Weekend Reading

  • I Quit Twitter and It Feels Great
    It has been one year and 28 days since my last tweet. I deactivated my account shortly after President-elect Donald Trump tweeted, “North Korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching parts of the U.S. It won’t happen!” on Jan. 2, 2017.
    Not sure I’d go as far as quitting but more and more I think on having less social media time. It just ain’t good for ya!
  • How ‘Baby Driver’ Orchestrated a Car Chase Timed to a Musical Beat
    The kinetic opening of Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver, with The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s “Bellbottoms” playing on its soundtrack, had to accomplish a lot: quickly introduce the characters; set up the geography of a bank heist and the car chase that follows; and tell the audience exactly what to expect.
    I only just watched this the other day. A little over-styled but great movie to watch, especially this stuff (it’s peppered throughout the movie, watch it again and you won’t help but notice).
  • ABBA gold
    As London’s Southbank Centre celebrates a major ABBA exhibition Mike Atkinson takes a look at the legacy of Sweden’s hottest export At any decent-sized Pride festival during the Nineties, the chances are that you’d have been entertained by Björn Again, the first of countless ABBA tribute acts.
    Who doesn’t love ABBA? (seriously, if you don’t, GET OUT!)
  • This Is Why Uma Thurman Is Angry
    Yes, Uma Thurman is mad. She has been raped. She has been sexually assaulted. She has been mangled in hot steel. She has been betrayed and gaslighted by those she trusted.
    Another voice. More of this, less of ‘men’.
  • The Banana Trick and Other Acts of Self-Checkout Thievery
    Beneath the bland veneer of supermarket automation lurks an ugly truth: There’s a lot of shoplifting going on in the self-scanning checkout lane. But don’t call it shoplifting. The guys in loss prevention prefer “external shrinkage.”
    I’m ok with people ‘tricking’ these systems (aka stealing), think of it as payback for ‘Unexpected Item in Baggage Area’.
  • Luge Yourself
    LAKE PLACID, N.Y. We can start with the suit. It was blue, with splashes of red and white. It said “USA” on the left leg. There were these stirrup feet, which felt very 1990s. Sartorially speaking, it was not my sharpest look.
    The Winter Olympics are here. Every year I think I won’t watch much and then these lunatics turn up and I can’t help myself.
  • Senate passes bill to make O Canada lyrics gender neutral
    The Senate passed a bill that renders the national anthem gender neutral Wednesday despite the entrenched opposition of some Conservative senators.
    That’s it. I’m moving to Canada.
  • The Power of RAW on iPhone, Part 1: Shooting RAW
    I take a lot of photos. Usually I pack either a Sony A7R2 or a Leica M—two cameras with massive sensors and brilliant lenses. But lately, I’ve been shooting exclusively with the iPhone X, and have found it absolutely excellent.
    Nice series if you have an iPhone capable of shooting in RAW.
  • I deleted WhatsApp for a year and here’s what I learned
    At the end of 2016, I sent a message to all my contacts: “After 31 December, I will not use WhatsApp any more. Instead, I will use Threema and Signal.” On New Year’s Eve, I closed my WhatsApp account and deleted the app from my phone.
    Ohhhh the peace and quiet, can you imagine?
  • On Imposter Syndrome
    Imposter syndrome wasn’t something I was even aware of until a year or two ago, but now I realise I’ve had it all my life. It’s strange, because I’m a fiercely independent person and I don’t really care what other people think.
    Mental Health issues impact everyone. They are not visible. You never know.
  • Super Mario Odyssey producer settles the debate over Toad’s head
    In a new video, Super Mario Odyssey producer Yoshiaki Koizumi addressed longstanding mysteries about Toad’s head, Mario’s belly button and the nature of Mario, Peach and Pauline’s relationship. First, let’s address the all-important mystery of Toad’s head.
    Not sure why I’m sharing this. It made me chuckle.
  • Hear Freddie Mercury’s Vocals Soar in the Isolated Vocal Track for “Somebody to Love”
    For some time now, certain fans of Queen have sought the elusive answer to the question “what made Freddie Mercury such an incredible singer?” That he was an incredible singer—one of the greatest in terms of vocal range, emotive power, stage presence, songwriting, etc.
    No YOU’VE got something in your eye.
  • Why Paper Jams Persist
    Building 111 on the Xerox engineering campus, near Rochester, New York, is vast and labyrinthine. On the social-media site Foursquare, one visitor writes that it’s “like Hotel California.”
    Technology can’t do everything OR why do we STILL use so much paper?
  • The Man Who Saw Inside Himself
    For years, Larry Smarr has used a supercomputer to monitor his health and peer at his organs. Recently, he used his knowledge to help direct his own surgery.
    OK. I’m all for the ‘quantified self’ if that’s your thing but this is surely too far?
  • SpaceX launches its powerful Falcon Heavy rocket for the first time
    SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket took off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, this afternoon and soared to space, carrying its payload — CEO Elon Musk’s red Tesla Roadster — into orbit.
    Watch the video, even if you only skip forward to the two thruster rockets landing again, perfectly in sync.
  • Paradise found: how The Good Place divinely remixed the sitcom
    The Good Place isn’t the funniest comedy on television, but it’s probably the most enjoyable and easily the most radical. A sitcom about self-improvement at all costs, made just as the world is flushing itself down the toilet. Who on earth saw that coming?
    But the BIG question is, WHEN IS SEASON 3?!
  • The incredible story of Glasgow’s suffragette tree planted 100 years ago to celebrate women’s voting rights
    And in a little-known corner of Glasgow stands a century old tree planted in tribute to these suffragettes and the victory they so rightly deserved. Standing tall on Kelvin Way, Glasgow’s Suffrage Oak tree was planted on April 20 1918 by women suffrage pioneers.
    I’m going to go and find this, had no idea it existed.
  • Spreadsheet realism
    When Beeker published the brilliant essay, by Rod McLaren in 2015, I was blown away by the poetry of Rod’s writing. At that point in my career, I had a growing reliance on Excel as a mode of planning and organising of education.
    Ohhh lordy. Close to home.
  • Behind-the-scenes look at mixing the clay for Wallace and Gromit
    When producing their claymation-style feature films or Wallace and Gromit & Shaun the Sheep animations, Aardman Animations goes through 100s of pounds of modeling clay.
    Love these behind the scenes insights.
  • Stop Crying! Tear-Free Onions Are Here
    Using onions to explain away crying is a familiar gag. On The Brady Bunch, housekeeper Alice answers the phone and cries as the caller tells her a sad story. After hanging up she says, “Darn onions,” holding up the offending allium.
    Great! But… Sunions? Hmmm not so great.
  • Beating yourself up is not as helpful as you think
    I don’t have a name for my inner critic, unless ‘shut up shut up SHUTUP’ counts.
  • The House That Spied on Me
    In December, I converted my one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco into a “smart home”.
    Privacy versus convenience? A tough balance. This is very much on my mind at the moment.

Written By

Long time blogger, Father of Jack, geek of many things, random photographer and writer of nonsense.

Doing my best to find a balance.

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