Prestige scientific journals are bad for science, and we should avoid them.
"Just as Wall Street needs to break the hold of bonus culture, so science must break the tyranny of the luxury journals." So argues Nobel laureate Randy Schekman
, urging scholars to shift their work to open source journals. [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 8:04 AM - 1 comment
What Happened on Easter Island - A New (Even Scarier)Scenario
A new theory exploring the rise and fall of the people of Easter Island.
posted by agregoli at 7:42 AM - 8 comments
Tim Gunn and the ACLU present "My Big Gay (Il)legal Wedding"
, a contest for same-sex folks in non-marriage equality states to come up with the most creative ways to cross state lines into a marriage equality state and get married. The winning couples will receive $5,000 for their wedding expenses, assistance from a wedding planner and a trip to New York for an event, planned for March, styled like a wedding reception.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:38 AM - 0 comments
The mystery of the Mima mounds
may have been solved
posted by Artw at 7:06 AM - 20 comments
Making Of The Bear and The Hare
- For the John Lewis Christmas advert Hornet/Blinkink directors Elliot Dear and Yves Geleyn took the two most traditional and time-honored animation processes – stop-motion and traditional hand-drawn 2D animation – and combined them to create something innovative and unique.
posted by Wolfdog at 5:50 AM - 5 comments
Let's admit it: Britain is now a developing country.
Gender equality? The WEF ranks us behind Nicaragua and Lesotho. Investment by business? The Economist thinks we are struggling to keep up with Mali. Let me put it more broadly, Britain is a rich country accruing many of the stereotypical bad habits of a developing country.
Aditya Chakrabortty discusses the increasing hollowing out of the UK economy, as well as the City as an economically distorting resource curse.
posted by jaduncan at 3:18 AM - 53 comments
Why I’m quitting Tropfest
The December 2013 winner of Tropfest
- The world's largest short film festival
has attracted controversy by awarding first prize to Bamboozled
- a story where a man sleeps with his ex girlfriend who's had a sex change as a punchline. TROPFEST #FAIL: WHY THEY GOT IT WRONG
posted by mattoxic at 1:32 AM - 49 comments
"We began the present study by asking, as some linguists have asked before us, why the ordering of certain conjoined elements is fixed
." -Cooper and Ross, 1975 (pdf)
Siamese twins in linguistics
: examples are "here and there (and everywhere)" and "peas and carrots." Siamese twins are also known as "binomial freezes," "irreversible binomials," or "freezes," and they can change over time
, too. And that can lead to fossil words
! Speaking of fossil words, did you know about cranberry morphemes
? [more inside]
posted by aniola at 1:00 AM - 11 comments
We northerners are well-balanced people: we have chips on both our shoulders. One of our long-standing gripes is that Their Rugby – union – is treated as a national sport while Our Rugby – league – is patronised as a parochial throwback to a mud-splattered, black-and-white, trouble-at-the-mill world of slag heaps, Tetley’s ale, black pudding, whippets, brass bands and bizarrely accented, trilby-hatted buffoons droning on about “up and unders” and “early baths”.
-- Why is Rugby League still patronised as a mud-splattered, parochial throwback
posted by MartinWisse at 12:14 AM - 19 comments
Curious as to what various legal and intelligence agencies can do with the data they are now currently collecting? They are collecting cell phone locations, there are currently license plate scanning vehicles in many larger cities, and Google Maps will gladly integrate with your location mapping systems to show you what type of business is at your coordinates. All state criminal databases are now nationally available. So the ACLU would like you to know what is going to happen
in the possible near future.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 8:53 PM - 58 comments
In 1973, a small think-tank with the mandate of anticipating and preparing for future threats was formed inside the DoD, called the Office of Net Assessment
. A RAND corp strategist named Andrew Marshall
was placed at its head. Forty years later, he's still at it and has survived the latest round of budget cuts
- for now. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:55 PM - 16 comments
Last month, the Vine Orchestra
held a call for orchestral scores with durations of less than 6 seconds. Over 150 compositions were entered, and 52 compositions were performed and recorded on December 1st.
You can find all 52 on their youtube playlist
. [more inside]
posted by moonmilk at 6:26 PM - 22 comments
"Always I love you and realize what a desert life might have been without you."
—Margaret Mead to anthropologist and folklorist Ruth Benedict, who remained her companion and arguably her soul-mate despite both women having husbands.
posted by Athanassiel at 5:25 PM - 8 comments
Red Jalopy creates posters for 10 fake films from The Simpsons.
