Swipe launches KONNECT at Rs. 4,999 Exclusively on Snapdeal        

by Shrutee K/DNS 

India, 4th August 2017: Swipe Technologies, India’s leading mobile internet technology company, is all set to unveil brand new member in its popular KONNECT Series - Swipe KONNECT Power.  The slim and sturdy smartphone sports 5” HD IPS display and boasts enormous 3000 mAh battery.  The compelling feature rich Swipe KONNECT Power is competitively priced at Rs. 4,999 only. It will be available exclusively on Snapdeal from 7th August 2017.

Swipe KONNECT Power is driven by a powerful 1.5GHz quad core processor that runs on Android 6.0 OS for lag-free multi-tasking smartphone experience. It comes with 2 GB RAM plus 16 GB internal memory, expandable up to 32 GB and OTG support enhances the storage options. The new 4G VoLTE-ready KONNECT Power features 5” HD IPS display that allows users to enjoy cleaner & sharper visuals at the highest resolution. Besides, this device has a very sleek body that makes the phone very stylish in its looks. That’s not all. For the photography enthusiast, KONNECT Power comes with 8MP Rear Camera and 5MP Front Camera. The camera app also comes with lots of features to enhance the photography. The new phone gives an extended company to the user with its 3000 mAh battery, which is installed keeping in mind the daily lifestyle and usage patterns of young smartphone users.  Commenting on the launch of KONNECT Power, Mr. Shripal Gandhi, Founder and CEO of Swipe Technologies said: “Fulfilling aspirations of demanding Indians at affordable price is what differentiates Swipe from other smartphone players.  Our latest creation is yet another affordable device under the KONNECT series – KONNECT Power. It is designed for the aspiring youth of the country who requires long lasting battery that too with 2GB RAM yet the phone is light on pocket.”
Vishal Chadha, Sr.Vice President – Business said: “As part of our commitment to the vision of Digital India, we are keen to bring our consumers access to compelling technology products at great value. With Swipe Konnect Power, we are confident that this newest exclusive addition to our smartphone assortment will be well received by our customers”
Swipe KONNECT Power comes with a gorgeous design, and it has a smoother touch experience as well as comfortable grip. Customers will be able to enjoy a greater multimedia experience, as they can capture stunning photos and videos in virtually any lighting condition.
About Swipe Technologies:
Swipe Technologies is an innovation-centric mobility solutions company, having started its operations in July 2012. Within a short span of time, Swipe has become the leading tablet and Smartphone maker in India.   Swipe was started with an aim to bring exciting devices in the growing Indian market and today, it is the leading consumer brand with key innovations across products, pricing and customer support. Founded by technocrat Mr. Shripal Gandhi, Swipe raised $5 million in May 2014 from the Venture Capital firm Kalaari Capital. In the last three years, Swipe has won a number of accolades including the “Top 50 Inspiring Entrepreneurs of India” by The Economic Times, the “Most Innovation-driven Company in India” by World Brand Congress, and the “Most Innovative Start-up” by Franchise India, the “Best Integrated Campaign” by the World Brand and Congress& the “Best Youth Brand Tablet” by CNBC. Also, Swipe’s young founder Mr. Shripal Gandhi has been recognized as the “CNBC Young Turks” for his breakthrough strategies and innovation in the field of mobile communication technologies. For details, logon to www.justswipe.com

          weekly Diigo Post (weekly)        

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

          Visual Serendipity Week 81. The largest flying bird.        
  The Andean Condor is the largest flying land bird in the Western Hemisphere, and second only to the Wandering Albatross in terms of wingspan among all living flying birds.
          Visual Serendipity.        
  “Los atardeceres caleños, como su brisa, no se parecen a nada, en ninguna parte.” Shot in Cali, Colombia (with O).
          Visual Serendipity.        
  Serendip­ity: noun; the occur­rence and devel­op­ment of events by chance in a happy or ben­e­fi­cial way. The Cocora Valley is located in the Central Cordillera of the Andean mountains in Colombia. According to local legends, “Cocora” was the name of a Quimbayan princess, daughter of the local chief Acaime, and means “star of water”. The […]
          Vanity GREAT (As Opposed To 'Fair')        
I almost hesitate to post these because our buddy Kroninger holds the official Drawger position as 'Vice President in Charge of Posting Images at Least 50 Years Old While Simultaneously Running Down a Hallway Dangerously Holding a Pair of Extra-Sharp Scissors'. I was checking out the Vanity Fair site over the weekend and was paying special attention to the Jazz Age and Depression-Era covers. Now THESE are covers! Covarrubias, Carlu, Aladjalov, Bolin and my personal fave, Paolo Garretto. So graphic, so elegant, so able to communicate an idea visual with an economy of line, shape and effects. So pull up a mouse and check out some absolutely amazing covers by illustrators who continue to inspire, influence and still ASTOUND us well over 50 years later. Oh, and don't mind Kroninger writhing over there in the corner -- it's only a flesh wound. Vintage Vanity Fair Covers

          The Cheney Chronicles #3: One Year Later – Decision Time        
Decision time

As a patient of Dr. Cheney’s, I had access to his frequent emails discussing his thoughts and treatments regarding chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). In writing this article, I went back and read most of these emails.  For quite a few of them, I had to research the acronyms and spend […]

The post The Cheney Chronicles #3: One Year Later – Decision Time appeared first on Health Rising.

          The Cheney Chronicles #2: His Protocol For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome        

(Chris continues his overview of seeing Dr. Paul Cheney  to treat his case of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. See Part I here) I have a confession to make –  I am treating myself. I just finished listening/reading Dr. Horowitz’s book, “Why Can’t I Get Better? Solving the Mystery of Lyme and […]

The post The Cheney Chronicles #2: His Protocol For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome appeared first on Health Rising.

          From Mono To Giardia To Orthostatic Intolerance to … Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Dr. Cheney: the First Visit        

My ME/CFS History 1989 – The First Flu-like Illness I was always a high energy burn the candle at both ends type-A person. In my early twenties (1989) I came down with a flu-like illness that did not go away. I had gone from a person who would play sports […]

The post From Mono To Giardia To Orthostatic Intolerance to … Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Dr. Cheney: the First Visit appeared first on Health Rising.

          3 consigli per dominare la Metro di Londra        
Dietro questo titolo roboante in realtà si celano i giorni di smarrimento che ho passato quando prendevo la metro a Londra le prime volte. Del resto basta guardare la piantina… …ed è facile immaginare che un romano abituato a visualizzare la  mappa del metro della propria città con una “X” si senta perso le prime volte nella Tube.  […]
          Ð‘еременность / We Are Pregnant (2016) BDRip 720p        

Категория: Фильмы/HDTV/HD/Blu-Ray/MKV
Размер: 3.89 GB
Траффик: Раздают (отдают): 8,371, Скачивают (качают): 8,718
Добавлен: 2017-08-10 07:41:28
Описание: Информация о фильме
Название: Беременность
Оригинальное название: We Are Pregnant
Год выхода: 2016
Жанр: Комедия
Режиссер: Хуана Масиас
В ролях: Пако Леон, Александра Хименес, Альберто Амарилья, Эрнесто Севилья, Айноа Айербе, Иньяки Фонт, Гойсальде Нуньес, Карра Элехальде, Белен Лопес

О фильме: Всё просто: яйцеклетка + сперматозоид = эмбрион. Но когда у тебя мало сперматозоидов, и к тому же они ленивые и ненормальные, а у твоей женщины пременопауза в 37 лет, всё становится сложнее.


Выпущено: Испания / Audiovisuales del Monte S.L.
Продолжительность: 01:46:34
Озвучивание: Профессиональный многоголосый [Синема УС]

Формат: MKV
Качество: BDRip 720p
Видео: MPEG-4 AVC, 1280x536, 5034 Кбит/с
Аудио: Русский (AC3, 2 ch, 192 Кбит/с)

          Side-Talk: Butterscotch Cafe        
Today I am going to blog about my dining experience at Butterscotch Cafe. I have seen photos of dishes from this cafe. The food looks visually appetizing. But it is a little out of the way. When I heard my friend's office is near this cafe, we decided to have our long overdue meet up here. It is located at Bukit Merah area. It is about 10 mins walk from Redhill MRT station. Fortunately, my friend and I did not get lost even when it is out first time and it was at night. When we reached there, both us agreed that it was an unexpected place to find a cafe. The place was much more 'ulu' than I expected haha.

You will need to wait once you reach there if the cafe is crowded. You can also leave your number and they will contact you once there are available seats. Since the indoor seating were full, we had to seat outside. It wasn't too bad because there were ceiling fans and there weren't many passerbys in the area.

I bought myself Bandung Soda Float  (S$6.50) and Chilli Crab Cake Burger (S$14). While my friend bought herself Chicken Chop with Eggs ($16) and Iced Matcha Green Tea (S$6.50). You opt for Chicken chop without egg which will cost S$2 cheaper.

Bandung Soda Float (S$6.50) and Iced Matcha Green Tea (S$6.50)

Chilli Crab Cake Burger (S$14) and Chicken Chop with Eggs (S$16)
The Chilli Crab Cake burger comes with wedges and the Chicken Chop comes with wedges and coleslaw. The crab cake had a really thick patty of real crab meat. It wasn't mixed with any other ingredients which is nice. The sauce is the typical Chilli Crab sauce but I feel it lacked spiciness. It wasn't even spicy for my standard. The Bandung Soda Float was a let down because I barely taste the bandung. I think it was overpowered by the soda and ice cream. I wished it has a stronger Rose water taste.

I tasted my friend's chicken chop and it was really good. This might not make sense because it was so good that it tasted like steak. The meat was juicy too. It is different from your typical hawker centre chicken chop. It was worth the buy. I didn't taste my friend's Iced Matcha Green Tea but according to her it was pleasantly unique.

We were too full once we were done with our meals and hence did not order any dessert like what we initially planned. But the desserts were pretty pricey, they cost at least S$12.

Overall, I find that cafe serves pretty good food. Will definitely come back again because I just found out that it sells korean bingsu as well!! Have been craving for bingsu ever since I came back from korea and it definitely difficult to get halal bingsu in Singapore. I hope someone would open a halal bingsu store soon. Oh and lastly I apologize for the lousy photos in this post haha.

          Side-Talk: FIX Cafe at Ah Hood Road        
Met up with my friends few weeks ago to take time off from studying. I suggested that we have dinner at FIX cafe. Have been eyeing this place ever since it got its halal certification. Their desserts look so photogenic on photos. However its location is a little out of the way from where we usually hangout. Suggested this place because the others do not have any better suggested, so we went….

We took a bus there and it took us almost an hour to reach but it was worth it. Got seated near the pool. It was not very crowded and the lighting of the cafe was good for photo taking. You have to the counter to order. I went to the counter to order but forget what my friends wanted to buy as soon as I was about to order haha. I bet the cashier thought I was weird. Went back to our table and asked my friends to come with to order haha. They also commented why I went to cashier without bringing my wallet -.- Scumbag brain.

Okay back to the food we ordered. We had Chicken Tikka Naanwich, Turkey Ham and Cheese Naanwich, Fish & Chips, Soy-glazed Chicken Drumlets and Strawberry Pistachio Rose Tart. For drinks we had ice-lemon tea, Iced Mocha and Iced Chocolate. The price came about $51 dollar, if I remembered correctly. And that is very reasonable.

Didn't manage to take lot of the photos of the food because we were all very hungry and could not wait to dig in. Here is my take on each of the item we had.

1) Chicken Tikka Naanwich (S$11)

This main comes with a cup of Nachos. The chicken tikka was nicely spiced and goes well with everything else. The portion of chicken was pretty generous. The only complain I have is that there was  too little cheese on the Nachos.

2) Turkey Ham and Cheese Naanwich (S$11)

Likewise this main comes with a cup of Nachos. I like the combination of everything. The oozing yolk completes the dish. The naan is not too hard and it is buttery. The turkey ham is good too, but felt that the slices were too little. It might look difficult to eat but you can just cut into sections and eat it. The ingredients complements each other well.

3) Fish & Chips (S$11)

The fish is quite plump. The inside is soft and the outside has just enough crust. I can actually taste the slight peppery taste to it. The fries is quite mediocre in my opinion.

4) Soy-glazed Chicken Drumlets ($7)

The skin of the Chicken has a nice crunch to it. However, the soy-glazed is kinda sweet for my liking. Maybe I should have squeezed more of the lemon slice that came with it.

5) Strawberry Pistachio Rose Tart ($6)

I was really to the tart visually. I also like how FIX presents their deserts, it looked quite luxurious. Some of the strawberries are sweet and some were not haha. We shared the dessert and my friend kept getting the sour ones haha. I like the pistachio base, because I like anything that is nutty. Anyway, my sister particularly like the combination of the pistachio base with the strong tasting strawberry jam. The sweetness is just right and it is a pretty light dessert.

Don't be deceived by how the mains look, they are pretty filling. Initially we all said that we are going to order more but we were extremely full and couldn't even finish the chicken. What I like about this cafe is that the prices are reasonable, a lot of halal cafes out there have ridiculously expensive food and they are not even good :/. Overall I will come back again. I really can't wait to taste their other desserts. The owner of FIX cafe is going to open another halal establishment called FIX grill. It is located just beside FIX cafe. Gonna give it a try after my exams. 

Summer Za'atar on the border with Lebanon
There is a little confusion around the name "Za'atar" and what exactly does it refer to: A condiment? A spice mix? An herb? And if so - which herb exactly - Hyssop? Thyme? Oregano? Marjoram?

The truth is that za'atar is an Arabic word used interchangeably for a number of wild herbs that grow wild in the Mediterranean region, and all contain thymol and carvacrol. Hence their similar sharp and warm aroma, bitter taste and spicy, almost hot "bite". They also share similar medicinal properties, most of them used in folk medicine for most digestive ailments and respiratory complaints. The mixture known to us as "Za'atar" is in fact a misnomer. Za'atar is originally the name of the plant now classified as Origanum syriacum, but in Arabic it is loosely applied to several other related wild and not so wild herbs.


The name for the condiment is in fact "doukka" (pronounced often as "Do-ak" with a very throaty "K" that almost sounds like an "A" so in reality the word sounds more like "Do-ah"). In Arabic this means "to grind". Each region in the Arab world has its own "Doukka", which is either sprinkled on food, or more commonly covered in olive oil to which the traditional regional bread is dipped. For example - Egypt has a complex nut-based doukka with toasted hazelnuts or walnuts, to which toasted or untoasted spices such as cumin, coriander seeds, green peppercorns and sweet fennel have been added.

In the Levant "doukka" happens to be made primarily of a mixture of thymol-containing herbs, with "The" Za'atar (Origanum syriacum) being the star of the show. Lesser amounts of other herbs, will be added - the most important of which are "Za'atar Farsi" (winter savory), Israeli Thyme (Corydothymus capitatus), Zuta זוטה לבנה ( Micromeria fruiticosa barbata), a delicate wild white mint known in English as White-Leaved Savory (which does not even belong to the savory genus, but to micromeria because of its tiny leaves). Common oregano (Origanum vulgare) makes a good addition, albeit cannot substitute for the real Za'atar or Syrian oregano if you actually know the real deal. Likewise, marjoram and thyme can also make a good addition but not be at the centre. Even though their profiles are similar - there are some nuances that will be lost if using only the garden variety oreganos and thymes and none of the wild stuff.

Many other things can be added to the mix, the most important being sumac berries (Rhus coriaria) for their wonderful salty-sour flavour, and toasted sesame seeds for their pop-in-the-mouth nuttiness. But you'll also find spices sometimes, including more obscure ones such as butum (بطم) - toasted terebinth fruits (Pistachia palestina), which are really like tiny pistachios with the outer red peel intact. I've got a few of those drying right now, because I've never seen them in any market before and I'm very curious how they taste as a spice.

The following are several authentic Za'atar recipes I've collected - and of course you are welcome to browse google's universe of shared recipes, but be cautious of a few things if you want to make an authentic za'atar:
1) Use actual Origanum syriacum even if a generic "oregano" is called for
2) Do not by any stretch of the imagination use "fresh" leaves. They must be dried first. And only then will you grind them up with the rest of the ingredients. This is a dried herb and spice mix. Not a fresh herb concoction.
3) Usage of salt, although found in many recipes, seems very superfluous to me, unless you are not using sumac berries. These have a unique taste - equally salty and tangy. The whole point of using them is so you do not need to use salt. Likewise, using citric acid is a way to fake the sumac effect. Which I'm not quit sure why would anyone do that aside from laziness. Sumac berries are difficult to grind manually (or even in a coffee grinder) - but you can find ground sumac easily in many spice shops and markets.

When shopping for pre-made spice mixes, or any ground spices for that matter, the main culprit is adulteration and using old raw material that are "dressed up" as authentic. It's hard to teach someone who've never tasted or smelled za'atar what to look for, but some things are a telling sign. For example: if you don't see the dark maroon red and still taste salt or tanginess, it is probably from salt and citrus acid, and not from the (missing) red sumac berries. Secondly, another visual sign - za'atar leaves are rather grey in colour when dried, so any other colour you see (olive green) is either food colouring or a combination of other types of "za'atar" herbs (i.e.: thyme, za'atar farsi, etc.). Best sign is by taste - if it taste like dust (and looks like dust) it's either too old or just a fake.

I suggest you start with the most basic three ingredients, and then play with the proportions and adding other herbs and/or spices. You can even start with equal amount of za'atar leaves, sumac and sesame and adjust to taste.

Safta Ada's Za'atar Recipe 
This is my mom's handmade recipe that she would make from wild harvested za'atar (before it was illegal to pick any) and would even send it to Vancouver so I can enjoy a taste of home.
1 cup dried za'atar leaves, coarsely crushed between your palms, or pounded with mortar and pestle to a finer powder
4 Tbs ground sumac berries (I suggest you purchase them pre-ground, otherwise their seeds can break your teeth!)
2 Tbs toasted brown sesame seeds, whole

May Bsisu wrote an excellent book, The Arab Table, which I highly recommend, and it includes a unique Palestinian style of za'atar that includes caraway:
10oz oregano (I assume she means za'atar)
5oz thyme
3 Tbs sumac, ground
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
2-1/2 Tbs coarse salt
1/2 tsp allspice, ground
1/4 tsp caraway seeds, ground 

Easy Lebanese Recipes provides a "Traditional Rich Recipe" for za'atar that I'm compelled to try, with dried za'atar, roasted sesame, sumac, marjoram, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, fennel, aniseed and salt.

Mamma's Lebanese Kitchen recipe contains thyme, marjoram, sumac, sesame, cumin, coriander, fennel, cinnamon and salt.

How to consume za'atar?
Use your za'atar mixed with olive oil as a dip for bread, on top of labneh (strained yoghurt cheese) or as a substitute for butter under any other soft or hard cheese, avocado, etc.
It's also a nice addition to salads, and for baking fish or poultry. I also like to add it to chickpeas that I fry whole in olive oil, after they've been cooked and drained.

Fresh za'atar leaves come in late winter and can be enjoyed all through spring, and can be fried in olive oil much like tender sage leaves and become this wonderful crispy topping for fresh bread, pasta, roasted vegetables, etc. Also, they can be used as they are in salads (May Bsisu has a recipe for fresh oregano salad in that book as well), with lots of onion and tomatoe. The Druze use it to season the dough or the fillings for various savoury pastries, such as sambusak (a flatbread that is folded in half to conceal a thin layer of highly seasoned stuffing, and baked in the tabun) and fatayer (little dough pockets filled with cheese), and the dried whole leaves can be used much like oregano in meat and pasta sauces, in soups, stews, breads, etc.

Now, let's explore the Za'atar "group" of plants:

Hyssop (Wild Oregano)

Ezov (the Hebrew word for the Biblical Hyssop - not the European Hyssopus officials which is also a medicinal plant, and produces a rather toxic essential oil), which is now classified as an oregano, Origanum syriacum (formerly Majorana syriaca). Like many of the other aromatic plants from the Lamiaceae family, za'atar has a winter and spring foliage and a summer foliage, which is smaller in order to preserve water and survive the long arid season. I suspect the essential oils also aid with the survival of these plants in such harsh conditions - because whenever they are grown in regions where the water is more abundant (British Columbia, for example) - their flavour is largely lacking. What you see above is the luscious winter "look", which features soft and larger leaves, and their colour is much greener, and therefore more similar to the common oregano (Origanum vulgare).


Za'atar Farsi (meaning Persian Za'atar), or as it is called in Hebrew צתרה ורודה - Tzatra Vruda (Pink Tzatra) which really is winter or mountain savory (Satureja montana). Its long needle-like leaves have a sharp, spicy taste. When we were growing up my mom would spice the egg for French Toast with them and make them literally savoury.

Thymbra spicata צתרנית משובלת
Mediterranean Thyme (Thymbra spicata), in Hebrew צתרנית משובלת Tzatranit Meshubelet is also called in Arabic "Za'atar farsi", and has a very similar leaf shape (only a bit longer, narrower and softer) and almost identical odour and aroma profile. It has flowers that look a bit more like chaffs of wheat (not unlike those of Lavandula dentata, and is even more rare to find than Satureja montana.

Coridothymus capitatus
Israeli Thyme (Corydothymus capitatis / Thymus capitatus / Thymbra capitata) or in Hebrew Koranit Mekurkefet קורנית מקורקפת is also known by many other names - Israeli oreganum (oil), Cretan thyme, Corido thyme, Headed savory, Thyme of the Ancient, Conehead thyme and most commonly - Spanish Oregano (even though it is not classified as "origanum"). This oil is what is often sold as "oregano oil", by the way. This is now a rare plant that in our area grows only along the rocky seashores of the North Coast leading to Lebanon. The leaves are tiny and sharp, like a miniature version of the Pink Tzatra, but they grow more dense and close together to form clusters around the tip of the branches. The branches are woody-looking almost like bonsai trees that crawl all over the rocks - and the flowers tiny and purplish-pink. The aroma is clean and maybe a little more simple than that of za'atar, but also the taste is much more sharp and phenolic.

¿Ciencia a la Colombiana? Este es un artículo que va en contra de la corriente actual, de alguna manera podrán decir que estoy en contra de la "ciencia" lo que me parece en cierto sentido excelente. Hace pocos días se desató el escándalo de que le iban a quitar plata a Colciencias. Para mí fue motivo de decepción: ¡Deberían cerrarla! Si yo fuera presidente lo primero que cerraría sería Colciencias y eso que es complicado dado como se comporta la academia actual, deseo que eso pase, que cierren a Colciencias... no ser presidente.

¿Qué ha pasado? La verdad hay un exceso de noticias que impiden afirmar científicamente qué fue lo que pasó. Hay dos hechos que creo claros: 

1. "La directora de COLCIENCIAS dijo que iban a quitarles presupuesto"
2. "La directora de COLCIENCIAS dejó su cargo a los pocos días"

¿Qué pasó realmente? ¿Cómo se supo la "noticia" difundida como escándalo nacional? Lo primero que genera inquietud es ¿cómo sabía la directora que les iban a quitar presupuesto? ¿Le escribieron el ministro o el presidente? De acuerdo con un artículo de "El Tiempo" (al que hay que leer a favor de Colciencias por el sesgo a favor del presidente) http://www.eltiempo.com/estilo-de-vida/ciencia/colciencias-recibira-menos-presupuesto-en-el-2015/14203881 manifestó que recibió un correo de su director de planeación, es decir, un funcionario de ella. ¿Y ese funcionario de dónde la recibió? El confuso artículo del periódico El Tiempo menciona al Departamento Nacional de Planeación. Esa mención parece una "Colcienciada..." es decir una imprecisión de tipo periodístico como se da en Colombia. Pero ¿y si viniera del DNP? Si uno mira las funciones del DNP frente al presupuesto sus funciones son más de carácter burocrático y asesor que realmente quien elabora el presupuesto https://www.dnp.gov.co/Qui%C3%A9nesSomos/Funciones.aspx . Por su parte, quien realmente elabora y sigue el presupuesto, por tener la misión de la política fiscal y la definición del gasto público es el Ministerio de Hacienda http://www.minhacienda.gov.co/HomeMinhacienda/presupuestogeneraldelanacion. 

¿Entonces era información veraz con la que se basaba la directora de Colciencias? Es factible que la información fuera veraz. ¿Y cómo lo comprueba? Pero no es una información que uno pueda tomar como concluyente.  Lo sería si hubiera conocido el proyecto de ley del presupuesto presentado al congreso, ni siquiera un borrador permitiría una inferencia que "les quitaron el presupuesto". Solamente podría hablarse de una intención. Pero releamos las palabras: "Voy a dar la mala noticia que me acaba de llegar en un correo. Me dice mi jefe de Planeación: 'Directora, le mando la confirmación del presupuesto del año entrante, que es 289.000 millones de pesos. Estamos ya a 125.000 millones del presupuesto del año pasado". Pero bueno esa es la ciencia a la colombiana, una declaración no confirmada de una funcionaria -con autoridad de dirigir la "ciencia colombiana"- da para que toda una academia proteste porque "le van a bajar el presupuesto a Colciencias". 

Pero bueno ese es el ridículo argumento de autoridad -no verdaderamente científico- por el que la "academia" reconoce un hecho probado: le van a disminuir el presupuesto a "Colciencias". Ni el más formalista, ni el menos riguroso de los académicos validaría una información de ese calibre. Es más ni siquiera hace bien el único trabajo que ese el estado: ¡producir formularios y saber llenarlos! Es como si un científico dijera que en su laboratorio la presión atmosférica es de 900 HPa porque se lo dijo su "asistente". Uno como mínimo mira el barómetro. Pero es ciencia a la colombiana... una mentalidad que se cree pensadora porque sabe muchos chismes... Recuerdo que hablaba una vez con una niña que estudiaba periodismo y ella leía "las fuentes son... el ministro". Y yo le dije que eso no era real, que la fuente es el acto -que es como se comunica el ministro como ministro- no la opinión -política además-del ministro. Bueno, tal vez la directora de "ciencias a la colombiana" quería rebelarse contra la ¡producción de formularios! y ver que puede haber verdad confirmada más allá del formulario... en especial lo referente al futuro...

"Deseo tener el país más educado: ¡todos tendrán un diploma!"
¿Qué es Colciencias? Uno podría quedarse por lo que dicen los decretos que la crean, que es el mismo copy paste de esos sueños que quedan en las leyes. Acá creemos que el tiempo y el reloj se mueven por decreto, sino pregúntele a Juan Manuel Santos su ridícula e improvisada propuesta que pasó a la historia como "la hora Gaviria" y que cancelaron casualmente en el momento en que astronómicamente era inconveniente... manifestando que "ya era económicamente viable". Así como creemos que por decreto va a salir la ciencia, la tecnología y la innovación, creemos que necesitamos gente "trabajando" para hacer magia el decreto. Y eso hace "Colciencias":

Colciencias es el Departamento Administrativo de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación.
Promueve las políticas públicas para fomentar la CT+I en Colombia. Las actividades alrededor del cumplimiento de su misión implican concertar políticas de fomento a la producción de conocimientos, construir capacidades para CT+I, y propiciar la circulación y usos de los mismos para el desarrollo integral del país y el bienestar de los colombianos.  http://www.colciencias.gov.co/sobre_colciencias?vdt=info_portal%7Cpage_1

¿Las cosas se conocen por el qué o por el cómo? Seguramente por el cómo. ¿Cómo promueve, fomenta, (y mil sinónimos de la burocracia para enfatizar sus objetivos) la Ciencia, la Tecnología y la Innovación? Contaré mi experiencia. ¿Qué hace Colciencias?

Siendo uno de los pocos privilegiados que pudo pasar por la universidad recuerdo varias cosas. Una de mis grandes amigas (que seguro estará en desacuerdo y podrá precisar este artículo) era la Directora del Centro de Investigaciones. También intentaba entrar al mundo de la investigación universitaria con un Semillero de Investigación. Y bueno he encontrado más cosas en las universidades. 

En aquellas épocas mi amiga trabajaba con otra amiga que se encargaba de arreglar todos los asuntos de la investigación. Bueno "investigación". Recuerdo que una de sus tareas era ayudar a los profesores a actualizar el CVLac ¿Qué es el CVLac? En Colciencias http://www.colciencias.gov.co/tutorialcvlac puede verse un tutorial especial para hacer el CVLac. Esto es básicamente la hoja de vida del investigador. ¿Por qué para investigar en las universidades se requiere una hoja de vida? El tutorial para hacer el CVLac tiene unas 66 páginas http://es.calameo.com/read/000051811450cdee35ceb cuya lectura muy posiblemente serán horas de investigación... perdidas... Y eso que luego de leerlo hay que llenarlo... Una labor que podrá ayudar a la paciencia, la templanza, la fortaleza pero no la investigación, mucho menos la innovación... Bueno, puede servir a crear el llenado automático de formularios, ¿se le ocurrirá eso a la brillantez colombiana? Espero que como un chiste bastante picante el programador del llenado automático de formularios sea colombiano...

Alguna vez renegaba del colegio del que salí diciendo "en este colegio no quieren científicos sino secretarias". Pero el colegio no era más que un mini-Colciencias. Creo que Colombia solamente necesita una profesión "elaboración y llenado de formularios", así que el colegio pensaba en mi bien cuando me hablaba de la importancia de no salirme de los márgenes. De paso no debía enseñar nada más, porque los que "estudiamos" comemos cuando llenamos formularios, y comemos mejor cuando llenamos formularios más elaborados. Pero entre llenar un CVLac para decir que investigo o una declaración de renta por plata prefiero llenar una declaración de renta.

Ahora bien, no bastaba con llenar la hoja de vida. También las universidades hacen grupos de investigación. Aunque la curiositas es amplia la investigación suele centrarse, no en el macrocosmos sino en el primer pelo de la segunda pata de la hormiga culona santandereana.Y allí tenemos los grupos de investigación. Esos grupos se mueven por proyectos. Por ejemplo "El crecimiento del primer pelo de la segunda pata de la hormiga culona santandereana en la disminución  del consumo de la misma en la dieta de los habitantes de San Gil, Santander". Esos grupos también tienen hoja de vida... efectivamente, más formularios. Pero bueno, eso no es lo que hace Colciencias, lo que hace es tomar esas hojas de vida y "pesarlas" y es básicamente comparar la investigación con la producción de bienes y servicios. La calidad de la investigación es "cantidad" http://www.colciencias.gov.co/sites/default/files/ckeditor_files/files/DOCUMENTO%20Modelo%20de%20Medici%C3%B3n%20Grupos%202013-VERSI%C3%93N%20II%20Definitiva%20DIC%2010%202013%20_protected.pdf.

Es así como los investigadores ya tienen un buen tiempo llenando formularios -e investigando cómo se llenan esos formularios-. Pero uno tal vez piensa "bueno, ese no es el día a día de la 'apasionante' investigación". Pero no es extraño encontrar a los profesores llenando esos formularios que tienen plazo para enviarlos. Eso sin contar con los miles de informes que deben mandar. Creo que Colciencias también financia proyectos o autoriza sumas pero eso por lo menos no lo vi. Bueno, vi los jóvenes investigadores de Colciencias ¿Un incentivo para destruir la investigación verdadera con dudosas vinculaciones a universidades?

¿Formularios o celdas? Difícil volar alto dentro de una jaula...
Supongamos que Colciencias sí financia los proyectos de investigación y supongamos que es una financiación eficiente: la burocracia es simple papeleo en comparación al apoyo a la investigación. Esto es un peligro porque queda centralizada a los intereses y compromisos del gobierno de turno. Supóngase que un grupo de investigación investiga las vías para la paz en Colombia y encuentra "peligroso negociar en la Habana por la inviabilidad y efectividad del acuerdo para generar un desarme efectivo". O supóngase que un grupo de investigación en "Energías renovables" investiga "la generación eléctrica mediante el uso de las olas" que afecta a los monopolios del carbón y de las energías en petróleo, carbón o gas que de paso son empresas "industriales y comerciales del estado" que le generan regalías o pueden subastar para mejorar su cash flow... O algo un poco más de frente "La necesaria liberalización de la investigación para asumir los retos del mundo moderno" o algo con un tono más marxista "el factor alienante del estado en sus 'oficinas de fomento' de ciencia y tecnología". 

La primera es una investigación que puede estar en el rigor legítimo y que está en todo su derecho a disentir de las políticas del gobierno. Pero como "la investigación debe realizarse dentro de los marcos, planes y programas" del estado posiblemente no se le acuse de frente, pero sí le exigirán hasta por un milímetro demás en los márgenes. Mejor dicho le dirán "claro que puedes abrir las alas... dentro de la jaula que hemos construido para ti". La segunda tampoco saldrá de plano, pero le exigirán todo y de paso se fomentarán investigaciones para demostrar "la inviabilidad del uso de las olas en la generación eléctrica". La tercera tampoco se aprobará. El estado  no es el garante, ni el promotor, ni la ciencia nace por decreto, ni llenando formularios. Bueno, sí salen libros sobre cómo llenar formularios, 66 páginas sobre cómo llenar la hoja de vida del investigador, algo que nos "facilita" la vida...   

El nacimiento de la innovación, la tecnología y la ciencia se da de una forma totalmente contraria al planteamiento burocrático y centralizado de Colciencias. Al respecto puede leerse "El Tomismo Desdeñado" donde explican con claridad cómo el descubrimiento, el aprendizaje y demás son cuestiones que se dan en el marco de cada persona en concreto. Esa novedad, eso que estaba 'under my very nose' para parafrasear a un autor judío-norteamericano citado en "El Tomismo Desdeñado", no es algo sujeto a la forma, la cantidad o la temporalidad. De esa misma forma investigo yo, abierto a la naturaleza, al mundo y a los hechos... En esa forma de investigar no tengo que llenar formularios, a veces ni dejar registro -aunque sea mejor hacerlo- sino una permanente observación. 

No niego que en el sistema de ciencia a la colombiana pueda haber buenos, incluso genios en la investigación y verdaderos aportes a la ciencia. Pero me parece que el sistema de "ciencia a la colombiana" o "investigación de llenado de formularios" anula, restringe o excluye a aquellos que son a mi juicio los mejores investigadores y restringe el alcance de los que lo logran. Los mejores investigadores son los niños sin lugar a dudas, su permanente contacto con la magia de la naturaleza y su capacidad de asombro los lleva a proponer las mejores soluciones y conclusiones sobre el mundo. La investigación necesita también del error, cosa que no se puede si está centrada en el llenado de formularios que considera el error como incorrecto... y de paso delito...

Y seamos sinceros ¿cómo se dio el aporte a la ciencia en la historia? ¿Por órganos centralizados que fomentaran la "innovación, la ciencia y la tecnología"? Entre algunos ejemplos Fermat era un matemático aficionado cuyo oficio era el de abogado, y tener un diploma en derecho hace 'necesariamente' que uno no sepa de matemáticas. Conclusión a la que los "col-científicos" han decretado como dogma. Fermat jugaba con los números y hacía continuos descubrimientos que sorprendieron a muchos matemáticos posteriores como Euler. Pitágoras necesitaba seguramente un proyecto de investigación -y financiación de "Crotociencias"- para probar que "en un triángulo rectángulo la suma de los cuadrados de los catetos es igual al cuadrado de la hipotenusa". Se dice que Pitágoras huyó de su ciudad natal a Crotonas entre otras porque no quería participar en cuestiones de política http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pit%C3%A1goras. Eso sin contar con notables condenas y asesinatos a genios del calibre de Sócrates, asesinado entre otras porque pidió como condena que "Colciencias" lo financiara de por vida por sus aportes a la sociedad...

Acabo de citar a Wikipedia que en ciencias colombianas "no es una fuente de fiar porque lo modifica cualquiera", el problema creo no es que cualquiera pueda modificarlo sino que lo hace gente que no tiene "CVLac". Probablemente los que modifican Wikipedia sean unos mediocres que pasan todo el día de fuente en fuente y no se gradúen con honores como Newton http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isaac_Newton que pasaba todo el día en la biblioteca y no iba a clase. Un artículo académico trae mil fuentes -CITADAS CON NORMAS APA- wikipedia trae ¡las fuentes! con link directo. O sino vea lo que trae la Wikipedia cuando uno busca a Newton: http://gravitee.tripod.com/booki1.htm ¡Su obra maestra!

Espero que todos sean científicos e innovadores como yo.
Atte: Colciencias.
El conocimiento, la verdad y demás, es dialéctico y por eso no debería concluir un debate. Pero yo concluiría, cerraría, a Colciencias. Una tímida disminución de presupuesto es poco por la ciencia, la tecnología y la innovación... pero, si eso es cierto ¡hay que reconocerle la buena obra al gobierno! Los críticos -simplemente porque no es el gobierno que quieren- critican cualquier cosa que haga o digan que haga el gobierno, es un deporte, hasta bueno, el caso es que ver algo bueno en un gobierno es TAN difícil que hay que felicitarlo si estuviera haciendo las cosas bien... 

Sin embargo, así es la realidad de este alienante y desmoralizador país cuya única profesión es el llenado de formularios... Si alguien pregunta por Colombia y lo que hacen... ¿Qué hacen? las empresas "llenar formularios" y si les queda tiempo producir bienes y servicios, las universidades "llenar formularios" y si les queda tiempo dan clases pero ¿investigan? Y los abogados "llenan formularios" y ¿en su tiempo libre? Piensan cómo hacerlos más enredados ¿Y qué hace el gobierno? ¡Produce formularios!  

Y ¿qué son entonces El Tiempo, El Espacio, El Asombro o Espectador, El Colombiano, La República, Portafolio, El Nuevo Siglo, El País, El Universal? ¿Realidades? ¡Qué va! ¿Formularios? No, eso tiene su ciencia... ¡Periódicos! Pero los dueños de los periódicos son los mismos que hacen los formularios... Esa es la ciencia a la colombiana, basta leer un periódico, e improvisar su resumen como lo hacía un mediocre profesor del colegio que estaba allí porque sabía cómo ser un buen policía... ah y sabía verificar que el "desprendible" -formulario para niños- se llenara bien so pena de llamar "negligentes" a sus alumnos... Ese era mi "modelo" de "diligencia"... Clases improvisadas, formularios bien llenados... 

Esa es la ciencia a la colombiana: producción de formularios. Y su proceso o método:

- Justificación o discusión del formulario: periódicos
- Producción del formulario: gobierno/estado
- Control y auditoria para garantizar su incomprensión: abogados, lobbies, grupos de poder. Su objetivo es que entre más incomprensible, mejor...¡calidad!

¿Y Colciencias? Una tuerca sin aceite en medio del engranaje decadente... al que muchos encuentran por donde elogiar sus "grandezas"...

NOTA: Si quiere comentar este artículo escriba 1. para queja, 2. para ironía, 3. para felicitación y agradecimiento, 4. Para reclamo... ¡Qué! Si le da la gana de escribir hágalo como quiera... si quiere insúlteme, internamente me ofenderé y reiré de usted al mismo tiempo, pero bienvenido...

NOTA 2: O uno escribe o se dedica a recopilar fuentes, ahí están los links y un libro "El Tomismo Desdeñado" de paso le dejo el "CVLac" del autor Algunos me entenderán que ese CVLac es ridículo...De investigador junior no tiene ni un pelo...

          Comment on New from Essay Press: “Women in Visual Poetry: the Bechdel Test” by Queen Mob’s Teahouse: On Translation and Erasure | "There are some things that it is better to begin than to refuse, even though the end may be dark."        
[…] Thanks to Jessica Smith and Rob McLennan at Queen Mob’s, my conversation with poet T.A. Noonan is finally published and up for great reading over at the awesome online literary magazine Queen Mob’s Teahouse. It was originally a part of Jessica’s collection of poet conversations for Essay Press: “Women in Visual Poetry: the Bechdel Test” […]
          Joe Budden – Flex Ft. Tory Lanez & Fabolous [Video]        
Joe Budden returns with new visual for his smooth single called Flex. Produced by araabMUZIK, track features Tory Lanez on the hook and guest verse from Fabolous. The New Jersey...
          #031: Zehn ungewöhnliche Tipps gegen den inneren Schweinehund        

Aufschieberitis, der innere Schweinehund, Prokrastination.

Wer kennt das nicht? Hand aufs Herz: Haben Sie nicht auch schon mal etwas aufgeschoben?

Also, ich schon.

Aber ich habe auch die Gegenmittel. Hören Sie sich hier zehn ungewöhnliche Tipps gegen den inneren Schweinehund an. Einige der Tipps kennen Sie vermutlich noch gar nicht und andere hätten Sie nicht im Zusammenhang mit Aufschieberitis vermutet.

In dieser Episode erwähne ich drei Links:

  1. Mein Webinar “Einfach produktiv mit dem Anti-Zeitmanagement“
  2. Mein Artikel “Hinter den Kulissen: Mein Podcast-Equipment“
  3. Der Aufschieberitis-Test

Dann habe ich hier die Übersicht über die 10 Tipps:

  1. Verändern Sie Ihre Umgebung.
  2. Schaffen Sie optimale Rahmenbedingungen.
  3. Suchen Sie erfolgreiche Routinen.
  4. Umgeben Sie sich mit inspirierenden Menschen.
  5. Nutzen Sie Affirmationen und Visualisierungen.
  6. Halten Sie Ihre Erfolge fest.
  7. Finden Sie Ihre Zeitfresser.
  8. Hören Sie mit den Ausreden auf.
  9. Meiden Sie Multitasking.
  10. Versetzen Sie sich in die Stimmung des letztes Arbeitstages vor dem Urlaub.


Hat Ihnen diese Folge gefallen? Dann empfehlen Sie den Podcast doch weiter. Damit unterstützen Sie gleichzeitig mich und meine Arbeit.

Besonders hilfreich sind positive Bewertungen bei iTunes. Klicken Sie gleich weiter unten auf den iTunes-Link und schenken Sie mir ein paar Sterne. Vielen Dank!

Den Podcast abonnieren

In meinem Podcast “einfach produktiv” geht es alle zwei Wochen darum, Ihr Zeitmanagement zu verbessern. Sie können meinen Podcast abonnieren. Sobald eine neue Folge erscheint, erhalten Sie sie so automatisch:

          Field Guide to Bird Sounds of Eastern North America        
Field Guide to Bird Sounds of Eastern North America

The first comprehensive guide to the sounds of eastern North American birds, featuring an innovative visual index that allows readers to quickly look up unfamiliar sounds in the field.

          Guia Vá de Metrô        

Navegando por aí descobri um site que apesar de não ter sido criado para ser visualizado em celulares pode ser importante para quem anda muito pela cidade de São Paulo.
O Guia Vá de Metrô (http://www.vademetro.com.br/) lista os principais estabelecimentos comerciais e de serviços situados próximos às estações de metrô da cidade. As informações são registradas pelos próprios usuários do site e, portanto, devem ser avaliadas com cuidado para não cair em roubadas.
Como mencionei, o site não foi feito para visualização nos celulares. Entretanto, o Opera Mini consegue abrir o site sem problemas, o que possibilita seu uso "na rua" na hora do aperto.
          Secret World Legends – The Secret World is relaunching this spring        
[Beta signup] Funcom today announced that their story-driven game, The Secret World, will be relaunched this spring as Secret World Legends, a shared-world action RPG with completely revamped combat, a new progression system, and updated visuals. The game’s full collection of missions and mysteries will be Free-to-Play with over 100 hours of mature storytelling and surprises.   [&hellip
          2017 Virtual Conference: Genealogy Technology and Tools        

Guest post by Vanessa Wieland, Dean of Family Tree University

We have another amazing virtual conference in the works (September 15-17), with three days of genealogy search tips, tricks, techniques and tools you can use to improve your genealogy search. Our lineup is still being finalized, but we’re looking forward to presentations on the following tech-based tools, plus a presentation that will compare the four DNA testing companies so you can see which test is best for you.

Cloud Technology: Preservation and Organization - Jennifer Alford
Learn how to preserve your genealogy and organize it online with these tips. You'll learn about what tools will be most useful for keeping your work in great shape.

Time Travel Technology - Lisa Louise Cooke
Go back in time to discover your ancestors with these tech tools that will help you discover the details that will bring your ancestor's history to life.

Resources for Visual Storytelling - Nancy Hendrickson
If a picture paints a thousand words, this presentation will provide you with the know-how to create great tales using visual elements.

5 Google Secrets Revealed - Lisa Louise Cooke
Google is a great resource for researching your family history and heritage, especially when you've learned these handy research tricks.

Learn more about the 2017 Fall Virtual Conference and sign up early to get the early bird discount. Take $40 off the price with coupon code FALLVCEARLY.

          PSA TEC 2018 call for presentations now open        

The PSA Security Network, a security and systems integrator cooperative with headquarters in Westminster, Colo., is accepting presentations through Aug. 4, 2017 for its TEC 2018 annual conference. Proposals can be submitted at www.psatec.com/cfp.

TEC 2018, which will be held at the Sheraton Downtown Denver in Denver, Colo., March 12-16, 2018, is a premier education and networking event for all professional systems integrators in the security and audio-visual markets. TEC features education and certification programs, networking, and dedicated exhibit hours designed to advance the skills and expertise of industry professionals nationwide. This training venue is open to all industry professionals and is designed to meet the educational needs of all employees within an integrator’s organization.

PSA Security Network’s president and CEO Bill Bozeman told Security Systems News that the move from Westminster—where the conference had been held for several years—to downtown Denver fro 2018 was needed to accommodate the growth of the show.

“The hotel [Downtown Denver Sheraton] is bigger, so we look forward to having everyone under one roof,” Bozeman told SSN. “In addition, I think some of our younger members and supporters are going to enjoy being in downtown Denver, where there is so much to do.”

The education program will deliver sessions tailored to physical security and audio-visual integrators focused on emerging technologies, critical issues in the industry, and tool development to augment attendees’ knowledge needed to continue to drive these industries forward. Sessions will be selected that serve a variety of disciplines including business management, sales and marketing, HR and recruiting, project management and operations, and installation and service.

Proposals are welcome for both certification programs and general education sessions for the security and audio-visual markets. All sessions must be unbiased and minimize commercial references and overt branding. Submissions are evaluated based on topic relevance, speaker expertise, and originality of the content. Additional guidelines are available within the call for presentations submission tool.

Accepted and approved presenters will receive complimentary registration to TEC 2018 and will have the opportunity to solidify their reputation as an industry resource and subject matter expert while expanding their own professional network and gaining access to strategic partnerships. PSA does not pay honoraria or expenses for accepted proposals.

          Taca-le pau: vídeo de carro caseiro ganha o mundo!        
Menino narra descida de carro, de produção caseira, de um morrinho! O vídeo ganhou a mídia e tem milhões de visualizações!
          Emocionante: Bebê surdo ouve pela primeira vez!        
Lindooooo! Uma explosão de fofura! Vejam esse vídeo com milhares de visualizações no Youtube! Um bebê que tinha problema congênito no ouvido e, por conta disso, não podia escutar, conseguiu o feito de ouvir pela primeira vez com poucos meses de vida! O sucesso foi através do conhecido aparelho auditivo adaptado para o pequeno. E, […]
          Dropdown (& Others...) broken in MS Edge browser.        

Hi Ivan,

    After your response we did a bit of investigation. Turns out it was third party software interfering with MS Edge. Specifically, it was the free Stickies software - it only caused the issue after kicking off a debugging session in Visual Studio, but then would continue to cause the issue from then on. Really wacky.

Sorry to raise the issue when it was our systems, please disregard the report!

          DropDownList Inside the Custom EditTemplate        
Hello Edwin,

You can review the Grid popup editing example implementation with Entity Framework and LocalDB in the Kendo UI for ASP.NET MVC Sample Application. You can find more detailed information about how to setup and run the application locally from the link below:

The source for the sample application can be found in the installation directory of Progress Telerik UI for ASP.NET MVC by navigating to \wrappers\aspnetmvc\Examples\VS2015\Kendo.Mvc.Examples.sln.

Progress Telerik
Try our brand new, jQuery-free Angular 2 components built from ground-up which deliver the business app essential building blocks - a grid component, data visualization (charts) and form elements.

          C#/.NET Little Wonders Anthology        

Originally posted on: http://geekswithblogs.net/BlackRabbitCoder/archive/2016/04/19/c.net-little-wonders-anthology.aspx

The following is the complete anthology of Little Wonders, Pitfalls, and Presentations.  

Enjoy!  A new little puzzler will be coming out this week.

The C# 6 Little Wonders

The Original C#/.NET Little Wonders Trilogy

The C#/.NET Little Wonder Sequels

The Visual Studio Little Wonders

The C#/.NET Concurrent Little Wonders

The C#/.NET Little Pitfalls

The C#/.NET Little Wonders and Little Pitfalls Presentations

C#/.NET Little Wonders from BlackRabbitCoder

More Little Wonders of C#/.NET from BlackRabbitCoder

C#/.NET Little Pitfalls from BlackRabbitCoder

The C#/.NET Fundaments: Of Lambdas and LINQ Presentation

Of Lambdas and LINQ from BlackRabbitCoder


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          Jogos para sala de recursos        
    Estarei postando alguns jogos que utilizo na sala de recursos e que também podem ser utilizados em outras situações:

      Jogo da Memória de personagens: os alunos adoram este jogo: de início nomeiam os personagens, descrevem a figura como: usa chapéu verde, está segurando um microfone...e, em seguida as peças são viradas para baixo e as crianças encontram os pares.
     Encontrei as imagens na net, imprimi, colei em papel cartão e passei papel contact para aumentar a durabilidade:

       Jogo da memória de objetos: para os alunos que tem dificuldade em nomear os objetos do cotidiano:

    Para os alunos em fase de alfabetização, utilizei as peças do jogo da memória e os descrevi, os alunos associam então a figura à sua descrição:

Créditos: www.atividadesescolaresludicas.com.br

Marcadores: atividades escolares lúdicas, sala de recursos, atividades aee, jogos de alfabetização, jogo da memória, jogos lúdicos, percepção visual, ideias de jogos, atendimento educacional especializado, literacy, teaching to read and write.

          Seleção de atividades: os 5 sentidos        
Atividades: Os cinco sentidos

Projeto os 5 sentidos, percepção auditiva e visual, os órgãos dos sentidos, aula de ciências, atividades escolares séries iniciais, plano de aula os cinco sentidos, 2° e 3° ano, jogo da memória, visão,a audição, paladar, tato, olfato, recorte e cole, texto informativo os cinco sentidos, cruzadinha, atividades de associação.

          Atividades para estimular o raciocínio e alguns pré requisitos necessários à alfabetização        
Estímulo à criatividade e raciocínio: (completar os desenhos criando animais):

Sequência, percepção visual, atenção:
(alunos com dislexia também podem se beneficiar com estas atividades)

Conceitos básicos (tamanhos, distâncias...), atenção, coordenação motora, percepção visual/visomotora:

Quebra cabeças de animais:

Colar as estrelas no local correto:

Esquema corporal, coordenação motora...:


Percepção de figura fundo:

Reconhecer cores, formas geométricas, percepção visual, atenção...

Colorir as formas geométricas conforme os comandos, realizar a contagem de cada forma:

 Encontrar as letras perdidas:

Completar as letras usando cor diferente para cada uma:

 Colorir as letras iguais ao modelo:

 Descobrir os objetos escondidos:

Cobrir os pontilhados:

Encontrar as figuras em destaque na cena:

Palavras chave: atividades escolares de educação infantil, pré requisitos necessários à estimulação, coordenação motora, esquema corporal, noção espacial, quebra cabeças, psicopedagogia, alfabeto, figura fundo, criatividade, sequência lógica, dislexia, desafio, raciocínio lógico, contagem, formas geométricas.

Keywords: school activities in early childhood education, prerequisites for the stimulation, coordination, body schema, spatial concept, puzzles, educational psychology, alphabet, backyground figure, creativity, logical sequence, dyslexia, challenging, logical reasoning, counting, geometric shapes.

          Blog Post: The Next Step In Interactive Fiction        

You awaken in a strange cylindrical room without a recollection of how you got there. Your head hurts. Judging from the view from a window, you’re in a tower. You head downstairs, open a door, and turn. At least, that’s what your character, Anna, is experiencing; for you, the player, things are just as disorienting.[Excerpt]

You see Anna’s story displayed on your screen in text. You swipe down as you read, and see a small graphic of a window inset into the text. As Anna sees that she’s in a tower and makes out a lighthouse, you’ve scrolled the text down far enough for that lighthouse to appear in the window frame. The words stack like stairs as she begins her descent. When she opens the door at the bottom and heads to the right, the text turns as well – and you turn your iPad to keep up. You never take direct control of Anna. Instead, you swipe along branching paths of text, solving puzzles and reading about her fate along the way. 

Simogo Games’ horror title Year Walk showed that a modern game could effectively provide scares without relying on gross-out visuals or overly complex gameplay. The mobile release also cleverly played with the concept of apps, with an optional free companion providing valuable insight into Year Walk’s folklore and help for puzzles. Device 6 shows a continued fascination with both the peculiarities of mobile gaming and an even more stripped-down approach to adventure.

I’d advise you to play with a notebook nearby; there are loads of little details sprinkled throughout, and even things that seem insignificant can be critically useful later on. Chapters are short enough that backtracking (or reading) isn’t bothersome. Puzzles are tricky without being needlessly obscure. Because each chapter is self-contained, you usually have access to everything you need to complete each one within a few minutes. Of course, that assumes that you’ve been paying close attention. The puzzles are stripped down as much as the visuals, usually only requiring button presses between two options. They’re no less satisfying than those with full visual inventories, however, and my internal “Hell yeah!” moments were just as loud as in any other puzzle-heavy game.

Once you complete a chapter, Simogo doesn’t exactly break the fourth wall, as much as it presses firmly against it. There are a lot of clever things going on within (and outside of) the game’s story, and I hate to ruin it for prospective players. Without going into detail, I will say that I loved the regular pendulum swing between drollness and desperation.

Sound is used to great effect throughout the game. Device 6 opens with a jazzy tune that would be perfect for most retro spy movies, and espionage-inspired audio elements are retained throughout the game. Many of the recordings that you hear in the game reminded me of those mysterious numbers stations heard on shortwave radios. There are light touches throughout, too. Anna leaves crunching footsteps as players scroll, and sound effects seemed to have been timed perfectly for when my eyes would hit the appropriate moment. It’s a visually sparse experience, and the audio helps to fill in some of those atmospheric gaps.

I wasn’t expecting to discover that one of my new favorite point-and-click adventure games would feature so little pointing and clicking, but that’s what Device 6 has done. I felt more than a little silly rotating my iPad around to read Anna along a new path, but her story was worth it in the end.


          Getting started with The Gamma just got easier        

Over the last year, I have been working on The Gamma project, which aims to make data-driven visualizations more trustworthy and to enable large number of people to build visualizations backed by data. The Gamma makes it possible to create visualizations that are built on trustworthy primary data sources such as the World Bank and you can provide your own data source by writing a REST service.

