Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Beatiful Photography of Mor (bcnbits)

Portal - Casa Sebastià Pratjusà - Barcelona(via Mor (bcnbits))

Beaulieu (via Mor (bcnbits))

Positano (via Mor (bcnbits))

twilight (via Mor (bcnbits))

libreria (via Mor (bcnbits))

The last sunray (via Mor (bcnbits))

(via Mor (bcnbits))

Sunset (via Mor (bcnbits))

Després de l'aiguat - Amsterdam
(via Mor (bcnbits))

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sahil - Dil Chahay

Sahil is an awesome Pakistani band. And here is, their Dil Chahay...
Thanks to my Lahore friend, Farhan, now I'm hooked by these Punjabi songs:)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Vision Speaks

Bold and splendid is the architecture of Willem Jan Neutelings and Michiel Riedijk. New York Times just reviewed their latest work: Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision.

Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision

Classical Music on Youtube

Piano Solos

Glenn Gould playing J.S.Bach Partita No.2

Wilhelm Kempff plays Beethoven Moonlight Sonata

2nd Movement

3rd Movement

Nikolai Lugansky plays Rachmaninoff Prelude Op. 23 No. 7 and No.5/ Moment Musical 4

Piano Concertos
Mitsuko Uchida plays Mozart Piano Concerto No. 9, 3rd Movement

Wilhelm Kempff plays Mozart Piano Concerto No.24 In C Minor, K491

Rubinstein plays Beethoven piano concerto No.4 3rd Movement in 1967

Murray Perahia plays Beethoven Piano Concerto no.1
1st Movement

2nd Movement

3rd Movement


Mehta conducts Mahler: Symphony 5

Movement 1

Movement 2

Herbert von Karajan Conducting Beethoven's 5th Symphony, 1966
Movements 1 and 2

Movement 3 and 4

Herbert Von Karajan Conducting Beethoven Symphony No. 9 in D Minor, Op. 125, 1986

For Classical Music on YouTube 2 (Cello Concertos and Contemporary Classical)

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Love in an Notebook

I thought I'm not the kind of girl that would cry when reading a sad romance. I was wrong. Nicholas Sparks, who is this man? How could he write something so mournfully beautiful as the Notebook?
I have watched the movie before, I had anticipated the story, yet when I read the words, when I saw the love unfolding, I couldn't hold back my tears. "The romantics would call this a love story, the cynics would call it a tragedy. " -- the author was right from the beginning. Summer love, long separation, return of the bride-to-be, passion and obligation, disease, again separation, but all overcome by the everlasting, devoting love.

The reason it hurts so much to separate is because our souls are connected. Maybe they always have been and will be. Maybe we've lived a thousand lives before this one and in each of them we've found each other. And maybe each time, we've been forced apart for the same reasons. That means that this good-bye is both a goodbye for the past ten thousand years and a prelude to what will come.
When I look at you, I see your beauty and grace and know they have grown stronger with every life you have lived. And I know I have spent every life before this one searching for you. Not someone like you, but you, for your soul and mine must always come together. And then, for a reason neither of us understands, we've been forced to say good-bye.
I would love to tell you that everything will work out for us, and I promise to do all I can to make sure it does. But if we never meet again and this is truly good-bye, I know we will see each other again in another life. We will find each other again, and maybe the stars will have changed, and we will not only love each other in that time, but for all the times we've had before.

There's more...

"You are Hannah, a lover of life, a strength to those who shared in your friendships. You are a dream, a creator of happiness, an artist who has touched a thousand souls. You've led a full life and wanted for nothing because your needs are spiritual and you have only to look inside you. You are kind and loyal, and you are able to see beauty where others do not. You are a teacher of wonderful lessons, a dreamer of better things."... "Hannah, there is no reason to feel lost, for: Nothing is ever really lost, or can be lost, No birth, identity, form--no object of the
world, Nor life, nor force, nor any visible thing;... The body, sluggish, aged, cold--the embers left from earlier fires, ... shall duly flame again;"

Richard Serra

Sequence - Richard Serra, MoMA American sculptor

A piece of genius. The artistic curve, the way it engages the visitors in a progressing motion, both in space and time. The shadow and slope ratio make the seemingly simple piece profound.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Picasso's Demoiselles d'Avignon at 100

Name the best known work of Pablo Picasso. Guernica! And? Demoiselles d'Avignon.
Picasso, what can I say about this man? What can I possibly say about his artwork? The tension and expression in his art is just so striking that it makes your heart ache.
Demoiselles d'Avignon is in exhibition in MoMA now, celebrating its 100 anniversary. The exhibit lasts until August 27.


