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lightprocesses:

Exponential sine waves

lightprocesses:

Exponential sine waves

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This photo of Jim Henson, at work with his colleagues making Bert and Ernie come to life, reminded me of the one time I had dinner with Henson. 
At the time, I was the head of Alias and we made the best computer graphics software in the world. We had just sold some expensive software to Industrial Light & Magic, George Lucas' company, and a key executive at Lucas had moved over to work with Henson. Henson wanted to know if computer graphics were good enough to handle his wonderful style.
Most people would have invited me into their offices. Henson invited me to dinner at one of those strange tiny French restaurants in the upper east side of New York City. Everyone there was dressed up: men in expensive jacket and tie, women in Chanel or Givency. Everyone but Henson; he was dressed as he is in the photo except it was winter so he was wearing a baggy old brown sweater. I felt out of place and he looked out of place! But he was a delightful man and  we had a lovely meal and decided that computer graphics were not quite ready to blend in with puppets. 
That was 30 years ago. Now, CGI works seamlessly with ‘real’ effects. Unfortunately, Henson died before that magical marriage could take place. His genius, however, lives on in the work of Jim Henson’s Creature Shop.
http://creatureshop.com/

This photo of Jim Henson, at work with his colleagues making Bert and Ernie come to life, reminded me of the one time I had dinner with Henson. 

At the time, I was the head of Alias and we made the best computer graphics software in the world. We had just sold some expensive software to Industrial Light & Magic, George Lucas' company, and a key executive at Lucas had moved over to work with Henson. Henson wanted to know if computer graphics were good enough to handle his wonderful style.

Most people would have invited me into their offices. Henson invited me to dinner at one of those strange tiny French restaurants in the upper east side of New York City. Everyone there was dressed up: men in expensive jacket and tie, women in Chanel or Givency. Everyone but Henson; he was dressed as he is in the photo except it was winter so he was wearing a baggy old brown sweater. I felt out of place and he looked out of place! But he was a delightful man and  we had a lovely meal and decided that computer graphics were not quite ready to blend in with puppets. 

That was 30 years ago. Now, CGI works seamlessly with ‘real’ effects. Unfortunately, Henson died before that magical marriage could take place. His genius, however, lives on in the work of Jim Henson’s Creature Shop.

http://creatureshop.com/

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The men in the photo are police officers in a small, not usually violent city in the middle of the USA: Ferguson, Missouri. It seems that one of the cops killed a black man for no reason - another black man in a very long line of black men killed by the police over the years. When the local African-American community protested, as is their right, the local police chief confronted them with this army. Snipers aimed high-powered rifles at citizens - black citizens - waiting for the order to kill. And the cops felt so powerful that they even arrested journalists trying to cover the story. 
America. But it looked like one of those other terrible ‘trouble spots’ we see on the news all the time: Turkey, the Ukraine, Iraq or Palestine. 
Most of us are not Americans, of course. But we’re much more connected to America that the other places. Why? Language, culture, music, movies, iPad and Google, protection, shopping, surfing and countless other connections. All those things add up; America’s ‘soft power’ is enormous. Even when the hard power of money and military start to decline a bit, the American Appeal will remain. If suddenly, an American fairy-godmother appeared and waved her sparkling Disney-style wand and turned us into Yanks, well, much worse things could happen. Some people would even be happy!
But they wouldn’t want to live in Ferguson, Missouri. Especially if their skin was dark. Obama and his Harvard-educated family and friends are far, far away. They are so far away that they might as well be white! In Ferguson, if you’re black you’re just a target - a target for the same stupidity that racists have practiced for centuries. Now they have better weapons. 
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/16/missouri-governor-curfew-state-of-emergency-ferguson
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/aug/14/ferguson-cops-military-weapons-michael-brown-shooting-protests

The men in the photo are police officers in a small, not usually violent city in the middle of the USA: Ferguson, Missouri. It seems that one of the cops killed a black man for no reason - another black man in a very long line of black men killed by the police over the years. When the local African-American community protested, as is their right, the local police chief confronted them with this army. Snipers aimed high-powered rifles at citizens - black citizens - waiting for the order to kill. And the cops felt so powerful that they even arrested journalists trying to cover the story. 

America. But it looked like one of those other terrible ‘trouble spots’ we see on the news all the time: Turkey, the Ukraine, Iraq or Palestine. 

Most of us are not Americans, of course. But we’re much more connected to America that the other places. Why? Language, culture, music, movies, iPad and Google, protection, shopping, surfing and countless other connections. All those things add up; America’s ‘soft power’ is enormous. Even when the hard power of money and military start to decline a bit, the American Appeal will remain. If suddenly, an American fairy-godmother appeared and waved her sparkling Disney-style wand and turned us into Yanks, well, much worse things could happen. Some people would even be happy!

