Category Archives: Vintage

Cheap, easy, no-mess cold-brew coffee 3

I’ve just finished teaching week four of the amazing Clarion Science Fiction Writers’ Workshop at UC San Diego; in addition to spending a week working closely with some very talented writers, I came up with a new and cheap way to make astounding cold-brew coffee. I bought a $10 “nut-milk” bag and a plastic pitcher. Every night before bed, I… Read More »

Bill Murray anti-tech rant: robots, digital watches, talking cars, 1982

Raw footage from “Wired In,” a never-completed series on the technological trends and innovations of the early 1980s. Here is unedited tape of Bill Murray doing takes for a promo, shot in NYC. He rants about technology. • “People have hands… Watches should have hands.” • “Who in the hell is thinkin’ up this stuff?… Read More »

BBC Engineering Monographs from 1950s and ’60s: Once 5 Shillings, Now Free

The legendary BBC Radiophonic Workshop closed down in 1998, after 40 years. 50th-anniversary celebrations in 2008, and a just-published book by academic Louis Niebur, titled Special Sound (Oxford), have helped to secure the Workshop’s legacy of sonic experimentation, notably the efforts of such figures as Delia Derbyshire and Daphne Oram, and the creation of the… Read More »

Wax Cylinder: Occult Sonic Technology of a Bygone Age, Good as New

(Photo: Thomas Adank, courtesy Touch) Move over, cassette-tape and 8-track reanimators. There’s a far older—and arguably more beautiful—retro-tech sonic fetish object in town: the wax cylinder. The original tech dates from the late 1870s, when serial tinkerer Thomas Edison was at the prime of his powers, having installed himself in his famed Menlo Park, New… Read More »