I guess we know how the Russian public feels about Putin's handling of the Chechen situation.
This old-ish and comfortingly eloquent essay by Umberto Eco outlines the fundamental characteristics of Fascism. Anything here sound familiar?
kevin said there was no link in the web sense for his wellstone post (oct 26) - then i came across this. fittingly scary for halloween.
Of course this combat training for journalists raises some ethical issues, though journalists have no equivalent of the Hippocratic oath.
This pub has had an uncanny track record for providing refreshment for serial killers, most recently the Sniper, and previously, Ted Bundy. "Maybe we should name sandwiches for them."
Today, researching russian/ukrainian Constructivist Nikolai Foregger -- theater guy -- I was intrigued to find that he had founded a Noise Orchestra back in 1922. ". . in 1923, Walter Duranty described it in the New York Times as so: "Arms wave, bodies are flung to and fro in regular oscillation, like machines in a factory. Rumbling, rattling, buzzing, and whirring noises off-stage aid the illusion, and after the spectator’s first astonishment is past, one does begin to see the effectiveness of the mimicry." (source) I can find no trace of the music itself, but the researches did get me to Matthew Wuolle's versions of musique concrète, for starters this composition for paper towel dispenser.
if you dig theorethical physics/cosmology check out the times piece on the new view of the universe. while i think the idea of a "multiverse" cuts a beautiful image, the flash animation is underwhelming (multimedia/interactive feature on the left side of the page).
I was going to write something about the time-travel email guy and the Time Travel/Bagotronics full-page ad in the Times today -- business-oriented time travel! secret revealed Thursday! -- but then metafilter pointed out that it's just an Ogilvy & Mather campaign. So instead I'll relay the bumper sticker I saw this weekend, on the fridge in a greasy spoon in Rosendale: "Advertising is an Insult."
This guy was a classmate of mine in college -- one of those unassuming, socially kind of wierd, but ferociously intelligent people -- and I've been following his career as a scholar and journalist with some envy. I never bothered to ask why the hell he was taking all those Farsi classes. Well, now he's adjunct scholar at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, and spent nine months in northern Iraq last year as a Carnegie Council fellow, and a columnist for the The New Republic. And he's one of the few left-wing advocates of US military involvement in Iraq.
I don't know about the stated rationale, but the Buy Bush a PS2 campaign (and copies of SOCOM and Conflict: Desert Storm, and an extra controller for Dick) seems to have been a quick success. The continuation is even better: Buy Bush a memory card.
today's pet peeve about the mediaverse: both of the news channels I get (fox + cnn) are still talking pretty much only about the snipers. For hours on end. Theories on why this is so? I mean, it's a week before the elections, there's the Russian thing, there's Wellstone, there's the 300,000 people who marched against the war in DC/SF/Mpls.... oh, I sound like an old man.
>In ''Heart of Darkness,'' Joseph Conrad remarks that empire, when observed close up, is not a pretty sight. What redeems it, he says, is only the idea.
It's a sad and sorryass day when lightheartedness can only be found in god's revenge on what was presumably a rather aggressive offense.
This is attributed to Aristotle in a novel by Eric Ambler:
"The tyrant who impoverishes his citizens is obliged to make war in order to keep his subjects occupied and impose on them a permanent need for a chief."
Of course, it's a novel set in Italy in 1934, so it's about Mussolini. But you get my drift.
I will bake cookies for whoever can figure out how to actually stand up and be counted against this regime. No one seems to be counting! Is anybody counting?
No link. Little hope.
Russian forces apparently used some sort of hallucinogenic, anti-Chechnyan nerve agent (BZ) which they're not supposed to have. Oh well, anything's fair in the war against terrorism.
I wonder how Dubya and the US forces would have handled the situation?
that took Wellstone and his family, is, so back when the Reichstag burned, was everyone sitting around as we are, just saying, well... buildings do catch on fire sometimes... or maybe it really was communists? Were they reading the Sunday Zeitung, speculating, and then saying, naaaah? Nein? Can't believe it?