A great piece of feedback that I got when talking about The Gamma is that this is a nice ultimate goal, but it makes it hard for people to start with The Gamma. If you do not want to use the World Bank data and you're not a developer to write your own REST service, how do you get started?

To make starting with The Gamma easier, the gallery now has a new four-step getting started page where you can upload your data as a CSV file or paste it from Excel spreadsheet and create nice visualizations that let your reader explore other aspects of the data.

Head over to The Gamma Gallery to check it out or continue reading to learn more about creating your first The Gamma visualization...

          Towards open and transparent data-driven storytelling: Notes from my Alan Turing Institute talk        

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, I've been spending some time at the Alan Turing Institute recently working on The Gamma project. The goal is to make data visualizations on the web more transparent. When you see a visualization online, you should be able to see where the data comes from, how it has been transformed and check that it is not misleading, but you should also be able to modify it and visualize other aspects of the data that interest you.

I gave a talk about my work as part of a talk series at The Alan Turing Institute, which has been recorded and is now available on YouTube. If you prefer to watch talks, this is a good 45 minute overview of what I've been working on with great video quality (the video switches from camera view to screen capture for demos!)

If you prefer text or do not have 45 minutes to watch the talk (right now), I wrote a short summary that highlights the most important ideas from the talk. You can also check out the talk slides, although I'll include the most important ones here.

          The Gamma dataviz package now available!        

There were a lot of rumors recently about the death of facts and even the death of statistics. I believe the core of the problem is that working with facts is quite tedious and the results are often not particularly exciting. Social media made it extremely easy to share your own opinions in an engaging way, but what we are missing is a similarly easy and engaging way to share facts backed by data.

This is, in essence, the motivation for The Gamma project that I've been working on recently. After several experiments, including the visualization of Olympic medalists, I'm now happy to share the first reusable component based on the work that you can try and use in your data visualization projects. If you want to get started:

The package implements a simple scripting language that anyone can use for writing simple data aggregation and data exploration scripts. The tooling for the scripting language makes it super easy to create and modify existing data analyses. Editor auto-complete offers all available operations and a spreadsheet-inspired editor lets you create scripts without writing code - yet, you still get a transparent and reproducible script as the result.

          The Gamma — Visualizing Olympic Medalists        

Olympic Games are perfect opportunity to do a fun data visualization project - just like New Year, you can easily predict when they will happen and you can get something interesting ready in advance. I used this year's Games in Rio as a motivation to resume working on The Gamma project. If you did not read my previous article, the idea is to build tooling for open, reproducible and interactive data-driven storytelling. When you see a visualization, not only you should be able to see how it has been created (what data it uses & how), but you should also be able to modify it, without much programming experience, and look at other interesting aspects of the data.

The first version of The Gamma project tries to do some of this, using historical and current data on Olympic medals as a sample dataset. You can play with the project at The Gamma web site:

Without further ado, here are the most important links if you want to explore how it all works on your own. However, continue reading and I'll describe the most important parts!

The project is still in early stages and the code needs more documentation (and ReadMe files, I know!) However, if you would be interested in using it for something or you have some interesting data to visualize, do not hesitate to ping me at @tomaspetricek. Also, thanks to the DNI Innovation Fund for funding the project and to the Alan Turing Institute for providing a place to work on this over the coming months!

          The Gamma: Simple code behind interactive articles        

There are huge amounts of data around us that we could use to better understand the world. Every company collects large amounts of data about their sales or customers. Governments and international organizations increasingly release interesting data sets to the public through various open government data initiatives (data.gov or data.gov.uk). But raw data does not tell you much.

An interesting recent development is data journalism. Data journalists tell stories using data. A data driven article is based on an interesting observation from the data, it includes (interactive) visualizations that illustrate the point and it often allows the reader to get the raw data.

Adding a chart produced in, say, Excel to an article is easy, but building good interactive visualization is much harder. Ideally, the data driven article should not be just text with static pictures, but a program that links the original data source to the visualization. This lets readers explore how the data is used, update the content when new data is available and change parameters of the visualization if they need to understand different aspect of the topic.

This is in short what I'm trying to build with The Gamma project. If you're interested in building better reports or data driven articles, continue reading!

I did a talk about The Gamma project at the fantastic Future Programming workshop at the StrangeLoop conference last week (thanks for inviting me!) and there is a recording of my 40 minute talk on YouTube, so if you prefer to watch videos, check it out!

Are you a data journalist or data analyst? We're looking for early partners! I joined the EF programme to work on this and if the project sounds like something you'd like to see happen, please get in touch or share your contact details on The Gamma page!

          Souhaiter Joyeux Noël en chinois - Sophie de chinois facile        

Bonjour Sylvie,

A priori je pense que cela vient plutôt de votre navigateur ou du plugin flash qui doit être mis à jour pour visualiser les vidéos youtube.

Bien à vous


          Troubling Meaty 'Estrogen'        

High temperature cooking can imbue meats with a chemical that acts like a hormone

Food for Thought

Women take note. Researchers find that a chemical that forms in overcooked meat, especially charred portions, is a potent mimic of estrogen, the primary female sex hormone. That's anything but appetizing, since studies have linked a higher lifetime cumulative exposure to estrogen in women with an elevated risk of breast cancer.

Indeed, the new finding offers a "biologically plausible" explanation for why diets rich in red meats might elevate breast-cancer risk, notes Nigel J. Gooderham of Imperial College London.

At the very high temperatures reached during frying and charbroiling, natural constituents of meats can undergo chemical reactions that generate carcinogens known as heterocyclic amines (see Carcinogens in the Diet). Because these compounds all have very long, unwieldy chemical monikers, most scientists refer to them by their abbreviations, such as IQ, MeIQ, MeIQx, and PhIP.

Of the nearly two dozen different heterocyclic amines that can form, PhIP dominates. It sometimes accumulates in amounts 10 to 50 times higher than that of any other member of this toxic chemical family, Gooderham says. Moreover, he adds, although heterocyclic amines normally cause liver tumors in exposed animals, PhIP is different: "It causes breast cancer in female rats, prostate cancer in male rats, and colon cancer in both." These are the same cancers that in people are associated with eating a lot of cooked meats.

However, the means by which such foods might induce cancer has remained somewhat elusive. So, building on his team's earlier work, Gooderham decided to probe what the heterocyclic amine did in rat pituitary cells. These cells make prolactin—another female sex hormone—but only when triggered by the presence of estrogen. Prolactin, like estrogen, fuels the growth of many breast cancers.

In their new test-tube study, Gooderham and coauthor Saundra N. Lauber show that upon exposure to PhIP, pituitary cells not only make progesterone, but also secrete it. If these cells do the same thing when they're part of the body, those secretions would circulate to other organs—including the breast.

But "what was startling," Gooderham told Science News Online, is that it took just trace quantities of the heterocyclic amine to spur prolactin production. "PhIP was incredibly potent," he says, able to trigger progesterone production at concentrations comparable to what might be found circulating in the blood of people who had eaten a couple of well-done burgers.

The toxicologist cautions that there's a big gap between observing an effect in isolated cells growing in a test-tube and showing that the same holds true in people.

However, even if PhIP does operate similarly in people, he says that's no reason to give up grilled meat. Certain cooking techniques, such as flipping hamburgers frequently, can limit the formation of heterocyclic amines. Moreover, earlier work by the Imperial College team showed that dining on certain members of the mustard family appear to detoxify much of the PhIP that might have inadvertently been consumed as part of a meal.

The human link

Three recent epidemiological studies support concerns about the consumption of grilled meats.

In the first, Harvard Medical School researchers compared the diets of more than 90,000 premenopausal U.S. nurses. Over a 12-year period, 1,021 of the relatively young women developed invasive breast cancers. The more red meat a woman ate, the higher was her risk of developing invasive breast cancer, Eunyoung Cho and her colleagues reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine last November. The increased risk was restricted, however, only to those types of breast cancers that are fueled by estrogen or progesterone.

Overall, women who ate the most red meat—typically 1.5 servings or more per day—faced nearly double the invasive breast-cancer risk of those eating little red meat each week.

Related findings emerged in the April 10 British Journal of Cancer. There, researchers at the University of Leeds reported data from a long-running study of more than 35,000 women in the United Kingdom who ranged in age from roughly 35 to 70. Regardless of the volunteers' age, Janet E. Cade's team found, those who consumed the most meat had the highest risk of breast cancer.

Shortly thereafter, Susan E. Steck of the University of South Carolina's school of public health and her colleagues linked meat consumption yet again with increased cancer risk, but only in the older segment of the women they investigated. By comparing the diets of 1,500 women with breast cancer to those of 1,550 cancerfree women, the scientists showed that postmenopausal women consuming the most grilled, barbecued, and smoked meats faced the highest breast-cancer risk.

These data support accumulating evidence that a penchant for well-done meats can hike a woman's breast-cancer risk, Steck and her colleagues concluded in the May Epidemiology.

PhIP fighters

Such findings have been percolating out of the epidemiology community for years. Nearly a decade ago, for instance, National Cancer Institute scientists reported finding that women who consistently ate their meat very well done—with a crispy, blackened crust—faced a substantially elevated breast-cancer risk when compared to those who routinely ate rare- or medium-cooked meats.

However, even well-done meats without char can contain heterocyclic amines, chemical analyses by others later showed. The compounds' presence appears to correlate best with how meat is cooked, not merely with how brown its interior ended up (SN: 11/28/98, p. 341).

At high temperatures, the simple sugar glucose, together with creatinine—a muscle-breakdown product, and additional free amino acids, can all interact within beef, chicken, and other meats to form heterocyclic amines. In contrast, low-temperature cooking or a quick searing may generate none of the carcinogens.

Because there's no way to tell visually, by taste, or by smell whether PhIP and its toxic kin lace cooked meat, food chemists have been lobbying commercial and home chefs to reduce the heat they use to cook meats—or to turn meats frequently to keep the surfaces closest to the heat source from getting too hot.

The significance of this was driven home to Gooderham several years ago when just such tactics spoiled an experiment he was launching to test whether Brussels sprouts and broccoli could help detoxify PhIP. "I bought 30 kilograms of prime Aberdeen angus lean beef," he recalls. "Then we ground it up and I gave it to a professional cook to turn into burgers and cook." Professional cooks tend to move meats around quite a bit, he found. The result: His expensive, chef-prepared meat contained almost no PhIP.

In the end, he says, "I sacked the cook, bought another 30 kilos of meat and prepared the burgers myself. It was a costly lesson."

Once restarted, however, that study yielded encouraging data.

One way the body detoxifies and sheds toxic chemicals is to link them to what amounts to a sugar molecule. Consumption of certain members of the mustard (Brassica) family, such as broccoli and Brussels sprouts (both members of the B. oleracea species)—can encourage this process. So Gooderham's team fed 250 grams (roughly half a pound) each of broccoli and Brussels sprouts each day to 20 men for almost 2 weeks. On the 12th day, the men each got a cooked-meat meal containing 4.9 micrograms of PhIP.

Compared to similar trial periods when their diets had been Brassica-free, the volunteers excreted up to 40 percent more PhIP in urine, the researchers reported in Carcinogenesis.

Experimental data suggest that two brews may also help detoxify heterocyclic amines. In test-tube studies, white tea largely prevented DNA damage from the heterocyclic amine IQ (SN: 4/15/00, p. 251), and in mice, extracts of beer tackled MeIQx and Trp-P-2 (see Beer's Well Done Benefit).

The best strategy of all, most toxicologists say, is to prevent formation of heterocyclic amines in the first place. In addition to frequently turning meat on the grill or fry pan, partially cooking meats in a microwave prior to grilling will limit the toxic chemicals' formation. So will mixing in a little potato starch to ground beef before grilling (see How Carbs Can Make Burgers Safer) or marinating meats with a heavily sugared oil-and-vinegar sauce (SN: 4/24/99, p. 264).

If you would like to comment on this Food for Thought, please see the blog version.


Janet E. Cade

UK Women's Cohort Study

Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics

30/32 Hyde Terrace

The University of Leeds

Leeds LS2 9LN

United Kingdom

Eunyoung Cho

Channing Laboratory

Department of Medicine

Harvard Medical School

181 Longwood Avenue

Boston, MA 02115

Nigel J. Gooderham

Biomolecular Medicine

Imperial College London

Sir Alexander Fleming Building

London SW7 2AZ

United Kingdom

Susan Elizabeth Steck

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics

Statewide Cancer Prevention and Control Program

Arnold School of Public Health

University of South Carolina

2221 Devine Street, Room 231

Columbia, SC 29208
Further Reading

Raloff, J. 2007. Concerns over genistein, part II—Beyond the heart. Science News Online (July 7). Available at [Go to].

______. 2007. Concerns over genistein, part I—The heart of the issue. Science News Online (June 16). Available at [Go to].

______. 2006. Pesticides mimic estrogen in shellfish. Science News 170(Dec. 16):397. Available to subscribers at [Go to].

______. 2006. No-stick chemicals can mimic estrogen. Science News 170(Dec. 2):366. Available to subscribers at [Go to].

______. 2006. Meat poses exaggerated cancer risk for some people. Science News Online (March 25). Available at [Go to].

______. 2005. Beer's well done benefit. Science News Online (March 5). Available at [Go to].

______. 2005. Carcinogens in the diet. Science News Online (Feb. 19). Available at [Go to].

______. 2004. How carbs can make burgers safer. Science News Online (Dec. 4). Available at [Go to].

______. 2004. Uranium, the newest 'hormone'. Science News 166(Nov. 13):318. Available to subscribers at [Go to].

______. 2001. Fire retardant catfish? Science News Online (Dec. 8). Available at [Go to].

______. 1999. Well-done research. Science News 155(April 24):264-266. Available at [Go to].

______. 1998. Very hot grills may inflame cancer risks. Science News 154(Nov. 28):341. Available at [Go to].

______. 1996. Another meaty link to cancer. Science News 149(June 8):365. Available at [Go to].

______. 1996. 'Estrogen' pairings can increase potency. Science News 149(June 8):356. Available at [Go to].

______. 1995. Beyond estrogens: Why unmasking hormone-mimicking pollutants proves so challenging. Science News 148(July 15):44. Available at [Go to].

______. 1994. Meaty carcinogens: A risk to the cook? Science News 146(Aug. 13):103.

______. 1994. Not so hot hot dogs? Science News 145(April 23):264-269.

______. 1994. How cooked meat may inflame the heart. Science News 145(March 12):165.

______. 1994. The gender benders. Science News 145(Jan. 8):24. Available at [Go to].

Smith-Roe, S.L., et al. 2006. Induction of aberrant crypt foci in DNA mismatch repair-deficient mice by the food-borne carcinogen 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo [4,5-b] pyridine (PhIP). Cancer Letters. 244(Nov. 28):79-85. Abstract available at [Go to].

______. 2006. Mlh1-dependent responses to 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo [4,5-b] pyridine (PhIP), a food-borne carcinogen. (Abstract # 514). Toxicologist 90(March):105.

______. 2006. Mlh1-dependent suppression of specific mutations induced in vivo by the food-borne carcinogen 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo [4,5-b] pyridine (PhIP). Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis 594(Feb. 22):101-112. Abstract available at [Go to].

          Human Suffering and Humanitarian Emergencies [Audio]        
Speaker(s): Professor Craig Calhoun | Humanitarian emergencies are not simply brute facts, appealing directly to our emotions or our moral sensibilities. They are one of the important ways in which perceptions of human life, sympathy for suffering, and responses to social upheaval have come to be organized in recent decades. Like nations and business corporations, they are creatures of social imaginaries, but no less materially influential for that. They are shaped by a history of changing ideas about the human; moral responsibility for strangers; structures of chance and causality; and the imperative and capacity for effective action, even at a distance. They reflect the context of the modern era generally and more specific features of the era since the 1970s. And they are embedded in a complex institutionalization of responses. First, grasping human suffering as humanitarian emergencies is made possible by a long history of changes in how we – Westerners especially – construct the categories of the human, the emergency, and moral obligation. Second, though they are influenced by both state politics and economic activity, humanitarian emergencies appear as anomalies outside the putatively normal stable functioning of political and economic systems. Third, emergencies and humanitarian sympathies are produced importantly through large-scale media systems, including especially visual media. Fourth, they have commanded attention especially since the 1970s as responses to an era of market-driven globalization and declining faith in political action. Fifth, they have occasioned a new institutional field of response in which NGOs and voluntary action are pivotal (even though states remain crucial funders), and they are shaped by the way such response organizes both what we see and what happens materially on the ground. Sixth, they reflect a view from relatively ‘core’ locations in the modern world-system on seeming chaos in its periphery, a view often linked at once to a managerial orientation, an idea of charity, and the reassurance of grasping suffering and chaos precisely as distant. The specific historical circumstances that gave rise to humanitarian response are changing, and with them this specific project of cosmopolitan care for distant strangers may be undergoing a deep transformation. Professor Calhoun is a world-renowned social scientist whose work connects sociology to culture, communication, politics, philosophy and economics. He took up his post as LSE Director on 1 September 2012, having left the United States where he was University Professor at New York University and director of the Institute for Public Knowledge and President of the Social Science Research Council. Professor Calhoun is an American citizen but has deep connections with the United Kingdom. He took a D Phil in History and Sociology at Oxford University and a Master's in Social Anthropology at Manchester. He co-founded, with Richard Sennett, Professor of Sociology at LSE, the NYLON programme which brings together graduate students from New York and London for co-operative research programmes. He is the author of several books including Nations Matter, Critical Social Theory, Neither Gods Nor Emperors and most recently The Roots of Radicalism (University of Chicago Press, 2012).
          Entreguei-me ao meu primeiro amor        

A história que vou relatar aqui é verídica. Há seis anos atrás eu morava no sitio com meus pais e estudava numa escola rural. Ao terminar o ensino médio fui para uma cidade vizinha, morar com uma tia, onde além de estudar ajudava-a nos afazeres de casa. Meu primeiro beijo aconteceu quando eu tinha dezesseis anos, com meu amigo de escola chamado Fernando (nome fictício), que sempre foi apaixonado por mim, mas que eu sempre ignorei por ser três anos mais velho que eu. Hoje estou com dezessete anos e mesmo morando na cidade grande, com novas amizades, continuo virgem. Certa noite quando cheguei em casa após o colégio, tinha uma carta das minhas amigas que deixei lá no interior, convidando-me para a festa de formatura delas e dizendo-me o Fernando continua apaixonado por mim, pois nunca deixa de querer saber notícias minhas. No dia seguinte escrevi para elas confirmando minha presença e no dia marcado lá estava eu de volta na minha cidadezinha. Minhas amigas estranharam um pouco o meu novo visual e a forma que eu me vestia, muito mais sexy e provocante. Meus pais então nem queiram saber o que eles falaram ao me ver. Passei a tarde com minhas amigas no galpão onde rolaria a festa, ajudando-as na decoração. Lá pudemos conversar sobre tudo, mas o Fernando era o tema principal, pois nos meses que eu fiquei fora, elas contaram-me que ele não namorara ninguém a sério, pois só ficava, certamente para se satisfazer e sempre dissera a elas que continuava me amando. Ouvindo tudo aquilo, não podia deixar de admitir que eu também tinha uma quedinha por ele e talvez fosse até apaixonada, mas nunca admitira, portanto sem falar nada a ninguém, eu também nunca o esquecera e sempre tinhas sonhos e pensamentos eróticos com ele, imaginando-o ser o meu primeiro homem, aquele que iria tirar o meu cabaço e me ensinar as maravilhas do sexo. Já a noite no galpão, a festa tava bombando e eu andava de um lado para o outro procurando pelo Fernando, que ainda não encontrei desde que voltei. As horas iam passando e nada. Fiquei numa aflição, prometendo mil coisas caso ele aparecesse, como já era bem tarde ele num aparecia eu fui dançar e curtir um pouco a festa, e ele nada. Quando foi bem mais tarde, e eu já sem esperanças vi ele chegando, tava ainda mais lindo do que quando o vi na última vez. Nossa, minha buça molhou na hora, minha vontade era de voar em cima dele, mas me contive, e assim a festa ia rolando, e ele nada de me procurar, talvez ressentido ainda pela forma que fui embora sem sequer despedir-me dele. Eu fiquei com o coração na mão e minutos depois decidi ir embora muito triste pois ele ainda não tinha me procurado. Despedir-me das minhas amigas e quando sai da festa ele estava do lado de fora do portão me esperando, e veio em minha direção falando: “preciso conversar com você, pode me ouvir?”, Disse-lhe que sim, mas antes queria um abraço bem forte dele, o que ele não pensou duas vezes em me dar. Disse que estava um pouco cansada, mas que poderíamos ir conversando enquanto caminhávamos. Ele então me acompanhava dizendo: “Porque você fez isso comigo? Você não percebeu e percebi que sou louco por você?, por favor diga-me alguma coisa?” Eu continuava andando sem nada falar, apenas ouvindo-o e quando chegamos na praça, ele se pos na minha frente, me parou, ergueu meu rosto e viu que eu estava chorando, então me abraçou falando: “porque você complica as coisas, eu amo você e sei que no fundo você também me ama. Te desejo desde aquela vez que ficamos juntos, mesmo que por alguns instantes e trocamos nosso primeiro beijo, o qual eu nunca esqueci” então aproximou seus lábios dos meus e me beijou, eu então baixei a guarda, abracei-o e correspondi com muita excitação. Ele disse que não via a hora de sentir meus lábios novamente e eu disse-lhe que eu também nunca esquecera aquele beijo. Continuamos a nos beijar e nas poucas palavras que trocávamos, ele disse saber que eu ainda era virgem e que nunca havia beijado outros rapazes, pois minhas amigas havia lhe dito sobre os meus medos e raiva que eu tinha de homem, devido meus traumas de infância, em seguida fomos para a praça onde não tinha ninguém, nos sentamos em um banco daquele e começamos a nos beijar, ele sabia como me deixar louca, eu não conseguia me soltar, mas ele com sua paciência aos poucos foi me relaxando, para que se eu quisesse me entregar a ele sem receio, ele mordiscava minha orelha, chupava, ia descendo pelo meu pescoço me deixando muito excitada. Resolvi me entregar de corpo e alma a ele, pois sempre sonhara com aquele momento, então comecei a soltar gemidos baixinhos, com vergonha dele perceber como eu estava cedendo aos seus encantos, eu respirava fundo e gemia, ele lentamente desceu sua mão em meus seios, eu delirei quando ele toucou eles pela primeira vez. Ele desceu sua mão até minhas pernas por entre as coxas e foi passando me fazendo gozar pela primeira vez naquela noite, sem ao menos ter me penetrado. Ele percebeu que me fez gozar e continuou a me tocar, em seguida ele devagar passou sua mão em minha xaninha por cima da calcinha, e viu como eu estava super molhadinha, e disse ao meu ouvido: “agora estou domando a minha menina” , então disse a ele: “quero ser sua, me doma” ele respondeu “já esta domada”, e ele me beijou na boca e desceu sua mão até minha xaninha e ficou alisando-a, depois tirou minha calcinha e colocou em seu bolso da calça e me pediu pra abrir minhas pernas, o que eu obedeci sem reclamar, pois eu queria muito que ele me penetrasse, mas não foi isso que ele fez, ele abaixou as alças de meu vestido e levou sua língua lambendo meus seios e depois chupando-os, eu gemia muito, não conseguia me controlar, minha xana estava muito molhada, ele passou sua mão nela enquanto sugava meus seios intumescidos, e eu urrava de desejo, estava como uma mulher vulgar em sua mão, ele voltou a me beijar na boca, com aquele beijo macio e molhado. Então ele abriu o zíper da calça e tirou aquele mastro pra fora e me pediu que eu olhasse para aquilo que seria todinho meu, eu olhei meio tímida e ele levou seu pau até minha boca e disse: “chupa meu pau minha menina, ele é todinho seu, hoje quero ter você por inteira e sem pressa, agora coloca sua boca nele e suga como se tivesse mamando” eu fiz o que ele pediu e meti minha boca naquele cacete enorme, chupei com muita vontade, como se fosse uma puta bem experiente, mas na verdade era a primeira vez que me via com um cacete na boca. Depois disso ele me pegou pelas mãos e disse: - Vamos para a minha casa, lá eu te farei mulher, a minha mulher e se quiser você será minha para sempre. Seguimos para a casa dele. Já na casa dele, fomos direto para o quarto dele, onde logo que entramos ele me virou de costas, beijou meu pescoço, foi tirando todo o meu vestido e continuou me lambendo e beijando nas costas. Então me deitou de bruços na cama e retirou meu vestido deixando-me nuazinha. Em seguida percorreu sua língua em minhas costas até chegar em meu rego e no meu cuzinho, deixando-me enlouquecida. Ele então começou a se despir e já livre das roupas, com aquele cacete duro feito pedra na minha frente, fez-me segurar e colocar na boca, chupando-o novamente. Vez ou outra ele parecia querer me furar a garganta, pois empurrava aquela vara até minha goela, fazendo-me ânsia de vômito. Depois de um tempo,veio por cima de mim, abriu minhas pernas e encostou seu mastro em minha xaninha, me levando a loucura, e ali ficou roçando e me beijando, eu comecei a chorar de prazer e respirar ofegante como se tivesse faltando algo me mim, e ele dizia: “chora minha menina, que agora você vai ser minha pra sempre” e de repente ele forçou a entrada de seu pênis em minha xana enfiando apenas a cabecinha, depois eu comecei a rebolar em seu pau para que o resto entrasse, mas ele retirou seu pau, e eu comecei a gemer alto e entre gemidos eu dizia: vai, por favor, me faz tua mulher, eu quero ser sua e nunca mais vou ti ignorar, não me deixe assim” ele ouvindo o que disse retornou seu pau em minha xana e forçou sua entrada, aquilo queimava minhas entranhas, ele tentou me penetrar mas não entrava, afinal eu ainda era cabaço e eu comecei a chorar de dor e prazer e ele me beijava e voltava e a me penetrar, e não conseguia e eu comecei a falar: “pode meter tudo em mim de uma vez que eu agüento, mas não me deixe sem sentir você, preencha esse vazio que esta entre minhas pernas” ele obedeceu enfiou novamente forçando a entrada, as lagrimas escorriam de meu olhos, mas aquela dor e prazer que eu senti foi enorme, me senti sair do meu corpo, como se fosse desmaiar, ele me beijava, e eu sentia cada centímetro de seu pau rasgando a minha xana, ele enfiou tudo e esperou um pouco para que eu pudesse relaxar e começou num movimento de vai e vem bem devagar, e ao mesmo tempo ele me beijava e segurava meus cabelos fortemente, aquilo pra mim era um sonho. Eu gozei múltiplas vezes insanamente, naquele pau gostoso e ele vendo aquilo todo melado tirou seu pau pra fora e se pos a chupar e lamber minha xoxota, eu me contorcia de prazer até que gozei em sua boca, depois ele meteu seu pau em mim novamente e bombou bem rápido dizendo: “vou gozar minha menina ahhhhhhhhh, você agora é minha mulher, eu ti fiz minha mulher ahhhahhaahhh” e começou a gozar dentro da minha buceta e também sobre ela. Sentindo aquele leitinho quentinho no meu interior e sobre meu corpo, comecei a gemer feito uma alucinada e mais uma vez gozei gostoso. Depois de tudo terminado ficamos coladinho um ao outro com ele fazendo carinho. A sua porra escorria entre minhas pernas, eu passei a mão em minha xana e pude notar que tinha um pouco de sangue pelo meio, ele notou que eu vi e começou e me explicar que aquele sangramento era normal, afinal eu acabara de ser deflorada. Depois de uma meia hora nos limpamos e nos vestimos e ele levou-me até minha casa. No dia seguinte acordei feliz da vida e quando pensei em ligar para ele, o meu telefone tocou e era ele, perguntando-me se estava tudo bem e convidando-me para almoçarmos juntos na pensão de um amigo nosso num bairro vizinho. Disse-lhe que sim. Mas tarde nos encontramos, almoçamos e depois fomos para um hotel onde mais uma vez entreguei-me a ele e desta vez além de minha bucetinha recém desvirginada, ele colocou-me de quatro na beirada da cama e arregaçou o meu cuzinho, tirando-me todas as pregas e depois fazendo-me chupar e engolir toda a porra dele na hora de gozar, o que fiz sem nojo e sem receio, afinal eu sempre o amei e não queria perdê-lo. Daí pra frente assumimos nosso relacionamento e depois de quatro meses de namoro, resolvemos morar juntos numa casinha modesta, mas nossa, que construímos num terreno que ele tinha. Hoje somos felizes e realizados sexualmente, pois sabemos como nos completar.
Luana – Rio Claro - RJ
          Earthworm Jim molaba más antes        
Viendo el siguiente vídeo comparativo de diferentes versiones de lo mejor que ha parido -y parirá Dave Perry en toda su vida, aunque MDK2 tiene su aquél, me quedo de calle con la versión de MegaDrive de Earthworm Jim. Todo ilusionado que estaba yo con la versión hachedeizada, y no sé como se las han ingeniado para sacarle todo el encanto visual 2D repleto de animaciones y encasquetarle unos colores pobres y renders incluso hasta para la nevera colgante. Si no me equivoco, la versión de MegaDrive está disponible en la Consola Virtual, o sea que pasando de Wiiware ( de todas formas creo que que por ahora sólo está a la venta para XBLA; PSN y Wiiware a esperar tocan ) y decantandóme por el clásico primigenio. Vivan las 2D, mueran los renders !

          Harto de la Llei del Cinema        
Odio que con la excusa de la cultura se nos imponga los que debemos ver y como lo debemos ver. Con la patraña de ' lo que es mejor para Cataluña y lo mejor para el català ', la Generalitat ahora nos dice como debemos ver el cine. En catalán. Y para ello no se les ocurre mejor idea que obligar a todos los cines catalanes a que la mitad de la cartelera en exhibición esté en catalán ( doblada o subtitulada ). O lo que es lo mismo, intervencionismo gubernamental en el mercado. ¿ Por qué apenas hay cine en catalán en los cines de Cataluña ahora mismo ? Porque no hay demanda, la gente no lo pide ni lo quiere. O como mínimo, son una minoría y para ellos ya existen alternativas, al igual que aquellos que busquen cine en V.O. o cine de corte independiente. ¿ Que no abundan estas salas ? No, porque repito, es algo minoritario. Pero las hay, existe la alternativa. Incluso en la capital pobre y ninguneada de Cataluña que es Lleida, tenemos los cines Funatic.

Si el público quisiera cine en catalán, tranquilos que los propios empresarios se darían cuenta de ello y bien se lucrarían de ésa demanda. Muy parece muy lícito y correcto que la Generalitat abogue por la difusión y normalización del catalán en todos los ámbitos de la sociedad, incluso el audiovisual, pero imponer por ley que el 50% de la cartelera sea en catalán es una insensatez. Para acostumbrar a que los catalanes veamos cine en catalán a) tendrán que pasar años, por no decir décadas. Es necesario un tiempo para crear ésa costumbre o hábito, b) el doblaje tiene que ser de calidad. No me sirve que en Cataluña tengamos una buena cantera de actores y actrices cuando finalmente acaban doblando los de siempre y en peor calidad ( obviamente, la distribuidora no invertirá lo mismo en el doblaje nacional que en uno minoritario, mal que pese ). ¿ Se aplica la Llei ? Pues perfecto, pero subvenciona a los cines, compensando las pérdidas que supondrá exhibir en catalán hasta que sea rentable para los empresarios. O crea un circuito alternativo de cine en catalán. Una série de cines públicos que sólo exhiban cine en catalán ( ya sea doblado o subtitulado ) y cine catalán, aún más importante para que al menos tenga algo de visibilidad lo que producimos aquí. ¿ Se puede considerar competencia desleal a los cines privados ? Pues ofrece el cine puramente comercial una-dos semanas más tarde de su estreno, como sucede en cines de pueblo o en los antes mencionados cines alternativos. Sea como sea, imponer un idioma en detrimento de otro para gusto y placer de cuatro individuos y el apuntador poco tiene que envidiar la políticas cuarenta años atrás.

          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Colin Watson        
Hi, Im not sure if anyone is looking after this blog as the last comments are almost 2 years old. But this is what Ive been trying to get for some time, multiple editing windows. Ive read through the comments here and its a bit beyond me - I can paste copied code into the right places on a html/css layout - but not originate it unfortunately. Has anyone produced code here that works and can I have steer on it please. Colin Watson
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Thilo        
This worked for me: $mb->the_field('new_content'); $content_settings = array( 'textarea_rows' => 15, 'textarea_name' => $mb->get_the_name() ); wp_editor(htmlspecialchars_decode($mb->get_the_value()), 'onepager-content', $content_settings);
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Diseño web chile        
i made a sample child theme too, where everything is fully integrated. Regards
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Jonny        
For reference I just got this working (wp 4.4) with the following: $settings = array('textarea_name' => $mb->get_the_name()); wp_editor(html_entity_decode($metabox->get_the_value()), 'myID', $settings); [this is a variation on the solution Adam posted above 5 years ago. No changes to functions.php are needed] I found I had to use html_entity_decode - otherwise any HTML would render in the tinymce editior on save. This could cause a problem when saving some content - only time will tell. Hope this assists someone.
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Dimas        
message me at https://github.com/farinspace/ama and i'll see if I can help you out. :-)
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Javier        
I just can't multiple instances of wp_editor (not repeatng) in wpalchemy .. this is driving me crazy! None of the solutions here or over the internet is helping me ... I need your help please Dimas!! Thanks in advance again. I already bought your item, please help me!
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Javier        
This is not working anymore ... any clue Mr Dimas? Thanks in advance for this awesome WpAlchemy!
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Dimas        
Mario, I haven't updated this post in some time .. do have a look through the comments as there are some gems in there which should help you out!
          Comment on How to Use Multiple WordPress WYSIWYG Visual Editors by Mario        
Just starting to use wordpress and php, WPAlchemy is great exactly what I was looking for and easy to implement. I've followed this tutorial and the 3 boxes appear in my custom post, but only as comment boxes with out editing buttons and WYSIWYG options. Has anyone run into this situation? Thanks

Associate Professor of Spanish Carlos de Oro and Iris Klotz '15 co-authored an article titled "Cine, pobreza y marginación en el Pacífico colombiano" in the journal Imagofagia, Revista de la Asociación Argentina de Estudios de Cine y Audiovisual. This article was the result of research that started during the 2015 Spanish Capstone. Klotz also presented a paper about this topic in the 2015 Undergraduate Research Symposium.  

          The Art of Lovin' Animals --- Featured Group of Artists Inspired by Their Beloved Pets.        
"Enilde And Our Children" Oil on Panel 42" x 60"
Painting by Luke Van Hook, 2003
Painting and Photograph copyright by Luke and Ginger E. Van Hook, 2004
Courtesy of the Van Hook Collection

The Art of Lovin' Animals
Features a group of artists inspired,
motivated or influenced by their beloved pets
and appear in this blog in the following order:

Joshua Elias, Simone Gad, Betty Glass, David Newsom,
Monrovia Association of Fine Arts supporters
(KidsArt Studio, PaintNPlay Art Studios, Tyson & Tillman Skate Dogs)
Family Dog and Cat Hospital in Monrovia, California (displays animal artwork).
Ginger Van Hook, Luke Van Hook,
Alex in Welderland, Elena Wolek, and Zareh.

Additionally as part of the "Art of Lovin' Animals"
there is a special book and movie review of
John Grogan's book "Marley and Me", and the recent hit movie
starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson

Written by Enilde G. Van Hook with special thanks to all participating artists!

Do you remember your first pet? I do. I even have a picture of how much bigger my cats’ paws were than my two feet put together at the age of three. My mother, tells me I had a yellow duck, a small dog and a large yellow tabby cat that owned me as a child.
These three pets were protective, possessive and they were my first companions as I ventured out, for the first time, into my wild back yard of dirt and weeds. I was born in Rosario Argentina and to me now as an adult, my backyard is still my world. I live in Los Angeles, California but the romance of the Argentinean Pampas is not lost on me. From the pictures of my past, I gathered that my Belgian Grandfather, Francisco, ran a plant nursery in Buenos Aires and that my father, Luis, grew up to be an inventor in America. But the most unique connection I have to my past is my relationship with animals. I’ve had a pet at almost every age as I grew up. The importance of this type of companionship has not been explored enough in the art world, at least, this is my opinion. This is the reason I am blogging about the subject of the art and inspiration of lovin’ pets. I hope to instigate discussion, if not compassion. I hope to motivate an artistic response to my thoughts as well. You may have a completely different experience, so I personally encourage you to post your comments after you read this entry.
This is what I asked myself for the subject of the essay for Ginger's Art Journal. What is the relationship of animals and pets to the art world? How involved are animals throughout the art strata? How much inspiration is gathered from the love of a pet? Can that even be measured? Does the love of a pet inspire political causes? Activism? How does one explain the pangs of loneliness from the loss of a pet? Does the death of a pet make an artist create more art? Does the gift of a new life of a pet inspire hope and renewal in artists? How do artists express their love and affection for the four-legged critters of our earth? How do animals, pets, pet trees, pet rocks or pets of any kind affect the process of making art?
There are a number of artists that I have followed for a period of time to investigate the questions that will make up this entry. Studying the work of a number of local artists from the Los Angeles and surrounding areas that work with pets in their art practice, I will present some of their unique stories with photos. The artists, in alphabetical order, include Joshua Elias, Simone Gad, Betty Glass, David Newsom, Ginger Van Hook and Luke Van Hook, Alexandra from Alex in Welderland, Lena Wolek and Zareh. Additionally, the art of lovin’ animals has made a seamless transition from the literary art into the film arts so I will discuss one of my favorite books by John Grogan named “Marley and Me” as it compares to its latest movie version of “Marley and Me” starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson which opened in December for Christmas Day.
The method selected to choose these artists was random. I began my animal photographic study in 2006. Through my daily practice of studying the arts, I have come across people who were “in my back yard” and came to connect with me in a special way. I didn’t set out to write a story about animals. I merely went about my daily routine of photographing people and artwork that caught my “eye” because I was at the right place at the right time. Believing that the universe has a special plan for me, I allowed this story to evolve of its own volition. What I discovered both surprised me and opened me up. What I mean by this is that I was surprised to discover that artists who had pets had a great deal in common with other artists who had pets. Most people know and understand the history that reveals how the Egyptians revered cats and how the dog is considered “man’s best friend”. While it was common to have general conversations about how great it was to have pets and create pet portraits, I rarely came across artists that spoke to the deeper underlying significance in the arts about this specifically. While doing this research, I came across the most extreme case of worshiping our pets. The act of cloning has been in the news ever since the cloning of “Dolly” the sheep, but did you know that now there is a company that has launched itself into a commercial venture to clone man’s best friend? I discovered this and lots more so enjoy the new year in 2009 with a renewed commitment to your beloved pet. This is an ongoing story so don’t feel left out if your best friend isn’t included in this entry. I’m still reviewing artwork and pet portraits,
feel free to send me an email about your animal story and I’ll include it in the followup stories!


Fine Arts Painter

Joshua Elias, Exhibition, DCA Fine Arts
Santa Monica, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2007
Winston and Lucille read art literature on the couch and
wait for Joshua Elias to become inspired to feed them.
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008
Paintings by Joshua Elias
Art in the making at the Brewery Artist Colony
Los Angeles, California, 2008
Studio visit by Ginger Van Hook
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook
Artist brushes belonging to Joshua Elias
The instruments by which Joshua Elias creates the canvas of weather and inspiration.
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008
DCA Fine Arts Gallery, Joshua Elias with Mathew Heller and his girlfriend
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook 2007
Joshua Elias, Exhibition at DCA Fine Arts Gallery
Santa Monica, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2007
Joshua Elias with his cats Winston and Lucille
in his studio at the Brewery Arts Complex in Los Angeles, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008

Joshua Elias
Artist Statement

Art has become about large quantities of Resin, masquerading as Content. The focus has been on Process, confusing it with Content. Enough. I wish to focus on Content. Story and Vibration lead the way for me to paint.

I work in oil because of the depth and movement that it allows for me, as a medium. I focus on Landscapes that are rearranged. Traveling spirits act as guides, to the movement of a particular painting. The influence of Moorish architecture and its many doorways offers and allows entryways into paintings.

At present we are in a period of Time where there seems to be long standing fights over Space, Time Religion, Money, Ideology, and Relationships. Enough. The one thing we do all share is Weather. Through the action of Creating our own environment, our own personal Weather, the Repositioning of Weather can illuminate and allow for more Creation to happen, more of a Life Force to shine and to take shape.

ï¿_ Joshua Elias

Courtesy of the DCA website

Fine Arts Painter, Collage Artist, Actor and Performer
Simone Gad, Artist, Solo Show, L2Kontemporary Gallery
February 2008 Chinatown, Los Angeles, California,
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Selfportrait with Max and Bella/Autoportrait avec Max et Bella
Private collection, photo courtesy of Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005
Gad/Rin-Tin-Tin Collection Long Beach Museum of Art
Courtesy Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Picture Holocaust Clowns - Pinups 127, Gad and Poodle
Courtesy Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Selfportrait with Cat and Jesus
Private collection, Courtesy of Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Hommage a Ma Mere 2005 Painting Collage
Copyright and Collection- Simone Gad
Courtesy Simone Gad-Artist
Photograph by Antonio Garcia

Autoportrait avec Kashmir, painting collage 2005/06
Courtesy Simone Gad- Artist and L2Kontemporary Gallery
Chinatown, Los Angeles, California. Copyright Simone Gad

Portrait of Bella, the Brindle cat, acting secretary for Artist, Simone Gad
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Bella the Brindle Cat, (on the Marilyn and JFK Installation)
Photo copyright and courtesy of
Jesse Bonderman and Simone Gad,

Bella, the Brindle Cat #2 (Marilyn Installation)
Photo courtesy of Jessie Bonderman and Simone Gad

Portrait of Simone Gad, Artist with companion, Bella.
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Portrait of Bella
The Brindle cat, Artist assistant, model
and loyal companion to Simone Gad.
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Max and Bella pose for pictures in the window of Simone Gad's artist studio
Los Angeles, California
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Simone Gad poses with one of her paintings of Chinatown
during her solo show at L2Kontemporary Gallery
Chinatown, Los Angeles, California
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Enilde Van Hook writer's notes: I met Simone Gad at an exhibition of her work in Chinatown in the spring of 2008. The L2Kontemporary Gallery is a unique gallery located at 990 N. Hill Street #205 in Downtown Los Angeles (90012), California. I received an email from ArtScene, a wonderful source of local Art Events that is produced by the staff of Coagula Art Journal. Special thanks to Michael Salerno and Mat Gleason, because somewhere in the announcement, I read that Simone Gad was a Belgium-born artist and this led me to want to meet her to talk about the art in Belgium, where my grandfather had been born. Once I attended her exhibit and got a chance to meet Simone, I realized there was a distinct cultural connection we had through our reverence to the animals. She used images of her cats to make intriguing and poignant self-portraits and insightful photographic collages.
I have followed Simone Gad’s work into 2009 and you will enjoy visiting her site through the L2Kontemporary Gallery located in Chinatown in Los Angeles: Follow these links to get to know a renaissance artist, a versatile film and TV actress, a woman of many talents and an artist who has a great deal of compassion to show for her animal friends: visit the online gallery site at http://www.l2kontemporary.com to view her solo show at L2k for Feb 08 plus her updated resume which may be viewed at saatchigallery.org by writing in her name or wooloo.org by writing in Simone Gad’s name.
Special thanks to the L2Kontemporary Gallery for cooperating with my interview! (www.L2Kontemporary.com and L2Kontemporary@sbcglobal.net and phone: 323-225-1288)

Simone Gad
Artist Statement and Biography: 2009

I've been showing in museums and galleries for 40 years-am a 6 times grants recipient, including a CRA Grant 1986, the Woman's Building 1985/6, New Orleans Contemporary Museum of Art 1984, the Gottlieb Foundation-NYC/Painting Medical Emergency Grant, Change Inc-Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Grant-both in 2002 for painting and medical emergency, and Artist Fellowship Foundation Grant in 2007-NYC. I am included in the Archives of the National Portrait Gallery/Smithsonian-Washington, DC, and will also be included in the Lyn Kienholz Encyclopedia of Los Angeles Artists who have shown between 1944 and 1979. In Los Angeles, I am represented by L2kontemporary Gallery-Chinatown, Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco, and am showing in Spain. I am also in the traveling museum exhibition-Your Documents Please thru 2010 in Japan/Europe/Mexico curated by Daniel Georges of Brooklyn, NY. I was born in Brussels, Belgium to holocaust survivor parents, from Poland. We came to the US in the early 1950's and settled in Boyle Heights/E.L.A, after arriving at Ellis Island. My mother got me into show-biz at the age of 4 upon our immigration. I grew up in the entertainment field as a young actress-have been working professionally in film, tv, commercials and theatre ever since. Have always had a dual career-.visual/performance artist and actor. George Herms and Wallace Berman were my first mentors. Al Hansen was my mentor from 1972 to 1995 when he passed away in Koln, Germany.

My cats Max and Bella Bettina Kashmir are my inspiration for many of my painting collages-have been so for many years. I've always been inspired by my cats and dogs that I've had since I arrived to this country from War torn Europe. My father got me my first dog-Teddy Queeny when I was a child living on Folsom Street-We had just returned from a movie on Brooklyn Avenue when we saw the puppies on our way home. I was allowed to have one-and I was so happy. But my mother hated animals and wouldn't let me keep my pet with me in my bedroom and it cried all night. I was heartbroken when I got home from Nursery School the following day and found that my dog was gone. My mom told me she had sent it to New Jersey to live with my Tante Sally. I wasn't allowed to have any animals after that. Years later I visited my aunt and asked her if she had taken care of my Teddy Queeny and she told me she never did-she never got the dog-didn't know what I was talking about. I realized that my mother had lied to me and had possibly killed my beloved doggie. I had moved to Topanga Canyon for a while in the late 1960's-that's where I got to know Wallace Berman and George Herms. I was given a miniature sheppard-who I named Lady. She was my constant companion and I adored her. She was run over by a couple of friends who were staying with me one night. I found her bleeding from her mouth by the driveway. She died in my arms and I could feel her spirit leave her body. We buried her the next morning. I was devastated for years. A friend of mine gave me a dash-hound and I took it home to be with me when I left Topanga and stayed with my parents for a while. I named her Wiggle Butts because she had this habit of wiggling her behind when she walked. I was not allowed to keep her-once again-so I called a friend and had her drive from The Canyon to pick Wiggles up and take care of her for me. When I left my parents and got an apartment, I got a cat-Nathaniel-my very first cat-who was with me for 15 years until he passed away. It was then that I started to incorporate animal objects into my collages-in the mid 1970's.

copyright Simone Gad 2009

http://www.l2kontemporary.com to view Simone Gad’s solo show at L2k for Feb 08 plus her updated resume-you may also get it on saatchigallery.org by writing in her name or wooloo.org by writing in Simone Gad’s name-



Focus One Gallery in Monrovia, California. Sponsored by M.A.F.A.,
the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts and Focus One Community Credit Union.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2006

Betty Glass celebrates Christmas with Lulu at home in 2008.
Lulu, wearing her new holiday sweater,
pokes her nose into the gift bag
to see if she likes what Santa has brought her.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty Glass and James Glass.
Turtle Painting, Watercolor Artwork by Betty Glass reminiscent of her pet turtles.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.
Trojan Horses, Watercolor painting by Artist, Betty Glass
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.
Hummy, Watercolor Painting by Artist, Betty Glass.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.

Yankee and Sugar, Watercolor Painting by Artist, Betty Glass
memorializing the life of her beloved friends.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.

Yankee (5-17-80 --- 4-20-94)
the larger white and orange Brittany on the right,
and Sugar (7-20-90 --- 12-24-04)
the smaller Brittany on the left.
"Beloved Friends and Forever in our hearts!"
Loyal Friends, Inspiration and Companions
to Artist, Betty Glass and her family.
(Special thanks to husband, James Glass
for his technical computer assistance
with digital photography formating of Betty Glass Artwork.)
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass

Enilde Van Hook, Writer's Notes:
I met Betty Glass through the Monrovia Association of Fine arts in 2006. We were showing together at the Focus One Gallery on Huntington Drive in Monrovia, California. When Betty came into the gallery, she was toting her adorable poodle named Lulu. I was charmed immediately and I just had to have a photo of this beautiful female pooch with a twinkle in her eye and the gumption to come into an art gallery where only humans gathered. This little poodle had no clue there was any difference between her and her owner, and she acted like she was looking at the art just like everyone else. At the time, I considered this a very cultured poodle and I told Betty so. Betty giggled and let me take her snapshot with Lulu and then we did not see each other again until we had another show together, also at Focus One Gallery two years later in December of 2008. When I saw Betty this time, I saw the connection of her artwork and the love of her animals come through her work and later, she agreed to participate in the interview for my blog. You may enjoy Betty Glass's artwork by visiting her website at www.bhglassart.com

Betty H. Glass
Artist Statement about Animal Art

Through art we communicate our feelings and thoughts.
Our art reflects what experiences in life have influenced us.
I have had a lifetime of pets
ranging from goldfish, parakeets, and turtles and, of course,
the loyal dog—always your friend even when the sky seems to be falling.
I am still sketching and painting animals, birds, and fish.
The softness of their fur, the texture of their feathers and fins,
the variations of color are very appealing to me,
because color is part of my artistic signature.
Sometimes they are presented in a realistic fashion.

Other times I use animals in a more stylized way—
using their shapes as patterns, semi-abstracting them and their background.
For example, my painting Trojan Horses shows flattened stylized figures of horses.
Hopefully artistically pleasing and calling to mind ancient Greece.

The Entrance to the Brand Library Art Galleries in Glendale, California hosts a prominent postcard of the show "Circle in the Square" now exhibiting through September 5th, 2008


Photo above: 
Cathy Billings, Art Librarian and Gallery Manager of the 
Brand Library Art Galleries and Co-Curator of 
"Circle in the Square" selected Luke Van Hook 
as one of the artists to show his circle paintings 
which explore Giotto's fabled "perfect circle.
Photo below: 
Alyssa Resnick, Senior Library Supervisor, Gallery Director 
and Co-curator pictured with Luke Van Hook.
Both ladies made studio visits all over Los Angeles and surrounding communities in search of the "perfect circle" of artists to represent the illusive qualities of the circle.
It takes over a year to prepare for a large show at the Brand Library Art Galleries and no one will have a better story to tell you about the waiting process than Galleries Manager and Curator, Cathy Billings or Alyssa Resnick, Senior Library Supervisor and Gallery Director. These ladies traveled to Inglewood, California for a studio visit to see Luke Van Hook's circle paintings some time in the early summer of 2007. They told Luke that they were preparing to curate a show of artists working on the motif of the 'circle'.  They had already reviewed a number of artists and found making the final decision difficult, first because there were a number of artists who worked with this subject and secondly, the talent was very competitive. The subject of the circle and how each artist approaches this topic is worth dedicated study in and of itself.  These lovely ladies, Cathy and Alyssa, with a keen eye for artistic talent, selected a total of five talented artists to show together this summer.   
Here you will find photos of how each artist expressed their obsession with the circular form.  I'll begin my blog entry with a brief history of what I believe may have led Luke Van Hook to painting the circle and continue with the photos and biographical information of the additional four artists each selected for working with the motif of circles, independently of each other, with their own unique and individual interpretations of the circle: Yesung Kim, Barbara Kolo, Susan Sironi, and Cheryl Walker.
Luke Van Hook began his present study of the circle in 2005. He first discovered the legend of Giotto's "Perfect Circle" in a class about ancient history; but the idea didn't sink in at first. He needed time to reason with his quest. While Luke approached the specific task of painting the circle with thin paintbrushes and applying layer upon layer of color to a raw naked canvas, I set about trying to understand what the hell prompted my husband to go circle crazy in the first place.  I started researching what the circle meant and I found a lot of literature in the realm of magic, rituals, mathematics, secret societies and romance. But my first impression was that the circle was a way to get back to the beginning of things.  Then I delved deeper.  Was Luke trying to say that he was going in circles?  Were we at this artistic point in our lives as a result of a past life?  Was our circular existence referencing our cycle of birth, death and rebirth?  Or was the answer more basic than that, like "the earth is round and it's an orbital thing.' There were other issues on the table I was urged to deal with also.  Were these circle paintings partly influenced by the school we had attended?  Once we leave school we are expected to make works of art that have fresh meaning and to blow out the cobwebs of old thinking.  While at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, Luke Van Hook studied all the required areas to excel in his chosen profession as a fine arts painter including the figure, landscapes and abstracts. But the abstract visual image is what finally drew Luke back in.  Could it be the understated obvious fact that the big 'O' (which formed a circle on every memo, syllabus and brochure in the name of Otis College) was influencing him subconsciously?  
Luke's earlier work involved intricately small hatch marks that evolved into large abstract images full of vibrant colors.  This work was very reminiscent of Jasper Johns.  So where did this circle idea really emanate from?  Did his hatch marks get married or what?  Observers of Luke Van Hook's work have stated that it raises the question, 'Is it a painting or a drawing?  Is it text or writing?'  Luke will often begin a row of circles that reads from left to right just as western literature is expressed.  But sometimes he changes his mind, and the direction of his technique, and he starts to paint his rows from right to left. At other times, he completes a horizontal column of circles which refers more to ancient Asian forms of writing going from the top, down.
During his graduating year at Otis College in 2004, Luke went on a mission to explore machine technology as it pertained to replacing humans.  He painted large canvases with a number of faces and shapes that represented cyborgs expressing the fear, uncertainty and ambivalence that humans have toward our technological future.  But once out of school, a full year later, in 2005 Luke seem to have turned a corner.  He seemed to have replaced his fear of technology with a competitive defiance that defied all reason.  Luke started working with his father-in-law, in his machine shop, where he started to observe how everything around him involved the circle in one way or another.  He watched the machines (Fadal CNC's- numerical control production machines) in action. The tool would spin in circles, plunging in and out of aluminum, stainless steel and plastic materials. The space left behind was almost always a perfect circle.  Perhaps, this was Luke's starting point. It was the first time he'd really seen a machine make simple circles and Luke probably said something to himself like 'I can do this! Just watch me!' then promptly, decided to take on his destiny. To compete with a machine, may have been the early impulse that drew Luke to paint the circle, but the legend of Giotto's 'perfect circle' was what has kept Luke going full steam ahead into production of abstract works of art.  The initial pieces he created were prototypes. These were the experiments he and his father-in-law Luis Ingels, worked on before moving into the hand made pieces. As his first experiment, Luke inserted a paint brush into the collet of the machine and programmed the coordinates to match the canvas. He overshot his calculations and the brush came crashing down upon the canvas; the collet smashed the brush right through the canvas and even broke the frame. Perhaps, Luke might have thought as he and my father, Luis, looked at each other, 'it was time to go back to the drawing board'. Undaunted by initial failure, Luke did complete an entire series of machine made circles before he went on to the main event, the competition of drawing the circles, one by one, by hand.  
Each piece of artwork created since his first attempts, is meticulously reinvented into creative visual landscapes layering circles upon circles of color schemes in gradations of complementary hues.  The colors reveal very subtle changes.  The circles pull the eye in.  The images seem to have a life of their own, a vibrant quality of pushing the viewer to look for patterns while pulling the eyes into fishers, crevices, or 'wormholes' as one collector observed. I have witnessed the intimate evolution of Luke's circles only because I have the honor and privilege of being Luke's wife.  The fact that I am discussing my husband's art work is of significance only in the sense that it is somewhat rare, although not unheard of, for the artist's loved one to interject a provocative discussion of the artwork publicly in a blog; however, this is a sign of the times we live in today and I feel blessed as a writer to have this open forum to share with you the joys and struggles inherent in Luke's artistic process.
The way I see it, Luke has taken on  the impossible task of creating the perfect circle, where no perfect circle has ever existed before, despite Giotto's legend.  All mathematical equations to date reveal that there is no perfect circle. It is a myth. So why Luke has persisted in this impossible feat only reminds me of the story of Don Quixote. Here is where I see Luke chasing his windmills. This is where in my imagination, I view the circles on the canvas as Luke's quest for the impossible dream and his circles are his windmills.  His paintbrush is his sword.  Thus Luke 
Van Hook's paintings, for me, exhibit all the romantic qualities innate in a love story.  Seeking to please his beloved Lucia, these references emerging from raw canvas could be read practically like text.  Some art collectors saw the circles as Braille text or some secret code or language.  The secret, I think, lies in Luke's love of sports!  Sometimes I interpret this circle code to reflect images of the sports activities I see Luke enjoy daily;  I make visual connections to the circles on the wheels of his bicycles which hang in his studio or his skate boards that decorate the rafters of the painting bays or even the wheels that drive his car which sits resting on almost perfect circles on the driveway.
For a while, I was convinced that Luke's enthusiasm for cycling was directly influencing the subjects of his paintings because one day, I was staring at one of his earlier images, (which is hung lovingly on the wall of the dining room right over the microwave oven); I saw it hanging next to a photograph of Luke participating in the 'Death Race 1999', a bicycle ride that cycle enthusiasts pursue along the most dangerous mountainous roads known as the California Alps in Northern California at the edge of the Northern Nevada border where Markleeville meets the Carson Valley.   The image Luke had painted in 1998, while recovering, ironically, from a broken ankle suffered in a bicycle race in Minden; was the image of three bicycles in a dead heat on the gray pavement with the yellow dividing line providing a ground for what appears as three large helmets (representative of the riders) in red, green and yellow.  The eventual emergence of Luke's hatch marks from work created in 2000, can be seen on the helmets and if you are really looking for this, (with your microscope) you may even find, the very beginnings of the influences which have eventually led to this mad case of circle paintings!  The circle imagery you might be searching for could have started at the base of the bicycle's anatomy with the wheels spinning along the highway to Kingsbury Grade, somewhere near Genoa, along the bottom of the hill leading to Lake Tahoe.  I comfort myself as painter's wife, that even Picasso had his periods, as did Rembrandt, Vincent Van Gogh, Monet and Gauguin and so long as Luke Van Hook doesn't try to cut off his ear we are doing just fine with these circles.

