Second Skin [is a documentary that] takes an intimate look at computer gamers whose lives have been transformed by the emerging genre of Massively Multiplayer Online games (MMOs). [more inside] posted by Dave Faris at 7:39 PM PST - 29 comments
Mark Liu's Fly Fishing Art .....Mark is both an artist and a photographer, with a love of the outdoors, and of fly fishing.
In addition to his paintings linked in the title, Mark also has a blog dedicated to his fishing related photography.
One of the neat aspects of Mark's site is his offer to send you free art if you take a kid fishing!
If, like me, you're stuck in a long winter of ice and snow, these paintings and photos will provide a few moments of vicarious fishing! Enjoy! posted by HuronBob at 7:33 PM PST - 5 comments
The talk show host, Miss Oprah Winfrey is illegally invading my privacy to promote show ideas on the Oprah Winfrey Show. Further, each time I gather evidence of proof, she pays people with her talk show earnings money to bribe them to destroy evidence. Many more complaints to the FCC about selected tv shows here. posted by oxford blue at 5:28 PM PST - 76 comments
There have been a few husband/wife teams in the art world. Nothing has impressed me as much as the work of Jorge Rodriguez Gerada and Ana Alvarez-Errecalde. Their work stands alone, but complements each other. Check out Ana's video of some of Jorge's work. Or some of her own work (NSFW). Or read an interview and see some of Jorge's work. posted by conifer at 2:32 PM PST - 6 comments
Los Angeles! he walks again by night......out of the smog, into the fog. Relentlessly -- ruthlessly -- ("I wonder where Ruth is?") -- doggedly! ("Woof woof!" *)
For the past 42 years the Firesign Theatre, the best comedy group of the 1960's, has been putting their art in cans from Canada to Kashmir. Up for the Grammy in 1998 and 2001, Firesign at their best combined clever, multilayered writing with pitch-perfect satirical performances as Rocky Rococco, Ralph Spoilsport, Art Holeflaffer, Hemlock Stones, Uh Clem and Barney, and many more. Back in the day, it would have been astonishing if at least one of your peers couldn't recite all of The Further Adventures of Nick Danger, Third Eye, including the sound effects. [more inside] posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 12:16 PM PST - 91 comments
Don't Mess with Charles Bronson (Videos) Charles Bronson is not to be messed with on the street, in any man made structure, but certainly not on a train. When Charles Bronson wants to sit alone and read his paper on the subway, leave Charles Bronson alone. posted by thisisdrew at 5:57 PM PST - 34 comments
The Polypunk mixtapes. "selected in Tokyo, designed in London, posted from Brooklyn, hopefully enjoyed around the world." From digi nikki. via.[more inside] posted by vronsky at 2:08 PM PST - 6 comments
"That half-destroyed paperwork is a tantalizing secret."The Stasi fostered a pervasive and justified paranoia. And it generated an almost inconceivable amount of paper, enough to fill more than 100 miles of shelves. The agency indexed and cross-referenced 5.6 million names in its central card catalog alone. Hundreds of thousands of "unofficial employees" snitched on friends, coworkers, and their own spouses, sometimes because they'd been extorted and sometimes in exchange for money, promotions, or permission to travel abroad. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Stasi tried to destroy its records. Now, with the help of computer science, the "billion-piece puzzle" is finally coming together. The article is an interesting update on the one featured in this 2003 Metafilter post . [more inside] posted by amyms at 7:42 AM PST - 29 comments
Why is your plane late?Airlines can make more money selling 70 airplanes worth of tickets per hour than they could if they limited themselves to the 60 airplanes per hour that the runway can handle. A long but excellent post on what is causing the delays at the airport. posted by Coop at 7:18 AM PST - 34 comments
While the dream of immortality might be as old as mankind, the jellyfish Turritopsis nutricula (image) seems to be living it:
The hydrozoan Turritopsis nutricula has evolved a remarkable variation on this theme, and in so doing appears to have achieved immortality. The solitary medusa of this species can revert to its polyp stage after becoming sexually mature (Bavestrello et al., 1992; Piraino et al., 1996). In the laboratory, 100% of these medusae regularly undergo this change. Thus, it is possible that organismic death does not occur in this species!
