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June 30, 2011

American Gods

MTV Geek has a go at casting the forthcoming HBO adaptation of American Gods.

Tim Burton related: Tim Burton on Craig Ferguson last night.

Posted by the Flea at 07:28 AM

One night at the manse

Inn at the Crossroads adds Pentoshi Honey Duck with orange snap peppers to the menu.

Posted by the Flea at 07:27 AM

Meanwhile, in Middle Earth

Some casting news from Peter Jackson's adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. Stephen Fry has been cast as The Master of Laketown and, possibly better yet, Benedict Cumberbatch will be the voice of Smaug. I expect you already know his Sherlock co-star Martin Freeman plays Bilbo Baggins.

There: The official movie blog for The Hobbit. Peter Jackson reports from the set.

Back again: If you haven't seen Sherlock.

Posted by the Flea at 07:24 AM

Chi-Li and Gosha Kutsenko: Tales

Posted by the Flea at 07:22 AM

June 29, 2011

People Like Us: The Actor

People Like Us - The Actor: Including Bill Nighy, David Tennant, Geoffrey Whitehead and Tamsin Greig (via Ace).

Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV.

Posted by the Flea at 06:05 AM

New weight loss strategy discovered

Considered four glazed mini-donuts then, with some dithering, rejected them.

---> Realized I had succeeded at Willpower save vs donuts <---

Understood in this way, all future decisions take on a new perspective.

Next: Must consider dice modifiers. For example, -2 save vs sourdough glazed.

Posted by the Flea at 06:04 AM

More than just a pretty face

The newly crowned Miss USA says she is "obsessed with the Tudor and Stuart era.” And Games of Thrones.

In short, your new Miss USA is a godless ginger-vampire reefer queen who spends her leisure time reading books about the British monarchy and watching a show about decapitation, incest, and dragon boobs. We salute her.
Posted by the Flea at 06:03 AM

Claire Diterzi: L'odalisque

Posted by the Flea at 06:02 AM

June 28, 2011

Marianne Trench and Peter von Brandenberg: Cyberpunk (1990)

"The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel."

The single greatest first line of any novel I have ever read. Sadly, my grad students were dumbfounded rather than struck dumb in awe of it. None of them have ever seen a dead channel.

Cyberpunk (Documentary): Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V.

"Cyberpunk" is a 60-minute documentary, the ad for which states: "What started as a book became a literary movement. What was a literary movement became a subculture".

Posted by the Flea at 08:28 AM

Eminem: Space Abound

I was going to embed Eminem's latest, "Space Abound", but given it features Sméagol Mathers battling it out with Gollum Mathers until one of them strangles his girlfriend and shoots himself dead.

I am beginning to think he has fallen into a bit of a rut, trope-wise.

On the other hand, Sasha Grey.

Posted by the Flea at 08:23 AM

Redshape: Alpha On The Rocks

Posted by the Flea at 08:22 AM

June 27, 2011

The Clock of the Long Now

"When Danny Hillis first started talking about his 10,000 year clock, many of his friends worried that he was going through some kind of mid-life crisis. I was one of them. But eventually we all started listening. A group of Danny's friends, led by Stewart Brand, got together and created "The Long Now Foundation" (http://www.longnow.org/) to build the clock, and also to begin to address the bigger issue involved: how to get people to think in a longer term, how to stretch out their sense of time."

Stewart Brand works on the Clock of the Long Now, a timepiece that counts down the next 10000 years.

"20 years ago computer scientist Danny Hillis thought up a monument scale slow moving mechanical clock to serve as an icon to long-term thinking. 10 years ago a first prototype was completed and put into the Science Museum of London. 5 years ago the full size clock project began design. A few months ago that project began construction. Project manager Alexander Rose will discuss the process and methods underway in the Clock of the Long Now."

Stewart Brand was a friend of Gregory Bateson. This makes sense of the project. I heard the same story about the oak beams of New College, Oxford twenty years ago from one of Bateson's students, the professor responsible for the doctoral theory course I still think with every day.

Posted by the Flea at 06:28 AM

Antikythera Mechanism

In Lego.

Posted by the Flea at 06:27 AM

Double Life

Posted by the Flea at 06:23 AM

Adriano Celentano & Raffaella Carrà: Prisencolinensinainciusol

"In an interview, Celentano explains that the song is about incommunicability in modern times. He added that the only word we need is prisencolinensinainciusol, which is supposed to stand for 'universal love'."

Posted by the Flea at 06:22 AM

June 25, 2011

The Awakening of Cthulhu

Public event.

