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Showing posts from March, 2004

more mash-up

Jay-Z and Metallica: Black on Black (DJ Halfred): "Announcing the release of Black On Black, a full-length reinterpretation of Jay-Z's Black Album, as seen through the lense of Metallica's Black Album." I'm happy to see so much copyright-protest art happening, but I'm getting a little sick of Jay-Z. Well, not quite as sick as I became of mash-ups using Missy Elliot's "Work It," but close.

the next batman movie

Batman Hype! - The latest Batman news and rumors: "Tom Wilkinson and Rutger Hauer have both joined the cast of Batman Begins, says The Hollywood Reporter. Christopher Nolan is directing the latest incarnation of Warner Bros.' superhero franchise, which stars Christian Bale as the Caped Crusader.

Wilkinson plays Falcone, one of the leading crime figures in Gotham City, while Hauer portrays Earle, a business contemporary of Bruce Wayne's murdered father who has designs on the Wayne corporate empire.

Michael Caine stars as Wayne's trusted butler, Alfred; Katie Holmes as a childhood friend of Wayne's; Liam Neeson as Wayne's mentor, Henri Ducard; Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, a former board member and sidelined employee of Wayne Enterprises; Gary Oldman as Lt. James Gordon; and Ken Watanabe as the villainous Ra's Al Ghul

Boing. Boingboingboingboing.

designing ico

The Method of Developing ICO: They began to accomplish this using a method they referred to as "subtracting design:" every element of the game that took away from its reality was removed. Instead of having a varied cast of enemies with unique strengths and weaknesses, for instance, there would be only one enemy type; instead of a castle, its environs, and nearby settlements, there would only be the castle and an escape from it. They also used unconventional hiring techniques: to put together a team capable of realizing Ueda's vision, they hired mostly outside of the industry to put together an initial staff of two programmers, four artists, and one designer in addition to Ueda and Kaido.For masochists, here is the non-printer-friendly, graphic-and-ad-heavy regular version of the article.

send in the clones (for an encore)

Star Wars: Databank - The Clone Wars Continue (free registration may be required): "The second season of the Star Wars: Clone Wars micro-series begins tomorrow on the Cartoon Network and here at Hyperspace subscribers will be the first online viewers of the new set of ten animated episodes..." I have only seen a couple episodes of this while loitering in a gachapon shop in d/t Osaka, where it was playing on a TV/VCR combo (I know, so low tech for Japan; if it's any consolation, the convenience store that I popped by last night was advertising a yogurt-and-aloe desert via a 4cm x 3cm LCD screen that was most likely running its vid off some kind of Flash RAM device). What I've seen of the Clone Wars animated series, aside from Natalie Portman's bondage-and-bare-midriff scenes, I've liked the anime better than the live-action "prequels."

Lucas/Star Wars has an RSS feed, but the damned thing doesn't differentiate between regular free…

seen elsewhere

I've heard two movie rumors about Britney this week, just after I was wondering if her career was over (haven't seen a new Pepsi add in a while). Both of these rumors have "nail if the coffin of a dwindling career" written all over them but you never know. The first rumor is about a Dukes of Hazard movie where Britney plays Daisy Duke. She'd be all wrong for this. First off, her butt is the wrong shape. If you're going to fill out a pair of Daisy Dukes you need a little junk in the trunk. Plus you need to be coy, able to put together a transmission blindfolded, and willing to marry a guy who's name rhymes with "penis". Britney would make a much better Bo Duke - she has his smile and swagger. Let's face it guys, Bo was the real cute one the whole time anyways and with this new wave of heterosexual values supposedly sweeping the nation, I think it would be morally wrong if we didn't make him a chick. If they do a Dukes movie Daisy should b…

eastern standard tribe

A reasonably swell review of Cory Doctorow's Eastern Standard Tribe on The Onion AV Club. I'm not sure how long it will be up; I've never sussed out their archive structure, either at the avclub, or proper. So I'll kopipee it here for convenience:Cory Doctorow
Eastern Standard Tribe (Buy It!) (Tor)

In his debut novel, Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom, Cory Doctorow laid out a high-tech, über-wired fantasy future where boredom was the last real social problem and even death was a temporary inconvenience. By contrast, the high-tech, über-wired fantasy future of his follow-up, Eastern Standard Tribe, seems like an oppressive dystopia, mostly because the world appears through an unluckier human lens.

