Friday, June 11, 2010
This is the MotoCzysz E1PC. It is electric. It is almost certainly the most advanced motorcycle on the planet. And it is the future.
We told you moto-genius Michael Czysz — pronounced sizz — was building another contender for the TT Zero electric motorcycle race on the Isle of Man. But we caught up with him early in the build and he wasn’t providing details or pics. Now that the bike’s hit the track, Wes Siler of Hell For Leather has all the details on the MotoCzysz E1PC in a piece posted over at Popular Science.
This bike is bad-ass, no two ways about it. It has a custom-built 12.5-kilowatt-hour lithium polymer battery that can be swapped in seconds. The custom-built, oil-cooled motor generates 100 horsepower (continuous) and 250 pound-feet of torque. It all hangs from a custom frame. Of course, it’s got the usual top-shelf hardware. Ohlins. Brembo. You know the drill.
Czyzs and his crew in Portland, Oregon, were literally buttoning the bike up before the first practice session on the Isle of Man, having just gotten the body panels through customs. No one had tested the bike before, but rider Mark Miller smoked the field during practice, finishing more than three minutes ahead of the competition. The bike hit a top speed of 140 mph and lapped the 37.7-mile course at an average speed of 94.66 mph.
For all the high-tech componentry, the E1PC is designed first and foremost as a motorcycle, so it’s meant to be hammered. Many bikes racing in the TTXGP series suffer ground-clearance issues when leaning into a turn, but the E1PC has no such trouble. Siler says riders accustomed to a conventional sportbike will feel right at home on the E1PC.
Take a close look at the pics. You’re looking at the future of motorcycling.
Photos: Amadeus Photography. More after the jump and over at PopSci.
No offense to Quinton “Rampage” Jackson who plays B.A. Baracus in the big screen adaptation of The A-Team, but Mr. T will always be the B.A. of choice. His signature Mohawk haircut, mountain of gold neck chains and quick trigger temper made him one of the most memorable personalities from ’80s pop culture. B.A. was also known for his hysterical insults and threats. Writers made sure to reserve the best lines for his character. As luck would have it, someone was shrewd enough to edit together a video featuring some of B.A.’s greatest barbs. I pity the fool who doesn’t enjoy this! (Via scratchersscratcher on YouTube.)
New fighter being developed for PS3 and 360, will have tag-team mode and "reinvented" 2D gameplay. See the first trailer.
By Kris Pigna
That live-action Mortal Kombat trailer recently released on YouTube maybe didn't have anything to do with a new Mortal Kombat game, but it makes little difference as Warner Bros. today has coincidentally announced a new Mortal Kombat game anyway. Evidently dubbed simply "Mortal Kombat," the new game is being developed by a new team for release in 2011.
The new team, called NetherRealm Studios, is being guided by original Mortal Kombat creator Ed Boon. This new Mortal Kombat promises a "reinvention of its classic 2D fighting mechanic" along with a "new graphics engine." It's a little unclear from the wording, but it sounds like it'll go the Street Fighter 4 route, with 3D visuals but strictly 2D gameplay.
This new entry will also add tag-team modes in addition to standard one-on-one bouts, including a "co-op arcade mode" that has two players teaming up to take on other teams online. Warner Bros. also promises the "deepest story mode of any fighting game" with a return of "iconic warriors" from past Mortal Kombat games, but no specific characters are mentioned. And of course, there will also be a return of Fatalities.
"This game really is a response to what players have been demanding: mature presentation, reinvented 2D fighting mechanic and the best, most gruesome fatalities ever," said Boon in a statement.
Mortal Kombat is being developed for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and other than 2011, no more-specific release date was announced. But as usual with just about every new game announcement these days, we wouldn't be surprised to find out even more about it at E3 next week.
Richard Jordan had everything he was told to want: cars, a new house, and a fiancee. Then his fiancee left him. So he sold everything, bought a Lamborghini Gallardo and set out across America. This is his amazing story.
This is a love story, but not a conventional one. Sure, there's a woman. There always is. But it's when the woman split that the real romance began. This is the story of Richard Jordan, a man who lost love and then found it again in an exotic Italian sports car and the open American road. Jordan's journey would take him across the country and back again multiple times as he racked up nearly 100,000 miles on a car so expensive, most owners rarely drive at all.
