Australian Ocean photographer, Tim Samuel, captured these astonishing photos of a fish swallowed whole by a jellyfish near Byron Bay, New South Wales. The fish is possibly a juvenile trevally, which are known to use jellyfish stingers as protection. On his Instagram account Tim says, “He was trapped in there but controlled where the Jellyfish was moving.” The photographer had initially considered trying to set the fish free, but ultimately determined “to let nature take its course.”
John Oliver incorporated the Central Asset Recovery Professionals (CARP, named for the bottom-feeders) debt collection firm for $50 and purchased $60,000 in medical debt. He then promptly forgave the debt allowing 9,000 people to walk away from nearly $15 Million in zombie medical debt. Debt collection is a grimy and under-regulated business and John Oliver does a great job of lambasting their predatory practices.
My wife introduced me to The Avalanches when we first started dating – that was over 12 years ago. At that time, the groups first and only ablum, “Since I Left You“, was already 4 years old. And what a brilliant album it was. It was made entirely through a unique blending of an estimated 3,500 samples (Rumor has it that he song “Frontier Psychiatry” has something like 600 samples on it).
Well, 16 years since their original release, the Avalanches have announced they were finally going to be releasing (scheduled for July 8th) a full-length sophomore effort called “Wildflower”. The first single “Frankie Sinatra” features Danny Brown and MF Doom on it.
If the above single isn’t enough to tide you over here is a link huge list of downloadable Avalanches related mixtapes, live sets, and DJ sets
Right on the heals of this large hip hop mixtape dump comes an enlightening Vox video that explores the advancing complexity of rap lyrics and rhyme construction. Employing the research of Martin Connor and some helpful visual aids, the video explores how the best artists manipulate words, rhymes, beats, and motifs in continually sophisticated ways.
Here is a playlist highlighting songs used in the video and others that are choice examples of how outstanding rhyming in rap can be.
Jason Scott has uploaded thousands and thousands of hip-hop mixtapes to the Internet Archive (almost 6,000 to date). He says he has access to over 17,000 tapes and somewhere close to that number might end up on the Archive over the next few months. There is obviously a ton of hip-hop culture to dig through here. Jason notes:
There’s a lot coded into the covers of these mixtapes (not to even mention the stuff coded into the lyrics themselves) – there’s stressing of riches, drug use, sexual drive, and oppression. I’m personally fascinated at the amount of reference to codeine and the purple color of “Purple Drank”, which, if you’ve missed that subject matter up to now… good for you.
If you’re new to the world of hip-hop mixtapes (as I am) the links below should get your discovery started
- A (Not at all Definitive) History of Hip Hop Mixtapes
- The History of Mixtapes
- The Real Difference Between a Mixtape and an Album
This is a great time to point out that the Internet Archive is an invaluable resource. In these times of link rot and the haphazard closing of essential web services (we miss you Google Reader) the Internet Archive is, well, archiving the web. The Wayback Machine now indexes over 435 billion webpages going back nearly 20 years.
The end goal here, like all the things I do in this realm, is simple: Providing free access to huge amounts of culture, so people can reference, contextualize, enjoy and delight over material in an easy-to-reach, linkable, usable manner. Apparently it’s already taken off, but here you go too.
Pete Warden has an informative write up about the computing differences between the CPU and the GPU for the layman. It’s a simplified yet illuminating description. Go learn something!
Graphics Processing Units were created to draw images, text, and geometry onto the screen. This means they’re designed very differently than the CPUs that run applications. CPUs need to be good at following very complex recipes of instructions so they can deal with all sorts of user inputs and switch between tasks rapidly. GPUs are much more specialized. They only need to do a limited range of things, but each job they’re given can involve touching millions of memory locations in one go.
Jason Shulman has created a series of photographs by pointing a large format camera at a large monitor for the duration of a movie, effectively flattening down an entire film into a single image. The photographs end up looking like impressionist paintings with only small details and color schemes recognizable from the original work. I think they’re beautiful.
This is a clip from the film Samsara, directed by Ron Fricke (also the director of Baraka and the director of photography for Koyaanisqatsi) packs a real punch, without saying a word. If you are not too squeamish, stick to the end, the last scene is the kicker. This is not comfortable or pleasant viewing. It is dystopian and confronting and robotic. Both tragic and beautiful. And definitely worth a watch.
Don’t let this stop you from watching the entire film though.
Samsara is a Sanskrit word that means “the ever turning wheel of life” and is the point of departure for the filmmakers as they search for the elusive current of interconnection that runs through our lives. Filmed over a period of almost five years and in twenty-five countries, Samsara transports us to sacred grounds, disaster zones, industrial sites, and natural wonders. By dispensing with dialogue and descriptive text, Samsara subverts our expectations of a traditional documentary, instead encouraging our own inner interpretations inspired by images and music that infuses the ancient with the modern.