Best Albums of 2017 (according to my Twitter friends)

​Suite à la question que j’ai posé hier sur Twitter, je vous livre ici la liste des réponses !
C’est un peu en vrac et les styles sont vraiment TRES Approximatifs, mais ça pourrait être utile à certains. 🙂

  • Mastodon – Emperor of sand (metal)
  • Rone – Mirapolis (electro)
  • Pg.lost – Versus (rock)
  • Fever Ray – Plunge (electro)
  • Makeup & Vanity Set – Syncro (electro)
  • The Horrors – V (rock)
  • Kendrick Lamar- DAMN (rap)
  • Orelsan – La fête est finie (rap)
  • Vald – Agartha (rap)
  • Girls In Hawaï – Nocturne (indie)
  • The War On Drugs – A Deeper Understanding (rock)
  • Charlotte Gainsbourg – Rest (chanson)
  • Mélanie de Biasio – Lilies (electro Jazz)
  • Queen of the Stone Age – Villains (rock)
  • Chinese Man – Shikantaza (electro)
  • Nova Twins – EPs (hip hop punk)
  • Nothing But Thieves – Broken Machine (alt rock)
  • Trivium – The Sin and the sentence (metal)
  • Last Train – Weathering (rock)
  • Shaka Ponk – The Evol’ (rock)
  • Human – Rag’n’bone Man (soul blues)
  • Mac Demarco – This Old Dog (rock)
  • Pale Seas – Stargazing for Beginners (rock)
  • BigFlo et Oli – La vraie vie (rap)
  • King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard – Gumpboot Soup (prog rock)
  • Ulver – The Assassination of Julius Caesar (ambiant)
  • Billx – U Can’t Stop The Rave (electro)
  • Magna Carta Cartel – The Demon King (rock)
  • Arcade Fire – Everything Now (rock)
  • Kasabian – For Crying Out Loud (rock)
  • Buvette – Elasticity (pop)
  • Timber Timbre – Sincerely, Future Polution (folk)
  • Steven Wilson – To The Bone (prog rock)
  • Lomepal – FLIP (rap)
  • Mogwai – Every Country’s Sun (prog rock)
  • Royal Blood – How Did We Get So Dark (rock)
  • Weezer – Everything Will Be Alright In The End
  • Carpenter Brut – CARPENTERBRUTLIVE (rock)
  • Prophets of Rage (rock)
  • Hoba Hoba Spirit – Kamayanbaghi (rock)
  • Kate Tempest – Let Them Eat Chaos (rap)
  • Arch Enemy – Will to Power (metal)
  • Rilès – Brother (rap)
  • Fishback – A ta merci (pop)
  • Mat Bastard – LA LOOV (rock)
  • Elbow – Little Fictions (rock)
  • This is the kit – Moonshine Freeze (folk)
  • Hallas – Excerpt from a Futur Past (metal)
  • Ultra Vomit – Panzer Surprise! (metal)
  • Chon – Homey (rock)
  • Stupeflip – Stup Virus (rock)
  • Booba – Trone (rap)
  • Liam Gallagher – As You Were (pop)


January 13th, 2018 | No Comments

Two videos everyone should watch

As some of you might know, we’ve been talking about social networks and anger a lot on The Phileas Club.

My feeling is that they enable a kind of “anti-bubble”: a parallel of the well know “confirmation bias” bubbles, where you are also constantly exposed to “bad stuff” which you specifically hate. It is the ultimate evolution of 24h news networks (which deliver bad news all day), where you are exposed to stuff algorithmically tailored to make you sad or stressed (or, in computer speak, make you “engaged”: you are fed more of the stuff that makes you react. And guess what you’re most likely to react to: kittens… and Nazis).
It’s not that there are more bad things in the world than before, it’s just that you see the things that you hate the most all the time.

And not only that; social networks will also put you in contact with people who will answer you, personally, with comments that push your buttons. Again, not because there are more of those people than before, but because you have access to them and are systematically matched with them. And “them” might be 12 people in the whole world, but it doesn’t matter: they are always there, on every topic, and you butt heads with them every time. So to you, it might as well be everyone everywhere. It’s “people”. “People are terrible”. “People suck”. “I can’t believe people”. Except “people” might be 12 idiots that you have a direct line to and choose to argue with.

