all things Pi. Having sold about four million units over the last 2.5 years, he feels the future is bright for his original vision of inspiring and helping kids to learn programming.

[Eben] is quite pleased with the Pi-Top, a B+ based laptop kit that’s pulling in backers left and right while completely unaffiliated with the Pi foundation. The kit includes a 13.3″ HD LCD screen, keyboard, trackpad, and an injection molded case, though you can print your own with the included STL files. Kits start at $249 without a Pi and $285 with a B+ included. Robot and home automation HATs are also available separately or bundled with the Pi-Top kit.

The most exciting news is that the $600,000 spent on DSI connectors for those four million Raspis is about to pay off. [Eben] hopes that an official touchscreen will be available for purchase before the end of 2014 or in early 2015. He showed off a 7″ capacitive touch panel that will attach to a display board stacked on a Pi, effectively turning it into a tablet.

[Eben] said that they will not be making a Model C and instead are working on revision A+. He hopes to make an official announcement in the near future.

Finally, [Eben] discussed the importance of community, which played a large part in the birth and evolution of the Pi. He also spoke of Pi Academy, a sort of professional workshop for teachers in the UK who’ve recently been tasked with teaching computer science as demanded by changes in the mandatory UK school curriculum. He hopes that these 2-day seminars will help educators achieve the high expectations recently laid out for students to achieve by age ten.

Filed under: Raspberry Pi

Colossal: Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell

Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell illustration gifs animation

Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell illustration gifs animation

Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell illustration gifs animation

Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell illustration gifs animation

Looping Illustrations by Drew Tyndell illustration gifs animation

Nashville-based artist and illustrator Drew Tyndell creates these looping animations which he paints frame by frame in Photoshop. He was first inspired by a Stan Brakhage piece he encountered at an animation exhibition at the Frist Museum in Nashville. After creating a 64-frame animation of a cube by hand-painting each slide, he then decided to go digital, exploring forms and shapes found in some of his own geometric paintings on wood. To see more of his animation work check out his Loops gallery. (via The Fox is Black)

OCaml Planet: Sylvain Le Gall: Release of OASIS 0.4.5

On behalf of Jacques-Pascal Deplaix

I am happy to announce the release of OASIS v0.4.5.

Logo OASIS small

OASIS is a tool to help OCaml developers to integrate configure, build and install systems in their projects. It should help to create standard entry points in the source code build system, allowing external tools to analyse projects easily.

This tool is freely inspired by Cabal which is the same kind of tool for Haskell.

You can find the new release here and the changelog here. More information about OASIS in general on the OASIS website.

Here is a quick summary of the important changes:

  • Build and install annotation files.
  • Use builtin bin_annot and annot tags.
  • Tag .mly files on the same basis as .ml and .mli files (required by menhir).
  • Remove 'program' constraint from C-dependencies. Currently, when a library has C-sources and e.g. an executable depends on that library, then changing the C-sources and running '-build' does not yield a rebuild of the library. By adding these dependencies (rather removing the constraint), it seems to work fine.
  • Some bug fixes


  • no_automatic_syntax (alpha): Disable the automatic inclusion of -syntax camlp4o for packages that matches the internal heuristic (if a dependency ends with a .syntax or is a well known syntax).
  • compiled_setup_ml (alpha): Fix a bug using multiple arguments to the configure script.

This new version is a small release to catch up with all the fixes/pull requests present in the VCS that have not yet been published. This should made the life of my dear contributors easier -- thanks again for being patient.

I would like to thanks again the contributor for this release: Christopher Zimmermann, Jerome Vouillon, Tomohiro Matsuyama and Christoph Höger. Their help is greatly appreciated.

things magazine: Round and round

Chelsea Hodson owns stuff. Marina Abramovic chronicled it / a beautiful sketch book by Kim Jung Gi / there is extreme mechanical beauty within: the Atari / Namco F-1 1976 arcade game (see above) / explode some songs; the process explained / a fine collection of images by photographer Joel Sternfeld / ceramics by Geng Xue / ‘A guidebook – and I use the term in as broad a sense as possible – is a proposal for action': David Knight on writing The Guide / installations by Cardiff and Miller / Lapham’s Quarterly has redesigned its website, and it’s beautiful / music: Gong keyboardist Tim Blake / abstract soundscapes by Chimères.

Instructables: exploring - featured: Laser Cut Board Games

There are a vast number of German Style board games on the market now a days. We have a growing collection and devote many hours to playing them with our friends. Some of these games require additional functional parts, fancy accessories or even just deluxe versions. This instructable will offer ide...
By: msraynsford

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programming: Eve, the successor of light table

submitted by cyberfax
[link] [81 comments]

new shelton wet/dry: ‘love these endocrine supplements i got at the natural foods store. they give you extra endocrine’ –@Mobute

In response to a threat, the brain triggers the release of epinephrine and cortisol from your adrenal glands into the blood. As a result, your heart beats faster and stronger, your blood vessels dilate to move more blood, and your lung vessels dilate to exchange more oxygen for carbon dioxide. Equally as important, your liver [...]

programming: Software developer shortage transcends international boundaries

submitted by knife_sharpener
[link] [181 comments]

Quiet Earth: Ridley Scott's HALO: NIGHTFALL Looks as Good as a Feature Film [Trailer]

I don't know from video games, but I know fans of the Halo series have been dreaming of a feature film for many, many years. While the news that Ridley Scott would produce a "digital series" was likely enticing, I don't think anyone expected Halo:Nightfall to look as big budget and glossy as this!

This trailer feels like it's for a blockbuster. We don't have a famous face, but we do have some great acting talent here in Mike Colter (The Good Wife) and a cast of others including Christina Chong (24: Live Another Day), Steve Waddington (The Last Of The Mohicans), Luke Neal (Wilderness) and Christian Contreras (Zero Dark Thirty.

Besides the acting you've got big visuals and scope and simply stunning cinematography that put Halo: Nightfall somewhere between Prometheus and Aliens visuall [Continued ...]

Penny Arcade: News Post: Spectrograph

Tycho: The last time I played Fantasia: Music Evolved, my apparatus was not tuned for assessment. Or, and we should entertain this also I suppose, I was optimally tuned.  Alcohol is not only good for sanitizing wounds it turns out.  I have a firm policy as regards this elixir, and I have maintained it in an unswerving fashion: I only drink the stuff if its there.  Or, if I can get it within the space of an hour.  Or if I have to make it from the rinds that have collected under the bag in the garbage can.  So if you are somewhere and motherfuckers just want to give it to you,…

Acephalous: Honestly, I wouldn’t even know what one looked like

COP: Have you noticed anything unusual this morning?

SEK: Not to my knowledge.

COP: Nothing at all? Not even a…suspicious dump truck?

SEK: A suspicious dump truck? I’ve seen a lot of dump trucks across the street, at the construction site, but I don’t know what would make one suspicious.

COP: You know, like one that didn’t look like it…belonged with the other dump trucks.

SEK: Sorry, they look like a happy little dump truck family to me.

COP: I understand. Just keep your eyes peeled, and call me if you see anything suspicious.

SEK: Will do.

Quiet Earth: THE WOMAN IN BLACK Returns In Creepy New Sequel Trailer

We had already seen a quick and not very informative preview of Hammer film's upcoming The Woman in Black: Angel of Death and with the movie's release slated for early 2015, the time has come for a good look at the trailer and not surprisingly, it's looking adequately creepy.

Directed by Tom Harper, the movie is based on a story written by Susan Hill, the woman responsible for the original novel, and picks up the story forty years after the events of the first movie, in the same creepy house that drove Daniel Radcliffe's Arthur Kipps to the brink. This time around the evil spirit is awakened by a group of children who are evacuated from London during WWII. Poor kids; they leave one [Continued ...]

The Rhizome Frontpage RSS: Big Data, Little Narration

Big Data, Little Narration

Open Culture: Rick Rubin Revisits the Origins of Def Jam Records & the NYU Dorm Room Where It All Began

There may have been no more influential a label in the late 1980s than Def Jam Records. Founded by Rick Rubin, Def Jam launched the careers of The Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, and dozens more hip-hop pioneers. But its beginnings were humble. The earliest Def Jam releases list the mailing address as “5 University Pl. #712.” Current and former NYU students out there may recognize this address—it’s a dorm room in the university’s Weinstein Residence Hall, where in 1984, Rubin set up shop and began trying to reproduce the sound, as Rolling Stone writes, of “the raw performances he heard in clubs and the wild parties he threw.”

In the short Rolling Stone documentary above, “Rick Was Here,” see the pioneering producer revisit his origins, returning to his old dorm for the first time in 30 years. He talks about the “very specific feeling” of early hip-hop, and his desire to shift the focus of hip-hop records from R&B backing tracks to the DJ, who was all-important in live performances. Def Jam’s first release, T La Rock and Jazzy Jay’s “It’s Yours,” remains a classic of the genre. At the time, says Rubin, “it didn’t sound like anything else,” and through that record, Rubin met Russell Simmons, already “a big fish in the small pond of hip hop.” Simmons brought along a host of artists and gave Rubin more credibility in the community. Now the two are superproducers and moguls, but their origin story is one of scrappy determination that sparked a musical revolution.

The short film also features interviews with Simmons, LL Cool J, the Beastie Boys’ Adam Horowitz, and some of Rubin’s former dorm-mates and accomplices. For more on Def Jam’s early years, MetaFilter points us toward the history Def Jam Recordings: The First 35 Years of the Last Great Record Label and Russell Simmons’ autobiography Life and Def: Sex, Drugs, Money, + God.

Related Content:

The “Amen Break”: The Most Famous 6-Second Drum Loop & How It Spawned a Sampling Revolution

All Hail the Beat: How the 1980 Roland TR-808 Drum Machine Changed Pop Music

Josh Jones is a writer and musician based in Durham, NC. Follow him at @jdmagness

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The post Rick Rubin Revisits the Origins of Def Jam Records & the NYU Dorm Room Where It All Began appeared first on Open Culture.

Quiet Earth: Trailer preview for INSIDIOUS: CHAPTER 3

No doubt timed to capitalize on the Halloween season, Focus Features continues to tease the next Insidious chapter with a sneak preview video of tomorrow's trailer which will premier on the Insidous Facebook page.

The newest chapter in the terrifying horror series is written and directed by franchise co-creator Leigh Whannell. This chilling prequel, set before the haunting of the Lambert family, reveals how gifted psychic Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) reluctantly agrees to use her ability to contact the dead in order to help a teenage girl (Stefanie Scott) who has been targeted by a dangerous supernatural entity.

The film stars Dermot Mulroney, Stefanie Scott, Lin Shaye, Angus Sampson and Leigh Whannell.

Opens [Continued ...]

Climate Resistance: Nuclear power? Yes please. But not this…

This was originally written for Spiked, who haven’t yet decided whether or not to publish it.

Plans to bring UK nuclear energy out of its torpor were given mild relief last week, as the EU Commission approved the deal between the Government and EDF – the developer of the proposed Hinkley Point power station. The Commission investigated whether or not the deal broke state aid rules, and found that it did not. But when the Somerset turf is finally cut to make way for Britain’s first nuclear power station in nearly 20 years, Hinkley Point will stand as an epitome of remote, self-serving and intransigent political institutions rather than the symbol of technological and social progress that nuclear power stations once were.

New nuclear has been on the table for some time. But years of talks with energy companies and potential developers resulted in them packing up their pitch and walking away, citing expense. With only one developer left in the running, and with the UK government having committed to new nuclear energy as part of its carbon emissions-reduction strategy, it was now held over a barrel. To save itself from embarrassment, the government would underwrite loans for the £16 billion project, and guarantee a minimum price (‘strike price’) for the electricity it produced for the first 35 years of operation: £92.50 per megawatt hour (MWh) – roughly double the current market value.

