[ B l o g / / Archive]

My Pokémon conspiracy theories, let me show you them 
Remember the 1997 movie Conspiracy Theory with Mel Gibson as Jerry Fletcher? Apparently it used to have an official website. However, these days http://conspiracytheory.warnerbros.com/ seems to lead you to something very different.

Is this some kind of hidden message? Religious authorities in Saudi Arabia, always interested in well-done nutty conspiracy theories, seem to have been in the know for quite some time now: In 2001, they issued a fatwa against a certain Japanese pop culture phenomenon, as it "possessed the minds of Saudi children, promoted Zionism and involved gambling which is banned in Islam". Zionism? Pika! Pika! Pikachu!

Not the Golden One 

monochrom: "Applicant Fisch" 
monochrom content info
Our brand-new short film. Thomas Fisch applies for a new job. (With Andreas Stoiber and Adam W Flynn.)

Link (to file download and YouTube link)

Four Million Iraqis on the Run 
Two thousand Iraqis are fleeing their homes every day. It is the greatest mass exodus of people ever in the Middle East and dwarfs anything seen in Europe since the Second World War. Four million people, one in seven Iraqis, have run away, because if they do not they will be killed. Two million have left Iraq, mainly for Syria and Jordan, and the same number have fled within the country.

Yet, while the US and Britain express sympathy for the plight of refugees in Africa, they are ignoring - or playing down- a far greater tragedy which is largely of their own making.

The US and Britain may not want to dwell on the disasters that have befallen Iraq during their occupation but the shanty towns crammed with refugees springing up in Iraq and neighbouring countries are becoming impossible to ignore.

Why We May Feel Guilty 
Guilt plays a vital role in the regulation of social behavior. That worried feeling in our gut often serves as the impetus for our stab at redemption. However, psychologists have trouble agreeing on the function of this complex emotion.

The Coopting Of ComicCon 
In a few short years, the annual convention known as ComicCon has gone from an obscure (if popular) gathering point for sci-fi nerds to one of Hollywood's most important annual events. In fact, ComicCon veterans have well noted "an expanding international presence, a growing tendency of movie news to drown out that of the comics industry and an increasing social frenzy."

Kurt Vonnegut meets an Internet meme 

Index on Censorship 
Index on Censorship was founded in 1972 by a dedicated team of writers, journalists and artists inspired by the British poet Stephen Spender to take to the page in defence of the basic human right of free expression. Since then Index on Censorship has published an extraordinary range of opinion, analysis, comment and reportage from all corners of the world. Today it is one of the world's leading repositories of original, challenging, controversial and intelligent writing on free expression issues. Index on Censorship continues to log free expression abuses in scores of countries world wide in its Index Index section. reported on censorship issues from all over the world and has added to the debates on those issues.

Eco-junk: Green consumerism will not save the biosphere 
By George Monbiot.
Dozens of new books appear to provide an answer: we can save the world by embracing "better, greener lifestyles". Last week, for example, the Guardian published an extract of the new book by Sheherazade Goldsmith, who is married to the very rich environmentalist Zac, in which she teaches us "to live within nature's limits". It's easy: just make your own bread, butter, cheese, jam, chutneys and pickles, keep a milking cow, a few pigs, goats, geese, ducks, chickens, beehives, gardens and orchards. Well, what are you waiting for?

Her book also contains plenty of useful advice, and she comes across as modest, sincere and well-informed. But of lobbying for political change, there is not a word: you can save the planet in your own kitchen - if you have endless time and plenty of land. When I was reading it on the train, another passenger asked me if he could take a look. He flicked through it for a moment then summed up the problem in seven words. "This is for people who don't work."

Mobius Strip: 'Endless Ribbon' Mystery Solved 
Dr Eugene Starostin and Dr Gert van der Heijden recently published the solution to a 75-year-old mystery.


Urban Light Hacking 
monochrom content info
We are helping some cool guys to organize the first Viennese laser tagging action, tomorrow evening, 11 PM @ Museumsquartier Vienna. Join us!

monochrom's Taugshow #12 @ Chaos Communication Camp 
monochrom content info
Our 12th episode of Taugshow will be recorded at the 2007 Chaos Communication Camp in Finowfurt/Germany, August 10.
Our guest will be b9punk (on pirates and radios) and Rich Gibson (on maps and realities). As a monochrom regular, Jake Appelbaum will talk about Flickr, Yahoo!, unintended consequences of censorship, and publishing on the net as an artist. The monochrom Allstar Band will provide you with songs... Phillip Stearns will do visuals...and and and...

More info about Taugshow #12

Mastodon DNA sequenced 
Ancient tooth reveals elephants' family tree.


A photographic slide show of images captured using Google Maps' Street View.


OMG! Spoiler! 

