November 30, 2002

Reach in and touch someone

Reach in and touch someone. Having a baby? Have money to burn? Think a video of your baby's ultrasound would just be so passe? Novint Technologies has developed a system that will let you "touch" your unborn child -- or at least a 3D ultrasound image of it.
posted by zztzed at 7:43 PM PST - 3 comments

Xupiter hell

Xupiter and other crap You geeks out there probably already know about the hell that is xupiter, and other parasite programs from Hades. I had to learn the hard way.
posted by konolia at 6:48 PM PST - 22 comments

Jewish Proselytism and Modern Rabbis

Nu, These New Rabbis, What Chutzpah, Huh? Judaism has decried proselytism, at least since Rome officially adopted Christianity, but a new wave of showbizzy American rabbis seem to be wowing their audiences. Their logic, apparently, is that there's nothing wrong with preaching to the converted. The refusal to engage in propaganda [scroll down to "Jewish Propagandism"] and conversion campaigns (since, unlike the other two great monotheisms, there is no need to be a Jew to have a place in the world to come) is often seen as one of the most attractive features of Judaism [see Part III], although many think its implied exclusivity and indifference to the world at large (and its religions) may actually foster antisemitism. Are things about to change? Should they? Whatever your view, have a happy Hannukah!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 5:53 PM PST - 15 comments

TextArc

TextArc is an interactive program that reproduces the text of more than 2,000 books as works of art.
The software converts the text into an interactive map that allows viewers to quickly see relationships between words and characters at a glance, even without having read the book. Try it with Alice in Wonderland. (Links opens a full-screen window.)
posted by Mwongozi at 4:41 PM PST - 9 comments

Into The Gnostic

Out of the mist of the beginning of our era there looms a pageant of mythical figures whose vast, superhuman contours might people the walls of another Sistine Chapel. Their countenances and gestures, the roles in which they are cast, the drama which they enact, would yield images different from the biblical ones on which the imagination of the beholder was reared, yet strangely familiar to him and disturbingly moving. The stage would be the same, the theme as transcending: the creation of the world, the destiny of man, fall and redemption, the first and the last things. But how much more numerous would be the cast, how much more bizarre the symbolism, how much more extravagant the emotions!
                                                                                                        Hans Jonas

Into the Gnostic.

Of magicians, miracle workers, saints and sinners of early Christianities and other mystery religions--including but not limited to Valentinus, Simon Magus, Mithras, Marcion, Manicheans, Mandeans, the Winged Hermes, the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Mary, among many other Apocrypha and Pseudepigraphica, the Cathars and Apollonious of Tyana. Not to mention Philip K. Dick.
posted by y2karl at 3:20 PM PST - 11 comments

Conservatives dispute Bush on Islam

Conservatives dispute Bush on Islam Bush critics, we are told, though they support him believe his statements about Islam are basically political and that Islam is not a peace-loving religion. Though I am not sure on this issue, I do not think citing a passage or two in this or that holy scripture is sufficient to apply to any religion, since what it does (or has done) differs often from what it's stated position is. In this article I find myself torn between disliking in general anything that right-wing conservatives utter and also disliking anything that Bush has to say! My shortcoming, no doubt.
posted by Postroad at 1:43 PM PST - 43 comments

Women, Fashion and Shopping

Fashion? What Fashion? Does any woman really care about fashion? Or put it another way: "fashion" . Doesn't each woman just shop for herself? For what she likes and looks good on - and to - her? Perhaps the idea of fashion (and the fact that most designers are men) is a man thing. And a gay man thing at that. It's very interesting and welcome but, when it comes to theory (as opposed to praxis), completely beside the point. I find it a pity some feminists (like Jenny Diski and Elaine Showalter) are becoming swayed and hesitant on this.
posted by Schweppes Girl at 1:14 PM PST - 12 comments

Djibouti

Djibouti As the United States builds up its combat power in the Horn of Africa, tiny Djibouti has emerged as the staging area for Washington's campaign against Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups in the region. But Djibouti is also a telling example of a problem that has bedeviled the Bush administration's war on terror: the struggle to harmonize its own military goals with the needs of the countries in which it is operating. Put simply, the administration seems to be better at taking the fight to its enemies than helping its friends.(NYT)
posted by elwoodwiles at 1:04 PM PST - 3 comments

Violent metaphors

Caution: Violent metaphors can blow up in your face. This one (see paragraph two)—which I discovered a day or so before the D.C. snipers were apprehended—struck me at the time as a particularly unfortunate demonstration as to why, especially considering this ad agency is based just outside Washington. George Lakoff, an undisputed Heavyweight Metaphorician of the World, turns the tables and uses human metaphors rather neatly to think about 9/11. And apparently, there are workshops that teach how to make nonviolent metaphors more vivid and, the logic goes, make violence less attractive. So, the explosive question: does hostile language encourage conflict or reflect it? Peace out.
posted by micropublishery at 9:27 AM PST - 10 comments

Can Poetry Matter - Part 2

Can Poetry Matter - Part 2 (nyt reg req) "Today photography is considered by many to be the most effective way to convey the plight of war's combatants, victims and mourners. But during World War I it was through poetry that many Britons came to share the horror of life and death in the muddy trenches of northern France.....To this day, every time Britons go to war, the opening lines of Rupert Brooke's 1914 poem, "The Soldier," are remembered: "If I should die, think only this of me:/That there's some corner of a foreign field/That is forever England."..."
posted by Voyageman at 8:45 AM PST - 10 comments

UK millenium engineering projects

I recently rode the Falkirk Wheel, perhaps the least well known of a number of UK projects marking the Millenium, which fuse stunning design with ingenious engineering. [more inside]
posted by gravelshoes at 7:07 AM PST - 17 comments

japanese tattoos

When I was nine, I saw a woman in a traditional Japanese bath house, covered with a full-body tattoo.[more]
posted by hama7 at 5:44 AM PST - 29 comments

Art goes to Mars.

Art goes to Mars. This may be the very first art that our species sends into space, unless you count the little naked folks on the Voyager plaque, or broadcast television. In a somewhat bold move, they've chosen shock artist putter-of-sharks-in-formaldehyde Damien Hirst. Is it me, or would the chosen painting be much dorkier if this were NASA rather than the European Space Agency? Like a duck or something.
posted by condour75 at 12:30 AM PST - 12 comments