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Release me:

Mozilla 1.2.1 is out. IMHO, this browser, at least for the Windows platform, so far outweighs M$IE that it hurts. If this is news to you, start by considering the memory-resident stub that makes for instant loading, the skinnability, bulletproof blockade of popup windows, and tabbed browsing interface.

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Oh Henry!

Joe Conason: Will he explain his job for Unocal when the oil giant was cozying up to the Taliban?

‘As a New Yorker who wants a full, fair and unsparing probe of 9/11, I’m not moving on just yet from the absurd appointment of Henry Kissinger to chair the new “independent commission.” Neither is the New York Times editorial board, whose latest salvo described Kissinger’s insouciance about his conflict of interests as “quaint.”

Quaint must be the polite way to say stunningly arrogant. But the wily Kissinger is probably quite right to brush off the halfhearted gnawing of the press corps, whose appetite for scandal has diminished markedly since the advent of the Bush administration. They’re already ignoring information about Kissinger that probably merits further exploration.’ Salon

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Brief Interviews With Devious Men

Village Voice ‘meta-coverage’ calls newly-released film Adaptation ‘the brainiest film of the year’; they devote five articles to it. The trailer for it is the most arresting thing I’ve seen during the coming attractions in a long time. The Heart of the Meta

“I’m a walking cliché,” begins Charlie Kaufman’s breathy voice-over over a blank page in Adaptation, a pop-surrealist manifesto that works at every turn to confound the meaning of these words. Directed by Kaufman’s Being John Malkovich cohort Spike Jonze, Adaptation (in theaters Friday) looks into the horrific abyss experienced by all self-conscious writers who aspire to art—how do I create something original when everything has been done before?—and responds, as many self-conscious writers have, by writing about the process of its own creation: The movie’s neurotic, overweight, balding protagonist shares the name (and, we assume, the nebbish identity) of its Oscar-nominated screenwriter.

Adaptation is ostensibly the story of Kaufman’s own crackup after being hired to turn Susan Orlean’s The Orchid Thief into a big-budget screenplay. Following many tortured attempts to adapt Orlean’s book, a nonfictional exploration of the passion generated by the testicular flower, Kaufman (in the hefty form of Nicolas Cage) responds with the ultimate challenge to both commercial Hollywood and its novocained cousin, director-centric auteurism: He writes himself into the script. Charlie’s “twin brother” Donald plays the foil to his torment, his natural screenwriting skills blossoming thanks to plot-workshop guru Robert McKee. Village Voice