So here’s the worst part: we don’t know how to deal with this constant stream of anger and stress.
Our reactions have no measure or reason. We’res either off… or 200% MAXIMUM RAGE. There’s no other setting. There’s no topic that will just annoy us, or bother us, or upset us and that’s it. When we see something bad, we get angry. I’d argue we should learn to deal with that constant stream of anger directed at us, because it’s not going away. Anger is fine, and it’s useful. But we shouldn’t be making ourselves sick with it all the time. Save it for the things that matter. Maybe get really angry twice a year. Or every other month. But not every day or every week… It’s making us sick peeps. And it’s making anger meaningless, and it’s making conversations impossible, and it’s making living together more difficult. We need to learn to deal with this new world. And I’m sure we will; it just takes time, but it also takes awareness.

So here’s one idea: when confronted with something upsetting, let’s maybe take a step back, decide if this is a 3 out of 10 “bad thing” or an 8 out of 10. And if it’s the former, maybe walk away, don’t reply, or re-share, or boost that signal, because it’s just not worth it. And incidentally, everyone has already heard about it; what will that accomplish, other than give you an ulcer?

Anyway, there are a couple of videos which I think explain portions of the context for these issues really well. Both were sent to me in the context of heated conversations, and I think they are really important concepts to be aware of. Maybe they won’t change our attitude, and learning to deal with new environments take time. But I think they contain parts of the answer at least.




January 10th, 2018 | No Comments

Tips for Japan!

I get this question all the time, and every time I rewrite a crappy version of what I want to say. I’ve been thinking that I should write an article about it forever… Well, it’s never too late to stop being an idiot, so here we go!

First a tiny bit of context: I love Japan. I’ve studied the language and culture at university, I’ve lived there for years and been there many times before and after. It’s not a perfect country, and I have some very strong issues with parts of what makes life there, but overall, and especially for visiting, it is wonderful. It’s safe, fun, different, interesting, and is a big part of a lot of what geeks enjoy. It’s also close enough to what we know for total comfort, but different enough that it is a real experience.

So here’s what I tell people who ask me what they should do / see / eat in Japan:


Ichiran, ramen chain restaurant. Although it’s a chain, I usually put it in the Tokyo section because that’s where I first went (Shibuya). Some of the best ramen I’ve had. I really recommend going a bit spicy and definitely al dente (kata). You choose what you want and pay at a machine before going in (very common in Japanese fast food like places). Oh, and Ippudo is a very decent altertive chain. They have places in western cities as well (when I’m in Paris, I’m there all the time).

Gyozarou, gyoza restaurant on Omotesandou. If you love gyoza, you’ll love this place (and if you don’t, I don’t even want to talk to you anymore). It was a while ago, but the miso cucumber was also kind of incredible. If it’s still there, try it.

Tsukiji fish market. If you’re coming from the west, the first day is probably going to be jetlag hell. Take advantage of this and get up early to go eat sushi breakfast/brunch at the restaurant inside the Tsukiji market, you’ll thank me. You can then go hang out in the market itself; it’s less hectic and it’s still pretty cool (early in the morning it’s kind of crazy, and honestly I’m not sure it’s super worth it).

Warning: Asakusa temple is kind of terrible. It’s a classic and you’ll probably have to go there anyway, but it’s horribly touristic and I would never go there again if I don’t absolutely have to.

Meiji shrine is lovely. It’s also one of the few places that feels quiet and natural in Tokyo. If you’re only staying in the capital, I’d definitely recommend not missing it. If you’re short on time and also going to Kyoto (or another city that isn’t a giant heap of concrete and glass), you can get that kind of feeling there instead.

Akihabara is not the best place for electronics. I mean, you’ll want to go there of course (as you should), but don’t plan on making big purchases there, it’s become just too expensive. Unless you’re looking for retro stuff of course. Otherwise, West Shinjuku (or any Yodobashi Camera / Bic Camera / etc really) will do much better.

Shibuya crossing on Saturday evening. It’s just crazy. If you have a chance, just go there and cross with the crowd, it’s kind of surreal.

