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Movie review: "Star Wars" the first trilogy, the DVD release

This is a review of the DVD release of the first Star Wars trilogy - episodes IV, V and VI: "A New Hope", "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return Of The Jedi". Of course there are spoilers all over, but c'mon, everyone knows these movies, right?

Official site:

http://www.starwars.com/

Approximately 20 years after the theatrical release, the original "Star Wars" trilogy is being released on DVD. After so much time, i'm looking at these movies with a nostalgic eye. There was much excitement at the time when the movies were originally released, and i didn't fail to get caught in that excitement. And now, 20 years later...

Book review: "The Baroque Cycle" trilogy by Neal Stephenson

This is a review of "The Baroque Cycle" trilogy: "Quicksilver", "The Confusion", "The System Of The World" by Neal Stephenson.

Official site:

http://www.baroquecycle.com/

There are no essential spoilers in this review.

This is Neal Stephenson's latest series of books. History, alchemy, the birth of modern science, pirates and treasures and distant seas - it's all there, in The Baroque Cycle. And there's a trace of cyberpunk, and there's also a trace of the stately and staid style of the writers of old... A multifaceted book that boggles the mind.
How did everything got glued together? Read on to find out.

Album review: "Gleam" by Etherine / Michael Weeks

Original website:

http://etherine.endmusik.com/

Album's page on Magnatune.com:

http://www.magnatune.com/artists/etherine

This is the second album by Etherine (real name: Michael Weeks). I've commented upon the first album, "24 Days", in my blog - the overall impression was that "24 Days" is a really good electronica album. "Gleam" continues the tradition.

Album review: "24 Days" by Etherine / Michael Weeks

Original website:

http://etherine.endmusik.com/

Album's page on Magnatune.com:

http://www.magnatune.com/artists/etherine

Etherine is the name of a musical project by Michael Weeks, and "24 Days" is the first album created under the project's "umbrella". The album was created as an experiment, the author wrote and recorded one song every day over a 24 days period. Despite the experimental character, it has cohesion and the inner "movement" of the album as you progress through the songs feels good and natural.

The name of the project could not have been chosen more properly - Etherine creates a music that's ethereal, pure and transparent. And there's something to it that puts it light years ahead of the typical, forced-ethereal, ambient or "new age" music.

LinuxWorld Expo 2004 San Francisco

Pictures from the Expo:

http://florin.myip.org/gallery2/v/lw2004/

Perhaps the previous LinuxWorld Expo events were a bit amateurish, or lacked focus, but not this one. This is probably the first LW Expo "with a theme". We all knew that Linux is here to stay, but perhaps what we weren't told so far was where exactly was going to be the penguin's lair. Thanks to the LWE 2004, we know that now. Ladies and gentlemen users of Linux, welcome to...

Perfect music, part I - the message

This is the first part of a series of articles about music ideals.

If you ask people at random "why do you listen to music?" the range of answers will vary a great deal.
The majority will probably answer "because it makes me feel good", implying an emotional satisfaction derived from the act of listening.
Other, maybe more refined listeners will answer "because it has beauty", the return here being one that belongs to the aesthetical domain.
Other people listen to music because it helps them concentrate while working, yet other people will utilize music to relax after a stressfull day, or perhaps to help alleviating certain ailments. In other cases music is a support for social activities (think about the carnival at Rio de Janeiro) while some other times the society uses music simply as a tool to put its member to work to accomplish certain goals (like the military music used to create a certain state of mind in soldiers). Also, music can be simply a decorative element, like when soft music is played in the background at various exhibitions or in restaurants or other public places.

In order to find the common thread to all these various situations, we have to look at how the music interacts with the listener.

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