Archive for December 2007

From the official conference web site:

Sex 2.0What is Sex 2.0?

Sex 2.0 will focus on the intersection of social media, feminism, and sexuality. How is social media enabling people to learn, grow, and connect sexually? How is sexual expression tied to social activism? Does the concept of transparency online offer new opportunities or present new roadblocks — or both? These questions, and many more, will be addressed within a safe, welcoming, sex-positive space.

Respecting the confidentiality and protecting the identities of participants who wish to maintain a degree of anonymity will be a top priority at Sex 2.0.

When? April 12, 2008
Where? Spring4th Center, 728 Spring St., Atlanta, GA
» Map of nearby hotels
How much? $10

Note: We will be following the unconference model, which means everyone is a participant rather than a passive attendee. This is YOUR event!


I was on my way home, late at night, around 2 AM-ish. Father asked if I felt the earthquake that recently happened. I didn’t because I was mobile then. There have been a couple of minor earthquakes near where I live.

Earthquakes make people excited, nervous, anxious, whatever. What I need is a meteor about to hit the earth in a month or so. That could make me really excited, in every sense of the word.

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I said blah.

And she said blah blah blah, and blah blah blah.

Then she said she loved ” ‘Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody’ ”

I said, you’re killing me.

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Doctors on TVWas passing by the TV and saw this Turkish series called Doktorlar (meaning Doctors) – an E.R. remake for the Turkish audience. Anyway… Because a research paper I’ll be writing (well, I should have been almost done with it so far, but that’s another story) is sort of related to the emergence of doctors in media (and vice versa). So, I stopped by to watch a little.

The title of this post is from the same titled book by Anne Karpf. The book is slightly related to my subject, so I didn’t really read it. But in one chapter, she says that doctors in dramas are all-clean/white although they are constantly in contact with blood. And, quoting from Foucault, they have great command of their (power/)knowledge and profession. They see a patient and boom, “it is this and that, so we do these and those.” How lame…

Ah, and also, in this series Doktorlar, there is the use of fast camera movements… How lame again. Ok, we understand that you are working in a fast-paced job, and all that. But is it so easy to create this meaning? Just by making the camera run around like crazy? The problem is, the dialogues and the actions that should match the camera movements don’t really match. The speed of the camera just doesn’t fit to the action. Sucks big time.

One thing she quotes from an actor is that these doctors “provide blood without violence.” Not sure if the actor knows about Aristotle, but that’s a direct reference to him.


BeowulfLast week, I and two friends went to watch Beowulf (2007) to see a recent example of digital cinema. Other friends, who saw the movie earlier said that it sucked. I thought the opposite.

I admit that this movie is not for those who like a real camera than one that can move freely in the rendered environment. Until you get used to it, the movie resembles a computer game, which most people would prefer flesh and blood actors (an image is an image, and both are projected images, should not really matter). However, I don’t really think this movie would work in 2.5D (real shooting plus CGI), as it would just be too artificial. This way, the movie is a lot more immersive in my opinion.

Anyway, I think this is a marvellous adaptation of a primary epic – an epic that is based on oral tradition. And the movie maintains these features of oral tradition, where storytelling is important. I really loved how they maintained the heroic ideal – the way Beowulf introduces and defines himself to others. Other than one or two things done for cheap laughs (bah), I think the movie was flawless.

This movie itself is another telling of the story of Beowulf (and Beowulf the epic). How awesome.


I have been looking for an easy and fast way to convert the Ape and FLAC files (aka Monkey’s Audio files) with cue sheets I have to a format that I could use for portable music players. Ok, we all love Ape and FLAC because they boast the best sound quality with lossless or lossy compression, but support for them on portable music players seems hard at this time because of the file size they have and the processing power they need.

The common sense way I have come across on the net is: First, decompress the ape file to wave, any audio convertor should be able to do this. Change the .ape extention to .wav inside the .cue file. Recompress it to MP3, split to individual files (or first split, then compress). But I don’t find this a nice way as the I don’t really want to play with gaps, etc. Ok, Cue Splitter software can remove/add gaps but I prefer to do it naturally.