At such prices, it is no surprise that the private sector was reluctant to get involved or finance Britain’s new nuclear projects. And with such an extraordinary intervention in the pricing mechanism, it was no surprise that the deal was investigated by the Commission for a possible breach of state aid rules. What is a surprise is that the Commission – which estimated that the costs of construction may reach £24.5 billion, and which advised that the price support should be extended from 35 years to the full 60-year lifespan of the plant – did not find much wrong with the UK government’s intervention. People born today will still be paying over-the-odds for the electricity produced at Hinkley Point at the end of their lives. Never mind toxic waste; expensive energy will be the coalition government’s ‘nuclear legacy’.

The cost of the 3.2 gigawatt (GW) proposed Hinkley Point power station is extraordinary. To put it into perspective, a comparison can be made with the gas-fired power station at Pembroke, which opened in 2012. On a unit-for-unit basis, the £7.6 bn per GW Hinkley Point plant is expected to cost nearly 20 times as much as the £400m per GW Pembroke plant. Though the fuel costs of Pembroke are not reflected in such a comparison, even at today’s relatively high gas prices, Pembroke produces electricity for less than half the cost of the proposed Hinkley Point plant. If gas prices were to fall to the prices seen in the 1990s and 2000s, electricity from Pembroke might be produced for as little as an eighth of the cost of electricity produced at Hinkley Point. The gamble on such high energy prices demonstrates that cheap energy is off the political agenda.

The green lobby reacted by complaining about the expense of the deal. “This is a world record sell-out to the nuclear industry at the expense of taxpayers and the environment’, whinged Greenpeace. But people who have campaigned for the abolition of greenhouse gasses and lobbied for expensive alternatives should not throw stones about market distortion and costs to the consumer. The same legislation which gives the operators of Hinkley Point £92.50 per MWh also grants to renewable generators far more generous subsidies. The strike price for offshore wind in 2014/5 is £155/MWh. For onshore wind it is £95. Biomass generators receive £105/MWh. Large solar PV installations receive a very generous £120. And operators of wave and tidal stream generators will receive a whopping £305. Where were Greenpeace’s complaints about government largesse when these prices were announced? The extraordinary Hinkley Point deal needs to be seen in the context of climate change and renewable energy policies.

High energy prices have been established as the norm by policy, not by scarcity. This has been legitimised by arguments that first-of-kind and immature technologies need help to compete with seemingly mature counterparts such as coal and gas. But the categories of ‘mature’ and ‘immature’ technology presuppose that one has reached its terminal point, while the other has more potential to be unleashed. But the reverse may be true: wind energy and the use of wood as fuel are in fact much older, and were largely abandoned by today’s politician’s wiser predecessors. Meanwhile, shale gas ‘fracking’ and the potential recovery of methane hydrates from the ocean floor demonstrate that there is a great deal of R&D left to do in the fossil fuel sector.

But abundant and cheap energy may create environmental problems. On the green view, this creates a tension between human needs and wants and the need for political leaders to address the urgent problem of a changing climate. Climate change may or may not be a problem requiring political intervention. However, there is no need for us to understand it as a problem to see the backwards thinking that has produced the climate and energy policies that now put expensive ‘negawatts’ further up the political agenda than cheaper megawatts. Although each EU member state – and many other countries throughout the world – spend many billions each year on renewable energy subsidies and emissions-reduction, global emissions continue to rise. But what if the tens of £billions ear-marked for the most expensive power station in the world instead went on actual energy research? Entire university campuses could be constructed and funded for just the price of Hinkley Point.

Just a small fraction of the many £billions spent each year on subsidising the extremely inefficient renewable energy sector could finance instead an array of projects like ITER – the European fusion research programme – where currently many countries now share just one. ITER is a good demonstration of political priorities. It is a 35 year research programme, intended to produce a proof-of-concept of sustained nuclear fusion: zero-carbon energy from water, forever. The programme has a budget of around €15 billion, shared between 35 countries – or very roughly €12 million per year, per country on average – barely enough cash to finance a small wind farm.

The budgets for nuclear energy research in the UK are, when compared to the money spent on renewables, mean, to say the least. A 2012 review of UK nuclear energy research found that UK Government expenditure on nuclear R&D was just £66 million in 2010/11 – around £30 million each for research into fusion and fission. The same review found that university research into nuclear energy between the years 2006-2012 was just £269 million — £44 million a year. Again, these sums are barely enough to build a small wind farm.

This is not to say that every last penny spent on renewable energy should have been spent on nuclear R&D. But these sums indicate that the problem of climate change isn’t being taken at all seriously from an R&D perspective. The emphasis on immediate, top-down and restrictive policies – targets, carbon budgets, subsidies and taxes – have yielded no practical benefit, whereas emphasis on energy R&D could have multiplied the number of experimental pathways into all forms of energy, both to mitigate climate change, and expand the reach of industrial energy production.
Investment in R&D, rather than top-down policies might well have delivered benefits that reduced the risks and costs of nuclear energy. There are many reactor designs that could compete on safety and therefore cost. Some designs offer to burn up waste stockpiles in sub-critical reactors. Some designs are modular, allowing easy and rapid deployment. Some are hybrids of fission and fusion. Some operate at low pressure. Some burn substances other than uranium and plutonium. The progress of each design is beset, not by technical challenges, but by political inertia. Rather than making a transparent choice of technique, or investing in such a way as to expand the choices on offer, policymakers were forced by first their own ineptitude, and second by their own intransigence into an expensive and hasty decision: not to save the planet from climate change, but to save their policies from embarrassing failure.

The predictable failure of renewable energy’s promises was the final cue for nuclear energy’s farcical return. The UK’s nuclear energy programme had been abandoned in the 1980s following the environmental movement’s successful mobilisation of public opinion after the Chernobyl accident. Meanwhile, the effect of the ‘dash for gas’ that had begun in the late ‘80s, and which led to low energy prices throughout the 1990s began to ebb away as North Sea gas fields seemed to dry up. In the 2000s, a timid and image-conscious Labour government sought the approval of green organisations, and allowed them to close down any possibility of new coal-fired power station. European emissions directives shortened the lives of existing fossil-fuel-powered plants though the Large Combustion Plant Directive and the Industrial Emissions Directive. Now the UK faced a growing energy gap.

Renewable energy never stood a chance of filling that gap or providing electricity at a reasonable cost. The offshore wind farm at Thanet, completed in 2010, cost £900 million to build for 300MW of installed capacity. But due to the variability of wind, offshore wind farms produce around a third of their nameplate capacity. Thanet therefore cost a whopping £8.6 billion per GW of effective capacity – nearly a £billion more than Hinkley point, but supplying the grid with electricity at three times the market value, netting its operators more than £75 million in subsidies per year.

The rhetoric hailing the return of nuclear exists in stark contrast to the promises about white heat of technological revolution generations earlier. More than half a century since the first civil nuclear reactors produced electricity, Britain’s political leaders struggle to establish the lowest possible expectations for the highest possible price: keeping the lights on and tackling climate change.

Back in the 1950s, a year before Britain’s first nuclear power plant opened, ministers from the six member countries of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) gathered at Messina, Italy. The ECSC met to set out the priorities that would become the foundations of the European Economic Community, and later the EU. Amongst the three major objectives that were essential ‘to improve steadily the living standard of the population’, the conference agreed that ‘Putting more abundant energy at a cheaper price at the disposal of the European economies constitutes a fundamental element of economic progress’ and that ‘The development of atomic energy for peaceful purposes will very soon open up the prospect of a new industrial revolution beyond comparison with that of the last hundred years’.

Nearly sixty years of technological development and social progress, however, have taken their toll on the European political elite’s technological ambition and imagination. In 2007, they set out their new objectives. Europe abandoned the Messina Declaration’s objectives. “Energy is essential for Europe to function. But the days of cheap energy for Europe seem to be over. The challenges of climate change, increasing import dependence and higher energy prices are faced by all EU members.”

It may seem a radical proposition: if policymakers eschew the principle of cheap energy, might cheap energy become that much harder to find? Does the fact of Europe declaring that ‘the days of cheap energy for Europe seem to be over’ not establish expensive energy as a political priority, and shift the emphasis of public organisations and publically-funded research away from the discovery of cheap energy? Might this not explain why ITER and nuclear research are so poorly-funded, in spite of what so many politicians have described as a ‘planetary emergency’ and ‘the biggest challenge ever facing humanity’?

Whether or not climate change is happening, the tension between the necessity of dealing with it and wanting cheap energy is one that politicians have used for their own ends: to secure themselves and their institutions against the public’s wishes. The promise of abolishing coal, and supplying the UK with green energy may occasionally raise a standing ovation from the zombie faithful at party conferences, but most people just want there to be reasonably-priced electricity when the light switch is flicked. Accordingly, the problem, as policymakers conceive of it, is people, not the climate. Hence their preference for ‘behaviour change’, demand-side management, ‘efficiency’, and the imposition of limits, targets and subsidies, while eschewing innovation and the notion of economic development with it. The growing expense and decreasing reliability of electricity infrastructure throughout Europe is not merely a symbolic reflection of the European political establishment’s detachment from ordinary life; it is its product.

And so it is with nuclear energy now. We can keep our lights on, but only at colossal expense. The expense was caused by policies, which through accidents and by design, established high energy prices and expectations of government support for new capacity. Having established that much, the incentive to innovate, to produce energy for a lower cost and in greater abundance, disappears.

Electricity generation and its delivery are technologies that were mastered many decades ago. Nuclear power was developed not long after. The fuels for these technologies exist in vast quantities, and their quantities are multiplied as the means to extract and use them are developed. The thing that stops the transparent management of resources and their efficient delivery is a form of politics which legitimises itself, to itself, for itself, against us, by problematising such simple things as energy. The more that technical problems involved in life’s most basic necessities – like coping with the climate and producing energy – are made complicated, so the lower the aspirations of politics and the lower the expectations of politicians become.

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CreativeApplications.Net: MIRA Live Visual Arts Festival

img-home-2-2MIRA – Live Visual Arts Festival is to be held in Barcelona from 6 to 15 Nov, showcasing new creations of visual arts internationally, generating unique symbiosis, transmission of knowledge and opportunity through col collaborations between visual and music artists. The fourth edition will feature more than 50 activities spread between Fabra i Coats factory, the Santa […]

OUR VALUED CUSTOMERS: Upon hearing of WOLVERINE's recent demise...

things magazine: Slice of life

Natalie Luder’s Fou Lard is 100% silk “Crèpe de Chine”, digitally printed to masquerade as thinly sliced meat: ‘The French word for a silk scarf is foulard. The word is composed by fou (insane) and lard (bacon).’

Colossal: Extreme Winds Cause a Waterfall in England to Blow Upward

Extreme Winds Cause a Waterfall in England to Blow Upward wind weather waterfalls England

Extreme Winds Cause a Waterfall in England to Blow Upward wind weather waterfalls England

Hikers exploring England’s Derbyshire Peak District earlier this week stumbled onto a rare phenomenon caused by extreme winds. The River Downfall, a 30-meter (98 foot) waterfall was blown back almost vertically by a powerful updraft, making it seem as if the waterfall was simply flowing into nothing. Very cool. (via Twisted Sifter)

Computer Science: Theory and Application: Ranking of (US) CS Departments based on the Number of Papers in Theoretical Computer Science

submitted by heimlichmaneuverer
[link] [21 comments]

New Humanist Blog: Ways to go: meeting death without religion

More than any other rite of passage, death separates the devout from the damned. So what can a secular funeral offer?

