31.1.08

KDE 4.1

The full release plan and the feature plan for KDE 4.1 have been published, with the official release date July 29th, 2008.


I'm not interested in migrating from KDE 3.x to KDE 4.0, but I'm anxiously waiting for KDE 4.1. Finally, we have a release date. More info at http://smallr.net/KDE4_1-release-sched.

30.1.08

More news about Metaplace... tomorrow

Metaplace [1] is basicly a platform to easily create a Virtual World. The aim is to make it easy for anyone to create a simple Virtual World (like, for instance, create just a virtual room and put it in your MySpace profile), but also an extensible framework that lets you make real complex stuff. Theoreticly - at least - it is flexible enough to make exactly the kind of VW you want, putting the limits just in your imagination. An alpha is running for a while for a few selected people that had to sign an NDA - so we don't really know much about it. In less than a week, 10,000 people applied to that alpha (including me), but only a selected few had access to it. Now, some questions are arising, including:
  • When can we expect Metaplace to reach beta phase?
  • How soon do Areae expect that a new round of Alpha testers will be let in?
  • When will the NDA be lifted allowing the alpha testers to tell us all the good things they know?

These, and more, are going to be answered in a "Developer Chat" tomorrow at 5:00pm PST (9:00am GMT), in... a Metaplace :-) I'll try to be there [2], and you?

[1] - http://mindboosternoori.blogspot.com/search/label/Metaplace
[2] - http://www.metaplace.com/

29.1.08

Trend Micro sues Barracuda

Talking about software patents... Trend Micro sues Barracuda, over a patent on filtering mails with spam.
Disgusting: http://smallr.net/trend-vs-barracuda

Nokia buys Trolltech: something to worry about?

You probably know by now: Nokia is buying Trolltech [1]. I didn't talk about this yesterday, besides releasing a "crap" shout as I read the news for the first time. I read a lot, specially from folks from Nokia, Trolltech and KDE. I'm somewhat confident that this might not be as bad as it first seemed. Still, I have two major issues with this aquisition:

  • Nokia actively lobbies in favour of Software Patents. This might not be an issue for now, but a culture clash might happen soon. Gladfully, QT is licensed with GPLv3, but yet, this can be a showstopper for both FreeQT and KDE.
  • Nokia have a no Ogg, pro DRM position regarding HTML5. If they somewhat forces this to Trolltech (instead of doing the right thing, supporting Ogg, rejecting DRM), once again this can be a showstopper.

What this really means, in fact, is that this two issues concern me and a lot of others - and that they should be answered before this aquisition ends... or else there's some uneasyness Trolltech and Nokia will have to deal with.

[1] - http://www.nokia.com/A4136001?newsid=1185531

28.1.08

Interview: Ambience


Ambience, a musical project hard to define, but allways around the most darkest sounds of the ambiental movement. In the end of 2007, they gave us their fourth album. "As Dez Esperas", via Nekrogoat Heresy Productions. After listening to this excelent album, one of the bests of 2007 and, for me, the best Ambience album, I had to know more. So, wearing a journalist coat from Lusitanium, I went to the dungeons and made an interview to M., the guy behind this one-man-band.

If you want to read the interview in Portuguese, go to http://smallr.net/entrevista-ambience. Here is a rough translation to English. Either way, you may want to read this while listening to the actual music. You can listen to the first track of this new album in the label's myspace at http://www.myspace.com/nekrogoatheresyproductions. If you want to listen more than that, you can download "Funeral", its third album, for free at http://www.archive.org/details/Ambience_Funeral.

What's the motivation behind Ambience?

The question is more complex than it seems. First, the intention was to make music that would be relaxing to myself. After that, it worked as a scapegoat from the whole metal projects I was involved in. Since this would only depend on myself, I could do something when I wanted or felt like, and that was much more enthusiastic. And productive too. Nowadays, this is my most important project because it works somewhat like an exorcism that I wasn't able to preview at first, that results like something terapeutic. What was made just to play around, ended up like a tool to exorcise what I have inside.

Looking behind to the whole work of Ambience, there was an enhancement until "Funeral", the third Ambience album, that was released in a digital format only and with a Creative Commons license. What made you do the release like that?

