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July 29, 2004

The Flat Earth Society

Yes, that's the name of a real society. No, they're not kidding. Yes, the following is really an excerpt from their official FAQ.

'1. What is the Earth's shape?
The Earth is flat. It is shaped in the form of a pentagon, and thus has five corners.

2. What is the "middle corner"?
If one was to draw a line from each corner to the centre of the opposing side of the Earth, the line would intersect in the middle of the Flat Earth. This place is known as the Middle Corner.

3. Hey, wait a minute, that is not a real corner...
So? The equator of the spherical earthers is an imaginary line as well. Does this mean that their model does not have a northern and a southern hemisphere? You cannot count in imaginary numbers, but does that mean that they do not exist?

4. What about the northern and southern hemisphere?
Globularist rot. This implies the Earth being a SPHERE, which it is not. The Earth has, however, an Inner and Outer Ring.

5. What is Platygæanism?
Platygæanism is the scientific hypothesis which holds that the Earth is flat or planar in topology.

5. Does the "middle corner" prove that 5=6?
And so on and so forth. Visit these fine specimens of utter intellectual defiance in the face of anything at http://www.flat-earth.org/.
And many thanks to RAW for alerting me to their continued, stubborn existence. At first I thought he was, you know, kidding.

July 27, 2004

computer-generated visual poetry for those who can appreciate

Check out this link. Put your mouse pointer in the Flash box and wave it around. Stare. Enjoy. Repeat.

Man, is it ever sweet to be a geek in the 21st century.

July 26, 2004


The rise of the Net and the Web represents a victory for the counterculture and the subculture.
The next generation, raised on the Net as their primary medium, won't even know what consensus reality is.

--R.U. Sirius

Ladies and Gentlemen, it is a honor for me to introduce you to Key23, a new group effort of the occultural blog/zine variety.
An apparent accident, borne out of a beautiful series of effortless synchronicities, Key23 finally brings me to team up with several o t h e r shady figures, whose own work I have long admired and blogrolled. At this stage in the game, what we have in practical terms is a group blog, but the six of us are in constant communication and working to expand in multiple directions at once. Please be our guests for an informal inauguration by pointing your browsers and bookmarks to http://www.key23.net/, where Michael Szul serves as the ideal MC to introduce this project:

'What is Key 23? Key 23 comes from author Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles graphic novel. Originally termed Key 17, and then remonikered with the 23 later in the series, Key 23 is a chemical substance that forces the person under it’s influence to confuse words with the concepts that they represent, ultimately leading to a blurry line between reality and the written word.

That is our attempt here: to blur consensus reality with the concepts and ideas that you’ll be reading about… and we’ve assembled a team like no other to accomplish this task.'
From now on, that's where most of my writing proper will be found. Corridor of Madness will remain active, but is slated for a major change of look (I know, I've said that before, but this time...) and will be mostly a place to collect research links, quick comments, personal journaling and the like.

So enjoy the occultural waves coming your way, and dance with us on the edge of the End of Consensus...

July 23, 2004

July 23rd, 2004

Today is July 23rd.

Exactly one year ago, I was in Santa Cruz to attend the world premiere of Maybe Logic, a documentary about Robert Anton Wilson. Santa Cruz Mayor Emily Reilly was there too, and she officially proclaimed that day "Robert Anton Wilson Day", managing to flatter even further an already warmly celebrated Wilson.

On July 23rd, 1973, Wilson had an experience that appeared to be a communication with an alien intelligence from Sirius, and that served as foundation for his trilogy The Cosmic Trigger (one, two and three). This wouldn't have sounded particularly weird at all to the ancient Egyptians, as they believed that the connection with Sirius is at its strongest on July 23rd, day on which the star first rises from behind the sun. Sirius is also known as the "Dog Star", and its rising on today's date marks the beginning of the "Dog Days" of Summer. The Dogon people of Africa also have had, historically, quite a relationship with Sirius. If you'd like some more information about that, LVX23 has some related quotes up today.

Incidentally, Sirius has an astronomical luminosity of 23.5 as well. But I'm going to stop here, and right away — before this becomes yet another endless list of 23's. If you would like one of those, may I direct you here... it's more fun that way.