It was early 2006 and Richard's version of the American Dream lay crumbling at his feet. After giving his girlfriend of five years a ring and a house in suburban North Texas — purchased with the proceeds from selling his metal fabrication business, his old house and a few of his cars — she left him.
"I bought us the house and planned on moving in and, as soon as I did, she left," explains Richard. "So I got stuck in a house I didn't want, in an area I didn't want to be in... it was kind of emotionally traumatic. So I bought the car and wandered around."
It wasn't actually as easy as that. No one wanted to buy his new house so he was stuck with it. It took him months to sell the rest of his possessions. That, combined with the much of his life savings, he used to afford a $90,000 down payment on a Lamborghini Gallardo — one of the most expensive vehicles on the market.
The Gallardo is named for a famous Spanish bull and unleashes a massive 512 HP through its mid-mounted V10. Its sharp looks hint at the performance: 0-to-60 mph in just 4.0 seconds with a top speed of 195 mph for the model Jordan purchased. The price? A steep $180,000 at the time of purchase.
Independence Day was an almost intentionally ironic choice, as he picked that day to separate from everything he'd created but now no longer wanted, including the house.
"I'd become a prisoner to my house, to everything, to my fantasy of an American Dream or anything I could remotely call home."
"I'm Not Moby"
With one of the fastest cars in the world but nowhere to take it, Jordan just started driving. For more than a year he wandered from place to place, living in motels and making new friends. He'd cross the United States three times and make trips from Ohio to Colorado to Texas to North Carolina on just a night's rest.
"It was just a feeling that I didn't really have a home, there was no place to safely be but the Lambo. That was the one thing that felt like it worked for me."
He visited the ghost towns and big cities and retraced childhood trips. As soon as he'd settle down somewhere he'd get the itch to move and pack up to drive somewhere else. It quickly became difficult to pay for the house in Dallas — his one remaining possession he couldn't shake — and still afford gas. He almost lost the house numerous times.
"I have a few hundred grand against me, I don't like debt, but I'm used to it," Richard says. "I've accumulated a lot and paid it back several times in my life."
His wanderings yielded as much joy and humor as they did introspection and isolation, including a trip to strip club in Ohio where Richard, then 32, was mistaken for Moby by an a waitress who was convinced he was the musician because of his shaved head, glasses and fancy car.
"This girl comes up and was a waitress and she's like 'You're Moby, aren't you?' and I said 'I'll be anyone you want me to be,' and she took it as 'I'm Moby.'"
Richard is not Moby, but he's also not completely against accepting free bottles of champagne when offered.
"It was just ridiculous, the manager's like kissing my butt, I maybe spent $100 the whole night and it was just really, really silly and absurd."
"It was just like The Blues Brothers!"
Driving across the country in a Lamborghini means occasionally driving above the speed limit. Richard's honest about his desire to go fast and has a drawer full of 53 tickets to prove it. But it wasn't speed, exactly, that landed him in the handcuffs of an Indiana State Trooper.
Though generally jumping from hotel room to hotel room, Richard did have family responsibilities like serving as the best man in his cousin's wedding. While en route to the wedding he was stopped for speeding but ran afoul of the Indiana State Police and suddenly found himself staring down the highway at a roadblock.
Because his car's registration was one-day expired the troops were able to search the car and found a handgun.
"I don't travel without guns, I've been in too many situations so I always carry one or two guns with me," Richard says. "A car like that is an assault on the senses, and you could be in a decent area and just be barraged by people and you never knew who you're dealing with."
At first he didn't grasp the gravity of the situation — the police thought he was moving drugs — so his calm demeanor and jokes about hating the town he was in and a general Blues Brothers schtick didn't go over well. They kept him in the back of a squad car for four hours, eventually releasing him on his own recognizance when they realized they weren't able to drive the car on the back of a flatbed without his help.
He eventually got the car back and the charges settled, but the whole endeavor cost him $25,000 in fines, travel, and legal fees.
Most people don't use their expensive cars as daily drivers exactly because they're so expensive. The highest mileage of any Lamborghini Gallardo for sale on eBay Motors is 38,835 for a 2004 model, but the majority of vehicles are below 10,000 miles.