Well, I see "Funeral" as the second album, since the first release was a split with KULT, but thinking about it, I made it as if I was making an whole album, so I can accept who considers it as such. Regarding your question, "Funeral" was released that way just because I didn't felt like looking for a label, Void Rekordz had closed some time ago, and also because that work was used as the soundtrack for 5 texts I wrote on Deviant Art, that makes part of a story that I hope to release as a book. It was something I just decided in that moment and since the texts were and are freely available online, I thought it would make sense to release the soundtrack for them in the same way.

2007 brought us a new Ambience work, "As Dez Esperas". This work was again released in a CD-R format, this time from Nekrogoat Heresy Productions. How this oportunity appeared?

I met João Pedro from Nekrogoat since we swapped some Dungeons Records material, an underground record label I'm slowly closing. From that, he started to have some interest in releasing some metal projects that I jad and we made some contacts with some musicians he knew, but, as before, it ended not working. In the meantime, I talked with him about Ambience, he listened to the new work and he was interesting in releasing it. For me it was awsome since I was thinking about releasing it in archive.org again or something simmilar.

This album brings a new element to Ambience music, almost marking a new phase. Besides to cohese dark ambient that you made ourselves familiar with, it has now a really heavy drone, dark and slow. Do you consider this a new Ambience phase, or was it only a experience this way written?

Nice question. Honestly, I have no clue. Conciously I would really like to reach that relaxing point, the inicial target. This last work is absolutely the oposite, in such a way that I can't stand to listen to it. I'm extremely proud of what I made, but I admit that it's not the music you'll be listening everytime, and that you need a certain mindset and body to enjoy it, trying not to be to pretencious. I already started working on a new Ambience track in the few free time I have and perheaps I'll go into a completely different new path, perheaps more tradicional in terms of the instruments to use, I don't know, it's something that is still open. It will be something instinctive and it might go in the same veign, or be something completely different. Only waiting to see.

This album music comes with a strong aesthetics, in both a visual an lyrical level. It was a developing concept, or one of the parts precedes the other?

Once again, it just came this way. I had a defined concept and also some ideas for the artwork. I asked some help to two people to do something related to the ideas I had for the texts and images, but both took way too long so I ended asking two other persons in a more free way. I gave the music to Sérgio (http://punhal.deviantart.com), that is an excelent poet, simply genious. I gave him the music and only told him "listen and write". And he did it, and in a really small timeframe. After that I have André those texts and the artwork elements and he made the paintings you can see in the artwork. I could never predict something like this, both parts were way too spontaneous, thanks to the huge creativity of both.

After a Split with Kult, this time the album "As Dez Esperas" has one remix from that musical project. How did this happen?

I had already told him I wanted him to work with something I did, and this also ended happening spontaneously. I made him listen the track, he asked me a copy, remixed it and it ended substantiantly different. It was that difference that made me want that track in the album, it works like a bonus track that complements the album and that makes all the sense there, like "Dez Esperas" part 2 ("Dez Esperas" translates to Ten Waitings).


What are the influences to Ambience?

In the beggining a huge influence was Morcheeba, in the instrumental level, it's a kind of sound that makes me relax entirely. Chill out and some electronic music also, that those were influences that never jumped (I think) into the end result, because since the beggining this was more like something that came from inside me than something I wanted to do to make it sound like this or that. Everything I listen ends being an influence, specially my Metal side. I think that this is the work where you'll feel it more, mainly in the atmosphere that is thicker this time, almost extreme.

The first Ambience works are already impossible to get... Are there plans to re-release that material?

Not from myself. Only if someone's interested in re-release it or give it a new graphical look. But I have no plans for it.

What will give us Ambience in the future?

I have no idea. I hope to keep the release rythm of one release per year, but lately my personal life and work aren't letting me to dedicate what I should to the project. First well see a new release in 2008, but I still have no idea of how will it be, but the target is to give something more of myself in a musical way.




I hope you liked this interview. If you're interested in buying this Ambience album, just go to http://www.myspace.com/nekrogoatheresyproductions and order it: it's an excelent album for just 4€ in CD format, or 3€ in Cassette Tape.

New-Rap: a new generation


From my whole collection of music, I don't have one Rap or Hip-Hop song at all - not that I recall of, at least. Sure, I have some music, mainly experimental, that uses lots of rap-style elements, but that's all. I don't think I like Rap or Hip-Hop. I can see the difference from good rap to bad rap, I understand its art and value, but... It's just not for me, I guess.

