Saturday, April 07, 2001

David Bowie live on NRK2 just now, in a recording from London last year. He didn't play any of my favourites, but there's something about the way he performs on stage that gave the songs he did play a new meaning to me. Too bad the audio on my capture screwed up, I wanted to keep this one.

Anyway, a great perspective on Bowies career can be gotten by reading these articles, copied from various magazines from 1969 to the present.

The really big button that doesn't do anything. It was on the net before me, and I have a feeling it will still be here when I'm gone. It's in the presence of immortal concepts like this one feels truly humble.

"There is an area of the mind that could be called unsane, beyond sanity, and yet not insane. Think of a circle with a fine split in it. At one end there's insanity. You go around the circle to sanity, and on the other end of the circle, close to insanity, but not insanity, is unsanity."

The opening to goa album Lone Deranger by Hallucinogen. After a bit of searching I found out they were sampling Timothy Leary, and in the process I ended up getting lost at Fusion Anomaly, one of those huge labyrinth websites that believes in hyperlinks but not in structure, where you can start anywhere you like but never reach the end, not even of the page you're trying to read. Like a mini-internet perhaps, but with an overall focus and purpose: metaphysics, psychology, psychedelia and information theory.

And now my head is swimming. This is the only way to surf.

Friday, April 06, 2001

A few updates on things I've written about before.

Oasen Bibelskole: Trond Giske fought to the bitter end, but was yesterday forced by a majority in Stortinget to accept an application for a christian private school based on the Accellerated Christian Education curriculum. Can't say I approve of what they teach, but at least it's an alternative to the tyranny of mediocricity that is most public schools.

Vigrid: Tore W. Tvedt, that dangerous menace to society, is still charged with racism, but currently roaming at large in the mountains like Asbj�rnsen and Moe in the Ivo Caprino movies, collecting racist fairy tales for the new childrens section of his website. I really hadn't thought of Reveenka in that light before, but it must have done considerable harm to me when I read it as a kid, and now that SOS Rasisme has been kind enough to point out the allegory, I feel it is our duty as enlightened 21th century norwegians to cleanse the libraries of this horrible nazi propaganda - or at least rewrite it.

The CD tax: Several special interest and lobby organizations have commented on the proposed tax on digital media, most of them supportive, some asking for a larger piece of the pie. Surprisingly (or perhaps not) the Department of Justice is the only one to vaguely hint that it may be a bit out of date.

Thursday, April 05, 2001

Tele2 has been fined 350 000 NOK by �kokrim for hosting child pornography on their news server. As could be expected, the NTB article leaves out all the important details, such as whether Tele2 had been given a chance to remove the news groups, whether they could be expected to know what was in them, and what kind of pornography we're talking about. Nettavisen, for once, does a better job, also revealing that �kokrim apparently downloaded child pornography from Tele2 for over a year, before notifying them in may 1999, and finally giving the fine in November 2000.

A friend of mine had some interesting comments to this, all of which were extremely threatening and libellous of Inger Marie Sunde, so he wouldn't let me quote him. Personally I only have two questions: 1) Why weren't Tele2 given a fair chance to remove the news groups, and 2) Why weren't we told about this five months ago?

Wednesday, April 04, 2001

Note to self: Reading to get the straight talk on a new game, (in this case Black & White), will always leave you (I mean me) bitter, cynical and forgetting why you love games in the first place. I don't know if there's any actual terminology for classifying online communities, so I'll just use an old one: c.s.i.p.g.s has bad vibes.

The best comment I've seen on B&W yet comes from an editorial at GamesDomain:

Of course, the bottom line is just what do you expect to get for 30 quid these days? That barely buys you a good meal out and a movie for two people.

Well put. Specs are bothersome, though. Must try overclocking my Celeron 300a again - it ran at 450 without problems for over a year, but then I had to gradually downclock it back to 300, where it's been for the last year. Other people upgrade, I downgrade. Still, it only cost me 900 NOK two years ago, at a time when the P2 450 was barely even available.