Doctorow's protagonist, Art Berry, is a fast-talking, argumentative neophile who's both worldly and boyishly naïve; as the novel leaps back and forth in time, he's alternately portrayed as a jet-setting, tech-savvy idea man and a hapless patsy, locke…

be very afraid

"Although girls can now go to school, few have discarded the burqa, which for the west came to symbolise Taliban repression. And in recent weeks there have been a spate of self-immolations from women forced into marriage. The country's chief justice, Fazl Hadi Shinwari, has stopped female singers from appearing on television and is trying to ban women from driving.
'Any advances are relative advances tempered with neo-Taliban practices against women,' said Sima Wali, head of Refugee Women in Development. 'Women are still subjected to sexual violence, torture, trafficking in women, forced marriage, domestic violence - the list goes on and on.'"
Four more years of Bush Jr. and Company would be four more years of "helping" other countries into this kind of situation? In, out, cut, and run?

Okay, fine, what about the policies he's carrying out at home? How about discrediting what you can't feasibly deny? Even if it puts our critical, in-plac…

hitori bochi... ja nai?

Meet the Quirkyalones: "You don't need a life partner to be complete -- or so say participants of this budding social movement (...) The contradiction isn't as marked as it appears. Just because these people don't 'need' significant others doesn't mean they won't go for a little TLC. It's not that they aren't open to the potential of romance, nor even that they prefer being alone. What makes quirkyalones quirkyalone is that they refuse to be in relationships for the sake of being in relationships. They chafe at the perception that they're supposed to be with somebody in order to feel whole, and are unwilling to compromise their sense of self for anyone. Because of these exacting romantic standards, they may spend long stretches of time single, and that's fine with them, because they enjoy their own company, and that of friends."Part of me is charmed by this concept, especially the portion that emphasizes accepting that a second per…

fan-art for operating systems

Otaku-alert! OSたん保管庫; apparently when Users aren't looking, the girl-group-avatars of our OS's are giving each other baths and making o-bento. And sometimes doing battle. After my Windows ME experiences, I can only assume it caused the explosion in this picture. After all, it looks kinda dark and mean compared to the boxy, clunky, but somewhat reliable-looking Win98 robot.

incorrect assumptions

It's a weird world. People meet, become friends, separate, get back in touch, and catch up, after which it's easy to assume we know what's happened in the intervening time. We don't though. Not really. Sometimes there are big pieces that have been left out. My friend Marc, over at Misanthropicity is one of these cases. I was planning on writing this even before he threw me a bone, but here it is: Marc and I had a mutual friend, who passed on just over half my lifetime ago, and little more than half of Marc's. The friend was a fan of, among other artists, Spalding Gray. When Spalding's body was found, it struck me as another sad, senseless tragedy, and another part of our friend had gone, well... away. Here was another performer from that time, whose existince, parallel, linear, co-extant still with ours, was at least a reminder that some things go on, even when our friend's life didn't.

For me, the sadness of Spalding's death was remove, something…

i, robot

(via AICN) The trailers for "I, Robot" are online. As an Asimov fan, I can only hope that the trailer is not indicative of the direction of the movie. The character design, with visible mechanics and translucent parts should have been dubbed "iRobot" instead.

On the other hand, the designs for "Robots" from the "Ice Age" team have a lot more going for them. As usual, exercise extreme caution at AICN; the comments threads are toxic.

accidental videogame pr0n archive

(thanks, monty)

pork by-products

Pork products processed and distributed from the farm of accused Canadian serial killer Robert Pickton may have contained human remains, police and health officials said Wednesday. | Pickton raised and slaughtered pigs at the Port Coquitlam farm as a part-time occupation until his arrest at the property in February 2002, and police believe he gave or sold processed meat products to friends and acquaintances. | Pickton, 53, is awaiting trial in the killings of at least 22 of more than 60 missing Vancouver prostitutes who disappeared over the past decade and are feared to have been murdered at the dilapidated farm 20 miles east of Vancouver. | "Given the state of the farm, and what we know about the investigation, we cannot rule out the possibility that cross-contamination may have occurred..."Next up in the national news: It's not Doom 2 or Quake that's bad for you; it's musicals like Sweeney Todd. (via DPH)

feed me

"RSS Rocks" - a PC Magazine article on the basics of RSS, and why it is teh awesome.

Here is RocketInfo a free, browser-based, crossplatform RSS aggregator (Atom compatible, too). I don't like the interface, but I assume it will change as needed. I'm really spoiled by NetNewsWire Lite on OS X.

