Saturday, 15 September 2012

Every day a little death

I cannot believe I am linking to the Austrian Independent, our utterly crappy English-language newspaper, but here goes: plans are underfoot to introduce QR codes to the headstones of the numerous famous composers and other luminaries buried in Vienna’s Zentralfriedhof. Austrians love love love DEATH – remember that Mahler dude? – and are rather keen on their smartphones as well (I believe we have the cheapest tariffs in Europe, though I have yet to purchase one of the damn things). So it was inevitable that the two would at some point collide. This new scheme, funded by the EU – which never ceases concocting new ways to shoot itself in the foot – will make the headstones interactive, linking to an online biography of the composer as well as musical extracts.

This kind of thing hinges on the quality of information provided. Assuming it’s either good or lowest common denominator, one of two things will happen to make aficionados of musical memorials enthuse or flinch:

a) people visit these graves and learn something meaningful about Beethoven
b) you won’t be able to visit Beethoven’s final resting place without hearing tinny da da da dums and: ‘check out this awesome deaf music guy’. ‘Dude, it’s composer, duh.’ ‘More like decomposer’ (sniggers all round).

For more see the AI
’s article, titled ‘Decomposers rave from the grave’.

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