Forum Posts

Palladium
May 23, 2022
In World Outside The Window
Following a couple recent threads on here, I was thinking of cover versions of music that I liked. ELP's 'Jerusalem' was the first "progressive rock music" track that appealed to me as a young teenager raised on mostly crappy 'Top of The Pops' chart pop music. I didn't realise it was originally a hymn (although it isn't technically speaking a hymn, apparently) set to a poem by William Blake (my brother pointed that out to me) - I just found the overall sound and melody infinitely preferable to the pop music I'd heard before (this was years before I heard Be Bop Deluxe, etc - I was comparing it to the likes of Suzi Quatro!). Anyway, I read that the current national anthem was recently booed at a football match, and I'd probably boo it myself - not out of any viewpoint on the monarchy/politics, but because I find the music lame and oppressive. I'd heard before that, for many people, 'Jerusalem' would be a preferred alternative. This goes back at least to King George V, who preferred 'Jerusalem' to "God Save The King". And, of course, the official national anthem would have to be a 1970s progressive rock version, since that is what most appeals to my sense of humour! 😁👑⛪️
ELP's Jerusalem for national anthem content media
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Palladium
May 17, 2022
In World Outside The Window
Post everything FAKE related here - from observations about Orson Welles's film, F for Fake, to examples of fakery spotted in the news and on social media etc. Deep fake videos, anyone? New and subtle forms of media/political fakery, natural evolutionary faking, "false flag" fakes, benign vs malign fakery, etc. I'll start the ball rolling with a few examples...
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Palladium
May 05, 2022
In William's World
May have been remarked on before, but in case not: - One of the comments posted to Youtube for Bill's classic 'Do you Dream in Colour?' video states that the commenter had gone searching for the record after seeing its cover pictured on a Marillion LP sleeve. Hmm - I hadn't heard that before, so I went looking - and indeed here it is, on the back cover of Marillion's 1983 'Script for a Jester's Tear' LP. I've blown it up for you to compare. You're welcome! Apparently, the other records shown are Pink Floyd's 'A Saucerful of Secrets', and a couple of Marillion singles.
'Do you Dream in Colour' on Marillion LP sleeve content media
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Palladium
Apr 25, 2022
In World Outside The Window
But Le Pen's far-right got 41% - worryingly high approval for, basically, a fascist direction. Macron said in his victory speech that he realises many voted for him, not because they agree with his policies, but as the only way to keep the far-right out. Sign of the times? The new algorithm politics mass-promoting viral claims and culture-wars controversies/conspiracies, boosting the hard right?
Macron defeats algorithm content media
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Palladium
Apr 12, 2022
In William's World
I don't recall reading this before (although I wouldn't be surprised if it's been linked to here in the past) - it's an article about Bill in The Independent (a national UK newspaper), in the period prior to the release of After the Satellite Sings. The article's author, Mark Prendergast, says that Chance Encounters in the Garden of Lights is "one of the finest instrumental albums of mystical ambience ever." (I have a feeling The Independent website might require you to register for free to view the whole article, although it didn't with me - maybe I've registered in the past and forgotten. I can always copy and paste the full text, if wanted).
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Palladium
Apr 11, 2022
In World Outside The Window
A few weeks ago I had an email from my bank telling me they were introducing a new security measure for online transactions. In addition to a one-time passcode sent to my phone, they'd ask for my email address. Here's what they said: "We’re not actually checking your email address; it’s how you enter it that matters (including your keystrokes). It’s known as ‘behavioural biometric’ data and it should be unique to you. We’ll record this data..." "How" I enter it? I didn't give this much attention at the time. But on Friday I attempted to make an online card payment (with a totally different bank account). On the screen that asked for the one-time passcode sent to my phone, it also asked for my email address. But the part of the email address already displayed (first character, plus the bit after "@") didn't resemble any of my email addresses. I then realised it was an email address I hadn't used in two decades, and I couldn't remember the front part exactly, so I cancelled the transaction, rather than be flagged as possible fraudster (flagged accounts can cause difficulties, if you make a further few innocent errors - like being locked out). Okay, I thought, no problem - they just have out-of-date contact details. So I phoned customer services this morning and.... ended up in The Twilight Zone! I told the guy on the phone what had happened, expecting him to ask for my current email address. But he told me it didn't make any difference what email address I entered, and that entering the wrong one wouldn't have invalidated the transaction. "ERRR, WHAT...?", I say, "SO HOW IS IT A VERIFICATION OF MY IDENTITY? WHAT'S THE POINT? He says they're gathering biometric data on "how" I enter the email address, not actually checking the correctness of the email address. "BUT WHAT DATA, EXACTLY, AND FOR WHAT PURPOSE?", I ask. He doesn't really know, except that it's some "high-end" biometric data gathering operation that will have future uses. "CAN I OPT OUT OF IT?", I ask. He doesn't think that's possible, he sheepishly replies. So, two unrelated banks that I have accounts with have implemented this rather odd, unspecified biometric data gathering recently. No doubt it has good intentions, but WTF! I don't think the 'decision' guys in their important meetings are considering all the implications while they roll out this intrusive micro-interaction technology. Anyone else experienced something similar?
