Sunday, December 19, 2010

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Jerry Blossom now twitter- 'n' tumblr-ing

I just understood how twitter works - I guess that makes me a "late adopter".
Addendum 17/12/10: For reasons of completeness, I'm also (redundantly) tumblr-ing.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Personal Stats for Annual Reports

New York-based graphic designer Nicholas Felton statistically evaluates and visualizes data from his everyday life. Ever since 2005, he publishes annual reports of the activities he records in painstaking 15 minute segments. He even developed Daytum, a tool which allows you to do the same. A video describing his approach can be found over at Slate (via Mo's twitter).
Addendum 15/12/2010: Cf. also the third section of Radiolab's "Fate and Fortune" episode covering computational linguistics on for example personal email archives.

(picture from Le Monde, Nov 17, 2010, via the Feltron tumblr)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

3D Multiverse Multitouch

Tellinya - Cyperspace-Metaverse is just around the corner: The ubiquity of fast internet, remote interaction in real time, (quasi) 3D perception - and now this: Multitouch handling in real space (cf. Minority Report) and 3D reality reconstruction has become feasible by hacking the Kinect depth camera system. Now we just need to hook up more than one and we're ready to evade real reality.

Portraits of the Mind

Carl Schoonover:
Portraits of the Mind: Visualizing the Brain from Antiquity to the 21st Century

"The brain is an endlessly fascinating topic for those who have one..."
(Betsy Mason's review on Wired, 11/15/2010)

Friday, November 05, 2010

Don't Believe the Hype

Round 1: Mexican Coke 3 - 0 American Coke (Justin Wright)
Round 2: The taste of coke is all in your head (Jonah Lehrer, Frontal Cortex)
Round 3a: Hipster, hör die Signale (Johannes Thumfart, Die Zeit, German only)
Round 3b: What was the Hipster? (Mark Greif, NY Mag)
Round 4: What is it about 20-somethings? (Robin Marantz Henig, The NY Times)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

jerryblossom Geocities-ized

Digital travel to the times of Web 0.5: How this site would've looked in the Geocities era (by Geocities-izer which makes "any webpage look like it was made by a 13-year old in 1996")

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Gilles Peterson w/ Kon & Amir

Brilliant Worldwide Show this week: GP hosting Kon & Amir.
Listen to it online...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Family Guy Explaining Monism

First it was "The Humanities" and "The Sciences", then it became "Brain and Mind Sciences" and "Brain & Mind Sciences" and now it's "Brain/Mind Sciences". I'm waiting for "Brind Sciences" or "Main Sciences".

Family Guy beautifully illustrates this:

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Tapping the Digital Collective Pool of Ideas

As a viral promo-slash-summary-slash-introduction to his book Where Good Ideas Come From (published today), Steven Berlin Johnson produced this neat video (via Neuron Culture).

The take home message is that half ideas or hunches of different people connect ("have sex") to create great ideas in certain environments but also at unexpected moments (see also his TED talk).

According to this new Science Express paper collective intelligence is influenced by the social sensitivity rather than the general intelligence of individual group members.

Remembering Durkheim's, Jung's, and Halbwachs'/Assmann's conceptualizations of Collective Consciousness, Unconscious, and Memory, respectively, one may integrate these claims into the following conclusion:

In order to fruitfully complement one's individual thoughts utilizing increased (weak or strong) connectivity in the age of social media, one should develop a sort of virtual social sensitivity to maneuver and tap into the digital collective pool of ideas.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Blu's Berlin Wall and 20 Years of German Reunification

Magnificent Italian street artist Blu (already mentioned twice) struck again (via my sis and unurth). Just in time for the German national holiday celebrating 20 years of reunification and fall of the Berlin Wall. Happy Anniversary!

Friday, October 01, 2010

Emerging Adulthood and Gradschool

But also:

The 20s are like the stem cell of human development, the pluripotent moment when any of several outcomes is possible. Decisions and actions during this time have lasting ramifications.
"In emerging adulthood, if you spend this time exploring and you get yourself on a pathway that really fits you, then there’s going to be this snowball effect of finding the right fit, the right partner, the right job, the right place to live. The less you have at first, the less you’re going to get this positive effect compounded over time. You’re not going to have the same acceleration".
(from: What Is It About 20-Somethings?, NY Times, August 18, 2010)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Strength of Weak Ties (Gladwell & Lehrer)

Malcolm Gladwell, in his piece on online social networks entitled Small Change - Why the revolution will not be tweeted, states that while "high-risk activism ... is a "strong-tie" phenomenon, [...] the platforms of social media are built around weak ties". Hence, "[the organization of social media] makes it easier for activists to express themselves, and harder for that expression to have any impact".

