Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008


A year in Forty Seconds (in case you don't have time)

As my RSS is currently being flooded with blog posts summarizing and assessing the past twelve months I thought to add my recollections to the mass. But I won't. It has been a good year, but hardly better or worse than the others. I detected the faint taste of vanilla in March, but it passed. June saw me in Paris, but I hope my wife does not ever find out. Late in the year I resumed drinking tea. This continues. Soon I shall be a year older, as I hope many other people will be also. While years are fine things too many can be bad for the health. I hope to retire from years sometime late in the Fall, of a distant year as yet undiscovered. Wrapping myself up I bid you all goodnight and best wishes for the coming session.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

China Awaits


Chinese Dub Orchestra (with Jah Wobble)
Improvised duet of 'No No No' by Cleo Rose and Gu YingJi under the direction of Mr Jah Wobble


Rice Corpse
Featuring the glass blowing talents of an old acquaintance of mine, Mr Lucas Abela.

Rice Corpse and Chinese Dub Orchestra are two examples of artists from outside going into China and making contact. With the growing dominance of China in the world, contact and exchange between artists over the borders is important. I hope 2009 is a year of hybrid cooperation between the enormous wealth of art, music, dance, theater, performance and writing from China and the rest of the world.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Sweden and the Pirates

When the Swedish Pirate Party was launched three years ago, the majority of the mainstream press viewed them with skepticism, with some simply laughing them away. Times have changed though. As the government works to introduce harsher copyright laws and others that threaten the privacy of Sweden’s citizens, the party is growing stronger and stronger.

In a recent poll, 21 percent of all Swedes indicated that they would consider voting for the Pirate Party in the upcoming European Parliament elections. Among men in the 18-29 age group, this number goes up to a massive 55% - an unprecedented statistic.

Aside from the support in this poll, more people have joined the party recently. During the last quarter the membership count increased by 50% - from 6000 to 9000 - which makes the party larger than the Green Party which currently holds 19 seats in the Swedish parliament.

Swedish Pirate Party Leader Rick Falkvinge told TorrentFreak that the Internet played a big part in the recent successes of the party. “We couldn’t have done this without the dialog infrastructure that the Net provides. Oldmedia has lost control of the discourse,” he said. With all the controversy surrounding the new anti-piracy and wiretapping legislation, the Pirate Party was often mentioned on blogs, since they are the most outspoken opponent.

For the upcoming European election, the Pirate Party requires 100,000 Swedish votes to get a seat, a goal that is within reach in the current political climate. Falkvinge is optimistic too, and said “We need to grow by another 50%, counting from the Swedish election two years ago, to get seats in the EU parliament and shake the political copyright world at its core. It’s hard, it’s supposed to be hard, but the numbers show we can do it. We can do this, and the charts are going stratospheric.”

The Internet will probably play a big role in this election for the Pirate Party, and recent history has shown that this is not only true for parties that carry “pirate” in their name. Elections to the European Parliament will be held in June 2009, and it’s going to be very interesting to see how the Pirate Party fares.

Post from: TorrentFreak

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The BBC Radiophonic Workshop 1958-1998



You have only four days left to listed to a three hour documentary on the BBCs Radiophonic Workshop (it is being taken down after this). If you know about sound art and electronic music then you know about the Radiophonic Workshop.

The BBC Radiophonic Workshop, one of the sound effects units of the BBC, was created in 1958 to produce effects and new music for radio, and was closed in March 1998, although much of its traditional work had already been outsourced by 1995. It was based in the BBC's Maida Vale Studios in Delaware Road, London, W9, UK growing outwards from the then-legendary Room 13. The innovative music and techniques used by the Workshop has made it one of the most significant influences on electronic music today.


Over 180 minutes the broadcast features a number of sound pieces going back to the 1958 beginning of the workshop. The star of the workshop for many today was Delia Derbyshire:


More sounds from Delia can be found HERE including the most famous piece of sound to come out of the workshop, the theme to Doctor Who:



The BBC documentary contains original interviews, unmixed sound pieces, stories about how the analogue tape-based works were made in the workshop. This is an amazing story of the history of sound.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

TechGnosis and Symmetry


In talking about Erik Davis, one can't help but talk of hybrids, things crashing into each other and having mutant children, millennial mixes of the ancient and the modern, often quite fringe but distinctly new. Davis floats in a very twenty-first century subcultural style, a mèlange of futurism and primitivism, call it cybermysticism or as Davis does "techgnosis".
Mission by Anais Lunet, Alexandre Bailly
Look at this mission also on Check-in Architecture website http://www.checkinarchitecture.com/mission/59 or on Google Earth http://www.checkinarchitecture.com


Here's an incident of the coincidental. Leaving my office on Friday for the Christmas break I tuned to my rather packed bookshelves to choose a book to read. I wanted to read one from the backlog that I have been meaning to read for a while but work (thesis) has prevented me from doing so. I grabbed Erik Davis' TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the Age of Information, which has literally been on my shelf for over a year on a never ending revolving loan from the library. I started reading it yesterday and to say I am enjoying it is an understatement. Then, a magazine arrived in the mail today, Arthur is its name. It comes from San Francisco and it is very 'groovy'. I have been reading Arthur online, from the blog and website for a long while. I ordered a paper copy two weeks ago maybe (things move slowly in San Fran??) but I was nonetheless so glad to see it today. And whose name is on the front cover, you guessed it, Erik Davis: Trance Planet: The Analog Life, Arthur issue 31

Monday, December 22, 2008

Talking Japanese

In these last days of the year the culture continues and we begin with an unlikely collision provided for me by Amazon:

We recommend: Mamma Mia! [2008]

DVD ~ Meryl Streep
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B001BYMKRO/ref=pe_ar_x8

RRP: £21.99
Price: £12.98
You Save: £9.01 (41%)

Recommended because you purchased or rated:
* On the Road: The Original Scroll (Penguin Hardback Classics)


How in the world is On the Road related to Mamma Mia I cannot understand.

Far away from Mamma Mia, I have long been a fan of things Japanese. Raised in a house where my father was a student of Japanese language I read Kawabata and Mishima as a teenager. As a young adult I discovered the new sounds of Japan via friends who were seeking out the most creative sonic expressions that were being recorded in the late 1980s and early 90s. First it was the Boredoms, whose album Pop Tatari (1992) was played over and over again in many chaotic lounge rooms of my youth:


Boredoms, Telehorse Uma

I saw Boredoms in 1996 (Boredoms, Regurgitator, Phlegm, Metro Theater, Sydney 1996) and it was like a postmodern opera of noise kabuki. Over the years I have remained with the Boredoms, through many changes. This year Yamatsuka Eye and Yoshimi P-We have led 88 Boredrum:


88 drummers give an 88 minute performance at the La Brea Tar Pits at 8:08PM on 8.8.08. Hosted by Boredoms.

Following immersion in the Boredoms reality there came other bands. Ghost is perhaps my number two of the Japanese groups I am dedicated to. Their album Temple Stone (1994)is brilliant:


Ghost - Guru in the Echo

In 1984 Ghost was formed in Tokyo. In the beginning, they played only improvisation / freeform music naturally. But when they started their first recording in 1988, their music had been changing to more constructive one. Still now on their live activities we can find they play improvisation sometimes.

"Their music was based on acoustic guitar usually. A lot ethnic instruments or strange instruments are added to it freely on recording. And the place they play were so unique as examples — buddist temples, churches, ruins, metro, fields, woods, caves... Such strange methods are nothing but ones of their expressions. They are Ghost anytime."

Ghost is:
Masaki Batoh: Vocal, Acoustic Guitar, Hurdy Gurdy, Banjo, etc.
Kazuo Ogino: Piano, Oscilator, Recorder, Lute, etc.
Michio Kurihara: Electric Guitar
Junzo Tateiwa: Tabla, Percussions, Drums
Takuyuki Moriya: Elecric Bass, Contra Bass
Taishi Takizawa (aka Giant): Flute, Theremin, Saxophone


No account of contemporary Japanese experimental and improvised music could be without Keiji Heino. Keiji Haino (灰野 敬二 Haino Keiji) born 1952 in Chiba, Japan, and currently residing in Tokyo, is a Japanese musician whose work has included rock, free improvisation, noise, singer-songwriter, solo percussion, psychedelic, minimalism and drone styles. He has been active since the 1970s and continues to record regularly and in new styles.


Keiji Haino (in the middle, long hair and guitar) Yamatsuka eye John Zorn Improvisati0n


Dance and music improvisation at Judson Church, 1999. Zack Fuller has danced with Min Tanaka many times, as has Keiji Haino. This performance was a part of the Movement Research at Judson Church series. Music by Keiji Haino.

Marble Sheep

I discovered both Marble Sheep and High Rise at the same time. I could not have been happier. Heavy psychedelic guitars that took up where bands such as The Seeds and Love left off. It was the record Marble Sheep & The Run-Down Sun's Children from 1989 that was my entry into the tangerine riffs and stone age drumming of the Sheep, beautiful (check out Last Race on the Sheep's Myspace page..sonic canyons of mind melt).

High Rise is an explosive power trio comprising the core of Asahito Nanjo on bass and vocals and Munehiro Narita on guitar, joined by a succession of drummers (including Yuro Ujiie, Pill and free-jazz veteran Shoji Hano in the past, and Koji Shimura currently). High Rise mix the jazz-influenced improvising of live Cream with the often brutal amphetamine-inspired rock of Blue Cheer. Narita is one of rock's unsung guitar players, and his dexterous fingering causes eruptions of pure electric joy. The other players are equally stunning in their total commitment to this high energy music that features the freedom of jazz and the power of rock.


High Rise - Psychedelic Speed Freaks (Live, Tokyo, Dec. 15 2006)

I could go on forever about Japanese music. But I would like to end with one artist who is so exquisite that I almost become emotional talking about him. Magical Power Mako is a legend in Japanese psychedelic circles:

This self-styled visionary and musical hermit has been releasing albums since the mid-70s. But the variety and here-there-and-everywhere approach of his attitude to record releases makes it difficult to grasp just who Magical Power Mako is, and what he does best. Mako’s career began auspiciously enough with thunderous applause for his first three LPs, but the slow nature of his recording techniques soon contributed to record company impatience with this often brilliant artist. Viewed by many as a legend and by others as a chancer, there’s no doubt that the extraordinarily varied quality of Magical Power Mako’s during the ‘90s contributed dramatically to compromising the public’s long-term perception of this charming artist.
Born Makoto Kurita around 1955, Mako grew up in the seaside resort of Izu Shuzenji, a sea coastal town similar to Brighton or Torquay. Throughout his childhood, he was an outsider who wrote much music and played piano and guitar while still in primary school. At junior high school, he decided to make a more concerted effort to realise his musical vision, and would return home after school to write songs every day. His house was situated in the mountains and looked down at the town’s hot springs. Mako became fascinated then obsessed by an octagonal hotel built near the hot springs. Visible from his bedroom, Mako believed that someone was observing him from the hotel’s 3rd floor. This sense of being observed spurred him further into musical activities and, at age fourteen, he began to record with a reel-to-reel, ping ponging the tracks back and forth in order to build up sound. The summer holidays of 1970 were spent in long recording sessions making his own LP. When it was finished, Mako wrote on the reel-to-reel tape box: ‘Summer 1970, things a 14-year-old boy thinks about’. The tape commenced with a song (‘I Bought An Extraordinarily Big Eye In The Town One Day For A Good Bargain Price’).

“One day, I bought an extremely big eye in the town, very cheaply,
When I saw the world through the eye,
Extremely small people were making noise,
Making a fuss about winning or losing,
What pathetic people who only have small eyes,
And they think the universe is the end of this world,
Not knowing that there is another world,
One Day I bought an extraordinarily big eye for a cheap bargain price.”

From the summer of 1973, he took up residence in a house belonging to the US Army, located in Fussa, Greater Tokyo. Mako began to record in this house, multi-tracking instrumental tracks endlessly. So many tapes were recorded that would not see the light of day for over twenty years, allowing new listeners to discover his old music. Even before the first LP, Mako recorded with Keiji Haino at the Fussa house.
From Julian Cope



Magical Power Mako / Open the morning window


Magical Power Mako + Pollypraha at Aoiheya May 11, 2007
Mako's albums are not easy to find, even in file sharing networks. I recommend the first self titled album from 1973 which is decades ahead of its time. The song 'Open the Morning Window' is from this album.

Finally something I discovered just today:
SHSK'H
Very beautiful Japanese music can be freely downloaded from the somewhat cryptic ShSkh web site. Etsuko Chiba plays koto and sings with a delicate voice that makes this traditional music quite pleasing and relaxing. There are three tracks at approximately 12 minutes each. This is both a good introduction the koto and Japanese music in general.

Japanese music is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Japanese contemporary culture. I hope to visit Japan one day, until then the music, manga, anime, novels, and so much more will just have to do.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Great Remixes of 2008



Tony "Baloney" Blair sings "Should I Stay or Should I Go" by The Clash

Pelt at Terrastock 7

Pelt Terrastock 7 June 22nd 2008 from Mikel Dimmick on Vimeo.



I am on holidays..sort of...well at home anyway. The coming week is home and family. I am however working on the thesis when I can. Not long to go. But I thought over the next week this blog would be a site for music and song, art and pleasure. 2008 has not been a bad year at all. I begin with an excerpt for the performance by Pelt at Terrastock 7 at Melwood Arts Center, Louisville Kentucky on June 19th - 22nd, 2008. This morning I listened to Pelt's Pearls from the River from 2003. What a fine fine piece of work it is. Of course if you don't like rolling waves of steely drone then maybe its not your cup of chai.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

To Share in Times of Austerity



It is Friday, but I began this post earlier as the above image stuck a chord in relation to the pirate utopias of the late William Burroughs (ever a comfort for me). Since I composed the above collage: Greek Rioters and The Wild Boys, riots have started in the Swedish city of Malmö. In the neighborhood of Rosengård youths have been running amok overnight. I wonder which European state is next for all night anarchy?