The winter solstice of 2012 will occur at 11:11 GMT on December 21st 2012, the same day the Mayan Long Count Calender flips over or "ends" as some say. On that morning the sun will appear to rise into the area of the sky we refer to as the galactic center or nuclear bulge. It is the location of the super-massive black hole at the center of the rotation of the the Milky Way galaxy. The sun's position in the sky on this day will also be perceptively aligned with the "Dark Rift" (the dark band that to the eye seems to divide the bright band of the Milky Way galaxy). ...

Ph'nglui Mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

At the proper time,"the secret priests would take great Cthulhu from his tomb to revive His subjects and resume his rule of earth....Then mankind would have become as the Great Old Ones; free and wild and beyond good and evil, with laws and morals thrown aside and all men shouting and killing and revelling in joy. ...

Iä! Iä! Cthulhu Fhtagn!

Bloop!

Cthulhu's appearance has been said to be of a gigantic cephalopod with a body like a man's and bat-like wings. "a monster of vaguely anthropoid outline, but with an octopus-like head whose face was a mass of feelers, a scaly, rubbery-looking body, prodigious claws on hind and fore feet, and long, narrow wings behind"

Cthulhu rises in 2012.

I'm attending.

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

No mask?

No mask!

With picture-perfect teeth and hair, shiny, flawless skin and a sweet singing voice, Aimi Eguchi embodied everything that teenage girls wished for.

Time to check if my Voight-Kampff machine is still working.

Until now, AKB48 was limited to long established cloning techniques.

Posted by the Flea at 07:47 AM

Made in Chelsea

Basically, if Proust wrote a vampire novel. To be this boring, this strained, until the end of days.

To underline my point.


Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Sleeparchive: Russia

Posted by the Flea at 07:42 AM

June 24, 2011

J.K. Rowling announces Pottermore

Posted by the Flea at 08:27 AM

The Corvins' Castle

And other 360 panoramas of the Hunyad Castle. Just the ticket for all your Byronic brooding needs.

Posted by the Flea at 08:23 AM

Peter Murphy: I Spit Roses

Posted by the Flea at 08:21 AM

June 23, 2011

Mitsou: On vole

HELL YES.

"Trois semaines après avoir lancé On vole, son premier titre depuis une éternité, Mitsou a dévoilé mercredi le clip de la chanson."

Paroles / lyrics: Mitsou, On vole. Dansez / chantez avec moi!

Allongez votre siège en position confort
Nous sommes prêts à décoller
Vous pourrez bientôt vous lever
Et danser à l'arrière, au centre et à l'avant de l'appareil

On monte plus haut, plus haut
Jusqu'à la fin du monde
Loin des armes et de mes larmes
Come on baby let's go

Cachez l'or et les lingots
Tout au fond du cargo
Barrez à double tour
Voleurs incognitos

On 'jet' à pleine vitesse
On oublie la détresse
En première classe, les Champagne glasses
Ta santé, ta richesse

J'entends comme un écho
Pretend that I don't know
On décolle...

REFRAIN :
On vole
Loin dans le ciel
Sans capitaine
C'est la scène
On vole
Loin de la haine
Sans capitaine
'Till the end

On vole si bas si low
Si bien dans nos Polos
Hors du bocal c'est trop brutal
Oublie tout àça let's go

On change de fuseau
Le même scénario
Terre en douleur
Mes frères et sœurs
On regarde de haut

Plus de délicatesse
Je regrette mes faiblesses
Et mon chèrement payé
Billet en classe express

On monte plus haut, plus haut
Et gonflent nos égos
On décolle

On vole
Loin dans le ciel
Sans capitaine
C'est la scène
On vole
Loin de la haine
Sans capitaine
'Till the end

Par les hublots de gauche
Vous verrez la montagne d'interdits
Les bas fonds de l'infortune
Mais à droite...
Nous vous souhaitons un excellent vol
Et rappelez-vous: tout ce qui monte redescend

Posted by the Flea at 08:12 PM

Laibach: Victory Under the Sun (1988)

Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI.

Peter Clarke: More Total Than Totalitarianism: The Strategy of Neue Slowenische Kunst.

Either NSK are the most rigidly deadpan satirists on the planet, or what they actually claim to be - serious thinkers systematically drawing out the totalitarian dimensions which they say lie at the heart of the cultural industry.
(Wilkinson, 1994, p.60)

Slavoj Zizek: What the hell is Laibach all about?

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

Laibach: Macbeth (I)

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Laibach: Sympathy for the Devil

Posted by the Flea at 07:43 AM

June 22, 2011

Woolite Commercial: "Torture"

Directed by Rob Zombie (via Five Feet of Fury).

