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Everything posted by Nevsky

  1. Books, books, books...

    I use dotepub, and then use Calibre to convert the .epub file into .mobi.
  2. The Last Express

    From RPS: I'm very tempted, thanks to all the talk about it, but I think I'll wait a bit, until I've cleared the backlog and have the money to spare.
  3. Books, books, books...

    Thanks for the heads-up, brkl. How did it break? I have one of the Amazon-brand covers, which seem to be well cushioned. Another point about the Kindle: so far it's really revolutionised my reading of long-form journalism. I hate reading on the computer screen, because I usually get distracted by something else, so I grabbed a Chrome extension that converts pages into ebooks. Very good for those longer articles on Gamasutra, or The New Yorker, or wherever.
  4. ilomilo

    When I get some time, I'm definitely going to check this out. I interviewed some of the Southend people back when - of all things - Lode Runner came out, and they were understandably much more excited about this. Wow, that was almost 2 years ago...
  5. Movie/TV recommendations

    I really should get around to seeing The Adventures of Baron Munchausen someday. Brazil is one of my all-time favourite movies, and Twelve Monkeys/Fisher King aren't that far behind.
  6. Inter-railing and stuff

    That's one of the reasons why I didn't go inter-railing when most of my schoolfriends did. That, and they came back with stories of getting drunk and losing shoes and passing out in baths. I suppose if that's what you're going for, 2 days or less is all you want to spend in a country! Although, to be serious, the whole inter-rail thing does inspire the checklist mentality, and I suppose that's what it's good for. Sample a bit of everything in a short amount of time, go back for a longer stretch at another time. Hello Yufster! I'd recommend Finland. I've been there in the summer and it is beautiful, especially Hanko on a clear and sunny day. Same with Tallinn, Estonia. Although I suppose the south of Europe is more enticing, and I guess you have to make a decision between the Baltic and the Mediterranean, and that's not exactly an even fight.
  7. Books, books, books...

    My two cents, in general: Mostly, the books are overpriced. And I'm not saying that because owning an e-reader is lowering the value of the written work, I am coming from the same perspective as with music. When you cut out much of the middle stages of production, publication and shipping, it should be cheaper. That's a kink they're still working out, especially as the machinations of the publishing industry haven't been shaken in the way the music one was before iTunes showed them a way out. (And self-publishing/releasing gave the creators an alternative - I know I'm more likely to pay more if it's a straight transaction with the artist.) The thing with the price is that, for most of the expensive ebooks, the publishers are setting the price. Amazon are surprisingly cheeky about that, branding those book listings quite noticeably. I do think it's absurd that, for example, the Kindle edition of Franzen's Freedom is 99p more expensive than the (hardcover!) print edition. Astonishing. I think one thing that Apple has taught us is that, if you give people easy and intuitive ways to get hold of their desired content, they will pay. And from my experience so far, the one-click Kindle store is great for that. You search, you order, bam - it's there on your Kindle. The only thing holding it back there is the price. I'm sure they'll start getting more App Store / Steam-y with the pricing and offers and so on once they get more of a foothold - and they've already done something like that (mostly with pretty dull looking books) as a 12 Days of Kindle offer. I'd like to know more about the process. Like, when it comes to getting full bibliographies on there, is it going to be hard because - unlike in the music industry - authors don't always sign long-term contracts with single publishers? So I guess there's going to be a bit of time and negotiation to bring all those licences under the same roof. So with the example of Burgess, his novels are currently in print via (in the UK) Penguin, Vintage and a small publisher called Beautiful Books. I wonder how much it is just a case of getting the specific publisher on board, or if there are larger entanglements. Vintage, for example, have some great authors on their roster, but their support of Kindle is inconsistent, even within the same author's body of work. I wonder how much these publishing deals and contracts even cover digital distribution... I'm not crowing too much about it. Thanks to the free pre-copyright books (which are in the Amazon store, handily), and both ebooks and PDFs I've downloaded from other sources (Gutenberg, journals like Five Dials, and Cory Doctorow's early books), I've prepared for a long drought if I can't justify buying many more. I realise I'm a relatively early adopter, but I'm a fan of the hardware and I'm willing to wait and see where it all goes. And thanks for the rec's, Orvidos. I will check them out!
  8. Movie/TV recommendations

    Oh, sure, I'm lumping that in there as being an emotionally draining experience. It doesn't have the same despair as Never Let Me Go (or Blue Valentine), but I was a nervous wreck by the end of it.
  9. Books, books, books...