La Haine: Matthieu Kassovitz 1995 stark depiction of life in a Paris project is just as relevant today. Powerful performances and harsh images shot in black and white and intercut with actual footage from the riots. Said Taghmaoui is right on the money as one of three friends the movie follows for one day in the aftermath of a violent street riot.

Walking to work this morning most of the snow has melted and it was just under 5 degrees Celsius. A week before Christmas! Global warming is clear near the arctic (I live at Latitude 63° 50'). Five thousand Swedes are loosing their jobs every week at the moment (not the same people over and over again..ha ha...but throughout the whole country).

In related news, I am well, the family is fine, holidays (PhD code for 'working at home') have started and we have a Christmas tree. "Now we don our gay apparel, fa la la la la la la". On to the recommended media for the week found on the web:

You & Me on a Jamboree!
Reaggae, Roots, Dub, Ska: Music blog from Brazil lost of Mp3s of whole albums.

Monitor - webbradio - sr.se

Special with Karl Bartos: formerly of Kraftwerk and now sound artist and academic

Whole Earth Review Fall 1989 - Electronic Edition

The Alien Intelligence of Plants.....Edited by Terrence McKenna

UbuWeb Sound - Gertrude Stein

From A Gertrude Stein Reader, Northwestern University Press, 1993 These sound recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to the Estate of Gertrude Stein. © 2005 Estate of Gertrude Stein. Used with permission of Estate of Gertrude Stein, through its Literary Executor, Mr. Stanford Gann, Jr. of Levin & Gann, P.A Distributed by Penn Sound and UbuWeb.

The Wild Boys (1996)
Composer: Colin Bright
Performers: Synergy Percussion
4 Saxophones, 4 Percussion + samples of William S. Burroughs
This is the first in a series of pieces to shift focus somewhat towards a more urban psychoscape. The elements of 'place' are still there, but are less obvious. The title is drawn from the novel by William S. Burroughs. It is basically about homosexual warrior packs out to save the world from an oppressive police state. Samples of Burroughs readings are integrated into the music of four saxes and four percussion. This work was awarded the Sounds Australian Composition of the Year 1996, and was also selected in the Recommened-for-Broadcast List of 10 pieces at the Paris Rostrum 1997. It was subsequently the most broadcast piece.

Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy & Captain Anomoanon :: 2006
As Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy prepared to embark on what would become a very busy fall of 2006, he played two very special nights at Joe’s Pub in New York City. With brothers Paul and Ned Oldham (Will Oldham/BPB/Palace Music), the trio blistered through nearly 40 covers, nearly all traditionals - playing only one original (“Cursed Sleep” in its pre-release form). Below are three of those shows (all but the first night’s late show). Enjoy, and hat tip to the original taper.

Mahikari
Taking their name from a Japanese religious movement that translates to "true light", Mahikari is the combination of two of Japan's most creative guitarists. Acid Mother's Temple's Makoto Kawabata and Yamamoto Seichie of the Boredoms combining forces sounds like it could either be incredible or incoherent, but thankfully it leans much more to the former on this collaboration. As expected they open things up with a long and winding rumination on the various uses of stings, amps and distortion before plowing on through the rest of the record, touching on walls of noise and psych-wrangled blues along the way. The pair is tethered, though ever so slightly by the able drumming of former Thin White Rope pounder Stoo Odom. This was released in a super limited vinyl edition (of course) but has thankfully begun popping up in a few digital outlets as well. Absolutely brilliant performances from all involved.

Next week is a bit of a mystery. I will be online as usual, but waking and sleeping times become very mixed when I don't go to work. So we shall see. Solstice on Sunday, I will be playing didgeridoo somewhere at sunset as part of the Worldwide Didgeridoo Mediation. Om Gaia!

The Tomorrow Story

If you can read Swedish and are interested in what youth between the ages of 15-24 are doing with mobile media, you should read the new report Unga Mobile Vanor (Young Mobile Friends) (PDF). The big news is that two of three youths have abandoned ipod type technology in favor of mobile phone platforms with multimedia. With these tools media is obtained by 'blutoothing', sharing files over mobile networks. This makes the efforts by the Swedish government to allow authorities and publishers access to IP addresses of file sharers all the more meaningless. There will be no IP addresses in the future, just offshore phone carriers and mobile networks. Of course this is where the FRA law comes in maybe.

Tomorrow Story is a Stockholm based media research company. They have a cool report on branding as well.

Jet Junk and Speculative Architecture



Fanzine for Electronics and Aesthetics Junk Jet just released their second issue, which examines "Speculative Architecture." Published out of Stuttgart, Germany, each installment of Junk Jet pulls together a chaotic assortment of collage, text, art projects, lists, photographs, and much more. The term "speculative" is used to group "works of unpredictable architectures and volatile spaces within real and virtual environments." One such space could be the empty bedrooms found in booty dancing demos on YouTube minutes before the dancer enters the frame. Olia Lialina writes on Dennis Knopf's Bootyclipse which compiles fuzzy, webcam footage of these domestic interiors, while maintaining their original soundtrack. (This article also appeared as a section in her essay Infinite Seance 2.) The confused comments from non-art seeking YouTube users posted in response to Knopf's video entries draw out a sense of speculation in their attempts to understand what it is they're viewing. 0100101110101101.org's An Ordinary Building also toys with the viewer's expectations. They contribute documentation of this project, in which they placed a plaque on a nondescript building in Viterbo, Italy declaring that the structure "...was designed by an unknown architect in an irrelevant epoch and never belonged to an important person." The sign stands in contrast to others found throughout Italy which detail the history and importance of specific buildings. While Junk Jet's themes are generally quite open (JODI contribute a recipe to this issue), one salient strand seems to be the confusion and suspension which follow speculation, regardless of its architecture.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Some Evening Reflections



Is it Tuesday? I think so. Almost Christmas. I went to town today, only for ten minutes. My mission failed. I forgot my money. Not so many Christmas hyped happenings. Things seen more restrained this year. Maybe things are changing. I am living in the pages of my slowly evolving thesis. I wonder if the great authors spoke to their characters outside working hours? It is amazing how words can become reality.

Visual Audio by Brightblack Morning Light (Holographic Buffalo)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Recommended and Recycled Media from the Web

Another week runs down the cosmic gutter of our dreams. I am so tired but happy. We are approaching the Solstice at a rapid pace and the snow is thick on the ground here. On to the recommended media found by me on the web this week:

abstract hacktivism (PDF Book 66 pages)
In this publication, Otto von Busch describes ”hacktivism” in an abstract sense, relating it to phenomena such as shopdropping, craftivism, fan fiction, liberation theology, and Spanish social movement YOMANGO. Similarly, Karl Palmås examines how publications like Adbusters Magazine, as well as business theorists, have adopted a computer-inspired worldview, linking this development to the dot.com boom of the late 1990s.

Nifflas' Games
Two attempts have been made to build a bomb, capable of freezing the entire world. The first was a failure, and resulted in a living blue ball. The second attempt was a success. Now the clock is ticking, and the world is in grave danger. That is, unless...
Within a Deep Forest is a freeware 2D platform game for Windows featuring challenging gameplay, beautiful music, an evil doctor, and a deep forest.


