September 2008


From Philadelphia Bulletin

And he walked among the people … no longer walking above them. He saw that he was not the only idol … and Sarah and John walked among the people too. The people rejoiced and their joy for Sarah and John angered Barack. The heavens shook with his anger … and he railed against the pigs who wore lipstick and the fish that stank. His wrath knew no bounds … and he went from praising audacity to alleging duplicity … and he no longer wished to build bridges … they went nowhere … he would no longer tear down walls … that could expose him. He declared his word was not to be questioned, challenged or ignored. As Eve took Adam out of the garden, so Sarah has brought Barack down from the mountain.

Barack Obama is now among us. Rather than the image of a noble, sophisticated, Ivy league lawyer ready to serve, we are seeing a petulant, narcissistic, ambitious and inexperienced politician who can’t handle criticism, competition or calls for clarity.

The questions now confronting us go beyond his inexperience … they go to his temperament, his demeanor and his judgment under fire. We must now ask whether his judgment will be faulty based not only on his inexperience but also on his inability to be challenged. We must consider carefully what the next president will be facing.

Two critical issues facing the next president clearly show what could happen.The government of Iran has repeatedly defied the United Nations as well as the United States by continuing its effort to develop nuclear reactors capable of producing bomb grade fissionable material. Limited sanctions imposed by the U.N., (honored in the breach by many of its members) has had no impact on the Iranians. Mr. Obama has declared that if elected president, he would go to Iran and meet with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with no preconditions.

Jimmy Carter also made that offer. Mr. Carter offered to meet with the Ayatollah Khomeni to secure the freedom of the American hostages held in Teheran. Their response was to keep them locked up. U.S. diplomats were held hostage for 444 days from Nov. 4, 1979 to Jan. 20, 1981 in the capital city of Iran at what was the American embassy. The hostage-taking was widely seen as an outrage violating international law regarding diplomatic immunity. This disregard for traditional diplomatic protocols has continued uninterrupted since the Muslim clerics took over Iran 29 years ago.

Mr. Obama claims that when he becomes president, he will modify their behaviors by force of his charisma, wisdom and vast experience in matters of state. In almost 30 years, no diplomatic undertaking has succeeded with the Muslim clerics who rule Iran. How will Mr. Obama react when Ahmadinejad not only rejects his entreaties, but mocks him, as they have done with other American presidents? Will he throw a tantrum? Will he refer to pigs and lipstick or smelly fish in defining Iran’s defiance? On the other hand, consider what John McCain, navy pilot, war hero and U.S. senator for over twenty years has said about Iran’s intentions. “… new severe sanctions with substantive economic consequences must be put in place. Iran must be told unequivocally, failure to cease the development of a nuclear bomb reactor would put them at risk of military action …” No equivocation, just plain talk shaped by experience.

How about our energy crisis? The United States is currently dependent to a great extent on foreign oil for its energy needs. Both candidates agree that alternative sources of energy must be developed within the U.S. to make us independent of foreign, sometimes hostile nations.

Mr. Obama proposes a comprehensive program of government funded and supported research for the development of alternative energy sources. At the same time however, he also proposes an increase in the capital gains tax, an increase in the dividend tax, an increase in corporate taxes and no investment tax credits to industry based on capital investment in alternative energy. What businessman is going to commit shareholder money to investment if the outcome of this investment is higher punitive taxes? Mr. Obama’s plan wouldn’t pass Economics 101 . Will he stomp his feet and call in the CEO’s of the Fortune 500 demanding their compliance with his plan regardless of the consequences to their shareholders and employees? Mr. McCain, on the other hand, is proposing a comprehensive energy development plan which enlists business and academia in a Manhattan Project type of undertaking … with incentives, support and coordination.

In the coming days of this campaign, the polls will show the true sentiments of the American voter. They will not be influenced by media bias, show business staging or rock star road shows. Mr. Obama obviously knows his personal deficits. He has refused to meet with Mr. McCain in a series of town hall meetings across America. He has refused to abide by his earlier commitment to limiting his fund raising by accepting the constraints of the Campaign Finance law. He vehemently continues to challenge any examination of his friendships and early career experiences and characterizes such efforts as personal attacks and dirty campaigning. You can bet the house, our international adversaries can’t wait for him to get to the White House.

Abe Bernstein is a retired business executive. He can be reached at abebernstein@e-datasend.com.

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A great article, which got hacked out of this blog by G-d knows who (and as long as He knows…I have done my share but have no time to keep on fixing the post) ; read it here

From BBC News

By Pallab Ghosh
Science correspondent, BBC News

Giant magnet at Cern, AFP/Getty

Some feared firing up the LHC would doom the Earth

The internet needs a way to help people separate rumour from real science, says the creator of the World Wide Web.

Talking to BBC News Sir Tim Berners-Lee said he was increasingly worried about the way the web has been used to spread disinformation.

Sir Tim was speaking in advance of an announcement about a Foundation he has helped create that he hopes will improve the World Wide Web.

