17 March, 2008

We're done here.

Ok, since I have little patience for double posting, I've failed at keeping this blog updated along with the new one. So, to wit:


Linger here at your peril.

That will be all.


11 March, 2008

Maldeamores comes to NYC

Maldeamores [imdb] [crackspace] [movie site], a Puerto Rican film directed by husband-and-wife team Carlitos Ruíz Ruíz & Mariem Pérez Riera, produced by Benicio del Toro, and starring Luis Guzmán (among others), opens in NYC this Thursday. Maldeamores has been in the can for a while now, and has been floating around in Carlitos' and his crew's heads for longer still. It premiered last year at the Tribeca Film Festival to solid reviews, and has been in wide release in Puerto Rico for a while.

As I understand it, the film is split into three stories dealing with the different facets of el mal de amor (Spanish for 'lovesickness'): a boy's first love, a hostage situation, and an elderly triad locked in a love triangle.

Carlitos and I worked together briefly back in my advertising days, and ever since we've loosely orbited each other via our extended circle of friends in the PR creative industry/scene. From what I remember of his work for me and others in advertising, Carlitos is a director with a distinct vision and storytelling style—I'm very excited to finally see the fruits of their labours.

07 March, 2008


I've begun the migration to www.defendini.com/sleekness. You may want to start reading over there instead of here, as there's going to be a bit more content, namely a chronicle of my Digg activity and Pownce feeds, as well as updated 'Currently Listening' and 'Currently Reading' widgets, if you're interested in that sort of thing. Mind you, it's quite fugly right now, as I tweak and work on the custom css template for WordPress. Regardless, for the time being, while I move archived posts over to the other side, and fiddle with the style sheets, I'll be double-posting here and there, so no matter where you are, you'll get everything. I'll post another note when I'm ready to abandon Blogger for good.

That will be all.

The Contact High that Came Down Through the Ages

From The Guardian:
In the philosophy journal Time and Mind, Benny Shanon states that key events of the Old Testament are actually records of visions by ancient Israelites high on hallucinogens.

So, Moses was high as a kite when he had his close encounters with yahweh. Trippin’ balls. Stoned out of his mind. No wonder he heard disembodied voices and saw funny light. I mean, who hasn’t, right?Anyway, my point here is: this is news? Just because the only people who like to get high in order to reach god nowadays are Rastafarians and the pseudo-mystical psychedelic Latin American shamans trying to separate aging hippies from their money, doesn’t mean that this wasn’t the modus operandi back in the day. All these old-school mystics and clerics used mind-altering substances: the oracle at Delphi, the Druids, etc. To suppose that the forebears of the Judeo-Christian tradition are any different simply because our modern-day popular moral code vilifies any and all type of substance abuse is self-serving delusion, at best.

11 February, 2008

Bin workin' on teh new bloggins.

I've been workin', workin' on the new blog. It's actually going better than I expected it to from the get go. I got WordPress installed very painlessly, and all seems to be working correctly. Still very much in the dark regarding all this crazy CSS business that's gone down over the past years since I've been away from web design, but I'm getting there. I'm one paradigm shift away from Understanding.

02 February, 2008

Beloit College's Mindset List

Beloit College has published their College Mindset List for the class of 2011, making the rest of us old farts feel even older and fartier. Among the nuggets of perspective gnawing at the Peter Pan inside me, the list assures me that people going into their freshman year in college this fall:

#4. They never “rolled down” a car window.
#8. General Motors has always been working on an electric car. (Edit: Yeah, but will they ever deliver? HA!)
#12. Religious leaders have always been telling politicians what to do, or else!
#35. Stadiums, rock tours and sporting events have always had corporate names.
#46. Most phone calls have never been private.
#53. Tiananmen Square is a 2008 Olympics venue, not the scene of a massacre
#55. MTV has never featured music videos.
#70. Food packaging has always included nutritional labeling.

Ye gods.

A Brief Message

I just discovered A Brief Message, via Subtraction.com. A Brief Message is a site that -according to its masthead- 'features design opinions in short form—200 words or less'. This is a great concept, and I've enjoyed trawling through previous entries over the past hour or so. Of note is this entry by Clay Shirky, on arrogance and humility in the life of a designer:
Arrogance without humility is a recipe for high-concept irrelevance; humility without arrogance guarantees unending mediocrity. Figuring out how to be arrogant and humble at once, figuring out when to watch users and when to ignore them for this particular problem, for these users, today, is the problem of the designer.

As someone who has alternately been accused of being impossibly arrogant and amazingly humble all throughout my adult life, I take this as some sort of strange vindication—apparently I'm doing something right. . . .

28 January, 2008

Happy birthday, Legos.

Happy 50th birthday, Legos. Far and away the most creative, fun, versatile, and long-lived toys I ever had (Thanks, mom).

22 January, 2008

Khoi Vinh on CS3

Khoi Vinh has a great little piece on Adobe's CS3 suite here.

One quibble: I have to disagree with Mr. Vinh regarding print dialog boxes in CS3. I find them very intuitive and handy, especially compared to the print dialog boxes on competing products (QuarkXpress, I'm looking at you, you slow, bloated, ugly, lo-res, counterintuitive piece of shit).

Aside from that, I find this article to be spot-on: CS3 is leaps and bounds ahead of its predecessor in terms of interface cohesiveness, stability, and feature improvement. I can't bloody wait until we upgrade at the office. . . .

10 January, 2008

Speaking of free. . . .

NetNewsWire, that badass, best in class, and my preferred feed reader, is now free. As in beer. If you're not using NNW for your RSS needs, do yourself a favour and get it now.

Hello neighbour. Come steal my bandwidth.

Good Morning. As soon as I iron out a few security issues on my machines, I've decided to open up access to my wireless access point at home (it's called Mothership X, just in case you're ever around). No password, no encryption, just free-and-clear internet access for me and my neighbours. I've been thinking about doing this for a while, for some of the reasons that Bruce Schnier outlines in this article. Also, I find it's a nice way to affirm what I've always thought, deep down inside: people are generally good, and when you share, people will share in kind. Karma and all that. Well, in any case, enjoy the free WiFi, Bed-Stuy.

09 January, 2008

The Pirate's Dilemma

Here's a fascinating excerpt from Matt Mason's new book, The Pirate's Dilemma, via torrentfreak.com. To wit:

We live in a world where it is legal for a company to patent pigs, or any other living thing except for a full birth human being, but copying a CD you bought onto your hard drive is considered an infringement of someone else’s rights. A place where an average law abiding citizen could owe more than $12 million dollars in fines if they were sued every time they accidentally violated copyright law in a single day. A society where it’s ok for each of us to be hit with 5,000 advertising messages every 24 hours, usually without our permission, but creating a piece of art and placing it in public yourself without permission can land you in prison. This isn’t just about the pros and cons of file sharing - this is about an entire species losing its sense of perspective, failing to understand the potential of one of its most precious (and yet most abundant) resources.

Many of us are confused about whether our ideas should count as information, or property. When we have a new idea, there are two opposing forces at work. At the same time as we are thinking “how can I get this out there?” we’re also asking ourselves “how can I benefit from/monetize this idea?” We want to spread ideas as information, but capitalize on them as intellectual property. This problem with information is something I call The Pirate’s Dilemma.

Interesting stuff, and there's not much on there that I don't agree with. I've had this book mentioned to me three times today alone—I'm going to have to shortlist it on my reading pile. . . .

02 January, 2008

Not dead, just resting. . .

I'll be back, like the Terminator. Except without the shotgun and the kickass bionics, unfortunately.