Now, today I'll talk you about something else - let's call it... er... new-rap. Probably this phenomenon is already known, studied and this new style has a name - another name. Just, it's something not known, and I don't know how to call it. As a matter of fact, the thing that makes this interesting is that - without purpose - this style is mainly unknown, specially from the music industry. But if they don't get this, they're dead.

Talking about new-rap is not talking about a music style - only. Talking about new-rap is talking about a new generation of people and how do they work, feel and deal with music.

Welcome to the world you usually avoid to see. They are young. They walk funny. They talk loud and in a strange dialect. They are everywhere on the streets and everyone knows, but usually don't think about them as a group - as a phenomenon. People are usually warry of them: from the "who's this funny guy" to the almost unconscious feeling that "this weird guy might steal me in a minute". As a matter of fact they probably walk with more money in their wallet than the one you would feel safe walking with, but you don't know that. They know they make you feel exactly how you do, but they don't give a shit. They're surprisingly friendly - to anyone. They talk really strange, but they usually don't curse, unless there's a specific curse-word that entered their dialect. They don't smoke. They don't take coffee. They don't do drugs. They only drink alcohol at parties. They drive a lot - and race - but they never do it in public places, they never drive after drinking alcohol, they all do safe sex. They're different.

They all have high-technology in their pockets: expensive cellphones. None of those cellphones have any software you ever seen. Really. They don't really have a concept for music, they live music. Sometimes while they're talking a cellphone just pops from their strange pockets and some loud music starts playing. They act as there's no music there - they just feel it and use it as to mark the rythm of their actions.

They all make music. All of them. Their lifes are basicly about three things: cars, parties and music. Not that they have a concept for music. They don't know what a composer is. It's really weird, but most of them don't know what a "band" means, they think that "a band" or "a CD" or "some sound" is the same thing. They don't have a clue about what intellectual property is. They make music, using voices, hardware and samples. They don't know that they make music. They don't know the difference between the music they composed and the music their friend did. For them, there are two types of music: the one they have and the one they still don't. They don't consider what you consider music as music. Not even well-known rappers. For them, those guys just make sounds. As they put it, "sounds are everywhere, but quality sound isn't in what you can record, is on what others recorded". What they mean with this is that, for them, a Bach 1 hour CD is the same as turning on TV in a random channel and recording (losslessly) one hour of the sound stream from that TV channel. As a matter of fact, they prefer the later, since they have more variety of sounds. Sounds are important for them: they all use them to make samples. I head a music that used a brilliant sample that I had to think about for several minutes until relating the result with the original: a 3 minutes or so kids song was reduced - in a brilliant way - to a 3 secs sample. They use everything. They mix and remix. "What? You're crazy, no one owns sounds!" It's their reaction to one comment. They were surprised, I was weird to them. They do AWSOME music. Really. They share it with everyone. It's the whole purpose of music - sharing thoughts, ideas. I listen an astonishing lenghly discussion about a 30 secs intro to a music someone they knew did. And I bet that if you buy 100 rap CD's from a CD store and mix those tracks with the new-rap thing they're doing, they'll naturaly call their tracks as music, the others as sound sources. It's a new style - a new generation.

Now, I know some other movements happening, for other music styles, for other kinds of kids. Not every have something in common with this. Many are different. The real question here is that, if you talk with this guys, you'll understand the way they live. You see beauty in some stuff. You don't see anything wrong. Then you go home, yet startled. And start thinking about what they do. They don't "record", they share. They don't buy music or sounds. They don't know what intellectual property is. According to our laws, I bet everyone of them "should" be in jail. They're happy. They aren't violent. They don't harm anyone. They share. They have true friends. They are humans. They live.

Who's wrong?

Virtual Worlds: Pass, Present and Future

So, last saturday I talked in a conference about "Virtual Worlds: Pass, Present and Future", and, as promissed, I've now published the presentation online (in Portuguese): http://noori.abismo.org/VW.pdf. Soon enough the organization will publish a video from each presentation, and I'll let you know as soon as it is available.

