Monday, November 06, 2006

Kurzweil and the weekend

Well, I manged to watch about 95% of the Ray Kurzweil interview on Cspan yesterday. It lost my attention span towards the last 15 minutes or so and I ended up surfing the web while listening in the background. Still it was an a good interview and an interesting person. I liked how Ray dodged some of the religious questions. He never would quite commit to saying there was a God or not. After listening to some of his thoughts though on virtual reality I sort of lost a little respect for him. He was predicting having glasses that shine directly in your eyes, and such... these glasses have been "forecasted" for about the past 15 years and nothing comes close. He seemed to be stuck in the 90's view of virtual reality. His female avatar was just plain creepy. But... I thought the portable box that would let a blind person point it at a book page, take a picture, and then the machine would read it out loud... that was amazing. The language translation was amazing too. His take on nanobots... I'll believe that when I see it. I don't think it's as close to coming true as fast as what Ray predicts, but who am I? :)
His vitamin/supplement regiment was interesting but they didn't go too far into that. All in all, a good interview.
I saw several movies this weekend...
In the theatre I saw "Flags of our fathers". It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. I saw an interview with the author James Bradley on Cspan (yes, I guess I watch a lot of cspan). I think I can honeslty say that the interview was much better than the movie itself. The movie seemed to just be too long and drawn out. The war scenes were nothing new. I don't think any movie can ever live up to "saving private ryan" as far as the war scenes. But I did learn some things, so it wasn't a total wash.

Yesterday was time for me to catch up on my netflix rentals...
I watched "Radio" at my mom's recommendation. It was good! It was a little sappy at points and predictable, but the acting on both Cuba Gooding Jr. and Ed Harris' part was fantastic. Ed Harris I think is one of my favorite actors. He's in a new movie coming out soon about Beethoven that looks pretty good.

Then I watched a political type documentary about the Weather Underground. I have heard the groups name mentioned before but knew nothing about them. It was an interesting documentary. What amazes me is how groups like this one and like the Black panthers were able to form. The weather underground were basically terrorists who finally had enough with peaceful demonstrations and decided to turn violent. They apparently bombed several places (though the movie didn't really go into that in detail). It was interesting to see how a group of people who may have started out with good intentions (stopping the war, and equality) can get twisted around to violence. The members themselves warned that if you believe you are on a moral high ground how anything you do can be rationalized. What amazed me even more is at the end of the movie they sort of did a little "where are they now" and several of the radical leaders are now teachers. Sort of surprised me. (one is in federal prison for bank robbery, and one is a bartender). A good documentary.

1 comment:

Reel Fanatic said...

The Weathermen doco is indeed brilliant ... I had only a vague notion of who they were going in, but I think that lack of knowledge just made the discovery all the more interesting