Sunday 12 January 2014


"Her" movie still via The New Yorker.

The Samantha Test. Brian Christian in The New Yorker writes about “Her,” the new film by Spike Jonze. A movie situated in the “slight future"—a world just at the change point when artificial intelligence has become capable of interacting with humans more or less seamlessly. Something that reminds him -and us- of Joseph Weizenbaum, a professor of computer science at M.I.T., that in 1966 wrote a computer program called Eliza, "which was designed to engage in casual conversation with anybody who sat down to type with it". Read this super interesting article in The New Yorker. E.T.P. 7'

You can also read Who is 'Her'? James Franco's review in VICE. E.T.P. 7'

Illustration by Matthew Roberts via Slate.

Rebecca Schuman in Slate review two books that attempt to capture the 'gaunt specter of modernism and make him talk' in The Ghosts of Kafka Present, this is how its starts: "Franz Kafka has been dead for nearly 90 years, which I suppose has given him ample time to get very good at haunting people. Such as, for example, Susan Bernofsky, author of a fastidious new translation of The Metamorphosis, and Jay Cantor, whose provocative story collection Forgiving the Angel dedicates itself to the gaunt specter of modernism. The books express their authors’ continuing fascination with Kafka from nominally opposite sides of the literary spectrum. And yet both of these books want desperately to bring a dead man back to life, so that he can explain himself, so that he can (metaphorically) finish novels that break off midsentence, so that he can solve the mystery of his own existence. That they cannot succeed is not only no mark against these two fascinating books but works to underscore exactly what drove both authors to chase his ghost in the first place." Read full article in Slate, totally recommended. E.T.P. 9'

Woody's Other Family Tree (fragment) via The New York Times.

The New York Times presents a very peculiar Woody Allen's alternative family tree that includes his influences, muses, heirs, and 'adopted kids'. The infographic includes some well known characters always associated with Allen like Groucho Marx, Sigmund Freud, Diane Keaton and Noah Baumbach; and also some less obvious ones like Joan Rivers, Chris Rock and The Simpsons. The map it's fun to watch, although I feel that they overindulged Lena Duhnam by saying that she is the new Woody Allen. I like her, don't get me wrong, but she is not the new Woody Allen. Luckily the new Woody Allen is still Woody Allen.  Have a look at full map in The New York Times. E.T.P 10'.

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