this space intentionally left blank

June 3, 2009

Filed under: random»linky

Yoshimi Battles the Link Robots

At my funeral, I want them to play "Do You Realize?"

  • Is your pen a deadly weapon? What happened to being mightier than the sword?
  • Newsweek comments on Ray Kurzweil's mid-life crisis. Not much new there, but it is kind of funny to hear that even fellow Singularity U professors think he may be a little crazy.
  • Last week, Wikipedia banned Scientology--or, to be more accurate, they put a blanket ban on IP addresses known to originate with the Church of Scientology. As satisfying as that might seem, Evgeny Morozov has a few good reasons why Wikipedia was wrong to do it.
  • A Brief, Incomplete, and Mostly Wrong History of Programming Languages: "1972 - Dennis Ritchie invents a powerful gun that shoots both forward and backward simultaneously. Not satisfied with the number of deaths and permanent maimings from that invention he invents C and Unix."
  • Jim Rossignol provides impressions of the "Thrilling Wonder Stories" panel, discussing architecture, fiction, and futurism. Guests included Warren Ellis and the designer of Half-Life 2's cityscapes, Viktor Antonov. There are elements of a post about gaming's relationship to both science fiction and futurism gestating as a result of this.
  • I think it's really, really important that Harmonix--and not the Neversoft Guitar Hero team--ended up doing Beatles Rock Band. Technical issues aside, there was always a feeling that Harmonix understood the musical side of what they were doing in a way that their successors didn't, and it shows through in the product. I'm not even a huge Beatles fan, and I still think this is phenomenal. The trailer with actual game footage is also looking really sharp. Belle is very excited.
  • Along those lines, Anil Dash comments on the New Yorker and supporting artists.
  • As for the rest of E3: Eh. Microsoft's motion-tracking looks very cool (and apparently actually works), which would be great if I had a living room with actual space in it. Likewise, if I wanted to annoy people I guess hooking my XBox up to my Facebook status would be one way to do it. Nintendo's being Nintendo with a million franchise sequels and Wii attachments. Sony continues to find ways to milk fans for money: more virtual objects for Home! A download-only portable console that's still way too expensive! And as usual, practically nothing for PC.
  • I once argued, to a room of conservative think-tank contributors, that hip-hop (and jazz) were distinctly American forms of music--genres that prize reinvention, improvisation, and a unique tension between individual and collective action. Perhaps I should have specified that it's not right for everyone.

Future - Present - Past