random quotes ... to amuse, inspire, enrage:
  The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. The happiness of credulity is a cheap and dangerous quality.

tagged: religion
  —George Bernard Shaw

borg monkey

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

Our cyberpunk future approaches: monkeys with brain implants can control robotic devices.

electronic provenance

Friday, March 14th, 2008

I was checking out Tor’s new wallpapers and thinking about the uses of provenance in the art world. Tor is a science fiction publisher, and they’ve been doing one of those Publisher Experiments with the new digital world. (In fact, Tor released this week Farthing by Jo Walton for free — this was an amazing […]

the unimaginative world of whorecraft(TM)

Sunday, March 9th, 2008

A few days ago, the Village Voice wrote an article about a series of World of Warcraft-inspired porn; their article was duly picked up by BoingBoing. Strangely, BoingBoing missed the IP angle — that “Whorelore”‘s original name was “Whorecraft” but they ran into an “IP” issue, presumably trademark. You can still see “Whorecraft” on some […]

fannish media studies

Wednesday, August 15th, 2007

A friend just sent me a link to this fan video about the TV series “Supernatural”. What an awesome demonstration of the power of technology to enable media criticism. A thousand feminists could comment about exploitative or graphic visual depictions of violence against women in a series or on TV generally, and it would never […]

press the piracy button now, please

Saturday, June 2nd, 2007

Regal Entertainment Group has designed a little device so movie-goers can wirelessly complain about things that are affecting their experience, plus, of course, PIRACY! New York Magazine had a great idea about what to do with the device at Pirates of the Caribbean 3: First of all, we’re amused by the button marked PIRACY. We […]

some notes

Monday, June 5th, 2006

(1) Today’s NYT article on “tough questions” for gubernatorial candidates on abortion: all the gubernatorial candidates quoted are men. [NYT 6/5] (2) Mercury Rising discusses what happened to Wen Ho Lee after the racist government debacle a few years back. [sideshow 6/4] (3) I don’t believe I’ve plugged Ann Bartow’s “Fair Use and the Fairer […]

boys read boys, NYT edition

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2006

Yet another instance of boys-read-boys makes the news. This time, Dave Itzkoff’s new “It’s All Geek To Me” column in the NYT. My partner thought I’d be excited — and I was — to see science fiction getting a column in the NYT. Alas, though, it’s only a boy-reads-boys column. The first column (March 5, […]

teledildonics can only be another step away …

Sunday, March 5th, 2006

Today, on our way to the Fung Wah bus (we never got there, but that’s another story), my partner & I happened to stop in at a bookstore/teahouse for brunch. Then we realized that they were actually having a booksigning by Margaret Atwood. I’m in the middle of a huge deadline, and have just started […]

Octavia Butler

Thursday, March 2nd, 2006

I was deeply saddened early this week to learn that Octavia Butler had died. She exemplified the spirit of inquiry that makes science fiction truly the literature of ideas. Below I collect a number of resources about Octavia Butler. Action Octavia E. Butler Memorial Scholarship Fund Obituaries and Remembrances SFWA Remembrances Memories in the comments […]

data mining & online information

Sunday, December 25th, 2005

Today is a beautifully misty day, perfect for leisurely procrastination from holiday tasks like installing back-up hard drives for the mom-in-law. (Well, “in-law” if we were in Mass.; everywhere else in the US, “mom-in-out-law”.) So naturally I found myself doing a little backlog reading of blogs that I don’t read every day, and was fortunate […]

no play for fan play

Thursday, October 20th, 2005

San Francisco’s counterPULSE Theater got a cease-and-desist from Fox TV demanding they cancel their sold-out live action performance of “Once More, With Feeling” (the Buffy musical). According to SFist, Buffy creator Joss Whedon said he had no objection to the staging of the show. [link from whedonesque]

vagina dentata: prior art?

Thursday, September 15th, 2005

South African inventor Sonette Ehlers has developed the “rapex”, a barbed female condom aimed at discouraging rapists. A coordinator for Rape Crisis cautions that the device could backfire, and rapists in penile pain might respond with increased violence. Of course, Neal Stephenson in Snow Crash (1992) was all over this idea: his teenage protagonist wore […]

elijah wood not upset by queer fan photo alterations

Monday, September 12th, 2005

hollywood.com 9/12 HOLLYWOOD, September 12, 2005 Wood Stunned by Gay Photo ‘Revelations’ By WENN …………………………………….. Elijah Wood is continually stunned by clever cyber pranksters who try to prove he is gay. The Lord of the Rings star is often caught out by Web sites with far from subtle names, like www.veryverygay.com, when he’s surfing the […]

lemony snicket copyright

Sunday, September 11th, 2005

The copyright notice in Lemony Snicket: The Unauthorized Autobiography (2002): No part of this book may be used, reproduced, destroyed, tampered with, or eaten without written permission except in the case of brief, possibly coded quotations embodied in critical articles, reviews, and subpoenas. Allegedly printed in the United States of America. For information address HarperCollins […]

peter jackson: piracy (vs. derivative works)

Sunday, August 28th, 2005

ordinarily i’m interested in quotes from artists & creators that evidence awareness of or interest in non-copyright maximalism. but in today’s NYT article (“King Kong vs. Pirates of the Multiplex”) there was a quote from Peter Jackson: “Piracy has the very real potential of tipping movies into becoming an unprofitable industry, especially big-event films. If […]

terry pratchett’s new secret novel

Thursday, August 18th, 2005

The widely quoted, hilarious response by Terry Pratchett to the Canadian court order [more from Michael Geist] applied to early purchasers of Harry Potter 6: Terry Pratchett, by a strange coincidence, chose the H*rry P*tter launch day to issue a stern warning about his next Discworld novel: ‘Now that the bound proof copies of _Thud!_ […]

rights to information on Beta & Barrayar

Monday, August 15th, 2005

Okay, I’m on some kind of a roll with fictional discussions of IP etc. Here’s another: Lois McMaster Bujold, in Barrayar, chronicled a cross-cultural exchange about the value of information access. Cordelia, from the planet Beta, is shocked that poor people don’t have access to information; Vorkosigan, from the planet Barrayar, is shocked at her […]

Sparky Valentine & IP

Monday, August 15th, 2005

John Varley has made more than a few comments about IP and information politics in his various stories. The Golden Globe (recommended) was centrally concerned with an actor named Sparky Valentine, and Sparky had a few observations about IP: In the early days, when they were considering various ideas for a corporate logo, Valentine had […]

patents on Barrayar

Monday, August 8th, 2005

Well, in the Barrayaran universe, anyway. Lois McMaster Bujold, in Memory, mentions patent labeling techniques during a briefing on a “bioengineered apoptotic prokaryote”: “I could read much of its product history off its molecular structure. First of all, whoever made this did not begin from scratch. This is a modification of an existing, patented apoptotic […]

yippee yippee 2

Sunday, July 24th, 2005

and now the International Trailer for “Serenity” related posts: yippee yippee


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