marco tempest

… get to the poetry faster  This is way overdue. It must have been in the late 1980s or early ’90s that for the first time I saw ↑Marco Tempest perform live. It was at one of those bigger magicians’ conventions in Germany where you can see and meet—if you’re a bit lucky—real top acts. Marco Tempest’s act was top, plus it was completely not off the peg. Brilliant stage magic lacking every standard element. Centerstage there was a big television set, Mr Tempest acted left, right, and behind that set and made flashy colored rubber balls move and jump … Continue reading

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ngon

It’s been some time since I regularly paid visits to ↑Second Life (SL). This is mainly because two of my best friends—master designers, creative geniusses, and overall great guys acid Zentih and ↑Detect Surface—seemed to have left SL for good.     Not only did I hang around with them two a lot, but they showed and taught me what SL really can be, and gave me a home there [all the ↑entries on my SL-adventures still haven’t been moved over form the ↑old xirdalium]. But first the ↑City of Abaddon vanished, then The Underground, too [Detect’s Sims]. I was … Continue reading

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environmental malfunction

After our conversation in the elevator unfortunately is interrupted by ↑Francis Pritchard entering, ↑Megan Reed has to go and meet ↑Athene Margoulis, ↑David Sarif‘s executive assistant. The latter is my boss, the founder and CEO of ↑Sarif Industries, whom I now have to meet up in his office. And quite an office it is [see above], although not as impressive as the one of ↑Dr. Eldon Tyrell—but then again Sarif Industries is characterized as ‘a moderately-sized biotechnology company.’ For that the building housing his company is quite impressive.     While talking with the old man [strange to say that, … Continue reading

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tie rendering

It seems like I can’t resist the gravity of the vast ↵moc- and afol-scene. And thick participation means, among other things, sharing practices. So I followed the comprehensive tutorial ↑Converting LDR Files to POV Files for Rendering by Jeroen de Haan and Jake McKee and then ran my rendition of a ↑TIE Interceptor (which I built first in the flesh, and then with the ↑LDraw-based ↑MLCad) through ↑POVRay. All that reminded me very much of ye olde days of game modding. Here’s how my model (every single part of it stems from the 1970s!) looks in meatspace:  … Continue reading

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cyberanthropology

My new book ‘↑Cyberanthropology‘ has been published. You absolutely are invited to order it online ↑via amazon [I have absolutely nothing against you clicking the like-button there] or ↑via Peter Hammer Verlag. Offline every decent bookshop can get it for you, too. As the book is in German, here is my description of its contents in German: In “Cyberanthropology” geht es um moderne Technik und den Menschen, um Computer und Internet, um Computerspiele, aber auch um GPS, Automobile, Roboter …     Was vor nicht allzu langer Zeit Science Fiction war, ist Lebenswirklichkeit geworden. Die vielfältigen Erscheinungsformen digitaler Elektronik und … Continue reading

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flowchart shaders

Biohazard’s modding tool, the ↑Source Shader Editor, is a ↑WYSIWYG editor, which ‘allows the user to create, compile and implement new ↑shaders easily into a source ↑mod without any preliminary knowledge of HLSL. The shaders are based on nodes which are connected over bridges to finally compose a flowgraph for each, the vertex and pixel shader […].’ It is a fine example of, and argument for the fact that modders not merely tweak games a bit, but sometimes create state-of-the-art tools sliding along the cutting edge of technology. I, and a lot of others, hope that this sooner or later … Continue reading

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mocs and afols

It may or may not be by accident, but ‘moc’ and ‘mod’ sound very similar. And indeed, both are close kin. The abbreviation ‘mod’ means ‘modification of a computer game,’ the playable addition to commercial computer-game software, produced by private individuals or groups of those. The acronym ‘moc’ in turn stands for ‘my own creation.’ Meant is an original three-dimensional design using Lego-bricks, quite often accomplished by an ‘afol’—an ‘adult fan of Lego’ … which is not a contradiction in terms, like ‘military intelligence’ is.*  The above pictured side elevation of the moc-version of the ‘Executor,’ the personal flagship of … Continue reading

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postapocalyptic interviews

At level-design.org there is an interesting ↑interview with Hélder Pinto aka [HP], my old friend from the Max-Payne modding-scene who became a level artist at Crytek. The above is an example of his art, the devastated Madison Square as it appears in Crysis 2. If it wouldn’t be such an old cliché, I’d say you truly are a master of desaster, my man. Speaking of which, eurogamer.org carries a recent ↑interview with John Carmack, the master of Doom. Engine John not only talks about id’s upcoming title Rage, but also on technology at large, e.g. about the end of Moore’s … Continue reading

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guy headroom

The screenshot above I grabbed from ‘↑A Message from Anonymous—12/16/2010‘ on YouTube. No, I won’t really comment on ↑Anonymous for now—my esteemed colleague ↑Biella Coleman already covers it nicely from an anthropological vantage point: ‘↑Anonymous: From the Lulz to Collective Action.’ What I am driving at are the remix-æsthetics of the video, and the sources it draws on, which stem from 1980s British cyberpunk.     The ↑Guy Fawkes mask is part of Anonymous’ corporate identity from the beginning on. Of course they had the idea from a motion picture produced by the ↑Wachowski brothers of ↑Matrix-fame: ‘V for Vendetta’ … Continue reading

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larry cuba

Just dug that one up from my bookmarks—back in the 1970s ↑Larry Cuba, then at the ↑Electronic Visualization Laboratory (EVL), made the computer graphics seen during the endbattle against the Deathstar in the original ‘Star Wars’ (Lucas 1977).     When I first saw those animated 3D line-graphics in the cinema in ’77 I was fascinated.     Three years later, at the first computer-christmas, I got a ↑Commodore 64 (C64).     With a freely programmable computer at my hands I set out to recreate those graphics. For a start I was content with the idea of an anmation … Continue reading

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