Make Blog and Boing Boing feature Dorkbot Vienna #3 

Martial Law: Working for the Clampdown 
By James Bovard.
How many pipe bombs might it take to end U.S. democracy? Far fewer than it would have taken a year ago. The Defense Authorization Act of 2006, passed on September 30, empowers President George W. Bush to impose martial law in the event of a terrorist "incident" or if he or other federal officials perceive a shortfall of "public order" or even in response to antiwar protests that get unruly as a result of government provocations.


(Click to enlarge.)

Link (thanx, Ami Sun!)

Feel the difference 

Send them to war, afterwards give them a drug 
Of course.
Researchers from MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory have uncovered a molecular mechanism that governs the formation of fears stemming from traumatic events. The work could lead to the first drug to treat the millions of adults who suffer each year from persistent, debilitating fears - including hundreds of soldiers returning from conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Final Meme 

Hacking Game Machines / Video online 
monochrom content info

Dorkbot Vienna #3 (hosted by J. Grenzfurthner/monochrom)

H a c k i n g  G a m e  M a c h i n e s

with Martin Pichlmair and friends.

June 23, 2007 @ Vienna's Metalab

Games are a defining medium of our time. The majority of them is produced by multinational corporations, designed to appeal to the mass audience, locked on drm-protected and region-coded data media, and sold, shrink-wrapped in plastic. yet resourceful hackers and artists are working on the liberation of this medium. serious games, homebrew games, and game art are results of their great efforts. Martin Pichlmair and his guests will present a number of game machine hacks - from a modified pinball machine dating back to the 70s to musical instruments running on the nintendo ds.

Let's crack open the game machine a bit further.

Link (Video download)

Blueprint for a Green Laptop 
How to make one of our most ubiquitous gadgets--every part of it--environmentally sound.


What's So Friggin' Funny? 
What's the relation between punch lines and laughter? Less that you might think. Laughter is (simply) how we connect.

Pinewood Studios At 70 
Britain's historic Pinewood Movie Studios turned 70 this summer.

Geoff's Homemade Air Conditioner 
How to survive the heat with a homemade air conditioner.

Robots That Walk on Water 
In another case of nature-inspired engineering, scientists create robots that take a walk on the wet side.


Takfirism: a messianic ideology 
By Syed Saleem Shahzad.
Takfirism is a centuries-old belief that suddenly revived among Islamic militants in Egypt after the Israeli victory in 1967. It claims that the Muslim ummah (the community of believers) has been weakened by deviation in the practice of Islam. Takfirism classifies all non-practising Muslims as kafirs (infidels) and calls upon its adherents to abandon existing Muslim societies, settle in isolated communities and fight all Muslim infidels.

Small isolated groups of Takfirist militants survived throughout the Arab world in the 1970s. They regrouped alongside the mujahideen in Afghanistan in the 1980s, during the war of resistance against Soviet forces. The Egyptian Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Uzbek leader Tahir Yuldash and Sheikh Essa, who were later the top leadership of al-Qaida, were among the fiercest proponents of Takfirism in these years. After the US invasion it flourished in Iraq, where the al-Qaida leader Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, killed in June 2006, was a leading exponent.

After 2003 Takfirism gained support among al-Qaida's middle leadership and the rank and file. These ideologues were no longer defined by their hatred of the US military machine. Takfirism encompassed the belief that infidels within Muslim societies gave strength to the enemy and were a danger to be eliminated. Leaders of infidel Muslim societies were prime candidates for elimination before those who had been led astray from Islam could be brought back into the fold. The Takfirists were enemies of all non-practising Muslims. The difficult, isolated terrain of North and South Waziristan was their new sanctuary. [...]

The megaflood that made Britain an island 
Geological evidence supports theory of surge down the English Channel.

Ten Years Since the UPS Strike: Globalization and Inequality 
Article by Deepa Kumar.
What will it take to shine a spotlight on the vast income gap between the very rich and everyone else in the US today, in the way that Michael Moore's film Sicko exposes the injustices of privatized health care? Ten years ago, on August 4, 1997, when 185,000 UPS workers went out on strike, they made headline news. They forced a discussion of inequality onto the front pages of national newspapers and they tapped into the economic anxiety of the vast majority of Americans, so that the public sided with the Teamsters against UPS by a 2-to-1 margin. The Teamsters then went on to win one of the best contracts ever from UPS and they showed the power that unions have in taking on large, powerful, multinational corporations.

The Cracked Ambience: new and recommended sounds for your personal space 

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf @ Gnomes Lair 
monochrom content info
A nice guide to the world of the Indy Adventure Games. They feature Soviet Unterzoegersdorf / Sector 1.

Higher Efficiency Organic Solar Cell Created 
Using plastics to harvest the energy of the sun just got a significant boost in efficiency thanks to a discovery made at the Center for Polymers and Organic Solids at the University of California, Santa Barbara.