Posted by the Flea at 08:29 AM

Gard's accidental 'one-fifty' design

One of six glitches that accidentally created modern video games.

Artist Toby Gard, one of the people in charge of designing Lara Croft, was toying around with the dimensions of the character. When setting the dimensions of her chest, he slipped with his mouse and increased the boob area by a cartoonish 150 percent.

Related: Five reasons it's still not cool to admit you're a gamer.

Posted by the Flea at 08:24 AM

Sexy MP

"In addition to my wanting to create a fun and memorable tool to help the British public get to know their Members of Parliament, I thought it would be an interesting opportunity to hold the first ever parliamentary beauty contest and find out once and for all which MPs and Parties have the most sex-appeal."

Posted by the Flea at 08:23 AM

Trentemøller: ... Even Though You're With Another Girl

Posted by the Flea at 08:22 AM

June 21, 2011

Kollektiv Turmstrasse: Tristesse

Posted by the Flea at 07:34 PM

The Ice and the Fire

I am not only a fan of Game of Thrones, I am something of a fanatic. With this caveat, I am pleased to direct your attention to Rick McGinnis' assessment, the best negative review of George R.R. Martin's story I have yet to read. It is the latest in what is becoming an increasingly weighty body of criticism directed not only toward the book but toward Martin's read on fantasy.

Several months ago, Leo Brin kicked off a bun fight in the sf&f corners of the blogosphere, attacking the "bankrupt nihilism" of contemporary fantasy writing or, more properly, fantasy writers including George R.R. Martin. Between Brin's critique and a reply by Joe Abercrombie, another of Brin's nihilists, we have two poles of a debate sparked by HBO's television adaptation of Game of Thrones. The show's $45m budget and unprecedented marketing has proven to be as significant for Martin's (ostensibly) nihilistic inclination in the genre as it has been for event television. This is a lot of attention for fantasy; genre fiction is rarely taken quite so seriously.

What McGinnis offers that Brin's argument lacks is a coherent perspective. If you do not find HBO's forays into bare breasts and bad language appealing - are perhaps troubled by them - then Game of Thrones is most probably not for you. If you think this sort of impropriety is symptomatic of the culture, it probably is. And if your idea of fantasy is defined by the Christian teleology of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, two of the the genre's defining masters, you won't find it in Martin's book or HBO's television adaptation. Fair dues.

But if you are Leo Brin, you want to excoriate today's nihilism while holding fast to the family values of Conan the Barbarian. Well, Crom laughs at that. He laughs from his mountain.

McGinnis' critique, by contrast, is leveled against Martin's story for what it is, not for failing to meet an expectation for what it should have been. As such, the review takes the work seriously while doing the job it needs to do for the readers of a "life and family" newspaper.

Most criticism has not met this standard. This last week has been an education as Game of Thrones' TV-only fans, baffled and offended at the prospect of reading a book, have spluttered their indignation at the death of a central character nine episodes into a ten episode season. "That's nine hours of my life wasted!","I will never watch Game of Thrones again!" and the like has cluttered by Facebook wall. Spare these darlings the rigours of Titus Andronicus, it would give them the vapours.

The most important thing to understand about Martin's apparently shocking treatment of his characters - trust me, you do not want to read the third book - is that the death at the end of episode nine in HBO's television adaptation is effectively the end of Act I in A Song of Ice and Fire, the climax of the first volume of a story spanning an anticipated seven volumes. And yet, the outrage. It is as if Gandalf never fell from the Bridge of Khazad-dûm.

We are only 4000 pages into Martin's work so far (ahem), with another 1300 manuscript pages on offer for the fifth volume to be published next month. As incredible as it is to type the following, with 4000 pages in print we don't yet know where George R.R. Martin is taking us.

It may be Martin really is doing something new with fantasy. Not because this is fantasy with bare breasts and bad language, Robert E. Howard offered something along these lines getting on a hundred years ago, but in terms of structure. In a genre rigidly determined by frankly cretinous tropes (the trilogy form being the worst offender) drawn from decades of misreading Tolkien, Martin has gone off the elven reservation. While there are clues we may yet get a standard fantasy genre resolution by midway through book seven my sense is - my hope is - we don't. Martin's take is new to the genre precisely because he does not (appear to) follow conventional character or story arcs. Instead, the more we learn about his characters, the more we learn about his world, the more we come to understand the appalling futility of this "game of thrones" and any moral certainty as to who should win and who should lose.

Is this a Christian sentiment? It is not. Nor should it be.

