Having owned an iPhone for all of one month, I’m still a bit leery of all it can purportedly do for me. Convenience is great, but I’m not sure I’m ready to cede control of all the little tasks, challenges, and puzzles my own imperfect brain has been handling more or less well for nearly half a century.
I don’t hate blundering.
“High tech and low life”: never have I heard a literary genre so elegantly encapsulated. I repeat it whenever a friend who finds out I enjoy reading cyberpunk novels — or watching cyberpunk movies, or playing cyberpunk video games — asks what “cyberpunk” actually means.[...]
Anyone remember Michael Crichton’s Westworld (or the Simpsons parody)? In this dystopian 1973 sci-fi, tourists visit a triumvirate of fantasy theme parks staffed by robotic historical re-enactors: Roman World, Medieval World, and the titular West World, with its “lawless violence on the American Frontier.[...]
Unmanned aerial vehicles, more colloquially known as drones, have drawn bad press in recent years: as the intrusive tools of the coming surveillance state, as deliverers of death from above in a host of war zones, as the purchase-delivering harbingers of world domination by Amazon.com.[...]
“I probably worry less about the real future than the average person,” says William Gibson, the man who coined the term “cyberspace” and wrote books like Neuromancer, Idoru, and Pattern Recognition. These have become classics of a science-fiction subgenre branded as “cyberpunk,” a label that seems to pain Gibson himself.[...]
If, like Virginia Woolf, you could never read James Joyce’s Ulysses from start to finish, then here’s another way to experience the modernist classic. Virtually rather than textually.[...]
Looking to kill some time during the dog days of summer? Here’s one option that John Ptak came up with. On his intriguing blog, The History of Ideas, he writes: “Isn’t this great? I bumped into a wonderful site called kloth.net that provides a free-to-all and unrestricted use of their punch card emulator.[...]
A couple weeks back, we mentioned that Brian Knappenberger had released his new documentary about Aaron Swartz, The Internet’s Own Boy, under a Creative Commons license, making it free to watch online. He now returns with a short op-doc for The New York Times.[...]
Maybe you knew about Marcel Duchamp’s passion for chess. But did you know about Marlon Brando’s passion for conga drums? Longtime fans may have first picked up on it in 1955, when the actor gave a microwave-link television tour of his Hollywood Hills home to Edward R. Murrow on Person to Person.[...]
Quick fyi: Eric Ligman, a Microsoft Sales Excellence Manager, has gathered together a big list of free Microsoft ebooks and resource guides that will help you navigate through various Microsoft issues. Some of the texts are geared toward consumers; others toward IT professionals working with Microsoft products.[...]