Preference Personnelle
Wednesday, September 29
Chocolypse Now is at least as cool as it sounds. Also, here's some stuff from Slashdot: Rare Witch Project finds undocumented features in N64 games, and Katamari Damacy (that PS2 agglomerating game--is that the word I'm looking for?) is sold out most everywhere.
Tuesday, September 28
Links past-due:

Blue Note covers (and others) via Mefi. Rad-lib celeb Jessamyn West's Naked Librarians page is the most popular thing on her site (my fave: the booklist) (and here's an essay about DNC blogger experiences). The most popular thing on this site seems to be the list of dirty Scrabble words.

Here are core competencies for online reference. Here's a Condensed Comics Construction Program. Kevin 'Cool Tools' Kelly reviews review sites and rounds up documentaries.

Here are some portrayals of librarians in obituaries, and of librarian clothing on eBay. Ooh, and the LibraryLookup bookmarklet maker. Here's that Flash Scrabble story.

And a couple Banned Books week things: on Wal-Mart and the Protocols of the Idols of Zion. Here's a Dealer article about Arming America.

Even more: a history of the Transformers (and one of Transformer). Hikarunix, the Go LiveCD. 50 Greatest Shooters. Mefiers debate Sarah McLacklan's newish video. Maya Keyes is a lesbian (but, frankly, who the hell cares?)

Nader, 80-pound paper and the Ohio ballots--Just how much of this story is bullshit? Also, here in Arkansas, local Dems' are working hard to get Nader off the ballot. The idea seems to be that Reps want fewer people to vote and Dems want more people to, but it's just got to be more complicated than that.

Shelley Jackson's 'Ineradicable Skin' project; would-be-CD-copy-protectors SunnComm; PBS' Origins; Hunt the Boeing redux; Nintendo DS weirdness; An exhaustive Star Wars DVD review..

A few K5 items: Duplicitious political ads, Wikipedia and neurolinguistic programming and the myth of the 'likely voter.'

Lastly: James Fallows in The Atlantic on Bush and Gore's debating styles. And, via Mefi, some very good debate links.
Saturday, September 18
Here's a NYT article about race and video games, specifically the upcoming GTA: San Andreas. Even Michael Eric Dyson gets in on the action, using the phrase 'video crack.' Mike, please. Comparing the addictive properties of video games to those of crack is laughable, and comparing the social effects is insulting.

While I'm at it, here's that GameGirlAdvance post talking about games-about-games.
If jazz fragments into millions of digital files, future generations could be left with a maddening cultural jigsaw puzzle. This music could quickly become one of the mysterious art forms that is translated to the public by a small group of experts.--From an article about online music stores (ITMS, specifically) and jazz.

The author fears that a lack of accompanying information (thorough liner notes, album cover art, etc.) will make jazz seem too Great-Man-ish. See, me, I thought jazz was too Great-Man-ish already, and that it has been a mysterious art form yada yada since before I was born, and that a radio station is as likely to give you a single track as iTunes is. Of course, I also thought that a major advantage to digital files is their durability, which makes it far more likely that future generations will have jazz to enjoy. Also, talking about ITMS instead of file-sharing shows a real indifference to hard numbers. So, to summarize, I disagree with this thing nearly completely.

Here's a P.J. O'Rourke interview with Colin Powell. I definitely like Powell a lot better than I used to, though, y'know, I can hardly stand the guy.

When you heard about the Mario Brothers hitting the big screen, did it ever once cross your mind that you might see people eating dead, fried lizards? I mean, I thought I was going to see Audrey II bust out of a pipe and chew Bob Hoskins. I was pretty sure we'd see Mario dress up like a raccoon and hopscotch across giant turtles. My point is, I can't believe the film actually managed to surprise me. Yeah, it sucks that I wanted invincibility stars and ended up with fried lizards, but at least I didn't see it coming.--from a SMB review.

Eisenstein and Warioware? But for the proper nouns, would that make a good Googlewhack? Not anymore, I guess. Avant Gaming has a fairly stupid name, but I absolutely love this recent flourishing of somewhat-intelligent (or at least not-bought-and-paid-for) writing about video games. Here's some more game stuff--an account of Maniac Mansion's expurgation-for-NOA, Sonic rendered in Flash, a list of GBA games with multi-boot support (and one of GC games with GBA support) and 1UP's 50 essential games.
Friday, September 17
I just finished reading Nelson George's Post-Soul Nation. I could compare it to 'The Clothes Have No Emperor,' one of my favorite books about the '80s (others off the top of my head: 'The Bonfire of the Vanities' (and 'The Devil's Candy'), 'Fear of Falling,' 'Circus of Ambition,' 'Inside Job,' 'Liar's Poker,' 'On Bended Knee,' 'American Psycho'). It plays things a lot straighter than 'Emperor,' and it's got a real thesis (where TCHNE's thesis is 'We don't have a president; we've got an actor portraying one,' which is just a simple statement of fact). There's something appealing, I think, about a book-of-days chronology that attempts to advance an argument, like writing senryu about the DeCSS algorithm, and I've enjoyed George's work since Hip-Hop Nation and that quickie Mikejack bio.