All Content: Identity Versus Self: Justin Simien on "Dear White People"


"Dear White People" is a film that follows a quartet of African-American college students as they try to negotiate their seemingly different but ultimately intertwined ways through the predominantly white campus of their Ivy League university. Sam (Tessa Thompson) is the campus firebrand who has a radio show entitled "Dear White People" in which she humorously calls out whites for the unconscious behaviors that are almost as insulting as outright racism. Troy (Brandon P. Bell) is the far smoother and self-assured type whose seemingly effortless rise to the top is stymied when he unexpectedly loses the election for student leader of the school's one predominantly black residence hall to former girlfriend Sam. Coco (Teyonah Parris) is a fame-obsessed type who attempts to position herself as an alternative campus voice in the hopes of attracting the attentions of a reality show that is casting on campus. As for budding journalist Lionel (Tyler James Williams), he is struggling to find himself despite the double-outsider status of being both black and gay. Among the Caucasian faces in the mix are Gabe (Justin Dobies), the genial RA who is also Sam's boyfriend, a fact that she is desperately trying to keep secret for fear of how it will look to others and Kurt (Kyle Gallner), the obnoxious and privileged campus alpha male who is the son of the university's president and the head of the school's celebrated humor magazine that is preparing to throw an "African-American" party that encourages white students to come as their favorite stereotypes and which leads to a campus race riot. (If that last detail seems a little too much, please note that the end credits for the film include an array of startling photos taken at numerous real-life gatherings along those lines that have occurred on campuses across the country over the last few years.)

Wait, did I neglect to mention that the film in question is also a comedy? Instead of using the material in the service of an earnest, well-intentioned but ultimately dull melodrama, debut writer-director Justin Simien has instead taken an overtly satirical approach that allows him to tackle the charged material in a way that allows him to deal with some hard truths about the contemporary African-American experience without getting bogged down in deadly dogma. The film is smart and insightful without becoming pedantic, and contains a number of big laughs to boot. By putting his focus as much on the notion of young people trying to discover who they are as individuals as on the racial aspect, he tells a story that can appeal to a wider audience without watering things down in the process. This is an ambitious and ultimately successful work and while it may not quite be, as some of the early reviews have suggested, the next "Do the Right Thing" (it is actually closer to Spike Lee's ridiculously underrated 2000 satire "Bamboozled"), it is certainly strong enough to justify "Variety" naming Simien as one of this year's 10 filmmakers to watch.

For Simien, the release of the film, which opened in New York last Friday and will be expanding throughout the country, marks the end of a long journey that began when he first conceived of the project in 2012 and produced a fundraising trailer that unexpectedly went viral and brought in over $40,000 and included a triumphant premiere at this year's Sundance Film Festival, where he won one of the Special Jury Prizes. This week, while basking in the strong reviews and box-office results of its opening weekend and preparing to introduce "Dear White People" as part of the Chicago International Film Festival, Simien sat down to discuss the issues raised by his movie, the decision to look at them through a comedic perspective and the current state of black filmmaking.

Now that "Dear White People" has finally arrived in theaters this past weekend to strong reviews and box office, what has it been like for you to finally have it out there for the public to see once and for all?

JUSTIN SIMIEN: I am relieved. I guess that for the first time in the entire process, I was finally able to exhale. There was always something coming up next that could go horribly wrong and it has been like that for a long time. "What if no one finances this?" "What if Sundance doesn't accept it?" What if no one picks it up out of Sundance?" "What if we don't open well?" Well, it finally came out and we opened well and I am good. I am happy that critically the film is being well-received and that audiences are receiving it well and are abuzz with questions and conversations. It is a big "Mission Accomplished" and everything after this is like icing on the cake.

What inspired the film and how closely is it inspired by your own collegiate experiences?

It came out of that. The script changed a lot but it started with having several conversations in college about our experiences as black people at a mostly white college versus what was presumed to be our experiences. We all had friends of all races and there were awkward moments and awkward conversations and I just thought that it was a way to say something new about the experience of being a person of color as well as a way to indulge in my love of black smarthouse films that Spike Lee begat but which were also carried out by other filmmakers. It was before my time but I love that there was a time when there were films like "Hollywood Shuffle" and "Love Jones" and "Boyz N the Hood"—all these different stories that were different from each other and different versions of the experience that were all together in the marketplace. I kind of wish that I had been a part of that in a way and it was a way to throw back to that while saying something new.

What governed your decision to approach the material from a more overtly satirical perspective?

It was just always funny to me. I think part of it is that when we were having these conversations—before I considered it to be a satire or considered the school to be a microcosm of the American experience—it was just my experiences on a college campus and they were always funny. When we would tell these stories, they were always hilarious and we laughed about it. To me, it always had a humorous tone to it but as it went from the shitty first drafts that are inevitable for most screenplays into something better and more powerful, I just doubled-down on the decision that the best way to talk about it was satirically. I had seen a lot of the earnest films that had dealt with race and the more dogmatic and earnest that they were, the less they felt like real life. They didn't look like the real racism that I would see in America.

"Do the Right Thing" as a screenplay might seem like a drama but he shot it almost like a comic book with a heightened reality—yelling racial epithets directly into the camera—and it would not have worked and the ending would not have been as powerful if you had spent the entire time just being dragged through the mud. Frankly, if we are going to talk about racial violence, "Fruitvale Station" and "12 Years a Slave" did that really well and I wanted to do something that hadn't been talked about or said. My focus was about identity--the issues of identity and the ways in which identity can complicate our lives. I hadn't seen that in movies, at least not through the lens of being a person of color.

"Do the Right Thing" has been cited a lot in commentary on "Dear White People" but the Spike Lee film that it reminded me of even more was "Bamboozled," his satire on contemporary racial stereotypes that bothered a lot of people when it came out in 2000 but which I still consider to be one of the best and bravest of all his films.

I so agree. It looked so unconventional that it was jarring to people but I loved that movie. It literally makes me laugh and cry—I know that sounds like a cliche but I am moved to tears by the end of that film. The mark of a really great satire is its ability to seem prophetic and I think that the television culture that film predicted really came true in the age of reality television and is a testament to how great it really is.

You were just speaking about how you wanted the film to focus on identity. Can you talk about your approach to exploring questions of identity through your four central characters and the different ways that the negotiate the experience of being black on a mostly white college campus?

I thought that the film was about identity versus self. I thought it would be interesting to talk about something that I think is a human condition—that struggle between who am I versus who people see me as—and talk about it through a black lens because before I could ever ask the question "Who am I?," I had to get through the minutiae of who I am as a black person and who I am as a gay person. I sort of had to answer the questions of identity that were thrust upon me that I wasn't innately asking until the world was asking.

I remember the first time that I realized that being black meant that I wasn't allowed certain things. It was in the fourth grade  and it was who I thought was my best friend not inviting me to his birthday party because I would be the only black kid there. It was the first time I ever felt restricted and it certainly wasn't the last time. I remember the shock of that—that I wasn't having the same human experience as the rest of the kids. I was somehow being held by this identity that was created by somebody else about me. I just thought that was an interesting way of talking about identity that I hadn't seen before and it was an opportunity to say something new about the subject. If the focus of the film is on identity, then anyone can sort of find a way in even though it is through these characters and their experiences.

One of the things that I found interesting about the way that racism is handled in the film is that of the two major white characters, neither one is particularly racist. Gabe, the RA and Sam's clandestine boyfriend, is arguably the single nicest character in the film and Kurt, the alpha-male humor magazine editor, is certainly a boor, but he comes across as an obnoxious equal-opportunity offender who mistakenly sees himself as following in the footsteps of people like Lenny Bruce or Richard Pryor who would say shocking things as a way of getting at greater truths. Instead, the real racism in the film is embodied by the institution of the school itself and its policies.

Well, that is the way that racism actually works. Yes, there are people who are outwardly racist and say outwardly racist things but more often than not, the kind of racism that affects the daily lives of people is the institutionalized racism, the kind that is baked in—the covert assumptions and the way in which people are subtly left out of access to certain things. That is how is actually works and functions and oftentimes, the conversation comes around to who is to blame and that loses sight of what the real issue is, which is that it is baked into the system. Kurt and even the president of the university, their sin isn't racism—it is a lack of tolerance for the experiences of people who are different from them.

"Color-blind" comes up—people say "Oh, I'm color-blind and therefore can't be accused of racism," but I think that if we are going to have an honest dialogue about racism, we have to admit that people of color are having a different experience. I have different privileges because I am a man and I have to acknowledge that and realize that another person of color who is also a woman is having a different experience than I am. Just saying that black people are inferior, that is not what it looks like anymore.

What kind of response have you received to the potentially controversial plot development involving Sam's secret romance with Gabe?

I have noticed that some audience members have wondered if I am trying to say something globally about black men and white men. I think a lot of that may be that many movies that are about race are dogmatic and they tend to have very clear-cut lessons for the audience to walk away with. I think that Sam's dual life when it comes to her guys—I think that is a real dilemma that a lot of women face. The pressure of whether to pick who the people around me think I should pick or should I pick who I secretly want even though it might be inconvenient for my life and my persona. That is a real struggle and a real thing and I know a lot of people who appreciate that the movie gets into that and articulates that. I also get people who want to make sure that I am not saying anything globally about interracial dating and I think part of that is that films like this dealing with subject matter like this are rare and I think part of it is that audiences have to get used to films that deal with racism in ways that aren't dogmatic or that isn't a morality play.

When you are discussing the film with audiences or looking at the reviews, have you found that there is a difference in the elements that black commentators and white commentators seem to be focusing upon?

I will be honest—I don't like to read every review because I am far too neurotic and I don't want to put myself through the nitpicking of every single review. I do notice that with audiences, laughter does come in different spots and people walk away with different things. I think that for African-American audiences who have experienced in very specific and concrete ways the things that are depicted in the film, I think there is an immediacy to it that is different than it is for a white audience, for whom it is more theoretical. When we have shown the movie on campuses, we get into very specific discussions about how to work as student activists on campus and how to rally up against things that I am not really qualified to give advice on. It is interesting to see audiences take different things away.

How close is the final version of "Dear White People" that is now playing to the version that you saw in your head when you first envisioned it?

It changed a lot. The first version of it was more Altmanesque—it was very slice-of-life and while it was satirical, it wasn't a satire. It followed 7 or 8 other characters and they were all very different—Sam, Troy, Lionel and Coco were all there but there were these 7 or 8 other characters and they all had equal weight and the script was incredibly long. It was meant to be this year-in-the-life-of more so than building to a culminating event that affected everybody. That was the big change over the years—it became more of a satire and it became about something specific. For financial reasons, I felt that it made more sense to focus on four characters—two sets of two opposites—and tell the story in a sort of point-counterpoint way.

You spoke earlier of wishing that you could have been making movies in the time of films like "Do the Right Thing" and "Boyz N the Hood." What are your thoughts about the current state of black filmmaking?

I think we are still in that kind of dichotomy where there are either awards-time movies where you see a black youth slain or a slave or some disenfranchised black person in a tragedy or the springtime romantic comedies for general audiences like "Think Like a Man" or even something like "No Good Deed"—a proven genre film that never really gets into anything complicated. One is for the box office and the other is for awards season but the arthouse stuff—the stuff that tries to talk about the human condition and which try to say something important about us now—you rarely see people of color in those kinds of movies. That is just where my interest lies more than in the others—those core-driven movies that are meant to be about something and where people of color are seen as human beings because they are not these tragic characters or these aspirational types trying to live up to this superhuman ideal of being black, this "Ebony"-cover version  of being black. There is a real power in putting the truthful, complicated and messy versions of us and I would like to see more of that.

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A big moment for one athletic hat. 