Wallpaper out - Relativity by Escher (ok I got it now):

Wallpaper in - Orange Jello by Adam Patterson, (from D-Top), don't even have to relocate my desktop icons, they're already in the black area:

Tuesday, April 03, 2001

And you thought your job was boring.

I don't know why, but every time I read one of Minister of Foreign Affairs Torbj�rn "36.9" Jagland's newsletters, I get the image of a little boy taken abroad by his parents, carefully writing down all the words of those nice statesmen in green uniforms, and nodding in appreciation every time he recognizes some of the big words he learned in kindergarden: menneskerettighetssp�rsm�l, dialog, �konomisk utvikling, kultursatsing. Maybe I'm unfair or just cynically biased, I don't know, read them for yourself, especially those for March 19th and February 19th (which I've commented before).

The point I'm getting at is that when politicians start communicating in writing, through e-mail or websites, they come off as completely different people than on TV. This is not news, I'm always surprised when I meet online friends in real life, or real life friends online, but I hadn't thought about it in terms of politicians before I started subscribing to their newsletters. Charisma and real life skills are also important in politics, but I think if more people started reading the words of politicians instead of just hearing them, (or reading the tabloid summaries), they might get a different and better picture of who they're voting for. And, what do you know, there happens to be an election coming up right away so we can test this theory.

Sign a petition to give the Nobel Prize in Literature to Astrid Lindgren. [From Torill.] This is a great idea. I mean, just look at this list of past winners. Ok, so I admit I'm not an expert on literature, but I keep my eyes open, and I tell you I don't recognize a single name on that list after 1970. (No, I'm afraid I haven't read Gao Xingjian's latest novel - do they have it at Avalon?) At least Lindgren has meant something to whole generations of children, even those who never read books.

And then there's Bob Dylan of course, whose influence has also spanned generations in his own way. Or what about Arthur C. Clarke, one of the few classic SF writers still alive. Some of those south americans I haven't heard of may have been pretty good with the pen, but it's not exactly bowing to market pressure for the Nobel Committee to acknowledge the importance of childrens literature, rock poetry or science fiction.

Monday, April 02, 2001

Alan Greenspan presents: Tales of Terror! From Modern Humorist.

Note to self: Thomas Spence in Aftenposten, remember that name. If I ever get tricked into boot-strapping an internet start-up, (I like to think I'm immune, but I'm only human), he's the guy to call to get my company free, no-questions-asked PR in one of Norways largest newspapers. Apparently Nameplanet have been given a monopoly on the .name tld, but that nice journalist is too busy copying their press releases to even question it. (At least they are norwegian, so they wouldn't abuse it, would they, even if they have emigrated to London - hey wait a minute!)

Seriously, it's a decent idea, third level rather than second level domain registration, so instead of me having all by myself, I get all by myself, or if there are more of me, (but there isn't - is that cool or what!) Reduces the load on the second level, but doesn't actually solve the problem, and what's really wrong with forename.surname@isp.tld? Sounds better than anyway, and if I couldn't have my own second-level domain, I'd try a lot of options before settling with

Sunday, April 01, 2001

"Hide your scalp in your pocket, the indians are coming!"

I suppose I could be linking to April Fools stories today, but I'd rather spend the Day of the Fool with some wine, grapes and a stack of Marx Brothers movies, than wading through the usual crap written by people who aren't comedians or con artists for a very good reason. With pros like the Marx bros, you can't go wrong. (Foolishness is a serious business, you know - don't leave it to the amateurs!) Unfortunately my Half-Life TFC clan is playing a match this evening, (correction: I thought we were), so I watched the movies high on caffeine instead, which may be why I got more Groucho jokes than usual. I'll watch them drunk next weekend, then I might get all the Harpo jokes.

Hrmf, Blogger is working against me today.