Future proof

Sir Tim talked to the BBC in the week in which Cern, where he did his pioneering work on the web, turned on the Large Hadron Collider for the first time.

The use of the web to spread fears that flicking the switch on the LHC could create a Black Hole that could swallow up the Earth particularly concerned him, he said. In a similar vein was the spread of rumours that the MMR vaccine given to children in Britain was harmful.

Sir Tim told BBC News that there needed to be new systems that would give websites a label for trustworthiness once they had been proved reliable sources.

“On the web the thinking of cults can spread very rapidly and suddenly a cult which was 12 people who had some deep personal issues suddenly find a formula which is very believable,” he said. “A sort of conspiracy theory of sorts and which you can imagine spreading to thousands of people and being deeply damaging.”

Sir Tim and colleagues at the World Wide Web consortium had looked at simple ways of branding websites – but concluded that a whole variety of different mechanisms was needed.

Tim Berners-Lee (AFP/Getty)

Sir Tim wants to help get the web to people who are cut off from it.

“I’m not a fan of giving a website a simple number like an IQ rating because like people they can vary in all kinds of different ways,” he said. “So I’d be interested in different organisations labelling websites in different ways”.

Sir Tim spoke to the BBC to publicise the launch of his World Wide Web Foundation which aims to improve the web’s reputation for accurate information.

Alongside this role it will aim to make it easier for people to get online. Currently only 20% of the world’s population have access to the web

“Has it been designed by the West for the West?” asked Sir Tim.

“Has it been designed for the executive and the teenager in the modern city with a smart phone in their pocket? If you are in a rural community do you need a different kind of web with different kinds of facilities?”

Creative medium

The Web Foundation will also explore ways to make the web more mobile-phone friendly. That would increase its use in Africa and other poor parts of the world where there are few computers but plenty of handsets.

The Foundation will also look at how the benefits of the web can be taken to those who cannot read or write.

“We’re talking about the evolution of the web,” he said. “Perhaps by using gestures or pointing. When something is such a creative medium as the web, the limits to it are our imagination”.

The Foundation will also look at concerns that the web has become less democratic, and its use influenced too much by large corporations and vested interests.

“I think that question is very important and may be settled in the next few years,” said Sir Tim.

“One of the things I always remain concerned about is that that medium remains neutral,” he said.

“It’s not just where I go to decide where to buy my shoes which is the commercial incentive – it’s where I go to decide who I’m going to trust to vote,” he said.

“It’s where I go maybe to decide what sort of religion I’m going to belong to or not belong to; it’s where I go to decide what is actual scientific truth – what I’m actually going to go along with and what is bunkum”.

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השבוע בברבור
This Week at Barbur
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Monday 15.09 יום שני
at 20:30 בשעה

מפגש עם האמן צחי בוחבוט והקרנת הסרט של לארי קלארק
Wassup Rockers

אחרי קידס המצוין וקן פארק האפל והשערורייתי, מביא לארי קלארק הבמאי והצלם, הצצה נוספת אל תוך פיסת נעורים מתוך ההוויה האמריקאית. הפעם מדובר בחבורת פאנקיסטים היספאנים על סקייטבורד, מהגטו של סאות’ סנטרל אל.איי ששומעים את הראמונס, עושים רעש בלהקת פאנק, נלחמים בכנופיות אחרות ועוד. קלארק נתקל בצעירים שמעולם לא שיחקו מול מצלמה ופיתח עמם מערכת יחסים אמיצה וממושכת שהובילה לבסוף לכתיבת התסריט. דיוקן חושפני, סוחף ומצולם מדהים.
הסרט נבחר ע”י צחי בוחבוט
תערוכתו “מפולת” מוצגת בברבור עד 9.10



Meeting with the artist Tzachi Buchbut and screening of the film “Wassup Rockers” by Larry Clark.


Wassup Rockers is about a group of Salvadoran and Guatemalan teenagers in South Central Los Angeles who, instead of conforming to the hip hop culture of their gang infested neighborhood, wear tight pants, listen to punk rock,and ride skateboards. Avoiding the violence of their dangerous home turf is an everyday challenge.


The Rockers decide to travel by bus to skate the world famous “Nine Stairs” at Beverly Hills High School. There they meet some local girls, attracted to the “punks” from the ghetto, but the day quickly goes bad as they’re hassled by rich boys from the neighborhood and rousted by the Beverly Hills Police. Trying to escape arrest by the cops and fights with the local kids, the Rockers run from house to house and yard to yard in this wealthy and foreign world, looking for a way to get home.


The movie was chosen byTzachi Buchbut.

His exhibition “Avalanche” is on display in Barbur until 09.10



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Friday 15.09 יום שישי


גלריה ברבור תיהיה פתוחה משעה 11 בבוקר עד 6 אחר הצהרים במסגרת האירוע
בתים מבפנים

בתים מבפנים הוא אירוע ארכיטקטורה עירוני המתקיים אחת לשנה.
מטרת האירוע היא לשפוך אור על הארכיטקטורה ולהציף לתודעה את הסביבה הבנויה.

