The blog of author Dennis Cooper


Created to provide a “novel way of transferring a kiss through interactive digital media,” the Kissenger works by first capturing the pressure patterns you create with your lips before recreating it, with the help of actuators, on your other half’s globular kissing assistant. The Kissenger can also facilitate two other modes of interaction as well: human-to-robot kissing and human-to-virtual character physical/virtual kissing.


On November 02, 2000, a person calling themselves Time traveller 0 and later John Titor, started posting on a public forum that he was a time traveller from the year 2036. One of the first things he did was post pictures of his time machine and its operations manual. As the weeks went by, more and more people began questioning him about why he was here, the physics of time travel and his thoughts about our time. He also posted on other forums including the now non-existent Art Bell site. In his posts John Titor entertained, angered, frightened and even belittled those who engaged him in conversation. On March 21, 2001, John Titor told us he would be leaving our and returning to 2036. After that, he was never heard from again. Speculation and investigation about who John Titor was and why he was online continues to this day.


some dronesounds realised with the weird sound gegerator (built by subtle noise maker) combined with the rainbowmachine by earthquaker devices and the echopark delay by line6.


The Chopper


The Lucid Dream Machine gives you the ability to take control of the action in your dreams without waking up, it’s like your awake inside your dreams and fully aware of the fact that your actually dreaming. The machine works by flashing two red LEDs in your closed eyelids while your sleeping, these make your eyes receive light, and send the information to the brain making it alert but not affecting your sleep, you gain consciousness and wake up in a dream. Once you hit that point you can do whatever you want. You have free access to the natural reserves of Adrenaline and Melamine which your body holds “people often take heavy drugs like “Methamphetamine” to unlock these magic potions”.


Cat Mew was a mouse scaring machine that made cat noises. It was introduced in 1943 and was moderately successful for a period of 8 months before its novelty wore off.


Disney Imagineers reveal their most sophisticated audio animatronic to date, the new Abraham Lincoln for Disneyland’s revised “Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln” attraction. The old Lincoln figure had 6 functions in the face, but this new one includes 19. Lincoln’s mouth is now able to form vowels such as “O”.


Roxy Paine ‘Scumak No. 2’ (2000), aluminum, computer, conveyor, electronics, extruder, stainless steel, polyethylene, teflon, 890 x 73 x 276 inches


Employees searched for 62-year-old Jose Melena after he went missing during an early morning shift at Bumble Bee Foods. He had been performing maintenance in a 35-foot long oven at the plant when a co-worker filled the pressure cooker with more than five tonnes of canned tuna and switched it on. The colleague mistakenly believed Melena was in the bathroom – but he was locked inside the machine, which reached a temperature of 132C. His body was only found two hours later when the oven was turned off and opened.


Are you ready to take your sexual experience to a new level? Fucking machines are the next generation in sex toys. These virtual lovers offer you complete control over your sensations and give you access to total sexual gratification on demand. Fucking machines are gaining so much popularity because of how well they satisfy your most carnal desires. Men are able to redefine their sexual experience and get the ass fucking of their lifetime and as much pleasure as they desire for as long as they want it.


Smoke ring machine


Scientist Rhawn Joseph sues NASA, alleges it’s failing to investigate alien life on Mars. Rhawn Joseph is suing the space agency after it released photos last week unexplained showing machine parts on Mars. Joseph claims NASA is failing to investigate alien life and wants the rover to go back and snap more photos of the mysterious machinery. According to NASA, they’re just rocks. But Joseph, a key writer with the online Journal of Cosmology, says the “rocks” are “clearly machine parts, and, in one case, a helmet obviously worn at one time by a worker with these machines.” He has now filed a lawsuit in a California court to make NASA examine it more closely. “The refusal to take close up photos from various angles …to release high resolution photos, is inexplicable” his suit adds.


The K’nex Pinball has been created by instructables user Alocke, and includes a numb rod different routes for the balls to take including some excellent lifts which have been created to transport the balls from certain locations within the pinball machine.


A javascript counter automates the On Kawara time-based “Date paintings” from his Today series. The script begins on January 4, 1966, the date of Kawara’s first painting, and counts upward toward the actual date checked in the operating system clock. The CSS code produces the look of the paintings, using futura bold typography on a black background. The project will be completed on the date of On Kawara’s death, at which time a new variable will be added to the code to make the counter end (reset) on that day.


