Culture, Film

Heavy Rain and the New Cinematic Experience

My friends and I watched Quantic Dream‘s latest, Heavy Rain for the last couple of days. I say “watch” for this, a PS3 game, because in reality only one of us played it while the rest watched what happened on the screen. This is not an entirely new phenomenon in my group of friends; we had done the same for games like Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and Batman: Arkham Asylum. what made this one much more interesting to me was that, as a lover of film and the way the medium works, it was really amazing to see how work normally used for film-making could really be applied to video games, and how that in turn can change the way we as gamers play games. Continue reading

Links, Science

Cloning Neanderthals and other Science Links

I wanted to do a large one year anniversary post for this a couple of days ago, but honestly I have so much to do already that I don’t have time to fawn over that fact . It did remind me, however, that it has been a while since I’ve put up some stuff on science, so I’ve decided to put a little something down on this question: should we clone neanderthals? This article points out the way in which we can do it, and all the ethical implications of doing something like this.

On the cool side, German scientist have made a 3D invisibility cloak that covered a gold surface. This is a great proof of principle for how transformation optics can actually bend light around objects. what made me smirk was this little comment right here:

He added, however, that it would be many years before anything as large as a person, car or tank could be made to disappear with this technique

Leave it to a German to be thinking of invisible panzers.

Moving right along to another post-Axis nation, Japanese designers have made some cool elastic iron alloys. What’s really cool is that beyond its super-elasticity, the developers are trying to find ways of using it for stents for heart surgeries where the normal nickel titanium wire is too weak along with other uses.


Lost Mention: Res’ How I Do

In the last couple of months since I did my End of the Decade Edition of Top Fives, I’ve been going through my media library and finding things that might have slipped through the cracks in the whole malaise of writing them. This became very apparent to me when I added a couple of songs to my mp3 player from the album How I Do, by Res.

Released in June of 2001, this album epitomized, maybe even helped craft, my love for artists who take great experimental leaps in their work. The album has tried and true hip-hop,jazz, and soul influences that you would expect in an album that would want to classified as R&B, but the inclusion of alt-rock, psychedelia,folk, and reggae influences among others is what makes this album great.  The best part of this is, of course, is that this was her first album, so that she swung for the fences as hard as she did was impressive. Continue reading

Top Fives

Top Five Animated Shows

After making the last entry one on a band that only exist via illustrations and animated music videos, it only seems right to go on that same path and find a Top Five from it. So, I have arrived to a spot to give you my

Top Five Animated Shows

Cowboy Bebop – I knew the moment that I was going to start this list, I was going to include one anime series in the list. And every time I think of the pinnacle of what that medium can do,  Shinichirō Watanabe‘s masterpiece always comes first to mind. The show made legendary characters out of relatively stock ones, and the artistic style was just so crisp and smooth you couldn’t help but follow the ragtag crew of the Bebop as they went from bounty to bounty. Watanabe’s love for fusion, in this case for jazz and sci-fi (although his samurai/hip-hop one wasn’t so bad either), really set the mood for the show. It also doesn’t help that it was composed by the legendary Yoko Kanno, either. Continue reading


Derailed While On The Hunt for Modern Latino Poets

While trying to ramp up my Spanish poetry writing, I decided to get my hands on some more contemporary Latino poetry.  I found some great work from Francisco X. Alarcon which can be found here. There is also the enigmatically named aguijonmagico who, despite not really being that lyrically astute, is pretty adventurous with his references to Sarte and Birdman  (more of his stuff here). If you really want to go for a poetic name drop, however, look no further than Luis Chaves, who wrote a book a poems and titled it under Cat Power’s real name. He even went so far as to write a poem whose title translates to “Free Translation of an Unreleased Track by Chan Marshall”. There are more poets here in case you’re interested, I’m probably going to be referencing some of the cooler ones as I go through them.

What really got me off the path was when I found the work of Sergio Badilla. He started the poetic transrealism movement, which is vastly different than this manifesto that I found for its literary counterpart. If you’re a sci-fi fan, you should read it, it’s a pretty interesting take on how stories can be written.

To top off my complete derailment, here’s a link to Calexico’s beautiful cover of Goldfrapp’s Human, en español: