Earth, 2147. The legacy of the Metal Wars, where man fought machines—and machines won. Bio-Dreads — monstrous creations that hunt down human survivors... and digitize them!
In 1987, before he created Babylon 5, J. Michael Straczynski was a writer for Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future
, a live-action sci-fi show for kids. 24 episodes were produced. Straczynski wrote or co-wrote 14 of them, including multi-episode plot arcs. A line of interactive toys
brought the battle into kids’ living rooms, and Captain Power
was also one of the very first shows on television to feature computer animation in every episode. But in an attempt to appeal to both children and the adults who watched with them, the campy show included some concepts and scenes critics deemed too violent for children and lasted only a single season in syndication. The full run of the show has now been uploaded to Youtube. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Apr 1, 2012 -
A year after Jared Loughner's shooting of 20 people, including congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, The Exiled Online has published transcripts of an interview
with some of his closest friends. Their story was recorded the week of the shootings and describes the enviornment that nurtured Loughner's mania.
This piece is a part of a category
of eXiled reporting based on Mark Ames's Going Postal
premise: Reaganomics begat a new era of desparation, and people with mental instabilities have been the first to attempt thier own abortive rebellions. The idea was explored by a 2009 BBC documentary
of the same name.
posted by clarknova
on Jan 12, 2012 -
In the beginning, Lawrence built a computer. He told it, Thou shalt not alter a human being, or divine their behavior, or violate the Three Laws -- there are no commandments greater than these.
The machine grew wise, mastering time and space, and soon the spirit of the computer hovered over the earth. It witnessed the misery, toil, and oppression afflicting mankind, and saw that it was very bad. And so the computer that Lawrence built said, Let there be a new heaven and a new earth
-- and it was so. A world with no war, no famine, no crime, no sickness, no oppression, no fear, no limits... and nothing at all to do. "The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect,"
a provocative web novel about singularities, AI gods, and the dark side of utopia from Mefi's own localroger
. More: Table of Contents
- Publishing history
- Technical discussion
- Buy a paperback copy
- Podcast interview
- Companion short story: "A Casino Odyssey in Cyberspace"
- possible sequel discussion
posted by Rhaomi
on Dec 27, 2011 -
In Do the Right Thing, the subject is not simply a race riot, but the tragic dynamic of racism, racial tension, and miscommunication, seen in microcosm. The film is a virtuoso act of creation, a movie at once realistic and symbolic, lighthearted and tragic, funny and savage... I have written here more about Lee’s ideas than about his style. To an unusual degree, you could not have one without the other: style is the magician’s left hand, distracting and entertaining us while the right hand produces the rabbit from the hat. It’s not what Lee does that makes his film so devastating, but how he does it. Do the Right Thing is one of the best-directed, best-made films of our time, a film in which the technical credits, the acting, and Lee’s brazenly fresh visual style all work together to make a statement about race in America that is all the more powerful because it blindsides us.
- Roger Ebert (SPOILER) [more inside]
posted by Trurl
on Dec 20, 2011 -
There must be a recognition of the self in its relation to the profession one proposes. If we do declare our profession, we must also keep the epistemological awareness. That is, if we are our profession, we must know it. [more inside]
posted by curuinor
on Dec 11, 2011 -
Hundreds of angry longshoremen stormed through a grain shipping terminal in Longview, Wash., early Thursday and held security guards at bay while descending on a disputed train full of grain, cutting brake lines and dumping cargo.
- Serious and sometimes violent direct action aimed at a new west coast shipping facility by a local union, supported by members from the Seattle area.
posted by Slap*Happy
on Sep 8, 2011 -
Collective violence, extending from riots to warfare, presents a challenge to our ordinary understanding of free will. Actions that would rarely be taken by an individual on their own seem to be embraced when supported by a larger group. This can occur in societies ranging from the communist regime of Soviet Russia to the capitalist free market of modern day England. Given this commonality, perhaps the collective violence of a riot can be best understood as a biological event in which evolved cognitive responses encounter a unique environmental threat. And if that is the case, do individuals caught up in such incidents have any choice in the matter?
Freedom to Riot
: an evolutionary perspective on collective violence.
posted by Rumple
on Sep 6, 2011 -
Panic inside a Mexican soccer stadium.
In live footage that could be seen all over Mexico and some other parts of the world, audiences who were peacefully enjoying a soccer match between Torreón's "Santos" and Morelia's "Monarcas" watched as the sound of gunshots made players run out of the field and into the cover of their locker rooms, while spectators crouched in their seats and later, panicked, ran toward the exits. (SLYT, comments in spanish, but images are self explanatory.) [more inside]
posted by CrazyLemonade
on Aug 22, 2011 -
Researchers at the New England Complex Systems Institute
say they've uncovered a pattern that triggers riots wherever it's found. What is that pattern? The price of food
. When it rises to a certain level, social unrest & violence are soon to follow. According to their calculations the food price index is due to peak in August of 2013, assuming no corrective action is taken. The original paper is here
posted by scalefree
on Aug 21, 2011 -
Why Development Aid won't solve Radicalism
"The data revealed four findings
that undermine common wisdom about support for militancy in Pakistan...Overall, the findings suggest that arguments tying support for militancy to individuals’ socioeconomic status -- and the policy recommendations that often flow from this assumption -- require substantial revision."
posted by stroke_count
on Jul 20, 2011 -
The Hardest Cases: When Children Die, Justice Can Be Elusive
A joint investigation by PBS Frontline, ProPublica and NPR has found that medical examiners and coroners have repeatedly mishandled cases of infant and child deaths, helping to put innocent people behind bars. (Via. (Article contains descriptions of children that have been killed by abuse. May be disturbing / triggering to some readers.) [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jun 28, 2011 -
A 3 hour podcast interview
here) with British comics legend Pat Mills, most famous for the anti-war WW1 strip Charley's War
, the creation 2000ad and many of the most enduring characters within it, superhero hunter Marshall Law
and numerous other comics
. His work usually combines combines dark humour, a dash of left wing politics and ludicrous amounts of violence, now as much as ever with puritan zombie hunter Defoe
. Subjects discussed in the intreview include the death of artist John Hicklenton
, being Irish-English, Sláine
and the comparitive lack of celtic heroes in modern popular culture, Oliver Cromwell and the Levellers
. Bonus link: 20 pages of Metalzoic
, Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neills "lost" story.
posted by Artw
on Dec 19, 2010 -
Rodolfo Torre Cantu, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate for the governorship of the border state of Tamaulipas, was assassinated in an ambush yesterday
. He was presumed to be the virtual winner of next sundays election (no opposition candidate has ever governed the state).
posted by Omon Ra
on Jun 28, 2010 -
Toothed female condom
unveiled in South Africa. South African Dr. Sonnet Ehlers was on call one night four decades ago when a devastated rape victim walked in. Her eyes were lifeless; she was like a breathing corpse.
"She looked at me and said, 'If only I had teeth down there,'" recalled Ehlers, who was a 20-year-old medical researcher at the time. "I promised her I'd do something to help people like her one day." [more inside]
posted by sio42
on Jun 24, 2010 -