But don't take my word for it. Luke Van Hook's circle paintings are something you should see for yourself.  The subtlety of the work is difficult to capture on film, although I tried my best to create a video after struggling with photographing the stills for three years.  But even the video work fails to reveal the whole story.  You've got to stand in front of one of these pieces to involve yourself in the novella of Luke's life.  Although I can decode a small portion of what I see through his work, the rest of the circles on the canvas are still a vague mystery to me as well.  Every relationship has its secrets.  Thus Luke and I, as artists, are no different.  Even when we know each other, there are elements of surprise and adventure that we have yet to tell each other.  The mystery in his canvases is what really thrills me to see Luke's work on display under gallery lighting! (Sales don't hurt my enthusiasm either!)

When I think of Luke Van Hook's circle paintings, today, in 2008, I often think of Luke riding a skateboard doing 'ollies' and then trying for a loop-de-loop in mid-air.  This is because in January of 2008, Luke begged for a skateboard for his birthday and little did I know what would happen when I wrapped it up for him!  He has returned to the love of his youth.  Luke Van Hook has come full circle to his beginnings to land on his home base. The skateboard has also flown in mid-air, in harmony with gravity, and both land as one in a perfect execution of a move I would never dare try to do myself.  I see each circle on the canvas as Luke's attempt to catapult his work into the mainstream of the art-world with each rotation of the paintbrush on the surface of the canvas.  This is where I see Luke Van Hook in mid catapult, surfing on the air, light in transition, from youth to inspired maturity; from student to master, with paintbrush in hand landing and continuing to roll on four wheels with a great big shit-eating grin on his face. ('four' being the lucky number of his numerology charts). I see the ordered struggle, the innate joy in the success of one loop-de-loop after another. And once in a while, I also see the crash landing and the bloody injuries.  What is more important is that Luke gets up and does it again each and every time.  Luke has to begin again with each new circle, every circle becoming a part of a larger layer of community, thus his canvases vibrate with activity, mystery, romance and adventure.  I find my own meanings in each image  as it develops day by day and I am privileged to stand beside him, admire and witness the struggle of our Don Quixote in the new millennium, first hand.
There is still time to see these painting up close and personal. The Brand Library Art Galleries is part of the Glendale Public Library, located at 1601 West Mountain Street in the City of Glendale, 91201  Telephone:  818-548-2051/ fax 818-548-2713 ;  visit the Brand Library Art Galleries online at   www.brandlibrary.org    to  check for Library hours.
Cookie Gallegos, Ana Porras and Martha Ingels attend the opening of "Circle in the Square" to support Luke Van Hook. Brand Art Library Galleries, Glendale, California August 2, 2008 Photo by Ginger Van Hook
(From left to right) Margo Payne, Lynn Nantana-Green and Angela Williams attend the exhibition "Circle in the Square" in support of Luke Van Hook.
Lynn Lantana-Green came to support Artist, Luke Van Hook at the opening reception of "Circle in the Square" an art exhibition held at the Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California, August 2, 2008.  Photos by Ginger Van Hook
Kevin Powell came to support Luke Van Hook and enjoy the paintings at the Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale California, August 2, 2008. Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist Luke Van Hook brought home-made pies to his reception of the exhibition "Circle in the Square". In addition to painting, Luke Van Hook has a reputation for making awesome pies from scratch. Photographed milling around the Double Fudge Pican Pie and the Sweet Berry Pie were the grandchildren of Hector Sticker. Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California August 2, 2008. Photo by Ginger Van Hook
(From left to right) Claudio Sticker, Hector Sticker, Peter Bolten, Martha Ingels, Luke Van Hook and Luis Ingels attend the reception of  "Circle in the Square". Luke Van Hook and Luis Ingels worked together to create circles on canvas with the use of robotic CNC machines. After creating a little over a dozen machine-made paintings, Luke went on to compete with the machine and do the circles on his own by hand, one by one. Each circle is represented as being one breath and Luke Van Hook states that these are the marks he is leaving behind which define his existence during this lifetime as he continues to pursue the legend of "Giotto's Perfect Circle". Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California, August 2, 2008. Photo by Ginger Van Hook

From left to right, Ohannes Berberian, his daughter Melanie, Luke Van Hook and Rouzanna Berberian attend the opening reception of "Circle in the Square" at the Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008.  Ohannes Berberian owns DigiTECH Camera Repair in Monrovia, California (www.digitechcamerarepair.com). Luke Van Hook and Rouzanna Berberian are both fine art painters and members of the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts (M.A.F.A.). Rouzanna Berberian is a teacher in the after-school arts programs supported by M.A.F.A.  which promotes the goal of enhancing the lives of those within the community through interaction with the arts and to increase the opportunities of children through art education. Photo by Ginger Van Hook

From left to right, Kathleen Zgonc, photographer Frank Zgonc and artist Luke Van Hook attend the opening reception of 'Circle in the Square' at the Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008. Frank Zgonc is a an executive member of the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts in Monrovia, California. Frank Zgonc is the vice-president and official curator of Monrovia's yearly October Art Festival. This year the October Festival will be held on Saturday and Sunday October 11th and 12th, 2008 at the Monrovia Community Center located at 119 W. Palm Avenue in Monrovia. Free and open to the public, this art event will feature work by photographer Frank Zgonc; (Scheduled from 10 am to 6pm both days).  There will also be an Opening Night Celebration Saturday, October 11th from 7-9:30 pm where the special Renaissance Award will be presented to a worthy individual who has made significant contributions to the arts. 
Photo by Ginger Van Hook
Mr. and Mrs. Luke and Ginger Van Hook attend the opening reception of 'Circle in the Square' at the Brand Libraries Art Galleries, August 2, 2008 in Glendale, California.  Luke Van Hook an artist working from Inglewood, California earned a BFA  at Otis College of ARt and Design.  For several years, Van Hook has been exploring in his work, Giotto's fabled "perfect circle".  Over time the single-minded focus on the perfection of the circle has been subsumed by the artist's interest in the aesthetic and expressive qualities of the circle. New works depict ritualistically repeated circular brushstrokes on canvas, hemp, and other materials. Van Hook states that he began " as a challenge to myself to see if a perfect circle was possible; these circles have now morphed into a challenge to myself to see if a perfect circle is  possible. These circles have now morphed into a study in patience. The sense of time and the marking of time is inherent in the meticulous application of paint. The viewer can appreciate these temporal qualities but is also compelled to bring their own  interpretation to the work. Are these circles pure abstraction? Combined do they conceal deliberate shapes and forms? or are they perhaps a secret code or language? Van Hook has exhibited at TAG Gallery, Focus One Gallery, and the Bolsky Gallery in  Westchester. Luke Van Hook's painting may also be viewed on his website: www.lukevanhook.com
Photo courtesy of Peter Bolten

Kevin Powell comes to support Luke Van Hook for his opening reception. Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California, August 2, 2008.  Photo by Ginger Van Hook
Jason Porras attends the opening reception to support Luke Van Hook in his endeavors to pursue Giotto's legend of the 'Perfect Circle'. Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California August 2, 2008. Photo By Ginger Van Hook.

Zoe Hengst, Ginger Van Hook and Martha Ingels attend the opening of "Circle in the Square" to support Luke Van Hook. Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California August 2, 2008. Photo courtesy of Peter Bolten.
Zoe and Jopie Hengst walk through the center of the exhibition "Circle in the Square" to support Luke Van Hook at the opening night, August 2, 2008. Paintings by Susan Sironi in the background. Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California. Photo by Ginger Van Hook.

Cookie Gallegos, Ginger Van Hook and Luke Van Hook pose for photographs in front of Luke Van Hook's painting at the Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008 Glendale, California. Photo courtesy of Peter Bolten.

Cookie Gallegos and Ana Porras watch the dance performance choreographed by Cheryl Walker, Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008, Glendale, California.
Paintings by Yesung Kim, Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008, Glendale, California. Photo by Ginger Van Hook.
Paintings by Yesung Kim, Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008, Glendale, California.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook
Yesung Kim poses for a photograph in front of her paintings at the Brand Library Art Galleries, August 02, 2008, Glendale, California. Yesung Kim from Upland, California, was born in Seoul, South Korea and holds MFA degrees from Chung-Ang University and Claremont Graduate University. Kim's mixed media pieces are seductively simple. Ordinary brown packing string is deftly applied to a painted canvas creating organic shapes that shimmer and reflect light. At times these shapes appear to be on the brink of an amoeba-like division as they spread and expand, dropping off the edge of one canvas and continuing on to another. Kim  cites the natural world and light and color as the underlying themes that both inspire and permeate her work.  Following solo shows at the Seoul Museum of Art and the Seoul Arts Center, Kim's work was most recently exhibited at the San Bernardino County Museum's Multi Media Mini Show. More information about Kim's work can be found on her website: www.yesungkim.com
Photo by Ginger Van Hook
Painting by Susan Sironi, Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008 Glendale, California.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook
Glass curtain by Susan Sironi, Brand Library Art Galleries, August 2, 2008,Glendale, California. Photo by Ginger Van Hook.
Cheryl Walker designed a curtain of vinyl layers of color called 'Waterfall IV' that became the backdrop for a beautiful dance performance using the 'circle in the square' theme exhibited at the Brand Library Art Galleries in Glendale California, August 2, 2008. Cheryl Walker holds in her hand some of the vinyl circles that were placed upon the windows at the exhibition hall. Her vinyl circles upon the windows created an illusion of  the stained glass effects. The dance piece entertained a large audience on opening night as artists, collectors, art appreciators and family and friends celebrated the mythologies, geometries, magical and mystical qualities of the circle.   Dance Performers Liz  Curtis, and Martha Carrascosa performed a dance which included participation from members of the audience.  
Members of the audience interacted with the dancers Martha Carrascosa and Liz Curtis at the Brand Library Art Galleries participated in creating a colorful cascade of window art on August 2, 2008 in Glendale, California.
Audience watches dancers Liz Curtis and Martha Carrascosa from Glendale Community College as they perform a choreographed piece by Cheryl Walker, artist. "Circle in the Square", Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale California, August 2, 2008.  Photo By Ginger Van Hook
Dancers Liz Curtis and Martha Carrascosa performing dance choreographed by artist Cheryl Walker, (within the green curtain), Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California. 
Photo by Ginger Van Hook.
Cheryl Walker engaged in performance art intersecting with window art using the artistic theme of 'Circle in the Square'. Brand Library Art Gallery, Glendale, CAlifornia August 2, 2008. Photo by Ginger Van Hook.

Cheryl Walker smiles happily on opening night, Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale California. August 2, 2008. Cheryl Walker, a Los Angeles artist, earned her BA in art in her home state of Minnesota, and her MFA from California State University, Long Beach. In this exhibition Walker created two large site-specific installations of vinyl, oil pastel and natural and artificial light.  Walker explains that the driving force behind her work is "human interaction and improvisation in response to a natural phenomenon or situation." Trained as painter, Walker's installations have some of the qualities of painting; when viewed head-on the suspended layers of vinyl can appear to be two-dimensional because of their transparency and the cut shapes and forms applied to the vinyl are reminiscent of brushstrokes--but removed from the wall these works are thrust into what she calls an "interactive field of play." The fluidity of the material she works with and her interest in collaboration between the artist and the viewer have inspired Walker to create works that can be transformed into performance pieces by dance, music and in-situ art-making. In this exhibition, a dance performance captivates the audience on opening night at the Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California. August 2, 2008.  Photos By Ginger Van Hook

Barbara Kolo, Artist from "Circle in the Square" poses for a photograph in front of her painting with her husband Mr. Kolo. Barbara Kolo, a Santa Monica Artist, earned her BFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. Kolo Participated in a successful two-person show at the Brand Library Art Galleries in 1999. The Brand Library Art Galleries are pleased to present (nearly ten years later) a new body of work by Barbara Kolo that connects to that which was here before. In those works and these, her focus is on representing organic materials. The current large scale acrylic on canvas works are saturated with color; the stippled application of paint creates organic shapes and patterns representative of the natural world.  The subject matter is open to each viewers interpretation, where one may see a birch forest at dusk, others may see the  bold aesthetic of pure color and abstraction. Kolo has had recent solo shows at Topanga Canyon Gallery and the Off Rose Gallery in Venice, California. More information about Kolo's work can be found on her website: www.barbarakolo.com Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale California. Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Barbara Kolo poses for a photograph during opening night celebrations for the exhibition, "Circle in the Square" at the Brand Library Art Galleries, Augusts 2, 2008. Glendale, California.

Susan Sironi,  an artist living in Altadena, California posed for her photograph in front of her paintings at  the Brand Library Art Galleries, Glendale, California. August 2, 2008.  Susan Sironi earned her BFA at California Sate University, Long Beach. This exhibition will showcase Sironi's recent paintings as well as her Glass Curtain installation which is comprised of conjoined antique optometric lenses. Her paintings are about texture, color and process. Small dabs of oil paint are painstakingly applied to aluminum, building up an intricate, thorny surface. Highly textured and multihued when viewed up close, this surface belies the color play minimalist color-field appearance of the work at a distance . In the artist's own words "texture and color play equal roles in these works. They ... set up contradictions within each piece. Painitings  that seem to invite touch and intimacy are also reserved and automomous. Time and process are weighed against a static and minimal structure. Sironi's work was most recently seen in the Brea Art Gallery's Made in California exhibition, at the Chouinard School of Art Gallery, and the Orange County Center for Contemporary Art.  More information about Sironi's work can be found on her website: web.mac.com/susansironi/susan/sironi/Welcome.html.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook.  

Yesung Kim, Brand Library Art Gallery, Glendale, California, August 2, 2008.

The Entrance to the Brand Library Art Galleries in Glendale, California hosts a prominent postcard of the show "Circle in the Square" now exhibiting through September 5th, 2008

                   Luke Van Hook paintings are now showing at the Brand Library Art Galleries in
          The Art of Reading Leads to the Art of Writing at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books on the UCLA campus in Westwood! by Enilde Van Hook        

When is a library, not a library? When it’s a Book Festival where the books come out to play! The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books celebrated its 13th year of book promotions on the UCLA campus with an estimated attendance of over 140,000 people who love to read books!
Here is where the traditional library, once thought to be a stuffy, hush-hush, nerdy and quiet setting transforms itself into a megalomaniac fair of books and stories and documentaries just waiting to come alive. Books become the roller coaster of emotions, the merry-go-round of ideas, the bumper cars of change and the Ferris wheels of fiction.

In this day and age, the traditional library has undergone a radical change in our culture…it has gone outside, yes outside the box, outside the building and outside under yonder shade trees to re-invent itself. Unlike the regular library, where one checks out a book and must return it within a specific amount of time, this type of literary environment goes beyond just borrowing a book. This activity steps into the realm of personal libraries. This is where the reader amasses his or her own library collection of favorite authors, books, books on tape, digital recordings of books, even recordings for the blind and dyslexic by going outside the comfort of indoor lighting and venturing into the elements of nature.

The weekend of April 26th and 27th, under weather conditions reaching over 90 degrees in Westwood, the Pacific Ocean breeze quietly slipped in and around the leaves of Ficus trees, Great Oaks, Pines, and luscious landscaped lawns of one of our most prestigious institutions of higher learning; on the campus of UCLA, surrounded by noble buildings of great learning and ample gardens of exquisite greenery, what promised to be adventure at first, had indeed become an obsession for learning, an unquenchable thirst for more information about one’s world…who was in it in the past? Who’s in it now? Where’s the planet going? Who killed who? Or Whom? What artist leapt to his death from the bridge of misunderstanding? The answers were all there waiting to be revealed once you ventured out into the Festival of Books to bring home some new friends! This was my third year visiting the LA Times Festival of Books.

As I came upon the first of the booths, I saw a long line of people, fanning themselves in the hot sun with only partial shade for some while others brought lawn chairs, umbrellas and water bottles or coolers and bared the heat while reading the LA Times or a comic book they’d purchased while sipping lemonades from the local vendors. “Get your lemonade!” a man shouted from the center of another line of readers waiting for an author. As I made my way down the narrow aisles of celebrity book fans I looked up in time to see that Valerie Bertinelli was about to emerge and I could already see a wave of nervous cameramen and camerawomen with their trigger fingers anxiously poised above their focused lenses. I felt in good company. I too was about to sign copies of my book today. The Kingdom Of Nuts and Bolts, was being released to the reading public and I was headed over to join the authors at booth 715 sponsored by THE GREATER LOS ANGELES WRITER’S SOCIETY.

I was invited to join the Greater Los Angeles Writer’s Society recently and have discovered the treasures of its membership as well as the benefits to career and community. The Greater Los Angeles Writers Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to mentoring writers of all levels in the craft and business of writing. The society works to provide continuing education and a forum for the marketing of a writer’s work. The society is guided by a philosophy of “writers mentoring writers of all disciplines” and their website (www.glaws.org) details their variety of resources, welcoming writers from all over California and the country to learn more about the craft.

I knew I had gotten to the right booth when I saw the buttons they were passing out. “What’s Your Story?” As I was about to take the hot seat of an author…I kid you not; the seat was hot because the sun cast its rays upon the storytellers’ table; I thought to myself again, ‘I’m in fine company!’ I had heard that Gay Talese, Julie Andrews and Tommy Lasorda were telling their stories and here I was, a humble little writer of my first fiction novel about to tell my own.
I resorted to taking pictures to relax my own photo-happy-trigger finger. I always enjoy a good shutterbug moment and this was no exception. So, I took pictures of the authors I was with, while I signed a few books myself.

I met Leslie Ann Moore, the author of Griffin’s Daughter, and I learned she wrote romantic fantasy (which I overheard her telling a reader that she had won an award). I visited her website at www.leslieannmoore.com and was inspired by her story that she is a veterinarian, writer and belly dancer too!

I also met Mike Robinson the author of Too Much Dark Matter, Too Little Gray (which personally as a photographer, I liked the title.) I learned that Mike Robinson is the author of seven novels and two collections. Mike also sold a number of short stories to print and electronic magazines, anthologies and podcasts. Visit Mike’s website at www.freewebs.com and learn that he too is stalking BIG FOOT!

On Saturday, another author I had the opportunity to meet at the GLAWS booth was Matt Pallamary. We sat together as our fans lined up to talk to us about our books. (Maybe our lines weren’t as long as Valerie Bertinelli’s for her book “Losing it: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time” but we had a following, nonetheless!) Matt has written his memoirs detailing his spiritual journeys to Peru where he worked with shamanic plant medicines. His most recent book is titled Spirit Matters and his website is www.mattpallamary.com. This was a serendipitous place to be sharing space with Matt Pallamary as I had the rare opportunity to discuss some of my own spiritual stories from my early childhood in Argentina. The Kingdom of Nuts and Bolts is a story about a five-year-old boy named Miguelito, who can see things that others can’t and this makes him special and extra inventive. He has a special magic friend named Hector (made out of nuts and bolts) who teaches him to fix things. The story, a comedy, is set in Buenos Aires, Argentina using the popular genre of South American writers, that of Magical Realism. The story explores an imaginative spirit world set in the 1930’s and is told from the perspectives of a fly, a witch, a seagull, an angel, a demon and two little brothers. The paperback version is available through www.enildeingelsvanhook.com.
and coming soon to www.amazon.com so check the website in mid May for available stock.

Several new, emerging and established writers joined us at the Festival of Books in the GLAWS booth #715. Among them was Joan A. Friedman, a Ph.D. who is an identical twin, herself, and has over thirty years of experience as a psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of twin-related issues. Her new novel, Emotionally Healthy Twins is a comprehensive guide on how to raise twins who are self-realized and distinct individuals.

Dr. Joan Friedman posed for a photo-op alongside two of the movers and shakers of GLAWS; Tony Todaro, one of its original founders (Sci-Fi aficionado) and an established strategic consultant (Todaro Communications) as well as John Weiskopf, the author of The Ascendancy.

The Ascendancy is an appropriate story for today’s times, as John Weiskopf has created a new world mythology at a volatile point in history. His latest novel brings modern day imagination to the old story of Jack in the Beanstalk. The premise of this novel is that a beanstalk starts growing out of the rubble of the World Trade Center and the protagonist Jack Tott, a twenty-six-year-old musician, believes that if he climbs the beanstalk, he will somehow find the means to help save his dying sister. This book is available through www.johnweiskopf.com.

I met Sandra Walter, the author of The Creator State (www.sandrawalter.com) a story where actors discover a unique state of consciousness and art changes reality. Pictured here to the right is the author of Akira's Army by Keith Kowalczyk as he tells the story of Ray Quincy who becomes a prisoner of war while on his family vacation on a small South Pacific Island (a novel available through midnightpressbooks.com) Also pictured in booth #715 are Tony Todaro, Neil Citrin, and John Weiskopf.

I also had an opportunity to talk to Robin Reed who was also releasing her first novel called Xanthan Gumm. Robin Reed writes in the science fiction genre about hard working creatures called ‘Humans’ who labor to make stories that are loved throughout the Galaxy. One young alien dreams of going to the ‘Forbidden Planet Earth’ to perform in the movies and wants to become famous like his idol, E.T. This book is available through www.barstowproductions.com.

On Sunday at the LA TIMES FESTIVAL OF BOOKS, I had the distinct privilege of sitting at the author’s table with Film Educator and author Charles Domokos. His work in education especially in the cinema and film-editing field has a long history of contributing extremely technical post-production knowledge to film students at USC School of Cinematic Arts, Loyola Marymount and Los Angeles City College. His book titled: Non-linear Editing: The Cutting Edge provides the foundation for the college-level media student to make the leap into the world of film and HD-based professional post-production, as practiced in the Hollywood media community. His book is available through Amazon.com; Barnes&Noble.com or www.GoGardner.com.

While sitting under the canopy of a nearby Elm tree, our booth enjoyed a little more shade and relief from the heat on Sunday, just enough to share our experiences and challenges of our publishing our first books. Charles and I also shared some of our inspirations to write and joked around that in our booth alone, we had the resources for taking my story of The Kingdom of Nuts and Bolts and turning it into a movie using stop-frame animation to create a Hollywood environment for my animated critter made of nuts and bolts and feathers named ‘Hector’. We figured we had a whole production team from writing the screenplay to filming, editing and strategic marketing with Tony Todaro!

Speaking of Tony Todaro, one of the founders of GLAWS, I learned he is a prolific fiction writer as well. He is now working on a final draft of his next novel, “What Comes Around” a story set in a future city by the name of San Angeles, a metropolis divided by rivers and gangs after the ‘Big One’ (the big anticipated earthquake Angelino’s often fear, has already happened in this story) has rearranged the real estate and politics of the Southland. Just a little sneak preview of his upcoming book, finds Fed Corp Special Crimes investigator Major Xander Hunt in the midst of two murder mysteries to solve: the death of prominent physicist Allan Dunwharton, and after a series of battles and attempted assassinations, (perhaps even his own death). Hunt has kept his aging body alive with a concoction of drugs and nanobots, despite decades of damage as a black-ops agent, and the terminal cancer eating at his guts. (Imagine here the actor Sean Connery as the wise, aging officer in the Untouchables, though Hunt thinks of himself as the younger version of a Kevin Costner character.) Tony Todaro is a strategic marketing consultant with a long history in the music business and now shares his expertise with his fellow authors in GLAWS!

With a philosophy of “writers mentoring writers of all disciplines” GLAWS holds monthly informative meetings, often with nationally-known guest speakers, offers critique groups, advice in the craft and business of writing, conducts special events including writers conferences and seminars, and promotes its vision through many businesses and social opportunities.
In April I had the opportunity to attend one of the membership meetings to hear the science fiction and fantasy writer, Tim Powers, author of Anubis Gates and winner of the Philip K. Dick Award. He spoke at length about the essence of “plot” or what actually happens in a story. He encouraged writers to think of the question ‘why’ and then dig deeper and ask no, ‘why, really?’; ‘why really is the character motivated?’ He also gave us an overview of what it is like to be a writer at work. He stated that he had cultivated a sense of both guilt and fear. “Afterall, I play with the cat while truckers have jobs…” In a brief moment I had to talk with him before he got on the podium, he stated that I should write down imaginary bets… but not to do it in my head. He urged me to write thoughts down directly onto the keyboard. In his presentation, he also shared some of the advantages to writing down your ideas and character traits onto index cards and spreading them around your workspace. Maybe one day, if you are experiencing ‘writers block’; maybe the landlord comes around knocking, blows open your door and tromps all over the index cards mixing them up every which way; well, he said, ‘you never know when that might have helped your plot strategy a little!’ TIM POWERS chuckled.

The headline of today’s blog stated that the Art of Reading leads to the Art of Writing. I strongly believe this because I can attest to the significant verbal, literary and visual growth that a child can attain while immersed in a supportive community reading program. That, in and of it-self is where the art of reading leads directly to the successful art of writing. Exposure to the arts at a young age in a person’s life greatly enhances the chances this experience will foster a love of story telling as well as an appreciation for the authors and artists of these works that influence the mind at a critical stage in our development.
I am an example of an After School Reading Program child. My first exposure to library books came about at approximately the age of 8 when I stated participating in the Duarte Public Library After School Reading Program and simultaneously the Monrovia Public Library system in California.

I personally see this important correlation between early reading and early writing because I began to keep a diary at the age of twelve after reading The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. I went on to improve my reading skills by practicing my writing skills in my journal and reading even more each month until I had practically consumed all the books I could in the children’s section of the Duarte Library. I seem to recall that by the age of thirteen I was already into the adult section where I promptly fell in love with science fiction and The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury. (At the time, I made no physical distinction between the right or left section of the Duarte Library but I did get into trouble with my mother who discovered one day that one of my books had an identifying label from the adult section of the library…I no longer remember what the name of that book was, because I didn’t get to read it…only that it had a harmless picture of a cat on the cover and I distinctly recall how disappointed and rather humiliated I was when I had to return the book to the librarian and admit that I had rules at home I had to follow that superceded library freedoms.)

My consolation was that I was a rebellious child so after that, I no longer checked out the adult books to take home—I just spent my free time reading the contraband stories, sitting cross legged on the floor between the stacks by the light of a window where a beautiful oak tree cast intermittent sun, shade and childhood inspiration; Under these conditions, I finished reading Pearl Buck’s novel The Good Earth. I can’t stress enough the importance of reading in a young person’s life. I admired writers without even knowing what they looked like. Often I didn’t see pictures on the covers. I just knew their voices by the way they would write their sentences. I feel I learned about life, lived through the characters and had adventures I couldn’t even dream of having all through the art of reading a wonderful book.

By the time I was sixteen, I had obtained my first job away from home. The Duarte Public Library hired me to work as a ‘page’ part time while I attended high school. I was able to devote even more time to filing and flipping through the pages of my most beloved writers and fondest friends. I recall taking a whole summer to finish the novel Hawaii by James Mitchner. These books were my education and entertainment away from the classroom and the schoolyard. By the age of eighteen, I was working for the USC Bookstore during freshman year of college and the Doheny Library by my sophomore year of college.

Now fast forward to the present day in 2008. I have written and self-published five books of poetry and recently released my first novel, The Kingdom of Nuts and Bolts here at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books on the campus of UCLA. Was it an accident that I developed into a writer? (In my particular case, I am also a photographer and an artist.) (www.gingervanhook.com) (www.enildeingelsvanhook.com) I don’t think this is a random event. I think there are no accidents in the universe. I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason. I believe in cause and effect. I believe that if you want to end up with a delicious cake, you need to prepare the recipe with proper ingredients. The ingredients leading to the successful art of writing requires nothing short of fresh time, young minds, good books and positive parental and community encouragement to read. The art develops naturally as the heat of age ripens the stories into cupcakes of our culture for everyone to enjoy!

I attended the Duarte Festival of Authors in October of 2005 in Westminster Gardens, in Duarte California just to visit with and enjoy a moment listening to Ray Bradbury as the featured keynote speaker, presented by The Friends of the Duarte Library.

We also support the Monrovia Arts Festival Association which is undergoing a change of name this year. In addition to the changes featured in Monrovia Library Park, with the new Library construction, Monrovia Arts Festival Association is about to be renamed the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts to better define the role of the arts in the community of Monrovia.
The Monrovia Arts Festival Association will continue to serve the arts and artists as well as the after school art programs in Monrovia as well as surrounding communities and schools. I firmly believe, the younger a child is exposed to the arts, in terms of reading, writing, painting, sculpture, photography, film, digital media, comic book art and art history just to name a few of the variety of arts, the more creative a child will grow into adulthood and the more rewarding our communities will be to thrive in.
          Best Time To Invest in Art, NOW! by Ginger Van Hook        
TV celebrity Jason Alexander supports the arts at the TAG Gallery in Santa Monica, California on August 18, 2007 for the CALIFORNIA OPEN EXHIBITION show juried by Peter Frank. Now showing NEW WORKS, painting, mixed media, sculpture, photography and video through September 1st 2007. Jason Alexander, an actor who played the part of "George" in the long running and popular hit TV show "Seinfeld",
is pictured here beside sculpture artist Ali Alinejad.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Christine Owens, president of the Focus One Community Credit Union and sponsor of the
Focus One Gallery in Monrovia, California is presented with the Renaissance Award
by Monrovia City Councilman, Joe Garcia at the Monrovia Arts Festival Association Gala Black Tie Annual Fund-raising Event May 12, 2007. The Renaissance Award is given to honor and recognize a special member of the community whose contributions to their fellow citizens leads to the cultural enrichment of the community as a whole. Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist, Photographer and Actor, David Newsom poses with his dog in front of his latest photographs (Thistle #1) being exhibited at the DCA Fine Arts Gallery, in Santa Monica, California, (June 1, 2007 through July 14th, 2007). Three miles of Idaho is an exhibit focusing on the landscape between his brother and his sister's properties in a unique and poignant family setting. David Newsom released large scale renditions of his work currently published from his best-selling book titled SKIP.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Peter Frank, Jurist, for the TAG Gallery, CALIFORNIA OPEN EXHIBITION,
stands beside emerging Los Angeles based artist, Luke Van Hook, August 18th, 2007.
The Painting in background, oil on canvas, "May", the study of Giotto's perfect circle.
by Luke Van Hook
(Investigating the legend that Giotto drew a perfect circle for the Pope)

As the economy goes up and down, so do the trends in the arts and art collecting. This is an exciting time for the arts because we have many historical markers and world conditions that exist today that make it a good time to invest in the arts. For instance, instability in the stock market often releases money to make investments in art, that, like real estate, also goes up in value as the years progress. Additionally, there are wars raging around the world so instability in world economic markets are impacting the art market too. The best impact that market instability plays upon the arts is that it gives incentives to support artists in your local communities. These artists are here and now. Their work is presently available, and like property, it too can be insured, placed into a family trust or safety deposit vault and along with the family heirlooms, art can be bequeathed as a legacy or inheritance to members of your family. Both the housing market and the stock market have been riding a roller-coaster in recent years making a good piece of tangible artwork a far more solid investment than betting on governments, point spreads or Las Vegas Mega Slots.

y husband Luke and I have explored a number of fine art galleries and art communities that will interest the art lover, the art collector and fellow artists in the pursuit of great works being created in the NOW, as well as some works that have survived the test of time. In my Blog I intend to discuss some of the hot spots and hot artists in Sunny Southern California. I'll share photos with you of some of these exciting options available to the every day collector, the seasoned collector, the art aficionados, or the emerging collectors eager with new money to infuse into an already thriving and ripe harvest of works in Oil Painting, Photography, Sculpture, Conceptual works, Collage, Digital Photography, Digital Film and Electronic Visual Art.

Through this summer we visited communities on the West side such as Santa Monica, West LA, and Culver City. In the inland areas, we visited some of the foothill mountain art communities such as Glendale and a little further inland, we visited Old Town Monrovia. Starting with the inland foothills we find the quaint town of Monrovia where I grew up and went to school at Immaculate Conception Elementary on Shamrock Avenue. In Monrovia, the City of Art and in Duarte, the City of Health, I grew up as a child. I volunteered about 300 hours as a candy striper for the City of Hope in my teenage years, went on to work for the Duarte Library and attended Alverno High School for girls in Sierra Madre. This is the place where I was raised marching in parades with the Brownies and the Girl Scouts and where I learned to tap dance, twirl a baton and where I rode a ferris wheel for the first time at the fiesta, (as well as ate a lot of cotton candy), I came back as an adult to find an incredible amount of support for the arts in local schools. The arts are not limited to crayons and pencils either. There is an extensive array of art mediums in which students, and some very young students at that, learn to hone their creative skills. For instance, at Paint N Play on Myrtle Avenue, they learn how to throw pottery. Also, with after school teacher, Rouzanna Berberian, children learn the art of drawing, photography and gallery showmanship as well. There are art lessons going on, on almost every street corner you encounter in the busy Old Town Center on Myrtle near the Krikorian Movie theatre. You'll find this charming section of town both soothing and exhilarating. You ought to try walking up and down the main street where there are sidewalk activities, new park benches to rest under shade trees, new lampposts and lanterns all reminiscent of a nostalgic time. Artists show their work on wide city blocks and inside cool and dim lit gallery spaces. The mountains loom in the distance and the afternoons yeild a light summer breeze in the early evening.

We support the Monrovia Arts Festival Association in their endeavors to promote the arts to the children at a very young age. It is not uncommon for lots of families that are raised to appreciate art to blossom into artists later in life. MAFA is a nonprofit organization led by President Bill Beebe with a history of supporting local artists and local after-school art programs. Over the years, the Monrovia community has begun to expand its outreach of art by developing local talent through a number of venues: Focus One Gallery for instance, is located in the lobby of the Focus One Community Credit Union at 404 East Huntington Drive on the corner of California and Huntington Drive. The president of Focus One Community Credit Union, Christine Owens is known for her support of local artists and was recently nominated for and awarded the annual Renaissance Award by Monrovia City Councilman Joe Garcia at the MAFA Black Tie Fundraiser in May 2007. This is a prestigious award that goes to honor and recognize a special member of the community whose contributions to their fellow citizens leads to the cultural enrichment of the community as a whole.

MAFA Marketing coordinator, (on left)Denise Daniels is pictured here with Christine Owens, President of Focus One Community Credit Union and Bill Beebe, President of MAFA at their annual Black Tie Fundraiser that occurs in May.

Monrovia, California
Foothill Mountain Communities
Some Artists in Action...

THE MONROVIA ARTS FESTIVAL ASSOCIATION otherwise known as MAFA, is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization and is dedicated to the cultivation and support of the arts in children's after school programs as well as educational awareness of the arts in the community at large. MAFA P.O. Box 92 Monrovia, CA 91017 (www.artfestivals.org) 626-256-3124

Several galleries and art venues have developed over the years which participate and support MAFA. The following information is current as of August 2007: If your event or venue is not listed, please contact Ginger Van Hook, press liaison, for MAFA at (enilde@sprintmail.com).

The AZTEK ART GALLERY, is located beside the Aztek Hotel at 305 West Foothill Blvd. Exhibits local artists work as well as holds art classes during scheduled times. The contact person is Bill Hyatt, (Hyatt2000@yahoo.com)

California Wine and Cheese, LLC supports local artists. New Artist reception for Frank Zgonc, Photographer is scheduled for the evening of Friday August 24th, 2007. Frank Zgonc shares images from his travels through Europe, scenes from Bodie Flats, Nevada and local scenes in Monrovia along with his signature digital watercolor manipulations. California Wine and Cheese is located at 115 W. Foothill Blvd., Owned by Janet and Tom Dugan, their website can be located at www.cawineandcheese.com (Contact by phone 626-358-6500 for reservations.)

The MONROVIA COFFEE COMPANY supports local artists and is located at 425 South Myrtle Avenue. Exhibits contemporary and emerging artists work. Next artists showing September 1 through December 30th, Ginger and Luke Van Hook Photography exhibit, Methusula in the Bristlecone Pine Forest. (Landscape photographs of some of the oldest pine trees on the planet. Some trees aged over 4,700 years, older than the Egyptian Pyramids.) (Additional digital photography of flowers and collage by Ginger Van Hook.) For artist schedules, contact person is Carol Curtis, (shutterbug@altrionet.com)

The PAINT 'N PLAY ART GALLERY is affiliated with Monrovia Arts Festival Association in its' support of the arts by providing a meeting place for MAFA members to discuss and plan their upcoming events for the community on a monthly basis. Contact Lisa or Rachel at paintnPlay2@aol.com. Paint 'N Play is located at 418 South Myrtle Avenue. Paint N Play sponsors the SUMMER ARTWALKS in Old Town Monrovia along with several merchants who participate every year. KidsArt, Segil Fine Art, Oh My Goddard Gallery, Family Festival Productions, Scoops, Joy Print and Design, Box Jewelers and Baldwin's Baked Potatoes as well as the Outback SteakHouse- Arcadia and Trader Joe's also participate in art festivities that promote the education of art in schools through Summer Artwalks. For more information regarding Summer Art Walks and how you may participate, you may also contact Betsy Thurmond (626-358-7800) or kamonrovia@verizon.net. The next SUMMER ARTWALK is scheduled for Saturday evening, August 25, 2007 from 6:30 to 9pm.



August 11 - September 28th, 2007.
Glendale Public Library Associates of Brand Library
1601 West Mountain Street Glendale, CA 91201
818-548-2051 www.brandlibrary.org

A group show Titled: PATTERN PLAY. Four artists demonstrate the variety of patterns available in color schemes, pattern originality, unique images in oil paints, sculpture, and graphic designs. Artist reception August 18, 2007. Artists featured are Patsy Cox, Yuriko Etue, Melanie Rothschild, and Jerrin Wagstaff. Definitely a great show for the entire family. You'll experience a great variety of brilliant colors and patterns that pop out of the walls, rise from the floor and reveal creative abstract patterns that draw you in, spiral you out and make you feel good.

Artist, Melanie Rothschild

Artist, Patsy Cox

Artist, Yuriko Etue

Artist, Jerrin Wagstaff



16:1 Gallery, Santa Monica, California Summer 2007


Kathryn Andrews
Chris Lipomi
Donald Morgan
Stephanie Taylor
organized by Kathryn Andrews

Showing August 11 through September 8, 2007

2116 Pico Blvd., Unit B
Santa Monica, CA 90405
email: info@16to1.com



Delia Cabral, Gallery Director
3107 Pico Blvd. Santa Monica, CA 90405

From Exhibition, THREE MENDACIOUS MINDS, (The Return of Paris' New Pestilence School) David Schoffman, Currado Malaspina, Micah Carpenter July 23- August 31, 2007 310-770-2525
Photo by Ginger Van Hook



TAG Gallery
Elizabeth Sadoff
Gallery Director
2903 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Elizabeth Sadoff, Gallery Director, TAG Gallery
handing out awards to the winning artists.

Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Jason Cimenski accepts award from Peter Frank and Elizabeth Sadoff
TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

First Place Winner, Artist, Jason Cimenski with his daughter "The Flooded Room" TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007 Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist Kim Kimbro, TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist, Lorien Suarez,
TAG Gallery August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist, Carlos Daub,
TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Derek McMullen, Luke Van Hook, Dennis Treretola Three artists, oil painters, from the same graduating class at Otis College of Art and Design, 2004
TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artists, and fine art painters, Carlos Daub, Luke Van Hook, Dennis Treretola
TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Artist, Carole Garland, "Midnight Mystery", oil on canvas
TAG Gallery, August 18, 2007

Photo by Ginger Van Hook

TAG Gallery, Santa Monica, California
August 18, 2007
Standing room only at the popular show

Photo by Ginger Van Hook

Peter Frank thanks the artists and their guests who have participated
at the TAG Gallery, Santa Monica, California Open Exhibition,
August 18, 2007
Photo by Ginger Van Hook

          Comment on The Autonomy of Public Space and Art Museums by helenatpinkhousehotmailcouk        
I was also really struck by the "visual space has essentially no owner" piece back when I visited in August (I think). This is really cheeky, but would you mind if I use your photo as my like cover photo on Twitter as my phone wasn't working that day - would be happy to include a link to this page, not that I'm at all well followed, I've only just got it, it just seems like the right thing to do?
          Taquilla MEDIASET – compra de entradas        
Mediaset España es una de las compañías audiovisuales más destacadas de Europa. Su agenda de eventos culturales, ocio, espectáculos, deporte, teatro… la podemos encontrar en taquilla.mediaset.es. Esta página web desarrollada en Wordpress nos presenta toda la Oferta de ocio constantemente actualizada por la compañía audiovisual. La particularidad a la hora de mantener la información de los eventos actualizada […]
          interview with guenter schlienz        

Guenter Schlienz (Stuttgart, Germany) is known for his vast catalogue of tape & cdr releases on different great labels around the world – Sacred Phrases, SicSic, Goldtimers, Constellation Tatsu, etc. He is the man behind wonderful Cosmic Winnetou label, releasing all kinds of experimental/drone/ambient artists — maybe not as frequently as we'd like, but each time pleasing the taste of any tape music geek. Creating his minimalist compositions by means of d.i.y modular synths, tape loops and field recordings, Guenter achieves the serenity of classic ambient works, while keeping the vibe of 70s kosmische musik (think Cluster or Harmonia) and sometimes reaches the territories of academic minimalism, exploring the sound as ding an sich, inspiring the listener to invent its own narrative. Being part of Navel band since mid 90s, Guenter's place in music world has a long, but still almost unknown story which continues nowadays with further explorations of all kinds of ambient music.


Pied Paper: First of all, I'm curious about how it all started for you — ambient music, synth building, tape releases, etc. I know that you were involved in many other projects before, call you tell a bit about them too?

GS: phew, where did it all started… definitely many many moons ago. was active mid till end 90s in some heavy stoner psychedelic rock band. was the guy responsible for producing some "far out sounds" with his guitar and some delay pedal. so there already was this drone element in what i did. but far from recognizing it as this for myself. bit later during the same decade i did a session with a guy who did guitar and singing for another noise rock outfit. we just fiddled around with our guitars and with every pedal we could get our hands on. we recorded our very first session with some broken 4track and quite liked the results. after presenting the finished cdr people came back and reported "this is quite cool drone music". so yep, that's how we learned the name of this style. and after having the name we were able to dig deeper and learned names like Stars of the Lid, Flying Saucer Attack, Brian Eno etc pp. this guitar drone project of us is called Navel and we are still recording and doing live shows.

beginning of the 00's i quit doing this rock band stuff, so there was plenty time to do some other things. after getting introduced to all this amazing kraut and kosmische musik (during a navel live show in france by an english man, but that's another story) there was the idea to do some kind of electronic music solo. so i needed an instrument, and after bit of research i discovered that the schematics for some modular synthesizer would be something i could manage with the training in electronics i already had. so i started soldering, first quite simple filters, later more and more sophisticated modules.

the tapes, yep, fast forward to the end of last decade. stumbled over this tape scene thing by accident via the internet (god bless it). those days i was pretty frustrated and bored by the music all the labels and magazines i knew presented, so this occurred to me like a big relief. yes. so many people and projects and bands and labels are doing fantastic stuff, exactly the music i love, right at the moment, and sell it for very low money to people all around the world. yes! couldn't belief my eyes. that the favorite medium of all those labels and projects were cassettes don't really bothered me (of course i had this "ugh? on tape? strange…" moment like everybody else i guess), because i never really stopped using this media since my early childhood days.

I like to dramatize a bit some things some times, but this discovery of the tape label scene kind of saved my artistic live. it gave me so much energy and confirmation and countless hours of joy during listening sessions that i got the feeling that i have to give something back. hence i started my own tape label.

Pied Paper: Your music sounds almost academic sometimes, especially works as Organ Studies, Loop Studies and Furniture Sounds — which, as I understand is a homage to Eric Satie. But your name is strongly associated with "underground tape scene", as we call it. Did you ever thought about making your music open for the interpretations, to write it down on a paper maybe, letting the others perform it?

GS: huh, not sure if i my music sounds bit like academic music. for sure i'm quite interested in this genre, mean contemporary composers with "classical" musical education composing pieces for concert halls and operas and stuff. like their approach to their art through quite rigid concepts, their huge knowledge about musical structures and about music of many centuries and cultures. perhaps you see my enthusiasm for their rigidness shining through my stuff? that would be a compliment for sure, at least in my opinion. and of course, if there would be a small ensemble crazy enough to perform it, i would love to write a score for them (though not sure if i would like to conduct it). but i guess your name must be some lou reed or some other in the same league to be honored like this. actually i'm pretty sure that many of those academic contemporary composers would be happily release their stuff on tape if they would only know this special scene around it.

Pied Paper: It's clear that ambient music is a wide field for interpretation, same sound can be perceived in different ways depending on the artwork, liner notes, track titles, etc. Can you tell something about your own perception of your music? Does it have some stories within, or it's just abstract form which everyone can fill with its own meaning?

as you see in the answer of the last question i like some kind of concept around the music. and if this concept even gets its visual equal with the artwork i'm more than happy. so of course, there is a story in every piece. but hey, its music, its a form of art, so who am i to dictate what some listener and spectator wants to see in it? isn't it the very meaning of any art, that the consumer of it knits his very personal meaning to it?

actually i am not able to describe what i hear in my music anyway. for me the answer to this question would lead to some kind of poem, some painting, some huge novel, some dance or any other arty abstraction. in none of the mentioned techniques 'm very good at, so please, listen to the music.

Pied Paper: Imagine a situation when you someone asks you to create music with specific mood, theme, etc. — like for a movie scene or something — would it be easy for you? What you enjoy more - improvisation or composition?

already did this, i mean creating some music for a specific use (to earn some money), and hey, that is pretty hard work (and hard earned money)! to create some music without some customers needs to be satisfied, just the personal ones, isn't really easy to do as well, but much more gratifying for the soul. its an privilege to be able to do this, and i have a (pretty time consuming) bread and butter job to create the circumstances to fulfill it.

can't really separate those strategies during my performances, both live and during my recording sessions. its always a mixture of plan and being ready to include some coincidences respectively enlightenments. actually my believe is, gained through many observations and talks about such things, that nearly every work in which i am interested in is created this way.

Pied Paper: I know that you enjoy recording outdoor, do you have any specific set-up for this?

not really specific, the equipment just have to have some possibility to work battery driven. luckily my modulars fall into this category. just to improve the handling of such adventure i have build my modulars as small and compact as possible, and since a couple of months a work on some modules who will be included into some water proofed case.

Pied Paper: Probably you've noticed that releases of first wave of cassette drone/ambient in 2009-11 was mostly lo-fi and many of same artists still doing tapes nowadays came to much cleared and well-produced sound - is that natural growth or trying to be more "mainstream"?

yes, i'm aware of this development as well. i think it just was some other group of people with bit different background which had been running those labels you' mention. In those early days of the reemerging of this medium the leading actors had had mostly a background in the noise scene. hence the tape as favorite medium, hence the cheap and ugly aesthetics of the chosen instruments. these different (don't like to ad some other evaluative adjective) sounding tapes of lately are from people without this background, they just take over the torch and work with it out of their musical socialization. so in my opinion it is either "natural growth", this sounds like some kind of improvement who isn't any need for, nor a try to reach broader audiences. the good stuff of recently is produced by people who are just as true to their own style as their ancestors had been, and therefore it is as important and equal beautiful as the old stuff.

Pied Paper: As a label owner, can you tell how many demos you receive? Which kind of styles you receive most? I'm asking because it seems that ambient/psych/drone music isn't that popular anymore - I see tons of vaporwave/webpunk tapes at new-born labels, while such imprints as Stunned, Tranquility tapes, Goldtimers are long gone (or maybe it's just old man's talk, huh).

yes, and i'm very happy about it, i receive quite a lot of demos. always love to get some new sounds for my ears. mostly the artists are very good informed about the style of the music i usually release and about the aesthetics i'm interested in. perhaps you are right, there are less people out there which do their own style of ambient/psych/drone as perhaps eight years ago, but i'm not sure about that. and as i stated in the last paragraph i think those vaporwave labels and the like took the torch of the cassette celebration and run with it their own way. and this is a good thing. who needs the 16th or whatever version of the emeralds (insert here the name of your favorite release of those years)? isn't this exactly what have happened with pop and rock music and what makes this stuff sometimes unbearable to listen to?

Pied Paper: And what are your plans for the Cosmic Winnetou in the foreseeable future?

prepare my next batch right now which will be released in a couple of weeks. but after this 13th cosmic winnetou bundle of cassettes i will need a hiatus, unfortunately. i love to do the label work, but it is very time consuming. have lots of projects for this year, music and private stuff, so i have to pull the brakes to this project for this year. but really looking forward to restart the tape label with new ideas and energies end of this year.

Pied Paper: Do you ever think about future of music? Is it possible to invent something new, or we are doomed to retro-mania, returning to same tunes from different angles?

of course there will some day somebody release some music which haven't been heard before and will blow all of us completely into the void. don't know which day this will happen, but i'm pretty sure someday it will. just look around, not only the music is stuck into retro mode. clothing, hair style, performing arts, pictorial arts, industrial design, i think that in our days nearly every form of artefacts are done with quite old ideas, just a few new kind of tools here and there. the whole mood, you can call it "zeitgeist" if you like, is like "let's try to preserve what we have", not "perhaps this is a better idea for the future, let's work on it". in my opinion everything is linked together somehow, and we have this retro mania since the 90s, starting with this global change of the modus vivendi. but nothing is forever, so i'm sure this will change someday. these thoughts are just my 50cents about a very complex question. but yeah, i think about this, and love to exchange ideas about this kind of topic.

Pied Paper: Humans already sent some music with space probes - which titles would you choose for such mission? I know you won't choose Wagner, huh :)

really nice question, this is. indeed already thought about that, and i think the nasa did a quite good job with the "golden record" for the voyager mission. very good selection which shows how wonderfully diverse sounds humans are able to produce, and each and all of them aim at the listeners heart. but always wondered if it would be perhaps a good idea to send some field recordings of this strange planet into the void, and f so, which i would chose.

some people laughing, some people fighting, a mother singing her baby to sleep, the audience at a soccer game, a sundown at the shore of a calm sea with waves and cicades and everything? what else?

Pied Paper: Okay, that's it — you can send high fives here or add something if needed! Thank you!

hey, high five to you and many thanks for those questions! took my a while to type the answers, because you found some topics and ideas i love to share my thoughts on it. and of course many thanks for your support!

perhaps i would like to ad a big "thank you" to all the readers of those lines, time is precious and i'm happy that you waste it reading them. and a big "thank you" to all the people who listen to my music and perhaps even bought the cassettes and cds and vinyls with my music on it. to know that somebody out there cares about my music means a lot to me. hugs.


selected albums:
guenter's bandcamp
sterne uber der stadt
organ studies
tape studies

          89th Academy Awards        
An unexciting post for a largely unexciting Oscar year. La La Land is going to lap up Oscars left, right and centre this year. A movie which is all the more special to me because I watched it in a nice and cozy theater with my now fiancé, on an evening made even more special as we drove around the city past midnight with it's soundtrack softly humming on our car's stereo. :)

City of Stars
Are you shining just for me?