Ghibli museum. It’s fun, but mostly for kids. Still a nice place to go if you’re into the movies, but be aware you should probably get the tickets BEFORE you go to japan. Each country has a limited set attributed to them, and they should be purchased very much in advance.


August 10th, 2017 | 3 Comments

Reportage : “Patrick Beja – Artisan du Podcast”

Salut les jeunes ! Certains d’entre vous l’auront peut-être déjà vu, mais je ne l’avais pas posté ici : en décembre dernier, Florian et Korben sont venu passer deux jours chez moi pour tourner un petit reportage / docu / court métrage dans le cadre d’un projet que Korben essaie de monter. Les retours ont été très positifs, et je trouve que Florian a réussi à vraiment capturer les émotions et l’esprit que je veux faire passer dans mon travail et dans mon quotidien.

Il y a quelques jours, un auditeur m’a demandé pourquoi je n’en avais pas parlé – alors que je l’ai bien sûr partagé sur Twitter, Facebook et tout le reste – et je me suis dit qu’il était quand même un peu étrange qu’il ne figure pas sur ce site ! Erreur désormais corrigée… J’espère que vous apprécierez, et n’hésitez pas à venir dans les commentaires pour dire ce que vous en aurez pensé ! 🙂

Description de la vidéo :
Patrick Beja est un créateur et animateur de podcasts. Nous avons réalisé un portrait sur cet artisan du podcast.
Réalisation : Florian Belmonte
Production : Break The Rules (Korben) et NoRoom
Musique : Redan
Mixage audio : Antoine Grelet
Graphismes : Jérôme Keinborg

August 3rd, 2017 | No Comments

Wonder Woman mini review (spoiler free)

Wonder Woman was an awesome movie.

If you want to talk super hero movies, I’d say it was as good as any Marvel movie.

It has a perfect balance of incredible action (perfect dose of over-used slomo) and an exquisite amount of humour (not too littel, not too much). Just like Marvel did in their movies, it makes a somewhat silly character like Wonder Woman work in ways you wouldn’t have suspected. I mean, hell, I want to go read Wonder Woman comics now!

And if we want to talk about the first female super hero movie, it was even better. Everything is done with such grace and balance; they touch on every topic you’d think necessary (men, sex, the status of women, Diana’s beauty, all of it), but it is written in such a way that everything felt natural and appropriate top me.

But far more important than all this: how empowering it must feel for women to finally see on screen what men have been getting for over a decade in super hero movies (and a tiny bit longer in society)? A heroic figure that is so badass and powerful that she pumps you up and makes you feel you can take on the world… I felt downright gleeful when in the beginning, when child-Diana was kicking and punching into the air! Finally!

On a side note: shame, SHAME on Marvel for not doing it first. They’ve been making blockbuster super hero movies for ten years now, and not once did they think… I know Captain Marvel coming, but they should have been first. And they’d better not mess it up because Wonder Woman is a tough act to follow.

Oh, and about the female only screenings, what a travesty that men would feel it’s their right to deny this kind of empowerement to women. A decade of super hero movies (not to mention the rest of History); they want to have a moment, let them! Support them! Don’t get in the way with baby tears of pretend-discrimination in the face or real discrimination. The principle of discrimination is that the discriminated party and the discriminating party can’t be considered in the same way. I mean, I understand the questions these screenings raise. But really, these questions don’t rise to the level of serious concern in any way other than a pretty ugly one. Even if you don’t think it’s cool, be a grown up and let it go. They can have this, we’ll survive. I just hope this movie isn’t a single blip and we’ll get more (many more) like this.

Finally, to get back to movie consideration, I hope DC has finally found its voice. I really want to love their movies, and I hope they follow this one with more like it, and that we finally get truly engaging tales of their heroes, and not those pointless “look how edgy we are” charades. I want the Justice League to become something I can look forward to, and not dread. This one is proably the most Marvel-ish of their movies, but in a good way. It works. It’s epic and fun and coherent and has so much energy… If DC keeps making them like this, we’re in for a really great ride.

