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Messages - mgriffin

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2921
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now reading
« on: December 07, 2007, 01:48:57 PM »
My understanding is that LeGuin wrote the original Earthsea trilogy right around the same time, then much later wrote another novel in the series, and then another.  At some point there was a collection of short stories set in the Earthsea world, with less of a direct connection to the story of the novels.

And yes, I read her complaints about the Sci-Fi Channel adaptation of the first book.  Sounds like the producers weren't exactly acting in good faith.

2922
Wow, that's a lot of "highly" -- I'm looking forward to hearing these.

2923
Everything and Nothing / Re: Old forum dead and gone ?
« on: December 07, 2007, 12:28:29 PM »
Hi Pete

The old Forum membership list is definitely dead.  There may be some way of retrieving the old posts or topics, but I doubt it more and more, and I have to admit to feeling a sort of relief, like a clean, fresh start.  I'll probably keep investigating ways of importing some of the old content, but it's probably a dead end.

Everyone should feel free to re-start their favorite topics, as I've done in a few cases.  I do have a list of topics from the old Forum, about 1,600 of them, and I'll probably cull out the obviously irrelevant or redundant ones, and post a list of some of the rest that people can go through and say "Oh yeah, let' talk about that again" or else "Hmmm, better to let that one be forgotten."

2924
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now reading
« on: December 07, 2007, 12:14:16 PM »
I'd add, furthering the subject of "college lit majors who are too cool to read sci-fi," that I recall it was "cool" for lit majors to read stuff like Philip K. Dick, Stanislav Lem, J.G. Ballard, and Anthony Burgess, while turning up our noses at Heinlein, Asimov and the like.

Oh, and also... Ursula LeGuin lives right up on Thurman or Upshur in NW Portland, right by where Lena and I run & ride our bikes sometimes.

2925
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 07, 2007, 12:09:41 PM »
This Forum includes an optional feature called "Karma" which allows users (at least somewhat established users, who have registered and posted a few times) to give positive or negative karma points to users who contribute something positive or negative to the Forum.

So...

Someone who creates an interesting topic, or who posts an insightful post, or a good CD review, might receive positive karma. 

Someone who breaks a Forum rule, or posts something inappropriate, or even who posts a "waste of space" comment, might receive negative karma.

I've turned on the karma option so we can experiment with it a bit.  If it's used frivolously or spitefully, I'll just disable it, but if it can be used for a sort of "peer review" to encourage people to contribute, and discourage people from acting like fools, then we'll keep it.

The karma points show up under your name & avatar, each time you post.

2926
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 07, 2007, 11:55:20 AM »
I have to say its nice to  have the delete option. I just did a double post and the delete option came in handy. Too bad most forums don't have this I see double posts just about everywhere.

Oh, and the default colors are fine for me, beats the red on black any day, plus I can actually read the threads now.  ;D

Red on black actually wasn't the default template on the old Forum... you actually ended up using an alternate template somehow!  The default for the old one was white and light blue, similar to the default on here.

I'm actually using the "BacknBlack" template here, which is black and gray with white text.  I'll probably take the best traits of some of the lighter and darker templates, and create a couple of new templates like "HypnosForumLight" and "HypnosForumDark" and get rid of all the other ones...eventually.

2927
Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Sexy Ambient
« on: December 07, 2007, 11:24:54 AM »
Bill, it sounds like you need help figuring out the true, indisputable definition of what's sexy.  The rest of us are in agreement about this, so here you go:


2928
Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Sexy Ambient
« on: December 07, 2007, 10:43:12 AM »
Hmmm.  Well, the Pink Floyd considered best for the bedroom (Meddle) is also the most ambient Pink Floyd album. 

As for me, I always say, Sexytime is Billy Idol time!

OK, more seriously now...

I remember at the first live performance by Viridian Sun, a girl in the audience came up to the stage afterward, when we  were  taking down our equipment, and said "I just wanted to tell you, your album is SOOO great to make love to."  Wow.