There's no link here, at least not in the web sense of the word.
the whole world continues to spin against the United States. The whole god-forsaken world.
somber afternoon, but then there's this, via the National Enquirer via Yahoo!:
Courtney's lost love
Courtney Love's telling pals she's devastated by the tragic death of her dog! When Courtney had a doc remove her breast implants, she brought them home as "souvenirs" . . . and the poor pooch ate one and died!
Microsoft flutterby marketing campaign. Ahem.
I've always wondered -- and I suspect we'll never know -- what completely organic food (free of excessive human tinkering, whatever that means) would taste like. Will we die from bacteria? Will it taste nastier? Or do additives actually make us more ornery?
Cut us open and analyze our DNA, and I'm sure all those additives, dyes, preservatives, and hormones are all intertwined in our double helices. Well, good to know that the USDA has made "organic" official. I guess.
The mutability of the historical record, as if we didn't know this.
You've all probably by now heard of the website protesting Peter Jackson's naming of the "Two Towers" as being insensitive in the interminable aftermath of 911 ("We believe that Peter Jackson and New Line Cinema's actions are in fact hate speech. The movie is intentionally being named The Two Towers in order to capitalize on the tragedy of September 11. Clearly, you cannot deny the fact that this falls under hate speech.") but the petition did make me laugh harder than I've laughed in quite some while.
Saturation.org gives you news on the sniper as it happens. Though the ATF site was swamped when I tried it, but supposedly a picture of the sniper suspect can be downloaded. John Allen Mohammed (né John Allen Williams) veteran of the Gulf War. Like Timothy McVeigh. Hm. Crazy press conference by The Moose. The sniper wanted the Moose to say "We have caught the sniper like a duck in a noose." ??? And the sniper was frustrated by apparently being put on hold 5 times when he tried to call the police department, resulting in the deaths of 5 people.
Smacking of donnie darko: 8march2003 announces a humanity-changing event. But my beef: those negatives look like they were damaged long after they were developed. [via mefi, all props.]
Then hurry up for the special sale package over at Site 59.
"The game pits cartoon avatars against a race of evil robots, called "Cogs," who are out to take the fun out of Toontown. The robots replace Toontown's colorful buildings with drab corporate skyscrapers and attack players with such corporate weapons as bounced checks and red tape."
Funny then how it sounds more like who they are than what they make. Disney, I mean.
"Yeah, I just quit on Saturday."
"Me, I quit every Saturday."
what's it like to be a gas staion attendant in the Beltway? "The first time I saw the Sniper Shuffle, I thought someone was going into convulsions; turns out he was trying to elude the sniper's scope."
This talk, given by Larry Wall, creator of Perl, is rambling and maybe a little out of date, but I stumbled upon it via a link on a Slashdot thread and was surprised I hadn't read this earlier. (Especially since he mentions Feed magazine in the first paragraph -- the raft on which I rode the 90s internet wave.) The fact, if you didn't know already, that he is an evangelical Christian (of the harmless sort) and a linguist makes him one of the more unusual public figures in programming.
Salon article about a convention for convenience store vendors and suppliers. Since I was practically raised by the Store24 next to where my mom worked, on a steady diet of Whatchamacallits and Cherry Coke (and videogames and the comic rack), I have a sentimental appreciation for these stores.
So, I think it's cool that they might have found historical evidence of the existence of Jesus - but I wonder what would have happened if they had the organic remains of Jesus' brother? What would/could you do with the DNA?
For those of you who do not want to invest the time and sanity that Neuro-Linguistic Programming demands, there is at least one prescribed way to deal with something that happens every single god damn day.
It's Saturday. Get in touch with your spiritual side, at about 56.6K.
"I find it utterly bizarre that they'd bury their message in the middle of a page that celebrates a decadent, sin-filled, Western movie series and that also sports the word 'hell' all over the place," Rexer said.
If you've never worked film, and I hope you ain't, then you might not know MOS. I love it even better than OK, because MOS stands for something pretty funny, by most accounts.
The origin of O.K.
