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David Kramer’s high-entropy blog

13 Things Horror Movies Taught Us

From the wonderful folks at the Boston Sci-Fi Marathon, I present 13 Things Horror Movies Taught Us.  These people run other movie marathons, like HorrorThon (which I attended), but the Sci Fi marathon is their biggie.  It’s a 10 day event (starting 02/05/10), ending in the 24-hour marathon (which I hope to go to). I just wish their website was in better shape.

100 Essential Skills for Geeks

From Wired: 100 Essential Skills for Geeks.

I found this list fun, but a lot of the skills on their list are either too esoteric for even a mid-level geek (lock picking, bypassing passwords), or to specific to be be general geek knowledge (steganographics, robotics).  But it is fun.

I’ll update this post tonight with my score.  I welcome comments with yours.

ABC’s The Middleman coming to DVD

According to io9, The Middleman complete series will be released on DVD 07/28/09.  This was a really fun show cut down in its prime.  If you haven’t heard of this show before, check out this fan-generated Wiki and this LiveJournal blog.   It had great dialog, culture references, characters, and plot complications, and was so over the top it regularly banged its head on the ceiling.  Unfortunately, it’s not in Netflix’s database yet, but when it is, I’ll link to it here.

Nominate A Robot For The Robot Hall Of Fame

The Robot Hall Of Fame is a Carnegie Mellon University project.

The School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University established the Robot Hall of Fame to honor landmark achievements in robotics technology and the increasing contributions of robots to human endeavors.  Two categories of robots are honored in the Robot Hall of Fame: Robots from Science and Robots from Science Fiction

They are currently accepting nominations for new inductee robots.  At the head of the pack right now is my personal favorite, Bender Bending Rodriguez from Futurama (yes, I voted for him.  Bite my shiny mettal a**.)  However, I found this entry quite intriguing.  This is an actual mechanical robot automaton from the 18th century that looks like a man, but can draw several complicated drawings and reproduce a few poems.  All mechanically.  Fascinating!  The website at The Franklin Institute has videos of it working and its output, as well as its complex history.

Bad Network Exec! No Cookie! (The Sci Fi Channel rename)

Behold the madness from this TVWeek post (I implore you to read the comments on that page, too): The Sci Fi Channel is renaming themselves in July to “SyFy”.  Yes, it sounds the same, but it’s spelled different.  But there’s one thing even more idiotic than the name change itself: the reasons for doing so.

They are changing the name in July because “The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular”, and because some brain-dead lemming thought that “SyFy” is how the hipsters type it in text messages anyway.

They say they’re aiming for the “18-to-34 techno-savvy crowd”.  That’s all I need to hear.  So they’re looking for people who listen to Moby and 808 State?  Maybe the problem isn’t the channel’s name, as much as it is that 40% of their airtime is reality shows and wrestling.  Is that what the “18-to-34 techno-savvy crowd” is looking for?  Ghost Hunters and three movies a week about gargantuan snakes?

Green Robots

This. Is. Cool.

io9 (a very cool blog on science, science fiction, media, and equally cool people) has a post about NerdBots: robots-as-art created from recycled component. These are small creations that can be purchased for the low price of a few gallons of gas (around $200).

A later article talks about Jeremy Mayer and his robot art. He seems to have a thing for typewriters.  And I found Lewis Tardy’s website myself.

I love SF art, found art, really creative abstractions. And who doesn’t love robots? I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.

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