==pla|\|ing lakes==

Rarely has reality needed so much to be imagined. --Chris Marker
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(r) = re-viewing

Criminal (2004)

Since Otar Left

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Birth (2004)

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Also watch the DVDs of the Secret Agent series with some regularity

(r) = re-reading

The Pythons Autobiography - The Pythons

A Life in Movies: An Autobiography - Michael Powell


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Saturday, January 18, 2003

Apple whacks i-Tunes P2P plug-in developer

So much for Apple's populist blush.

10:37 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Good Zippy today: "Humiliation ROCKS, man!"

If you miss it today, you'll have to wait a couple weeks and go here -- as far as I know.

10:06 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Alex catalogue of etexts allows content search, variety of formats [refdesk]

Pdf, Palm Pilot, Newton, Rocket all supported.

And just for the record: the Supreme Court sucks.

10:01 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

NBA edges closer to pro wrestling territory

Class war declared by Shaq:
"The unfortunate thing is it had to be decided by them," O'Neal said of the officials. "A whole bunch of people who paid a lot of money had to see a game that was decided by someone who doesn't make a lot of money. That's unfortunate."

9:47 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Friday, January 17, 2003

Historical corrective to Gangs of New York's Anglo-Irish foreshortening

Clearly the ethnic mix and the relations between them -- particularly the slavery/blacks component -- was more complex than Scorsese apparently shows. I imagine his simplification and license with the history was necessary to prevent the movie from being 10 hours long for one thing. It certainly could have been more accurate, but this is a piece of American history most people didn't even know existed til the film was released. It's only a beginning, and historical accuracy has never been Hollywood's um strong suit. If Scorsese didn't go a bit out of his way to make the central narrative simple and entertaining, how many people would have gone to see the damn thing anyway?

That being said, hopefully the History Channel or PBS (which just premiered a fine mini-series on 19th century Chicago) will delve into the deeper complexity of this extraordinary time and place.

Of course, if Americans had more of an interest in their history to begin with, we wouldn't have the problem to begin with, would we? Perhaps this is what really angers Foreman -- that American disinterest in history gives movies based on history disproportionate influence on what we think of our past.

5:13 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Back at Portage, a link to the New York Public Library Image Gate, which you can promptly lose yourself in


7:42 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

As coyotes and humans expand and overlap territories, the price might be your pet

4:26 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Fastmartblrtok u no?

Fast-talkers seem smarter -- and Hollywood uses quick scenes and chatter to skew towards younger audiences
This thinking was explained by the producer of a popular TV show on the WB network, "Gilmore Girls," which features a mother-daughter duo who are more like friends than like parent and child. The elder Gilmore, Lorelai, became a single mother while still in her teens; now she is in her early thirties and her daughter, Rory, is a teen. The creator, Amy Sherman-Palladino, told the Wall Street Journal recently that zippiness is the motivation for many aspects of "Gilmore Girls:" no close-ups (they slow things down); frequent shots of characters talking as they walk from place to place; and scenes shot over and over to shave a few seconds off the already dizzying pace. Screenwriters traditionally figure a page of dialogue to a minute on air; Sherman-Palladino figures 20 to 25 seconds a page.

Surely the fast-forward speech of "Gilmore Girls" helps the characters sound like hip teenagers, just as their jeans and midriff-baring blouses clinging skin-tightly to their teen-thin bodies help both "girls" look like teens. But network shows aimed at fully adult audiences, like the wildly popular "West Wing," follow the same trend. Hollywood producers, according to the Wall Street Journal article, think people seem smarter if they talk faster.
Good article by Deborah Tannen, who also spots IM (Instant Messaging) talk as a bonding strategy.


4:05 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Sheeler el

I've always liked Charles Sheeler's work, though it's hard not to feel ambivalent about someone who (intentionally or not) glamorized industrial landscapes

I guess I've been fascinated with them too though. I remember being fascinated by a photo of myself next to a giant hydro carbine in Canada as a kid.

This good short piece on Sheeler has a link to a Karen Lucic book which purports Sheeler's ambivalence as well, apparently.

There's also a link to Interior, which I like a lot. Trippy.

2:13 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Confessions of a Dangerous Mind looks pretty good

Nice to see George Clooney do so well his first time out directing. Even if it's not as intriguing as Sterritt makes it sound, doing a passable job directing a Kaufman screenplay is an accomplishment for even seasoned directors, I think.

Since the source material kind of gices you license to do what you want, I'd have taken it into a darker, more Phildickian direction probably. It's got that whiff. . .

1:54 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Bruce Perens' "Open Source" series of books to be offered as free ebooks by Prentice-Hall

1:45 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

On a personal note: I've tried to list books I'm reading only when I figure I'll finish them. Lately I've been so restless and moody, pleasures like reading have seemed closed off to me.