George R.R. Martin has been called "the American Tolkien". This is a mistake. Writers are told to "kill your darlings" and Martin has taken this advice, applying it in deadly earnest. He is the William Faulkner of fantasy.

Posted by the Flea at 07:28 AM

Synaulia: Synphoniaci

Posted by the Flea at 07:24 AM

June 20, 2011

Lisel Raps at the Renaissance Fair

Are you a playa? Yeah. Live action role playa.

Posted by the Flea at 06:48 AM

The Saint of the North

In light of recent events, Sean Bean has been beatified by the men of Yorkshire.

The actor, famous for appearing in Hollywood blockbusters where he plays Sean Bean, completed the most Northern night in history with a story involving beer, a fight and somebody looking at somebody else's bird.
Posted by the Flea at 06:44 AM

John Tams: Over the Hills and Far Away

Posted by the Flea at 06:42 AM

June 19, 2011

My pants froze hard

Have you ever seen the man-penguin walk after an intense mating season? Have you?

Posted by the Flea at 05:48 AM

Ia! Lolli! Lolli! Lolli!

Cryptocurium is offering a line of Loathsome Lovecraftian Lollipops. I am partial to the Elder Sign (via Boing Boing).

Posted by the Flea at 05:44 AM

Piknik: Doll with a human face

Posted by the Flea at 05:42 AM

June 18, 2011

Sheen Lantern

I have had the same problem with space octopus lava fog.

Posted by the Flea at 12:28 PM

Pottermore

Quoth the Rowling, Pottermore.

Posted by the Flea at 12:27 PM

The scarlet letter, a blog

Captain Vancouver is posting brief biographies, with images and links to video, in an effort to publicly name and shame Vancouver rioters, a move likely to prove more controversial than, for example, rioting.

As Captain Vancouver, bear with me as I never expected the support to reach these heights. I have over 220 emails I need to get thru with photos and ID’s of people to judge before posting up. There will be much more to come. I’m not running a post a pic blog either, but rather one that will stay up for a long time.

Update: Tremble ye riotards, Michael Buble is on the case.

Along the same lines: Identify the rioters. It seems in Canada, the culture of spectacle and carceral culture have been made to rhyme.

Posted by the Flea at 09:24 AM

Derek Sivers: Weird, or just different?

Sometimes, the opposite of what you know to be true might also be true.

That said, the bit about traditional Chinese medicine might be an old school Orientalist flight of fancy. Or another way of thinking about private health insurance...

Posted by the Flea at 09:23 AM

Bob Sinclar & Raffaella Carrà: Far l'Amore

Hat tip to Beautiful Atrocities.

Fagli capire quello che vuoi.

Nello stile antico.

Posted by the Flea at 09:22 AM

June 17, 2011

A survivor is born

And so it begins: "This much-needed franchise reboot introduces a radically different Lara Croft – aged 21, on her first archaeological escapade, she is shipwrecked and must develop her famous skills."

Tomb Raider: Survival of the fittest.

This is the new Tomb Raider, presented by studio Crystal Dynamics at E3 2011. As the above sequence shows, this is not the Lara Croft longtime Tomb Raider fans have grown accustomed to. She's younger and inexperienced, and the adventure she is taking is far darker, grittier and more perilous.

Introducing the story, Tomb Raider global brand director Karl Stewart.

Note to the interviewer: It's Lara. Not Laura. Lara.

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

One minute you're waiting for the sky to fall

George_Orwell_1984.jpg

On the one hand: Lovers in a dangerous time.

"The girl who was knocked over landed head first on the pavement with her boyfriend landed partially on top of her," he said. "She was in visible pain, crying, but the two officers gave them a parting shove and moved on. Bystanders went to make sure she was OK."

On the other hand: The mob.

The gripping hand: You fling off the shackles of social restraint and the law and decide to loot... Sears?

Update: The couple.

Posted by the Flea at 07:03 AM

Stevie Wonder + Prince: Superstition

Live in Paris 2010. And not a fuck was given about the Masquerade that day.

Also: Prince on Lopez Tonight. Serious footwear is featured.

Posted by the Flea at 07:01 AM

June 16, 2011

Northumberlandia

What drove them, "in the latter stages of the Oil Age, to create the largest replica of the human body ever seen on Earth — a reclining female figure a quarter of a mile long and weighing 1.5 million tons"?

Posted by the Flea at 07:08 AM

Conan O'Brien Delivers Dartmouth's Commencement Address

"It is our failure to become our perceived ideal that defines us and makes us unique."

Posted by the Flea at 07:04 AM

Crystal Castles: Not In Love ft. Robert Smith

Posted by the Flea at 07:02 AM

June 15, 2011

Tryion slaps Joffrey for 10 Minutes

To the tune of Led Zeppelin's "Achilles Last Stand".