Colossal: Cubic Rubber Bands by Nendo

Cubic Rubber Bands by Nendo stationery rubber bands office

Cubic Rubber Bands by Nendo stationery rubber bands office

Cubic Rubber Bands by Nendo stationery rubber bands office

Cubic Rubber Bands by Nendo stationery rubber bands office

Earlier this year Tokyo and Milan-based design firm Nendo (previously) accepted the challenge of redesigning the rubber band, one of the most common desktop items that seems so ubiquitous that it’s disposable. After all, the cost of a few hundred more is just a few bucks. But what if a rubber band was interesting, functional, and you didn’t want to throw it away. This was the idea behind Nendo’s cubic rubber band, a completely different form factor resulting in a desktop object that isn’t meant to be stashed away in a drawer or tossed in the trash. A set of three retails for 1080 yen (about $10), though you’ll need to be able to navigate a Japanese retailer, Marks, to snap up a set. (via Spoon & Tamago)

TheSirensSound: Wacky Southern Current

Wacky Southern Current Profile

Mellow, instrumental, post rock. Wacky Southern Current’s ” Like The Wind Within The Hollow Tree ” is neither wacky nor southern. Marco Cervellin of Italy plays most of the instruments himself creating a hush, minimal, peaceful landscape of down tempo, acoustic music. From the electronic tinged opening track, ” I Took a Journey ” to the ambient feel of ” Unterkircher ” this album sways without ever straying too far. It is very much a cohesive unit. “Like The Wind Within The Hollow Tree” harkens similarities to [ Explosions In The Sky's ] quieter material, [ Album Leaf's ] early work, as well as netlabel musicians such as [ Cantaloup ] and [ Nic Bommarito ]. This is truly a beautiful suite of music for a quiet Sunday soundtrack.

Today’s Embrace
By: Wacky Southern Current
Release Date: 16th Of October 2014
All instruments Marco Cervellin
Except saxophone by Luca Mattiuzzo
Cover ghost photo courtesy of Angela Deane
Digital Album Distributed Through [ BANDCAMP ] and [ ROUTENOTE ]

Invoking definitive knowledge on how to get an appealing start, “Today’s Embrace” by [ Wacky Southern Current ], fittingly the band fourth full length, features chic arrangements in compositions. Kicking off with ‘Greeted by A Swarm of Butterflies’, from the word go, the album carve a fragile hallucination of a newfound lethargic darkness and soothing vibrations. Instead of sounding just as terrified as many other monikers who would step in this type of musical direction, [ Wacky Southern Current ] has acquired a particular set of skills and sense of confidence in producing some of the most amazing nostalgic lo-fi reverberation.

As soon as you listen to the first track ‘Greeted by A Swarm of Butterflies’, you can’t help but feeling every bit of your emotion slowly connecting to a larger life-form. “Today’s Embrace” holds the power to draw you back in time as it would equally for the future. Sky is the limit, picture the 01st time you light a cigarette or the 01st night you slept A La Belle Etoile and the music will take you there in an instant. Thanks to those dark ballades we can now explore an even deeper and more intricate aisle to our past in a very ambient, very melodic, very lo-fi / mellow-dark and nostalgic appearance as [ W.A.C ] pursues similarly to swapping its musical dynamic and sonic rhymes for a visuals one.

The entire record flows in an unusual pattern and proves to be Wacky Southern Current’s ‘ most prominent effort to date, abounding with simple yet distinctive guitar rhythms (however drawn out) and approved by models, synth and keys with splashes of electronic elements together with the addition of saxophone, Wacky Southern Current’s have almost completely and gently stuffed the subtle instrumental ambience to whole new level. While previous releases by the band speaks for itself, still… we talking, experiencing a whole new game together with a strong sense of nostalgia and with an output focussing primarily on experimental lo-fi ambient. Staggering indeed!

“Today’s Embrace” ebb’s and flows in a surprisingly loveable way, to something close to poniarding atmospheres with its otherworldly enactment effects and drowsy pace, all of which, gathered and brought forth enticingly in a vocals(less) and instrumental package that hugely makes you want to re-visit the definition of sadness. The end result is a beat, a simple beat, a kick and a melody that eventually grows on you. Quick listening or part listening of the album is definitely NOT RECOMMENDED. “Today’s Embrace” is a new act that you have to listen from the beginning to the end, and once that done you will somehow set this album on repeat listen. I know, because that’s what exactly happened to me. A one word definition for this album, EXCEPTIONAL!

< < < < < [ [ INTERNET ARCHIVE ] | [ BY ALL MEANS ] | [ BANDCAMP ] ]. > > > > >

Wacky Southern Current - Today's Embrace

Artist – Wacky Southern Current
Album – Today’s Embrace
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Instrumental, Post-rock, Lo-core / Medio-core [ AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL & LAID BACK ]


1. Greeted by a Swarm of Butterflies 03:58
2. No Safe Harbor 04:24
3. Trains Are Cool 04:04
4. Your Aria 03:56
5. In Fear of the Aztec Sun 04:54
6. Montevideo 03:57
7. Good At Guessing Accents 04:33
8. Kogan Tribute Piece 04:52
9. House Wrapped in Vines 05:21
Wacky Southern Current – Today’s Embrace


Wacky Southern Current - Argonautica

Artist – Wacky Southern Current
Album – Argonautica [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Instrumental, Post-rock, Lo-core / Medio-core [ AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL & LAID BACK ]


01 – Sam the Lion
02 – We Are Argonauts
03 – Spirits and Libations
04 – Padawan
05 – The Faun Song
06 – Père-Lachaise
07 – Inland vs Coastal
08 – The Falconer Song
09 – Transparency
10 – French Radio
11 – Blues in A
FREE DL Wacky Southern Current – Argonautica


Artist – Wacky Southern Current
Album – In a Realm of Uncertain Summer [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2011
Genre – Instrumental, Post-rock, Lo-core / Medio-core [ AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL & LAID BACK ]


01 – Intro
02 – Theme from An Uncertain Summer
03 – Eaten By Your Own Sun
04 – West Of The Dam
05 – The Nearest Star
06 – Naked Mountain Song
07 – Dream Sequence
08 – New towns
09 – Eventide
FREE DL Wacky Southern Current – In a Realm of Uncertain Summer


Artist – Wacky Southern Current
Album – Like The Wind Within The Hollow Tree [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2010
Genre – Instrumental, Post-rock, Lo-core / Medio-core [ AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL & LAID BACK ]


Wacky Southern Current – 01 – I Took a Journey
Wacky Southern Current – 02 – Robinia
Wacky Southern Current – 03 – Painted Leaf
Wacky Southern Current – 04 – This Summer
Wacky Southern Current – 05 – Unterkircher
Wacky Southern Current – 06 – Ghost Pine Sonata
Wacky Southern Current – 07 – Encore
FREE DL Wacky Southern Current – Like The Wind Within The Hollow Tree

Wacky Southern Current

TheSirensSound: Dai Watts

[ 'Liminalondon' available on CD and Download ]


The new electro-acoustic album from London-based composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Dai Watts is out now on CD and download. Liminalondon is a “psychogeographical” tour of one of the world’s great capital cities, featuring ten instrumental tracks that interweave “found-sounds” with ambient and left-field electronica, acoustic and electronic beats and contemporary classical minimalism. The field recordings and conversations on the album were captured spontaneously by Dai in a variety of London locations, including The National Portrait Gallery, Hampstead Heath Ponds, Curzon Soho Café, The London Underground, along the banks of the Thames, The O2- not to mention several of London’s finest pubs and bars- with the music being largely written on a laptop and MIDI keyboard at the Southbank Centre by the Thames before being recorded and mixed at The Shed, Dai’s studio in Archway in North London.

Dai Watts performing ‘Liminalondon’ at The Hideaway. from Dai Watts on Vimeo.

‘Liminalondon’ by [ Dai Watts ]
Genres: Ambient Electronic, Music
Released: 26 June 2014 ℗ 2014 Dai Watts

Expressing ‘Liminalondon’ couldn’t be any easier or warmer, it’s simple, yet delicate and fragile field-recordings ambience and an anecdotal of soundscape drove deep in the heart of a luminous city with smooth rising textures and an extended atmospheres reflecting landscaping themes and shifting nature of the habitat. The paramount effect here is one of ambient nuance and clarity perfection: computerized ambient sheets and subtle drones periodically collide with static streams and animate with whispering sequence.

Liminalondon is a top notch listen from the press of the play button in every possible aspect one can think of, straight 10 out of 10 if I may say, the smoothness, yet electro-core rhythmic flow perfectly balances with the digital structures and the movement’s arrangement that will most of all draw attention from the most serious minded fans from the likes of [ Antonymes ], [ bvdub ], [ Plinth ], and [ William Ryan Fritch ] or [ Field Rotation ] for that matter.

That in mind ‘Liminalondon’ is by far more than just an ambient / smooth-tempo type of listen. The album also incorporate one of the most unusual and unique classical figure. The clarity and quality of such amalgamation doesn’t only reside in the plaintive strings and keys touches but it’s more encrypted in the formula of passionate music making. Believe me when say this release is not about how beautiful is the sound but its more about the driven passion that make the sound so beautiful, and this can be felt right across the entire Liminalondon.

Imagine such sound, such elegance, such smoothness, such blend, such passion from the heart, all uniting at once in a cinematic prospect; the result is nothing but an endless rewarding listen. As much as I love ‘Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol 2’ I think ‘Liminalondon’ is indeed the most prominent work by [ Dai Watts ] as the album is full of repeated musical motifs. This is ambient / classical-ambient at its finest and highest peaks. This record is crafted mainly for REPEATED LISTENS and I must say… it’s a sublime success. Once again 10 Out Of 10 and notably one of the most beautiful 2014 ambient albums I’ve come across. I’ll say grab it in an instant.

‘Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol 2′

Dai’s previous release ‘Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol 2′ is also available on both CD and download. Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol.2 features nine electro-acoustic tracks carefully interwoven with audio and field recordings to create over fifty minutes of continuous music. Combining melodic fragments, haunting vocal refrains, beat-based grooves and piano/orchestral minimalism, the album is a unique sonic impression of a journey by rail and sea across Mediterranean Europe and North Africa.

< < < < < [ [ iTUNES ] | [ SOUNDCLOUD ] | [ .COM ][ FACEBOOK ] ]. > > > > >

Dai Watts - Liminalondon

Artist – Dai Watts
Album – Liminalondon [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Minimal, Electro, Experimental, Ambient-electronica [ SUPERB ]


01 The Hill
02 The Bridge
03 The Ponds
04 The View
05 Psychogeographer’s Blues
06 Return of the Unreliable Narrator
07 The Whispering Portrait Gallery
08 The River
09 Supervised Desuetude
10 The Homeward Way
Daiwatts – Liminalondon


Dai Watts Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol two

Artist – Dai Watts
Album – Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol.2 [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Minimal, Electro, Experimental, Ambient-electronica [ NICE LISTEN / EASY FLOW ]


1 Treno Italiano
2 Isle of Elba
3 Isis in Tunis
4 Tangier in Dreams
5 Lisbon Lament
6 El Camino
7 Ares Masts
8 Ubiquitous Eucalyptus
9 Sous le ciel des Pyrénées
Dai Watts – Train Tracks and Travelogues Vol.2

Dai Watts

TheSirensSound: Andrew Henry

Andrew Henry Profile

Andrew Henry is an electronic, experimental, and ambient artist based out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His music crosses multiple disciplines of electronica, but all of his work retains an atmospheric texture influenced by soundscapes, film scores, and choral music. Andrew began making music in 2011, and initiated a consistent output of self-releases in 2012 which continues today. Andrew is also one half of the rock and roll duo The Pinheads, with his friend Michael Praskovich.

