Domino, Notes and videotape

Stephen Hawking’s Greatest Hits

March 15th, 2018 | Posted by elfworld in Music - (0 Comments)

Stephen HawkingStephen Hawking died yesterday. A huge loss to the world, and no matter his very human shortcomings, the world truly should pay tribute to this man. I am among those millions who bought his book “A Brief History of Time” in the early 90s. It opened my mind up on so many levels, and taught me complex concepts that I had only scratched the surface of before.

I met several of my heroes within science and last year I almost made a hat trick by meeting and interviewing both Neil deGrasse Tyson, Brian Cox and Stephen Hawking at the Starmus science festival in Trondheim, Norway. However, Hawking couldn’t make it because of his declining health. And now I never will be able to meet him. But last weekend I bought a new copy of “A Brief History of Time”, because I lost my old copy, and will read it this weekend in tribute.

As the years went by, Hawking became quite the celebrity. He appeared in numerous TV shows, probably most memorably “The Simpsons” and “The Big Bang Theory”. And loads of artists made songs with or about him. I have created a playlist of 12 of my favourites of these songs:

1) “Into the Party Zone” – Turbonegro

The Norwegian hard rock band Turbonegro’s opening track to the album “Party Animals” called “Intro: The Party Zone,” features Hawking’s familiar electronic voice saying, “Greetings, my name is Stephen Hawking. Anyway, please follow our denim leaders as they enter the final black hole – a new dimension in rock music. Welcome to the party zone.” I don’t think it is Hawking’s voice, though, even if the band have always refused to confirm or deny it.

2) “Stephen Hawking Sings Monty Python… Galaxy Song” – Monty Python & Stephen Hawking

For Record Store Day in 2015, Hawking recorded a version of Monty Python’s “Galaxy Song,” originally sung by Eric Idle for 1983’s film “The Meaning of Life” (he also appeared in a short video clip featuring fellow physicist and professor Brian Cox filmed for a documentary about the British comedy stalwarts’ reunion shows the year before).

3) “E=MC Hawking” – MC Hawking

MC HawkingWhen I attended the aforementioned Starmus festival last year, they showed us a documentary about Stephen Hawking’s career as a rap artist… It was hilarious, and taken from the works of Ken Lawrence, who created the MC Hawking rap persona in the late 90s. The lyrics are side splitting, and also spoofs N.W.A (“Fuck the Creationists”). Stephen Hawking was a big fan too.

4) “A Glorious Dawn” – Carl Sagan

Ok, so it’s not really Carl Sagan who performs this track. In 2009, John D. Boswell, a.k.a. Melodysheep, a.k.a. the man behind online video series Symphony of Science, concocted a genius mind-meld between two cosmologists, Carl Sagan and Stephen Hawking. The result is a “cheesy, synthesizer-strewn odyssey that sounds like Auto-Tuning the Cosmos, that could also gently lull you to sleep on dreams of Milky Ways and nebulae nurseries” as Spin Magazine described it.

5) “Keep Talking” – Pink Floyd

David Gilmour insisted that the Pink Floyd albums released under his leadership were concept albums, just like the earlier Pink Floyd albums. 1994’s “The Division Bell” was about communication. So when British Telecom did an advert featuring one of Stephen Hawking’s most powerful monologues, Gilmour thought it fit the bill for his song “Keep Talking.”

“This was the most powerful piece of television advertising that I’ve ever seen in my life,” Gilmour said soon after The Division Bell’s release. “I just found it so moving that I felt that I had to try and do something with it, or with him or something, in some way.”

6) “Hawking Radiation” – Philip Glass

The mastermind of minimalistic music created an album of the same title as the book “A Brief History of Time.” This is a short, but very nice ditty. Unfortunately this is not on Tidal, so the Tidal playlist below only has 11 tracks.

7) “Me and Stephen Hawking” – Manic Street Preachers

The once huge stadium filling band, who used to be an underground band, name checks Hawking in this nice pop track.

8) “Hawking” – Todd Rundgren

Todd is a strange one. Part jazz, part prog, part rock, part pop and part psychedlia. Not only on one and the same album, but preferrably in one and the same song! This one however is dangerously close to lounge jazz.

9) “Da Vinci” – Weezer

Don’t remember what happened to this band, but mentioning Da Vinci and and Hawking in one and the same song just feels right.

10) “White & Nerdy” – Weird Al Yankowic

Come to think of it, I saw Yankowic in Trondheim as well. Oh well, this is a parody of a hiphop song I’ve never heard. But the lyrics are hilarious and the video is awesome too.

11) “Chronologie Part 4” – Jean-Michel Jarre

Jean-Michel Jarre and Neil deGrasse TysonWhen the French electronica hero created an album about time, called Chronologie, in 1993, he name checked Stephen Hawking and thanked him for his book “A Brief History of Time,” in the liner notes. The book was a huge source of inspiration for Jarre when he worked on this album.

Last year when I was in Trondheim Jean-Michel Jarre received “The Stephen Hawking Award,” together with Neil deGrasse Tyson and the producers of the TV Show “The Big Bang Theory.”