In his trips across the country Richard managed 91,807 miles.
"I can't afford to buy something like that and drive it on the weekend," Richard explains. "The difference between being materialistic and not is when you use what you have."
For him, it's a better value to drive it given the immediate drop in value for a used Lamborghini. It's even strange for him that others think otherwise.
"No one is concerned with anything as long as Starbucks and the mall is open. It baffles me. It overwhelms me actually. You can have something that's as extreme as a Lamborghini — that's perfect in a sense — and it has no value once you use it."
All that driving does have a price and now the car has even less value. After all the hard driving and long miles, the timing chain stretched, crunching the valves and turning the car into an exotic and expensive paperweight. The car is now worth less than he owes on it and the bank refuses to grant him another loan.
"For me, it's wasteful not to use it. That's anything. It doesn't matter if it's a fucking dishwasher," says Richard. "That's not really socially acceptable. It's not the way we're programmed... most people don't live like I do. I'd eat ramen noodles to pay for gasoline, just to avoid the monotony of being stuck in four walls."
Considering the traumatic experience that led him to buy the car, its destruction doesn't seem to burden him too much.
"It worked everyday, it worked like it was supposed to, it never broke down," Richard assures me. "It exceeded all my expectations."
He's using his sudden lack of transportation not as the end of one journey but as the start of a new one, setting up a shop in Dallas where he plans to build custom motorcycles and superbikes. He has plans to repair the engine or swap in a new one once he can afford it, but for now it makes an interesting sculpture to show friends and prospective customers in the main room of his new office. Richard's also met a girl, but he's trying to take it one step at a time.
His Lamborghini may no longer run, but Richard doesn't regret the decisions he's made. He adopts a zen-like tone that clashes with his mohawk while explaining how lucky he was to be able to leave everything behind and experience something many fantasize about but almost no one has the balls to actually do.
"You're never going to live up to anyone's expectations, so you might as well live up to your own and for me that's to be as free as you can. And if money doesn't buy you freedom then it's useless."
We couldn't agree more.
Phish’s summer tour is set to open in Chicago on Friday. To help mark the occasion, a live performance by the band aired last night on Night with Jimmy Fallon. The group taped Joy track “Kill Devil Falls” after recording “Loving Cup” last month and that performance was broadcast on Wednesday.
For a look back at the group circa 1992, check out our archival article, “Phish: Getting It Clearly Through Alternative Paths,” now up on the site.
After The Addams Family premiered to big box-office success in 1991, the floodgates opened for classic TV shows to be adapted into movies. While 1993's Beverly Hillbillies movie performed dismally, the success of The Flintstones (1994) and The Brady Bunch (1995) kept the creatively challenged studios raiding TV Land for big-screen bounty.
Ultimately, for every Mission: Impossible, audiences also had to endure Car 54, Where Are You?, Sgt. Bilko, Leave it to Beaver, Lost in Space, and McHale's Navy.
With The A-Team opening this week, can a deluge of movies based on '80s TV shows be far behind? Should The A-Team become a success, we've compiled a list of small-screen shows from the decade of leather ties and hostile takeovers that we'd actually like to see in theaters.
10. ManimalManimal turned the detective show on its collective head by partnering police detective Brooke MacKenzie (Melody Anderson) with Dr. Jonathan Crane (Simon MacCorkingdale), who uses his shape-shifting ability to help solve crimes because, really, is there a day when police detectives don't require the aid of a hawk or a panther?
Sound crazy? What's crazy is that the show only lasted one season and no one has bothered to make the movie yet.
A movie version of The Greatest American Hero — the show about a teacher (William Katt) who finds a suit that gives him incredible powers and contained arguably the greatest theme song of any show in the 1980s — almost hit the big screen in 2009. Eric Christian Olsen was cast as lead, Ralph Hinkley, and explained to Moviehole what happened.
I booked that movie. I went in for it right after Fired Up. They were like, "This is our guy," but they didn't have financing in place. But yeah, I booked it, but because the budget was so huge they couldn't get the money.
It was a really funny script — about a reluctant hero who gets in way over his head — and it had a lot of really cool stunts.... Then we get a phone call just as we were starting the deal to say they hadn't got the financing. I'm not attached anymore.