Fake promotional materials for fictional movies have become a popular form of amateur and professional graphic design on the web and in real life. The latest entry, Red Jalopy's posters for ten fictional films featured on The Simpsons
, plays with fantasy casting and period design elements. It follows the recent appearance of posters for Seinfeld's fake foreign movie, Rochelle, Rochelle around New York City
and the circulation online of a Wonder Twins movie
. [more inside]
posted by kewb at 4:20 PM - 43 comments
is an open access resource featuring human bones which have been digitised using 3D laser scanning, CT and radiography. The resource focuses on a wide range of pathological type specimens from archaeological and historical medical collections, specifically examples of chronic diseases which affect the human skeleton for which many of the physical changes are often not directly observable within clinical practice. Of major interest to many will be high fidelity photo-realistic digital representations of 3D bones that can be viewed, downloaded and manipulated on their computer, tablet or smartphone. [more inside]
posted by shoesfullofdust at 3:56 PM - 7 comments
Esquire's Chris Jones looks at the old techniques
used to make the new US $100 bill.
posted by reenum at 1:24 PM - 50 comments
The Making Of Cart Life
, the 2013 IGF award winning video game. [more inside]
posted by Diskeater at 1:01 PM - 12 comments
The number of homeless New Yorkers in shelters has risen by more than 69 percent since 2002, when Mayor Bloomberg took office. Each night as many as 60,000
people -- including more than 22,000 children, the highest number since the Great Depression, -- experience homelessness in NYC, and during the course of each year, more than 111,000 different homeless New Yorkers, including more than 40,000 children, will sleep in the city's municipal shelter system. Meet Dasani, one of the city's 'invisible children.' [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:34 PM - 65 comments
is a severely autistic thirteen year old artist whose prolific drawn art, animation, films, photographs and clay sculptures
all share a distinctly colorful, vibrant and upbeat style. Her mother maintains an online gallery of her work, as well as sharing her story as it develops on the site and in a blog
. She has also notably used Rickrolling
as inspiration to create beautiful art
. [more inside]
posted by byanyothername at 12:17 PM - 5 comments
Protesters blocked a private Google shuttle in the Mission District of San Francisco today.
"In the video, a Google employee who hopped off the bus shouts down Erin McElroy, a protester who also heads the eviction mapping project. 'How long have you lived in this city?' McElroy asked him. He shouted back 'Why don't you go to a city that can afford it? This is a city for the right people who can afford it. You can't afford it? You can leave. I'm sorry, get a better job.'"
Concern over increases in cost of living in San Francisco are becoming more of a focal point for discussion, as seen in a recent NYT blog post, Dystopia by the Bay.
posted by FuturisticDragon at 12:04 PM - 363 comments
Do not return after an encounter. Australian magpies have an incredible memory (as with all members of the Corvid family, they are very intelligent) and will attack the same people again and again. It is also too bad if you happen to look like someone they attacked before.
-- Thoughts on Australia fauna
posted by Chrysostom at 11:59 AM - 40 comments
A new iteration of the august tradition of fictional Amazon.com product reviews has arrived: The 2-in-1iPotty Activity Seat for iPad.
(scroll down for reviews)
posted by The Whelk at 11:40 AM - 36 comments
Only Yesterday: An Informal History of the 1920s
is very nearly literal in its title—its author, Harper's
editor Frederick Lewis Allen
, published it in 1931. Writing before popular memory of the decade had solidified, Allen chronicles the Scopes Trial and the Harding scandals, radio and the Red Scare; but he ignores jazz for the mahjong craze and devotes an entire chapter to the real estate boom in Florida. [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 9:16 AM - 32 comments
The conventional wisdom about the origins of the Affordable Care Act is that it is a reformulated plan from the Clinton era, one that right-wingers like Newt Gingrich and the Heritage Foundation created. How true is it
? [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest at 9:02 AM - 125 comments
The Roaring Twenties
: An Interactive Exploration of the Historical Soundscape of New York City (sound autoplays)
. via i09
, which says The map uses a combination of noise complaints and old reel footage to plot everything from what must have been an exceptionally noisy subway turnstile (complete with notes from the police report) all the way to a carnival barkers in Coney Island, and is a great way to listen in on the everyday life of a New York City gone-by.
posted by davidjmcgee at 8:15 AM - 3 comments
Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, LinkedIn and Aol have all teamed up to oppose
widespread government surveillance. In an open letter to the US president and members of congress, the companies urge
the government to reform
its digital spy apparatus.
reactions at the Guardian.
posted by brina at 8:04 AM - 80 comments
Twenty years ago tonight, id Software uploaded Doom
to an FTP server at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and completely changed the video gaming industry. [more inside]
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:16 AM - 79 comments
[Eleven] days ago, The New Yorker’s Daily Comment blog published an essay by Michael Specter titled “What Young Gay Men Don’t Know About Aids,
” in which Specter points to the increase of “unprotected anal intercourse among gay men,” claims that “the rates of HIV infection will surely follow,” and then identifies the cause of this shift as the ignorance of my generation, who weren’t around to see the AIDS epidemic for themselves. The piece is a call to arms of sort, stating the need for increased public funding for HIV/AIDS prevention, and concludes by quoting Larry Kramer’s famous 1983 warning, “1,112 and Counting.” It’s a familiar argument—one that, in my lifetime, I have heard repeated ad nauseam and, I fear, largely misses what AIDS means to me and many other young gay men.
posted by Blasdelb at 5:53 AM - 71 comments
Super Mario on Ice
, with Jason Bateman and Alyssa Milano
posted by timshel at 3:42 AM - 12 comments
Men receive longer sentences for equivalent crimes.
