Sunday, 7 June 2009

Interviews with Reggio and Glass about Koyaanisqatsi

Just watched “Essence of Life” (2002), a short documentary with interviews with Godfrey Reggio and Philip Glass, part of the collaboration that made the film Koyaanisqatsi (1983), on the DVD of the film. I can't help thinking that, while many films lose their relevance with time, or at best maintain it, this one becomes increasingly important as technology becomes ever more pervasive. Reggio started out by making a public information film about the way technology was being used to invade privacy. In 1978!. Before the popular use of the Internet or the invention of the World Wide Web. Have things improved since then? I don't think so; quite the opposite. As technology becomes more pervasive it increasingly becomes what Reggio calls the “host of life”, supplanting nature. I think this film will become increasingly important as time goes on and technology becomes the place where we live (trapped by it), with the “day of purification” getting ever closer. Thanks to Jack Moore for introducing me to the film (around 1985 I think). More information about Koyanisqaatsi in Wikipedia. Clips of the documentary are on YouTube, but the DVD of Koyaanisqatsi and Powaqqatsi is available from Amazon ridiculously cheap.

Friday, 5 June 2009

Chip and Pin a la espaƱola

Just went to my bank (Bancaja) and picked up my new charge card. Hope that it'll make life easier now that I no longer have a valid residence permit and don't carry my passport around with me. Until HM Government gets around to issuing me with an identity card. Hopefully it'll also save explanations when I try to use it in small shops in the UK.

Why do they always put such tiny space on the back for the signature? Is there anyone who can write their signature in that? It's not even big enough for a fingerprint much less a signature.

Monday, 1 June 2009

Register of foreign residents

Go to Ministry of Interior in Plaza del Campillo del Nuevo Mundo (near Puerta de Toledo) to be inscribed on register of Foreign Residents. Under European legislation, EU citizens do not require residence permits, these are no longer issued.Unfortunately as the British government is only now starting to issue them again, I don't have an ID card. This means that I should carry my passport every time I go out, which is rather a non-starter I think.

I was given an appointment several months ago. They attended to me quickly and there was no problem. Had to pay a €10 fee at the bank down the street.

I downloaded the fillable form EX-16 in PDF from the Ministry's website and saved it, then printed it out on paper, which was very efficient, I thought. Although PDF was at least tagged after a fashion, it had loads of accessibility errors; they obviously hadn't checked it at all. It was done with Acrobat Distiller. So much for accessibility of government websites. It was only created three months ago, in compliance with a law passed in 2007, so no excuse. The site proclaims its WCAG 1.0 AA, compliance, but then that's no surprise either.