Wonderland is a series by Yeon Doo Jung which takes drawings done by children, and re-photographs them in the real world. The results of this interpretation are, um, hilarious. Use the green arrows for navigating from photo to photo. [more inside] posted by suedehead at 8:20 PM PST - 27 comments
American audiences remember Akira Kurosawa as the genius of the samurai epic, a past master who used the form both to revise and revive Western classics - Shakespeare with Ran and Throne of Blood, Dostoevsky with Red Beard and The Idiot, Gorky with The Lower Depths - and to give splendid and ultimately immortal life to new archetypes, as in The Seven Samurai, Rashomon,Yojimbo. But Kurosawa also made films of his own time. His masterpiece, in fact, was the quiet story of a gray Japanese bureaucrat dying in post-war Tokyo, and of his attempt to do something of lasting good before he leaves. The film is Ikiru ("To Live"; 1952). [more inside] posted by Iridic at 8:17 PM PST - 46 comments
Tony Judt's acceptance speech for the 2007 Hannah Arendt Prize: "Let me suggest five difficulties that arise from our contemporary preoccupation with the Shoah, with what every schoolchild now calls 'the Holocaust.'" posted by anotherpanacea at 7:11 PM PST - 30 comments
A recent poll (PDF) asked for reactions to the same model dressed in two different ways: in a plain shirt with her hair down, and in a blue head scarf of the style of some Islamic women. Perhaps understandably, the survey respondents felt the scarfed image was more traditional and more religious. But some of the other perceptions are less obviously predictable. (via crooked timber) posted by Rumple at 5:55 PM PST - 45 comments
Divorce Hearing was a television program where couples aired their grievances to Dr. Paul Popenoe, who would attempt to help them figure out how to make things work. Popenoe is notable for few things: he wasn't a real doctor - his highest academic achievement was receving an honorary degree from Occidental College; he founded the first "marriage clinic" in the US in Los Angeles in 1930 and created and authored the long-running "Can This Marriage Be Saved?" column for Ladies Home Journal. Oh yeah, he was a eugenicsproponent, too. (Discovered via.) posted by beaucoupkevin at 6:26 PM PST - 8 comments
Pimping ain't easy. In a cluster of lawsuits gathered up by The Associated Press, the former chief financial officer of health insurance giant WellPoint Inc. is depicted as a corporate Casanova -- a world-class, love-'em-and-leave-'em sort of guy who romanced dozens of women around the country simultaneously, made them extravagant promises and then went back on his word with all the compassion of a health insurance company denying a claim. [more inside] posted by psmealey at 1:57 PM PST - 41 comments
Over 30 years ago, Robert Burnham Jr. struggled to get his astronomical (in more ways than one) three volume work published. Burnham's Celestial Handbook: An Observer's Guide to the Universe Beyond the Solar System "remains a sort of real-life hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy, a compendium with something to say about nearly every cosmic destination worth visiting. . . It is rarely compared to other books because there simply is none other like it." It remains a beloved and relevant book among star-gazers today. Yet few know much about the life of the author, or of his sad and lonely demise: Sky Writer. posted by spock at 1:39 PM PST - 20 comments
According to studies, most people are positive about their own lives, but tend to see the world going to hell in a hand basket - for a sample ride in said hand basket, see the disturbing A Crude Awakening: The Oil Crash (2006; 1hr 23m) one of the canonical Peak Oil educational/propaganda films. Doomer porn is nothing new - starting with Rousseau, a common belief still exists - both in popular and scientific circles - that humans reached the height of advancement in the hunter/gatherer stage, a proto-garden of eden, and its been downhill since. Or is it just the same old story? posted by stbalbach at 10:04 AM PST - 121 comments
The biggest tourist attraction in Buenos Aires is a cemetery. El Cementerio de la Recoleta is the final resting place for some of Argentina's most illustrious and wealthy residents. (Yes, Evita is among them.) AfterLife explores the architecture, motifs, and history of this cemetery, as well as the stories of its residents. [more inside] posted by veggieboy at 5:20 AM PST - 16 comments
The murky demimonde of Amazon's Top Reviewers.I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised, but I had imagined Amazon's customer reviews as a refuge from the machinations of the publishing industry: "an intelligent and articulate conversation ... conducted by a group of disinterested, disembodied spirits..." posted by farishta at 5:11 AM PST - 44 comments
Nona Hendryx (wiki) founding member of Labelle went on to a solo career that included working with The Talking Heads, Material, and Laurie Anderson. Her album Nona (produced by Laswell) featured the club hit Transformation which still sounds 20 years ahead of its time even though it was recorded in 1983.
