27 May 2008

Simon Pegg Interview

Saw an interview of Simon Pegg. Remember him from Shaun of the Dead? He's in the new Trek movie, donning the role of Scotty.


I have a recurring dream I’m back at school but as I am now. I’m sure it has something to do with wanting people to know you’ve done something with your life. I’m back there telling my friends: ‘I’ve got a job now.’ It’s a strange one.

Read his interview here.

Houston, we got a bug problem

Strange creatures are taking over the NASA computers. It would make a bizarre story if it was little green men hacking into computers, Asgard style.

Alas and Alack, it's just weird little red ants that love living in computers. Anything really, they don't make ant hills, they make do with whatever is around.

And the warm fuzzy interiors of computers seem to be a choice spot for these Carribean ants.

With the rather fruity and mellow name of Crazy Rasberry, these fiesty creatures seem to be taking over everything.

It's not just the Johnson Space Centre that's decrying an attack of bugs; the whole surrounds seem to be suffering from a siege of ants.

The ants have been causing all kinds of trouble in five Texas counties in the Gulf Coast area. Because of their sheer numbers, the ants are short-circuiting computers in homes and offices, and knocking systems offline in major businesses. When IT personnel pry the affected computers open, they find the machines loaded with thousands of ant bodies.

Reminds you of the computers mentioned in Discworld, doesn't it?

22 May 2008

MSN monopoly of WWW

World of Big Brother indeed.

This is a scary take on the Microsoft / Yahoo deal coupled with the Microsoft /Facebook deal.

He talks about a Microsoft Monopoly on the web with them vs. Google, if they are able to own get a hold of Facebook and or Yahoo.

It is a frightening thought.

But then, open source community has created so many fantastic innovations, out of necessity and sharing that Microsoft will lose out in the end. Look what happened to their OS.

Memoris of a Monster

This is such a brilliant idea!

Journal of Darth Vader, behind the scenes look at that wheezy breathing lord.

Here's an extract from it:

I'm back. Commodore Ozzel just rushed to my chambers to triumphantly announce in his simpering way that a series of terrorist transmissions has been intercepted originating from the very starship that even now ostensibly ferries Ambassador Leia Organa on a consular mission to her homeworld of Alderaan.

Another extract:

Looking disappointed that he wouldn't be in on Imperial gossip, Ozzel nodded curtly to the communications officer as I swept past him and into the lift. On the way down I considered how I would frame the events of the past few days in my report to my master. I found the elevator music irritating.


Rosen finds Potter boring

Another author jumps on the anti-Rowling bandwagon.

While I agreed with Orson Scott Card's argument, I am not so sure about this particular author's claims.

Daily Telegraph has Micheal Rosen's take on the Potter books, where he states that the stories were somewhat boring and not at all gripping.

"Figures appear and you don't know whether they are a goodie or a baddie. You would think, traditionally, 'That is for an older reader', because young children more often than not cannot cope with that. My seven-year-old daughter watches the films but they tend to spell it out a bit more. I have not read the books to her; you do not want to bore your kids."

Awwh, but that's sort of what I liked about the stories - the cliff hangers and the ambiguity of good vs. evil.

To give Rowling credit, she did create (should I put that in inverted commas) characters who didn't fall into either spectrum of absolute good or absolute evil.

I always felt that you needed to tell that to kids from a young age. That everything is not black and white and humans had shades of grey in them.

But what do I know, I don't have snotty little kids of my own.

Jason Momoa might leave Stargate? Who's gonna kill aliens now?

Not good news for Ronon fans.

According to Gateworld news, Jason Momoa might be moving onto new projects.

Fear not, they mention that it might be after the next season. By that, it's probably after 7th season.

Blame it on the age gap.

Here's what Momoa said:

[I] wouldn't say I'm sick of [Ronon] yet," Momoa said. "But one more [season], and I'll probably be good. I'm 28 now. I'll be 30. ... It's just time to move on, and I'll want to play something else."

19 May 2008

Banned for gay gaming?

Banning usernames, are we?