Thug - Electric Woolly Mammoth LP (1988)

Thug's Electric Woolly Mammoth, a noisy Australian post-punk Faust Tapes if ever there was one. This album, the band's second and final LP, is a collection of anarchic hilarity, fuzzy blasts of noise, inspired space-rock trips and the occasional sweet little instrumental, like early Cabaret Voltaire filtered through a devastating outback demolition derby. Though there are two slightly longer, dronier tracks, most of the ideas don't last too long—just long enough to push you on to the next little bit of abuse, the sonic equivalent of that spinning scene from Guinea Pig: Devil's Experiment.


Free Audio Books: Download Great Books for Free | Open Culture
Hundreds of audio books for free download.

Podcasts - Learn at Any Time - The Open University
Enormous collection of free podcasts, Arts, Business, Computing, Education, Engineering, Languages, Law. Who needs a classroom?

Salifu Titah’s Band - Babu Me-Ee-Say Ala « Excavated Shellac
Approximately 24 million people in Africa now speak the Hausa language, from Western Africa across the continent to Eritrea. However, it’s in northern Nigeria and the country of Niger where you’ll find the majority of speakers. It is an Afro-Asiatic language, which means it’s in the same general family as Berber languages and the Arabic of Egypt - languages spoken in the northern part of the continent. It can be written in an Arabic script, known as Ajami.
Which brings us to this Hausa recording, made for HMV and on the TM series. The guitars show an influence of West African pop, but the voices sound real and unpolished. The singers are accompanied by two (?) guitars, drum, and percussion (perhaps a bottle). Alas, I could find no information on Salifu Titah.

Chewbone: alpha.new
Rickdog's collected 6,000+ mp3blog links, accessible from the alpha menu at page top. You can open frames on these blogs to view them directly on my site, and you can also view the feeds in a frame.

Digital Islam



I just joined Digital Islam: Research on Middle East, Islam and Digital Media. I am expecting to be happy I did. It looks like an amazing site and community of scholars and resources. One thing that stuck me is the long list of video games dealing with images of Islam and the Middle East. The above image is taken from Kuma War - Battle in Sadr City. Kuma, the company making the game, is affiliated with Stars and Stripes magazine and Military Spot, the US army's web portal. The critical reading of such games should be an essential skill developed in language and cultural studies education today.
The reason behind my contact with Digital Islam is the submission of an abstract for a paper (Digital Space and Religion: Representing the Sacred in 3D Virtual Worlds) for the conference “Changing Societies – Values, Religions, and Education” here at Umeå University next year (June 9-13). I recommend it to anyone interested in the subjects:

At present societal changes take place in societies worldwide. As a result of this, issues related to value changes surface. Issues related to democracy, to identities, cultures and ethnicity are brought to the fore. Through migration, the patterns of religious activities are also changing. The presence of citizens with more varied religious affiliations, some with new understandings of the role that religions play in society, poses new questions to respond to. Gender relations are another societal area where changes are taking place. The roles of women and men – or girls and boys – and equity between them have become crucial issues and are nowadays complexly interwoven with the others mentioned above.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Importance of Careful Translation



I have heard of people getting Chinese script characters tattooed and then find out later what they thought was the sign for Peace was actually taken from a menu.

Now the esteemed Max Planck Institute has committed a similar blunder. The above cover of Max Planck Research (MaxPlanckForschung) has just been withdrawn but not before thousands of copies were distributed. The Chinese text reads in translation:

With high salaries, we have cordially invited for an extended series of matinées

KK and Jiamei as directors, who will personally lead jade-like girls in the spring of youth,

Beauties from the north who have a distinguished air of elegance and allure,

Young housewives having figures that will turn you on;

Their enchanting and coquettish performance will begin within the next few days.

It is taken from a poster set up in the streets of Hong Kong's redlight district.

A meme or just dumb?

A more detailed account with expanded translation is available HERE.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Peer to Peer File Sharing in Sweden

Posts that contain IPRED-lagen per day for the last 30 days.

The topic of the IPRED Law in Sweden has faded in the blog world.

At the moment in Sweden the Justice Minister Beatrice Ask is doing a lot of media appearances trying to explain the incoming IPRED Lag (Property Rights Enforcement Directive) and it does not seem like the honourable minister is doing a very good job. The new law is supposed to make uploading of proprietary materials illegal according to the minister. There is a technical problem with this as most people understand; when one downloads one also uploads in the network scheme of things.

Ask said on the current affair program Agenda (25.30-38:40) recently that the law is designed to act against those which upload "commercial amounts" of copyrighted material. When questioned about what exactly are 'commercial amounts' the minister could not answer and said it is up to the courts to decide. This is despite the initial power to act against file sharers not being given to the judiciary by the IPRED Law but to the publishers of the material being shared illegally. A letter of demand is to be the first stage in any action being taken against file sharers.

According to the web news site di.se the new law does not specify the amount of files being shared as deciding if an offence is being committed. Once again in the article the minister said that it is up to the courts to decide.

I cannot help but think that this is all in preparation for the Pirate Bay trial which has been postponed in the summer and will now take place early next year. The fate of four young men, Fredrik Neij, Per Svartholm Warg, Peter Sunde and Carl Lundström, will be decided in court. I would think that the Pirate Bay trial will be sometime soon after April 1 2009. The day the IPRED Law comes into effect.

Related to the drama in Sweden I read this morning the top ten prophecies of the digital millennium and number 4 is

4. The decline of copyright

Regular readers of this column will know this is a hobbyhorse of mine. Copyright and most intellectual property laws are now an anachronism. Attempts by record companies and film studios and book publishers to stop people copying digital media are doomed to failure.

Technology is forcing big changes to business models.


I wonder how this is all going to play out.......badly I expect.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Weekly Media Recomended by the Management

Today I managed much to little work on the thesis beast. Meetings kept cropping up all over the place. So this is short and sweet and I am going to try and clean up a couple of pages of a chapter draft before I fall into bed for the dream ship takes me away for 8 hours....tomorrow is Saturday oh sweet sweet day!

Here is some good stuff for the week from the net:

New Acid Mothers Temple
Kawabata's and his Mothers are back, this time in full on Melting Paraiso UFO form. As heavy as his recent work with the Cosmic Inferno, the man hasn't lost a step over the course of who knows how many releases in several configurations and numerous side projects. It's hard not to like a release that contains a song called "Cosmic Soul Death Disco" that clocks in around 28 min and change, but the rest of this release is no slouch either. Another long piece starts the album off like a slow trudge to the center of a volcano before the aforementioned CSDD triggers the explosion of molten rock. The band cap Glorify Astrological Martyrdom with a powerful and by AMT standards very short song that gets to the fury without hesitation and though there's no room for an 8 minute solo it seems to live up to expectations rather nicely. This is actually one of the more consistent albums I've heard out of the last couple the band has released, building to a nice momentum without losing a step along the way.

