The Pipwick Papers

There’s no Sunday Papers this week as RPS continues to sleep off its Christmas dinner, so here’s a Pipwick Papers from the Supporter program archives.

Last week I finally took a holiday and it was glorious. I went to see a bunch of cool art exhibitions and projects as well as finally catching up on some sleep. This edition of the Pipwick Papers is going to be a smattering of the things I read and saw while pottering about – there’s a lot of art!

  • There’s this storymap of the Chagall Window at the United Nations headquarters in Stockholm. It’s a stained glass work dedicated to peace which acts also acts as a memorial. I’d say the map doesn’t really move you around the window much (that will make more sense once you’ve clicked the link) and it doesn’t really talk much about the specific motifs and so on but I liked the idea even if the execution was a little odd.
  • The National Gallery has a really wonderful Goya exhibition on at the moment which focuses on his strengths as a portrait painter, his changing relationship with the country’s leadership and his more personal relationships. Of the paintings on display I think I had the art equivalent of being starstruck by his portrait of the Duchess of Alba, while his painting of his closest friend, Martín Zapater was truly touching.
  • There was also this fantastic honey bee paper cut artwork at the Holburne Museum in Bath. The museum website doesn’t really have a lot in the way of explanation or illustration so you’re probably better off going straight to the artist, Nahoko Kojima, and clicking through the gallery on her site. Here’s a close-up I took while there:
  • The Finding Dory trailer also came out but I’m a bit… meh about it all. Dory was a decent enough sidekick but I don’t relish the idea of spending a whole film focusing in on her:
  • Meeri Kim has written about Cotard’s syndrome for the Washington Post. The illness makes the sufferer think that he or she is dead. The explanation put forward in the article relates to a lack of emotional response to stimuli which previously provoked a reaction. It’s such a peculiar and horrible thing but some of the explanations and cases in the article are fascinating.
  • Finally, Benedict Evans has a piece called “Mobile, ecosystems and the death of PCs“. The headline makes posting it here seem provocative but actually I liked it as an exploration of what “mobile” actually means.
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    1. Sinomatic says:

      Those papercut works are stunning. Not sure I’ve ever seen it hung that way before.

    2. dangermouse76 says:

      Any good tech prezzies to share. I got creative T20 speakers for chrimbo. It’s ramped up the panic factor on suicide mutants.

      Also struggling to set up a decent browser for the rasberry pi. The Kodi ones don’t seem great . Need a media center solution that has a good Web browser.

    3. celticdr says:

      Goya had some damn fine portraits, he certainly captured his subjects personality quirks unlike any other artist of that era, and there’s of course his famous Peninsular War paintings (The Third of May 1808 being a solid favourite).

      TL;DR (how was that even close to being too long, damn kids with your short attention spans) Go see Goya.

    4. GWOP says:

      Hey, if an ARM device perform and dissipate heat to the level of a tower configuration, provide a user interface as ergonomic as a mouse and keyboard, and no longer be held within a walled garden where the general user has to depend on the OEM to release crucial updates (who would rather you just buy their new hardware)… then sure, I would switch wholly to mobile…

      … because by then they would just be PCs in a new form factor.

    5. Beanbee says:

      I think an accurate death knell is when consoles become something you can put in your pocket. By that point, there’ll be no (gaming) reason to remain full-sized.

      I’m already quite happy rocking a mini-itx case

      • Zenicetus says:

        Depends on what you call a game, I guess. Flight sims and the more CPU/GPU-intensive space sims will be the last holdouts on PCs, because they need the latest and greatest hardware to run anywhere close to maximum settings. They also need the open-standard input flexibility to run a bunch of specialized controllers and head tracking/VR hardware.

        Current higher-end sims like X-Plane, Prepar3D, and the DCS sims are only available on PCs and not consoles for that reason. I can’t see it changing soon, because flight sims are still fairly primitive with room to grow. Weather modeling has barely been touched, and that’s going to need some major CPU grunt when the sims get around to modeling it more realistically.

        As general-purpose PC usage continues to shrink, flight sim fans will probably just move onto PCs aimed at the pro graphics and video editing market. They’ll be the last “gaming” PC computers if everyone else moves to consoles that fit in your pocket.

      • Rhodokasaurus says:

        Nobody ever addresses the real reason people play on a particular platform. Personal preference.

        Do you like games that use a mouse? Have text? Require thought? PC.

        Do you like to chill on a couch? Shoot stuff? Veg out? Console.

        Do you like to waste your time? Throw away money? Are you literally retarded? Mobile.

        Nothing’s going to die out and leave a vacuum if there’s demand for all these things.

        • Viral Frog says:

          Just about hit the nail on the head there. With a few exceptions regarding mobile gaming, I still don’t understand how that’s even a thing. It’s like you take a game, remove the fun, and make it portable. Woopty doo.

        • Premium User Badge

          Grizzly says:

          80 Days was originally a mobile game, and a spiritual succesor to the well recieved Sorcery! games which remain there. It is now one of RPS’s advent games. I don’t think the “Literally retarded” phrase fits, considering that these are the most lauded adventure games to come out in a while.

          • GWOP says:

            You can always discount someone’s opinion when s/he thinks ‘literally retarded’ is a good qualifier for anything.

    6. Monggerel says:

      “Finding Nemo” is literally perfect as the title of a Sartre play.

    7. Snargelfargen says:

      Interesting article about Cotard’s syndrome. One thing I wish it went more into depth with was Wang’s Lyme disease diagnosis. While it’s a very real disease, a lot of quack doctors have been diagnosing it recently in patients looking for an alternative explanation for the symptoms. Joint pain, neurological problems and rashes are unfortunately pretty common ailments.

    8. Flegrant says:

      I’d like to say +1 for the Apartment reference in the mobile piece.

    9. Dhakka says:

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