Saturday, November 30, 2013

A Red Right Hand

The Red Right Hand a mystery by Joel Twensley Rogers and not Nick Cave.

One of Nick Caves signature songs Red Right Hand, was written in 1994 depicting a mysterious character appearing on the edge of town. In the song Song of Joy from his Murder Ballads album Cave reveals the phrase is from a line in John Milton's epic poem Paradise Lost that refers to the vengeful hand of God. Nick Sings:

"It seems he has done many, many more,
  quotes John Milton on the walls in the victim's blood.

  The police are investigating at tremendous cost.
  In my house he wrote 'his red right hand'.
  That, I'm told, is from Paradise Lost."

The appearance in Paradise Lost (Book II, 170-174) is:

"What if the breath that kindled those grim fires,
  Awaked, should blow them into sevenfold rage,
  And plunge us in the flames; or from above
  Should intermitted vengeance arm again
  His red right hand to plague us?"

The original term itself appears to be Milton's translation of the term "rubente dextra" in Horace's Ode i.2,2
So it would appear that the mystery contained in this book is a story of bloody vengeance, and not excessive masturbation after all.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sondra Prills Jam

Sondra Prill  was a former "singer" from Tampa, Florida who starred in her own public-access television show in 1987, simply entitled My Show, singing hits of the time.  Despite feedback from critics and the general public about her off-tone singing, her television show ran until 1992.
On October 16, 1992 she performed at the Tampa Bay Performing Art Centre starring in her own event called, Sultry Sondra: A Musical Fantasy. A total of 41 paying attendees came to see her, however the official head count put the number of people in attendance closer to 70, with the vice president of marketing for the centre concluding, "She might have comped some folks."  At the finale of the show, Prill had honey poured all over her, in what seemed to be a literal interpretation of the lyrics to the song, "Oh, You Sexpot Honey."  Prill planned to do the finale nude, but the performing arts centre made her wear a body stocking.  After the performance a backup singer walked out from backstage to say good night and to apologise to the audience. 
With the advent of the internet and sties such as YouTube, Prill has gained some popularity as an Internet Meme. Despite this more recent popularity, her current whereabouts are unconfirmed as of 2007, she may be hiding-out.
Here's Sondras rendition of Technotronic's Pump Up The Jam (her "Sand In My Crack" Mix)
The honey-pouring performance was videotaped for her program but the tape went missing, and never aired.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Bad Hobbits

Everyone has their secrets.  Even Gandalf has a few filthy hobbits.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Building Daleks

We're building daleks!
Researcher Kevin Warwick, a former cyborg, from the University of Reading, has been working on creating organic neural networks that can control machines.  He and his team have taken cultured brain cells from rats and used them as the guidance control circuit for simple wheeled robots.

Electrical impulses from the robot (or travel machine) part of the rat-dalek enter the cluster of neurons, and responses from the brain cells are turned into commands for the device.  The intelligence of these daleks are very basic, the brain cluster control primarily helps the robot to avoid walls.  Where it gets really interesting is that the cells can form new connections and this obstacle avoidance often shows clear improvement over time, demonstrating true learning ability on the part of the dalek.

Current cultures of neurons have about 100,000 cells, but only a small fraction are actually involved in controlling the robot circuits at any given time. Research teams continually find new ways to increase the size and response of these cultures, as well as how long they can survive. Eventually, we’ll have a dalek brain that will be able to accomplish much, much more.  Perhaps we are just a shrill voice synthesis and a death ray away from a true tantrum throwing salt and pepper shaker seeing our extermination.
"Primitive but undeniably a dalek" - Tom Baker as Dr Who, Genesis of the Daleks.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013