April 27

You Have to See It to Beelieve It

BeeLine Reader makes screen reading easier with multicolored gradients that guide your eyes from line to line.
posted by overeducated_alligator at 8:54 AM - 28 comments

Kanye West's First Beats

Jensen Karp: “I was stumbling through my garage, searching through old storage bins, when I came across some old beat CDs from my days as a signed Interscope rapper. I was shocked to find that two of them, both given to me in ‘01, had the name Kanye West on them.” (via)
posted by Going To Maine at 8:18 AM - 4 comments

“Assassination is the extreme form of censorship.”

Six PEN Members Decline Gala After Award for Charlie Hebdo [New York Times]
“The decision by PEN American Center to give its annual Freedom of Expression Courage award to the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo has prompted six writers to withdraw as literary hosts at the group’s annual gala on May 5, adding a new twist to the continuing debate over the publication’s status as a martyr for free speech. The novelists Peter Carey, Michael Ondaatje, Francine Prose, Teju Cole, Rachel Kushner and Taiye Selasi have withdrawn from the gala, at the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan.”
[more inside]
posted by Fizz at 7:40 AM - 65 comments

"I'm glad I bought it and I'm sure I'll love it in a couple of months"

A self-proclaimed insufferable asshole named Matt complains about his new luxury watch. Turns out it's the most personal device ever, only not in an insanely great way. Still, he has hopes for the future of his new wearable computer. (MeFi's own mathowie at medium.com.)
posted by valkane at 4:59 AM - 103 comments

Google Paul Rand... oh, nevermind

There's already one big loser in the 2016 Presidental Campaign: Paul Rand, the legendary graphic designer, who has lost more than half of the first-page search results on Google, Bing and GoDuckGo for his name to Candidate Rand Paul. Especially ironic considering that Paul Rand COULD have improved Rand Paul's campaign logo, according to Ernie Smith in his "blog via email" Tedium. [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:43 AM - 8 comments

April 26

Eight thousand years of natural selection in Europe

How did Europeans become "white"? [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:49 PM - 27 comments

A Field In Pseudo-Germany

Want to play Warhammer Fantasy Battle? Not possesed of a Scrroge McDuck style moneypit or willing to sell organs in order to buy figures? Kieron Gillen and Matthew Sheret are here to help with Hipsterhammer. Jump in with guides to building Dwarf, Empire or Vampire Count armies on the cheap! Doubles as a bit of a guide to the weirdo world of Warhammer Fantasy, as distinct from your more generic Tolkienesque efforts. They even have a manifesto!
posted by Artw at 8:10 PM - 12 comments

The eeriness of the English countryside

Robert Macfarlane, in The Guardian: In music, literature, art, film and photography, as well as in new and hybrid forms and media, the English eerie is on the rise. A loose but substantial body of work is emerging that explores the English landscape in terms of its anomalies rather than its continuities, that is sceptical of comfortable notions of “dwelling” and “belonging”, and of the packagings of the past as “heritage”, and that locates itself within a spectred rather than a sceptred isle. Such concerns are not new, but there is a distinctive intensity and variety to their contemporary address. This eerie counter-culture – this occulture – is drawing in experimental film-makers, folk singers, folklorists, academics, avant-garde antiquaries, landscape historians, utopians, collectives, mainstreamers and Arch-Droods alike, in a magnificent mash-up of hauntology, geological sentience and political activism. The hedgerows, fields, ruins, hills and saltings of England have been set seething. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 4:07 PM - 53 comments

Don't Put Your Dry Ice In The Thermos, Mrs Worthington

While you were out, your childminders have been entertaining your offspring with dry ice experiments. You're that sort of parent, with those sorts of friends. On your return, you discover that this has gone down very well with junior, and that there's some solid CO2 left over. What could be better than to continue the science fun in the morning? All you have to do is keep the stuff cool overnight. Simple enough? Perhaps not. (Previously)
posted by Devonian at 2:11 PM - 49 comments

