Mar 26, 2005 · 2 minute read
Lots of planets have a North.
As far as re-introductions go, I don’t think I could have asked for much more from Rose
, the first episode of the new Doctor Who
series. Certain things, like the incidental music, the opening sequence with far too may quick cuts, and Graham Norton’s unscheduled interruption, I could have done without, but it was a strong opening. Christopher Eccleston was just great; odd, funny, and plain weird. I loved the look of pride on his face when he was talking about the TARDIS’s appearance: “It’s a disguise!” Billie Piper wasn’t as bad as I feared either. Her accent tended to jump around a bit for some reason, and perhaps she’s a bit too much like Ace (someone who has been forgotten about with all the “she’s the feistiest assistant the Doctor’s ever had!” PAH! Does she throw explosives, and beat a Dalek to bits with A BASEBALL BAT? I think not), but she was fine, and she’ll make a decent assistant on the basis of this episode.
For all the talk, though, about how this would be a “new vision” (although RTD has been playing down this in his press appearances recently), this was an episode of Doctor Who
. Its greatest strength is its biggest weakness; it has a format which allows the cast to go anywhere, at any time. The problem is that when you tell a writer that, they’ll inevitably end up writing a huge epic set in Ancient Egypt, or a war story set in the far future among exploding stars and the end of galaxies. The effects department just cries itself into a drunken stupor, and does the best it can. I’m not one for complaining about old-Who effects; sure, some were ropey, but some were surprisingly decent for their time (the first regeneration sequence for example - an analogue morphing effect that still looks quite effective today). The new series has money, but not enough to make perfect-looking CGI. So the effects look a little out-of-place sometimes, but they’re on the same quality level as your average Buffy
Next week: the end of Earth. Episode 5 is called Dalek
Mar 24, 2005 · 2 minute read
More weirdness from Florida: a bill to stamp out the leftist domination of universities.
According to a legislative staff analysis of the bill, the law would give students who think their beliefs are not being respected legal standing to sue professors and universities.
So if, I’m reading this right — if I was at a Florida university, and my professor said that “MS-DOS’s file-allocation system was a badly-designed hack vulnerable to data corruption, and FAT32 was the equivalent of trying rebuild an egg using wallpaper paste,” I could sue? Perhaps I think Bill Gates is awesome, and that all his code is perfect. How dare the man or woman disparage his good name!?
Students who believe their professor is singling them out for “public ridicule” – for instance, when professors use the Socratic method to force students to explain their theories in class – would also be given the right to sue.
Erm, I hope that’s qualified in the law somewhat, as doesn’t that form the basis of most teaching methods? If you’re going to ask somebody for their theory, you also want them to explain it, for that helps everybody understand where they’re coming from (and yes, in many cases, people will pick holes in a person’s theory. But I’d say, in almost all cases, it’s not personal).
And, really, why would you bother going to a Biology class if you don’t want to hear about evolution? It’s like taking Physics and decrying the professors for talking about electrons instead of little pixies.
Mar 23, 2005 · 1 minute read
Mar 22, 2005 · 1 minute read
Today’s entry: “email contact of fine men and girls in London 2005”
Well. perhaps Richard will leave his number in the comments, but I’m not promising anything…
(apologies for dismal updates recently. Must do better, I know)
Mar 19, 2005 · 1 minute read
Witness! The black market underground of…
Blue Peter badges. Yours for the low price of £20.
We live in a sick and twisted world…
Mar 17, 2005 · 1 minute read
And, a little bit of advice to those of you in Chapel Hill:
Every year on this day, the comic shop in the town has a big sale; comics and graphic novels at excellent prices! So, if you’re in the area, I suggest you have a look (I arrived ONE day late for this sale last year! Bah. But they had a Hallowe’en sale as well, so I did okay in the end). It’s Chapel Hill Comics, on Rosemary Street. Just go through the Bank of America building, carrying on until you get down the steps onto Rosemary, past the nightclub that changes its name every year because the owners go bust when the students leave in May, and out onto the path. Head towards Columbia, and it’s on your left!
(Everybody else: umm, I don’t know. Wear something green?)
Mar 16, 2005 · 1 minute read
It is rather annoying, that if it wasn’t for somebody demanding a photograph, the IRA would have probably disarmed last year…
(and it’s not just the IRA who are still involved in paramilitary violence in Ulster
Mar 14, 2005 · 1 minute read