"...its first known published appearance with its current meaning came in The Boston Morning Post on March 23, 1839: "o.k. — all correct." It appeared at a time when initials, preferably of misspelled words, like "oll korrect," were the fad. "K.Y." meant "no use" ("know yuse"), but that did not catch on."
From the NY Times obit of Allen Read, who also hunted down the source of words like Dixie and Podunk.
Somebody in the cartographic dept laying some easter eggs in Iowa. (Courtesy of MetaFilter)
then-defense secretary Cheney in 1991, via Slate: ""If you're going to go in and try to topple Saddam Hussein," Cheney said, "you have to go to Baghdad. Once you've got Baghdad, it's not clear what you do with it.... How much credibility is that government going to have if it's set up by the United States military when it's there?"
so is this the beginning, middle or end of one of those 'incredible journey' movies?
The Brains in Bahrain is turning out to be the Manhandling in Manama. It's now sudden death, tied at 3-3. Kramnick thought he had the most beautiful move in the world on the 19th move -- the sacrifice of a whole piece to finance an all-out assault on the king -- but it turns out Fritz had gone down that path already and knew that it amounted to nothing, hinging on an incredible sequence that seemed like a dead-end for black but revealed itself to be the turning point that gave black the victory. Kramnick was lured out of playing positional, anti-computer chess and lost. What drama!
The pictures will be down soon, so check out some of Theodore Geisel's (aka Seuss) earliest work. Good price. How much is your high school yearbook worth? I've got ready cash for it.
Never ceasing to amaze, Google presents Google Answers -- ask a question, name a price, get an answer, pay price to answerer. I feel a new profession coming on. Especially for those among us who Google all day long anyhow.
Great for obscure legal advice without the annoying lawyers! Need some tips on maintaining long distance relationships? Well, now we know the going rate for such advice is $40. Or if you'd rather indulge in some recursive solipsisms, ante up $5.00 please. Or if you need help on your homework, real help from an english teacher, $10.
Step one: a good photo. "Maulvi Hafizullah... says he has been hiding in fear for his life... since his photograph appeared as [Mullah] Omar on hundreds of thousands of leaflets air-dropped... The leaflets offer a US$5 million reward."
I've taken the liberty of reprinting this article here on Saturation (since it requires registration on Gamasutra). It's not a masterpiece by any means, but I always find it rather cute to see people whose lives are spent playing and making games trying to explain why they are worthwhile activities. They may not always get there but sometimes it's fun to take a step back and ponder the absurdity of the landscape...before returning to the slaughter.
From a spam this morning: "The USB007 is . . . Impervious to magnetic fields, moisture resistant and able to withstand up to 1000 Gs of shock. . . " Now if I'm not mistaken, the gravity on Jupiter is 2.5 Gs, and on the Sun (if anything can be said to be on the Sun) it's 28 Gs. What event could possibly produce 1000 Gs?
That not only does Japan have the death penalty, but that it is by hanging, and that ABC News Online in Australia has an "Aboriginal" section...
How much do you want to bet Rem's next building will be in space?
What a job to be a bus driver in Israel. You'd be safer enlisting in the army -- at least there you get issued a weapon. The harrowing, incredible story of the most recent suicide attack.
I'm not necessarily swallowing this obituary for TiVo...
Maybe it's because the champ is man-handling the machine, or maybe it's the hi-larious URL ("Brains in Bahrain" -- Kramnick thinks like a, uh, Vulcan and plays like a, uh, Vulcan)drew with Deep Fritz, though the Fritz team (we have stopped referring to DF as a singular entity since it is twiddled between every game) made it a little bit harder for Kramnick in this one. It's clear DF is not the same force Deep Blue was, as Kramnick is no Kasparov (less temper, more nerdy genius). I never did understand how a passionate, fiery personality would be a bonus in chess, anyhow.
I like the fact that Fritz & co. have had to adjust to Kramnick, who is dictating the play, for instance, the DF team acknowledging that if Kramnick trades queens Fritz goes on the fritz. Deep Flaw.
