Fred recently discoveredKomar and Melamid. I first encountered them half a lifetime ago when they made an appearance at Wichita State. Their schtick then was that they bought and sold souls. They were particularly proud of purchasing Andy Warhol’s. The business wasn’t as lucrative as they had hoped, though, so by then they only accepted souls on consignment.
They came to Fred’s attention through their fusion of musicology and statistics. By polling, they attempted to define the characteristics of the “most wanted” and “least wanted” songs, and then realize the songs. I’m afraid that I’m the in the 28% that dislike the wanted song. The unwanted song, however, is an amazing hodgepodge of accordion, bagpipes, tuba, banjo, operatic soprano and obnoxious kids, and it’s worth 22 minutes of your life. Once will probably be enough.
Shamus Young is the most dangerous sort of guy, with lots of ideas and the time and energy to implement them. He first came to my attention several years ago with The Lemon. Later there was The DM of the Rings. Currently he is one of the parties responsible for Chainmail Bikini. His most recent effort is a WordPress plugin, “Wavatars,” which I’ve installed here. If you leave a comment, your name will be accompanied by an eighty-pixel-square avatar determined by your email address. (If you have a Gravatar, as I do, that’s what you will see instead.) On a weblog like mine where comments are infrequent, these are just a cute novelty, but on sites where comment threads get lengthy, these could be useful for keeping the various writers straight.
If you like the idea but want something a little more macabre for your own site, consider MonsterID. (Via Aziz.)