Demoiselles d'Avignon

Summer of Love

Light, music, color. Hippie, LSD, losing yourself. The 60s art could forever be alluring.
New York Times reviews “Summer of Love: Art of the Psychedelic Era” remains at the Whitney Museum of American Art, 945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street, through Sept. 16.

Panton Design, Basel/Vitra Design Museum
Phantasy Landscape Visiona II (View 3)

Albert Alotta
A still from the film "Peacemeal" (1967).

Photography of Sara Wight

Beautiful, emotional photography of Sara Wight

The Deep (Blue)

“It was as though a veil had been lifted... revealing unexpected points of view, vaster and more promising.” -- Claire Nouvian, French journalist and film director, arthor of “The Deep: The Extraordinary Creatures of the Abyss” (University of Chicago Press, 2007)

New York Times recently reviewed the book.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Something Everyone Can Relate To

( as far as I know, this dates earliest back to 2002 from someone's friendster bulletin, please help find the author...)

What it says is so true...
They call it the “Quarter-life Crisis.”

It is when you stop going along with the crowd and start realizing that there are a lot of things about yourself that you didn't know and may or may not like. You start feeling insecure and wonder where you will be in a year or two, but then get scared because you barely know where you are now.

You start realizing that people are selfish and that, maybe, those friends that you thought you were so close to aren't exactly the greatest people you have ever met and the people you have lost touch with are some of the most important ones. What you do not realize is that they are realizing that too and are not really cold or catty or mean or insincere, but that they are as confused as you.

You look at your job. It is not even close to what you thought you would be doing or maybe you are looking for one and realizing that you are going to have to start at the bottom and are scared.

You miss the comforts of college, of groups, of socializing with the same people on a constant basis. But then you realize that maybe they weren't so great after all.

You are beginning to understand yourself and what you want and do not want. Your opinions have gotten stronger. You see what others are doing and find yourself judging a bit more than usual because suddenly you realize that you have certain boundaries in your life and add things to your list of what is acceptable and what is not. You are insecure and then secure. You laugh and cry with the greatest force of your life. You feel alone and scared and confused. Suddenly change is the enemy and you try and cling on to the past with dear life but soon realize that the past is drifting further and further away and there is nothing to do but stay where you are or move forward.

You get your heart broken and wonder how someone you loved could do such damage to you or you lay in bed and wonder why you can't meet anyone decent enough to get to know better. You love someone but maybe love someone else too and cannot figure out why you are doing this because you are not a bad person.

One night stands and random hook ups start to look cheap and getting wasted and acting like an idiot starts to look pathetic. You go through the same emotions and questions over and over and talk with your friends about the same topics because you cannot seem to make a decision.

You worry about loans and money and the future and making a life for yourself and while wining the race would be great, right now you'd just like to be a contender!

What you may not realize is that everyone reading this relates to it. We are in our best of times and our worst of times, trying as hard as we can to figure this whole thing out.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Recently Discovered Nice Photography

Dom zu Limburg - 2006-01-27 11:27:32
CAM: Dynax 7D | FL: 18 mm | EXP: 1/8 sec | AP: f 5 | ISO: 400