Here she is rocking the house live at the Apollo with Why Should I Cry and making your spirit soar with Winds of Change
[warning: one or more of these videos may contain a keytar] posted by vronsky at 7:42 PM PST - 13 comments
Erika Gunderson got into a taxicab in New York City this past New Year's Eve and found a digital camera on the back seat. The cab driver had no information or interest in which previous passenger might be the rightful owner. Bringing the camera home, Gunderson's fiancé, Brian Ascher, took on the task of trying to find the owner. Using clues from 350 photos and two videos stored on the camera he was able to track down the owner, Irishman Alan Murphy in Sydney, Australia and return the camera to him. [more inside] posted by ericb at 4:30 PM PST - 36 comments
Waving Goodbye to Hegemony. "Just a few years ago, America’s hold on global power seemed unshakable. But a lot has changed while we’ve been in Iraq — and the next president is going to be dealing with not only a triumphant China and a retooled Europe but also the quiet rise of a 'second world.'" [Via The Washington Note.] posted by homunculus at 4:15 PM PST - 63 comments
YouTube in partnership with The Davos Forum has established a great "contest" although I don't think of it like that. YouTubers are asked to submit a video answering the question "What one thing do you think that countries, companies or individuals must do to make the world a better place in 2008?" I thought a long time about the question, and then, after approaching Mayor Gavin Newsom to be in the video, then getting caught up against deadlines, I had the answer: to end racism around the World. Here's the video. Here's Emma Thompson's response. posted by nickyskye at 2:42 PM PST - 35 comments
The Basilica of Our Lady of Peace, Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), is the largest church in the world1. Completed in 1990 for about $300 million by President Félix Houphouët-Boigny - with profits skimmed from the slave labor best cocoa (chocolate) industry - in the small rural town of his birth, it sits today in the bush a vast empty palace of marble and crystal gawked at by the occasional backpacker. Among other trappings it has the only airport big enough in Africa to take the Concorde, a presidential palace with a lake stocked with scores of Sacred Caymans (crocodiles,) and a mansion next to the Basilica reserved exclusively for the Pope on visits from Rome (used once). The President enjoyed his complex for less than 3 years before dieing in 1993. posted by stbalbach at 9:03 AM PST - 66 comments
Is this the end of the bus timetable? It can be bloody cold in Helsinki in January. The last thing you want to do is hang around too long for a bus or tram. Soon you won't have to because Helsinki City Transport is currently fitting *its entire fleet* with Linux servers. Not only will each bus or tram become a travelling wireless hotspot, but you will be able to see exactly where in the city your new bus actually is. Meaning that you only step into the bitter cold the minute before it arrives. (its in beta but you can see the effects of the live trial) [more inside] posted by MrMerlot at 5:23 AM PST - 49 comments
The 25 Greatest Duets Of All Time (with embedded YouTube videos of each) from retroCRUSH. Duets, by nature, are a corny type of song. Sure, there's a handful that we recognize here that are also some of best tunes ever recorded, but there's something inherently cheesy and fun about duets that make them a fun guilty pleasure for millions to enjoy. posted by amyms at 11:07 PM PST - 67 comments
Lego wrangler Lwelyk has put together a little blog featuring his video game Lego creations. Each piece is an exact recreation of the original 2D sprite artwork where one pixel equals one square Lego block. Aside from Mother Brain we also get Phanto, Mushroom Block, Flying Shy Guy, Tingle and tons of others. The Mother Brain is by far the most impressive but the Twinrova piece definitely gets an honorable mention. [more inside] posted by jcterminal at 10:31 PM PST - 5 comments
George Habash aka the Doctor, founder of the PFLP has died. The group, still extant, were notorious for various attacks in the 60s and 70s, most notably the Dawson's Field Hijackings in the early days of Black September when four planes bound for NYC were hijacked. Three were evacuated and detonated on live TV at a remote airstrip in Jordon. LeilaKhaled (Mefites might better know her the inspiration for another Doctor's accomplice, Leela) and her Sandinista accomplice Patrick Argüello boarded a Swissair flight from Amsterdam posed as married Hondurans. Argüello was assaulted with a whiskey bottle and finally shot, while Leila was arrested and released as part of an exchange deal. Though the group gave up hijacking, the Japanese Red Army, armed with Czech rifles concealed in violin cases, orchestrated the Lod Airport massacre on their behalf, killing mostly mostly Puerto Rican pilgrims. The only surviving culprit, Kozo Okamoto is eventually granted refuge in Lebanon. posted by harhailla.harhaluuossa at 9:42 PM PST - 4 comments
French writer AlainRobbe-Grillet, one of the most important literary stylists of the last 50 years, the acclaimed master of hyper-realism and the anti-novel, and member of the Académie Française, has devoted his latest novel to kiddie porn. [warning: first link contains excerpts of the novel which many may find truly disturbing.] posted by vronsky at 10:57 AM PST - 135 comments
Another Country is the name of Chicago Tribune photographer Scott Strazzante's long-term documentary project. Presented in diptych form, he shows the lives of two subjects on the same piece of land separated only by time. From the Cagwin family farm to a sleepy suburban Chicago subdivision, the striking images magically embody the old saying- the more things change, the more they stay the same. [more inside] posted by TheGoldenOne at 9:03 AM PST - 28 comments
He's probably the first person you'll see if you've ever been to an Indian Train Station. Not as dramatic as has been immortalized on screen, but certainly no less forgettable either. He is one of many who waits for his turn to carry your luggage on his head, or his shoulders, and maybe even around his neck. He has dreams and ambitions too, and just wants to earn a decent enough living. But it can get tedious at times, especially with the odds stacked against him. [more inside] posted by hadjiboy at 2:50 AM PST - 14 comments
At the Isle of Wight Festival, Dylan was the only monster on the bill capable of attracting a monster of an audience. In refusing to play the Woodstock Festival and in then letting himself be talked into playing the Isle of Wight, Dylan in effect was telling England's counterculture: ''C'mon. Let's hold our own Woodstock.'' And so, on the Isle of Wight, a dot of land that certainly wasn't the easiest place in the world to get to, Dylan almost single-handedly proved an enticing enough attraction to collect an audience sometimes estimated to be as few as a 125,000 and sometimes as many as 250,000.