It's what I was wondering would happen in this sniper case (will somebody please come up with a nickname for this guy/gal already?): using databases and new-fangled computer technology to catch the sniper.
This geoprofiling software is now being used in the hunt, but it still boggles the mind to think about: the killer leaves only a bullet and maybe a casing. Maybe some threads from the blanket he uses, but little else, unless he chooses to leave something, which would suggest he wants to be caught or at least recognized. There is no apparent motive in the choice of victim, except for geographic location with a whiff of human laziness, which is why this geoprofiling software could yield something.
If you've been cursing your rhesus monkey's dirt bowl, throwing out your old porcupine quills, and cleaning the house of slug mucous, you're missing out on all the valuable natural resources of the future. Ask me what! Ask me how!
Kevin Mitnick's laptop for sale. One question: why dust it for fingerprints?
"While anecdotal evidence would suggest that many people have thrown sodium into the lakes and streams of the world, they have been reprehensibly lax in documenting the results....The first step was the procurement, through eBay, of three and half pounds of solid sodium metal for about a hundred dollars. This is a decent price for a small quantity like this. Small being a relative term: It's used by the ton in industry, but anything more than a few grams is a dangerous quantity if found in your home. Three and a half pounds is enough, for example, to blow your home to bits under the right conditions."
What I thought would be the ravings of an puerile lunatic obsessed with blowing things up turned out to be the ravings of a nature freak obsessed with blowing things up. Rather a dandy combination, I must admit. Don't miss the part about the butterflies.
Maybe I've been inured to all the ultraviolence, what with SIlence of the Lambs, Syphon Filter, and Metal Gear Solid, but something about this Grandson of Sam gives me the creeps.
Florida man changes name to 'I am who I am'. Reminds me of the Great Domain Name Grab of the late 90s.
Pardon the mess while I try some things out in the next few days. I know we're overdue. In the meantime, play with the new Search feature, which Eddie brought my attention to. It rocks (thanks Eddie!).
Pick up your own damn socks is the forum for petty and not-so-petty-at-all bitching about hubbies and boyfriends. Good reading. But I wonder, is this the female equiv. of boyfriends/hubbies posting nude pix to wivesandgirlfriends.com or what have you? (I made that url up; someone will have to check it for me.) Good thing there are no couples left on saturation.
in the latest occurrence of life imitating saturation, the new york times has run a piece on the many faces of saddam (week in review, check the 'interactive feature' on the right for pics), which was reported here first (noise to signal). if you happen to have the paper version lying around you'll also see my 'ear/mao' claim is substantiated.
"What's the point of putting out a new Ja Rule or Sum 41 album if people can just call up and hear any song off the album that they want?" Frackman asked. "In some instances, these stations actually have the nerve to let the caller 'dedicate' his act of thievery to a friend or lover. Could you imagine a bank letting somebody rob its vaults and then allowing the thief to thank his girlfriend Tricia and the whole gang down at Bumpy's?"
Metafilter has Flash fridays. Saturation has Lawrence Weiner Fridays.
A WALL PITTED BY A SINGLE AIR RIFLE SHOT
ONE QUART HEAVY GRADE MOTOR OIL POURED INTO THE GULF STREAM
A RUBBER BALL THROWN AT THE SEA
A STONE WALL BREACHED
A DIRECT AFFRONT TO A NATURAL WATERWAY
VARIOUS OBJECTS COLORED BY VARIOUS MEANS ASSEMBLED IN SOME MANNER FOR SOME PURPOSE
If you think you're being followed or stared at, you're probably right, and definitely not alone. And if you think you're being lied to by advertising, you're not immune to its effects.
But if you think that all of this is much smarter and more efficient than it really is, you've got a website you can call your own. In particular, those faces that you see staring at you from the trees, those are real, you know.
In today's department of ephemeral value, exhibit a is this simple cocktail glass, whose owner's lofty goal is to monetize personal experience: "...back in the late 60's when i was in my twenties i was there and Mr. Sinatra Knocked this glass into me and spilled my drink he looked up with those Bles Eyes said "Sorry Kid" told the bartender get him another on me and that was that." Reminds me of Madonna's pap smear in Slacker, or Courtney Love's yeast infection medicine in an ex-girlfriend's junk drawer (long story). How much do you thing something like that is worth?
