The Null Device
Why doesn't this surprise me: Craig "she hates my futon" Mitchell gives Nick Hornby's High Fidelity a rave review.
When you're getting hassled by beggars or bums on the street, always respond with something that's the complete opposite of what they were asking for. In other words, if they ask for a cigarette then you respond, 'My watch is broken, I don't know what time it is' or 'I'm straight man, I only dig women.' This tends to throw them completely off balance and by the time they recover you're already in the door or halfway up the street.
-- Craig Mitchell, She Hates My Futon
A piece on mildly psychoceramic British writer Will Self, and his latest novel, How the Dead Live.
A recent tennis match at Wimbledon was disrupted by a self-styled professional streaker: (BBC News)
Roberts, who is unemployed, said he timed his streak for the moment the umpire shouted "new balls please".
The serial streaker first bared all during a Merseyside derby match at Liverpool 's Anfield ground in 1994. Since then he has shed his clothes at numerous high profile sporting events and paid the price with fines totalling more than £1,200. He says his ambition is to streak at the US Superbowl.
Facing the music: Superstar lawyer David Boies (responsible for nailing Microsoft to the wall) has taken on the recording industry, and has just dropped a bombshell in the Napster case. Get this, kittlings: if the recording industry is found to have used copyrights anticompetitively, it could lose the right to enforce them (at least until they buy a law to give them whatever they want, anyway). If you have a PDF reader, you can find the brief here. The chickens may finally be coming home to roost... (Link shamelessly stolen from Slashdot)
It looks like there are some interesting films lined up in the upcoming Melbourne International Film Festival; these include previews of High Fidelity, American Psycho and The Virgin Suicides, as well as others which look promising (Hotel Splendide, for example).
A lucid and revealing interview with Ryan Lackey, chief technical officer of the Sealand data haven, going into considerable detail about the establishment of this unusual facility and actual and potential challenges. (Slashdot)
Anomalous animals: The strange case of the goat/sheep hybrid of Botswana, a fast-growing, hardy beast whose rampaging libido caused locals to name it "the rapist":
Interestingly in this case, the scientists involved found that the hybrid had 57 chromosomes, a number in between that of sheep and goats. The ram had 54 and the dam had 60 chromosomes... The intermediate number proved the animal was a real hybrid and not merely a case of mistaken identity.
(If this is true (and given that it's the BBC and it's not April 1, I'd say it's not unlikely), this shows that the concept of species (usually defined by reproductive incompatibility) is not as solid and absolute as most people have assumed.
The new Amiga slouches one step closer to world domination, with the release of the Amiga SDK. It costs US$99, runs on Linux/X, and consists of a virtual machine coupled with something called Taos and the obligatory chunky-looking widgets. In short, it's a funny-looking, proprietary "operating environment" with its own graphics window and command line, which supposedly will run on everything and take its rightful place as the Operating System Of The 21st Century™. Whilst it isn't native, it supposedly does run decently fast on a 200MHz machine with only 128Mb of RAM. As for running your old Amiga games, they're working on an emulator to do just that.