Sunday, April 20, 2008

APOD fractal

Is it just me, or does today's Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)

remind you of a famous fractal named Julia?

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Zimmer interviews Gary Marcus

NYU Psychology professor Gary Marcus has just released his latest book Kluge about how the human brain is the product of tinkering. It is really one of the best refutations of the argument from design. Here he is interviewed by Carl Zimmer.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Charleton Heston dead at 84

Charleton Heston has died at the ripe old age of 84. In honor of him, I have found this video somebody made using clips from a classic Heston movie and the soundtrack from The Simpsons send-up on it. Yes, I realize that Dr. Zaius was not Heston's character, but it just seems so strangely appropriate.

Friday, April 04, 2008

JoCo in Philadelphia

(Poster by Len)

Last Wednesday (April 2nd), Jonathan Coulton played a concert in Philadelphia for the very first time. Or perhaps I should say that he played a concert in Philadelphia proper for the very first time. He was joined once again by Paul and Storm for a show at the World Cafe Live. This a larger venue than the last few times I saw him. Jen hooked me up with a ticket (her ticket--she couldn't make it--thanks Jen!) at a table near the front and center with some friends Caroline, Arthur, Jeanne, Kathy that was absolutely fantastic. This may be the best show I've been to yet. Unlike past shows where I brought props related to JoCo songs, I decided to honor Paul and Storm at this show: I brought panties (you'll have to check out the video to see what I'm talking about.)

Speaking of Paul and Storm, they played (with full cathedral echo) their very fun song Nun Fight. I'm sorry that I wasn't recording at the time.

But I was able to get some footage of the concert. Below is the playlist of the songs I recorded. It's not the complete set they played, but it's a decent chunk of it.
  1. Opening Band
  2. Watch the panties fly.

  3. Nugget Man
  4. An homage to a great inventor indeed.

  5. IDEAL jingle
  6. If you're not a 30+er from the Philly area, you won't get this one.

  7. The Future Soon
  8. Hey popular girls! Remember to treat the nerds nicely or this is what they'll do to you.

  9. I'm Your Moon
  10. Love song to Pluto from its moon Charon.

  11. Flickr
  12. This is the first time I've heard this song with the proper accompanying video. It's AOK!

  13. Code Monkey
  14. Needs no introduction.

  15. Soft Rocked By Me
  16. Jonathan sings about what it's like to be a total pussy.

  17. Creepy Doll
  18. Paul and Storm really rock on the back up during this song.

  19. I Feel Fantastic
  20. The song is fantastic.

  21. Mr. Fancy Pants
  22. Watch a grown man have fun with a $1000+ toy.

  23. Dance Soterios Johnson, Dance (partial)
  24. Unfortunately, due to my camera running out of memory and an emergency refill, I was only able to get the last verse. Luckily (for JoCo), what was lost was mostly screw-ups since this song was a special request that he hadn't rehearsed or played in like forever. Still, I felt that the performance was important enough that it needed to be posted anyway.

  25. Still Alive
  26. I added some "TRON" FX to this song written for the video game Portal. JoCo couldn't help laughing during the song because most of the audience members were holding up their cell phones (lit up). I guess cell phones are the "lighters" of the twenty first century.

  27. Skullcrusher Mountain
  28. What's with all the screaming?

  29. Re: Your Brains
  30. Even someone like me who couldn't sing to save his life can be a zombie for this audience sing-along.

  31. First Of May
  32. The JoCo classic about the coming of Spring (adult themes).

  33. Sweet Caroline
  34. Since I recorded this from the audience, I must apologize for the loud, off-key singing from the crowd. Oh wait, that was me ...
    (Note to self: sign up for singing lessons)

Here's the video (total playing time 58:52) Enjoy!

UPDATE: The Voice of Free Planet X has a podcast with some highlights from the show as well as interviews.

UPDATE #2: The three panties from our table have made it to The Gallery Of Thrown Panties.