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WSJ Staff

In this week’s pictures, a soldier takes part in Victory Day commemorations in Moscow, a graduate dresses casually at a commencement ceremony President Obama attends in Ohio, a woman in a wedding dress gets muddy in England, and more.

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Shortly after establishing his communist revolution in 1959, Fidel Castro declared Cuba an “atheist” state and all but shut down the Roman Catholic church on the island. But ever since the Soviet Union collapsed, and the Cuban economy with it, Fidel and his younger brother Raúl, who has taken over as President, have looked to the church and its charitable missions for help. Pope John Paul II’s historic visit in 1998 helped resurrect the Cuban church – and today its bishops have emerged as political as well as spiritual players, brokering the release of political prisoners and broadening the island’s fledgling private sector. The church now is nothing less than the first and only alternative institution to the Cuban Revolution.

But Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Cuba this week is a reminder that the Cuban church is not without its critics on both sides of the communist divide. Castro foes accuse it of being too timid about confronting the government’s repression of human rights, democracy and free speech and scold it for not using its new influence to hasten a Havana Spring. Meanwhile, Castro police and militants, fearing the church is actually doing too much to encourage regime change, are increasingly jailing and harassing Catholic dissidents like the Damas de Blanco (Ladies in White).

Church leaders insist they’re planting the seeds of Cuba’s long-term democratization. Either way, as Tomás Munita’s somber but arresting photos point out to us, both the island’s secular and religious worlds are still in a state of disrepair. The church is in a rare position to renovate them – and it’s under pressure now to move a lot faster than those vintage cars in Munita’s shots.

Tomas Munita is a freelance photographer based in Santiago, Chile. See more of his work here.

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Pedestrians stopped to watch a reporter at work Feb. 1 as Luis Ortiz, accused in the shooting of NYPD Officer Kevin Brennan, was led out of the 90th Precinct station in Brooklyn after being charged with attempted murder of a police officer. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Aaron Bloom, of Aaron’s Roaming Reptiles, posed for a photo Feb. 1 while delivering an American alligator to an exhibit at Chelsea Market to advertise the premiere of the third season of the History Channel show ‘Swamp People.’ (Andrew Burton for The Wall Street Journal)


New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly attended a memorial service on Jan. 27 for two officers killed 40 years ago, outside of the 9th Precinct in the East Village. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Bishop Dennis J. Sullivan
Bishop Dennis J. Sullivan celebrated mass with parishioners and clergy of the now-shuttered St. Augustine parish in a service at Our Lady of Victory Roman Catholic Church in the Bronx Jan. 29. The parish also held the final mass in its longtime home at 1183 Franklin Ave. on Jan. 29. (Karsten Moran for The Wall Street Journal )

Chicken shumai
Chicken shumai with gingered tomato sauce and parmesan at The Hurricane Club, a pan-Asian restaurant at 360 Park Ave. at 26th Street. (Agaton Strom for The Wall Street Journal )

Director and screenwriter Amos Poe
Director and screenwriter Amos Poe in Battery Park, where his 1978 film ‘The Foreigner’ has its climax. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)

James Houghton
James Houghton, the artistic director of Signature Theatre, stood in one of the three new theaters designed by Frank Gehry. (Ramin Talaie for The Wall Street Journal)

David H. Koch Theater
The David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Mini arancini
Mini arancini, rice balls stuffed with ham and mozzarella, at Zito’s Sandwich Shoppe in Park Slope, Brooklyn. (Agaton Strom for The Wall Street Journal)

Four New York Giants fans
Four New York Giants fans protested in front of Michael’s restaurant in Midtown Manhattan Feb. 1 during a VIP-only party to celebrate the Giants’ upcoming Super Bowl appearance. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)

A taxi
A taxi drove through the intersection of Broadway and 42nd Street on Jan. 31. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Server Rebecca Schroder
Server Rebecca Schroder carried a tray of drinks at Jacob’s Pickles, a bar on the Upper West Side that specializes in regional beers and spirits, as well as house-made pickles and biscuits. (Agaton Strom for The Wall Street Journal)

Guggenheim
Girls sat in a sunny spot outside of the Guggenheim museum on the afternoon of Jan. 30. (Emily Berl for The Wall Street Journal)

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TIGHT SQUEEZE
TIGHT SQUEEZE: A fireman worked to remove a man who was stuck in a space between walls in Liujiang County in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Thursday. The man got stuck in the space less than eight inches wide while collecting waste material for recycling. (Zuma Press)

ISLAMIST-LED RALLY
ISLAMIST-LED RALLY: A man stood on his motorbike at a protest in Cairo Friday. Tens of thousands of Egyptians rallied in Tahrir Square with Islamists in the forefront to protest against what they say are attempts by the country’s military rulers to designate themselves as the guardians of a new Egypt. (Asmaa Waguih/Reuters)

