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Book Review: As the Future Catches You
by Lang Reid
This week’s review is a hard cover book with a
hard-hitting jacket, determined to catch your attention. As the Future
Catches You (ISBN 0-609-60903-3) is written by Juan Enriquez, the director
of the Life Sciences Project at the Harvard Business School.
It begins with, not an “introduction” but a page
called “Before you start reading” in which author Enriquez exhorts the
reader to go right through, returning if needed to difficult passages. He
also assures that one does not have to be a rocket scientist to understand
what he has written. He just wants you to understand the trends that are
The first chapter swings you into a new style of book
printing, and a new style of reading with it. Spectacular leaps across the
pages are made, dragging your eyes and stimulating your mind with chilling
predictions such as, “We are beginning to acquire direct and deliberate
control ... over the evolution of all life forms ... on the planet ...
Enriquez manages to show, very quickly, just why the
world technology is moving, very quickly, and in what direction it is
going. He states (and shows) the fact that the previous commodity based
corporations which were once supreme have become dinosaurs. In place of
oil, agriculture, automobiles, tobacco, the new wealth is in corporations
dealing in (wait for it) genomics, bioinformatics, nanotechnology,
photonics, robotics and aerospace. I must admit I have only heard of three
of them and my spell checker only recognised two!
Artificial intelligence is dealt with in chapter 8 with
the “news” that in 8 years time a computer should have the same
processing capacity as a human brain and by the middle of this century
people will carry around computers with the processing capacity equivalent
to the sum of all the brains in the United States.
Are you ready for the concept of computers made from
silicon and DNA that can bypass their own damaged sections and
“regrow” organically? Are you ready for computer chips that can assess
your DNA for over 4,000 genetic conditions right now, and for 100,000
within five years? You’d better!
The review copy was provided by Bookazine with an RRP
of 995 baht, and should be available at all major bookstores. It is a
fascinating read. It is the ‘brave new world’ staring you in the face,
with the message of ‘shape up or (be ready to) ship out’. His use of
the English language is superb in the way it takes you racing from page to
page. If you want “proof” for some of his sweeping statements (and
that is really what every page holds), then you can turn to the end notes
in the book where a comprehensive bibliography is printed for every
When I initially picked up this book I looked at the price and thought,
“This is a bit expensive.” After reading it, I now say it is too
cheap. Get it, read it and give it to your kids to show them that you are
still capable of keeping up - today! But tomorrow?
Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
enjoyed the Sorcerer’s Stone so much that I was a little dubious about
going to see this movie; second movies are rarely as enjoyable. But I have
to say in many regards this one is better.
The movie opens with Harry - he has been virtually
incarcerated for the summer with his loathsome aunt and uncle. He looks
forward to his second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,
but a mischievous “house elf” named Dobby warns him that disaster
lurks in Hogwarts’ hallways.
Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) joins his friends, Hermione
(Emma Watson), Ron (Rupert Grint), and Draco (Tom Felton), as they prepare
to begin their sophomore year at Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and
Wizardry. Many of the old professors and administrators are back,
including headmaster Albus Dumbledore (Richard Harris) the strict
Professor McGonagall (Maggie Smith), and the dark, brooding Professor
Snape (Alan Rickman). There is also a newcomer - the charismatic,
self-absorbed Gilderoy Lockhart (Kenneth Branagh), who is more concerned
with answering fan mail than teaching how to defend against the dark arts.
In one very funny scene Ron and his brothers borrow
their dad’s flying car to rescue Harry from the clutches of his wicked
Good fun, but it’s a better if you have seen the
first movie or read the books, as this one tends to jump straight in, with
little introduction to the story.
Directed by Chris Columbus
Daniel Radcliffe ... Harry James Potter
Emma Watson (II) ... Hermione Granger
Rupert Grint ... Ron Weasley
Richard Harris ... Albus Dumbledore
Maggie Smith ... Professor Minerva McGonagall
Kenneth Branagh ... Gilderoy Lockhart
Robbie Coltrane ... Hagrid
Alan Rickman ... Professor Severus Snape
Warwick Davis ... Professor Filius Flitwick
Sean Biggerstaff ... Oliver Wood
Shirley Henderson (I) ... Moaning Myrtle
Miriam Margolyes ... Professor Sprout
Alfred Burke ... Headmaster Armando Dippet
Sally Mortemore ... Madam Irma Pince
David Bradley (IV) ... Groundskeeper Argus Filch
Mott’s CD review:
Montrose - Montrose
by Rick The Rottweiler
(Mott is in the kennel for the next couple of weeks)
***** 5 Star Rating
When the definitive history of rock is written, one
single accomplishment will demand Ronnie Montrose’s inclusion as a
guitar great - his 1973 self titled album ‘Montrose’. On this album
you are treated to Montrose’s Gibson Les Paul guitar roaring like a
motorcycle or screaming with almost impossible sustain.
Ronnie Montrose’s career first took off in the early
seventies as a guitarist for Van Morrison. Following this he teamed up
with Edgar Winter before forming his own band in 1973 with Sammy Hagar
(vocals), Bill Church (Bass), and Denny Carmassi (Drums).
Although Montrose never gained ‘Mega Star’ status,
they still managed to build up a large following in Europe and the US and
from 73-75 they undertook numerous tours supporting established hard rock
acts including Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, which enhanced their
reputation as a high calibre rock and roll band.
The first album was originally issued in 1973 and was
re-released in 1979 to coincide with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM)
which was flourishing at that time in the UK.
Produced by Ted Templeman and written by the band it
contains such songs as ‘Bad Motor Scooter’, ‘Rock the Nation’, and
‘Space Station Number 5’, which can all be described as Full-Tilt
Riff-Rock at its very best. If you are looking for an album that will get
the dandruff out of your hair and your neighbours banging on the walls,
this is the one for you.
‘Good Rockin’ Tonight’ and ‘Rock Candy’ are
further excellent examples of up tempo, foot tapping, beer drinking rock
‘n’ roll songs, which appear on the album and cry out to be played at
maximum volume on your Hi-Fi system.
Surprisingly, Sammy Hagar did not do any guitar work on
this album, all of which was left to Ronnie Montrose and was one of the
factors which led to unrest between the two of them and the band’s
eventual splitting up in 1975. Hagar left to pursue a solo career, where
he would at last get the chance to display his own skills on the guitar.
Things between Hagar and Montrose had become so strained just prior to the
split that, for the last dates of their final tour, they refused to stand
anywhere near each other on the stage.
Following the split of Montrose and a successful solo
career Sammy Hagar went on to gain even more fame and fortune as
singer/guitarist with Van Halen.
In an era of highly polished, digitally mastered,
nicely rounded at the edges productions that we now live in, it’s always
a pleasure to listen to this album and enjoy that Raw Rock sound of the
early 70’s. It really doesn’t come any better than this.
Ronnie Montrose - Guitar
Sammy Hagar - Vocals
Bill Church - Bass
Denny Carmassi - Drums
1. Rock The Nation
2. Bad Motor Scooter
3. Space Station Number 5
4. I Don’t Want It
5. Good Rockin’ Tonight
6. Rock Candy
7. One Thing On My Mind
8. Make It Last
To contact Mott the Dog email: [email protected]
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