Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 20080609

Hi,

For those of you not in Melbourne, it’s a public holiday here. The excuse this time is that it’s the Queen’s Birthday. Now personally I think that this is a great holiday, it allows Republicans to enjoy the same kind of dilemma that non-Christians get at Christmas and Easter. You know should I take the day off if I don’t support the monarchy? Is this giving tacit approval to an outmoded ridiculous hereditary method of choosing a leader. Then you look at what you can get with a vote and figure “they owe me”.

What’s even funnier is that most people in the UK DON’T get a day off (it appears that the civil service may get a day off). Bizarre huh?

On with the sillies..

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Hands up everyone who hasn’t read “Little Fuzzy” by H Beam Piper. Whooah ,that many huh? Well get your MP3 players out and head over to Archive .org and Download the mp3.s (I suggest the 17 parts rather than the one big one) load it up and enjoy your journey to work. This is a classic piece of SF and the reading isn’t half bad.

Here’s the synopsis..
The planet Zarathustra is going through a dry spell. Land-prawns, ecologists, and scared bureaucrats are coming out of the woodwork. But there’s more trouble to come. The cutest little alien critter you’ve ever seen: Little Fuzzy. This book is widely regarded as a minor sf classic, and is much loved.

Dead Tree Version – http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/18137
MP3 version – http://www.archive.org/details/LittleFuzzy

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About two years ago I made mention of “Elephants Dream” https://thatchspace.com/2006/05/29/monday-morning-impediment-to-productivity-20060529/
A Creative Commons movie using Blender (cool open source software). Well another movie has shown up, this one is a great ten-minute cartoon called ‘Big Buck Bunny.’ They were bankrolled by the Blender foundation and pre-orders of the DVD by the Blender community. But the coolest part is that the whole thing is Creative Commons-licensed, and all the files for the animation are available this means if you don’t like the end. do your own). It’s ten minutes long and they have versions for about every format (the YouTube one is pretty good looking)

http://www.bigbuckbunny.org/index.php/download/

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Sock puppets deconstruct 1984, this is so funny (this may be my sense of humour kicking in).This is from monochrom who are an Austrian international art-technology-philosophy group, founded in 1993. it’s a safe bet they aren’t on the Right of the political fence.

http://www.monochrom.at/kiki-and-bubu/

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The New Yorker is a site I pop into from time to time. Currently they have an article by Elizabeth Kolbert about the life of Buckminster Fuller and the exhibition about Fuller at the Whitney Museum of American Art. “By staging the retrospective, the Whitney raises-or, really, one should say, re-raises-the question of Fuller’s relevance,” Kolbert writes. “Was he an important cultural figure because he produced inventions of practical value or because he didn’t?” Here is a portfolio of images from the magazine and the Whitney exhibition.

http://www.newyorker.com/online/2008/06/09/slideshow_080609_fuller

They also have an article about Jeff Koons and a retrospective being held at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary art. Koons is one of those artists that you can’t ever make your mind up about. Just when you’ve decided that he’s pulling your leg he will turn around and do something that stops you in your tracks.
No pictures but a good read.

http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/artworld/2008/06/09/080609craw_artworld_schjeldahl

and lastly there is one for the audio geeks (you know who you are). There is a story called “The Gerbils Revenge” by Sasha Frere-Jones.

“Tourists black out reflective retinas in snapshots before printing them, and millions of people refer to strangers they’ve never spoken to as friends, because they’ve connected through a social-networking platform. The transition from living in the stubborn physical world to managing a life that is split between platforms, where the ability to change aspects of your identity (at least digitally) is always an option, is becoming more common. It should come as no surprise, then, that singers sometimes choose to correct recorded flaws in pitch with modern software, like Antares’s Auto-Tune.”

http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/musical/2008/06/09/080609crmu_music_frerejones

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Blame this week is courtesy of Andrea L. It puts together two of my favourite exports from Scotland.

Lets read on….

Subject: FW: Runrig single malt
Date: Fri, 6 Jun 2008 11:09:06 +0100
For all you Single Malt aficionados here is a new Runrig Whisky now available from the following web site.
Remember, this is for those fans who are 18 years of age or over. There are some tasting notes below.
http://www.singlemaltsdirect.com/shop.php?action=full&id=1206
Cost £35.00 inc VAT

Tasting Notes for Runrig Edinburgh Castle Concert Aberlour 12yo 46%
Nose: Sweet vanilla, malty, fresh cut grass. Fresh & zesty with some creamy caramel notes and soft oak.
Taste: Warm fruity notes and creamy caramel with a touch of milk chocolate.
More vanilla on the palate. Light, refreshing & soft with a hint of nutmeg.
Finish: Lingering creamy toffee notes mixed with zesty citrus fruits and nutmeg.

Well Andrea If your friend Howard can whack one in a post pack for us.. Nuff said.

And More Blame for Jools .
“This is a pretty astonishing article – the photos are incredibly detailed. There are links at the bottom of the article to more photos and some video footage assembled from the photos – but you loose a lot of detail. Check out Lake Eyre – there is a lonely little light that I suspect is Rob Backway (Commodore of the Lake Eyre Yacht Club).

Check out the following related link too.
http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/cities/
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/CitiesAtNight/

Love, Jools “

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Also from Jools (she thought it was terrible).

A letter from the past to a “snivelling pond destroyer”. This is fabulous, it’s the sort of thing that you wish you had thought of years ago. This really appeals to the “evil” thatch

http://www.thatcanadiangirl.co.uk/blog/2008/05/30/the-letter-in-the-pond/

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This week at Duggup. Jools wrote about “EarthlyDelights” they are basically a dance ensemble but the music is acoustic, not overproduced and enchanting. My favourite this week would be “Devotchka, totally insane music and incredibly well done. Head over and check it out. http://duggup.com.au

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Flash Game Time: What with today being a public hol and all, we all have time for an impediment with a touch more complexity. MotherLoad – will let you dig your way out of the Monday blues . Short version. You are an operator of a digging vehicle on Mars, the game’s objective is simple: dig your way to riches and upgrade your digging vessel as you sell the collected ore on your way to the hidden treasures deep within Mars.

The controls are just the arrow keys and talk about intuitive interface, the digger moves exactly as you would expect it to which means you get to the time wasting part really quickly, but comes in handy as your digging vessel is rather fragile and needs to be cared for if you want to survive multiple trips below the surface. (Hint Don’t just enter the Down tunnel and stop, remember it’s not the fall that kills you. it’s the sudden stop at the bottom). Upgrades are imperative, you start with a small hold and fuel tank and the drill’s not that flash either. But be warned, this puppy becomes incredibly addictive after having pulled in your first few loads and made some basic upgrades. Kiss the day goodbye.

http://www.miniclip.com/games/motherload/en/

Well that’s enough for this week. Have a good one.

thatch

{Currently listening to Muse and Amy MacDonald }
{Currently reading: Still reading Greg Bear’s Eon and the CSS manual ( I hate precedence)}
{Quick Status Check: Clinton 0 Obama 1 – Hell there is gong to be another 6 months of this}
{Crop Circle Status: Total for June is 2. Barbury Castle is a ripper http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2008/2008.html }

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