Posts by: Jeremy Hatch

Flash vs. HTML5

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Over on TechCrunch, one of the developers who helped build the Flash platform was asked to speculate about the technical future of web content — essentially, whether he thinks the Flash platform will be made obsolete as HTML5 is adopted. His response to this question is neither yes nor no, but a lengthy, carefully considered, […]

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Six Free Documentaries at Criterion

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In honor of the True/False Film Fest, the Criterion Collection is making available for free online viewing six films that previously showed at the festival. They will be available through February 28th. The titles are Son of a Gun, Someday My Prince Will Come, The Mother, The Order of Myths, Running Stumbled, and The Mosquito […]

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The Most Mysterious Book Now Online

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The Codex Seraphinianus — a mysterious book by an artist named Luigi Serafini, which is often described as seeming to be “a visual encyclopedia of an unknown planet” — has been placed online in its entirety. Back in 2007, Justin Taylor wrote about the book in the Believer, and in 2009 he wrote a follow-up […]

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Influencing Inglourious Basterds

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Quentin Tarantino gave an interview to the LA Times, in which he discusses the films that influenced Inglourious Basterds, although he first expresses annoyance with critics who, instead of reviewing his movies, really try to “match wits” with him, and try “to show off every reference they can find, even when half of it is […]

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Robert Walser’s Microscripts

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The Center for the Art of Translation has an interview up with Susan Bernofsky, translator of Robert Walser’s novel The Tanners, among other works. She talks about the six volumes of Robert Walser’s miniaturized shorthand that has come to be known as the “Microscripts.” Her translation of selections from these are forthcoming from New Directions. […]

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Just Call Me Otto

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Last month Nerve published a really fantastic piece by Andy Horowitz about Repo Man, and why this studio picture from a British director is actually the seminal American indie film. “Shot after shot,” Horowitz writes, “you find yourself saying, ‘Where have I seen that before?’ and then realiz[e] you saw it after, in somebody else’s […]

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Eyeglasses For Everyone; No, Really: Everyone

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The Washington Post reports that an English physician, Joshua Silver, has designed eyeglasses that absolutely anybody in the world, no matter how poor, can afford, and he has plans to distribute a million pairs in India this year. The glasses are based on a very simple principle: clear plastic lenses encase a flexible sac, and silicone […]

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Researchers Show How to Hijack Clicks on Facebook

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CNET has a short piece up about a number of security vulnerabilities on Facebook that have recently been demonstrated by researchers — and they’re more serious than the notion that some random employee there might check out your profile. In fact, one of these vulnerabilities make it possible for some random hacker to use Facebook […]

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Handwriting on the Way Out

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The history of handwriting and handwriting systems is sketched out in this article by Oberlin professor and GOOD columnist Anne Trubek. Trubek also sketches out the history of the writing machines that began to replace handwriting from 1874 onward, with the invention of the first typewriter. Plus she includes a few notes about how old […]

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Seth on the Quiet Art of Cartooning

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Recently I was reminded of this lovely little essay by the cartoonist Seth, about the solitary art of cartooning. From his description I’d say that cartooning — at least fiction cartooning such as Seth practices — sounds exactly like fiction writing, except you have to draw pictures. Which by rights should make it even harder. […]

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How to Destroy the Book: A Guide

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Last month Cory Doctorow gave an eloquent and often-amusing speech at the National Reading Summit to an audience of “librarians, educators, publishers, authors and students” called “How to Destroy the Book.” The transcript was published yesterday by the University of Toronto’s student paper, The Varsity. Doctorow begins by describing the threat of a group of […]

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The Last Book I Loved: Life, Inc.

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Although the title of this book would seem to promise another critique of the practices of specific corporations we do business with every day (often for a lack of alternatives), Rushkoff is after much bigger game: Life, Inc. is a critique of how a way of doing business became a way of life.

