A photographic glimpse of life in a nunnery

Friday, 17 October, 2014

Probably not something that we see all that often, a glimpse into life in a nunnery, or convent, by Edinburgh based photographer Craig Buchan.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

The next stage in GIF animation evolution, the GIF Video

Friday, 17 October, 2014

I think GIF animations are more widely used now than twenty years ago, when they were one of the few ways to serve motion files the web. While the latter day animations are often fun, they can chew up download or airtime allocations, on account of their size.

So what to do? Online image hosting service Imgur may have a solution by way of Project GIFV, an application that converts GIF animations to video files. The reduction in file size certainly looks promising, a raw GIF animation at fifty megabytes becomes a video GIFV file of some four megabytes.

The cornerstone of Project GIFV is a platform-wide upgrade to automatically convert uploaded GIF files on the fly into the MP4 video format. The converted MP4s are significantly smaller than their equivalent GIFs, which allows them to load at lightning-fast speeds with better quality. By lowering bandwidth consumption, the change also optimizes Imgur for users on mobile. Rejoice!

Mind you, four megabytes still seems sizeable for a GIF animation, but at least it’s a step in the right direction.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

The desk, in downsize mode since 1981

Thursday, 16 October, 2014

When I first started working I had no idea I’d one day be able to pack the entire contents of my office into a day bag, and base myself almost where ever I wanted to.

Yet since 1981, or maybe a little later than that, the amount of desk space we require has been diminishing, to the point that desks as we know them may well soon be obsolete.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

It’s just another day at the office that doesn’t exist

Thursday, 16 October, 2014

So, these days you work for yourself, by yourself, from home, whatever, but still – for reasons best known to yourself – miss being in an office environment. The politics. The policies. The procedures. The culture. The water cooler. The list goes on. Striking out on one’s own sure seems to have its drawbacks, doesn’t it?

Enter then Generic Office Roleplay (Facebook login required), possibly the best online simulation of an office I’ve ever seen.

The new management team thank you for your years of service and take this opportunity to tell you that the only changes which will be implemented in the next few months will be those that can clear the well defined process mapped out on pages 2814 to 2912 of your employee manual. We’re dedicated to red-tape, bureaucracy and efficiency.

I feel much better now.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

Drone racing on the forest moon of Endor

Thursday, 16 October, 2014

This may be the best possible way to use drones that I’ve seen so far… race them in Rebels versus Imperial troops on the forest moon of Endor – as seen in Return of the Jedi – style.

Presented here in French but click the “Subtitles/CC” button for subtitles.

Via prosthetic knowledge.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

Empathy, something useful to bring to an argument

Thursday, 16 October, 2014

Ten things to keep in mind when arguing a point of view, culled from a book written on the topic by Jonathan Herring.

Arguments, and for that matter discussions, should be about seeing things through the other person’s eyes. They should lead to a better understanding of another person’s view.

That’s what I call lucid thought.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

Where’s the time I tried to save gone? Anywhere but here it seems

Wednesday, 15 October, 2014

Parkinson’s law states “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion”. So even though I restructure, reduce even, my work commitments, can I log-off for the day any earlier? Apparently not. What to do? Hope that the time I was meant to be saving makes a delayed reaction like appearance. Soon. One can only hope.

In the interests, however, of not losing sight of what’s important though, here’s some music, the Null remix of Anywhere, by Frames and Elizabeth Rose, no less.

Via Nina Las Vegas.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

The favourite books of the famous and influential

Wednesday, 15 October, 2014

It occurs to me I’m not reading enough books at the moment. Therefore I read “To Kill a Mockingbird” last week, and am about to start “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” by Hunter S. Thompson, after I’ve read “Life in Half a Second”, by Matthew Michalewicz, a tome I think I need to read. And absorb.

I’ve had to cut back on the movies I watch to do achieve though, but I’ve probably been a little over-weight films these last few years anyway.

Long story short, I’m often on the look out for reading ideas, so this list of the favourite books of people such as Bill Murray, Michelle Obama, Robin Williams, Olivia Munn, Hillary Rodham Clinton, James Franco, and forty-four other “cultural icons”, might have come along at just the right time.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

How difficult is it to make a film about someone who is still alive?

Wednesday, 15 October, 2014

The Theory of Everything (trailer), a romantic biographical film about British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, and his first wife Jane, opens in Australian cinemas on 29 January 2015.

Making a biographical film about any historical figure has its challenges, but what of those who are still living? What considerations must film producers make, and to what degree – if at all – should they involve their subject?

New Zealand born filmmaker and novelist, Anthony McCarten, who wrote the screenplay for “The Theory of Everything”, describes the process:

I would liken it to walking down the street and looking into the window of a house that’s illuminated, and seeing two people dancing, but not knowing what music they’re dancing to. The process of scriptwriting, whether it’s about real people or not, it’s imaging what music they’re dancing to.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,

Ok, so you can run, but can you properly imagine a person running?

Wednesday, 15 October, 2014

Well, this is embarrassing. People have been running for what, tens of thousands of years, but we, the same people, still don’t how to properly depict, or even imagine, this physical activity?

Wilson also points out that there’s a huge difference between asking someone to strike a running pose, and asking someone to run. “The only thing your postural systems cares about is staying upright, maintaining balance,” he says. “Running is about dynamic balance; maintaining balance as your mass moves. This is why we run in a contralateral pose – that’s how you balance out all the various forces and preserve your upright posture. Posing as if running is static balance.” In other words, the body asked to pose and asked to run is acting on two very different requests.

Read more posts on related topics

, ,