BottomFeederis a self-contained executable (no installation procedure was needed, the current version has one, but doesn't write to the Windows Registry as far as I can tell) BUT it doesn't like being run from a keychain disk. My dreams of keeping my RSS lists on me at all times, and not seeing previously read articles appear as unread were dashed as I tried it on home and then work, then home machines. In fact, it would just vaporize off to Nowheresville, and not show up except as a couple of processes in the Task Manager. In order to get it to run, I'd delete the .ini files, and the .bfrunning file, and then it would open fine, and restore from the last-saved ba…


If you don't already, check Futurismic (also on sidebar, to the right) for all kinds of wild, hopeful, or at least interesting tech and culture aritcles (e.g this National Design Triennial entry, "Wave Garden"). My good friend Jeremy runs it, and I sometimes contribute there as well. The term "futurismic" captures the spirit of futur-ism, since "futuris-tic" anymore conjures images of Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey," or the Apollo astronauts. Where has our future gone?

simplified windows keyboard


We all went down to the Carrefour in Komyoike; it's a French supermarket chain with a lot of imported goods. I imagine in France it's about as exciting to a French person as it would be to say, "I went to Ralph's/Safeway/Walmart" in the States. In Japan though, it's pretty cool; there are groceries, including more cheeses and wines than one normally finds in Japanese supermarkets, and it has a mini-department store thing as well, -- well, more like Walmart, if Walmart sold 60-inch plasma televisions, $600 digital cameras, and foreign-language magazines.

It's the weekend and the place is packed. Families are walking by; this area is enough of a countryside spot that there aren't a lot of foreigners, so I'm getting stared at by a lot of the kids while their parents fastidiously ignore me. Loitering, but trying to not be an obstacle, I try to place my incongrously-large-for-Japan 92kg frame as far off the walkway as possible, in a spot couched betwe…

ted jesus christ god

Ted Jesus Christ GOD is the Son of David and is from the Bloodline and Linage and Line of David from Adam through Noah and through Abraham and Isaac and then through David.  For Ted Jesus Christ GOD; we use the initials of TJCG for short.  TJCG also genetically has the look.Holy fuck. (via Starchy'sStealth Tribe post)

UPDATE: Ted Jesus-Christ-GOD sends out very long email messages. Spam? Or deviled ham?!

twisted tales

American McGee's Oz lives (GameSpot): For the record, I think American McGee's Alice was quite pretty, but it's not particularly scary or dark to put odd-angled doorways, blood, and dirt into a fantasy-world. Taking a child-oriented property and re-imagining it to be dark, in and of itself, doesn't make it a postmodern masterpiece. I think it can be done, and has a lot of potential, but the McFarlane figures of American McGee's Twisted Tales: OZ, the nekkid bondage Dorothy with Munchkin BDSM master, and the steroid-enhanced Toto didn't do anything for me. That said, if Jerry Bruckheimer is developing a series of movies on Twisted Tales OZ, Warner Books is about to put a book out on the property, I don't understand why publishers, who are so keen on license-based tie-ins, are so skittish about backing this venture when so many other consumer vectors are on-board.

disney's next movie - 'Chronicles of Narnia' to be film - Mar. 2, 2004: (Hollywood Reporter) -- Following collaborations on 'Holes,' 'Ghosts of the Abyss' and the upcoming 'Around the World in 80 Days,' the Walt Disney Co. has struck a deal with Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz' Walden Media to co-finance and distribute 'The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.'

I don't know whether to jump for joy or not. When I realized that the dwarves from Snow White were supposed to be of the same ilk as The Hobbit's, I was really put off of Disneyfication of existing works. That said, I love a lot of Disney stuff as long as I'm not holding it to my preconceived or educated notions of the material, such as Aladdin or Hercules; they are a lot of fun on their own, but OH, the pain of content slippage...

Update: Michael Eisner has been separated from his chairman of the board position, but retains his CEO status: CNN: Money, BBC.

manga sarariman

Apparently there is some backlash about reading comics while riding the train: "Besides," she adds, "Americans are shocked to see grown men reading comics in trains, especially ones that are choke full of violence and sex. It's not something Americans can understand." Um. Not this expat, if anyone's confused. I've never noticed anyone giving dirty looks or nasty vibes to comic readers, but have seen plenty of that when there is a jerk reading a newspaper spread wide enough to interfere with another passenger's space, or some kind of nudie/sports daily, with inappropriate content. I've felt really nasty vibes directed against those using a cellphones on the train. But lately I've seen more people with comics than ever, and no one seems to care a whit.

In short, I've not noticed what the article mentions, and caution that the Wai-Wai section of MDN be taken with a full pinch of salt.

"i see dead people..."