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Release Date: August 05, 2009
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iTunes New Music Releases

Release Date: September 29, 2009
Genre: Rock
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Discover New Music

  • With Teeth

    • 4 out of 10
    • Nine Inch Nails
    • In the sprawling post-A&R rock and roll world, there are two camps: the Beatles and the Stones. The Beatles are the artists that like to explore, evolve, and change styles. The Stones are the artis

  • Bowie at Beeb: Best of BBC Radio 68-72

    • 10 out of 10
    • David Bowie
    • The companion CD to a BBC television concert, BBC Radio Theatre has some of the best renditions of many of Bowie's best songs throughout his career. "I'm Afraid of Americans" is substantial

  • 2112

    • 10 out of 10
    • Rush
    • We all know it, right? Well, ya just gotta have it. 2112 finally showed Rush out on their own, doing their own thing, and doing it well, IMHO.
  • Rock Spectacle

    • 8 out of 10
    • Barenaked Ladies
    • These guys know how to put on a live show, and whomever recorded this knows how to capture one. Rock Spectacle is one of the warmest-sounding recordings I've ever heard, and totally fills a room at a
  • The Life Pursuit

    • 8 out of 10
    • Belle & Sebastian
    • The Life Pursuit is a sort of Reeses Peanut Butter Cup. You get Belle & Sebastian's peanut butter (its wistful, often irresistible pop) dipped in a 'Have A Nice Day!' and glam 70s chocol

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Science Stuff And More

While most of my friends fell asleep or played flick-football in science class back in my high school days, I was actually paying attention as the teacher droned on about cells, stars, energy and matter. My teacher was parroting what was, at that time, the sum of Man's basic understanding of the world and universe we lived in.

I didn't care much for dissecting worms and frogs, but I jumped at any chance to use the microscopes; that was the real adventure to me. There, living in the smallest droplet of pond water, were thousands of animals as alien as anything on The Outer Limits, moving, eating, and reproducing, oblivious to the eyes that watched them and the young and mostly disinterested minds that considered them.

It seemed almost unfathomable that cells similar to those I watched through the eyepiece made up my body, and that specialized cells inside my head were the ones pondering what I was seeing.

Needless to say, my young mind was completely blown by that realization.

I had always been a fan of science fiction, but science fact can be even more intriguing. True, we don't have teleportation, warp engines, and food replicators (yet), but what we do have can literally pop your noodle if you let it.

Of course, we adults don't have the time to pursue mind-blowing science. We have to make do with The Discovery Channel and the occasional two hours with popcorn in a dark theater watching aliens, terminators, and star wars.

For those would be armchair scientists or wannabe armchair scientists I offer Scientific America's 60-Second Science Video podcasts.

Scientific America has been a well read and respected science magazine for decades and reading it when you were a teenager pretty guaranteed you'd be dateless on Friday night, but it was also a sure thing that if you read and understood what was written inside you could depend on a career in science or technology.

60-Second Science Video podcasts are never 60 seconds. They are more like four minutes, but if the subject matter fascinates you, do you really care about the extra three minutes? I don't think so.

There are well over 40 episodes covering all manner of science and technology and the videos are done quite well.

If you've got a few minutes to spare why not use them to expand your knowledge of the world around you? 60-Second Science Video Podcast: add it to your list.

If you are the inquisitive type and want to know how thing are made or how they do what they do, then you are going to love The Stuff of Genius podcast made available by

This is a new podcast so there are only two episodes, but the podcasts holds a lot of promise. The first episode is about Velcro!

Those of you who were Star Trek: Enterprise fans will remember that episode where T'Pol grandmother, after having crash landing on Earth became interested in the town that had accepted her and her two crew-mates, traded Velcro for a large sum of money which she then donated to a local kid's college fund.

I'm a huge fan of Velcro and it isn't a stretch for me to believe that it is alien technology. Be that as it may, The Stuff of Genius is a fun podcast that will definitely be on my subscription list.

OK, any geek worth his pocket protector has thought about building a robot. Some actually have.

I have some friends, young guys, all bachelors, who spend their spare time and income building stuff. Doesn't matter what. One guy is building a car, another is working on upgrading an off-the-shelf video camera with still camera lenses so that he can make Hollywood quality videos. When I last visited these guys I spied an odd looking robot sitting in a corner.

"Does it work," I asked?

"Of course," they replied.

Dumb question.

Anyway, if you want to understand what goes through the mind of guys like these you might be interested in Robots, Robots, Robots.

RRR is Steve Smith's video blog of his quest to build robots, robots, robots. It really is interesting to see how Steve animates the inanimate. Very cool.

This is a rather old podcast and there are only 15 episodes, but it's fun to watch.

That's a wrap for this week.

I will mention the latest waste of my time before I leave: Mafia Wars, a free iPhone/iPod touch app available at the iTunes Store.

The interface and controls are basic and there's not a lot to see, but building up your character is fun and I'm not sure why. Join other mobsters online, mug people, rip off businesses, buy property to hide your shady dealings and war with other wise guys, all of which advances your character, to what end I don't know. But, like I said, it's fun.

Check out Mafia Wars and break virtual knee caps.

More free stuff below (with direct links)

Vern Seward is a writer who currently lives in Orlando, FL. He’s been a Mac fan since Atari Computers folded, but has worked with computers of nearly every type for 20 years.

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