Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Words, Words, Words... Also Images, Videos and Sundry Other Media

Recent links, non-political edition:

Twitter jokes about the faster-than-light neutrinos. ('cause you've all seen the definitive joke, from XKCD, right?)

• Cool painting which I just saw (a reproduction of) for the first time: Victor Olivia's The Absinthe Drinker. (via)

• Very cool story by Robert Charles Wilson, Divided by Infinity.

Caveman Science Fiction. (via)

Very cool video of a famous optical illusion brought to life. (via)

China Mieville's rejected pitch for an Iron Man comic. (via) I would so totally read this.

• Julian Sanchez on Why do rich superheroes inherit their money while rich CEOs tend to be supervillans? Follow-up thoughts from Aylssa Rosenberg here.

Brian Leiter's five books to start reading/reading about Nietzsche.

"Ten percent of all the photos we have [i.e. the human race has now in any form] were taken in the past 12 months."

John Crowley on predicting the future.

• Two fun videos of people doing impressions: Jim Meskimen Does Shakespeare in Celebrity Voices, and 50 Impressions in 50 Seconds (both via).

• You know that famous quote from Zhou Enlai where he said, in 1972, that it was too early to tell what the impact of the French Revolution would be? Well, he meant the street protests of May 1968 -- not the famous Revolution of 1789. Much more reasonable, albeit less notable.

A profile of Barry Duncan, the world's first self-proclaimed master palindromist. (Although so far as I can tell he's actually not yet bested Georges Perec, save in quantity.) More on Duncan from Metafilter. (I'm pretty sure these were via Gerry Canavan, but I can't find the link, so maybe not.)

Bee proverbs.

• Most of Tom Tomorrow's fabulous cartoons are political in humor, and thus not linked to in this list, but this particular cartoon is not only very funny, but isn't really political at all (save in the broadest, most meaningless, "everything is political" sense).

John Varley's short story "The Manhattan Phone Book, Abridged". Via Jo Walton, who says it's like Geoff Ryman's internet novel 253.

• Speaking of which, Paul Lafarge lists Ryman's 253 as one of the two hypertext novels which actually stand the test of time (so far) in his essay about why hypertext fiction seems to have fizzled (via). The other he lists is Shelley Jackson's Patchwork Girl which, alas, is not online for free, unlike Ryman's 253. Lafarge himself is in the middle of publishing a hypertext novel, Luminous Airplanes, as the companion/sequel to the just-published print novel of the same name.

• Adrian Fiske traveled both China and India, giving people a piece of paper, asking them to write whatever they wanted on it, and taking a photograph of the result. More at his web site, although there's no direct link to that set, sadly -- get through his annoying intro page, then, under the "new stories" menu, they're labeled "ispeak India" and "ispeak China". (Why do photographers have such annoying web pages?)

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