Another scrap from the late Al Aronowitz, the self-styled Blacklisted Journalist, and former Dylan courtier, recalling the only full concert Dylan gave solo or with the Band between 1967 and 1973 and sung in his Nashville Skyline voice, to boot, no less. And now you can have it all to yourself.... [more inside] posted by y2karl at 12:27 AM PST - 10 comments
What Am I Craving?That's the question we always ask ourselves when thinking about what to eat. So we got to thinking: wouldn't it be cool to have a tool that could listen to what we were craving and then suggest something good to cook? posted by amyms at 10:19 PM PST - 28 comments
The Case for the First Folio For centuries, editors of Shakespeare's plays have conflated different published editions (quartos and folios) in an attempt to create one true text as the writer intended. In this essay (.pdf file) Jonathan Bate, one of the editors of The RSC Shakespeare makes the case that in fact what they're doing is editing together different drafts of the play originated by the bard at different times in his life attempting to make better dramatic sense. Essentially that none of the texts you studied at school are what Shakespeare intended to be performed at all. [more inside] posted by feelinglistless at 4:42 PM PST - 29 comments
Fusarium solani , a fungus known for attacking tomatoes, has become a major problem in France's famous Lascaux Cave, a World Heritage site. Authorities say it's under control, but that's disputed. "They tell us the cave's condition is stable. But that's what they say about Ariel Sharon," said one anonymous expert quoted in a special report by Time magazine. The fungus is also believed responsible for a deadly epidemic of "White-Nose Syndrome" that has been killing bats in the Northeastern U.S. over the last few years. The fungus is durable: "Authorities began spraying massive doses of antibiotics and fungicides [in Lascaux] in an effort to stop the rapidly spreading organisms. Within weeks the molds reappeared quickly developing a resistance to the antibiotic sprays." posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:30 AM PST - 24 comments
Oscarology is a system of astrology I invented -- excuse me, that was revealed to me in a powerful mystical experience -- based on what movie won the Best Picture Oscar for the year you were born. I have been communing with the Spirit of the Oscars and transcribing the visions it has vouchsafed to me. posted by arcticwoman at 8:29 AM PST - 64 comments
"The "American Intervention in Northern Russia, 1918-1919," nicknamed the "Polar Bear Expedition," (wikipedia) was a U.S. military intervention in northern Russia at the end of World War I." The ostensible purpose was to open an Eastern Front following the Russian withdrawal from World War I, but in practice the unit stayed to fight Bolshevism. An archive of the expedition, which gives wonderful insight into early Bolshevik Russia as well as war-weary United States, is online. [more inside] posted by Rumple at 1:19 AM PST - 23 comments
In July 1915, a fresh-faced young man got off a train and presented himself at a working cattle-and-sheep ranch on the North Fork of the Smith River, a few miles outside of White Sulphur Springs,
Montana. He was slender—about 5'8," 150 pounds—and arrestingly handsome, with champagne-colored hair and blue-green eyes. He carried himself so lightly on the balls of his feet that his wife later wrote, "There seemed to be some heavenly support beneath his shoulder blades that lifted his feet from the ground in ecstatic suspension, as if he secretly enjoyed the ability to fly but was walking as a compromise to convention." The ranch hands must have been astonished at the sight. F.
Scott Fitzgerald had arrived in Montana.