Should the project be resurrected, Nathan Fillion has already claimed he would like to play the role. "I know I'm Canadian," said the actor last October, "but I think I could put my hat in for that one."
8. T.J. Hooker
T.J. Hooker was the second successful television show for William Shatner, who played the police-detective-turned-patrol-sergeant for five seasons.
Last July, news of a big-screen version surfaced, described as an action-comedy centering on Hooker and his relationship with his father. Chuck Russell (The Scorpion King) was picked to direct the movie, with screenwriting partners Brent Maddock and S.S. Wilson (Tremors) set to adapt the screenplay. For almost a year, further news of a T.J. Hooker movie has gone quiet, but all that could change depending on The A-Team's success.
7. Misfits of Science
Put together a telekinetic, a rock star who can shoot lightning bolts from his hands, a scientist who can shrink for only minutes at a time, and a guy called "Ice Man" who can freeze anything he touches — except the legal objections from Marvel Comics as to who owns the rights to a character with the same name and abilities — and you get the Misfits of Science, the 1980's answer to Heroes as well as Courtney Cox Arquette's first TV show. (Fun fact: Tim Kring, creator of the now-canceled Heroes, was a writer for Misfits of Science.)
With comic book movies more popular than ever, it seems appropriate that Misfits of Science get their due, and The A-Team could be the boost that they need. In fact, besides their superhuman abilities, the Misfits are pretty similar to The A-Team. Both have four members (Misfits of Science's Ice Man" never made it past the pilot). The A-Team rides around in a van, while the Misfits of Science use an ice-cream truck. The A-Team are mercenaries-for-hire, while the Misfits work for a scientific think-tank.... OK, perhaps the comparison is a stretch, but it doesn't stop the show from being one of the forgotten gems of the '80s.
The show, which launched the career of Johnny Depp, followed rookie cops going undercover to investigate crimes in high schools and colleges. In 2008, it was announced that a movie version was on its way, starring Jonah Hill, who would also write and produce. In January of this year, Hill updated Movieweb on Jump Street's progress.
We hired directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller who directed Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and are friends of mine. They are incredible. Their take on the movie is incredible and I actually didn't write the script. Mike Bacall wrote the script. He wrote Scott Pilgrim vs. The World with Edgar Wright and Mike and I came up with the story together. I'll get a story credit and I'm executive producer as well on the film.
Hill stressed that he is "not playing Johnny Depp's character" from the show, but said that no other actors have been hired for the movie.
No, we're more working with Phil and Chris to nail the story and get the script ready for this year and then we'll concentrate on filling the rest of the pieces.
In February, Sony announced that the movie will open in August 2011, but that date will likely be pushed as Hill recently told MTV that the movie won't start shooting until "January or February" of next year. Instead, the Get Him To The Greek co-star is working on the drama Moneyball with Brad Pitt next, and then The Sitter with director David Gordon Green, which Hill described as "an R-rated, f**ked-up Adventures in Babysitting-type of movie" to Collider. With so much on his plate, it's possible that 21 Jump Street may get postponed, but the movie at least appears to be on solid-footing.
While the 1980's were filled with action shows, MacGyver was different. Special Agent Angus MacGyver (Richard Dean Anderson) used his scientific knowledge rather than a gun, and the approach yielded seven seasons. MacGyver-spoof MacGruber got to theaters first, but that didn't stop New Line from hiring screenwriter Jason Richman to write a script for a big-screen MacGyver last month.
No word on whether Anderson will return to the role he made famous, or whether the poor box-office results of MacGruber will impact the movie. A strong showing for The A-Team could erase the memory of MacGruber entirely.
Some may find this suggestion a throwaway, but think about it, the plot of Hardcastle and McCormick is just screaming to be adapted into a movie: L.A. County Judge Milton "Hardcase" Hardcastle retires and decides to go after 200 criminals who were let go on technicalities, employing help from streetwise car thief Mark "Skid" McCormick and his stolen Coyote X prototype sports car. Sounds like two solid "name" actors away from a movie to us.
Hardcastle and McCormick was also created by legendary TV producer and writer Stephen J. Cannell, responsible for The Greatest American Hero, 21 Jump Street, and a little show called The A-Team. (Fun fact: Cannell was a producer on The A-Team movie.
