Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Mercedez Bens International Media

Mercedes Benz International is providing nice mixtapes and podcasts with young artists (musicians and authors) from all over the world. In fact they feature groups like Jazzanova, Micatone, Fat Freddy's Drop, and many others. Very eclectic mixes and nice flash animations. Internet at its fullest.

Check out this Mercedez Bens website.
(Today they put up Mixed Tape 10)

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Deep Ascii full length (a l.ink)

Gorgeous: Watch adult movie classic Deep Throat full length as an inoffensive Ascii version on this page (requires JAVA). The "Asciimator algorithm" was developed by mediaartist Walter van der Cruijsen.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Neuro 101 - 3-D Brain Anatomy

A colorful crash course in functional neuroanatomy, i.e. a short and shiny introduction to the parts of the brain and their function (as far as it is known) can be found on this website.
You can also stay longer and learn more about e.g. methodology/technology and optical illusions. Popular science at its best.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Art: Skateboarding, B-Boying, Rodney Mullen, David Bernal

With my limited amount of insight into B-Boying and Skateboarding, I think there are similar discussions going on in both disciplines. Discussions that are also generalizable to art in general, it doesn't matter which modality of expression is chosen.
To turn the claim upside down: Important (and controversial) points in the general discussion about art and aesthetics can be discovered in the debate within the disciplines of b-boying and skateboarding. However, in a less theoretical and (seemingly) less intellectual way.

At the heart, there is the dichotomy of minimalism versus grandiosity with contributions of the discussion about the relation between skill and popularity.
In B-Boying it seems to be implemented in the debate about powermoves (fancy and very athletic movements) against simpler moves that are in closer symbiosis with the rhythm of the music.
In Skateboarding there are e.g. fancy 720 degree flips and turns over high obstacles versus rather delicate and more sophisticated freestyle moves that mainly involve the board and the skater.

In the historic development usually the "higher, faster, wider" paradigm is observable, with regular interruptions that revert to older virtues.

To make a long story short: Check out Rodney Mullen's skills in this video. He is almost 40 years old and perfectly combines the two extremes mentioned above in skateboarding, yielding sophisticated, yet pompous performances.

And then there are artists who are in a league and a discussion of their own. An example in b-boying is David Bernal, called Elsewhere. Check out the incredible collaboration videos at the kollaboration festival 2003 and also in 2001.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

History of Media, Media of History

I discovered this media archive of CBC, Canadian Television. It covers loads of interesting topics from categories like "People", "Conflicts&War", "Arts&Entertainment", "Politics&Economy", "Life&Society", "Science&Technology", and "Sports".
It is huge and handy, fascinating and fancy.
In my opinion, the best gadget is the clearly arranged, flash animated timeline (click on the left "Explore the Archives Timeline").

Once again, once again-gain

I really really dig and recommend Bluejake.
The photos and the commentaries are terrific.
Check out the MomoMetaStyle.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Nostalgic Style (a link by mo)

For anyone who remembers Audiotapes (i.e. was born before 1990), and used to buy blank ones in order to make stop-button mixtapes or record the charts from the radio - check out this website which hosts the biggest virtual collection of blank tapes imaginable: http://hanazuc02.ld.infoseek.co.jp/cassettes/cassettes.htm

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Things you already know

There is a nice small internet platform where you can sell and buy used stuff. It goes by the strange name of ebay.com... Check it out.
Just kidding.

But there is another site you should already know (because I mentioned it earlier):
bluejake.com, the best daily photoblog on the web. There is no way I could over-emphasize its beauty.
Especially check out his recent Top of the Rock series part 1 and part 2, consisting of gorgeous NYC pictures shot from the top of the Rockefeller center.

Even if your interest in photography is small, your sense of aesthetics is hard-wired.

Friday, October 28, 2005

The Meaning of Life

If you would like to use the internet as some sort of sophisticated television, watch this channel:

Sunday, October 16, 2005

JFK Assassination - Zapruder Film

Since I was asking about the origin of the animated gif footage a couple of weeks ago, and people seemed to be interested, I did some research.

Here are the results:

It's genuine footage, originally part of 8mm home movie, shot by Abraham Zapruder, a manufacturer of women's clothing and spectator at the fatal presidential parade. He used top-of-the-line technology and caught the assassination on tape. Since his material is supposed to be the best visual evidence of the catastrophe, the film came to be known as Zapruder Film.

If you want to know more about it, check out this interesting 10-minute documentary on the assassination of JFK and the Zapruder film, which - by the way - was bought by the US government in 1998 for the incredible amount of $16 million.

