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Congratulations are in order for austin_dern, whose proposal was accepted by bunny_hugger. From all I've known of them from LJ (having only met AD in person), I'd have to say that's a fantastic match. ^_^

Also in the aforementioned preview of animated releases for 2012, I see the director of Summer Wars and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time has a new one coming, too - "The Wolf Children Ame and Yuki", "the story of a college student named Hana who marries a “wolf man” and gives birth to two wolf children. When the wolf man dies, Hana and the children move from the city to a quiet rural town." Given the director's excellence before, this ought to be well worth waiting for. And then there's Genndy Tartakovsky with "Hotel Transylvania"..

For the serious Whovian collector.. an edition of 25 Sonic Screwdrivers, made by the same person who makes the "real" ones, Nick Robatto, and in exactly the same way: purely hand-made, nothing machined or CNCd, made of 248 aluminium, copper, brass, resin, and leather components. Quite a work of art, though at the kind of price you'd fear. ^_^; (A little more affordable is the poster My Mysterious Doctor, as in The Impossible Astronaut)

And anyfur in Manchester might be interested to hear of a stage adaptation of the Doctor Who episode Midnight, playing for a couple more days, until January 8th, at the Lass O'Gowrie. The article also notes the same venue will be hosting a version of The Ballad of Halo Jones.. ! Bear in mind, it's a very small venue, and be sporting The Lion King's budget.

You may recall Sir Phillip Green, one of UKuncut's star performers. Head of Arcadia, the parent company of Top Shop, he's renowned for his tax evasion skills, with wheezes including getting out of some £235m in tax by way of channeling funds into his wife's Monaco accounts. You may also have heard that as Top Shop's not doing so well lately, the group's closing some stores. One tidbit I hadn't seen reported before, though, is that he took out a loan in 2005 - a £1b loan.. to pay his wife a £1.3b dividend. *cough* The "fun" part is that that loan's coming due soon. By 2010, there was £464m remaining to repay..

Here's a good video review of one of the more unconventional iPad synths, TC-11. As the guy points out, it departs from the usual paradigm of presenting itself as a traditional synth, with knobs to be twiddled, and playing a keyboard, and instead, seems much more designed with a hihgly multitouch interface at its heart. Unfortunately, it's also one of the most expensive, at $30, but against normal AU/VST pricing, that's still firmly on the low end.

With the coffee house I'd intended to visit turning out to be packed and not particularly peaceful, I opted for Mission Impossible instead. ^_^; For a MI flick, it delivered. I wouldn't say it was especially remarkable, but competently handled. True, it is Mission Impossible, but I couldn't help but feel they went a bit overboard with the unbelievability - sticky gloves that go on the fritz after a couple minutes, a missile that's not intercepted by anything, and Torchwood's contacts on loan.. Still, good to see Simon Pegg again, even if his role was a bit on the comic relief side, and very good to see stronger female characters than in the second, where what could've been a good foil for the perfect Cruise turns into little more than a simpering maiden after crossing paths. Thus far, probably the best.

rabitguy might be interested in this video of Battles' "Tonto" that dzlk uncovered - a rather unusual LED installation, synced to their performance in a disused slate mine.

Rather good to see Rango named Best Animated Feature at the latest OFCS Awards, alongside Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy for Best Adapted Screenplay, which I shall confess to still not having managed to see. I'm hoping Lucasfilm don't stop there, as far as animated features go; nor, indeed, its director.

The (US) National Film Registry recently announced its latest list of 25 films to be preserved, with some odd inclusions, and some well overdue, including Porgy & Bess. Interestingly, films' safety - ie, how well preserved they already are - doesn't seem to be a factor, given Bambi's inclusion, but no less well-deserved for that. And apparently, Porgy & Bess may soon see a new release, with its legal wranglings between the Gershwins and Goldwyns apparently settled, just in time for the negative to be rescued from disintegration.

Rather sad to see, though it's been a long time in coming - rumors are circulating that Kodak may be preparing to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. They do still own quite a substantial patent portfolio, which may yet continue at least some of the business forward, but they've not really made much great inroads into any companion industries, and the P&S camera market's nowhere to make money, with extreme price pressures, and the entire market segment arguably in decline itself, with the improvement of cameraphones into viable, and highly flexible, cameras in their own right. They have manufactured some high-end sensors, but typically outside what could be considered a volume market; the Leica M9's sensor is Kodak designed, but its pricing is in Leicaland. In DSLR land, Canon's are entirely their own work, Nikon's are a combination of their own and Sony's design and manufacture, and of course, Sony's are purely their own. Whilst it's tempting to consider Kodak helping Nikon, Kodak would have to be in a position to offer something at least competitive to Sony to place such a business relationship in jeopardy.

And for foofers, this map of the USA is indeed a true work of cartographic art.

