My brad photoshop collection ^_^

Here is my shrine of fan art/ photoshops of our brad for all the internet to keep 
starting off with one from me ^_^ 

Feel free to contribute and add on fan shoops/ news 
its all about brad :D

Barack Obama calls France America's strongest ally.

Now im not going to be waving my nationalist flag here, im just genuinely seeking American opinion on what the president said 

 “We don’t have a stronger friend and stronger ally than Nicolas Sarkozy, and the French people.”    

- Barrack Obama 
In Britain a lot is said of a "special relationship" we enjoy with America, usually by policy makers looking for our vote, but do you all agree france is a closer ally than the UK?

Why is Islamic Jew-hatred allowed to thrive on academic campuses?

Anyone around here who shares a scholarly interest in Islamic extremism often wonder if they can possibly see anything more shocking than their last encounter. This video at least, reminded me there are always new lows. 
This is a video taken from a recent talk by the author David Horowitz at the University of California, San Diego. 

I wont spoil the video for you, but i encourage you to watch it all the way to the end. I have no idea why she is allowed to get away with what she says

Yesterday i drank wine with two nobel prize winners

pretty goddamn awesome if i do say so myself  
Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov won it on tuesday for their work with graphene 
from the nobel website 

Graphene – the perfect atomic lattice

A thin flake of ordinary carbon, just one atom thick, lies behind this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics. Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov have shown that carbon in such a flat form has exceptional properties that originate from the remarkable world of quantum physics.

Graphene is a form of carbon. As a material it is completely new – not only the thinnest ever but also the strongest. As a conductor of electricity it performs as well as copper. As a conductor of heat it outperforms all other known materials. It is almost completely transparent, yet so dense that not even helium, the smallest gas atom, can pass through it. Carbon, the basis of all known life on earth, has surprised us once again.

Geim and Novoselov extracted the graphene from a piece of graphite such as is found in ordinary pencils. Using regular adhesive tape they managed to obtain a flake of carbon with a thickness of just one atom. This at a time when many believed it was impossible for such thin crystalline materials to be stable.

However, with graphene, physicists can now study a new class of two-dimensional materials with unique properties. Graphene makes experiments possible that give new twists to the phenomena in quantum physics. Also a vast variety of practical applications now appear possible including the creation of new materials and the manufacture of innovative electronics. Graphene transistors are predicted to be substantially faster than today’s silicon transistors and result in more efficient computers.

Since it is practically transparent and a good conductor, graphene is suitable for producing transparent touch screens, light panels, and maybe even solar cells.

When mixed into plastics, graphene can turn them into conductors of electricity while making them more heat resistant and mechanically robust. This resilience can be utilised in new super strong materials, which are also thin, elastic and lightweight. In the future, satellites, airplanes, and cars could be manufactured out of the new composite materials.

This year’s Laureates have been working together for a long time now. Konstantin Novoselov, 36, first worked with Andre Geim, 51, as a PhD-student in the Netherlands. He subsequently followed Geim to the United Kingdom. Both of them originally studied and began their careers as physicists in Russia.  Now they are both professors at the University of Manchester.

Playfulness is one of their hallmarks, one always learns something in the process and, who knows, you may even hit the jackpot. Like now when they, with graphene, write themselves into the annals of science.

Was a pretty big day for science at manchester 
also the wine was free 

Get to know music: Miles Davis and his acolytes

Its that time again! 

From the top

Miles Davis is arguably The jazz trumpeter, and is rightly a household name however his back catalogue is long and varied to say the least, im going to try and help cut through some of the murk that surrounds such bodies of work. 

birth of the cool

Miles released arguably the defining album of his early years, Birth of the cool, in 1957 and featured unconventional instrumentation for the time and featured songs mainly clocking under 3 minutes, but never to the detriment of the quality of the recordings 
From this point on, Miles davis just kept on going faster, faster and faster in a genre that would be dubbed "bebop", a subgenre defined by rapid chord changes and virtuoso playing 
This track exemplifies the point im making: (two bass hit from the album milestones) 
However miles grew tired of bebop, he though more emphasis should be placed on melody rather than simply playing fast leading to what many regard as the best jazz album of all time........ 

Kind of Blue

Rightly hailed at the time, and still held in massive regard now, King of Blue was part of a new movement of "modal jazz", Jazz that used fewer chord changes but emphasised the infinite uses that could be made of the fewer notes 
Today, Kind of blue is amazing listening and if you havent ever heard it, you are missing out. 
Kind of Blue marked a massive change for miles, leading him to release a string of classic albums...... 
Sketches of spain 
and many others in between. 
At this point im going to take a moment to discuss what several of his ex bandsmen were doing

'Trane, Cannonball and Hancock

Over the years Miles had several sidesmen, and a lot went on to have massive success, before i continue onto miles changing music once again, a few select tracks by some of his greats 
Possibly my favourite ever jazz album, Cannonball Adderley and the Quintets "mercy, mercy, mercy" 
  And the pianist who dared lead  a band
All of these were the dominants of jazz, all played with miles, all changed music forever. 