A rush
A glance
A touch
A dance

A look in somebody's eyes
To light up the skies
To open the world and send it reeling
A voice that says, I'll be here
And you'll be alright

Category // Prediction // My Pick // Hit or Miss

Best Film // La La Land // // hit, miss (LOL)

Actor // Casey Affleck, Manchester By The Sea // Ryan Gosling, La La Land // hit

Actress // Emma Stone, La La Land // // hit

Director // Damien Chazelle, La La Land // // hit

Supporting Actor // Mahershala Ali, Moonlight // // hit

Supporting Actress // Viola Davis, Fences // Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures // hit

Original Screenplay // La La Land // // miss

Adapted Screenplay // Moonlight // // hit

Animation // Zootopia // // hit

Foreign Language // The Salesman // // hit

Cinematography // La La Land // Arrival // hit

Editing // La La Land // // miss

Production Design // La La Land // // hit

Costume Design // Jackie // // miss

Music // La La Land // // hit

Original Song // City of Stars, La La Land // Audition, La La Land // hit

Visual Effects // The Jungle Book // Kubo and The Two Strings // hit

Total:   13 / 17

          88th Academy Awards        
Note 1: This is the fourth consecutive year when I am doing this. Hopefully this one will be much more readable compared to my previous attempts. Hopefully. (prev: 87th, 86th, 85th) This year, I also wrote a story with the tag-lines of the Oscar-nominated movies.

Note 2: I suspect the ratings for this year's Oscars are going to be very low. I mean, outside of #OscarsSoWhite, Studios and producers need to freakin' make the movies available for viewing online (or in theaters)! I will pay money to watch these movies BEFORE the Oscars goddamit! Events are successful when people talk about it. And to talk about it, people need context. What should we talk about instead of the movies themselves, Clooney's tux, JLaw's stumble, host's fumble, and hot cleavages?

This is one of those years when I am not particularly attached to any movie that has been nominated. Atleast not for the big awards. But this year's Animated and Documentary nominations are a bunch of powerhouses compared to any year in recent history for these categories. It beats me why Inside Out didn't get a Best Picture nod. This just might have been a year when a Pixar movie, or any animated movie for that matter, won the top prize. Instead, we get Oscar-bait movies such as Room, Bridge of Spies, or even The Revenant. Mad Max getting in there is quite a surprise, not so much in retrospect. And yet, the top prize this year remains wide open, probable front-runners being Spotlight, The Revenant, and The Big Short, with the race getting more interesting than the movies themselves.

Emily Blunt's omission from Supporting Actress and Villeneuve's from Director (yep, I loved Sicario!) seems a little strange, but Villeneuve's time will come. His every successive movie gets better than the last! And Quentin, what did you do? He is forgiven though for getting too indulgent, considering that he might be nearing the end of his filmography. I hope though that I get to see him, among others, getting a Directing Oscar some day. Some day.

Right then.

Category / PickNomineesVishesh TippaniHit / Miss
Motion Picture


The Big Short


Bridge of Spies

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant


The Big Short: After The Wolf of Wall Street's rollercoaster ride, this seemed like pony carousel. I mean, we get it. Financial meltdown happened, and no-one responsible went to jail. Bravo! Selena Gomez explaining Collateralized Debt Obligations was cute though. Heh.

Brooklyn: It gets a lot of things right. Saoirse Ronan is an absolute delight to watch on screen, with a well-deserved Actress nomination for her. And the way the movie transports you to the 50s is incredible, effortlessly shattering a lot of things we take for granted today. And we are not talking about an ancient era, just 60-70 years ago. Brooklyn also does not resort to evil-looking people to further the plot in a way Titanic did, and in a way that makes the protagonists' struggles relatable, real, and very palatable - in a way that triggers a "Life is such," response rather than "They deserved this".
"I'd forgotten what this town is like. What were you planning to do, Miss Kelly?" 

Bridge of Spies: This is the "America is the best country in the World" movie for this year. Although both Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance nailed it with chiselled performances. Coen brothers wrote this, perhaps it would have been a much better movie if they directed it as well.
"Aren't you worried?"
"Would it help?"

Mad Max: Fury Road: This movie was an adrenalin-induced delight without end. Stunning camera work, absurdist humour, and louder than loudest everything, so much that one literally felt exhausted after the movie did not give any breathing space during.

The Martian: Someone please explain to me why Inside Out is not in this category, and why The Martian isn't in the Best Animated movie category instead? What is the line between special effects and animation? Considering the state of the art for motion capture and 3D rendering techniques, maybe it's time we do away with the distinction. Anyway, The Martian falls flat compared to Gravity, or even Interstellar. Maybe it was just an excuse to rescue Matt Damon... again.

The Revenant: A lot of people, including the Academy, seem to be particularly fond of Iñárritu. I find his movies boring, the technical brilliance notwithstanding. Birdman was perhaps Iñárritu's most enjoyable movie, and I didn't want Birdman to win (Boyhood... sigh). If The Revenant wins this one, of which there is a more than significant chance, it will be several firsts, perhaps the most interesting one being successive wins by the same Director. Sure looks like Leo's year though.

Room: This was a hit or miss and all over the place. Some scenes were striking, in particular the one towards the end where Brie Larson goes back to the Room. Jacob Tremblay was spectacular until he was inside the room, and made his escape. After that it seemed like the director just didn't give a shit anymore.
"There's so much of "place" in the world."

Spotlight: This is my favourite movie from this category. Tense, crisp, great characters, performances, writing, Spotlight ranks high up there.
"We got two stories here: a story about degenerate clergy, and a story about a bunch of lawyers turning child abuse into a cottage industry. Which story do you want us to write? Because we're writing one of them."
Alejandro González Iñárritu, The Revenant

Adam McKay, The Big Short

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Alejandro González Iñárritu, The Revenant

Lenny Abrahamson, Room

Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
As much as I loved Spotlight, I am not sure if Tom McCarthy's time has come for a directing Oscar. The race mostly seems between Iñárritu and Miller, both of whom are really fine directors. If Iñárritu pulls this one off, back-to-back Director Oscars would be a tremendous feat.

Although, if I had my way, Duke Johnson and Charlie Kaufman (directors of Anomalisa),  Andrew Haigh (director of 45 years), would have found a spot here. And when-o-when will Denis Villeneuve's (Sicario) time come?
Writing (Original)


Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out


Straight Outta Compton
Bridge of Spies is probably in here because... Coen brothers. Perhaps the movie would have been significantly better had they directed it as well.

Ex Machina had some really smart writing as well, reminded me of "Her" in a lot of ways.
Ava: "What will happen to me if I fail your test?"

I loved the fact that Inside Out got nominated for this, if not for Best Picture. They really got me from the moment the "train of thought" arrives. As cheesy as that is, really made me chuckle.
"Take her to the moon for me."

And as much as Tarantino would like to say "I truly believe in the material" for The Hateful Eight, he needs to sit on the bench for this one.

Spotlight though, crisp, taut, engaging from start to finish truly deserves this one.
"If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to abuse them."
Writing (Adapted)

The Big Short

The Big Short



The Martian

The Big Short is a no-brainer for this. I haven't read the book so I do not know how it reads, but this is one of those examples of an "adaptation", from a non-fiction, that would have truly meant a LOT of work.

Aaron Sorkin could have been slipped in here (for Steve Jobs), again adapting a non-fiction. Plus, in my opinion, his approach with the source material was remarkable and creative. With all the different sorts of issues Steve Jobs ran into during production, Sorkin was probably the only one who did the cleanest job for this movie.

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

FINALLY, LEO! Boy am I waiting for his acceptance speech! SIXTH nomination, and what a journey! A story of survival, revenge, and life is also possibly the most fitting way he could have won this one!

But this doesn't go without mentioning the other quite remarkable performances in this category. Trumbo felt a lot like Argo, even besides the 'Hollywood making a movie about Hollywood thing' and John Goodman's huge (literally) presence. And I love this "genre" (if you may) too - Sunset Bldv., Chaplin, The Artist, to name a few.

Michael Fassbender did a fine job and literally saved the movie, but the most striking performance for me from this movie would definitely be that of Winslet's.

There are some roles where it is unimaginable for anyone else doing them except for Eddie Redmayne (you know, the kind of feeling we get quite often for Benedict Cumberbatch). I doubt anyone else would have been able to do Theory of Everything or The Danish Girl.

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Prediction: Brie Larson
Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Brie Larson seems sealed for this category. She isn't on my top 3 out of these 5, so I will be a little bummed about this one.

I am conflicted between Charlotte Rampling and Saoirse Ronan for my top spot. 45 years is a stunning film, and deserved much more than the solitary nomination it received, but Charlotte is really the heart and soul of the film. After Emmanuelle Riva (Amour) lost to JLaw, I would be too pleased to see Charlotte win this one, for a movie that has too many similarities to Amour.

I wouldn't mind Saoirse winning this one either. Her nuanced performance in Brooklyn left you yearning for more.
Supporting Actor

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Prediction: Sylvester Stallone
Christian Bale, The Big Short

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Sylvester Stallone, Creed
The one thing that I loved about The Big Short was Christian Bale's performance. In the very limited time that he occupies the screen, every freakin' scene is fireworks. He would be my pick for this one, but Sylvester Stallone makes for a great Oscar story, so yeah... Mark Rylance.
Supporting Actress

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Prediction: Alicia Vikander
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

Rooney Mara, Carol

Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs
It's a shame that Alicia Vikander got nominated for The Danish Girl instead of Ex Machina. I am nuts about Alicia Vikander, she is what I would call "vanilla" beautiful. I know she is beautiful, I don't know why, and I find it hard to be able to figure it out. It's like she only registers when she's in front of me, but poof as soon as she's not, enigmatic almost. I think it was a stroke of casting brilliance to cast her in Ex Machina, a role which hinged significantly on this quality of hers in my opinion. You know, artificial... but not really, feels real... but can't put a finger on why.

But between her performance in The Danish Girl, and Kate Winslet's in Steve Jobs, my vote definitely goes to Kate. Them glasses. Sigh. And a performance that stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Fassbender's as Jobs, that's really something.
Animated Movie


Prediction: Inside Out

Boy & The World

Inside Out

Shaun The Sheep Movie

When Marnie Was There
What a collection of movies in this category! This is a collection which is missing The Peanuts Movie and The Good Dinosaur - movies which in any other year would have made the nomination cut and might even have won!

I want to especially talk about three movie here, Anomalisa, Inside Out, and Boy & The World, although Shaun The Sheep and When Marnie Was There are brilliant movies in their own right.

Anomalisa is one of those movies that leave you going "How on Earth did they pull this off on screen?!" The stillness of this movie, the calm, the poise, the detail - both in the little things and the not-so-little things - is astounding. I could write at length about this movie, but anyone who has spent any time travelling to a smaller city in the US (especially to the mid-west) will get all intricate details they have managed to so gloriously capture. The absolutely shocking sex scene, the long takes, the movie playing almost in real time... Anomalisa is an anomaly done right when it comes to pushing the boundaries of what can be done on animation.

Talking about pushing the boundaries of animated films, Boy & The World is gorgeous! Such raw beauty, it is a spectacle to behold. Lovingly crafted hand-drawn animation, the colors, the playfulness, the airiness, the fireworks-y sparkle, the dazzle, every still of the film could be a framed painting in an art gallery. This is how, I wish, The Peanuts Movie had been made. HAND-DRAWN! I hope we get to see more of Alê Abreu's work.

Inside Out is almost surely going to win this one. Don't get me wrong, it is a great film, perhaps one of Pixar's top 3, if not the best. But it is going to win it for the wrong reasons. Animation has very little to do with what makes Inside Out a great film, which is why it was much better off getting a Best Film nod, along with the Writing nod that it deservedly received.


Prediction: The Revenant 

The Hateful Eight

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

The Hateful Eight is on this list because... 70mm, Ben Hur lenses, yada yada yada. It's not the tooling that maketh a genius. Nope. But okay Quentin, you were indulging yourself, you are allowed to do that, of course.

It will be a big surprise if The Revenant does not win this one. The cinematography, after all, is one of the biggest reasons why it has been getting oh-so-much love. But, have you seen Sicario! Especially the one scene where they perform the extraction from Mexico, sent a chill down my spine. That is a scene in the same league as the car scene from Children of Men.

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant


Star Wars: The Force Awakens
If there is one award that Mad Max truly deserves, it's got to be this one. How do you even cut this movie?! Hit!
Production Design

Mad Max: Fury Road

Bridge of Spies

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight

Bridge of Spies


The Hateful Eight


Star Wars: The Force Awakens
The Hateful Eight, again, is here because... Morricone. This is probably Academy's last chance to give a real Oscar to Ennio Morricone rather than the honorary one they had to give him a few years ago.

Sicario and Star Wars (obviously) truly deserve a special mention though.
Visual Effects

The Revenant

Ex Machina

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This category is really losing its significance extremely fast. It is too hard to tell what's special effects and what's not, considering almost every movie undergoes huge transformation during post-production. Ex Machina.

Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight For Freedom

Prediction: Amy

Cartel Land

The Look of Silence

What Happened, Miss Simone?

Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight For  Freedom
Just like the Animated Feature Film category, this was another powerhouse collection of films. I wouldn't mind Amy winning this one, Asif Kapadia is an accomplished director, his Senna ranks amongst my favorite movies. And, to be fair, Amy is an amazing movie, except, I didn't care a lot about the subject matter.

Winter on Fire, on the other hand, is a movie extremely relevant in today's day and age, and has managed to put together some really spine-chilling footage and beautifully. It also managed to give a first-hand glimpse into a country that we (I) know so little about, and around events that are being played out right now on the global political arena.

Total: 13 / 15

          87th Academy Awards        
Note 1: Hello, and welcome to the annual edition of my pretending to understand how the average-age-55-years-white-American-old-men vote to find the best movie of the year! It's almost like how the new Pope is picked. Almost.

Note 2: Post 3.0 is going to be awesome, just like my previous two posts. Also, this year, a bunch of us got together to make an AWESOME app for Oscars - Award Street. Check it out!

This year is pretty much going to be Boyhood vs. Birdman. A lot of people are going to get their predictions wrong this year depending on which way The Academy leans, unless your prediction is that a movie whose name starts with the letter 'B' is going to take home the grandest prize, and you can be sure about nailing it. Personally, I want to be screaming "It's a boy!" when it's announced. That man, Linklater, deserves a trophy by now. He got nominated for the last 2 movies of the 'Before' trilogy, and has made cult classics like Slacker, Dazed and Confused, Waking Life, and School of Rock. He might just walk away with 3 trophies in his hands this year and that would be AWESOME. If The Academy leans towards Birdman instead of Boyhood, it will be sad, and them trying incredibly hard to be cool. Boyhood is an achievement, period. A movie event we are going to be talking about for a long, long time. It will be fitting if Boyhood is announced for the Best Picture, and this plays:

I don't wanna be a big man
Just wanna fight like everyone else

No major controversies with the nominations, although no love for Nightcrawler, The Lego Movie, and no cinematography nod for Interstellar broke my heart a little. But then, what's an Oscar without a little heartbreak, right?

Right then, let's get on with it.

CategoryPredictionPickVishesh TippaniQuotesHit / Miss
Best Motion Picture of the YearBoyhood
I think this category isn't even a contest. Boyhood is by far the best movie on this list. Also, instead of the standard Film/Director split the Academy is known for doing, I think this year is going to see a Film/Writing split, between Boyhood and Birdman.'You know how everyone's always saying seize the moment? I don't know, I'm kind of thinking it's the other way around, you know, like the moment seizes us.'Miss. Birdman. Oh well.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading RoleMichael Keaton, Birdman
Another year, BC! This year's going cleanly to Mr. Keaton.'A thing is a thing, not what is said of that thing.'Miss. Well, I am glad. Great performance by Eddie Redmayne in Theory of Everything.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading RoleJulianne Moore, Still AliceRosamund Pike, Gone GirlThe chills Rosamund Pike gives you! Goodness. I wish she won this one, but she won't.From Gone Girl: 'I'm the cunt you married. The only time you liked yourself was when you were trying to be someone this cunt might like. I'm not a quitter, I'm that cunt. I killed for you; who else can say that? You think you'd be happy with a nice Midwestern girl? No way, baby! I'm it.'Hit!
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting RoleJ.K. Simmons, Whiplash
The only thing going for Whiplash. Simmons' powerful performance made this movie worth a while. His performance took me back to when I was in school.'There are no two words in the English language more harmful than good job.'Hit!
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting RolePatricia Arquette, Boyhood
Boyhood could very well have been called 'Motherhood', and it would have remained as true. Patricia deserves this gold!'I just thought there would be more.'Hit! YAY!
Best Achievement in DirectingRichard Linklater, Boyhood
Please. Starting to feel a little bad for Mr. Anderson though. Maybe Mr. Anderson is destined to be seventh time lucky another year.'I finally figured it out. It's like when they realized it was gonna be too expensive to actually build cyborgs and robots. I mean, the costs of that were impossible. They decided to just let humans turn themselves into robots. That's what's going on right now. I mean, why not? They're billions of us just laying around, not really doing anything. We don't cost anything. We're even pretty good at self-maintenance and reproducing constantly. And as it turns out, we're already biologically programmed for our little cyborg upgrades. I read this thing the other day about how When you hear that ding on your inbox, you get like a dopamine rush in your brain. It's like we're being chemically rewarded for allowing ourselves to be brainwashed. How evil is that? We're fucked.'Miss. Iñárritu, Birdman. Oh well. Another year, bigger movie, Linklater!
Best Original ScreenplayBirdmanBoyhoodThis is going to be a close call, but I think Birdman will pull through in the end. Also, if it does, the Best Picture announcement is going to induce double the nervousness. Writing/Film split seldom happens. The last time this happened was with Argo (2012), and Million Dollar Baby (2005) before that.From Boyhood: 'I mean, what makes you think that elves are any more magical than something like a whale? Yoy know what I mean? What if I told you a story about how underneath the ocean, there was this giant sea mammal that used sonar and sang songs and it was so big that its heart was the size of a car and you could crawl through the arteries? I mean, you'd think that was pretty magical, right?'Hit!
Best Adapted ScreenplayThe Imitation Game
The better crop are the ones in the original writing category. The adapted is pretty non-exciting, unless American Sniper takes it because of the emotions involved.'Do you know why people like violence? It is because it feels good. Humans find violence deeply satisfying. But remove the satisfaction, and the act becomes... hollow.'Hit!
Best Animated Feature Film of the YearHow to train your Dragon 2
No nomination for The Lego Movie was really disappointing. Nothing much here.
'Some of us were just born different.'Miss. Big Hero 6. Blah. I couldn't care less without The Lego Movie nomination.
Best Achievement in CinematographyBirdmanThe Grand Budapest HotelNo nomination for Interstellar was a disappointment. A win for Grand Budapest would redeem it.'You're looking so well, darling, you really are... they've done a marvelous job. I don't know what sort of cream they've put on you down at the morgue, but... I want some.'Hit!
Best Achievement in EditingBoyhood
This is a no contest. Editing footage spanning 12 years into this masterpiece!'I find myself so furious at all these people that I am in contact with just for controlling me or whatever but you know they are not even aware they are doing it.'Miss. Whiplash. :/
Best Achievement in Production DesignThe Grand Budapest HotelInterstellarWell, I am going to pick Interstellar for whichever category it's nominated in!From Interstellar: 'Mankind was born on Earth. It was never meant to die here.'Hit!
Best Achievement in Costume DesignThe Grand Budapest Hotel

'You see, there are still faint glimmers of civilization left in this barbaric slaughterhouse that was once known as humanity. Indeed that's what we provide in our own modest, humble, insignificant... oh, fuck it.'Hit!
Best Achievement in Makeup and HairstylingThe Grand Budapest Hotel
A lack of Theory of Everything here was a little bit surprising.'I must say, I find that girl utterly delightful. Flat as a board, enormous birthmark the shape of Mexico over half her face, sweating for hours on end in that sweltering kitchen, while Mendl, genius though he is, looms over her like a hulking gorilla. Yet without question, without fail, always and invariably, she's exceedingly lovely.'Hit!
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original ScoreInterstellar
Zimmer's score made Interstellar more grandiose than it already was. Just 1 win for him from 9 nominations, I think he can use another win, and deservedly so. Theory of Everything has a good chance of taking it away.'Those aren't mountains, they're waves.'Miss. Grand Budapest Hotel. This movie is on a roll tonight! Desplat deserved a win, nominated for 2 movies this year, and 7 before this.
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original SongSelmaThe Lego MovieI like 'Lost Stars' from Begin Again. But my pick is The Lego Movie because it was AWESOME, and these buggers did not give it a nod for Animated Feature.From The Lego Movie: 'All this is true because it rhymes.'Hit!
Best Achievement in Sound MixingInterstellar
There was a bunch of controversy around Interstellar's sound. It doesn't matter. A couple of IMAX viewings is what those buggers need.'You're telling me it takes two numbers to measure your own ass but only one to measure my son's future?'Miss. Whiplash. For not giving it to Interstellar, I tell you, Academy, "Not my tempo."
Best Achievement in Sound EditingInterstellar
see: above. Although, American Sniper might snatch this one. Also, I think Fury should have gotten a nod here.'And that our greatest accomplishments cannot be behind us, because our destiny lies above us.'Miss. Sniper made a headshot at TARS.
Best Achievement in Visual EffectsInterstellar
This is a no-contest. Why are there even other nominees?!'Do not go gentle into that good night; Old age should burn and rave at close of day. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.'Hit! Although it's sad that Interstellar might end its count with this.
Best Short Film, Live ActionThe Phone CallButter LampThis is the first time I got to watch all the live-action shorts before the event. Pretty great movies, all. My favorite's got to be Butter Lamp, for the sheer ingenuity of script.
Best Short Film, AnimatedFeast
It's a dog's life.

13 / 21

Who are you rooting for?

87th Academy Awards...

          86th Academy Awards        
Note 1: Well, I did a post on Oscars last year, so I am going to do one every year now. Talk about being clingy, heh.

Note 2.0: Post 2.0 is going to be bigger and better, aww yeah!

It hasn't been a stellar year for movies compared to the previous year, neither there nor here. A year of massive snubs too (I weep for you, Coen brothers, Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson). '12 years a slave' emerges as the 'Lincoln' from last year, and TEN nominations for 'American Hustle', are you effing kidding me?! The race is wide open (which makes it mildly interesting), and my prediction is that this year predictions in general are going to go for a toss. My sentiments for this year's Oscars are best summarized by the movie nominated this year for Makeup and Hairstyling, a movie that will be selling DVDs with 'Oscar nominee' plastered on its cover - 'Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa'.

The complete list of nominations is available here. This is going to be a difficult year for predictions, so whenever in doubt, I will stick to a golden rule - snub American Hustle!

CategoryPredictionPickVishesh TippaniQuotesHit / Miss
Best Motion Picture of the Year12 Years a SlaveThe Wolf of Wall StreetThe Wolf of Wall Street is by far the best movie of this year, its only fault being that it isn't "Best Picture material". F.U. American Hustle, I wish Jonah Hill peed all over you.From TWOWS: "My name is Jordan Belfort. The year I turned 26, I made 49 million dollars, which really pissed me off because it was three shy of a million a week."Hit! But they got it wrong. Time.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading RoleMatthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers ClubLeonardo DiCaprio, The Wolf of Wall Streetsee: Best Motion Picture of the Year
P.S.: F.U. American Hustle.
From TWOWS: "I am not gonna die sober!"Hit! So disappointed for Leo!
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading RoleCate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Kill me for saying it, but I don't think Amy Adams' cleavage deserves an Oscar. F.U."Who do you have to sleep with around here to get a Stoli martini with a twist of lemon?"Hit!
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting RoleJared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
see: Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling"Relax, I don't bite. I guess you're handsome, in a Texas, hick, white trash, dumb kind of way."Hit! 
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting RoleLupita Nyong'o, 12 Years a Slave
If only Scarlett Johansson was nominated. Sigh. And F. U. JLaw, Eff. You. You didn't deserve it last year, you don't deserve it this year.From Her:
"You know, I can feel the fear that you carry around and I wish there was... something I could do to help you let go of it because if you could, I don't think you'd feel so alone anymore."
Hit! So much deserve! 
Best Achievement in DirectingAlfonso Cuarón, GravityMartin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Streetsee: Best Motion Picture of the YearFrom TWOWS:
'The name of the game, moving the money from the client's pocket to your pocket.'
'But if you can make your clients money at the same time it's advantageous to everyone, correct?'
Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the ScreenSpike Jonze, Her
The writing is just devastating. Devastating. Isn't that what great writing is supposed to be?"Sometimes I think I have felt everything I'm ever gonna feel. And from here on out, I'm not gonna feel anything new. Just lesser versions of what I've already felt."Hit!
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published12 Years a SlaveRichard Linklater, Before MidnightAnyone who has followed the 'Before...' series will hardly contest that Linklater deserves this, but well...From Before Midnight:
"Like sunlight, sunset, we appear, we disappear. We are so important to some, but... we are just passing through."
Best Animated Feature Film of the YearFrozen
'Olaf! You're melting!'
'Some people are worth melting for.'
Hit! â™¥
Best Foreign Language Film of the YearThe Great Beauty
The Great Beauty is what To Rome with Love should have been, or rather what this movie should have been called.'We're all on the brink of despair; all we can do is look each other in the face, keep each other company, joke a little... don't you agree?'Hit!
Best Achievement in CinematographyGravity
Technical awards for Gravity is quite a no-brainer this year. From the camera-work to sound, Gravity is, without a doubt, going to sweep the technical awards.'Houston, I have a bad feeling about this mission.'
'Please elaborate.'
'Well, it reminds of a story.'
Best Achievement in EditingGravityCaptain PhillipsCaptain Phillips' climax got close to Argo's climax. It's tough to beat Gravity for the technical awards this year.From Captain Phillips:
"Shut up, Irish. Too much talking."
Best Achievement in Production DesignAmerican HustleHerHer was a surprise (and deserving) nomination for this category, and the minimalism in the look and feel of the movie only goes on to show how much thought was put into it. Oh, and yes, F. U. American Hustle.From Her:
"Your past is just a story you tell yourself."
Miss. The Great Gatsby.
Best Achievement in Costume DesignAmerican Hustle
Probably the only good thing about American Hustle. Yup, Amy Adams' cleavage wasn't one."But, you know I thought you were mysterious like my mother. Until, it turned out... the mysterious just meant depressed." Miss. Because in-your-face costumes are the way to go. :| The Great Gatsby.
Best Achievement in Makeup and HairstylingDallas Buyers Club
see: Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original ScoreSteven Price, Gravity
While I really wish Thomas Newman, after being nominated 11 times before this (including Wall·E), won this one for his great score in a music-heavy Saving Mr. Banks, I feel Steven Price deserves this one. Check it out.
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song'Let it go', Frozen'Ordinary Love', U2, Mandela: Long Walk to FreedomThis is a tough one to pick, between 'Ordinary Love' and 'Let it go'. I do want to see U2 win, after they didn't win the last time they were nominated. And while you are at it, 'The Moon Song' from 'Her' is absolutely heart-breaking.
Best Achievement in Sound MixingGravity
see: Best Achievement in Cinematography
Best Achievement in Sound EditingGravity
see: Best Achievement in Cinematography
Best Achievement in Visual EffectsGravity
see: Best Achievement in Cinematography

18 / 20

Who are you rooting for?

86th Academy Awards...

          Aam Aadmi Party: the political start-up        

"Aaj hum yahaan aayein hain sabse ye kehne, ki kuch to karna hoga. Hum sabko kuch karna hoga."

"Koi bhi desh perfect nahi hota. Use perfect banaana hota hai. Police mai bharti honge, military join karenge, IAS banenge, politics ka hissa ban ke iss desh ki sarkaar chalaayenge. Ye desh badlega, hum badlenge ise."

-- Rang De Basanti (2006)

I quoted from Rang De Basanti, but it does not mean that this is going to be an incensed hysterical rant of a twenty-something someone which goes "Inquilab Zindabad!". Inquilab, sure. But let's put it into perspective and context. Inquilab will happen. One step at a time.

Election is coming.

It's easy to talk about politics sitting in our rooms, dissing any and everything that is happening around us. Heck, even this post qualifies. People here in India, and people abroad too - US, Europe, or farther east, you name it. "India has gone beyond a point-of-no-return." Sure, it must have sounded profound sitting in a room in a high-rise with a city skyline view in some sophisticated corner of the world, or here, in India. Sorry, no. But I have no interest in a conversation that begins or ends with that sentence, whether you live in India, or live abroad and intend to come back. It does not sound profound to me because I intend to spend my life in this country, by choice. Hopefully.

I would not care if haters and dissers shoot holes into this post. By all means, go ahead. I admit I don't know my politics or economics. Let the intellectual masturbation begin. But I will not engage you in a conversation unless you give me a viable choice in the upcoming Delhi elections in November. We'll talk about NaMo vs Rahul Gandhi, sure, after the Delhi elections.

It is really sad that after 66 years of our country's independence, the issues today, still, in the capital of India are Water, Electricity, Safety of Women, and Corruption. Forget Infrastructure, Public Health, or a healthy eco-system for entrepreneurs, we haven't afforded ourselves that luxury. Not yet.

We, the youth, are lucky to have been born at a very opportune moment in the history of our country. We have the privilege to be a part of the 'Indian growth story', to be the Indian growth story. Be a part of it. Engage. Of course, it is unreasonable to ask people to quit whatever they wish to do with their lives and set out "to clean the system". No. But help those who are trying, in whatever little way. You can still be a part of it. That's why I am writing this.

I know about a start-up that is trying to win the Delhi elections. I hope they do. It was unthinkable until a year ago, that a newly formed political party could think of forming a state government, let alone contesting elections with a strong foothold, or even fielding candidates in all the contested constituencies with confidence. Today, not so much. AAP doesn't have a long history, nor do they have the money or the adequate resources even, but they do have the passion and the will to do something. They believe they can, I believe they can. Sure, you or me might not agree with everything that they say or want to do, but do you agree with anyone a hundred percent? And if not them, who is your pick, and why? The question is whether anyone, anyone with the will and the passion can make a difference if they want? This is the test.

Santosh died. No, I am not using her name to sensationalize this and drive my point across. The fact is, a good person wanted to contest the elections, and she died. It is NOT trivial. Can you do something about it?

Take a look at their candidates list. Go ahead, look at their profiles. There is a commando who lost his hearing a hundred percent during 26/11, and was fired from the Army after that. Or this construction worker living in the slums, who is looking to contest from Rajouri Garden. And then, there is an ex-IRS IITian who championed the cause of RTI. He is pitting himself against Sheila Dixit. These people are getting their voice heard. We are getting our voice heard.

At the very least what I'm confident of is this, that these candidates won't be murderers or rapists, and that if they are deemed incapable or corrupt, they will be sacked by their own party. Atleast give these people a chance. One chance. And like all start-ups, they need money to scale. They have been angel funded by several investors, and are looking to mobilize resources through crowdsourcing.

What are you doing, Delhi? I'm jealous because you got this opportunity before I did. And things are happening and will, with or without you. Here's what the donations to AAP from our country looks like [link] :

Almost as much from Maharashtra as from Delhi?! And it's not even Maharashtra's elections! There is still time. Get on board with this, man.

1) You can donate in kind. There is much more than just money that is required to contest elections. You can give whatever you have to spare. [link]

2) You can adopt a constituency. From anywhere. [link]

3) You can make a recurring donation every month. [link]

4) Or, you can just donate once and be done with it. [link]

5) And the least you can do is get your voter i-card made and exercise your franchise. Vote. [link]

An incident happened not so long ago. Arvind Kejriwal was asked by a journalist, "What would you do if you don't win the Delhi elections?". He responded by saying, "If we lose, what will you do?"

Atleast we are talking about the right things.

So... what will you do?

Oh, and in this interview, Arvind Kejriwal answers most of the questions commonly posed by the haters and the dissers. Do watch. You might not agree with him or still be unsatisfied, but atleast hear what he has got to say.

If you know me personally, or have been following this blog, you would know that I am not someone who begs for likes and shares. But this one time, I will. If this post struck a chord, please share it. It's only a click, and is much less to ask than an Inquilab.

          85th Academy Awards        
Note 1: This is probably for the first time that I have watched almost all the movies in contention for the Oscars before the Oscar ceremony, so I might as well do a prediction post, with a healthy 2 weeks till the event. Just for the kicks, and maybe some "pre-Oscar discussion", not that it matters.

Note 2: In every category, I will list one name if my prediction is same as my vote, two otherwise.

CategoryPredictionPickHit / Miss
Best Motion Picture of the YearArgoAmourHit! Yay! \m/
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading RoleDaniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading RoleJessica Chastain, Zero Dark ThirtyEmmanuelle Riva, AmourMiss. JLaw, oh well. :|
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting RoleChristoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Hit! Waltz, aww yeah!
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting RoleAnne HathawayLes Misérables
Hit! Hathaway! ♥
Best Achievement in DirectingSteven Spielberg, LincolnAng Lee, Life of PiWoohoo! Ang Lee for Life of Pi! \m/
Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the ScreenQuentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
Hit! T.A.R.A.N.T.I.N.O. \m/
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or PublishedTony Kushner, LincolnDavid Magee, Life of PiMiss. But Argo, deserved!
Best Animated Feature Film of the YearBrave
Hit! Pixar FTW!
Best Foreign Language Film of the YearAmour
Best Achievement in CinematographyClaudio Miranda, Life of Pi
Best Achievement in EditingWilliam GoldenbergArgo
Best Achievement in Production DesignLife of Pi
Miss. Lincoln, seriously? :|
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original ScoreMychael DannaLife of Pi
Hit! \m/
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original SongAdeleSkyfall
Best Achievement in Sound MixingSkyfall
Miss. Les Misérables - deserved.
Best Achievement in Sound EditingDjango Unchained
Oh well, a tie! And both misses. (ZDT and Skyfall)
Best Achievement in Visual EffectsLife of Pi
Best Documentary, FeaturesSearching for Sugar Man
Best Short film, AnimatedPaperman

 14 hits ( + 1 woohoo/ 20

85th Academy Awards...

          What did I just read? : The complexity of reading comprehension        

I love to read, but what if you read and you don’t understand what you have read. Working with clients to improve reading comprehension is a challenge because reading comprehension relies on many skills including but not limited to vocabulary, grammar, visualization  Often I hear learning specialist say,  that a child is having problems with […]

The post What did I just read? : The complexity of reading comprehension appeared first on Long On Language.

          Wonder Woman One Sentence Review        
. By Michele Costanza…bringing you a humorous view on consumer topics in an all-too-serious world   Wonder Woman rocked the house, from stunning visual effects, fierce women warriors, a likable and impressive Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, a stunning transformation of Buttercup from Princess Bride to this: a great storyline, and finally, Chris Pine naked.
          Safety of a Rapidly Dissolving Buprenorphine/Naloxone Sublingual Tablet (BNX-RDT) for Treatment of Opioid Dependence: A Multicenter, Open-label Extension Study        
imageObjective: To assess the safety of rapidly dissolving buprenorphine/naloxone sublingual tablets (BNX-RDT) in opioid-dependent patients. Methods: This open-label, 24-week extension study enrolled patients who completed primary trials of BNX-RDT. Daily tablet doses ranged from 5.7 to 17.1 mg. The primary endpoint was safety; secondary assessments included opioid cravings, addiction severity, health-related quality of life (QOL), and workplace productivity at screening (final day of the primary trials) through study end, with changes measured from baseline of the primary trials. Results: In all, 665 patients received treatment; 292 (43.9%) completed the study. A total of 258 patients (38.8%) reported 557 treatment-emergent adverse events, most commonly headache (3.2%) and constipation (3.0%). Craving scores showed continued improvement on 100-mm visual analog scale (mean change from primary trial baseline, −52.8 at screening; mean change from extension trial baseline, −60.5 at week 24). Reductions in addiction severity from baseline of both the primary and extension trial were maintained through week 24 on multiple assessments, as were improvements in QOL on Short Form 36. Employment increased by 15% and mean (SD) hours worked per week increased by 4.6 (20.1) from baseline to study end. Mean (SD) scores for impact of opioid dependence on work productivity improved from 4.7 (3.0) at baseline to 0.9 (1.8) at study end (11-point scale). Conclusions: Extended treatment with BNX-RDT demonstrated a safety profile similar to other BNX formulations, reduced opioid cravings, and improved both QOL and work productivity. Continued treatment may enable patients to advance in recovery and return to normal functioning.
          Efficacy of Buprenorphine/Naloxone Rapidly Dissolving Sublingual Tablets (BNX-RDT) After Switching From BNX Sublingual Film        
imageObjectives: The aim of the study was to evaluate treatment retention, efficacy, and preference ratings among opioid-dependent patients transitioning between a buprenorphine/naloxone rapidly dissolving sublingual tablet formulation (BNX-RDT) and BNX film. Methods: After a 2-day, blinded, fixed-dose induction with BNX-RDT (5.7/1.4 mg and 5.7/1.4 or 11.4/2.8 mg, respectively) or buprenorphine (8 mg and 8 or 16 mg, respectively), patients received open-label titrated doses of BNX-RDT or BNX film (generic buprenorphine induction group) during days 3 to 14. On day 15, patients switched treatment (using a conversion ratio of 5.7–8 mg) and continued switched treatment through day 22. Assessments included treatment retention, opioid withdrawal (Clinical and Subjective Opiate Withdrawal scales), opioid cravings (0–100 visual analog scale [VAS]), and preference ratings. Results: Of the 287 patients who switched from BNX-RDT to BNX film and 279 patients who switched from BNX film to BNX-RDT at day 15, 8.7% and 6.1% withdrew, respectively. Reductions in opioid withdrawal and cravings were similar with both formulations through day 15; after switching treatment, reductions were maintained through day 22 in both groups. Preference ratings at day 22 (patients had received both formulations) favored BNX-RDT for taste, mouthfeel, ease of administration, and overall preference (all P < 0.0001). Conclusions: In both patient groups who switched treatment at day 15, more than 90% were retained in treatment, and reductions in opioid withdrawal and cravings were sustained. A significant majority of patients preferred BNX-RDT over BNX film, the clinical impact of which requires further study.
          Emoticons do Gtalk        
Venho por meio desta informar que descobri mais emoticons para o Gtalk do que os que eu conhecia.

Uma vez ouvi falar do Crab, e adorei, mas nem me passou pela cabeça procurar por mais. Hoje tentei mostrar a uma amiga mas fiz errado:


O que, claro, faz muito mais sentido visualmente. Mero detalhe.

O caso é que trago para vocês hoje um site que não está na web por acaso, é este aqui do próprio Google.

Deixo vocês com os principais novos e bonitinhos emoticons presentes lá nesse link.
          Pre-Alpha Gameplay Footage of Failure        
It’s strategic and it’s pretty. We get to see gameplay footage of Failure in its pre-alpha state, showcasing the overall game idea from mechanics to how a match plays out, alongside it’s beautiful visuals with all those neons. Check out the game’s Kickstarter page for more information.
          Audio Push "Planet Earth Is Live" Video        

Audio Push drop the visuals for "Planet Earth Is Live"
          Director of People and Engagement - Toronto - Freeman Audio Visual CA - Mississauga, ON        
Manages compliance requirements including Employment Standards, Overtime Averaging &amp; Excess hours, Federal, Provincial and BackCheck security clearances,...
From Freeman Company - Fri, 19 May 2017 16:53:25 GMT - View all Mississauga, ON jobs
          Carnaval - O que devo vestir?        

Carnaval no Brasil é mesmo um grande evento. Tem festas de rua, blocos, trio elétrico, festas à fantasia, bailes, desfile de escolas de samba.... e muita diversão espalhada. 

Qual a Origem do Carnaval? 

Essa história é muito mais antiga do que imaginamos. Ela teve origem na Grécia, em meados de 500 a.C (antes de Cristo). E não é originalmente cristã, começou com um culto em agradecimento aos Deuses pela fertilidade da terra. Só em 600 d.C (depois de Cristo) é que se transformou em uma festa cristã com muita festividade popular. O nome surgiu do latim "carne valle" ("adeus à carne"). E a grande influência do Brasil foi o Carnaval Francês do século XIX, onde haviam desfiles e fantasias deslumbrantes. Sem esquecer do Carnaval de Veneza com suas famosas máscaras.  

Hoje o Carnaval do Rio de Janeiro é considerado o maior do mundo e Recife tem o maior bloco de rua. Nós brasileiros não somos fracos, não é mesmo? 


Chega de historinha e vamos ao que interessa. 


O que devo vestir no Carnaval? Roupas ou FantasiasChique ou Casual?


Qual o look ideal para festejar essa data tão representativa em nosso país? Uma coisa é certa, CONFORTO é a palavra chave para compor este look. Não importa se é rua, bloco, desfile, clube, praia ou qualquer outro lugar, vá confortável. O importante é dançar e se divertir bastante. Geralmente o estilo é bem casual, mas com um toque de irreverência e fantasia, abuse das cores e esqueça do seu lado nude. E fantasiar-se mesmo, só quando a festa for específica ou para algum desfile. 


Dicas Valiosas: 

1. Sapato - nada de salto alto. Salto fino está fora de contexto e não combina com a festa. O melhor são as rasteirinhas, sapatilhas, tênis, sandálias com salto grosso... deixe o saltão para as rainhas de bateria.



 2. Roupas - se jogue no básico, shorts, saias curtas, vestidinhos leves e macacão (está super na moda neste verão). Para quem vai em blocos carnavalescos não tem muita opção, a camiseta do bloco pede sempre um shortinho ou saia, calça só se for justinha! Básico só no modelito, essa é a data certa para usar CORES VIVAS que remetem muita alegria. Look total #black não rola nesta época do ano!



3. Maquiagem e Acessórios - agora sim, nestes requisitos vocês devem ABUSAR. Com roupas e sapatos confortáveis, basta só dar o glamour com uma maquiagem caprichada e muito brilho. Brincos, colares, pulseiras, anéis, enfeites de cabelo, bandanas... use e abuse dos acessórios... afinal, são eles que te dão "toda a pinta" de um estilo. Você pode optar por uma inspiração hippie chic, anos 80, retrô, rock... só precisa escolher os acessórios certos!



 4. Festa à Fantasia - para os mais requintados e com festinhas mais chiques, minha dica é não sair comprando ou alugando qualquer roupa. Seja criativa, pegue um vestido no seu armário que você adora e só mude o visual (cabelo e maquiagem), use acessórios diferentes para puxar mais o lado fantasia (brincos com penas, maxi colares, pulseiras e anéis em formatos de animais....) vasculhe o armário.. tenho certeza que tem uns acessórios super diferentes lá!


          HELP WANTED: Graphic Designer Intern Part-Time        
GRAPHIC DESIGNER INTERN WANTED AT MIDTOWN COMICS’ WAREHOUSE IN NEW HYDE PARK, LONG ISLAND!  We are seeking for a Part-Time Graphic Designer Intern that can create visual concepts, to communicate ideas that inspire, inform, or captivate consumers, in addition to developing the overall layout and production design for advertisements, newsletters, signs, and corporate reports. This exciting [...]
          Blog Post: Rooted In Shallow Soil        

Gamers were dumbfounded when PopCap announced it was transplanting the Plants vs. Zombies series from the backyard to the battlefield. To say the multiplayer-shooter spinoff is a huge departure for the casual game developer is an understatement, but the aesthetics and lighthearted tone are a wonderful change of pace for the violence-obsessed genre. Dig beneath the surface, though, and you find some fundamental flaws that hold back this family-friendly shooter.[Excerpt]

PopCap is known for making highly polished games that virtually anyone can pick up and play. Unfortunately, that equation only rings half true for Garden Warfare. The developer's simplified approach to the genre does away with basic concepts like sprinting, melee attacks, and limited ammo, making it easy for anyone to get into the swing of battle. However, the gameplay is uncharacteristically buggy; players get hung up on other characters and geometry, corpses twitch on the ground, and even the slightest bit of network lag renders some abilities (like the all-star zombie's dash attack) ineffective. A variety of classes and unlockable characters add some nuance to the simple fun, but PopCap's limited mode offerings hamstring replayability.

Garden Warfare only features two main competitive modes: Team Vanquish and Gardens & Graveyards. Team Vanquish is your run-of-the-mill team deathmatch. Gardens & Graveyards tasks zombies with assaulting a series of consecutive capture points in a map, similar to Battlefield's rush mode. A classic variant of each mode disables upgrades and unlockable characters (making them less interesting), and the beginner mode gives you more health the more you die, but you're still playing one of two basic formulas.

Gardens & Graveyards is clearly the main attraction. Maps have unique themes, and capture points are built around interesting locations that facilitate large-scale confrontations. Every map features an interesting final objective, such as sneaking five zombies into Crazy Dave's mansion or destroying the roots of a giant sunflower growing inside of a lighthouse. Gardens & Graveyards provides hours of fun, but eventually you get tired of assaulting or defending the same points on the same handful of maps, and Team Vanquish does little to alleviate the boredom.

Garden Warfare's co-op offerings are equally uninspired. Garden Ops is a four-player horde mode, which tasks players with defending a garden against ten increasingly difficult waves of zombies. Aside from the occasional zombie boss or special wave, you don't have much to draw you in once you've beaten a few matches. 

Garden Warfare's most interesting twist is how it incorporates the series' tower-defense elements into matches. Players can spawn zombies or plants in designated locations on the map, which then attack opponents autonomously. Unfortunately, these characters are treated as consumable items that players must purchase before matches using Garden Warfare's microtransaction-ready economy.

The vast majority of Garden Warfare's content is locked behind its PvZ Coin currency. Support plants and zombies, customization items, weapon upgrades, and even new class characters are bought with the coins you earn from matches. However, can't just buy what you want; instead you must purchase blind card packs of varying prices. Consumable card packs give you a handful of zombies and plants to summon during matches, while more expensive packs provide random upgrades or character stickers – though you have to collect all of the stickers for a character before you can actually play as them. Like any good pusher, EA gives you a couple packs for free, but after that the grinding for coins begins.

This faux free-to-play approach undermines Garden Warfare's promising tower-defense elements. Each plant or zombie you spawn feels like a waste of money; regardless of how helpful they may be on the battlefield, buying consumable packs just holds you back from the larger goal of unlocking more playable characters, which is the only motivator to continue playing after you've learned the maps inside and out.

Those extra playable characters are worth unlocking. Although they have the same class abilities, each character has its own unique twist on gameplay. For instance, the marine-biologist zombie features a higher rate of fire than the regular scientist zombie, and the fire sunflower deals extra elemental damage. Unfortunately, characters take an exorbitant amount of time to unlock, and because card packs are random, you can't just unlock upgrades or characters for the class you're interested in.


Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the economy is that there's no option to purchase coins with real money, but EA says it may institute such an option in the future. Frankly, I can't imagine a world where that change doesn't happen, but it doesn't really matter. The progression system and tower-defense elements are already broken to accommodate the possibility. Garden Warfare is designed like a free-to-play game, despite the $30 price tag.

PopCap's approach to class progression also plays out for the worse. Instead of gaining experience points, you level up classes by completing a series of challenges. Things start out easy – deploy five potato mines, kill three plants with rockets – but more specific challenges distract players from what's best for the match and make leveling up a pain. Killing two scientist zombies with a sun beam or shooting down three garlic drones seems easy enough, but what if the other team isn't using those characters? I went entire matches making zero progress with characters simply because the right elements weren't on the battlefield. Some challenges are downright devious; spawning five conehead zombies first requires you to buy consumable card packs until you randomly receive enough of them to complete the challenge. Luckily, you unlock all of the abilities for a class in the first few levels anyway, so you can abandon the progression scheme after that.

Before the tedium set in, I had fun with Garden Warfare. Spending a few hours with the accessible combat and charming world was entertaining, but the random card packs and achievement-style leveling system killed my desire to keep playing. Garden Warfare's simplified gameplay and limited map selection can only entertain for so long – without rewarding progression, there's no carrot (or brain) at the end of the stick.

The Xbox 360 Difference
While both the Xbox One and Xbox 360 versions have their share of problems, the last-gen incarnation fares considerably worse. While testing the 360 version, I ran into increased gameplay bugs, load times, pop-up, and embarrassingly blurry visuals as the game struggled to stream in the high-resolution textures. These shortcomings don’t ruin the experience, but they are significant enough to earn the Xbox 360 entry a lower score than the Xbox One version. 

          why we care about what we wear        
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Why Can't a Smart Woman Love Fashion?
I had learned a lesson about Western culture: Women who wanted to be taken seriously were supposed to substantiate their seriousness with a studied indifference to appearance. For serious women writers in particular, it was better not to dress well at all, and if you did, then it was best to pretend that you had not put much thought into it. If you spoke of fashion, it had to be either with apology or with the slightest of sneers. The further your choices were from the mainstream, the better. The only circumstance under which caring about clothes was acceptable was when making a statement, creating an image of some sort to be edgy, eclectic, counterculture. It could not merely be about taking pleasure in clothes. ... I dress now thinking of what I like, what I think fits and flatters, what puts me in a good mood. I feel again myself—an idea that is no less true for being a bit hackneyed. I like to think of this, a little fancifully, as going back to my roots. I grew up, after all, in a world in which a woman's seriousness was not incompatible with an interest in appearance; if anything, an interest in appearance was expected of women who wanted to be taken seriously.
*Pacific Standard - What to Wear? *Avidly/LA Review of Books - Lady Professor Conference Fashions *Racialicious - Haute Couture In The 'Ivory Tower': "The spread presumes that when a professor walks into a classroom she is a blank slate, a model to be adorned in fine clothing and given an identity. The reality is that scholars of color, women, and other groups whose bodies are read as non-normative have never been able to check their race, gender, religion, or sexual orientation at the door. As soon as we walk onto campus, our bodies are read in a certain (often troubling) manner by our students, our colleagues, and school administrators. Our professionalism and our intellectual competence are largely judged by how we style ourselves. Therefore, we are highly aware of how we adorn our bodies. And, like our foremothers and forefathers who innovated with American "street fashions," we, too, use our fashion sense to define ourselves, our professionalism, and our research and teaching agendas on our own terms." Tamara Shayne Kagel: The Feminist's Dilemma: Why We Can't Stop Caring About How We Look
I find myself constantly trapped in a world where I desperately want to be judged by my work but at the same time, I want other people to think I'm pretty. I'm permanently berating myself for caring about my appearance, because I am aware on a mental level that to care at all is to be superficial. But at the same time, I find myself squirming uncomfortably when I run into someone at the supermarket when I'm a sweaty, disheveled mess... This cognitive dissonance is a state that most modern women inhabit all the time, but refuse to acknowledge. Instead, we talk and write and judge like we live in a post-superficial world. [...] It's a rare breed of woman who truly doesn't care about her appearance, and there are some women who only care about their appearance. But most of us fall in the middle -- wanting to be appreciated and loved and valued for more than how we look, but unable to completely expunge all interest in our outward image. If this is where most of us live, shouldn't we be asking for acceptance to be in this middle space?... Isn't it normal to hope that the picture of you is not taken from a horrible angle the moment you wake up and at the same time be concerned with society's obsession about the ubiquitous worship of an unattainable ideal of the female form?
Sociological Images - The Balancing Act of Being Female; Or, Why We Have So Many Clothes (previously): "And, of course, all women are going to get it wrong sometimes because the boundaries are moving targets and in the eye of the beholder. What's cheeky in one setting or to one person is flirty in or to another. So women constantly risk getting it wrong, or getting it wrong to someone. So the consequences are always floating out there, worrying us, and sending us to the mall." *This Kind Choice - I Am Woman, Watch Me Shop? Part 1 – The Ever Changing Clothes *Part 2 – Appearance as Identity, A Double-Edged Sword *The Nation - For Women's Office Wear, Who's Making the Rules? *The Atlantic - No, It's Not Sexist to Describe Women Politicians' Clothes *Feministing - Learning to dress "professionally" in a white man's world Already Pretty: Why Caring About Your Appearance Is Valuable to Self-Care
In order to move through most peopled societies, we are required to wear clothing. Nudist colonies aside, we've all got to get dressed every day if we want to leave our homes for any reason... And in my opinion, since we've got to get dressed anyway, we might as well do it expressively and in ways that feel good. I've said it before, I'll say it again: Dress, grooming, and overall appearance constitute the first levels of information about ourselves that we offer to the observing world. They may not be the most important, but they are the first, which makes them worthy of effort and attention. ...I've already acknowledged that how you look isn't the most important thing about you... But thinking of your body as a brain-and-personality-holder strikes me as short-sighted. Consider this: Someone who focuses virtually all attention, care, and love on their body is generally considered to be vain. So why would focusing virtually all attention on your intellect, creativity, and personality be any less imbalanced? You're not a zombie – a body that moves through life without a functioning brain. But you're also not a brain in a jar – thinking and creating in the abstract alone. You have a body. As long as you are alive you will have a body. In fact, without your body, your intellect and creativity and personality wouldn't exist. Pitting your mind against your body is like cooking up a personal civil war.
Bridgette Raes - Are You a Devaluist and Don't Even Know It? (Guest Post): "Clothing is often seen as a superficial shell, and fashion a frivolous, flighty thing that gets in the way of the serious stuff. The real stuff. But I don't believe that. I don't believe we can neatly divorce the way we look from the way we live. I believe the way we look is a reflection of the way we live." Dress A Day - You Don't Have to Be Pretty: "You don't owe prettiness to anyone. Not to your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-workers, especially not to random men on the street. You don't owe it to your mother, you don't owe it to your children, you don't owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked "female". I'm not saying that you SHOULDN'T be pretty if you want to. (You don't owe UN-prettiness to feminism, in other words.)" (responses to "The Princess Effect", previously on MeFi) *Washington Post - Being informed and fashionable is natural for women *Flavorwire - The Catch-22 of Women's Magazines *Kat Stoeffel - Finally, 'Serious' Women Are Standing Up for Fashion Magazines: "As long as we all need to get dressed each morning, clothing will be a communication tool... Men and women both choose how they deploy the language of fashion; but women, deprived of the suit-as-uniform, still face unique challenges in fashion fluency... Women's magazines — especially when they work with women like Clinton, Abramson, and Mastromonaco — offer other women a map for navigating style and other sexist minefields without compromising their intellectual integrity. For that, we should celebrate them. And if we want to level the playing field, we should start by posing the same "frivolous" questions of men." *Ms. Magazine - If the Clothes Fit: A Feminist Takes on Fashion: "If feminists ignore fashion, we are ceding our power to influence it. Fortunately, history has shown that feminists can, instead, harness fashion and use it for our own political purposes." *GirltalkHQ - Fashion Vs Feminism: Can You Like Both? We Break It Down *Greta Christina - Fashion is a Feminist Issue: "In fact, fashion and style are so much like a language, I'm always a bit baffled when people say things like, "I want to be judged on who I am, not on the clothes I wear." It's a bit like saying, "I want to be judged on who I am, not on the words that come out of my mouth." ...Fashion is a form of expression. A language of sorts. An art form, even. It's also one of the very few art forms/ languages/ forms of expression in which women have more freedom than men... And I don't think it's an accident that it's typically seen as shallow, trivial, and vain." Medium (Backlash Book Club) - And Another Question: What Ever Happened to Pantsuits?: "Faludi writes about fashion as if women were totally subservient to its dictates (and as if its dictates were unified), but, of course, most women—precisely because they are judged so much by their appearance—know how to manipulate, subvert, and use clothes. To some extent, they're tools, like hammers." The New Inquiry, Vol. 20 - Sept. 2013, "Off Brand" issue (link opens PDF file) "We are told we must be clothed, and then that our clothes are not good enough.That fashion is predicated on this cruelty—making luxury of necessity, and necessity of a luxury—makes it as morally questionable as the behavior of foodies. Fine: We accept this. But we are also told that we must be bodies and that our bodies are not good enough, and fashion (at least for those who fit into it) can provide an escape from the disappointment of our flesh. Some of us feel we were born into the wrong body; for that, fashion is the first corrective. For others, fashion is the first rebellion... In selecting appearances, we want not only to be seen but sometimes to be heard before we speak. Fashion can be a weapon of the silenced, even when it is seized and wielded by those who have always talked loudest." *Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa - Fashion for Feminists: How fashion and dress shape women's identities *Migrant Woman Magazine - Asalet Tulaz: I like being the colour of feminism *Buzzfeed - How Iran's Young Women Are Using Fashion To Influence Politics *Minh-Ha T. Pham - Why Fashion Should Stop Trying to be Diverse *À l'allure garçonnière - Fashion Blogging Culture: Demanding Substance Over Style *Tanisha C. Ford - You Betta Werk!: Professors Talk Style Politics: "Below are excerpts from some of the interviews I conducted with women professors of color. Together, these interviews illustrate that studies on fashion and adornment politics offer a powerful lens through which we can explore other important issues such as women's rights, motherhood and relationship status, pleasure and sexuality, and the politics of "respectability."" Alison Bancroft - How Fashion is Queer: "The feminine is as much of a minority interest in culture as it is anywhere else in life. The only exception to this is fashion. This is why fashion is a radical creative space where heterosexual gender binaries are irrelevant and queer is the default setting, and it is also why fashion is routinely denigrated and dismissed." Final Fashion - so, is fashion feminist?: "Why is the visual aspect of fashion so inextricably linked to feminism, and why is it worth considering how to dress like a feminist?" Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie previously on MeFi: the danger of a single story
          Cómo dejar de morder uñas – ayuda de resolución de año nuevo        

Let's start con clavo penetrante es muy insalubre, y es bruto. Es necesario aprender a dejar de morder uñas. Sus uñas llevan dos veces mÌ as bacterias y gérmenes como el alcance de su mano.  Mayoría de los teclados y mandos a distancia tenga más gérmenes y cruda de ellos que su asiento de inodoro. Visualizar utiliza el teclado y brazos cruzados comenzó a masticar un clavo, acaba de poner todas las clases de icky mierda en la boca. ¡Basta!

