Friday, March 28, 2008

Earth Hour and the Hour of Man

Earth Hour 2008

Earth Hour, in 2008, happens on March 29 between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. You can participate by turning off your lights during this hour. Earth Hour is the perfect way to begin your commitment to fighting climate change. For more information, visit the Earth Hour website, here:

Earth Hour website

Earth Hour is a small sacrifice: one hour per year. More than 50 years ago, the poet Walker Winslow proposed that -- to save our troubled world -- each of us might contribute one hour per week. Winslow called this concept "The Hour of Man."

He explained:
"I want to see the radio or television turned off for an hour a week, the paper or magazine laid aside, the car locked safely in the garage, the bridge table folded, the liquor bottle corked, and the sedatives kept tightly in their packages. I want to see production and consumption forgotten for this hour. Politics must be forgotten, national or international. The hour I propose could be called The Hour of Man. During this hour man could ask himself and his neighbor just what purpose they are serving on earth, what life is, what a man or woman can rightly ask of life as well as what they must give in return. If that man is working and struggling for what he really wants, is it worth the price he pays in personal suffering? Neighbors should learn to listen intently to neighbors. In only that way will the eye turn inward. In other people's souls they could see the undistorted image of their own souls. As they helped others they would help themselves."

A beautiful idea!

In every age, there are individuals who believe the goodness of human beings, and work for a better society: a new age of wisdom, caring, and community. Earth Hour on Saturday night -- with participants all over the world -- is a small step and significant step toward a greener and healthier world.

Watch the video (on YouTube) about Earth Hour:

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Zorba the Greek, a Clip from the Film

Wrote Albert Camus:
"In the midst of Winter, I found within myself an eternal Summer."

And the Zen master Masahide said:

My storehouse
burned down
Nothing obscures the view
of the bright moon.

Watch this scene from the film Zorba the Greek. The boss and Zorba had invested everything -- months of labor and all their cash -- in great scheme to transport lumber from the top of a mountain to the land below. But the technology fails, and they lose everything.

After viewing the film clip, watch the entire film; then read the novel -- and remember to celebrate your life.

That's not all. There is a ballet version of Zorba the Greek, where the boss has learned quite a bit about dancing. Click the READ MORE link, and then scroll on down to see it.

Watch the ballet in the clip below. And contact Multigram for the DVD of the entire performance:

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Book Review: Digital Prepress Primer

shot from Pages: save to PDF-X

Reviewed by Michael Pastore

When you create a document with Pages (the word-processing software included in Apple’s iWork), you can save it in a number of different file formats. To do that, simply select Export (from the File menu), and then select from four options: PDF, Word (.doc). RTF, or plain text (.txt). Saving to PDF is especially useful for everyone who wants their documents to be viewed the same way, and to remain impervious (well, somewhat) to changes. Your word-processing life gets even more interesting when you chose Print (from the File Menu), which allows you print you file, or to save it to these formats: PDF, Postscript, and PDF-X.

You may or may not know that PDF-X is a type of PDF file (a “restricted subset” in the jargon) that meets certain requirements for printing: all fonts must be embedded; images must be encoded in CMYK or spot colors; active content (forms, sounds, movies) canned be embedded ... and so on. When I need a clear and concise explanation of PDF-X, and everything essential about preparing documents for digital printing, I open up the handy little book titled: Digital Prepress Primer.

Digital prepress involves “all operations necessary to prepare a (printing) job for output to digital device." The book’s 14 chapters are divided into four sections: Job Creation; Digital Image Caputure and Reproduction; Job Engineering; and Digital Output. Author Marin does excellent work in explaining some of the more complex aspects of this field, especially color theory and reproduction; and digital trapping and imposition.

shot from Pages: save to PDF-X

The book is written mainly for printing pros, but the clear language will make it interesting for everyone curious about how modern books are made. Especially notable is Chapter 8, ‘Graphic Arts Workflow’ which takes you inside the mind and office of a book-printing professional, as it describes the basic steps of print production: concept and design; prepress; press; finishing and binding; and shipping.

A glossary at the end defines more than 100 printing terms. The book is generously illustrated with screenshots, diagrams, and photographs. A handy reference, the Digital Prepress Primer reminds me of Strunk & White’s “The Elements of Style” for everyone involved in the work of book production.

Digital Prepress Primer
by Joseph Marin
Paperback, 114 pages
Published by PIA/GTF Press
ISBN: 978-0-88362-563-7

PIA/GATF: the Printing Industries of America, Inc. / Graphic Arts Technical Foundation

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Monday, March 03, 2008

Save the Internet — Support Net Neutrality

What is Net Neutrality ? A belief that the Internet should remain equal for all users, and free from interference from the telecommunications companies who provide broadband service to consumers. These broadband companies want to destroy Net Neutrality, to create a "two-lane" information highway system. Those who pay more would get the fast-lane service, and those who pay less would get the slow lane, with the possibility that some content from the Internet would be filtered out according to the whims and whams of your ISP.

Net neutrality is the way that, for the most part, the Internet is working now. But the big companies are trying to change the laws to allow them to control the content-flow, and thereby create an undemocratic Internet.

Lots of people are not happy with this move by the telecommunications giants. But the solution is not as easy as "change your ISP." Broadband buyers often have little or no choice all.

What can we do? ... An excellent group, Save the Internet, is organizing an effort to preserve net neutrality. And Congressman Ed Markey is attempting to pass a bill that will protect our Internet freedom.

Learn more, with these Resources For learning about Net Neutrality:

Save the Internet:

Ed Markey's Proposed Law:

Net Neutrality in Wikipedia

Net Neutrality Supported by John C. Dvorak,2817,2269835,00.asp

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