Jazz Fusion

In 1969, Miles released "in a silent way" an album where melody is light and rhythmic interpretation of soloing is strong. It marked the dawn of so called "Rock Jazz", a term later used as a pejorative, regardless, in a silent way was miles doing as miles does: innovating 
and then the even more famous Bitches Brew 
Once again, the greats of jazz took his ideas and ran with it, leading to Herbie Hancock, and The bands Weather report and Mahavishnu Orchestra taking the ideas further 
All revolutionised music, all had fantastic careers and Miles started it all. 
I wish i could talk in more depth, but i fear trying to use too many words and not enough music may lead to me getting carried away 

Essential Listening

Miles Davis 
Birth of the cool 
porgy and bess 
sketches of spain 
kind of blue 
in a silent way 
bitches brew 
Herbie Hancock 
Takin' off 
head hunters 
empyrean isles 
Weather report 
heavy weather 
blakc market 
Cannonball Adderley 
Mahavishnu orchestra 
the inner mounting flame 
birds of fire 
john coltrane 
a love supreme

Get to know music: Funk

This blog is in tribute to Phelps "Catfish" Collins, Garry "Starchild" Snider and Marvin Isley, all of whom passed away this year. 

The Origins of Funk

Funk can trace its roots back to R n B, Jazz and soul music though it often used elements of harder rock and rock n roll music. The distinctive sound, which emphasises the down beat and holds true to the 4 4 timing of blues was developed by James Brown and his backing band, The JBs. By the mids 60s James Brown had his style down to a T, with syncopated guitar riffs and a swing that defined his hits such as the Classic "Papas got a brand new bag". 
Following his lead, other bands started to play like Brown, Bands like the Isley Brothers, Sly and the Family Stone and even Jimi Hendrix (who once played for the Isleys, and taught their guitarist how to play) owed a lot of their sound to Brown. Their success's were, however, very much their as they carried on to develop the genre in different ways from the more straight RnB of the Isleys 
To the more Psychedelic Sly 
Their incorporation of influences that felt more "real" to them allowed funk to blossom, with scores of other bands starting to play in their styles. 

The 70s: Disco and Pfunk

 Arguably the biggest funk band of the 70s was George Clinton with parliament/funkadelic. Fresh from working for motown he envisaged a funk where he had a revolving line of musicians, and rather than a genre they had a philosophy and a mythology, and on they went. Their mainstream penetration must've surprised even Clinton, as they US went crazy for them with some fans even reporting transcendent experiences at concerts. Such was their cultural impact, their music is still used today, notably to advertise pringles or even appear on glee 
Other bands such as the ohio players and labelle appeared, creating instant classics that i bet you all know and love 
You all know these songs 
Funk began to take a more electric edge at this time, and was a very very direct influence on the emerging disco scene, with obviously george clinton being at the forefront 
However disco represented the death of funk, with several bands like the red hot chilli peppers playing the style but never gaining success with that sound (RHCP got success with a more alt rock sound) 

Essential listening

One nation under a groove 
cosmic slop 
Mothership connection 
Funkentelechy Vs the Placebo Syndrome 
The Motor Booty Affair 
George Clinton 
Computer games 
James Brown 
Live at the apollo 
Love Power Peace 
Sex Machine 
Bootsys Rubber Band 
Bootsy? Player of the year 
The Isley Brothers 
Brother, Brother,Brother 
The Ohio Players 
loads more, have a listen and give funk a chance!

Void rays are ruining online team multiplayer for me

It could just be my own experience in the game, but having played practice league through, all my placements and managed to get into gold for 3v3 and made my way up a bit ive noticed something 
a good chunk of protoss players see to think that the best strategy to use is to turtle in their base,building no units other than harvesters, then spam voids. 
Now with good scouting (which i always do) this is very very easily stoppable by hitting them early, so when i fight this its never a problem 
however when theyre on my side its a good bit less ingratiating, having to draw spread your troops out to protect some dolt who is doing the strat is getting on my nerves 
is anyone else having this problem? id hoped such strats wouldnt exist in higher tiers but clearly they do


Just completed Mass Effect 2 on insanity (probable spoilers)

First off, what a ride that was! I played it through on normal having imported my ME1 character, wasnt satisfied so decided to dive right in. First up my stats: 
Soldier , imported at 30 
chose the widow sniper rifle 
toyed with reave for a while, eventually settled for warp ammo 
Amazing experience, not like the call of duty or bad company games difficulty level, where it feels cheap and youre just hopping from save to save, insanity made it so the tactical side to combat was far more important than just hittin em up 
Grunt got a lot of use, found him as an overall gun platform as invaluable, and on levels where there are tons of them ghoul things coming at you his charge attack (melee) one hits them.  some seriously intense gameplay was coaxed out of me, the disabled collector ship was damn near impossible but it just felt so satisfying to finish it. By the time i had got all/most the upgrades the slack was let up (slightly!!) and i found myself having to reload very rarely. 
Also i banged miranda 
hell yesssssssssssssss 
i also managed to haul everyones sorry asses outta the collector base 
found it easier than when i did it on normal