Archive for May, 2007

In the Peak

Odd synchronicity; last night I blogged on a debate titled Where is the heart of English culture? In this morning’s Telegraph comes a partial answer to a similar but slightly wider question; “Which county best shows us England?”. The answer is, apparently — some of the rural counties that surround Birmingham & the Black Country: […]

Second Lives

The first book-length ethnography of Second Life? Possibly, and certainly interesting enough to be reviewed by the TLS. It’s published in early June.

Found girl

British comics genii Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie get married in magnificent style.

Dept. of Culture and Massive Sofas

Ouch; £40-million a year, just to pay for the DCMS to have nice offices in London. Come to sunny Stoke-on-Trent instead, dear chaps and chapettes, and Gordon can spend the savings on taking artists out of the tax system some bunting for the Olympics.

English culture

Where is the heart of English culture? Good question. If you’re trekking through the sheep mess in Kendal, Cumbria, on Friday 8th June 2007, that’s roughly where it’ll be. Because Where is the heart of English culture? is the title of a debate organised by Arts Council North West on that day in Kendal. Let’s […]

Artists’ working lives

A useful full-text paper from 2004, Researching artists’ working lives (PDF, 80kb), providing an overview of our knowledge and an outline of the gaps.

“It’s trash up north”

There’s to be a fab-sounding conference on The Aesthetics of Trash: Reassessing Animation and the Comic. It’ll be at the end of August 07, at Manchester Metropolitan University. [ Hat-tip: Intute blog ]

Second Life voice

Information Week gives Second Life voice a trial run. The verdict? “Outstanding”. Someone is going to make a small fortune selling fantasy voice-changing software, so that your SL dragon sounds convincingly dragony, and so on.

Northern Exposure series six

Nice; we have a UK release date for the sixth and final series of fave TV series Northern Exposure. A six DVD box-set will be out on 25th June 2007. Price is set at £26.24 which (with postage added) should be only about £4 more than the cheapest it’s ever been on either Amazon or […]

“Can I do yer now, sir?”

Well, who’d have thought it; from today’s Guardian newspaper… “The United Kingdom now has as big a slice of its population working as servants as it did in 1860.”


MIT has released Scratch, a free multimedia programming language designed especially for children.

JPG, pegged

JPG magazine is a new photography magazine that’s been going strong now for nine issues, and along the way it’s been proving that Lulu’s print-on-demand service has no trouble handling a quality photography magazine. Sadly, issue 10 is the last one that two of the founders will have a hand in. Derek Powazek explains why.

Python and the perl

Fab; Brummingham gets a large UK Python programming conference in September 2007. No, it’s nothing to do with what time the BBC programs wildlife documentaries about nasty pythons swallowing bambi-eyed fawns. Python is a multi-platform programming language. The Birmingham Perl mongers may even be there, since apparently the two languages now play together reasonably nicely. […]

Same old story

Even in the booming Chinese art market, it’s the same old story for artists; property developers want the artists out, once artists have pioneered the gentrification of an area… “For the past four years, avant-garde artists in Beijing have staged an annual festival in a cluster of disused 1950s-era factories. … The complex, known as […]

Documentary Practice

There’s a new M.A. degree in documentary photography, starting at Birmingham’s BIAD in late September 07; Photography: Documentary Practice.

The Well-Dressed Geek

A full presentation of some new nerd-geek research, courtesy of MIT’s recent MIT5 conference; Jason Tocci’s The Well-Dressed Geek: Media Appropriation and Subcultural Style (PDF, 180kb).

Comics graduates

At a time when we’re hearing the first stirrings of a comics production degree, based in Birmingham, it’s perhaps a good time to meet the first crop of graduates of the Center for Cartoon Studies in the U.S.

Alter Ego

Alter Ego: Digital Avatars and Their Creators, photos from a new book. There’s also another gallery here.

Omega Sektor

New for Birmingham city centre; a “massive interactive entertainment centre”, the largest in Europe. Which apparently means 400 fast LAN/online PCs and videogame consoles, surrounded by comfy chairs and big monitors and suchlike. And presumably a monster air-conditioning system. It’s been given the rather chav-tastic title of Omega Sektor. But I wonder if it might […]


While musing on the potential of doing funky things with mobile phones, way back in June 2005, I wrote on D’log… “…you could clip it into a little model-car “˜chassis’ and then set it down in a “˜phone playpen’, where it would slowly roam around while “˜nibbling’ at the LED displays of other phones.” Come […]