But they wouldn’t want to live in Ferguson, Missouri. Especially if their skin was dark. Obama and his Harvard-educated family and friends are far, far away. They are so far away that they might as well be white! In Ferguson, if you’re black you’re just a target - a target for the same stupidity that racists have practiced for centuries. Now they have better weapons. 

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/16/missouri-governor-curfew-state-of-emergency-ferguson

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/aug/14/ferguson-cops-military-weapons-michael-brown-shooting-protests

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retro-style electric moto-bike by OtoCycle in Barcelona! beautiful! the gas tank is an electric motor! Too smart!
http://otocycles.com/
http://youtu.be/bkm9A9AoFrs

retro-style electric moto-bike by OtoCycle in Barcelona! beautiful! the gas tank is an electric motor! Too smart!

http://otocycles.com/

http://youtu.be/bkm9A9AoFrs

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My pasta cooking is good but…in a rut. Maybe a little cream will increase the ‘delicious’ factor! This beautifully simple recipe uses a 1/4 cup of cream. To me that seems like “too much fat!” And a serving of the resulting dish has 12 grams of fat. Ouch! I’ll have to think about that…
In Korea, the shrimp are wonderful. The basil is non-existent or, if you can find it in some super-expensive shop, tasteless. Sad. I remember the potent basil of Barbados! What a taste! In the shops for 2 weeks and, then, gone.
BTW, thekitchn.com recipes now have full nutrition info. They really are the best food site!
http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-shrimp-pasta-with-tomatoes-recipes-from-the-kitchn-206500

My pasta cooking is good but…in a rut. Maybe a little cream will increase the ‘delicious’ factor! This beautifully simple recipe uses a 1/4 cup of cream. To me that seems like “too much fat!” And a serving of the resulting dish has 12 grams of fat. Ouch! I’ll have to think about that…

In Korea, the shrimp are wonderful. The basil is non-existent or, if you can find it in some super-expensive shop, tasteless. Sad. I remember the potent basil of Barbados! What a taste! In the shops for 2 weeks and, then, gone.

BTW, thekitchn.com recipes now have full nutrition info. They really are the best food site!

http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-shrimp-pasta-with-tomatoes-recipes-from-the-kitchn-206500

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There’s a new movie about James Brown and it might be good but no movie can capture the incredible musical and cultural power of James Brown. He is unique. 
A long time ago I was in New York City and I watched a black street performer singing, dancing and joking around. The black people in the crowd were doubled over with laughter while the whites were blank, mystified, myself included. I couldn’t resist asking a nicely-dressed African-American man standing beside me, “What is it about?” He smiled because he knew it was a performance coming from another world. All he said was, “James Brown.”
Ten years later, I was in Paris and I went to a James Brown show: 25,000 people and everybody dancing for 2 solid hours. Pleasure and genius in dynamite mix. Unforgettable.
Definitely worth reading is Philip Gourevitch's “Mr Brown" from 2002. Here’s a sample:

One evening not long ago, in a dressing room at the great Art Deco pile of the Paramount Theatre in Oakland, California, as his valet Roosevelt Johnson ironed a gold lamé suit with heavily fringed epaulettes for the night’s performance, Mr. Brown sat before a mirror contemplating his reflection. His totemic hair—an inky, blue-black processed pompadour, “fried, dyed, and laid to the side”—was bunched up in curlers, awaiting release. A black silk shirt hung open from his shoulders, baring a boyishly smooth and muscular torso for a man who says he’s sixty-nine and is alleged by various old spoilers down South to be as much as five years older. He had just finished refurbishing the thick greasepaint of his eyebrows and, wielding a wedge-shaped sponge, was lightening the upper edges of his high, flat cheekbones with some latte-colored paste. He studied his smile, a wide, gleaming streak of dental implants whose electrifying whiteness might have made Melville blink. In show business, he has said, “Hair is the first thing, and teeth are the second. Hair and teeth. A man got those two things, he’s got it all.” Still, he looked tired and lonely and even smaller than he is, as old men tend to look when applying their makeup.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2002/07/29/mr-brown

There’s a new movie about James Brown and it might be good but no movie can capture the incredible musical and cultural power of James Brown. He is unique. 

A long time ago I was in New York City and I watched a black street performer singing, dancing and joking around. The black people in the crowd were doubled over with laughter while the whites were blank, mystified, myself included. I couldn’t resist asking a nicely-dressed African-American man standing beside me, “What is it about?” He smiled because he knew it was a performance coming from another world. All he said was, “James Brown.”

Ten years later, I was in Paris and I went to a James Brown show: 25,000 people and everybody dancing for 2 solid hours. Pleasure and genius in dynamite mix. Unforgettable.