Anyway. Coming back to the present... today, July 23rd, 2004, the doors of Robert Anton Wilson's Maybe Logic Academy have opened, and 44 people (including myself) are beginning RAW's course on '8 Dimensions of "Mind"'. Course text is Wilson's masterpiece Prometheus Rising. A forum has been set up for people that are enrolled in the course to share insights and discuss this or that point, and RAW is already encouraging such interactions. As the course progresses, I might sporadically blog about it whenever a particularly interesting discussion or statement enters my radar. So stay tuned and, if you feel so inclined, you might consider joining of the other, upcoming courses. If you end up in the Illuminatus! course, I'll see you there — be sure to say hi!

the Demon of Electricity...

...was found hiding in today's spam (about some sort of antiaging product). The Demon appeared to me in the following form:

From: xxxxx@x.xxx [mailto:xxxx@xxxx.xxx]
Sent: Friday, March 8, 2004 4:68PM
To: maira; alisa@x.xxx; willia; dee; efrain
Subject: appreciate but no thank you PO 12 00 B , Oran ge sta d, A ruba

You don't seem to understand Well, I'll explain

You're the Demon of Electricity, aren't you? I am, said the other, drawing himself up proudlyYour mission is to obey the commands of whoever is able to strike the Master Key of Electricity

And that was it.


July 22, 2004

Your Imaginary Friend: The Sweeper // prelude

My friend Paul, also known as Your Imaginary Friend, recently sent me some cryptic emails, each containing what appears to be a fragment of a longer story. Or a longer something, anyway. I'd like to share with you one of those fragments. It's a great prelude, I think, and I hope he continues fleshing out the whole thing. Read on for the story so far.

The Sweeper

“Surrender yourself humbly, Then you can be trusted to care for all things.” Tao te Ching (XIII)

It is spoken of great musicians that their instruments have become extentions of their bodies and that by way of these instruments they can connect themselves, together with those who listen as they play, to another realm.
The masters of East Indian music are especially renowned in this regard. It is said that there are those who are able to transverse the subtle nerve channels of those who listen with dragon kites flown on strands of melody drawn from a sitar while accompanied by 10,000 ecstatic butterflies set free from a set of tables. Indeed it is said that there are those who are able to coax from a tambor ethereal vibrations that keep all those who listen gently suspended in the loving arms of living space. Together, these musicians conspire (breathe together) to open a resonant gateway -a subtle and shimmering window, delicate and intricate as a crystal chandelier – connecting the gods with humanity.
These great ones appear to play magical instruments; instruments whose function it is to connect us with sources divine rather than induce our exile from innumerable Edens. Alas! What compass could serve to navigate the bizarrely convoluted passageways that lay between the carnivorous carnival of Modern Times and our very essence?
In the darkness of our so-called advanced age, it often appears that the magical arts belong to another space and time in lands that bear little resemblance to our own. Apparantly barred from participation in the mysteries of magical instruments, I’ve plummeted down into the depths of despair to the foot of a prolific heap of refuse where we (Hey, how did you get here?) have come upon a man. A man with a broom.

[To Be Continued, I imagine...]

Domain Name Anarchy

Last year's Hackmeeting, Italy's main hacker convention, brings us this attempt to establish an independent, grassroots DNS network:

'The goal of DNA project is the creation of a parallel network of authoritative name server for some Top Level Domains freely grass root created.

Internet growth extinguished (at least statistically speaking) the hacker feeling which charcterized the Net for over twenty years, creating a population of telematic sheeps, which pretend they can control their communicative power because they can post three messages a day on their favourite forum. Reality is that the Net is no more in its majority in the hands of its very users.

The best expression of Net self-organization (one of its main fundamental concepts) is limited to small, isolated manifestations of individual opinions, when, some years ago, organization, topology and services were promoted, proposed and developed by the same folks who deeply knew the Net. And that's not the whole story...'
Click here for the whole story. The language is Italian by default, but if you enable cookies in your browser and click here before browsing the site, you'll be able to view most of its contents in English. Found on Neural.it, Italian magazine of 'Hacktivism, e-Music and New Media Art' (link goes to English version).