WELCOME TO BENIN
WELCOME TO BENIN: Women danced at a welcoming ceremony for Pope Benedict XVI at an airport in Cotonou, Benin, Friday. The 84-year-old pope is making his second trip to Africa, the fastest-growing region for the Roman Catholic Church. (Issouf Sanogo/AFP/Getty Images)

SHOOTING DRILL
SHOOTING DRILL: Students lay face-down in a classroom during a drill in a high school in a low-income neighborhood in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Thursday. More than 2,400 high school students and teachers carried out a shooting drill in high-risk areas due to the city’s level of violence, local media reported. (Jose Luis Gonzalez/Reuters)

TSUNAMI DAMAGE
TSUNAMI DAMAGE: A three-story building lay on its side in Onagawa, Japan, Friday. Though much of the debris left by the March 11 tsunami has been removed, there is little sign of rebuilding in communities across northeast Japan. (Greg Baker/Associated Press)

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Police prepared to enter Arrow Wine & Liquor at 48th Street and Avenue N in Flatlands, Brooklyn, on Wednesday. Two men were taken hostage in an attempted robbery, but were released unharmed. In the end, two suspects surrendered. (PJ Smith for The Wall Street Journal)


Jhonny Arteaga, a player for the soccer team F.C. New York, practiced at Mitchel Field in Uniondale Monday. The team was considered the underdog ahead of its match Tuesday against the Red Bulls in New Jersey, and lost, 2-1. (Kevin Hagen for The Wall Street Journal)


A makeshift memorial stood on the football field at Truman High School in the Bronx after Isayah Muller, a star running-back on the school’s football team, was killed Tuesday. The 19-year-old was stabbed in a dispute just hours after graduating. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, center, at Sunday’s Gay Pride parade with his girlfriend, in white; New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, far left; and openly gay elected officials including City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, in purple. Friday, Gov. Cuomo signed a law legalizing same-sex marriage. (Daniella Zalcman for The Wall Street Journal)


The risotto alla pescatore at Zero Otto Nove Manhattan. The new location for the Bronx-based restaurant is 15 W. 21st St. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal )


Workers painted a stretch of Times Square between 44th and 45th Streets on Thursday. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal )


Patrick Carrajat is the lifelong obsessive behind the one-room Elevator Historical Society, which had its grand opening on Wednesday in Long Island City. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)


Stage hands Bradford Olson, left, and Jarmel Cruz installed armrests inside a replica of the Royal Shakespeare Theater stage in the Park Avenue Armory Wednesday, ahead of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s six-week residency in Manhattan. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)


The Perfect Storm, a blend of Jamaican Rum, lime juice, green-tea syrup, ginger syrup, soda and angostura bitters, is a standout at The Drink, 228 Manhattan Ave., in Brooklyn. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)


Participants at the Society of Illustrators’ Tuesday drawing class this week. At the group’s Tuesday night ‘Sketch Night,’ nude models are on the agenda. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)


Fifth-grade students at an awards ceremony on Monday at Harlem Day Charter School, which is being taken over by Democracy Prep Public Schools. Only one-third of the class is moving on to middle school. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)


Actors in an upcoming performance of the Shakespeare play “Henry V,” from left, Andy Paterson, Chance Anderson, Tim Bungeroth, Kevin Orton and Max Waszak rehearsed a fight sequence on Governors Island Tuesday. The show opens July 5th. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)


Deborah Young, co-founder of the Crown Heights North Association, inside St. Gregory’s Roman Catholic Church, where her group regularly meets. (Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal)


The Astoria Pool in the borough of Queens welcomed hundreds of city residents this week. (Timothy Fadek for The Wall Street Journal)


In Washington Heights, Loew’s 175th Street Theatre opened in 1930. It functioned as a cinema until 1969, when it was saved from the wrecking ball by the charismatic televangelist Rev. Frederick J. Eikerenkoetter II, who bought it and converted it into his ‘Palace Cathedral.’ (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)


Tires for sale were piled high outside a shop just off 126th Street next to Citifield in Queens on Wednesday. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)


Children said goodbye to friends at P.S. 171 in Long Island City, Queens, Tuesday, the school’s last day of class before summer vacation. (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal )

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Students from Bellport High School, many wearing their graduation caps and gowns, embraced Friday outside Our Lady of Mount Carmel Roman Catholic Church in Patchogue, N.Y., where a funeral was held for 17-year-old Jennifer Mejia, one of four people killed in a Medford robbery Sunday. (Kevin P. Coughlin for The Wall Street Journal)


Dozens of brass players positioned themselves around the lake in Central Park Tuesday, playing an original composition called to an audience in rowboats as part of a daylong event called Make Music NY, which consisted of more than a thousand free concerts across New York City over the course of the day. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Antonio Munoz, center, rounds a corner during the Skyscraper Classic cycling race in Harlem on Sunday. Leif Lampater of Germany claimed the overall men’s professional title. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)


