28. Tuareg guitar players really like Dire Straits
December 3, 2016 2:58 PM   Subscribe

Tom Whitwell of Fluxx lists 52 things I learned in 2016.

2. Google’s advertising tools can track real-world shop visits. If a customer sees an ad then visits the relevant store a few days later, that conversion will appear in Google Adwords. Customers are tracked via (anonymised) Google Maps data. They’ve been doing this since 2014.

8. Australian musicians have performed with a synthesiser controlled by a petri dish of live human neurons: “The neurons were fed dopamine before the gig and went ballistic. The interaction with the drummer was very tight. The drum hits are processed into triggers and sent to the neurons.”

(Those Tuareg guitar players)
posted by Johnny Wallflower (18 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
 
8. Australian musicians have performed with a synthesiser controlled by a petri dish of live human neurons:

I realize he's a keyboarder but he has a name you know: Andrew Farriss.
posted by Talez at 3:12 PM on December 3, 2016 [9 favorites]


The cure for scurvy (citrus fruit) was discovered and proved in 1601 by Captain James Lancaster. The innovation wasn’t adopted across the British Navy and Merchant Navy until 264 years later, in 1865. 

Scurvy was cured by steamships.

Much to the surprise of polar explorers.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:38 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


I will read the whole thing but yes, I went to see Mdou Moctar this year and spent the entire show thinking how much like Dire Straits it was. I'm glad i wasn't the only one.
posted by alanbee at 3:38 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


46. A Dutch bike manufacturer reduced shipping damage by 70–80% by printing a flatscreen TV on their boxes.

As a cyclist who has more than once been forced off the road by an eighteen-wheeler, I suspect (truck) drivers may have more respect for a 60" LG than a bicycle.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:57 PM on December 3, 2016 [5 favorites]


I went to see Mdou Moctar this year and spent the entire show thinking how much like Dire Straits it was.

Yeah, the boy can play.
posted by rokusan at 5:59 PM on December 3, 2016 [3 favorites]


Nice reading list for offlining. Pity there's no reader-friendly bundle.

(PS: If you're keeping track on your bingo card, that Google real-world tracking info was "Thing #14 that paranoid Rokusan tinfoiler guy has been ranting about for years but it's not even possible." It's way down under tabulator hacking and the US gov monitoring all net traffic.)
posted by rokusan at 6:01 PM on December 3, 2016 [2 favorites]


Item number 46 was previously discussed on Metafilter.
posted by ardgedee at 7:10 PM on December 3, 2016


Pork scratchings?
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 9:16 PM on December 3, 2016


Fried pig skin, a.k.a cracklings a.k.a. pork rinds.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:21 PM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ah, so nothing to do with the card game then? Oh well, some interesting tidbits - I'm now on a mission to find some research that proves the health benefits of pork scratchings actually increases after a couple of pints of beer...
posted by Chunder at 2:29 AM on December 4, 2016


Number 8 is super fucking cool.

Say what you will about our future robot overlords but at least they'll be able to swing.
posted by From Bklyn at 4:07 AM on December 4, 2016


14. A Californian company called Skinny Mirror sells mirrors that make you look thinner. When installed in the changing rooms of clothes shops, they can increase sales by 18%.

We had one of those at our house. I called it "my best friend." Always had something nice to say about me.
posted by datawrangler at 11:01 AM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Google’s advertising tools can track real-world shop visits. If a customer sees an ad then visits the relevant store a few days later, that conversion will appear in Google Adwords. Customers are tracked via (anonymised) Google Maps data. They’ve been doing this since 2014.

Be Evil
posted by Beholder at 11:31 AM on December 4, 2016


To reduce PTSD in drone pilots, military psychologists have considered developing a Siri-like app for the pilots. The pilots would ‘let crews shunt off the blame for whatever happens. Siri, have those people killed.’

“Make him die, daddy!”
posted by acb at 9:18 AM on December 5, 2016


Instead of batteries, the ARES project in Nevada uses a network of train tracks, a hillside and electric trains loaded with rocks to store wind and solar power. When there is a surplus of energy, the trains drive up the tracks. When output falls, the cars roll back down the hill, their electric motors acting as generators.

In other words, gravitational energy storage. This is usually done by pumping water uphill; I'm guessing that water is scarce enough in Nevada to use trains instead, though am wondering whether or not something simpler, like, say, gravel or sand could have been more efficient.
posted by acb at 9:23 AM on December 5, 2016


14. A Californian company called Skinny Mirror sells mirrors that make you look thinner. When installed in the changing rooms of clothes shops, they can increase sales by 18%.

Like so many other things, this is a Seinfeld episode come to life.
posted by knownassociate at 10:17 AM on December 5, 2016


Oh man I'm totally going to start snacking on pork rinds all the time now
posted by numaner at 2:39 PM on December 5, 2016


There is a 2,150-member Facebook group called “WE WANT TESCO IN PORTREE, ISLE OF SKYE”

I was in Portree a few months back, it's true there are not a ton of grocery purchase options.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:27 PM on December 7, 2016


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