How To Fake An Atomic Bomb Blast On Public Television. [ YouTube] This past June, the early-morning live weather report on Prague television station CT2 was being delivered on top of live panning sweeps of the beautiful Czech Republci countryside and a seemingly par-for-the-course summery day. But as NYT reported today, "Then came the nuclear blast." The immediate reaction by the viewing public? Somewhere between a semi-collective shrug and minimally raised eyebrow. Yet months later, CR art-prankster group ZTOHOVEN [Czech] are presently enjoying international attention and wide-spread accolades for this classic piece of culture-jamming. [more inside] posted by humannaire at 8:22 PM PST - 18 comments
The process and history of "brokered conventions," for both the Republican and Democratic parties:What if no candidate gets a majority (2025 delegates for the Democrats, 1191 for the much smaller Republican convention)? This is where "brokered convention" comes in. Actually, it is more like "All hell breaks loose." All delegates are now up for grabs. All the candidates try to grab as many delegates as they can ... but after the first ballot, the delegates are free agents don't have to obey their chairman or anyone. Some might not care about dams and bridges but might trade their vote for a promise to insert a plank in the platform to [ban voting machines, build a 20' electrified fence on the Mexican border, declare the chicken to be the national fowl, you name it]. posted by geoff. at 8:01 AM PST - 65 comments
It is an interesting and somewhat macabre parlor game to play at a large gathering of one’s acquaintances: to speculate who in a showdown would go Nazi.... Mr. B has risen beyond his real abilities.... His code is not his own; it is that of his class–no worse, no better, He fits easily into whatever pattern is successful. That is his sole measure of value–success. Nazism as a minority movement would not attract him. As a movement likely to attain power, it would.... Mr. G is a very intellectual young man who was an infant prodigy.... Mr. G will never be a Nazi,... [h]e will certainly be able, however, fully to explain and apologize for Nazism if it ever comes along.
"February is more than a diminutive month of love... It is a month of hair." Your mission should you choose to accept it, is to grow your beard throughout February, then shave back to a glorious mustache for a gala beer party at the end of the month. The rules are very, very serious. Apparently the reverse goes for the ladies i.e. shave everything from eyebrows to hair. [more inside] posted by chime at 10:20 PM PST - 20 comments
Stanislav Szukalski was born in Warta, Poland on December 13, 1893. When he was only six years old, a teacher sent him to the headmaster's office for whittling a pencil. The headmaster examined the pencil more closely and discovered that young Stanislav had carved a tiny, near-perfect figure.[more inside] posted by louche mustachio at 9:18 PM PST - 8 comments
The Ugliest Yacht in the World? "Frankly, Sigma is a bit scary. With its razor-sharp hull and Northrup Grumman aesthetics, Sigma looks more like a cruiser for Darth Vader’s navy." Contenders include Asean Lady, "an office tower plunked down on an outrigger canoe", and Wallypower 118, "with all the elegance and charm of a WWII torpedo". posted by stbalbach at 3:52 PM PST - 62 comments
How to win at the internet: Horse mask? Check. Wild mushrooms? Check. Improbable thongs and partial nudity? Check. Dancing? Check. Craziest goddamn thing I've ever seen on the internet? Absolutely. As if I even need to say it, this isn't safe for work, for human consumption, or retaining what few shreds of sanity you believe that you may still cling to. posted by loquacious at 7:33 AM PST - 54 comments
All the recent Tom Cruise or LOLXTIANS posts made you feel picked on? Get your game on playing Faith Fighter and have the final say! Pick your deity, you're matched with an opposing deity and the fight is on to the death, or whatever recursive afterlife an immortal would experience. (via)[more inside] posted by uaudio at 7:29 AM PST - 24 comments
While fellow mid-nineties stargirl Lisa Loeb is off becoming the next Jewish Dear Abby at the Daily Forward's storied Bintel Brief, Jill Sobule is hosting an online "telethon" to raise the money to record her next album. $100 (copper level) gets you a junior executive producer credit, while for $10,000 (weapons-grade plutonium level) you can actually sing on her CD (or at least play cowbell). posted by ericbop at 7:09 AM PST - 36 comments
Yesterday, I was invited to talk about gadgets onThe Hugh Thompson Show, a television-style talk show sponsored exclusively by AT&T for distribution on the online AT&T Tech Channel. I eventually did talk about gadgets, but in light of AT&T's shocking and baffling announcement of their plans to filter the internet, I thought that a much more interesting and important topic.
The Origin of Emotions by Mark Devon “I began thinking about emotions while studying evolutionary theory at Harvard University. Learning that adaptations do not evolve unless they help survival, I reasoned that each emotion must have a purpose that helped survival. If I could identify an emotion’s trigger, I could also identify its purpose." [more inside] posted by dontoine at 10:32 AM PST - 38 comments
Six new cities are planed in The Construction Site Called Saudi Arabia. "The vision is to turn the kingdom into a major industrial power by 2020. Drawings of these new towns depict a cross of the futuristic “Blade Runner” and traditional Arabic design." The cities will focus on petrochemicals, aluminum, steel and fertilizers, and will together have four times the geographical area of Hong Kong, three times the population of Dubai, and an economic output equal to Singapore’s. [more inside] posted by stbalbach at 7:47 AM PST - 53 comments
Join a community commitment to make a thing a day for the month of February. "knit cook draw paint sodier (sic) write install destroy invent document" are presented as ideas to demonstrate that anything goes. Last year's contributions are currently down, but did run the gamut of media and topics. posted by artifarce at 7:51 PM PST - 8 comments
Justice, the french electro-whatever group (read: Daft Punk)(previously discussed here) recently had their addition to the prestigious FabricLive Series rejected for not entirely clear reasons, although the relatively short length (40-something minutes) and taste (or perhaps the lack of) may have been factors. Justice, being the gentlemen they are, decided to give the mix away as a Christmas present to their friends (yes, I'm a little late on this, but not as late as you, presumably), and it is now readily available for anyone to download here. I'm only familiar with a few of the artists in the mix (Fucking Champs! Goblin!), but it's a pretty good time, and definitely a big, fat middle finger to most of the minimal techno mixes which Fabric usually releases, which is probably why they rejected it in the first place. Lots of old pop, funk and super-cheesy french music (and the FUCKING CHAMPS!), tell me what you guys think! posted by domakesaypat at 4:12 PM PST - 52 comments
"I have a dream..." Take 17 minutes out of your day and remember. And then maybe take a look at this NY Times slide show of murals depicting Dr. King.
