November 17, 2007
The website of ethnomusicologist Robert Garfias is a treasure trove of mp3 sound recordings and short realplayer film clips of traditional music from all over the world, including Japan, India, Mexico, Turkey, Albania, Okinawa, Spain, Burma, Alaska, Sudan, Venezuela, Spain and many more. Garfias' field recordings are illustrated with his photographs.
Ghostbusters: The Video Game [Flash-based site] is coming soon to a console near you. Featuring the original cast doing voices and motion capture, it looks to be very impressive graphically [video], but will it be better, gameplay-wise, than the previous attempts at a Ghostbusters game? [More videos, NSFW]
Like a YouTube for soldiers in the Middle East, this site boasts lots of large explosions, night vision footage, dawn raids, night-time firefights, desert shootouts, and convoy ambushes. There is one film of a failed IED that is breathtaking. Astonishing movies, whether you're for or against the war. [more inside]
Smile - a very creepy short student film.
Excellent post over at BLDBLOG on the history of Bannerman's Arsenal, a ruined island castle in the middle of the Hudson river, created by a war profiteer who was at one time the world's largest arms dealer. Bonus points for the amazing accompanying photos by Shaun O'Boyle, whose site Modern Ruins has been featured on the blue previously.
Led Zeppelin's The Song Remains The Same motion picture soundtrack, reverse engineered. [more inside]
The American military finds new allies, but at what cost? One afternoon, sitting with Captain Brooks in Thrasher’s rooftop gym, I asked if he felt that what he was doing in Iraq was appreciated by the people back home. “Oh, yeah,” he said. Turning to one of his N.C.O.s, who was seated nearby, smoking a cigar, he asked, “What do you think, Sergeant Cochran?” Lowering his voice, Cochran replied, “When that bullet goes by my head, all the politics goes right out the window. My only thought is to get my men out of there alive.” “Thanks for quoting ‘Black Hawk Down,’ Sergeant Cochran,” Brooks drawled. Turning back to me, he said, “When I went home the last time, we went skiing in Colorado. Everywhere we went, people thanked me. One man said, ‘I don’t support the war but I support the soldiers.’ I can accept that. We have a system that allows freedom of speech. Hell, I put on the uniform to defend that.”
Klutzo...is...dead! Klutzo had been talked about before. He is gone now (video link has short crappy commercial). Prior context.
Got some spare time? Then let's learn origami! Check out this large collection of origami designs (suitable for beginners too), and here's some instructional origami videos to help you along.
The Skeleton Coast, so called for the whale skeletons that littered its shores when the whaling industry was at its peak, is now well known for the skeletons of shipwrecks. More. And a a bit of description here. Still, the coast is full of life. Each year hundreds of thousands of Fur Seals come ashore. (Video on this site of baby Fur Seal vs. a jackal.) (wp)
Her quiet depravity has netted her many fans (even some outside her immediate family.) Here's what you need to see to catch up with Sarah Silverman, the funniest person on television: Date with God, The Aristocrats, I Love You, Jury Duty, A Very Convenient Truth, My Boyfriend is Catholic, Writer's Strike, Comic Relief, The Sarah Silverman Program.
