Friday, August 25, 2006

Burn rate revisted.

Cleaning out the library. Taken back by a tome. To. That time about ten years ago - those thrilling days of yesteryear – when the Web was new, that’s the time well captured in Burn Rate by Michael Wolff. Aptly cover the 24 weeks or so when 'content was king.'

Like many others [including me], Wolff could not resist the opportunity to be a part of a medium in its infant days. His delivery is generally well paced, often witty. It is old news now of course, and says nothing of Google or AOL since its merger with Time. The time capsule effect is for the better...

What is your business model? When Netscape met advertising. The conundrum of the CPM [Cost per Thousand] trade press advertising model. And the larger more targeted more economical online version. Can software tell you what music you may like better than a skilled critic? In those days the folks with the money had not been on the Internet anymore than they have used these days. Would the Internet level magazines? Minimal entry cost, but then what? Users taking control of news delivery systems. Pathfinder. Burning venture capital faster than achieving revenue. If you build it…

It's all there.

Podcast: Clemens Vasters on Windows Communication Foundation

Just before TechEd this summer, Clemens Vasters walked TheServerSide.NET through a brief overview of aspects of Windows Communication Foundation (WCF).

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Pluto Not Dead Yet !

BBC_ The fight to keep Pluto a planet continues as a fierce backlash begins against the decision by a number of astronomers. Them gravitational do-gooders are on the descent. Good to know Pluto wont go down without a fight. Planet X forever!

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Stored procedures: yes, no, or maybe?

The world of software somewhat resembles a pendulum. Styles of development swing in and out of favor. Sometimes that swinging is very slow -- so that it is practically imperceptible. Developers with considerable experience may not

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Thursday, August 10, 2006

Hour of d' Wolf

Gordon Thomas strikes! This time with a tome that can be read in a commute ... Gordon walks us through Bergman's tale of the time of the haunting of the Howlin WOlf, or as in the native tongue, D' Wolfen Biscuit Hour. A true view into this work by Bergmann - one of those death-haunted artists.

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James A. Van Allen, Discoverer of Earth-Circling Radiation Belts, Dead

Iowa Physicist James A. Van Allen died. He gained global attention, discovered the bands around the earth known as the Van Allen Belts.Put more than 20 instruments in the first US satellite, Explorer. Heard the signal coming back from space. Found intense radiation that surrounds earth. Uncovered fact that Northern Lights are electrons.

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Sunday, August 06, 2006

DeMark Report

Wisconsin was wonderful, as usual. It had been very hot but it subsided a bit when we got to Racine. My kids went frolicking in Lake Michigan and I went with them but it was a bit too cold for me. They loved having those little waves to jump into. We went to DeMark's bar and had meatball bombers and played shuffleboard. They just celebrated their 100th anniversary and gave us T-shirts for free. The back was a cowboy hat and the name "Rocky" inside it for my infamous cousin Rocky DeMark the gambler and owner of the bar who always wore a red cowboy hat (he was country before country was cool). I learned that it actually became a bar in the 1930s because my grandfather ran it as a grocery store until then. My dad and his siblings lived upstairs, all nine of them.

The gig at the barn was very cool. People picnicking outside on the surreal green lawn. The barn had hay bales and people could bring in chairs and drinks. It was low-key but had a functional stage, lights and sound. A great crowd of over 100 came and then seemed to respond well to my writing. I enjoyed it immensely.

You can do whatever you feel like with my note to you. The thing about that barn gig was I real all Wis. stuff except for one story. The stories and one poem included one about tiny Tim playing at the Trempeleau Hotel on the Mississippi, one about my grandma in Antigo (how when she worked at a department store called Krum's the janitor would dress up in drag and she would play a toy xylophone as he pranced around the store for the townspeople---this happened when the owners left town and went on for 6-7 years), the Willie Overstreet Story in Racine (how he almost blew up a gas station [Ed Note: Clark gas station] and then I went on to relating Madison stories. So it was a Bermuda Triangle of Wisconsin stories.

Then we went way up north past Eagle River for our family reunion and that was perfect. Fishing off the dock for blue gills, swimming, drinking , talking to each other. My son Jesse caught a 12 inch large moth bass, by far the biggest fish and he was thrilled (me too). We went back to Racine for a night and there was a celebration of my dad's last living sibling, Theresa who lives in Phoenix. She is 9-0 and full of life still. I got to see a bunch of my cousins and talk with them as we all get older, too. They are all such god, down to earth, honest people.

Anyway, that's the report.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Peter Pan was the name of the bus

Top: Leaving South Stn. Below: Cafe Reggerio[?], MacDougal St, 2006, across from Dylan's old house.

July 27, we headed out from Boston’s South Station – left at 7am - for a summer sojourn in New York. Early morning, people finding their way to bus station. Me and Jacob. Studying inexpensive way to get to and get about the big city of dreams which is not always what it seems.
Sleeping on the Peter Pan bus of endless youth. Reading early English poems and hillbilly essays. Got to Harlem at 11.30 am, went down Adam Clayton Powell Way, and at 125th st, caught a peak at the


[You should have seem them go, go, go.]