Terror FTP 
Reporters trawling un-indexed FTP servers have recently been ableto download large amounts of secret US military data, it has been revealed. Documents found included plans of a new military prison camp in Iraq and a fuel dump in Afghanistan - both likely to be targets for insurgents. Associated Press hacks who carried out the investigation suggested that less tech-savvy people in the US military-industrial complex thought it safe to put the files on open FTP (File Transfer Protocol) machines because they were not crawled by search-engine bots and thus could not be Googled. However, the AP scribes could get to the files in many cases by simply substituting "ftp" for "http" in their browser address bars.
Link (via Lynx, quisse-list)


Computer Viruses Are 25 Years Old 
The first computer virus wasn't much of a threat. Created by a mischievous Pittsburgh high school student, Elk Cloner annoyed unwitting Apple II users with a brief poem extolling its power to proliferate:
It will get on all your disks
It will infiltrate your chips
Yes it's Cloner!...
The year was 1982. The IBM personal computer had only been born the year before (its first virus would not crop up until 1986), the worlds of science and business had yet to adopt computer technology on a wide scale and computer users were primarily a gaggle of tech-savvy hobbyists who swapped files by floppy disk.

The Surf Also Rises: How macho movies get misread as homoerotic 
The most famous thing ever written about surfing, Tom Wolfe's essay, "The Pump House Gang," doesn't have much to do with surfing. Instead, Wolfe focuses on the hostility between adult society and surfing understood as an outsider cult and defined, more or less, by mindless adolescence. This is a strange position for Wolfe (of all people) to take, since embedded within actual surf culture is something that should be right up his alley: an elaborate, informal, borderline inscrutable code of masculine status.

Many high-quality surf spots are governed by a "pecking order," for example. And those who surf the biggest, most dangerous waves are called "hellmen" and "gladiators." So it's no surprise that—despite all the clichés about blissed-out surf-stoners—the most serious and ambitious surf movies convey a traditional, indeed heroic ethos. And it's probably no surprise that they sometimes share a peculiar fate with other films that offer idealized portraits of heroic masculinity, such as this year's 300—the tendency to have clueless film critics misread them as "homoerotic." [...]
Link (via metaphilm)

Best Curve-Fitting Ever 
From Mark Thoma, via Brad DeLong (via Boris Kamenik on Bagasch), comes a wonderful example of twisting data to fit your theories. It's a graph of corporate tax rates vs. revenue in units of GDP.

SiFeet Pussy Foot 
Well, here is the product description:
The SiFeet Pussy Foot is the ultimate fantasy sex toy for foot fetishists. This size 6, 100% silicone foot is cast in pure silicone from a real life actual, beautiful female foot. In the sole of this lovely foot is a fully functional and totally fuck-able silicone vagina.


China had more wars in cold weather 
Reduced agricultural productivity seems to trigger armed conflict.

Paper: Global Climate Change Triggered By Global Warming 
CFI's paper on global climate change, written by Stuart D. Jordan, Ph.D, offers compelling evidence from a large body of research that global climate change caused by global warming is already underway and requires our immediate attention. As the paper explains, the probability is extremely high that human generated greenhouse gases, with carbon dioxide as the major offender, are the primary cause of global warming and that this global warming will produce harmful climate change. The paper also points out, however, that much can be done now to mitigate the effects of global warming and the associated climate change. Difficulties in addressing the problem are not caused primarily by unavailable technology, but by the lack of sufficient incentives to implement the new technologies more aggressively.

"There will be linguistic conservatives who will turn their nose up at a word like 'ginormous,' " said John Morse, Merriam-Webster's president. "But it's become a part of our language. It's used by professional writers in mainstream publications. It clearly has staying power."

British troops blamed for "man-eating beasts" 
Word spread among the [Iraqi] populace that UK troops had introduced strange man-eating, bear-like beasts into the area to sow panic. But several of the creatures, caught and killed by local farmers, have been identified by experts as honey badgers.

Galaxy Zoo 
Boris Kamenik recommends Galaxy Zoo. But beware: highly addictive!

Astronomers are inviting members of the public to help them make major new discoveries by taking part in a census of one million galaxies.

Visitors to www.galaxyzoo.org will get to see stunning images of galaxies, most of which have never been viewed by human eyes before. By sorting these images into "spiral galaxies" (like our own Milky Way) or "elliptical galaxies", visitors will help astronomers to understand the structure of the universe. The new digital images were taken using the robotic Sloan Digital Sky Survey telescope in New Mexico.

What's al-Qaeda's take on the iPhone? 
So, the options are as follows: al-Qaeda is so angry about the iPhone's inflated pricetag, lack of user-changeable battery and 3G capability that it is planning something really big; or Ozzie's sidekick Ayman al-Zawahir has been stunned into reluctant admiration by Apple's audacious UI and crisp-as-a-Baghdad-winter-morning MP3 playback.

AREA is a visualization tool that allows friendly-graphical browsing of data and creation of intuitive representations. One data, a lot of points of view. Choose your own perspective.