Bernice Acosta was among the thousands who celebrated the summer solstice by performing yoga in Times Square on Tuesday. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)


Artist Akihiro Ito helps install his sculpture titled ‘Forever,’ on Tuesday in Riverside Park on the Hudson River near 60th Street. Other works by members of the Art Students League also will be installed along the riverfront for a year. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Chinese artist Liu Bolin was painted for an art project at the Charging Bull in lower Manhattan Thursday. Mr. Bolin is creating a series called ‘Hiding In The City’ in which he camouflages himself against an urban background for a self-portrait.  (Bryan Derballa for The Wall Street Journal)


Ibtihaj Muhammad practiced her thrusts Thursday in Maplewood, NJ. Ms. Muhammad, 25, is the 11th ranked female saber fencer in the world and the 2nd ranked US Women’s saber fencer.  (Natalie Keyssar for The Wall Street Journal)


Braised rutabaga with plum, fennel, pistachio and goat cheese at Gotham Bar & Grill. (Ramsay de Give for The Wall Street Journal)


Andrej Ruff proposed to Natalia Giesbrecht, his girlfriend of 12 years, in a row boat on Central Park on Tuesday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Actor Todd Lawson on the cot babckstage at the Acorn Theatre on 42nd Street. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


A fan is carried by a New York City police officer to an ambulance after falling ill at a promotional appearance by Justin Bieber at Macy’s in New York Thursday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


James ‘Whitey’ Bulger peered down from a digital billboard above Times Square on Monday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Kyrie Irving, who many sports analysts expect to be the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft Thursday night, attended a clinic for athletes with mental disabilities with Brandon Knight, left, and Kemba Walker, right, at New York City’s John Jay College Wednesday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Steve Nash of the Phoenix Suns shows off his soccer skills during a charity match Wednesday on the Lower East Side. Several NBA and soccer stars participated in the annual event. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)


Robin Mazzanewitter and her father, Paul Mazza, played gongs in Columbus Circle as part of the Make Music NY festival. (Natalie Keyssar for The Wall Street Journal)

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Pictured: Loopseque, in final form (top) and sketched on paper (bottom). Images courtesy the developers; visit them on Flickr.

Saturday afternoon in Toronto, I’m giving a talk to the North by Northeast festival on music software and tablets. I’ll explain a bit about what tablets are about, and some of the software that’s out there on the landscape (principally, of course, on the iPad). But I hope to emphasize a deeper issue: how you design software for the tablet, and what’s unique about this convergence of form factor and touch interface. I mean this generically for a reason: on CDM, we covered some of these ideas before even the announcement of the iPhone, and I was an early (and skeptical, I might add) reviewer of the JazzMutant Lemur.

Even looking beyond that, I hope to talk a bit about how representing music graphically has been an essential part of human practice, not only beyond the iPad, but beyond even the current notational system as derived from the Western church. Talk about early tablets: the first known music notation appeared in ancient stone Greek and Byzantine tablets. (On weight and thinness, I don’t think they compete with the iPad.)

That sounds lofty, especially for a potentially-hungover crowd of musicians and designers on a Saturday, so here’s the executive summary: you don’t have to make a bunch of fake knobs.

I’m really mostly curious to start a conversation about design; ideally, I’ll get some designers showing up here in Toronto, but it’s time to make that conversation happen on the Web, too.

With that in mind, I’m curious:

What software designs – iPad or otherwise – have you seen that have most inspired you, in terms of the way the interface was designed?

Fair game: sound toys, music notation (really), art pieces, games, control surfaces … whatever you like.

I’ll post notes from my presentation by early next week, because I’ll probably be assembling it at the last minute it’s already totally done and perfect and rehearsed and I just wouldn’t want to spoil it.

Pictured: Loopseque; previously on CDM

Also, because I’m a huge fanboy of circles in general (as readers of this site know), I love this image and blog post from Loopseque. They didn’t exactly invent the idea of visualizing loops as circles, but let’s join this revolution.
Another step in the evolution of music interface [Loopseque Blog]

Honestly, if tablets are nothing other than an excuse to ask these questions again, all the better – and there’s no reason not to then apply what you’ve learned to computers, embedded hardware, analog hardware, paper notation – anything.

If anyone would like to start a circles versus rectangles fanboy platform war, troll away! I’ll start:

stupd circle &*(&$s you losers got not edges. serious muzos have right angles. go play with your dumba** frisbee shaped toys that dont have even no sides on them and see if you can even figure out PI LOLZ pie like something youd eat its not even a rational number whatevss
real pros use polygons

whaaaa??? ow did someone just hurt on their foursided pointy pointy pointy edge? shoulda used a circle, youd be happier :P :P r4d1us 4 l1f3

Seriously, definitely let me know what new interfaces you’ve found inspiring lately, and I’ll be sure to credit you in my talk!

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