Onychophagia es el término clínico para uñas que morder. Además de ser un real apagar el sexo opuesto, puede ser una causa para los jefes y los empleadores potenciales cree que tienen baja autoestima. Si eso no es suficiente, tienes que saber a sus transferencias de uñas desastre millones de bacterias, hongos y otros microorganismos dentro de la boca. MONSTRUO!

Además de ser antihigiénico, morder uñas contribuye al uso y desgaste de sus dientes, piel de causas y las infecciones de la cutícula y ups las probabilidades se enfermará de mayor exposición a los gérmenes. Ya sabe usted que la pura fuerza de voluntad no es suficiente para lograr que deje el clavo mordiendo ahora. Necesita ayuda más que eso. Si deseas estos productos y técnicas para ayudar a que dejar de morder uñas.


Control-It! 3 es una crema totalmente natural inodoro que se aplica a las uñas. Su sabor amargo le recuerda que debe dejar de poner los dedos en la boca.


Es necesario tener una Lima de uñas y la cutícula recortador cerca de usted todo el tiempo.  Además, necesita apartar un tiempo de preparación para manicura y pulir las uñas. Incluso chicos puede utilizar un fortalecedor de uñas para cortar ayuda mantener salud de uñas.


Mi libro, cómo dejar de uñas morder, ofrece excelentes técnicas para ayudarle a reconocer su clavo mordiendo patrones y activa. También dará ejercicios que usted puede usar para tomar tu mente fuera el fuerte impulso de morder las uñas.


Además de aburrimiento, estrés es el factor más evidente en fomentar actividad penetrante de uñas. Cuando sienta ansiedad, frustración o miedo, usted puede estar seguro desencadenantes para iniciar una sesión de Rally son en la gama completa. Mi libro witll darte algunas sugerencias de relajación. Yoga y el hipnotismo pueden ayudarle también.


Algunas personas han tenido éxito usando una banda elástica en la muñeca. Que lo encajen inteligentemente cuando se capturan en una sesión de uñas penetrante. Debe ser doloroso mensaje a tu cerebro. Tienes que dar seguimiento a alguna afirmación positiva acerca de cómo dejar de morder uñas. La combinación puede ser poderosa, especialmente si usted lo contrario está motivados para dejar de fumar.


Las probabilidades son grandes que se recaída, probablemente más de una vez, antes que gana suficiente experiencia y moxie dejar de uñas que morder para bien. Así que no seas demasiado en ti mismo cuando suceda. Sobre todo, no conseguir desalentado y dejar de fumar. No ser víctimas de este mal hábito. Usted puede aprender cómo dejar de morderse las uñas si se determinan y mantener después de él.

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          Dejar de morder uñas con estas siete maneras        

Recortar las uñas - si se muerden las uñas, feo y masticado, probablemente estás desmotivado para pasar tiempo en la preparación de los. Esto es totalmente equivocado. Siempre es importante aprender manicure adecuado y tratamiento para las uñas de la preparación. Es imprescindible en las primeras etapas. Haciendo esto regularmente le ayuda a empezar a pensar sobre las uñas de una manera positiva. Tener la actitud correcta ayuda a fortalecer su determinación para dejar de fumar y no volver. Obtener las herramientas adecuadas para facilitar el trabajo. Aquí hay un enlace para uñas cuidado herramienta que se puede utilizar.

Mantenga las manos ocupadas - tiempo de inactividad es zona de juegos del diablo, por lo que el refrán. Bien, lo mismo vale para uñas que morder. Si usted está ocupado, usted es menos propensos a casualmente morderse las uñas. Si se muerde mientras mira la televisión, o en algún otro momento relajado, asegúrese de que tener algo que puede mantener para mantener las manos ocupadas. Rosarios, bolas de goma squeeze, exer-grips, et cetera. Un buen ejemplo y recomienda maravilloso producto es la bola de masaje de la mano de ZON. O, usted puede tratar de tejer o recoger algunos rosarios como éstos en esta hermosa pulsera de abalorios redondo de Lapis.

Trabajo en su fuerza de voluntad - se necesita más energía para dejar de fumar para siempre, pero sin no tiene ninguna posibilidad de salir en primer lugar. Trabajar en dejar algo más, o cambiar de otro aspecto de su vida. Determinar a hacer algo rutinario y luego hacerlo rutinariamente. Algo que nunca antes hecho. Como dar un paseo para el almuerzo. Reemplace el postre con un pedazo de fruta. Parece que están haciendo las cosas más difíciles de asumir algo más. Lo que hace es ejercer su poder de voluntad. La mayor confianza que tiene en el logro de una cosa le ayudará con la otra, y Obtén un doble beneficio de mejoramiento personal en general.

Entienda su disparador - necesita conocer la psicología y la fisiología de sus penetrantes rituales. Son mucho más complejos de lo que imaginas. Gran parte de lo que lleva a morderse las uñas se realiza en un nivel casi inconsciente. Comience a entender cuáles son los rituales para que pueda identificarlos y desarrollar medios alternativos para desviar y redirigir su ritual a algo no destructivas para las uñas.

Practicar sus técnicas de evitación - evitación técnicas son más elásticos, mantras o amarga polaco. Estos implican la programación neura-lingüística, que se describe en la Wikipedia como: Programación Neuro-Lingüística (PNL) es una aproximación a la psicoterapia y cambio organizacional basado en "un modelo de comunicación interpersonal principalmente preocupado por la relación entre éxito patrones de comportamiento y las experiencias subjetivas (especialmente los patrones de pensamiento) que les" y "un sistema de terapia alternativa en base a esto que busca educar a la gente en autoconocimiento y comunicación efectivay para cambiar sus patrones de comportamiento mental y emocional.

Visualizar sus uñas crecidas – personas exitosas usan técnicas de visualización para ayudarles a formar su cuerpo y mente en qué hacer y cómo hacer las cosas de una determinada manera para que obtener los mejores resultados. Un esquiador puede imaginar cada paso en la ladera, un golfista cada agujero y tiro en un curso, un vendedor que presenta un producto, pidiendo a los negocios y cerrar la venta. Su trabajo es a visualizar su gran apariencia clavos y el sentimiento de orgullo de que tienes cuando usas las manos delante gente en vez de conscientemente y a veces torpe tratando de evitar dejar que otros ven el producto de su clavo mordiendo el hábito.

Dieta y ejercicio - obtener suficiente calcio es indispensable ayudar a para uñas pinzas cortantes cuyas uñas son frágiles y con cutículas desiguales masticadas. Calcio se recomienda para personas que hacen dieta así. Muchos médicos recomiendan una ingesta diaria de 1200 mg. Además de mejorar su salud de la uña, usted consigue la ventaja del lado de ayudar a fortalecer sus huesos.  Algunas hierbas que incluyen sílice en ellos son oatstraw y cola de caballo y ortiga. El sílice es una sustancia que se muestra para fortalecer las uñas. Sus uñas están constituidas por queratina. Asegúrese de que están recibiendo cantidades adecuadas de aminoácidos, vitamina C, vitamina E y biotina en combinación. Crestas en las uñas pueden ser eliminados o reducidos por el uso regular de vitamina B. Zinc deficiencia puede provocar manchas blancas en el clavo. Es común en muchas mujeres a ver una caída en sus niveles de cinc justo antes de un período menstrual. El ejercicio es beneficioso en su propio mérito. El ejercicio regular, como se mencionó en la sección sobre fuerza de voluntad, conduce a un mayor sentido de su bienestar y su salud en general. Mejor se sienta, más probable ser verdaderamente decididos a dejar de morder uñas.

Si usted quiere tener una idea del contenido en How to Stop uñas morder puede ayudarle a conquistar su hábito aventajaban, haga clic aquí para descargar el capítulo dos gratis!

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          Dejar de morder hábitos – uso de fuerza de voluntad, productos de uñas        

Control-It! Tarro 3 ~ 21 día uña penetrante tratamiento OMEGA3 Extra Strength, este médico recomienda crema cura las cutículas, a diferencia de polaco que cutículas secas, índice de éxito más fuerte disponible' >Stop Nail Biting Treatmentsin embargo, para aprender cómo dejar de morder uñas nunca es fácil para quienes han tenido una permanente aflicción a este hábito más indeseado. Podría decirse que es uno de los hábitos más difíciles de romper. Hay tantas cosas que van a morder uñas. No es un simple proceso de masticar una uña o puling en una cutícula.

Morder uñas implica un complicado proceso que es mayoría en un estado subconsciente de la mente. No pensamos en ello cuando se cepille el pelo de la frente, o rayar un leve picor en algún lugar, hacerlo solo sin dar ningún pensamiento completo a la acción. Lo mismo vale para el proceso implicado de hacer inspecciones visuales y táctiles uñas pinzas cortantes.

Muchas pinzas cortantes de uñas no se mira las uñas conscientemente para admirarlas, o busque potencial arreglarse las necesidades que se hará más tarde en privado. Hacen esto con ningún deseo de quitar un uñero o corregir una uña irregular, que es lo que sucede cuando un morderse las uñas mira o siente su clavo. Es la preparación que estimula el cerebro en una acción deseosa.

Creo que hay algún tipo de reacción química en el cerebro. No a diferencia de anticipar algo agradable sobre a suceder. Los adictos son conocidos a experimentar síntomas pre-alta, los amantes son conocidos por tener un pulso acelerado y heightenend sentimientos de sensualidad antes de cualquier actividad física lleva a cabo.

Usted puede poner cigarrillos y alcohol fuera de la vista, usted puede permanecer lejos de la mayoría de otras tentaciones mientras construyes tu fuerza de voluntad, pero los dedos están siempre contigo. Como tal, es más difícil hacer que cualquier morderse las uñas no podría imaginar.

Para detener el clavo mordiendo, necesita entrenarnos para reconocer sus hábitos penetrantes y entonces usted necesita para entrenar a utilizar patrones de comportamiento alternativo para que pueda superar los impulsos poderosos para recortar las uñas y cutículas por morder y tirar en lugar de utilizar instrumentos adecuados en privado en un salón de manicura. Eso es lo que yo enseño en mi libro, cómo dejar de uñas morder

Lo primero que comienzas con es el deseo. Tienes que tener un plan y una caída en el nuevo plan también.  Todo lo que tienes en mi libro. Además, necesita el clavo adecuado aseo herramientas para ayudarle. Para comenzar con, podría necesitas ayuda de un producto como Control-It! Tarro 3 ~ día 21 uña morder tratamiento OMEGA3 Extra fuerte. Este médico recomienda crema cura las cutículas, a diferencia de polaco cutículas secas, índice de éxito más fuerte disponible.

También necesita algunos esmalte endurecedor, incluso los chicos. Algunos argumentan que se seca las uñas y podría hacerlo. Sostienen tener uñas más fuertes, especialmente en las puntas es más importante que la humedad en ir temprano. Si sigues de chipping sus uñas recién crecientes, evitas que quieren estar presentes después de la rotura, desgarro, jag o lo que tenga que activará una secuencia penetrante.

Quimica Alemana Nail Hardener es una opción popular y asequible. Y chicos, se puede manchar el polaco como se seca a mate lo un poco. Si usted está preocupado por su vanidad o masculinidad, pensar sobre cómo mierda sus uñas miren ahora. Se trata de una compensación menor durante unas semanas obtener sus uñas en forma y bajar sus mordaces repeticiones en el proceso.

Mínimamente las herramientas que usted necesita son tijeras, alicates y un buen archivo. Recomiendo Tweezerman apriete de acero inoxidable y Snip: cutícula y padrastro Snipper es fácil de llevar en el bolsillo, cartera o maletín. Utilizarlo con cuidado y limpio recortar tus cutículas cuando nota algo no lisa. No ser agresivo o sobre snip y causa llagas o más daño.

Para los clippers, casi cualquier hará. Si quieres algo más de una mejor calidad que encuentran en la farmacia, prueba el Tweezerman plegable cortauñas. He encontrado la marca Tweezerman ofrecer productos de alta calidad y gran valor. Es decir por qué también me gusta el Tweezerman cerámica plegable Pocket archivo. Es un poco voluminoso como su único inconveniente. Una alternativa es el Kit de uñas de los dos hombres la pieza en estuche de cuero negro. Contiene un archivo y clipper en un caso de Niza.

Luego se comprometen a utilizar herramientas como estas para ayudarle a conquistar el hábito. Para más ayuda, conseguir mi libro para que puedas empezar a aprender técnicas que puede utilizar en cualquier lugar en cualquier situación para ayudar a frustrar clavo mordiendo las tentaciones. Esto es especialmente útiles semanas o meses más tarde cuando las uñas se cultivan, la guardia está abajo, y ocurre un hecho desencadenante.

Etiquetado como: trastornos de ansiedad, modificación del cuerpo, mordiendo la uña, hábitos, uñero, comportamiento humano, manicura, uñas, uñas pinzas cortantes, clavo mordiendo, hábito penetrante de uñas, productos, dejar de morder el clavo, clavo mordiendo recursos, fuerza de voluntad de detener

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          3D home interior        
Singapore 3D Freelancer in 3D Rendering and 3D Visualization Service | Specialize in creating stunning 3d interior rendering.
          3D Interior Rendering        
Singapore 3D Freelancer in 3D Rendering and 3D Visualization Service | Specialize in creating stunning 3d interior rendering.
          Estilização, herança, especificidade são importantes        
Praticamente já deixamos nosso blog com um visual mais apurado e profissional com os tutoriais anteriores. Agora vamos dar estilos específicos aos elementes internos.
Esses elementos XHTML são: Títulos de widgets, data, títulos de post, etc.

Vamos começar de onde paramos:

No código CSS vá até o item /* Headings. É daqui que vamos começar e estilizar os títulos dos widgets

h2 {
  margin:1.5em 0 .75em;
  line-height: 1.4em;
 font-family: Georgia;
 font-weight : bold;

 Este trecho defini praticamente todos os títulos widgets, onde definimos as margens de todos os lados, o tamanho da linha, a fonte a ser usada, transformamos os texto em maiúsculas, definimos a cor, alinhamento do texto, em negrito e tamanho da fonte.
Uma coisa que todos devem prestar atenção é sobre herança dos elementos, por exemplo:
Eu defini no body que a fonte é Georgia, então h2 já herdou esta fonte e não preciso declara-la neste elemento, certo? Errado, pois declarei na sidebar que queria uma fonte Tahoma, logo h2 da sidebar herdará está fonte, então por isso preciso declarar a fonte Georgia novamente, pois é a que quero nos títulos.
Acho que essa parte ficou claro. Você deve ajustar este código para seus propósitos, mas sempre lembrando do que já declarou anteriormente. As vezes quebramos a cabeça, pois uma estilização não ocorre como queremos e isso pode ser efeito da Herança ou da especificidade do código. Ainda criarei um tutorial sobre esses dois assuntos que são de grande importância na CSS.

A data nos Blogs são também elementos h2 e aqui podemos ver o efeito da herança. Como são h2 iram receber toda herança do código acima, mesmo sendo uma classe distinta, então por isso precisamos estiliza-la:
h2.date-header {
  margin : 0 0 10px;
font-size : 12px;
font-weight : normal;
text-align : center;
color : #999;
Definimos uma margem embaixo para dar um espaço, tamanho da fonte, fonte normal, texto alinhado no centro e cor. Note que não declarei a fonte aqui, pois está herdando de h2.

Bom, este tutorial abrange mais 2 elementos de nosso tutorial para criar templates para blog blogspot, que demos inicio como o:
Eles devem ser lidos novamente para que as Heranças sejam notadas e aprendidas. Nosso tutorial é longo e tem muito mais para ser mostrado, mas garanto que se prestarem atenção neles, logo não terão dificuldades de criar templates profissionais.

Por hoje fico por aqui!

Subscreva o CSS-Desvendado completo!
Subscreva CSS - Desvendado por Email
          Review Filem Dunkirk: Perang Epik Terbaik Arahan Nolan!        
Review Filem Dunkirk: Epik Perang Dunia Kedua Terbaik |Okay hari ni aku berkesempatan bersama rakan-rakan untuk tonton filem berjudul Dunkirk di GSC Sunway Carnival. Mana tidaknya aku memang beriya-iya ingin tahu jalan penceritaan filem bergenre perang ini dari karya pengarah hebat Hollywood, Christopher Nolan. Anda tahu tak, kebanyakan filem Christopher Nolan memerlukan penghayatan yang tinggi sepertimana filem Interstellar, Inception dan The Dark Knight. Dengan kali ini genre agak berbeza, rasanya filem Dunkirk ini perlu dihayati setiap detik penceritaan kerana ia berkait rapat kisah sebenar tentang sejarah Perang Dunia Kedua antara Tentera Bersatu vs Nazi Jerman. Menarik ke filem perang ni? Baca selanjutnya....

Review Filem Dunkirk: Epik Perang Dunia Kedua Terbaik

Sinopsis Filem Dunkirk 2017

Sebelum tu biarlah aku mukadimah sedikit tentang sinopsis filem Dunkirk. Mesti anda ingin tahu tentang sejarah Perang Dunia Ke-2 ini dahulu? Filem Dunkirk mengisahkan peperangan membabitkan antara Pasukan Tentera Berikat dengan Tentera Nazi Jerman, dimana tentera Berikat telah dihentam teruk oleh tentera Nazi sehinggalah mereka terpaksa berundur ke sebuah tempat yang dikenali sebagai Dunkirk.

Review Filem Dunkirk: Perang Epik Terbaik Arahan Nolan!

Bagi mengelakkan kemusnahan besar terjadi, pihak Tentera Berikat telah merancang satu operasi besar-besaran untuk menyelamatkan 400,000 tentera yang terperangkap di tempat itu dari ditawan oleh tentera Nazi. Adakah tentera-tentera British, Perancis, Belanda dan termasuklah sekutunya berjaya diselamatkan daripada dibunuh oleh tentera Nazi?

Review Filem Dunkirk

Bagi aku pertama kali menonton filem perang sebegini agak janggal kerana plot penceritaan dari Christopher Nolan memaparkan 3 sisi 'views' yang berbeza dalam filem Dunkirk ini, dimana di darat (jeti), udara dan laut. Sebenarnya, ketiga-tiga pandangan ini berkait rapat apa yang telah terjadi dalam pertempuran di Dunkirk. Jika dilihat babak di atas udara mengisahkan seorang pilot bernama Furrier lakonan Tom Hardy yang berjuang bermati-matian untuk menyelamatkan tentera Bersekutu dari dibedil bom pesawat pengebom sehinggalah kehabisan minyak jet tempurnya.

Review Filem Dunkirk: Epik Perang Dunia Kedua Terbaik Arahan Nolan!
Babak Tom Hardy di Dalam Jet Spitfire 

Di lautan, mengisahkan tentang pengemudi kapal layar yang sanggup bergadai nyawa untuk ke tempat pertempuran bernama Dunkirk, dimana seorang ayah bersama anaknya berjaya menyelamatkan seberapa ramai tentera Berikat dari serangan tentera Nazi. Dari pandangan darat pula lebih ke arah pengisahan di jeti, menunjukkan jumlah besar tentera Berikat yang menanti ketibaan kapal untuk menyelamatkan diri mereka dari peperangan ini.

Review Filem Dunkirk: Epik Perang Dunia Kedua Terbaik Arahan Nolan!
Sekumpulan Tentera di Jeti 

Dari segi babak aksi agak menarik kerana filem Dunkirk tidak memerlukan banyak peluru , letupan dan darah untuk menghasilkan filem ini. Ia lebih menggambarkan suasana tegang dikalangan tentera yang ingin melarikan diri daripada dibedil bom dari pesawat. Bagi aku babak suspen dan thrill filem ini sangat menjadi, tambahan pulak dengan soundtracks sangat mantap untuk menggambarkan suasana suspens. Sekali sekala terkejut jugak aku kerana soundtrack letupan sangat tepat dan memang terbaiklah. Anda boleh lihat sendiri tentera yang terdesak untuk melarikan diri dan menyelamatkan tentera yang terperangkap.

Dari segi karakter dan lakonan aktor, Nolan tidak memerlukan pelakon yang popular atau rupa yang kacak untuk melakonkan filem ini. Tetapi bakat yang ada setiap pelakon tersebut sepanjang filem ini ternyata berjaya membawakan karakter mereka begitu baik sekali. Jika dilihat filem ini dialog agak kurang sedikit berbanding filem-filem lain karya Nolan, anda boleh lihat lakonan Tom Hardy sebagai pilot jet pejuang yang kurang berdialog dan tidak menunjukkan muka sepanjang filem ini sehingga lah babak akhir baru menampilkan wajahnya, tetapi prestasi lakonannya sama seperti karakter Bane dalam trilogi Dark Knight.

Selain itu, lakonan Fionn Whitehead sebagai Tommy, tentera muda British dianggap berjaya kerana setiap babak yang ditampilkan oleh beliau sangat menjadi walaupun ini filem pertama kalinya. Beliau menampilkan riak wajah yang begitu terdesak menyelamatkan diri sehinggalah beliau berjaya pulang dengan selamat bersama-sama rakan tentera yang lain.

Review Filem Dunkirk: Epik Perang Dunia Kedua Terbaik Arahan Nolan!
Fionn Whitehead 

Secara keseluruhan yang boleh aku simpulkan filem ini harus dipuji dan dianggap salah satu filem yang perfect dari segi karakter pelakon, plot penceritaan, aksi, thrill dan kesan visual termasuklah soundtrack sudah cukup memuaskan hati penonton. Bagi pendapat aku filem ini bukannya semata-mata aksi suasana perang tetapi kepada menyelami perasaan tentera-tentera yang begitu terdesak melarikan diri.

>> Baca juga : Review Filem War For Planet Of The Apes

Rating Filem Dunkirk : 8/10
          Practica Diseño Grafico/Audiovisual Nestlé TENO - Nestle - Teno, Maule        
Contar con seguro por parte de tu casa de estudios. Te invitamos a formar parte de Nestlé....
De Nestle - Fri, 07 Jul 2017 22:55:00 GMT - Ver todos: empleos en Teno, Maule
          ALIH WAHANA        

Transformasi dari karya sastra ke bentuk film dikenal dengan istilah ekranisasi. Istilah ini berasal dari bahasa Prancis, écran yang berarti layar. Selain ekranisasi yang menyatakan proses transformasi dari karya sastra ke film ada pula istilah lain, yaitu filmisasi.
Ekranisasi adalah pelayarputihan atau pemindahan sebuah novel ke dalam film. Eneste menyebutkan bahwa ekranisasi adalah suatu proses pelayarputihan atau pemindahan atau pengangkatan sebuah novel ke dalam film. Eneste juga menyebutkan bahwa pemindahan dari novel ke layar putih mau tidak mau mengakibatkan timbulnya berbagai perubahan. Oleh karena itu, ekranisasi juga bisa disebut sebagai proses perubahan bisa mengalami penciutan, penambahan (perluasan), dan perubahan dengan sejumlah variasi.
Pada Kuliah wawasan ilmu sosial dan budaya, Sapardi Djoko Damono memiliki istilah alih wahana untuk membicarakan transformasi dari satu ke yang lain. Istilah ini hakikatnya memiliki cakupan yang lebih luas dari ekranisasi. Ekranisasai merupakan perubahan ke atau menuju layar putih, sedangkan alih wahana seperti yang dijelaskan Sapardi bisa dari berbagai jenis karya seni ke jenis karya seni lain. Akan tetapi, istilah ini tidak bertentangan dengan makna dan konsep dasar yang dimiliki oleh ekranisasi sebagai proses pengubahan dari satu wahana ke wahana lain.
Sapardi Djoko Damono menjelaskan bahwa alih wahana adalah perubahan dari satu jenis kesenian ke dalam jenis kesenian lain. Alih wahana yang dimaksudkan di sini tentu saja berbeda dengan terjemahan. Terjemahan dan penerjemahan adalah pengalihan karya sastra dari satu bahasa ke bahasa yang lain, sedang alih wahana adalah pengubahan karya sastra atau kesenian menjadi jenis kesenian lain. Sapardi Djoko Damono mencontohkan cerita rekaan diubah menjadi tari, drama, atau film. Bukan hanya itu, alih wahana juga bisa terjadi dari film menjadi novel, atau bahkan puisi yang lahir dari lukisan atau lagu dan sebaliknya. Alih wahana novel ke film misalnya, tokoh, latar, alur, dialog, dan lain-lain harus diubah sedemikian rupa sehingga sesuai dengan keperluan jenis kesenian lain.
Di dalam ekranisasi, pengubahan wahana dari karya sastra ke wahana film, berpengaruh pula pada berubahnya hasil yang bermediumkan bahasa atau kata-kata, ke dalam film yang bermediumkan gambar audiovisual. Jika di dalam novel ilustrasi dan penggambaran atau pelukisan dilakukan dengan menggunakan media bahasa atau kata-kata, dalam film semua itu diwujudkan melalui gambar-gambar bergerak atau audiovisual yang menghadirkan suatu rangkaian peristiwa.
Perbedaan media dua genre karya seni, memiliki karakteristik yang berbeda pula. Bahasa sebagai medium karya sastra memiliki sifat keterbukaan pada imajinasi pengarang. Proses mental lebih banyak terjadi dalam hal ini. Bahasa yang digunakan memungkinkan memberi ruang yang luas bagi pembaca untuk menafsir dan mengimajinasi tiap-tiap yang ditontonnya. Faktor lain yang berpengaruh adalah durasi waktu dalam penikmatan film. Terbatasnya waktu memberikan pengaruh tersendiri dalam proses penerimaan dan pembayangan.
Selain transformasi bentuk, ekranisasi juga merupakan transformasi hasil kerja. Dalam proses penciptaan, novel merupakan kerja atau kreasi individu, sedangkan film merupakan kerja tim atau kelompok. Novel merupakan hasil kerja perseorangan yang melibatkan pengalaman, pemikiran, ide, dan lain-lain. Maka dengan demikian, ekranisasi juga dapat dikatakan sebagai proses perubahan dari sesuatu yang dihasilkan secara individual menjadi sesuatu yang dihasilkan secara bersama-sama atau gotong royong.
Dalam sastra Indonesia, karya yang mengalami bermacam-macam alih wahana, direka ulang oleh pengarang lain dengan perubahan sudut pandang, diposisikan sebagai sebuah legenda atau cerita rakyat, dipentaskan berulang-ulang oleh sejumlah kelompok teater tradisional maupun modern, disalin ke dalam bentuk naskah atau manuskrip, atau juga dimanfaatkan sebagai nama bagi sejumlah jenis minuman dan makanan, dapat dikatakan sebagai tidak banyak jumlahnya. Transformasi, adaptasi, atau peralihan rupa yang paling lazim adalah perubahan dari novel menjadi film, atau sebaliknya, yaitu dari film diwujudkan menjadi sebuah novel. Utamanya pada dekade terakhir ini, pada awal tahun 2000-an misalnya, tercatat cukup banyak novel atau film yang mengalami perubahan bentuk itu, khususnya pada karya-karya yang cenderung dikategorikan sebagai karya populer.

Asrul Sani. 1991. Transformasi Novel ke dalam Film. Jakarta: IKIP Jakarta
Sapardi Djoko Damono. 2005. Pegangan Penelitian Sastra Bandingan. Jakarta: Pusat Bahasa
Laelasari dan Nurlailah. 2006. Kamus Istilah Sastra. Bandung: Nuansa Aulia

          What are the top 10 values that make us Australian?        
Ever wondered what values make us uniquely Australian – and the differences amongst various age groups or locations? Check out the results of our National Value Assessment, done by Galaxy Poll in February 2016 for the Australian Futures Project. Data visualisation courtesy of News Corp Australia. View the results on news.com.au
          Shade: Bene ma non benissimo, testo e video        

Canzoni Web
Shade: Bene ma non benissimo, testo e video

Con “Bene ma non benissimo“, Shade diverte e trascina. Un po’ come aveva fatto già un anno fa con “Odio le Hit estive” e con le tante visualizzazioni ottenute dai contenuti web che ha postato nei mesi successivi. Ritornello accattivante e sound pop con ritmi afro catturano al primo ascolto e ricordano che potrebbe sempre […]

Fonte: Shade: Bene ma non benissimo, testo e video
Scritto da: Francesca Spanò

          J Balvin e Willy William: Mi Gente, testo, traduzione e video        

Canzoni Web
J Balvin e Willy William: Mi Gente, testo, traduzione e video

Mi gente è il nuovo singolo di successo del colombiano J Balvin insieme al giamaicano Willy William. La superstar latina del reggaeton, torna in radio con una canzone che è già uno dei tormentoni estivi del 2017. Il videoclip del brano in poco tempo ha già raggiunto più di 100 milioni di visualizzazioni su YouTube […]

Fonte: J Balvin e Willy William: Mi Gente, testo, traduzione e video
Scritto da: Federica De Martino

          Ð›ÑƒÑ‡ÑˆÐ¸Ðµ полнометражные порно фильмы (обновляется)        

Young And Cravin Cum # 6 / Молодые и жаждущие спермы 6


Год выпуска: 2012
Жанр: All Sex, Legal Teen
Продолжительность: 45mn 36s + 1h 1mn
В ролях: Jennifer Love, Michelle, Tina Gabriel, Josette Most, Kethy
Режиссер: Max Candy
Студия: Pink Visual
Описание: There comes a time in a young woman`s life when she grabs the world by the lapels, jerks and chugs all the cock she can get her hands on, and offers up her teen snizz for the pounding like getting fucked hard is all that matters. And it IS all that matters when they`re Young and Cravin Cum!

Качество: DVDRip
Format: AVI
FileSize: 699 MiB + 699 MiB
Length: 45mn 36s + 1h 1mn
Video: XviD, 624x352, 29.970 fps
Audio: MPEG-1 Audio layer 3, 48.0 KHz, 2 channels

http://ist1-4.filesor.com/pimpandhost.com/5/7/2/5/57258/1/6/E/Q/16EQA/divxfactory-Yo.An.Cr.Cu.6.a.avi_0.jpg http://ist1-2.filesor.com/pimpandhost.com/5/7/2/5/57258/1/6/E/Q/16EQz/divxfactory-Yo.An.Cr.Cu.6.b.avi_0.jpg






          MPEG decoding, state save/restore, NRF emulation, ...        
It's been a while since I wrote anything here, but that doesn't mean that work on CD-i Emulator has stopped. On the contrary, a lot has happened in the last month and describing all of it will take a very long blog post. So here goes…

Last January an annoying date-checking bug was found which forced me to release beta2 somewhat earlier than anticipated. After that I did no further work on CD-i Emulator. There were various reasons for this, but the most import one was a very busy period at my day job.

After a well-earned vacation I resumed CD-i related work in early August. First I spent a few days on Walter Hunt's OS-9 port of gcc, the GNU C/C++ Compiler that I found in October of last year. Getting it working on a modern Cygwin installation was interesting and something very different from my usual line of work. The result could be useful for homebrew activities: it's a much more usable C compiler then the Microware OS-9 one and supports C++ as a bonus. I intend to use this for ROM-less emulation validation some day; see also below. The sources need to be released but I haven’t gotten to that stage yet.

After that I had another go at the Digital Video cartridge emulation. At the point where I left off last year the major stumbling block was the presumed picture / frame buffering logic of the MPEG video driver. When the appropriate interrupt status bits are set the driver starts copying a bulk of status information to an array of device registers and it will sometimes also read from those registers. This is all controlled by several status and timing registers that are also referenced elsewhere and I previously could not get a handle on it.

My first attempt this time was spending another few days staring at it and tracing it, but this did not gain me much new understanding. Finally I decided to just leave it for now and see how far I could get without understanding this part of the driver. I decided to once again attempt to get "CD-i Full Motion Video Technical Aspects" working.

This CD-i was produced by Philips to give future Full Motion Video (as the new MPEG playback functions were called at the time) developers a demonstration of the technical capabilities of the new hardware, at a time when this hardware was still in the early beta phase. The CD-i actually contains the compiler libraries necessary for making FMV calls from CD-i applications, as these had not previously been widely distributed.

It is not a very slick disc visually, being intended for developers, but it demonstrates a number of FMV techniques such as regular playback, playback control including pause, slow motion and single step, freeze frame and forward/backward scan, special effects like scrolling the FMV window, a seamless jump and a sample of overlay effects with the CD-i base case video planes.

I had previously tried to run this disc on CD-i Emulator, but it always crashed for an unknown reason that I attributed to MPEG device emulation problems. This time I traced back the crash and it turned out to have nothing at all to do with FMV playback but was instead caused by an incorrect emulation of the 68000 instruction "move ea,ccr" which is supposed to set the condition code register (ccr) to the value specified by the effective address (ea). In the processor manual this is classified as a word instruction and I had emulated it as such, which turned out to be wrong as it caused a word write to the full status register which should have been a byte write to the lower eight bits of it which hold the condition codes.

The problem manifested itself when the application calls the math trap handler for some mundane number calculations, which were naturally supposed to set the condition codes. The value written to the status register inadvertently changed the processor from user to system mode (and also scrambled the active interrupt masking level) which caused an instant stack switch that caused a bus error when the trap handler attempts to return to the application program (the cpu took the return address from the wrong stack and got garbage instead).

Most CD-i applications probably don't use the math trap handler so the problem went undetected for a long time. Now that it's fixed some other titles have probably started working but I haven't tested that.

After this, the FMV Technical Aspects application would get to its main menu screen, allowing me to start FMV playback operations. Regular playback worked fine until the end of the video clip, where there turned out to be status bit generation issues that prevented the application from properly detecting the end of video clip condition (the decoder is supposed to send a "buffer underflow" signal, among others, after the end of the MPEG data and my emulation didn't do that yet).

This was not very easy to fix because of the way that MPEG data buffering and decoding is handled inside CD-i Emulator, which I'll get into below. So it took me some time.

Regular play working fine, I started worrying about window control. This was the area where I feared the picture buffering stuff, but it turned out that this was easily bypassed. The horizontal / vertical scrolling functions were ideal to test this but it took me some time to get it working. There were bugs in several areas, including my integration of the MPEG video decoding code, which I took from the well-known mpeg2dec package. This code is written to decode a single video sequence and consequently did not handle image size changes without some re-initialization calls at the appropriate times. Failing that, it mostly just crashed (at the Windows application level) due to out-of-bounds video buffer accesses.

Another issue was the timing of device register updates for image size changes; I turned out to have the basic mechanism wrong and consequently the driver would keep modifying the window parameters to incorrect values.

Having all of the above fixed, I returned my attention to playback control. So far I can get the video playback properly paused, but I haven't been able to get it properly resumed. For some reason the application resumes the MPEG playback but it doesn't resume the disc playback. Since the driver waits for new data to arrive from disc before actually resuming MPEG playback nothing happens (this is documented as such). The application is presumably expecting some signal from the driver to get into the proper state for resuming disc playback, but I haven't found it yet.

At this point, it seemed promising to look at other CD-i titles using playback control and the Philips Video CD application is an obvious candidate. Again, regular playback appears to work fine, but playback control (including pause/resume) does not. It turns out that this application uses a different driver call (it uses MV_ChSpeed instead of MV_Pause, probably in preparation for possible slow motion or single step), which never completes successfully, probably again because of device status signaling. Similar issues appear to block playback control in a few other titles I tried.

I've given some thought to tracing driver calls and signals on an actual player to see what CD-i Emulator is doing wrong, and it appears to be relatively simple, there's just a bandwidth issue because all of the trace output will have to go out the serial port which can go no higher then 19200 baud. Some kind of data compression is obviously needed and I've determined a relatively simple scheme that should be enough (the CD-i player side will all need to be coded in 68000 machine language so simplicity is important!), but I haven't actually written any code for it yet.

I know there are issues with the proper timing of some video status signals. Things like start-of-sequence, end-of-sequence and start-of-picture-group should be delayed until display of the corresponding picture, at present they are delivered at decoding time, which can be a few pictures early. But that does not really affect the titles I've tried so far, because they do not attempt picture-synced operations. An application like The Lost Ride might be sensitive to thinks like this, though, and it needs to be fixed at some time. Similar issues are probably present with time code delivery. In addition, the last-picture-displayed and buffer-underflow signals are not always properly sent; I'm fixing these as I go along.

In the process, I decided that the magenta border was getting annoying and tried to fix it. That turned out to be harder then I thought. The MPEG chip has a special border color register that is written by the MV_BColor driver call and it seemed enough to just pass the color value to the MPEG window overlay routines. Well, not so. Again the issue turned out to be timing of decoder status signals, but of a different kind. The driver doesn't write the border color registers until it has seen some progress in certain timing registers related to the picture buffering thing, presumably to avoid visual flashes or something on the actual hardware. Fortunately, it turned out to be easy to simulate that progress, taking care not to trigger the complicated picture buffer code that I so far managed to keep dormant.

At some point, possibly related to slow motion or freeze frame, I might need to actually tackle that code but I hope to by that time have gained more understanding of the supposed workings of the MPEG chip.

Looking at the above, you might think that all of the difficulties are with the MPEG video decoding and that is indeed mostly true. I did have to fix something in the MPEG audio decoding, related to the pause/resume problems, and that was the updating of the audio decoder clock. When audio and video playback are synchronized the MPEG video driver uses the MPEG audio clock as it's timing reference, which means that it has to be stopped and restarted when video playback control operations occur. Since I had never before seriously tested this, the audio clock wasn't stopped at all and the video driver obligingly continued decoding and displaying pictures until it ran out of buffered data.

There is currently just one known problem with the MPEG audio decoding: the audio isn't properly attenuated as specified by the driver. This causes little audio distortions at some stream transitions and when buffers run out. There is also a problem with base case audio synchronization but that is hard to trigger and possibly even not audible in many titles so I'll worry about that much later.

Above I promised to get into the MPEG data buffering and decoding issue. The basic problem is one of conceptual mismatch: the CD-i decoding hardware gets data "pushed" into it (by DMA or direct device I/O) at the behest of the driver, whereas the MPEG decoding code (based on the publicly available mpeg2dec and musicout programs from the MPEG Software Simulation Group) expects to "pull" the data it needs during decoding. Things get messy when the decoding runs out of data, as the code does not expect to ever do so (it was originally written to decode from a disc file which of course never runs out of data until the end of the sequence). Some obvious solutions include putting the decoding in a separate thread (which given multi-core processors might be a good idea anyway from a performance perspective) and modifying it to become restartable at some previous sync point (most easily this would be the start of an audio frame or a picture or picture slice). Both options are somewhat involved although they have obvious benefits, and it may turn out that I will need to do one of them anyway at some point. For now I've avoided the problems by carefully timing calls into the MPEG decoding code so that enough data to decode a single audio frame or video picture should always be available; the MPEG data stream at the system level contains enough timestamp and buffering information to make this possible (in particular, it specifies the exact decoding time of every audio frame or video picture in relation to the timing of the data stream, thus making it possible to make those calls into the decoding code at a time that a valid MPEG data stream will have already filled the buffers far enough).

The approach depends on the timing of the MPEG data entering the decoder, which means that it does not handle buffer underflow conditions unless you add some kind of automatic decoding that continues even if no more MPEG data appears, and this is basically what I’ve done. In the end it was just relatively straightforward extension of the automatic decoding already there to handle the fact that MPEG audio streams do not have to explicitly timestamp every single audio frame (the CD-i Green Book does not even allow this unless you waste massive amounts of space in each MPEG audio data sector) and would have been needed anyway to correctly decode the last pictures of a sequence, but that had never been tested before.

For performance and possible patent reasons I have taken care to edit the MPEG decoding code (placing appropriate #ifdef lines at the right places) so that only MPEG 1 video and audio layer I/II decoding code is compiled into the CD-i Emulator executable. This is all that is needed for CD-i anyway and MPEG 2 video and audio layer III greatly complicate the decoding and thus significantly enlarge the compiled code.

Being somewhat stymied at the FMV front, I next decided to spend some time on another lingering issue. During testing, I often have to do the same exact sequence of mouse actions to get a CD-i application to a problem point and this is starting to be annoying. Input recording and playback are a partial solution to this but then you still have to wait while the application goes through it, which is also annoying and can sometimes take quite some time anyway. The obvious solution is a full emulation state save/restore feature, which I've given some thought and started implementing. It's nowhere near finished, though.

During the MESS collaboration I spent some time investigating the MESS save/restore mechanism. If at all possible I would love to be compatible for CD-i emulation states, but it turns out to be quite hard to do. The basic internal mechanism is quite similar in spirit to what I developed for CD-i Emulator, but it's the way the data is actually saved that makes compatibility very hard. Both approaches basically boil down to saving and restoring all the relevant emulation state variables, which includes easy things like the contents of cpu, memory and device registers but also internal device state variables. The latter are of course not identical between different emulators but they could probably be converted if some effort was thrown at it and for a typical device they aren't very complex anyway. The MESS implementation uses an initialization-time registration of all state variables; at save/restore time it just walks the registrations and saves or restores the binary contents of those variables. CD-i Emulator has a somewhat more flexible approach; at save/restore time it calls a device-specific serialize function to save or restore the contents of the state variables. The actual registration / serialization codes are structurally similar in the two emulators (a simple list of macro/function calls on the state variables) but the code runs at different times.

The real problem is that MESS includes very little meta information in the save files: only a single checksum of all the names and types of registered state variables in registration order. This is enough to validate the save data at restore time if the state variables of the saving emulator exactly match those of the restoring emulator, because there is no information to implement skipping or conversions. This holds between different versions or in some case even configurations of MESS emulators, but it holds even more so between MESS and CD-i Emulator! The meta information could of course be obtained from the MESS source code (relatively simply macro modifications could cause it to be written out) but that would require exact tracking of MESS versions because every version could have its own checksum corresponding to different meta information (in this case CD-i Emulator would need meta information sets for every MESS checksum value it wants to support).

I want CD-i Emulator to be more flexible, especially during development, so I decided to make full meta information an option in the save file. The saved state of every device is always versioned, which allows the save/restore code to implement explicit conversion where needed, but during development this isn't good enough. With full meta information turned on, the name and type of every state variable precedes the save data for that variable in the save file. This allows more-or-less automatic skipping of unknown state variables and when properly implemented the restore code can also handle variable reordering. At release time, I will fix the version numbers and save full metadata information sets for those version numbers so that the same automatic skipping and handling of reordering can be done even if the metadata isn't in the save file (it probably won't be because of file size considerations, although that may turn out to be a non-issue because save files need to include the full RAM contents anyway which is 1 MB of data in the simplest case without any compression, which is of course an option).

In addition to all of the above, I made some progress on the ROM-less emulation front. First I spent some time reading up on the internals of OS-9 file managers, because writing a replacement for the NRF file manager (NRF = Nonvolatile RAM File manager) seemed the logical next step. Actually writing it turned out not to be that hard, but there were of course bugs in the basic ROM emulation code. Most of them had to do with handlers not calling into the original ROM, which totally screwed up the tracing code. Some new functionality was also needed to properly read/write OS-9 data structures inside the emulated machine from the ROM emulation code; I wanted to implement this in such a way that compilation to "native" 68000 code remains a future option for ROM emulation modules. And of course the massive tracing described in the previous blog post had to be curtailed because it was impossible to see the relevant information in the morass of tracing output.

The new emulated NRF stores its files in the PC file system and it currently works fine when you start it with no stored files (i.e., the player will boot). In that case it will write out a proper "csd" (Configuration Status Descriptor) file. However, if this file already exists, the player crashes, although I have so far not found any fault in the NRF code. The origin of the problem probably lies elsewhere; I suspect it has to do with the hidden "player_shell_settings.prf" file. This file is read and written by the ROM bootstrap even before OS-9 is running; it does this by directly accessing the NVRAM memory (the file never changes size and is always the first one in NVRAM). Since the bootstrap accesses of this file do not go through the NRF file manager or even the NVRAM driver they are not redirected by the OS-9 emulation. However, later accesses by the player shell *are* redirected and the player shell does not seem able to handle the file not existing in the PC file system in the case where a csd file already exists. Solutions include extending the emulated NRF to always access this particular file from the NVRAM instead of the PC file system or somehow synchronizing the two locations for the file. The latter is probably the easiest route given the fixed location and size of the file, but the former is also useful as it would provide a full reimplementation of the original NRF that could in principle be compiled to native 68000 code to replace the "original" NRF in ROM (this is where gcc comes in as alluded to earlier, since all emulation code is written in C++).

In either case, I do not want the file manager to directly access emulated NVRAM although it could do so easily, as there is already an internal CNvramPort interface that provides just such access independent of the actual emulated NVRAM chip. The NRF file manager should instead call the NVRAM driver, which means that I need to implement cross-module calling first. It's not really hard in principle, the design has been done but there are a lot of little details to get right (the most obvious implementation uses at least 66 bytes of emulated stack space on each such call which I find excessive and might not even work; smarter implementations require some finicky register mask management or a "magic cookie" stacking approach, the latter having the best performance in the emulation case but being impossible in the native 68000 compilation case). When cross-module calling is working, I can also have the file manager allocate emulated memory and separate out the filename parsing functions by using the OS-9 system calls that provide these functions (the current emulated NRF does not allocate emulated memory which is arguably an emulation error and has the filename parsing coded out explicitly).

When everything works correctly with the emulated NRF, I have to find some way of integrating it in the user experience. You could always start over without any NVRAM files, but I'd like to have some way of migrating files between the two possible locations without having to run CD-i Emulator with weird options. Extending the CD-i File Extractor (cdifile) by incorporating (part of) the emulated NRF seems the obvious choice, which would also provide me with some impetus to finally integrate it with the CD-i File Viewer (wcdiview) program that's supposed to be a GUI version of cdifile but so far is just a very thin skeleton barely able to graphically display a single CD-i IFF image file passed on the command line (it doesn't even have a File Open menu) and will often crash. A proper implementation would look like Windows Explorer with a tree view on the left (CD-i file system, real-time channels and records, IFF chunk structure, etc) and a variable content display on the right (raw data view, decoded sector view, code disassembly view, graphical image view, audio playback, slideshow playback, decoded MPEG view, MPEG playback, etc).

That touches on another area in which I did some work last month: the saving of CD-i IFF image files for each emulated video frame. The motivation for this was to bring full-resolution real-time frame saving into the realm of the possible, as it would write only about 2 x (1024 + 280 x (384 + 32)) = 247 KB of raw CD-i video and DCP data per frame instead of 560 x 768 x 3 = 1260 KB of raw RGB. At least on my PC this has turned out not to be the case, however. The data is written out fine, which is not as easy as it sounds since video line data size can vary with each line because of pixel repeat and run-length encoding, but it's still too slow. That being so, I am not really very motivated to extend the CD-i IFF decoding implementation to actually decode this information. Some kind of compression could be an option, but that takes processor time and makes things even harder and possibly slower. Perhaps using another thread for this would be a solution, on a multi-core machine this should not greatly impact the basic emulation performance nor the debugging complexity as the compression code would be independent of the emulation itself.

So there is still a lot of work to be done, but it's all quite interesting and will provide for some entertaining evenings and weekends in the coming weeks or possibly months.

Today I did some housecleaning for the upcoming beta, which I'm still hoping to release before the end of this month.

I decided to keep the current somewhat buggy MPEG decoding stuff in the beta, which meant that I had to clean up the MPEG ROM detection logic so that it actually works (until now I always used the -dvc option to explicitly force the DVC model).

The MPEG ROM detector will now only use the supplied "dummy" xmpeg.rom file if it cannot find another recognized ?mpeg*.rom file. If it does find such a file, the DVC type will now be displayed in the CD-i Emulator title bar (GMPEG, IMPEG, VMPEG). For GMPEG the AH0x number is also displayed, as the AH00/AH01 cartridges are very different from the AH02/AH03 ones.

Some little-known DVC tidbits:
- The Philips CD-i 370 uses VMPEG hardware but at a different memory address
- The Philips CD-i 615 uses IMPEG hardware but the ROM also contains non-FMV software
- The DVS VE-200 and LG GDI-700 use IMPEG hardware but at a different memory address

More details on the state of the MPEG emulation will be available in the beta release notes.

Earlier I had started using a manifest file to get a newer common controls DLL, thus modernizing the visual "look" of CD-i Emulator somewhat. However, this caused Windows Vista and Windows 7 to stop using "virtual store" redirection of the cdiemu.ini file which broke all settings stuff (including the recently used list).

Today I figured out that leaving out the UAC "requested level" entry from the manifest restores the "virtual store" redirection. This is good enough for this beta.

I also killed the "file registration" code because it would hijack any existing non-beta registration (this has nothing to do with licensing but with the way Windows finds executables to open certain files).

Finally, I added video decode skip validation. This gets a bit technical...

In CD-i players, video decoding steals bus cycles and thus slows down the machine. The amount of bus cycles stolen depends on the video mode, pixel repeat settings and, for run-length modes, on the actual data.

If the emulation starts to lag behind, CD-i Emulator starts skipping the decoding of video frames. Previously, I used a "worse-case" estimate for the number of stolen bus cycles in this case. However, this introduces problems with input recording and playback: if frame skipping differs (which is almost guaranteed to be the case), the playback will start to "drift" from the recording. Over many frames this will result in an incorrect playback.

I coded a "SkipLine" routine that does no actual video decoding like "DecodeLine" but it does decode just enough to accurately determine the number of stolen bus cycles. This routine is now used when the video frame is skipped.

The validation consists of running both routines when the video frame is not being skipped and ensuring that both "steal" the same number of bus cycles.
          Quick status update        
It's been just over a half year since my last posting here. A quick status update...

In March I upgraded my trusty old desktop PC to a new laptop with a dual-core Pentium T4300 at 2.1 GHz. In the process of migrating my data I broke my old P-ATA hard disk :-(

The breakage was very minor (a broken connector lead) and seemed to be fixable with some soldering, but it took me nearly two months to get around to obtaining the proper cable and connector. Then I quickly made a full copy to a new S-ATA hard disk and breathed a sigh of relief.

I did have a backup but it was months old and did not include my most recent CD-i Emulator work, so I really wanted the up-to-date data.

However, as Charles commented on my previous entry, Visual Studio 6 has problems working under Windows 7. That demoralized me such that I left it hanging for a few months more. My older CD-i Emulator development builds didn't even work under Win7 :-(

Yesterday I finally got around to doing a full restore from the backup disk to my laptop and I also installed Visual Studio 2010 just to take a look at it.

Having done that, I realized that I could try building CD-i Emulator again!

I just finished doing that, and after finding the single source line that generated the 300+ errors I got on the first build, it appears that I now again have a working development build of the most recent CD-i Emulator, optimistically labeled v0.5.3-beta1. It seems to run like a charm, doing 50/50 frames on non-FMV titles and even 34/50 on my FMV test cases. Wow!

Using Visual Studio 2010 means that the minimum system requirement is now Windows XP, as earlier Windows versions are no longer supported as C++ build targets. But I don't think that should really be a problem.

At the end of next month it will be five years since the original CD-i Emulator v0.5.2 public release; I'm hoping to release 0.5.3-beta1 before that.

Please bear with me...
          Input record/playback, I2M emulation and a new start        
It has been more then a month since my last blog entry. There are several reasons for this, among others the very busy month of december and a mild CD-i Emulator burn-out. This blog entry is part of an attempt to restart the process and hopefully arrive at a releasable beta version in the not too distant future.

Early december I did a little work on rewriting the input record/playback code to its final specifications, using the full IFF reading/writing code that I reported on in the previous entries. It was hairy work (refactoring often is) and I more or less threw in the towel at that point.

This was followed in mid december by an attempt to regain focus. Triggered by some forum discussions, I did some work on emulating the I2M Media Playback CD-i board for the PC (in a sense another completely different player generation).

This board uses a Motorola 68341 so-called "CD-i Engine" processor chip, which is a CPU32 processor core with some on-chip peripherals (a DMA controller, two different serial interfaces, a timer, etc), a VDSC video chip and a completely undocumented "host interface" to the PC bus. So far the board does not appear to have a separate CD/Audio interface, but it does have a VMPEG chip.

I had already implemented CPU32 emulation and partial emulation of its on-chip peripherals, but this needed to be extended a bit more. The main "problem" here appeared to be that these peripherals appear to ignore address bit 23.

I also had to reverse engineer the host interface, which amounted to some disassembly and tracing. In the process I also figured out that I had built a bad ROM image (the host software generates these on the fly from "ROM fragment" files and I had mis-interpreted the script file that tells it how to do this). I used the CD-i Playback 2.2.1 files for this.