Heavily citing a classical paper by Granovetter from 1973, Jonah Lehrer objects this "denigration of weak ties in social activism" on his Frontal Cortex Blog.

Great food for thought!

Addendum 05/10/10: Adding to the discussion on the power of social media is this talk by Clay Shirky from 2007

Monday, September 13, 2010

Walt Disney & Salvador Dalí - Destino (via Ley)

"Destino is a short animated cartoon released in 2003 by The Walt Disney Company. Destino is unique in that its production originally began in 1945, 58 years before its eventual completion. The project was a collaboration between American animator Walt Disney and Spanish painter Salvador Dalí..."

Info taken from wikipedia (cf. also imdb).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Monday, August 09, 2010

Reason Has Nothing To Do With Reality

"We like to believe that the gift of human reason lets us think like scientists, so that our conscious thoughts lead us closer to the truth. But here’s the paradox: all that reasoning and confabulation can often lead us astray, so that we end up knowing less about what jams/cars/jelly beans we actually prefer. So here’s my new metaphor for human reason: our rational faculty isn’t a scientist – it’s a talk radio host."

(via Jonah Lehrer's We Are All Talk Radio Hosts, now at Wired Science)

Sunday, August 01, 2010

"Renn, wenn du kannst" im Kino

Go and check out "Renn, wenn du kannst" (Run, if you can) in the movies - a great new young intelligent funny political entertaining German movie by Dietrich Brüggemann.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Monday, July 12, 2010

Jonah Lehrer on Brain-Body Holism

"It strikes me that we need a new metaphor for the interactions of the brain and body. They aren't simply connected via some pipes and tubes. They are emulsified together, so hopelessly intertwined that everything that happens in one affects the other. Holism is the rule."
From: Cages and Cancer

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Istolethesoul Mixes by Koray Özel

Check out the neat selection of Nujazz'n'Soul-slash-Hiphop-tracks and mixes available at, the 'mix archive and music blog by Koray Özel', a Toronto-based graphics guy.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Miracles in Nature and Science

Occurrence of the word "miracle/s" in Nature and Science over the decades (by Toril Johannessen via well-formed-data and VVork).

Monday, June 14, 2010

Pipe - NOT!

Saw a playful 'geek chique' shirt today (b/u/y threadless).

Thursday, May 27, 2010

News: Noam Chomsky Craze in Paris

Avram Noam Chomsky, revolutionary in several fields, left his Bostonian arm chair and (after having been denied entry to Israel's West Bank last week) is visiting Paris this week. Already four (!) years ago there were rumours that this would happen and now the days have come.
If you won't make it to Paris in time or you don't manage to get one of the 50% of freely available tickets, check out the website that was set up specifically for "his coming". They'll also put up video recordings after...

Addendum 28/5: Some of his appearances will be broadcasted live - for example the one at Collège de France later today.

Monday, May 24, 2010

May 25th: Happy Sad Towel Day

In commemoration of Douglas Adams, who sadly passed away nine years ago (on May 11, 2001), tomorrow people celebrate Towel Day a/k/a Geek Pride Day. Proudly carry your towel around or participate in an 'official' Towel Day event in your city (from Backnang, Germany, to Medellin, Colombia).

Krautrock (via tsw)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Non-conceptual Skill - Léon (Playing) Theremin

I went to this talk today in which a philosopher came to the revolutionary conclusion that there might be non-conceptual/ non-verbal thought.
She offered the pivotal examples of pre-linguistic children and non-linguistic animals as evidence, claiming that skills are a form of intelligent yet concept-independent behaviour.
As a theoretical (i.e., armchair) philosopher - how far can you dissociate your scholarly thoughts from your everyday experience? How best to minimize or eliminate your common sense?
Playing a musical instrument as prime example of skillful motor intelligence, I consider the Theremin (a/k/a aetherophone) as particularly interesting, as there isn't even proper tactile contact with the instrument involved. Check out the inventor's demonstration video (you may wanna skip to second 15):

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Death: Dwele w/ the Suite for Ma Dukes Orchestra - Angel

Leaving aside the whole discussion about the interaction effects of his fame and his death, Jay Dee a/k/a J Dilla has been dead for four years now and I don't know of anybody who filled his spot.

