Posts Tagged ‘Culture

27
Nov
08

So what if…

22
Nov
08

Wealth Report

It’s nice to see that even in these tough economic times even the upper-crust playboys are having to scale back their activities.

According to a new survey by Prince & Assoc., more than 80% of multimillionaires who had extra-marital lovers planned to cut back on their gifts and allowances. Still, only 12% of the multimillionaire cheaters said they plan to give up on their lovers altogether for financial reasons.

It makes me wonder if I’m doing enough in curtailing my unnecessary expenditures?

Women were far more generous to their paramours in the face of financial crises. Less than 20% planned to lower allowances, gifts and perks, while more than half planned to raise them.

The survey doesn’t mean to suggest that all, most or even a large minority of rich men and women have affairs. It simply is a snapshot of a certain sample at a certain time. Yet it suggests that in a time of financial crisis, it is better to be a kept man than a compensated woman.

Read the entire report via WSJ.

15
Oct
08

Txtng: The Gr8 Db8

So what sorts of cultural ramifications exist as texting becomes even more widespread? Professional Linguist, David Crystal, argues (as most linguist tend to do) that naturally occurring changes in a language are not so bad.

It is good to know that the estimated three billion human beings who own cell phones, and who use them to send more than a trillion text messages every year, are having no effect on anything that we should care about. A trillion text messages, Crystal says, “appear as no more than a few ripples on the surface of the sea of language.

In some respects, texting is a giant leap backward in the science of communication. Sending a text message with a numeric keypad feels primitive and improvisational—like the way prisoners speak to each other by tapping on the walls of their cells in “Darkness at Noon,” or the way the guy in “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” writes a book. And, as Crystal points out, although cell phones keep getting smaller, thumbs do not.

Read the review of David Crystal’s book, Txtng: The Gr8 Db8.

Homer Simpson ~(_8^(|)

07
Oct
08

Lebanon: Israel stole our falafel

Lebanon is planing an international lawsuit against Israel citing violations in food copyright law.

The Lebanese claim is that Israel markets original Lebanese food like tabouleh, kubbeh, hummus, falafel and fattoush which the Lebanese considered their trademarks prior to the establishment of the Jewish state.

Note to the reader: Feta cheese precedent

Abboud, who prepared a memo on the subject, based his case on the, ”feta cheese precedent” that occurred six years ago. At that time, France, Denmark and Germany asserted that Greece cannot have a monopoly over the production of this type of cheese. Greece managed to prove in international institutions that it is the cheese’s “originator” and won the case.

Eat more falafel..The article in its entirety, here.

02
Oct
08

The last typewriter repairman

He stays in business repairing laser printers. And insist that typewriters have gained popular appeal among youth.  Read the article here.

While Schweitzer carried on, he noticed that most of the offices that he serviced were purchasing Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) laser printers along with their computers. Recognizing that those printers would break down and need repairs, Schweitzer took Hewlett-Packard-sponsored training courses to learn how to fix the machines and added that to the firm’s service menu. Before long, he included fax machine repairs as well.

30
Sep
08

Raiders of The Lost Ark: An adaptaion

As boys, Chris Strompolos, Eric Zala and Jayson Lamb spent every summer from 1982 – 1989 (that’s eight summers, folks!) crafting their shot-for-shot recreation of the film they’d later entitle “Raiders: The Adaptation”. Amazingly they did actually finish the film.

Read the article here.

25
Sep
08

19th Arrondissement–La haine attire la haine!

Writer-director Mathieu Kassovitz’s, La Haine (1995), highlights the marginalization within France’s  banlieues. Hands-down one of my favorite films ( also a Cannes Film Festival winner), if not a cinematography masterpiece.

…butts European urbanity up against American street style as kids clash with cops in suburban Paris.

Here is how the film relates to current society.

24
Sep
08

The bicycle solution

Rising gas prices, increasing environmental concern, and a seemingly obese nation have all contributed to increases in demand for our more humble modus operandi, the bicycle. Unlike most industries bicycle manufacturing has to an effect zero barriers of entry, and as a result maintains one of the most competitive and innovative market environments. Read the article, via Economist.

Bicycle and car production grew pretty much in tandem in the two decades beginning in 1950. But since 1970 bike production has nearly quadrupled while car production has roughly doubled.

14
Sep
08

Digitisation and the emergence of transliterate writers

Will intelligent literature survive the new world of web downloads, e-books, and the ever shortening attention spans? John Walsh highlights the shifting cultural trends and its impact on the world of literature, here.

“Will books exist in 50 years? Definitely, but they will also be just one of the many ways we experience art. I feel quite cynical about the cloak of preciousness that’s been woven around the novel: it’s such a recent medium – we’ve only had it a few hundred years and yet you often hear people say, ‘We’ve always had novels.’ No we have not!”

Amazon’s Kindle is one of the many new electronic reading devices designed to keep pace with today’s growing constraints.

14
Sep
08

Expected Delays

Here is the average annual commute for some major metropolitan areas converted into units of time it takes to listen to “War and Peace,” or every note of Wagner’s “Ring” cycle, or to watch the “Lord of the Rings” film trilogy.

This could be considered time better spent.

03
Sep
08

3 Degrees of Separation

European mobile carrier O2 claims to have found the conventional “six degrees of separation” is now down to three, thanks to increases in social-networking and information technologies.

All respondents were asked to make contact with an unknown person from destinations selected at random from across the globe using only personal connections. By using their shared interest networks the participants were able, on average, to make the connection in three person-to-person links.

Read the entire press release here.

30
Aug
08

Worth its weight in gold

Everyone is more than likely aware of the phrase, worth its weight in gold, but the determination of value based on a per unit measurement isn’t always a simple task.

Here is a collection of things that represents a wide range of monetary value per unit of weight.

29
Aug
08

Most Endangered Languages

The linguistics professor, Peter K Austin reports:

Each language expresses the history, culture, society and identity of the people who speak it, and each is a unique way of talking about the world. The loss of any language is a loss to both the community who use it in their daily lives, and to humankind in general. The songs, stories, words, expressions and grammatical structures of languages developed over countless generations are part of the intangible heritage of all humanity.

23
Aug
08

Taking off the touch

Taking off the touch refers to the point of action during the con when the mark’s money is taken. Studies of  behavioral assumptions displayed by con artists have long kept researchers busy developing new cognitive shorthands for gullibility.

The article here highlights Clark Rockefeller’s con brio methods of deception.

Trust games don’t really explain how this congenital gullibility works. To do that, researchers need to observe the actual social world – a place where there is often too little time and too little information coming from too many different places to form a reasoned judgment.

22
Aug
08

Long queues a determinant of healthy society?

Incentive changes throughout the world and the role of spontaneous action..

Though seemingly chaotic and unnecessary to those of us in the “West”, the truth might be that these “mobs” actually work. Their structure– or lack of it– rewards those who want the ticket or item the most, and only displeases those who weren’t industrious (or ruthless) enough to work their way up to the front. This is a form of price discrimination in which those who were willing to “pay” the most, in this case with time and effort, are rewarded, while those who weren’t, aren’t.

View the article here

21
Aug
08

Open Eye Café

Some of the best espresso I’ve had to date. Open Eye Café uses artisan roasting techniques combined with proper pricing levels, OEC is well ahead of the curve.  This I believe can be attributed to high concentrations of academic and intellectual influences of UNC and the eclectic types residing in Carrboro who demand a high quality café experience.

Take a look and size-up your café of choice..

19
Aug
08

How long do you spend getting ready?

An interesting discussion highlighting differences in time spent getting ready between males and females.




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