Wednesday, September 15
Metafilter bonanza: Best Futurama moments ever (here's the page); CliffsNotes online;; new cartograms at

And, very importantly, Kryptonite bike locks, ballpoint pens and very bad news. Update: Now on Slashdot, too.

Here's an old Mefi thread about fixed-gears, too. And, speaking of obscure bike stuff, Sheldon Brown rocks my socks, and people aren't necessarily too thrilled with Momovelo--in fact, it appears that it's out of business. Here, though, are some retailers who offer similar items: American Cyclery, Wallingford, Harris Cyclery (where Sheldon Brown works), Jitensha Studio and the wonderful Rivendell Bicycle Works.

Someday, I'll make a post of nothing but links from the wide world of bicycling (other fertile grounds: lowriders, cruisers, retro-grouch mountain biking, singlespeeding, urban assault, messenger culture, trials, touring, recumbents).
I just finished reading (actually, it was a little while ago, but I'm just now getting to writing about it) Mark Crispin Miller's 'The Bush Dyslexicon: Observations on a National Disorder.' I found it really entertaining. The thesis, briefly: the emperor's an idiot. It's a very funny book, and one tailor-made for angry, mean elitists such as myself.

Miller marshalls staggeringly airtight arguments that Bush is borderline if not completely dyslexic, and that complacent big media largely gives him a pass on it. This is not what I'd call breaking news. And let's be clear--this one's for the choir. Arianna Huffington's blurb to the contrary, books like this serve as ammunition for the reactionaries who are sick of liberals treating them like they're stupid instead of just ignorant and wrong.

Give the man a little credit--Bush is stupid like a fox, and what I'd really like to read is a book about that.

Also, here's a great NYT graphic showing the frequency of particular words in convention speeches. This would make a great companion to those short films that cut up Bush speeches.
Monday, September 13
"Abigail Spath is a twenty year old published author. The fact that she's dyslexic and barely literate will be offset by her looks and charmingly disingenuous persona when she does the talk show circuit, during the big media push to create a teen sensation."--Doug Dechert

"I didn't really want to come out and say my publisher is an asshole."--Abigail Vona

Have you heard of Abigail Vona's Bad Girl? The vicious, gossipy, ridiculous backstory is, undoubtedly, more interesting than the book itself.

I'm fairly interested in these, like, boot-camps-for-troubled-teens, though. Someday, surely, someone will write a decent book-length account. Here is a group of links on the topic. And more more more. And mefi mefi mefi.

Ooh, and lest you miss it, the Bad Girl goodie bag.
Saturday, September 11
A gallery of Olympic posters, and one of adult movie posters.
Wednesday, September 8
Good news, at least for the few people who own iRiver HD-based mp3 players (hiya, Sumei): The Rockbox project, which provides open-source firmware for Archos players, is being ported to the iRivers. This is a big undertaking, far bigger than my understanding of it, so it's not like I'm holding my breath, but nevertheless: Rockbox for iRiver, on its way. (Via Slashdot)
Tuesday, September 7
Here are a couple articles about Laura Bush and anti-war poets. I'm still forming an opinion about the accomplishments of the First Librarian.
Friday, September 3
Nobody I know cares about sports. I don't even care about sports, particularly, except for, as with so many things, the business and marketing and whatnot. But Ricky Williams? The story keeps getting better (and note that I'm just hitting the highlights. I'm skipping, for example, the way that new Saints coach (and penis-drug spokesperson) Mike Ditka sold the farm to get Williams in the NFL draft).

First he signed to Master P's No Limit sports agency (currently, as best I can tell, defunct). Then he signed a ludicrous contract, literally negotiated on the golf course, with the New Orleans Saints. This contract consisted of, basically, an $8.8 million signing bonus, the NFL's minimum annual salary and a whole bunch of incentives, tied to things like touchdowns, 100-yard games and averaging 1600 yards/game over his first four seasons. Very few of these things happened (the last has only happened twice in NFL history, and not to anybody who keeps a weblog or chills with Ziggy Marley). Williams got a different (read: competent) agent, and, eventually, signed a deal with the Miami Dolphins. He was on the cover on NFL Street. Then, well, not much of interest, to football fans or anyone else, happened, until just recently. After failing an NFL-mandated drug test for the third time, he decided to retire, seemingly after having decided that he'd rather get high and hang out with Lenny Kravitz than play football. Dare I live out the American dream? Anyway, the definitive Ricky Williams story has yet to be written. I, for one, am hoping for a decent ghostwriter.

Also, here's a paleoclimatologist's review of 'The Day After Tomorrow.'
Thursday, September 2
One of many underreported stories from this election season: what George Herbert Walker Bush thinks of his son. Here's a quote from an appearance on Imus:

Look, I told you I don’t like to differ with my son, his team or anything else. I have to surrender. I have to have my own opinions in a blind trust as Doonesbury said about me one time in which case it’s true. If I said something to you, I took differ for me the President, everybody would rush over to the New York times or to Maureen or to somebody else and say look, the President differs. What do you say down in the white house pressroom about the nutty father unleashed out there. We don’t need that. I had my chance.

One of many overreported stories: Zell Miller.

Also, spoiler city at Me and Mofi.
A lagniappe of cultural kitsch and B-movie claptrap

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