Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 20070827

Hi,
A fairly ordinary week this week, but as always it has it’s moments. I have been doing a lot of “server wrangling” and that’s always fun. I have been listening to a lot of old music this week, I really love that my MP3 player can hold so much stuff on it . I went off on one of my jazz fusion things this week and found that my memories of what I thought was pretty spectacular music back then still amazes me. I almost felt like dragging out my guitar again (I got over it and washed my hands straight away). Oh I have been told to point out to you that all of these are available at the thatchspace website, so if you are looking for an old issue to find a game or something head to http://thatchspace.com. There is a reasonable search facility available there as well.

On with the sillies.

Oh yes, this is a goodie, get yourself a cuppa, take the phone off the hook and kiss the morning goodbye. Jools is to “Blame” for this (it’s already put a ding in her productivity).

“The idea is to paint a path for the ball to get it to the exit. Time soak worthy of the name Impedimentia.

http://gamebulge.com/play.php?id=Paintball_The_Game
Love, Jools ”
IT sounds so simple. mwahahahahaha.
And this is also from Jools . Vinni Puh (that’s right Poohbear) in Russian. This is fabulous.
“Settling down this evening to write a Duggup review – I stumbled upon this most wonderful version of the children’s classic Winnie the Pooh. Unlike the Disney version though this has real character and humour.



AND if you insist on subtitles try

Oi! Rabbit has no friends and relations and there is no Christopher Robin, but who cares, they have the cutest piglet. Worth wasting time on.
Love Jools”
This is priceless, and it will stick in your brain. you have been warned. Much, much better than the Disney stuff.

There is something fascinating about the cult of Solitaire, for all the “social networking” talk of people using computers to communicate with one another I am willing to bet that a lot more time is spent in the “solitary” pursuit of whacking the red three on the black four. And here is yet another version. World of Solitaire is a full screen Javascript based solitaire program with all the usualsmooth animations, a customizable card deck, and 12 game modes including popular versions such as Spider, Klondike, and FreeCell. The game gives you a ton statistics and a status bar for your time, number of moves, and overall score. (Big deal I lose. Lots. Thanks for the reminder)
http://worldofsolitaire.com/
And for the two geeks out there, Robert Shultz, the developer of the game, gave an interview
http://yuiblog.com/blog/2007/08/20/schultz-solitaire/ about how he built it and the stuff he used.

The noise you can hear is my good taste chip hemorrhaging, it was a close thing but I managed to fight it off long enough to write this site up, it’s is obscene, disturbing and of course American, http://www.bulletproofbaby.net/ and fortunately it’s a parody. but it will mess with your mind nonetheless.

Over at http://www.notdeadyet.com.au/ we had a very cool week. Sarah McQuaid , a killer guitarist and singer, Jools found Il Giardino Armonico, a period instrument ensemble and Lisa Germano or Like A Thief to round out the highlights. Stroll over and have a listen.

And on a related thought, I noticed this while trawling through YouTube. The Zombies doing “She’s Not There”. Rod Argent on keys (and he looks as if he’s not there) and Colin Blunstone on vocals. One of my favourite oldies. (Bugger I forgot to look and see if there was a copy of “Time Of The Season”)

thatch

{Currently watching: Midsomer Murders (ooh scary stuff boys & girls). the series will be over soon. Sadly}
{Currently reading: Still on Susan Cooper’s “Dark is Rising Trilogy” . damn it’s good}
{Quick Status Check: Still going to hell. Jools is coming as well}
{Crop Circle Status: August: Still only a measly 6. I think the bottom has fallen out of the crop circle market . oh well it was fun while it lasted.
http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2007/2007.html }

Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 200070820

Hi,

Way back in the dim dark past, Jools and I went to Science Fiction Conventions and at one of them William Gibson was the Guest Of Honor. I should add here that William Gibson is the writer of some of my favourite books; Neuromance and the Difference Engine and Virtual Light and I’ll stop now. Anyway at the convention I had the pleasure of listening to William reading from some of his works. When I read Neuromancer for the first time ( and the subsequent times) it was at a million miles an hour, the story and the settings encouraged this. It was a ripper read.

So imagine my surprise when I heard him reading and it was in a slow and really measured voice, so much calmer. So now when I read them I can hear his voice and tend to read his books at a much slower speed.

