• "Some rapid prototyping later, alongside the expert developers from the R&D team, I had arrived at the below: an autonomous system capable of delving into the BBC’s media archive in search of certain foley effects, deconstructing the artifice of television back into its constituent parts. Pre-loaded with a particular search term, it spiders the archive, iterating backwards through time for instances of a particular kind of sound effect, downloading the relevant media, and extracting the specific timestamp referenced by the subtitle. It then re-composites them to create a generative collage, structured by chance based on when a particular kind of sound has appeared on-screen." Dan Jones programatically extracting Foley from the BBC archive.
  • "The printing press on its own did not create poetry, but by spreading poetry around it helped to create new poets. The steam engine on its own did not create the industrial revolution. Tools are made by people and when tools call out for revolution they will speak through people." Love this quotation – it's a good article, too.
  • "Some of the best field naturalists I know grew up in working-class rural communities, skipping school like Billy Casper to practise forms of natural history that bent or broke the law: they ferreted rabbits, collected eggs, broke into quarries, kept pigeons, reared finches, climbed fences to poach for fish. Today they can still spot a linnet’s nest in a furze bush at 50 paces and possess fieldcraft skills that would put many a birder to shame. There’s little room for them in today’s culture of nature appreciation and even less so in nature writing, which tends to entrench a sense that the correct relation to the landscape is through walking and distanced looking." From the section on 'Landscape and Englishness', which sounds excellent.
  • Jessamyn West on the useful things one can do to make one's digital legacy easier on the bereaved. But there's lots more in here too – on how we adopt or inherit both things and identities; on the nonsense some companies expect you to go through; on how history fades in and out as the meaning of 'forever' changes. (Added timeliness: I'm reading Soul of a New Machine at the moment).