Your Ultimate Guide to Free Books

Posted on April 9th, 2007 in Useful Tips by James Yeang

  1. ManyBooks - Free eBooks for your PDA, iPod, or eBook reader - Thanks Tony Bryan & abben
  2. BookCrossing - Where real books are released into the wild to be found by others - Thanks Engtech
  3. LibraryElf - The perfect companion to a public library system - Thanks Engtech
  4. Scribd - Open library to publish and discover documents online - Thanks CincauHangus
  5. Word Public Library - 400,000 PDF ebooks for download - Thanks Ellen
  6. Free Tech Books - Free computer science and engineering books (+ lecture notes) - Thanks Ellen
  7. Bookins - Swap real books with other readers - Thanks Jimbob
  8. WellToldTales - Free short story podcasts (like audiobooks, but shorter) - Thanks Kevin C.
  9. Wowio - Public domain, free legitimate copyrighted materials & one of the only with a selection of Comic Books - Thanks Jane and Art Dardia
  10. BizBooktalk - Free book giveaway contests on Fridays - Thanks Brandon
  11. MoochMuch - Organize your book lending with your friends - Thanks Bobby
  12. CHMPDF - A collection of general interest and technical ebooks - Thanks Manish Garg & Brian Di Croce
  13. Realtime Publishers - free IT eBooks by many of the world’s best authors - Thanks Kevin
  14. FrugalReader - Trade Books for free - Thanks Brent
  15. TitleTrader - Swap books, movies, and music - Thanks Brent
  16. ZunaFish - Trade your old media and books items for new titles you’d rather have - Thanks Brent
  17. SwapSimple - Swap your used books here - Thanks Brent
  18. SwapThing - Community of users who swap items including books - Thanks Brent
  19. BookCart - Internet paperback exchange - Thanks Brent
  20. SF-Books - Exchange Sci-Fi Books here - Thanks Brent
  21. PaperbackSwap - Swap books for free - Thanks jane dough, IBelieveInFairies, & Lauren
  22. PinkMonkey - 450 Study Guides / Booknotes / Online Chapter Summary Notes and Analysis - Thanks Spellchecker
  23. eBookWorld - Technical resources - Thanks 5n7p3r
  24. Flaxx - IT and computer books - Thanks tejinder
  25. Baen Library - Free science fiction and fantasy novels - Thanks lanthus & Glen Davis
  26. LibraryThing - Social networking and free books - Thanks Michael
  27. Online Books Page - Facilitates access to books that are freely readable over the Internet - Thanks Aman
  28. Podiobooks - free audiobooks that you can subscribe to with iTunes or any other podcatcher - Thanks KJToo
  29. BookRags - Research material in the form of eBooks - Thanks Henry Delany
  30. Technical Books Online - Old tech books from the “vacuum tube age” of electronics- Thanks obiewiz
  31. ebookSearchr - Google powered Thanks Rico & Rokker
  32. Internet Archive - The Intenet indexed - that includes a vast text library - Thanks jojo
  33. BookYards - Books, videos, education materials- Thanks Victor
  34. Memoware - Free books for your PDA - Thanks Doug

Original Top 10 list with full reviews (here and here)

  1. Gutenberg Project Top 100 - Popular books from the oldest producer of free ebooks on the Internet
  2. BookMooch - Community for exchanging used books
  3. ebookSpyder - Specializes in technical books ranging anywhere from C# to AJAX
  4. Google Book Search - Read the classics online
  5. Dwalin - plain text novels
  6. Free Computer Books - Technical resources about computers
  7. Librivox - Audio works and podcasts of books
  8. CliffsNotes - Get the notes to cram for the exam
  9. WIkibooks - Free textbooks
  10. DailyLit - Receive small parts of books via email

I Wish You Enough

Did you ever say good-bye to someone knowing it would be forever?
I sure have, though in fact, at that moment, you would always try to convince yourself that you are wrong.
Just read a story on Help Others. org, lovely. So I'd like to share it here.

Next time when you leave someone, say: "I love you, I wish you enough."

"I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright. I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun more. I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive. I wish you enough pain so that the smallest joys in life appear much bigger. I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting. I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess. I wish enough "Hello's" to get you through the final "Good-bye."

PHotoEspana 2007

10th International Festival of Photography and Visual Arts
Madrid. 30 May - 22 July

Monday, May 21, 2007

One Hour No Power

At midday On Sunday July 1st 2007

we are asking everyone concerned about the effects of climate change to simply turn everything off for an hour. That is one hour with no cars, mobile phones, televisions, household appliances or any other non-vital equipment. We would also like as many businesses as possible to join in and publicly show their commitment to tackling climate change. Effectively, we want to unplug the world for an hour or at least your little bit of it.

One Hour No Power is not just another event about raising our awareness of global warming; after all, the media has been pretty good at scaring us all silly on that one. One Hour No Power is an event to raise awareness of our collective ability to tackle climate change through our everyday lives.

This is a people powered event for all, old and young, multi race, multi faith, as well as for those of no faith. It is an opportunity for us to come together and publicise an event ourselves, help to shape it, swap green ideas and talk to each other instead of being talked to.

It is up to you how you spend the hour. You could hold a sponsored event for your favourite environmental group, take to the roads on your bike, hug a tree (while stocks last), write your personal green action plan for the coming year or even hold a John and Yoko style love-in.

Visit for more information about how you can join in.

Please help to promote One Hour No Power by circulating this email to friends and family.

