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Zachary Sarver
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Just a guy who does some math. An awesome guy who does some math.
Just a guy who does some math. An awesome guy who does some math.

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View from 30,000 feet of Unicode planes. There's a frequency heat map, too.
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Swipe away 👻👻👻 in this #Halloween #GoogleDoodle Score: 98880
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Wait, so Google Assistant is a repackaging of Google Now? Or it isn't? Why can't Google keep their product lines distinct? This is confusing even to informed consumers. #madebygoogle
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Last week, a student emailed me his work so far and asked if it was correct. I told him it needed some work. I never heard back from him. Today, he asks why he never got his grade for that assignment. I told him it's because he never submitted anything. Turns out, he considered "needs some work" good enough for a final submission. Whatever.
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This is pretty near.
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On this day:
At 8th June of 1984, the movie "Ghostbusters" was released.

'Ghostbusters' is quite possibly director Ivan Reitman's finest hour (and forty minutes)! Written by stars Harold Ramis and Dan Aykroyd, ‘Ghost Busters' is a rollercoaster ride of awesome special effects and intelligent humour which features the undeniable talents of Bill Murray as the sarcastic, but loveable character of Dr. Peter Venkman.

The film stars Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, three graduates from the great schools of "Saturday Night Live", "SCTV" and "National Lampoon", as three "scientists" whose specialty is to detect and hunt down ghosts of all kinds. They form a team called the Ghostbusters and they offer their duties to whoever wanting to get ridden of a ghost.

After some troublesome beginnings, the team quickly becomes very popular and is able to eradicate dozens of paranormal creatures from every corner of Manhattan. They are in such demand that they need to hire a fourth crew member, played by Ernie Hudson. However, their skills and their knowledge are soon going to be rudely tested when a destroyer god from the Babylonian era is getting ready to penetrate into our world and to spread chaos in a Judgment Day fashion.

This kind of scenario could reminisce anybody of such disaster movies from the middle of the 20th century, monster movies such as "King Kong" and "Godzilla", or even contemporary blockbusters, filled with rumpus, destruction and special effects intended to terrify and provoke some panic. "Ghostbusters" is all of that at once, but it dissociates itself from the bunch in its own particular way.

Instead of presenting itself as a drama, a thriller or an action flick, "Ghostbusters" is introduced as a heavy special FX comedy. Chimeric idea ? Maybe. But the result is simply delectable, because of the quality of the special effects, but mainly because of the humor brought out by the stars of the picture, beginning with the master of irony, Bill Murray.

Murray plays Dr. Peter Venkman, the unofficial leader of the group. His on-screen appearances are always delightful, his lines being almost always stamped with irony and impassive humor. Murray is very much at ease and he does whatever he wants in front of the camera.

Murray's two accomplices (and the co-writers of this movie), Aykroyd and Ramis, are not relegated to oblivion anyway and, together with Murray, the three of them have a good lot of chemistry. At moments, they can become as funny as Murray is.

Sigourney Weaver is also a part of the cast in "Ghostbusters". She plays a violinist who quickly realizes that her refrigerator could very be some kind of portal towards a parallel dimension. Rick Moranis plays her nerdish neighbor. Sometimes nice, sometimes unpleasant, it's actually very hard to really care about Moranis' character in this movie. It becomes easier when he is pursued and possessed by the Sumerian demons, but we actually do care much more about Sigourney Weaver in that situation.

Ernie Hudson, a relatively underground actor, is fairly attractive as the fourth Ghostbuster. He represents somehow the link between the ghost trackers and the ordinary people.

Nonetheless, the actors from "Ghostbusters" are generally overshadowed by the impressive special effects required for that kind of movie involving creatures from another world and innovative technology to hunt ghosts. But the actors find themselves rewarded from that move. Thus, we see "proton packs" with extremely dangerous, but extremely convincing beams. We also see ghosts that are both frightening and funny, the green wiener-eating "Slimer" being the best example.

But how could we forget the unforgettable climax starring the most unlikely destroyer in New York City history: the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man ? It is without any doubt the most famous scene of the whole picture and it's not without reason. His arrival unleashes the greatest panic attack from the movie's extras, because of his menacing stature. But in the viewers' case, they can't help themselves from smiling and laughing when they see that surreal giant walking in the streets of Manhattan, even if they know that this monster is not so much different from Godzilla, save for the hideous and repulsing appearance.

The film was a critical and commercial success, receiving a positive response from critics and audiences and grossing US$242 million in the United States and more than $295 million worldwide. It was nominated for two Oscars at the 57th Academy Awards for Best Visual Effects and Best Original Song (for the eponymous theme song), but lost to Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and The Woman in Red respectively.

The American Film Institute ranked Ghostbusters 28th in its AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs list of film comedies. The film launched the Ghostbusters media franchise, which includes a 1989 sequel, Ghostbusters II; two animated television series, The Real Ghostbusters and Extreme Ghostbusters; and several video games.

So "Ghostbusters" is technically innovating, comically revealing, but it's globally some really tasty entertainment that everybody will be able to appreciate. Everyone will be able to find at least one element that will satisfy them. Those who love spectacle and eye-popping sequences will be delighted by the special effects. Others will respond to Bill Murray's lines with an inescapable smile. And let's not forget the eponymous theme song from Ray Parker, Jr. that will play in the heads of people long after they've seen the film.

So, thirty-one years later, we can still watch "Ghostbusters" without telling ourselves that this picture comes from another era. The majority of the special effects have aged well, even if some of the moves from the demonic dogs begin to look like those created by Ray Harryhausen for "The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms". Sharp, inventive, and broadly comical, this is one you can enjoy again and again.

#Ghostbusters   #BillMurray
#80sMovies   #Movies
#Comedy   #Fantasy
#SciFi   #SciFiFilm
#SupernaturalComedyFilm   #DanAykroyd
#HaroldRamis  #SupernaturalFilm
#MovieReview  #WhoYaGonnaCall
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New course to teach, new frustrations. I'm asking for some (very simple) proofs, and a solid third of the class assumes the conclusion to start with. Even after I've said in class and in email to not do specifically that.
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They Might Be Giants mentioned something about wanting to make a video game... http://www.npr.org/2015/06/05/413177625/dial-a-giant
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I clench my teeth when I grade. I need to break this habit.
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