Friday, March 05, 2021

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

Playing cards from the 16th and 17th centuries

Click any image to enlarge

These images are of playing cards from the 16th and 17th centuries. I believe they are all of the face of the cards, I would be curious to see if their backs are highly decorative. The suits and card values seem to be the same as modern cards. 

These images, and those after the jump, are from the Paris Musées digital collection. There are more at the link, you can also download zips of each card which contain the card's image as well as a PDF with further information. The PDF is in French.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

He must be an awful dope

Sailor Boy Bill goes on shore leave with a cocky attitude and seven months pay on him. He meets a friendly young lady in a bar and gets drunk. What could possible go wrong?


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Walking at the Pak Khlong Flower Market

The walk starts in a regular market in Bangkok, Thailand and the moves to the part of the market that sells flowers. I half expected to see Chompoo, Peun, Prim, Foon and Art, but it looked like it was early in the morning so maybe they were sleeping off one of their benders at Go's bar.

OK, enough of my stupid jokes. It was filmed in December of 2020. The mask usage seems to be fairly random.


Sunday, February 21, 2021

The delivery of meaning

Images from Messy Nessy 
(click any image to enlarge)

The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it. - Edward R. Murrow


'It's a beautiful thing, the destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and adjectives, but there are hundreds of nouns that can be got rid of as well. It isn't only the synonyms; there are also the antonyms. After all, what justification is there for a word which is simply the opposite of some other word? A word contains its opposite in itself. Take "good", for instance. If you have a word like "good", what need is there for a word like "bad"? "Ungood" will do just as well -- better, because it's an exact opposite, which the other is not. Or again, if you want a stronger version of "good", what sense is there in having a whole string of vague useless words like "excellent" and "splendid" and all the rest of them? "Plusgood" covers the meaning, or "doubleplusgood" if you want something stronger still. Of course we use those forms already. but in the final version of Newspeak there'll be nothing else. In the end the whole notion of goodness and badness will be covered by only six words -- in reality, only one word. Don't you see the beauty of that, Winston? It was B.B.'s idea originally, of course,' he added as an afterthought.

A sort of vapid eagerness flitted across Winston's face at the mention of Big Brother. Nevertheless Syme immediately detected a certain lack of enthusiasm.

'You haven't a real appreciation of Newspeak, Winston,' he said almost sadly. 'Even when you write it you're still thinking in Oldspeak. I've read some of those pieces that you write in the Times occasionally. They're good enough, but they're translations. In your heart you'd prefer to stick to Oldspeak, with all its vagueness and its useless shades of meaning. You don't grasp the beauty of the destruction of words. Do you know that Newspeak is the only language in the world whose vocabulary gets smaller every year?'

Winston did know that, of course. He smiled, sympathetically he hoped, not trusting himself to speak. Syme bit off another fragment of the dark-coloured bread, chewed it briefly, and went on:

'Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed, will be expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. Already, in the Eleventh Edition, we're not far from that point. But the process will still be continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words, and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. Even now, of course, there's no reason or excuse for committing thoughtcrime. It's merely a question of self-discipline, reality-control. But in the end there won't be any need even for that. The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect. Newspeak is Ingsoc and Ingsoc is Newspeak,' he added with a sort of mystical satisfaction. 'Has it ever occurred to you, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?' 

- George Orwell