June 9th, 2017 | No Comments

Détails sur la réflexion (élections 2017)

Hier, j’ai publié un article sur mon choix pour ces élections, et les raisons qui m’ont poussé à le faire. J’ai reçu de nombreux commentaires ici et sur Twitter. Ils ont été dans l’ensemble très bienveillants (avec quelques exception un peu énervées, mais moins que je ne l’aurais imaginé), et certaines de nos discussions m’ont poussé à développer une présentation plus neutre de la manière dont je vois les causes et les enjeux de nos divisions. J’espère que vous apprécierez le texte, et je vous invite à continuer les conversations, ici et ailleurs !

Posons d’abord les bases du constat, pour parler ensuite des solutions qu’envisagent chacun.

D’abord donc, le constat.

On parle beaucoup de l’état catastrophique de notre pays ou du monde aujourd’hui, mais il me semble que, si les problèmes que nous avons sont bien réels (et parfois urgents), nous avons une visons souvent trop restreinte de la situation dans laquelle nous sommes.

En effet, en regardant les choses avec un peu de recul, disons sur 50 ans, il me parait assez clair que la globalisation et l’économie de marché ont eu des effets très positifs sur le monde (amis socialistes, ne partez pas, je vous jure qu’on va se retrouver au bout de l’article !). La pauvreté recule, l’alphabetisation progresse, la criminalité est en chute libre, les infrastructures se développent, nous avons un accès illimité à l’information (au sens large)… Bref, à l’échelle du monde, il est difficile de nier que les choses vont, en moyenne, beaucoup mieux. Et que ces avancées sont en grande parties dues aux avancées technologiques, et à la globalisation qui en résulte. Encore une fois, on trouvera ici et là des contre exemples, mais si on compare les situations d’aujourd’hui et de l’après-guerre, il sera difficile de considerer la seconde comme plus enviable.

Là où le bât blesse, c’est principalement dans le monde occidental, où la globalisation a clairement créé une fracture sociale : il y a ceux qui en ont profité et s’en sont globalement bien sorti (dont je fais partie, comme sans doute la plupart de ceux qui liront ces lignes), et ceux qui ont été victimes des changements qu’elle a induit. Car si l’enrichissement (dans le sens de “la sortie de la pauvreté”) a été manifeste dans le monde, il y a tout de même des individus ou des catégories socio-professionnelles dont la situation s’est dégradée chez nous pendant qu’elle s’améliorait ailleurs. Concrètement, un ouvrier français ou américain va moins bien qu’avant, et un ouvrier chinois ou indien va mieux. Alors certes, les conditions de vie dans les pays en voie de développement restent moins bonnes que celles que nous connaissons ici, mais la situation reste préoccupante quand on est a plus de mal à subvenir aux besoins de sa famille. Là où une révolution économique ou technologique provoquait il y a quelques décennies un  transfert de richesses et de compétences à un niveau d’un pays (industrialisation, par exemple), il est aujourd’hui fuyant sur la planète entière. Et la pilule est d’autant plus difficile à avaler quand on constate, et je pense qu’il est là aussi difficile de ne pas le faire, que si certains profitent “normalement” des bienfaits de la globalisation (société de services, informatique, etc), d’autres en ont tiré, littéralement et métaphoriquement, des bénéfices bien plus importants. Il y a en occident un affinage de la classe moyenne, écartelée entre plus de pauvreté d’un coté et plus de richesse de l’autre, et cette situation est clairement un danger pour la paix sociale. Quel que soit le niveau de richesse statistique de l’ensemble, une classe moyenne importante est une composante essentielle d’une société apaisée, et il clair que nous allons dans la direction inverse. Le danger est donc bien réel.


April 20th, 2017 | 16 Comments

Reflexions sur la campagne 2017

En me réveillant j’ai commencé un Tweet, et deux heures plus tard il s’était transformé en article de plusieurs pages. Je crois que j’aurais aimé parler avec vous de cette campagne depuis des mois, comme je l’ai fait en 2012, mais des circonstances familiales compliquées m’en ont empêché. Alors ça sort maintenant, à la veille du premier tour et sans doute un peu tard, mais au moins j’aurai vidé mon sac. 🙂

Ce qui m’irrite le plus dans cette élection c’est le manque de retenue de la moitié du pays: quelle que soit notre intention de vote, on est un traitre à la nation, limite un égorgeur d’enfants, pour la moitié de la population.

