dimanche 18 septembre 2011

Gun Buy-Back

Il y a des choses qui me sidéreront toujours aux États-Unis d'Amérique, des choses comme ça:

NYPD Collects 164 Guns At Staten Island Gun Buy-Back

The NYPD announced that 164 guns were surrendered at yesterday's gun buy-back on Staten Island. The program, which was held by the Staten Island DA's Office and NYPD, offered $200 cash for each eligible handgun and $20 for each eligible rifle or shotgun—no questions asked. The NYPD adds that of the guns turned in yesterday, four were loaded.

jeudi 15 septembre 2011


Rompant avec mon habitude de très peu regarder la télévision, j'ai hier soir regardé un match de baseball. Les Detroit Tigers étaient opposés aux Chicago White Sox. J'aime bien le logo des White Sox, ce "Sox" en typographie gothique entremêlé verticalement, très joli je trouve. J'avais une casquette des White Sox, je l'ai donné à quelqu'un, je ne me rappelle plus qui, ou prêté peut-être, bref je ne l'ai plus. Par contre comme équipe les White Sox ne valent pas grand chose, surtout contre Detroit qui est cette année au dessus du panier. Il n'empêche, j'aimerais mieux être un citoyen de Chicago qu'un habitant de Detroit, mais peu importe. Peu importe aussi le sport bien que j'apprécie le baseball en tant que spectacle, ce qui n'est pas donné à tout le monde, ici en Europe, la plupart des gens trouvent ce sport horriblement ennuyeux. C'est qu'ils n'y comprennent rien, en fait le baseball est un sport d'adresse au même titre que le tennis (que je trouve terriblement ennuyeux à regarder) avec une stratégie très subtile en plus, qui fait tout son attrait. Je suis toujours à me demander quelles sont les intentions des uns et des autres, balle par balle, et je suis ravi de comprendre, par exemple, que si l'équipe "au champ" décide de laisser les batteurs avancer sur les bases c'est pour mieux tous les éliminer d'un seul coup grâce à la tactique du double play. les Tigers ont gagné hier soir (ou plutôt avant hier soir, le match étant diffusé en différé) par 6 à 5. Les deux équipes étaient à égalité à la neuvième et dernière manche, ils ont donc joué une dixième manche pour se départager et les Tigers ont marqué un point lors de cette manche, ensuite ils ont éliminé tous les batteurs des White Sox par strike out et le match était fini.

La veille j'avais regardé un film de Clint Eastwood True Crime (en Français: Présumé coupable). C'est un thriller bien tourné, au scénario invraisemblable (mais est-ce bien nécessaire d’avoir un scénario parfaitement vraisemblable?) et avec des acteurs que j'aime bien comme Clint, bien sûr, mais aussi Dennis Leary et surtout James Wood qui cabotine à fond. C'est très bien troussé, comme on dit.

Je ne devrai pas oublier tous les soirs que j'ai la première saison de Breaking Bad à finir de regarder et que j'ai téléchargé le pilote de Treme l'autre soir et toujours pas visionné.

Je ne saurais expliquer ce brusque accès de télévisionnite, autrement qu'en disant que ça m'arrive périodiquement dans des phases de somnolence mentale ou de fatigue.

mardi 13 septembre 2011


A deux heures du matin, toutes les nuits (sauf celles des weekends) j'entends passer les trois Boeing 737 au dessus de chez moi. C'est le passage de l'Aéropostale. Mais l'ancienne Aéropostale de Saint-Ex et Mermoz a pris aujourd'hui le nom d'Europe Airpost. Les trois 737 vont à Marseille, Bordeaux et Toulouse. Ils prennent toujours la même route directe qui passe au dessus de mon appartement après avoir décollé de Roissy. Leur grondement m'est familier et je les écoute disparaître dans la nuit, vers le sud.

dimanche 11 septembre 2011

The wasted decade

John Naughton on 9/11 and the decade since

After watching the TV coverage for a while and it became clear that it was a terrorist attack, I wrote in my diary: “Today means the end of civil liberties for my lifetime”. In an interesting New York Review of Books piece David Cole is less pessimistic. But his tally of the aftermath and implications of the attacks is worth a read. Looking back, what’s most striking about the decade is how wasteful it has been in both resources and lives. The US (and the UK) got themselves enmeshed in one necessary war (Afghanistan), which they then screwed up by getting involved in an unnecessary one (Iraq). Air travel has been transformed from a convenience to an infuriating, inefficient nightmare. State surveillance has increased a thousandfold, and ’security theatre’ has become a way of life not just for real security authorities but also for the millions of jobsworths who wear uniforms in corporate foyers. Every time I’ve queued at an airport in the last decade, or been told by a cop that I can’t take a photograph in a public place, my first thought is that bin Laden won hands down.


