Random Thursday

Scattershooting while contemplating a four day weekend...

  • It's been a while since I wrote anything remotely Apple-fanboyish, so indulge me for pointing out that yesterday was a red letter day in that company's history, as its market capitalization at the close of trading exceeded that of arch-rival Microsoft. Market cap is for all practical purposes a meaningless number, but it doesn't seem like it was all that long ago that Microsoft was giving Apple a cash infusion to keep it afloat and bolster Microsoft's claims that it wasn't a monopoly. Actually, nowadays the term "arch-rival" probably imbues Microsoft with more credibility than it deserves. It's a competitor, and a strong one, but no longer the one that Apple looks for under the bed before turning in at night.

  • We finally got around to watching Avatar (it feels good to be part of such an elite group of a billion others), and while I'll admit it considerably raised the technical bar for speculative fiction on film, I'm much less impressed with James Cameron's feel for the storytelling aspect of the genre. I can't help wondering how much better Avatar would have been if the science fiction details had been outsourced to the likes of Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, Neal Stephenson, or David Brin, with those gentlemen being able to pass along their creative visions to Cameron's ace technicians.

    Some of the details in Avatar were laughable, like the reference to unobtanium, the mystery substance for which the human corporation was willing to destroy another race to, uh, obtain. Besides being a lame name for such a supposedly precious substance, it's not even original. The vehicle used to bore a hole to the center of the earth in the 2003 movie The Core was constructed from unobtanium. (But even that reference wasn't original; bike magazines have been referring to exotic frame materials by that term for decades.)

  • On the other hand, I'll watch any movie where Neytiri is the starring "actress." That's one hot CG alien chick.

  • Speaking of hot alien chicks, I understand that Megan Fox wasn't invited to the Transformers 3 soiree. There goes the lone reason to watch this train wreck of a film franchise.

  • If you follow me on Twitter (and why wouldn't you, other than it's the most boring thing in the world?), you can skip this next bit since I've already ranted about it there. But I'm getting fed up with those yahoos who think that the federal government is either more competent or more motivated than BP in getting the Gulf oil leak plugged. If I wasn't dead certain it would result in a significantly worse disaster than we're now seeing, I'd be in favor of turning the whole thing over to the Feds just so those folks could once and for all understand that the Feds are not the omnipotent, omniscient force they envision in their dreams (hallucinations?). [And, further, BP and the rest of the companies out there are not the uncaring, reckless, stumbling bozos the media is determined to paint them.]

  • Ever wonder what the guys in the Dyson warehouse do when the boss is away? Me neither, but here's the answer anyway [Link via Neatorama]. I have to admit that those bladeless fans are definitely awesome.

  • Last but far from least, and just in time for Memorial Day, here's a moving video produced by the Igniter Media Group in Dallas. This was forwarded to me by my pal Gene, who got it from a couple whose son worked on the creation of the video, and who happens to be a former Midlander. Good, powerful stuff.

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This page contains a single entry by Eric published on May 26, 2010 6:30 AM.

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