Alan Moore: The man who invented the future

The great Alan Moore muses on media and the warping of human consciousness in this Salon interview (you'll be required to watch a short ad to read it, alas):

'One of the reasons we singled out media in "V for Vendetta" was because it is one of the most useful tools of tyranny. We invite it into our own home every night; I'm sure that some of us think of it as a friend. That might be a horrifying notion but I'm sure there are people who think of television as perhaps one of their most intimate friends. And if the TV tells them that things in the world are a certain way, even if the evidence of their senses asserts it is not true, they'll probably believe the television set in the end. It's an alarming thought but we brought it upon ourselves. I mean, I think that television is one of the most diabolical -- in the very best sense of the word -- inventions of the past century. It has probably done more to degrade the mind and intelligence of its audience, even if they happen to be drug addicts or alcoholics; I would think that watching television has done more to limit their horizons in the long run. And it has also distorted our culture.' (Salon interview via BoingBoing)

UPDATE: LVX23 has archived this interview as a PDF, so you don't have to pay Salon or watch the ad to read the whole thing. Good job, LVX23! You know, I really do wonder how many of those subscriptions they sell. Can't be that good of a business model... but then again, maybe there's enough chumps out there to make it worthwhile. Who knows.

July 21, 2004

Cognitive Liberty vs. Mind Control

Just found this article by Richard Glen Boire, director and chief legal counsel for the Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics (formerly known as the Alchemind Society):

'The opposition is coming from people who might be called bioconservatives. They believe that drugs should only be used to make sick people normal, and should not be used to improve, enhance or selectively modify the mental functioning of healthy people. Their concern is often rooted in religious beliefs that perceive the nonmedical use of drugs as immoral and unnatural. Attempting to improve human functioning, rather than simply correct malfunctions, they say, is to audaciously take on Godlike powers and endeavor to skirt natural limits that the Creator placed on human beings.

Last fall, the US President's Council on Bioethics, an influential panel of 18 scholars appointed by George W. Bush, released a 300-page report titled Beyond Therapy: Biotechnology and the Pursuit of Happiness. Among other topics, the report addressed memory-management drugs.

While the council carefully avoided explicitly structuring its analysis on conservative religious values, these are deeply infused in its report. The majority of the council members are ardently religious.' (Betterhumans article)

July 16, 2004

Plankton Power

'Phytoplankton may be small, but that doesn't mean they can't do big things -- like change the weather to suit their needs.

A recent study funded by NASA's Earth Science Department shows that the tiny sea plants release high quantities of cloud-forming compounds on days when the sun's harmful ultraviolet rays are especially strong. The compounds evaporate into the air through a series of chemical processes that result in especially reflective clouds. This, in turn, blocks the radiation from bothering the phytoplankton.

The findings not only confirm earlier theories that plankton are linked to the creation of clouds above the ocean but could also lead to a better understanding of how living things affect the Earth's climate.' (Wired article)

Circling the Square

Yesterday, as I was cruising around on Google for my daily fix of alchemical symbolism (don't we all), my choice of keywords made me stumble upon this blog: Circling the Square: Dark conspiracies, fiendish plots, and end-times paranoia.The site is basically dead — last updated on May 26th — but I've decided to make it a policy to blog any such serendipities. So check it out anyway for a few funny and snarky tidbits about, among other things: brain fingerprinting, far-out futuristic weaponry, Martha Stewart, small-penised men fighting back against spammers, and the virtues of crack cocaine over the Atkins diet.

MadGhoul: Douglas Rushkoff interview

MadGhoul's editor Michael Szul interviews Douglas Rushkoff, brilliant media philosopher. Read the interview here, and check out Rushkoff's Disinformation dossier if you need some background. Enjoy.

July 13, 2004

The Absurdity Continues

Novelist (Move Under Ground) and erstwhile Disinfo scribe Nick Mamatas has received TRUE and AUTHENTIC wisdom from no less a source than Ted Jesus Christ GOD, and decided to share it with us. Thanks, Nick!