"Udo 77" online 
monochrom content info
Finally (after a long, long time) we put a video of our musical "Udo 77" online. The show deals with the life and times of infamous Viennese society freak, industrialist and criminal Udo Proksch. Proksch is a fascinating figure in recent Austrian history. Born to a poor family he rose to become the darling of Austrian high society before landing in jail on a life sentence for sinking a ship and its crew in order to cash in on insurance of nonexistent goods. His perfectly tuned network of sponsors, friends and political functionaries could not hush up the scandal and many of his associates joined him in his fall from grace.

"Udo 77" is clearly nerd-compatible. The musical was a cooperation with the Viennese Rabenhof Theater.

[Sorry to all English speakers, it's in German language. But maybe you like the music.]

monochrom / Video Download
Blip / Embedded Video

A Misremembering of Robert Frost 

Deterministic Nonperiodic Flow (1963) 
"Deterministic Nonperiodic Flow (1963)" is a beautiful installation by Eva Schindling and Daniel J. Wilson.
A dynamic system with magnetic interaction between its parts visualizes the increasing difficulty of prediction the farther into the future we attempt to look.


monochrom #26-34 Call: First results! 
monochrom content info
Laughing Squid and Boing Boing feature our "Call for Everything"... and we received tons of interesting stuff!
Link (Laughing Squid)
Link (Boing Boing)

A binary marble adding machine 
Is this binary adding machine a Steam Punk device? No! It's pre-Steam Punk. It's pure Timber Punk!


Globalization, Productivity, and 'Protectionism': A Response to Foreign Affairs 
By Mark Weisbrot and Dean Baker.
In "A New Deal for Globalization," (Foreign Affairs July/August 2007), Kenneth Scheve and Matthew Slaughter have made a contribution by recognizing that what they call "a protectionist drift in public policy" in the U.S. is a result of the fact that the majority of the US labor force has seen little (in recent decades) or no (in the last five years) income gains. They even acknowledge that "it is plausible that there is a connection" between the "skewed pattern of income growth" in the United States and globalization, something that most of the economics profession is still in denial about.

Harry Potter & The Myth Of The Literate Children 
"Of all the magical powers wielded by Harry Potter, perhaps none has cast a stronger spell than his supposed ability to transform the reading habits of young people... [But] the truth about Harry Potter and reading is not quite so straightforward a success story. Indeed, as the series draws to a much-lamented close, federal statistics show that the percentage of youngsters who read for fun continues to drop significantly as children get older, at almost exactly the same rate as before Harry Potter came along."

Flickr / Censorship / China 
monochrom content info
Boing Boing blogs about the case of Oiwan Lam, a well-known blogger in Hong Kong who's facing the possibility of a year in jail or a $HK 400,000 fine for having linked to an image deemed offensive by authorities. That image was shot and published by none other than our monochrom ambassador Jake Appelbaum.
Oiwan reached out to Jake for help via Flickr mail. She blames the photo-sharing site's recently implemented content rating/blocking system in part for the legal situation she now faces in Hong Kong.

Jake believes the program, as implemented, amounts to censorship, and helps governments which are already unfriendly to online free speech limit that speech more efficiently.

monochrom #26-34: Call For Everything 
monochrom content info
We are looking for articles, essays, graphics, cartoons, cut-up stuff for the next multi-issue of our non-commercial yearbook series "monochrom". We'll publish the entire book in English, a fact that might be highly interesting for many monolingual Angloamerican folks.

There is no maximum or minimum length for articles or essays. There is no general topic whatsoever. You write about things you find interesting. Or boring. Your text could be about radical constructivism. Or fish and chips. Or hacking your toilet. Or blowing up Mercury. Or HTML. Or Mormon theology and Battlestar Galactica. You'll find your topic!

A big section of the publication will be dedicated to reviews. And we review everything. Want to review a certain medieval war? Or arctic sea protozoans? Laws of nature? Climate zones? Ways to die? Lava streams? Spam headers? Demonstrations? Sumerian gods? Neon feelings? A crisis? The different types of snow in Stephen King novels? Book shelves in porn movies? Kosher hot dogs? Axiology? Sperm? Johann Sebastian Bach? German officers in American movies who shout "Schweinerei"? Russian oil pumps? Calvinistic prayers? Trash cans in Kansas and/or Lithuania? Anal sex? The Northwest as an ontological entity? Perfect! Go on!

So, please send your suggestions or finished works to mono AT monochrom.at

Deadline is September 15, 2007.
Preferred format for text files: RTF files. Preferred format for graphics: Greyscale JPEGs, maximum quality, 300 dpi.
Please don't forget to mention your name and snailmail address.

We hope we'll be able to publish monochrom #26-34 in spring 2008.


Hello Cthulhu! 
Tina Lorenz created a great DIY baby romper suit to shock fellow mothers. No sweet cat, but inexpressible Old One.


Love Titanic, But in a Rush? 
Metaphilm recommends an ultra-condensed version of Titanic. Film compression for your busy life.