The International Journal of Proof of Concept or Get The Fuck Out

"Permission to use all or part of this work for personal, classroom, or whatever other use is NOT granted unless you make a copy and pass it to a neighbor without fee, excepting libations offered by the aforementioned neighbor in order to facilitate neighborly hacking, and that said copy bears this notice and the full citation on the first page. Because if burning a book is a sin—which it surely is!—then copying of a book is your sacred duty." [more inside]
posted by yeahwhatever at 1:35 PM - 8 comments

If a shark had pockets...oh, wait, this one does

Pocket shark caught: Rare shark with 2 big pockets netted off U.S. coast (pics) A pocket shark isn’t like a pocket knife, where it fits into your pocket, it is a rare shark that actually has pockets in its body, one under each fin. “Think ‘Jaws’ meets kangaroo,” [more inside]
posted by Michele in California at 1:28 PM - 26 comments

Do the hokey pokie

When you're sitting on the couch in your snuggie, do you ever wish you could be having sex? When you're having sex, do you ever wish you could be wearing your snuggie? Now you can with the Pokie! Comes with the exclusive Pokie Sutra.
posted by jeather at 12:54 PM - 64 comments

These are nobody's memories

"There is nothing borrowed, or blue." As the Sixth Circuit marriage cases head to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, LGBT organizations make their closing arguments via YouTube.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:32 PM - 4 comments

Back to the roots: the real meaning of a "power plant"

Three researchers develop E-Kaia, a phone charger that plugs into a plant. [more inside]
posted by ipsative at 12:16 PM - 17 comments

November: The Able Archer Wargames take place in Belgium

ICBM is a game that allows you to take on the role of a Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander. Set in November 1983, during the Able Archer war games, it aims to accurately simulate shifts at a bunker beneath Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota. [more inside]
posted by frimble at 10:51 AM - 14 comments

Distinctly Emasculated

[F. Scott] Fitzgerald saw homosexuality as a weakness—less a sexual predilection than something one undergoes in times of emotional distress. [Ernest] Hemingway used fiction to broadcast his virility after a sexually confusing childhood. Both were more sexually fluid than their contemporary reputations suggest. Cody C. Delistraty in The Paris Review
posted by chavenet at 10:37 AM - 36 comments

Denim cut-offs, floral garlands, fashion wellies - you know the drill

As a music fan, what I find even more worrying is that these “festival fashion” features only perpetuate the myth that women are incapable of enjoying music for music’s sake. More than that: these features are flat-out telling us we’re not allowed to. The subtext appears to be, “Girls: the boys have generously granted you access to their sphere; the least you can do is look pretty.
posted by acb at 10:16 AM - 36 comments

The Asshole Factory

They are designed to disinfect us of our fragility. To cleanse us of our flaws. To disinfect us of weakness. Love, grace, mercy, longing, forgiveness, passion, truth, nobility, dreams. Their objective is to stamp all that out; to eradicate it; to erase it. To replace it with calculation, ruthlessness, self-concern; gluttony; cruelty; anxiety, despair. By using the most sophisticated technology ever made to subjugate, oppress, and goad us into being little torturers ourselves. Our economy doesn't make stuff anymore. So what does it make?
posted by philip-random at 10:03 AM - 81 comments

We use products to dream things that matter.

The Random Startup Website Generator is brought to you by a pair of Georgia Tech computer science students. via Slashdot
posted by Little Dawn at 9:01 AM - 26 comments

Korean with a side of litigiousness

"So what does this curious tale of a mediocre restaurant prove? It proves that in London’s modern restaurant business, the combination of furiously high costs, reputations and big egos can be explosive. Indeed only one thing is clear to me. Right now the people really making money out of Jinjuu are the lawyers." Guardian restaurant critic Jay Raynor reviews Jinjuu - and the ensuing legal storm he accidentally provoked.
posted by Punkey at 7:09 AM - 48 comments

the lifecycle of discarded clothes

Unravel ‘Maybe the water is too expensive to wash them’: a short documentary on how Indian women recast and recycle the clothes the West throws away
posted by dhruva at 7:02 AM - 39 comments

Shifting perspectives: because that axe was difficult to carry.