[ Salvation ]

A phrase caught my eye on the release page for Salvation: “minor improvisation”. Tiny accidents, subtle responses. Like a marble on a table-top, drastically responsive to the tiniest of surface tilts. On this 38-minute track, transition accumulates from the momentum built from infinitesimal flickers in thought – new drones filter into the picture like light through the blinds, gradually teasing open the opportunity for change. The sounds are smooth like lattices of water molecules, and even the pulses of piano loop are rendered blurry and indistinct as if observed underwater. I imagine Henry allowing his body to fall limp; consciousness drains away, and the piece drifts through its journey carried by the currents of instinct.

The changes in emotional hue are unexpected. What starts as a state of major-key equilibrium tips into states of anxiety and heavy sadness; a churn of manipulated tape at four minutes sounds like someone drowning quietly, while the little piano notes at 14 minutes sound like dry petals breaking away from a dying flower. I slip into shadow and emerge again, sent through gentle cycles of unease and recovery – each state is subtle and somewhat distant, like bad and pleasant memories surging back into view, the emotional connection withered by time. Misery fades out, replaced by the hazy organ spirals and florescent lights of a fairground coughing out of dead tape. Like so many aspects of Salvation, it’s recalled in fragments of nostalgic sensory jolt; a childhood fondly forgotten, warmer in retrospect.

< < < < < [ [ BANDCAMP STREAM ] | [ BANDCAMP PURCHASE ] ]. > > > > >

Andrew Henry - Salvation

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Salvation
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – Salvation I
02 – Salvation II
03 – Salvation III
04 – Salvation IV
05 – Salvation V
STREAM Andrew Henry – Salvation
DIRECT DOWNLOAD Andrew Henry – Salvation


Andrew Henry - Summer of Baja

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Summer of Baja
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01. So Glad 03:10
02. Steel City Imagination 02:21
03. Soul Skaters 04:07
04. Karate 04:13
05. Ken Herman [Interlude] 00:54
06. Tara’s Pancakes 03:00
07. Keep Giving 03:28
08. Don’t Wanna Be 05:09
09. Sunshine! 03:30
10. Nocturnal Splendor 04:12
11. Summer of Baja 03:34
Andrew Henry – Summer of Baja


Andrew Henry - Nothing Important Happened Today

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Nothing Important Happened Today
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01. 12:00 A.M. 02:10
02. Eighteen 04:25
03. Our Chemistry 04:51
04. Dreams 03:51
05. Amends (Interlude) 02:13
06. Death Benson 04:12
07. Our Philosophy 04:40
08. Driving to Sheetz with the Windows Down 01:50
09. ’97 Protege 05:03
10. Summer 03:12
11. 7:00 A.M. 02:46
Andrew Henry – Nothing Important Happened Today


Andrew Henry - Eight Months

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Eight Months
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – Eight Months
Andrew Henry – Eight Months


Andrew Henry - Anonymous Camaraderie

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Anonymous Camaraderie
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – Anonymous Camaraderie 37:34
Andrew Henry – Anonymous Camaraderie


Andrew Henry - Searching for Answers

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Searching for Answers
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – Searching for Answers 44:58
Andrew Henry – Searching for Answers


Andrew Henry - Musical Espionage Action

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Musical Espionage Action
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01. Introduction 00:18
02. Konami 04:27
03. Press Start 02:13
04. Objectives 01:20
05. Yet To Come [Drums by Lecky] 03:07
06. This is Snake 00:48
07. Cavern 03:10
08. Revolver Ocelot 01:42
09. Rap Game Solid Snake 02:33
10. Versace Sneaking Suit 02:17
11. Vulcan Raven 00:47
12. Warheads 03:56
13. Mantis 04:11
14. Enclosure 05:49
15. Sniper Wolf 02:00
16. Rex’s Lair 03:07
17. I Choose Life 01:48
18. VR Training [Bonus Track] 02:21
Andrew Henry – Musical Espionage Action


Andrew Henry - Celine and Jesse

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Celine and Jesse
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. Sunrise, Sunset, and Midnight 32:08
Andrew Henry – Celine and Jesse


Andrew Henry - Texas

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Texas
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. Texas 12:09
Andrew Henry – Texas


Andrew Henry - The Everlasting Smile You Hold

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – The Everlasting Smile You Hold
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. The Everlasting Smile You Hold 29:52
Andrew Henry – The Everlasting Smile You Hold


Andrew Henry - All the Hard Work is Done For Me

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – All the Hard Work is Done For Me
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. Midnight at Eat’n Park 05:36
2. Leaving You Behind Was Easy 04:03
3. Everyone is Above Me 09:57
4. The Sound of Everything Dying 10:03
5. Akol Atpas 06:56
6. Peace in Simplicity II 06:24
7. A Slice of Utopia 05:52
Andrew Henry – All the Hard Work is Done For Me


Andrew Henry - A Wave of Relief

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – A Wave of Relief
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. A Wave of Relief 16:09
2. One More Day With You 04:45
Andrew Henry – A Wave of Relief


Andrew Henry - Without You, Nothing

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Without You, Nothing
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. The Light Remains for a Short Time 09:29
2. Without You 12:48
3. Nothing 10:40
Andrew Henry – Without You, Nothing


Andrew Henry - Everything is Falling Into Place

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Everything is Falling Into Place
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – Everything is Falling Into Place 41:12
Andrew Henry – Everything is Falling Into Place


Andrew Henry - The World Will Wait For You

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – The World Will Wait For You
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01 – The World Will Wait For You 42:00
Andrew Henry – The World Will Wait For You


Andrew Henry - Two Tapes for Parents

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Two Tapes for Parents
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. A Tape for a Mother 09:07
2. A Tape for a Father 06:11
Andrew Henry – Two Tapes for Parents


Andrew Henry - The Elephant and the Wolf

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – The Elephant and the Wolf
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. The Elephant and the Wolf 55:28
Andrew Henry – The Elephant and the Wolf


Andrew Henry - A Dream I Never Had

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – A Dream I Never Had
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. A Dream I Never Had 22:48
2. The Morning After the World Ended 02:21
Andrew Henry – A Dream I Never Had


Andrew Henry - West Virginia Lasts Forever

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – West Virginia Lasts Forever
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. West Virginia Lasts Forever 11:00
2. Ozymandias 11:27
Andrew Henry – West Virginia Lasts Forever


Andrew Henry - Saturday Evening at the Praskovich House

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Saturday Evening at the Praskovich House
Release Date – 2013
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. Saturday Evening at the Praskovich House 12:12
2. A Façade of Modesty 10:24
Andrew Henry – Saturday Evening at the Praskovich House


Andrew Henry - Shadows

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Shadows
Release Date – 2012
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


1. Owego 12:16
2. A Song For Katie 03:21
3. (In Memory of Mike Praskovich) 07:20
4. Pelicula Reflexiva Parts III and IV 04:21
5. Usman dan Fodio 09:03
6. Pelicula Reflexiva Parts VII and VIII 04:36
7. Perpetual Dawn 10:11
8. Alienated 03:44
9. Behemoth 04:43 | 10. Discovery 03:47 | 11. Petra Von Kant 08:00
Andrew Henry – Shadows


Andrew Henry - Everything Reminds Me of You

Artist – Andrew Henry
Album – Everything Reminds Me of You
Release Date – 2012
Genre – Ambient, Dark-ambient, Drone, Dronescape, Experimental, Abstract-ambient


01. Thornwood 04:40
02. Prayer 03:33
03. Introversion 03:35
04. Interstate 02:24
05. Extroversion 03:25
06. Peace in Simplicity 03:55
07. Comfort and Understanding 06:56
08. A Fear of the Unknown 05:03
09. Home 02:21
10. New Girl 05:54
11. (Where I Want To Be) 01:46
Andrew Henry – Everything Reminds Me of You

Andrew Henry

TheSirensSound: Soulspace

Soulspace Profile


A home grown Music producer, currently based in New Delhi, India. Making much deeper sound, he expanded his sound for his live act. Being versatile with upcoming releases to his credit on different labels, and a mutual love to push the deeper side of Electronic Music.

Capable of shifting an aural ambience from downtempo summertime grooves to more club friendly music in a blink of an eye – Soulspace produces tracks with melodic, soulful and straight up dance floor sensibilities. The slickly engineered compositions are not only deeply appealing but offer moments of musical clarity that have garnered attention from international aficionados such as Berlin based record label TraumSchallplatten with whom he has signed multiple releases through the year.

< < < < < [ [ SOUNDCLOUD ] | [ FACEBOOK ] ]. > > > > >

Soulspace - Soulspace

Artist – Soulspace
Album – Soulspace
Release Date – 2014
Genre – Ambient, Instrumental, Electro’, Low-end Dance Ambient Influence


01 – Mourning At Roots ( Original Mix )
02 – Jayeta ( Original Mix )
03 – C’est La Vie ( Original Mix )
04 You ( Original Mix )
Soulspace – Soulspace


Lambda the Ultimate - Programming Languages Weblog: Seemingly impossible programs

In case this one went under the radar, at POPL'12, Martín Escardó gave a tutorial on seemingly impossible functional programs:

Programming language semantics is typically applied to
prove compiler correctness and allow (manual or automatic) program
verification. Certain kinds of semantics can also be applied to
discover programs that one wouldn't have otherwise thought of. This is
the case, in particular, for semantics that incorporate topological
ingredients (limits, continuity, openness, compactness). For example,
it turns out that some function types (X -> Y) with X infinite (but
compact) do have decidable equality, contradicting perhaps popular
belief, but certainly not (higher-type) computability theory. More
generally, one can often check infinitely many cases in finite time.

I will show you such programs, run them fast in surprising instances,
and introduce the theory behind their derivation and working. In
particular, I will study a single (very high type) program that (i)
optimally plays sequential games of unbounded length, (ii) implements
the Tychonoff Theorem from topology (and builds finite-time search
functions for infinite sets), (iii) realizes the double-negation shift
from proof theory (and allows us to extract programs from classical
proofs that use the axiom of countable choice). There will be several
examples in the languages Haskell and Agda.

A shorter version (coded in Haskell) appears in Andrej Bauer's blog.

Penny Arcade: Comic: Spectrograph

New Comic: Spectrograph

Disquiet: Like a Robot Tuvan Choir

Gretchen Jude’s “Midsummer Dark” track was performed live this year at Oakland, California’s annual Garden of Memory, an annual solstice event that takes place in a columbarium and invites a wide range of musicians. Her sole instruments on this appear to be a synthesizer made from a kit in the famed (at least famed in the maker set) Japanese magazine Gakken and a sampler from Roland, the SP-404. That isn’t intended as gear-hound talk, just as a recognition of the systems in play. The result is glottal, droning mass, the undulating layers like a robot Tuvan choir. For 16-plus minutes straight, she pushes at the drone, eking out impressive states yet never piercing the veil.

Track originally posted at More on the Garden of Memory at More from Gretchen Jude at

Cowbirds in Love: The White Horse Paradox

It’s Day 4 of Philosophy Week!

I love Gongsun Long. So much so that when I initially drew Gongsun Long, I gave him basically the same character design that I use for myself today. I know there’s not much to a character design that only consists of a shirt color, a hair length and color, and a skin tone, but still.

When he returned to the comic around comic 1287, I cemented my theft of the short black hair, brown skin, blue shirt look.

One of the things I love about the White Horse Paradox is that Gongsun Long is not trying to prove some crazy fact about reality. Rather, he is trying to prove out through reasonable statements something unreasonable, causing us to reflect on the nature of identity. We can say a white horse is a horse, but we can also say that a white horse is not a horse, in the sense that those are not identical concepts.

One of the things I love about this comic is that with regards to horse drawing I just kinda decided that my best attempted horse drawing isn’t much better than my worst attempted horse drawing, so I just decided to wing it.

I know if I ever need to be published in a serious horse illustration journal I’ll have to clean up my act, but for now, giving myself permission to draw bad horses has been incredibly therapeutic.

I hope you join me tomorrow, as we wrap up Philosophy Week and LOOK TOWARDS THE FUTURE.