Don't be surprised if Cannell tries to parlay The A-Team success into some of his other '80s hits, including Hardcastle and McCormick.
3. Magnum P.I.
Magnum P.I. was one of the most iconic TV shows of the 1980s, following Tom Selleck as a Vietnam-veteran-turned-Honolulu-private-detective for eight seasons. Yet, despite being in development for years, there's still no movie. Producer Brian Grazer commented in November of 2008 that casting was the biggest hold-up.
I think the idea for Magnum P.I. is to find a counterpoint, to not try and find the new Tom Selleck but to find someone that is just so different that you go, oh my God! That guy is Magnum?!?
While Matthew McConaughey was a rumored favorite in 2007, Ashton Kutcher is the latest actor rumored to don the Hawaiian shirt and OP shorts. Showbiz Spy reports that Kutcher is the favorite for the role after George Clooney turned it down.
Magnum fans incensed at the possibility of Kutcher as their favorite P.I., fear not. Even if the rumors are true, Kutcher's self-proclaimed inability to grow a mustache could keep him from the role. Seriously. Co-starring with Selleck in Killers, Kutcher bemoaned his facial hair quandary to StarPulse.
I have been trying to grow that mustache since I could grow facial hair. I can't grow a mustache. It's pretty sad, if I attempt to. I believe that Tom produces more testosterone in his little finger than I produce in my entire body. My face doesn't do that.
I played him once, you know, and I'm prepared to play him again. They have to call and write and be nice.
Airwolf was more than just an action show, it captured America's obsession with high-tech helicopters. Clint Eastwood scored a hit with his telepathically controlled jet in Firefox in 1982, but it was eclipsed by Blue Thunder, released the next year, which spawned into a TV series at the same time as Airwolf. While the Blue Thunder TV show crashed and burned after one season, Airwolf rode through the skies with pilot Jan-Michael Vincent for 55 episodes of stealthy, supersonic helicopter action.
With any luck, the high-flying helicopter sequences from The A-Team will prove to Hollywood that America's love of the high-tech helicopter isn't over, but merely resting.
1. Knight Rider
Nothing showcased the 1980's love for ridiculous technology more than the sentient Trans Am K.I.T.T. in Knight Rider, which kept David Hasselhoff in check for four seasons. The Weinstein Company acquired the movie rights to Knight Rider in 2006, with series creator Glen A. Larson on board to write the script. Hasselhoff confirmed the development in 2007, but three years later, no Knight Rider movie has been put into production.
Considering the Weinstein Company's recent financial woes, Knight Rider looks like it won't be going anywhere until either the rights are sold or the Weinstein Company decides to rush the movie into production.
It's a shame, really, if The A-Team becomes a huge hit, Knight Rider seems like the most viable option for another dip into the 1980s.
After Manimal, of course.
Control4 home automation solutions let you easily manage your security system, lights, home entertainment, thermostat and various other electronics…from your iPad!
If you already have a Control4 system in your home:
- Download the FREE Control4 My Home application at itunes.apple.com/us/app/control4-my-home-for-ipad
- Contact your Control4 Dealer to purchase a Control4 Mobile Navigator License to enable secure access to your Control4 system over your home Wi-Fi network.
If you do NOT have a Control4 system in your home:
- Download the Control4 My Home application at itunes.apple.com/us/app/control4-my-home-for-ipad
- Find a Control4 Dealer near you. Your Control4 Dealer can set-up and configure your Control4 system and can enable secure access to your Control4 system over your home Wi-Fi network.
Once you’re up and running, you can use your iPad as an interface to your Control4® system to create custom lighting scenes; to conveniently control entertainment systems; or to take advantage of energy savings with programmable thermostats and other ‘green’ settings. If you’ve already experienced mobile control using your iPhone or iPod Touch, you’ll be even more impressed by the iPad app which is specially designed to take advantage of the larger screen size making it even easier to manage your home.
Later in the year, you’ll be able to use Control4 My Home in conjunction with a Control4® 4Sight remote monitoring subscription to turn lights on and off, lock or unlock doors, or access IP video cameras and security systems from the Internet, providing increased home security and peace of mind.
