So thanks to my tablet, I was able to watch the whole presentation regarding the earlier version of Mona Lisa, live yesterday. And I must say it was extremely cool! The proofs that were presented, both historical and technological, were VERY interesting! Check out the Mona Lisa Foundation website which now has a good load of info to offer. This little documentary is also pretty cool.
Blue blazes!! Wow! I find this quite exciting! So apparently the Mona Lisa Foundation has finally found enough evidence to prove that the "Isleworth Mona Lisa" is actually an earlier version of Mona Lisa, by Da Vinci himself! They're going to present the painting and the evidence tomorrow at Geneva. Anybody know how I can get in there by any chance? =)
In fact I have not been able to find any info about where in Geneva this is happening, or what is the title of the book that's going to be released! I think they're being pretty secretive about the whole thing... even the foundation's website is only going to go live on the 27th, so there is no info on there right now.
According to RT.com:
"The opinion of art historians is split. American scientists are skeptical, saying that it is not the first time researchers have tried to attribute the ‘Isleworth Mona Lisa’ to Leonardo. All previous attempts failed, and they do not believe this time will be any different. Moreover, the Mona Lisa is one of the most copied and imitated paintings ever."
So, for a few friends of mine who are apparently keeping scores on my movie reviews... unfortunately here's another one for the "disappointed" list! Yes, sorry, I had such high hopes for this one... didn't work out! =P
Sitting down to watch this movie, I actually had no idea that this was going to have anything to do with the Alien franchise. That was probably for the best because I've never been a fan of those movies. As much as space ships, aliens and androids are very much my thing, the Alien franchise have always lacked too much on the plot side for me. [Perhaps with the exception of "Alien Resurrection".] Well, now it seems I have a very similar problem with Prometheus!
Prometheus isn't without a plot, but it's without a proper plot! The plot is like a puzzle with so many shiny pieces, put together so badly that the big picture doesn't make any sense what-so-ever. I found the whole idea of finding those cave paintings and going after the "Architects" very interesting. Seeing them actually find the remnants of the Architects et all was also very cool. "Elizabeth Shaw" deciding to go after the Architects at the end, very very cool. And there were a lot of other very interesting "pieces"... but that's the thing, the whole plot is in pieces! And these pieces neither go too well together nor with the rest of the Alien franchise that supposedly follow this one.
So a bunch of advanced aliens go around architecting new species... except once they create one that is not actually monstrous, they turn against it and decide to destroy it. And they do go about that in the most weird impractical backwards way possible. Oh, and the other handy work of theirs that's monstrous and turns against them, somehow ends up in continuing conflict with humans, whereas we basically end up not seeing anything at all about the origins of the architects in the following movies.... and that's just to bring a couple of examples.
Anyhow, I think the only way to fix this "prequel" is with a proper sequel that actually straightens a few things out and offers some answers. We'll see if that'll happen....
Last night we watched "Snow White and the Huntsman". It was a bit of an unfortunate experience... not because the movie was bad altogether, but because you could see how it could have been much better. I think the main problem was the casting.
Charlize Theron as Ravena was great. But only because she does any role great! I would sooner have watched her portrait Snow White, and there would have been many other great choices for the witch [Nicole Kidman? =P I don't know... I just like that idea!].
Chris Hemsworth for Mr. Huntsman... ok, that worked quite well. And the rest of the cast was also pretty good.
But then, Kristen Stewart for Snow White?? I mean... whatever the bloody hell gave them that idea? Aside from the fact that she looks all wrong for the role, she is also incapable of acting! Her happy, sad, scared, and excited face are all the same face, with slight changes in how much her mouth is open.
So you have a good cast, more or less good directing, some great effects... and then you go and choose the wrongest possible actress for your main role. This, ladies and gentlemen, is how to destroy a movie. =)
"Many robotic designs take nature as their muse: sticking to walls like geckos, swimming through water like tuna, sprinting across terrain like cheetahs. Such designs borrow properties from nature, using engineered materials and hardware to mimic animals’ behaviour.
Scientists at MIT and the University of Pennsylvania have genetically engineered muscle cells to flex in response to light, and are using the light-sensitive tissue to build highly articulated robots."
So here's something I received in the post recently, from Venice. It's a dip pen, entirely made out of glass, also known as a "Murano Glass Pen". Thanks to a good friend I recently learned about the existence of these... yes, I had never seen one of these before, which given my general obsession with odd writing/drawing equipment, says something about the rarity of these pens. Apparently they're quite old, and even less popular than normal dip pens.
I must say this is definitely the smoothest dip pens [or generally drawing / writing equipment] that I've ever used. The numerous cuts around the tip allow the pen to hold onto enough ink to fill a page with, without any need for re-dipping. And the glass tip simply draws like a dream... Honestly the pen feels like magic in my hand. I'm generally a huge fan of dip pens, but this is just mind blowing.
"Designed and produced by the World Wide Web Foundation, the Web Index is the world’s first multi-dimensional measure of the Web’s growth, utility and impact on people and nations. It covers 61 developed and developing countries, incorporating indicators that assess the political, economic and social impact of the Web, as well as indicators of Web connectivity and infrastructure."
I find this _very_ cool.
I can hardly believe this... one of my favourite actors. I loved his acting in every role I had seen him in, from "The Green Mile" [which still breaks my heart every time I watch it] to his latest role in "The Finder" series. May he rest in peace.
So, that was Demodays 2012. The crowd was much bigger than last year, which was fantastic. The quality of the demos however still needs a bit of work. Altogether, it was a fun weekend. [Of course the fact that the Expat Expo was on the same weekend didn't make my life any easier... but oh well, they were both great. =) ] You can check out all the prods here.
Due to requests from friends [since a very long time ago] and some recent developments, I finally sat down and came up with a way of having private content on Verse. The code and the solution itself are somewhat messy, mainly because a Wiki is basically not designed for private content [quite the opposite...]. But well, so far it looks like it works. It is now possible to have private categories, all items belonging to which would be private. Private categories can be accessed by certain user groups.
It should be kept in mind though, that this is basically like a lock on a diary. It is simply for the purpose of picking and choosing what content will be shared with whom, but it should not in any way be considered truly secure. So basically don't store your credit card numbers in there please.
Now, anyone who wants to use this feature, should tell me to set category[s] and user group[s] for them.
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