twelve twentyfive oh seven

Well despite my heartfelt emails Santa brought bills this year instead of a nice flatscreen TV. So I threw out sanity, payed the bills and bought some thingys for the fam and invited them here instead of heading home. I've seen my mom make a roast before, it didn't look that hard ...

Maybe after new years I'll put a fish tank here instead.

I hope you find yourself warm, well fed, and in good company today :)


what would shatner do

Yeah I wanted to be an astronaut when I was a kid. So did you. Except what we didn't know until just recently, is that today's space explorers face a terrifying new menace! That's right you dirty biped, giant arachnids are attacking our spacecraft and we seem powerless to stop them. Will they target civilians next? Do our puny defenses stand a chance against their sheer numbers? Is there no end to their insatiable lust for human flesh!?

While they do give me the creeping willies, I for one welcome our new eight-legged overlords.



muad'dib on the beeb

BBC science news ran a story today about this little fellow called a Jerboa. The article claims that this is the first time this little fellow has been caught on camera, but I think they mean video as a google search yields many photos.

And of course I'm by no means the first to liken this small critter to Paul Atreides' name sake, the "kangaroo mouse" of Arakkis, but after a visit with my dad this week I've got Dune on the brain. He's reading the Prelude to Dune series again during some extended traveling, which I've never gotten to. I've only ever read Franks Dune novels, having heard lukewarm responses to Brians contributions. However I've always had an interest in reading The Butlerian Jihad, which chronicles the war between the humans and "thinking machines" which results in the ban on intelligent devices found in the later novels and the subsequent development of Mentats, the human logicians trained to replace computers.

Mayhaps I'll continue my ongoing saga of simply assembling a list of books for Santa this year as opposed to the obligatory kitchen gadgets, socks, and blank media I've been avoiding buying all year.


moving pictures on the digiwebs

A couple weeks ago I pulled a flick called "The Man From Earth" off the newsgroups and gave it a watch. It was a low budget Sci-Fi picture with some vaguely familiar faces (Enterprise's Dr. Phlox) and an intriguing hook. A university professors going away party becomes an intellectual Q & A session when the departing prof confesses to his peers that he is over fourteen thousand years old and does not age.

The film does a great job of tackling many of the interesting angles from "immortal" classics like Highlander, and Interview With The Vampire and leaving the action and special effects for the blockbusters. The mechanics of living with immortality present engaging and unusual problems and The Man From Earth handles them deftly without pre-chewing the ideas before presentation. Its no hit, but it makes for smart storytelling and an entertaining intellectual exercise in history and human nature.

Sure I enjoyed the picture, and I certainly recommend it, but the really interesting bit cropped up on a few popular P2P news sites recently. When the DVD screener was ripped and released on the net it was featured in P2P review site Rlslog. It seems the popularity garnered on IMDB and other online movie review sites since the leak was attributed by the producer of the film to its circulation online. He even went out of his way to contact Rlslog and thank them and the community for helping to promote their labour of love.

The creators are of course business men, and not above soliciting a few digital alms from those who pilfered and enjoyed the show. As I have strong objections to paypal I think I'll wait till I can take it in at the theatre, but I applaud their stance. I'm hoping more small budget pictures will consider "pulling a Radiohead" to get their stories out to an audience beyond the Hollywood targets. So lets see a Canadian theatrical release boys, I'll grab friends and put asses in those seats.