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Rushdie on Film and the Novel

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“The movies are now old enough — we’ve had a century of movies — that you can actually look at a long period of time during which there has been interaction between the forms [of film and the novel]. And it has been both ways, and we tend to think of it only going one […]

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Thoughts on The Salt Smugglers at TQC

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“Nerval is remembered as a minor literary figure, an eccentric who walked his pet lobster on a ribbon in the Palais Royal, gabbled his poetry in doorways, read at night with a candlestick on his head, and slept in coaches with his head in a noose, habits that endeared him to aesthetes and literary anecdotalists.”

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Live As if Everything Were a Miracle

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“Someone said there are only two ways to live your life: one is as if nothing is a miracle, the other is as if everything is. I’ve always been convinced Havana is an annexed colony of the latter… “I was sitting in the rafters next to a father and son for the morning set of […]

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“Friends” vs. Friends, Twitter vs. The Long Missive

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William Deresiewicz just published a long essay in the Chronicle of Higher Education that’s worth spending some time with: “Faux Friendship,” in which he traces how the concept of friendship has changed since classical times — it used to be an intense and serious matter; these days, not so much — and worries that social […]

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The Road from Infinite Jest to Oscar Wao

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New York Magazine‘s Sam Anderson — who is, in my opinion, a top contender for a spot on IHateYouAndIWantYourLife.com — has written a fascinating piece outlining his view of the way ambitious novels have changed in the past ten years. Those doorstops from the late 90s — Infinite Jest being Anderson’s main example — have […]

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Path Lights by Zachary Sluser

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The David Lynch Foundation wrote us the other day to mention a delightful film they’re screening on the DLF.TV website until December 9th: Path Lights. It’s a 22-minute short, based on a 2005 story by Tom Drury, about a voice actor who almost gets hit by a flying bottle one day — and then sets […]

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A Disarming Post-Adolescent Intensity

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“His prose may often rest on a banality (“we like to feel superior to others. But our problem is that we’re not superior”) but his inner turmoil over such bland ideas, expressed with a post-adolescent intensity, is disarming.” Ron Slate reviews the new book from actor, playwright and filmmaker Wallace Shawn, Essays. (Several months ago, we […]

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Terry Gilliam, Movie by Movie

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Total Film has published an installment of their regular feature “Movie by Movie,” about each one of Terry Gilliam’s films: “The Trials, the Tribulations, The Triumphs.” From Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Jabberwocky on to Time Bandits — about which there is an amazing story: Gilliam was having a big argument with the […]

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DVD Review: Medicine for Melancholy

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Two people meet at a party, have a one-night stand, and — in the cold awkward light of morning — finally get around to introducing themselves to one another. And maybe they even have coffee, and continue the conversation. And maybe even keep hanging out for another night.

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F. Scott Fitzgerald in Hollywood

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“Fitzgerald, to put it mildly, did not impress the studio bosses. The rap against him was that he couldn’t make the shift from words on the page to images on the screen. His plotting was elaborate without purpose; his dialogue arch or sentimental; and his tone too serious — at times, even grim. Billy Wilder, […]

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Geoff Dyer Finds the Timeless in Fashion

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“Thin as legend claims, the models streamed into view. […] There was a bit of everything going on. The models appeared, variously, as flappers, can-can dancers, sprites, zombies — you name it. A seasoned fashion writer said to me later that this show had actually been comparatively tame: ‘There were things in it that you […]

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France’s Fixed-Price Book Law

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France has a law in place, established in 1981, that requires all booksellers in the country — big-box stores, independent stores, online retailers — to sell a given book at the same price as all their competitors. (Stores can do some discounting in order to help move stock, but the maximum discount allowed is 5%.) […]

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The Dark Side of Sustainability

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Curtis White’s essay in the new Tin House, “A Good Without Light,” contemplates the dark side of sustainability. In a word, he argues that sustainability, as a philosophy, is a desperate and perhaps futile attempt to figure out how the status quo can be preserved without significantly altering our society. White argues that our capitalist industrial […]

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