Feel free, in fact please do, add appropriate links and suggestions in the comments section. posted by brookeb at 11:12 AM PST - 40 comments
Ubuntu has quickly become the number one Linux distro for the desktop. Not only is it free, but it has also made Linux easier to use than ever. Now, Wubi enables Windows users to install Ubuntu just like any other application, so you no longer have to mess around with partitions, burning CDs, etc. [more inside] posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:09 AM PST - 82 comments
So we've already learned how babies are made in Germany. But we haven't seen Russia or Israel. Could be NWS if you work with people who don't know where babies come from. posted by Lord_Pall at 7:38 AM PST - 31 comments
A year from yesterday, George W. Bush will no longer be President. So here's yet another online quiz to help you "Test your party preference". But the policy questions in contention in this quiz may seem surprising to many Americans. posted by orthogonality at 6:36 AM PST - 75 comments
Kin-Dza-Dza! is a Soviet sci-fi cult classic that has managed to go largely unnoticed outside of Russia. Bizarre, funny, and at times surprisingly deep. Truly one of the unknown sci-fi greats.
Part One.Part Two. [Google Video, with embedded English subtitles] [more inside] posted by pravit at 11:43 PM PST - 14 comments
Study: Internet Not Dumbing Down Kids, Who Were Stupid Anyway.Full report! (warning: PDF)
The information literacy of young people, has not
improved with the widening access to technology:
in fact, their apparent facility with computers
disguises some worrying problems. Young people have unsophisticated mental maps of what the internet is, often failing to appreciate that it is a collection of networked resources from different providers. (Like tubes!) posted by parmanparman at 11:28 PM PST - 43 comments
In 1968, three sisters from Fremont, New Hampshire -- Dot, Helen, and Betty Wiggin -- started a band, under the encouragement, support, and management of their father, Austin. Dot recalls that the girls would rise late, practice for two hours, then work on their home-schooling. Then they did their calisthenics, rigidly prescribed by their father, and rehearsed two more hours in the evenings when Austin was home. Over the next 8 years, Austin would rent out the Fremont Town Hall many Saturday nights for a dance; the sisters, known collectively as "The Shaggs," would play their music, while their mother, Annie, would collect tickets and sell sodas (with help from more of the Wiggin siblings). In 1975, Austin Wiggins died; the sisters, without their father to spur them on, laid down their instruments and got on with the rest of their lives. [more inside] posted by not_on_display at 9:22 PM PST - 79 comments
Before he went to prison for dogfighting, Michael Vick trained his pit bulls at a 4,600-sq-ft house on 15 acres in Surry, Virginia. Earlier this year, local tax rolls valued the property at $747,000, but Vick hurriedly sold the house to real estate developer Ray Todd on the cheap, to aid his mounting financial troubles. Todd had hoped to resell the house for $1M at a December auction, and dozens of rubberneckers toured the property -- to gawk at the syringes left on the ground, the twenty kennels "like prison cells", and the outbuildings where the dogs were fought. Naturally, no one was buying. Still, Todd wants to recoup his investment, so he’s turning to a conventional sale this month… and failing that, is considering building (unbelievably) a bed-and-breakfast where pets are welcome.
