R.I.P. Writer Gabriel García Márquez

Gabriel García Márquez, Literary Pioneer, Dies at 87

Mr. García Márquez was considered the supreme exponent, if not the creator, of the literary genre known as magic realism, in which the miraculous and the real converge. In his novels and stories, storms rage for years, flowers drift from the skies, tyrants survive for centuries, priests levitate and corpses fail to decompose. And, more plausibly, lovers rekindle their passion after a half century apart.

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The Brady Mysteries: Casual Racism For Fun

I came across this extraordinary collection of dime novels (actually they cost a nickel, but let’s not quibble) on Google Books, called Secret Service, featuring the exploits of Old and Young King Brady.

Here’s some information first from two sites:

Old King Brady
Public Domain Super Heroes: Old King Brady

According to this site, it was published from 1899 to 1925 — 1,374 issues in all! — which has to be some sort of record.

Out of that huge run, Google Books has one hundred issues. Of course I grabbed all of them.

What no site really mentions is just how absolutely racist this publication was.

It was basically these two white guys beating the shit out of Chinese, Blacks, “Hindoos,” dwarves(!), and Mexicans — with the stray white guy here and there.

I’d never seen anything like this before in my life. Cover after cover with non-whites as the villains. And this was considered mainstream entertainment!

After the break, some of the jaw-dropping covers.

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TV: Fargo, Episode 1

FargoS01E0100001

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Chuwi Has New iPad Mini Clones

At the 2014 Spring Edition of the Hong Kong Electronics Fair, Chuwi displayed two non-working new iPad Mini clones based on the 64-bit Intel Bay Trail-T platform [Google Translate]:

ChuwiHKEF2014iPMC001

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Aoson iPad Mini Clones

Aoson revealed two new iPad Mini clones at the 2014 Spring Edition Hong Kong Electronics Fair [Google Translate].

Both the M785 and M787T share these characteristics: 7.85-inch IPS screen at 1024 x 768, 1GB RAM, 8GBs storage, 2MP front and back cameras.

M785:

AosonM78501

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The Music Video That Needed To Be Made

A treat for Gerry Anderson fans of Thunderbirds and Terrahawks!

Someone has finally done the music video that needed to be made.

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The Corporate Abyss

New Yorkers, Take Back Your City

This is not normal. It is state-sponsored, corporate-driven and turbo-charged.

Manhattan has become a Corporate Abyss.

There’s no place in midtown where you can place your eyes that doesn’t hit a corporate logo.

The Blade Runner-like ads are just the tip of the iceberg.

The Bloomberg push to “clean up” things have led to a city-corporate one-two punch driving out small businesses for the sake of national brands.

I’m newly disgusted every time I venture into Manhattan. I’m totally disoriented, not finding familiar landmark stores that were once present for ages. Now replaced by shiny national corporate brands and national brand wannabes.

And it’s encroaching on Chinatown too, perhaps the last part of Manhattan that has any actual human life remaining in it.

I don’t know how it can be changed. But it has to be stopped.

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Amazon Smartphone Sneak Peek

After years of rumors: This is Amazon’s smartphone

I’d be surprised if it was branded as a Kindle. This would be much more: “All of Amazon in Your Pocket.”

This is probably the biggest move ever made by Amazon and should really scare the living shit out of everyone who’s wide awake. It has repercussions that I’m not even going to try to list because that list would be huge.

The 3D is, of course, differentiation — but that could have vast implications for all UIs as well. People talk about kids and tablets encountering paper, trying to pinch-zoom photos. What happens when kids experience the 3D Amazon UI and have to go back to flat?

From a technical standpoint. it’ll be interesting to see if the infrared cameras work in bright sunlight. There’s more to those IR cameras than a 3D effect. Imagine your eyes being tracked to call up a contact and dial a number — hands free. Or to scroll through Twitter — hands-free.

The eye-tracking will probably send data to Amazon to tweak things — and to measure the effectiveness of ads. There’s a big privacy issue that will blow up.

It’ll probably sell out the first day it’s offered for sale.

Previously here:

This Is Why Amazon Will Do A Phone
The Amazon Phone Rumor Again
How Amazon Could Make Its Phone Free

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The People Of The Abyss

Go look. Just go look. There are no words I can add.

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Filed under Reference, Collapse, Pricing, Video, Writing, Marketing, Pottersville, Movie, Fraud

iFive Mini 4: New Information

From this point on, I will stop preceding it with “Retina-class” since the iFive Mini 4 designation makes it clear this is a new generation of tablet.

From Weibo’s FindFive account, we have two new photos:

iFiveMini4FindFive01

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