Reruns On Demand

AOL and Warner say they’ll launch a new video-on-demand service and make 100 old TV series available online. “Company officials said the shows will be available on demand, meaning computer users who search six new Web-based television channels on will be able to choose when they watch the shows and which episodes to view. The companies, both part of media giant Time Warner Inc., will profit by sharing revenue from advertising, including banner ads and four 15-second streaming video ads per 30-minute episode.”

Study: Meditating Makes You Smarter

“What effect meditating has on the structure of the brain has been a matter of some debate. Now Sara Lazar at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, US, and colleagues have used MRI to compare 15 meditators, with experience ranging from 1 to 30 years, and 15 non-meditators. They found that meditating actually increases the thickness of the cortex in areas involved in attention and sensory processing, such as the prefrontal cortex and the right anterior insula. You are exercising it while you meditate, and it gets bigger.”

Sony Might Have Infected Many Computers

Sony’s anti-piracy measure in DVDs which leaves home computers open to hackers might have struck hundreds of thousands of computers. “Each installation of Sony’s rootkit not only hides itself and rewrites systems drivers, it also communicates back to Sony and the creators of the software, British company First 4 Internet and Phoenix-based SunnComm Technologies, who handled the Mac side for Sony.”

Baldwin’s Big Plans For Rambert

Mark Baldwin has transformed the Rambert Dance company since taking over. “Under Baldwin, the company has won half a dozen national awards, bigger audiences and critical acclaim for its overhauled repertory. On top of this, he is spearheading a fundraising campaign to get the company relocated to a shiny new base on London’s South Bank. It has been a terrific directorial debut.”

Ten Years Of ‘This American Life’

“This American Life” is 10 years old, and it has changed public radio. “The program has become a full-fledged brand, complete with a pair of movie projects, a record deal with Shout! Factory and a television version of the show awaiting a green light from cable’s Showtime channel. Few thought Glass’ quirky, narrative-driven radio hour would have either the impact or the longevity it has enjoyed. The show’s episodic style tied together by the host’s soft-spoken narration was initially a tough sell.”

Report: Former CPB Chairman Repeatedly Broke Law

Investigators at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting have concluded that former CPB chairman Ken Tomlinson repeatedly broke the law in the name of routing out “liberal bias”. “A scathing report by the corporation’s inspector general described a dysfunctional organization that violated the Public Broadcasting Act, which created the corporation and was written to insulate programming decisions from politics.”

Sorting Out The Managers And Agents In Hollywood

“Not so long ago, managers existed solely to offer career advice and support to their clients. But when agents began representing more and more talent — most agents’ rosters have swelled to include 30-40 names — the interests of higher-profile stars started to supersede those of clients whose careers needed the most nurturing, and up-and-coming writers, directors and actors turned to managers for assistance.”

BBC Shakespeare Audience Plummets

“The updating of the classic play, which saw Macbeth become a top chef, was seen by 3.4m viewers, down 1.2m on the previous week’s Much Ado about Nothing. Coronation Street and drama Walk Away and I Stumble, which were shown on ITV1 against the drama, got 11.4m and 7.9m viewers respectively. The BBC has made four dramas for the series celebrating Shakespeare’s life.”

Moby Sounds Off

One of the best (and first) publishing blogs on the net was Moby Lives, written by Dennis Loy Johnson. But Moby took a vacation this summer, and a promised return in September was delayed. Now Moby’s back – only in audio form, with interviews with such notables as David Kippen, the new director of the literature program at the National Endowment for the Arts, and Sara Nelson, an editor at Publishers Weekly.

The FBI’s Top Ten Stolen Art

The FBI has released a list of its most wanted stolen art. “Heading the list were 7,000 to 10,000 Iraqi antiquities stolen from the Iraq National Museum and archaeological sites after the US invasion in 2003. A handful of cylindrical seals believed to be more than 4,500 years old have been recovered, but 5,000 remained missing. It also included the biggest art heist in history – the 1990 theft of an estimated $US300 million ($A409.72 million) in paintings from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.”