31/08/2006

Is it a bird?

Is it a plane? No, it's Superman!

I had another thoroughly enjoyable cinema evening yesterday night, seeing Superman returns with W & T. This is a perfectly worthy successor and update of the 80's classic - something that you rarely get with remakes nowadays. I guess it takes a lot of moderation and confidence on the part of the director not to overshoot. Superman Returns is a well balanced template with online resources aplenty - bluetights.net???

What's becoming increasingly more annoying though, despite of the first digital projection to my knowledge, is the rather poor experience with online reservation system of Kino Basel AG. It's perfectly obvious that the internet is an inevitable nuisance to those guys. Their competitors at KITAG are so much more professional. I think I'll have to take care not to leave too much credit on that Moviecard ...

26/08/2006

White, too white

Thanks to this review in Weltwoche, I found out about a photo exhibition in Hamburg which I will not be able to see despite of its rather disconcerting effect. The exhibition consists of portrait studies by Andreas Deffner of Indians who are suffering from albinism. This would be rather innocent by itself, were it not for the powerful racial - or racist? - allusions the images work on. Whiteness as a genetic disorder for once. Rather daring - and bold is the critic who dares to venture into this minefield.

13/08/2006

40 years on ...

Where will we be? What's the shape of the world going to be?

Fascinating to see how it was 40 years back: This day 40 years back, the "Cultural" Revolution was kicked off in China, one of the most traumatic totalitarian events in recent history. And five years before that, the dividing wall between east and west Berlin was erected.

Fortunately, both apparently monumental events are now superseded by subsequent changes after just one generation. What will remain of today's big news? Hardly anything, I presume - certainly not the "war on terror".

12/08/2006

German brutality

"The German reputation for brutality is well earned. Their operas are known to last four to five days, and their language doesn't have a word for 'fluffy'."

Captain Blackadder in Blackadder Goes Forth

11/08/2006

Codices Electronici Sangallenses

More ancient manuscripts! We now have unlimited, free access to 100 (and rising to 400) rare manuscripts from the Convent Library St. Gallen. Some of those manuscripts date back to the 8th century CE. All pages of those manuscripts as well as their often spectacular bindings are available as high quality colour, high resolution pictures. This is amazing stuff!

09/08/2006

Da Finger!

You may be forgiven if you think you are being given the finger in the Z├╝rich main train station, but you'd be wrong. It's actually a warning to beware of pickpockets (Langfinger in German) turned steel, or whatever it is ... fancy!

08/08/2006

Aktionis

The Swiss webspace is increasingly filling up with "life" content! The latest addition to it is Aktionis, a student founded, independent portal to current discounts from Swiss retailers. Good stuff! Now, link this with Map Search, a store locator and match it with your personal shopping list to get a fully optimised shopping errand!

Also new in the webspace is pianoforte, the minimal art website of my nephew N's drumming band. Not yet very informative, really ...

05/08/2006

Domesday Book

Who'd have thought that a 900 years old tax inventory can make for an interesting read?! See for yourself in the Domesday Book.

Philips RK 50

A foray into the pre-digital age - Philips RK 50 tape machine for sale.

Btw, the heaviest iPod weighs about 86 times less (without tapes for the machine) and holds about 672 times more music. And it does a few more things, like doubling for a watch, calendar, toy etc ... talk about productivity efficiency increase - some 58'000 fold!

Only 15

It's only 15 years now that the world wide web has been invented at the CERN in Switzerland, and already it is completely indispensable. See this BBC timeline.

P.S. Here is the historic newsgroup message.

03/08/2006

A mighty fine mouse!

Yay! One day ahead of schedule, my new Mighty Mouse arrived today, and already I wouldn't want to go back anymore. So, if you would like to keep a well behaved, plain vanilla, tailless rodent, just let me know ...

In other news, I finally downgraded my 5 MBit/s service to a 3 MBit/s one from Cablecom. The difference will more than pay for the VoIP landline that I am switching to at the same time, which in turn pulls the last plug on my Swisscom connection. About the CHF 100 downgrade fee that Cablecom charges ... let's just say that it doesn't take much clever negotiating, seeing how the contract's notice is three months at no cost.

Speaking of all that connectivity - you already know that I am a FONero, and I am still happy with the idea, even though the router turned out to be dramatically (+100%) more expensive than almost free because of unexpected customs & VAT. See my gripes here.

02/08/2006

Synaesthesia

Amazing! I used to think that Synaesthesia was a rather brainy & abstract concept in art, until I just saw the Apple profile of Japanese artist Takagi Masakatsu. This guy's got it!, I thought. Turns out that Synaesthesia is in fact a psychological perceptive condition! Live & learn ...