So Mr. Brown got me all thinking, what's my old high school like these days? Still there, I found, still uptown, and now in digital stereo.
I poked around and found that my old music teacher, Phil Rosenberg, had asked his students to compose works from their experiences of September 11. One of them, "Carlos' Elegy," evidently was aired on WNYC, and is archived at the site. (There's a longer radio piece about it that I didn't have the patience for.)
It's not brilliant the way some things are brilliant, but it moved me immensely. Part of it, I think, is that it's played by a sextet of students also from Phil Rosenberg's class. It's that they play like, you know, high school students.
It's that thing of still being capable of earnestness, at 15 or so. Of striving to hit the thing precisely. But more, really, it's that thing of not being capable hitting the notes perfectly at all, which we should all be so lucky to have preserved.
and this whole thing that's heating up about how passive surveillance cameras capture just about everything in the semi-public (hemi?)sphere. So not BB, but tbb.
But so ok, that is what it is. But why does it feel like a qualitative -- not just quantitative -- leap when kidnap-kid Amber Alerts are broadcast to the computers, pagers, and cell-phones of every one of the 26 million AOL members? As soon as a child is kidnapped, instant notification.
Sort of like MSN Messenger Alerts when a buddy signs on, except it's about a stranger signing off. No question about the goodcauseness of it. It's the 26MM posse I'm scared of, goodcause or no.
Once they integrate AIM (which they plan to) it jumps to 150MM. That's a lot of rope.
so this story of a high school satanist club, wouldn't rate a super-elite saturation mention except that it's from my home town. So props to the young LaVey-wannabe in san mateo.
But while we're on the subject of San Mateo, recently found this memoir-interview of the late-80s stoner-punk scene there. "A: Yeah, it was pretty much the happening house in San Mateo. Where all the acid went down. That's where all the pot fuckin' went down, all the wall painting, band practices, parties. J: Any band that was worth a damm in San Mateo at the time played there." I got mightily fucked up there one new year's; they had a groovy Jacobsen egg chair, long before its vibe had changed from Altered States to Tribeca.
In the UK, it seems, when they refer to ordinary non-cable, non-sattelite TV, the phrase is "terrestrial TV."
Ok, so it's gorgeous on its own, but then also, a misnomer. It's the cables that are in the ground. The ordinary TV is broadcast through the air.
Those witty Brits. They probably did it on purpose.
I admit that it's the combination of opacity and density that makes this intriguing, rather than any sense of real promise.
But if someone has more time than I do at the moment, will you please roll up your sleeves and find out what the fuck Collective Detective is talking about?
Once upon a time in a small town, a little girl with stars in her eyes dreamed of becoming a professional cheerleader. That little girl grew up to be Debbie.
Based on the American film classic, DEBBIE DOES DALLAS arrives live on stage at the Jane Street Theatre downtown in a totally ingenious (and thoroughly respectable) production that adds contemporary music, and of course - cheers!
DEBBIE DOES DALLAS is a timeless coming-of-age story about a group of ambitious young women who want nothing more than to help their friend Debbie get a spot on the Texas Cowgirls cheerleading squad. It is perhaps the most important theatrical event of the 21st Century.
No, not perhaps. Definitely.
Animal Crossing. Just saw an ad on the TeeVee for it, it feels an awful lot like the future.
There's no Animal Crossing website per se, but here's a review. Basically, somewhere between the Sims and Tamagotchi and a bad dream, it's a real time simulation of, um, I don't know.
OK, it goes something like this. You have a video game character who exists in real time. It's on the GameCube, uses the internal clock. When it's night, it's game night, when it's winter, it's game winter. Your character sleeps, gets cold, goes fishing. Plays hooky. Whatever. Whether you're watching or not.
It's not sentient, but it's not as simple as persistent. And at present, this character only interacts with other pre-prog characters in the game. But how long before it breaks that boundary down?