Definitely worth reading is Philip Gourevitch's “Mr Brown" from 2002. Here’s a sample:

One evening not long ago, in a dressing room at the great Art Deco pile of the Paramount Theatre in Oakland, California, as his valet Roosevelt Johnson ironed a gold lamé suit with heavily fringed epaulettes for the night’s performance, Mr. Brown sat before a mirror contemplating his reflection. His totemic hair—an inky, blue-black processed pompadour, “fried, dyed, and laid to the side”—was bunched up in curlers, awaiting release. A black silk shirt hung open from his shoulders, baring a boyishly smooth and muscular torso for a man who says he’s sixty-nine and is alleged by various old spoilers down South to be as much as five years older. He had just finished refurbishing the thick greasepaint of his eyebrows and, wielding a wedge-shaped sponge, was lightening the upper edges of his high, flat cheekbones with some latte-colored paste. He studied his smile, a wide, gleaming streak of dental implants whose electrifying whiteness might have made Melville blink. In show business, he has said, “Hair is the first thing, and teeth are the second. Hair and teeth. A man got those two things, he’s got it all.” Still, he looked tired and lonely and even smaller than he is, as old men tend to look when applying their makeup.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2002/07/29/mr-brown

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explore-blog:

Nietzsche’s 10 rules for writers, laid out in a letter to the Russian-born intellectual Lou Andreas-Salomé, with whom he was in love.

explore-blog:

Nietzsche’s 10 rules for writers, laid out in a letter to the Russian-born intellectual Lou Andreas-Salomé, with whom he was in love.

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Bats as models for drones. Very cool. And very military, as this video concludes.
http://txchnologist.com/post/91942958839/birds-bats-are-models-for-next-generation
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1p7CCX-xWXo

Bats as models for drones. Very cool. And very military, as this video concludes.

http://txchnologist.com/post/91942958839/birds-bats-are-models-for-next-generation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1p7CCX-xWXo

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A day in the life of a New York taxi! A map of NYC and every fare traced!  See if you can guess the total fares and also the number of passengers. Fun. Made by Heroku. Good work!
http://nyctaxi.herokuapp.com/

A day in the life of a New York taxi! A map of NYC and every fare traced!  See if you can guess the total fares and also the number of passengers. Fun. Made by Heroku. Good work!

http://nyctaxi.herokuapp.com/

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There is no Hell but there is torture. It is constant in the world. Sadly, war is sometimes necessary and war is difficult. Torture is easy to do. Stupid and cruel men are always available and all they need to do torture is permission. In Iraq, the American torturers had the go-ahead from seniors officers who, in turn, had permission from George Bush and Dick Cheney. They made an important mistake - a mistake that led to them becoming war criminals. The mistake was their idea that torture would make America strong when, in fact, it made America look hopelessly weak. 
This week, Barack Obama admitted to torture. He said:

We tortured some folks.

Despite Obama’s desire to tell the truth, the words have a quick and casual tone that makes them seem false. No doubt the plan was to sneak away from the moral disaster with a few well-chosen words. But the smell of sulfur lingers. 
American politicians love to end their speeches with the words, “God bless America!” To the rest of the world, it seems typically and obnoxiously American. Why would God bless one nation and exclude the rest? And why, especially, would God’s grace be given to torturers? For Obama’s confession to be full and true, he should have said:

We tortured people and, when we did, we lost God’s blessing.

http://www.nytimes.com/video/multimedia/100000003035205/obama-says-that-after-911-we-tortured-some-folks.html
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/01/obama-cia-torture-some-folks-brennan-spying

There is no Hell but there is torture. It is constant in the world. Sadly, war is sometimes necessary and war is difficult. Torture is easy to do. Stupid and cruel men are always available and all they need to do torture is permission. In Iraq, the American torturers had the go-ahead from seniors officers who, in turn, had permission from George Bush and Dick Cheney. They made an important mistake - a mistake that led to them becoming war criminals. The mistake was their idea that torture would make America strong when, in fact, it made America look hopelessly weak. 

This week, Barack Obama admitted to torture. He said:

We tortured some folks.

Despite Obama’s desire to tell the truth, the words have a quick and casual tone that makes them seem false. No doubt the plan was to sneak away from the moral disaster with a few well-chosen words. But the smell of sulfur lingers.

American politicians love to end their speeches with the words, “God bless America!” To the rest of the world, it seems typically and obnoxiously American. Why would God bless one nation and exclude the rest? And why, especially, would God’s grace be given to torturers? For Obama’s confession to be full and true, he should have said:

We tortured people and, when we did, we lost God’s blessing.

http://www.nytimes.com/video/multimedia/100000003035205/obama-says-that-after-911-we-tortured-some-folks.html

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/01/obama-cia-torture-some-folks-brennan-spying