Guide to cooking soup, courtesy of

Dinner: well, with the fridge running low, but not feeling overly inclined to head into town just yet, I went with a leftovers creation - and it turned out surprisingly well! First, four slices of good smoked bacon, trimmed of fat, fried for a couple minutes, then joined by some baby corn and mangetout, minced garlic, black bean paste, and a Berber spice mix (think "ground chili" as a theme). Once they'd gained some heat, I added a little water, and half a block of tofu, cubed up, and the remnants of a bag of mixed salad, and left that all to continue simmering away, finally adding a packet of instant mild curry soup to thicken it up and add further to the flavors, serving it as three tortilla wraps.
In DSLR land, ... Sony's are purely their own

As someone who's entry into digital photography was through Minolta, I know off by heart who's design work Sony absorbed.

Ah! Excellent point, indeed, and one I completely spaced out on while tapping out that paragraph. That was certainly the epitome of the strategic acquisition - and they've certainly done well with the resultant corporate division, with both "traditional" (however that applies to a field so new =:) DSLRs, and their NEX MILCs, which seem to come in for a goodly amount of praise.

(Interesting way of going about it, at least in public - a "cooperative venture" started in July, followed six months later by a full absorption of the camera division! Something of that scale would surely have been in the works, quietly, for a long time beforehand)

Never really used any of theirs in anger, though I did enjoy a few months with a former coworker's Konica Minolta A200, before I picked up my TZ5. And indeed, it was another coworker's Sony A380 that kicked off my interest in getting a DSLR of my own - the quality of the images was just so far above what I could manage with the TZ5, and of course.. depth of field. <3 Ye gods and little fishes, what a complex world I'd stumbled upon.. every manufacturer having their own mounts, the in-lens vs in-body stabilisation debate, down to details such as the utility of in-body AF motors.
I had to go out for some soup in the end. The only can we had in was my housemate's "Royal Game" tin. ME eating that would just be....creepy.
Ack! I understand entirely. I wince quietly on seeing my kin on menus, and try not to think further of it.

I'd recommend keeping a few instant soups around - I usually go for Ainsley Harriot's, as there's a decent variety available, and they're quite reasonable food. The Mulligatawny (now renamed "mild curry", it would seem) doesn't really need anything more doing to it, nor indeed the chicken & lemongrass. Of course, with any of them, it's easy to chop up some ground beef, chicken, or bacon as desired, for something a touch heartier, yet still economical.
The only time I would have a problem with something like that is if I went to some backwoods house in the Deep South.

Which I don't plan on doing anytime soon anyway. :D
I still wonder how much Kodak would make if they fired up their Kodachrome machines for a "Limited quantity availabile" run every now and then? Obviously not enough to run their entire company on it, but I'm sure there's people who would pay pretty good money to get their hands on a few fresh rolls of that stuff and a can or two of whatever chemicals you need to go along with it.
It's an interesting notion. I'm very much out of touch with film matters, though - rav_bunneh is much more into "lo-fi" photography (which, to be absolutely clear, is just a label, like the "lo-fi" tag on some indie music) and industry happenings. My vague suspicion is it'd be difficult to make economically on small scales, but I could be entirely wrong.

I wonder what the current film market volume is now. It's hardly up to the volume of cellphone photography, or that of P&Ss, but maybe an investor might take an interest, if there really could be a viable business in resuming Kodachrome manufacture.

Me, I'm a digital bunny through and through. =:)
the P&S camera market's nowhere to make money

Especially if you make as much of a mess of it as Kodak did. As you may recall. In, say, 2005 I don't think there was a single one of their models in that sector that was anywhere near competitive with Canon and Sony at the posher end or Fujifilm at the simpler end.

(Mind you, Nikon's P&S cameras have too often been unworthy of the brand, also...)
And yet, early on, they were very active, although I'd need to look into some 'zines of the time to find out how well received they were - I was all but dormant in photography until around 2005, when I had the notion of selling some Stuff™ on eBay, and giro_batol was kind enough to send along an old Canon A200, which would let me post some photos of the miscellania in question. (Think I mentioned it to you before - the LCD positively chowed down on the battery! With it on, I'd get maybe ten shots out of a pair of AAs, or as many as sixty without) It then wasn't until mid-2008 that I researched what was available by way of compacts with good zooms, which seemed a slender field then, but seems to've picked up steam since.

Even now, I'm only peripherally aware of happenings in the compact sector - it's bad enough keeping track of just Nikon's DSLRs. I am a bunny of very little brain. =:)

Speaking of Fujifilm, I see they just announced another high-end bridge model, the X-S1, amongst a plethora of other models - a lesson indeed in how two similar companies fared, once their traditional mainstay was chopped away from under them.

Of course, this needn't be the end of Kodak - this is, after all, Chapter 11, not bankruptcy, and I've certainly not performed an investigation into their corporate finances; it would be interesting to see just where the company really is financially, and whence its revenues are now derived.
Frith, I remember that old A200. Possibly not one of Canon's finest hours, given that awful battery life.
this soup can not so healthy:)
mant preservatives on that label, ouch