The Half-Dipper: Chinese, II

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal (updated daily): October 22, 2014

Symmetry Magazine did a nice article about me and BAHFest.

Potz!Blitz!Szpilman!: Monty Cantsin/Istvan Kantor

Monty Cantsin:Istvan Kantor, 2014

s mazuk: not really an internet star, more of an internet character actor

not really an internet star, more of an internet character actor

the waxing machine: thedavidoreilly: one of the crazier projects from this year - I...


one of the crazier projects from this year - I created a mascot for a new Japanese festival called Georama. Here’s some development drawings & renderings. The festival made the costume which is pretty great. He’s also a brand of coffee.

things magazine: To boldly go

In this era of funny-shaped mp3 players and Bluetooth speakers it’s refreshing to find a company still building music boxes. At least, that’s what the MusicMachine 2 claims to be (via Design42day). Designed by Maximilian Büsser and friends, a company better known for its elaborate timepieces, this is actually the second Music Machine. As before, the mechanism is crafted and manufactured by the Swiss music box specialists REUGE (known their mechanical bird automatons, apparently). The choice of music is also striking:

MusicMachine 2 doesn’t just look unconventional; it plays unconventional melodies as well: Themes from Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and Star Trek, on one ‘channel'; Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven, The Rolling Stones’ Angie and The Clash’s Should I Stay or Should I Go? on the other. Small wonder: MM2 was conceived and designed by MB&F and its songs have been selected by their rock ‘n’ roll founder and sci-fi fan, Maximilian Büsser. 10.22.2014

New Cyanide and Happiness Comic.

Penny Arcade: News Post: Limited Edition Carl Pin!

Gabe: Automata: Silverside launched officially today. We’re still wrapping up the end but it’s looking like it will be around 11 pages. It’s been a lot of fun re-visiting the world of Automata and writing for Sam and Carl again. To commemorate the occasion we will be releasing a limited edition Carl pin this Thursday. This pin is a limited run of 1500 pieces and it will go on sale in the PA store Thursday afternoon at 2:00pm PST. It will run $14.99 and if Carl is anywhere near as popular as Hanna was, he will probably be gone in a few hours. This is one of my favorites. I think I’m…

Greater Fool - Authored by Garth Turner - The Troubled Future of Real Estate: Darwin

SELFIE modified

Let’s irritate the millennials more. It’s fun. They’re so cute and defenceless. Like baby skunks.

Almost nine million people born yesterday (between 1981 and 2000) which is roughly equal to the number of wrinkly Boomers. Incredibly, half of the M-people still live with their parents, and about a million of them who could work, don’t. Six years ago, the number living at home was just a third. Go figure.

Millennials account for about 20% of all income earned in Canada, while the Boomers, many of whom are now at the end of their piteous careers, constitute 30% and their kids (Gen X) who are in mid-career, represent 46% of all earnings. Of course, this last group – saddled with houses, kids, dogs and SUVs – also spend hugely.

Well, so what?

Hmm. This is an ugly demographic mix for the little skunks. I hope their moms are teaching them to forage, and hide their nuts.

Our social system – much of the economy, in fact – is based on working people supporting old wheezers. Today there are four-and-a-half workers for every senior. So, the Boomers never have to worry about their CPP or OAS or health care. But when the average 25-year-old millennial is 65, there will be just two people with a job for every retiree. Oops.

This is because our population’s aging quickly. Like Japan’s. Within twenty years a quarter of the nation will be collecting OAS – that’s $4,000,000,000 a year (four billion) in pogey. CPP payments add another six billion, but that program should still be self-funding two decades from now. Forty years out, I’m not so sure.

The implications should be obvious, but aren’t to most millennials, 70% of whom have smart phones but no savings. For starters, real estate is demographically doomed. With an aging population in financially strapped times, demand and prices are destined to fall. Survey after survey of Boomers (most of whom are in denial) already show between a third and half understand they’ll have to downsize their property in order to raise cash for living expenses.

That only makes sense. Over 70% don’t have defined-benefit corporate pensions, and have saved a quarter of what will be needed to survive 25 years without working. They’re house-rich and financial asset-poor, not to mention unbalanced, non-diversified and potentially illiquid. The big need in the years to come will be income, not enough garage for two minivans.

So, the current millennial fixation for real estate, as we ridiculed yesterday, is beyond dumb. These kids are buying into a mindset which will facilitate a giant transfer of wealth from them to their parents. The wrinklies end up with the cash. The kids get the debt – pledged against assets likely to fall in value as rates inevitably rise. Double screwed.

Second, the whole system of social transfers could be threatened by the time the millennials are lining up for metal hips and plastic hearts. Today, when there are twice as many taxpayers and half the dependents that will exist in forty years, we already have a persistent federal operating deficit, and an accumulated government debt (the feds, provinces and cities) of $4.1 trillion. That’s about $245,000 for each of us. And these are the good old days. Every year more than $60 billion in taxes goes to pay interest in this debt – so imagine what happens when rates drift higher over the decades ahead.

So, yes, the millennials would be fools to expect their lives to unfold as carbon copies of their parents’. No profligate hippiedom, no finding-myself-in-Europe, no sha-na-nah for them. This is Darwin, baby. And you’d best know that now.

Some months ago I gave you a Millennial Portfolio. It was met with thunderous neglect. So let’s try again.

First, the investment vehicle of choice for all the kids should be the TFSA. Forget RRSPs for now, because they’ll end up being tax bombs you deeply regret in a few decades, when taxation rates are inevitably higher. You may not get a break for making a TFSA contribution, but you’ll pay nothing on the growth or any withdrawal.

Second, these savings accounts are not for savings. Get out of the bank or the orange marmalade outfit and into a place where you can hold a bunch of low-cost ETFs – exchange-traded funds. Divide your money into five piles and buy a fund holding the TSX 60, another containing the S&P 500, one with a basket or preferreds, one comprised of a bundle of REITs and the last containing a good mix of bonds. Now you have balance, diversity and liquidity.

If you start with five grand and add that much in a year, securing just a 6% annual return (assuming a slow-growth world), in thirty years the balance will be $494,000, of which almost $300,000 would be tax-free growth. That’s half a million in taxless wealth, all for contributing $100 a week.

Or, you could buy a condo for $400,000, with a $390,000 mortgage, pay twice the amount per month that a renter does, and end up losing all your equity. In a vaguely deflating world populated with annoying and condescending old people who won’t give you money even though you’re special, why would you?

Ask your phone. There’s an app for that.

Tudor Girba's blog: CHOOSE Forum 2014

We are pleased to invite you to the CHOOSE Forum to be held on November 28, 2014 at the University of Bern. This year’s topic is Software Engineering Today.

The full day event will feature four talks and a panel. New this year is that we allow more time for networking and informal exchanges. The speakers are:

The day also features the CHOOSE General Assembly, including reports from the President and the Treasurer.

More details together with the registration form can be found on the official webpage:

Please note that this year, we also organize a satellite course on November 27 with Michael Feathers on Working Effectively with Legacy Code.

the waxing machine: memphis-milano: Totem after Ettore Sottsass by Edgar Orlaineta...


Totem after Ettore Sottsass by Edgar Orlaineta (2013)

An example of Latin American craft that “[presents] a response and challenge to international icons,” according to curator Lowery Stokes Sims, this wire-framed shelving system by the Mexican artist is a playful take on Ettore Sottsass’s iconic Carlton bookcase.

Arduino Blog: Experience sound multi-sensorially with Ocho Tonos


Some of you may have noticed that words like rhythm, texture, pattern, can be used both to describe fabrics, as well as sound. Focused on building an interface as a whole, using mostly textiles, OCHO TONOS invites the user to interact through touch, and experience sound in a multi-sensorial way. Ocho Tonos is an interactive installation by EJTech duo (Esteban de la Torre and Judit Eszter Kárpáti) I met last July during etextile summer camp while they were working on this experimental textile interface for tactile/sonic interaction by means of tangibles:

Exploring the relation between sound and textile and experimenting with the boundaries of our senses whilst changing the way we perceive fabric, surfaces and their manifestation as sound. Recontextualizing our tactile interaction with textile acting as an interface, where each element triggers, affects and modifies the generated sound’s properties. Creating a soundscape through sensor technology enticing audiophiles to interact and explore with reactive textile elements.The nexus of the body, the senses and technology.
OCHO TONOS is a symbiosis of the unique hand-crafted traditional textile techniques and the immaterial digital media.

Thanks to Arduino Mega ADK , all inputs coming from the touch of the user on the soft sensors are translated into a digital platform, parsed and filtered through MaxMSP, in order to control the generation of a soundscape in Ableton Live.

Ocho Tonos was chopped, spiced and cooked at Kitchen Budapest. Sounds used are samples from the working machinery at  TextielLab.

Paper Bits: Filmmaker Gorgeously Captures Intricate Paper Marbling Process

Filmmaker Gorgeously Captures Intricate Paper Marbling Process:


uygur3Turkish filmmaker Oguz Uygur has gorgeously captured his parents’ delicate craft of erbu, also known as paper marbling. To create these beautiful patterns, first a tray is filled with water. Next, paint or ink is spilled, dabbed, dripped, sprayed, fanned, and/or pulled across the surface of the water. 

Follow the link for a full video.

Paper Bits: Listening to others complain about fully disclosed Spotlight queries that can be easily turned off.


by @JZdziarski

OUR VALUED CUSTOMERS: X-FORCE movie casting rumors!

new shelton wet/dry: ‘A bad beginning makes a bad ending.’ –Euripides

In social psychology, revenge is defined as a behavioural reaction toward perceived injustice that aims at re-establishing a (personal) sense of justice by “getting even” and giving wrongdoers what they deserve. The question I will address in this presentation is, what exactly does “getting even” mean? By addressing this question, I will adopt a “social [...]

new shelton wet/dry: Every day, the same, again

Couple Fucking in the Sea Hospitalized After Getting Stuck Together MIT computer scientists can predict the price of Bitcoin The nation’s largest servicer of subprime mortgages has engaged in abuses that could potentially harm hundreds of thousands of borrowers Even depressed people believe that life gets better A paralysed man has been able to walk again after a [...]

Colossal: DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric
Photo by Fearless Photography

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric
Photo by Fearless Photography

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric

DIY Geometric Paper Masks by Steve Wintercroft paper masks Halloween geometric
Photo by Fearless Photography

Need to do Halloween on a budget this year? Designer Steve Wintercroft has a series of inexpensive geometric mask templates that you can download, print, and color. From animals and skulls to stormtroopers and faces, he has a little bit of everything over on his Etsy page. (via NotCot, This Isn’t Happiness), All Things Paper

Quiet Earth: New on Blu-ray and DVD: Snowpiercer! The Purge: Anarchy! & More!

We don't throw the word 'masterpiece' around much, but I feel very comfortable labeling Bong Joon Ho's Snowpiercer just that. At the very least, it's the perfect art-house genre film in that it's consistently provocative while being also consistently entertaining. The performances are strong, the action is tight, the concept is compelling and the allegory is timely.

For me, the film also perfectly captures the weirdness of a comic book world. Tonally, comic books fluctuate from serious to surreal in a way that we don't like films to do, but Bong Joon Ho embraces the nature of that medium in a way we don [Continued ...]

Perlsphere: I rewrote uni

For years, I've used Audrey Tang's uni program for stupid things. It helps you find Unicode characters:

$ uni ☺

# Only on Perl 5.14+
$ uni wry

I've never been super happy with searching. All of the args to the program are joined on space and searched for. That means that uni roman five won't find ROMAN NUMERAL FIVE. I also used to like using Carl Masak's little HTML+JavaScript unicode deconstructor. This thing would let you type in a string, and it would display each codepoint. I've long since lost it… and anyway, I didn't want to use a web browser. I thought that maybe Tom Christiansen's Unicode-Tussle tools would have the answer, but nothing quite did what I wanted.