'This is Ted Jesus Christ GOD saying that I AM THE CREATOR and this is what Doctors and Dentist should be Prescribing...NO PROCESSED SUGAR in anything and ZERO TOLERANCE for any of that and NO PROCESSED FOODS and NO PROCESSED WHITE BREAD and NO STARCHY FOODS and NOTHING ARTIFICIAL and NO ANIMAL FATS in anything and ZERO TOLERANCE for any of that and this includes NO butter milk and NO dairy milk and NO sour cream and NO yogurt and NO cheese and NO meats and then NO Biotech and EVERYTHING from the Fresh Produce Section has to be Creator Original and definitely NEVER any Street Drugs or Over the Counter Drugs or Prescription Drugs or Pharmaceuticals or Hospital or Medical Center Drugs and NO Smoking of anything and NO drinking of anything alcoholic and NO Plastic or Cosmetic Surgery and NO Surgery to counter Growing Old Curse and DEFINITELY AND THIS NEVER EVER EVER taking anything or allowing to be put in your veins anything that Alters your Genetics and that can then be passed onto children or Altering of Human Genetics for any reason including to cure or fix or improve or enhance or alter. Ted keeps hearing and this LOUD SPIRITUALLY that Antibiotics have caused certain types of FATAL Cancer and are partially RESPONSIBLE for the Cancer EPIDEMIC!'
What can I say? Read the whole thing. Here's links to parts one and two.

The Corridor of Analogies

Open yet another doorway into the Patently Absurd, by checking out this list of the "Worst analogies ever written in a high school essay" (via Discordian Research Technology News).


He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.
— Joseph Romm, Washington

She caught your eye like one of those pointy hook latches that used to dangle from screen doors and would fly up whenever you banged the door open again.
— Rich Murphy, Fairfax Station
And many more...

July 12, 2004

Night of the Living Spambots

Today, Corridor of Madness received its first big spam attack, with about 200 comments posted by spambots. Most were links to either sex sites (of the brutal kind), or various online scams. All I can say is, Gee... thanks! The attack has provided the push I needed to finally install MT-Blacklist, a plugin for Movable Type that automatically deletes spam comments and prevents them from being posted in the future. It was a snap to install and use, and it fixed in a few minutes a problem that it would have taken me hours to tackle otherwise. I highly recommend this plugin, if you have a Movable Type blog and wish to secure it from the attacks that some extremely low forms of life (spammers) might level on it.

Special thanks go to MT-Blacklist's author, Jay Allen: I'll get you a donation as soon as I can! :)

July 09, 2004


Besides its dubious name, The Register's online store brings to you today's Manifestation of Twentythree (click here).

July 06, 2004

Solioonensius Rising

Many have already linked to this BBC article, relating the Sun's latest display of bizarre behavior:

'A new analysis shows that the Sun is more active now than it has been at anytime in the previous 1,000 years.
Scientists based at the Institute for Astronomy in Zurich used ice cores from Greenland to construct a picture of our star's activity in the past.
They say that over the last century the number of sunspots rose at the same time that the Earth's climate became steadily warmer.'
Indeed it is pretty interesting, and it can lend itself to many musings and reflections. If you're a libertarian, for instance, you might rejoice, sure that this somehow finally proves how fossil fuel gases have absolutely nothing to do with global warming. If you're an environmentalist, you may think that both sunspots and fossil fuels are factors, and this must mean that we're all doomed. Me? I'm just reminded of Gurdjieff's concept of solioonensius.

If you don't know or remember what that is, you can brush up on it with this DuVersity article:

'...the time of planetary tension which energizes the earth so people strive for freedom - then turn that striving for freedom into war or the equivalent of war, into destruction. It is, according to Gurdjieff's own theory, a time when certain new directions can be implanted into general culture.'
Some related reflections can be found here and here. To explore the war-related implications, check out Alex Burns' excellent 2002 essay on "Gurdjieff and Peace Studies: the Dark Side in History".

Once you're done, (or before you start, or if it's all you're going to read), re-read carefully this J.G. Bennett quote from one of the articles linked above:

'The point is that there are two completely different ways in which people can react to a state of Solioonensius. It always arouses dissatisfaction, but this may be external or internal. External dissatisfaction leads to external conflict; internal dissatisfaction strengthens the desire to struggle with oneself. Those who understand the necessity for working on themselves and achieving the second destiny find in that state of tension the greatest possibility of incentive and force to make them work harder. But those who do not have this feeling, this realization, project outwards their dissatisfaction and become hostile and angry with other people—suspicious, jealous and the rest of it- and then, defenseless against these mass psychoses, begin to hate. And the very people who, only a few years before, could not conceive of themselves consenting to the idea of war become involved in the destruction of other people. And those other people, passing through the same mass psychosis with the same justification, wish in turn to destroy their existence.'
Would that explain a few things? Enjoy the reading...