More links (e.g. the whole film [some 25 sec]) can be found on Wikipedia, the internet's ingenious encyclopedia.

How could I...? Mawil

I never told you about mawil? How come?
There is this Berlin guy who is doint some great comic art. His name is Markus Witzel (a/k/a mawil). Some of his books are also published in English. Check out his website www.mawilcomix.de and support him. Legend "has i"t that he was the first student at the Berlin University of the Arts to hand in a comic book as his final thesis. Check out SuperLumpi and Hasi!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

The Super Mario Brothers Trash

Mario and Luigi are back. Check out this video, especially the Mariorap at the beginning, and feel like back at 10.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Apparatschik - Pandora and Google Suggest

I just moved to a new and bigger city, so I was kinda busy. Nevertheless, I found two amazing and useful websites that really seem to work:

Google Suggest - a beta version of an extended google search, which suggests possible queries together with estimated result number while you are typing. Amazing and extremely useful.

Pandora.com - an electronic internet DJ that creates customized radio stations. You provide your favorite song or artist and the artificial intelligence (based on something called the music genome project) calculates streams of music which you like. Seems to work pretty well.

That's the future. Now you just have to teach it how to compose music and it'll create customized bands based on the 'genome' of your favorite music.

Friday, September 09, 2005

"Biggie, noooo... "

Check out this Motorola spot featuring a contemporary who-is-who in the musicbiz: Common, Questlove, Madonna, Alanis Morissette, etc.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

American Catastrophes

I don't really want to write about the Katrina catastrophe, but I found a disturbing video on the web: This sad interview.

Plus this disturbing animated gif (is it really real or is it from a movie?):

Something less sad: There is going to be a new Blackalicious LP, soon. It's gonna be called The Craft.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Cities Have Personalities

Cities have personalities, and just as I have a specific feeling about a person (as soon as I spent a certain amount of time with her/him) I develop a certain feeling about a city.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Random Shiznat

Despite the FAQ, I still don't get the title of the page. Nevertheless, it's a nice little private website. Something like a grandfather/grandmother of weblogs: Randomshiznat.

My favorite categories:
1) A nice selection of mp3 DJ Mixes
2) Some nerdy Math Puzzles
3) A fine collection of nice music reviews (HipHop, 1999-2003)
4) Interesting travelogues, e.g. Cologne, Germany, visited in 2003
5) Many more interesting statements, ideas, stories and it's still work in progress

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Haircut Memories

I'm back - with the first genuine observation of this weblog:

It's beyond dispute that music can function as a medium for memories. A single tune can capture (and reactivate) the emotional state of one special second, an exceptional evening, a whole holiday, or even an entire season.

A certain type of haircut, however, seems to be able to preserve particularly longer periods of time (up tp -say- 10 years). I am not sure if it can re-evoke emotions like music can, but in any case it seems to be capable of prolonging a certain feeling of oneself. It may have something to do with mirrors.

It seems to me that preferably fourty-something-year olds try to preserve their twenties by sticking to their (back-then) haircut and thus often maintain weird eighties mullets.

What do you think?

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Vivid History Twice

To get a grip on general (American) history there is a nice archive containing loads of original recordings of historical turning points - short audio clips as well as full speeches: American Rhetoric - The Power of Oratory in the United States. A special recommendation would be the list of Top100 speeches.

In turn, to get a grip on special (i.e. your own family) history you can consult the huge archive of mankind at familysearch.org. Just submit your last name or the full name of one of your ancestors and explore your lineage.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Temporary Mail Addresses

Did you know there are services to obtain a temporary email address? This could be useful for example when you want to register for something and need to receive an email in order to unlock the account, but you don't want to provide your real email address for whatever reason.

The service I usually use is mytrashmail. You don't have to sign up or something. Just specify an arbitrary XXX@mytrashmail.com and if an email gets in, the account is created. Then you just catch the mail on mytrashmail.com and after some hours the account gets deleted.

There are also some other services as mailexpire.com or spamhole.com but in my opinion mytrashmail.com is the best one.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Nate Harrison - TB-303

The original link to the nhkstudio website is working again, you can watch the documentary on the 'Amen Break' again.

Some of you probably checked out the other projects and installations of Nate Harrison already. Despite the fact that (almost) all of them are very interesting, I want to emphasize another one - his ingenious observation of the classical Roland Bass sequencer TB-303 along the timeline of music: Bassline Baseline, a twenty-something-minute Quicktime movie. At least as great as the 'Amen Break' story.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Nate Harrison - Amen Break

Nate Harrison, an interdisciplinary artist from Los Angeles, California, presents a gorgeous project documenting the career of 6 seconds of music, the infamous 'Amen Break'. In the 17-minute documentary (Quicktime movie), Nate Harrison argues that, how and why the drumloop (originally played by 'The Winstons') entered the "collective audio unconscious".