Hiroshi Ishiguro is one of the greatest robot-makers in the world. He once had a robot he built and crafted used in a Japanese play entitled Sayonara. The popularity that Robot lead to Ishiguro fashioning a robot in his own image about a decade ago. But there’s a problem – robots don’t age. “When I made my copy, I was 41 years old,” Ishiguro said. ” Of course, I’m getting old and androids never get old.” That’s why he’s been surgically altering his own face to look identical to his ever-youthful robot twin. Of course, Ishiguro also has the option of creating a new android with his aged appearance, but he doesn’t “like to get old and actually … the cosmetic plastic surgery is much cheaper.” Now, Hiroshi Ishiguro doesn’t just leave his robot at home sitting in a chair creeping out children while he works. He actually sends it to conferences and meetings and controls the robot remotely via the internet.


Hope, Arkansas — A seven-year-old boy was killed while on the Sizzler, a ride at the Easter Week 2007 carnival in the southern Arkansas town of Hope. Allegedly the boy and his mother were late arriving at the ride, and a miscommunication prevented their chair from locking properly before the ride was started. The boy and his mother both fell out shortly after the Sizzler began it’s run, and the boy was struck in the head not once, but twice. “[The operator] tried to stop it, but it was spinning so fast the boy was falling out of the chair, and the mother is trying to get him, but he is too heavy,” the boys uncle told the Hope Star. “When he was on the floor (ground), he stood up, and the chair hit him.” The boy stood again only to be struck in the head once more. He was quickly transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead from “traumatic brain injury.”


Henk van Kuijk, director of Dutch industrial company Vanku, evidently decided that squatting/ kneeling and shoving the bricks into place on the ground was just a little too slow, so he invented the Tiger Stone paving machine. The road-wide device is fed loose bricks, and lays them out onto the road as it slowly moves along. A quick going-over with a tamper, and you’ve got an instant brick road.


Felix Thorn creates musical sculptures. With a background in fine arts and sculpture, an overriding love of electronic, breakcore and experimental music, and an intensely creative spirit, Felix builds machines that embody aspects of the mechanical and digital, creating music which is both acoustic and synthesized, as well as visually and aurally interesting. Not to mention beautiful. Musical pieces are created with Apple’s Logic Studio and sometimes Bidule (made by Canadian-based commercial software company Plogue Arts and Technology) and the sculptures are scavanged from a variety of sources and musical instruments (eg: an old piano, guitars, drums, an old shoe polisher brush, a towel rack…). Thorn also incorporates LED lights into his sculptures that flash on and off in time with various beats. Parts of Felix’s Machines frequently break, or come undone and this is all part of the natural process. (Sometimes double-sided tape can be a robot’s best friend) Thorn, who was born in 1985 and lives in southeast London, UK, continually builds new robots, adds to and revises his existing machines, and is apparently in the process of developing a method of incorporating wind instrument sounds into his mechanical orchestra.


This 1932 Italian petrol-engine powered horse had mechanical steel pipe legs. It was said to be able to traverse relatively rough terrain. However it is hard to imagine the 5-horsepower motor supporting much in the way of speed. Observers report it more closely resembled a grasshopper than a horse. The creator, Alzetta planned to create a higher horsepower model, but it does not seem that this ever came to pass.


Mark Pauline presents a video of a SRL show in San Francisco entitled A Calculated Forecast of Ultimate Doom (1984). Filmed and edited by Leslie Gladsjø, the video depicts scenes from the Apocalypse. The show begins with an effigy of Jesus riding into the arena on a rocket propelled go-cart. There is a large machine with a canon that acts as a flamethrower and other various machines that attack each other as well as the other props in the show. The cast of props includes a giant flying saucer with a flaming eyeball at its center, a giant clown face, and a life-size depiction of The Last Supper that is eventually set aflame. The show concludes with the total destruction and graceful collapse of all the machines.