The 'black ops' of America 
The US military spends $30 billion annually on classified military programmes, ranging from spy satellites to 'extraordinary rendition'. These secret 'black operations' leave a mark on our everyday landscapes and legible traces in public data. Trevor Paglen is an artist and experimental geographer working to create visual representations of these secret worlds. He spoke to Oscar Reyes.

Al-Qaida: the unwanted guests 
As the arc of chaos grows from Afghanistan to Somalia by way of the Middle East, the region's states are growing weaker and their armed groups gaining in power. But in this battle for competing visions between the US and al-Qaida, the Sunni resistance is now opposing al-Qaida in Iraq, as are the Taliban in Afghanistan.

NASA's Stardust And Deep Impact Will Observe More Comets And Extrasolar Planets 
Two NASA spacecraft now have new assignments after successfully completing their missions. The duo will make new observations of comets and characterize extrasolar planets. Stardust and Deep Impact will use their flight-proven hardware to perform new, previously unplanned, investigations.


monochrom @ ACC Weimar 
monochrom content info

July 9, 2007; 9 PM @ ACC Weimar, Weimar, Germany.

Earth Day? They aren't the world! 
Today is... well... Earth Day. And I bet they burn a lot of CO2.

That's why I want to present you with Culturcide's "They aren't the world", a great deconstruction of the ultimate charity anthem. In 1987 a group of artists from Houston/Texas released a record called Tacky Souvenirs of Pre-Revolutionary America. And it's full of extremely pointed criticisms of the music industry.
They aren't the world
They aren't the children
They're just fossils and bureaucrats and rock 'n' roll has-beens...

Link / MP3

Sokushinbutsu: Self mummification 
Talk about an extreme body modification!

Chronically Sleep Deprived? You Can't Make Up For Lost Sleep 
We've all experienced that occasional all-too-short night of sleep -- staying out too late at a party on a weeknight, studying into the wee hours for a morning exam or being kept up during the night with a sick child. Our bodies try to catch up by making us sleep more and/or more deeply the following night.

Does what happens in the Facebook stay in the Facebook? 
Interesting Flash animation on the Facebook privacy and a slightly wacky conspiracy theory around the funding for the company.

The day after tomorrow / Making progress on climate change 
By Mark Hoffman.
In November 2006 over six thousand officials from 180 countries, along with representatives from international business and labour movements, NGOs and faith groups, schoolchildren and a host of other observers, gathered in Kenya for two weeks of discussion. They were there to attend the Twelfth Annual Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Second Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol. Chauffeured from the airport, through the vast slums that constitute much of the country's urban landscape, and sequestered in Nairobi's tree-lined UN compound, they came, ostensibly, to agree current and future actions to meet the overall objective of the convention: to stabilize greenhouse gas emissions and prevent dangerous climate change. That is, they met apparently to avoid catastrophe.

This catastrophe has several names – salinity valves, carbon pumps, methane outbursts, glacial retreats, deep water formation – together signifying the collapse of the material basis for life itself. The breakthrough that climate observers, NGOs and at least some delegates wanted to see most is agreement on an international treaty to take over from the Kyoto Protocol in 2012. The European Union, in particular, has called for warming not to rise more than two degrees above preindustrial levels, representing about 400–450 parts per million (ppm) of greenhouse gases to non-greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. If this can be done then everybody can apparently rest easy: a few extra hurricanes, a couple of submerged islands, some odd weather events, but overall an environment the rich can get richer in, the poor supposedly become less poor. After hours of discussion, silent and exhausted, rows of impassive middle-aged men and women with coffee-stained grey hands clapped the final smack of the gavel that sounded the end of the conference. And achieved an agreement to carry on talking.

The political process to agree what needs to be done is frozen. Such paralysis has a particular poignancy, for at stake in this process – the earth's climate – is what should, by definition, be common to the totality of any imagined global community. Indeed, for some, it is this aspect of climate change that has been seen to offer a certain perverse form of political hope, as a phenomenon that, observable and empirical as it is, also possesses some inherently transcendental force of appeal. Certainly, the ultimate horizon of the earth as condition of possibility for human existence itself (at least for the present) takes the visible threat of climate change into a different realm than just another example of the many in history that constitute the so-called 'tragedy of the commons'. If Kant once thought that the global form of the earth itself offered hope for 'perpetual peace', today, from the perspective of current planetary transformations in its ecology, the earth appears as something like an apocalyptic pure sum. Emissions circulate equally throughout the system. With global warming it precisely makes no difference where greenhouse gases are emitted. [...]

Gay Monsters 
If homosexual monsters turn you on, you'll find this page a treat.


Rat-brained robot thinks like the real thing 
A robot controlled by a simulated rat brain has proved itself to be a remarkable mimic of rodent behaviour in classic animal experiments.