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Palladium
Mar 30, 2022
In William's World
Recommendation: Listen to the album, 'Quiet Bells', by Bill Nelson, on a misty, slightly chilly Spring morning, without preconceptions or expectations. Sometimes it's amazing how all the worry and bullshit can disappear into nothingness in the face of quiet modest beauty. Here's wishing that all the "Joes" and "Vlads" of the world can let go of the past, and step into a future in which we're delighted by artists and nature, not terrorised by idiots! 🌻🌍🔔 Personal favourite track from the album: 'A Perfect Night - The Dawn Rejoices'. That E-bow is something else!
In praise of Quiet Bells content media
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Palladium
Feb 24, 2022
In World Outside The Window
"The Moscow economic picture is actually worse: the market is down > 70% in $ (since the ruble dropped). Russian traders are saying (privately) that Putin is crazy & getting crazier". - Nassim Nicholas Taleb The recent video showing Putin humiliating his own spy chief (who looked terrified) tends to give the same impression of someone unhinged. Everyone seems petrified of Putin within the Russian power structure. He's a one-man show, a dictator with nukes, and some bizarre, sentimental, anachronistic beliefs about the 'Fatherland'. God help the folks in Ukraine.
Ruble crashes, Putin "insane" content media
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Palladium
Dec 23, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Apologies, folks, for my post lampooning trolling activity (from a few days ago). It was intended as humorous and non-personal, but sometimes it's difficult to judge the tone of these things. No offense intended! 😊😎
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Palladium
Dec 11, 2021
In World Outside The Window
The 'Birds Aren't Real' movement, which claims that real birds were replaced by government surveillance drones, seems to have taken off in a big way (I read about it in a recent New York Times article). I like their T-shirt, "If it flies, it spies", and their videos (one has a 'CIA agent' whistleblower talking about the government programme to remove all the living birds, and another has a media interview with the movement's founder, who says with a straight face that the government "mercilessly genocided over 12 billion birds and replaced them with surveillance drones"). It's a satire (I nearly said "of course", but these days...) - of the stupid conspiracies that masses of people believe in (QAnon, Pizzagate, etc), and which have infected some so-called serious news/commentary. It's good to know the satirists are fighting back! (Then again, I've always been a bit suspicious of pigeons).
Birds Aren't Real! content media
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Palladium
Dec 06, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Spotify's CEO, to be precise, has invested $113 million into Helsing AI, a military defense firm that uses algorithm-based systems. Couple of links on this: at Vice, and an interesting blog piece by musician Tim Arnold.
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Palladium
Oct 17, 2021
In World Outside The Window
"Facebook has made building the metaverse one of its big priorities. It's invested heavily in virtual reality through its Oculus headsets, making them cheaper than rivals - perhaps even at a loss". - BBC News. Imagine a universe composed of pictures of your kids & family vacations. And lunch pics & cats & stupid memes. Jeezus H Christ.
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Palladium
Oct 08, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Something I've come across recently, which seemed worth sharing - especially for folks of a certain age (like myself) who have spend a lot of time on a computer, reading, writing, etc. Typically western slouched postures which can result long-term in chronic aches and pains. The little-known "Egoscue" - simple yoga-like postures/stretches, but designed for such modern problems (eg workplace/computer posture, carpal tunnel, etc). Pretty straightforward (not a cult or a "grift"!) & certainly seems to work (or at least it did for me). The usual book, youtube videos, etc, depending on ailment.
