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Archive for April, 2007

How Things Have Changed for Musicians

My Web log seems to have transformed (maybe even devolved) into a bunch of articles that attract my attention. A quick look at the archives will reveal that I used to write much more in here, but I digress. Maybe blogs have just lost their appeal or style.

Here is an article which repeats that theme of ‘music under stress’. I would like to share it with the readers.

You’ll still have a hard time finding vinyl 45s or their modern counterpart, CD singles, in record stores. For that matter, you’ll have a tough time finding record stores. Today’s single is an individual track downloaded online from legal sites like iTunes or eMusic, or the multiple illegal sites that cater to less scrupulous music lovers. The album, or collection of songs — the de facto way to buy pop music for the last 40 years — is suddenly looking old-fashioned. And the record store itself is going the way of the shoehorn.

Amusing Viral Videos

Okay, I’m willing to admit that I’ve been watching some videos lately and the following two are worth sharing.

Climate Gets Worse, But Nobody Seems to Mind

It’s unlikely that you have not seen this already, but just in case, here’s the summary from the BBC.

Billions of people face shortages of food and water and increased risk of flooding, experts at a major climate change conference have warned.

Full report as PDF, with fragments below.

Settlements in mountain regions will become more susceptible to flooding from glacier-fed lakes. River runoff in fact will increase by 10 to 40 percent in high latitudes and shrink by 10 to 30 percent in the midlatitudes by midcentury. That means a mix of good and bad news for Canada and Russia, but bad news for the Mediterranean. It’s bad for China too, which depends on glaciers to retain its water.

Sea level increases will lead to further coastal erosion.

Droughts and shorter growing seasons will hit Southern Africa and the Sahel region.

Roughly 20 to 30 percent of the plant and animal species on earth will experience an increased risk of extinction if temperatures rise in the expected 1.5-2.5 degree Celsius range.

Shell-forming organisms in the ocean will be impacted in all likelihood by increased acidification.

Deaths from droughts, storms and fires will increase. Deaths from exposure to cold, however, will decline.

[...]

Bill Gates’ Path to Success

This is the story which reveals how Bill Gates made his company so ‘successful’.

Media Companies Go Chasing Google

Have a look at this little gem.

The Alternet magazine claims that there is a conspiracy between the big media outfits to kill off or at least damage Google.

It thinks that Viacom’s $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit against YouTube and the recent deal between NBC Universal and News Corp to establish a rival online video site is all part of a cunning plan.

TV X-FilesThis can’t be confirmed, but it’s probable given Viacom’s recent strike. It seems like Google has become the scapegoat of declining media companies, which increasingly suffer in an age of sharing. They just fear the idea of people generating and viewing their own content. People can legally collaborate on and extend music, video, literature and more. When will companies realise that rivers just run dry owing to disruptive technologies. They should seek alternative revenue streams instead of fighting reality.

It’s April 1st Every Day for Julie MacDonald

Rabbit

Apparently, some people do not mind lying and deceiving on a regular basis as long as they get paid.

“In another case of a government official creating a ‘unique’ interpretation of science, TPM Muckraker reports on Julie MacDonald, deputy assistant secretary for fish and wildlife and parks in the Department of the Interior in Washington. The Department’s Inspector General issued a report today documenting evidence that MacDonald not only overrode opinions of department scientists to benefit lobbyists, and political interests, but also that she shared internal documents with said lobbyists and a friend in an unnamed online roleplaying game…”

The victim is everyone’s environment and wildlife.

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