Or, there are software like Ape Ripper, which can convert your ape files to MP3. But then, it doesn’t allow you to pick a specific encoder, like LAME.

So, what I did was: I first looked for an ape plugin for Nero Burning Rom, and found one here – They have plugins based on the official releases by Monkey’s Audio, FLAC or any other format, so it offers the best quality around. Installed the plugin, and boom! Now, Nero can read and write ape files. Then, I chose Nero’s Image Recorder as the recorder, so I can get a .nrg image file. Just use the Burn Image option and pick the cue file, and it will write it as a .nrg image. Afterwards, I used Daemon Tools (or any other similar software) to mount the .nrg image file so I can rip it with any software I want.

This way, you can use EAC and LAME couple to make your portable music files sound a little better with right settings, or you can directly use the CD rippers of iTunes or SonicStage. Also, your mounted image file will (most probably – all of mine have been found) be found on freedb or Gracenote/CDDB, so you won’t spend extra time with tagging. Depending on the compression settings and your cpu, this should take you a maximum of five minutes to get all these done.


G.ho.st DesktopThis website called G.ho.st has received the Silver Award at Le Web 3 ’07 Conference in Paris, and many other awards from other places. I browsed the site out of curiosity and oh my god!

G.ho.st offers a virtual computer accessible from your favorite browser (users say that does not really work good on IE performance-wise), click on the image on the left to see. It uses the familiar (resizable!) window metaphor operating system. It includes a web browser that can either directly connect to your sites or by using G.ho.st’s proxy (looks pretty capable). A mail client that you can use to check all your POP3 mail boxes and handle calender/contact needs.

Additionally, it comes with 3 gigs of storage, which is accessible from FTP (just ftp g.ho.st with your username and password, and that’s it) and allows you to share them on the web. A seperate 3 gigs email quota, which is also accessible from POP3/IMAP. What is good is, you are not forced to login to G.ho.st’s virtual computer to check your mails. You can just go to the webmail service to check them and make the web-based software handle all your POP3 mail needs. It works like any other desktop mail client. In other words, ou can make it check any other POP3 mails and all your mails will be at one place accessible anywhere from the internet. Ah, and a fancy username@g.ho.st email address.

G.ho.stA MP3 player, which can play the files you uploaded to your storage, customizable desktop, instant messaging software. Moreover, you can view and edit your office application files. Youtube, Flickr, feed reader (which is ‘dockable’ on your desktop), a couple of widgets and many more features that I am yet to discover. Ah and, you can use G.ho.st virtual computer in many languages.

Check it out! Highly recommended.


Just found this free ebook site at California Digital Library website. I haven’t checked in detail but they offer free online access to quite a lot of books under various subjects. They are academic books by academic publishers.

Check out the library here.


Track: Jericho (lyrics)
Artist: Das Ich
Album: Satanische Verse
Label: Danse Macabre
[audio:dasichjericho.mp3]

Das Ich is a German band that makes something in between these: darkwave, electronic, EBM, industrial, gothic, etc. They usually use distorted vocals and awesome minimalist music, which is hard to find in all these commercial electronic music industry.

This song “Jericho” is from one of their early albums Satanische Verse, which also includes famous songs like “Gottes Tod.” Anyway, “Jericho” is a very theatrical song, which successfuly conveys the psychological depth embeded in the vocals and the piano and minimalist ambient background. You don’t need to understand German in order to be moved away by this song. Stop listening to the lyrics and listen to the music as a whole – how it forms sounds that form images.


In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

If I remember correct, it was last year, during American Poetry II class, when we read T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.” Our reading of this poem was different then. But, how true it is when you look at these lines alone – same imagery but different articulation. The women come whenever they want, and leave when they (are) please(d).

Please don’t.


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