"Egoscue" musculoskeletal pain relief content media
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Palladium
Sep 16, 2021
In World Outside The Window
I'd been searching (ages and ages) for a certain quote about Confucius's philosophy, as it summed up to me what happened under Trump in the US, and Johnson in the UK. Finally found it. So thought I'd share (in its own thread, no less!): Once everybody becomes aware that the rich can commit any crime in the book and get away with it, then the general attitude is, "Well, why don't we do the same?" The whole sociobiology of Confucius is when the ruling class are decent, honorable, gentlemen scholars, the people will be well disposed; when the government is a bunch of thieving rascals, the people will become thieving rascals. We've seen so much of that, and the only hope I can see is that some of the malefactors in high places get punished so that a sense of justice and order is reestablished in this country. I'm not a vengeful person and I have a great deal of compassion, even for Nixon and Reagan, but I think some of those people have to go to jail to restore the idea that there is justice in the universe. (from an interview with Robert Anton Wilson, in Mavericks of the Mind).
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Palladium
Jun 22, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Wouldn't fit in title, but what I'm after is the album you've enjoyed (or rated) most so far, from the last decade (or two decades if you must go back further!). Any genre, but not Bill Nelson (that's a different thread in its own right). And not reissues from the 90s, 80s, 70s, etc. Can you single it down to one or two rather than giving long tedious (😉!!) lists? Should be interesting...
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Palladium
Jun 10, 2021
In World Outside The Window
I'm thinking of getting a decent pair of noise cancelling headphones, as noise from neighbours and road outside has increased lately. Anyone know if the good ones (eg the Sony WH-1000XM4 over-ear style) work with standard - ie old - hi-fi, in terms of cable connection/jack, etc. All the talk about USB and Google assistant, etc, in the literature and specifications on these new headphones make me think it's gone totally over to use with phones and tablets, etc. Wireless connection would be good, but only if it the transmitter part will plug into my existing old-style amplifier somehow. Any ideas?
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Palladium
Jun 04, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Anyone tried it? I've found it remarkably effective for getting rid of persistent background anxiety. My first experience with it a few years ago was that it had zero effect. But I found later that this was because of confusion over dose (I'd been trying a cheaper oil that was very low CBD concentration and not clearly labeled). After a little bit of research, I recently tried higher concentrations, and found it worked. It's not up and downs of euphoria (it's practically zero THC - no "highs"), but for me very noticeably takes the edge off any anxiety throughout day. I just put around 10-15 drops of 4% concentration under tongue twice a day (after breakfast and evening meal). Pricey, of course, but the small bottle seems to last a long time. I'd be interested to hear of others' experiences... Given the times we're living through, I'd expect CBD's popularity to soar, along with Bitcoin. 😁
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Palladium
May 19, 2021
In World Outside The Window
Finally replaced my 10-yr-old laptop, as it was slowing to a halt, and the messages I got when browsing changed from "Some functionality of this website may not work with your browser version" to "What the hell is this operating system, Dude, Windows 3.1!!?" After looking at reviews of mid range models I chose a Lenovo Ideapad 15.6" screen with an AMD Ryzen CPU, which scored well on performance. Big mistake. Worst screen I've ever seen - poor contrast (no black, just muddy dark greys), inaccurate, low-saturation colours (which no amount of altering colour calibration helps). It makes my old laptop (which was a budget model itself) look like a high-end Apple by comparison. Just thought I'd mention it if anyone else is buying a Windows laptop. It may be good performance, but if visuals are important, forget it!
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Palladium
May 03, 2021
In World Outside The Window
It happened a month ago, but I've only just heard about it. Same with many US states. Doesn't tend to be reported much (if at all) here in backward Britain, with its mostly conservative media. Pity, as the failing UK economy could probably use some of the tax revenue. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/31/nyregion/cuomo-ny-legal-weed.html
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Palladium
Mar 13, 2021
In World Outside The Window
This site lists an impressive - and massive - collection of avant-garde/Surrealist film & video, spoken word sound recordings, etc. (For example, 4 films and 42 sound recordings relating to Jean Cocteau). Take the film section - material from everyone from Man Ray and Max Ernst to Jacques Derrida and Marshall McLuhan. Video of an interview with Philip K. Dick from the Sci-Fi Book Festival in Metz, France, 1977? William S. Burroughs Cut-up films? Erik Satie documentary? No problem! The sound recordings section looks equally extensive. Film & video archive: https://ubu.com/film/index.html Sound recordings: https://www.ubu.com/sound/index.html Main menu: https://www.ubu.com/
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Palladium
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