Curiously, while travelling on train, returning to Lisbon, I decided to read some of those papers we usually download to read later but never find the time to do so. The choice couldn't be better: www.mud.co.uk/richard/makplac.pdf is a Richard Bartle paper called "Making Places", which argues that building Virtual Worlds is like making places, and justifies it historicly, from text-based virtual worlds to 3D worlds of nowadays (somewhat like I intended to do, but he's good doing it ;-)). The only thing that I don't agree with him is exactly in the conclusion: while I totally agree with him that the conceptual differences between text-based virtual worlds and 3D VW's is the existence of sprites and instances (that appeared to solve some representation issues, well described in his paper), Bartle thinks that this new concepts (sprites and instances) should be explored in which ways can they be explored. My oppinion is different: we should focus in researching ways to avoid the need of stuff like instance'ing. Would you imagine Second Life with instances? Surely not, because it wouldn't feel right. There's something there to fix, not to exploit.

Nightmares

Dear subconscious,

Next time you decide to mess with me with a nightmare, please consider using some gore horror movie set up, it would surely be less afflictive than tonight's present.

Hell of a day,
Yourse trully.

26.1.08

Second Life and Mono

http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Mono_beta_FAQ: finally there's a date for us to replace LSL with Mono: 30 January 2008.

Social 3D Worlds

I'm now attending to "Social 3D Worlds" conference, where I'll see two workshops about Second Life, then do a presentation about "Virtual Worlds: pass, present and future", and finally see Paula's presentation about Education in Virtual Worlds. I hope it will be nice, but considering what I've seen for now, it will be.

For those not here, the organization told me they'll try to capture the presentations and workshops as video and then put them at their website: http://student.dei.uc.pt/~pgms/sites/social3dworlds/.

BTW, Alcides, your cellphone has bluetooth enabled and open O:-)

24.1.08

Tecnonov com nova data

Boa tarde,

Infelizmente a data para o Tecnonov 2008 teve de ser alterada: assim, passa a ocorrer no próximo dia 5 de Abril.

Por favor actualizem os vossos calendários, e obrigado pela compreensão.

23.1.08

Last.fm will pay to artists too!



This image (click to enlarge) is a screenshot I just took from Last.fm's Music Manager, the place where labels and artists manage their accounts. It is all about the new features they are doing in this music social network, which they call "Free the Music", and that you can read about in http://blog.last.fm/2008/01/23/free-the-music.

Basicly, a lot (heck, virtually every) music on Last.fm will be fully-streamable (major labels tracls will be too!), and artists will directly get ads revenue when their music is streamed (somewhat like Reverbnation's deal). Cool! Read the blog post for more details.

UPDATE:

Here's the numbers, taken from the agreement:

7.4 Last.fm shall pay the following royalties in respect of the transmission of Your Content as permitted by You:

· for the free radio service, 10% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the free radio service.

· for the personalised premium radio service, the greater of 10% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the personalised radio service or US $0.0005 for each complete transmission on the personalised radio service of a track which forms part of Your Content transmitted on the Last.fm service.

· for the free on-demand service, 30% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the free on-demand service.

· for the premium on-demand service, the greater of 30% of the Share of Last.fm’s Net Revenue from the premium on-demand service or US $0.005 for each complete transmission on the prepaid or subscription on-demand service of a track which forms part of Your Content transmitted on the Last.fm service.

and
7.8 The minimum royalty amount payable pursuant to Clause 7.9 is either US $10.00, £5.00, €7.00 or ¥1000 depending on your local currency (the “Minimum Royalty”). Where the amount in any given month does not amount to the Minimum Royalty, the sums due to You shall accrue until the amount owing is at least the Minimum Royalty.


A lot more official info at http://www.last.fm/forum/6666/_/371603.

22.1.08

"Social 3D Worlds" conference in Portugal

This post is just to let you know that there's a new event happening in Portugal, this time about Virtual Worlds. "Social 3D Worlds" is happening for the first time in Coimbra, Portugal already this next Saturday (26th of January), and I'll be there, speaking about "Virtual Worlds: Pass, Present and Future".

Check more about this event at http://social3dworlds.dei.uc.pt/. See you there!

Green Party says: sharing is not stealing

I've told you before how much I hate that "piracy is stealing" bullshit we're forced to see everytime we are paying to those guys who are lying to you: for instance when you go to the cinema, you're forced to see a stupid video like this ( http://www.youtube.com/v/l5SmrHNWhak&rel=1 )...