According to site, a user was banned from ..er.. using a name that proudly proclaimed his sexual orientation and his love of gaming. Hence "gayergamer".

Apparently that ruffled a few feathers.

The company [Microsoft] said the name was in violation of its XBox Live network’s terms of service, saying the name was of a sexual nature and therefore inappropriate.

Is it offensive because it mentions homosexuality or is the added combination using the word "gamer" that conjured up a colorful picture?

I suppose the miffed user can migrate to other consoles.

Wii anyone? Wii?

16 May 2008

Swiss Flyer

Look at Fusion Man!

That's the Swiss pilot Yves Rossy who flies using his own wings, jet powered ones of course!

Dressed in a white flight suit, wearing a white helmet and strapped to his black device, Rossy was dropped from an airplane 2,348 meters above the Earth. He first unfolded the rigid, eight-foot wings strapped to his back, then fired up four tiny jet engines originally intended to power model aircraft.

Red Bull does give you wing ... it is a European product, yes?

Photo Source:

Youngest Supernova in the Milky Way

Here is the much awaited NASA news.

Using the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, scientists have found the youngest supernova in our galaxy!

The little fella, G1.9+0.3, is estimated to be around 140 years old.

Extract from NASA website:

Finding such a recent, obscured supernova is a first step in making a better estimate of how often the stellar explosions occur. This is important because supernovae heat and redistribute large amounts of gas, and pump heavy elements out into their surroundings. They can trigger the formation of new stars as part of a cycle of stellar death and rebirth. The explosion also can leave behind, in addition to the expanding remnant, a central neutron star or black hole.

We know what the office cooler conversations gonna be for the next few years!

A Third Stargate Movie?!!

Found an interview of Brad Wright.

While chatting to Gateworld about the Stargate Franchise, Brad Wright has a brief discussion about any upcoming / potential / new movies for the gate traveling bunch.

Good news is, he is definitely considering a 3rd SG-1 movie.

Great news is, lovable Jack O'Neill is in it. Yes, Wright responded in affirmative when Gateworld probed him about casting calls.

Sadly, other members look a tad busy with other projects.

But Wright seems to have a secret plan.

"But you know what? They have a good time when they come, and I think these guys had a good time making Continuum. Is it likely we'll ever get them all again? That's kind of unlikely just because of the math. But our core folks, I will move heaven and earth to get them if I can."

Read the full article here.

Linux Desktop for all Asus

Great news.

Pretty soon there will be Splastop Linux desktop for every Asus Motherboard!

According to Geek,

DeviceVM, the makers of Splashtop, just made a big announcement though. Their technology will no longer be restricted to the top-shelf motherboards and will see a much wider release. At first it will be featured on Asus’ P5Q (high-efficiency design, Intel P45 chipset) family of motherboards, starting with the P5Q Deluxe, P5Q-WS, P5Q3 Deluxe, and P5Q-E. Later Splashtop will be featured on all the company’s motherboards, over a million units a month.


14 May 2008

NASA conference is today!!

This article will hopefully be updated soon.

For now, NASA was supposed to announce something big today.

According to their website,

WASHINGTON -- NASA has scheduled a media teleconference Wednesday, May 14, at 1 p.m. EDT, to announce the discovery of an object in our Galaxy astronomers have been hunting for more than 50 years. This finding was made by combining data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory with ground-based observations.

Keep your ears open.

Einstein's letter about God

This is going to make headlines and probably upset quite a lot of people.

A letter written by Albert Einstein is going to be sold off this week; in it, he seems to state his stand on God and religion.

"The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish."

"No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this," he wrote in the letter written on January 3, 1954 to the philosopher Eric Gutkind, cited by The Guardian newspaper.

At least he felt an affinity with humankind in general.

Wonder if anyone is going to cry "forgery" here.

Darth Vader Attacks the Jedi

Join the Dark Side, he seemed to say.

Looks like a tad drunk Darth Vader jumped over a wall and attacked a gathering of Jedi Church members in the UK.