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

The Jedi Path

While presumably rife with heresy (spelled "midichlorian") the packaging is superb.

"Hardcore Star Wars fans can now obtain The Jedi Path, a text book handed down through generations of Jedi masters. The concept for the book is that it is the only copy in existence. So how does it come pacakged? In a silvery, vault-like box produced by Becker & Mayer. How do you get at the book within? You press a button and... well, watch this little film."

Posted by the Flea at 07:47 AM

Arkona: Liki Bessmertnykh Bogov

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

June 14, 2011

Stupid Ned Stark

My sympathy for House Stark is limited.

Game1.jpg

Posted by the Flea at 08:52 AM

Fable: The Journey

Peter Molyneux wants you to know that you can steer your horse using Kinect to control the reigns and use spellcasting gestures to make magic but that the next iteration of Fable is not on rails.

Brian Crecente says... it's on rails.

Exit observation: Thankful Team Bondi hadn't thought of Kinect for L.A. Noire.

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

Everyone loves an underdog

Even Mother Nature.

Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

Jim Henson: The Paperwork Explosion

Machines should work. People should think.

"In 1967, Henson was contracted by IBM to make a film extolling the virtues of their new technology, the MT/ST, a primitive word processor. The film would explore how the MT/ST would help control the massive amount of documents generated by a typical business office. Paperwork Explosion, produced in October 1967, is a quick-cut montage of images and words illustrating the intensity and pace of modern business. Henson collaborated with Raymond Scott on the electronic sound track."

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

Shakira: Rabiosa ft. Pitbull

Hat tip to Beautiful Atrocities.

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

June 13, 2011

Silbo Gomero

The phonetic whistle language of the Canary Islands.

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

How to speak sexy English

"You are good at blowing job, aren't you?" NSFW, unless your workplace is a cockpit.

Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

Philip Glass on writing music

Even his sentences come out as an arpeggio.

Posted by the Flea at 08:44 AM

Asmus Tietchens: Ritual der kranken Freude

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

June 12, 2011

Philip Glass: Madeira River

Possibly suffering from late onset Stendhal syndrome. Every once in a while I hear something and I am frozen, arrested in place and find it difficult to breath.

Posted by the Flea at 11:46 AM

There's a pattern here to see

Lost treasure: I had never heard of, much less seen, this documentary about one of my favourite albums, Stewart Copeland's The Rhythmatist.

In 1985, Copeland released a solo album, The Rhythmatist. The record was the result of a pilgrimage to Africa and its people, and it features local drums and percussion, with more drums, percussion and other musical instruments added by Copeland.

Africa is a rather diverse place and is home to diverse peoples with diverse musical traditions. But such is the write up and in fairness neither the album nor the film worries itself about these distinctions either.

The album was the official soundtrack to the movie of the same name, which was co-written by Stewart. He also starred in the movie, which is "A musical odyssey through the heart of Africa in search of the roots of Rock & Roll." The movie is an almost psychedelic, psychological, anthropological, and mythological cosmic adventure drawing from sources like Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung, similar to Peter Weir's "The Last Wave."

Another odd claim as the album is lacking in rock and/or roll. And, while invoking Campbell and Jung works for undergraduate film students, it is important to note the particular myths being invoked viz Stanley's search for Livingstone and, of course, Conrad's Heart of Darkness.

The main feature: The video is a bit wobbly to start but stick with it.

Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV

Poking around: I had never heard of Peter Weir's The Last Wave either. It sounds beautiful, an artifact from an alternate universe where Tehran hosts international film festivals.

Posted by the Flea at 06:44 AM

Stewart Copeland: Kemba

Posted by the Flea at 06:42 AM

June 11, 2011

Botas vaqueras exótica

Botas picudas: Human psychology culture biology is almost depressingly straightforward if you stop complicating it with wishful thinking.

Vice: Look at these fucking boots!

Also: I want the black curly toed version.

In this episode of Behind the Seams we head to the dusty city of Matehuala, Mexico in search of the pointiest long-toed cowboy boots ever made. Over the past year, the botas vaqueras exóticas phenomenon has overrun the rodeo dance floors and clubs of this area and even spreading North into Texas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and any place where big groups of immigrant Mexicans have taken root. We made our way to Desierto Light, one of the clubs in this area where party promoters host dance-offs to music known as Tribal Guarachero. For the finals competition, the 17-year-old prodigy DJ Erick Rincón of the 3ballMTY crew performed for a crowd of adoring pointy-boot wearing raver cowboys.

