Level Six, Baby!

The Dante’s Inferno Test has banished you to the Sixth Level of Hell – The City of Dis!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:

Level Score
Purgatory (Repenting Believers) Very Low
Level 1 – Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers) Very Low
Level 2 (Lustful) Very High
Level 3 (Gluttonous) High
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious) Moderate
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy) Moderate
Level 6 – The City of Dis (Heretics) Very High
Level 7 (Violent) Very High
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers) High
Level 9 – Cocytus (Treacherous) High

Take the Dante’s Inferno Hell Test

Thanks, Echidne!

Day-Glo Pterodactyl

I so rock. Written in Perl, I managed to write a script that will output a good-looking Mandelbrot set. This version actually greates a PNG and outputs it to the user, rather than the old version which would output a massive HTML file full of transparent gifs with coloured backgrounds. I’m planning some more customizability, too: colours and so on. Go me!

Rorshach test on fire

A Grammy for Web Music

In case you don’t read Slashdot:

For what may be the first time ever, an artist has won a Grammy for an album that was never sold in stores. Jazz artist Maria Schneider just won a Grammy for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album” for an album that was only ever sold online. The really cool part? Even before she started recording Schneider had fully funded the $87K price tag on the production, thanks to ArtistShare, an online music delivery site. And she is thrilled at not having to shell out wads of cash to distributors and the RIAA. From the CNet article:

“This record cost $87,000 to make. I already made my money back,” she said. “I’m not splitting the profits with the distributor, the record store and the record company. It’s working so well for me,”

Now that’s what I’m talking about. The internet is a medium that allows artists to distribute their music broadly without having to rely on the RIAA cartel. Schneider realized she didn’t have to go the old route of sending her album out through the usual channels, paying a million intermediaries along the way. You can buy the album for $16.95 US — Schneider is printing a limited run of 10000 prints. Of course, she didn’t have to charge $17 for it; she probably could have easily gone down to $12 or so. She would still be making more per disc than releasing it through the usual channels, but she’d gain an even greater following than she already has. But I guess $17 isn’t too too bad.

If the RIAA does eventually crumble, it will be partly thanks to sites like ArtistShare, and artists like Maria Schneider. However, the biggest thing in the way of that happening is the legal power the RIAA wields: the power to lobby in laws to their liking and to bully people. The american legal system needs to be changed to prevent that sort of thing, and of course the current administration is working to encourage it. Bah. The next four years are going to suck.

Am I the only one…

… who hears “transmuters” instead of “transmitters” in Adam Curry’s podcast intro? Perhaps I’ve been playing D&D for too long.

“Okay, so we want the illusionists round the back. They should start out of sight. Put the evokers up front and the abjurers behind them, and see if we can get some enchanters to back them up.”
“Check. Now, where do you want us to put the transmuters?”
“Transmuters? We don’t need no steenkin’ transmuters!”