Invisible Children co-founder Jason Russell, who was involved in the making of the Kony 2012 video, was detained in San Diego yesterday morning after being found masturbating in public, vandalizing cars, running through traffic and screaming in his underwear. NBC San Diego reports:
Several people attempted to calm him down and when officers arrived they said he was cooperative.
"He was no problem for the police department however, during the evaluation we learned that we probably needed to take care of him," said [Lt. Andra] Brown at a press conference. "So officers detained him and transferred him to a local medical facility for further evaluation and treatment."
The SDPD suspects Mr. Russell was under the influence of something.
Irishman Sam Jordan wanted to see if he could consume a gallon of that ancient traditional Irish celebratory beverage, the Shamrock Shake. Did he succeed? You'll have to visit the link to find out.
A major new book on the art of video games was released today to coincide with the opening of an exhibition at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The show curator, Chris Melissinos, is also the co-author of the book, titled, The Art of Video Games: From Pac-Man to Mass Effect.
In the forty years since the first Magnavox Odyssey pixel winked on in 1972, the home video game industry has undergone a mind-blowing evolution. Fueled by unprecedented advances in technology, boundless imaginations, and an insatiable addiction to fantastic new worlds of play, the video game has gone supernova, rocketing two generations of fans into an ever-expanding universe where art, culture, reality, and emotion collide.See sample pages from The Art of Video Games
As a testament to the cultural impact of the game industry’s mega morph, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, with curator and author Chris Melissinos, conceived the forthcoming exhibition, The Art of Video Games, which will run from March 16 to September 30, 2012.
Melissinos presents video games as not just mere play, but richly textured emotional and social experiences that have crossed the boundary into culture and art.
Along with a team of game developers, designers, and journalists, Melissinos chose a pool of 240 games across five different eras to represent the diversity of the game world. Criteria included visual effects, creative use of technologies, and how world events and popular culture manifested in the games. The museum then invited the public to go online to help choose the games. More than 3.7 million votes (from 175 countries) later, the eighty winners featured in The Art of Video Games exhibition and book were selected.
From the Space Invaders of the seventies to sophisticated contemporary epics BioShock and Uncharted 2, Melissinos examines each of the winning games, providing a behind-the-scenes look at their development and innovation, and commentary on the relevance of each in the history of video games.
Over 100 composite images, created by Patrick O’Rourke, and drawn directly from the games themselves, illustrate the evolution of video games as an artistic medium, both technologically and creatively.
Additionally, The Art of Video Games includes fascinating interviews with influential artists and designers–from pioneers such as Nolan Bushnell to contemporary innovators including Warren Spector, Tim Schafer and Robin Hunicke.
Cary Sherman, CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America, has reminded the nation that at his instigation, the largest ISPs in the USA are set to disconnect their customers, and their customers' families, if the companies that Sherman represents makes a series of unsubstantiated accusations of copyright infringement against them. The ISPs came to the agreement after pressure from the Obama administration. This "five strikes" rule is the same system that has been decried around the world -- including in the EC and the UN -- as being a gross violation of human rights.
Sherman's role as Witchfinder General for the nation's Internet access kicks off on July 12. After that, if you get on his bad side, he can cost your children their ability to complete their education, he can cost you your job (if you are part of the growing proportion of people whose livelihood depends on the Internet), cut you off from civic and political engagement, lock you away from online access to your bank account and information about consumer rights, and, if you live remotely from your family, he can cost you your ability to stay in touch with them.
Oh, and if you have VOIP for your home phone service, Sherman will take away your 911 access too. Because burning to death is only too good a fate for people accused, without proof, of copyright infringement.
But of course, Sherman represents a sober-sided and cautious industry, the sort of people who claim that the Internet has cost them more jobs than they ever created and that an iPod's worth of songs is worth $8 billion, so they'll never abuse this power.
Thanks, ISPs, for capitulating to some of the worst companies in the world. Thanks, Obama administration, for turning America's attorney general's office into a revolving door career opportunity for entertainment industry lawyers. And thanks, RIAA, for making the case that your companies are too dangerous to peacefully co-exist with the Internet. SOPA was just the beginning, suckers.
Here's Greg Sandoval on CNet:
"Each ISP has to develop their infrastructure for automating the system," Sherman said. They need this "for establishing the database so they can keep track of repeat infringers, so they know that this is the first notice or the third notice. Every ISP has to do it differently depending on the architecture of its particular network. Some are nearing completion and others are a little further from completion."
The program, commonly referred to as "graduated response," requires that ISPs send out one or two educational notices to those customers who are accused of downloading copyrighted content illegally. If the customer doesn't stop, the ISP is then asked to send out "confirmation notices" asking that they confirm they have received notice.
At that time, the accused customers will also be informed of the risks they incur if they don't stop pirating material. If the customer is flagged for pirating again, the ISP can then ratchet up the pressure. Participating ISPs can choose from a list of penalties, or what the RIAA calls "mitigation measures," which include throttling down the customer's connection speed and suspending Web access until the subscriber agrees to stop pirating.
