Saturday, March 5, 2011
The Journal of Cosmology is currently running an article about the discovery of a fossil - on a meteorite (Vol. 13, March 2011; Hat tip: @swadeshine). Feel free to reread that sentence. The article is by Richard B. Hoover, Ph.D. NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center, who works on Astrobiology and Solar Physics. The journal's article synopsis states: "We believe Dr. Hoover's careful analysis provides definitive evidence of ancient microbial life on astral bodies some of which may predate the origin of Earth and this solar system."
Friday, March 4, 2011
Living Apparitions by Mario Leko. Culture Matters UNESCO World Heritage Sites Exhibition. ACF, London (15-25 March 2011).
Here are some images and music that crossed my path in the past week.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Alienmonster (Giger's Alien), 1979 © HR Giger, 2011. Image Source: Kunst Haus Wien.
H. R. Giger Update. What should pop up in my inbox yesterday, but a nice invitation from Kunst Haus Wien to a press conference with H. R. Giger? The Swiss artist who famously designed the alien in the Alien franchise will be meeting with the press today to discuss his new exhibition, Träme und Visionen (Dreams and Visions) which is running at the Kunst Haus (Untere Weißgerberstraße 13, 1030 Vienna) from 10 March to 26 June.
Atomkinder (Atomic Children), 1968 Collection of City Zürich © HR Giger, 2011. Image Source: Kunst Haus Wien.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Sean Young as Rachael in Blade Runner (1982). Image: Warner Brothers.
I09 and Bleeding Cool are reporting that a Warner Brothers-related company, Alcon, is buying the rights to produce spin-off movies around Blade Runner. Despite the nay-sayers, I hold out hope that they will do a decent job. And will someone please cast Sean Young? A 2007 EW report quoted her as saying that she was "a comeback waiting to happen." I wish someone would take her word for it.
Will Anne Hathaway play Selina Kyle in The Dark Knight Rises? Image Source: ScreenRant.
ScreenRant is reporting that Anne Hathaway is playing Catwoman in Gen X director Christopher Nolan's next Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises. Hathaway discussed it with Oprah during an after-Oscars interview, shown below the jump (see January reports already confirming here and here).
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Are we already at the changing of this guard? Silicon Valley at sunset. Image Source: Wear Cape Fly.
You may or may not have seen German company Audi's recent advertising campaign that pokes fun at old money and proclaims the rise of new luxury in its car designs. For some reason, they've roped Kenny G. into the campaign, which weirdly works. The ads proclaim all the images of old-fashioned capital, stability and property as symbols of a bygone era. The auto maker associates itself with the symbols of new tech-driven times. But what are those symbols? We're definitely moving away from the original image of tech as geeky and accessible, and we are already far from the 90s' vision of tech's radical and primal openness once proclaimed by Wired magazine and Wikipedia. Tech is slowly becoming the preserve of a new power base.
Monday, February 28, 2011
Image Source: Free Will Astrology.
Pessimism dominates the Millennial Zeitgeist. The thrill of predicting apocalypse is everywhere, whether you are an environmental activist, a light sweet crude oil trader or a religious eschatologist. After the stock exchange, one of the areas of our culture most devoted to predicting the future is astrology. Without discussing its credibility, one can find in astrology's popularity an index of our desire to read the signs and predict what is coming. It is a gauge of our interest in knowing time that is unknowable, and of how we try to know it.
The astrologer Rob Brezsny advocates optimism. To teach spirituality, he inverts beliefs we take for granted. A few years ago, he went out onto a freeway in California and gave away handfuls of money to passing motorists. This was his attempted karmic counter-balance to the greed of pre-Great Recession America. At the time, it looked crazy. But remember that Brezsny spends a lot of time thinking about the future. And in a way, what he did that day was a true indicator of what was coming. A Recession-ridden society is one forced to reevaluate its priorities and values, to give rather than take, to return to its roots.
Brezsny's optimism is a far cry from the bright eagerness of futurists like Ray Kurzweil, who hang their hopes on the Technological Singularity. Boomers both, still driven by the courage of their convictions as well as irrepressible confidence, it is Brezsny who appears far more attuned to the human side of massive change. One thing he argues is that we are living through the apocalypse right now. (Others think that the apocalypse has already happened and we are blindly toiling through the wreckage; in this view, World War I is often seen the turning point that changed everything.) In five years, or ten, or twenty, we will look back and say Brezsny was right, in the same way we might now say it, looking back on his antics on the motorway before the Great Recession. What does it mean if our world is on the verge of becoming 'post-apocalyptic' - and why should that be a good thing?
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Canadian Humour: A 1990 Honda Civic pimped up with tractor wheels, from The Red Green Show. Image Source: Macgyver Approved.
The interaction between humans and machines is always a concern these days. In this case, we've got a great shift from hi-tech to low tech. Here is a video of a Saskatchewan Bluegrass garage band (or should I say Bluegrass farm shed band) playing while using a tractor for percussion (Hat tip: @LillyLyle). Who says people don't live it up out in the country? See the video below the jump; it's very Red Green Show - you will laugh, I guarantee it.