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July 8th, 2004

Stranger In the House

There's an interloper in the house – a Windows PC. Why ? While I'm still looking for a job, I am also doing some tweaking and evaluation of a membership/donor management application for non-profit organizations. I met the guy who's done the lion's share of development on it at my class reunion, and offered to poke around at it. The exercise is also a good reality check into the world of low-end PC computing, where hardware is cheap, but the software keeps racing out to need to the latest and greatest. For example, the Gateway PC I brought home is about four years old, and is pretty capable for web and email, but Office is pokey on it. It will be OK for the Visual Basic tweaking I might have to do, though.KVM FunCollapse )

Disco Inferno

Franz Ferdinand is so goldurned obvious, but I really dig “Take Me Out.” It's a catchy tune with more than one hook, it's got a good beat, and that video is a graphic designer's wonderland. I'll probably succumb.

The one and only Rockpile album, Seconds of Pleasure has been reissued. It has the tracks from the “Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds Sing the Everly Brothers” EP – I think that came with the first pressing of the album.

There's yet another new format in stores, but this one actually is really just a packaging innovation that doesn't require any new hardware or software that isn't being made today – it's called DualDisc, and is basically a CD on one side and a DVD on the other. (So much for the web site.) It's a somewhat less elegant solution to what hybrid SACD offers, which is something that can be played on both CD and higher-resolution devices, but on the other hand SACD can't offer gobs of disk space for things like DVD-quality video, so in this case competition is a good thing. Typically the CD side will have the stereo mix and perhaps “CD Extra” type material, while the DVD side will have videos, and the surround mix in both Dolby Digital and uncompressed formats. Tower had a few of these for $18 – and of course, in yet another gratuitous packaging change, they come in something that's like a jewel box but has this extra semicircle of plastic on the side that opens. WHY ?

More JB !

Gee, I thought pretty much all the important James Brown stuff was already reissued, but there's this jazz standards album he did that sounds real good (iTunes sample of “I Need Your Key (To Turn Me On)”).

The Freedom Tower Has A Font

The New York Times devotes an article to the choice of font used for the inscription in the foundation block for the new Freedom Tower that is to rise on the site of the World Trade Center. Hoefler Gotham, especially in its capitals, is inspired by the admirably non-nonsense lettering found on mid-20th century buildings in the city.

You can even try it out for yourself:

Hoefler also made the elegant Hoefler Text font for Apple's QuickDraw GX in the 90s; it's a pretty amazing piece of work that evokes classic book fonts while showing off the typographic capabilities of Apple's type support.

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