The I2M board now successfully boots OS9, including displaying some tracing messages (it turns out that it can do this either via the host interface or via the serial interface, which was reason for lot's of head scratching until the "aha!" moment). The video display gets initialized (some kind of "blue" screen) and the then board "hangs" inside a watchdog process, presumably waiting on some signal from the host telling it what to do (it's not a crash but appears to be waiting for some host interrupt). Figuring this out requires disassembly of the watchdog process and that's where I stopped, having worked on it for about three evenings.

Somewhere in between (can't remember the exact timing) I also did a test build with Visual Studio 2008, which resulted in a few portability fixes but nothing dramatic. I had hoped this would make some speed difference but I didn't notice any. I've returned to my old trusty Visual Studio 6; it's smaller and faster and has everything I need.

That's more or less the current status; I hope to resume work on the input record/playback code soon which is the last thing holding up the current beta release.
          Comment on Digital and Independent Media Revolution in Hawaii by Roger Thomas        
I run a 3D Computer Animation and Visual Effects studio here on the Big Island. I'm interested in learning more about digital media in Hawaii. Thanks! - Roger Thomas
          Quarto infantil atual e inspirador, ideias        

Modernizar o visual de um quarto infantil pode ser uma tarefa muito mais ao seu alcance do que você imagina. Veja ideias do tipo DIY econômicas e criativas.

O post Quarto infantil atual e inspirador, ideias é um artigo da Vila do Artesão.

          Candy Floss Days of Summer        
Before I start, I would just like to point out the fact that, yes, I know it's not summer. As much as I might wish it was- as much as I wish I could bury my head under my duvet and pretend that the stifling air in my room is drifting in through the window from a sultry, hot night instead of from my blow heater- even I cannot ignore the inevitable signs that the seasons are changing. The leaves are steadily turning gold, a bowl of freshly-collected, glossy brown conkers has taken pride of place on our living room table, and there is that definite nip in the air that demands the first trip up to the loft to uncover last season's fur coat and vintage Christmas jumpers.

OK, I am not denying that there is not some excitement in this. The musty scent of vintage knits and the new crispness in the air carry with them that back to school feeling that has you hankering for the scent of new text books and high denier ribbed tights, and that gives you the urge to go to WH Smiths and buy a new pencil case, no matter how many years ago you left school. Autumn is a time of promise; the dry leaves on the pavement whisper to you of that smoky scent mixed with the taste of red toffee apples that can only mean bonfire night, and the echoes of fireworks resounding through the brilliant cold of black, November air. It all has a touch of magic to it, yes. Even I, eternal child of summer and running barefoot on the beach, have been a little affected by it's sparkle. And yet.

As much as I look forward to winter and the promise of Christmas, I lament the loss of summer like the loss of a dear friend, or an intense, all-consuming holiday romance. For those short, fleeting summer months that we are (sometimes) blessed with in this country, there exists a time of endless possibilities; reading in the garden, camping by the sea, the smell that rises from a hot, sun-baked pavement after the rain has fallen. My memories of childhood and adolescence are a continuous steam of golden, sunlit flashes and hazy summer moments; of water fights in the garden, the faded pastel stripes of Neapolitan ice cream, toasting marshmallows with my little brothers and Adam Crossley from down the road, and then later: making up dance routines to Beyonce's Baby Boy, laying beside my best friend on the trampoline one cool summer night, looking up at the stars and laughing til our bodies shook and we could no longer breathe.

So, while I do look forward to the coming of the colder months and the fashion opportunities that arise from them, I still look back to summer and its somewhat haunting beauty. I say haunting because for me, summer is the time of year that holds the most poignant memories, and although those memories are happy and golden, I have always thought that there is something about happy memories that is incredibly and overwhelmingly sad. Because- as happy as they are, as much as they represent a time of beauty and freedom and youth- they are gone. So it is with a bitter sweet feeling that I welcome in this season and say goodbye to the old.  

But anyway, I have gone off on a ridiculous tangent that I totally didn't even plan to go into...What I really wanted to say was that right now, I am kind of liking the idea of hanging onto a remnant of those hazy, candyfloss days of seaside pier wanderings and summertime fairgrounds via my wardrobe. The person that originally inspired me to do so was the beautiful Marina Diamandis, who I mentioned in my last post and who is my celeb style crush of the week. When searching online for some sartorial inspiration for an outfit to wear at London Fashion Weekend (which I attended on Friday with my close friend Leah, as is our tradition) I came across Marina, dressed for the shows in a concoction of candy pink pieces, teamed with pale pink curls and matching lipstick. Finally, someone who wasn't draped in the predictable autumnal hues of September, but someone who was rocking an unashamedly sugary mix of shades teamed with none other than bare legs. I took note.

As well as Marina, though, I have recently been reflecting on the fact that I have a rather extreme style crush on Kirsten Dunst, and that she is possibly one of the most beautiful women in the world. This is probable due to the fact that I watched The Virgin Suicides for the first time ever this summer (I know, it pains me that it took me 22 years to discover such an amazing and visually stunning film) and was taken aback by the haunting images, teenage nostalgia and hazy summer feeling that I always try to capture in my own creative writing. For me, Kirsten, with her laid back sun bleached waves, subtly suggestive smile and far-away dewy-eyed look, is the perfect embodiment of all those things that the film captures so well.     

Film stills from The Virgin Suicides

Getting back to my outfit though, I ended up ordering something in dark colours and edgy jewel tones with a flash of leopard print thrown in just because it went so well with the most amazing shoes the world has ever seen, which I simply had to order from Topshop the second I saw them. But alas, it wasn't to be. Although the shoes arrived on time, my vintage outfit arrived a day too late, and I was left desperately rifling through Absolute Vintage near Old Spittalfiels Market on my lunch hour in a big sweaty mess at the last minute. However, with Marina Diamandis in mind, as well as the lingering of summer vibes I was evidently clinging onto, I somehow found the perfect outfit. The thing is, the pictures I took at London Fashion Weekend are not majorly impressive, given that I'd been at work all day and had rushed there straight after on the tube, was horrendously hot, sweaty and disheveled. Not to mention that there weren't really many posing opportunities. Therefore, I decided to recreate the look today with a photoshoot in my room, and have a little fun reveling in girliness with my mum's set of hot rollers while I was at it. I hope you enjoy my attempt at clincing onto the fading days of summer with a little candy floss chic...

  Me in my London Fashion Weekend Outfit.

Hope you enjoyed the post guys! xoxo
          A Thousand Shining Beads Await my Every Move        
New sparkly top alert! I wore this outfit last night for drinks and a curry for a friend's birthday, and it took me soo long to decide what to wear. The thing is, I am one of those people who has loads of casual day-time outfits, loads of dressy going out outfits, but who NEVER knows what to wear to pubs/bars/restaurants. I can just never seem to get the smart/casual balance right. It's the one area in which I feel I struggle when it comes to style. Flats seem too casual, but heels are only acceptable if worn with jeans or trousers, otherwise you look too dressy, and I don't do jeans or trousers. I do jeggings, during the day, and will occasionally wear shiny leggings- but that's about it. I think it's just that, to me, jeans seem like the easy option. They're kind of the modern day uniform. I hate how, if you go to a train station or a bus stop or a supermarket and look around you, EVERYONE is wearing jeans. I mean, slinging on a pair of jeans and a top is effortless, isn't it? It doesn't require any thought. But then, where's the creativity in that? Where's the challenge? And you all know I love a good style challenge. SO. I decided on some extra shiny leather look leggings, and a cream vintage beaded top which I thought I vaguely remembered seeing in 360 degrees vintage. It turns out someone else had snapped up the cream top, BUT, they had one which was pretty much exactly the same in Beehive, so in the end I got my perfect bar to restaurant outfit :-) The top is entirely covered in tiny cream beads in vertical lines, and every time I move they give a subtle twinkle. Plus, all the little beads feel really smooth when you run your fingers down them, so it's one of those tops that you want to keep stroking all night.

The look was partly inspired by the Olsen twins- I love how they wear their hair all long and wavy and disheveled and how their outfits are often so simple and yet so amazingly cool and chic. Someone who I'm also currently obsessed with is model and style blogger Rumi. I am in love with her amazing blog Fashion Toast simply because the photography is stunning and because she is just so effortlessly stylish. I actually want to be her. Her outfits all consist of neutral tones like nudes and greys mixed in with black and the occasional unexpected flash of leopard print. Then I feel there is also a bit of Gaga factor to this look, in that the colours and sparkles remind me of the visually stunning, diamonte filled Love Game video. Plus, how Gaga-esque is this dark lipstick? So that's the inspiration behind the look. Let me know what you think.  

Disheveled curls and dark lips: eat your heart out Mary Kate :-)
Topshop lipstick in Ruthless
My many beautiful rings (all Topshop)
Loving this nail colour
Yep, I did wear all these rings at once :-)
Please leave your comments, they make me super happy!
Love the Porcelain Princess xoxo
          Facebook Inc still pursuing dream of spying on users through their webcams and via their touch screens or mobile phones        

The Daily Dot, 8 June 2017:

Your worst internet nightmare could be on its way to becoming a reality.
newly discovered patent application shows Facebook has come up with plans to potentially spy on its users through their phone or laptop cameras—even when they’re not turned on. This could allow it to send tailored advertisements to its nearly two billion members. The application, filed in 2014, says Facebook has thought of using â€œimaging components,” like a camera, to read the emotions of its users and send them catered content, like videos, photos, and ads.

“Computing devices such as laptops, mobile phones, and tablets increasingly include at least one, and often more than one, imaging component, such as a digital camera. Some devices may include a front-facing camera that is positioned on the same side of the device as a display. Thus, during normal operation, a user may be looking towards the imaging component. However, current content delivery systems typically do not utilize passive imaging information. Thus, a need exists for a content delivery solution that takes advantage of available passive imaging data to provide content to a user with improved relevancy.”

This is the US patent application to which the article is referring.

United States Patent Application 20150242679
Kind Code:
Techniques for emotion detection and content delivery are described. In one embodiment, for example, an emotion detection component may identify at least one type of emotion associated with at least one detected emotion characteristic. A storage component may store the identified emotion type. An application programming interface (API) component may receive a request from one or more applications for emotion type and, in response to the request, return the identified emotion type. The one or more applications may identify content for display based upon the identified emotion type. The identification of content for display by the one or more applications based upon the identified emotion type may include searching among a plurality of content items, each content item being associated with one or more emotion type. Other embodiments are described and claimed.

Publication number
US20150242679 A1
Publication type
Application number
US 14/189,467
Publication date
Aug 27, 2015
Filing date
Feb 25, 2014
Priority date
Feb 25, 2014
Also published as
Original Assignee
Export Citation
External Links: USPTOUSPTO AssignmentEspacenet

Facebook Inc appears to have been granted this related patent, Techniques for emotion detection and content delivery (US 9681166 B2- Publication date 13 June 2017):

Techniques for emotion detection and content delivery are described. In one embodiment, for example, an emotion detection component may identify at least one type of emotion associated with at least one detected emotion characteristic. A storage component may store the identified emotion type. An application programming interface (API) component may receive a request from one or more applications for emotion type and, in response to the request, return the identified emotion type. The one or more applications may identify content for display based upon the identified emotion type. The identification of content for display by the one or more applications based upon the identified emotion type may include searching among a plurality of content items, each content item being associated with one or more emotion type. Other embodiments are described and claimed.

Users of computing devices spend increasing amounts of time browsing streams of posts on social networks, news articles, video, audio, or other digital content. The amount of information available to users is also increasing. Thus, a need exists for delivering content a user that may be of current interest to them. For example, a user's interests may be determined based upon their current emotional state. Computing devices such as laptops, mobile phones, and tablets increasingly include at least one, and often more than one, imaging component, such as a digital camera. Some devices may include a front-facing camera that is positioned on the same side of the device as a display. Thus, during normal operation, a user may be looking towards the imaging component. However, current content delivery systems typically do not utilize passive imaging information. Thus, a need exists for a content delivery solution that takes advantage of available passive imaging data to provide content to a user with improved relevancy.

Facebook also appears to have been granted a US patent in May this year for Augmenting Text Messages With Emotion Information (US 20170147202 A1).

According to CBINSIGHTS this patent would; automatically add emotional information to text messages, predicting the user’s emotion based on methods of keyboard input. The visual format of the text message would adapt in real time based on the user’s predicted emotion. As the patent notes (and as many people have likely experienced), it can be hard to convey mood and intended meaning in a text-only message; this system would aim to reduce misunderstandings.
The system could pick up data from the keyboard, mouse, touch pad, touch screen, or other input devices, and the patent mentions predicting emotion based on relative typing speed, how hard the keys are pressed, movement (using the phone’s accelerometer), location, and other factors.

          Super Mario Bros 3 - Mario Forever 5.01 Final Retail        
Super Mario Bros 3
Super Mario Bros 3 - Mario Forever 5.01 Final Retail | 16.66 MB

If you remember the oldest of Mario games, you cannot just pass this title by! Mario Forever is a remake of the classic Super Mario Bros game, which will make you busy for long hours, even if you haven’t played Mario before!

Impersonate the friendly plumber once more to guide him through 8 different worlds of this platform game, through countless monsters and obstacles, to help him beat the evil dragon Koopa and save the imprisoned Princess Peach – all while listening to pleasant, cheerful music. Mario Forever has also renewed graphics and much better scrolling in comparison to the original Mario.

Of course, there are also many novelties in the gameplay – an option to save your game, brand new enemies and bonuses are only a few of them! However, fans of the original old Mario don’t have to fear – it is still the same game, only upgraded. Collecting coins, jumping into the pipes, hidden levels – there are still here! Don’t hesitate to download Mario Forever now – but remember, this video game is really addictive!!

Changelog :
· New powerful graphics algoritms
· Smoother graphics and scrooling
· The background graphics was upgraded
· New visual effects
· The help signs for beginers
· New pipe shortcuts
· More compression level – game installer now have 16mb not 24
· New Mario Forever logo on start game
· Credits changed
· Save Game room was upgraded
· Changed difficult level

Download Link
          Monitor UltraSharp UP2516D PROBLEMA RESOLUCIÓN Y NITIDEZ        

Hola buenas tardes.

Adquirí recientemente un monitor UltraSharp modelo UP2516D, y lo recibí ayer día 27 de octubre de 2016.

El tema que ocupa es que utilizándolo como extensión de espacio de trabajo, aprecio un poco de falta de nitidez y cierto emborronamiento en las imagenes y tipografías, así como  efecto de sierra en los contornos. He intentado configurar el portatil y la pantalla de diversas formas con el fin de conseguir la nitidez que esperaba de dicho monitor, pero no consigo revertir el efecto.

Me dedico al mundo audiovisual y lo utilizo como monitor secundario para el montaje de vídeo y diseño gráfico. El monitor lo conecto por HDMI (no dispongo de entrada DP)  a un portatil ASUS con grafica NVIDIA GEFORCE 610M 2GB.

He estado informándome en foros y he visto casos similares con dichos modelos UltraSharp, y quisiera saber si existe algún tipo de solución, o si el problema radica en el equipo que utilizo. Iba a instalar el CD de configuración que viene con el monitor, pero no he querido abrirlo por si decido devolver el producto y cambiarlo por otro tipo de monitor DELL. En caso de devolución ¿Qué tramites debo seguir? ¿Se puede cambiar por otro producto abonando o devolviendo la diferencia?


          surreale o grottesco?        
La notizia (una delle) del giorno lascia inizialmente esterrefatti; poi magari la si butta sul ridere.
Sì, perché il DDL sull'editoria (attenzione, è un pdf), come hanno fatto notare su Punto Informatico (che riprende Spataro su Civile.it) è una minaccia alla libertà di espressione. Ma non solo; è una ridicolaggine.
Ridicolissimo pensare di equiparare ogni pubblicazione su internet ad un prodotto editoriale; e ridicolissimo pensare di poter applicare un simile provvedimento.

In buona sostanza, nel quadro di una riorganizzazione della legislazione sull'editoria, si intende equiparare a prodotto editoriale (con tutto quello che ne consegue in termini di burocrazia, responsabile unico anche in piattaforme collaborative come Wikipedia, maggiori responsabilità per chi scrive) ogni pubblicazione su internet, con una definizione che include anche i blog (anche se non a scopo di lucro), i siti personali etc.

Se venisse applicata oggi, chiuderebbero le piattaforme di blog italiane (Splinder etc.), chiuderebbero i progetti Wikimedia in italiano (Wikipedia etc.), chiuderebbero una miriade di siti internet e l'Italia smetterebbe di partecipare alla rete, in buona sostanza.

Son impazzito?
No, tanto è palese che questa legge non è applicabile, che non mi preoccupo affatto che sia stata approvata dal CDM.
Una conferma in più che i ministri & co. non leggono le leggi o non ne comprendono il significato. O semplicemente ignorano l'esistenza di internet.

Ok, non verrà mai approvata... ma intanto è meglio firmare la petizione per chiederne il ritiro, che non si sa mai.

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          SCHWENKLER – O MAGO DO 3D        
Nº74 MOTO REPORT Fevereiro 2008

Na edição anterior revelámos o talento de um jovem português e a sua paixão pela criação de motos através do método da realidade virtual. Nesta edição terminamos o tema mostrando aquilo que será o expoente máximo, ao nível mundial, e aquilo que um homem e um computador, juntos, são capazes de fazer. Fomos ao encontro de quem faz das suas criações 3D um modo de vida. Na América, Russ Schwenkler (ou “Dangeruss”, que é como gosta de ser chamado no meio), fez uma pausa no seu trabalho para nos revelar alguns segredos da sua magia.

«Sempre tive um fascínio enorme por tudo o que estivesse relacionado com veículos. Em criança coleccionava miniaturas e desenhava eu próprio veículos agressivos. Agora que tenho 46 anos, tenho de admitir… faço a mesma coisa. É engraçado ter conseguido combinar o meu trabalho artístico com o entusiasmo que tenho por máquinas com motor. Profissionalmente os meus desenhos destinam-se a empresas de desenvolvimento na indústria do car tuning, fabricantes de brinquedos, fabricantes de jogos para PC e consolas, e empresas de web design.»

MOTO REPORT: É motociclista?
DANGERUSS: Sou desde 1986. Tive uma data de motos desportivas. A última foi uma Suzuki GSXR1000, com muita potência e muitas alterações personalizadas. Infelizmente os ladrões entraram na minha garagem e levaram-na. Limparam tudo desde os meus capacetes, fatos de cabedal, ferramentas, etc. Ainda não a substituí, mas a nova Ducati 848 é bastante tentadora. Fora as motos sou praticante regular de BTT.
MR: Quando se iniciou no 3D?
D: Foi em 1990. Tive de aprender modelação 3D para o meu emprego de então. Comecei com o 3D Studio® para o MS-DOS®. Na altura não havia o Google®, por isso eu não podia pesquisar pelas centenas de recursos que existem hoje em dia, à distância de um clique. Aprendi por tentativa e erro. Eu sou um admirador do estilo realista (pintura) e com o 3D conseguimos atingir um nível de realismo muito bom e com menor esforço do que se utilizássemos as técnicas de pintura. Há partes da modulação 3D que são comuns, e por isso são aproveitadas. As opções para acrescentar brilho, reflexos ou sombras, simplificam muito o trabalho. É claramente melhor para o artista.
MR: Por que precisam os seus clientes de imagens 3D dos produtos que eles próprios fabricam?
D: Eu tenho trabalhado com todos os vectores (principais, complementares e derivados) da indústria automóvel. Muitos clientes vêm ter comigo para que eu conceba algo que vai existir, mas ainda não existe. Eles esperam, ou necessitam, ver um conceito ou uma imagem antes de ela ser transposta para o mundo real. Por exemplo, a capa e o material promocional de um jogo de corridas para a X-BOX 360® necessitava de um determinado carro. O carro não existia na vida real, mas era importante que aparecesse e que mostrasse uma lista específica de patrocínios, determinadas cores, e que estivesse inserido num ambiente gráfico altamente estilizado. O carro tinha de parecer altamente real, preferencialmente tinha de aparecer numa situação de velocidade. Ora, usando técnicas de modelação 3D, foi-me possível criar este ambiente de fantasia, não sendo portanto necessário construir um carro real, pagar a um piloto e a um fotógrafo, alugar o espaço e retocar o resultado final.
MR: Quanto custa desenhar uma moto?
D: A resposta a essa pergunta não é simples. Para um projecto 3D normal, facilmente despendo quarenta horas para moldar as formas, mais doze horas para acabamentos realísticos e materiais. Como cobro aos clientes por hora, quase sempre os trabalhos ultrapassam os 2.600 euros, mas tudo depende do nível de detalhe. É como quando vamos comprar uma casa.
MR: Que software usa actualmente?
D: Desde o início da minha carreira que uso 3D Studio® e o 3D Studio MAX® da Autodesk®. Já devo ter actualizado as versões mais de uma dúzia de vezes. Para mim, são as que funcionam melhor pois, como ferramentas, são muito poderosas e a capacidade de integrar situações e contextos é literalmente infinita. Para arte digital 2D uso, maioritariamente o Adobe Photoshop CS2® e recorro ao Adobe Illustrator® para tarefas tecnicamente mais precisas como logótipos.
MR: E hardware? A renderização de imagens pode demorar horas infindáveis…
D: Com efeito é preciso alguma potência ao nível da máquina. Actualmente uso 2 processadores Intel® Core Duo® a 3.0GHZ com 4GB de RAM e uma placa gráfica aceleradora bastante dispendiosa. Trabalho em simultâneo com dois monitores Flat-Panel de 22 polegadas.
MR: Que parte do seu trabalho o entusiasma mais?
D: Eu gosto muito de dois aspectos do meu trabalho. Primeiro, é a arte realística. Entusiasma-me criar imagens que mais tarde podem passar a fotos. Adoro incluir o máximo de detalhes possível. Segundo, e em oposição, adoro desenhar motos e outros veículos fantásticos e agressivos, com aerodinâmicas exageradas e pormenores de competição acima da média. Muitas vezes esses veículos têm origens muito humildes. É engraçado pegar num Fiat e transformá-lo num carro de corridas de milhões de dólares.
MR: Já alguma vez criou uma moto para si ou alguém pegou numa das suas motos originais e a mandou construir?
D: Eu não faço muitas criações originais. A maior parte do meu trabalho assenta em desenhos já existentes, ou em modificações dos mesmos. Portanto não há nenhuma criação original minha a rodar na estrada. Mas estou a trabalhar com um australiano que quer produzir um Super Car baseado num Corvette. Tenho-me dedicado à parte da carroçaria. Se alguma vez ele conseguir realizar o projecto será espantoso!
MR: Qual a relevância actualmente do 3D?
D: Nenhuma moto é construída sem ferramentas 3D CAD (Computer Aided Design). A visualização 3D é usada em muitos sectores para produzir imagens indistinguíveis de fotografias. São usadas em anúncios de TV, outdoors, filmes de cinema etc. Os construtores de motos conseguem mostrar imagens das suas mais recentes criações antes mesmo de os protótipos estarem construídos. Com este recurso, os fabricantes conseguem determinar a dimensão ideal para os componentes das suas motos, como se interligam com outros componentes, quais as cores que jogam melhor, que tipos de jantes servem os melhores propósitos das motos, qual a suspensão mais adequada, e tudo isto sem a moto estar ainda construída. Depois de construída, em termos reais, e como disse, acaba por ser mais barato recorrer a imagens 3D do que expedir uma moto para um local exótico e preparar uma vasta equipa técnica para fotografá-la.
MR: Vê-se a si próprio mais como um artista ou como um especialista gráfico?
D: Creio que um pouco de cada. Para mim 3D e arte digital são formas de arte perfeitamente legítimas. Como para criar imagens 3D é necessária uma grande dose de técnica, acontece que a actividade não é tanto encarada do ponto de vista artístico, mas mais como uma sequência de inputs precisos. Quem manipula 3D tens de criar, literalmente, ou tem de instruir a aplicação para produzir absolutamente tudo. Todos os objectos de cena têm de ser introduzidos, os materiais aplicados, luzes, reflexos, sombras, cenários, operação de câmara, texturas, ângulos, efeito atmosférico, etc. E para tudo isto não há nos programas um botão que diga: “Fazer Arte”.
© Todos os direitos do texto estão reservados para MOTO REPORT, uma publicação da JPJ EDITORA. Contacto para adquirir edições já publicadas: +351 253 215 466.
© General Moto, by Hélder Dias da Silva 2008

          GÓIS 2007 - NA CAPITAL DO CEIRA        

Nº69 MOTO REPORT Setembro 2007

Com a gentil colaboração do S. Pedro, que expulsou a chuva para outras paragens entre 16 e 19 de Agosto, Góis foi o ponto de encontro para milhares de motociclistas que se fizeram à estrada para um fim-de-semana de animada confraternização, desfrutando de uma belíssima paisagem natural e uma banda sonora com muito Rock. Com estes condimentos, e muitos outros, o resultado não podia ser melhor. A viagem até Góis vale sempre a pena!

O Rio Ceira, que atravessa todo o recinto, com as suas sombras e açudes, será sempre o ex-líbris da Concentração de Góis. O vale do Ceira, com as várias praias fluviais, as piscinas naturais da Lousã, o Rio Alva, na zona de Arganil e a barragem de Santa Luzia na Pampilhosa da Serra, são excelentes locais para refrescar. Para alguns, à falta de um guronsan para a ressaca, sempre se pode dar um mergulho logo pela manhã. O efeito é praticamente o mesmo…

Durante a tarde de sábado, as repousantes sombras do Parque do Cerejal serviram, uma vez mais, de palco para uma boa mostra de motos transformadas, contando, mais uma vez, com a excelente organização do MC Aço na Estrada. Este ano, o local escolhido para a exibição das motos a concurso foi num cenário militar.

Classificação por categorias
RAT - 2.º Francisco – Kawasaki, 1.º Costinha – Yamaha XJ 700 - STRANGE - 2.º António Martins – Suzuki Bandit 600, 1.º Sérgio Silva – Honda Modo - STREETFIGHTER - 3.º Jorge Bastos – Honda CBR 600, 2.º Luís Ribeiro – Suzuki RF 600, 1.º Alexandre Magalhães – Honda Hornet 600 - CUSTOM - 3.º Mr. Lobo – Honda Shadow 600, 2.º Nando – Horex, 1.º João Santos – Yamaha XV1600 Wild Star - HARLEY - 2.º Costinha – H-D Sportster, 1.º Padacha – H-D Night Train - CHOPPER - 3.º Marco Vasco – Zundapp Ecila, 2.º Carlos Cruz (Patinhas) – Yamaha DT 125 MX, 1.º Estrondo – Estravagancia, BEST PAINT - Mr. Lobo – Honda Shadow 600, BEST BIKE - João Santos - Yamaha XV1600 Wild Star

Chave de ouro a fechar as actuações no palco principal.
Após 28 anos de carreira, o tempo parece não passar por eles. Com o recinto a abarrotar, brindaram o imenso público com um concerto grandioso fazendo, inclusivamente, três encores. Um palco bem iluminado, decoração interessante (uma Jukebox insuflável), grande presença, uma atitude altamente positiva, e claro, um rol de excelentes canções, foram os trunfos lançados por Tim, Zé Pedro, Gui, Kalú e João Cabeleira na noite de sábado. Os temas do reportório são autênticos hinos para várias gerações. Por tudo o que significam para a música em Portugal, mas também pelo exemplo que são de determinação, confiança e respeito pelo próximo, os Xutos & Pontapés merecem sempre o carinho com que o público os acolhe.

Quase a completarem 30 anos de existência, António Manuel Ribeiro, alma e mentor da banda, presenteou-nos com um espectro de canções que abrange todos os períodos da banda. Desde o seminal “Cavalos de Corrida” até ao último sucesso “Matas-me Com o Teu Olhar”. A banda, que na verdade foi a mãe do movimento “Rock Português”, agitou o público fazendo-o vibrar com a actuação.

IRIS c/ Orquestra Ensemble Petrov
Directamente do Algarve, os Iris fizeram-se acompanhar pela Orquestra Ensemble Petrov, que emprestou uma sonoridade sinfónica às composições originais e às versões que os Iris habitualmente tocam ao vivo. Domingos Caetano, guitarrista virtuoso, e vocalista de voz aguda, influenciado pelo som que ouviu na juventude nos anos 80 (Hard-Rock e Heavy-Metal), terminou o espectáculo dedicando a emocionante versão do famoso “Adágio” de Albinoni a todos os motociclistas que já partiram.

Extravagantes até mais não! Este colectivo de Coimbra, que foi buscar o nome à mundialmente famosa “casa de meninas” em Nevada, EUA, aposta num Rock’N’Roll competente que, por vezes, parece beber influências da sonoridade Rockabilly dos anos 60. O vocalista – Kaló – é precisamente o baterista, toca de pé, e dá-lhe com uma força impressionante. Parecia até estar “possuído”…

Como toda a regra tem a sua excepção, os “Quem é o Bob?” foram a única banda no palco principal a não interpretar Rock. Mas souberam compensar-nos bem. Este projecto de Leiria é um grupo de tributo a Bob Marley & The Wailers e bastava escrever isso para dizer quase tudo. Prestar homenagem à música reggae é sinónimo de boa disposição, “boa onda” e de “tá-se bem”. Porém, os “Quem é o Bob?” acrescentam, ainda, a experiência de dois anos de estrada, espectáculos em semanas académicas em Leiria, Abrantes ou Évora e músicos de primeira craveira que, normalmente, acompanham David Fonseca, Wonderland ou Pop Del Bar.

Banda de covers, os Stone são um colectivo com boa presença e som possante que aqueceu o público que se assomava ao recinto da concentração na noite de sexta-feira.

Este ano a oferta, embora menos “violenta” (sim porque o bungee jumping do ano passado não era para todos…), foi mais variada. As opções disponíveis eram o Laser Tag, Sky Bike, Orbit Ball, Human Loop, Parede de Escalada e Slide.

O habitual passeio, em velocidade reduzida, terminou em desfile pelas ruas da vila de Góis, fazendo-se assim a despedida até ao ano seguinte. É sempre um momento que atrai muito a atenção da população, por serem centenas de motos a desfilar, das mais bonitas às mais bizarras.

Vários restaurantes, com extensas esplanadas, onde se pôde apreciar a boa e variada gastronomia beirã. Uma excelente oportunidade para uma pausa, num ambiente calmo e sereno, saboreando um bom vinho em convívio com os amigos.

A habitual e procurada feira onde é possível encontrar de tudo, desde as farturas aos fatos de cabedal, de algumas novidades do sector motociclístico às representações de clubes.

Inseridos no espaço da Feira, este ano havia ainda mais tatuadores do que no ano passado, ou não fosse este um clássico complemento do visual motard. De dia e de noite, eles perpetuavam a sua arte nos corpos dos participantes. Era visível a satisfação dos clientes, quando a tatuagem ficava finalmente pronta. Qualquer resquício da dor provocada pela agulha era eliminado nesse momento. E dizem que o mal é começar! Depois de feita a primeira tatuagem, não faltarão novas ideias para as próximas.

Depois das actuações no grande palco, a tenda electrónica garantiu a animação pela noite dentro com excelentes DJ’s. O mote era pôr todo o tipo de pessoal “a bombar”, e pelo que vimos, o objectivo foi atingido.

Distribuídos com a inscrição, os roteiros turísticos são duas diferentes propostas de passeio pela região, percorrendo
as suas melhores paisagens, a gastronomia, as tradições, o artesanato e a hospitalidade beirã.

Esta novidade apareceu na forma de passatempos e concursos de pintura para várias categorias.

Como a consciência social do Góis Moto Clube é uma realidade, no domingo, durante a cerimónia de encerramento, foi feita a entrega simbólica de um cheque de 1500 euros ao projecto “Escolhas de Futuro”, promovido pela edilidade, que visa a inclusão escolar e integração comunitária, qualificação pessoal, empregabilidade e participação cívica dos jovens e das organizações.

Mais uma edição deste carismático encontro, apoiado desde a primeira hora pela Honda Portugal, onde as pequenas motos são as vedetas. Decorreu sábado, dia 18.

Pela terceira vez consecutiva, o Góis Moto Clube promoveu uma reunião dos característicos e prestigiados modelos Vespa. Estes modelos, cada vez mais populares em Portugal, proporcionaram um verdadeiro toque de alegria ao ambiente da concentração. Por lá, pudemos assistir a muito bons trabalhos de recuperação e restauro dos clássicos modelos da década de 60 e 70.

GNR no local
De presença discreta, mas efectuando algumas operações Stop, o balanço foi positivo, uma vez que não houve ocorrência de acidentes graves durante o período da concentração. Não foram interceptadas motos roubadas, houve sim alguns autos de contra-ordenação levantados por excesso de álcool, ausência de seguro ou de licença de condução, e matrículas tapadas ou retiradas. Mas mesmo assim, estas ocorrências foram em menor número absoluto do que em 2006. Tendo em conta que este ano houve uma maior afluência de motos do que no ano passado, podemos afirmar que, de um modo geral, os motociclistas tiveram um comportamento verdadeiramente exemplar.

Já se sabe que erguer um evento desta dimensão não é tarefa fácil. Todavia, e com o passar dos anos, a experiência adquirida ajuda a soltar muitos nós, a notoriedade conquistada arrasta novos voluntários, e o amor pela região e pelas motos encarrega-se de fazer o resto. Esta 14ª. Concentração de Góis não foi excepção. A logística no local foi adequada para as solicitações e foi até perceptível a diminuição do tempo de espera na fila para as refeições. O palco principal estava munido de um sistema de luzes mais adequado do que no ano anterior. O INEM também esteve no recinto, mas felizmente não atendeu a nenhuma situação complicada. Em termos gerais, o Góis Moto Clube promoveu e realizou um evento pacífico e ordeiro, grandioso para a região (o segundo maior do género no nosso país, este ano com cerca de 16 mil pessoas entre inscritos e visitantes), reconhecido pelas mais diversas instâncias (políticas, sociais, económicas, culturais, policiais) e pela própria comunicação social como algo que dignifica o motociclismo em Portugal. Os amantes das motos agradecem!
© Todos os direitos do texto estão reservados para MOTO REPORT, uma publicação da JPJ EDITORA. Contacto para adquirir edições já publicadas: +351 253 215 466. As fotos são do Mário Peralta. Abraço pá!
© General Moto, by Hélder Dias da Silva 2008

          FARO SEMPRE! 26.ª CONCENTRAÇÃO        
Nº68 MOTO REPORT Agosto 2007
Nº69 MOTO REPORT Setembro 2007
Dizemo-lo todos os anos e com justificado orgulho: a concentração motociclística de Faro é considerada a maior e melhor da Europa e a maior do mundo, organizada por um clube. As entidades políticas regionais também são unânimes em considerar este evento aquele que mais promove a região algarvia além fronteiras. O mérito é endereçado a um punhado de homens e mulheres que dão corpo e alma ao Moto Clube de Faro e, simultaneamente, aos cerca de um milhar de voluntários que anonimamente se juntam para erguer tão singular acontecimento. A concentração de Faro é, na realidade, mais do que um evento. É um símbolo de solidariedade e puro espírito motociclístico. Embora se fale, com algum pessimismo, sobre a utilização futura do terreno que serve de palco à grande festa, um sentimento é unânime a todas as entidades: A Concentração de Faro não pode morrer!

Blasted Mechanism
Doze anos após a sua formação, os Blasted Mechanism continuam a ser uma pedrada no charco. Visual e musicalmente arrojados, a banda que lançou este ano “Sound In Light / Light In Sound” (um trabalho pioneiro no modo de edição por ser um híbrido: o primeiro CD é comprado nas lojas, o segundo é descarregado de um site), leva ao rubro a multidão com os temas mais recentes, bem como com os clássicos “Atom Bride Theme” e “Karkov”. Diferentes, únicos, por fazerem da música um meio de regeneração da sua própria energia, os Blasted concedem à audiência, um momento de contacto com a energia universal que, segundo eles, purifica o corpo e a alma. Na prática foi um dos momentos mais altos de palco. Uma impressionante máquina de produção, um exotismo envolvente, uma delícia para os fotógrafos. Os portugueses no seu melhor!

Kiss Forever Band
Estes insuspeitos músicos da Hungria formaram em 1995 aquela que viria a ser uma banda de tributo aos seus ídolos: os Kiss. Tudo começou apenas pelo prazer de tocar, sem grandes compromissos, as músicas da banda americana, ao vivo. Contudo, o fenómeno foi arrastando mais e mais público, acabando por se tornar no projecto principal dos elementos enquanto músicos profissionais. Vestidos e pintados a rigor, os KFB abriram, em grande, as hostilidades da Concentração de Faro na noite de quinta-feira. Fantásticos!

Joe Cocker
Este cantor britânico de 63 anos, com presença e voz inconfundíveis, percorreu parte dos sucessos da sua carreira, promovendo também faixas do mais recente trabalho “Hymn For My Soul” editado em Abril deste ano. Fiel ao seu estilo, bem produzido em termos artísticos, com uma banda competentíssima, foi o cabeça de cartaz da 26.ª Concentração Internacional de Faro.

Tocá Rufar
Formação mutante e itinerante, este projecto de percussões fundado por Rui Júnior pode ser descrito como uma performance visceral, onde os ritmos se transformam em gritos selvagens e libertam da alma a raiva e a rebeldia depositada à nascença. É impossível ficar-lhes indiferente não só pela quantidade de elementos como pela tremenda força da sua acústica. Duas mulheres em destaque e um animador fantástico. São sempre bem vindos a Faro.

Rui Veloso
Rui Veloso também está no 26.º ano… mas de carreira. Curiosa coincidência que Rui Veloso também está no 26.º ano… mas de carreira. Curiosa coincidência que nos confirma que tudo o que é bom conquista a longevidade naturalmente. Rui Veloso, normalmente conhecido pelo epíteto de “o pai do rock português” mostra-nos em cada concerto quão redutor é este rótulo. O seu universo musical está muito mais próximo do blues do que do rock. Para além disso, algumas das suas baladas, por exemplo “Porto Sentido”, são uma original confluência do blues com o fado, o que lhe confere um swing muito próprio, tornando as suas composições perfeitamente distintas. Um virtuoso guitarrista, um excelente cantor e distinto compositor. Rui Veloso é, sem dúvida, uma referência na música portuguesa.
Na foto, acompanhado pelo Tim dos Xutos & Pontapés – que se encontrava presente na concentração - para a interpretação do tema: Postal dos Correios.
Miss Faro
É um dos momentos altos de palco. Já se chamou “Miss Tshirt Molhada”, hoje chama-se “Miss Faro”. Segundo o organizador é “uma brincadeira”, mas o total de mil euros em jogo, a dividir pelas três finalistas, faz com que as concorrentes levem a coisa muito a sério. Os atributos físicos são uma boa ajuda, mas a simpatia, ousadia e espírito exibicionista das voluntárias são o que mais agrada ao público. Já se chegou a usar um medidor de decibéis mas acabou por se voltar a confiar na sensibilidade discutível do speaker de serviço. As mais ousadas querem-se despir na totalidade, usando assim todos os seus argumentos, sem excepção. O público, por seu lado, fica naquela tensão de ver “algo” mais, embora se trate de poucos centímetros…. O patrocinador não deixa… Este ano a vencedora foi de
novo a Natacha, segundo lugar para a Sandra e terceiro para a inconformada espanhola Pamela Calderon, que foi desclassificada por ser ter exibido… na totalidade.

Pat Savage
Na onda bike music, este músico canadiano de blues e rock, aproveitou o aquecimento que a banda antecessora deu no público e entregou-se ao som forte e apelativo que tanto tem em comum com o imaginário motard de um evento como este.

Desde o Rock in Rio 2006 que esta banda não tocava em solo português. Misturam a música tradicional cubana com o Hip Hop. Em ano de lançamento de uma compilação com os seus principais êxitos, os Orishas encheram a concentração de Faro com balanço quente e vigoroso.

Hard-Rock puro e duro vindo da vizinha Espanha. Visual a condizer. Para que nuestros hermanos se sintam em casa.

Shows eróticos
Com qualidade, mas… Cerca de 500.000 euros é a verba envolvida para montar toda a estrutura de Faro. Tendo em conta o fascínio que os shows eróticos provocam no público, talvez se justificasse um pouco mais de investimento para que estas performances fossem mais elaborados a nível coreográfico e de adereços. Aquilo que se viu não se distanciou muito do que vamos vendo ao longo do ano nas restantes concentrações nacionais. Faro merece uma fasquia mais alta. Este ano a ousadia passou por actuações com dois homens e uma mulher. Modernismos…

Sorteios finais
É sempre um momento emotivo e é com ansiedade e “fé” que milhares aguardam o anunciar do número mágico que habilitará um dos presentes a uma viagem a Daytona ou a uma moto. Este ano, as chaves de uma cobiçada Kawasaki Z 750 foram parar às mãos de Maria Conceição, de Sintra. As senhoras que protagonizaram, nas noites anteriores, os shows eróticos de palco, tornam sempre este momento ainda mais… excitante.

Halcone México
Foram uma grande surpresa na tarde de quinta-feira. Acrobacias em motos Harley-Davidson com cerca de quatrocentos quilos e da década de sessenta, não será fácil certamente. No tipo de piso a que ficaram condicionados (inclinado, terra batida com pequenas lombas e alguma palha), o acréscimo de dificuldade foi enorme. O que eles fizeram? Só mesmo visto ao vivo ou nas fotos. Contado custa a acreditar…

GNR no local
Tudo na mesma. Metralhadoras e tudo. O aparato que a GNR diz ser necessário para impor o devido respeito. Impõe respeito a meia dúzia de indesejáveis energúmenos, incomodando simultaneamente todos os outros pacatos motociclistas devido à sua atitude agressiva e despropositada. Não sei se terá que ser assim. O facto é que só vejo esta forma de actuação em Portugal. Pelo menos não nos podemos queixar que a nossa guarda não seja criativa. “No problem”, a GNR intimida e… a caravana passa!

A campanha ZerOKilled é um dos cavalos de batalha do Moto Clube de Faro. Não adianta montar uma festa excepcional se depois, nas estradas e associado ao evento, sucederem acidentes com vítimas mortais a lamentar. É essa a notícia que muita imprensa sensacionalista procura. Os chamados “caçadores de acidentes”. Felizmente que, pelo menos desde o ano passado, não têm tido muito sucesso e, provavelmente por esse motivo, se tornou notada a sua ausência fazendo a cobertura da concentração. A mensagem ZerOKilled é criada pelo Moto Clube de Faro, divulgada principalmente pela imprensa especializada e pelos visto tem sensibilizado grande parte dos motociclistas. O slogan o ano passado era “Todos vivos” e este ano “Ir a Faro… e voltar”. Que assim seja sempre! O relatório deste ano emitido pela Guarda Nacional Republicana, Grupo Territorial de Faro, e que transcrevemos na íntegra, é a oficialização desse sucesso.

Unidade Móvel de Rastreio
Anónimo e Gratuito do VIH/SIDA
Uma iniciativa que o Ministério da Saúde tem apresentado nos últimos anos à organização da Concentração de Faro – a qual tem sabido acolher e fomentar – possibilitou que todos aqueles que quisessem realizar o teste do VIH/SIDA de forma anónima e gratuita e com aconselhamento e apoio psicológico, o pudessem fazer. Descomplexando este assunto sério e delicado, será, sem dúvida, uma maneira eficaz de alargar as acções de despiste e controlo da infecção. Aplausos para a iniciativa.
© Todos os direitos do texto estão reservados para MOTO REPORT, uma publicação da JPJ EDITORA. Contacto para adquirir edições já publicadas: +351 253 215 466.
© General Moto, by Hélder Dias da Silva 2008

          The White Theatre at The J Announces 2017-2018 Season;        

Excitement is in the air as The Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City announces its 2017-2018 season of arts and cultural offerings at the White Theatre.

The 13th season of the White Theatre, produced by The J's Arts + Culture Department, includes something for everyone, including a new partnership with the Coterie Theatre that will co-produce the regional theatrical premier of Disney's Tony Award-winning musical, Newsies, during July 2018.

The White Theatre season also includes concerts to visual arts, comedic plays to thought-provoking dramas as well as dance and literature presentations. The inspirational season includes four locally produced shows, several musical concerts, a choreography showcase and a new artist-in-residence offering with the Kinnor Philharmonic.

The season includes:

  • November 4-19, 2017: Mel Brooks' comedic musical, Young Frankenstein (local production), directed by Missy Koonce.

  • December 2 & 3, 2017: The Sarah Play produced by the In[Heir]itance Project.

  • January 1, 2018: Kinnor Philharmonic, The J's artists-in-residence, perform first of two concerts; the second concert is June 10, 2018.

  • January 6, 2018: YidLife Crisis-Live! starring Jamie Elman & Eli Batalion, the creators and stars of the award-winning Yiddish comedy web series YidLife Crisis.

  • February 3-18, 2018: Tony Award-winning musical, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (local production), directed by Steven Eubank.

  • March 17-25, 2018: The Tony-Award winning play, The Miracle Worker (local production) directed by Bill Christie.

  • April 8: Kansas City's professional dance showcase, Open Stage at The J.

  • April 11-14: Wiesenthal, the riveting true story of Simon Wiesenthal, nicknamed the "Jewish James Bond".

  • July 7-29, 2018: Disney's Newsies (in collaboration with The Coterie Theatre), the captivating story of a band of underdogs who become unlikely heroes.

(Full descriptions for each event are available at TheWhiteTheatre.org. Auditions for various productions will be held throughout the year.)


Young Frankenstein is a hilarious musical based on the classic Frankenstein story, with a Mel Brooks comedic twist. The musical is an adaptation of Brooks legendary film. With a book by Brooks and Thomas Meehan and music and lyrics by Brooks, audiences will roar with laughter as they follow Frederick Frankenstein, the grandson of the infamous Victor Frankenstein. The younger Frankenstein travels to Transylvania to inherit his family estate and zaniness ensues, complete with a tap-dancing monster.

The Sarah Play is in the creative stages of The In[Heir]itance Project as part of a national series. Playwright Jon Adam Ross presents the story of the biblical matriarch, Sarah, in conversation with contemporary realities in Kansas City. Developed during workshops with local clergy, artists and community members as well as interfaith groups, The Sarah Play reflects local perspectives on sacred texts.

YidLife Crisis Live! starring Jamie Elman & Eli Batalion, the creators and stars of the award-winning Yiddish comedy web series YidLife Crisis present a night of shtick, schmoozing and inspiration. This duo of seasoned performers mix skits, discussion, screenings and use the "trojan horse" of comedy to bring Yiddish and yiddishkayt to the forefront and engage the topic of Jewish identity for all.

The 25th Annual Putnam Spelling Bee is a riotous musical ride complete with audience participation and comedic genius. This Tony and Drama Desk Award-winning musical features an eclectic group of 6 awkward tweens as they vie for the spelling championship of a lifetime. While candidly disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their home lives, the tweens spell their way through a series of (potentially made-up) words, hoping never to hear the soul-crushing, pout-inducing, life un-affirming "ding" of the bell that signals a spelling mistake.

The Miracle Worker, the Tony-Award winning play by William Gibson, takes the audience through the daily struggles of Helen Keller, who is blind, deaf and mute. With the help of her devoted and sometimes defiant teacher Annie Sullivan, Helen is finally awakened from the darkness in this emotional story. (Special school performances are available.)

Wiesenthal focuses on the story of one man, Simon Wiesenthal, who devoted his life to bringing 1,100 Nazi war criminals to justice. Wiesenthal's dedication to this one purpose - seeking justice for the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust - is the focus of the play. This production focuses on this courageous man's wit and wisdom, tenacity and dedication to help repair the world.

Disney's Newsies marks The Coterie and the White Theatre's first partnership, as well as the Kansas City region's first locally produced production of the Tony Award winning musical. Disney's Newsies, based on the 1992 motion picture, features a high energy, explosive song and dance score by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (La Cage aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy). It will be co-directed by Coterie Producing Artistic Director, Jeff Church, and Jerry Jay Cranford, who will also serve as choreographer, with musical direction by Pam Williamson, veteran of 10 musicals at the White Theatre. Disney's Newsies will feature a cast of all-local professional and non-professional adult and youth actors. Auditions for Disney's Newsies are set for December 17 at 2 p.m. at the White Theatre. More information on auditions for the entire 2017/18 season can be found at TheWhiteTheatre.org.

The White Theatre's season tickets are available now. Season ticket holders enjoy many perks including preferred seating, free ticket exchange, friends and family discounts and more! The new Flex Five pass option allows the season ticket holder to design their own package with five tickets to use at their discretion. Performances for the Kinnor Philharmonic are an "add on event" to the regular season ticket.

In addition to season tickets, the Arts + Culture Patron program has been enhanced to provide additional "perks" at every level including complimentary tickets, seatback surprises on select show nights, tax deduction or your support and more. For a complete list of patron benefits visit TheWhiteTheatre.org.

Individual tickets for the 2017-2018 season go on sale September 1. Tickets may be ordered online at TheWhiteTheatre.org, by phone at (913) 327-8054 or in person at the White Theatre's Box Office.

In its effort to expand its offerings, additional Arts + Culture events will include the Kansas City Jewish Film Festival in April and May, literary salons and the Midwest Jewish Artists Lab.

Discover The J's White Theatre at 5801 West 115th, Overland Park, Kansas 66211, conveniently located at 115th & Nall. Contact our box office at (913) 327-8054 or by email at boxoffice@thejkc.org. The White Theatre box office is open Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information on everything Arts + Culture at The J and the White Theatre check out our website at TheWhiteTheatre.org.

About "The J"

Established more than 100 years ago, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City-The J, provides a warm welcome to families of all backgrounds. The J's all-in-one hub for health, learning and well-being elevates the lives of the community and its members with programs of excellence in fitness, sports, theatre, arts + culture, senior adult programming and youth services including summer camps and child development. Everyone can "live up" at The J, located in Overland Park, Kansas, and at thejkc.org.

          BWW Feature: KANSAS CITY FRINGE FESTIVAL at All Over        

Now spreading like a virus with a lifespan of only ten days, the annual Kansas City Fringe Festival has once again exploded across Kansas City entertainment venues for the thirteenth July in a row. It is an entertainment stew chock full of short plays, musical performances, dance, comedy, storytellers, clowns, puppeteers, improv groups, one man shows, magicians, and visual artists.

There are over 90 opportunities to explore your own tastes and stretch your own limits of acceptability. Some Fringe performances are very good. Some are adult in nature. Some ideas are wonderfully creative and executed. Some shows are just awful.

"Fringe Festivals" are the descendant of something that happened organically in Edinburgh Scotland in the late 1940's. It has acquired a reputation for hosting performances on the "Fringe" of good taste and propriety. That's kind of unfair. There are shows that fit the description, but more "Fringe" is an opportunity join in something developmental and potentially worth seeing.

Anyway back to post World War II Edinburgh, eight uninvited theatre groups appeared at the established Edinburgh International Theater Festival. These groups found venues around the "Fringe" of the established event to display their wares. The idea spread and grew. "Fringe Festivals" now thrive after 80 years on six continents.

Here is how it all works. Fringers buy a $5.00 Fringe button and pick up a program at any of the seventeen venues around town or at the "Kansas City Fringe" office in the lower level of Union Station. The button allows "Fingers" to buy a $10 entrance ticket to any of the one hour or so performances.

Is it great? Well, you pays your money and you takes your chances. A lot of this stuff is experimental. About 20 percent of Kansas City performers travel around the country and the world to various versions of "Fringes." The Kansas City Fringe features local performances plus American performers who have arrived from homes located from sea to shining sea. One is from Alaska. Another is from New York City.

The Kansas City Fringe Festival continues all over through July 30. The web site is www.kcfringe.org.

          Todo lo Que Necesitas Saber Sobre Las Previsualizaciones en Lightroom        

¿Te has planteado alguna vez cómo es posible que Lightroom maneje con tanta agilidad los cientos o miles de fotos que tienes en tu catálogo? En mi caso, tengo catálogos con más de 20.000 fotos y resulta increíble la velocidad con la que las gestiona y me las presenta Lightroom. ¿Cómo consigue esto? Pues, entre […]

...seguir leyendo...

          ESM's QuickLessons A DearMYRTLE Genealogy Study Group Lesson 8         

Hilary Gadsby

QuickLesson 8: What Constitutes Proof?    
Elizabeth Shown Mills, “QuickLesson 8: What Constitutes Proof?” Evidence Explained: Historical Analysis, Citation & Source Usage (https://www.evidenceexplained.com/content/quicklesson-8-what-constitutes-proof : accessed 4 May 2016).

Genealogy, like many other disciplines, has to acknowledge that just because something has been recorded, be it, written, spoken or visual, does not automatically make it truthful or accurate. 
Incorrect information may have been recorded for any number of reasons. 
Alterations can be made, even in official documents, which means that the information contained in a source may not reflect the truth.

In this lesson, the author, explains how genealogical proof is a process of building or assembling the evidence required.

When a structure is built we need to take care to build it correctly so it can stand the test of time like the castle in this photograph.

Lindisfarne Castle

If we fail to maintain the structure or do not consider correctly what we need to correctly build it initially we could end up with something similar to this second photograph.

Lindisfarne Priory
So what things do we need to consider in order to build a robust proof.

Elizabeth Shown Mills suggests we need 11 basics in building our proof.
These key words sum up those points.
        1. Thorough
        2. Thoughtful
        3. Careful
        4. Unbiased
        5. Accurate
        6. Knowledgable
        7. Skilled
        8. Creative
        9. Critical
        10. Logical
        11. Well-reasoned
If all of these come in to play it would be reasonable to assume that any beginner would be unlikely to have all the skills needed to produce a well crafted proof. But none of these is unsurmountable and the skills and knowledge can be acquired through practice and education. 
Many of these skills may be taught in school and there has never been a better time to attain the knowledge of what resources are available in order to carry out thorough research.

Do not expect the answers to your research questions to be found in a single document, if an answer is there, consider how you confirm it is correct.
Many things require interpretation, it may be that any conclusion is just the best inference drawn from the resources currently available. We must always be open to changing our interpretation if further evidence is found.

Being thorough does not solely mean finding lots of sources, it also applies to how we look at what we have found. We need to consider, each of these words, each time we look at information, if we are to interprete all of the evidence we have.

It is almost certain that each of us at some stage in our research have gone back to a document or individual in our research to discover that due to a lapse in applying the basics we have missed or misinterpreted something.

