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Lyle Zapato

He Who Controls The Encoder...

Lyle Zapato | 2004-06-10.1788 LMT | Mind Control | General Paranoia

As every paranoid knows, all "music" released by the Recording Industry has been riddled with cerebrosonic mind control ever since the Industry's inception. (The earliest forms of cerebrosonics were, unsurprisingly, laughably crude by today's standards -- such as Edison's simple backmasking of adverts for his electric pen into his debut release of "Mary Had A Little Lamb" -- and the modern era of consumer cerebrosonics really didn't come to full fruition until the development of Beatlemania-inducing quasinodal harmonics by the BBC in 1962.) It's no wonder then that paranoids have been musically disadvantaged in recent decades, since finding underground, trusted sources of mind-control-free recorded music was often difficult.

Then the 1990s brought with it the promise of being able to find those sources with ease, for both paranoids and orthonoids alike. The global and decentralized nature of the burgeoning Internet allowed the free exchange of music, with digital signatures based on advanced cryptographic technology used to ensure a network of trust from paranoid artists to their paranoid fans. Today, this is all taken for granted, however there is a dangerous flaw in this trust network: The music encoder.

Say you have a raw digital recording of mind-control-free music that you are going to distribute on the Internet. To save on bandwidth, you wish to compress it as much as possible while maintaining quality, so you unthinkingly use a common compression solution such as MP3, AAC, or WMA to encode the music for distribution. But, how can you trust the encoder not to add cerebrosonic mind control to the resulting file? You can't. And since the "lossy" compression significantly reinterprets the recording, there's no easy way to verify that the resulting file matches the original in memetic content.

Consider: The technology in all these high compression formats is based on a scientific field called "psychoacoustics," which studies how the brain perceives and interprets sound, and specifically what sounds people can't consciously detect. I mean... come on, do you really trust your brain to people calling themselves psychoacousticians? (Notice how that one doth protest too much about the whole "sonic mind control" issue.)

Furthermore, the technologies are all heavily patented by groups ranging from a shadowy German corporation founded by a Knight of the King of Bavaria, to a cult-like company known for its leader's ability to locally distort perceived reality, to Microsoft. If you are using encoders for these compression formats, you might as well just buy the newest Britney Spears CD and surrender your brain to the New World Order's sex slave recruitment division.

Of course, orthonoids and ill-informed paranoids will use them, just as the forces of mind control have arranged. (Organizations like the RIAA are merely fronts designed by the forces of mind control to encourage use of these compromised technologies through reverse psychology.) And while open audio technologies like Ogg Vorbis offer an alternative for those who know to look for them, they will never be allowed to gain general acceptance.

(NB: All MP3s offered on this site were hand encoded using vi for your protection.)

UPDATE: More On iPods & Cerebrosonics

Lyle Zapato

How To Disappear Completely (As Seen On TV!)

Lyle Zapato | 2004-06-01.2900 LMT | Fashion | General Paranoia

In public places, cameras watch our every move. They record where we go, what we do, and who we meet -- even what personal hygiene products we buy. While ostensibly for our security, these cameras are in fact being used by shadowy forces to monitor our lives and learn our secrets to later use against us. Is there a way for the conscientious paranoid to avoid the unblinking gaze of the modern panopticon? Indeed, there is.

Television meteorologists and digital effects technicians use a technology called chromakey -- also often called "blue screen" -- to aid in compositing different elements into a scene. The most common use of this technology involves having a subject stand in front of a usually blue or green screen that is then replaced electronically with some background image, such as a weather map or CGI alien cityscape. Although technicians try to avoid it, chromakey can also affect a foreground subject; for instance, a bright blue tie will result in the illusion of a gaping hole in a weatherman's chest.

While this downplayed side-effect of chromakey technology may be undesirable to those trying to project the image of weathermen as solid purveyors of truth, it can be used to the paranoid's advantage: by wearing a costume made entirely of chromakey screen material, a paranoid can become invisible to electronic surveillance cameras.

