Saturday, 1 April 2023

der lehrpfad der unholdigen personen (10. 650)

In the forest of the municipality of Salzhaff in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern on the the Baltic, colloquially known as the ‘Arschlochwandelweg,” there is a mile-long sculpture featuring six, life-sized bronzes of George W Bush, Erich Honecker, Recep Tayyip ErdoฤŸan, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, Nikita Khrushchev and Donald Trump. On private property but freely accessible to the public, the owner choose to have a rogues gallery of the unkind but did not want evil figures like Hitler and Stalin. A commission was put in for the addition of Vladimir Putin but was ultimately rejected by a Polish foundry due to the neighbouring war.

7x7 (10. 649)

the house of mouse: Disney lawyers thwart Florida governor’s interference plans by linking status quo to the British monarchy 

the highrise collection: a drone exploration of beautiful early twentieth century skyscrapers of the US

mambabatok: Vogue Philippines has 106-year-old traditional tattoo Apo Whang-Od artist on its cover  

fraktur folk art: the lettering of German dissident รฉmigrรฉ communities in Pennsylvania (see also

pretty fly for a white guy: Finnish politicians, as their rapping alter-egos Qruu and Cstar, drop some rhymes for their campaign platform—via Miss Cellania    

gelatinous cube: the 1977 Dungeon’s & Dragons Monster Manual  

g: all. of. the. above: a Trump indictment quiz

Friday, 31 March 2023

caret notation (10. 648)

 Brilliantly our AI wrangler Janelle Shane (previously) points us to fun test for chatbots that while prising some insight into their inner workings without the danger of producing nightmare-inspiring outcomes by giving the prompt to create ASCII art, moreover asking it rate its creations. Here are a few that I asked ChatGPT to create, with rather surreal summaries (of showing one’s work) following. Give it a try and share your results with us.


hold on (10. 647)

Via Web Curios (with much, more more to explore from the week at large), we are directed towards upbeat track by Pascal Nuzzo and a wonderfully dynamic, old school video that is reminiscent of the aesthetic of those trippy Sesame Street interstitials. Put out by independent label R&S Records, the Gent DJs Renaat Vandepapeliere and Sabine Maes were inspired by the Belgian New Beat of the late 1980s and helped launch the careers of CJ Bolland, Ken Ishii and Aphex Twin.

Thursday, 30 March 2023

news cycle (10. 646)

Historically though the exact extent and nature of the charges are under seal with secret deliberations until the arraignment on Tuesday and just following speculation that the grand jury would be taking an extended recess after Trump’s arrest did not take place, a former US president, for the first time in the nation’s history—significant though this I think is another example of toxic exceptionalism that bewitches America, has been indicted and is expected to surrender to the court. Tawdry and aggrieved as it is, as with everything connected the legal jeopardy that’s far outlasted his single term in office and far more minor than embezzling from his charitable foundation, collusion with Russia, hateful, pandering and racist policies and highly questionable accounting, the first felony charge levied against him is in connection with a 2006 tryst and hush-money earmarked from campaign funds a decade later, expensed as a retainer fee for a lawyer, now principal witness for the prosecution. The Manhattan district attorney had entertained not pursuing this charge for the reasons above but was urged to continue rather than wait for evidence to mount for more serious offences, like the family syndicate’s business practises and exaggerating personal wealth in order to secure loans, and demonstrate that no one is above the law.

8x8 (10. 645)

maximum fun: Jessie Thorn is turning the podcast network into a worker-owned cooperative  

gearing-ratio: a nifty explainer on the physics of riding a bike—via Waxy  

glass-bead game: fascinating insights into the lunar water-cycle and stellar mist—see also 

stop making sense: David Byrne on his Big Suit  

retrotopia: Berlin’s Kunst-gewer-bemuseum explores Socialist design—see previously here and here  

sit up & listen: a Thames Television station closedown (see also) routine  

the panopticon effect: 99% Invisible explores the nineteenth century prison of Breda—see also

Wednesday, 29 March 2023

the first transport is away—repeat—the first transport is away (10. 644)

Via Boing Boing, in an admittedly a small but welcome, uplifting and surreal condolence, Jedi knight and accomplished voice actor Mark Hamill is issuing incoming warnings for the beleaguered and embattled people of Ukraine, announcing on an app connected to the ministry of defence, “Attention—air raid alert. Proceed to the nearest shelter,” accompanying the barrage of sirens preceding a missile attack from Russia. With the further advisement of, “Don’t be careless—your overconfidence is your weakness,” once the danger passes and the air alert is over, Hamill leaves attendants with “May the Force be with you.”

true south (10. 643)

Via Miss Cellania, we are treated to vlogger CGP Grey’s enthusiastic primer on the succession of banners bestowed on the world’s largest condominium, the continent of Antarctica, territory of no nation despite competing claims and the presence, albeit it temporary, of research outposts that like to plant their own flags. Designs and proposals flown as at least semi-official ensigns have been around since the 1930s and with a vexillologically complete presentation in 1978 that chose a highly contrasting international, aerospace orange and an 2018 contender by Evan Townsend that seems to have traction with the negative space of a compass arrow pointing to the geographic nadir and invoking bergs and mountains and thelong days and nights of the planet’s extremes.