Shiri – Japanese for buttocks – has three main parts: a silicon skin, a pair of actuators and a microphone. The actuators serve as Shiri’s muscles while the microphone senses how the skin is touched. Stroke it and it will clench its cheeks; spank it and it will quiver. Inventor Nobuhiro Takahashi says he invented Shiri because he’s aware that humans don’t just communicate verbally; we also have physical reactions or expressions. Takahashi also said that Shiri is a great starting point because our butts have large muscles and thus make more visible movements.


During an illusion where magician David Copperfield attempts to walk through the rotating blades of a 12-foot high industrial fan, the fan and its platform were being rotated by one of David’s illusion technicians. Just prior to David himself walking through the fan, [the assistant] was accidentally pulled into the vortex of the moving fan blades. Audience members watched in horror as the assistant was sucked into the fan, before another staff member rushed to turn it off. An audience member said: ‘One of the assistants dropped to the floor. The curtain came down partially. Blood was everywhere, and the other assistants dragged the victim back. Then the curtain closed all the way.’


Chain making machine, chicken wire making machine, Spongebob Squarepants toy molding machine, log cutting machine, pipe forming machine, pretzel making machine, ice cream sandwich making machine, Pop Tart making machine, bottle recycling machine.


Cabaret Mechanical Theater started life as a slightly odd crafts shop called Cabaret in Falmouth, Cornwall. It was opened in 1979 by Sue Jackson and sold Peter Markey’s simple wooden toys alongside knitwear and ceramics. With the arrival of Paul Spooner, it wasn’t long before the mechanical pieces started displacing the other crafts.


These are the first pictures of the two teenage boys seriously injured after their carriage on a spinning fairground ride broke off and flipped over. Danny Keogh and Conor Baker, both 16, were on the spinning Mega Bounce Frog ride at Billy Bates Fairground in Leicester when the terrifying accident happened on Saturday evening. One boy was catapulted into the air, while the other was crushed under the weight of the car.


In 1897, crossing the Atlantic Ocean by steam ship was a lengthy and, in bad weather, stomach-churning proposition. In the days before over-the-counter Dramamine, engineers like Frederick Augustus Knapp believed a “roller boat” – a vessel capable of driving on top of the waves – was the answer to passengers’ woes. His cigar-shaped vessel, 34 metres long, 7 metres tall, was essentially a cylinder inside a cylinder; a stationary passenger cabin around which a giant paddle revolved. The ship was welded together at Polson Iron Works, a shipbuilding company in Toronto, located south of the Esplanade between Frederick and Sherbourne streets. In trials Knapp’s Roller Boat never managed to travel above a crawl, well short of the 200 km/h predicted by its owner. After a brief stint as a ferry, the roller boat was buried under Lake Shore Blvd. by infill. It’s still down there, apparently.


Mr. Machine is a once popular children’s mechanical toy originally manufactured by the Ideal Toy Company in 1960. Mr. Machine was a robot-like mechanical man wearing a top hat. The body had a giant windup key at the back. When the toy was wound up it would “walk”, swinging its arms and repeatedly ringing a bell mounted on its front; and after every few steps emit a mechanical “Ah!”, as if it were speaking. The toy stood about 18 inches tall (roughly 46 cm).




Artist Tim Hawkinson combines his face and facial expressions in a mechanized sculpture, Emoter, included in the 2002 Whitney Biennial. “It’s something that emotes and it’s motorized and it is an emoter. So why not call it Emotor?”


These are creepy messages. They all came from a number that was from a Verizon landline in thorndale, Tx. They all tried calling the number Bach and it was disconnected (in each case the calls had been made within an hour before they tried to call it) None of them know anybody in Thorndale, Tx.


I’m an Animatronic Designer or Creature FX artist. I do movie FX in the traditional way, it’s all in camera. The way they used to do it in the movies my generation grew up with. I started out as a Model Maker at a company called Artem. After a couple of years there, I started to focus more and more on Animatronics, learning from the freelance people that worked there of and on. That allowed me to further my skills and get recognized by my colleagues. This proved more important than tailoring my portfolio. — Gustav Hoegen


This is from the 1960’s. It’s a vintage hard plastic Hong Kong import practical joke. Overall, the outhouse measures 5-½ inches high. An outhouse by other names is a privy, etc. It’s where hillbillies in our own US of A used to use prior to having running water in the home — it is generally in REAL LIFE made of wood, but this little mechanical toy is made of plastic — am sure some camps out in the middle of nowhere, etc., still have outhouses… It is ever so cute, so tempting to NOT unlatch that door to see cute silly smirking little boy — reminds me like a billiken is doing, although we KNOW what it LOOKS like he is doing…but wait!! You go to unlatch the door, he turns around towards you and pees at you! Mischievous or what?


Steam Machine Music is a homebuilt mechanical instrument by Morten Riis made mostly from vintage Meccano parts. The instrument is driven by a steam engine that provides the whole instrument with energy. The sound material is generated using two music boxes that are programmable with perforated paper strips, a small Zither – a stringed instrument played with Meccano pulley wheels thus generating continuous drones instead of the normal plucking of the strings. Furthermore a dynamo that generates alternating current, which drives a small Lego engine which output is feed directly to a mixing desk generating a continuous tone which frequency is depended of the speed of the steam engine. Additionally a “drum” machine is incorporated which is built with Meccano parts that can be programmed to consist of up to four simple rhythm patterns; and the most important sound generating part is the sound of the machine itself, the rhythmic patterns and pulsating drones of the steam engine, the squeaking of the gear trains and the rattling of the whole structure is all important parts of the sonic experience. The instability of the entire mechanism is extremely noticeable, and displays and reflects the physicality of the machine to an extreme degree. Everything is imminently about to go wrong, a cogwheel that jams, a screw that loosens itself, a chain falling of, water running out, the loss of steam pressure, gas running out. One could state that this is physical mechanical glitch music, but in contrast to its digital counterpart, Steam Machine Music questions the whole practice and conceptualizing of machine music in a historical perspective that points to the fact that machines always have been malfunctioning, they have always broke down, there has always been a ‘real’ physical mechanism that challenged the predetermined functionality of the machine.


Turn your kitchen into an IHOP with the ChefStack automatic pancake machine. For the list price of $3,500, it can spit out perfectly shaped pancakes at the rate of 200 per hour.


The Darwin-Coxe Machine, circa 1900-1920s, in which the insane were swung until quiet. It was located at The Narrenturm, a home for mental patients in Vienna, Austria.


The Marble Machine is powered by hand, and works by raising steel marbles through the machine into multiple feeder tubes, where they are then released from height via programmable release gates, falling and striking a musical instrument below. Instruments played by marbles striking them include a vibraphone, bass guitar, cymbal, and emulated kick drum, high hat and snare drum sounds using contact microphones. The music score is stored on two programmable wheels that utilise Lego Technic beams and stud connectors to trigger armatures to release the marbles.


A 6-year-old boy died after undergoing an MRI exam at a New York-area hospital when the machine’s powerful magnetic field jerked a metal oxygen tank across the room, crushing the child’s head. The force of the device’s 10-ton magnet is about 30,000 times as powerful as Earth’s magnetic field, and 200 times stronger than a common refrigerator magnet. The routine imaging procedure was performed after Colombini underwent surgery for a benign brain tumor last week. Westchester Medical Center officials said he was under sedation at the time of the deadly accident.




p.s. Hey. ** Wolf, What in world does that mean? I like it. Okay, if Marseilles counts, I’ve been in Provence. What a rangy place. Provence, I mean. Marseilles too in a different way. At the moment, … fuck knows about the opera project. In a nutshell, it is or was to be produced by the Volksbühne in Berlin. That was set up under the tutelage of its extremely controversial director, Chris Dercon, who just quit or was forced out, depending on what you read, last month, so whether the opera is still being produced by Volksbühne is very up in the air right now, and if the new director that they end up hiring wants to cancel the opera, I think that will probably kill it. So at the moment it’s a wait and see thing. Would extremely suck if it gets cancelled since we’ve put a huge shitload of work into it. Spring is really wobbly here too. I think it’s supposed to explode into summer tomorrow for a few days. Ugh. Oh, the Irish vote is today, right? I don’t know what the polling on that is, but, yeah, Jesus, I hope they decide to do their part for earth depopulation. Hugs to your Bonsai. ** David Ehrenstein, Thank you. Your piece on the Beales film is wonderful, and I’m excited to see it. Any new book of new Roland Barthes is a huge occasion as far as I’m concerned, so I’ll snag that. Thank you very much for the alert. ** Sypha, Yeah, I remember having a very similar take on ‘IB’ to yours. My favorite Sonic Youth album: ‘Sister’. I like pretty much all of their albums, but that’s my fave. I do have a special fondness for ‘Goo’, which I think a lot of SY hardcores aren’t that wild about. ** Jamie, Hey! I’m good, or good enough. Long story short, her feedback on the script was extremely irksome, and basically we now have to spend a couple of restoring a lot of what she cluelessly edited out and declining her dumb suggestions and then send it back to her and politely reject almost all of her suggestions and tell her to send it to ARTE as is. Man oh man. Well, I’m not surprised that you realised how good your screenplay is, and I haven’t even read it. Great! Your week sounds to be ending richly. I hope the writing Gang goes juicily and whoever you want to win the Championship League final does. My end of week is going to involve a lot of unnecessary restoration work on the TV script, and finally seeing my visiting friend Ariana, and I think going to see some art, and maybe film script talk with Zac, and … who knows? May your Friday bust one helluva move! Love on the tip of every tongue, Dennis. ** Steve Erickson, Hi. I’ll head over to your reviews. Everyone, Do find out what Steve Erickson thinks about Catalan film SUMMER 1993 and the second album by Thalia Zedek’s current band E. I liked the previous E album quite a bit. I’ll get the new one, obvs. I’m a big Jim Steinman fan. I even did a gig post dedicated to his stuff. Have a great time with your parents. ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, Ben. Glad you enjoyed getting to know Dominique’s work. The opera project is in a state of confusion at the moment. See what I wrote to Wolf up above for the details. Oh, okay, about the staff turnover. That might explain it, yes, but excuse it? Nope. Best of luck there. ** Chris Cochrane, Hi, Chris. Didn’t the last bunch seem kind of serious at first too? I bet by the time I get there it’ll be like Open Mic night at the Comedy Club. Thanks a bunch for the report. I’m super interested and intrigued and anticipatory, of course. Hugs. ** JM, Hi. I’m a bit irked about some work I have to do, but I’m pretty much tip top in general, I suppose. I hope everything going on there that keeps you flitty re: the blog is mega-nourishing and all of that. I look forward to an update, yes! ** Okay. Another thematic kind of deal for you today. Try it out. See you tomorrow.


  1. David Ehrenstein

    My Favorite Machine

  2. Bill

    Super awesome day, Dennis. That Kissenger creeps me out like you wouldn’t believe (and not just because of the name, ha). The Chopper! The Smoke Ring machine! And of course good old Mark Pauline. I had to do more research on Shiri; an article with video:

    Sorry to hear about the (umm) opera drama. Hope the project finds a good home sometime…

    Things have been kind of insane at work, but mostly with ok outcomes. Long weekend, yay.


    • Bill

      And that Accident is pretty fine as well.


  3. Dóra Grőber


    It’s really, really nice to see you too!
    How are you? How was your week? Did anything remarkable happen producer-wise? I really fucking hope it’s not going to turn into a legal hassle. Did she at least send your script to ARTE? And what about your and Zac’s own film script? Can you make satisfying progress with it? God, it feels like we haven’t talked in ages, haha! I’m excited to hear about everything that’s been going on with you!

    Here’s the book, ‘The Last Victim’, though you’ve probably already looked it up:
    I’m still pretty consumed by this whole 9 to 5 thing though I started making myself write a little every day and it feels good. So far it’s some weird, self-analytic thing but I’m trying not to force it – just let anything that comes effortlessly out. I’m thinking a lot about what to do next. I’m sure I won’t be able to follow such a monotone routine for a very long time – however nice the place generally is – but I know that if I don’t come up with a “next step” and just leave the shop now, I’ll end up lying around at home again, not doing anything. I really don’t want that. Looks like I’m in a kind of crisis here but I’m not too desperate because I know that this pressure that keeps building and building and building in me will eventually blow me out of this state. It usually does. Hopefully towards something I’ll finally feel more comfortable with. Also, I only slept 4 hours last night so if what I’m saying doesn’t make any sense whatsoever, that’s the reason behind it, haha.

    I can’t wait to hear about your side! I’ll be back on Monday so have the most amazing weekend, Dennis!!

  4. _Black_Acrylic

    That tragic boy who had the MRI accident, it’s enough to give regulars like myself and Jamie severe claustrophobic freakouts. Seriously I had no idea the magnets in those things were so strong, yikes.

    I’m laid out for now due to the unglamourous affliction of a poorly toe, guzzling antibiotics and treading softly around the place. Compendium things are moving slightly because I was a able to speak with someone at the Generator today on the phone, and there seems to be a mix of staff turnover and illness that explains the problems. Myself and Alex hope to set up a meeting with them next week to get this show on the road.

  5. Jeff J

    Hey Dennis – Nice machinery day. The Hawkinson, Chopper, and Marble Machine leapt out at me for whatever reason. Enjoyed the Gonzalez-Foerster post yesterday as well. How far along is the opera work with her?

    Comments vanished for me again. Yesterday I could read everyone’s comments (though didn’t have time to comment myself). Ah well.

    Sorry to read about the continuing headache with your producer for the TV series. Hope things start to run more smoothly there.

    Do you know the movie ‘Wheel of Ashes’? Re:Voir put out a DVD of it. Here’s the description: “Shot in Paris in 1968, WHEEL OF ASHES is Peter Goldman’s second feature after the groundbreaking ECHOES OF SILENCE. Produced by Godard and starring Pierre Clémenti, WHEEL OF ASHES built a bridge between the New York Underground and the French New Wave.”

    I figured with Clementi in it from his prime years, you might have checked it out already. It’s new to me, including the director.

  6. Misanthrope

    Dennis, Well, that sucks. It’s weird, there were days were everything was perfect, and then…bleh, as far as seeing anything on here. So weird. Nothing to be done about it. Like you say, maybe it’ll all work itself out.

    I liked Gonzales-Foerster’s “interior design”-type stuff from yesterday. I wouldn’t mind having rooms like those.

    I’m sure I’m not spilling any secrets here, but Sypha’s been looking to buy one of those fucking machines for a while now.

    It’s dawned on me recently that school sucks. Why do we make kids -I was one once, you know- suffer through 12 years of what amounts to be about 75% of boredom? Same with college. I mean, if I want to be a writer or a lawyer or a musician, why am I forced to take calculus or botany? Kind of fucked up, no?

    Hour and a half classes for a 15-year-old who’d rather be anywhere else then sat in a classroom listening to someone drone on about something that may have happened in 1,407 B.C.? Ridiculous.

    Anyway, just a recent line of thinking for me. 😛

    I’m off on Monday for Memorial Day, so I’ll have a chill weekend. A friend wants to see the SOLO movie, so I said I’d go.

    Speaking of BEE, I just finished The Rules of Attraction. I liked it a lot better than Less Than Zero, which I did indeed like itself. I’m on to Glamorama now. So far, so good. Very funny so far. I can see why Will Self likes BEE, some of the humor reminds me of Self, as well as the satire.

  7. Steve Erickson

    I had an unpleasant trip to my parents’ house, where I’m typing this. The train ride was supposed to take 2 & 1/2 hours, but it wound up lasting more than 4 hours because we got stalled in the middle of nowhere in southwestern Connecticut for more than an hour. But at least I had books, my iPod, my laptop and intermittently functional WiFi from Amtrak. My parents got to the New London train station about 20 minutes before my train was supposed to arrive and wound up waiting 2 hours for it with nothing to do!

    I will probably see an indie film called LITTLE PINK HOUSE, which is set and shot in New London, and apparently deals with a lawsuit involving eminent domain that made it to the Supreme Court from a libertarian POV. (David Crosby wrote a song for the film, and Glenn Greenwald has a cameo.) I’m expecting a curio, and my parents will probably get more out of this because they followed the case as it happened and will recognize more locations. But there’s not a single Hollywood film currently in American theaters that I want to see, and the “arthouse” pickings in New London County are mighty slim.

    For some reason, I can’t see any other comments on this post right now.

  8. MANCY

    Oh man, I really want a Cat Mew. This Titor guy looks entertaining as well.

    About to finally get into the DGF day…

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