Enter The Vick House project: a Dallas charity called Jalie’s Butterflies is hoping to raise enough money online to buy the house and convert it to a non-profit animal shelter, under guidance of the SPCA. [more inside] posted by pineapple at 7:30 PM PST - 27 comments
I remember her smoky-voiced laugh best. I can't believe I'm the first person to post about Suzanne Pleshette's untimely death. I came to MetaFilter after not having visited in many months to post a respectful '.' and there wasn't a link up yet. So I'm starting one.*
As much as I loved her in Newhart, I remember her most from her appearances on talk shows, mostly her flirting with Johnny Carson. I was a little surprised when I read that she'd married Tom Poston, who also passed away recently. He seemed kinda square on The Newhart Show, and she seemed so hip. Apparently I confused their TV personae with their real ones. [more inside] posted by jenii at 5:00 PM PST - 64 comments
The Shaved Bumblebee. His is the little story of the bumblebee Bernard who wanted to impress his friends with an experiment. It was one of these boring days and they were as usual looking for some nonsense to get involved in and succeeded in switching on an electric shaver. [more inside] posted by nickyskye at 1:28 PM PST - 24 comments
Book Scavenging. Hundreds of homeless people eke out a living scavenging books from dumpsters and sidewalk trash in Manhattan. Sidewalk is a book about the subculture of sidewalk book scavengers and vendors. posted by stbalbach at 9:11 AM PST - 52 comments
The Red Bull Music Academy is the best in music, past & present, from around the world, under one roof, getting down just for the funk of it. It is an event that travels the world, a yearly celebration of all the journeys and breakthroughs, all the dreams and intricacies that go into the music we love. Here on the 'tubes the RBMA mainly consists of lectures, interactive features, and documentaries. [more inside] posted by carsonb at 3:24 AM PST - 21 comments
El Paso. The lovely ballad of love and murder on the Mexican border won the very first Grammy for Country & Western for Marty Robbins in 1960. But for some it will never feel complete without Steve Martin's video, in which he recreates the lyrics with some non-union actors. [more inside] posted by Bookhouse at 9:12 PM PST - 28 comments
...Japanese hip hop has become a significant national, cultural, and business genre since the late twentieth century, and this phenomenon has been applied and has succeeded by using almost the same ideology that was historically used by other Japanese industries like automobile manufacturing. The pioneers in the Japanese hip hop industry like Buddha Brand learned their skills in the U.S. and have successfully been influencing the contemporary Japanese music scene. As a result, the imported hip hop has become a ''Japanized'' products. Many hip hop industries in Japan have modified the American hip hop into Japanese ways, and their businesses, like the hip hop dance schools, have succeeded.
Reviving an ancient practice, churches are exposing sinners and shunning those who won't repent. Unfortunately, some of the worshipers are expelled not because of willful or unrepentant sins, but for criticizing the pastor on matters of church polity. "A lot of times, flocks aren't willing to submit or be obedient to God. If somebody is not willing to be helped, they forfeit their membership." posted by mrducts at 5:19 PM PST - 130 comments
MATSYS Based on the idea that architecture can be understood as a material body with its own intrinsic and extrinsic forces relating to form, growth, and behavior, the studio investigates methodologies of performative integration through geometric and material differentiation.
WTF, LA hospitals? "Gabino Olvera, 42, sued the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center for negligence and elder abuse after it discharged him in February 2007, took him across town in a van and left him in a soiled hospital gown without a wheelchair in the heart of the city's homeless area." posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:58 PM PST - 89 comments
Comics writer Warren Ellis invited indie comics creators to introduce their work (warning: image intensive page) in his new forum, Whitechapel. With posts from 100+ writers/artists creating everything from free webcomics to traditional books, it's a great source for new reading material. posted by nerdcore at 1:37 PM PST - 6 comments
After 60 years of separation due to her family being marked as an enemy of the people, and sent off to internal exile a couple who spent only three days together after their marriage have reunited, in an amazing stroke of luck. [more inside] posted by korej at 7:51 AM PST - 39 comments
It could have been the greatest disaster in US history. On January 18, 1978, 30 years ago today, the 1400 ton 2 1/2 acre roof of the Hartford Civic Center, covered by a blanket of snow and ice, suddenly and completely collapsed, damaging almost all of the seats underneath. Just four hours earlier there was a basketball game packed with 5000 fans. Had it collapsed then, many, if not most, of the fans and players could have died. [more inside] posted by eye of newt at 7:43 AM PST - 37 comments
Stickk.com allows people to undertake commitment bonds: promises that they will do something (lose weight, quit smoking, etc.) or else forfeit a pre-determined amount of money to a charity. Either the honor system or a referee can be used to decide if the goal is met. The idea is related to Nobel prize-winner Thomas Schelling's concept of strategic precommitment. More here, here, and here. posted by shivohum at 7:05 AM PST - 17 comments
Selling out is becoming trendy. Last fall, Burt’s Bees was soldto Clorox. It turned out then that former owner Roxanne Quimby bought out co-founder Burt himself in 1999 and sold 80% of the company to AEA Investors in 2004; this was just the final stroke of the pen. [more inside] posted by bassjump at 6:30 PM PST - 43 comments
"Intended to deepen our understanding of disputes over climate change and the human contribution to it," the new 'Climate Debate Daily' is brought to you by the folks who created the well-known 'Arts and Letters Daily'. Links to everything from scientific articles through PR releases down to blog entries, are arranged on the page in 'face-off' format, with pros and cons in side-by-side columns. If you want to keep on top of the debate on climate change, it seems that you'll find no better source of information anywhere .. posted by woodblock100 at 1:52 AM PST - 57 comments
Nitroeconomics (if you want to sound more scientific you can call it synthetic economics) is different. It is set in the virtual world of Nitropia, which doesn't exist but easily could....
