Tuesday, January 1, 2019

№ 384. Pop

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

№ 382. Waking Up to Binary Dreams 2018

The digital world’s emphasis on speed inhibits reflection; its incentive empowers the radical over the thoughtful; its values are shaped by subgroup consensus, not by introspection. For all its achievements, it runs the risk of turning on itself as its impositions overwhelm its conveniences.


Saturday, December 15, 2018

№ 381. Forecast for Our Dust Mote

This excerpt from Sagan's book Pale Blue Dot was inspired by an image taken, at Sagan's suggestion, by Voyager 1 on February 14, 1990. As the spacecraft left our planetary neighborhood for the fringes of the solar system, engineers turned it around for one last look at its home planet. Voyager 1 was about 6.4 billion kilometers (4 billion miles) away, and approximately 32 degrees above the ecliptic plane, when it captured this portrait of our world. Caught in the center of scattered light rays (a result of taking the picture so close to the Sun), Earth appears as a tiny point of light, a crescent only 0.12 pixel in size.

"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there--on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam."
--- Carl Sagan

Friday, November 2, 2018

№ 380. Pluck the Day While It is Ripe

A Bigger Splash by David Hockney  

Ask not ('tis forbidden knowledge),
what our destined term of years,
Mine and yours; nor scan the tables of your Babylonish seers.
Better far to bear the future, my Leuconoe, like the past,
Whether Jove has many winters yet to give, or this our last;
This, that makes the Tyrrhene billows spend their strength against the shore. 
Strain your wine and prove your wisdom;
life is short; should hope be more?
In the moment of our talking, envious time has ebb'd away.
Seize the present; trust tomorrow e'en as little as you may.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

№ 377. The Secret Life of Old Songs

This song about rediscovering our old selves and lovers made me smile. I paid no attention to it before until I watched "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" again, this time on Netflix. I actually liked how the movie tied up a lot of almost unrelated elements. Iceland, Greenland and Afghanistan were beautifully shot in wide panoramic format which just underscored the theme of a closeted traveler finally unmoored from the desk job and let loose to the chaos of the elements.

I didn't appreciate the movie the first time I watched it. I probably missed out on the many cultural references and the really stunning landscapes. But seeing it again in high definition and on a very big 70-inch or so screen made such a difference.

Escape (The Piña Colada Song)