Remember Stanley Kubrick's The Shining with Pippin Barr's Let's Play: The Shining, a browser game in Atari 2600 style. Press release.
posted by khonostrov at 5:21 AM - 8 comments

Maralinga’s Afterlife

At Maralinga, the British Government treated Aborigines, Australian servicemen and even its own troops as scientific guinea pigs. John Keane, whose father was there, looks at the dirty games that were played in the desert of South Australia.
posted by Wolfdog at 4:06 AM - 8 comments

April 25

Luther, Obama's Anger Translator

Key & Peele's Luther the Anger Translator juxtaposed Obama's calm demeanor with the stereotypical "angry black man." Not seen as much since the Romney debates, Luther is back. But Obama doesn't need Luther anymore.
posted by justkevin at 10:28 PM - 60 comments

RAGEagain

Remember this? The date-entry form no longer works, but that's okay, because now RAGEagain is here to automate (more than ever before) the process of reliving episodes of the beloved long-running minimalist Australian music video program rage from 1998 onwards, by automatically pulling songs listed on rage's archive of playlists from YouTube. [more inside]
posted by BiggerJ at 10:18 PM - 10 comments

Why is Gay Marriage Winning While Abortion Rights Lose?

Katha Pollitt believes it's because, unlike gay marriage, "Reproductive rights are inescapably about women." Same-sex marriage is something men want. Lesbian couples account for the majority of same-sex marriages, but even the vernacular "gay marriage" types it as a male concern. That makes it of interest to everyone, because everything male is of general interest. Though many of the groundbreaking activists and lawyers who have fought for same-sex marriage are lesbians, gay men have a great deal of social and economic power, and they have used it, brilliantly, to mainstream the cause. [more inside]
posted by emjaybee at 8:52 PM - 109 comments

Shotgun Honey

Short stories. Crime. Hardboiled. Noir. Something like that. 700 words maximum. Make it tight. Make it hum
posted by mrbigmuscles at 6:29 PM - 10 comments

"things get pretty weird pretty quickly": becoming fake-famous

"Basically, somebody who worked at Twitter back in 2009 added me to that list, and all of a sudden my online network got upgraded to the kind of numbers that are usually only reserved for rock stars." Nobody Famous — what it's like to have the social network of a celebrity, without actually being famous, by Mefi's own Anil Dash.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 6:02 PM - 44 comments

“For all intents and purposes, I am a woman,”

Bruce Jenner Says He’s Transitioning to a Woman [New York Times]
Bruce Jenner, the Olympic gold medalist and member of the Kardashian family, ended months of speculation Friday night when he announced during an ABC television special that he identified as a woman and was making the transition from male to female.
[more inside]
posted by Fizz at 4:36 PM - 77 comments

Clever Technology Joins Old Technology

Tsunago is a pencil sharpener with a clever twist; it can take the stubs of pencils too short to easily use, and join them into a useful sized writing instrument again. [via]
posted by quin at 2:36 PM - 68 comments

Is passionate work a neoliberal delusion?

Angela McRobbie on the rise of the creative economy. Why are young people attracted to creative jobs with low pay, and how does this benefit the neoliberal project?
posted by winterportage at 1:44 PM - 35 comments

el chico de la espina

Heaven Knows I’m Mexican Now: Morrissey's Latino connection goes live “I would hate to see a cheesy Mexican tribute to Morrissey,” he says. “I knew I had to use well-known Mexican artists” – among others, the group features underground icon Chetes, trumpet player Alex Escobar and Cafe Tacuba’s violinist Alejandro Flores – “and to mix it with electronic elements and other non-Mexican elements. To just play these songs with mariachi trumpets would be touristic – we didn’t want to come and dress in ponchos.” [more inside]
posted by betweenthebars at 1:42 PM - 14 comments

Earthquake in Nepal

An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 has hit Nepal, killing over 1,000 people. The epicenter was just outside Kathmandu, but the effects have been felt as far away as Tibet, Bangladesh, and India. Regular updates at The Guardian.
posted by lunasol at 11:15 AM - 71 comments

"I'm not one of those who will ever say to you 'No regrets.'"