Psychedelic Adventure: Psychedelic Shamans Of The Amazon
Here are some classic documentaries on Amazonian Shamanism

The Entheogenic Evolution Podcasts
Trance, shamanism, music, healing. Its all here in nice podcast form.

Forever Blowing Bubbles: A Walking Tour with Peter Linebaugh and Fabian Tompsett (video)
A walking tour and talk in the City of London with Peter Linebaugh and Fabian Tompsett, taking in landmarks of capitalist crisis past and present. Organised by Mute magazine http://metamute.org . 12 November, 2008.

HANSON RECORDS
This one looks like a winner. Really cool podcast from ex-Wolf Eyes Aaron Dilloway, with 20 layers of tape-hiss…always, featuring William Burroughs explaining how audio tape cut-ups can tell the future and Mick Jagger wilding on Moog synthesizer for Kenneth Anger’s 1969 film, ‘Invocation of My Demon Brother.” Unfortunatley there are only a couple of them, but certainly worth the listen.

Vintage Art Digital Downloads

High Resolution. No Usage Restrictions. No Licensing Fees. Commercial Use Allowed. Finally. High resolution, high quality fine art and vintage art by instant digital download. Created in 300-2400 dpi, up to 6000 pixels, without any usage limitations or licensing restrictions. Archival, professional quality for printing and more. Without even one rule or restriction. You will find many of these very same images for singular download--even with commercial use caveats--for over 100.00, 200.00 or more per download. Our prices are simply unprecedented and our quality is beyond compare.

HERMETO PASCOAL!

I had never heard of this guy before but just check out the videos on Arthur magazine this week.

Music Podcast Collection - Classical, Jazz, and Rock | Open Culture

Enormous collection of music podcasts.

Download | The Public Domain
This book is an attempt to tell the story of the battles over intellectual property, the range wars of the information age. I want to convince you that intellectual property is important, that it is something that any informed citizen needs to know a little about, in the same way that any informed citizen needs to know at least something about the environment, or civil rights, or the way the economy works. I will try my best to be fair, to explain the issues and give both sides of the argument. Still, you should know that this is more than mere description. In the pages that follow, I try to show that current intellectual property policy is overwhelmingly and tragically bad in ways that everyone, and not just lawyers or economists, should care about.


Keep on shining in the sunshine.

Body Swap



Valeria Petkova, center, of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm and Karolinska Institute student Andrew Ketterer, left, test the 'body-swap' illusion, a method whereby people can experience the illusion that either a mannequin or another person's body is their own body Monday Dec. 1, 2008 in Stockholm. In a study presented Tuesday, neuroscientists at Stockholm's renowned Karolinska Institute show how they got volunteers wearing virtual reality goggles to experience the illusion of swapping bodies with a mannequin and a real person.

Pedagogy with Mike Wesch



Interview with Mike Wesch
Mike Wesch, US Professor of the year, on anti-teaching and how to engage today's students. Mike was interviewed by Sebastian Hirsch and Ulrike Reinhard.

I have started teaching at first year university level. It is a serious business. What I think is most interesting is that I feel like I actually care about the people I am teaching. I want them to learn, I want them to benefit from the experience of attending my classes. This is not easy. I am using new media in teaching and want to continue to develop my use of these modes.

What Mike Wesch talks about in this video is very exciting. Building community, increasing styles of learning, changing learning spaces. "The possibilities...we can't really grasp them." Welcome to the sea of information!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

I am in Print (Soon)

Virtual Learning and Teaching in Second Life by Judith Molka-Danielsen and Mats Deutschmann (eds.)

Price: Price not currently set
Availability: Coming

About the book

Coming January 2009

Virtual worlds are increasingly incorporated into modern universities and teaching pedagogy. Over 190 higher education institutions worldwide have done teaching in the virtual world of Second Life (SL). This book is based on the first Scandinavian project to experiment with the design and testing of teaching platforms for life long learning in SL. In 2007 it created a virtual island or “sim” in SL called Kamimo Education Island. The project generated a number of courses taught in Second Life, and instructed educators in the use of SL. This book disseminates the experiences and lessons learned in that project and from other educational projects in SL. This book identifies the gaps in traditional forms of education. It provides a roadmap on issues of: instructional design, learner modeling, building simulations, exploring alternatives to design and integrating tools in education with other learning systems.

Revision: 1. edition
Published:
Case type: Paperback
Number of pages:
ISBN: 9788251923538

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Tuseday Evening Somewhere on Earth


Amon Düül II - Eye-Shaking King (1970)


Trying to wake or maybe going to sleep. My thesis has become like a virtual reality for me. I long for it when I am not with it but then when I again open the screen it is agony. Nothing much else to say. Winter. Sky very close to the ground. Writing. I am the eye shaking king.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Autonomous Culture Center Burns





The culture center Cyclopen (The Cyclops) in Högdalen south of Stockholm burnt to the ground last night under very suspicious circumstances. I have never visited the place but I have been following its progress over the past two and half years via the Fria newspapers and am quite shocked at this has happened. With two large neo-nazi rallies planned for the Swedish capital city this week I wonder if the events are not connected. The Cyclops had been built from nothing (literally) by those who made use of it for music, meetings, education, festivals, art, study circles, visiting cultural figures and of course activism. I hope the loss of Cyclopen gets the attention in the mass media it deserves.


Video in Swedish on the Cyclops activist and culture house.


Cyclopen in better days- I hope it is reborn from the ashes.

More in Swedish HERE, HERE and HERE.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Birthday William Blake





William Blake was born on this day 251 years ago - a visionary artist, poet, artisan, philosopher, mystic and husband.



"He who binds to himself a joy
doth the winged life destroy.
But he who kisses the joy as it
flies lives in Eternity's sunrise."


William Blake (28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827) was an English poet, painter, and printmaker. During his lifetime, and for half a century afterwards, his work was largely disregarded or even derided as the work of a madman. Today Blake's work is considered seminal in the history of both poetry and the visual arts of the Romantic Age. Blake's prophetic poetry is often considered to be the writings of extraordinary originality and genius. Though he is now considered to have been a spiritual visionary of the Romantic age, his work has been said to form "what is in proportion to its merits the least read body of poetry in the English language". His visual artistry has led one modern critic to proclaim him "far and away the greatest artist Britain has ever produced". Born inside London, Blake spent the entire course of his life, save for three years, inside the city. His creative vision, however, engendered a diverse and symbolically rich corpus, which embraced 'imagination' as "the body of God", or "Human existence itself".


The William Blake Archive

A hypermedia archive sponsored by the Library of Congress and supported by the Carolina Digital Library and Archives at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. With past support from the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities at the University of Virginia, the Getty Grant Program, the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, the Preservation and Access Division of the National Endowment for the Humanities, Sun Microsystems, and Inso Corporation.
Editors
Morris Eaves, University of Rochester
Robert Essick, University of California, Riverside
Joseph Viscomi, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


Books by William Blake on Google Books

Weeks Media Recomended



A more organised life (ha ha) has allowed me to post this week's recomended media on Friday as it should be. The world this week has me wishing the penguins were in charge. Although even they seem to have their troubles. The media for this week is an interesting mix of audio from the nature of the Great Southern Continent to the experiments of Swedish sound artists in the 1960s and 70s and a computer game that verges on art...or maybe its art that verges on computer game.