Of course that, being such a lie as this, and for so many time, people started to create their own rebutal clips, like this ( http://www.youtube.com/v/MRVHUbrbEUA&rel=1 )...



But what's cool now is that there's a new video out there, with the slogan "I wouldn't steal", that is a part of a Green Party campain [1]! Let's hope this will have some political attention...



(This post has embeded flash videos, if you don't see them and don't want to click in each one individually, consider seeing the post in the blog and not in your RSS reader)

[1] - http://www.iwouldntsteal.net/

noise music

Yesterday I had dinner with Nuno Nunes, and in conversation we ended talking about Noise (the music genre). At the end, he asked me to tell him about some noise acts so he can explore more Noise. Instead of telling him about some artists, I decided instead to make this post, so others can also know about my actual recommendations in the noise music scene.
I guess I should do post simmilar to this one for a lot of other musical genres... Well, maybe in the future :-)

21.1.08

Marilyn Manson talks about the record industry

Last 17th Marilyn Manson gave an exclusive interview to MansonUSA [1], which I recommend you to read. If not, at least take this comments he made about the record industry:

With the recording industry in shambles, certain high profile artists such as Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails have favored a strictly online venue to selling their music. Certain artists are providing people the option of paying what they want for a record. How do you feel about the current state of the music industry and this new approach to selling music?


I think that Prince really pioneered that concept the best but it just wasn’t at the time of the technology and of the audience to understand it. I think he was the first. I wish I could have that luxury and that's the difference. Radiohead and NIN have been freed from their slavery of the record label. I don’t have that luxury. I have a record contract. Anyone who is just starting a band can go make a website and sell their own song. Someone that has been making music for years would love to do that but they just can't because they are under a record contract. That's the one thing I hope people on the outside can see. I would love nothing more than to do that - not even because of the money, the record industry, or specifically my record company. I know you've heard Trent complain it's the same record company, but I'm not going to fight for the same reasons. I just don’t think they understand what to do with me and I think they've proven that very well. I think that they always want to take what I give them and make it a watered down version. It’s not what I give them and I think that then they're surprised about that. First of all, you can water down what I do and give it to the radio or MTV and they are still not going to walk away with a good taste in their mouth. I try to explain to them to just give people what they want, which is what I created. Smells Like Children is a good example. I can’t give you enough examples and that's why my soul has been removed from the whole concept of making music videos. They tear out everything that people want. They don't understand that I wouldn’t be who I am if I wasn’t me. They want to tone me down so that I can be more like new bands that they’ve shown my record to and said, “Be like this, but not so scary.”

It’s a fucked up world. I'm not bitter about it, just tired of it. That was half the reason I didn’t want to make music anymore. I'm not discouraged because I think, first of all, my motivation has never been to make money. It's been to be able to do this, have this be how I survive and how I live. I never asked for much and I just want to do this and enjoy it. The way that I enjoy music the most is performing live and record companies can’t put their hands on that. That makes me happy, so that's one thing that really makes me smile when it’s all over with. I can control that. The only people that can stop me are the Police. I have no idea what’s going to happen next, I really don’t. I'm going to make the most extreme possible record that they could never want from me. It's going to be the best thing and they'll figure out every way possible for it to not be a hit. But have I ever wanted to be a hit? No! Who wants to be right next to, Rhianna and Jessica Simpson? I don’t want that. I want people to hear it. I’m not trying to pretend I want to be the secret that's in the closet. People come to the show and that is something these other bands that are on MTV that play one video a day don’t know about. That's something that you really have to earn and that's what fans are really about. That’s something that I’m really happy about and I’m very lucky that I have that much dedication from people who like what I do.


As for me, I'm still not buying his stuff while he's under that hideous record contract.

[1] - http://www.mansonusa.com/everyone_will_suffer_now/

17.1.08

Palco Principal: the Portuguese Reverbnation?

They told us before that they would be the Portuguese SellABand [1], and, while waiting, they now announce they'll be the Portuguese Reverbnation [2].

Let's hope this future is soon...