The fabrication process.

The next step: "New and improve Tribal Boots"

Posted by the Flea at 09:58 AM

DJ Erick Rincon: La Ricotona

Posted by the Flea at 09:57 AM

Tribal Mix 2010 (Parte 1/2) - Adios Gilipollas Vol. 2 - Erick Rincon MTY

Tracklist:
1. DJ Alan Rosales - Hasta que salga la luna
2. DJ T3's Ft. Los Costeños - Fandango La Revolcada
3. Sex Sax - 3Ball Refix
4. Erick Rincon & T3's - I wanna Dance (AiguanadensMix)
5. Erick Rincon - Loituma (3ball Experimented)
6. DJ Alan Rosales - Muchacho Loco
7. DJ Mouse - Muchacha Loca
8. Erick Rincon - Canto Obachere
9. Erick Rincon - Sandungueando (3BALL MTY)
10. Erick Rincon - Viva México Cabrones
11. Schlachthofbronx - Mad Instrument (Erick Rincon mix)
12. Toy Selectah + Erick Rincon - Por La Carretera Refix
13. Erick Rincon - Viaje Prehispanico
14. Erick Rincon - Orelei (Trib-Tonik Mix)

Posted by the Flea at 09:54 AM

June 10, 2011

Woodkid: Iron

Found in: The Assassin's Creed: Revelations trailer.

Sounds like: A soundtrack for The Blade Itself.

Posted by the Flea at 08:47 AM

The mothership has landed

Apple_Cupertino_Mothership.jpg

Steve Jobs' presentation to the Cupertino City Council avoids empty bromides about sustainability in design by calmly, clearly explaining the benefits of what Apple proposes for its new main campus. These include and acknowledge Cupertino's tax base alongside a power plant whose environmental benefits are advanced alongside Apple's productivity and the need for a power source more reliable than California's public grid.

The new Apple HQ would be a huge, four-story doughnut-shaped building, designed to house 12,000 employees. Apple has 9,500 now, but only 2,600 are at One Infinite Loop with the rest spread out all over town in rented buildings, Jobs told the council. The land itself — purchased from Hewlett-Packard, where Jobs once had a summer job — would go from 20 percent landscaped to 80 percent, with 90 percent of the parking in a four-level underground garage.

There is lots and lots of glass in the proposed design, and it is all curved — “We know how to make the biggest pieces of glass in the world for architectural use,” Jobs said, based on the company’s bricks-and-mortar business.

Jobs is gracious in deflecting a grasping councilor, oblivious to what she has just seen and after "free" wifi (she doubles down and asks for "free" iPads), as a quid pro quo for giving Apple the go ahead. Not only is the project inspirational, the presentation is a reassuring example of municipal government working properly alongside a business magnate who understands his civic responsibilities in light of his responsibility to his employees. Glassy eyed Apple enthusiasts annoy me to no end but I tip my hat to Steve Jobs regardless. You could use this presentation to teach rhetoric.

For example: Mac cultists are suffering cognitive dissonance about the mothership, claiming the building planning process is broken when a business can make decisions about where to locate. Cult of Mac's love of Apple is pure (tragically, at a distance) but Cupertino city councilors are just fanboys (who got to meet Steve Jobs).

Posted by the Flea at 05:48 AM

Battlefield 3: Thunder Run Tank Gameplay Trailer (E3)

Video available in full HD at the link.

"Battlefield 3 will feature the maximalist combined arms battles that made the series popular across single-player, co-operative and multiplayer modes. It will reintroduce several elements absent from the Bad Company games, including fighter jets, the prone position and 64-player battles on PC."

Yet more: Twelve minutes of game play in 720 HD.

Posted by the Flea at 05:47 AM

Serebro: Let's Hold Hands

Posted by the Flea at 05:42 AM

June 09, 2011

Ghost Recon Future Soldier : Future War [Europe]

The trailer everyone is talking about is available in full HD at the link (hat tip to Gilles).

And game play.

Also: "Take a look Behind the scenes from Ghost Recon Future Soldier Live Action Trailer."

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

Vegan Black Metal Chef Episode 2

Easy Meal Ideas of The Ages

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

The 69 Eyes: Dead Girls Are Easy

In undeath, Finland and Brujah are made to rhyme.

Posted by the Flea at 07:42 AM

June 08, 2011

Das Running Shoe

Ares describes arms show reaction to a new French submarine with an unusual profile and unusual mission.

French shipbuilder DCNS raised eyebrows at last October's Euronaval show with its extraordinary SMX-25 concept for a submarine like no contemporary design - sharp-prowed, with a big but low sail and a jet-like stern.