Kate Mulgrew tells the Chicago Tribune's Heidi Stevens about giving her daughter up for adoption and reconnecting 20 years later (Video). [more inside]
posted by Pater Aletheias at 11:08 AM - 12 comments

Can't stay for long, just turn around and I'm gone again

An oral history of The Littlest Hobo, Canada's greatest TV show.
"My second episode was a few years later, as a DEA agent who was tracking some drug smuggling that was going on in a movie unit. So I was undercover as a vampire in this movie. And the dog was helping me unearth the bad guys."
posted by frimble at 10:40 AM - 42 comments

Texas True Crime

TWO PROMINENT DOCTORS. ONE BEAUTIFUL WOMAN LOOKING FOR ROMANCE. AND A LIKABLE MISFIT WHO SPUN TALL TALES. THEIR LIVES INTERSECTED AFTER AN INTENSE RELATIONSHIP TURNED SOUR, BUT NO ONE GUESSED THAT THE PATH TO LOVE WOULD LEAD TO MURDER. - Texas Monthly: "A Deadly Dance" By Skip Hollandsworth
posted by The Whelk at 10:18 AM - 14 comments

10 Minute Dosage of Engrossing Web Design

Form Follows Function is a beautifully designed collection of interactive mini-experiences, coded in HTML5, and designed to work as flawlessly on mobile as on the desktop.
posted by polywomp at 8:32 AM - 14 comments

Dave or Ed? The 2015 UK General Election

In just 12 days, the 2015 general election for the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) takes place. On the surface, the math is simple: there are 650 seats, so winning 326 gives you a simple majority. In the previous parliament, governance was through a coalition of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties. But this time, predicting who will be Prime Minister, or have the most seats, or what form the government will take, is ... complicated. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 8:18 AM - 92 comments

What sound does a coyote make when he takes a bottle of earthquake pills

"Usually the kind of sound effects you heard in the earliest cartoons were strictly sound effects produced by musical instruments. What happened with Treg Brown is entirely different; he would bring in sounds that were recorded in the library at Warner Bros. If someone came quick to a stop, he would bring in a car skid from a Jimmy Carney gangster movie that they had recorded. If somebody was hit on the head and flew out a window there'd be a thunderclap followed by the sound of a biplane in a spin recorded for Dawn Patrol. It was this imposition of realistic sounds into the fantasy world of the cartoons which gave them comic impact."

CRASH! BANG! BOOM! The Wild Sounds of Treg Brown, (Part 1 Part 2 [SLYT]) is a short documentary about legendary sound editor Treg Brown.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:54 AM - 6 comments

The Last Ride Of The Polo Shirt Bandit

"William Guess was his name - and it was prophetic. When he shot himself while surrounded by the police, he left unanswered the question that had stumped his pursuers: why did an ordinary middle-class Texan turn into the state's most prolific bank robber?"
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:39 AM - 3 comments

And Holland Has Tulips

What It’s Like to Have Down Syndrome—and Care for a Sister With Disabilities While the initial focus was to portray Alyssa as just another member of her family, the project changed slightly when Carly began to lose neurological ability. Although Carly’s condition is still undiagnosed, Lois needed to continue to work in order to keep everyone under the same roof. As a result, Alyssa became one of Carly’s primary caregivers. [more inside]
posted by magstheaxe at 6:57 AM - 9 comments

Where No Freak or Geek Has Gone Before

Other Space: A sci-fi workplace comedy created by Paul Feig. Featuring Milana Vayntraub (a.k.a. the lady from the AT&T ad), Karan Soni (a.k.a. the dude from the AT&T ad), and Joel Hodgson and Trace Beaulieu from MST3K.
posted by Cash4Lead at 6:32 AM - 25 comments

Teaching evolution to Muslim students

Associate Professor Rana Dajani describes why she teaches evolution to Muslim students in Jordan.
posted by 1head2arms2legs at 4:58 AM - 23 comments

Why are you still here?