The Catholic roots of American liberalism? 
In Search of the Common Good. By Lew Daly.
When the Republican Party won control of both houses of Congress in 2002, the view that "values matter," once marginal in Democratic circles, suddenly became the talk of the town. To be sure, some analysts continued to argue that the Democrats had plenty of good policy ideas and simply required a better campaign strategy and effective policymaking once in office. But a new conversation had started, beginning from the premise that Democratic success depended on reclaiming the moral high ground.

John Kerry's defeat in 2004, assumed by many to be the product of perceived Democratic deficiencies in "moral values," gave this conversation renewed energy. And while some in the "new values" camp pointed to the importance of a specifically religious morality, others urged the Democrats to focus on a secular but morally demanding vision of the common good. In spring 2006 Michael Tomasky argued in The American Prospect that the Democratic Party should restore the idea of the "common good" to its proper place at the core of the party's political identity. This argument provoked a widespread debate, and the term is now increasingly visible in the liberal apparatus of bloggers, think tanks, and even consulting groups.

The idea of the common good is the right place to start, but it is not well understood. More often than not it is used as a decorative term, a sound bite. Consider even Tomasky's description: the liberalism of the Democratic Party, brought to power by Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and upheld for three decades thereafter, "was built around the idea—the philosophical principle—that citizens should be called upon to look beyond their own self-interest and work for a greater common interest." As a definition of the common-good tradition, this is uncontroversial if somewhat redundant. Probing further, however, he describes the common good as the "moral basis of liberal governance—not justice, not equality, not rights, not diversity, not government, and not even prosperity or opportunity." The contrast he ultimately makes here, separating the common good from concepts of justice, equality, and rights, is jarring, and the argument loses its bearing. In what seems a throwaway line, it becomes clear why. The common good, he claims, is a matter of "faith" rather than ideology—but "not religious faith." It's about "faith in America and its potential to do good." [...]

BBC Releases "Revolutionary" Player 
The BBC says this is the biggest thing to hit TV since color. "After installing the iPlayer on a PC, viewers will be able to download almost any programme from the previous seven days at will and store it on the computer for up to 30 days, after which it will be automatically deleted."

Gyros Signs of Chicago 
What it says: Gyros Signs of Chicago.

How to cook hot dogs... with electricity! 

Irark @ Miden Festival, Greece 
monochrom content info
Our short film "Irark" will be shown at the Miden Festival, Kalamata, Greece.
5th to 7th of July 2007.


Ratatouille: Walt Disney's life tale? 
A great interpretation by Jeffrey Overstreet.
Attention, parents, kids, anybody who appreciates good movies and great food! Ratatouille is a feast so fantastic you'll go running back for seconds. And if you pay close attention, you'll also see that it's a film that tells two great stories at the same time.

The first story is what you'll see on the big screen. And the second—at least the way I see it—is a more subtle, almost allegorical re-telling of what really happened to one of the 20th century's most-loved and enduring pop culture icons .... Walt Disney himself.

Once upon a time, there was an adventurous French chef named Auguste Gusteau (think Walt Disney) whose Paris kitchen (think Disney studios) was famous for awe-inspiring cuisine (Disney's classic animated features, like Pinocchio).

Gusteau knew his strengths and focused on them, serving up heaping plates of excellence to the delight of the customers at his self-titled restaurant. Gusteau's and its namesake became legendary worldwide.

But then, for one reason or another, the quality of his work began to falter. He died, and his successors (think .... Michael Eisner?) sold out, stamping the Gusteau (Disney) name on all manner of mediocrity. The master's face and name eventually flew like a banner over mediocre microwave meals (frivolous features like Pocahontas, and disposable straight-to-video sequels to Disney classics). And eventually his name represented fare that seemed completely unrelated to his legacy (The Muppets?).

And while the masses seemed content to choke down anything contained in a Gusteau can (or released on a Disney label), it looked like Gusteau's name would become synonymous with trash. [...]
Link (via metaphilm)

Generosity among rats 
A helping paw! Rats that benefit from the charity of others are more likely to help strangers get a free meal, researchers have found.

John Smeaton 
Anyone who watched CNN recently saw a fantastic eye-witness at Glasgow Airport. He told the story like it was, in Glaswegian, and perhaps only 9 % of viewers understood what he was saying. He also kicked the shit out one of the attackers. He's a true hero of our times, and someone made a website for him, asking members of the public to donate a pint of lager for him. They've already got 600 of them!

An internet-meme, perhaps, but Smeato deserves it. If you haven't seen the footage, watch it, it's all on the site.


All frequencies hailing!! 

"c-base space station", which is a vital part of Berlin's governmentally unfunded subculture, is under pressing threat of closure. Until the 08/30/07 they have to come up with several months' worth of outstanding rent, otherwise they will be evicted and the space station will have to close.

If that happens an important and fertile ground for ideas and projects (e.g. berlin's free wavelan networks "freifunk.net" and the wikipedia regulars' table ), event location (e.g. exhibitions, concerts, open stage sessions) and space for open knowledge transfer and last but not least a home for creatives, utopians and space cadets will dissapear from berlin's cultural landscape.