I guess I would say, without giving away too much of The Griffin Technique, that more dynamic albums with more variety and change, would be more suitable for this sort of thing, than the more minimal or drony stuff.  But everything can have its place!

2929
Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Now reading
« on: December 07, 2007, 10:39:14 AM »
In my teens and early twenties, I was a big sci-fi and fantasy reader.  I sort of got away from that stuff in college, and got into the "I'm a serious lit major and I don't read that stuff" mindset for a while... but now (triggered by the Lord of the Rings films, I think) I've been enjoying getting back into some of the books I loved when I was younger.

One set of books I bought in the late 70s but never got around to reading, is Ursula LeGuin's "Earthsea" series, starting with "A Wizard of Earthsea."  This last week I've been listening to an unabridged audiobook of "A Wizard of Earthsea" and aside from the annoying presence of Harlan Ellison as the "voice" of this audiobook, I really enjoyed the story and it made me want to explore the rest of the series.

These slim, simple books have more in common with the minimal and poetic fable-like quality of "The Little Prince" than with more epic fantasy series like "The Lord of the Rings." The story is basically about a young boy who discovers he has basic magical powers, and he is befriended by a sort of magical mentor who sees to it that he's enrolled in a school for magicians.  Apparently, J.K. Rowling had read this book... but there is no real similarity to the "Harry Potter" series.  This is more quiet and moody, somber and earthy.  In this book, words have great importance, in particular names.  Knowing the name of an object, its "true" name and not just the name that everyone calls it, has great significance.

This is the first time I've listened to an audiobook and been moved to immediately get out the printed book and actually read it.  Harlan Ellison so overdid it with the overdramatic and silly voices for various characters, that I found myself cringing at times.  Sometimes, an audiobook can be just as enjoyable as reading, but not this time.


2930
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 06, 2007, 08:00:46 PM »
Anyone having any access problems at all?  It's worked fine all day, and I just experienced a few glitches, and received an email from someone who said they tried to sign up, and couldn't connect.  Now it seems completely fine again.

2931
Everything and Nothing / Re: Now watching
« on: December 06, 2007, 07:57:32 PM »
while i love both of those movies, griff, a band of brothers might be the best war "movie" i have ever seen. it is a tad long (it is an hbo series - 9 episodes of about an hour each) but it is based on fact and the action is very real. they tried to put a bit too much comic relief in 'tld' and some of 'abtf' was just unbelievable.
my favorite fiction war movie is in harm's way - a bit smarmy and overly melodramatic but some great lines and cool action.

I agree Band of Brothers is great, and I recollect it being more character-driven, at least enough to possibly appeal more to a person who's not into war movies.


2932
Now Playing / Re: Currently listening, part 1
« on: December 06, 2007, 07:55:54 PM »
- Vidna Obmana: An Opera for Four Fusions Works (Act 3, Reflection on Scale). All four volumes have their merits, but I love the intentional static on this disc; I miss the pops and scratches of vinyl, and this, in addition to being interesting, sparse, well-constructed music, sounds oddly nostalgic as well.

That reminds me of when we were planning this release, and talking with Dirk (Vidna Obmana) about the glitches and static, and whether people would misunderstand it, since it doesn't appear throughout the whole recording.  It was my idea to include a note about this inside the booklet and I don't know whether that was the right decision or not, but at least nobody has complained and said "my CD is defective, it has all this static on it."

2933
Everything and Nothing / Now watching
« on: December 06, 2007, 06:03:47 PM »
Here's a kick-start of one of my favorite topics on the Hypnos Forum in recent months.

Lena's been out of town, and she doesn't really like war movies (though otherwise our tastes are very much in sync) so I thought I'd watch a couple of long ones while she's away.

A Bridge Too Far -- As part one of my two part "classic WWII war movie" two-fer, I found this one a bit disappointing.  I mean, the whole Operation Market Garden thing is depressing enough to start with, but I guess I've never really liked the whole "let's cram every movie star we can find into this movie and that will make it great" idea.  Even knowing a bit of the real story, I was a bit confused at times as to who some of the characters were.  On the other hand, it was well-made and grand in scope.  I'd give it maybe a B- grade.

The Longest Day -- Much better, having a lot in common with Saving Private Ryan (the whole idea of rolling into Normandy in open boats and charging out to try to get across the sand while guys are dropping dead all around you), but I found it an interesting and clear telling of the events.  Some actors who bug the crap out of me at times, like John Wayne, actually were pretty good.  I'd give this one a B+ or A-.

Both of these were 3+ hours long, and I'd say that's enough of the war movies for a while.

2934
Other Ambient (and related) Music / British dronemeisters
« on: December 06, 2007, 05:55:29 PM »
Another popular recent topic that was still going strong.

Hey, let's talk about BradleyChalkTateColeclough...and so on.

Undershadow, what say you?

2935
Other Ambient (and related) Music / Steve Roach discussion
« on: December 06, 2007, 05:53:55 PM »
The Steve Roach discussion was definitely one of the "hot" areas of the Hypnos Forum this past few weeks -- well, actually longer than that -- so I thought I'd plant the seed here.

Actually I'm of a mind to spin Quiet Music tonight.

2936
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 06, 2007, 05:33:23 PM »
"What about the backups?" is a much longer and more tiring story than I'm prepared to tell right now.  Let's just say that most of the Hypnos site, the kind that resides in discrete files (html, php, txt, jpg and so on) that I can upload and download, is well and frequently backed-up.  The data underlying the Hypnos Forum is a batch of complex mySQL data kept in a huge file on the web site host's server, and that part is not readily backed-up by the user (or at least I didn't know how to do it until now). Worse, in the course of trying to comply with the web host's complete lockdown of that data, I deleted a bunch of old, redundant data (like the old, old Hypnos Forum on UBB software), as well as one bit of not-old, not-redundant data that was crucial to the running of the Forum. 

The story of why I can't get the web hosts to just restore the database to its prior state, is the long, tiring and depressing part.  Let's just say I have come to truly hate the web hosting company that hosts hypnos.com, and that they will not be hosting the site much longer, but in the mean time, the Hypnos Forum as we know it will just have to start fresh.  Maybe if I hadn't been banging my head up against the brick wall that is ValueWeb tech support for the past 2 days, I would have been able to solve this problem more elegantly.

2937
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 06, 2007, 05:15:46 PM »
I'm very gratified that there are already 30 members signed up, in just the few hours since this new location was made public.

I've been posting the announcement around, so that news should continue to spread.

2938
Everything and Nothing / Re: This new SMF forum
« on: December 06, 2007, 03:57:53 PM »
Believe me, I'm as sorry as anyone about the loss of legacy Forum content... if I was just going to start fresh like this, I could have saved myself a couple dozen hours work and just done that at the beginning.

But I'm trying to remember, this place will fill up quickly with new members and new content, and the most interesting old ideas will be brought up here again, I think.

2939
Everything and Nothing / Re: a poll
« on: December 06, 2007, 03:38:00 PM »
There are many good things about cheese but cheese has no single color.


2940
CD release announcement from Hypnos Recordings
Title: Sounds of a Universe Overheard (various artists compilation)
Hypnos Recordings (hyp2752)





2007. This is the first compilation project on Hypnos since 1999's  Weightless, Effortless.

Track listing (mp3 sample clips coming soon):
Jonathan Block "The Language of Rocks"
M. Peck "Somna"
Freq. Magnet "Nitrous"
Kirk Watson "Scarecrow"
dreamSTATE "Ghost Nebula"
Seren Ffordd " Strange Attractor"
Dwight Ashley " Behold the Trampled Wheat"
Justin Vanderberg "Infection"
Igneous Flame "Pandora"
Tau Ceti "Float"

Hypnos Online Store listing (sale price $12.99)
http://www.hypnos.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=HOS&Product_Code=hyp2752

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