Call her a missile ram and name her Polyphemus.

Seven seas related: Calling her a "Potemkin carrier", David Axe suggests worries about the Shi Lang are misplaced.

Posted by the Flea at 08:08 AM

Out of Nowhere, a Bear Eats a Guy

The six most WTF moments from Shakespeare plays. Courtesy of Cracked, obviously.

Posted by the Flea at 08:07 AM

3-Way Street

People complain about Toronto traffic. NYC shows us how it's done.

Posted by the Flea at 08:04 AM

My Name Is Two-Ten

"A day in the life of the tow truck driver who calls himself "Two-Ten". No car is safe."

My Name Is Two-Ten from Michael Nusbaum on Vimeo.

"NSFW, explicit language. ... Shot on a Canon 7D. Regarding the grain and camera shake: it was dark out and the truck was shaky."

Posted by the Flea at 08:03 AM

Korea's Got Talent: Sung-bong Choi

Watching this, I discovered my talent is peeling onions at my computer.

Posted by the Flea at 08:02 AM

June 07, 2011

Mein Schtroumpf

Smurf_racism.jpg

French sociologist Antoine Buéno's The Little Blue Book argues Smurfs are steeped in Stalinism and Nazism.

He said that their lack of private property and collective-style economy is a clear nod to socialism.

He also makes the connection that their biggest enemy - the magician Gargamel - has a Jewish caricatures and his cat's name is Azrael.

The real tip off should have been all those Phrygian caps.

A thought: I am pleased with the title for this post. It was that or Smurf Nazis Must Die. Close call.

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

Paris syndrome

Concept builder: It turns out there is an opposite of Stendhal syndrome, viz Paris syndrome describes the crushing disappointment of the Japanese experience when they finally get to Paris.

A dozen or so Japanese tourists a year have to be repatriated from the French capital, after falling prey to what's become known as "Paris syndrome".

That is what some polite Japanese tourists suffer when they discover that Parisians can be rude or the city does not meet their expectations.

The experience can apparently be too stressful for some and they suffer a psychiatric breakdown.

Think of it as the work of France in the age of mechanical reproduction. It's the Mona Lisa experience over 9000.

Posted by the Flea at 07:47 AM

June 06, 2011

The 'styles' are a lie

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Le Corbusier reinvented himself in the 1920s. Alongside the new moniker, he adopted "what became known as his uniform: a wide-lapeled double-breasted suit, a hand-tied bow tie, and thick, round spectacles."

Posted by the Flea at 06:28 AM

The social network

Naomi Schaefer Riley suggests college is a waste of time and money, taking college dropout Mark Zuckerberg as a for instance.

It is exactly the wrong for instance (via Five Feet of Fury).

In the recent movie “The Social Network,” Mark Zuckerberg is shown devoting endless hours in his room to computer programming. He goes to a few parties, but mostly he is engaged in his new business venture, “the Facebook.” How is this possible, one might wonder? Was he flunking out of his classes? No. Thanks to the wonders of grade inflation and the lack of a serious core curriculum, it is possible to get through Harvard and a number of other high-price universities acing your computer science classes and devoting very little effort to anything else.

I have no doubt this is true at Harvard. But then, having had the opportunity to compare Harvard graduates with students from the University of Chicago, Berkeley, McGill and many more on a long list (including a number of humbler institutions on my resume), I have no doubt this was always true at Harvard. Of course, were we to follow this line of reasoning, Zuckerberg would have been better served by an undergraduate curriculum forcing him to study Economics 101 and the history of the Peloponnesian War rather than wasting his time founding a trillion dollar empire. But Shaefer Riley's argument isn't just wrong, it is beside the point.

You don't go to Harvard to get an education. You go to Harvard to meet other Harvard students. The whole point of The Facebook was to create an electronic equivalent of a Harvard print tradition. Initially, you could only join Facebook with a Harvard student email address and gradually the magic circle was extended first into other Ivy League colleges and then in an ever expanding arc in the greatest feat of brand stretching in history.

I am sympathetic to Peter Thiel's warnings about an education bubble but Shaefer Riley could not have picked a worse case to illustrate her point. Try dropping out of a college without a Harvard pedigree - or the family money and connections that got you there in the first place - and see how far you get.

Theorum: Gormless graduates lack basic workplace skills in "communication, problem solving, presentation, customer relations and even punctuality."

Corollary: Fourteen "star professors" are launching a private £18,000-a-year university to rival Oxford and Cambridge.

