Advice from one lifetime to another

Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

WireTap was a Canadian radio show that recently ceased broadcasting, after an eleven year run. As a farewell to audiences, and the world it seems, they produced this video clip, featuring people of all ages, young and old, offering each other a lifetime’s advice.

Don’t listen to anyone’s advice. No body knows what the hell they’re doing.

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Destroyed but still there, the “information” retained by a black hole

Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

Nothing can escape from the immense gravitational attraction of a black hole. Not even light. Nor information either. Information, in this context, being a more palatable reference to the crushed and mangled remnants of whatever was captured by said black hole.

So it’s not data we that we might be able to do something useful with, were we ever to, somehow, retrieve it. Which we can’t. British physicist Stephen Hawking has been in the news recently, talking about this information, and offered a real world, easy to understand, explanation of this… stuff:

At Monday’s public lecture, he explained this jumbled return of information was like burning an encyclopedia: You wouldn’t technically lose any information if you kept all of the ashes in one place, but you’d have a hard time looking up the capital of Minnesota.

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The travel photography of Anuar Patjane

Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

Having travelled from Antarctica to Zanzibar, and a whole lot of places in between, the question has to be asked, where has Mexican photographer Anuar Patjane not been? Whatever, he has taken some incredible photos of his journeys to date though.

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Once we were content producers and collectors, now we are curators

Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

Link blogs, Tumblr pages, and Instagram accounts, have made curators out of many of us. They are places, among many others, where we place links, photos, videos, and snippets of text. And that’s just online. Offline curating, of the non museum, art gallery variety, is huge also.

So why is curating, as it were, as popular as it is now? Miya Tokumitsu, writing for The New Republic, argues that curation offers individuals a semblance of control, in a world where control is seemingly in short supply.

One simple explanation is prestige appropriation. This is understandable – “curation” lends the cultural capital and seriousness associated with art institutions to the mundane assemblages of our lives. Curating an Instagram feed or Christmas list sounds more legitimate, somehow, than simply having a social media profile or scribbling on a piece of paper.

Then again, some people have been curating long before it was known as curating. It sure has a ring to it, but if you ask me, curating is simply a high sounding term for blogging. Or keeping a collection of restaurant menus, for that matter.

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Fun parks, more fun after they’ve closed for the day?

Monday, 31 August, 2015

Photo by Stefano Cerio

Visiting Dismal Land, the new “fun park” opened recently by UK street artist Banksy, in the south west of England, is something I wouldn’t mind doing.

But going along to these amusement parks in Hong Kong and China, after hours, when no one at all was there, as Stefano Cerio, a photographer who is based in both Paris and Rome, did recently, also has a certain allure.

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If extraterrestrials talk to us, how will we understand them?

Monday, 31 August, 2015

There are still some ancient languages on Earth that linguists are still struggling to understand, so how would we fare if an alien intelligence tried to contact us? How might we ever make sense of what they were saying?

Yet, any carefully thought-out message sent to us may be composed in a way that we might be able to comprehend, without too much difficulty:

“If an advanced civilization did want to communicate with us, they would probably choose to base their communication on something we have in common, such as the fact that we live in the same physical universe,” says Siemion. “They might use the properties of astrophysical objects, like pulsars, quasars or the shape of our galaxy, as a first step at teaching us their language.”

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Body language cards for the online generation

Monday, 31 August, 2015

So many body language gestures, so little time to comprehend them instantaneously. Tom Rothe and Stefan Wabner have put together sixty three cards that will help you figure out what someone is really thinking, or how they see themselves.

Comes in app form as well, so you can conduct such inquiries discretely.

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How long does it take to earn enough for a hamburger on your pay?

Monday, 31 August, 2015

A good measure of your salary, or otherwise… how long, as in what number of minutes, hours, days, weeks, and so on, does it take you to earn enough money to buy items such as a hamburger, a pair of running shoes, a flat screen television, a new car, and a house.

For those living in Melbourne or Sydney, the estimated time to buy a house however may be just slightly out.

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A new trailer for “The Martian”

Friday, 28 August, 2015

The latest trailer for Ridley Scott’s upcoming sci-fi adventure feature, The Martian, that is due for release in Australia at the end of September. I have to say, this looks promising.

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The world needs more emojis, so turn photos into emoji mosaics

Friday, 28 August, 2015

This sounds incredible, but it has been almost three years since I last mentioned the word “emoji” here. It also happened to be first as well. That is weird though, because the world is awash with emoji, the smileys, emoticons, or pictographs, that originated in Japan.

I better get back with the program then… here’s a link to Emoji Mosaic, by Eric Andrew Lewis, that allows you to turn any image you care to choose, into a mosaic of emoji characters.

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