23-acre body of water disappears

Today's weird 23 story brought to you by MSNBC (though I got to it a little late):

'WILDWOOD, Mo. - To folks around Wildwood, it is nothing but freaky: an entire 23-acre lake vanished in a matter of days, as if someone pulled the plug on a bathtub.

Lake Chesterfield went down a sinkhole this week, leaving homeowners in this affluent St. Louis suburb wondering if their property values disappeared along with their lakeside views.

“It’s real creepy,” said Donna Ripp, who lives near what had been Lake Chesterfield. “That lake was 23 acres — no small lake. And to wake up one morning, drive by and it’s gone?”' (MSNBC article via One More Day...)

July 04, 2004

RAW: Is There Reason For Optimism?

American Samizdat links to this Robert Anton Wilson interview:

'The reason for optimism lies in the biological fact that it keeps you happy and busy, whereas pessimism just leads to lying around and bitching. I'd rather keep happy and busy than lie around bitching, but I know this will not convince those who really like lying around and bitching. As Nietzsche said that optimism and good health always go together, and so do pessimism and morbidity, in the medical sense of the word.' (Church of the Subgenius interview)

The Political Compass

While you question your identification with this or that political/social/cultural group, it might also help to disengage from one-dimensional polarities (Fascist-Communist, Liberal-Conservative, etc.). As a tool to do just that, a British journalist-and-academic duo created The Political Compass:

'There's abundant evidence for the need of it. The old one-dimensional categories of 'right' and 'left' , established for the seating arrangement of the French National Assembly of 1789, are overly simplistic for today's complex political landscape. For example, who are the 'conservatives' in today's Russia? Are they the unreconstructed Stalinists, or the reformers who have adopted the right-wing views of conservatives like Margaret Thatcher?'
Based on your answers, their quick test will position you somewhere on a four-quadrant chart, adding a lot more definition to your social/economic/political identity.

They also checked the voting record of all the 2004 Presidential candidates from the two major parties, and generated their position on the Compass accordingly. Which results in an interesting at-a-glance overview of American politics. Moreover, this quick quiz tests your knowledge of the more surprising positions of many political leaders, from Gandhi to Adam Smith to Mussolini to the Dalai Lama. Which makes for many a revealing "Everything You Know is Wrong" moment.

Enjoy, take the test, and once done don't forget to question the Political Compass itself, along with the way it evaluates information (which, incidentally, is not disclosed).


Well, it's that time of the year again. For the occasion, let me first echo the sentiments expressed in these July 4th wishes, contained in the latest Disinfo newsletter edited by Alex Burns:

'First, the Disinfo team wishes our United States readers a safe and joyous July 4 celebration. During this holiday weekend take time to reflect on the fate of American governance and the republic, given the major events during the past 12 months. Is the US truly a universalist civilization, worthy of being the 'city on the hill', the 'guiding light' of the world?
Freedom of the revolutionary sort must begin with you, not an elected government or nation-state. It's the individual freedom that Aleister Crowley conveys, or that Douglas Valentine hints at (in an almost throwaway line that Christopher Hitchens is being disengenuous to critique Michael Moore when the neoconservatives have likely siphoned off $US20 billion from Iraq's oil reserves).
The Freedom of an arrow effortlessly hitting the bullseye.'

The 'throwaway line' that Alex refers to is contained in Valentine's Counterpunch review of Fahrenheit 9/11. Hitchens' own oft-quoted, hack'n slash review can be found here and, among other places, has been painstakingly rebutted here.

A careful reading of both points of view is encouraged, as is your own research on the issues raised. Objectively examining all sides of every issue is necessary to create one's own original, inner-directed position, and to steer clear of groupthink. Necessary — and yet often difficult, especially in highly charged and polarized political territory: peer pressure can and does stigmatize even the treating of opposing viewpoints as worthy of open-minded analysis. We are subjected to subtle and powerful influences that induce us to take not just a clear stance, but sides, much like in a battlefield. Different categories, classes, identities wage a war for our hearts and minds, our allegiance. Any one of them, when embraced, will demand a reprogramming of the individual self to fit its identity, goals and values. This induces a state analog to sleep, in which conformity is rewarded, comfortable and preferable to more personal and creative ways of thinking, acting, being.