YOU can help to avoid this, by getting engaged and involved: drop by at the facilities in Rungestrasse, Berlin,Germany and participate, become a member or just go online and hit the donation button on their website http://www.c-base.org.

be future compatible - join the space station rescue team!!

The International Law Enforcement Cybercrime Award (I.L.E.C.A.) 
Scary award with scary logo.
The International Law Enforcement Cybercrime Award (I.L.E.C.A.)
Sponsored Motorola Information Protection Services, USA

The Society For The Policing Of Cyberspace (POLCYB) and Motorola Information Protection Services are pleased to announce The International Law Enforcement Cybercrime Award (I.L.E.C.A.) Call For Entries.

Created jointly by POLCYB and Motorola Information Protection Services, the International Law Enforcement Cybercrime Award recognizes innovation and best practices pertaining to prevention, detection, and/or response to cybercrimes. This is your chance to spotlight your law enforcement agency for fighting cybercrime by using proactive and successful inter-agency collaboration with community partners.

The International Law Enforcement Cybercrime Award program honours achievements in one or more of the following goals:

* Prevention of Cybercrime
* Detection of Cybercrime
* Response to Cybercrime


Upside down. 
.ʇǝɯɐ ʇıs ɹo1op ɯnsdı ɯǝɹo1 ʇsǝ snʇɔuɐs ɐʇɐɯıʞɐʇ ɐǝs ou 'uǝɹbɹǝqnb psɐʞ ɐʇı1ɔ ʇǝʇs .ɯnqǝɹ ɐǝ ʇǝ sǝɹo1op onp oʇsnظ ʇǝ ɯɐsnɔɔɐ ʇǝ soǝ oɹǝʌ ʇɐ .ɐnʇdn1oʌ ɯɐıp pǝs 'ʇɐɹǝ ɯɐʎnbı1ɐ ɐubɐɯ ǝɹo1op ʇǝ ǝɹoqɐ1 ʇn ʇunpıʌuı ɹodɯǝʇ poɯɹıǝ ʎɯnuou ɯɐıp pǝs 'ɹʇı1ǝ buıɔsdıpɐs ɹnʇǝʇǝsuoɔ 'ʇǝɯɐ ʇıs ɹo1op ɯnsdı ɯǝɹo1

Georg Paul Thomann's funeral 
monochrom content info
We put Georg Paul Thomann's funeral online on blip.tv...

Want to know more about Georg Paul Thomann?
Read the project summary.
And his biography.

The clearest ocean waters on Earth 
As clear as the clearest lakes on the planet, salty as ocean waters, and roughly the size of the Mediterranean – this, say researchers, is the clearest and most lifeless patch of ocean in the world. And it is in the middle of the Pacific.

The wand is mightier than the pen 
What gives Harry Potter such sales magic? And just how good are the books? Sam Leith investigates.
Rowling has neither the depth of a Pullman, nor the comic exuberance of a Roald Dahl, nor the mythological gravity of a C S Lewis. Not by a long chalk. But - as the astonishing success of her books shows - she has something, and she has it in spades. We can call it, for want of a better word, magic.

Open a record store! 
The internet is hurting CD sales. Can record shops fight back?
A revival in vinyl sales suggests that there may be a future for music sold as a physical arte-fact. Six times more 7-inch singles were sold in 2006 than in 2001, and with their current single, Icky Thump, the White Stripes have achieved higher weekly sales of 7-inches than any band for 20 years.

Gray's vs. Grey's 
There's a new sport on the Internet: competing to come up with the best examples of how Wikipedia, the Web's home-grown reference source, is skewed towards pop-culture topics. For instance, the West Wing of the White House merits a 1,100-word entry on Wikipedia, while "The West Wing," the Aaron Sorkin TV drama, has an 6,800-word write-up.

Beavis and Butthead in London jihad 
Police and securocrats know that there aren't enough real terrorists in the world, which is why they have to keep manufacturing them. [...] Today we have news from London, where a "big [explosive] device" was discovered inside a parked car near Piccadilly Circus. The device consisted of petrol, propane gas cylinders, and nails. The car containing it had been abandoned after its driver was observed piloting it erratically, crashing it, then running off, like a true professional. Ambulance workers called to assist nearby noticed what they initially thought was smoke inside the car, but which likely was petrol vapour, and contacted police. [...] Ah, if it had detonated. Yes, it could have been a real horror. Only, the device could not have detonated. Not under any circumstances. You see, the terrorist wannabe clown who built it left out a crucial element: an oxidiser.
Link (via Lynx, quisse-list)

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monochrom is an art-technology-philosophy group having its seat in Vienna and Zeta Draconis. monochrom is an unpeculiar mixture of proto-aesthetic fringe work, pop attitude, subcultural science, context hacking and political activism. Our mission is conducted everywhere, but first and foremost in culture-archeological digs into the seats (and pockets) of ideology and entertainment. monochrom has existed in this (and almost every other) form since 1993.