I had mistakenly assigned the wrong parents to one of my husband's ancestors Richard Ward. There were 2 Richard's in Croxton Kerrial, Leicestershire, England. One christened on 6 Jun 1813 son of William and Catharine and the other on 25 Jun 1809 son of Catherine Ward which I now believe to be the correct Richard. The year of birth from the 1841-1871 census returns varies between 1809-1811 and the place of birth of Mary his wife is listed as outside Leicestershire, Marston Lincolnshire or Leicestershire, Muston, Leicestershire and Harston, Leicestershire on the census returns. I had failed to note the earlier christening fitted the information from the census records and that the Richard christened in 1813 had married a Sarah and moved to Harston, Leicestershire. Subsequent research has found Mary, whose maiden name was given as Gray at marriage and in christeninng records for some of their children, was herself christened in Marston, Lincolnshire. 

To sum up, each and everyone of us should keep in the back of our minds whenever we evaluate our sources, am I involving those basics in reaching my current conclusion. 

          Where next for Twile?        

Do you want more of your family to be involved in creating Family History for future generations?

Whether it's taking pictures, writing stories, or just sharing experiences, we are all creating our own family history everyday. 
The younger generation use social media to interact with each other and some even use it to keep up with their families. 
If you use Facebook you will see numerous photographs every day. Some of these are of milestone events weddings, christenings, birthdays and other special occasions. 
Would you like to save these for your descendants to see or share them with family who live away? 
Some members of the family may be reluctant to share in such a public arena and would prefer a more private place.

Twile was created so families can share there experiences and knowledge about the family in a fun interactive way and everyone can add their own part of the story. 
It uses timelines and is very visual great for engaging the younger generation. 
There are also ways of incorporating historic events within your timeline to show how these evnts may have affected your family.

Why not try their 30 day free trial.

I wrote a post in February so take a look if you have not read it and read some of the Twile blog to find out more.

The Twile team (in red) of Paul Brooks, Kelly Marsden and Caroline Brooks at the Find My Past Stand at Who Do You Think You Are Live 2016

Earlier this week I posted about my experience at Guild Conference and WDYTYA Live. Paul Brooks was at both conference and show and was explaining how Twile works and asking whether there is anything they could do to make the website work for those doing surname studies. I must admit I was not sure how it might work.

The team have been busy since Rootstech trying to respond to the suggestions they received from those likely to use the site to build and share their family history.
I could write about the discussion of what is to come but instead I will share with you an interview I conducted with Paul in the hall at Who Do You Think You Are Live.

Here is the link to my interview.

Caroline Brooks talking to a member of the Find My Past team

          Making caves from simplex noise        

In Ephenation, we want underground caves. The requirements on these caves, and their construction, are:

  1. Any sub underground region shall be possible to create without knowledge of neighbour regions.
  2. The caves shall be long and winding.
  3. They shall split and join randomly, sometimes ending in a dead end.
  4. Most of them shall be of a size to allow a player to pass through.
  5. The algorithm shall be based on 3D simplex noise.
The description below is not really depending on OpenGL. Anyway, path finding algorithms are out of the question. The first problem is the simplex noise. I use simplex algorithms defined by Stefan Gustavsson, normalized to the interval 0 to 1. Using a 3D simplex noise produces a density function. The the underground is created as empty space where this density is below a certain threshold, and you will get some kind of caves. But the simplex noise is spherical in nature, and not at all long and winding.

To demonstrate the result, I show pictures of inverted caves. That is, ground where the space should be, and vice versa. This makes it easier to visualize.
density > 0.85
These caves are not very nice. They are too round, and most of them are not connected to each other. One reason for this is the limit set on the density. With a lower density limit, the caves (that is the floating blobs in the picture) will grow, and start to connect.
density > 0.7
This is better. But the caves are starting to dominate the world. That is, there are caves almost everywhere. And they are very wide and spacey, with no feeling of a cramped cave. The question then is if another algorithm than simplex noise should be used.

There is a way to continue, based on this. The principle is that an intersection between two planes is a line. If the planes have a certain thickness, then the line will get a height and width. Thus, the next step is to change the above into curved planes instead of massive objects. An easy way to do this is to have the condition "make stone if density > 0.7 and less than 0.8". That will make most of them hollow. The inside will have no opening to the outside, making it difficult to visualize. But using the Ephenation X-ray view, it will look as follows:
density > 0.7 && density < 0.8
This is now curved planes, sometimes looping around into spheres. If used inverted as caves, you would run around inside these walls, which can be adjusted to an appropriate size. But they are still rather unnatural caves. The trick is to make two such worlds, based on different random seed. That will make two worlds, each looking a little like a bottle full of soap bubbles with thick membranes. Now create a third world as stone, but with the condition for every coordinate to be air if both the first and second world is air. That will be an intersection, looking as follows.
dens1 > 0.7 && dens1 < 0.8 && dens2 > 0.7 && dens2 < 0.8
It is easy to adjust how long the caves shall be. In my example, I am using the interval 0.7 to 0.8. Changing this to 0.45 to 0.55 increases the chance to make tunnels, while still remaining of the approximately same size, and gives the following, based on the same view.
dens1 > 0.45 && dens1 < 0.55 && dens2 > 0.45 && dens2 < 0.55
I should mention that I scale the y argument (the height) to the simplex function a factor of 2 compared to the x and z. That way, the caves get more elongated in horizontal level.

          Setting up a deferred shader        
See also the part 2 about deferred rendering.

The idea with a deferred shader is to use two (or more) shader stages. The first stage will render to internal buffers, but with typically more information than is usually shown on screen. The second stage will use the internal buffers to create the final screen image.

Notice the difference between deferred shading and deferred lighting. The case of deferred lighting only do the lighting in the second (deferred) stage. Information about the geometry is not saved, and so need to be rendered again. It can still be efficient, as the depth buffer is reused.

If there are a lot of effects that are added, like lighting, and other pixel transformations, then it may be a disadvantage to do this in a single render stage (forward renderer). The reason is that a lot of GPU processing power can be used for computing effects of pixels that are thrown away because they were found to be occluded. One advantage of using a deferred shader is that all drawn objects will have light effects added from the same algorithms, even if they use separate first stage shaders (as long as the correct data for the second stage are created).

A disadvantage of a deferred shader is that transparent objects are more difficult to handle. One way is to simply draw the transparent objects after the deferred stage. In my case, I draw the transparent objects also in the deferred stage.

In the following, I will show an example on how it can be implemented. I am using one FBO (frame buffer object), one depth buffer as a render buffer and four colour buffers. The FBO is not a buffer on its own. It is a container object, much like vertex array objects. When a FBO is bound, all drawing will go to the attached buffers of the FBO instead of the visible screen. There are two different types of buffers that can be attached; textures and render buffers. The texture buffer is used when the result of the operation shall be used as a texture in another rendering stage. A render buffer, on the other hand, can't be used by a shader. A way to use the result from a render buffer after the draw operation is glReadPixels() or glBlitFramebuffer().

Setting up the FBO
This has to be done again if the screen size changes. As the depth buffer isn't used again after the FBO drawing, it is allocated in a render buffer.

glGenFramebuffers(1, &fboName);
glGenRenderbuffers(1, &fDepthBuffer);

// Bind the depth buffer
glBindRenderbuffer(GL_RENDERBUFFER, fDepthBuffer);
glRenderbufferStorage(GL_RENDERBUFFER, GL_DEPTH_COMPONENT24, width, height);

// Generate and bind the texture for diffuse
glGenTextures(1, &fDiffuseTexture);
glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fDiffuseTexture);
glTexImage2D(GL_TEXTURE_2D, 0, GL_RGBA, width, height, 0, GL_RGBA,

// Generate and bind the texture for positions
glGenTextures(1, &fPositionTexture);
glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fPositionTexture);
glTexImage2D(GL_TEXTURE_2D, 0, GL_RGBA32F, width, height, 0, GL_RGBA, GL_FLOAT,

// Generate and bind the texture for normals
glGenTextures(1, &fNormalsTexture);
glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fNormalsTexture);
glTexImage2D(GL_TEXTURE_2D, 0, GL_RGBA16F, width, height, 0, GL_RGBA, GL_FLOAT,

// Generate and bind the texture for blending data
glGenTextures(1, &fBlendTexture);
glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fBlendTexture);
glTexImage2D(GL_TEXTURE_2D, 0, GL_RGBA, width, height, 0, GL_RGBA,

Now the buffers have been allocated, and have to be attached to the FBO.

// Bind the FBO so that the next operations will be bound to it.
glBindFramebuffer(GL_FRAMEBUFFER , fboName);
// Attach the texture to the FBO
glFramebufferTexture2D(GL_FRAMEBUFFER, GL_COLOR_ATTACHMENT0, GL_TEXTURE_2D, fDiffuseTexture, 0);
glFramebufferTexture2D(GL_FRAMEBUFFER, GL_COLOR_ATTACHMENT1, GL_TEXTURE_2D, fPositionTexture, 0);
glFramebufferTexture2D(GL_FRAMEBUFFER, GL_COLOR_ATTACHMENT2, GL_TEXTURE_2D, fNormalsTexture, 0);
glFramebufferTexture2D(GL_FRAMEBUFFER, GL_COLOR_ATTACHMENT3, GL_TEXTURE_2D, fBlendTexture, 0);

GLenum fboStatus = glCheckFramebufferStatus(GL_FRAMEBUFFER);
printf("DeferredLighting::Init: FrameBuffer incomplete: 0x%x\n", fboStatus);
glBindFramebuffer(GL_FRAMEBUFFER , 0);

As can be seen, the colour buffers are texture buffers. They have an initialized size, but no initialized data. The GL_TEXTURE_MIN_FILTER and GL_TEXTURE_MAG_FILTER doesn't really matter, as the final screen will have the same size as the internal buffers. So there will be no magnification or reduction, but it still has to be defined as default for the reduction is GL_NEAREST_MIPMAP_LINEARDefault for magnification is GL_LINEAR, though.

The FBO is bound using glBindFramebuffer. There are three possible targets, GL_DRAW_FRAMEBUFFERGL_READ_FRAMEBUFFER  and GL_FRAMEBUFFER. It is recommended that GL_FRAMEBUFFER is used when the FBO is defined, and that GL_DRAW_FRAMEBUFFER or GL_READ_FRAMEBUFFER are bound when the FBO is used.

Some explanation is needed why I use 4 colour buffers. These buffers will consume many Megabytes of GPU memory, and should be kept to a minimum. However, with modern graphic cards, the problem is smaller. The fDiffuseTexture will contain the colour of the material. As the original textures are of type GL_RGBA, this buffer can as well be GL_RGBA. The fPositionTexture will store the world coordinates of the pixel. For this, we need higher precision (GL_RGBA32F). The coordinates are needed in the deferred shader to compute distances to lamps and other objects. The fNormalsTexture buffer stores the normals. In this case, a limited precision is good enough (GL_RGBA16F). The normals are needed to compute effects of directional light and lamps. Finally, there is also a fBlendTexture buffer. The blending can also be done in a separate render stage after the deferred shader (remember to reuse the depth buffer if that is the case). But I use the blending data for some special effects in the deferred shader.

First stage shader
The first stage vertex shader looks like this:

#version 130 // This corresponds to OpenGL 3.0
precision mediump float;
uniform mat4 projectionMatrix;
uniform mat4 modelMatrix;
uniform mat4 viewMatrix;
in vec3 normal;
in vec2 texCoord;
in vec4 vertex;
in float intensity; // sun light
in float ambientLight;
out vec3 fragmentNormal;
out vec2 fragmentTexCoord;
out float extIntensity;
out float extAmbientLight;
out vec3 position;
void main(void)
   fragmentTexCoord = texCoord;
   fragmentNormal = normalize((modelMatrix*vec4(normal, 0.0)).xyz);
   gl_Position = projectionMatrix * viewMatrix * modelMatrix * vertex;
   position = vec3(modelMatrix * vertex); // Copy position to the fragment shader
   extIntensity = intensity/255.0;        // Scale the intensity from [0..255] to [0..1].
   extAmbientLight = ambientLight/255.0;

To map output from the first fragment shader stage, I do as follows. This has to be done before the shader program is linked.

glBindFragDataLocation(prg, 0, "diffuseOutput");
glBindFragDataLocation(prg, 1, "posOutput");
glBindFragDataLocation(prg, 2, "normOutput");
glBindFragDataLocation(prg, 3, "blendOutput");

The names are the output names of the fragment shader, which looks as follows. A layout command could also have been used, but it is not available in OpenGL 3.0. The shader is executed twice; first for normal materials, and second for transparent materials. The second time will only have the blendOutput enabled. The blending uses pre multiplied alpha, which makes the operation associative. The first stage fragment shader looks as follows. For this example, the same shader is used for opaque objects and transparent objects, but eventually they should be split into two.

#version 130 // This corresponds to OpenGL 3.0
precision mediump float;
uniform sampler2D firstTexture;
in vec3 fragmentNormal;
in vec2 fragmentTexCoord;
in vec3 position;       // The model coordinate, as given by the vertex shader
out vec4 diffuseOutput; // layout(location = 0)
out vec4 posOutput;     // layout(location = 1)
out vec4 normOutput;    // layout(location = 2)
out vec4 blendOutput;   // layout(location = 3)
void main(void)
   posOutput.xyz = position;   // Position given by the vertext shader
   normOutput = vec4(fragmentNormal, 0);
   vec4 clr = texture(firstTexture, fragmentTexCoord);
   float alpha = clr.a;
   if (alpha < 0.1)
       discard;   // Optimization that will not change the depth buffer
   blendOutput.rgb = clr.rgb * clr.a; // Pre multiplied alpha
   blendOutput.a = clr.a;
   diffuseOutput = clr;

Deferred stage shader
The vertex shader is very simple. It is used only to draw two triangles covering the whole window. The main work will be done in the fragment shader. The default projection of OpenGL is x and y in the range [-1,+1]. The position information forwarded to the fragment shader has to be in the range [0,1] as it is used to interpolate in the textures. The triangles are defined in the range [0,1], which I transform to the range [-1,+1]. This is a simple operation with no need for a transformation matrix.

#version 130 // This corresponds to OpenGL 3.0
precision mediump float;
in vec4 vertex;
out vec2 position;
void main(void)
   gl_Position = vertex*2-1;
   gl_Position.z = 0.0;
   // Copy position to the fragment shader. Only x and y is needed.
   position = vertex.xy;

The fragment shader for the deferred stage looks as follows. Some simplifications have been done to keep the listing short. Other lighting effects are easy to add, e.g. material properties for reflection. The specular glare should not be the same for all materials. Other things that can be added is information about ambient light and sun light, which would also need to be prepared in the first render stage. More texture buffers can be allocated for this, but there are unused space available already in the current buffers (i.e. the alpha channels). The input textures are the ones generated by the FBO.

#version 130 // This corresponds to OpenGL 3.0
precision mediump float;
uniform sampler2D diffuseTex; // The color information
uniform sampler2D posTex;     // World position
uniform sampler2D normalTex;  // Normals
uniform sampler2D blendTex;   // A bitmap with colors to blend with.
uniform vec3 camera;          // The coordinate of the camera
in vec2 position;             // The world position
out vec4 fragColor;           // layout(location = 0)
void main(void)
   // Load data, stored in textures, from the first stage rendering.
   vec4 diffuse = texture2D(diffuseTex, position.xy);
   vec4 blend = texture2D(blendTex, position.xy);
   vec4 worldPos = texture2D(posTex, position.xy);
   vec4 normal = texture2D(normalTex, position.xy);
   // Use information about lamp coordinate (not shown here), the pixel
   // coordinate (worldpos.xyz), the normal of this pixel (normal.xyz)
   // to compute a lighting effect.
   // Use this lighting effect to update 'diffuse'
   vec4 preBlend = diffuse * lamp + specularGlare;
   // manual blending, using premultiplied alpha.
   fragColor = blend + preBlend*(1-blend.a);
// Some debug features. Enable any of them to get a visual representation
// of an internal buffer.
// fragColor = (normal+1)/2;
//      fragColor = diffuse;
// fragColor = blend;
// fragColor = worldPos; // Scaling may be needed to range [0,1]
// fragColor = lamp*vec4(1,1,1,1);

Execute the drawing every frame
Now everything has been prepared, and can be used for every frame update. Clear the fbo buffers from the previous frame:

glBindFramebuffer(GL_DRAW_FRAMEBUFFER, fboName);
glDrawBuffers(4, windowBuffClear); // Select all buffers
glClearColor(0.0f, 0.0f, 0.0f, 0.0f); // Set everything to zero.

Execute the first render stage, which will fill out the internal buffers with data:

// Do not produce any blending data on the 4:th render target.
glDrawBuffers(4, windowBuffOpaque);
DrawTheWorld(); // Will also produce depth data in the depth buffer

GLenum windowBuffTransp[] = { GL_NONE, GL_NONE, GL_NONE, GL_COLOR_ATTACHMENT3 };
glDrawBuffers(4, windowBuffTransp); // Only update blending buffer
// Use alpha 1 for source, as the colours are premultiplied by the alpha.
// The depth buffer shall not be updated.
glBlendFunc(GL_SRC_ALPHA, GL_ONE_MINUS_SRC_ALPHA); // Restore to default
glBindFramebuffer(GL_DRAW_FRAMEBUFFER, 0);

The output from the first render stage is now available in the texture buffers. Execute the second render stage, the deferred shader.

// The depth buffer from stage 1 is not used now as the fbo is disabled.


glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fBlendTexture);

glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fNormalsTexture);

glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fPositionTexture);

glBindTexture(GL_TEXTURE_2D, fDiffuseTexture);



The result

The material colour information.

Positional data.


Final result. In this picture, blending data, lamps, fog effects and ambient light are also used.

Update history

2012-09-13 Added reference to deferred lighting. Clarified some distinction between using GL_FRAMEBUFFER, GL_DRAW_FRAMEBUFFER and GL_READ_FRAMEBUFFER. Cleaned up the fragment shader of the first stag.
2012-10-26 Add reference to part 2.

          Re: This is going to be a regular thing? [by JrMcDeath]        
HeroMorph site questions & Suggestions:: This is going to be a regular thing?

thestarkiller wrote:
I understand the reason behind it, and I'll go with it if that's what you want to do. It's all about what's visually stimulating, which is what really sets it apart from movies, as in my comparison below. With film you have story, characterization, sound, direction, AND visual stimulation to account for, whereas here it really needs to be about what's pleasing to the eye and nothing else.

That being said, lol, I'd like to go back to my Academy Awards comparison and say that I can remember years where there wasn't a single movie that came out that I personally considered "Oscar worthy", but the Academy still, by their own rules, had to pick from what was released that year (which is probably why Titanic got one in the first place. . .a buddy took me to see it and wouldn't let me walk out halfway through like I wanted, lol).

I really don't want to seem like I'm angry about this, because I'm not. I'm deeply honored when I do get one of my images chosen for the list, but I don't ever expect it. There are so many other artists on this site who are much more talented than I am, so I never really make images with the intent of trying for the list. It just confused me a little as to why that was being done. Thank you for clarifying.

That is the longest way of saying "thanks for clarifying" Also, why did your buddy take you to Titanic? Hummmmmmmmm?????? Class Diagram

There are a few issues that I've identified right now:

  1. What type do I use for the selections?

    Since I'm allowing heterogeneous selections, I need an array which can hold basically any CS engine object, including factories. I'm thinking a csWeakRefArray of iBase will work. It should use weak references since, we don't want to keep objects around if they deleted. Perhaps I need to call csWeakRefArray::Compact() before any function dealing with the selection, so I don't need to deal with invalid objects.

  2. How do I get the property editor for the selected objects?

    Each SCF interface will have its own property category, and each of these categories will be registered with the main property editor. To display the appropriate property editor for the selection, for each object, I should query each possible SCF interface until I find a match. The downside of this is that it has to test each and every interface for each object.

    Something like:

    class MeshWrapperPropertyCategory {
      // Pretty name for the category
      const char* GetCategory() {
        return "Mesh Wrapper";
      bool AddToEditor(iBase* obj, PropertyEditor* propEditor) {
        iMeshWrapper* mesh = scfQueryInterface<iMeshWrapper>(obj);
        if (!mesh) return false;
        // ...
        // Add properties to propEditor.
        // These will also setup property change handlers which will call the interface's functions.
        // ...
        return true;
      // Property change handlers go here.

    This should allow you to edit objects of different types as long as they share some common SCF interface. The property editor will only show the interfaces in common. This will also reduce the amount of querying being done, since if the first object doesn't have interface X, we don't have to check if the next object has it.

  3. How do I register the tools with the toolbox?

    When a tool will registers itself with the tool manager, the tool manager should publish a ToolAdded event to its listeners. Among the listeners will be the ToolboxPanel. This should solve that.

  4. How to draw special stuff like the selection, manipulators for the move, rotate, and scale tools, or billboard icons for lights so you can select them visually?

    These should be handled in different classes.

    The CS view should draw the selection bounding box and the billboards for lights.
    The move, rotate, and scale tools should draw the manipulators.

  5. Where to use SCF interfaces in the code?

    I think one of the annoyances of CStudio was that everything was an interface and you had to put up with a lot of SCF boilerplate and interface querying to do anything. That said, I think that parts of the editor which are meant to be implemented by plugins should use SCF so that I can leave the dirty work of plugin loading to SCF. So, you'll probably end up seeing iTool, iPanel, and iAction. I'll have to read up more on SCF and talk to my mentor to make sure this is what I want.

Still, the diagram is missing some detail, e.g. tool and property category registration, various events/listeners, settings manager, and many tools/actions are not shown.

I will try to come up with a more complete diagram tomorrow and then I'll try to sort out any further difficulties. Hopefully I can get my hands on some code soon. In the meantime, to entertain my thirst for action rather than abstract thinking, I will try to set up the build system to work with wxAUI and wxPropertyGrid.

          2016 New Acquisitions / 7 Years of PLL!!!!!!!        
 I have no excuse! I have been very behind on accessioning books into the Library. Okay - one excuse is the lack of available shelf-space. I am working on making space on the shelf for all of these books. Pictured above are four books in the Robert Smithson Collection:

Mallarmé by Guy Michaud (also below, such a beautiful cover!)
New Lives, New Landscapes by Nan Fairbrother
American Space by John Jackson
The Watershed: A Biography of Johannes Kepler by Arthur Koestler

 More from the Robert Smithson Collection:

The Artist's World in Pictures by Fred McDurrah
Jackson Pollock: Energy Made Visible by B.H. Friedman
Modern Artists in America, vol. 1, edited by Robert Motherwell and Ad Reinhardt
Object & Idea: An Art Critic's Journal 1961-1967 by Brian O'Doherty

Below is a spread in the "Women Artists" (hmmm) chapter of The Artist's World in Pictures.

 Below are more art books from the Smithson Collection:

Turner: His Life & Work by Jack Lindsay
Matisse by Jacques Lassaigne
Matisse and the Nude by Alan Bowness
Art & Visual Perception by Rudolf Arnheim

One of the loveliest spreads in a book - from Lassaigne's Matisse - seen above.

 Gardening & Gardens! (from Smithson's Collection):

Lawns & Ground Covers by James Crockett
Italian Gardens by Georgiana Masson
Gardens of England & Wales Open to the Public by National Gardens Scheme
Garden Making by Example by G.C. Taylor

Below, an example of what you can learn from Lawns & Ground Covers:
 At this point, just assume these books are from the Smithson Collection, unless I say otherwise:

Let's Explore Indian Villages by Bertha Dutton
Dictionary of Geological Terms by American Geological Institute
Clocks & Watches by Chester Johnson
Easy Guide to Merida, Yucatan and Nearby Archaeological Zones by Richard Bloomgarden

Insect Ways by Clarence Weed
The Observer's Book of Common Insects and Spiders by E.F. Linssen
The Ants by Wilhelm Goetsch

From Maria Mitchell's Collection - one of the most incredible astronomy books in the PLL holdings! This is truly a book to see in person:

Outlines of Astronomy by Sir John Herschel

Not pictured, but also accessioned:

The Social History of Art, vol. 2 by Arnold Hauser (Robert Smithson Collection)
Geography of the Heavens by Elijah Burritt (Maria Mitchell Collection)

For any questions about the Library, the Collections, membership, or to check out a book, please contact the Librarian at personallibraries{at}gmail{dot}com.

          The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy + When Looking Down is Looking Up        
The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy + When Looking Down is Looking Up
December 12, 2015 - January 17, 2016
7326 N. Chicago / Portland, Ore. / 97203
Opening Reception + Book Launch / Saturday, December 12 / 5 - 7 pm
Gallery Hours / Friday - Sunday / 12 - 5

The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy
2015 Portland Publication Fair
Sunday, December 13 / 12 - 6
The Cleaners at Ace Hotel / 1022 SW Stark / Portland, Ore. / 97205

The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy is a book that reproduces over one hundred, self-reflexive black pages from multiple, paperback editions & copies of Laurence Sterne's The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman. When taken out of context and accumulated, these once playful, visual metaphors reveal the printing inconsistencies of ink on paper (varying density, hickeys, oxidation spots, and moiré patterns). The hidden nature of the page, that which was unread, can now be read. In this case, astronomical imagery is revealed; that of stars speckled across an inky blackness or the soft haze and ripple of a galaxy. Since the 1760s, readers, printers and publishers have been forced to grapple with the black pages of Sterne's novel; this struggle with discovery, meaning, and craft is at the heart of The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy.

The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy can be purchased through c3:initiative, at the 2015 Portland Publication Fair, or by contacting the artist at personallibraries {at} gmail {dot} com for $70 USD.

The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy is funded in part by the Regional Arts & Culture Council.

When Looking Down is Looking Up is an ongoing investigation of the shift from outer space to page as a re-envisioning of matter and printed matter. It centers on how when contemplating what is known and unknown, one usually finds themselves either staring down at the page or up into the sky. The viewing at c3:initiative from December 12, 2015 to January 17, 2016 will include photographs and book works.

I would like to thank Shir and Erin at c3:initiative for supporting When Looking Down is Looking Up and The Secret Astronomy of Tristram Shandy, as well as Publication Studio for continued support and for organizing the Publication Fair.

Publication Studio
2015 Publication Fair
          September New Acquisitions!        
As we head into Autumn, I found a moment to accession the PLL's newest batch of books. All but one are from the Robert Smithson Collection. The following, Spectrum Analysis by Henry Roscoe, is from the Maria Mitchell Collection. This beautiful volume has multiple color images of spectra, such as the "Spectra of the Metals of the Alkalies & Alkaline Earths:"

A grouping of blue covers
The Antarctic Challenged by Admiral Lord Mountevans
Module, Proportion, Symmetry, Rhythm by Gyorgy Kepes
The Mystery of Matter, edited by Louise Young

Kepes founded the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT; his research can be seen in these book spreads:

A group of grey covers

Notebooks 1914-1917 by Ludwig Wittgenstein
The Cardinal Points of Borges, edited by L. Dunham and Ivar Ivask
Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind by Shunryu Suzuki

The last groupings contain

Revolution for the Hell of It by Free (Abbie Hoffman)
Shells & Shelling by Ralph Barrett
Trees of North America by C. Frank Brockman
The Shape of Time: Remarks on the History of Things by George Kubler
Art and Culture by Clement Greenberg
Paul Gauguin's Intimate Journals by Gauguin

Shells & Shelling is a comprehensive guide that is beautifully designed:

For any questions about the Library, the Collections, membership, or to check out a book, please contact the Librarian at personallibraries{at}gmail{dot}com.

          J'Aime La Perla, o perfume lingerie da sedução        
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Perfume da Rosa Negra
From Perfume, We Return!

O toque de uma sedosa e sedutora lingerie no corpo da mulher tem o poder da transformação assim como o toque de um perfume na pele. Ambos tornam - a mais desejável pelo outro, mais amada por si mesmo e em sintonia com seu corpo, seus sentidos e desejos. Após o primeiro beijo do perfume, peróla preciosa para o olfato, vem a explosão quente e especiada das pimentas, o calor que leva ao prazer do querer, a expressão máxima do desejo. O sussurro inevitável é o Eu amo, amo... faltam palavras, resta a ela render-se ao J'aime melódico e incendiário provocado por uma apaixonante fragrancia que abraça o corpo com paixão, com muito tesão...

Assim é J'Aime da marca Italiana de lingerie de alta costura La Perla. É um perfume lingerie da sedução: doce, quente e excitante na sua natureza olfativa; delicado, elegante e apaixonante em seu visual de joia cristalina coberta com negra organza. Como a dualidade feminina que penetra os sentidos e seduz o imaginário, J'Aime é dócil em seus acordes floral e frutal com pimentas, lichia, framboesas e jasmim, e também sabe exalar o mais tentador charme e refinamento ao criar uma base chypre de patchouli com nuance gustativa de caramelo, que aguça o apetite pelo relevar da pele nua,  sempre perfumada e envolvida por finas e íntimas vestimentas. O cheiro floral marcado pelo sabor gostoso das frutas vermelhas  e caramelo é impossível de ser esquecido, assim como também é a visão da bela mulher de sinuosas curvas, trajada com as transparências de uma deslumbrante lingerie.

Com J'Aime, La Perla oferece à mulher uma fragrancia que está em linha com a beleza e a sensualidade do universo que a própria lingerie tem. Prolonga a conexão da marca com um perfume bem elaborado e em sintonia com a intimidade da mulher. É muito sexy e expressivo em sua proposta e, como analogia e semelhança, tem a sedução refinada de um Calvin Klein Euphoria e a delicadeza gustativa de um Miss Dior Cherie. Mais um perfume feminino para usar com amor e paixão por aquelas que gostam de muita doçura a dois.

Perfume: J'Aime La Perla
Versão: EDP
Gênero: Feminino
Notas de saída: Bergamota, pimenta, lichia
Notas de coração: Framboesa, jasmim Egípcio, lírio
Notas de fundo: Patchouli, âmbar, almíscar e caramelo

O melhor da fragrância: É um jovial floral chypre marcante que tem frutas vermelhas e caramelo, mas está longe de ser um perfume  juvenil por ter personalidade olfativa e ser um chypre mais moderninho e sedutor.  De maneira geral, isso só reflete o fato de La Perla produzir bons perfumes.

O pior da fragrância: Bem doce. Pode provocar leve dor de cabeça àqueles mais aversos a fragrancias deste tipo. Um pouco mais de sutileza seria bem vinda.

Poder de fixação: 10 horas

Sillage: Alto

Recomendado: Para mulheres que gostam de florais frutais, florais orientais ou florais chypre com nuances gustativas, longevidade alta e bastante adocicados. Recomendado para pessoas que gostam de perfumes femininos como Miss Dior Cherie, Calvin Klein Euphoria, CH 212 Sexy,  Emanuel Ungaro Apparition, Gucci Rush, Escada Magnetism.

Avaliação Perfume da Rosa Negra

Perfume Review by Cristiane Gonçalves for Perfume da Rosa Negra.

          Convocation 2012        

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September 4, 2012

Amherst marked the beginning of the 2012–13 school year with Opening Convocation at Johnson Chapel on Sept. 3. The first formal gathering of the first-year class, the annual ceremony enables the college’s president and the faculty, dressed in their academic regalia, to officially welcome the new students. Every year, it features a procession, music by the Choral Society and the awarding of master of arts degrees to faculty who have reached the rank of full professor but aren’t graduates of Amherst. (View photos of the entire event at the Amherst College Flickr set.)

In this year’s Convocation address, President Biddy Martin commended the members of the Class of 2016 for having the courage to learn, to be challenged by new ideas and to “combat our own willful ignorance.” “Critical thinking cannot be programmed, but it can be exemplified,” she explained to the audience of first-year students, faculty, staff and others. “It is our job to exemplify it by turning our analytical skills and our patience outward but also inward toward ourselves. The quality of this institution depends on the willingness of our students and faculty and everyone else who works to put their ‘taken-for-granteds’ at risk.”

She discussed the relationships the students would cultivate at college and reminded them of the value of their Amherst education as well. The latter, she told them, is “a launching pad or platform for the work that needs to be done to address the monumental challenges in the world—economic, political, cultural, environmental.… It’s an opportunity to learn not only how to think but [how] to relate to people from every conceivable background, how to engage the world and how to lead.”

Prior to speaking to the first-years, Martin conferred honorary master’s degrees on Catherine Epstein, professor of history and chair of her department; Jeffrey Ferguson, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Black studies and American studies; Caroline Goutte, professor of biology; Amelie Hastie, professor of English and film and media studies and chair of the film studies department; and Nasser Hussain, professor of law, jurisprudence and social thought. She also acknowledged Scott Kaplan ’95, professor of computer science, who was also promoted to full professor but already holds an Amherst degree.

President Biddy Martin’s 2012 Convocation Address


Good evening, and welcome once again. We are gathered to mark the beginning of the academic year, to celebrate teaching and learning and to affirm their importance. We are lucky to be learning and teaching in a community of smart, curious and creative people. By the very nature of this event and its rituals, we commit ourselves to one another and to a larger world that desperately needs its Amhersts. We are all eager just to get on with it, but it makes sense to dwell, even if only briefly, on our work, our relationships, and, perhaps, even our fun.

I know the faculty feels fortunate to be teaching a student body with your talent, curiosity and diversity. You, who are our new and continuing students, are lucky to study with faculty who are contributing to their scholarly fields, creating new knowledge across disciplinary boundaries and investing their creativity in the art of teaching. The Amherst faculty treats teaching with same seriousness they bring to original research. I know from experience that such seriousness is rare. 

In their senior survey, members of the Class of 2012 reported that their favorite teachers were the ones who had the highest expectations of them, who demanded their best work. This is a place that reveres the life of the mind and challenges us to continue a long tradition, a 191-year-old tradition of setting high standards.

In a meeting of Amherst alumni in the chapel last spring, I was asked by an alum what motivates serious scholars to spend their careers teaching undergraduates; “What’s in it for them?” I believe he asked. I had a response ready, based on my own experience as a teacher of both undergraduate and graduate students, but I caught sight of Professor Sarat, a political scientist, who happened to be standing in the back of Johnson Chapel; I asked him to come forward and give the audience his perspective—and he was glad to oblige. I want to read the summary account he sent me later, because what he said is representative of Amherst faculty as a whole. I cannot imagine any member of the faculty who would not agree. “Amherst classrooms at their best,” he said, “are places that combine love, challenge and hope. We want our students not just to learn, but to love ideas, images, mathematical equations.”

“Love,” he cautioned, “cannot be programmed, but it can be exemplified.” We want our students not only to learn, but also to love learning. He continued: “At our best, we try to put our students in a place of productive discomfort … we want to unsettle their taken-for-granteds. We want to challenge their moments of complacency. The return for those of us who teach, of seeing students take up the challenge, venture into that place of productive discomfort, is being inspired by their courage and reminded of what it is like to move beyond our own comfort zones.”

He concluded by saying, “I guess it is all about what they and we are willing to put at risk.”

I like the combination of challenge, love and hope. I like thinking about what it means to put our assumptions, even ourselves, at risk, within what is ultimately a pretty safe environment. If anyone among you doubts that it takes courage to question what we think we know or put our beliefs at risk, you need only look at the ideological rigidity in the world around us and consider the tenacious refusal in broad swaths of the public to accept scientific conclusions or listen to the views of others.

It takes particular courage to combat what we might call our willful ignorance, but we are here to do just that. By “willful ignorance,” I mean the active suppression of knowledge or truth, the kind of ignorance that cannot be changed by the mere addition of new information. In moments of uncertainty and fear, we are particularly prone to indulging our ignorance, and the times are nothing if not uncertain. Our resistance to change is purposeful, but often only at an unconscious level by virtue of our stubborn internalizations.

Last week, [DeMott Lecturer] David Nevins [’88] told you that the most creative periods in his career have often been the most anxiety-ridden; they have come when he was making the transition from one job to another, before he knew the rules and had not yet internalized them. He encouraged you to take advantage of the transition you are making, giving yourselves permission to think otherwise. Permission of that sort requires a fight, because we are largely unaware of the structure of our ignorance, and our prejudices can be forms of love for those from whom we learned or absorbed them. Critical thinking cannot be programmed, but it can be exemplified, and it is our job to exemplify it. The quality of our institution depends on the willingness of students and faculty, and everyone who works here, to put their “taken-for-granteds” at risk.

Amherst sometimes seems like a treasured island, a respite from the inanity or insanity or the ugliness in the world, but it is not an island, and we don’t want it to be. We want it to be a platform or a launching pad for the work that needs to be done if we are to address the monumental challenges we face—economic, environmental, political, social, cultural and psychological. Amherst provides an opportunity to acquire the skills and the quality of thought that is adequate to the problems; it is also an opportunity to learn how to engage and build relationships with people from all over the world; it is an opportunity to learn how to lead.

When I was in London visiting our alumni this summer, I asked some of my interlocutors how they accounted for their love of Amherst. “It’s a place,” said one, “where it was cool to be smart.” We are fortunate to be in a place where it is cool to be smart; cool to be different; cool to be an athlete who puts academics first or finds the right balance between the two; cool not to be an athlete; cool to sing, to dance, to stay up all night studying, even when there is no exam the next day; cool to grasp and appreciate the nature of reality and the complexity of our lives.

I have lots of wishes for you, but I will emphasize two: first, that you reject the substitution all around us of only dimly related bullet points for genuine analysis. I hope you will use your time here to hone your intellectual skills and use them to reach for an understanding of the world—one that integrates the different modes of thought to which you will be exposed; one that displays close reading, critical thinking, analytical reason, creativity and a commitment to clear, compelling exposition. I hope you take full advantage of Amherst’s commitment to great writing and to other forms of creative expression. I hope you go beyond scattered “bullet points” or decontextualized data to a working understanding, or an approach to understanding, that honors imagination, distinguishes between fact and fiction and remains open to new knowledge.

Second, I hope you find ways to let your leisure time be inflected by your intellectual development. It is popular here, as well as at other colleges and universities, to oppose play to work. “Work hard—play hard” becomes a kind of mantra, and sometimes a misguided one. I encourage you not to think of work and play as oppositions. Satisfying play is not the absence of work. It, too, takes cultivation and learning. And work is neither successful nor satisfying if it lacks experimentation, whimsy and fun. Play can be deadening when it is conceived only as an escape from thought. It is possible to relax and have fun, even to be a little oppositional, even a little bad, without suppressing all awareness and judgment.   

You are here to learn not only how to be successful at work but also at play, and much of your playing will occur in relationships with your peers. Indeed, relationships will be a significant focus of your experimentation and growth while you are here—the friendships, love relationships, sexual ones. At least some of you will take an interest in sexuality. Good experiences and relationships cannot be programmed any more than the love of learning can, but they can be exemplified, and they will benefit from the work of thought. I will close with a good example of thought when brought to bear on questions of love and sexuality. In the early part of the 20th century, the German poet Rainer Marie Rilke wrote a letter to a young poet offering advice about the relationship between love, sensuality and work. Rilke warns the young poet against the tendency of young people to abandon themselves in pursuit of love or of one another, and he offers an account of love and marriage that has been cited many times over the past hundred years:

Like so much else, people have also misunderstood the place of love in life, they have made it into play and pleasure because they thought that play and pleasure were more blissful than work; but there is nothing happier than work, and love, just because it is the extreme happiness, can be nothing else but work. For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks; the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation …

but young people fling themselves at one another, when love takes possession of them, scatter themselves, just as they are, in all their untidiness, disorder, confusion … And then what? Each loses himself [herself] for the sake of the other and loses the other and many others still to come. And loses the expanses and the possibilities, exchanges the approach and flight of gentle, divining things for an unfruitful perplexity…

Physical pleasure is a sensual experience no different from pure seeing or the pure sensation with which a fine fruit fills the tongue; it is a great unending experience, which is given us, a knowing of the world, the fullness and the glory of all knowing. And our acceptance of it is not what’s bad; the bad thing is that most people misuse and squander this experience and apply it as a stimulant at the tired spots of their lives and as a distraction instead of a rallying toward more exalted moments … In marriage [relationships] the goal is not to create a quick community of spirit by tearing down and destroying all boundaries. A good marriage [relationship] is one in which each appoints the other guardian of his [her] solitude.

This last sentence is one of the most frequently cited passages in the letter. “A good [relationship] is one in which each appoints the other guardian of his [her] solitude” or separateness. Use your leisure, your play, your relaxation and your relationships with one another as a rallying toward the project of becoming who you are and letting others be engaged in the same work. Respect yourselves, your own boundaries and the boundaries of others.

Take yourselves and your fellow classmates seriously. And, in the process, enjoy! Welcome and welcome back to Amherst.

          15 dicas para deixar o Windows XP mais rápido        
Confira 15 dicas para deixar o Windows XP mais rápido

Quanto mais se usa o computador, mais lento parece que ele fica. Às vezes isso pode ser verdade. Compilamos uma série de 15 dicas que devem deixar o seu computador pelo menos um pouco mais rápido.

1) Memória RAM = velocidade
O equipamento mais importante na hora de se ganhar velocidade é a memória. Quanto mais RAM, mais rápida será a máquina. Grande parte das dicas para deixar o PC mais veloz, giram em torno de como melhor utilizar a memória.

2) Não deixe abertos aplicativos que não usa
Vá em executar e digite "msconfig" e clique em OK. Vá na aba inicializar e desmarque os itens de inicialização que você não utiliza. Estes são os programas que o Windows executa ao inicializar o computador. Clique em OK e reinicialize a máquina. Muito cuidado para não desmarcar itens importantes: se não souber o que é, melhor deixar assim.

3) Desabilite opções de visualização
Abra o Painel de Controle e clique em Sistema. Abra a aba Avançado e dentro de Desempenho, clique no botão configurações. Na aba efeitos visuais, selecione a opção "Ajustar para obter um melhor desempenho".

4) Arquivo de paginação
Quem tem bastante RAM (pelo menos 1 GB) pode desabilitar o arquivo de paginação que o Windows XP utiliza. Este arquivo é um auxiliar da memória, mas no HD. Como a RAM é muito mais rápida que o HD, a velocidade aumenta. Entretanto, se você tem o costume de abrir muitos programas ao mesmo tempo esta opção não é recomendada, já que em seguida a RAM lota.

5) RAM sem dll
Algumas vezes o Windows preserva arquivos de biblioteca (.dll) na memória até mesmo depois que o aplicativo foi encerrado. Isto é feito para que, caso o programa seja reaberto, não seja necessário recarregar a dll.

Para mudar isso, vá em executar e digite "regedit" e clique em OK. Encontre a pasta HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersion Explorer. Crie dentro dela uma nova chave chamada AlwaysUnloadDLL com valor 1. Feche o programa e reinicie a máquina.

6) Indexação automática
O Windows XP faz uma indexação de todos os arquivos do HD para facilitar na hora de fazer uma busca. Este processo pode deixar o computador mais lento e ocupa memória. Para desativar este serviço, vá no Painel de Controle e abra "Adicionar e Remover Programas". Vá em "Adicionar/Remover Componentes de Windows" e desmarque o item "Serviço de Indexação", depois clique em Avançar. Tenha em mente que o computador vai ficar mais rápido, mas as buscas, mais lentas.

7) BootVis
A Microsoft desenvolveu uma ferramenta que faz uma análise dos itens na incialização e os ordena de forma a funcionar de forma mais rápida. O programa, chamado de BootVis, não é mais distribuído pela empresa no site, mas pode ser facilmente encontrado em sites de download pela web. A velocidade de boot melhora consideravelmente com o uso do aplicativo.

8) Atualizar drivers
Mantenha os drivers de vídeo e da placa-mãe em dia. Muitas vezes os drivers contêm atualizações que fazem uma grande diferença.

9) Limpeza de disco
Faça pelo menos uma vez por mês uma limpeza de disco. Clique em Meu Computador, na área de trabalho. Clique com o botão direito sobre o ícone do seu HD principal e vá em "Propriedades". Ao lado do gráfico de capacidade, há um botão chamado "Limpeza de disco". Clique.

10) Atualize o Windows
Visite com freqüência o site de atualização do Windows. Baixe sempre todos as atualizações chamadas "críticas".

11) Não particione o HD
O Windows funciona mais devagar com HDs com partições. Dados não estão mais protegidos em partições diferentes e para reinstalar um sistema não é obrigatória uma formatação.

12) Limpe o computador
Pelo menos uma vez por ano, abra o o computador e com um ventilador expire pó e sujeira, além de conferir se os ventiladores estão funcionando de forma correta.

13) Antivirus
Antivirus é um tipo de programa que deixa o computador mais lento. Todas as informações que a máquina processa ou passam pela rede ele inspeciona, tornando tudo mais devagar. Ainda assim, é um programa fundamental para a proteção da máquina. A solução é escolher um produto que utilize pouca RAM. Consulte os sites de empresas de segurança (como, por exemplo, a McAfee - www.mcafee.com/br/default.asp) para ver o que seu PC precisa.

14) Número de fontes
PCs com mais de 500 fontes instaladas ficam bastante lerdos. Tente manter menos fontes carregadas.

15) Desabilite a restauração do sistema
A restauração do sistema pode ser muito útil na hora de problemas, mas guardar todos esses dados consome literalmente diversos Giga. Para desabilitar a função de restauração, abra o Painel de Controle, clique em Sistema e abra a aba "Restauração do sistema". Desmarque a opção "Desativar restauração do sistema" e clique em OK.
          ADOBE DREAMWEAVER        

Programa para webdesign. Um dos melhores.
Crie sites da Web e aplicativos de nível internacional com uma das ferramentas de criação na Web líderes do setor. O software Adobe® Dreamweaver® CS4 é ideal para designers da Web, desenvolvedores da Web e designers visuais.
* 512MB of RAM

Tamanho : 422 Mb



O Dreamweaver CS4 traz novos recursos e ferramentas adaptadas para qualquer tipo de usuário. Cada vez mais usuários comuns querem aprender como desenvolver páginas de internet, e o programa Adobe Dreamweaver tem facilitado muito, pois consegue reunir na mesma interface recursos para programadores — que tem como base o código puro — e também recursos para os designers que são os mais experientes quando falamos do visual das páginas.

Tamanho: 140 MB

          Annual Mormon Book Review        

Carrying on from last year's review of David Robert's Devil's Gate: Brigham Young and the Great Mormon Handcart Tragedy, here is a second review of another Mormon-centered book. Enjoy!

Jared Farmer. On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008. 455 pages. Cloth: Alkaline Paper. $29.95.

From the early days of the inception of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints (LDS), the Mormons were concerned with place-making. Joseph Smith, the religion’s founder, initially identified Jackson County, Missouri as the “center place,” where the Garden of Eden had once stood. However, the devout were soon thrown out of the state by the governor, and moved on to Nauvoo, Illinois. Later, after Smith was assassinated, the new Mormon leader, Brigham Young, turned his gaze farther west and in 1846-1847 led a party of followers to Utah, which he claimed as “Deseret”—their Zion. There, the Saints found their “place apart” from the rest of the world.

Jared Farmer’s 2008 book On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape adroitly traces Mormon place-making in Utah. His story is ostensibly about Mount Timpanogos, a landmark known as “Timp” that unites the skyline above Orem and Provo. But the history involves much more than the mountain. It is a microcosm of Angloamerican settlement in the west. Using a singular landmark, Farmer delves into the importance of creating place out of space. He asks why Mount Timpanogos usurped the importance of the historically and agriculturally significant Lake Utah, and how the Mormon settlers manipulated their turbulent history with the Ute Indians in order to make myths and claim places as their own. The book deals with two centuries of history, as well as the interaction between varied cultures and the sometimes contradictory dogma of the LDS Church. Though complex, On Zion’s Mount is a wonderfully executed book—well written, insightful, and an excellent example of how to use local history to illuminate greater historical narratives.

The book is divided into three sections, each focusing on a different step in the climb to the veneration of “Timp.” The first, “Liquid Antecedents,” deals with the early history of the Ute Indians and the Mormons. It also concentrates on how bodies of water were significant to residents and settlers in the Utah Valley. This section is compelling, as Farmer explains just how distinct the freshwater Lake Utah was in the arid Great Basin. The lake was a natural landmark for the Utes, who relied heavily on its plentiful supply of fish. In the mid-1800s, it became a landmark for the Mormons, who arrived predisposed to seek out monuments in their new “holy land.”

Despite the Mormons’ intention to find a locale that was disconnected from the rest of the world, the Utah Valley, where the first waves of Mormons settled, was not a “place apart.” It was populated with Ute Indians, who had lived in the area for centuries. The wellspring for many of these Utes was Utah Lake, a freshwater reservoir southeast of the Great Salt Lake. The Indians there called themselves Timpanogos Nuche—“Rocky River Fish Eaters.” They identified themselves in connection with the body of water. The Mormons entered into an unstable relationship with the Timpanogos; an association characterized by violent fits, uneasy alliances, and contradictory feelings. This fluctuating friendship came with a bond to Utah Lake.

Both the Timpanogos and the Mormons emphasized the importance of place. The Utes classified bands by “geographic food names” like “Lake People” and “Fish-Eaters.” (25) The Saints were concerned with place as it related to Millenialism. While other religions affected by the Second Great Awakening believed in a prediction of when Christ would return, the Mormons were concerned with where. (36) When the Mormons arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, the hot springs, streams, and of course the Great Salt Lake all contributed to the Saints’ belief that they had found their promised land. In the waters they took healing baths, baptized their children, and fished. These same waters had been frequented by the Utes for decades, if not centuries.

From their introduction onward, relations between the Mormons and the Timpanogos were rocky. In 1849, the former noticed that livestock was missing, and rallied a group to ride south and confront Little Chief, a Ute leader who lived on the shores of Utah Lake. The chief turned the Saints towards some “mean Ewtes,” who they subsequently slaughtered for stealing.(62) Three days afterward, a band of Mormon men decided to relocate their families to Utah Lake. The Saints settled in the midst of hostilities between bands of Utes. In order to secure their own safety, the settlers at Utah Lake as well as the LDS leadership engaged in unsteady diplomacy and occasional fights with different Indian contingents.

To complicate the already problematic situation, Mormons arrived in Utah with preconceptions of Native Americans. In fact, Indians were integral to the burgeoning religion’s discourse. According to LDS dogma, Indians were descendants of the “Lamanites,” once followers of Christ who traveled to America before the Babylon captivity. In the New World, the hostile sect broke away from their brothers, the “Nephites.” For this, God cursed the Lamanites with dark skin. The ill-fated group waged war on the Nephites and erased any fragments of Christianity from the land. The last Nephite scribe, Moroni, was the impetus for the Mormon religion. He came to Joseph Smith in a dream and told him where to find the scriptural record of this lost history. With his revelation of the sanctity of the Lamanites, Smith incorporated proselytizing to Indians into the Book of Mormon. The descendants of the Lamanites who converted would be saved during the Second Coming. More importantly, they would assist Christ in destroying the earth as soldiers of the apocalypse. This created a contradictory idea of Native Americans: “They were cursed to be inferior yet promised to be superior. They were destined to save the world, yet they couldn’t save themselves.”(57) Furthermore, dealing with real-life Utes proved harder than the LDS leadership imagined.

The tension in Saints’ beliefs between “Indian-as-brother and Indian-as-other” continued to influence their interactions with natives around Utah Lake.(61) Young was wary of the amicable relations between his followers and the Timpanogos and wished that the two groups not mix. In 1850, following the murder of an Indian man, the Mormons and the Utes engaged in the “Indian War.” Later, LDS leadership chastised natives for engaging in slave trade with a New Mexican. Though in Mormon thought there were some redeemable Indians, by 1860 Young was determined that the Utes ought to be displaced. He wrote to Washington, D.C.: “It is our wish that the Indian title should be extinguished, and the Indians removed from our Territory (Utah) and that for the best of reasons, because they are doing no good here to themselves or any body else.”(82) By the latter half of the 1860s most of the Timpanogos people moved to the Uinta Basin, estranged from the place upon which they based their identity.

Following the removal of the Utes, Utah Lake experienced a surge and then a decline in popularity that mirrored the fate of other regional waterways. In the late 19th century, tourists came to the area to take in the healing waters of the hot springs, the Great Salt Lake, and Utah Lake. Additionally, the latter continued to be a distinguished fishery. However, this fame did not last. In the first half of the 20th century, fires destroyed a number of Salt Lake resorts. Overfishing and the introduction of nonnative species affected Utah Lake. The Great Depression and WWII furthered the destruction of water sport popularity. The federal government opened the Geneva Steel plant on Utah Lake; its smokestacks and pollution diminished the reservoir’s beauty and water quality. Even after the plant closed in 2001, the lake had lost its reputation. Residents considered it dirty, shallow, and full of undesirable fish. Furthermore, during the twentieth century Utahans rethought their sense of identity. Instead of revering the hydrological geography of Utah, its residents had turned their gaze upward to the peaks.

The second section of the book, “Making a Mountain: Alpine Play,” discusses how Utahans built Mount Timpanogos into a landmark. Farmer makes great use of the exclusion of certain places as well as their later inclusion. Using topographical resources from the four western surveys, as well as mormon settler drawings and maps, Farmer shows how Timpanogos went from being an undefined ridge in the Wasatch Range to a distinct massif that overshadowed both the larger Mount Nebo to the south and the historically significant Lake Utah to the west.

As in the first three chapters, Farmer employs LDS beliefs to form the basis of his argument. The Saints’ theological sense of place included an emphasis on mountains. Settlers viewed their new homeland through religion; mountains pervade world religions as the geographical pathway to God. Peaks were of special importance to Mormons, since Joseph Smith purportedly prophesied that they would “become a mighty people in the midst of the Rocky Mountains.”(150) When the Saints arrived in Deseret, they labeled many geographic sites with biblical names, including Mount Nebo, the highest peak in the Wasatch range. However, in the 1880s Mormons began to secularize their environment. This shift was motivated by the United States Congress, which outlawed theocracy and polygamy. During what Mormons call “The Great Accommodation,” the Saints rethought the peaks in a patriotic light.

The King Survey was the first to identify “Tim-pan-o-gos Peak” in 1869.(164) However, no one considered it a defining aspect of the region, and many could not even see it; the massif was just a part of the jagged wall between Provo and American Fork Canyons. It wasn’t until the early decades of the 20th century that residents of Provo “began to visualize a mountain.”(167) The view of Timpanogos from Provo changed as the town relocated to the east of its original home at old Fort Utah. Spurred by the historic importance of mountains to the Mormons as well as the “European vogue of alpine aesthetics,” it was not unnatural for the residents of Provo to revere a nearby peak.(141) By 1910, the town described itself in relation to the mountain.

The King Survey did more than just identify Mount Timpanogos—the survey also pronounced it (erroneously) the highest peak in the Wasatch Range. In reality, that title belongs to Mount Nebo. However, the claim persisted even after the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey corrected the record, and tourists began arriving to climb the “highest mountain in the Wasatch.”(175) With the boosterism of Eugene “Timpanogos” Roberts, Brigham Young University’s athletics director, and the national increase in the popularity of hiking, “Timp” became a recreational landmark. Roberts led yearly hikes to the top of the massif, and along with the claim that they were climbing the highest peak in the Wasatch, boosters “endlessly repeated claims that the Annual Timpanogos Hike ranked as the biggest hike in America, the greatest community hike in the world, and the largest ‘pilgrimage’ to any mountain over 10,000 feet.”(202) The peak, as well as its ascent were powerful symbols of community strength.

