Dave Pollard talks about models to find the intersection of your genius, your passion and your purpose. I really like intersection diagram he has made and quite a lot of the models are new to me and will need exploring.
5 min 1 sec.
Juggler, magician, comic and general super hero Penn Jillette the talking partner of Penn and Teller has a podcasted radio program. Penn is also a fierce fighter for freedom of speech and critic of the church. With his partner he did one of my favorite favorite sequences on the TV series "the West Wing", a trick where they burned the flag wrapped in the US constitution and of course scandalous hilarity ensued.
Edge.org has their annual question online, this year it is "What is your dangerous idea?". Answered by a bunch of luminaries they are well worth browsing through.
There is a short interview with Richard Dawkins over on beliefnet where of course he talks about evolution, creationism, god and atheism. I thought this part was particularly telling:
...I feel elated. My book, "Unweaving the Rainbow," is an attempt to elevate science to the level of poetry and to show how one can be—in a funny sort of way—rather spiritual about science. Not in a supernatural sense, but there are uplifting mysteries to be solved. The contemplation of the size and scale of the universe, of the depth of geological time, of the complexity of life--these all, to me, have an inspirational quality. ...
This touches a nerve with me. I often get annoyed by people that think that one can not marvel at nature if one tries to understand it. In my opinion understanding almost always ends up enhancing the beauty of what one observes.
Frederik Samuel noticed something strange with these two ads.
What is TBWA trying to do here? It's not a spoof becuase a Golf is hardly in the same class as the 300Z. Everything is the same except that this time the cops are protecting the car except being protected by it.
Parody is great when you know what is being parodied and that is what makes this TBWA Nissan parody of the VW ad so strange, nobody outside the advertising world will ever understand the joke on the polo ad but still they have gone through a lot of expense to almost clone the Polo ad, if you look carefully you will notice the cars are very similar but not the same, the location is exactly the same or is the sidewalk and wall just photoshoped back in? In any case it seems like a lot of expense for a parody that very few will ever understand. Now the strange thing is that there are a bunch of other copies of the Polo ad.
In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy and abortion in the prosperous democracies.I don't doubt the statistics but I have second thoughts on the conclusion. I think that it is more probable that countries with a functioning social safety net tend to become less religious over time. It works something like this, as people feel more confidant that their public services can help them in their hour of need they feel less the need to rely on a higher power. I think a big reason the US is so religious compared to Europe is that they don't have a functioning social safety net, and if one is very cynical, one could even think that the reason the religious right are in bed with the neocons is that they both benefit in different ways from weakening the state.
99.9% of graffiti is crap and vandalism but Banksy proves that the medium can be interesting. I would love to see public service graffiti. Something around dog shit in Brussels seems sort of appropriate, or some kind of pirate signalization to make people in Brussels stand on the right in escalators.
Of course this being Belgium it rained for Rollerparade so that was canceled, but on saturday morning the Euro Rollers invited me to skate along to the Atomium. We went by the Chateau Royal and had some nice thrills going down the hill by the japanese tower where someone clocked over 50km/h on their wrist GPS, don’t think I reached that speed but it was scary enough, I learned that the trick when the skates start to wobble is to put more weight on the heel and wiggle your toes.
On sunday morning after a couple of hours sleep it was off again but this time out to the Bois de la Cambre via les Etands d’Ixelles and back again via the Brussels Observatory and some incredibly stupid hills selected by me.
I really enjoyed meeting all the Eurorollers during these couple of days, they are an incredibly warm and welcoming group, furthermore I think they are on to something, it must be one of the best ways to visit cities as you really get a feel for them and not only the tourist parts but also the neighborhoods.
Something massively cool happened to me tonight, just as I was skating home a group of about 20 inline skaters zoomed passed by my place. Curious if this was some kind of organized group I caught up with them and asked but they explained that they were just traveling and instead invited me to join them. Off we went to the EU parlament, the Cinquantenaire and back via the "Park Royal" and "Galeries de la Reine". While skating they explained that they were from all over the US and do these trips every year to different cities in Europe. It must be a great way to get a real feel for a city. It is also feels very safe to be a gang of skaters cars have to acknowledge a cluster like that.We finally ended up at the "Halles Saint Gery" to have a couple of beers, a fantastic group of people. And then to top of the experience it turns out that Meg sitting next to me is also an Information Architect. Tomorrow we are off again but this time in the context of the Rollerparade for a different kind of experience.
I waited. I listened to selections from her library: Low, Manual. And then the sound skipped. I flipped to iTunes. Her library title had changed: try_the_new_dalek.A conversation began, conducted solely by library title, and it continued for the next couple of hours.
Not only is itunes an extension of identity but its now also becoming a communication medium
There are many kinds of art but I have not seen good political art in a long time until this "Licence to Sit".
Here is the Internet Chair with magnetic stripe card reader and spikes that retract when a seating license is downloaded from a license server in response to input from the card reader incoroprated into the chair.
If you are following the insipid growth of service locked devices and digital rights management this piece is much scarier than funny.