WikiLeaks publishes 5,000,000 Stratfor emails

Dear Reader,

For a while WikiLeaks has been quiet. And you did not read anything about it here on diablog lately either. Now that’s changed.

Tonight, WikiLeaks gained followers on Twitter like never before.
Within about two hours more than 10,000 additional people followed WikiLeaks, bringing the total to now more than 1,378,934 followers.

Then WikiLeaks started a countdown leading to midnight GMT.

And then AnonymousIRC announced a leak, followed by WikiLeaks announcing to publish five Million (5,000,000) emails from Stratfor.

Stratfor was hacked in December 2011 supposedly by Antisec, a group associating with Anonymous.

You can read it all here:

After the hacking Stratfor and many others had claimed nothing of interest had been copied. I guess, we will find out soon, whether that’s true.

Stay tuned,
Engine Room

Happy 80th Birthday Johnny Cash

Dear Reader,

You haven’t heard from Glynsky this weekend.

There is an obvious reason for Glynsky’s absence:

Today is the 80th birthday of Johnny Cash, the “Man in Black”.

Thus, I imagine Glynsky sitting in the board room of Glynsky Towers, his remaining hair styled into a Duck’s Arse, listening to A Ring of Fire”,

and remembering those days when he had hope and cash.

Stay tuned,
Engine Room

865 years "Austria" – Beethoven’s 3rd Eroica

Dear Reader, Smiles, our beloved commentator at diablog, is a big fan of Austria and its capital, Vienna. So, we congratulate “Austria” today, because the name Austria was mentioned for the first time 865 years ago on February 25, 1147. We made fun of French and Italians and others before. Somehow we missed Austria. According to a common joke, the two most important accomplishments of Austrian foreign policy are:

  1. They made everyone believe, Hitler was German
  2. They made everyone believe, Beethoven was Austrian

Alas, Hitler became a German citizen 80 years ago on February 25: “1932 Adolf Hitler obtains German citizenship by naturalization, which allows him to run in the 1932 election for Reichspräsident.” But let’s move on to Ludwig v. Beethoven. There are many anecdotes about him, here is my favorite: Continue reading “865 years "Austria" – Beethoven’s 3rd Eroica”

Understanding the "Webkids" by Piotr Cersky via Rick Falkvinge

Dear Reader,

Thanks to Rick Falkvinge, who promoted the following text.

The author is Piotr Czerski (a pseudonym), also known as *c. He is a Polish poet and writer born in 1981. He graduated from Computer Science at the Technical University of Gdansk, and has also studied philosophy at the University of Gdansk.

To many older people, it might be an eye-opener. Certainly it helps understanding the “digital natives” better.

Links to translations can be found here If you can add one, please do.

Stay young,
Engine Room

There is probably no other word that would be as overused in the media discourse as ‘generation’. I once tried to count the ‘generations’ that have been proclaimed in the past ten years, since the well-known article about the so-called ‘Generation Nothing’; I believe there were as many as twelve. They all had one thing in common: they only existed on paper. Reality never provided us with a single tangible, meaningful, unforgettable impulse, the common experience of which would forever distinguish us from the previous generations. We had been looking for it, but instead the groundbreaking change came unnoticed, along with cable TV, mobile phones, and, most of all, Internet access. It is only today that we can fully comprehend how much has changed during the past fifteen years.

We, the Web kids; we, who have grown up with the Internet and on the Internet, are a generation who meet the criteria for the term in a somewhat subversive way. We did not experience an impulse from reality, but rather a metamorphosis of the reality itself. What unites us is not a common, limited cultural context, but the belief that the context is self-defined and an effect of free choice.

Writing this, I am aware that I am abusing the pronoun ‘we’, as our ‘we’ is fluctuating, discontinuous, blurred, according to old categories: temporary. When I say ‘we’, it means ‘many of us’ or ‘some of us’. When I say ‘we are’, it means ‘we often are’. I say ‘we’ only so as to be able to talk about us at all.

Continue reading “Understanding the "Webkids" by Piotr Cersky via Rick Falkvinge”

The City of Samba – Carnival in Rio – tilt shift

Dear Reader,

A long time ago – by diablog standards – in a post about giga pixel photography I mentioned Rio and promised to write more about it. Today I can deliver, and again the reason is photography.