After fidgeting unhappily for about ten minutes, I realized that I could've used those ten minutes to write my own solution. I'm sure it's awful in some way, but I'm very pleased with it, and maybe someone else will be, too.

It has four modes:

Single Character Mode


This will print out the name and codepoint of the character.

$ uni ¿

Name Search Mode


This one will look for codepoints where each term appears as a (\b-bounded) word in the name. If the term is bounded by slashes, it's treated as a regular expression and is used to filter candidate codepoints by name.

$ uni roman five

String Decomposition


This prints out the codepoints in each string, with a blank line between each argument's codepoints.

$ uni -c Hey リコ


Lookup By Codepoint


This prints out the codepoint for each given hex value.

$ uni -u FF 1FF 10FF

My uni program is now on GitHub or, for those who are curious, but not curious enough to click a link, it's right here:

use 5.12.0;
use warnings;

use charnames ();
use Encode qw(decode);
use Unicode::GCString;

binmode STDOUT, ':encoding(utf-8)';

my $todo;
$todo = \&split_string if @ARGV && $ARGV[0] eq '-c';
$todo = \&codepoints   if @ARGV && $ARGV[0] eq '-u';

shift @ARGV if $todo;

die "only one swich allowed!\n" if grep /\A-/, @ARGV;

@ARGV = map {; decode('UTF-8', $_) } @ARGV;

$todo //= @ARGV == 1 && length $ARGV[0] == 1
        ? \&one_char
        : \&search_chars;


sub one_char {

sub split_string {
  my (@args) = @_;

  while (my $str = shift @args) {
    my @chars = split '', $str;

    say '' if @args;

sub print_chars {
  my (@chars) = @_;
  for my $c (@chars) {
    my $c2 = Unicode::GCString->new($c);
    my $l  = $c2->columns;

    # I'm not 100% sure why I need this in all cases.  It would make sense in
    # some, since for example COMBINING GRAVE beginning a line becomes its
    # own extended grapheme cluster (right?), but why does INVISIBLE TIMES at
    # the beginning of a line take up a column despite being printing width
    # zero?  The world may never know.  Until Tom tells me.
    # -- rjbs, 2014-10-04
    $l = 1 if $l == 0; # ???

    # Yeah, probably there's some insane %*0s$ invocation of printf to use
    # here, but... just no. -- rjbs, 2014-10-04
    my $p = $c . (' ' x (2 - $l));

    my $chr  = ord($c);
    my $name = charnames::viacode($chr);
    printf "%s- U+%05X - %s\n", $p, $chr, $name;

sub codepoints {
  my (@points) = @_;

  my @chars = map {; chr hex s/\Au\+//r } @points;

sub search_chars {
  my @terms = map {; s{\A/(.+)/\z}{$1} ? qr/$_/i : qr/\b$_\b/i } @_;

  my $corpus = require 'unicore/';
  die "somebody beat us here" if $corpus eq '1';

  my @lines = split /\cJ/, $corpus;
  my @chars;
  LINE: for my $line (@lines) {
    my $i = index($line, "\t");
    next if rindex($line, " ", $i) >= 0; # no sequences

    $line =~ $_ || next LINE for @terms;

    push @chars, chr hex substr $line, 0, $i;


Michael Geist: The Expansion of Personal Information Disclosure Without Consent: Unpacking the Government’s Weak Response to Digital Privacy Act Concerns

Bill S-4, the government’s Digital Privacy Act, was sent for review to the Industry Committee yesterday. The committee review, which comes before second reading, represents what is likely to be the last opportunity to fix a bill that was supposed to be a good news story for the government but has caused serious concern within the Canadian privacy community. While there are several concerns (I raised them in my appearance before the Senate committee that first studied the bill), the chief one involves the potential expansion of voluntary disclosure of personal information without consent or court oversight. Bill S-4 proposes that:

“an organization may disclose personal information without the knowledge or consent of the individual… if the disclosure is made to another organization and is reasonable for the purposes of investigating a breach of an agreement or a contravention of the laws of Canada or a province that has been, is being or is about to be committed and it is reasonable to expect that disclosure with the knowledge or consent of the individual would compromise the investigation;

Translate the legalese and you find that organizations will be permitted to disclose personal information without consent (and without a court order) to any organization that is investigating a contractual breach or possible violation of any law. This applies both past breaches or violations as well as potential future violations. Moreover, the disclosure occurs in secret without the knowledge of the affected person (who therefore cannot challenge the disclosure since they are not aware it is happening).

The government is clearly aware that this is a major concern as it attempted to answer the critics during debate over Bill S-4 in the House of Commons yesterday. Unfortunately, the responses were incredibly weak. I’ve identified at least six responses from government sources below.

1. Expanded Disclosure Without Consent is Needed for Investigations by Regulatory Bodies

Conservative MP Cheryl Gallant claimed that there is a need for the provision since there are regulatory bodies such as the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, the Law Society of Alberta, or the Association of Professional Engineers of Nova Scotia that may need to obtain personal information as part of an investigation into member conduct. Yet the three organizations are all already included in a list of organizations that qualify as investigative bodies and therefore can rely on an exception that permits disclosure. In fact, the list already includes nearly 100 organizations that ranges from the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario to the Board of Funeral Services to the College of Midwives of Ontario. The law has been in effect for over 10 years, providing plenty of time for dozens of organizations to obtain regulatory approval. Opening the disclosures to any private organization is simply not needed as there is no problem for regulatory bodies that conduct member investigations.

2. Expanded Disclosure Without Consent is Consistent with a 2006 Committee Recommendation

Government MPs claim that the provision is merely implementing a 2006 recommendation from the last committee to consider Canadian private sector privacy law. But while the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics may have recommended a similar reform in 2006, that recommendation was rejected by both the Conservative government and the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. The committee recommendation appears to have come from a single submission from the Canadian Bar Association. The CBA appeared before the committee but was not questioned about the proposal. The CBA proposal focused specifically on personal information legally available to a party to a legal proceeding. That is much narrower than the Bill S-4 provision.

In fact, even that narrower proposal was rejected by the Conservative government in its response to the committee recommendations:

The government notes the Committee’s recommendation and acknowledges that it was made in response to concerns expressed by certain stakeholders regarding the need to ensure that PIPEDA does not impede litigation procedures.  However, the government does not share the Committee’s view that such an amendment is necessary at this time.

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada also publicly opposed the recommendation, which she included among the six issues about which she had particular concerns:

The Canadian Bar Association recommended that the AB and BC Acts both provide clarity in regard to information legally available in a legal proceeding. I do not believe that this issue has posed any great difficulty over the past five years. The OPC has stated in complaints that the access provisions of PIPEDA may be broader than the requirements of discovery, depending on the breadth of documents relevant to a proceeding.

In other words, Bill S-4 contains an expanded version of a provision that one group asked for without facing any questions, that the government rejected when it was proposed, and about which the Privacy Commissioner of Canada expressed particular concern.

3. The Privacy Commissioner of Canada Supports Bill S-4

Government MPs claimed that the Privacy Commissioner of Canada supports Bill S-4. However, the Privacy Commissioner’s submission to the Senate committee specifically identified expanding voluntary disclosure without consent to private organizations as a concern:

While we understand the challenges created by the existing investigative body regime, we have some reservations about the proposed amendments. First, we believe that the grounds for disclosing to another organization are overly broad and need to be circumscribed, for example, by defining or limiting the types of activities for which the personal information could be used...Finally, there is the issue of transparency. These disclosures will be invisible to the individuals concerned and to our Office. In order to provide greater accountability, we recommend that the Committee consider ways to require organizations to be more transparent about the disclosures they would make under this provision.

4. Canadians Expect Businesses to Disclose Their Personal Information

Conservative MP Joan Crockatt implausibly argued that Canadians expect that businesses will share their personal information in this manner:

The provisions in the bill would allow businesses to share information in the normal course of business in a very limited way. They are things that would actually be required for that business to be conducted. It would not involve something like a major search through data to look for information on a large number of consumers. This would be something that would be more specific to being able to conduct day-to-day business, something that consumers would expect when they are doing business with a corporation.

The reality is that the provision has nothing to do with day-to-day business operations. Indeed, businesses can easily obtain consent for that form of use. The provision in question involves disclosure without consent.

5. PIPEDA Already Includes Information Sharing Provisions

Industry Minister James Moore’s press secretary Jake Enright argued on Twitter that PIPEDA has always permitted information sharing. However, as Enright surely knows, PIPEDA does not currently include a blanket exception for disclosure to private sector organizations. There are an assortment of exceptions for disclosure without consent, but the broad permission found in Bill S-4 is not there. This is not a case of implementing strict rules, but rather expanding the scope of disclosure without consent or court oversight.

6. Bill S-4 Is Consistent With the Supreme Court of Canada Spencer Decision

Enright also maintained that Supreme Court of Canada’s Spencer decision, which found that there is a reasonable expectation of privacy in subscriber information, does not mean that Bill S-4 is unconstitutional. But the constitutionality argument is wholly beside the point given the emphasis on reasonable expectation of privacy. Moreover, when Moore appeared before the Senate committee, he argued that consumers may have agreed to the voluntary disclosures in their user agreements:

Well, if you agree to a contract, for example, with a telecommunications company, and as part of that contract you can surrender some of your capacity to have your information shared under certain circumstances, that can exist in a number of contractual situations, but that’s an individual signing a contract and agreeing to that openness in the case of a criminal investigation.

But the Supreme Court was dismissive of arguments that consumers had consented to the disclosure of their information in the ISP user agreements:

Whether or not disclosure of personal information by Shaw is “permitted” or “required by law” in turn depends on an analysis of the applicable statutory framework. The contractual provisions, read as a whole, are confusing and equivocal in terms of their impact on a user’s reasonable expectation of privacy in relation to police initiated requests for subscriber information.

The Court added:

Given that the purpose of PIPEDA is to establish rules governing, among other things, disclosure “of personal information in a manner that recognizes the right of privacy of individuals with respect to their personal information” (s. 3), it would be reasonable for an Internet user to expect that a simple request by police would not trigger an obligation to disclose personal information or defeat PIPEDA’s general prohibition on the disclosure of personal information without consent.

The reality is that the expansion of voluntary disclosure of personal information without consent or court oversight is both overbroad and a serious threat to the privacy of Canadians. Indeed, when coupled with the expansion of voluntary warrantless disclosure to law enforcement in Bill C-13 (through full legal immunity) and the revelations of more than a million annual disclosures of subscriber information to law enforcement, it paints a picture of the government undermining privacy while claiming to protect it.

The post The Expansion of Personal Information Disclosure Without Consent: Unpacking the Government’s Weak Response to Digital Privacy Act Concerns appeared first on Michael Geist.

Colossal: Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryan’s Hand-Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives

Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryans Hand Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives sculpture fairies

Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryans Hand Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives sculpture fairies

Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryans Hand Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives sculpture fairies

Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryans Hand Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives sculpture fairies

Desire to Fly: Samantha Bryans Hand Crafted Sculptures of Whimsical Aviator Fairies Going about Their Daily Lives sculpture fairies

From a very young age, mixed-media artist Samantha Bryan was obsessed with flight, and while she never became a pilot, it’s a passion she carried through school and into her artistic career as a sculptor. The central subject of her artwork is the creation of fairy-like aviators going about their daily lives, often riding in whimsical flying contraptions. Richard Foot and Arron Fowler of R&A Collaborations recently shot this great stop-motion profile of Bryan as she talks about her inspiration and creates a few of her delicately crafted pieces. (via The Kid Should See This)

things magazine: Diplomatic bags

How much every embassy in London is worth, a speculative look at the value of non-sovereign land in the capital, conducted by Spears. From North Korea’s Islington semi (value c£750k) to the Americans’ £600m new structure in Vauxhall (their soon-to-be-vacated tranche of Mayfair sold for £500m), the total value is something in excess of £4bn (set against an estimated total value of £1.5 trillion for the city’s entire housing stock). ‘Russia pays only £1 a year, thanks to a 1991 agreement; conversely, the UK pays one rouble a year for our embassy in Moscow.’