Though the hike was discontinued in the 1970s, the peak remained emblematic of Provo. The Forest Service designated Timpanogos as wilderness. They banned the grazing of domestic animals and introduced mountain goats to the area in 1981. Meanwhile, Provo and Orem transformed from farming communities into suburbia and Robert Redford bought and built up Sundance. These changes emphasized the dichotomy between wilderness and urban areas. With the growth in population of the two cities and the ski resort, Timpanogos increased in importance. In 1996 the mountain’s significance was solidified in Mormon minds when the LDS Church built Mount Timpanogos Temple. Farmer ends this section with a rumination on environmentalism. Despite all the reverence for place, Mormons are not conservationists, and do not engage in preservation of their landmark. “Sense,” he concludes, “is not the same as sensibility.”(238)

The final section of the book, “Making a Mountain: Indian Play,” investigates how “Timp” was marked with cultural meaning. Farmer examines the place name as well as the legends that surround it. In the nineteenth century, white Americans like Henry Schoolcraft and Lydia Sigourney advocated the use of Indian place-names, despite the usual miscommunication, misappropriation, or blatant invention of “native” words. The American government continued the trend by accepting Indianist names of states. In Utah, “Timpanogos” was a long-remembered name in the Provo region. The Indians themselves were displaced to the Uinta Band, and though the name had originally designated a river, the waterway had been renamed “Provo River.” For locals, associating the mountain with a Native word “gave the landmark a heightened semblance of antiquity and authenticity.”(281)

Ironically, to further this authenticity, Eugene “Timpanogos” Roberts provided the mountain with a fake Indian legend. “The Story of Utahna and Red Eagle, an Indian Legend of Timpanogos” retold a familiar Angloamerican tale of the Indian Princess—the “dark-skinned Sappho” throwing herself from a precipice in response to a suitor.(287) These stories, all of which have suspect providence, used Native American tragedies to deepen American antiquity.(297) In a land without any ancient city walls or moldering castles, a sense of historic depth was created through legend. Additionally, the legends of leaping maidens alleviated whites’ guilt on displacing the Indians across the continent. The tales emphasized either brutish men that the women could only escape by committing suicide or savage societies that forced women to neglect her chosen lover. Either ended with the implicit message: the race of Indians is uncivilized. More importantly, the destruction of these Native maids was self-imposed. In an age when America was dealing with the morality of Indian Removal, it was more convenient for white storytellers that the natives to make the choice of self-destruction.(314)

The Legend of Timpanogos gained further footing by its performance in Utah. People repeated the story of Utahna and Red Eagle, and the tale influenced an opera, a ballet, and an oratorio. Locals further promoted the fake history by dressing up in war paint and moccasins and climbing the mountain “as Indians.” The mountain was seen as the embodiment of a Native woman; like the “Sleeping Ute” in Colorado, “Timp’s” ridge resembles a slumbering Indian maid. The Mormon use of Indianist music, storytelling, and fashion to create the Legend of Timpanogos was paradoxical in that they paid homage to a romanticized version of the people that they had forced out of the Utah Valley—the Timpanogos’ ancestral home. These cultural performances replaced history with both fiction and selective memory. Modern residents of Utah formed their own heritage; no matter that their memory is based on a fallacy.

But of course it does matter, which is Farmer’s point. Mormons produced a heritage that all but erased the Utes, just as it effaced the importance of Utah Lake. Instead of concentrating on their forebears’ efforts to colonize a “place apart,” which would necessitate emphasis on their interactions with the Indian inhabitants, Saints overwhelming focused their attention on the successive journeys westward. LDS theologians went so far as to modify the meaning of a Lamanite, so that Amerindians lost their scriptural status.(370) When they did incorporate Native Americans into their heritage, they did so with Indianist fictional stories that obscured history with romanticism. In this way, Farmer’s book acts as a historical monument, countering the heritage attached to Mount Timpanogos. Using “Timp” as a framework for his study, Farmer is able to resurrect the forgotten history of the Timpanogos Nuches and Lake Utah.

On Zion’s Mount is an outstanding cultural, local, environmental, and religious history. Farmer engages readers with his lucid prose even as he presents the tangled story of Mormons, Utes, and the western landscape. Such excellent writing is especially important when one is reminded of some of the recently popular books on Mormon history: Jon Krakauer’s Under the Banner of Heaven and David Roberts’ Devil’s Gate: Brigham Young and the Great Mormon Handcart Tragedy.19 Krakauer and Roberts are both professional journalists and authors; their work is aimed at the populace rather than the academy. And yet Farmer rivals these works in its composition and surpasses them in its historic breadth and depth. More importantly for scholars, his argument illuminates the American inclination to transform its landscape and pinpoints those transformations in culture and historic memory. Overall, Timpanogos’ jagged ridge proved an excellent vantage point from which to view Utah’s past.
          Obama Fights Back        
The newest fight on the political front is "the great smear," as I will call it. It started when McCain started to question Obama's relationship with Bill Ayers, who was one of the leaders of The Weathermen, a group of anti-Vietnam activist/terrorists. Of course, McCain latched on to Obama's relationship with Ayers and put out this smear ad (notice that, at no time during the ad, are there any quotes from Obama where Obama is speaking. It is narrated and they provide no visual or audio evidence of Obama's relationship or his opinion of Ayers):

McCain, of course, bolstered his ad with an appearance on ABC. Notice especially that at the end of his lengthy questioning of Obama's relationship with Ayers that he gets all upitty: "and then to compare [Ayers] with Dr. C- Tom Colburn who spends so much of his life bringing babies into this world!.."

Why should you have paid attention to McCain's anger at Obama's "comparison" of Ayers to Coburn? Because here is what McCain is referring to. Decide for yourself whether Obama's actions were reprehensible.

At the end of Obama's Primary debate with Clinton, he says that he "can take a punch, [he's] taken some pretty good ones." And thank God Obama's finally punching back (and with quite a bit more power than McCain's smear ad, it looks like!)

More information on the Keating scandal can be found on Wikipedia and in the New York Times.
          Laws of Attraction        
How to use the Law of Attraction? Know the secret Law of attraction and the secret behind its success. We offer law of attraction articles and books, visualization CDs, audio and tips. Learn the art of applying law of attraction and positive thinking.
          Daring Cooks Challenge June 2013 Meatballs         
This month's challenge was MEATBALLS my favourite recipe of all time I have so so so many great recipes here a couple of personal fav's enjoy the colour and flavours.

This month's hosts were  Shelley and Ruth and here their introduction to the challenge

Hi there! We are Shelley from C Mom Cook and Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood. We are twin sisters who share a love of food, but who have very different cooking styles. Ruth keeps a vegetarian home while Shelley is a carnivore through and through.  Despite our differences, we both love all aspects of food – eating it, preparing it, and sharing it with the people we love.

For this month's challenge, we wanted to do something a little bit different.

So many of the challenges this year have helped us learn skills or techniques that are pretty specialized - and that have proven to be very challenging. And while the big challenges absolutely bring big rewards (not to mention yummy results), this month we thought we would go a bit more creative.

There are many foods that appear across a variety of cultures, with only slight differences or variations.  This month we wanted to test out one food across many cultures to see how many variations we can bring to the blogosphere.  So this month we challenge the community to bring us meatballs from around the world.

A meatball, at the most basic level, is some kind of ground meat that has been rolled into a ball and cooked.  But that is where the basics end.  Usually other ingredients are involved – generally breadcrumbs and eggs, to give the ball body and bind it together, and a variety of spices for flavor.  The type or types of meat used, the method of preparing the balls and especially the way the meat is served can vary so greatly that it is sometimes amazing to think that they are all the “same” kind of basic food.

It is these differences that we are looking to celebrate this month – to create more meatball dishes than anyone ever would have thought possible, and to show the world just how versatile the “simple” meatball can be.

Recipe Source:  Basic meatball recipes or based on recipes from cooks.com and Mark Bittman, with additional inspiration recipes provided from various online sources.

Blog-checking lines:  The June Daring Cooks’ challenge sure kept us rolling – meatballs, that is! Shelley from C Mom Cook and Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to try meatballs from around the world and to create our own meatball meal celebrating a culture or cuisine of our own choice.

Here follows my meatball recipes please enjoy them as much as I and my friends and family did!!!

Kangaroo and beetroot meatballs in red wine sauce

I LOVE meatballs and I KNOW how to make them after doing them many 1000s of times and I never get tired of them. This is one of my personal best meatball recipes made with kangaroo steak minced, the ready-made mince is easily available in major supermarkets in Australia (Coles/Woolworths $8.75/kg). I combine it with the other classic Australian taste that is beetroot. It always surprises foreigners how much beetroot is eaten in Australia, in fact it is a standard addition in hamburgers in most takeaways. So how couldn't I combine kangaroo and beetroot into a humble meatball. I use very strongly flavour rye crisp bread combined with robust sun-dried tomato pesto to favour the meatball mixture this combination seems to produce a mellow flavour simmered meatball. This is always a winner at parties and BBQs especially if I have let the meatballs soak in the red wine sauce overnight. The biggest tips for light, moist and fluffy meatballs - use the best ingredients you can afford, freshly minced meat is best, sauté your aromatics, all ingredients must be cold when mixing, freshly made bread crumbs, a gentle touch, make a test meatball check seasoning and simmer the meatballs.
Kangaroo is a very 'soft' meat; especially lean, tender, and soft-textured well suited for children's palate and also it cooks at a very low temperature and very fast which makes it excellent for simmered meatballs.
My standard roo and beetroot recipe (roo is Australian slang for kangaroo) is below, this makes the lightest most tender meatballs. I like making a batch and letting it cool in the red wine sauce overnight and then reheating until just hot super tasty.
It is a very easy recipe.
Kangaroo and beetroot meatballs simmered in red wine sauce
Makes a lot, 4 dozen meatballs
1 kg kangaroo mince, (best if used cold)
2 large beetroot, finely grated
1 carrot, finely grated
2 onions, finely chopped and pan-fried until caramelised
1/2 cup of cottage cheese (fetta cheese works well, reduce salt if using)
3-4 tablespoons olive oil, extra virgin
3 rye crisp-bread soaked in 3 tablespoons of cream or milk
1/2 cup freshly made bread crumbs from wholemeal pita bread
1 bunch of parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons sun-dried tomato pesto (basil pesto is fine also)
1 large egg
2 small hot chillies, finely chopped
2-3 teaspoons salt (if in Australia use vegemite (1/2-1 tablespoon) instead of salt)
3 teaspoons pepper
1 large tin of cherry tomatoes
1 cup of red wine, good quality (or if using for children cranberry jelly or beef stock)
1. In a sauce pan combine the cherry tomatoes (smash them with wooden spoon) and red wine bring to a simmer and let simmer while making the meatballs.
2. In a bowl combine all the other ingredients except meat until well mixed.
3. Place meat in large bowl add the mixture gently combine until almost mixed. Make a very small meatball, add to simmering sauce, cook, taste, adjust seasoning of the meatball mixture. Finish combining the mixture.
3. Using 1-1/2 tablespoons of mixture form meatballs, drop immediately into the simmering red wine sauce. Cook for 10-15 mins.
4. Enjoy!
Kangaroo Mince - easily available in supermarkets in Australia (cheap & super healthy) I usually mince my own meat but the market was out of kangaroo meat so I used pre-packed mince.

Ingredients for meatballs (L to R caramelised onion, carrot, beetroot, parsley, in front cream soaked rye crispbread)
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The mixture that is added to the kangaroo mince (beetroot, carrot, caramelised onion, parsley, cottage cheese, cream soaked crisp bread, bread crumbs, whole egg, sun-dried tomato pesto) which is great on toast by itself.
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The mixture all ready to made into meatballs
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I did a fried test batch just to see how these worked out (not my usual procedure)
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The interior of the fried meatball, nice, soft and fluffy
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My normal simmered meatballs
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The interior of the meatball
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I have to say the fried ones were interesting not has tender as the simmered one but well worth eating. I have road-tested this recipe over many years to get the most tender simmered meatballs (especially made for children and fussy adults) so that is why the fried meatballs were well above average but not as good as the simmered ones.
Lamb, mint and beetroot meatballs
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Isn't the colour gorgeous on these bright pink lamb meatballs. This is one of the reasons I love this recipe and it goes so well with cucumber/mint/yoghurt dip. I like making tiny 2 teaspoon-sized meatballs for the kids just one bite for their tiny mouths. The caramelised beetroot and onion really adds to and intensifies the natural sweetness of lamb. This meatball recipe has been developed by me over a couple of years. As the butcher was explaining to me a long time ago the fat in lamb is "funny" it doesn't take too well being mixed with pork or veal or beef. That is why I like adding gelatine to the lamb mixture which adds a lovely tender moist mouth feel to the cooked meat balls. Also I like how the meatballs when fried have a "black" crust the characteristic brown-black colour of the crust results from the browned beetroot it doesn't taste burnt or bitter. If you bake the meatballs you can control the colour of the balls to suit your visual liking.

A couple of years ago I was researching on the internet about meatball making and discovered a trick professionals use - adding gelatine to the soaking liquid which adds an unctuous mouth feel to the meatball (which is why a lot of meatball recipes add veal which is gelatine-rich). So I tried it in my standard lamb, mint and beetroot meatball recipe. I have to say the gelatine really adds a lot of moistness and a soft tender mouth feel to the interior of the meatballs. I do this gelatine trick to all my recipes now. Several people who had my lamb meatballs before the change commented after I added the gelatine about the tenderness and moistness of them now. (If anything I thought almost too tender and moist the first time I tasted them but that is my opinion.)
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Lamb, mint and beetroot meatballs based on this recipe
500 gm (1 lb) lamb mince, freshly ground, best if used cold
250 gm (1 very large) beetroot, grated and fried until caramelised
2 onions, grated and fried until caramelised (do the onion and beetroot together)
1/2 cup of cottage cheese, drained
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pepper
1/2 teaspoon of gelatine bloomed in 1/2 cup of warm wine for 5 mins
3 slices of white bread, torn into small pieces, then soaked in the cooled wine/gelatine liquid for 5 mins then squeezed dry and chopped
1 bunch mint, finely chopped
1 large egg if frying the meatballs, 2 large eggs if simmering
(optional toasted sesame seeds for garnishing the cooked meatballs)

1. Combine all the ingredients into a large bowl except for the meat. Mix until well combined.
2. Add meat and gently mix until almost combined. Make a very small test meatball and cook, taste, adjust seasoning then continue combining mixture until just mixed. Make medium meatballs using 1-1/2 tablespoons of mixture or large meatballs using 3-4 tablespoons of mixture. Let rest in fridge for at least one hour and up to one day. Fry or simmer gently. I find it best to fry them first and then simmer (the frying adds a nice crust to the meatballs).
3. Best served with yoghurt/mint/cucumber dip.
4. Garnish with the optional toasted sesame seeds.

The baked meatballs garnished in black and white toasted sesame seeds
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Spicy Tom Yum Asian Meatballs

This is the recipe I have when I'm trying to impress at dinner parties. They are made with beef/veal (and the gelatine trick) and the same ingredients as TOM YUM soup. The colour for them is so golden and when fried the meatballs form a beautiful tasty crust. These are so beautiful piled high on a party platter. I know I know this soup is meant for prawns (shrimp) but it seems to work excellently for these meatballs, maybe the saffron, coconut cream and fried tomato paste does the trick.

Tom Yum Soup Ingredients
4 lime leaves,finely chopped
2 lemongrass stalks, chopped into tiny pieces
4 slices galangal, finely chopped
2 thumbs of ginger, finely chopped
4-8 bird's eyes chillies, finely sliced
1 tbsp palm sugar
Juice of 1-2 limes
2 tbsp fish sauce (a good Thailand brand)
3 large pinches of saffron infused in the lime juice and fish sauce
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 small tomato de-fleshed seeded and chopped finely
20 gm dried mushroom reconstituted in warm coconut cream with 1 tsp of gelatine
1 tbsp of tomato paste fried until brown
1/2 cup reconstituted glass rice noodles (or bread crumbs) soaked in the mushroom/coconut cream/gelatine liquid
1/2 kg of beef/pork belly (freshly ground)
the above ingredients plus 1 large egg combined. Form 1-1/2 tablespoon-sized meatballs then fry gently.
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Lentil and Spinach balls with blueberry sage glaze

This is an intriguing recipe! It tastes so GOOD yet it is the weirdest combination of ingredients but it's always a winner at parties and surprise pot-lucks and it's easy to cook also (only a couple of mins in a mircowave and if you want an optional light browning in a fry pan.) It always STUNS guests when I tell them what these tasty entrées are made of - lentils, spinach, a couple of eggs and some seasoned bread crumbs served with a sticky blueberry sage glaze. This combination is so delicious and so stimulating to the palate, the different tastes oscillate on your tongue which is exactly what you want an entrée to do to stimulate the appetite for what-is-to-come. The lentil and spinach balls are delicious alone but teamed with the sticky blueberry sage glaze they really seem to switch the taste receptors to the "pleasure" setting. A good recipe to have and their freeze well also.
I always get so many different answers when I ask what they tasted like, but universally they do say they liked them.
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The cooked balls (after microwaving for 2 mins in my very old microwave oven)
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Lentil and Spinach balls with blueberry sage glaze
Lentil and Spinach Balls (adapted from this recipe)
2 cups of cooked green lentils (these lentils hold their shape when cooked)
250 gm packet of frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed dry and chopped (you can use watercress or collard greens make sure that the greens are squeezed dry and chopped finely)
2 large eggs
1/2 - 3/4 cup heavily seasoned dry breadcrumbs (Italian-seasoned is fine)
2 teaspoons of freshly cracked pepper
1. If you want a very fine texture and even colour in the interior of your vegetarian balls, you can machine-process the spinach and eggs (not the lentils) together to form a bright green purée. (see here for a picture of a puréed lentil/spinach ball)
2. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl, form 3 tablespoon-sized balls. Refrigerate for at least one hour up to one day.
3. Microwave on high for 2 mins (check at 1 min). Serve with a simple tomato sauce or the blueberry sage glaze.
4. If you want you can lightly fry the microwaved balls to form a crisp thin eggshell crust the balls will brown slightly if fried.
Blueberry sage glaze (based on this recipe)
500 gm frozen blueberries (can use a mixture of red/purple berries) (cranberries or pomegranate molasses work well also but will need more sugar) (you can use 1/2 cup red wine but reduce the blueberries by half)
1 tablespoons white vinegar (to taste)
2 tablespoons sugar (to taste)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon hot chilli powder (optional)
1 thumb of ginger, grated (optional)
1 spring (green) onion, finely chopped (optional)
1-2 garlic clove(s), crushed (optional)
4 sage leaves
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (or butter)
1. Combine all the ingredients in a small sauce pan reduce gently, taste and adjust vinegar or sugar until slightly sweet with a light sour after-taste. Use the optional ingredients if you are serving a meat (or strong tasting) main course.
2. Remove sage leaves before serving.
Blue-Veined Watercress Ricotta Balls

Blue-Veined Watercress Ricotta Balls
These ricotta based balls are simple to make and only contain a few ingredients; ricotta & blue-veined cheese, eggs, watercress (or spinach), and seasoned breadcrumbs (or flour). I included some puréed beetroot in the mixture (I had some left over) that is why this batch is pinkish in colour usually they are white. They fry up nicely but I like them simmered in soups and stews. If you use flour in the recipe you get "gnudi" a dumping, these are much lighter.
Blue-Veined Watercress Ricotta Balls1 cup (250 gm) fresh ricotta cheese, broken up into small pieces (I use low fat)
1 large bunch watercress (or spinach), blanched (1 min), squeezed dried & chopped finely
1 bunch mint (or basil if using spinach), finely chopped
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs (or flour if you want gundi), seasoned (may need more)
1/3-1/4 cup blue-veined cheese, finely crumbed (1/2 cup finely grated parmesan if using spinach)
(optional 1/4 cup root veggie purée (beetroot, carrot or pumpkin) best if you are using spinach)

Combine in large bowl all the ingredients mix until almost combined, make small test ball, cook, taste adjust seasoning, finish combining, form small (2 teaspoons), medium (1-1/2 tablespoons) or large (1/4 cup) sized balls, place into simmering soup or stews until cooked (small 3 mins, med 6 mins, large 10 mins)

Hearty Winter Soup with Ricotta balls and Spinach Balls

Ballsy Hearty Winter Soup with Ricotta balls and Spinach Balls
I made up a warm filling pearl barley, red and green lentil, split pea, tomato and beetroot winter soup I served it with my spinach/lentil balls and blue-veined watercress ricotta balls, (each 4 tablespoons-sized). (The spinach and lentil balls recipe has already been posted and the blue-veined water ricotta ball recipe is above). Perfect on a cold winter's day especially with buttered sourdoug rye bread.
Ballsy Hearty Winter Soup
1 onion, chopped, fried
1 carrot, grated, fried
optional 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 piece celery, chopped, fried (fry (3 tablespoons olive oil) celery, carrot & onion (& optional garlic) together until onion goes translucent then add tomato paste)
3 tablespoons tomato paste, fried (until brown), then add
2 cups - 4 cups of good vegetable stock
1-3 teaspoon salt & 2 teaspoon pepper, to taste
1 cup pearl barley, soaked and washed
1/2 cup green lentil, soaked and washed
1/4 cup split pea, soaked and washed
2 tablespoon red lentil, soaked and washed
1 cup of finely chopped (or grated) beetroot
Add in a large saucepan the fried ingredients, stock, barley and legumes. Simmer for 1-1/4 hrs adding extra stock as needed. Add the beetroot simmer of extra 1/2 hr. Add plenty of spinach/lentils balls and blue-veined watercress balls in the last 15 mins. Serve the balls covered in the thickened soup or stew.

Super Duper Surf and Turf Meatballs
These are so so so GOOD I scoffed the entire first whole batch down myself there is something about adding umami (the savoury taste sensation) to food especially to meatballs that really intensifies and accents the taste of all the ingredients. These tasted like something from a super fancy restaurant I even impressed myself, since it was an impromptu recipe just using leftovers and a couple of pantry staples, usually you aren't this lucky with "spur-of-the-moment" recipes. Deeply and profoundly satisfying and so exquisitely tasty. I will be making these again and again.

I opened the fridge and this is what I had leftover from the night before:-
1. a half packet (250 gm or 1/4 lb) of good quality hamburger mince (ground beef),
2. a tin of smoked oysters in oil,
3. a 1/4 packet of powdered mushroom, nori sheets and sesame (the blue plastic packet),
4. vegemite,
5. wasabi powder,
6. some fresh bread crumbs (not shown), and
7. 1 large egg (not shown)
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I noticed immediately that many of the ingredients were rich in umami. After sweet and salty, sour and bitter, there is umami—the fifth taste. Discovered at the beginning of the last century by the Japanese, the word umami translates roughly to mean "deliciousness" or "deliciously savour" — an understatement if ever there was one. Rich, deep and intensely savoury, umami exists in a number of foods and I had a gold mine of them.
So I decided to make a surf and turf meatball (technically an umami-rich wasabi beef meatball stuffed with smoked oysters). The powdered mushrooms, nori, vegemite, smoked oysters and beef are all rich sources of umami (the savoury taste in foods). Also roasting, caramelizing, browning and grilling all boost the umami taste sensation in foods. Which is why this is a FABULOUS little entrée super rich in umami literally drenching in "deliciousness". I would serve with blue-vein cheese (rich in umami) or shaved parmesan cheese (one of the richest sources of umami), black olives (rich in umami) with some fried tomato paste (rich in umami) or fresh ripe tomatoes (rich in umami), tabasco sauce or hot chilli sauce, fish sauce (rich in umami), balsamic vinegar (rich in umami) and freshly minced garlic and a some finely chopped herbs parsley or mint, with a little of the reserved oyster oil. YUM YUM YUM. These tasted so good I'm calling them super duper surf and turf meatballs.
This is the best one so far on my meatball making challenge!. On reflection and making two other batches for my friends who LOVED these, I'm entering these in the college's (that I'm attending) cooking competition next week so tasty and satisfying hummmmmm.
How to make the meatballs
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The finished meatballs waiting to be cooked (all the same size)
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Super Duper Surf and Turf Meatballs
250 gm (1/4 lb) minced beef, best if used cold
100 gm (3-1/2 oz) tin of smoked oysters, drained, reserve oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup of fresh breadcrumbs, heavily seasoned
2 teaspoons of vegemite, mixed into the beaten egg (or 1 tablespoon fish sauce)
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4-1/2 teaspoon of wasabi powder, to taste
1/4 cup of dried mushroom, shredded (or 2 tablespoons of mushroom powder)
1 sheet of nori, finely shredded
1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1. Combine in a large bowl all the ingredients except the oysters until almost combined. Make a very small test ball, cook, taste, adjust seasoning. Place 1 tablespoon of mixture into a semicircular spoon, poke finger into mixture to form a hole stuff with 3 smoked oysters cover the stuffing with the displaced beef mixture to form a complete meatball, repeat until all the mixture and oysters are used up, makes about 16-18 meatballs (See pictures above).
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Chicken balls

I made two sorts of chicken balls; a sun-dried tomato, olive and ricotta chickenball and a sesame seed coated Thai coconut lime chickenball
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Sun-dried tomato, olive and ricotta chicken-ball
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Sesame seed coated Thai coconut lime chickenball
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Sun-dried tomato, black olive and ricotta chicken-ball
300 gm chicken, mince
300 gm ricotta, finely crumbed
1/4 cup sun-dried tomato, finely chopped
28 black olives, stoned, (use 2 black olives per 1-1/2 tablespoon meatball)
1 large egg
2 tablespoons basil, finely chopped
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4-1/2 cup of fresh bread crumbs, heavily seasoned

Sesame seed coated Thai coconut lime chicken ball
500 gm chicken, mince
3 tablespoons coconut cream
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 packet of Hot and Spicy Thai noodle soup (any spicy Asian style is fine)
2 lime leaves, finely shredded
1/4 cup of fresh bread crumbs, heavily seasoned
1/4 cup of peanuts, pieces
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 red chilli, finely chopped
4 tablespoons sesame seeds, for coating

          March 2012 Daring Cooks' - Braving the braise        

This month's Daring Cooks' challenge was to braise we had complete freedom to do any sort of braise we wanted. What a fun challenge and so much freedom and from the superb responses from the other forum members this challenge went down really well, so many braise using all sorts of ingredients such as chicken, duck, pork, beef short ribs, fennel, root vegetables, tofu even moose!

Recipe Source: Michael Ruhlman – Ruhlman’s Twenty

Blog-checking lines: The March, 2012 Daring Cooks’ Challenge was hosted by Carol, a/k/a Poisonive – and she challenged us all to learn the art of Braising! Carol focused on Michael Ruhlman’s technique and shared with us some of his expertise from his book “Ruhlman’s Twenty”.

See the PDF of the challenge recipes with hints and tips here.

Balsamic vinegar and honey beef short ribs
I have been wanting to do a short rib recipe for a little while now so this challenge was perfect. Braising is such a great technique because:-
1. the searing gives you great colour and add lots of flavour to the final dish
2. as the connective tissues break down, they dissolve and form gelatin, which thickens the cooking liquid and gives it body and shine, meanwhile
3. the braising causes the muscle fibers to absorb moisture from the cooking liquid and steam. Which gives you a juicy piece of meat. Braising also melds flavours from the stock, vegetables and any herbs and seasonings.

So it is important to pay attention to searing the meat correctly (including the bones), and the flavouring ingredients in the braising liquid. Take careful note of all the wonderful tips and hints that our lovely hostess Carol has included in the challenge write up they really do work. I like a longer slower braising time at the lowest temperature 140°F/60°C to cook meat safely I think it really adds a lot more flavour into the meat.    

This recipe uses an initial eight hour marinade of fried tomato paste for acidity, onions and garlic which is cleaned off then the ribs are seared, and then they are braised for 14 hours at 140°F/60°C (in a cool oven) in a mixture of ironbark honey and aged balsamic vinegar, a little red wine, smoked paprika, chilli flakes, bay leaf, a mirepoix, lots of pepper and the marinade. I used two bush tomatoes (an Australia native herb that is a strongly flavoured of tomato and eggplant even one is enough to perfume a whole room!) in the braising broth also, I was very lucky and got 3 kgs (6.6 lbs) of short ribs for only $10 (they were on special in the Asian butcher shop usually $15/kg) which consisted of two enormous slabs of meat studded with ribs. After the ribs were cooked and cooled the fat is taken off and the sauce is reduced to a thick shiny sticky consistency it has a super concentrated flavour. I was very impressed with the colour and flavour of the ribs a small amount of sauce goes a long long way in this recipe. Enough for many many meals I got almost 12 cups of braised meat and liquid.  I will make a meal using the ribs in the next of couple of days since I want maximum flavour infused into the meat. Incidentally I got a new camera so that's the reason for all the close-up shots of the ribs I was experimenting it is an Aldi Traveller brand $56 point and shoot.

The butcher told me that oxtail will be on special soon maybe I will try that next, since all braises freeze well.

The two humongous slabs of beef ribs they are about 1.5 kgs (3-1/3 lbs) each!

Seared beef ribs

The braised ribs cooled overnight in the refrigerator

The braised ribs before they were covered in the reduced sauce, even these are delicious

Caramel miso duck nibbles
I just had to do the caramel miso sauce it sounds so tasty, I got some duck pieces from my favourite gourmet butcher, I seared them to crisp up the duck skin and then oven braised them in the caramel miso sauce. Then I rested the braised meat in the fridge overnight then I removed a voluminous amount of duck fat (almost 1-1/2 cups) and strained the braising liquid and reduced it until it was thick and shiny. I used my new chopper to cut the cold braised duck pieces into bite sized nibbles (I find it is much easier to cut cooked poultry when it is cold). I coated the nibbles with the reduced caramel miso sauce and broiled (grilled) them until well coloured. I don't make duck that often since most of my friends dislike it (bad experiences at restaurants, greasy and tasteless) even my friend Cherie liked these nibbles, not greasy at all. The caramel miso sauce is to-die-for and can be used for meat and veggies a great recipe.

Slow braised sweet chilli squid

This is one of my favourite summer seafood dishes it is embarrassingly easy to make and it's a real crowd pleaser. When squid is slow braised it becomes extra soft (melt in your mouth) and sweet and in combination with sweet chilli sauce and a tomato/onion based pasta sauce produces an unctuous amalgam that emphasises the taste of the squid. The squid sauce is sweet and mild and perfect as a sauce for a seafood pasta dish. I seared the squid pieces and braised them for six hours on the lowest simmer.

Slow braised sweet chilli squid
(1-1/4 kg)(2-3/4 lb) 3 large squid (or you can use baby octopus about a dozen or so)
3 cups pasta sauce (the kind that uses mainly tomato and onions, I use a good store bought kind, you can make you own if you wish, the sauce must be thick)
3 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
optional 2 cloves of garlic crushed
fresh lemon or lime juice, to taste if the sauce becomes too sweet

1. Clean the squid (remove the beak, the central clear cartilage, the fins, ink sack, the innards and scrap off most of the 'coloured' outer skin and scrap the tentacles to make sure that all of the sucker cartilage is removed). Cut the flesh into 2 cm (1 inch) pieces, cut the tentacles into 5 cm (2 inch) lengths. The pieces reduce in size by about 75% when braised so remember to cut the pieces much larger than the final cooked size. You can sear the pieces if you wish this adds a lot more flavour and colour to the pieces but increases the braising time by twice. Place the pieces into a medium stew pot.
2. Add the pasta sauce, the sweet chilli sauce and the optional garlic.
3. Slow braise uncovered in a very slow (90C/195F) oven or on the stove top just below a bare simmer for about 3 hours (check at 1 hour to see how much squid liquid is given off if there is a lot leave the pot uncovered, if the sauce is already thick cover the pot and add some water as needed during the braise) until the squid is soft to the tooth and the sauce has thicken and turned a brownish red colour, I have found you can simmer the sauce all day all that happens is the squid flesh becomes softer and softer and the sauce becomes more and more mellow. Makes 4 cups of squid pasta sauce suitable for about 8 servings.
4. The squid pasta sauce is much better the next day, store in the fridge up to 5 days.
5. Add fresh lime or lemon juice at the end of the cooking process to counter excessive sweetness if desired. Gremolata would be an excellent addition to the pasta dish.
Notes:- try to get small-sized squid or baby octopus since their cooking time is about 2-3 hours, while one large (1-1/3 kg/3 lb) octopus can take 6+ hours!

A couple of questions about the squid from the challenge host
1) You said searing increases the braising time...why? Do you have to the sear? Does the squid turn brown?
2) How do you serve it - pasta, polenta, by itself?
My answers
Thank you so much for the kind kinds. Yes squid/octopus is perfect for long slow braising unlike some other seafood.
Answer 1) There are two ways to cook squid one) fast and furious in a fry pan or a BBQ or two) a long slow bare simmer. So if you sear the squid first basically it is cooked therefore if you braise it after searing you need a lot more time to make the squid tender again. No you do not need to sear I usually just throw in the freshly cleaned and cut squid pieces into the sweet chilli tomato/onion sauce and braised it just like that with no problems. For special occasions I like to sear the squid first since it adds an additional flavour dimension to the final sauce but there is no real need to sear first if you do not want to. The sweet chilli tomato/onion sauce colours the squid flesh a light brown/red hue, if you sear first then the squid gets a very light brown colouring in addition to the brown/red hue that the sauce imparts to it.
Answer 2) I just cook up some dry packet pasta and heat up some of the sauce and just add that to the pasta. I like to use black squid ink pasta to show off the colour of the squid and sauce. I think polenta (or sweet potato gnocchi) would be wonderful with the squid sauce though I never have had it that way. The squid sauce is great on pizza as well especially if you add some extra seafood like oysters or clams etc to the topping.

Double squid pasta with gremolata
Slowed braised sweet chilli squid served on squid ink pasta with gremolata
I had surprise lunch guests over so I thought that I would serve up the braised sweet chilli squid I made a few days ago I love this sauce since it takes no time to made up a restaurant quality dish (in appearance and flavour) literally 5 minutes. The use of squid ink pasta really adds a lovely base seafood flavour to the dish which enhances the braised squid sauce taste while the germolata adds a lovely "fresh" zing to the dish I never used germolata before now it is a must for me. For this recipe I cooked some squid ink pasta (5 mins), made the gremolata (4 mins) while heating the sweet chilli squid (3 mins in the microwave) then finally I added some sliced marinated sweet chillies as a garnish. The final dish looks stunning the contrast of colours and textures makes its very visually appealing. This was a smashing dish I thought there is something about the texture contrast of the squid and the pasta that is delightful. And I have half of the sauce left! I liked this dish so much I'm having it for dinner tonight with some guests. Serve with crunchy bread and a green salad. I think you can see why this is my all-time favourite summer seafood pasta recipe, it's simple fast and always gives a spectacular looking result.

The gremolata recipe
Anchovy dill gremolata
A gremolata is a quickly made condiment used to finish savoury dishes with bright fresh citrus-herb flavours.
2 anchovy fillets, chopped fine
1 lemon peel, zested fine
1 garlic clove, minced fine
1/4 cup Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped fine
1 tablespoon dill fronds, chopped fine
1-1/2 tablespoons extra virgin oil
1 teaspoon anchovy oil
Optional 1 tablespoon shallot, finely chopped

In a mortar and pestle mash and pound all the ingredients until a paste is formed. Dab or sprinkle sparingly over the pasta.

If you like you can make orange fennel gremolata replace the lemon zest with orange zest and replace the dill with fennel fronds. Instead of the shallot use fennel.

Sticky Sweet Braised Tofu Steaks with Asian Germolata
I wanted to braise at least one non-meat ingredient for this challenge I just had to make a braised tofu recipe (I love tofu and am always looking for ways to enjoy it). I have been wanting to make sticky sweet tofu (tau hu kho) for a while now so this was the perfect challenge for this dish. And since I'm in love with germolata at the moment I made an Asian germolata to serve with the braised tofu it consisted of coriander, lime zest, garlic, Thai basil, mint, lemongrass, crispy fried chilli pawn (shrimp), salt and dark roasted sesame seed oil. I seared the sliced bite-sized firm tofu pieces until lightly brown then I braised them in a mixture of kacap manis, honey, rice wine vinegar, ginger powder, onion powder, chilli paste and vegetable stock. During the simmering the braising liquid reduces to a thick shiny sauce which coat the pieces with sticky sweet deliciousness. I really like this cooking method for tofu it adds so much flavour and colour to the bean curb. These taste great at room temperature great for dinner parties. I just love how the bean curd absorbs the braising liquid and the sweet sticky coating is to die for, and I think the Asian germolata is a great addition to the original basic braised tofu.

Sear the tofu pieces until brown

When seared transfer to a shallow saucepan and braise until the pieces expand about 15% (about 30 minutes to an hour), I fried the tofu in two batches you can see the difference before (the light coloured pieces) and after (the dark pieces) braising

The tofu after braising

The tofu topped with Asian germolata

Sticky Sweet Braised Tofu Steaks
makes 12 mini-steaks
500 gm (1 lb) extra firm tofu block
3 tablespoons vegetable stock (or water)
2 tablespoons soy sauce, salt-reduced
3 tablespoons kacap manis
2 tablespoons rice wine vingear
juice from one lemon or two limes (use the zest for the Asian gremolata)
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
2 teaspoons ginger powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon chilli paste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
dash of salt
2 tablespoons olive oil (for frying)

1. Combine all the braising ingredients in a small bowl mix well check for taste it should be slightly sweet with a salty sour after-taste adjust seasoning as needed, set aside.
2. Drain tofu, slice into 1-1/2 inch (4 cm) square pieces about 1/2 inch (1-1/4 cm) thick, pat dry with paper towels. Squares work best for searing and braising.
3. Add oil to a frying pan heat on medium heat until the oil shimmers.
4. Fry the tofu until browned (about 3-5 minutes each side). Do not overcrowd the frying pan, it is best to fry the tofu in small batches. Remove browned pieces set aside. Clean the fry pan if needed.
5. Add the braising liquid into the frying pan gently heat until barely simmering, add the browned tofu pieces in one layer braise (turning once or twice) until the pieces expand about 15% (about 30 minutes to one hour) and the braising liquid is thick and coats the tofu (add more water as needed). Check for sweetness add lemon juice as needed. Serve warm or at room temperature, braised tofu reheats wonderfully. It tastes even better the next day. Stores for 5 days in the fridge.

Asian Gremolata
Provides a generous topping for 12 sticky sweet tofu steaks
A herb-citrus gremolata made with traditional Asian ingredients

2 tablespoon crispy fried pawn (shrimp) flakes or crispy fried shallots, chopped fine
2 lime peels (or 1 lemon peel), zested fine
2 garlic cloves, minced fine
1/4 cup coriander (cilantro), chopped fine
1 tablespoon lemon grass, chopped fine
1 tablespoon Thai basil, chopped fine
1 tablespoon mint, chopped fine
2 to 3 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon shallot, finely chopped
1 teaspoon chilli paste (mild or hot as to taste)
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a mortar and pestle mash and pound all the ingredients while adding teaspoons of sesame oil until a paste is formed. Dab or sprinkle generously over the braised tofu pieces.
          Dec 2011 Daring Bakers' Challenge - Sourdough        
Sorry for posting late but I'm on holidays away from my normal computer setup and this is the first chance I've had to get onto my blog.

This month's Daring Bakers' challenge was sourdough, yes sourdough and yes we were asked to make a fresh starter for the challenge.

French Country Sourdough Picnic Loaf

I have a decade old starter called Boris (100% hydration i.e. equal weights of water and plain bread flour) so I decided to use that to make the French Country Loaf recipe. I started the process at Day 4 in the instructions. Since I had Boris already made up I saved four days. I have started a new sourdough starter to use in a few days time. In Sydney Australia it is the start of summer so I made a stuffed picnic loaf with the baked bread one of my favourite summer picnic foods.

I used "OO" finely steel-milled bread flour and "OO" finely cold-steel-milled whole wheat flour with some stabilised wheat germ (since I couldn't find my stone ground flour).

Boris my (100% hydration) starter, before I fed it to make the Leaven Starter, notice how Boris is burping gas

Boris feeding on the extra flour and water, notice the condensation on the top of the plastic lid which indicates that the yeastie beasties and bacteria are very active making lots of gas and tasty flavour for the sourdough

Boris full of tiny active bubbles after feeding

Comparison of Boris (left) when he is made into the leaven for the sourdough (right) in the French country loaf. Notice how wet and soft the leaven is for this recipe!

The loaf proofing for the final raise in a greased pan (I didn't want flour on the outside of the picnic loaf) before it is tipped out and slashed. The unbaked loaf is very soft and needs a mould.

The baked loaf (the unbaked loaf is very wet and soft and forms a great shape when baked) the final loaf shape is formed by squeezing (the soft out-turned unbaked loaf) with your hands, then you quickly slash it and place immediately into a very hot oven and turn the temperature to hot for 10 mins and then to the recipe temperature for the rest of the time.

Making the picnic loaf
Hollow out the loaf, notice how moist the interior is and the 'greyish' colour which is a indication of the sourdough starter. The crumb (the texture of the interior) of the loaf is like dense sponge really good I thought, notice the dense spongy crumb in the hollowed out top of the loaf (bottom piece in the photo below).  

Line the hollow with several layers of thin ham, and then fill with a combination of ricotta cheese, chopped charred-grilled red capsicums (fire-roasted red bell peppers), spinach, basil, finely chopped spicy smoked French sausage, grated sharp cheese and lots for black pepper. The filling ingredients can be varied to suit your own tastes a great version is the famous Muffuletta sandwich (the filling is an olive paste with various cheeses and sliced meats).

Wrap tightly with plastic film and place into the fridge with a light weight on top of the loaf for a few hours (up to two days)

The finished picnic loaf

Close-up of a slice of the picnic loaf yum yum

The verdict - this recipe produces a sourdough unlike anything I have done before the crumb of the loaf is very moist almost sponge-like which I really really liked and it is a perfect foil for the pressed filling ingredients since they almost have the same texture which is what you want in a picnic loaf. Also the picnic loaf slices cleanly and thinly. I bet for an extra special treat slices of this picnic loaf would fry up beautifully. I will be using this recipe from now on to make picnic loaves.

What to do with the leftover starter
You can make a lot of recipes with the leftover starter examples pancakes, cakes, scones etc.  In this case I made crumpets with the leftover starter (To make the batter - to one cup of starter, sprinkle over the surface 1 teaspoon of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (or 1-1/2 teaspoons of baking powder), stir well, the mixture will double in volume. Dry fry 1/4 cup scoops of the batter in well greased 3" (7-1/2 cm) metal rings on a medium-low heated griddle (or fry pan) for 4-6 minutes on the bottom and optionally 30 seconds on the top if you like colour on both top and bottom of your crumpets.) These crumpets were so good I love how the holes form and the moist texture of the crumb so much better than the store bought version. You can freeze the leftover starter/leaven and the cooked crumpets. 

Comments and notes
1. This recipe is unusual in that you knead the leaven into the dough.
2. The leaven is very wet and soft more like soft putty so when you form the disk of dough and place the leaven onto it and knead it, the final dough-making is incredibly messy and the final dough is very very soft and spreads out very slowly (takes about 20 mins) if left on the counter. I had to add about 3 tablespoons of extra flour to make it a little stiffer.
3. The final interior of the loaf is very moist, as compared to my normal sourdough. I really liked the final interior and the loaf. The crumb (the texture) of the interior was like soft dense sponge even slightly doughy which I really liked. The weight of the loaf feels very heavy for its size. 
4. What to make with the leftover starter make crumpets see links below for the recipe.
What to do with the discarded starter (use to make crumpets)
And what to do with a neglected starter
5. A plain flour starter seems to work very well for this recipe.

French Country Sour Dough Open-faced sandwiches with home-made pesto, tomatoes and cured Italian ham

I made the French country loaf its starter was very easy to make and look after until it was active it only took three days for the starter to become super active since I feed it twice a day and the starter was in a moist warm environment for the entire 'brewing' time. I made up the loaf has per the recipe I used very coarse stone ground whole meal bread flour and "OO" finely milled bread flour. The dough rose in about 2 hours (really quick for a sour dough) and to twice it original volume and when baked stayed exactly the same size. Since I used such coarse flour the final texture of the crumb was very grainy. My dough was so wet and soft it really needed a mould but that was no problem.

I wanted perfectly shaped sandwiches which means the crust has to be very smooth with crisp edges, so I went for a 'brick-shape' loaf that could be cut thinly and cleanly while having the strength so the bread slice wouldn't break or bend when the sandwich is being eaten.

The final texture of the loaf was like a Rye European sour dough bread, not dense at all in fact, the loaf could be cut very thinly and cleanly - perfect for open-faced sandwiches.

I had the most beautiful tomatoes and basil so I had to use them as the topping for my sandwiches.

This summer in Sydney Australia has been the coldest in the last fifty-one years, so I took special precautions in keeping the starter warm that is by enclosing the plastic container in several tea-towels on the counter on the spot that is above the hot water system. The temperature was gorgeously warmish at all times, so after three days the starter was full of energy and going for it. If you feed the starter once in the morning and in the evening it shortens the time for the starter to become active.

The starter covered in many tea towels over a warm spot on the counter, it is toasty in there:)

I wanted to make thin open-faced sandwiches so I coated my pan with oil-spray and then with wheat germ flakes which produces a thin smooth crust on the loaf

Notice the nice straight edges and smooth faces on the loaf, it looks like a brick! Perfect for open-faced sandwiches.

Close up of the crust of the loaf

Some more photos of the loaf and the thin slices that can be cut from it

I really like how thin you could slice the loaf

To make the open-faced sandwiches

Finished sandwiches with home made pesto, tomatoes and cured Italian ham and a piece of tangy goat's cheese

The verdict - a very tasty open-face sandwich bread wonderful with the tomatoes and pesto. And so filling only a couple of quarter slices where enough. Just like the old fashioned country breads I had in my childhood.

Some notes
1. You can speed up the 'brewing' time of the starter by twice feeding it a day and making sure that the starter is in a moist warm place.
2. My starter was super active it rose the dough in about two hours which is very quick.
3. The final dough was too soft to be shaped into a free-form loaf it really needs a mould.
4. The final crumb is very much like the classic black bread style of Northern Europe.

Cornmeal sourdough loaf

I used the French Country starter to make a cornmeal soudough loaf that was more traditionally shaped. I replaced the whole meal flour with corn meal (polenta) I added some pure gluten flour to replace the missing gluten from the corn meal and raised the dough in a bowl lined with linen that was covered in flour and cornmeal.

This is the largest loaf of bread I have made it was 12 inches (30 cms) in diameter and weighed almost 2-1/2 kgs (5-1/2 lbs)! It took about an hour and a quarter to bake.

The dough is very wet and soft

The dough raising in the lined bowl

How to raise the dough during cold weather, place a plastic bag over the bowl and place that over a saucepan 3/4 filled with warm water also you can wrap the saucepan in tea towels this will keep your dough warm for many hours even overnight.

The final baked loaf

The underside of the baked loaf a wonderful yellow colour

I will use the loaf tomorrow after it has cooled down and the flavours have settled.

I love the look of this loaf so rustic with lots of character in the crust and the yellow colour is stunning. 

Cornmeal Sourdough Loaf part II

I use my cornmeal sourdough loaf today I was extremely pleased with the look, taste and texture of the slices. I had some beautiful beet(root) and mint on hand so I made a spicy beetroot mint dip to serve with the cornmeal bread.

Lovely beet(root) and mint

The yellow cornmeal bread sliced into wedges so colourful and tasty

The beet(root) and mint dip served on the cornmeal sourdough slices

Another photo of the delicious bread

Gorgeous White Sourdough

One thing about sourdoughs is that they can look so beautiful as compared to the store bought loaves. I made another loaf using the French Country starter but using all white flour for the loaf. I had to add about 1/4 cup of extra flour to the dough so that the shaped loaf would hold its shape and be slashed. I double egg-washed the loaf which really gave the baked loaf a lovely shiny gloss finish. I will use it tomorrow after the loaf has had time to settle and mellow. I cannot wait.

I used a five cup "flower-pot" shaped container which gives a nice visual proportion to the loaf 

Some gorgeous photos of the final loaf

White Sourdough Loaf
I made tandoori roast chicken to serve with the white sourdough loaf I had made yesterday. The crumb of the sourdough was very smooth and its hue was a light sand colour which was unexpected since I used a very white flour for the dough. The thinly sliced chicken was lovely on the sourdough sandwich. The crumb of the loaf was very similar to white wonder bread a wonderful bread for sandwiches.

The white sourdough loaf being sliced

The tandoori roast chicken I adore the vibrant colour of the chicken

The final tandoori chicken sandwich

White sourdough loaf

I repeated making a white flour sourdough but this time I added some more flour in the final stage so that the loaf would spread out so much and would hold it shape when slashed. I needed about 1 cup of extra flour to achieve the correct consistency. I was very pleased with the final result. The loaf expanded about three times it was incredible to watch it grow and bake in the oven.


More things to make with the leftover starter part II
Wholesome banana and date sourdough bread

I had a cup of very sour active starter left so I thought I would make my favourite banana/date bread with it, I make this recipe about once a fortnight during the summer. The recipe is easy -

Wholesome banana and date sourdough bread
1 cup starter (the starter doesn't need to be active)
2 cups wholemeal flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons olive oil (or melted butter)
3 tablespoons dried milk powder (or buttermilk powder)
3 tablespoons wheat-germ
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup of dates finely chopped, soaked in orange juice until soft
(Optional 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts)

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, milk powder and salt, form a well in the centre of the dry ingredients. Pour into the well the sourdough starter, oil, wheat-germ, egg, brown sugar, banana and dates (and the nuts if using). Whisk the ingredients together until a normal "cake" batter consistency is formed you can add more water if you need to loosen the batter. Bake in a moderate oven 160C/320F/gas mark 3 for 1-1/2 hours until a skewer comes out clean, check at 1 hour and then every 10 mins until done. Best if left for one day before slicing, but can be sliced when completely cooled. The bread will last for 2 weeks (at least! I have always eaten it before this) in the fridge covered in foil and plastic wrap and it gets better and better with time, fabulous toasted and served with butter. The slices are super moist and not too sweet. The sourdough and bananas really makes for a moist bread. 

White sourdough loaf

I decided to make a treat for this delicious bread that is meatloaf which I really really like a lot in Australia it isn't that common basically nobody I know makes meatloaf but every time I make it the meatloaf gets rave reviews.

For a super special treat I baked the meatloaf on two slices of the white bread these slices therefore get toasted and are dripping with gorgeous flavour I'm sure that they aren't not that healthy but once in while it is such a flavoursome treat.

The meatloaf notice the two slices of white sourdough bread that acts as a soak of all the juices

The delicious slices of bread that have been baked and basted throughout the cooking of the meatloaf

The cut meatloaf. My meatloaf contains grilled red capsicums (the red pieces), shredded seaweed (the black pieces) and lots of herbs and a mixture of pork and veal with some BBQ duck and the glaze is a mixture of tomato pesto, black sugar and balsamic vinegar.  
          It’s How Many Terabytes?! A Case Study on Managing Large Born Digital Audio-visual Acquisitions        

In October 2014, the University of California Irvine (UCI) Special Collections and Archives acquired a born digital collection of 2.5 terabytes – the largest born digital collection acquired by the department to date. This case study describes the challenges we encountered when applying existing archival procedures to appraise, store, and provide access to a large born digital collection. It discusses solutions when they could be found and ideas for solutions when they could not, lessons learned from the experience, and the impact on born-digital policy and procedure at UCI Libraries. Working with a team of archivists, librarians, IT, and California Digital Library (CDL) staff, we discovered issues and determined solutions that will guide our procedures for future acquisitions of large and unwieldy born digital collections.


          Using a Computational Study of Hydrodynamics in the Wax Lake Delta to Examine Data Sharing Principles        

In this paper we describe a complex dataset used to study the circulation and wind-driven flows in the Wax Lake Delta, Louisiana, USA under winter storm conditions. The whole package bundles a large dataset (approximately 74 GB), which includes the numerical model, software and scripts for data analysis and visualization, as well as detailed documentation. The raw data came from multiple external sources, including government agencies, community repositories, and deployed field instruments and surveys. Each raw dataset goes through the processes of data QA/QC, data analysis, visualization, and interpretation. After integrating multiple datasets, new data products are obtained which are then used with the numerical model. The numerical model undergoes model verification, testing, calibration, and optimization. With a complex algorithm of computation, the model generates a structured output dataset, which is, after post-data analysis, presented as informative scientific figures and tables that allow interpretations and conclusions contributing to the science of coastal physical oceanography.

Performing this study required a tremendous amount of effort. While the work resulted in traditional dissemination via a thesis, journal articles and conference proceedings, more can be gained. The data can be reused to study reproducibility or as preliminary investigation to explore a new topic. With thorough documentation and well-organized data, both the input and output dataset should be ready for sharing in a domain or institutional repository. Furthermore, the data organization and documentation also serves as a guideline for future research data management and the development of workflow protocols. Here we will describe the dataset created by this study, how sharing the dataset publicly could enable validation of the current study and extension by new studies, and the challenges that arise prior to sharing the dataset.

Inside the Quilts EduKit, available for schools to rent

By comparing a 19th century quilt sample with a modern version, students explore the technical mastery and traditions of this craft. Other activities include studying the pattern of pioneer quilts and reconstructing the geometry of quilt design.


Nineteenth century and modern quilt samples, pattern board, patch piece bag, student activity booklets and teacher's notes.



Best Grade Connections: 

Grade 2


Arts - Visual Arts

Available Languages: 


Case Category: 

A - Mini

Case Size Information: 

46 cm x 38 cm x 16 cm


12 lbs

          Tattoos to Toes        
Some objects from the Tattoos to Toes EduKit

Travel to a Japanese tattoo parlour, and drop in on an ancient Egyptian party! Through the examination of a variety of ROM objects and museum reproductions, students are introduced to the language and art of body decoration, across a broad spectrum of cultures and peoples.


Seven activity centres, including: scarab, Menorah ring, Byzantine cross, Thai ankle bracelet, photo cards, student activity booklets and teacher's notes.



Best Grade Connections: 

Grade 8
Grade 11
Grade 12


Arts - Exploring and Creating in the Arts
Arts - Visual Arts
SS&H - Equity Studies
SS&H - Family Studies

Available Languages: 


Case Category: 

B - Regular

Case Size Information: 

51 cm x 57 cm x 21 cm


35 lbs


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