This paper assesses gender disparities in federal criminal cases. It finds large gender gaps favoring women throughout the sentence length distribution (averaging over 60%), conditional on arrest offense, criminal history, and other pre-charge observables. Female arrestees are also significantly likelier to avoid charges and convictions entirely, and twice as likely to avoid incarceration if convicted. Prior studies have reported much smaller sentence gaps because they have ignored the role of charging, plea-bargaining, and sentencing fact-finding in producing sentences. Most studies control for endogenous severity measures that result from these earlier discretionary processes and use samples that have been winnowed by them. I avoid these problems by using a linked dataset tracing cases from arrest through sentencing. Using decomposition methods, I show that most sentence disparity arises from decisions at the earlier stages, and use the rich data to investigate causal theories for these gender gaps. [more inside]
posted by vapidave at 2:56 AM - 52 comments
In a rare study involving direct brain stimulation,
Michael Greicius, a neurologist at Stanford University, and collaborators say they have uncovered direct evidence that a brain region known as the anterior midcingulate cortex and its surrounding network play a central role in motivation and a readiness to act.
posted by headspace at 11:25 PM - 8 comments
"Replace the paint of your car and accessories with reflective material"
is the first of several suggestions from TriMore, a brilliant parody of the "Be Seen, Be Safe"
campaign from TriMet, provider of public transit for Portland, OR. [more inside]
posted by sibilatorix at 9:57 PM - 33 comments
The Atlantic cities reports:
"Criminologists call it the 'special sensitivity hypothesis.' Defense attorneys often cite it as a mitigating circumstance when asking for lighter sentences for white collar clients. But according to researchers at the University of Cincinnati and the University of Missouri, "special sensitivity" may not actually exist. In the forthcoming December 2013 issue of Justice Quarterly, UC's Michael Benson and his co-researchers argue that white collar offenders adapt to prison just as well as other types of offenders, and in some categories, do even better.... 'Prisons are bureaucracies that have rules and regulations,' Benson says. 'People from middle class and white collar backgrounds understand rules and bureaucracies. I did an interview for my dissertations where I talked to a small number of white collar offenders. Before they went they were scared to death. They imagined all these bad things happening. Once they get there, after the initial shock passed, they realized it’s just a big organization. Follow the rules, be polite to people, don’t go outside your space, and you’ll be fine.'"
posted by bookman117 at 8:12 PM - 25 comments
covering Part One (out of Six) of the Chicago Tribune investigation
Chemical flame retardants are everywhere. Our furniture. Our homes. Our bodies. Yet they don’t seem to stop fires. They do, however, seem to make us sick.
TOXIC HOT SEAT
is a documentary which takes an in-depth look at a nexus of money, politics and power – and a courageous group of firefighters, mothers, journalists, scientists, politicians and activists as they fight to expose what they assert is a shadowy campaign of deception that has left a toxic legacy in America’s homes and bodies for nearly 40 years.
Set against the backdrop of the award-winning 2012 Chicago Tribune investigative series “Playing with Fire,”
TOXIC HOT SEAT tells an intricate story, detailing how chemical companies that produce flame retardants spend millions of dollars on lobbyists, publicists and influencers, and how Big Tobacco had a hand in convincing fire-safety officials to back a standard that, in effect, requires all furniture to be filled with toxic flame retardants. [more inside]
posted by beisny at 7:41 PM - 7 comments
28 year old Chauncey Wright, brain damaged, with an IQ in the 50s, had trouble holding a job. Seeing some men handing out flyers at a Walmart parking lot, Wright asked if they needed a helper. Soon, Wright found himself handing out flyers on his bike, eventually procuring drugs and firearms for his employers. And inidicted on several drug and gun charges after finding out his employers were undercover ATF officers running a sting operation in a curious Milwaukee storefront
. During which the storefront was burgled, damaged, the owner stiffed on repair costs, and several guns stolen from ATF vehicles, including a machine gun that has yet to be recovered.
This wasn't an isolated incident. [more inside]
posted by 2N2222 at 7:40 PM - 29 comments
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