- Charles Tan asks whether .epub and .mobi ebook formats will go obsolete. I dunno, we’re still using .mp3 despite the obvious drawbacks. And for those who haven’t seen it yet, here’s the Philippine Speculative Fiction Sampler that Tan co-edited, and Best of Philippine Speculative Fiction 2009 edited by Tan as well, available for download in one of those not-yet obsolete formats (along with PDF).
- A veteran of several crit groups with me, Ben Burgis, published his story After October at GigaNotoSaurus and Podcastle at practically the same time. The former is for reading, the latter for listening.
- Another Ben in the SF world is Benjamin Rosenbaum, whose story “The Guy Who Worked for Money” attacks the questions of materialism and power from a different angle. Worth reading, as are the posts where he outlines working up the ideas involved (which you can see here: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ). His Nature story “Falling,” set in the same world, is worth a go too.
- You should read, too. Raymond Mar has found some compelling reasons:
“Mar, a doctoral candidate in psychology at University of Toronto, shows in a recently published article that exposure to narrative fiction is positively associated with improved social abilities, a correlation not shown for non-fiction reading.”
- Ever imagine a world where mahjong is used to solve political disputes? Where North Koreans cheat at mahjong (of course) and the Pope uses ancient Catholic magic to fight against Koizumi? No? Well, someone has done it for you. This does have me interested in manga, I’ll admit. Or anime, from the looks of this. (Via this post at Mutant Frog Travelogue.) That’s also where I found this interesting-but-belabored excoriation of Anime fansubbing practices, by an anime fan. I have to say as a non-anime person he has a point, but the behavior he describes are interesting as a kind of cultural phenomenon.
- Have you read Karen Russell’s Swamplandia? I think I want to… and I definitely want to read Janet L. Abu-Lughod’s The World Before Hegemony, which Benjamin Rosenbaum mentioned somewhere in those articles linked above. And I was impressed by Sherman Alexie’s defense of non-candy-coated YA books.
- Ha, when I first started thinking about the novel I’m drafting this summer, A Killing in Burma, I think thingiverse and RepRap.org were more just ideas than thriving communities stuffed with downloadable RepRap patterns. Which doesn’t matter much for parts of the story, but matters a lot for others. I think this is gonna be an interesting century. Cross it with the Open Source Ecology project and… well, all I can say is someone should tell the Jensenists. Personally, though, I’m sad I couldn’t find a model for a grain mill. I hope that once I get around to building myself a RepRap, there’ll be a model for a grain mill out already, or I’ll have to design one (or, well, do something derivative from other similar objects) myself. Then again, there’s Yuri on Homebrewtalk: I bet he’ll have a grain crusher pattern available for download eventually, if not yet.
- Here’s what happens when you copy your keys. Keys are a lossy information medium, or at least, key replication is dreadfully lossy.
- As someone recently Tweeted, our estimates for the age of the universe seem to have been confirmed by the WMAP satellite. 12-14 billion years old, not 5000 years.
- If I could get my hands on cheap malt extract, I’d be all about brewing a 15 minute beer.
- erenlai magazine looks interesting, and vibrant, and full of things worth knowing about if you’re interested in culture, politics, and social movements in the Asia-Pacific region.
And this video, which is an oldie but a goodie: