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DVD Times offers up a good, spoiler-free review of Miyazaki's forthcoming release, Howl's Moving Castle, which recently saw its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival. (They also make note of the Complete Futurama box set - 15 discs, coming to the UK on October 25, for £80. Or £56 at Amazon)

Quite an interesting glimpse at visiting North Korea: "Pyongyang is the obvious first stop on any tour of North Korea. Its many statues and monuments - most of them dedicated to the now-deceased 'Eternal President' Kim Il-sung - are a must-see.
In fact they literally must be seen, as the compulsory guides who accompany all foreign tourists are certain to include them in the itinerary." Sounds like the perfect destination for Germans suffering from ostalgia..

Using SleepLess 1.5.1, Dormouse is now set to never sleep, even if the display's folded down. So, whilst it'll be using some battery, I can carry it around normally - at least, up to around three hours or so, probably more if I turn the backlight off. (Not really ideal, obviously, as the original iBooks weren't designed to run while closed - but then, neither were the Wallstreet family, and gods know, OS 9 caused Bunny a few crash-on-sleep hours of backlight toastiness in its time) So now it's "just" a matter of laying my paws on an AirPort or other compatible WiFi card for Ocelot, and Dormouse can then, finally, be the family net.system it was intended to be.

When the inimitable akira114 comes to visit on Monday, it looks likely The Motorcycle Diaries will be on the cards. It does seem like a film potentially rousing to one's conscience and soul, ne? Amongst others we'll probably be enjoying are Angelus, portending cinematic poetry, and the promisingly cheesy Peter Rottentail. ^_^

An all too brief look at "fab labs" - sufficient equipment to be able to fashion almost any three-dimensional object. The emphasis, however, isn't on the tech itself, but where it's being deployed, such as Ghana, and above the Arctic circle, and the reason such machinery - ultimately, they hope, able to replicate all their own parts - holds such promise.

Cool! Horizon, a BBC emulator for OS X, is now freeware; previously, it had disabled sound until the fee was paid. And yes, it runs Sentinel nicely, and claims to run Elite perfectly..

And some may consider Beijing retrograde in democratic trends?
"All 60 seats in Legislative Council up for grabs.
Only half are decided by direct elections.
Other half reserved for business and professional groups."
How many Western countries institutionalise lobbying? ^_^

Spotted recently:
Horizon, a BBC emulator for OS X, is now freeware

I've had a go with the PC version of Horizon - not bad at all, although BeebEm is better. Running Elite isn't much of a claim for a modern BBC emu, though - the question is, can it cope with Revs, Firetrack and Exile? BeebEm can. =:P
Ooh, Revs! Now that I played quite a bit.. ^_^ Incredibly primitive now, but it preserved what was important - a sense of realism, within the very simple graphics. Acornsoft did turn out some very good works in their time (as did Acorn, of course. Their versions of Basic for the BBC and the Arc were about the fastest anywhere, and the OS was designed with future improvements in mind - VDU 19 was a good example. On the BBC, that just mapped a logical color to a physical color, from the palette of primaries, secondaries, and flashing. Because they'd thought to leave some padding zeros in the original definition, they were able, eight years later, to use those for their likely original intention - specifying the color by R/G/B components, where those zeroes had been), including their authentic arcade knockoffs, like Snapper and Defender.

Exile.. I'm not sure I ever actually saw that, actually, but this BBC games page suggests I should. ^_^

And Frak, yay! As that site says, it didn't really have much of a plotline, but it was just such a fun game regardless. And Citadel.. that had plenty of gameplay in it, and they managed to coax a reasonable speech synth out of the unsuspecting sound chip's noise channel. (I wound up just making my own, based on an SPO-256 phoneme synth, and a four level VFO for intonation. Worked quite nicely, and with only 64 phonemes to choose from, programming new words was fairly straightforward, just choosing the right version of a given sound for a word, occasionally munging the spelling if that made it sound better)
Revs! [...] Incredibly primitive now, but it preserved what was important - a sense of realism, within the very simple graphics.

Not surprising, given that it was written by Geoff Crammond. =:) And as far as I know, it's still the only dedicated Formula 3 simulator ever released! =;P

a reasonable speech synth

*grin* I've got a 5.25" disk of Speech! lying around somewhere. I got it to (more or less) sing the Welsh national anthem at one point - yng Nghymraeg, of course. =;P
Thinking about preserving the essence of motion, I was wondering - there surely must have been, but nothing's coming immediately to mind - what games have involved humanoids in zero gravity? That'd be quite a sensation to convey plausibly, until such time as we on the ground can casually escape the hold of Terra.

Hee! But can Speech! speak lapine? (I don't think I ever tried it on other languages, only English)