Thank You!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

If You Want Peace, You Must Not Keep Hurting Taiwan







所谓siege mentality,「被封锁心态」,我们是很熟悉的。


































── 原载 中国时报

If You Want Peace, You Must Not Keep Hurting Taiwan. By Lung Ying-tai (龍應台). May 18, 2007. Public speech on May 17, 2007 at Cambridge University, England.

[in translation]

We all know that the Taiwan strait is one of the "danger zones" in the world. Five to six hundred missiles are located on the Chinese coast and aimed at the Taiwan islands. It is actually astonishing why so many missiles are needed against such a small island. The area of China is 256 times that of Taiwan and the population size is 58 times as big. How far apart are the two coasts? From the Matsu coast, you can see the people walking on the opposite side. A fighter plane pilot said that it takes 6 minutes to go from Hsin Chu Airport to reach the opposite shore.

It is no exaggeration for the Taiwanese people to say that the Taiwan strait could be an "ignition point" that threatens world peace. "Ignition" is no joke. On the fewer than 150 square kilometers of Kinmen island, there are 1,500,000 bombs or about 10,000 bombs per square kilometer. This does not include the 500,000 land mines and 500,000 gun shells. The 70,000 inhabitants of Kinmen island get to "share" 22 bombs, 8 land mines and 44 gun shells each. The ammunition depots on Taiwan often explode.

War is not far back in our memories. For the 20 years after 1958, about 1,000,000 explosive bombs crashed into the ground at Kinmen. We grew up in a state of "wartime." Before I was 12 years old, I had already acted many times in school plays as a little soldier carrying a rifle on my back and killing "enemies" with a bayonet. Before I was 18 years old, I had participated in numerous "Mandarin oration performances" to offer my wisdom and impassioned views on "recovering the mainland and saving the compatriots."

The seafaring fishermen were under strict control. For "safety" reasons, they were not permitted to have adequate communication equipment. When the storms came, they faced the fate of sinking into the ocean. We have 1,500 kilometers of sea coast. But the sea coast was a military zone and therefore many people do not know how to swim. We are afraid of the ocean.

We are familiar with the so-called "siege mentality."

In 1979, I met the first "Chinese person" from mainland China. In comparing our growing-up process, we found that we were actually very much alike: he had played a little soldier who "killed enemies" and he participated in oration competitions and sang innumerable patriotic songs. Our differences were: his "heros" and "martyrs" were my "traitors" and "sinners"; my "great men" and "saviors" were his "bandits" and "gangs." The word "revolution" sounded terrifying to me, but it was righteous to him. When he said "left," he meant "reactionary," backwards and conservative, which is "right" for me.

Was there so much difference between our values? At the deeper level of values, we are actually identical to each other. Heros and martyrs, traitors and sinners. The names were changed but the standards for telling good from bad were identical.

The difference began to show after Taiwan officially became a democratic society in 1987. In Taiwan, the singular "Grand Narrative" and the sole "Truth" were replaced by many "small narratives." Any grand concept was superseded by the small narratives of personal values. Any consensus had to go through struggling and fighting. Democracy led to a deep transformation of the value system of Taiwanese people: the relationship between the national collective whole and the individual including the beliefs about the rights and obligations between the two became different from Taiwan before and with the present China in a fundamental way.

Human rights is one of the core values in a democratic system. On this key concept, there is a serious divergence between Taiwan and mainland China. When I bring up the words "human rights" and "China" at the same time, you must think that I am going to talk about the number of writers and reporters who have been sent to jail, or the number of death penalties in China each year, or the number of peasant homes that were demolished with their inhabitants left homeless. You are western Europeans and I believe that you must have heard enough about human rights being discussed this way. This is the mainstream approach in western Europe. I would rather offer a different angle for you.

It is true that the control of speech is a daily reality in China. Following the development of science and technology, the technology to control people and media are also changing. But at the same time that we watch the collective controls, we cannot help but see the ongoing changes. In 2005, it is estimated that more than 90,000 large-scale mass demonstrations and protests occurred in China. This showed that the people's awareness of their rights has grown rapidly. The year 2003 was even referred to as the Year of Rights Defense by the Chinese media: young lawyers helped farmers to sue the government for violating their rights; the middle-class went to court to defend their private property; the parents fought for the right of education; dog lovers marched in the street to call for respect of the rights of pets, etc.

I recognize that China is not just a single slab of iron. Its values are also in the process of being divided. In the inside part which we cannot see too clearly, the various values are combatting in a seesaw battle. The responsibility of the global community is to know this new China with the changing values. Then we will know what to do and what not to do so, that the rational, open and peaceful half of the forces in the seesaw battle of values can gain the upper hand.