WYPR | Tapestry of the Times | Current Show
It's the inaugural episode of Tapestry of the Times, and we kick things off this week with a sampling of some of the label's original legends: Lead Belly and Woody Guthrie. We'll also hear blues from Warner Williams and Robert Jr. Lockwood, gospel music old and new, and international folk songs from Colombia, Cuba, and Iran. Real music, real people, and the stories behind the sounds... on Tapestry of the Time.

FYLKINGEN TEXT-SOUND FESTIVALS - 10 YEARS
A group of artists at Fylkingen started working with text-sound compositions during the sixties. At that time the medium had difficulty being accepted either by the poets or by the musicians; amongst composers the demand for 'pure' music was still very strong, and poets still clung to metaphor and semantic elements as the basic components of poetry. But the picture has changed during the last 15 years. The tyranny of the established media is no longer so powerful, and a belief in intermedia art is growing amongst artists from previously opposing camps.

Fylkingen Text-Sound Compositions
Text-Sound Compositions 1 and 2 (Sweden / Fylkingen, 1968)

Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) PALAOA - Livestream
You can listen to the underwater sound of the Antarctic Ocean with a delay of a few seconds here.

Immersions: Water Music and other Improvisations
Video artist Emile Tobenfeld (a.k.a. Dr. T) performs video improvisations using multiple DVD players,, utilizing his videography, photography and animation. Joining Dr. T for this performance is an ensemble of musicians featuring Dean (Deknow) Stiglitz (The Lothars) Electro Flute; Ramona Herboldsheimer--(The Lothars) Hammered Dulcimer; Rick Scott (Birdsongs of the Mesozoic) Synth; and Eric Crawley Harpeggi and and Synth. The free-flowing music and visual improvisations explore the theme of "The Secret Knowledge of Water."

Bob Dylan/Johnny Cash :: 1969 Sessions
Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash’s 1968 sessions. This is a true peice of Americana — two iconic masters of their craft conversing with one another via song. Recorded throughout 1969 on three separate occasions, these recordings mark an important historical collaboration between two American poets/musicians. Even a casual fan of either artist should at least give these a cursory listen. Great stuff.
CBS studios, Nashville, TN February 17-18, 1969. Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN May 1, 1969. Nashville Skyline: The quadraphonic mixes

The Graveyard. A Tale of Tales. (Freee Dowload)
The Graveyard is a very short computer game designed by Auriea Harvey and Michaël Samyn. You play an old lady who visits a graveyard. You walk around, sit on a bench and listen to a song. It's more like an explorable painting than an actual game. An experiment with realtime poetry, with storytelling without words.

Best for the weekend and the coming week.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mumbai and New Media




Having spent several weeks in Mumbai during my first trip to India (1990) I, like most people, are sort of stunned by what is happening in the city. Like a nightmare come to life.
It seems that network social media and citizen journalism is covering the events in a round the clock constant feed to the web. Videos on Youtube on the Mumbai attacks seem to be being updated every few minutes. Google Maps is running a dynamic map of the attack sites. Live blogging from central Mumbai is happening here. Twitter is also being used to get out information: See Mumbai, Bombay and #Mumbai. Flickr is also running up to the minute images from the attacks.
I hope it all stops very soon.

Ah Pook is Here





Click on Images to Come to Truth.


The show runs at the Saloman Arts Gallery in downtown Manhattan till December 14. There is a website as well with some nice high rez images online.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Southern Theory by Raewyn Connell



I have just finished reading Southern Theory (2007) by Professor Raewyn Connell. I found it an excellent introduction to what Connell terms 'southern theory', theories related to the social sciences that are formulated outside the metropole. The metropole is the centres of knowledge production in the hegemonic sense, Europe and North America. Connell writes:

"I use the term 'Southern Theory' for several reasons. First, the phrase calls attention to the periphery-center relations in the realm of knowledge. The editors of the Indian periodical Subaltern Studies used the term 'subaltern' not so much to name a social category as to highlight relations of power (See Chapter 8). Similarly, I use the term 'Southern' not to name a sharply bounded category of states and societies, but to emphasise relations - authority, exclusion, inclusion, hegemony, partnership, sponsorship,appropriation - between intellectuals and institutions in the metropole and those in the world periphery." (ix)


As an Australian living in Europe I understand the distance between the periphery and the metropole. While I consider this a potentially useful concept, the region I live in Europe I would consider a periphery within the metropole, so while the general sense of the center-periphery concept is clear it is more complex than it appears as well. I think Connell is aware of this, and it does not prevent what I consider the strongest point of Southern Theory being established. As a survey of academic, activist, theorist and research from outside the globally dominant nodes of knowledge production.

The chapter headings of Southern Theory are:

Table of Contents

Introduction

Acknowledgments

Part I: Northern Theory
Empire and the creation of a social science
Modern general theory and its hidden assumptions
Imagining globalisation

Part II: Looking South
The discovery of Australia

Part III: Southern Theory
Indigenous knowledge and African Renaissance
Islam and Western dominance
Dependency, autonomy and culture
Power, violence and the pain of colonialism

Part IV: Antipodean Reflections

The silence of the land
Social science on a world scale

References
Index

As a academic (approaching the end of initial training) one of the more concise and sharp paragraphs which made an impression on me in Southern Theory is

"Corporations are not the only institutions that allow the rich countries to exercise control and accumulate resources. There is also the metropolitan state, changing from its days of plump imperial pride to its scarecrow neoliberal present, thinning its commitment to citizen's well-being while growing its capacity for external destruction. There are museums and research institutions that have been key players in the centralisation of data from the colonial world. There are new sciences and technologies that, as Al-e Ahmad (1962) observed, lie behind the machine civilization that is the vehicle of Westoxification [Farsi: gharbzadegi]. Since his day computer technology has made the point even more forcibly. And there is the problem of tracing the changing locus of power in a system where now, as Garcia Canclini (1999:13) puts it the main decisions that shape everyday life 'are taken in places that are inaccessible and difficult to identify" (216)


Connell states elsewhere that Al-e Ahmad's suspicion of the machinist West was a not a resistance to technological change but rather a desire for the machines to be within the control of the fellahin.

"Only the society that makes machines, rather than always importing them, can control their power and use them in a labour-intensive, more appropriate agriculture that would reduce imports and support the population." (123)


Granted Connell is no economist. Being able to produce a good, be it a high-end manufactured one, does not guarantee an equitable society. But I believe the point regrading access to and use of technology in a global perspective is a good one. Witness the travesty that is internet access in sub-Saharan Africa today:


It is all going East-West!!!!


