Sunday, May 29, 2011

News From Here & There

Canon 5D Mark II Firmware Update 2.0.9
  1. Improves writing/reading speeds when using UDMA 7-compatible CF cards.
  2. Fixes a phenomenon where the IS function will not work when custom function C.Fn III-2 is set to [5: IS start] and the lens attached does not have an AF stop button. This is because custom function C.Fn III-2 allows users to assign IS start to the AF stop button on the lens
  3. Corrects misspellings in the menu screens displayed in Arabic, Portuguese, Spanish, and Thai languages.
CanonAsiaEOS 5D Mark II, Firmware Version 2.0.9 [Windows] via

3D Movies Not So Hot
Another report that 3D is not doing so well at the theaters:
Ripples of fear spread across Hollywood last week after “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” which cost Walt Disney Studios an estimated $400 million to make and market, did poor 3-D business in North America. While event movies have typically done 60 percent of their business in 3-D, “Stranger Tides” sold just 47 percent in 3-D. “The American consumer is rejecting 3-D,” Richard Greenfield, an analyst at the financial services company BTIG, wrote of the “Stranger Tides” results.
But, 3D is still doing okay overseas!
NewYorkTimes3-D Starts to Fizzle, and Hollywood Frets

Don't Buy/Renew MobileMe?
The Unofficial Apple Weblog says not to renew MobileMe in the next ten days as Apple might announce something new at the World Wide Developer Conference.

I'd say it's plausible....except that for more than six months this same rumor that Apple will change MobileMe has floated around the web; so it could be a year from now, it could happen tomorrow...
TUAWMobileMe subscription about to expire? Don't renew it just yet

Video Portraits
Jonathan Jones writes a love letter to Richard Philips's love letter to Lindsay Lohan, a video protrait of the latter.
Phillips makes a completely different choice and films Lohan in several dramatic images, edited together in an exhilarating way. The result is a romantic and indeed erotic view of an actor recently in the headlines for violating her probation on a 2007 drink-driving offense.

Lohan is seen as an almost mythical beauty, a pop goddess framed against the sparkling sea, contemplating her own outsized image.

Ignoring Lohan and the baggage of celebrity and bad behavior she brings to the project, I don't think this video piece does a better job of capturing her as a person than a collection of glamour shots would have. In fact, you could have taken a bunch of fashion photos taken of her at different times, added the "Ken Burns Effect" and some music and ended up with something that would have told the viewer exactly the same amount about her that you get from that video.

So as a video portrait - something the truly captures the spirit of a person - I actually think it's a failure. As a pretty piece of video about a person, it's nicely done. love letter to Lindsay Lohan – and the moving image

Terry Gilliam Does Faust
Gilliam makes his opera-directing debut with a production of Berlioz’s “The Damnation of Faust” at the English National Opera in London. According to this article it works wonderfully:
Gilliam’s vision compliments Berlioz’s original, rather than overwhelming it, and it’s brilliantly realized, aided by Hildegard Bechtner‘s outstanding stage design, and some top-notch video work, again used to support what’s going on on stage, rather than dominating it in the way that many filmmakers-turned-stage-directors can lean
IndieWire: Stage Review: Terry Gilliam’s Opera ‘The Damnation of Faust’ Is A Return To Form & Then Some

Speaking of Gilliam, in his "My Week in Movies," Michael Scott revisits Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secret's and wonders what would have happened if Gilliam had directed the Sorcerer's Stone (he was J.K. Rowling's first choice.)
I think Terry Gilliam’s HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE would have been a brilliant, unique, oddball film… and it would only have been a film. Too weird for most adults, too intense for most kids, it would be a cult classic that left the franchise totally dead in the water. We would probably never have seen CHAMBER OF SECRETS onscreen, let alone the rest of them.
Dorkamn'sBlogMy Week(s) in Movies (5/14–5/28)

15,000 "useful" phrases
Taken from the book "A Practical Handbook Of Pertinent Expressions, Striking Similes, Literary, Commercial, Conversational, And Oratorical Terms, For The Embellishment Of Speech And Literature, And The Improvement Of The Vocabulary Of Those Persons Who Read, Write, And Speak English" by Greenville Kleiser...[they don't write titles like that anymore - Ed]
And with a title like that, are we sure this isn't a joke? Phrases include:
  • abiding romance
  • abject submission
  • abjured ambition
  • able strategist
  • abnormal talents
It's enough to set your hair on end.
FimmakerIQ: 15,000 Useful Phrases

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