This time it is not giga pixel, but something called tilt shift. My knowledge is zero, as I admitted here, maybe Pete can explain it.

But I do like the result a lot. The first time I saw it was the movie The Sandpit.

What is it this time? A movie about Rio de Janeiro, more precisely the Samba School Parade during Carnival 2012.
(Thanks to Glyn Moody for pointing it out.)

Glynsky enjoyed his pancakes on Fat Tuesday, now you can enjoy the parade. Here we go:

Continue reading “The City of Samba – Carnival in Rio – tilt shift”

nosey parker…

Dear diablog,

It is interesting that Engine Room seems to have elected himself as the arbiter of any ‘drinks’ discussion that takes place on our diablog. Probably because he accounts for 50% of world consumption.

How much does he really know!? He has obviously strong views on Scotch (about which he regales us all regularly) and on which, as it is not one of my favourite ‘alcohols’, I have very little knowledge other than, as earlier mentioned, I far prefer Irish whiskey to anything else of that type. He also seems keen on (and claims to know everything about) beer. Yuchhhh.

The final straw for me though was his obvious delight in sharing the bonkers idea of ‘blend your own’. BYO has been a byword for years when restaurants want to avoid carrying large stocks of wine, but Blend Your Own? Good grief, would anyone actually want to? What machinery do they use?


Who in their right mind would want to ‘Blend their Own’? If your favourite and best fitting jeans are Gap would you want to Make your Own? If the best dish in the best restaurant in your area is ‘Maitre Fabrice’s Rognons a ma Facon’ would you want to Mix your Own?


If Gaudy designed buildings are your thing would you Draw and build your Own? How much scorn would Engine Room pile on ‘Homemade’ wines – from say cauliflower – which are proudly presented to you as being ‘like a good burgundy’?


Is the geezer who has spent his life refining the taste and smell of his pride and joy to be replaced by people who have no idea of what he aimed at? Does his experience count for nothing? The people offering this nauseous service should be disposed of as quickly as their lack of taste and style.

Something about which I know a fair bit is Cognac – and as a word of warning, never use the word ‘brandy’ when you are in the Cognac region! The producers loathe it with a passion, though I honestly don’t know why unless it is because they associate it with any cheap alcohol. I must find out sometime.

Anyway, I am fortunate to have good friends in and near the town of Cognac and regularly visit them and local suppliers of the wonderful product. The whole essence (which I would assume applies to a Scotch or any other similar product ) of their success depends on their ‘nose’ and taste for you to prefer marque (see, even avoided brand!!) A to B.
Would I (could I) dare to not only Blend my Own but maybe with that of their biggest rival? They spend lifetimes perfecting what they do – growing the grapes, sleeping by the still, buying the bottles and printing their own labels.
Maybe it is time to pass on a little of what they have taught me over the years…

Continue reading “nosey parker…”

Kraftwerk 8 day concert at MoMA sold out within minutes

Dear Reader,

A few days ago the internet was quite full with announcements of an 8-day Kraftwerk event here at the MoMA. I am a fan of Kraftwerk and wrote about them here and here on diablog already October 18 and 23, 2010.

What you could see and experience is this (quote):

Over eight consecutive nights, MoMA presents a chronological exploration of the sonic and visual experiments of Kraftwerk with a live presentation of their complete repertoire in the Museum’s Marron Atrium.

Each evening consists of a live performance and 3-D visualization of one of Kraftwerk’s studio albums – Autobahn (1974), Radio-Activity (1975), Trans-Europe Express (1977), The Man-Machine (1978), Computer World (1981), Techno Pop (1986), The Mix (1991), and Tour de France (2003) – in the order of their release.

Kraftwerk will follow each evening’s album performance with additional compositions from their catalog, all adapted specifically for this exhibition. This reinterpretation showcases Kraftwerk’s historical contributions to and contemporary influence on global sound and image culture.

I say “could” because obviously, the ticket seller, ShowClix, had no idea what they were doing.
The tickets went on sale online at noon today. And the shows – all eight – were sold out within minutes. While tenths of thousands of people where still queuing online in the ticket system. Over 50,000 according to Showclix.

When growing impatient, they took to twitter and complained. Within seconds #kraftwerk was a trending topic.

And then people got to see this:

Continue reading “Kraftwerk 8 day concert at MoMA sold out within minutes”