Now to the point of all this. NPR’s Rick Kleffel had an hour long chat with William Gibson and has uploaded the podcast. Best of all when the interview ends, you can hear the William Gibson reading from both ‘Neuromancer’ and his new novel, ‘Spook Country’, which I haven’t seen yet. (Trip to Minotaur coming up I think). Well worth a cup of coffee and an hour of your time.
http://trashotron.com/agony/news/2007/08-13-07.htm#081307
The interview can be listened to at

UPDATE: BoingBoing has a podcast interview with William Gibson as well… http://www.boingboing.net/2007/08/21/boingboingboing_15_w.html

MP3 Feed http://odeo.com/show/16091713/4/download/BoingBoingBoing015WilliamGibson.mp3

On with the silliness.

OK it’s Monday, you probably don’t want to be there (wherever there is) and you are reading this an attempt to prolong the actual “start of the working week” (it’s OK. that’s what we are here for). Here is a turn your brain to mush entertainment from Jools.

“This is an impedimentia flash test. The idea is that you have multiple moving objects on the screen. Some of which you have to track – all at once. Two objects is easy peasy, anymore than that and my head falls off. Do have fun.
Love, Jools.
http://www.psychology.uoguelph.ca/faculty/trick/mot.html ”

I could manage three (one time in four). Blame Jools.

Need a bit of inspiration? Have I found the toy for you. Just spin the “Wheel Of Ideas” and see what turns up. We have the “battery operated flying concept” or the “exclusive inflatable vehicle” This little web application has just the right combination of eye-catching but simple graphics and the complete lack of any practical use. In other words, Perfect for a Monday morning.

Here’s how it works. Give the wheel a spin and it will choose from a relatively small list of words. The first two words or phrases generally describe the third. In other words, every idea is just stupid enough that you can be nearly certain there’s a possibility of a good domain name.

Projects

Continuing on with the useless things you can do to kill time, this one is from Roger C.
“Hi Thatch try this
(and type in words like “goldfish”, not just names)
http://www.thesurrealist.co.uk/slogan
cheers Roger ”

So if we take the words from the ideas generator and plug them itnt the slogan generator the question is “Have we just put advertising agencies out of a gig?” Probably not, but I’ll bet it’s lunch time before you start work.

Got one of those flashy new phones and a shortish commute to work?
Why not have DailyLit email a book to you , one segment per day. They have recently add a bunch public-domain and Creative Commons-licensed science fiction, including most of the Cory Doctrow stuff (he is in town for the writers festival. and sold out already. bugger) and Flatland (which is a good read), and let’s not forget the old favourites like Frankenstein, From the Earth to the Moon, and The Time Machine.
http://www.dailylit.com/books/alices-adventures-in-wonderland
Or there’s Alice.

This one is another in a long line of “make it go as far as you can” that has been done with everything from paper airplanes to penguins in previous Flash games. That being said, it’s a fun little diversion, and particularly so if you’re a Simpsons nut. In this one, you are Homer Simpson driving a crane with a wrecking ball on it. The rest of the Simpson family is locked inside an armoured vehicle, and your job is to whack the vehicle hard enough to break them free. This will only take a few minutes.
http://www.simpsonsmovie.com/content/games/wb/?land=us&userid=null

Over at http://www.notdeadyet.com.au/ we had an interesting week. Amy Macdonald, Paul Dateh and Ambient Teknlogy. Stroll over and have a listen.

thatch

{Currently watching: Midsomer Murders (ooh scary stuff boys & girls). the series will be over all too soon}
{Currently reading: Susan Cooper’s “Dark is Rising Trilogy” and then Spook Country?}
{Quick Status Check: Still going to hell.}
{Crop Circle Status: August: Only a measly 6. I was expecting a lot more by this time. oh well
http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2007/2007.html }

Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 20070813

Hi,

Well I finished the final Harry Potter book and will now go back to reading manuals , although while watching the Midsomer Murder I was captivated by some amazing footage of Snowdonia National Park in Wales that put me in mind of the one of the books in Susan Cooper’s “The Dark Is Rising” series. If you haven’t read it, mug a twelve year old and steal their copy (or head to Minotaur books and just give them money. which ever you think might be easier and I digress). “The Grey King” is set around the same countryside and it was cool to see how well my imagination had done.

