Pandora’s box of music

Do you ever get bored at work? (Note: if your boss is reading this, you should probably answer “No” to this question).  If so (or…not [see above]), then I have a great site, called Pandora Radio to share.  It’s a “radio” where you can sort of make your own playlists!  You can just type in a favorite song or artist and the radio will play songs by that artist and other songs from similar sounding artists.  You do have to register for the site, but the best part is, they save your playlists (and you don’t get annoying spam emails from them, either).  It’s something fun to play around with, or just have in the background at your desk.  You don’t even have to let anyone know what kind of music you’re listening to, so go ahead- listen to your guilty pleasure songs and music genres!  In my case, this is country music (ok… I guess I lied when I said Gretchen Wilson was the only country on my iPod.  Heh).

Meet Author (and NU’s own) Cynthia Baron

In her new book, Adobe Photoshop Forensics, Cynthia Baron, Associate Director of Northeastern’s Digital Media and Multimedia Studies program, reveals an intriguing relationship between art and science as she describes how new technologies have assisted in the creation of altered images used for advertising, political propaganda, and even scientific fraud. In this work, Baron provides real historical examples and case studies of those who have used Photoshop to doctor photos for their own benefit and demonstrates the techniques used to deconstruct a photograph to detect fraud. This will be a fascinating discussion for anyone who enjoys shows like CSI or wants to learn more about advances in modern technology.’s Dr. Neal Krawetz calls Adobe Photoshop Forensics “excellent” and “a must-read.”

Meet Cynthia Baron on Wednesday, March 26 @ 4 pm. She’ll discuss her book, sign copies and take questions in 90 Snell Library. Refreshments will be served!

Lovely Volcanoes and Horrible Dams

I have always had an absurd and unnatural love for volcanoes. There is something very mystic about them, especially extinct ones, whose insides are still scarred from millions of years of eruptions. In the middle of chaos and fire, volcanoes persist, even thrive. And even though they are slowly contributing noxious gases to the air I breathe, I can’t help but feel that they and I have some unique spiritual bond… if volcanoes can really have a spiritual anything. It is for this reason that I cradle close to me the idea of Iceland, the enigmatic, romantic concept of an island both fire and ice, that stands so far from everything else, on the edge of the arctic, in a world all its own. I dream of going there like I dreamt of one day playing Scrabble with Kurt Vonnegut, or of seeing The Dismemberment Plan live. It now appears that all three of them may be out of the question. Just when I thought that Iceland may have slipped past the radar of the greed and industrialization of the Rest Of The World, this horrific little event occurs, one that left me sprawled in panicked horror on my living room floor for no less than an hour, clutching my heart and moaning to no one in particular. National Geographic’s March issue contains an article ( discussing the conflicts behind Iceland’s latest industrial progress, namely a dam called Kárahnjúkar, which required an enormous amount of flooding and will provide energy to a massive American-company-owned aluminum smelter. The smelter will provide much-needed jobs and foreign capital. however, and while it’s impossible to ignore the social aspect, it’s also impossible for me not to be enormously depressed about this: in my mind it will always be a tragedy, akin to the Truth About Santa Claus, birthdays after fifteen, and the last book of Narnia.

Relive the magic

Meet the Author programs : If you want to see what you missed out on, or just relive the magic, go to the library’s flickr account. Unfortunately, the photos cannot be organized into folders by event because that feature isn’t available on the free account (the max number allowed is three). But I tagged every photo for easy searching. Since I don’t think this is linked to flickr, don’t hesitate to add any of those photos to the gallery

Hello from Wellesley!

I’m here at a great workshop at Wellesley College today, learning some tips about how to write for the web. Also here with me is the famous Emily Sabo! In addition to the fun workshop, we had a great lunch over at the student center. Shrimp risotto. Yum.