Hughes, from Holyhead, Anglesey, who was drunk at the time bellowed ``Darth Vader'' as he hit Barney Jones over the head with a crutch and punched his cousin Michael in the thigh on March 25th.

The Force is strong in this one.

13 May 2008

Interview with D'Argo

I found an interview of D'Argo on an old BBC page. So we finally know what he looks like; I could not find his picture on IMDB so this was interesting.

Read the full article here.

Funny fantasy covers

This was classic.

Cracked has an article about the worst Fantasy book covers. It is "The Best (Worst) Fantasy & Science Fiction Book Covers" by Chris Bucholz.

You have to read the list, it's hilarious.

Servants of the Wankh?

And another description,

Cloud Castles: The story of Prince Arthus, the last unicorn of Drak-Halur, and Gerry, the man who rode around on his back.


Interesting thing about men in robes

Check out this funny article about wizards.

The writer talks about various wizards portrayed in different movies: the original Wizzy, Merlin, Hobbit's best friend, Gandalf and of course, old Obi-Wan Kenobi!

12 May 2008

First Contact: Season 5 Atlantis

Gateworld has news about upcoming fifth season of Stargate Atlantis. It is about the two parter called First Contact & The Lost Tribe, parts that involves Dr. Daniel Jackson.

To describe it briefly?

Jackon & McKay explore Ancient Lab.
Mr. Todd (not of Todd Hall) abducts the awesome Asgard battleship.
He wants to destroy Lab.
Something other interesting & related stuff happens to Shepard and Zelenka.

Read the article for all the details.

09 May 2008

Expelled: Danger to progress and development

I've been hearing a lot about Expelled.

I do want to watch despite the terrible terrible reviews. It actually sounds like a mind-numbing bit of science genocide. But you know the phrase ... you have to see it to believe ... I'm a sadist at heart ... Any of these phrase will suit the occasion.

In the meantime I found an article about Expelled written by a biology professor, Kenneth R. Miller. Needless to say, as a man of science and an educator he sounds rightfully horrified at the insinuations evident in Expelled and the far reaching consequences due to this strange flick.

He points out the various deceptive tactics used to prove the theme of the movie.

... the editors of Scientific American asked Mark Mathis, the film's co-producer, why he and Stein didn't interview such people, like Francis Collins (head of the Human Genome Project), Francisco Ayala, or myself. Mathis cited me by name, saying "Ken Miller would have confused the film unnecessarily." In other words, showing a scientist who accepts both God and evolution would have confused their story line.

And the bit about likening Darwinism to all of science thereby creating an arbitary link to the Nazis? I must admit I cringed when I first about it; anyone who makes such a link is so deeply ignorant about historical events that it makes you want to throw an encyclopedia at them.

Well, Miller address this as well:

A concentration camp tour guide tells Stein that the Nazis were practicing "Darwinism," and that's that. Never mind those belt buckles proclaiming Gott mit uns (God is with us), the toxic anti-Semitism of Martin Luther, the ghettoes and murderous pogroms in Christian Europe centuries before Darwin's birth. No matter. It's all the fault of evolution.

All in all, well written commentary, Prof. Miller.

NASA conference coming up

InfoAddict has a bit of news about an upcoming NASA conference on Wednesday.

... according to them [NASA] it's to "announce the discovery of an object in our Galaxy astronomers have been hunting for more than 50 years. This finding was made by combining data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory with ground-based observations."

Hmm. let's set a reminder for that date, shall we?

Microsoft to buy Facebook?

What's going on here?

Apparently Microsoft is in talks with Facebook, for possible merger, see if they up for sale.

According to Intology,

A Microsoft source claimed that its financial team is in contact with Facebook’s team to see if they are willing to sell or not. The talk is in early stage and no time frame could be given for the deal.

Now that the Yahoo deal is not happening ....

08 May 2008

Platypus unveiled

Sounds like scientists have been splicing up the platypus' genes.

And comparing them to other living beings; humans, mice, dogs, chickens, etc.