Oh dear this is depressing. The Dark Is Rising is an amazing series of books, it takes Arthurian and Celtic mythology and wraps it up in a totally absorbing story that frankly leaves the whining Mr Potter and his companions for dead (waits for thunderbolt to fall from the sky. No? See even the gods agree.). That’s right folks Darth Vader is Luke’s father. Nooooooo! (sorry, blame User Friendly http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20070722&mode=classic )

Back to depressing, they are finally turning “The Dark is Rising” into a film. < http://community.livejournal.com/authorblog/5880.html#cutid1> and this doesn’t bode well. Remember what happened when the Americans got hold of Hitchikers and they cut out all the jokes because they didn’t feel that they would work in America. yep. As near as I can figure only ONE of the actors has actually read the books. So that’s made the decision for me instead of reading another boring computer manual, I will drag out my copy of the Dark is Rising and read it instead.

On with the silliness.

Jools found this is her travels..
“Wingardium Leviosa! Make me one? huh?
This is a impedimentia olright – not sure if it’s a Monday morning one though.
Love, Jools
http://tinyurl.com/26kehv ” Yeah yeah, we all want one.

OK picture this, you work in an advertising company and you are given this as a brief.
“Try to encourage people to take a taxi with Frankfurt Taxi Services after they’ve had a few drinks, rather than get behind the wheel of their own car.”

So being a bright advertising person you do the obvious thing and head down the boozer for lunch (of course it’s research. just checking out the target market. trust me)
And while you are there the answer comes to you in a splash (wait for it)

Well, where do most people go when they’re drunk? (Apart from the bar, that is.) They go to the toilet. Bloody obvious really and there is the perfect medium to reach our target audience, the urinal. Don’t believe me, have a look at http://www.piss-screen.de/
Trust me I am not making this up. So from this we learn that women are less likely to drive while drunk and that advertising agencies should ban Flash Games from the workers computers (nice segue that)

Today’s Flash Game is from the “Jools Collection. Wee hoo! This is the old game of Tank with better graphics – just.
Fun.
http://www.makaimedia.com/games/game_frame.aspx?gid=64
Love, Jools”
She’s right, and not a urinal in sight unless you count my crappy score.

This next item is from Rob B. it seems that there is a Scotch Appreciation society (of course there is and Aberlour is the favourite I am appreciating at the moment) and they have members and believe it or not a conference about how to appreciate scotch (in a glass with 2 ice cubes is my preference)
http://www.mwsoa.org.au/expo.html
http://www.mwsoa.org.au/convention%202007.html
Thanks Rob

This is from Cory Doctrow at Boing Boing (one of my favourite blogs)
“In the 8-minute animated short “A Gentleman’s Duel,” what starts off as a sexist little cartoon about a Frenchman and a Brit vying for the attention and affection of an improbable-breasted bimbo builds up a rapid head of steam as the antagonists climb into their giant Victorian mecha suits and kick the snot out of each other, with a lot of Road Runner-esque funny gracenotes.”
http://www.dailymotion.com/nettouch/video/x2aj1j_a-gentlemens-duel_shortfilms

We haven’t done wallpapers for a while, I found Interfacelift while looking for something else and was blown away with the staggering amount of resolutions available. They even support my laptop’s wide screen “out of the box” as they say. Pretty piccies too.
http://interfacelift.com/wallpaper/index.php

Over at http://www.notdeadyet.com.au/ we had an interesting week. Justin Moore and Jenny Scheinman were two of the highlights. Stroll over and have a listen.

thatch

{Currently watching: Midsomer Murders (ooh scary stuff boys & girls)}
{Currently reading: Finishing up Richard Bransons bio and then onto Susan Cooper}
{Quick Status Check: Microsoft SBS2003 Server. Hell absolute hell}
{Crop Circle Status: August: Oooh we have 4. You have to read the “explanation” of the Westwood one, truly priceless.
http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2007/2007.html }

Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 200070806

Hi,
Jools & I went to a forum at the The State Library earlier this week. The topic was “Distributing Sound: Evolving Technologies and Music Publishing”, sounds cool huh?

It was.

The speakers included Abby Dobson -ex-Leonardo’s Bride, David Vodicka -Media Arts Lawyers, Director of Rubber Records and Chairman Australian Independent Records Association (and well worth listening to), Craig Kamber -Lab 3000 (he was the organiser), Bruce Milne – Infidelity Records, Au-go-go Records, co-owner, the Tote Collingwood and Phil Wales from 3RRR radio.

They were discussing how technologies, like online performance, digital web distribution, audio and video streaming and even the humble CD has opened up tons of new opportunities for self publication and promotion as well creating whole new ways of getting ripped off. It was an fascinating couple of hours and I learnt one important fact. everyone is basically equally clueless in how all this stuff actually works.