Booking monochrom:

External monochrom links:
[monochrom Wikipedia]
[monochrom Flickr]
[monochrom blip.tv]
[monochrom GV]
[monochrom Youtube]
[monochrom Facebook]
[monochrom iTunes]
[monochrom Twitter]

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf / Sector 2 / The Adventure Game

Climate Training Camp

Krach der Roboter: Hello World!

Slacking is killing the DIY industry (T-Shirt)

Carefully Selected Moments / CD, LP

Freedom is a whore of a word (T-Shirt)


International Year of Polytheism 2007

Santa Claus Vs. Christkindl: A Mobster Battle

Could It Be (Video clip)

Pot Tin God

Hacking the Spaces

Kiki and Bubu and The Shift / Short film

Kiki and Bubu and The Privilege / Short film

Kiki and Bubu and The Self / Short film

Kiki and Bubu and The Good Plan / Short film

Kiki and Bubu and The Feelings / Short film / Short film

Sculpture Mobs

Nazi Petting Zoo / Short film

The Great Firewall of China

KPMG / Short film

The BRAICIN / Short film

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf / Sector 1 / The Adventure Game

I was a copyright infringement in a previous life (T-Shirt)

Brave New Pong

Leben ist LARPen e.V.

One Minute / Short film

Firing Squad Euro2008 Intervention


A tribute to Honzo

Lessig ist lässig

I can count every star in the heavens above -- The image of computers in popular music

All Tomorrow's Condensations / Puppet show

Bye Bye / Short film


PC/DC patch

Proto-Melodic Comment Squad


The Redro Loitzl Story / Short film

Hax0rcise SCO

Law and Second Order (T-Shirt)

They really kicked you out of the Situationist International?

Death Special: Falco

Applicant Fisch / Short film

When I was asked to write about new economy

Taugshow #6

Taugshow #7

Taugshow #9

Taugshow #10

Taugshow #11

Taugshow #14

Taugshow #15

Campfire at Will

Arse Elektronika 2007, 2008, 2009 etc.

The Void's Foaming Ebb / Short film

Remoting Future

When you / Short film


Free Bariumnitrate

Toyps / Typing Errors

ARAD-II Miami Beach Crisis

The Charcoal Burner / Short film

Digital Culture In Brazil


Nation of Zombia

Lonely Planet Guide action

CSI Oven Cloth

Dept. of Applied Office Arts

Farewell to Overhead

Google Buttplug

Fieldrecording in Sankt Wechselberg / Short film

Dark Dune Spots

Campaign For The Abolition Of Personal Pronouns


Space Tourism

In the Head of the Gardener

Entertainment (Unterhaltung) / Short film

Cthulhu Goatse

Nicholas Negroponte Memorial Cable

Coke Light Art Edition 06

Experience the Experience! (West Coast USA/Canada Tour 2005)

April 23

Overhead Cumshot

Irark / Short film


Instant Blitz Copy Fight

A Patriotic Fireman

A Micro Graphic Novel Project

Noise and Talk

The Exhilarator


SUZOeG Training / Short film

The Flower Currency


A Holiday in Soviet Unterzoegersdorf

How does the Internet work?

Paraflows 2006 and up

Special Forces

Coca Cola

About Work

Turing Train Terminal

Me / Short Film

Massive Multiplayer Thumb-Wrestling Network


Some Code To Die For

The Year Wrap-up

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf Metroblogging

Project Mendel

Display, Retry, Fail

Manifesto of Ignorantism


Towers of Hanoi



Every Five Seconds an Inkjet Printer Dies Somewhere




We know apocalypses

452 x 157 cm² global durability

A Good Haul

Blattoptera / Art for Cockroaches

Minus 24x

Gladiator / Short Film


An attempt to emulate an attempt

Paschal Duct-Taping

Laptop Crochetication


Somewhere in the 1930s

Soul Sale

The Department for Criticism against Globalisation

Dot Smoke

Georg Paul Thomann

Nurgel Staring

War On

Let's network it out


Mackerel Fiddlers


Disney vs. Chrusov / Short film

Bulk Mail

Easter Celebrations

Mouse Over Matter

Condolence for a Crab

Force Sting

Turning Threshold Countries Into Plows


A Noise

A. C. A.

Hopping Overland

Achy Breaky Heart Campaign

Hermeneutic Imperative III

Holy Water / Franchise

Roböxotica // Festival for Cocktail-Robotics


Engine Hood Cookies


The Watch

Creative Industry 2003

This World

Cracked Foundation For The Fine Arts

Sometimes I feel

Fit with INRI

Growing Money

Catapulting Wireless Devices

Buried Alive

Illegal Space Race

Magnetism Party

Brick of Coke

1 Baud

Scrota Contra Vota

Direct Intervention Engine

Oh my God, they use a history which repeats itself! (T-Shirt)


Dorkbot Vienna