Alors moi je vais voter Macron, et je vous emmerde.

D’abord je vais voter Macron parce que je pense qu’on peut, et même qu’on doit en finir avec les dogmes ineptes qui disent que si une mesure vient du camp d’en face elle est forcément la pire chose qui ait été imaginée de l’Histoire. Il y a des bonnes idées partout, et j’en ai ras le bol de me faire insulter par mes amis “de droite” quand je parle de ce qui est intéressant à gauche et vice versa. Ces attitudes absolutistes sont aussi toxiques que les trolls qui viennent pourrir toutes les conversations sur le net.

Ensuite je ne vais pas voter aux extrêmes parce que, avant tout, je suis convaincu que l’union de notre Europe est un trésor à chérir (je là fais une pause parce que j’en vois qui se sont mis à saigner du nez dans le fond…), et même une chance unique que nous serions fous de rejeter. On nous parle sans cesse de ses problèmes, et il serait vain de les nier, mais on oublie autant ses réussites. Au delà de l’ouverture culturelle et économique qui sont pour moi des forces incroyables et indispensables (un détail), et au delà de notre interdépendance qui nous met à l’abris des conflits de grande ampleur qui étaient jusque là toute notre Histoire (encore un détail), je pense que notre génération est une génération de l’Europe, de l’auberge espagnole, ouverte, mélangée, pleine d’enthousiasme et d’opportunités, qui donne à ce continent sa force. Nous sommes ensemble comme jamais dans notre Histoire, nous voyageons, nous rencontrons, nous connaissons, et le danger d’un repli sur soi est, dans le contexte local et global, le plus grand danger auquel nous ayons à faire face aujourd’hui. Le replis nous couperait des opportunités dont nous ne pouvons pas nous passer. Est-ce que tout va bien ? Non bien sûr, c’est une évidence. Je sais que nous vivons un conflit entre bénéficiaires et laissés pour compte de la globalisation. Mais je ne pense pas que tout aille mal non plus, comme voudraient nous le faire croire certains. Et quand il y a des problèmes, on les corrige, on ne jette pas le tout comme un bébé capricieux qui n’aime plus son jouet.

Et enfin, je ne vais pas voter pour les partis traditionnels parce que, au delà de l’évidence de la médiocrité de leurs campagnes, je crois que le message envoyé par un vote Macron est fort, mais qu’il va aussi dans le bon sens. On dit qu’on veut de la raison, pas de la panique. On veut de la mesure, pas du catastrophisme. Car c’est de mal que nous souffrons le plus : on ne sait plus aborder les choses calmement, et, poussés par l’urgence et la peur, on prend des décisions impulsives. Cette tendance me paraît dangereuse, et je préfère pousser dans le se sens de la raison et de la mesure. Contrairement aux anglais et aux américains, j’ai envie de réparer le système, pas d’envoyer la table valser dans un accès de rage, pour nous retrouver ensuite avec un bordel effroyable et une spirale incontrôlable.

Voila, l’essentiel est dit, mais si vous en voulez plus, vous pouvez continuer à lire…


April 19th, 2017 | 41 Comments

Arcade games from Soviet Russia

We’re in St Petersburg, and yesterday we played soviet era arcade games, with kopeks & everything!

Unsurprisingly, the 1983~1990 games looked like our 1975~1983 games. There were a LOT of electro-mechanical games. Even in 1985-1990, few were actually electronic “video” games. And there was a surprising number of military games (sniper, torpedo, tank buster). A few fairy tale or sports ones, but mostly military.

They also had basically no game design either. Most were “point, press button” kind of games. One of those electro-mechanical games, for example, was a sniper setup that had you shoot 20 targets with 20 bullets… but there was no timer. So if you managed to get all (very easy to do after a few tries), that was it. No ranking possible, even among friends keeping score (unless you had someone with a stop watch keeping track, I suppose). Understandable of course; the way these came to be was likely people (don’t ask me who) getting super rare imported western games years after their release. They would try to copy them with very little context or understanding of how things had evolved in the field…

Anyway, it was a really interesting dive into this unlikely “industry”. If you ever go to St Petersburg, go check it out!