Perhaps you wonder, Is there a human rights problem with Taiwan?

Put it this way -- suppose we have a small community here. For what reasons do we have to not permit the people from this community to attend any conference or participate in any decisions. We do not allow them to appear at any important festive, mourning or memorial functions. Furthermore, we forbid the leaders of this community to step out of their community and enter our area. Worse yet, if there is a huge fire, we will not notify them. We don't even allow them to call themselves by their own name.

Please ask yourselves: Why is this not a violation of human rights?

In terms of economic power, Taiwan is the fifteenth largest economic system in the world. In terms of population size, Taiwan is the 48th largest in the more than 200 nations of the world. But Taiwan has been excluded from almost all international organizations. It has to spend money to "buy" diplomacy. When its leader travels abroad, he is insulted and humiliated. In 2006, President Chen Shui-bian went on the "lost" international mission. Although his personal ways can be criticized, the humiliation heaped on him was not just his personal one. It was a humiliation of all the people of Taiwan.

The international community knows about the political isolation of Taiwan. But I think that the international community has no awareness whatsoever about the depth and breadth of this isolation and the degree of damage done to the people of Taiwan. This is not just about the "isolation" of Taiwan in the realm of politics, but the "isolation" pervades at all levels: art, academics, public health, education, every field. Using art an example, Taiwan cannot be represented in the public national museum venue at the Venice Art Exposition. Instead, it must find another venue for which it has to worry about being able to retain for the next year.

The most prominent and acute example is the SARS episode. When the epidemic broke out, Taiwan health officials immediately contact the World Health Organisation for information and assistance. They received the response, "You are not a member. Please go and talk to Beijing." But during the initial stages when the epidemic first broke out, the Beijing officials were not even prepared to deal with their own problems.

The 23 million people in Taiwan went through a martial law period of 37 years. Martial law meant a form of siege. After the martial law period, there was another 35 years of international blockade up to now. After 37 years of martial law and 35 years of blockage, there has to be some "symptoms." In 2006, the survey results from a certain Taiwan magazine are astonishing.

* 80% of the Taiwanese do not know where the United Nations headquarters is located
* 80% of the people do not know in which city the Nobel Prize for Literature is awarded
* 80% of the people do not know where the largest rainforest in the world is located
* 60% of the people do not know the name of the currency in Germany
* 60% of the people do not know which continent Athens is located in

You should not think that this survey was conducted in some remote village. No, the principal sample came from Taipei, and the people of Taipei are supposed to have the highest educational level in the Chinese world.

The so-called international world has become a common global community. But the people of Taiwan have been deprived of the social and cultural rights to participate in this global community. Do you know that the deprivation of social and cultural rights is against the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights? Please read Articles 2 and 22 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

Article 2: Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.

Article 22: Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.

The western European countries are members of the United Nations. I ask how you would explain the spirit of these two articles to the children of Taiwan.

37 years of self-imposed blockage and 35 years of forced blockage. No matter whether it was self-imposed or forced, aren't the people innocent? The international isolation and "abandonment" of Taiwan made the people of Taiwan feel that they are being "punished" because they fought for democracy. The global community watch coldly that one generation after another of Taiwan children grow up in the global village, they are talented and they work hard, but they are deprived of their global citizenship as well as the basic dignity of citizens.

The damage from this deprivation is twofold:

1. Democracy in Taiwan cannot be improved materially. You tell me whether a society that cannot participate in international affairs, that cannot gain experience from international affairs and cannot that fulfill its international duties and obligations can possibly become a democracy with better quality?

2. The continuation of the isolation of Taiwan and the repeated defeats inflicted on its people has caused greater hostility towards the "originator" of the isolation: China. As the desire to oppose or separate from China grows, the possibility of conflict in the Taiwan strait becomes higher.

The international community should care about the situation of Taiwan not just for the sake of the people of Taiwan, but also for the sake of the security of the global village itself. The logic is actually simple: on the path of China's question for modernization, the Taiwan experience -- whether the good or the bad part -- should be an importance reference point for China. If an open and rational China with citizen participation is essential to world peace and stability, then the global community must not ignore the importance of Taiwan. That is to say, the more the global community supports and looks after democracy in Taiwan, the more guarantee there is for stability in the Taiwan strait and world peace.

You cannot ignore the international blockade of Taiwan and the deprivation of global citizenship to the children of Taiwan. This has to stop, not just for Taiwan but for the sake of international peace.