All Content: Walerian Borowczyk’s Psychopathia Sexualis


Poland-born director Walerian Borowczyk’s cinema is neither decorative not decorous. In both his animated and live-action films, he favors plainly-composed head-on shots, mostly medium in length. His lighting is generally flat. Although he concocts startling images, he very rarely makes pretty ones. Even in a film set in 13th-century France, he favors cinema language that is almost pedestrian. And yet every one of his films—his career extended from the mid-‘40s until the early ‘90s, and he died in 2006—startle in some way.

Arrow, the exceptionally adventurous video label from England, shows both considerable skill and considerable daring in its limited edition “Boro Box,” a dual-format, multi-disc set that collects five of Borowczyk’s features and 15 of his shorts (both animated and live-action) and also includes an exhaustive book of biography and criticism, which, turned over, reveals another book of the filmmaker’s short stories and drawings. It’s a head-spinning crash course in the works of a filmmaker who’s not easy to like—he’s not nearly as intellectually adroit or witty as, say Luis Buñuel, to name a cinematic provocateur who was a major influence on Borowczyk—but whose ability to appall and exhilarate and to make one fall sideways laughing at erotic absurdity will certainly find appreciation from anyone whose taste for the Psychotronic runs to extremes.

Margolit Fox, in her 2006 New York Times obituary, wrote of Borowczyk that he was “described variously by critics as a genius, a pornographer and a genius who also happened to be a pornographer.” The problem with this assessment is that even at its most sexually explicit, and be warned, the work could get very sexually explicit indeed, Borowczyk never betrays a desire to arouse. His most notorious film, 1975’s “The Beast,” included in this set, opens with a scene of unsimulated horse-mating, and ends with a dream sequence in which a maiden is ravished, in a variety of ways and positions, by a man-beast with a massive and rather silly-looking tool of reproduction that keeps spouting…well, you get the idea. I can’t imagine a human being finding such stuff genuinely stimulating in the way that pornography itself actually has to intend in order for it to be pornography (and no jokes about Comic-Con attendees and their predilections, please). So if Borowczyk’s not a pornographer, what is he?

The keys are found in the early work collected in the Arrow box. I won’t lie: my favorite is very first, the “Short Films And Animation,” which contains a beautiful rendering of the 1958 short “Astronauts,” a picture he made with the legendary Chris Marker soon after relocating to France. Like the films of Czech director Karel Zeman, Borowczyk’s animated work provides the delightful missing links between Melies and Terry Gilliam; “Astronauts” is a work of whimsical subversion and freedom. Boro’s 1963 destroyed-room-reversal-and-loop 1963 masterpiece “Renaissance” anticipates The Quay Brothers while indulging a fantastic anarchical streak, something pushed to full throttle in his 1967 animation/live-action hybrid “Theater of Mr. and Mrs. Kabal.” David Thomson, a critic who is nothing if not discriminating, pronounced Borowczyk “one of the major artists of modern cinema” strictly on the strength of these works. He’s not wrong. Power relations, both political and sexual, are the subjects of his two live-action features collected here, 1968’s grim and grimly funny totalitarian allegory “Goto: Isle Of Love” and the 13th-Century tale of amorous machinations in a French court, 1971’s “Blanche.”

It gets tougher, though, to suss out what Boro is on about as the work gets more explicit. Various accounts of the filmmaker find him, in a fashion not unreminiscent of the career travails of rough-hewn erotic fantasist Jean Rollin, making a kind of Faustian bargain with sex-content hungry European film producers in an effort to realize a vision. But as out there as the content of “Immoral Tales” gets (Paloma Picasso’s Elizabeth De Bathory really does take a rejuvenating bath in the blood of slaughtered maidens, and a comely Borgia has sex with an uncle, who happens to be the gosh-darn Pope), there’s something about its cinematic detachment that makes me either uncomfortable or indifferent, I can’t say which. As for “The Beast.” Well, as I mentioned before, it opens with an explicit scene of horses mating. To which I say, “ew,” but after saying that, I think, why I should be mortified, let alone be mortified by the prospect of potential mortification on the part of you, the reader, when, after all, a much-respected film like Bertolucci’s “1900” opens its second half with unsimulated footage of a live pig’s transformation into sausage, and few critics or viewers go to the fainting couch over that? This is a distinction worth thinking about, so why do I resent “The Beast” for compelling me to think about it? Borowczyk’s key strength as a filmmaker could be his desire to show us things we don’t want to see, and to show them in the plainest light. The perversions on display in “The Beast” have a laughable dimension to them, but its evocation of a sexuality whose exhaustion brings death speaks to some of civilization’s most enduring hang-ups.

This is hardly the only question brought up by the material in this incredible set, which features nothing but beautifully rendered transfers, terrifically stimulating and exhaustive extras, and superb critical texts. As much as some of the stuff here irritates and frustrates me, it’s made me even more curious than I once was about the rest of Borowczyk’s work. I’m pleased, then, to learn that Arrow’s not through with its exploration of the filmmaker yet, and will release his 1982 “Docteur Jekyll et les femmes” in 2015.

All Content: No Safety Net: Eugenia Yuan on “Revenge of the Green Dragons”


A star rhythmic gymnast before she started her acting career, Eugenia Yuan is a formidable presence. Controlled yet lively, joyous and serious, this young actress—a daughter of one of China’s greatest martial arts icons, Cheng Pei Pei—is taking on more and more diverse roles. Her memorable turn in the Roger Ebert-endorsed “Charlotte Sometimes” paved the way to a diverse group of movies, of which “Revenge of the Green Dragons” is currently the most expected one. 

I can’t think of many actors whose career would be as international as yours. You’re versatile, bilingual and seemingly open to any challenge. Is the first question you ask yourself after waking up: “Which continent is this?”

EUGENIA YUAN: Sure, I have that feeling sometimes, but that sense of confusion may affect you even if you don’t move from L.A. or New York. You always go where your work is, and I feel fortunate my work takes me to different places. Since I speak both English and Chinese, I feel at home in many places. I do feel a little bit ungrounded, but that’s part of the career. What grounds you is each character you play, because you bring so much to it without even knowing it. And then you’re at home any place you’re at, no matter where you’re shooting. Sometimes you act in scenes that supposedly take place in Europe, but the shoot is in Canada. It’s not the location that matters: it’s you, the character and the situation. I feel more grounded when I’m playing something than when I’m not working. It’s more traveling between characters than traveling between places.

Do you soak up cultures you encounter in those various places?

I wish I could do it more, but it’s difficult. In a way, it’s similar to when I was a rhythmic gymnast—I could have spent the whole summer in Bulgaria, but all I saw of it was the gym, because I was so focused on my practice. I soak up cultures only at my leisure.

How does being a rhythmic gymnast compare to being an actress?

The two are so similar, in that they’re both about expression and storytelling by means of your body and the control you have over it. I like communicating emotions through movement, eyes and face – film and TV allow so much subtlety of expressions. In gymnastics, the key factor is perseverance. You train for days and then you get to show your abilities for a couple of minutes of performance. In that way, it’s similar to auditioning: all your training and emotion has to be packed into those incredibly intense minutes of showing what you can do.

Can you tell me more about the character you play in “Revenge of the Green Dragons”?

I play a character named Snakehead Mama. In reality, she was the grandmother who came to this country first, and, in a way, started the gangs the movie tells the story of. I’m very grateful to the director for the trust he put in me. A role like that could easily be treated like a stereotype, but that’s not how Andrew Loo and Wai-keung Lau approached it. I was cast against type and I think it worked. By the end of the shoot everyone called me Snake Baby Mama.

The story itself, which is based on real-life gang wars between immigrant groups in Flushing in the 1980s and 1990s, is reportedly full of violence.

My character is definitely capable of violence, but she’s also a vulnerable human being. She didn’t come to America expecting to be in a position in which struggle for making a living becomes literally that: a fight. She’s powerful, but power was not what she craved in the first place. What she does is how she survives. In a way, I feel like her story is a powerful testimony to immigrant experience in America. And not only in America. Nowadays, many people actually go to China, for that’s where the opportunities are at. Immigration is about adaptation. Not everyone is necessarily happy with the person they become, but the decision was made the second they decided to emigrate. It’s scary that you don’t have that much control over who you become if you decide to reinvent yourself.

What is your experience of being an actress? You bring so much life to the characters you play. How much of energy is left for you?

Acting is a very lonely business, a very lonely career. You can have a loved one in your life—a wife, a husband, a partner—but once you go inside the character, you’re totally alone. It’s difficult for your partner, too, because they won’t be able to understand (even if they’re actors themselves) what it takes for you to become that other person, and what is it exactly that you leave behind when you become your character, and how much it costs to come back to yourself again.

Sounds a lot like what you just said about emigration.

In a way, actors are just like immigrants: plunging into something new and scary in order to emerge as different human beings. On the other hand, changing doesn’t mean that you stop being yourself. There’s an anchor somewhere deep down that keeps you and makes you into who you are. You don’t even realize it’s there, and it’s usually when you hit your lowest point that you discover what that anchor truly is. It’s sad that it takes so much, but I think that your lowest point can also be the point at which you become strongest.

Right, but as an actor you have a safety net spreading beneath.

When I act, I don’t really feel there’s a safety net. That’s what’s so scary. I jump into the role with no life vest on.

How was it to act alongside your mother in your earlier movie, “Shanghai Hotel”?

It was a huge challenge. My role was so dark: I played a prostitute, and she played a madam who basically has total control over my character. We lived together during the shoot and my Mom saw me every day as I was getting more and more depressed, going more and more deeply into my character. She’s been in the business for so long, it’s easy for her to pull back from the character she plays once the scene is over. For me, it takes a longer time. I can’t just stop being the character I play that quickly. It takes time for me to come back to myself and to heal.

Are you happy with the way American movies portray Asian and Asian-American characters?

I think there’s a lot to do for every culture and every minority in terms of representation in film. If everybody took themselves for human beings, instead of labeling all the time who we supposedly are, it would bring true progress. We all share the same fears, but our experience can be vastly different. For example, I would love to play someone who was adopted by white parents, because I see that happening all around me—and yet there are so few movies in America that would deal with race and culture in an adventurous way.

OCaml Weekly News: OCaml Weekly News, 21 Oct 2014

  1. OCaml 4.02.1
  2. uproplib
  3. findlib-1.5.4
  4. Beginner OCaml Books
  5. Jane Street is hiring interns
  6. Dimensional Analysis question
  7. opam-android, a modern Android cross-toolchain
  8. exn-source - exception backtraces with source code printing
  9. utop 1.16
  10. slacko 0.10.0
  11. First class modules sub-typing
  12. Release 0.8.0 of Zenon
  13. Other OCaml News

OCaml Planet: Caml Weekly News: OCaml Weekly News, 21 Oct 2014

  1. OCaml 4.02.1
  2. uproplib
  3. findlib-1.5.4
  4. Beginner OCaml Books
  5. Jane Street is hiring interns
  6. Dimensional Analysis question
  7. opam-android, a modern Android cross-toolchain
  8. exn-source - exception backtraces with source code printing
  9. utop 1.16
  10. slacko 0.10.0
  11. First class modules sub-typing
  12. Release 0.8.0 of Zenon
  13. Other OCaml News / 2014-10-23T12:54:23