Here's Molly Wood on UltraViolet, the harebrained new scheme whereby people take their DVDs into stores to pay for them to be ripped to region-locked, time-limited DRM-laden streamable formats:
It is appalling to me to hear John Aden, executive vice president for general merchandising for Wal-Mart, say that this move is about helping consumers enjoy their own DVDs into the Digital Age. "We've all recognized that consumers have sunk lots and lots of money into these DVD libraries," he said. Really? But clearly not enough money, right? Or Hollywood wouldn't be trying so hard to get them to replace those libraries with new! better! Blu-ray! discs!, or trying to charge them a fee to access digital copies of content they already bought that they should have a fair use right to rip for free at home.
It's interesting how all this relies upon the suggestion the that DVD ripping is prohibited in any meaningful sense. The industry claims this in the vain hope anyone is stupid enough to believe it or care, these hucksters do it because they sell worthless services to stupid people, and critics do it because it highlights how stupid the industry is. [CNET] Thanks, Glenn!
"More Awesome Than A Monkey In A Bacon Tuxedo Riding A Cyborg Unicorn With A Lightsaber For The Horn On The Tip Of A Space Shuttle Closing In On Mars, While Engulfed In Flames."
Robbo sez, "The title for the article is just a portion of an amazing thank you letter from a primary school student in Austin, Texas - sent to a local weatherman who visited the class. Includes a drawing of a unicorn delivering donuts."
'More awesome than a monkey in a bacon tuxedo' - child's letter goes viral (Thanks, Robbo!)
'I will not make you a slave, you will live in my 200 story [sic] castle where unicorn servants will feed you doughnuts off their horns,' Flint wrote.
'I will personally make you a throne that is half platnum and half solid gold and jewel encrested [sic].'
The student, whose age is uncertain, proved he may have a career in creative writing ahead of him if either the meteorology or world domination do not work out as planned.
In fulsome praise, Flint said Ramon was 'more awesome than a monkey wearing a tuxedo made out of bacon riding a cyborg unicorn with a lightsaber for the horn on the tip of a space shuttle closing in on Mars, while ingulfed in flames'.
Flint added: 'And in case you didn't know that's pretty dang sweet.'
Instructables member TimAnderson has a great HOWTO for growing molded "portait gourds," a technique from China and would work with other vegetables. He starts with a 3D sculpture of his subject, creates a mold, and then coaxes the veg to grow within the mold's constraints.
This mold has a flexible rubber lining which makes it easy to remove from the gourd. A plaster mold adheres to the gourd more tenaciously and usually the mold is destroyed in the course of removing it from around the gourd.
The gourd is then allowed to dry slowly, and the outer coating called the "cuticle" is removed. Then the finishing steps, if any, are done.
On this gourd, the details of the face and hair were then traced with the point of a jade knife to enhance the detail, It was dyed with dark tea, and a coat of varnish was applied to make it shiny.
Boing Boing pal and periodic guestblogger Andrea James sends word of a cool and worthy project she's doing, and raising funds for via Kickstarter: "Family Restaurant," a film for children whose moms and/or dads are LGBT.
"There are very few family-friendly films where kids with gay or lesbian parents can enjoy a fun story that reflects their own lives," Andrea says, "I think it's going to be pretty cute and a teensy bit controversial. All art is political!"
From Andrea's project description:
Pitch in or learn more here.
"Family Restaurant" celebrates young children with gay or lesbian parents. It shows them a magical world filled with cute characters who reflect their family lives. Set in a family restaurant, it features talking ketchup and mustard bottles among the colorful residents of the diner. It has a mix of puppetry and actors, including a number of real children with gay or lesbian parents.
I serve on the Board of Directors of Outfest, a prominent LGBT film festival. Each year, Outfest has a family day for children to watch movies, but there are very few family-friendly films where these kids can enjoy a fun story that reflects their own lives. It's time to make something specifically for these wonderful children, with a story that's charming enough to appeal to all young people.
Michael Geist, "One of the major unanswered questions about Bill C-30, Canada's lawful access/online surveillance bill, is who will pay for the costs associated with responding to law enforcement demands for subscriber information ('look ups') and installation of surveillance equipment ('hook ups'). I recently obtained documents from Public Safety under the Access to Information Act that indicates that the government doesn't really have its own answer. But apparently the police do. The documents indicate they proposed a new 'public safety' tax to be added to Internet and wireless bills."
This undated Iver Johnson ad may just be the most disturbing thing I've ever seen posted on the LiveJournal Vintage Ads group. Not just for the odd spectacle of the little girl playing with a pistol in bed above the legend "Accidental Discharge Impossible," but for the accompanying caption "Papa says it won't hurt us." Even without reaching for some kind of sexual abuse innuendo or subtext, the idea that a father would show a small, untrained child a loaded handgun and say, "Don't play with this, daughter, but if you do, it won't hurt you!" is, well, weird.