Along the (fascinating) road, the narrator discusses the topics of sampling, copyrights, and the evolution of different types of music.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005: Unfortunately, the link seems to be down (because of bandwidth reasons). You can also download the quicktime movie at this alternative yousendit link. Information on N. Harrison's projects can still be found at http://nkhstudio.com/.

Friday, July 22, 2005

M. Lyer and M. Bach

Today I finally mastered the Mueller-Lyer Illusion. It took me a couple of years, but now I don't fall for it anymore - and thus contradict the research on vision of decades.

If you want to become a pro on optical illusions, check out Michael Bach's website, the most comprehensive and most fun archive on these phenonema. Michael Bach is a professor from Freiburg, Germany, and he seems to be a fun(ky) guy.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Enki Bilal - Immortal (ad vitam)

A couple of days ago, I watched the movie Immortal (ad vitam). An apocalyptic SciFi flic, which was jointly produced by France, Italy and the UK in 2004, and didn't make a big fuzz when it came out. For understandable reasons.
The Internet Movie DataBase (imdb) has it that 'Immortal (ad vitam)' "[w]as one of several films around the world that were the first to use an entirely 'digital backlot' (i.e. the actors were all shot in front of blue- and green-screens with all the backgrounds added in post-production...)". The hook is, however, that it was a European production without the monstrous budget Hollywood productions (such as 'Sin City') usually have.
Although the (satisfactory) plot was based on the comics by Enki Bilal, who at the same time directed the movie, the particular style and mood of his comic designs couldn't be transferred.
I wonder how he could allow for such unstylish animations in his movie, in which human actors and actresses (e.g. the German actor Thomas Kretschmann as Nikopol) perform next to completely (but unsophisticatedly) animated characters.
The only solution I could imagine would be that either the budget wasn't big enough, or the technology not sufficiently advanced. He should've shot the movie in ten years.

Upshot: Check out Enki Bilal's comic work but rather wait for a remake of 'Immortal (ad vitam)' in 2015.

Monday, July 18, 2005

fi5e and max asare

The United States of America, East Coast and West Coast, New York City and Los Angeles, fi5e and max asare, a 27 year-old student and a 25 year-old architect. Together they present their extraordinary work on ni9e.com, combining technology and esthetics in theory and art.

Among their many fantastic projects, I'd like to mention two: the USPS spoofing project, and the 'Explicit Content Only' project, where they extracted all the dirty words outta the most famous LP by N.W.A. (Niggaz with Attitude), 'Straight Outta Compton'.

Friday, July 15, 2005

This Week in Science Podcast

Mo, a buddy of mine, recommended a special Podcast, i.e. an acoustic broadcast (something like the future version of radio) which one can subscribe to and (automatically) download on a regular basis - usually as .mp3 file.

This certain podcast is based on a Californian radio show (at the University of California, Davis) called 'This Week In Science'. For 1 hour each week it deals with news in science and technology. Its sympathetic hosts are Kirsten Sanford and Justin Jackson.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Jake Dobkin is Bluejake

I'd like to introduce my favourite photoblog - run by Jacob "Bluejake" Dobkin, a "28 year-old amateur photographer living in New York City". Every day he uploads at least four pictures, mainly from NYC. At the moment he is travelling France, and some of his buddy photographers are helping out.
He also got the most brilliant shots of Christo's 'The Gates' project I am aware of. I'll pay tribute to his work by permanently linking Bluejake. It is worth a visit every single day.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Tatsuya Ishida's Sinfest

For some time now I've been reading Tatsuya Ishida's Sinfest (you gotta scroll down a little bit). The daily comic strips are stand-alone but in sequence they also yield little stories - about almost everything that matters in life: the good and the bad, God and the Devil, nookie (a word I learned there) and love. The cast: Slick, Monique, Criminy, Squigley, Seymour, Pooch&Parcival, God and the Devil, Ezekiel&Ariel, and The Dragon. My highlight of last month, June 2005.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Jason Koxvold's MyView

Bubble Squeak - His view of the world: "Tourist" Jason Koxvold, San Francisco, CA, USA, with his "travelogue of photography, video, and wistfully snide commentary". Georgeous impressions from Italy, Norway, Britain, Cuba, Thailand and Chicago.

Contribute My Mite.

Since I am already exchanging links and thoughts with buddies over the internet almost daily, I just decided that I could also contribute my mite in a more broadcasting manner.