So guess what? They might have answered the age old question: Just what the heck is a platypus.

Well, something like that.

According to an article in LiveScience, in the greater 'gene' of things, these mysterious creatures are somewhere between reptiles and mammals.

"The platypus is a very ancient offshoot of the mammal tree, so it was 166 million years ago that we last shared a common ancestor with platypuses," said study team member Jenny Graves, head of the Comparative Genomics Group at the Australian National University. "And that puts them somewhere between mammals and reptiles, because they still maintain quite a lot of reptilian characteristics that we’ve lost, for instance they still lay eggs."

And guess what? They have X and Y chromosomes just like us, but with some major differences:

Like humans, platypuses carry an X and a Y chromosome. But unlike humans, the X and Y are not sex chromosomes. "That means we can go right back to the time when our sex chromosomes were just ordinary chromosomes minding their own business and ask well what happened, what made them into sex chromosomes," Graves said.

Changes over the years to your genetic structure, possibly adapting to the environment ....

Wait, did someone say evolution?

Stephen King's comments about army and education

In other news, Stephen King is under verbal attack for his recent comments about education.

These are his original comments:

"I don’t want to sound like an ad, a public service ad on TV, but the fact is if you can read, you can walk into a job later on. If you don’t, then you’ve got the Army, Iraq, I don’t know, something like that. It’s not as bright," King said at the April 4 event in which he was accompanied by his wife Tabitha and son Owen.

There was a great uproar following his comment. You can even see it through the user comments to that article itself.

And now he's defending himself against his critics.

"I live in a National Guard town, and I support our troops, but I don’t support either the war or educational policies that limit the options of young men and women to any one career — military or otherwise,"

Seems to be a touchy topic eh?

On a completely separate topic, since King brought up education ... wonder how he feels about Rowling's copyright case and it's impact on literary 3rd party books?

Actor picked to play Adama's father

AICN has found out who will play Bill Adama's Daddy-o.

It's Esai Morales who was recently in second season of Jericho.

Orson Scott Card Criticizes Rowling

Orson Scott Card has his say about the J.K.Rowling's copyright trial against Steven Vander Ark.

Interesting point he makes about Rowling's borrowings, from his own work and others as well.

This is his comparison to Ender's Game:

A young kid growing up in an oppressive family situation suddenly learns that he is one of a special class of children with special abilities, who are to be educated in a remote training facility where student life is dominated by an intense game played by teams flying in midair, at which this kid turns out to be exceptionally talented and a natural leader. He trains other kids in unauthorized extra sessions, which enrages his enemies, who attack him with the intention of killing him; but he is protected by his loyal, brilliant friends and gains strength from the love of some of his family members. He is given special guidance by an older man of legendary accomplishments who previously kept the enemy at bay. He goes on to become the crucial figure in a struggle against an unseen enemy who threatens the whole world.

What's also interesting are the links provided by Orson Scott Card about Rowling's other "borrowings"

Cases of other possible copyright infringement from Rowling's side here.

He makes a strong argument about scholarly comment. Check out the full article here.

I must say I agree with him.

There can be ridiculous boundaries drawn by some such as Rowling, presumably for monetary reasons.

If you wanted to put the Rowling Spin on author's rights, perhaps creators of Lost should pay royalties to descendants of author of the Robinson Crusoe?

Or every single story or game that contains a halfling character should pay out to Tolkien's family?

Geniuses behind Batman should track down Bram Stoker's next of kin - Batman was batty and hung around in a cave, Bruce Wayne was looking to harness the fear of bats. No wait, that's called creative licensing.

Frankenstein's monster wouldn't be the gooey, green, bolt in head mute fella that he is today if derivative writing had been hindered. One of my university lecturers had marveled at this example of human creativity, where fiction took a life of its own and years later, the "parentless" monster finally ended up with the scientist's name.

It would be a bad day for publishing if Rowling wins her case.

Would any scholarly commentary written for purpose of analyzing previous works be affected by it? If a college professor wanted to write an exploratory work about Jane Eyre, is that going be labelled as a crime against creative brains?