Didn’t get your iPad yet? You can still manage your Control4 system from your iPhone or iPod Touch (Blackberry and Droid coming soon!). Ask your Control4 Dealer now!
Sculptris is, without question, the coolest thing I have seen all day. What was supposed to be a short spin became an hour of prodding and playing around with every tool of this incredible creation.
In simple terms, it's sculpting software. It's free, and it's accessible. I once downloaded Blender and spent an hour trying to figure it out to no avail. With Sculptris, I got it, started playing around, and in less than an hour I created the rudimentary pig-man that you see in the image. And I have no previous experience with any sort of 3D graphics (except for a bit of SketchUp).
Yes, the ears are on purpose -- it's a tribute to Sebastian's furry friends.
When you fire up the program, you get a round sphere of clay-like substance. You can change the material; what you see above isn't rendered, it's just a different material -- and this is what it looks like mid-sculpting. An array of tools are provided with you sculpt your clay. You can pull, push, pinch, twist, and do just about anything that you could do with a regular piece of modeling clay. There is one important distinction with Sculptris, though, and that's symmetry.
By default, a line crosses the sphere in the middle. Every operation that you perform on one half of the sphere is exactly mirrored on the other half. So, you only have to sculpt one ear, one eye, etc.
It's not limited to faces, of course. Hit Ctrl+N and it adds another pair of blobs (or just one, if you hold Shift). You can then make it into a body or anything else you can think of.
The program is obviously geared for character sculpting and "organic" models. This isn't SketchUp; it's something completely different and far more artistically-oriented.
Once you finish sculpting your character, you can export it or paint it. Painting renders the image, and then you get a completely different set of tools for painting over the surfaces, as though you have baked your sculpture and now you're decorating it. You are no longer able to change its shape, but you get a wide, sophisticated array of brushes and painting options and all tools are aware of the 3D nature of your sculpture. It's not like painting a 2D bitmap.
This tool is a real tour de force in UI design and user friendliness; it is responsive, powerful, and fast. I can't believe it isn't better known. You simply have to download and try it! Be prepared to lose an hour or two, though.
Be sure to check out the video below -- it shows you what can be accomplished with Sculptris when you actually know what you're doing!
Of course, anyone who watches 'Entourage' knows that in Hollywood, even the best laid plans often go awry (see: 'Medillin'). But Wahlberg, who spoke about the project at last weekend's MTV Movie Awards, is convinced that not only will the 'Entourage' film happen, it will happen in a big way.
"I am more focused on making that movie than my own films," Wahlberg said in a statement that his agent must have been thrilled to hear. "I just think we can make a great movie. I think people always wanted [it] and have complained that the episodes are too short - they've always wanted more. I think we're going to do it. We just have to end strong, and this season is, by far, the best season so far."
Of course, it will still be a while before any film could get going; following the upcoming seventh season, which premieres on June 27, Wahlberg says that there will be another six episodes next year where they plan to "end with a bang." How big a bang? Well, no word yet on any actual plots for the potential feature, but Wahlberg says that a trailer where "you see Jeremy Piven and Lloyd waking up in bed together in Vegas" is not out of a question.
And that would be a pretty big bang.
You can check out all of Wahlberg's comments on 'Entourage's' movie prospects here:
Jim Dyson / Getty ImagesThom Yorke of Radiohead performs during 'In Rainbows' tour in 2008 in London.
Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke is warning the music industry is on the brink of collapse, insisting young musicians should resist signing record deals because the major labels will "completely fold" within months.
The British rockers broke away from their longtime label, EMI, in 2007 and went on to embrace the new digital era with the release their seventh album, In Rainbows, which they offered up over the internet and allowed fans to choose the price.
Yorke has now issued a warning to upcoming artists, urging them not to sign traditional record deals because they would be tying themselves to "the sinking ship."
In an interview for a new high school textbook called The Rax Active Citizen Toolkit, which aims to inspire youngsters to become more politically literate, Yorke claims the music industry is on the verge of a major crisis and could collapse completely within "months".
He says, "It will be only a matter of time - months rather than years - before the music business establishment completely folds. (It will be) no great loss to the world."
-- World Entertainment News Network