12) “Talkin’ Hawkin'” – Pink Floyd

Hawking pops up again on the very last Pink Floyd album, “The Endless River.” I think this is a beautiful track, and a nice closer to this playlist.

What did you think of this list? Should I create other lists? Leave your comments below.



Some of my real life and Facebook friends, as well as relatives of them, have died. A while after their funeral, you suddenly see that Facebook is telling you that it’s the dead person’s birthday. And then a lot of people who don’t know that this person has passed on are posting birthday greetings. It’s awkward, and can also be hurtful for the dead person’s family and friends.

However, there is a way to prevent this from happening. You can actually decide who should manage your Facebook profile when you die. This person (you can choose more than one) will then be able to do things such as pin a post on your timeline, respond to new friend requests and update your profile picture. They won’t be able to post as you or see your messages.

How to set this up

  1. Go to the pull down menu in the upper right corner and choose Settings:
    Settings menu choice
  2. A new page will open up. At the bottom of the options list under General Account Settings you see a choice called Manage account. Click on the Edit link:
    General Settings
  3. You will see a form called Your Legacy Contact:
    Legacy Contact
  4. Click on the field called Choose a friend and start typing the name of the Facebook contact you want to make your legacy contact. When the person appears in the list, click on her. You will then see this form:
    Legacy contact form

  5. You can edit the message that you want to send to the contact that you’ve added as your legacy contact. If you don’t want to send the legacy contact a message, just click Not Now. They will still be added as your legacy contact, and you will receive an email about it. However, I will strongly advice that you contact your legacy contact about this!

And that’s it. You now have a legacy contact who will take care of your Facebook profile when you die.

Delete the account if you die

If you don’t want to add a legacy contact, but want Facebook to delete your account when you die, you will find a link underneath the form that says Request account deletion:

Deactivate account


If you click on that link, this pops up:

Legacy confirm


What will happen now is that when you die, and Facebook gets a confirmation from your family, or others, that you indeed are dead, they will delete your account.

Too morbid? No, this is something you should consider about all your online accounts. Who will clean up after you?

What do you think about this functionality and this tip? Is there anything about Facebook you would like a tip about? Leave a comment below!

Have you ever read a blog posting from a someone, with photos and a nice summary of something they’ve experienced? Or read something that they wanted to share or discuss? And then thought: “Gee, I want to to that.”

But then you’ve realised that you don’t want all the hassle of setting up a blog, dealing with design, maybe a domain and a lot of administration? Well, there’s no need to be jealous of your blogging friends anymore. You can become a blogger in less than 2 minutes! Because you already have a ready to use blog tool: Facebook!

Where can you find it?

It’s a bit of a hidden feature if you don’t know about it. Sure, sometimes you will see a Facebook posting in your news feed from one of your friends that opens in a bigger window when you click on it, and which contains a title, a photo and formatted text. But surprisingly few use this function.

In the web browser you find the notes at the adress . To find notes (notater på norsk) on the cell phone, search for notes in the search field on in the Facebook app. The notes app will show up and you can click on it:

Notes on mobile


No matter what of these two options you choose, you will now get to a page that lists all the notes of your friends. These notes are like blog postings:

Facebook notes


Like your Facebook news stream, they are not listed chronologically. I haven’t found any way to sort them like that, if you do know any solution, feel free to leave a comment below.

To read a note, you either click on it’s title or the See more link. As you can see, a note can look like any normal blog posting:

A Facebook blog posting


To close the notes you just hit the Esc button on your keyboard, or the x in the upper right corner.

How to create your own

So, would you like to write your own? That’s easy!

You can create your own notes on both the mobile app as well as in the web browser. This recipe is for the web browser, but the principle is the same for both, even if there are fewer options for the cell phone app.

At the top of the page you find this button:

Write a note


Click on it, and the form for creating a note opens up:

Note form


You can now add a top photo (please do, it makes it much more inviting to read your note) and a title. And then you can start writing in the main rich text field.

To the left of the rich text field you have two icons. The right icon let’s you choose various types of formatting like headings, lists and quotations:


You can also add photos by clicking on the plus sign:

Add photos

At bottom left of the note form, you have a button called Delete. Click on that if you don’t want to save or publish the note.

At the bottom right of the form you have the following buttons:

Audience: This is the button to the left. Here is where you choose your audience. Do you want only your friends to see this (or a subset of them) or do you want this note to be public for all to see? If you want to start a blog with a big readership, choosing Public is the way to go.

Save: Click on this if you need to save the note, but you don’t want to publish right now. Click on the x in the upper right corner to close the note.

Publish: Click on this when you are ready to publish it.

See all your notes and drafts

In the upper right corner on the page you will find two menu items:

Drafts and notes


My notes: This will give you a view of all your published notes. You can use this to go back to them if you want to edit them or delete them.

My drafts: This will give you a view of all your unpublished notes. You can use this to go back and finish them and publish them.

That’s it! Happy blogging!

PS! Facebook has a complete manual on how to use notes, in case you get stuck or have problems.

Did you like this tip, or have any feedback on it? Leave a comment below!