So it will be a record of my unease more than what I get all the way through, for now anyway.

It's very frustrating, because reading has always been vital to me, and things are definitely unsettled when this happens. And I have so many books I want to read.

The "Viewing" section lists what I've actually completed; for instance, I didn't list the Scorsese apperciation of Italian cinema (My Voyage to Italy) til I'd actually finished it, months after I started (it's over 4 hours long). Still haven't finished Open City yet -- though I watched Germany in the Year Zero immediately. Some of this is because of limited access to the TV, for reasons I won't go into.

1:07 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

"MAKE MUSIC LIKE BRIAN ENO OR BRITNEY SPEARS" -- from a recent ZiffDavis newletter, referring to an article on building a home studio

Oh dear.

12:51 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Damn. Looks like we'll have to wait til at least 2005 for Turrell's Roden Crater site to open

He'll have exhibits in Pittsburgh, Seattle, Nagoya Japan and Unna Germany this year though. The 2 outside the US are group shows.

Here's a good interview, if you're unfamiliar with Turrell.
I make spaces that apprehend light for our perception, and in some way gather it, or seem to hold it. So in that way it's a little bit like Plato's cave. We sit in the cave with our backs to reality, looking at the reflection of reality on the cave wall. As an analogy to how we perceive, and the imperfections of perception, I think this is very interesting.

And there is the making of Plato's cave literally-at New Grange in Ireland, or Abu Sembal where you don't have a pointing sculpture like Stonehenge. Instead you have an architectural space that is arranged to accept an event in light on the horizon. When that event in light occurs on the horizon there is an event in light, inside that space.

This then became the camera obscura, which appeared in many European towns. They would have these, and eventually even created panoramas and dioramas. The "camera lucida" and the "camera obscura" were what artists used to actually make this Western painting space.

We made this eye that sees for us, like the camera, and this is very much a part of how we organized our culture. Of course it became this holder of truth. I mean in a court of law you take a photograph, and you can use it as evidence.

3:48 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Top 2003 calendars in the US [CSM]
1. George W. Bush (daily)
2. Sports Illustrated Swimsuit (wall)
3. German Shorthaired Pointers (wall)
4. "Harry Potter" movies (wall)
5. The Far Side (wall)
6. 365 Cats (daily)
7. Thomas Kinkade - Painter of Light (wall)
8. "Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers" (wall)
9. Dilbert (daily)
10. FDNY Firefighters (wall) - Associated Press
I picked this one (that's a good price too), because the artist caught my eye.

I can't believe how many people are staring at shrub every day. *shiver*

3:15 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

New tech/music industry agreement may end the clearly useless attempt to build copy-protection into hardware
The agreement, expected to be announced Tuesday in Washington, contends that U.S. laws do not need to be amended, for example, to permit consumers to make backup copies of compact discs they purchase or copy songs onto handheld devices. The technology industry also will announce its support for aggressive enforcement against digital pirates.

Under the plan, future generations of entertainment devices won't be required by law to have locking controls that make it more difficult to copy digital entertainment. Technology companies have complained that the locking devices are too expensive and complex.

The deal attempts to heads off government intervention in the rising debate over what consumers can do with copyrighted material they have purchased.
Could be a major step forward, though it could kaibosh Zoe Lofgren's bill which "wants permission for consumers to sell or give away copies of music or movies they purchase, and to impose protections for consumers who break locking controls that violate these rights."

The MPAA did not take part in the agreement.

2:17 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Israeli geologists claim a recently uncovered stone tablet is the first physical proof of Biblical history

It details repair work on Solomon's Temple, supposedly, and stirs up the debate about Old Jerusalem's historical provenance.

2:07 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Looks like Vonage has the first decent online phone service, though it's $70 just to sign up

You need broadband, natch. $40/month gets you unlimited US long distance, $26/month 500 minutes.

Check the article, which goes into detail (and tells you what the deal is if you love outside the US). The writer loves it, says the sound quality exceeds regular phone service (not too hard that).

2:00 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Make sure you sign up for the price-fixing settlement refund

If you bought music between '95 and '00, you're eligible. Probable refund is between $5 - $20, though if enough people sign up and the refund is less than $5, the money goes to "music-related programs" or whatever.

At least you'll be telling the MusicMobsters you're watching them.

I don't feel this is near enough, but they'll probably be bankrupt soon enough anyway.

The deadline is March 3rd, and few have signed up so far.

1:54 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Monday, January 13, 2003

New frontiers in corporate hegemony over national borders

US MusicMobster suit against Kazaa OK'd by judge

Corporate use of UN army to follow.

Just kidding. Right?

11:03 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Researching musical notation in the wall carving and the possibility of buried relics in Masonic/Knights Templar mecca Rosslyn Chapel

3:22 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

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