Hot, very hot the weather, the sidewalks of New York, where the electricity has been off in a part of Queens for three days….and lower on Broadway, Jake picked out the HQ of Troma Productions. We stayed in Murray Hill, pretty cool. Nice neighborhood. The old away from home stead of Gramercy Park Hotel was closed for renovations. Opening in fact the following week again – after a makeover by Julian Schnapel [well he did keep the old red chairs, probably a mistake] it is probably way upscale and way less fun in its new incarnation. I called Schnapel a usurper. Not too funny to find out that Hezballo Chief calls Israel a ‘usurping entity’ not a country. Well Schnapel usurped my little corner, but Murray Hill Inn, was, well, okay. Did I say the neighborhood was nice?

What Schanpel did do Gramercy, to see the pictures, was to go for the feel of the Reishstag in 1945, elegance, destruction, dark war, and post modern. What a waste of attitude.

See more pics at Flickr site

Keeping America save for paint balls

42nd St subway - w dirty woosh a' comin down the track
Rebels are we...born to be free...Your money or your life? I am thinking....

After checking the bags, we went to see Rob first in the 50s, stopping along the way for raspberry fritzers, record shopping, ice lattes, newspapers, commentary. A war in Lebanon had started, and it was somehow palpable here. In the drone of the subway. Certainly in the headlines. That there and the sad fate of matron Brooks Astor now dowager doyen down on luck at 105. Perfect for Daily News. The Post was hard to find.

Rob has moved uptown, and things have apparently recovered from the depression of 9/11. We talked about the old days for Jake’s elucidation. The Black Panther posters of Madison 1971. An unharmed people are subject to subjugation at any time. Profit is not a bad thing, Rob the Prophet intoned. I agree. When 9/11 struck, not far really from his 16th st lights and wind machines shop, everything stopped. The big fashion season started on 9/11 [check out that days NYT front page] and that came to halt too. Rob gave over his trucks to the work of helping the work at Ground Zero. All of course a great tale in his hands. He is mix of farmland wisdom and big city chutzpah.

Rob is not an artist, but has become a work of art. The guns we posed with [my idea, they were laying there] are paint ball guns – so no humans were hectored during the making of this picture.

I never actually got the hang of the crosstown subway before. But with age and heat, and the notion of ‘learning the subway’ on tap, we managed to trek up and cross town several times via subway. Which for two people [at $2 per] is not way cheaper than a cab. Insect life, Koyannsquatsi. On 30th near Lexington, had to wait to get our room, but we sat in the lobby [no bigger than my living room], cause it was so damn hot outside. Long as there is Mountain Dew.

Subway to glitter

Dolls Poster, 3rd St near Bowery, 2006

14th subway

179 E3rd St.

The New York Dolls just released a record[!], all two of them. After 30 years. I took that as a backdrop for trip to NYC. Can’t show Jake Mercer Art Center of course, cause the building collapsed. Dolls all dead [including two dead drummers] but Sylvain Sylvain and David Johansen of the original band still pushing. The Dolls have wondered into our blog site before; and are essential to my original New York Days [1972-1973] became a sort of background music for the trip. Like the Hot swelter of summer subway coupled with fast cool dirty whoosh of train.

The record is pretty good. If Aerrosmith, the Who and Rolling Stones can keep pumping them out, there is no reason why the Dolls should not try. Just last night saw the film “New York Doll” - quite worth seeing for people interested in that era of glittering rock decadence - about now-dead bassist Arthur Killer Kane who finished his days out working in a Mormon church library, and had a dream that came true…

“I’ve seen more drama right on a Subway Train” - the Dolls sang on LP 1. This one has some really couple sad heartfelt things by David Johanssen..and a few fast bemused things. iPods pretty big down there these days. Places like 14th St station, 23rd St Station, W.4th St Stn, Bleeker St station, Houston have changed but are still the essential place where that music happened.

See more pics at Flickr site

One’s 2 many…and a hundered’s not enough

Jack w One Two Many Band singer Stephanie Bichanich
John Jonny Rocket Ruetz & One2ManyBand, NYC, July27, 2006

But the thing that made this trip happen in fact when it did was the fact that the One 2 Many Band was appearing in New York. Ensconced in LL2. Showered and revived. The night came. For us to see John Reutz and crew.

And we went down [got lost big time before we got there [on time] ] to Cornelia St Café. Somewhere in the neighborhood of the specters of Gregory Corso and Sidney Simon.

John Ruetz, my high school mate [I did the promotion for his 1966 class president campaign] band mate of the DeMark’s Basement days, has continued with music as a hobby over the years. And now he has partners in a professional band known as One2Many Band. Learned about this through Brusha [who saw and played with John’s band one night with Bob and Celeste Henken in attendance] and Paul DeMark who also saw and sat in. Got on the mailing list and discovered they were playing NYC July 27th [playing State Fair back in West Allis following week! Like tonight.]

So John comes into the Cornelia St Café, wearing what I’d call a two-tone bowling shirt, with bit of goatee…looks great! And he meets Jake - similarly looking great – and then Ann Ruetz comes in [still “Ann Lewis” in my [high school] book. And everybody is great.