The Evolution of the Web

Excellent infographics.

samedi 10 septembre 2011

Detachment from reality

Republican Debate: Galileo and the Eight Dwarfs (The New Yorker)

"Williams: What do you make of that dynamic that just happened here, the mention of two hundred and thirty-four executions drew applause?
Perry: I think Americans understand justice."
Is “justice” some sort of slot machine that works best, in terms of wins, when it turns out the most bodies? The applause will likely be cited as an example of our national bloodthirstiness. That’s not quite right, though; the truth is a little worse. Even a death-penalty supporter might be expected to remember that each execution is part of a story that involves the death of a victim, maybe more than one. For there to be a lot of executions, there have to have been a lot of murders—and that can hardly be cause for happiness. But one suspects that, for this audience, “death penalty” had ceased to be anything but a political symbol—a word disconnected from actual lives and deaths. It wouldn’t be the only sign of detachment from reality in the debate.

My iPhone, my love

Technology Provides an Alternative to Love. (Jonathan Franzen - NYTimes.com)

Let me toss out the idea that, as our markets discover and respond to what consumers most want, our technology has become extremely adept at creating products that correspond to our fantasy ideal of an erotic relationship, in which the beloved object asks for nothing and gives everything, instantly, and makes us feel all powerful, and doesn’t throw terrible scenes when it’s replaced by an even sexier object and is consigned to a drawer.

To speak more generally, the ultimate goal of technology, the telos of techne, is to replace a natural world that’s indifferent to our wishes — a world of hurricanes and hardships and breakable hearts, a world of resistance — with a world so responsive to our wishes as to be, effectively, a mere extension of the self.

Let me suggest, finally, that the world of techno-consumerism is therefore troubled by real love, and that it has no choice but to trouble love in turn.



Carol Bartz’s Yahoo Legacy  (The New Yorker)

Yahoo missed out on every tech trend of the past few years: social networking, location service, group deals, passive gaming, status updates. Yahoo once was the place that organized the Internet. Now, it’s a place for fantasy-sports leagues, stock prices, and inscrutable purple signs proclaiming, “It’s You.” What is Yahoo? Neither Bartz nor other executives have proven able to coherently answer that question.

Drought and wildfires in Texas

Texas drought and wildfires - The Big Picture - Boston.com

(Photo : Jay Janner/Austin American Statesman/AP)

Mermaid Dawn

How Military Operations Get Their Code Names

As it turns out, “mermaid” has long been a nickname for Tripoli, which helps explain Operation Mermaid Dawn. Although the rebels might have not given us the best name to bandy around in the press, it certainly fared better than Operation Ripper (Part II: The Final Rip) would have. That would have sent the wrong message to almost anyone—except maybe Qaddafi himself.

jeudi 8 septembre 2011

In the countryside

Reality insurgents

Reality as failed state

Interesting concept here : the reality insurgent.

What many techno-scientists fail to understand - and thus find most frustrating - about dealing with climate change deniers is that the denier has no real interest in engaging at the scientist’s level of reality.

The point, for the climate denier, is not that the truth should be sought with open-minded sincerity – it is that he has declared the independence of his corner of reality from control by the overarching, techno-scientific consensus reality. He has withdrawn from the reality forced upon him and has retreated to a more comfortable, human-sized bubble.

In these terms, the denier’s retreat from consensus reality approximates the role of the cellular insurgents in Afghanistan vis-a-vis the American occupying force: this overarching behemoth I rebel against may well represent something larger, more free, more wealthy, more democratic, or more in touch with objective reality, but it has been imposed upon me (or I feel it has), so I am going to withdraw from it into illogic, emotion and superstition and from there I am going to declare war upon it.

Jan Chipchase interview

Warren Ellis meet Jan Chipchase

Jan Chipchase is kind of hard to describe. Basically, he’s a strategist/technologist who travels the world with teams of ethnographers and designers, looking at how people use communications devices in different cultures. I like to kid him that he’s the Indiana Jones of user experience. He’s one of those wonderful people who’s essentially invented his own job, and I asked him to write to you about where (roughly) he is today.


I'm now a very proud member of Stellar

You can follow my RSS feed there.

Why people share content

5 reasons people share news & how you can get them to share yours | Poynter.

1. Altruism. We share to bring valuable and entertaining content to others. We think about what our friends want to know, and try to help them out.
2. Self-definition. We share to define ourselves to others. Perhaps this notion is better phrased as, “you are what you share.” People consciously shape their online persona by the types of things they share.
3. Empathy. We share to strengthen and nourish our relationships. Sharing shows someone else we’re thinking about them and we care.
4. Connectedness. We share to get credit and feedback for being a good sharer, to feel valuable in the eyes of others.
5. Evangelism. We share to spread the word about a cause or brand we believe in.

dimanche 4 septembre 2011

William Gibson

William Gibson interview (Boing Boing)

What things are keeping your interest lately?
The sheer surreality of the Republican presidential primary, Libya, Iain Sinclair's monolithic ongoing anti-Olympics project (Hackney, That Rose Red Empire and now Ghost Milk), the "gray man" concept in personal security, the culture of personal aerial drones, parts of the United States as newly undeveloped sub-nations and the foreign outsourcing thereof...

Atlas du National Geographic

The World by National Geographic is live

Une magnifique application iPad pour qui aime les cartes  et les atlas et particulièrement les cartes du National Geographic magazine.