February 22nd, 2017 | No Comments

PewDiePie vs Anti Semitism, my 2 cents (updated)

This post was reformatted from a series of Tweets which start here.
If you’re not aware of what this is about, you can get info here or here.
[Update: PewDiePie posted a response to the controversy here. Thoughts below.]

Update 2: The Short Version (as of Feb 17)
He agrees he messed up and went too far. Everyone agrees he went too far. That’s not in question.
The remaining question is: was he treated unfairly by the media?
To answer this question, we need to ask another one:
Do you think he’s being accused of being an anti Semite, or of trivializing antisemitism?
If you think he’s accused of being an anti Semite (that’s not what’s happening), you think people and media are piling on, and some variation of “but don’t you get that he was just joking/denouncing/doing it on purpose?”. My suspicion is that you’re under 30(ish).
If you think he’s accused of trivializing antisemitism (that’s what’s happening), you think people and media are deeply concerned at the consequences of these seemingly inconsequential jokes, especially considering he is the biggest personality on the Internet. My suspicion is that you’re over 30(ish).
In my humble opinion, most people agree on most of the situation here. For the rest it’s a matter of perspective, and a matter of generation. Older people have grown up with a strong understanding of the horrors of World War 2; it was part of their (our) culture and education. To them (us), talking about this is a delicate matter always. Similar to someone calling black people “niggers” or homosexuals “faggots” today. For younger people, this was a bad joke, sure, but it’s not *that* big a deal, and the media is piling on.

I don’t have an answer here, I just think laying out the issue in more easily understandable terms might help some people form their opinions. Let me know if you think this doesn’t seem accurate to you. One last thing: I do think that screaming “the media is dishonest/biased/etc” is irresponsible given today’s landscape; whether he wants it or not, he has great influence, so responsibility comes with the territory.
More on that below if you’re interested.

For the full thing, read on…

It seems there’s a backlash against the backlash against PewDiePie’s “anti-Semitic” videos. Here are my 2 cents on the matter:

I don’t think he’s anti Semitic. But, that doesn’t mean he can do or say anything and it’s ok because “I’m just joking”. The line is thin between humor and trivialisation, and I’m not sure he was in the right side of it. The consequences aren’t unjustifiable; he’ll be fine, it’s a slap on the wrist. No need for more drama.

However, the idea that we should “stop getting offended for other people” is FUCKING INSANE. We should absolutely get offended for other people! What are you saying? We should only be offended when we ourselves are targeted? What kind of morality is that?…

And the fact that one Jew doesn’t feel offended doesn’t mean “see? Jews are fine with this!! SJW ruining it for us again!!” – sorry, but no. This issue is serious, and it should be addressed. Panic and eternal condemnation of PDP? Hell no, he probably just went a bit too far. But go to the other extreme and just say it’s all fine and we should all “leave PDP alone!!!”? No, doesn’t work either.

He went a bit too far, got the appropriate response for it, story over. Everything’s as it should be. The drama, on both sides, is overkill. (more…)

February 15th, 2017 | No Comments

Aerial is the Best Screensaver You’ve Ever Seen

A lot of blogs and sites have already talked about it, but here’s one more praise for the AppleTV screensaver. If you don’t know it, you’re really missing out. And there’s no reason why you should: it’s available on Mac and Windows (via unofficial devs).

If this is the first time you’re hearing about it, the idea might seem unoriginal: it’s a series of slow motion flyovers of cities and landscapes. That’s it. But don’t be fooled: they will take your breath away, in an almost meditative experience. The deliberate paths and precise slow motion do something to the images and our brains, where you yourself slow down as you see the tiny cars or the intricate patterns weave and change. The more you look at them, the more you get lost in the imagery. It’s hypnotic and delightful. Honestly, this feels like art more than technology. You might think I’m overselling it… Maybe I am, but that’s honestly the way I feel about this thing. 🙂

Saying that Apple is good at design is kind of trite (or annoying, depending who you are), but I never thought they’d find a way to make me fall in love with a screen saver. And yet they have.

Install it now, you won’t be sorry:



And huge thanks to the devs, John Coates and Dmitry Sadakov!

December 28th, 2016 | No Comments