October 2004

Flashing words, whole novels at a time

Trevor Smith has an awsome speed-reader applet that flashes Cory Doctorow’s novel, Eastern Standard Tribe, on the screen, one word at a time. It’s an interesting experience of reading.

Cory’s been up to a lot. He loosened the (Creative Commons) license of his first novel, Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, and gave an interesting talk at the Ebooks: Neither E, Nor Books event.

There’s also an Ogg file of Cory’s speech, Web 2.0 == AOL 1.0?, available through BitTorrent.


Some outliners and Dia

Another list of outliners.

WikidPad looks interesting, and for $12, it’s certainly in my price range. I wonder if the titles of pages are always WikiStyleWords in the outline view? I don’t think I like that.

Skwyrul still seems to be about the best two-panel outliner there is for Windows. It’s small, simple, and has full version you can try.

Dia is an open source diagramming tool. I need to look into some other ones. I’ll put up some links later.

  • P2P Politics features political video clips from both sides of the line.
  • Media Matters for America feels somehow more relevant than most (partisan-split) political sites. It explores the conservative-rigged untruths that the media (purposely or not) spreads.

Eriarvoisuus iskee jälleen silmää(n)

Tutkiessani josko kurssikirjaa olisi joskus saatavilla, törmäsin jälleen räikeään esimerkkiin kirjastopalvelujen käyttäjien eriarvoisuudesta. Huomaa Itäkeskuksen kirjan eräpäivä! Taitaa olla jonkun kunnallisvaltuutetun lähipiirissä, tuo lainaaja.


Tarrojen ja kaakeleiden liimailijoita pidätetty

Naiskasvo kaakelillaKuusi nuorta on pidätetty epäiltynä satojen, jopa tuhansien tarrojen sekä keraamisten laattojen liimaamisesta, kertoo tämän päivän Helsingin Sanomat. Poliisi otti epäillyt kiinni maanantaina. Read more


Hei katsokaa noita tyhmiä, jotka Punikkilassa asuvat

Kokoomusnuorten Punikkila-kampanja on harvinainen irtiotto politiikan tavanomaisesta mainonnasta. Valitettavasti kampanja ontuu.

Kampanjassa esitellään kaksi kuntaa, Porvarlahti ja Punikkila. Kuten arvata saattaa, Porvarlahdessa on kaikki kokoomuslaisittain ja hyvin, kun Punikkilassa on asiat päinvastoin, eli niin maan perkeleen huonosti. Jo tässä asettelussa mennään kuitenkin pieleen. Näennäisen kysymyksen ollessa “kummassa kunnassa haluaisit asua”, kampanja oikeasti uhkaa: Olet joko puolellamme tai meitä vastaan.

Maailma ei kuitenkaan ole kaksijakoinen, kuten ei myöskään Suomen monipuoluejärjestelmä. Vaikka tällainen poliittinen asettelu on Amerikoista tuttu, se ei tee sitä yhtään sen siedettävämmäksi.

Porvarlahti on se idylli, jollaiseksi kokoomus muuttaisi maailman, jos voisi. Jokaisella puolueella pitäisi olla oma esikuvakunta, jossa yhteiskunta toimisi parahin päin, toteutettuna puolueen oppien mukaan. Kokoomusnuorten kampanjassa Punikkila-kunta kuitenkin sisältää toisen viestin: ne, jotka eivät Porvarlahdesta pidä, voivat painua huitsin vittuun.

Ehkä seuraavissa vaaleissa voidaan kyydittää Punikkilaan kaikki ne muutkin epätoivottavat, jotka eivät vapaaehtoisesti tajunneet rajaa ylittää. Muilutukseksi sitä kai kutsuttiin.

Kokoomusnuoriin voi tutustua heidän Internet-verkkosivustollaan, joka on rakennettu käyttäen hyväkseen tekstin ja kuvan yhdistämisen Internetissä mahdollistavaa HTML-teknologiaa.


Overview of Intelligent Systems

Yesterday’s Presenting Computer Science lecture was on intelligent systems, given by Petri Myllymäki. Professor Myllymäki would be a great person to interview, many things he said would make good soundbytes. That’s probably why this is the first lecture I’ve gotten around to noting here.

My favorite quote: “We want to do to Google what Linux did to Microsoft.” Read more

  • Tietojenkäsittelytieteen laitoksen me@tktl-verkkolehdestä on ilmestynyt uusi numero.

Paul Auster: Hand to Mouth

I found Paul Auster’s Hand to Mouth from the Pasila library. I hadn’t heard of Auster before. I didn’t connect him with the New York Trilogy, which I had heard good things about. I admit it: I was drawn to the book because it told about a young, struggling writer. Read more


The icon not chosen

While I like Firefox’s fox-hugging-globe icon, I think the alternative proposal, an icon inspired by Japanese brush painting, is fantastic. It looks good because it looks so different from the usual icons you see. This is also probably why it wasn’t chosen. We need a more heterogenuous visual culture for our logos and icons. Jon Hicks tells about the branding of Firefox.


Lokakuun tarranlumous, October 27–30, 2004

A few guys I used to go to school with are part of the Lokakuun tarranlumous (“October stickerevolution”), a street art exhibit. The site promises to open some time soon. Someone pasted the exhibit stickers that were given to me all over our living room mirror last night. Now it’s full of torn paper and glue.


Weekly site rankings

TNS Gallupin Suomen web-sivustojen viikkoluvut julkaistaan M&M:ssä. Irc-galleria on kuudentena.

  • 9cm is a Helsinki-based graphic design collective. Be sure to check out their Dodge-like design magazine.

There are at least four translations of Madame Bovary...

