Wednesday, May 15. 2013
Commander Chris Hadfield performs a rather good reworking of David Bowie's classic 'Space Oddity' on his last day in charge of the International Space Station. Hadfield has become something of a celebrity by regularly sending tweets about his unique and inspiring experiences aboard the ISS...
Sunday, May 12. 2013
Thursday, May 9. 2013
As if there was ever any doubt about this man's advanced intelligence, superbrain Stephen Hawking flips the bird to Israeli president Shimon Peres over Israel's treatment of Palestinians. Way to go Stephen!
Friday, May 3. 2013
'Alan Watts was born in London in January of 1915 at the start of the first World War. At a young age he became fascinated with the arts of the Far East, and by the time he was ten or eleven he began to read thriller stories by Sax Rohmer about about mysterious Oriental villains. This interest led him in turn to the works of Lafcadio Hern, Christmas Humphreys, and DT Suzuki, and by fourteen was writing on Eastern themes, and was published in the Journal of the London Buddhist Lodge before producing his first booklet on Zen in 1932. He moved to New York in 1938 and then to Chicago where he served as an Episcopal priest for six years before leaving the Church. In 1950 he moved to upstate New York, and in late 1950 visited with Joseph Campbell and, composer John Cage, and Luisa Commaraswamy at his Millbrook farmhouse. Then in 1951 at the invitation of Frederic Spiegelberg he moved to San Francisco to teach at the Academy of Asian Studies.
Thursday, May 2. 2013
'The Booth At The End is a 2010 drama series. The series includes two seasons, so far, consisting of 5 twenty-three minute episodes each. It was created by Christopher Kubasik, directed by Jessica Landaw and starring Xander Berkeley. The series asks one question: "How far would you go to get what you want?"
Sunday, April 28. 2013
'It's time, if you're so inclined, to plunk down a reservation for a one-way ticket to Mars. The privately funded Mars One foundation recently opened up applications for astronauts to take a journey to the Red Planet in 2022/23. Return trips, the organisers said, just aren't feasible with the technology we have.
Thursday, April 11. 2013
Monday, April 8. 2013
Woo hoo! Good riddance to bad rubbish! Thatcher has finally died from a stroke (a stroke of good luck). And not before time. Great news like this demands a celebration. Now stock up on coal and get ready to lob it at her hearse during the forthcoming state funeral!
Thursday, March 21. 2013
'The Challenger, is a factual drama about acclaimed scientist Richard Feynman’s search for truth in the wake of the NASA Challenger disaster.
Tuesday, March 12. 2013
'In a world where human contact takes the form of likes, retweets and “sexts”, Todd Strauss-Schulson takes an interesting perspective on society’s smartphone over-attachment epidemic in this darkly-humourous schlocktastic thriller, Valibation. In Valibation, Strauss-Schulson introduces us to the movie’s protagonist, Yale, who finds himself in an other-worldly predicament. Through the movie short’s 20 minutes, the audience is wrenched around with Yale through his strange and slightly perverse journey of self-discovery to find out if he really does need “[social media] hits of validation” or if he is capable of finding within himself what he was previously craving from his smartphone.'
Wednesday, March 6. 2013
'Former fundamentalist Christian Brian Flemming places the core concepts of his former religion under the microscope in a documentary that attempts to do for religion what Morgan Spurlock’s Super Size Me did for the fast-food industry. In his bold quest to seek answers to the difficult questions that few are willing to pose, Flemming is joined by Deconstructing Jesus author Robert M. Price, renowned historian Richard Carrier, and The End Of Faith author Sam Harris.
Tuesday, March 5. 2013
This is the kind of bat-shit crazy pioneering spirit that is sorely needed in the 21st century if humanity is ever to become a multi-planetary species. Sceptics said that man would never walk on the moon before 1970, but the same bat-shit crazy pioneering spirit that took hold during the space race of the 60s proved them all wrong. More power to the Inspiration Mars Foundation. I want to see this and more before my time on this backward little planet has expired. Go Fever!
Monday, March 4. 2013
Cyberpunk and media theorist Douglas Rushkoff talks perfect sense, yet again, on the dangers of using Facebook. As he aptly points out: "The true end users of Facebook are the marketers who want to reach and influence us. They are Facebook's paying customers; we are the product. And we are its workers"...
Sunday, March 3. 2013
'This is a film based on the book Death Of The Liberal Class by journalist and Pulitzer prize winner, Chris Hedges.
Thursday, February 28. 2013
'The butler did it! That was the tabloid take on the unprecedented breach of security that shook the Vatican last year, when a trove of secrets plucked from one of the most impenetrable places on earth - the pope's private quarters - was leaked to the media. But why did he do it? And did he act alone?
