November 2001


Milan, Italy.I went to see  #

Milan, Italy.

I went to see the White Stripes at a place called the Tunnel, more of a cave really, under the elevated tracks behind the Stazione Centrale. The show was held up because the band felt that the flag of Detroit, which was duct-taped to the wall at the back of the stage, was not sufficiently lit. (Detroit has a flag?) I wish I still had their album -- somebody lost it and nine others.


From Battery Park City, Manhattan.The  #

From Battery Park City, Manhattan.

The Winter Garden.

The "Here Is New York" exhibit is open until Christmas. Go.

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Do you live in one of the eurozone countries? Is your written English really good? Do you know what a weblog is? If so, I have an interesting project in the works that you may be able to help out with. E-mail me.

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L.A. signs by Rion.

"Brooklyn Christmas Trees" by Mike C.


Financial district, Manhattan.  #

Financial district, Manhattan.


Bucks County, Pennsylvania.  #

Bucks County, Pennsylvania.


Bucks County, Pennsylvania.  #

Bucks County, Pennsylvania.


Somewhere over New England.  #

Somewhere over New England.


Malpensa Airport, Milan.Did I mention  #

Malpensa Airport, Milan.

Did I mention the fog?

Over the Alps.


Milan.Palatial apartment buildings.Bottled water truck.On  #

Palatial apartment buildings.

Bottled water truck.

On the tram.

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A stack of great photos from Austria at Nice design, too.

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Family album.


Milan.The city is often fog-bound.Given  #

The city is often fog-bound.

Given that they came up with the word for it, Italians aren't all that great at graffiti.

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When I started doing this a year ago, I thought that perhaps six of my friends would care. As it turned out, most of my friends didn't care, but a lot of random strangers did. Thanks for visiting and for your encouragement.

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My open-source-related story for the NYT was picked up on Friday by the IHT, whose site, incidentally, has an interesting approach to article layout. And my NYT story about ads and shopping on car information systems was Slashdotted over the weekend. At least 95 percent of the commentators, including the guy who wrote the initial summary, didn't bother to actually read the article. This is my favorite post:

I... can say with some degree of certainty without even reading this article that this is 99% BULLSHIT in it's purest form...

This article sucks!

If this is the future of news, we're all doomed.

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It's still burning. They say it's like the mine fire in Centralia, Pa.


Bologna and Parma, Italy  #

"Hat store" and hats.


"Horse meat." Mmmmm.


Bologna Station.Malpensa Airport, Milan.. .  #

Bologna Station.

Malpensa Airport, Milan.

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I wrote something for the autos (?!) section of the NYT: Steering the Driver to Preferred Pit Stops. It's about how advertising and shopping opportunities are creeping into car navigation systems like OnStar.


Parma.The Icomatic, spotted in a  #

The Icomatic, spotted in a church, is a machine that allows you to purchase religious icons without the intervention of a human (or spiritual) being. Isn't this the kind of thing that caused that whole flap with Martin Luther?

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Some photos worth seeing:

Deconstruction, Tokyo.
Laundry, Singapore.
Sidewalk ice, New York.
Subway, Buenos Aires.


Parma.This town is all about  #

This town is all about food.


Parma, Italy.. . .An awful  #

Parma, Italy.

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An awful day for New York, again.

I have been feeling uncomfortably disconnected from New York and its efforts to put things back together. From here it is not hard to see how the Sept. 11 attacks could be abstracted and turned into a piece of a much larger geopolitical puzzle that has little to do with real everyday life, or with the lives and deaths of individual people. I don't want that to happen. I also want to remember the details. So I went back to my photos, and added some captions. The result is here. Not a lot of deep thoughts, just some facts and observations, for the record, I guess.


Bologna.The Two Towers, built in  #

The Two Towers, built in the 12th century, are major landmarks in Bologna. (The man at the hotel called them the "Twin Towers," then apologized, laughing nervously.)

One of the towers has a serious leaning problem.

You can climb the other one on rickety stairs.

There used to be hundreds of towers. Every rich family had one. A great place for cocktail parties.

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Scott Heiferman's photo of the day. Design is overrated. Design is cool. Pizza is an aphrodisiac.


Signs, Bologna."Street of hell." Would  #

Signs, Bologna.

"Street of hell." Would you live here?


Bologna, Italy.  #

Bologna, Italy.


Milan.In the plaza in front  #

In the plaza in front of the Central Station, where all the skaters hang out. The giant sculpture at left is about to be torn down.

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I wrote an article for the special E-Business section of the NYT, which apparently came out two days ago: Helping Software Companies Be as Open as They Want to Be. It's about how open-source ideas about software development are changing the way lots of different kinds of software get built.

Elsewhere in the same section, Katie Hafner writes about the amazing Ian Smith.

. . . Lo sguardo della Net Art sulle twin towers.


Milan.At a department store's "Marlboro  #

At a department store's "Marlboro Classics" boutique.

This kind of merchandising, which is apparently known as "brand stretching," is a nifty way for tobacco companies to get around restrictions on cigarette advertising. Tobacco companies agreed to stop selling branded clothing in the U.S. in 1998, but they get away with a lot more overseas. People actually buy the clothes, perhaps taken in by the vague assurances of quality on the nonsense-English labels. (Brown colored thread? You don't say!)

For more info see:

--USA Today, Sept. 2000: Cigarette logos abound despite ad bans
--Tobacco Free Kids: Tobacco advertising photo gallery
--Action on Smoking and Health UK: Briefing on 'brand-stretching'
--International Union Against Cancer: How to circumvent tobacco advertising restrictions

The Marlboro Classics line is made in Italy by Marzotto SpA, who want you to know that Marlboro Classics "stands for defense of a pristine natural environment."

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