במשך סופשבוע ארוך נפתחים עשרות מבנים לביקורים, סיורים ודיונים: בתים פרטיים, מבני ציבור וממשל,
בתי תפילה וגינות, ומתקיימות פעילויות לילדים בנושאי בנייה – הכל חינם!

אירועי בתים מבפנים בישראל מתקיימים תודות לאדריכלים, ליזמים, לבעלי הבתים, למנהלי המוסדות ולאנשי השימור, הטבע
והמורשת הבנויה, שרואים בארכיטקטורה לא רק מקצוע, אלא גם שליחות חברתית ותורמים מזמנם ומרצם ובחלק מהמקרים אף פותחים את בתיהם.

מייסד ואוצר: אדריכל אלון בן-נון
מייסדת ומנהלת: אביבה לוינסו

לאתר האירוע


Barbur gallery will be open between 11:00 and 18:00
as a part of the event Houses From Within

Houses From Within” is one of many “OpenHouse” events that take place in cities around the world. One weekend a year, Jerusalem opens up private spaces – Private houses, urban villas, unique synagogues, architecturally significant public buildings, curious construction sites, plazas and gardens. During the event weekend, the public can visit, explore and discuss these sites. Many people have contributed in order to allow us all to discover Jerusalem from within during this weekend, including architects, developers, property owners, institutional administrators and many others who live and breathe the city, including some who devote their time to trying to improve it.

See the list of the open houses:


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תערוכה רצה
current exhibition

צחי בוחבוט
מפולת


פתיחת התערוכה היא חלק מ”מנופים” (להוריד תכנייה) : אירוע פתיחת עונת הגלריות בירושלים.

Tzachi Buchbut
Avalanche

The exhibition opening is part of “LIFT OFF” (download programme), the galleries season opening in Jerusalem.


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שעות פתיחת הגלריה
א‘,ב‘,ג‘,ה: 14:00 – 20:00
ו ‘: 11:00 – 14:00

Gallery opening hours
Sun, Mon, Tue, Thu: 14:00 – 20:00
Fri: 11:00 – 14:00

רחשיריזלי 6, מזכרת משה, נחלאות
6 Shirizli street, Mazkeret Moshe, Nachlaot

From Notes From Planet Earth

by

November 15, 1988 is a date that  has been forgotten by many.  That is the day that the former Soviet Union launched the Space Shuttle “Buran.”  The Soviet Shuttle was, in many ways more superior to the American Shuttle.  “Buran” had a better heat shield, it’s engines were able to provide powered flight upon re-entry in Earth’s atmosphere, and, perhaps more remarkably, it was able to fly remotely – without a crew.  Sadly, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the project fell by the wayside.  The “Buran” only flew one mission, and eventually was mothballed due to lack of funding.  These pictures show this remarkable machine…

A Sad End To A Noble Dream

Buran Lies Shattered In Pieces

For a history of “Buran”, click here:

http://www.buran-energia.com

http://www.darkroastedblend.com/2007/11/rare-photos-of-russian-buran-space.html

From Neural.it :: media culture, hacktivism

by

  • The meeting gathers Upgrade! nodes into one core event in Macedonia and will hopefully cause a positive chain reaction. Upgrade! network gathers annually or bi-annually, each time in a different city for a festival by artists who participated in the Upgrade! meetings around the world.
    (tags: art media)

From Neural.it

by

Francis Hunger, Setun, An inquiry into the Soviet Ternary Computer, book, Institut Für Buchkunst Leipzig, ISBN 3932865480, francis_hunger_setun.jpg book – Institut Für Buchkunst Leipzig – ISBN 3932865480
Looking back at the mysterious early computer research from beyond the Iron Curtain (and its “aura”), with special focus on the Soviet Union, this in-depth investigation unveils the unique Setun project – the first computer to make use of ternary logic (-1, 0, 1). A dead-end innovation, with a life-span of just twelve years, the Setun evolved out of ground-breaking work in the field of Multiple Valued Logic, a logic that proceeds with more than the two values employed in binary systems. The ternary approach was thought to have the potential to go well beyond the binary schemes that the global IT industry and infrastructure still use today. Extensively quoting original materials, the author presents a detailed discussion of Setun’s internal mechanisms, that after almost sixty years sounds incredibly “geeky”, but is nevertheless fascinating. The author grew up in the ex-East German state, and, as such, is able to give an interesting perspective on the former relationship between the two superpowers. We are told about the competitive environment that existed and how this was tempered with academic cooperation and a shared belief in the ethereal, fascinating notion of “progress”. This research has been embodied by Hunger in the form of an art project, a propagation of the painstaking research effort. Its aesthetic reflects some of the communist bureaucracy cliché: in a cardboard wooden office, Hunger sits with the paper archive of Setun’s information giving answers only to people that follow specific rules (affixed at the entrance) and who queue politely in stanchions. The access to knowledge “configuration” here is a complex metaphor describing Setun’s time and reflecting on how we are used to completely different rules nowadays, using a milestone in computer archaeology as the symbolic content.

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