Tuesday, January 29. 2013
Upon hearing that Gangstagrass were coming to Europe sometime this year, Media Underground's very own Sergeant Matron decided to push his luck, contact their manager, and try get them to come to the incredible Glenuig Hall in remote West Lochaber, Scotland. To everyone's surprise, he seems to be making some headway and there's every chance the gig will go ahead providing the dates fit in with the band's schedule.
Monday, January 28. 2013
Wednesday, January 2. 2013
'Neil Armstrong's family and friends, many of whom have never spoken publicly before, tell the story of the first man to set foot on the moon.
Wednesday, December 19. 2012
'For his entire life, one man has nursed the dream of putting mankind into space. Inspired by the Dan Dare comic strip, Alan Bond first started building rockets as a teenager in his back garden. He started his career working on Britain's Blue Streak rocket, then HOTOL - the world's first attempt to build a single-stage-to-orbit spacecraft. Each time, he was thwarted by lack of funding from the UK government, so, together with two colleagues, Richard Varvill and John Scott-Scott, he decided to go it alone.
Wednesday, December 12. 2012
NPR's Science Friday book club takes to the skies with the Tom Wolfe classic The Right Stuff, a behind-the-curtain look at the 20th century’s most famous test pilots - including Chuck Yeager. Yeager joins the club to talk about his long career, and what he considers “the right stuff”.
Friday, December 7. 2012
'Kevin Fong talks to one of the last two men on the Moon, 40 years after the final Apollo 17 mission blasted off on 7 December 1972.
Tuesday, December 4. 2012
'Climate change has become one of the biggest, most complex issues of our time. And the warnings from some of the world's leading scientists are getting louder. But sceptics remain. Despite the data, many are unconvinced that the science is on target. So, we ask: Is climate change man-made and, if so, what can we do to stop it?'
Sunday, November 25. 2012
In the following Al Jazeera special, Nick Clark talks to scientists, geologists, meterologists and environmentalists, who all agree that humanity is having a detrimental impact on the planet's climate. Yet former fat fucking finance minister, Nigel Lawson, thinks it's complete nonsense despite all the evidence to the contrary. Let me see, a fat bastard with his fingers in every pie can be impartial enough to also keep his thumb on the pulse of the planet? Someone please lynch this idiot and hang him from a tree whilst we've still got some growing out the ground.
Friday, November 23. 2012
I'm reading Mike Mullane's highly entertaining autobiography Riding Rockets at the moment.
Wednesday, November 21. 2012
'Like Einstein, Paul Laffoley is reported to have been delayed in developing speech. He was thought to be mildly autistic. A brilliant youngster, he graduated from Brown but received several treatments of Electro-Convulsive Therapy before graduating. In spite of physical and emotional obstacles, Paul Laffoley developed into a soft spoken, functioning gentleman with a warm sense of humor. But also like Einstein, Laffoley is a “divergent” thinker. Laffoley’s determination and positive approach to life allowed him to overcome odds to become an architect; his creative thinking enabled him to become an internationally acclaimed visionary artist. Paul Laffoley tells his story in his own words in this documentary by Jean-Pierre Larroque. As Laffoley invites us into his world one easily wonders if this is a world of delusion or a world of someone gifted with a brilliant, unbounded imagination.
Thursday, November 8. 2012
Wednesday, October 31. 2012
'In recent years, the radical online community known as Anonymous has been associated with attacks or “raids” on hundreds of targets. Angered by issues as diverse as copyright abuse and police brutality, they’ve taken on child pornographers, the Bay Area Rapid Transit system and even forced a standoff with Mexican drug cartels. They’ve hit corporate targets like Sony, cyber-security firms like HBGary Federal and would-be web controllers like the Church of Scientology.
Tuesday, October 30. 2012
Warren Ellis is an English author of comics, novels, and television, who is well known for sociocultural commentary, both through his online presence and through his writing, which covers transhumanist themes (most notably nanotechnology, cryonics, mind transfer, and human enhancement).
Monday, October 29. 2012
How exactly is it that SpaceX can do everything so cheaply? Well, it would seem from this recent interview with Elon Musk that there are a couple of reasons in particular. The first being that there’s a tendency for big aerospace companies to outsource everything to subcontractors who then, bizarrely, outsource work to other subcontractors who subsequently - in what seems to be little more than an utter bureaucratic shambles by this point - outsource to other subcontractors and so on and so forth... ad nauseum. As one commenter aptly points out at the foot of this Wired article: "One reason for all that expensively administered subcontracting is that it pleases exactly those committees [who control NASA's funding]. The large projects they favor can subcontract in many different districts, whose congressmen then have a good reason to vote for NASA's budget. This means the committee members need not trade away any more of their political capital to get the projects that support contractors in their districts."
Thursday, October 25. 2012
'SKYLON is the successor to Britain's HOTOL spaceplane concept, being developed by Reaction Engines Ltd (REL). It is an unpiloted fully reusable aircraft-like vehicle capable of transporting 12 tonnes of cargo into space and is intended as a replacement for expensive expendable launchers in the commerical market.
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