Mitch Kapor on techno-utopias

People tend to be idealistic about technology and they harbour utopian fantasies that with the right technology everything is going to be all better. (But) people bring all of their stuff with them, all of their issues. The good, the bad, the ugly, the indifferent and the wonderful. They will take new forms and guises in Second Life … it will create new freedoms and huge new problems, we can’t even say what they are yet.

From Reuters/Second Life » Linden Lab chairman: Death to the techno-utopias

So you want to earn a living from font design?

Erik Spiekermann blogs about the epsilonic first payment he got for ITC Officina:

The first cheque came to the unbelievable sum of One Dollar and Nine Cents. The fees for cashing it would have been much higher, so I kept it as an original document. ITC Officina is still a bestseller in that library. And although the license fees are a little higher these days, I certainly couldn’t live from that money.

SpiekerBlog : Get rich through typedesign?

(Also see my earlier post on Spiekermann and ITC Officina)

Filmmakers Seek Future in Past

A article asserts that there’s a silent film revival:

Over the past two decades, artists have explored the legacy of silent cinema, not as a dusty anachronism but as a rich medium from which lessons about music, performance and art can be drawn.

Prolific modern-day directors like Guy Maddin work largely in the medium of silent film to convey postmodern tales. Silent film festivals are held annually around the world: from San Francisco to Kansas, from Italy to Australia. The Chilean subways are plastered with thousands of still images, coming to life as contiguous strips of film as the trains rumble by. And numerous groups throughout the United States have been inspired to compose and perform live original scores to silent film.

Wired News: Filmmakers Seek Future in Past

It’s true to some extent, if a “revival” can be said to take place over decades.

In any case, we’ve been seeing more silent film here. There was Kaliya Mardan last year at the National Museum (see earlier post), and the upcoming Japanese silent film screenings with gamelan accompaniment (!) at NUS in March.

(From Table of Malcontents)

Also see my earlier post on old, decaying silent film.

From Singapore to Chicago

Event info for this year’s Singapore Arts Festival is up.

Dollhouse by Mabou Mines is coming here.

Coincidentally, it was part of Court Theatre’s season last year.

In Court Theatre’s season this year (2006/07):

Hotel Cassiopeia – a play about Joseph Cornell!

Hotel Cassiopeia follows the American collage artist Joseph Cornell as he observes the city he so loved, overhears—and fabricates—parts of conversations, is inspired by movies and overwhelmed by the glorious bustle of Manhattan’s streets.

and Tom Stoppard’s amazing Arcadia too.

Erik Spiekermann

If you’re a regular reader of The Economist, this should look familiar:

Erik Spiekermann on the development of ITC Officina Display:

When we (Ben Tappenden and myself at MetaLondon) redesigned The Economist magazine in London in 2000/2001 (the new magazine was launched in May 2001,) we picked ITC Officina Sans as the “information” face. All text is set in the Economist’s own typeface, which Ole Schäfer and myself redesigned for the relaunch. But all the graphs, tables, sidebars and captions are set in ITC Officina Sans for contrast and clarity.

Read on: Spiekerblog 2.0 (scroll down to the second Jan 22 entry)

Speaking of The Economist:

Whilst retaining the quirkiness of the original Economist typeface, Spiekermann redesigned it slightly, adding more whitespace to the individual characters. He then set the type slightly smaller and with more leading. All these changes added micro whitespace to the design. The overall result was subtle: the content was more legible and the overall feeling of the newspaper was lighter, yet the amount of content remained the same.

From A List Apart: Whitespace. Which also links to Spiekermann’s redesign. Sexy!

Spiekermann on Wikipedia