Here at ZPi Laboratories, we are working on such electrooptical camouflage in the form of a hooded unitard made of bright blue or green colored spandex, which I call the Chromatard. I believe that this outfit -- which is form-fitting to help the wearer avoid unnecessary, camera-detectable interaction with the environment -- will become as popular with the paranoid community as the AFDB has become. Unfortunately, it is currently unusable outside of laboratory conditions since its bright color will attract the unwanted attention of any enemy agent not hidden behind an electronic camera. However, this should be less of a problem in the future when nearly all forms of surveillance will be mediated by electronic visualizing devices -- either "security" cameras or the eyes of robots. This future will belong to the Chromatarded paranoid.

Lyle Zapato

Walking Downhill Perpetually To Prosperity

Lyle Zapato | 2004-05-29.0000 LMT

In The Two Towers, Treebeard the talking, walking tree muses that he always likes going south because it somehow feels like going downhill. While meant as folksy humor, this actually isn't far from the truth (at least in the northern hemisphere, where presumably all the talking, walking trees live).

As one walks across the surface of a spinning planet toward its equator, one is moving farther away from the planet's axis of rotation, meaning one is traveling at a greater speed around it and is thus experiencing stronger centrifugal force -- the pseudoforce pushing objects away from the center of rotation that is really the consequence of the conservation of momentum. As the centrifugal force increases, the centripetal force of gravity remains relatively constant (in reality, planets bulge at the equator, so gravity is slightly greater,) resulting in a decrease in gravity's subjective effect. Therefore, walking south while in the northern hemisphere becomes progressively easier since one weighs less with each step (that is until one hits the equator, then it gets progressively harder until one hits the south pole and it becomes impossible). The difference in effort is, of course, not consciously perceptible to us, although it may be to massive, tree-sized creatures. So Treebeard might really have felt like he was going downhill afterall.

In M. C. Escher's famous illustration "Ascending and Descending," hooded figures perpetually ascend or descend a staircase that loops continuously on itself. This seemingly impossible situation was illustrated by Escher using geometric slight of hand, but could it not be possible in reality? In fact, it could, and Treebeard was 90° from the secret of Escherian perpetual downhilledness: he should have gone east!

When walking eastward on Earth, you are walking with the rotation of the planet (your planet may vary). Since your momentum would send you at a tangent to the surface if not for Earth's gravity, you are falling somewhat with every step east -- in other words, you are going downhill. Contrariwise, when going west you are stepping into the Earth as it rotates at you, requiring extra effort to lift yourself on top of it -- exactly like going uphill.

To realize Escher's impossible staircase, we would need only to build stairs circling the globe along a line of latitude. The stairs would need to have a very low rise to run ratio, and be slightly curved toward the Earth at a radius to balance gravity and linear momentum when traversing them. The effect would be most pronounced at the equator; however, budget concerns may force the stairs to be built farther north or south, with grippy soled shoes used to compensate for the necessarily angled runners. Much like the planned space elevator, this project would be one of both international cooperation and global economic benefit from energy savings -- imagine armies of moving men and stevedores from all the nations of the world harmoniously carrying crates down the stairs ever eastward, satisfied in the knowledge that they are doing less work than if they were going the other direction.

Can humanity even afford not to build the stairs? I think not.

Lyle Zapato

The Terrible Secret Of Tundra

Lyle Zapato | 2004-05-28.0001 LMT | General Paranoia | Cascadia

Here's something from the Vaults of Unfinished Projects... a crude rendering -- created by ZPi Imaging Laboratories from partial blueprints smuggled out of Ottawa by Windingo agents sympathetic to Cascadian independence -- of a Canadian tool of destruction known as the McLuhanator Mark XI:

McLuhanator Mark XI rendering McLuhanator Mark XI diagram

This dastardly device -- which is being secretly built in a facility somewhere in the Northwest Territories -- is the end result of decades of Canadian giant-robotic-arm research, and was designed for the sole purpose of keeping British Columbia under Federalist subjugation. It's estimated to stand at over 100 feet tall and have the stomping power of over 70 enraged elephants, making an army of these megabotic weapons more than a match for the Sasquatch Militia. (In light of this development, Sasquatch Command has initated a plan to repel the megabots using an ingenious array of forest traps involving swinging logs and tripwires.)

What other horrors does the vast tundra of Canada hide? Probably nothing else, but this is horrific enough.