Firefox Plugin has adware code

Bit of an uproar about a Firefox Plugin.

Apparently there might have been a bit of adware code in the Vietnamese Language pack. The handy work of malicious software, apparently.

Extract from Yahoo News:

The malware in the language pack is from the Xorer Trojan, according to discussion on Mozilla's Bugzilla developer Web site, which indicates that Mozilla developers first discovered the issue on Tuesday.

"I think it (happened) just because the author's local network was infected with the virus, so it modified HTML files," wrote developer Hai-Nam Nguyen. "The infected code just display(s) annoying banner but it can't propagate."

Could happen to anybody. I hope they don't point fingers at open source stuff after this.

I still think the Fox is one of the best browsers around.

07 May 2008

Twitter saves detainee

How's this for weird?

Twitter helps student get outta jail. An American student, James Karl Buck, who was checking out the recent protests in Egypt was arrested along with his translator. He quickly sends a tweet saying he was arrested.

Friends were able to follow his tracks and sorta make sure he was released from prison.

It's scary to think it could have gone really badly for him if not for twitter. His translator and friend Maree is still being detained at an unknown location.

Buck is now trying to track down his friend.

Blizzard digital downloads

Yay. Blizzard has announced a Digital Download Store.

Gamastura notes that so far it's only 3 games up for downloading: Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, Warcraft III Expansion Set: The Frozen Throne, and StarCraft Anthology.

And apparently you can register CD keys for previous games.

06 May 2008

Virginia Hey Interview

Look what I found here. ScifiWorld had an interview of Virgina Hey.

Virigina Hey is that awesome actor from Farscape, Zhaan. She was the doc / spiritual mediator on board Moya. Plus someone who keeps Rygel in his place. Well, everyone did. Or tried to.

She talks about her role in Farscape, her passions and of course, more acting opportunities.

Why have we not seen her in any other shows / movies? When interviewer asked her if it was lack of interest or opportunities, here was her shocking reply!

Re acting, oh my Goodness, NO, not a lack of interest, or a lack of opportunities, I stopped dead when I was informed I was too old to act anymore. So I didn’t even try to see if there were opportunities...

She's over fifty? So what! There's always a place in SciFi for great actors, irrespective of age. Just ask Patrick Stewart or Chrisopher Lee. Can't believe she was told that.

Good to know she's checking out more acting roles now.

Amanda Tapping interview: Stargate Continuum

Den of Geek has an interview with Amanda Tapping! She talks about Ark of Truth, Stargate Continuum and her new series Sanctuary.

Seems like she moved away from Atlantis to take on Sanctuary. Which explains the Woosely move.

I've not seen Sanctuary but it sounds interesting. Well, it's coming to your telly soon so will get to check it out. Or when I get uncapped internet, whichever happens first.

What she says about Stargate Continuum:

... I mean I got to spend eight days living on a moving ice flow in the Arctic Ocean, watching a nuclear submarine crash up through the ice, and shooting on a nuclear submarine. The Air Force brought in F-15s, we got to play around in those. It was massive. The scale of the shoot was massive. And it’s a really nice, standalone piece. So if you’re not a fan of SG-1 or you’ve never seen it, the show will still make sense to you. But for fans of the show we bring back Richard Dean Anderson, and we bring back Cliff Simon and all these great characters from the past. General Hammond, Don Davis is back. It has a nice familiaral sense to it.
Keeping tabs on this one!

05 May 2008

Myst Movie in the Making

Remember Myst? That awesome puzzle solving game?

Well, there's now gonna be a Myst Motion pic, with Patrick McIntire and Adrian Vanderbosch donning the movie maker's cap.

I must say I loved Myst part one. Must admit I have not played the rest of the series; sadly, when I stopped being a broke university student, the shops around here deviously stopped stocking the games. Nooo!

Well, if part one is anything to go by, the story will be suspenseful, have fantastic graphics, mysterious worlds and of course, a strange man yelling "Blue Page".

Myst Movie via Geeks of Doom