I would recommend Southern Theory to just about anyone who wanted to gain a broader picture of how "the global dynamics of knowledge" (the subtitle of the book) is organised today. With both integration of global economies and inequity and exploitation working in an unholy triad and many people being aware of this and acting out of desperation, it is very necessary that the issues addressed by Connell gain a broader scope of consideration. If they do not it will be bad for everyone.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Keeping Culture Free



Public Lecture by Lawrence Lessig in Auckland, New Zealand, about the war between "prohibitionists" and "abolitionists" in the copyright debate. Builds on old stuff, adds an idea about how best to deal with copyright in developing nations.

The Swedish government yesterday rejected any change to copyright law following a European Union directive for member nations to enter into a dicussion regrading the possibility of increasing the manditory copyright period from the current 50 years to 95 years following composition.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Book: Software Studies by Lev Manovich Available Online

Lev Manovich's new book Software Takes Command is available online as a PDF under a Creative Commons License. Here are the details:

Note: In the Spirit of the commons Lev Manovich makes available online his latest book. Release notes from the book’s website follow below.

———-

DOWNLOAD THE BOOK:
format: PDF.

VERSION:
November 20, 2008.
Please note that this version has not been proofread yet, and it is also missing illustrations.
Length: 82,071 Words (including footnotes).

Software Takes Command by Lev Manovich is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Please notify me if you want to reprint any parts of the book.

ABOUT THE VERSIONS:
One of the advantages of online distribution which I can control is that I don’t have to permanently fix the book’s contents. Like contemporary software and web services, the book can change as often as I like, with new “features” and “big fixes” added periodically. I plan to take advantage of these possibilities. From time to time, I will be adding new material and making changes and corrections to the text.

LATEST VERSION:
Check softwarestudies.com/softbook.html for the latest version of the book.

SUGGESTIONS, CORRECTIONS AND COMMENTS:
send to manovich@ucsd.edu with the word “softbook” in the email header.

Brought to you by Remix Theory

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Stanford Laptop Orchestra: Writerase



Trying to wake this blog up a bit, I give you the Stanford Laptop Orchestra performing Writerase by Brett Ascarelli (2008).

Media for Calm Waters

My other half has arrived home from the orient. The cold continues both inside and outside my head. Great events are eventing around the world: the Tibetans are activating, Sweden has passed the Treaty of Lisbon by a parliamentary vote, the USA is changing in the world with a remaining 45% of the global military, the Democratic Republic of the Congo really needs help and in Palestine the struggle continues.
Here is some media to ride out the storm of the now:

Jan Steele / John Cage (MP3s)
Brian Eno's Obscure Records label released only 10 albums during its existence from 1975 through 1978. Some of these have been reissued on CD (among them Eno's own 1975 masterpiece Discreet Music), but for some reason the album Voices and Instruments (Obscure No. 5, 1976) only exists on out-of-print vinyl. It is a very quiet and beautiful record, featuring three compositions by Jan Steele on one side, and five compositions by John Cage on the other side. Lyrics are by James Joyce and E. E. Cummings, performers include Jan Steele, Richard Bernas, Steve Beresford, Fred Frith, Robert Wyatt, and Carla Bley. It is not just mellow, it is avant-mellow...

European Film Archive
Film Treasures safeguarded by important European film archives are finally on the net! Incredible collection of early and important European films. All streamed online and all free. An important site for teaching.

Headphonica
Seventy four albums for free download from the headphonica label. I recomend My Log by Koen Park
There is also a Myspace site.


"Flower Travellin' Band-Anywhere -1970 Japan"

Flower Travellin' Band are an influential Japanese psychedelic heavy rock outfit that was first active in the late 1960s and early 1970s, consisting of Akira "Joe" Yamanaka (vocals), Hideki Ishima (guitar), Joji "George" Wada (drums) and Jun Kozuki (bass). As of January 12th, 2008 they have officially reunited and hired a new member, keyboardist Nobuhiko Shinohara.

Kev Carmody "Cannot Buy My Soul: The Songs of Kev Carmody"
2 CD Tribute Set (2006)
The songs and song order are identical on each of the CDs although, of course, the cover artists have their own interpretations. The cover artists are all popular and award-winning Australian performers (listed with the track list below) but, if you must choose, then I strongly recommend that you get CD2 with the originals.

Kevin Daniel Carmody is an Indigenous Australian singer-songwriter born in 1946 in Cairns, Queensland. His father was a second generation Irish descendant, his mother a Murri woman. The family moved to southern Queensland in early 1950. Carmody grew up on a cattle station near Goranba, 70km west of Dalby in the Darling Downs area of south eastern Queensland. His parents worked as drovers there, moving cattle along the stock routes. When he was ten years old, Carmody was taken from his parents under the assimilation policy and sent to a Christian school, after which he returned to his rural roots and worked for seventeen years as a country labourer.
At the age of 33 Carmody had the opportunity to go to university where he attended the Darling Downs Institute of Advanced Education, at which he completed a Bachelor of Arts degree, with honours. He later undertook postgraduate studies and completed a Diploma of Education from the University of Queensland, eventually finishing a PhD. While at university Carmody used his guitar as a means of implementing oral history in tutorials, which led to his career in music.
His first album, Pillars of Society, was released in 1989 and drew heavily upon country music and folk music styles. Australian Rolling Stone described the record as "the best album ever released by an Aboriginal musician and arguably the best protest album ever made in Australia". In subsequent recordings he has adopted a broad range of music styles from reggae to rock and roll.


British National Party (BNP) membership list Nov 2008 (download torrent) - TPB

Leaked membership list of the British right-wing party, the BNP (British National Party). Leaked in November 2008, believed to date from late 2007. Includes names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, occupation details and membership comments. Ten thousand members of the BNP spread, strangely enough, across the world. Knowing who these people are is perhaps a step towards understanding the retrograde politics of isolation preached by the BNP.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Talan Memmott in HUMlab


The Topic of the Seminar: In[ter]venting Multi-Modal Rhetoric(s)/(a) Poetics of Emergence



A Portrait of Selves


Yesterday I attended two seminars in HUMlab, one on fan fiction, which was very interesting but primarily focusing on pedagogy and younger authors (not really my scene), and one on digital poetics. The second of these (which was actually the first in the order of the day) has been making me think since I attended it. Talan Memmott presented a word and image performance with a basis in critical theory, art and design (although he is no fan of the last term). When I was actually listening to the seminar I found some of it difficult to follow, dense and intense at the same time. But then afterwards we adjourned to the pub with a chance for chat I (drank very little and) went back over the talk and began to realize how close much of it was to the area I am working with in my own research. As a result, today I have felt a renewed sense of focus in my thesis writing (I managed a page today, not bad considering I only started working on it a 16:00..a long story, single parenthood continues for another 24 hours).
I have spent the last few days in a bit of a confused state about how to finish a chapter I have been (re)working on for a month now. Talan's wild imagery and persistent questioning of the possibilities helped me see what it is I am trying to say.
If you want to see the seminar here is the link to it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday Morning Wake Up


Flower Travellin' Band, live 2008, Satori Pt II

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Recomendations from the Net for Now

This week's recommended media is dedicated to lone parents everywhere. After one week of caring for two children, ages 3 and 8, I am in awe of anybody who manages such a life by themselves. I believe we should have a week each year dedicated to lone parents, where public transport is free for people who are raising children alone, as well there could be theater, music and other cultural and even sporting events where lone parents get cheaper (or free) entry and child minding is free. Any town or local government that implemented Lone Parents Week would be setting a standard for the world to follow.
And now for a few online media pieces that I thought help me get through this difficult week:

HEVOSET-S/T, TAPE, 2004, FINLAND
Predating their recently issued eponymous LP on Dekorder by four years, this blink-and-you-missed-it 50 copy cassette by Finnish freak folk/freak out operatives Jan Anderzen (Kemialliset Ystavat, Avarus, Tomutonntu etc) and Jani Hirvonen (Uton, Aan, Last Night On Earth) finds these two initiating a typically (if enjoyably) bedragged pseudo ritualistic trawl through wheeze, twang, rustle and stumble on their way toward heavy lidded enlightenment.

