BB pal Erik Davis
, author of Techngnosis, has just published a brilliant short book riffing on the magick and mystery behind Led Zeppelin's nameless "Runes Album," AKA the one with Stairway to Heaven. I read this foray into pop occulture in one sitting and it's classic Davis--fun, informative, and damned funny. As always he tempers his deep knowledge of mysticism with a devilish smirk. The book is part of publisher Continuum's inspired 33 1/3
series of pocketbooks where edgy writers are paired with classic albums ranging from the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds to Radiohead's OK Computer. (For example, former Mondo 2000 and BookForum editor Andrew Hultkrans indulges his passion for Love's Forever Changes.) From Davis's book:
It must be said that many rock bards name Black Sabbath rather than Zeppelin as the true font of heavy metal. After all, Sabbath pack an unparalleled eldritch punch, and in many ways represent a purer source of bane: the riffs more consistently morbid, the stance more prole, and the whole shtick more out-of-nowhere and hence more monstrous, more contrary to nature. But Zeppelin had a vaster palette, a more richly perfumed darkness; perhaps most importantly, they sold way more records. Like all origin stories, this one depends on your frame of reference, your own lineages, your taste. It’s very much like the question of who deserves blame for the genre of heroic fantasy, whose multi-volume sagas of dwarf-lords and magic blades continue to clog the SF sections of bookstores. Hardcore sword-and-sorcery buffs will rightly name the pulp peregrinations of Robert E. Howard’s Conan, while more literary types will nominate, with equal justification, Tolkien’s "Lord of the Rings". Sabbath is Conan; Zeppelin is "Lord of the Rings." But Zeppelin is a special sort of "Lord of the Rings," one where you get to root for both sides.
David Robinson used the data from the 28,657 people who self-selected to take the Stack Overflow survey to investigate the relationship between programmer pay and the conventions of using either tabs or spaces to mark indents, and found a persistent, significant correlation between using spaces and bringing home higher pay.
It’s the end of an era, sort of: Fraunhofer IIS, the developers of the MP3 audio compression format, announced that they are ceasing their licensing program. In a blog post, spokesman Matthias Rose says that it’s had a good 20-year run and is obsolete. But it’s also true that the decoding patents expired last year, […]
Freddy deBoer writes that he’s been telling the same joke for years about Silicon Valley’s only product, which might be universalized as “At last, a way to verb with nouns on the internet!” But the social-media techopoly is stable, now, and so the venture capitalists have moved on to the three terrible trends that will […]
Although flagship smartphones are unlikely to adopt heavy-duty outer casing anytime soon, you can always prepare your device for the outdoors with a beefy case and and an external battery like this Nomad Tile Trackable PowerPack, available in the Boing Boing Store for $119.95.The Nomad Tile can fully recharge an iPhone 7 over three times […]
Even though credit cards now feature an EMV chip for securing transactions, they still have to include the magnetic strip for compatibility with older point of sale systems. Because of this, there’s no way for the chip’s new security capabilities to protect against card skimmers in the wild.How do you protect yourself from legacy-technology-induced fraud? […]
As the old saying goes, “You should sit in meditation for 30 minutes every day. Unless you are too busy, in which case you should meditate for an hour.” Since most of us have an endless list of things to do and people to see, carving out quiet time can feel impossible, especially when most […]