Last year, Mochilla organized a series of three "timeless" concerts "in homage to the composer/arrangers who have influenced hip-hop in the most literal and profound ways".
The DVD can now be purchased and one of the pieces is Dwele performing Dilla-produced Angel together with Miguel Atwood-Ferguson conducting the Suite for Ma Dukes Orchestra:

The Sounds of VTech / Dwele: Angel (Suite for Ma Dukes)

In addition, a review is up on okayplayer and more videos can be found on the timeless youtube channel and at

Friday, April 30, 2010

Life's plain beautiful !

(mimicking the development of twitter)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Friday, April 02, 2010

Graffiti Stop Motion - Broken Fingaz

In the tradition of Blu's work, there is this graffiti stop motion by Israeli Broken Fingaz Crew (via themusicsarecoming)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

New HomeCookin': Hardcore Boogie Bass's got a new one: HC52, Hardcore Boogie Bass

...and the Principles of Neural Science publication date was shifted again - September 2010.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Pferd aufm Flur - Fuzzy Filme

"There's a horse in the hall" in a famous (very tacky) German carneval song by Klaus & Klaus (sic!).
Another line goes:
...wohl zu viele Fuzzyfilme gesehn, wa?...
(freely: must've watched too many fuzzy flics, haven'tya?...)

"fuzzy flics"?!?

I just found out that "fuzzyfilme" refers to cowboy movies from the 1940s featuring a certain Al St. John as Fuzzy Q. Jones. Maybe (just like Bob Ross) he may exhibit what I called "the David Hasselhoff effect" as only on German amazon you can get the Fuzzy Western Collectors DVD Box.

Sunday, February 28, 2010


probably as funky as digital can get: themusicsarecoming
"discovering the musics and their crazy memes"

Plakataufwand: digital-to-analogue

Apparently, the digital natives are the generation who grew up with all the virtuality around us and who, in an act of emancipation, retract it.
As a first step, a slow approximation, you can try this service of digital to analogue, virtual to real message conversion: Plakataufwand lets you send lines and location to their email address and they install your thoughts and feelings in public space (at the moment in Berlin, Hamburg and Kiel).

Saturday, February 06, 2010

HipHop Edutainment - Rap History

In Zürich, Munich and Berlin there is an ongoing project called Rap History that wants to extend usual clubbing by adopting a more educative stance: Location as university, DJs as professors & scientists, visitors as nerdy students - veeery HipHop, i'n't it!
Always focusing on a particular year, they accumulated a neat database with rap records and pages with auditory and audiovisual study material.
The next lesson in Munich is "1980" on April 17, 2010, at the University of Glockenbachwerkstatt and at Berlin's Bohannon you may attend a voluntary repetition session of the decade between 1979 and 1989 on April 14, 2010, at 22h30 ct.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Inputinputinput: AtGoogleTalks & pulse-berlin & Pinker's Myth

So much to read and watch and so little time:
invites interesting speakers (e.g., Chomsky, Pinker, Rushdie, Rifkin, Obama - but also less known ones like Jonah Lehrer or Neal Stephenson)
Pulse Berlin
a written and online magazine on "culture, creativity, discussion" with two issues per year
Steven Pinker's TED Talk "The Myth of Violence" with a (positive) bird's eye view on human history and development (thanks, Mo)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Religion vs. Secular Science

all sloppy scientists who forget a dot when wanting to access pubmed dot com (the central search engine for medical publications), thus typing into their browser windows, are referred to bible studies dot org ("the mega site of bible, church, christian & religious info & studies").
bible studies dot org is "easy to navigate" and can prove that the bible is true on only "app. 6000 pages"
great website

Monday, January 18, 2010

Kreuzberg 36

Great things going on in Kreuzberg 36:
Prinzessinnengarten and Stadtsafari

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Space & Time Travels: Mazaworld and Krautrock

Virtually feels like travelling: A 40-year old Kiwi travel buff documents his own travels and compiles interesting information about the earth on In particular his collection of travel videos (in particular Michael Palin's Full Circle with full-length episodes) is useful!

New Urban Music Blog features a cool BBC4 documentary on Krautrock (Krautrockumentary) and the awakening of German electronic music.
German Electronic Music History from Jose Rodriguez on Vimeo.

Addendum: I don't like the krautrock as david bowie's li'l brother part at the end, but it neatly shows german music in the 60s to 80s. kraftwerk electro stockhausen synthis everything

Friday, January 08, 2010


I'm home, there's a wonderful viral movie about our planet called Home and a great Berlin party series called home.