Fallen Gods.

Books Back when I was visiting north west regional art collections, I eventually had to commute to the Lake District for three days to cover the remotest venues in the cheapest was possible. Reading the Telos Publishing novella Fallen Gods was this mission's equivalent of that. So rare is it that I spent today in the special collections room of an academic library bing reading through it, unable to justify spending the £50 it otherwise costs second hand on Amazon.  In keeping with other titles during the Wilderness years, it's a litfic experiment, in which the locale dictates the format.  Set during the Minoan age (although also implied to be a pocket universe), it's aesthetically like a Victorian translation of Ovid or Virgil, ignoring more accessible punctuation (not a speech mark in sight) and language in favour of allusive poetry which challenges the concentration of the reader [the old BBC website has an extract].  At first, the underlying story is pretty simplistic in structure, giant fiery monsters from the sky, the Doctor educating a local with the necessary skills to fight the thing.  But everything becomes gradually darker and although the the Eighth Doctor is present and correct, as it should be given the authors are Jon Blum and Kate Orman of EDA fame (not least when he's entertaining the surfs singing Yellow Submarine), his actions becoming increasingly questionable if understandable in the circumstances.  Thematically, we're in the area of how we should react when we learn that lifestyle within which we've become accustomed is as a result of the misery of others and how so often it's with a shrug.  Honestly, it's also a book which requires multiple reads in order get the full experience, which is the diplomatic way of me saying that I found it a bit of a slog.  Which I just have anyway.  Placement: The Doctor says he has companions waiting for him in the TARDIS (in a roundabout way) and seems to have all of his memories.  But he also refers to only having one heart so it seems like it has to be set after The Gallifrey Chronicles.  Update 29/6/2020: He got his heart back in Camera Obscura, so shrug.  Perhaps he's just having a lucid moment.

Architects Assembled.

Liverpool Life  'Five years to do 10 chuffing houses!' – meet the guerrilla gardeners of Granby:
"There are still a few tinned-up buildings on the street, but the CLT homes now stand out with smartly painted bay windows in chalky shades of blue, green and grey, providing homes for those most in need at affordable rents that will be tied to local wages for ever. Half of the houses were for sale and half for rent, priced at £99,000 to buy or £480 per month to rent – almost half the amount being charged by private landlords in the Welsh Streets nearby."There's more about the gardens
There are more photos and information at creator Assembly's own website.

Operation Night Watch.

Art Rijksmuseum have begun their restoration of Rembrandt's The Night Watch which, thanks to a giant glass wall, can be witnessed by visitors.

Find above an online Q&A about the start of the exhibition-cum-Twilight Zone episode.

This used to be an embedded timelapse of the creation of the space, which for someone who's fascinated by curatorial processes and how art handlers work, was a glance behind the walls and doors which usually obscure this kind of process.

But curiously this has been taken down, I can only assume because it gave away a little bit too much about the security elements which had been put in place to protect the painting.

The Rjiksmuseum also has full video of the Kick-Off Symposium with its lectures about the state of the painting and the work which is to be carried out:

Although BBC News says that the process is to be streamed online, as of writing the webcam doesn't seem to have been turned on.

"platform (n)"

Web How to speak Silicon Valley: 53 essential tech-bro terms explained - an often funny, incredibly useful jargon guide:
"bootstrap (v) – To start a company without venture capital. The only option for the vast majority of people who start companies, but a point of pride for the tiny subset of entrepreneurs who have access to venture capital and eschew it. “My dad is friends with Tim Draper but I wanted to do something on my own so I’m bootstrapping” – a tech bro."
The a link in the entry on AI led me to the revelation that we're now in a world where "real" humans are being hired to pretend to be chatbots.   [via LMG]

The Macra Does Exist.

TV Although I didn't enjoy everything about animated version of Doctor Who's The Macra Terror, I understood that such things as the scene omissions and the way the scenes often stray wildly from the telesnaps were as a result of the production schedule and budget.

This brilliant making of explains just how difficult it is to create these animations, featuring short essays by most of the key creatives.

 Here's Charles Norton on thinking through how the project would even work:
"... when Paul first started talking about tackling another of these projects around Christmas 2017, we all had certain reservations. A project of this scale really needed a full year of production time or as close to it as reasonably possible. It ideally needed to have the resources to cover an all-under-one-roof team of character animators. We needed dedicated production and studio managers, so that the director could really just concentrate on actually directing and not everything else. This is far closer to how such shows are run in the States. The way Warner Brothers make their straight-to-DVD Batman animations, for instance. The idea there is to sub-contract out much of the heavy-lifting 'grunt-work' of character animation, leaving your core creative team to concentrate primarily on story direction and design."
In any case, it's better than whatever was going on in the Reign of Terror animation.