good for me

Microsoft and Ensemble Studios just released a demo of Age of Empires III. Now, AoE2 is one of the best real time strategy games out there. It features players competing as 13 different civilizations by getting resources, progressing a technological line, raising armies/navies, battling and ultimately, trying to conqueror one’s enemies. Mac-users go here. Well, AoE3 uses a gorgeous, brand new game engine. The game itself seems to be a mix between Aoe2(resources,technology timeline and battle) and Conquest of the New World(‘Home City‘, colonization, more Native American tribes).
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I don’t need Steven Johnson to encourage me to play. I just don’t have the time. Now that the art season is in full engagement, time to play is dwindling. Plus there is the issue of the minimum requirement of contemporary games. Nowadays a fancy 3D video card is required. AoE3 will not be an exception. I am not a fan of first-person shooters, but i do want to play Doom3, Half-Life2. Those two games, features awesome game environments, are now the yard stick for hardware requirements. Even The Sims2 is dependent on some decent hardware. The good thing though, is that a good platform to play games is also a good platform to do multimedia works like video and surround sound audio projects. So a computer upgrade is in my future.

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some more photos from the nytimes

Spectral photography is the subject of “The Perfect Medium: Photography and the Occult,” an exhibition that will be opening at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, September 27.

The 120 pictures in the exhibition are by turns spooky, beautiful, disturbing and hilarious. They are also, by and large, the visual records of decades of fraud, cons, flimflams and gullibility – though there are also some pictures, like those produced by an eccentric Chicago bellhop, Ted Serios, said to be purely from his thoughts, in the 1960’s, that have never been adequately explained.

This preview article is also a sketch of Pierre Apraxine, one of the curators, at the Met, in charge of this exhibition. He is profiled as “the eyes, ears and auction proxy for the philanthropist Howard Gilman, who built a collection – recently acquired by the Met – that is widely considered to be one of the most important in the world.”

The article. The slideshow.

Photography

The NYTimes.com has an article on an exhibition of color phtographs, from the Depression Era, at the Library of Congress. The Print and Photographs Division of the LoC published ‘Bound for Glory‘, a book of photographs from which this exhibition is extracted. Most, 164,000, of the photos from the Farm Security Administration-Office of War Information Collection are in black and white, but some, 1600, are in color. The color photographs’ artistic value seemed to have been in question. This issue is still present today in the criticism of photography. As far as color goes, I love the limited color palette of kodachrome. I would love shot some that film stock.
There is a slideshow on the NYTimes.

Marion Post Wolcott - Library of Congress
I really like this image. It reminds me of rural Haiti. The photgrapher is Marion Post Wolcott. A biography can be found here.
The library of the University of Miami has some pages, ‘for teachers and students’, about of the FSA-OWI photographs in Florida. Marion Post Wolcott consciously portrayed class difference in America. While in and around Miami, she photographed blacks, migrant workers, their living conditons and Miami Beach and its fancy offerings.

Marion Post Wolcott - Library of Congress
The rights of these images are administered by Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, FSA-OWI Collection.

Katrina

We lost power Thursday, around 4:30pm, a couple of hours before Hurricane Katrina made landfall near the Miami-Dade – Broward county line. Someone needs to take FPL to task on this point. This pre-hurricane power failure issue was a bit lame. It’s definitely an argument for putting some power line underground.
Katrina, a catergory 1 hurricane, came, past and left us in the dark. We were underprepared, as were the rest of the city. Many trees toppled, around here, mainly Banyan (ficus). We fared well; we had the generosity of friends and family.
Katrina did go on to become a Category 5 hurricane. And places North of the Gulf of Mexico, like New Orleans, Biloxi and Gulf Port didn’t fare as well. They are going through devastation, from wind and flood, that renders our inconvenience to the degree of insignificance. As I write, NPR reports bad news to terrible news of tragedy and utter pain–no food, no drinkable water, no power, many people are missing, many of the dead are clearly visible and are on the street, looting in New Orleans, a little girl raped. It is crazy, scary and a bit unbearable. Martial law (state of emergency) has been declared. There is a real need out there. So I urge all to be a little bit less self-involved and help, anyway that you can.

iSAW hollers

Gustavo Matamoros wrote in an email:

The interdisciplinary Sound Arts Workshop is issuing a call for works
in surround sound format to be exhibited at the Miami Beach Cinematheque.

THE GALLERY:
The interdisciplinary Sound Arts Workshop is launching a new project
in collaboration with Miami Beach Cinematheque we call the “Surround
Sound Gallery.” The project will feature audio pieces submitted to us
in 5.1 surround audio format from composers and sound artists in response
to specific themes in the Cinematheque’s programming. The selected works
for each exhibit will be on display before and after every film for a month.

UPCOMING THEMES:

OCTOBER 2005 – DAVID LYNCH
A month-long retrospective of the films of David Lynch culminating Halloween weekend with a site specific, Lynch-inspired SÉANCE project.

DECEMBER 2005 – GUY MADDIN’s COWARDS BEND THE KNEE
This ten-part silent-film inspired movie will exhibited as individual peepshows.

MARCH 2006 – WOMEN IN SURROUND
Celebrating “Women History Month” the surround sound gallery will display the work of women composers and sound artists. The surround exhibit will accompany a photographic collage exhibition by women about women.

Interested artists should submit 5.1 DVD’s, bio and press materials to:

iSAW’s Surround Sound Gallery Project
PO Box 01-5298
Miami, FL 33101-5298

Materials not accepted for the exhibits, will be deposited in the iSAW experimental sound archive for later use. Artists will be contacted if and when the opportunity arises.

Please spread the word! Thanks!

gustavo matamoros
director interdisciplinary Sound Arts Workshop
305 981 0600 ? isaw@earthlink.net

[:: LOCATION ::]
iSAW is located at 12355 NE 13 AVENUE #206 in NORTH MIAMI, FL 33161

From: I-95 –> NW 125th street [EAST]–> NE 13th Avenue
(one street before railroad tracks) [SOUTH]–>
12355 NE 13 AVE (on your left hand side)

From: Biscayne –> 123rd street [WEST]–> NE 13th AVE
(one street pass railroad tracks) [SOUTH]–>
12355 NE 13 AVE (on your left hand side)

isaww

Saturday edition

We listen to a lot of radio around here. We don’t watch tv at home, we primarily do Netflix and the library. Television is too expensive really and besides, I want to get tv à la carte.
< dream > I want about 5 or 6 channels and want to pay about $10 a month. I want to be able to switch those 5-6 channels from the pool of avaliable channels and I want this as part of an open DVR package. For no more than $10 a month. < /dream >

Until that happens, radio will continue to be dominant aroung here. I am not sure how dominant radio is really. We mainly listen to WLRN, our local NPR affiliate. I also listen to some of University of Miami‘s, WVUM; but the current wvum-DJs are just too young. Some of them sounds like that they have just discovered Squarepusher and Aphex Twin. And they just talk about crap like being too tired from partying. And times, they play the same music day after day. They also missed their own shows, and so, a tape show is played. Sometimes, the same tape show is played several times a day for sereral months. Yeah, wvum can be a bit annoying.

Saturday is good day for radio, though. The highlight of the saturday line-up is Weekend Edition with Scott Simon, WaitWait…Don’t Tell Me, Marketplace: Money, Weekend America, On the Media, A Prarie Home Companion and Weekend Jazz. It’s a lot of listening, but listening is developable skill.