...and the newest one, by Margaret Mauldon, is horrible. At least according to Clive James.

... Already, though, it is hard to suppress a suspicion that in the matter of historical fidelity things are out of kilter, and the suspicion intensifies once the book is opened. Professor Malcolm Bowie, who wrote the informative introduction, makes much ado in his back-of-the-jacket blurb about Flaubert's precision, which the professor assures us is matched by Mauldon's brand-new and meticulously accurate translation of the actual work. Any reader wishing to believe this is advised to start on page one. He had better not open the book accidentally at page 178 [end of chapter 12, in part 2], on which we find Emma's lover Rodolphe justifying to himself his decision to ditch her. Rodolphe is supposed to be a creep, but surely he never spoke the French equivalent of late-twentieth-century American slang: "And anyway there's all those problems, all that expense, as well. Oh, no! No way! It would have been too stupid."

Just to be certain that Rodolphe never spoke like a Hollywood agent, we can take a look at the same line in the original: "Et, d'ailleurs, les embarras, la dépense … Ah! non, non, mille fois non! Cela eût été trop bête!" The perfectly ordinary, time-tested English idiom "No, no, a thousand times no!" would have fitted exactly. The awful possibility arises that Mauldon has never paid much attention to English idioms like that. Instead she thinks "No way!" is perfectly ordinary. We can take it for granted that she knows the French language of Flaubert's era inside out. (She has already translated, for the same series of Oxford World's Classics, works by Zola, Stendhal, Huysmans, Constant, and Maupassant.) But she has a crucially weaker knowledge of how the English language of her own era has been corrupted. You might say that English has always advanced through corruption, but "No way!" is an idiom so closely tied to the present that it can hardly fail to weaken any attempt to summon up the past. In Alan Russell's translation of Madame Bovary, first published by Penguin in 1950, there is no "No way!" Probably the phrase did not yet exist, but almost certainly Russell would not have used it even if it had. What he wrote was "No, no, by Heaven no!" Not quite as good as "a thousand times no!" perhaps, but certainly better than "No way!": better because more neutral, in the sense of being less tied to the present time.

Looking at this online version of Madame Bovary, I can’t find see who the translator is. A little investigation, based on James’s comparisons, proved inconclusive. The last sentence of part 2, chapter 12 is interesting. It reads: “And besides, the worry, the expense! Ah! no, no, no, no! a thousand times no! That would be too stupid.” Just as James recommends.


The Mac is a...

Scent of an OS and The Mac is a hard mistress. While I like Apple computers (the 17" TiBook is the most drool-worthy computer ever built), I don’t look forward to learning the ins and outs of the Macintosh OS. It’s actually considered a bit clunky by a lot of designers I know. IBig icons and all that dragging and dropping, ugh.

Still, someone I know isn’t looking back from his switch (in Finnish).

  • Palm and Handspring founder Jeff Hawkins thinks humans don’t think by computing, they remember things. “When I take a drink, I'm not calculating how to move my arms; I'm recalling sequences.”

Revolution Betrayed

While there’s little chance I’ll ever read it, Leon Trotsky’s Revolution Betrayed in available online.


Homage to Catalonia

The full text of Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia is available online.


Joi Ito coming to Helsinki

Joi Ito will be speaking in Helsinki on Thursday, October 14th. The speech, titled “The Future of Music,” is hosted by Aula.


My new 7610

I got a new phone a few weeks ago, and now it seems to be a little broken. The five-direction key doesn’t want to go up. I’ve googled around, hoping someone else might have the same problem and an explanation why, but so far no luck. I’ve found a few decent reviews, though, and learned some things I didn’t know. Read more


Firstly, uhhh, and secondly, uhhh

This remix of Bush’s speech from the September 30 debate reminds of the story about the guy who made a tape of the between-word sounds he made while giving a lecture. He edited out all the speech and kept only the umms and uhhs. There was twenty minutes of it! Voke, a Finnish teacher I had in high school, used to tell this story to make students pay attention to the stalling sounds we make when speaking publicly.

Here’s another work of edited footage, this one video from the Republican National Convention.


Thinking ahead

To all of you, who I fail to see regularly because of my inability to schedule appointments, let me say: I am sorry, I truly cannot help it. I like the way Po Bronson put it: “I'm not very good at planning. Thinking ahead makes me frantic and depressed, because inevitably I see that there is a lot of work in my future.”


Po Bronson: Bombardiers

The only book I’d read by Po Bronson was The First 20 Million Is Always the Hardest, and I wasn’t impressed. But when I found Bombardiers on the shelf in the Kallio library, I grabbed it, took it home, and read it. And wasn’t disappointed. I am, however, baffled by how good Bombardiers is, and how bad The First 20 Million is. Read more


Small screen rendering

Testing web pages for how they’ll look on small screens is easy with Opera. You can switch to small screen rendering (SSR) mode by hitting Shift+F11.

Opera’s browser is available on many mobile devices, for example on phones that run on the Symbian OS.

A List Apart has an article on building sites that work on small screens.


Vilkaus Blogistaniin

Ylioppilaslehden Tervetuloa Blogistaniin on mielenkiintoisimpia weblogien esittelyjuttuja, joita on perinteisessä mediassa julkaistu. Ehdottomasti paras suomenkielinen juttu. Muotokikkailu, jossa alaotsikoina toimivat eri päivämäärät ja ajat (muka blogimuodossa) on aika päälleliimatun oloinen, mutta muuten kerronta etenee mukavasti—melkein blogimaiseen tapaan.

  • Home
  • About
  • Preferences


October 2004











































Sep   Nov

Beared souls

caught together