The tutors will include evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, historians Sir David Cannadine, Linda Colley and Niall Ferguson, psychologist Steven Pinker, former Oxford professor Sir Christopher Ricks and geneticist Steve Jones.

Next month the New College of the Humanities, based in Bloomsbury, London, will begin taking applications for three-year courses beginning in 2012.
Posted by the Flea at 06:27 AM

Charity for thee

But not for me.

'Bono claims to care about the developing world, but U2 greedily indulges in the very kind of tax avoidance that is crippling poor nations.

'We will be showing the very real impact of U2's tax avoidance on hospitals and schools in Ireland. Anyone watching will be made very aware that Bono needs to pay up.'

Art Uncut have decided to make weekend June 24/25 'Bono Pay Up!' weekend.

Posted by the Flea at 06:24 AM

Xavier Naidoo: Frei sein

Posted by the Flea at 06:22 AM

June 05, 2011

George Lucas Strikes Back

Please be true (via Quotulatiousness).

Posted by the Flea at 11:31 AM

Perhaps I wasn’t made to be a doomsayer

"The dying of things—of art forms and civilizations as well as people—seems to me the inevitable and steady state of the world: a point of view that leaves me prone more to melancholy than to panic. What I really care about now is the immortal parts of mortal enterprise."

Posted by the Flea at 10:18 AM

Henry Rollins vs Hipsters

"An excerpt from the tv program 'Durch die Nacht mit... (Into the Night with...) Henry Rollins and Shirin Neshat'. Henry gets mocked by local hipsters at the record store and fights back immediately."

Henry Rollins on selling out.

Posted by the Flea at 09:36 AM

John Maus: Through the Skies for You

Posted by the Flea at 09:32 AM

June 04, 2011

Nicola Roberts: Beat Of My Drum

They were all wrong about her, of course.

Posted by the Flea at 11:42 AM

They say translation does violence to language

"In ancient Japan, a kensei (剣聖?, sword's saint; sometimes rendered in English as Kensai, Ken Sai, Kansei, or Kenshei) was an honorary title given to a warrior of legendary skill in swordsmanship. The literal translation of 'kensei' is 'sword saint'."

"Sensei (先生?) is a Japanese title used to refer to or address teachers, professors, professionals such as lawyers, CPA and doctors, politicians, clergymen, and other figures of authority. ... The two characters that make up the term can be directly translated as "born before" and implies one who teaches based on wisdom from age and experience."

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

Anna Calvi: The Devil

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

June 03, 2011

Walt Disney: Victory Through Air Power

"Victory Through Air Power is a 1942 non-fiction book by Alexander P. de Seversky. It was made into a 1943 Walt Disney animated feature film of the same name."

Posted by the Flea at 08:48 AM

Hairstyles for War Jobs (1942)

Featuring Veronica Lake's "victory roll". Followed by a variety of domestic concerns and a thousand bomber raid on Bremen.

Posted by the Flea at 08:43 AM

Veronica Lake: Now You See It, Now You Don't

Posted by the Flea at 08:42 AM

June 02, 2011

Hooning is not a crime

Unreal_3.JPG

A suggestion: Watch these Dirt 3 promotional trailers in HD. The game's developers pitch Dirt 3 as the best balance of reality and playability ever achieved in a driving game.

I can't agree with Codemasters on this one. This isn't mere reality; this is car ad reality.

And: The new Unreal physics engine was made for gymkhana.

Related: "I like the part where he was drifting."

Posted by the Flea at 06:28 AM

Ken Block's Dirt 3 Gymkhana: Battersea Power Station, London

"Shot at London's iconic Battersea Power Station, transformed for one day only into a hoonigan's paradise, DiRT 3 Technical Consultant Ken Block hits the dirt hard in his specially prepared Ford Focus."

Posted by the Flea at 06:27 AM

Echo & The Bunnymen: Lips Like Sugar

Posted by the Flea at 06:23 AM

June 01, 2011

Lindsay Lohan

A Richard Phillips Film.

“[She] holds an existential vulnerability, while harnessing the power of the transcendental—the moment in transition. She is able to connect with us past all of our memory and projection, expressing our own inner eminence.”

I don't care what they say, Mean Girls was a great movie.

Posted by the Flea at 07:48 AM

Dear South Asian Technical Support Corporation

I have recently purchased one of your Analytical Engines and my cycle apparatus is consistently off by unity.

Posted by the Flea at 07:47 AM

David Attenborough on Mount Roraima

More faithful to the Mythos than any H.P. Lovecraft film adaptation.

Posted by the Flea at 07:44 AM

Yolanda Be Cool & Dcup: We No Speak Americano

Posted by the Flea at 07:43 AM