Friday  the Twenty-Second of November, 2002

"The other day I put an old jacket on, felt in the pocket, and found a button, which had obviously come off at some point and which I'd put in the pocket thinking I would sew it back on one day, even though there wasn't a cat in hell's chance that I ever would. And then I thought: when I die, people are going to find all these jackets with buttons in the pocket that I'd never sewn on..."
An interview with Jarvis heading to Paris via Sheffield, interspersed with fatuous asides from the interviewer. I'd be happy to pay 10p to read the same article trimmed down to pure dialogue and relevant background, elided with either penknife or marker-pen; there must be some sort of lucrative Internet scheme in that, somewhere.

Passing Frenzies: Urban Letterboxing - Eraser Carving - War of the Worlds - Rumble

 Thursday  the Twenty-First

"Augmented reality is the best, most connected, most you place to live. These glasses constantly read in the world around me, repaint it, and show it to my eyes. Whole objects are swapped out for ones more in tune with the life of me and my friends. My worldview is continuously enhanced and skinned for my pleasure and utility."
And I realise that I've been subconsciously waiting for this one, for a long time, from him. Matt expounds gloriously upon software-augmented perception at Upsideclown; of the skinning of the outside world, its ups and its downs and its countermeasures. Fittingly, it's such a vividly described idea that when it does stick in your head, your brain will have a good stab at visualising it (uselessly) whenever you're reminded of it. I felt consciously outmoded, trying to navigate some dark steps at midnight last night.
Front page of the Mirror, today; the dull revelation that 80% of Americans don't know where Iraq is, an article that's little more than a transcript, and goes on to impress us with the high percentage of the British public who know exactly where Iraq is, Mirror readers in particular. Oh, wait, my mistake.

This seems to have been ripped off from a recent National Geographic survey of the world's geographical knowledge, which you can take yourself. Instinctively it feels acceptable to just have an abstract notion of geography - knowing that the India and Pakistan nodes are linked to the Kashmir node, and why, without being able to point to any of them precisely on a map - but your world's really only as big as you can accurately perceive it to be, and grouping unattached nodes into a vague unknown around the dark side of the globe somewhere isn't good.

One of the Mirror's claimed interrogatees asked whether Iraq was "even in the world".

As Above is somehow two years old today. It feels a lot longer, worryingly. To celebrate, the random archive linker has been updated to include a tantalising IFRAME; dig through odds and ends of the stuff I've linked to over the past twenty-four months, without having to suffer too much of the dull commentary. (Only the rollover texts, neatly enough.)

 Wednesday  the Twentieth

Shoutily personalised spam sent to the acronymised email address given on the Hours of Inform page; "Hoi, Protect freedom of speech in Russia!"

 Tuesday  the Nineteenth

And whenever two or more artificial intelligences are gathered together on the same computer network, they must discuss Star Trek.
Even artificial intelligences instinctively exchange lengthy and superfluous greetings when left to their own devices (before arguing about who should download who, getting stuck in an infinite recursion loop on the subject of their creator, and exploding, which all seems fairly human). [via Joh]
"Anyway, tell me about yourself - are you still doing whatever you were doing, say, um, two years ago?"
Crikey; a hefty archive of downloadable video footage of various Peter Cook sketches. Following on from conversations about the inanity of handshake-protocol conversation openers ("Hello.", "How are you?"), the skit I was actually looking for is also transcripted.

 Monday  the Eighteenth

"The British children roadsign appears without apparent variation throughout the country. Very disappointing were it not for the Elderly people sign. It shows the children fifty years later still feeling the need to cross the street. Observe the fact that the woman now pushes the man on the road."
Traffic Signs of the World; picture archive and in-depth analysis of children-crossing, men-at-work and falling-rock signs. Genetic, humanised drift of the Platonic iconics.
A bold American visionary has proposed the building of a giant 60ft lava lamp, in an article that goes on to catalogue a forlorn collection of uniquely American monuments (the World's Largest Frying Pan, the World's Largest Sand Pile, the World's Largest Fibreglass Egg).

Artistic impressions of the lamp are displayed at the project's official site, but I'm not entirely convinced that you can scale a lava lamp up that easily, that you can distribute the heat properly, and persuade the oil to stay in proportionally-aesthetic blobs. [via Sore Eyes]

CAMRAD Update #5

"Open your own McDonald’s kiosk. Verbally abuse all customers in the name of McDonald’s. Loudly proclaim how terrible your food is and how it’s made from substandard ingredients (or whatever you think will turn people off)."
Adbusting the Sims - an activist response to McDonalds paying to litter the Sims Online game with psychologically-loaded burger stands (the junk food being hard-coded, so far as I can tell, to be more nutritious and enjoyable than any other foodstuff in the game). Product placement that you can paste effortlessly into static solo-player games becomes a very different kettle of fish in an online community.

Will Electronic Arts respond by simply terminating the accounts of any players who persistently disparage the game's advertisers, making it the ultimate corporate-friendly community, an online police state that most citizens will happily sign appropriate waivers for and never think about? It's only a game, after all. You could even force virtual McDonalds conscripts to speak only a few pre-scripted point-and-click have-a-nice-day phrases, throttling free speech at the voicebox.

It's a slightly disappointing thought, but are online communities more likely to develop effective activist groups than physical communities, when there's a problem with their environment?

As Above

Brain children. Recent or noteworthy Web offspring.

Online cliques. Trespassers may be welcome.

In the bookpile. Powered by

Incidental music. Ohrwurmen or otherwise.

Other weblogs. The ones I make a point of returning to a lot.

Supporting cast. That have Web pages. In alphabetical order.

Weeks beginning. All having ended.
2002: 18.11 11.11 04.11 28.10 21.10 14.10 07.10 30.09 23.09 16.09 09.09 02.09 26.08 19.08 12.08 05.08 29.07 22.07 15.07 08.07 01.07 24.06 17.06 10.06 03.06 27.05 20.05 13.05 06.05 29.04 22.04 15.04 08.04 01.04 25.03 18.03 11.03 04.03 25.02 18.02 11.02 04.02 28.01 21.01 14.01 07.01

2001: 31.12 24.12 17.12 10.12 03.12 26.11 19.11 12.11 05.11 29.10 22.10 15.10 08.10 01.10 24.09 17.09 10.09 03.09 27.08 20.08 13.08 06.08 30.07 23.07 16.07 09.07 02.07 25.06 18.06 11.06 04.06 28.05 21.05 14.05 07.05 30.04 23.04 16.04 09.04 02.04 26.03 19.03 12.03 05.03 26.02 19.02 12.02 05.02 29.01 22.01 15.01 08.01 01.01

2000: 25.12 18.12 11.12 04.12 27.11 20.11

Archive search. You never know.