Then again, some popular collective identities claim to hold individual freedom as their only value and goal, but do they really? Can they really? This and all the other questions must be answered by you for yourself, or somebody else will. This obviously requires work, work that can be slow and hard — but that yields as a result the only true and complete freedom, foundation of all other freedoms. Today, this is what I'm thinking about.

Happy Independence Day!

Just a very few additional resources:

Alex Burns' Personal Mutations :: [1] [2] [3]

Tools to inspire the "conscious evolution of the individual psyche" while maintaining "a healthy scepticism and a critical nature". All work by The Disinformation Company, Ltd. is recommended for the same purpose, but these three pieces by Burns have an immediate relevance to this post.
Robert B. Cialdini's Influence :: [summary] [author academic and business homepages]
Essential book on the science of practice of influence and compliance, or "the principles that determine beliefs, create attitudes, and move people to agreement and action". Read it — marketers and advertisers did.
Douglas Rushkoff's Coercion :: [book homepage] [author homepage]
"Why we listen to what 'they' say" — and allow outside influences to do our thinking for us. Highly recommended, as is just about anything else by Rushkoff, a sharp and eloquent media thinker.
Tim O'Shea's The Doors of Perception: Why Americans Will Believe Almost Anything :: [essay]
An absolute must read, this essay explores in detail how PR flacks and propagandists engineer mass acceptance. Eye-opening and well referenced.
Enjoy. And if you liked the quote from Disinfo's newsletter, I recommend subscribing to it here. It's a good roundup of links and quotes, you're guaranteed to find fodder for your psyche in it every time — and the Disinfo folks won't spam you. Over and out...

July 03, 2004

Pump Up the Volume 2004

'This was going to be “How-To increase the range of your iTrip mini”. But after playing around with the new iTrip mini, the FM broadcasting accessory for the iPod (our review here) our little minds got working on some ideas. We thought we might be able to make the range of Griffin’s iTrip mini a little better if took it apart and exposed the antenna, turns out we could. And then we thought, hey- we could use a couple iPods to broadcast something we wanted to get out there, perhaps not “should” that is, but could. So that was our motivation, and here’s the How-To.' (Engadget blog entry via Slashdot)

Exhibit With Human Bodies Debuts in L.A.

'LOS ANGELES - A pregnant woman lies on her side with a hand behind her head as if posing for a nude photograph. But her dead body isn't the only thing exposed. Her heart, intestines and 8-month-old fetus are visible as well.

The woman was one of more than 200 people who donated their cadavers for use in "Body Worlds: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies," which makes its U.S. debut Friday at the California Science Center.' (Yahoo! News article)

Webcam lets users eyeball others

'Instant messaging could get a lot more interesting if webcam technology from Microsoft gets the go-ahead. i2i, in development at Microsoft's research lab in Cambridge, UK, is a two-camera system which very carefully follows an individual's movement.

It uses a specially developed algorithm to fuse what each camera sees to create an accurate stereo "cyclopean" image. This means it looks as if users are looking each other in the eye.' (BBC News article)

July 02, 2004

The Gematriculator

This site is certified 58% EVIL by the GematriculatorThis site is certified 42% GOOD by the Gematriculator

'The Gematriculator is a service that uses the infallible methods of Gematria developed by Mr. Ivan Panin to determine how good or evil a web site or a text passage is.

Basically, Gematria is searching for different patterns through the text, such as the amount of words beginning with a vowel. If the amount of these matches is divisible by a certain number, such as 7 (which is said to be God's number), there is an incontestable argument that the Spirit of God is ever present in the text. Another important aspect in gematria are the numerical values of letters: A=1, B=2 ... I=9, J=10, K=20 and so on. The Gematriculator uses Finnish alphabet, in which Y is a vowel.

