Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2013

What did the new #iOS and/or #iTunes do to my album art work?

I love iOS7. I love its flat UI and attendant absence of gradients, especially noticeable in the much-improved appearance of the core app icons (haters gonna hate) and those of third-party apps that were updated by developers keen on keeping with the new aesthetic. I love the fastidious little gesture now required to close an app, the indulgent thumb flick that makes me feel like an Ottoman sultan dismissing some minor nobel to deal with his own affairs. I love the little navigation back button, the bold title bars now featured in most apps, and the endlessly useful Command Center. Above all, I love that iOS7 persuasively evinces the commitment of Apple to creating and curating a mobile operating system experience that is as elegant as it is functional.

But there is one thing I hate: I *hate* what is has done to album art in the Music App. What has it done, you ask, that it is deserving of my ire? Here, here is what it has done:

That man is the one, the only Peter Gabriel (you can tell …

Reflections on Public Spaces #Istiklal #Istanbul #Turkey #Turkiye

Riot Police Near Galatasaray High School on October 19 There is a manic exuberance to the always congested Istiklal Caddesi that is as enjoyable as it can be overwhelming. Conceive of Istiklal as a frenetic pedestrian rush hour that never ends. Tourists and Istanbulus alike traverse it at all hours of the day and night. Hipsters idle in its traditional and more European-style cafes. The country's over-abundance of teenagers move in tiny scrums down it and guard the entryways to the many intriguing side streets that feed it, smoking cigarettes and playing on their smartphones. Young families displaying various levels of Islamic religious observance walk down it in small yet formidable phalanxes. The iconic T√ľnel-Taksim tramway stutter-stops down the middle more slowly than a pedestrian, serving more of an ornamental purpose (a welcome one at that) as Istanbulus jump on and off it, exploiting it as an apparent break from walking. Somehow, cars, including taxis that really should know…


"I'm really going to do it this time. I'm going to write a blog!" he said with a feigned assertiveness, like some deluded, perennial failure over-compensating for his crippling insecurity and paucity of accomplishments. Think Willy Loman or, better yet, "The Simpsons'" Willy Loman analogue, Gil Gunderson. "This time it'll work out for old Nullprof! You'll see!" 

I've started at least five blogs in my lifetime. Three never earned more than two posts. One was a text-intensive Tumblr that quickly devolved into a standard, image-intensive Tumblr (that's easier than writing, it turns out). One was a Posterous that was active for almost a year until I unceremoniously abandoned it. Earlier this year, Posterous' new owner, Twitter, killed it dead along with all other blogs on that service. So, yeah, I've had a bad history with blogs/blogging. 

Regardless, I'm going to try to start again. I have things to say, and judging by p…

Wherein I inadvertently solicit a terrific response from @CameronCrowe...

...who should know I love "Singles" more than most things in life. @nullprof @cafepedlarExactly the quality I was looking for."Action!"— Cameron Crowe (@CameronCrowe) February 7, 2013 For context, here's a photo of the cast of "Singles":


While visiting Portland over the winter holidays, my brother and I made a pilgrimage to the tiny village of St. John’s on the northernmost tip of what is still, surprisingly, Portland proper. I say surprisingly because to get there, you must wend a path through what are, to SW/SE Portland residents, the already far flung expanses of upper industrial NW beyond which surely, I thought, the city simply ends. And keep going. Doing so takes you past the dense catchment of current and repurposed factories and warehouses on and around NW 23rd and up the bipolar stretch of Hwy 30 that runs along the train tracks. The city persists, it turns out, amid the lush, looming hillside of Forest Park and a sparse population of very active industrial buildings and port facilities. It all takes time, covers substantial distance, and I remain incredulous: by the time you get to St. Johns, it feels like you should be anywhere other than Portland.

St. Johns Bridge, courtesy of ZnE's Dad (love…