In Grimsby, the former fishing capital of England, sandpipers scurry across the tarmac of derelict streets. The sandpiper isn’t a creature of asphalt and paving. It’s a small white-breasted bird usually to be found foraging on British foreshores in groups of twenty or so, scuttling up and down sandy beaches as the foaming forward edge of the sea roars in and hisses back. I’d come to Grimsby to see why, after seventy years of voting Labour, the town was flirting with the United Kingdom Independence Party. After a while I began wondering what had happened to make Grimsby a wild and lonely enough place for the sandpiper to feel at home. It turns out the reason is the same. Someone, or something, abdicated power in Grimsby, leaving swathes of it to rot. But who, or what? And what will the succession be?
James Meek in the LRB provides an indepth look at the problems of one northern town, featuring the decline of the fisheries, the hopes resting on new offshore wind energy parks revitalising the town, the difference between Victorian local capitalism and contemporary pension fund driven global capitalism, the leftwing grassroots Ukip campaigners trying to end the dominance of Labour and their parachuted in candidate with a campaign manager engaged to the local candidate for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, heardheaded Greens, the withdrawal of the State and the hollowing out of local control of everyday necessities needed for any town to flourish.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:58 AM - 21 comments

The Last Mechanical Monster

The Mechanical Monsters was the second in a series of Superman cartoons produced by Fleischer/Famous Studios in the early 1940s. The Last Mechanical Monster is a webcomic by Brian Fies* that is a sequel of sorts (starting here, with a recap of the cartoon here), set over 60 years later as the now-elderly inventor defeated by Superman is released from prison and returns to his old lair and his old tricks... reconstructing one of his 'monster' robots (and with no Man of Steel in sight).

It's nominated for an Eisner Award (previously) for Best Digital/Web Comic, competing with previous winner Bandette by Paul Tobin & Colleen Coover, Failing Sky by Dax Tran-Caffee, Nimona by Noelle Stephenson, and The Private Eye by Brian Vaughan & Marcos Martin. [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:23 AM - 27 comments

videos: how to move a fridge by yourself

Part of Gershom Hyldreth's job involves moving fridges in his truck by himself. In these two short (and charming) instructional videos, he demonstrates how one person can load a fridge on and off a pickup truck with just a hand trolley, and how to secure a fridge with just a couple of straps.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 2:23 AM - 33 comments

Napoleon or Cleopatra

Slate's Reincarnation Machine identifies your previous lives. Actually it finds a consistent chain of people through history, each born when the preceding one died, and ending up with you.
posted by Segundus at 12:23 AM - 74 comments

April 24

In a Cheese and other cylindrical stories

360º cutout books by Yusuke Oono
posted by moonmilk at 7:45 PM - 6 comments

:P

dogs with tongue sticking out a little
posted by NoraReed at 6:02 PM - 61 comments

No Small Parts

Brandon Hardesty's [previously] web series, "No Small Parts," celebrates the careers of movie character actors. So far, we have five very touching short biographies of: Anne Ramsey (Throw Mama from the Train, Scrooged, The Goonies), Vincent Schiavelli (Ghost, Amadeus, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest) Scatman Crothers (One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Coonskin, The Shining), Warwick Davis (the Star Wars series, the Harry Potter series), and Michael Jeter (The Green Mile, Miller's Crossing, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas). Bring a hanky. These are love letters.
posted by McLir at 5:57 PM - 17 comments

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