Six Albums of Studio and Bootlegs by Syd Barrett
Six albums of bootleg and studio material by the late Roger 'Syd' Barrett. Opel was the original lp with left overs from the Barrett and Madcap sessions and is extended with more extra tracks. The 5 song John Peel Session does not add a lot to it but it's nice enough for those who need more. Magnesium Proverbs is a bootleg with singles and takes from Pink Floyd and Syd Barrett solo. Quality is not always good so it is mostly a listen for the diehard Syd Barrett fans.

Why Google’s book deal is such a big deal
If you want to search for PDF-files containing out-of-copyright books, go to the advanced search form and by click on the “Full view only” radio button before entering your search terms. Once you select a book from your results, you’ll see a “Download” button on the right side of the page. The result pages also have a pull-down menu that lets you select this option.

Mp3: Grievous Angel - Devotional Dubz Mix for FACT Magazine
00:00: Jill Scott: Slowly Surely (Grievous Angel's Erzulie Edit)
02.20: Craig Mack: Brand New Flava (Grievous Angel's Iron River Edit)
05:19: Grievous Angel: Lady Dub
08:07: Jill Scott: Watching Me
09:30: Vaccine: Wishful Thinking (VIP Mix)
12:03: DJ Abstract: Touch
15:18: Jill Scott: Crown Royal (Grievous Angel's Fucking In Sunshine Edit)
17:07: Jill Scott: My Love (Grievous Angel's Deeper, Tighter Edit)
19:29: HorsePower Productions: Gorgon Sound
21:56: Grievous Angel: Lady Dub (2Step Remix)
25:10: Groove Chronicles: Be Happy
28:09: Grievous Angel: What We Had
31:47: El B: Bison
31:58: Groove Chronicles: Faith In You
34:13: Dru Hill: Freak Like Me (El B Remix)
39:11: El B: Two Thousand
40:34: Our Lady of Rage: Afro Puffs
42:00: Grievous Angel: I Love Dem
49:13: Ends

Friday, November 14, 2008

Space and Place in Architexture

I gave a lecture yesterday on Space and Place in Architexture for the Museum Studies course I have been working with. I made a long blog entry for the session on my teaching blog Augmented Reality. Accessible from the link are such gems as

"The power a place such as a mere room possesses determines not only where I am in the limited sense of cartographic location but how I am together with others (i.e. how I commingle and communicate with them) and even who we shall become together. the "how" and the "who" are intimately tied to the "where", which gives to them a special content and a coloration not available form any other source. Place bestows upon them "a local habitation and a name" by establishing a concrete situatedness in the common world. This emplacement is as social as it is personal. The ideolocal is not merely idiosyncratic or individual; it is also collective in character." Edward S. Casey, Getting Back into Place: Towards a New Understanding of the Place-World. (23)

Over on Augmented Reality there are images, a couple of videos, lots of quotes and a great map:

Two Seminars in HUMlab (Streamed online)

Next week on Wednesday 19 November there is a double header in HUMlab (all times are Central European GMT+1):

At 13.15 Talan Memmott who is a writer/artist and Lecturer in English at Blekinge Institute of Technology, Karlskrona, will talk about In[ter]venting Multi-Modal Rhetoric(s)/(a) Poetics of Emergence.
Abstract: This presentation will look at electronic literary practices and the modes and methods of meaning-making there in. Using my own creative work as an example, I will discuss how the poetic formation and rhetorical outcomes of my work are integral to the ‘text’ of the work, and integrated into what could be called an environmental grammatology. From programming to visual design, the word to the image, user interaction to instrumentality -- we have moved from “Work to Text” to Work...
This is a joint venture with the Department of Language Studies and the Department of Culture and Media.

At 15.15 Christina Olin-Scheller from Karlstad University will talk (in Swedish) about Författande fans – om ungas läsande och skrivande på nätet.
Abstract: Unga nätkulturer, som en rad olika fanfiction-sajter, är många gånger kraftfulla informella lärmiljöer för barn och ungdomar. I fanfiction som handlar om att skriva vidare på redan publicerade fiktionstexter, tar läsarna kommando över fiktionen och utvecklar nya liv för karaktärer som Harry Potter, Luke Skywalker från "Star Wars" och manga-figuren Naruto. Den täta interaktionen mellan läsare och författare på fanfiction-sajterna skapar en konstruktiv skrivprocess som skolans formella lärmiljö kan ta intryck av. Seminariet behandlar frågor som rör skärningspunkten mellan unga nätkulturer och undervisning.
I samverkan med Språkstudiers höge seminarium i didaktik och litteraturvetenskap.

If you are suffering from distance the telematic body can help by accessing the stream from here (opens on the hour of seminar).

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Google Earth Rome Reborn



Google today resurrected ancient Rome online, opening a three-dimensional virtual version of the city for cyber-explorers interested in trips back through time.

People using free Google Earth software can seemingly fly past more than 6500 buildings that stood in the city at the peak of the Roman Empire in 320 AD.

Online visitors can swoop in for close-ups of structures and peruse pop-up information "bubbles" written by historians.

Some buildings feature full interiors. Internet surfers can visit the Roman Forum; linger in the Colosseum; pass through the Arch of Constantine and follow in the footsteps of gladiators in the Ludus Magnus.

Rome is the first ancient city recreated at Google Earth, an interactive online Atlas that provides tools and technology that enable people to explore the world.

To commemorate the launch, Google is inviting US educators to take part in a contest promising prizes for innovative lesson plans based on the virtual Ancient Rome feature.


Google made use of the resources of the Rome Reborn project at the Univesity of Virginia, which has been working on 3D models of Rome since 1997:

From 1997 to 2007, the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities (IATH) of the University of Virginia, the UCLA Cultural Virtual Reality Laboratory (CVRLab), the UCLA Experiential Technology Center (ETC), the Reverse Engineering (INDACO) Lab at the Politecnico di Milano, the Ausonius Institute of the CNRS and the University of Bordeaux-3, and the University of Caen have collaborated on a project to create a digital model of ancient Rome as it appeared in late antiquity. The notional date of the model is June 21, 320 A.D

War Ends Reality Continues


A fine piece of culture jamming has been reported from NYC today. Arts activists handed out copies of the New York Times this morning bearing the above headline. There is a website reporting how life could be.......