April 2014

The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb (7/10)

Admittedly, I didn't finish this book. There's a point about halfway through when he tells the casual reader that now would be a good time to bail; it gets pretty number-y from here on out. I tried to proceed but was lost. The book runs with a few ideas that Fooled by Randomness touched upon, mainly, the idea of the rare random event. I'm not sure I understood it all, but it was pretty interesting read filled with a decent mix of anecdotes, philosophy and statistics.

Not Cool: The Hipster Elite and Their War on You by Greg Gutfeld (8/10)

Another enjoyable read from Red Eye host Greg Gutfeld. The thesis as I see it is that liberals own the definition of cool, but the real cool people are those who go against liberal orthodoxy. I get his point but it felt a bit like whining over libertarians and conservatives not being the center of attention. Let's face it, conservatism is dorky, boring and will never have that the more universal cool factor that liberalism has. But really, so what?

Resident Evil: Revelations on PC (7/10)

Resident Evil Revelations

I understand that this game was originally a Nintendo 3DS launch title. So, by the standards of portable gaming, this is not a bad game at all. However, here on the PC it seems a little behind the times and blah. This criticism is mostly about cosmetics. Unlike the bright and diverse levels of Resident Evils 4 & 5 the game seems really limited to the samey-looking hallways of a dingy cruise ship's interior. While you would think that they could use this environment for all its worth by, say, including the listing of the ship, bursting portholes, and other aquatic mayhem. Instead it's your standard FPS hallway levels with a little swimming here and there.

Flood by They Might Be Giants (4/10)

Format: CD

Nobody needs to own more than one They Might Be Giants album. While I enjoy the "hits" on this record, for the most part it bores me. This is the duo starting to become a band at the expense of the wonderful quirkiness of their first effort. Ah, the joys of combining your record collection with your wife's.

Silent Running (5/10)

A dated and preachy science fiction story from the seventies about the last forest of earth being preserved in space ships. There are some neat robot costumes. But, overall, this was a boring slog with some horrible music choices.

They Might Be Giants by They Might Be Giants (8/10)

Format: CD

Yeah, I get it. You went to art school you clever bastards. Fun, smart pop songs, it's no surprise they have become children's music superstars as of late. I prefer the homemade quality of this first record over later efforts and there's only so much of this band that I can take. One record is enough.

Get Action! by Teengenerate (6/10)

Format: CD

Teengenerate are what I would describe as a Ramones-y punk band. They are much faster and certainly less tuneful than the Ramones, but they share the same affinity towards loudness and basic song structures. Oh, and their records also happen to sound like a trebly mess. The thing is, I saw them live thinking that I would finally hear the band as they should be heard, but it turns out that the records are a pretty accurate facsimile of their live sound.