Tag Archives | Video

It’s a sci-fi trope, but are “beings of pure energy” really possible?

“Beings of pure energy” are oft-used tropes in sci-fi. They have no physical bodies, tend to be “enlightened,” and transcend time and space. But, is this transcendent state possible? Xaq Rzetelny at Ars Technica investigates:

If you’ve experienced science fiction in any of its many forms, chances are you’ve encountered “energy beings.” Unlike the other aliens in sci-fi, they have no ‘physical’ bodies but rather exist as beings of pure energy. They’re usually able to flit about the Universe at will and often demonstrate great abilities befitting their advanced, ultra-evolved state.

They are also typically portrayed as more powerful, more enlightened, and possessing a deeper understanding of the universe. It’s almost a given in most science fiction that sufficiently advanced civilizations will eventually develop this way. Converting themselves into beings of pure energy seems like the ultimate stage in the development of any civilization. It’s a ubiquitous trope—as if “pure energy” is our own mass cultural idea of humankind’s far future.

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CIA Global Video Program: Soviet Perceptions of the USA

Overview of Soviet perceptions of the United States, created by CIA’s Global Video Program. Reagan was interested in the subject and wrote how important it is to see “how others see us.” To learn more, read Ronald Reagan: Intelligence and the Cold War on CIA.gov’s Historical Collections Division page at http://go.usa.gov/XWQ.

h/t Mother Jones.

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Live Dodo or Hoax?

This is probably a hoax (actually I’m about 99% sure it is). But I always get a kick out of hearing about the newest cryptozoology findings.

This film was allegedly shot in Costa Rica. It appears to capture a bird very similar in appearance to a Dodo. Unfortunately, the filmmakers should have done their research. Dodo birds never lived on Costa Rica, they were endemic to the Mauritius island. A bit of an oversight, eh?

h/t Unexplained Mysteries.

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The Ideological Babelfish

Are you tired of the communication problems endemic to political or religious dialogue? Frustrated about talking past each other in political debates? Have no fear… Our wizards of innovation and science have a solution for you! This product promises to revolutionize the way that we pedantically micro-analyze eachothers linguistic choices for the rest of all time! It will save the world!

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Radian: Musique Inconcrete

Austria’s Radian is a trio featuring Martin Brandlmayr, Stefan Nemeth, and John Norman, all of which have been known for their playing in a variety of arrangements (bands, duos, solos), with music often improvisational in nature. Radian, however, is a cold-calculated authentic band, with emphasis on the actual songs rather than free-form improvisation. Their third album, last year’s Juxtaposition is their second for Thrill Jockey and the group have finally made their rounds of live dates. The Eye was fortunate to capture them in a very special setting, the Goethe Institut in Boston, and are thankful for the great interview with these talented musicians.

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Paul Metzger and His Banjo

Instrumental alchemist Paul Metzger improvises hauntingly beautiful music on his self-modified 23-string banjo. Over the past 30 years, he’s honed a sound that’s percussive, rustic, ornate and entirely original. Besides creating music, Metzger is also committed to saving it — through the process of bringing old instruments back to life. He also has a gift for constructing new instruments out of unusual materials, creating pieces never before imagined.

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