Experts consider the mathematical patterns in the text of the Holy Bible as God's watermark of authenticity. Thus, the Gematriculator provides only results that are absolutely correct.'
Yeah, yeah, OK. And as the figures above clearly show, The Corridor of Madness has passed the test! More narrowly than I would have expected, but it passed still. Maybe now I can write to these nice folks and politely ask for that CAP Influence Density ranking, eh? (see here)

[The Gematriculator was found via Invisible College.]

geometrical visions

This video gallery for the Discrete Differential Geometry Project — hosted at Technische Universität Berlin — contains a few nice geometrical computer visualizations, such as the one about constant mean curvature tori from which these stills were taken:


late Bloomsday linkage

Dublin - June 12-17, 2004 — B.L.O.O.D. F.O.R. S.A.L.E. is a "Wi-Fi performance at the ReJoyce Festival celebrating Bloomsday 100", by Christophe Bruno.

'As James Joyce did 100 years ago, I walk through Dublin, but with a Wi-Fi handheld and a digital camera. On my way, I record everything I see, mainly company logos or brands, as if my eyes were "spammed". Then, through the wireless network, I send all this visual spam to a program on my server that fetches related "sponsored epiphanies" from the whole Web. These epiphanies are incorporated into the text by Joyce in real-time.'
Follow this link for a detailed description, images and downloadable video of the performance.

And since I've finally gotten around to mentioning anything at all about Bloomsday, let me also link to these related and somewhat rambling comments, posted by a user on the online social network Tribe.net. I just like how he sounds:

'The noise machines strategy--Mock the fnord. Pretend that the year 1904 didn't have a bigger meaning outside of the date. That's right, if you don't see the fnord, it can't hurt you. Reinforce that new ideas are dangerous. Label the work of art as fiction or fantasy. Those crazy hippies have another ritual pole they are dancing around. There are economic liabilities to publicly being a wiccan.'

File under: EYKIW

'As you may already know, one of America's two political parties is extremely religious. Sixty-one percent of this party's voters say they pray daily or more often. An astounding 92 percent of them believe in life after death. And there's a hard-core subgroup in this party of super-religious Christian zealots. Very conservative on gay marriage, half of the members of this subgroup believe Bush uses too little religious rhetoric, and 51 percent of them believe God gave Israel to the Jews and that its existence fulfills the prophecy about the second coming of Jesus.

Liberals could read these statistics and sneer about "those silly Republicans" were it not for the fact that it's the Democrats who hold these beliefs. And the abovementioned ultrareligious subgroup is not the so-called "Religious Right" but rather the so-called "African-Americans."' (Slate article, link via MoorishGirl)

Surprised? You shouldn't be. Remember: EYKIW.

a quote

Overheard at the local video store, 3 minutes before closing time. Three girls, probably none of them older than 17, trying to agree on the movie to watch.

Girl 1: "Hey, [insert name here], do you wanna see Bowling for Columbine?"
Girl 2: "Well, I like weapons, but yeah, sure.
Girl 3: "Say what?"
Girl 2: "I said I LIKE WEAPONS!"

Meanwhile, Nick Mamatas is commenting on Moore's latest: Fahrenheit 9/11 (as well as pointing out something about Bowling that, judging by the quote above, is still worth repeating).

July 01, 2004

Man Nails Himself To Cross In Protest

'ZACATECAS, Mexico -- A farmer upset about not getting his party's nomination to run for the Zacatecas state legislature nailed himself to a wooden cross and donned a crown of thorns in a protest outside the state's electoral office.'

Yeah. For real. (local6.com article)

Is This You?

This site is a collection of found photos. If you have ever lost a picture of yourself, somebody might have found it and submitted it to the site. The idea being that, if you recognize yourself, you can get the photograph back. If you don't, you can browse through hundreds of pictures of strangers all huddled together in small thumbnails, crowding a single webpage. A mildly eerie buzz might well ensue.

Check it out: http://www.isthisyou.co.uk/

Lysergically Steeped Drawings

'These 9 drawings were done by an artist under the influence of LSD -- part of a test conducted by the US government during it's dalliance with psychotomimetic drugs in the late 1950's. The artist was given a dose of LSD 25 and free access to an activity box full of crayons and pencils. His subject is the medico that jabbed him.'

See all the drawings and experiment notes here.