Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Final Fantasy Onstage in a Storm

Came across this via CBCradio3.

Just watch, it's worth it. He's a great musician and the energy he has for what he does really comes across in the performance.

Monday, July 27, 2009

It's basically all about me...

Well, it's really about the way my "crafts" turn out.

Come by, have coffee, witness my hand-quilted bodum-cozy - you'll see.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday, July 17, 2009

I Love Winter, I Love Summer

Free Videos - Videos About Being Free

These snowboard, ski, skate, and surf videos help me love life and remember that being outside is better than being inside - which is where I see them. Then, I go outside and enjoy living life.

(int) Factor Films presents THEY CAME FROM... from factor films on Vimeo.

Nike Debacle from mike on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Canadian Privacy Laws & Online Networking

A report form the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has found that facebook breaches Canadian privacy law. The report responds to 24 complaints, and while most were unfounded or resolved there are four cases that are of concern.

Here's a bit from the executive summary (bolding by me):

On the remaining subjects of third-party applications, account deactivation and deletion, accounts of deceased users, and non-users’ personal information, the Assistant Commissioner likewise found Facebook to be in contravention of the Act and concluded that the allegations were well-founded. In these four cases, there remain unresolved issues where Facebook has not yet agreed to adopt her recommendations. Most notably, regarding third-party applications, the Assistant Commissioner determined that Facebook did not have adequate safeguards in place to prevent unauthorized access by application developers to users’ personal information, and furthermore was not doing enough to ensure that meaningful consent was obtained from individuals for the disclosure of their personal information to application developers.
It's something I rarely think about as I generally avoid apps, but it makes me wonder how many third-party applications are created just to harvest users' information.

CBC has a good quote from Jordan Plener, the UOttawa student who filed the complaint on behalf of the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic.

"For a hangman application, for example, there is no use for the developer to know where the person lives or have their personal email address."
That sounds on the money to me - but really, should we have any expectation of privacy at all on facebook? Our Minister Van Loan doesn't think so.

What do you think? Is it time we give up on protecting our personal information online?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Letting go of What you Know to Progress

Last night Wachtel on the Arts took over Ideas on CBC1, and her interview with Milton Glaser was pretty awesome.

American Graphic Design
Glaser is an artist - I say that because he is beyond being a designer. It can take a lot to get past design when you work in a commercial business, but Glasser's work has consistently been right at the front of the pack.

He and Wachtel discussed the approach and philosophies of Giorgio Morandi (under whom he studied) and Picasso.

Giorgio Morandi
Morandi's body of work is cohesive and well tied together, in stark contrast to Picasso's progression and variation through approaches and movements.

Glaser described really clearly what I find so fantastic about Picasso - and I'm sorry I can't find the exact quote - by praising his drive to abandon a style or pursuit once accomplished, and move on to something new.

He said "Once you've learned something, and you can do it, it's time to let it go and move on to the next thing."

I like that.

It's not the way to become a specialist, but it's a fantastic way to become an excellent generalist specialized in adaptation.

Adaptation, it makes us human.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Burrard Bridge and Cringeworthy Comments

Disclaimer: This isn't about the issue. It's an issue the issue raises that has to do with discussion, communication, and community.

The Burrard bridge bicycle lane trial has begun.

I'm not from Vancouver, I don't bike across the bridge, and I'm not really entitled to much of an opinion as I haven't examined the plans, read the council minutes, or really paid much attention at all - until today.

You see, every local-news outlet has a story on the bike-lane'd bridge. And in today's everybody-has-a-voice web2.0 social media mad world, that means every story has a comment thread a mile long.

In theory, enabling comments and discussion fosters debate and communication.

In practice, comment-sections quickly degenerate into useless strings of spin and vitriol only occasionally related to the originating article.

Insults are flung with wild abandon, key-messages drown out discussion, and somehow (I really don't understand it yet) the least intelligent among us manage to find their way onto the internet and whip out angry diatribes that only occasionally make sense.

It's depressing to think that those posting are actually the listening/watching/reading public. So, rather than be depressed I imagine this:

Massive banks of computers in a smoke-filled room, cigarette buts dangling from ashtrays on the corners of redbull-strewn desks. Each computer is staffed by a moron with a script, shit-posting to beat hell, while a balding man with dark circles under his eyes paces circles in front of a giant set of monitors looking for news to hijack.

It's like a telethon to save PBS, but instead of red-dwarf reruns we get the daily news. And instead of saving PBS the point is this is an intricate plot to degrade public dialogue to the point where it doesn't make sense to have a public dialogue at all.

I like to think this intricate plan is funded by the military-industrial-complex (do we even call it that now that it's really the everything-complex?) to weaken the public's role in any sort of policy development or implementation.

I then like to use that vision to get really pissed off, curse the lack of public spaces where debate and discussion occur in Canada, and then I do my best to either:

A. Write a coherent post engaging with the few people actually participating in some sort of discussion, then vote-up our posts with a host of fake accounts.

B. Respond to comments in earnest, with sourced arguments, but in the wrong comment thread.

Option B is way more fun, but usually just gets ignored.

The moral of the story is this, "The internet is too easy."

Or it isn't.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Photos I've Found

I love photography. The still image catches me more than video ever does, leaving space to explore beyond the image.

Here are a few of the choice photos I've stumbled across this week:

Look at me I'm Tony Hawk!

Stéfan's stormtrooper-a-day set on flickr is gold.

This cat, I don't know what to say really...

Salt Ponds (Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge)
Jerry Ting's photos are really well done, this one is a few years old but it a cool look at the SF Salt Ponds.

Marketing madness here, feels more like social commentary...

And finally,


Because I like how some of these turned out. It's always fun playing with old camera equipment.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

New Video from Shad

Even if hiphop isn't your thing, Shad's flow is so good and he's got this down to earth vibe that's refreshing.

Ironlak Paint - for writers and arteests

How cool is this - a paint 'n marker company that sponsors and celebrates streetart.