history

The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence at Home is over, for now

Some 21 years ago, when I was managing editor of the Cape Times, I had acquired as my desktop computer at work an Apple Power Macintosh G3 with its matching Sony Trinitron monitor.

It was both beauty and beast by the standards of the day; blue and white polycarbonate clocking in at 300 MHz. More importantly, it could effortlessly play the Star Wars Phantom Menace trailer which was the first movie trailer to debut on the Internet

Remembering Fela Kuti because music

Driving my 12 year old daughter to school this morning, and the iPhone god of randomness popped by Shakara by Fela Kuti.

And I told 12 that Fela had been beaten to death by Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha, and she asked why, and I said that's what dictators do. But that I would check my recollection and get back to her.

Actually, I had misremembered. It was not Sani Abacha; it was Abacha's predecessor General Olusegun Obasanjo. Fela was not beaten to death; merely close to death.

Every so often, the Internet gives us something truly wonderful

Fancy listening to Folk Music of Afghanistan from 1971? Or Afro-Cuban Jazz from 1966?

The Internet Archive has begun digitizing long out-of-print vinyl and making it freely available.

As I write these words, I am listening to "Profiles" by Gary McFarland (1966). It was post bop contemporary jazz at the time. Now, it's a half century old.