[1] - http://mindboosternoori.blogspot.com/2007/04/takeoff-review.html
[2] - http://www.palcoprincipal.com/blog/2008/01/17/optimus-patrocina-players-do-palco-principal/

Piracy?

They call it piracy, I call it bullshit. This year I still only bought 3 CD's, but, as a compensation, 4 other CD's were sold thanks to me. Three of those four were sold not only thanks to me, but also thanks to piracy. Two of them were bought from someone that didn't use to buy music for years. Piracy? Bullshit.

15.1.08

Your music consumption

Please, satisfy my curiosity and answer to this poll: how many physical music albums did you buy in 2007? Thanks!



(If you don't see the poll, please take it at http://www.polldaddy.com/p/233863/)

14.1.08

Best 2007 albums

Here's my list of "best 2007 albums", meaning "albums released in 2007 I got and definitively recommend you to do the same". This doesn't mean that these are the only 2007 albums I got and would buy again... But hey, even this way I feel the list is a little longer than usual...

Merankorii - Melencolia III
Dismal - Miele Dal Salice (CD Limited deluxe edition)
Antimatter - Leaving Eden
Bardic Wisdom / Merankorii - Prose of the Ancient Times / Sanguine
V/A - Falésia
Tenhi - Folk Aesthetic 1996-2006
V/A - Fairy World 3
Moorlandt - Waiting Again
The Allstars Project - Your Reward... A Bullet
Ambience - As Dez Esperas
V/A - Livre Trânsito #2 - Sons de Outubro'07
V/A - Winter of Dissonance
Corde Oblique - Volontà d'Arte

13.1.08

A small round of links

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117978756.html?categoryId=16&cs=1: EMI is going to exit IFPI;

http://www.donhopkins.com/home/micropolis/: Micropolis, a new name for Simcity, is now available with a GPL3 license;

http://joaomartins.entropiadesign.org/2008/01/13/brilhante/:
(this is in Portuguese) Microsoft tells "Bright Partners" they are their "partner of the year". If you check out what did they do, you'll realize that their work was to inject Microsoft into the Portuguese Public Administration. No wonder they got a price...

12.1.08

Masters in OpenSource Software in Portugal?

I've just read [1] that there's an attempt to create in Portugal a Masters course in OpenSource Software! The attempt is from DCTI - ISCTE. WOW!

[1] - http://smallr.net/master-OSS

11.1.08

iSecurity, dia 18 de Janeiro iSecurity

Are you in Portugal? You're interested in Security?

iSecurity is a Portuguese security conference that will happen in Coimbra next 18th of January. You can check more about the event at http://lage.dei.uc.pt/~isecurity/, but here's a teaser:

  • MalWare Analisys
  • Security in Mac OS
  • Solaris Security Features
  • Cartão de Cidadão

DRM: Send a letter to EU

As I've told you [1] a couple of days ago, Viviane Reding, European Union commissioner for information society and media, issued a report sanctioning a "transparent" DRM framework for the EU. This irresponsible and senseless report comes just a day before Sony BMG announced that they would join Warner Music Group, EMI, and Vivendi's Universal Music Group in selling DRM-free music downloads in the United States.

If, as me, you oppose this attempt by the EU to sanction, promote, or endorse DRM technology platforms, please sign this letter [2] and let Europe know you're against DRM!

[1] - http://smallr.net/drm-EU
[2] - http://www.defectivebydesign.org/EU_Letter

Workshops Audiência Zero

You're in Portugal? Do you want to attend to some free software workshops in creative areas, with software like Blender, GIMP, Inkscape, Audacity, Ardour, and so on? Check out some of them for this first trimester of 2008 in Porto: http://www.audienciazero.org/cct

I missed the audio one in December, but I'll try to attend this time...

today I'm sick, tomorrow I'll be okay

I hate being sick. I was supposed to be in Lisbon, working, last monday, but I was sick (tonsilitis) from the friday before that, and I'm still am. I've been with fever continuously for four or five days, visited the supposedly best Hospital from Portugal (I hope it's not, really, with the stuff I've seen there in the more than 5 hours I was there just to get an antibiotics prescription) and then one Health Center. The rest of the time was spent at home, in the bed. I couldn't even read or listen to music, 'cause my head automaticly started threatning of exploding. But what I hate the most of being sick is not doing stuff I really wanted to... Like, for instance, this gig, that is in Lisbon tonight and tomorrow is going to be in Coimbra... An unique experience, that I'll be missing while being in bed:

