Sid Caeser died this past Wednesday at the age of 91. He was one of the first starts of television back in the early 1950’s. I have not seen all of his works, but what I have seen has always stuck with me. As a kid, I first saw him in the 1963 movie It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. This was back before cable televisions and one of the big three networks played the movie once a year. Later, I saw some of the highlights of Your Show of Shows. It’s slapstick. It’s Vaudeville. It’s Commedia dell’ Arte. It’s hilarious.
Here is the New York Times obituary for Mr. Caesar. I have also included a short video clip of Conan O’Brien’s Salute to Sid Caeser followed by a sketch of Sid Caeser in one of his shows.
This is a clip from a documentary of Buckminster Fuller. The name of the doc is not included on the YouTube page. In this bit, Fuller talks about how economic systems can be based on abundance instead of scarcity.
The right audio channel has a few issues so you may want to listen to the video without headphones. If you care to see and hear Fuller in action, there are many videos of him on YouTube. Fuller was way ahead of his time so if you are new to his work, a visit with his ideas could be invigorating if you need a jolt of a new perspective.
Philip Seymour Hoffman died today at the age of 46. It was a shock to many people around the world. It was a shock to me. I have only seen his movie work. Unfortunately, I never had the pleasure of attending his stage work.
Actors are story tellers. Very good actors are capable of transforming themselves such that the audience notices the character being portrayed – brought to life – more than the actor portraying the character. It is a magical phenomenon. And it is rare. The skill can be nurtured and developed but only if it is there to begin with. You either have it or you don’t. Philip Seymour Hoffman had it. And his acting was magical. And I will miss him and his work dearly.
Rushkoff’s perspective of the digital revolution complements those of Scott Burken and Frank Rose. Each author’s work informs the others’ works. Multiple readings are recommended. With respect to that, it’s time for me to revisit all three of their works. It will be interesting to discover new facets that time will reveal as it has been over year since I first read them.
Frank Rose is the second author whose work I discovered during the summer of 2012. His book The Art of Immersion explores how our current digital age of story telling has transformed audiences from passive receivers to active participants. While I read his book, I couldn’t help but think of McLuhan and his work.
I am a fan of Scott Berkun. He is an author who writes about “creativity, leadership, philosophy and speaking.” Check out his blog on his website where you can learn more about the five books he has written plus a lot more.
I first encountered Berkun’s work a couple of summers ago. I was looking for some books that explored how individual people and societies are being affected by the Internet, WWW, portable digital devices and social networks. With respect to the digital tools, I was curious about where we are, how we got here and where we are headed. To put it another way, I was wondering who was picking up from where McLuhan left off. I discovered four new books on my search.
The first book that I read was Berkun’s The Myths of Innovation. If anyone enjoyed reading the biography Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson and was fascinated by the history of the technology as well as Jobs, then The Myths of Innovation is a must read.
The above video is of Berkun speaking at Ignite Seattle 7 December 2010. He provides commentary as the audience watches a time-lapse video of Berkun’s computer screen while he writes 1000 words. The video is in his blog post titled How to Write 1000 Words.
I thought I’d share a few bits about R. Buckminster Fuller. Do you know who he was? Are you familiar with what he did? Click his name in the first sentence to check the Wikipedia article about him.
Visit the Buckminster Fuller Institute online at BFI.org.
Check out what why “Call me Trim Tab” is on the headstone at his grave. If you know about boats and planes, you’ll have an inkling.
And finally, here’s a brief video about Fuller’s invention the Dymaxion House. There are many more videos, even full length programs available on YouTube. (Thanks to airboyd.tv for posting this video on their YouTube channel.)