It's all about expectation management, you see. If you make your kid think he can be president, he will grow up disappointed. Tell him he's headed for a life as an office drone and at least he'll be mentally prepared.
The Web site Cryptome, which publishes sensitive corporate and government files, was taken down briefly by its provider after Microsoft complained of copyright infringement over the publication of one of its documents.
Cryptome often posts documents detailing the surveillance activities that companies and government agencies perform on behalf of law enforcement officials. These documents, which Cryptome refers to as "lawful spying guides," explain what information companies reveal about its customers when requested by legal authorities. Many of these documents are specifically written for law enforcement officials to guide them on obtaining customer information from a company--what to ask … Read more
Their invention, which is forthcoming in the paper version of the journal Lab on a Chip, works much the way a coin sorter does, only on a microscopic scale, screening for particles purely by size. This renders sample sizes and concentration levels almost irrelevant, because particles are trapped by size, not number, thereby allowing for much earlier detections of viruses.
"Most of the tests that you're given … Read more
It's pricey. The "Neil Young Archives, Vol. 1: 1963-1972" Blu ray box goes for $349; the DVD is $250; and the CD set a mere $100. The Blu-ray box contains a sprawling 11-disc collection. Young's been working on this set for what feels like decades; was it worth the wait?
There's a beautifully bound, embossed-"leather," covered book with tons of cool pictures. Hard-core fans will love it, everyone else will look through it once and be done with it.
There's only one unreleased live disc, "Live at the Riverboat 1969." The Blu ray box also includes "Live at Canterbury House" (not a Blu-ray, just a DVD and CD), "Live at the Fillmore East 1970," and "Live at Massey Hall 1971," which have been individually released over the past couple of years. I already bought them, as I'm sure many fans have. What a rip off to make us buy them again.
Most discs have music running times of under 60 minutes, so why oh why didn't Neil fill up more of the discs' capacity, or did he just need to justify an exorbitant MSRP? $350 for 11 discs? Strange, Hollywood movies that cost hundreds of millions of dollars to make retail for under 20 bucks a pop, so why does Neil charge $31 for a disc for music he made nearly 40 years ago? Rip off.
The Blu-ray features ultrahigh resolution 24-bit /192 kHz stereo sound, which you can play over some newer AV receivers, but I'm not so sure that any high-end electronics can access the superduper-sounding PCM tracks. Surround sound? Only one disc has surround. Blu-ray sound quality is about the same as the previously released 24 bit/96 kHz sound on the DVDs that came out years ago. Don't buy the Blu-ray box for the sound; the DVDs are fine.
I had a rough time navigating the Blu-rays' stupidly designed menus and accessing some of the "bonus" material and "hidden" tracks. Hey, I paid my money, why do I have to go round and round to find the music I paid for?
As for video "content," I don't know about you, but watching an LP playing on a turntable or reel-to-reel tapes spinning gets old really fast. Reading pages of text off my TV is also less than entertaining. The photo galleries are nice.… Read more
I'm definitely way past the age for childhood toys, though some people still haven't outgrown that. I believe the politically correct phrase for them is "young at heart." However, Japanese retailer Banpresto has taken the zoetrope (remember the spinning drum with slits that make the static images inside appear to move like a flip book?), and given it a modern spin, so to speak.
Its Twinklepict has figures inside, backlit by a flashing internal light. As the characters in the dome spin, their shadowy forms project out in a pretty light show. This works on three … Read more
Wired's Epicenter blog has the skinny on why MySpace Music failed to create any big waves when it launched. A lot of mistakes were made, including an unclear Web address and lack of any independent music. But I think it boils down to something fairly simple: the designers of the service were focused on the wrong audience. MySpace envisioned the site as an online showcase for major acts on major labels. The labels, anxious for any help navigating the file-trading era, were excited. But nobody bothered to consider why users visit MySpace, and what they might want from a … Read more
The "grunge father," along with biodiesel pioneer Johnathan Goodwin, are developing a commercially viable electric power system in a 1959 Mark IV Lincoln Continental, which they hope will get the equivalent of 100 miles per gallon and take the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X Prize.
Young's classic "Long May You Run" could have been a proper theme song for the project. Instead, he's written new material about the LincVolt, featuring the crisis in theindustry and the economic downturn in general.
In "Fuel Line," he sings about the Johnny Magic," about the prize he's aiming for, "she goes long range on domestic green fuel, 100 miles a gallon is the Continental rule."'s technology: "Awesome power of electricity, stored for you in this big battery." In "
So far the concept album has received mixed reviews both in the music and green communities. … Read more
Update 9:20 p.m. PT: To include YouTube's response.
Neil Young wants to remind YouTube that Rockin' in the Free World isn't free.
The iconic musician, whose hits include "Harvest Moon," "Cinnamon Girl," and "Rockin' in the Free World," says in a blog post that YouTube doesn't fairly compensate acts represented by Warner Music Group.
Young is referring to the spat that erupted in January between Warner Music and YouTube. The two companies couldn't come to terms on a new licensing agreement and Warner Music's content was pulled … Read more
Just a rain shower ago, I highlighted a stunningly surprising piece of research suggesting that video games feed the male need to dominate.
My Sunday has been infiltrated with news from yet another bunch of huge brains. This time, it's the chaste scientists from Brigham Young University in Utah, who have spent money to discover that the more you play video games, the more your personal relationships will suffer.
The researchers crunched their numbers simultaneously with their granola to reveal that increased video game participation brings with it increased involvement in something called "risky behaviors." These seems … Read more
This time of year there's no shortage of lists, everywhere you turn you're hammered with Top Ten and Best of 2008 harangues.
Me, I'm not going to waste your time raving about Portishead, TV on the Radio or Vampire Weekend's CDs. Why bother? I'd rather turn you onto great music that slipped between the cracks.
My favorite album of the year was JD Souther's "If The World Was You." JD was most famous for co-writing a bunch of 1970s era Eagles tunes, but this new CD demonstrates the Detroit-born, Amarillo, Texas-raised musician hasn't dried up in the intervening decades.
The new CD, recorded live in a Nashville studio, has a dark, brooding sound. JD's accompanying musicians are serious players. But it's the writing that kept this disc in heavy rotation in my house. There's a bit of the late, great Warren Zevon influence in there, so if you're a fan of 1970s Southern California rock If the World Was You would definitely be worth a listen. It's at least as good as Randy Newman's excellent "Harps and Angels" CD that was also released this year.
A friend turned me onto Lizz Wright's "The Orchard" CD and I couldn't get over her straight from the heart vocals. This woman can sing, this kind of depth of feeling is rare nowadays, but Wright comes from a different tradition. … Read more