So on with the silliness…

Actually this isn’t silly, I know that the Catholic Church is sitting on squillions, but somehow I cant see the current bosses reaching in to their wallet to save the incredibly strange Renaissance painting inside the Church of San Pietro located in Montalcino, Italy. It was painted by the artist Bonaventura Salimbeni (1567-1613), the artwork, titled “Glorification of the Eucharist,” looks like the cover of a science fiction novel. Indeed, it’s been nicknamed “Sputnik” based on the globe’s similarity to a satellite. The church is in dire need of restoration and an international campaign is underway to raise funds to save it, and the painting inside. The organizers printed 1000 posters of the painting and are selling them. If you have a lazy US$270 you can buy one, with the proceeds going to the restoration funds
http://www.save-san-pietro-montalcino.com/sputnik.htm

Here you go, a very, very addictive game. It’s called Bubble Shooter and your job is to shoot bubbles with the weapon of choice. more bubbles. Pop!!! Needless to say I am pathetic at it.
http://www.onemorelevel.com/games.php?game=307

This is cute, Built half a mile from the Pont du Gard — a section of ancient Roman bridge classed as a UN World Heritage site — Shigeru Ban (he’s a Japanese architect) built a cardboard-tube structure is strong enough to carry 20 people at a time. It arches over the Gardon River to a sandy islet mid-river, it opens to the public for six weeks starting on Monday, before it is dismantled for the rainy season… What it isn’t waterproof? The Romans did way better than that. Now your next question is probably “Why would he do this”?
Because he can
http://tinyurl.com/34zpum

Dry Fire is a Flash shooting game, where you have a gun (kind of hard to have a shootem up without one), and you try to kill everyone. You get attacked by men on the ground, as well as having bombs dropped from the sky. The early levels are fairly easy, but it’s lot tougher as the baddies start dropping stuff from the sky as well. A fun way to blast your way through a Monday.
http://www.crazymonkeygames.com/Dry_Fire.html

This is scary. really, really, really scary.
If you have ever tried to find parking at the Richmond Ikea store you probably associate the Swedish furniture giant with screaming kids, traffic jams in the parking lot and an occasional riot when the new catalogue shows up (how come they never print enough ), it seems Norwegians see a trip to Ikea as the ultimate tourist attraction.

The Oslo Ikea is opening up a no-charge hostel for shoppers who want to keep on shopping the next morning. It includes a bridal suite, and a luxury suite with breakfast in bed. Many Norwegians visit Ikea on holidays, treating it like a flat-pack theme-park. Guests also get to keep their sheets, and complimentary slippers, bathrobes, dinner and breakfast.

“There will be the regular dormitory with lots of beds stacked up together. We will also have a bridal suite, with a round bed and a hanging chandelier, and the luxury suite, where customers can enjoy breakfast in bed,” he said. Family rooms will also be available for parents and children to join into the Ikea fun. None of the guests will be charged for their stay. ”
I am not making this up.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/travel/2007/jul/13/travelnews.norway

BLAME: Phillip and/or Keith sent this out.

“Philip saw this story on the BBC News website and thought you
should see it.
** Message **
How sublimely bonkers (and terribly British) is this? Make way crop-circles!
** Seagull becomes crisp shoplifter **
A seagull turns shoplifter by wandering into a newsagents and helping itself to packets of crisps.

And then there’s this (isn’t synchronicity wonderful)
http://www.neatorama.com/2007/07/19/well-crows-can-make-tools/

Think Tim Burton meets Steampunk. that’s sort of the feel I get from Stephane Halleux’s works. His objects just make you want to pick them up and turn them every which way,and truth be told drop them in your pocket and take them home. Tiny cars, left of centre characters, mechanised chairs and odd engines. As usual it sets the old imagination off racing. Let me know what you think
http://www.stephanehalleux.com/

Over at http://www.notdeadyet.com.au/ we had an interesting week. Jools wrote about Devandra Banheart and I was taken with “British India” and an assortment of indie bands.

Have a good week.

thatch

{Currently watching: Midsomer Murders (ooh scary stuff boys & girls)}
{Currently reading: Harry Potter 7… actually I just finished it. Moral ambiguity all over the place}
{Quick Status Check: Still going to Hell.}
{Crop Circle Status: August: We have 3, and check out the Pewsey White Horse one, we’ve been there. http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2007/2007.html }