Danny Cavanagh in Portugal (flyer)

Duncan Peterson, ex-Anathema, ex-Antimatter, from Íon, is going to be with Danny, at least in the autograph session! :-(

3.1.08

European Commission adopts strategy for "Creative Content Online"

So, the European Commission decided to "adopt a strategy" for "Creative Content Online". Scary, huh? It is more when you read the press release [1]:

I'll quote some just to give you a glimpse:
The Commission therefore seeks to establish a framework for DRM transparency concerning, amongst others, the interoperability of different DRMs, and ensuring that consumers are properly informed of any usage restrictions placed on downloaded content, as well as of the interoperability of related online services.

All stakeholders are invited to take position on the elements listed in the Annex to the Communication by 29/02/2008... Let's see who's going to answer that call.

[1] - http://smallr.net/creative-content-eu

About SLTalker

For those wondering why there's no signs of evolution on SLTalker [1], basicly I intend to make it extremely flexible and modular, and for that purpose I reached into the conclusion yesterday that SLTalker must be rewritten - more news about that soon.

BTW, if you know IronPython and you're interested in helping me out, drop me a line. I'm studying the chance of using it, 'cause coding in C# just pisses me off.

[1] - http://noori.abismo.org/sltalker

Idling

A coffee shop, two floors, empty. It's raining outside, but despite the rain, all the tables there are used. Inside... just me. A couple of calls, a coffee that doesn't taste as well as it usually does - and someone enters. Oh, she's just going to the cigarrettes machine, buy a pack and leaving - sitting in the rain. I still can't believe that this coffee shop is empty.

I need to buy a book, so I wait for the rain to stop and there I go. The book store next to me is closed (vacations, I guess), so I walk towards the next one. In the path I notice that the music store that used to be there is nowadays closed - turned an online-only business. It doesn't really surprise me, after all that's one of those stores that lost me as a client since they just don't figure out that to make business you must not treat your customers as they did. Well, anyway, this walk was for nothing since the book store I was walking towards to has closed. Walking towards the next one - closed. Once again a music store in the path, this one a relatively new one to the town, and one that has changed its store location twice - always to a bigger place. I guess that this one knows how to do his business. Nope, this book store also closed its doors. Well, there's another one, even if small, up there... No, also closed. What the hell is happening to book stores? Are all of them closing because there's a FNAC in the city?

A long walk downtown, and finaly a bookstore. I need to buy a book, but come out of there with two. Curiously I think the unexpected one will turn out to be a better reading than the first. I guess I'll postpone the reading of "Cobweb" yet again... And that kind of worries me, since I'm really enjoying the book.

Finaly, I find in the long walk a coffee shop with more people inside than outside. I guess people will get used to the fact that now you can't smoke (almost) anywhere. A small visit and some tea, waiting for the rain to stop. Walking slowly, back again, to the location of departure, I do a little stop to that Academic place that - now with nothing but some empty sofa's - gives you access to an University Wireless Access Point. As I should expect, there's no free IP address for me. I feel less and less from this city. Pity.

2.1.08

Music: what was 2007, what to have in 2008

Acording to http://hypebot.typepad.com/hypebot/2008/01/top-music-20-st.html, music sales in 2007 are expected to have dropped 15% or more in 2007 (relating to 2006). On the other hand, eMarketer's predictiongs for 2008 also talk about music, as we can see at http://www.mediafuturist.com/2008/01/emarketers-pred.html. The predictions include a further fade off of the CD but a rise of experimentations with new and emerging business models like ad-supported music, mobile music and music social networks. Also, DRM is going to drop further (in music, remember)...

I can hardly wait, let's make 2008!

Missing in 2008

2008 is the year I start missing the "old times", sitting for hours in a coffee table reading, chatting, writing, debating. It was a rite we developed, the same that others, we poeticly assumed, like Pessoa, did before us. Growing our minds in the back corner of a bar. One table, two Zamiatine books, coffee and an ashtray - one day at Tropical. Music albums being made at a coffee table - one day at Bocage.

At the 1st of January of 2008, the rite of countless Portuguese people ended - mine included. You just can't smoke in a coffee or a bar anymore...