Remember that X-files episode? The one with the robot cockroaches from outer space? Well, scientists in Belgium have created robots that act like cockroaches, and are accepted by the real cockroaches because they smell sexy to them. Better yet, the scientists were able to use the robots to change how the cockroaches behaved. [more inside]
"The ‘Ndrangheta cannot be beheaded.” Organized crime is Italy's biggest industry. Most people are more familiar with the Sicilian Mafia or maybe even the Neopolitan Camorra, but it's the Calabrian 'Ndranghta (very in-depth article) that has police around the world worried now, especially after they were blamed for a six-person murder in Germany this summer. [more inside]
Nowadays, if you're of a mood to be all Web 2.0 about it, to-do lists have gone past the paper and pen with web applications such as Remember the Milk, Hiveminder, Toodledoo, Todoist, Ta-Da Lists, do.Oh, Nozbe, Treedoolist, Vitalist, Web To Do, SimpleGTD, Sandy, Tracks, gootodo, Zirrus, OnMyList, TaskToy, Gubb, Nutshell, Joe's Goals, Tedium, MyTickerFile, voo2do, and 30boxes — even plain old text files have gotten spiffied up with Unix shell scripts to generate graphs and reports and projects. [more inside]
There really are no accidents [NSFW] Talking corpses who had been electrocuted, impaled by steel rods or lacerated by broken glass didn't get the message across. Now, an even more graphic series of ads is spotlighting workplace safety in Ontario and grabbing attention well beyond the province's borders. Ontario's Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) has launched a new (and graphic) campaign to help improve workplace safety. Family Man gets blown off side of building; Forklift driver gets impaled by metal rod; A shop clerk topples off a ladder; An electrocuted corpse speaks at his own funeral [more inside]
Popular Science has named Nanosolar the #1 innovative product of the year. Finally, cheap and ubiquitous solar power has arrived, “You’re talking about printing rolls of the stuff—printing it on the roofs of 18-wheeler trailers, printing it on garages, printing it wherever you want it,” The only problem is demand, so they're building the world’s largest solar-panel manufacturing facility in San Jose. See 96 other innovations in PopSci's Best of 2007.
Even if Lou Reed had dropped out of music after the break-up of the Velvet Underground, his name would still be forever etched in the history of rock music. Yet his solo career, filled with eccentric detours and radio-ready rockers in equal measure, remains one of the most fascinating canons in all of rock music. Metal Machine Music, however, is a unique entity in itself, proudly pushing at the very boundaries of what pop music is capable of. Zeitkratzer’s performance not only makes the original album ripe for critical re-evaluation, but it’s a performance that stands on its own ground...Why Does the Music Have to End?: An Interview with Lou Reed regarding how he came to play Metal Machine Music live in 2002.
The folks at Anchor optics must have figured out that if you give away more than thirty pdfs of classic science project books involving optics, people who want to do the projects will know where to shop. My favorite: Fun With Fresnel Lenses (22.9 mb pdf).
City of Sound as it describes itself, is a blog about cities, design, architecture, media, music, etc. But calling it a blog really does it a disservice. City of Sound is a category-killer; amazingly dense, thoughtful, erudite, and compelling, it begins to catalog our urban identity. A bit of reminiscent of Metropolis magazine, if it was edited by Robert Rauschenberg. If you've not visited, do yourself a favor. It is a treasure trove. [more inside]
Empty Cathedrals. Tenement closes. Glasgow artist Frank McNab documents the communal entrances sans nostalgia or sentimentality. Gets it just so damn right! His 'Thoughts' and 'Projects' need a little more work however.
Wu-Tang Clan's RZA Breaks Down His Kung Fu Samples by Film and Song. Kung-fu's influence on hip hop has been around since the '70s, when B-boys busted Bruce Lee moves while break-dancing. But in 1993, gritty rap supergroup the Wu-Tang Clan released Enter the Wu-Tang (36-Chambers), the first chart-topping album to kick up raw rhymes with dialog sampled from underground Hong Kong flicks. [more inside]
Meet The Crazy Robertson. The newest sensation at the center of Hollywood's fashion scene isn't a famous designer or starlet. It's a 56-year-old homeless man who spends his days dancing on roller skates. Check out his website, Myspace, and some of his sweet dance moves. There are some that find this not so cool.
The Imagined Village [promoting an album too but plenty of interesting free stuff] Several luminaries of a now more globalised British music scene reinterpret the folk heritage and pose questions about a modern English identity. There's Benjamin Zephaniah's version of Tam Lyn and a retelling of Hard Times in Old England; even our American cousins get in on the act, for instance remixes like Doghouse Riley's doo-wop Cold Hailey Rainy Night. There's also a few thinky pieces explaining what it's all about.