Saturday, June 4, 2011

Check your mylar at the door, please

Apple filed an interesting patent application with the United States Patent & Trademark Office that has enormous implications. It’s all over the Tech headlines at the moment but the mainstream press is still ignoring it. I’ll bet you haven’t heard about this yet. But you should.
You know that camera you have in your phone? 

Governments pass laws prohibiting photography in certain places with a penalty if you do it anyway, but they leave you the freedom to choose. Penalties only apply if they catch you, arrest you, try you and find you guilty. But that’s a time consuming and expensive process and so that’s about to change.
The remote controller for your television works on infrared, right? It’s how you change the channel or adjust the volume without getting up.
At the behest of the recorded music and motion picture industries, Apple has developed an infrared sensor integrated into all its mobile devices with a built-in camera; the iPhone, iPodTouch and iPad but it can roll out to every other device, too. A live concert, performance or movie would not be recordable or photographable if Apple implements this technology. An infrared signal shining from the stage to the audience would disable all recording features making it impossible to shoot photos or record music or movies and post it all online, in violation of copyright laws. 
Seems to me, though, shooting through a few cents worth of mylar would re-enable the camera. Mylar is a clear plastic sheet with a thin vaporized film of metal on it, which reflects up to 99% of the infrared spectrum. Block the infrared and the camera works again.

It would be ironic if concert venues began to disallow mylar like they do smoking, alcohol and drugs. 

another cool thing about the Bronx

City Island is one of those cool, far-away places in the Bronx that isn’t actually all that far away. Hop the northbound six for 30 minutes to the end, transfer right there to the CityIslandBX29 and about 10 minutes later you are crossing the bridge, about 45 minutes in all.

In Summer it’s like our own Martha’s Vineyard if Martha worked in Manhattan, rode the eastside IRT and had a shadowy pal named Vinnie the Keel. ;-)

There are restaurants galore and marinas and piers and beautiful vistas all around. You can walk much of it, too, although taking a bicycle on the subway and then riding the last 3 miles to the bridge is really the way to go. 

City Island is tiny, barely 1/3rd the size of Central Park. On a bike you can own it in a day.

It’s ringed with sailboats and seagulls and the main drag is studded with ship yards, junk shops and antique stores. Some of the “America’s Cup” sailboats have been built here. And the ice cream truck is never far away.

The amazing thing is how quiet it can be and how distant you feel. It’s like going back in time.

The island is home to four yacht clubs including this namesake above, the City Island Yacht Club, located at the red marker on Pilot Street on the map.

Incorporated in 1907 it took its present home in 1921, adding additional property, more waterline and a post-prohibition liquor license in 1930. Yeah baby, rum. 

It’s quite the proper neighborhood.

The club house is nice, too, ClockTowerTenants will do a feature on the interior in the weeks ahead. 

Twice it’s been inundated with storm water.

But the boats are the real reason to go.

Motors and sailboats of all kinds, many up in dry dock for repair or paint…

... or just a wash and wax before heading to the water for the season.

That’s the Throggs Neck Bridge on the horizon.

City Island is well out into the Long Island Sound. It’s odd to still be in the Bronx and feel this green and clean. :-)

City Island New York, another cool thing about the Bronx.

 It’s not actually in the shadow of 
the Empire State Building.

But it sure feels like it.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Did you know they use a road blower to clean the bridge?

Me neither.
That particular model is made by Honda, for sale on

Who cares, right?

so let's dance, take a chance

"You're dirty and sweet, clad in black, don't look back

And I love you."

"You're dirty and sweet, oh yeah"

"You dance when you walk so let's dance, take a chance,

 understand me."

"You're dirty, sweet and you're my girl."

Get it on.


Thursday, June 2, 2011

givin' the devil his due

Burn out the day. Burn out the night.
I can't see no reason to put up a fight
I'm living for givin' the devil his due.

And I'm burnin', I'm burnin', I'm burnin' for you