    So I invested in a Kindle. Since studying a BA in English Literature put me off reading anything longer than a New Yorker article for a couple of years, I want to get back into reading prose books. In the last couple of years, apart from huge piles of comics, I have mostly been reading stuff by Dave Eggers and Tove Jansson. Oh, and The Road, Tom Bissell's book, The Story of Forgetting and Steve Martin's memoir. I have almost finished the rather harrowing and quite brilliant book Room, and am looking for something to pick up next. But the Kindle store is unpredictable and frustratingly sparse - and sometimes the price just isn't worth it (damn VAT). So, please suggest some things for me to check out. I might download/read them! Oh, I have been through the thread and made a list. Couldya believe it, they have no Hunter S. Thompson, apart from Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas?
  10. Movie/TV recommendations

    No problem. Although, you know, I'd probably say that it is similar to The Road, in that the 'depressing' aspect is totally tonal - they both share a very overcast atmosphere - whereas Requiem For A Dream has that final montage sequence . I don't think there's anything as harrowing as that in either The Road or Never Let Me Go. Likewise, I think I saw other, more 'harrowing' or emotionally draining films very close to it - Blue Valentine and Black Swan come to mind. I hope this has been helpful, and not incredibly confusing.
  11. Movie/TV recommendations

    Oh, it's a very affecting film, but I don't think it will depress ThunderPeel beyond belief. I'd say it's melancholic, but not exaggeratedly so. I wouldn't put it on a par with Requiem For A Dream or Threads for making you question the point of it all. I liked it a lot, and wrote about it here in a very spoileriffic way.
  12. Movie/TV recommendations

    I don't think so, no.
  13. Movie/TV recommendations

    Lemmy. (If you need convincing #1, #2.)
  14. Movie/TV recommendations

    That's brilliant! Kudos to your boss.
  15. Movie/TV recommendations

    It made over £32,000 from only 32 screens, which isn't bad (Secretariat got £40,000 from 233!). It's a tough one - as you say it's mostly in Finnish, which always limits the audience in the UK. And its limited release cuts out a lot of the crossover audience who would probably enjoy the fuck out of it - and the arthouse crowd would much rather go and see something like Of Gods And Men (just shy of £60,000 from only 16 screens!). Maybe it will build with word of mouth, and there's always the DVD release. Shame it's a 15 over here, too, because I think a lot of those younger teens would get a kick from it as well. The BBFC classification information is quite an amusing read (click 'show details', but beware of spoilers).
  16. Plug your shit

    Since August, I've been hosting a semi-regular podcast about comics, called We Are Words + Pictures. It's an off-shoot of a London-based comics collective that I have had dealings with, geared around highlighting aspects of the community and the culture. Each episode I have a different guest, usually a comics creator, and we chat and play some killer tunes. The latest episode, however, might be of more interest to Thumbs, as my guest is Antony Johnston, the writer who scripted Dead Space, as well as the spin-off comics and both Extraction and Ignition. He's a cool dude with Things To Say. So we bring that up. I use the term 'emergent gameplay', but I stopped myself from talking about Far Cry 2. I've blogged about it over here, but you can go straight to the station's Mixcloud site to stream it here. The games-centric part is from 43 minutes onwards, but the first track he plays is from the Silent Hill soundtrack, so why not listen to all of it? What do you think, Thumbs?
  17. Movie/TV recommendations

    Nice publicity stunt, but considering that the feature is a prequel to the shorts, it's misrepresenting the plot a bit. In fact, But still, as long as it gets people intrigued by the film.
  18. Movie/TV recommendations

    Rare Exports! I saw that a couple of months ago (it was also screened at the London Festival), and I really enjoyed it. Damn good fun full of Finnish swearing.

    I've got a copy of this on the 360. I love the wager match types, but I've found it to be utterly pointless playing with random Live users.
  20. Movie/TV recommendations

    I'm covering the London Film Festival, and we're neck-deep in press previews at the moment. So I'm going to try and catch Blue Valentine and Upside Down: The Creation Records Story during the day. I'm also at a screening of The Exorcist in the evening, to tie in with the Blu-ray release. I've not seen it before, so I'm struggling to find my angle on it - surely it's the most over-exposed horror film ever made? The LFF (and other film work) has taken over my life for the last couple of weeks, hence why I've not had the chance to write a rejoinder to your great post on World's Greatest Dad, Thunderpeel. Apologies. Oh, and I hated Made in Dagenham (I thought it was very flippant and dumbed-down), and quite liked Tamara Drewe (there's a definite smugness there, but I think it's intentional).
  21. Movie/TV recommendations

    Damn, that's an ace double bill. Can't go, though. I'm seeing 3 or 4 other films that day.
  22. Left 4 Thumbs

    So 8pm BST tomorrow? I might be around, if you're doing a versus game or there are multiples of 4 willing to shoot through a campaign. Depends on work, though.
  23. Left 4 Thumbs

    I now have both of them, too.
  24. Movie/TV recommendations

    Nice write-up, Peely! Glad you enjoyed it. I saw this film a couple of months ago, and the UK release was pushed back at least twice. It's one of my favourites this year, because it feels different and fresh. The streak of dark - and at times grotesquely vulgar - humour you mention gives the film a very shocking kick, but the fact that it is very well incorporated into the characters (Daryl Sabara, wow, what an amazing, horrific creation) and situation doesn't make it seem cheap or juvenile. Plus the themes and satire (the latter of which you didn't mention) were very well teased out of the plot - which was always going forward, with the momentum of a twisted farce. The way it approaches school life, personal ambition, and how society can make icons out of anyone, is particularly good. And Robin Williams. He's one of my favourite actors, but he's in that flawed-genius mould because he appears in some atrocious films. In this he's very playful with his previous roles - ie he plays a high school teacher, whose poetry class fails to inspire anyone. Good stuff! Damn, now that everyone's talking about it, I want to see it again.