Downstairs this is like a showcase gig..and they only can do one short set. John The KnobGuy adjusts upon the amp precisely and the guitar until the minute that the band must kick in. And they are really good. John plays with same style of ever but has really gotten way better in 30 years; and the band singer Stephanie Bichanich is a spectacular performer with real feel for the blues, for music, for show business.

Lost my notes on the play list. But they did the House of the Rising Sun, Little by Little, Roadhouse Blues, and Turtle Blues. Turtle Blues was example of Stephanie’s talent because I really wouldn’t think anyone could do that after Janis Joplin. Yet she could evoke Joplin but still first of all evoke the song and get her own band over. I have some numbers in the old 45 collection that I’d like to send The One2Many’s. Just brilliant, and afterward dinner and talk.

Keep in touch with the band using this URAL.
Check out Lost Soul 45 Podcast discussing NY trip.
Pics of trip - TripdPics
See more pics at Flickr site

Starting at the end

Jake at Cafe Reggerio

High point for Jacob might have been CBGBs. We saw two bands in the darkness in that Bowery club, which is holding on after nearly closing. Kind of like fight club music, for my money, though the first guy was fey in a slightly endearing way. It was cool inside. All and all it was pretty hot vacation..but we’d go into coffee joints and Lebanese pitzah parlors and little stores and cool off and then go back onto Gotham. We walked down to old 3rd St where Dave and I lived, went past the New York Hell’s Angel’s HQ down that way still there. John and Ann joined us at Café Reggerio famous old coffee bar across from Dylan’s old MacDougal St abode. Rain came in but it didn’t cool off.

Saturday morning we went to Rob’s house, big cool midtown place with big view of New Jersey. Had bagels and fruit. Talked with Beth. About college. Art school. Da Mayor. The Power Outage. That the Middle class and small business is getting squeezed out of town. Then we had to go. The line for the Boston bus at the Port Authority getting out of town was semitragic. Poor folk in the heat, waiting pretty patiently. Wanted to take pic of Ralph Cramden [Jackie Gleason] statue outside the old Port Authority…but individuals were using it as rest spot. Not near as bad by a mile as in 1985. But reminded me of a blues I wrote…

Going down to that bus station
One with the TV chairs
Didnt know my life
Would ever take me there

In a 25-cent locker
In a 25-cent locker
I put my life
In a 25-cent locker

Port Authority,
Port Authority
What have you done to me?
Took my dignity.
Port Authority

Friday, August 04, 2006

Radio's First Voice - Reginal A. Fessenden

After radio invention, what to do? 100 years ago Reginal Fessenden decided to broadcast some music to the ships at sea. Instead of Morse code telegraph, he sent messages of Victrola record, played violin, read poems. He did this from Marshfield Mass, and the town is celebrating the anniversary this weekend with ice cream, chowda, a car show, and radio broadcasts by WATD-FM, a great oldies station. What a gadget!

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Love's Arthur Lee Dies

Love's Arthur Lee died yesterday afternoon in Memphis after a prolonged bout with leukemia. He was sixty-one. After his diagnosis became public, several artists -- including former Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant, the New York Dolls' David Johansen and Ryan Adams -- took part in a benefit show for Lee at New York's Beacon Theatre on June 23rd.

His number 7+7 Is was one of the ravingest of all time. The first lp was among greatest folk rock pieces...and second lp - from 1966 - was one year ahead of its time. Friends liked Forever Changes, not me. But I was playing Love just last week, and discussing with Jake.

You have to wonder if the interracial Love would have been the hit the Doors were, if they'd come up with a Light My Fire [and they were all white].

My brother Mike saw Lee live about two years ago. Said he came on and tripped over the cables..made a joke about tripping..started out with My Little Red Book with tambourine.. and just wowed all... then did for #3 song...Orange was young but tight behind him... and then for the 5th number he called out Orange Skies..again...oops, band tells, him we did that already.. Things were kind of in decline after the big opener..but fun...said Mike. [ think author of this piece usta hang out with an art director I worked w...

Music's inner map revealed, with some help from geometry

The Boston Globe
Euro Musical tradition seems to address a manner in which the brain may process music, Tymoczko said. If notes make large leaps, we don't tend to hear it as a single melodic line. But if the steps are small, we can hear many lines of melody at once.

Music inner map Globe
More technical info Princeton

includes visual rep of Smoke on the Water and Chopin

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Feedback hero

He is a programmer. He absorbs powers from video games; generates a feedback field that disrupts electronics within 15 feet. A computer genius, Feedback is seeking to learn why he is progressively losing his memory. He is part of the 'reality' TV series So You Want To Be a Superhero. Reminds of our high school flick So You Want To Be a Beaver.

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Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Microsoft Live Labs: Photosynth

Microsoft was quiet, but very apparent at Siggraph, which this year took place in Boston. It's hard to believe Photosynth will work..... but if it does it may stymie Google Maps, at least on the PR front.

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Oppy at Harvard

“The Great golem we have made against our enemies is our culture, our bomb culture-its logic, its faith, its vision.” -- E.I.  Doctorow  ...