We can use nitroeconomics to understand real situations in the real world, such as the subprime crisis, with a simple three-step process.... The first cool thing about Nitropia is that it has no financial system at all. Unlike other, inferior virtual economies, it does not distinguish between "money" and other virtual objects. A monetary token in Nitropia is an object like any other - a magic sword, an inflatable penis, or whatever. A player in Nitropia who has a lot of money just owns a lot of these tokens. There is no special, separate "bank balance."
In Praise Of Melancholy. We are eradicating a major cultural force, the muse behind much art and poetry and music. We are annihilating melancholia. Does an overemphasis on the pursuit of happiness cause us to miss an essential part of a full life? Via. posted by amyms at 8:40 PM PST - 83 comments
In the early twentieth century, photographer Lewis Hine took now-famous photographs of American child laborers. In the nearly hundred years since Hine took those photos, surely many viewers have wondered what became of the children he documented. Freelance historian Joe Manning has taken it upon himself to find out.[more inside] posted by craichead at 6:55 PM PST - 20 comments
A complex situation has arisen in the Southern Ocean where the Japanese Whaling fleet run by The Institute of Cetacean Research is attempting to slaughter nearly a thousand whales for the much scoffed at purpose of scientific research. Greenpeace located the fleet and claims to have chased the whalers out of hunting grounds. An Australian Federal Court judgement meanwhile has ruled the expedition illegal and imposed an injunction against the illegal whaling in Australian waters. The Japanese do not recognise Australia's claim. The Japanese responded by ignoring the judgement. Now Sea Shephard an activist group have put two of their members aboard a Japanese Ship and claims they were tied to the mast. Despite the Japanese Government saying the activists would be released the ships captain refuses to do so. Recent related post. posted by dodialog at 12:14 AM PST - 69 comments
"Because of the digital chip age in which we live - "Mass Effect" can be customized to sodomize whatever, whoever, however, the game player wishes. With it's "over the net" capabilities virtual orgasmic rape is just the push of a button away." [more inside] posted by prostyle at 1:34 PM PST - 82 comments
As Iraqis See It. "About a year ago, McClatchy Newspapers set up a blog exclusively for contributions from its Iraqi staff. 'Inside Iraq,' it's called, and several times a week the Iraqi staff members post on it about their experiences and impressions. 'It's an opportunity for Iraqis to talk directly to an American audience,' says Leila Fadel, the current bureau chief. As such, the blog fills a major gap in the coverage." Previously discussed here. [Via disinformation.] posted by homunculus at 11:30 AM PST - 10 comments
Million-dollar mistake at Dreamhost. A $7.5 million error this morning at the world's 15th largest hosting company has left most of it customers short by hundreds and even thousands of dollars. Discussion boards are reporting a litany of overdrafts, credit card overlimit fees, and bounced checks. posted by chips ahoy at 11:14 AM PST - 125 comments
When the working poor turn to addictive drugs to manage pain so they can keep working, that's "moral weakness, not a public health problem.":
Every morning before sunup, Trapp drives 120 miles.... "This methadone makes you feel like a human being again," Trapp says. With disability rates as high as 37 percent in coal-mining areas such as Buchanan County, the region has many people with long-term pain management needs. As is the case with lots of aging miners, Trapp's addiction to pills began in a doctor's office, not a back-alley drug deal.... The clinic's counseling staff members say that many patients need to be on some sort of drug to cope with severe, long-term pain and that methadone has made them functional. And for those who lack insurance or access to more personalized care, it is often the only affordable option.
It's a familiar story, a young upstart goes against the rules laid down by the establishment, gets smacked down but somehow rises from ruin. It's just not a story one usually associates with scrapbooking. Kristina Contes (blog, flickr page) of scrapbooking group Effer Dares became the most vilified person in scrapbookdom ("Has KC ever done a layout that didn't feature a photograph of herself?" "My 4 y.o. does better with stickers." "After you have viewed her work you know she has no class." "I just want to . . . slap her!"). The L. A. Times tells her story. posted by Kattullus at 9:51 PM PST - 73 comments
Clazziquai Project is a Korean band fusing jazz, pop, and electropop, leading their music to be described as Shibuya-kei. Several of the band members are Korean-Canadian, including the main man DJ Clazzi, who writes, mixes, and produces. The lyrics are usually a mix of Korean and English, with all-English versions of their songs being released for foreign markets. Their most recent album, Robotica, included remixes by a number of Japanese musicians, such as Fantastic Plastic Machine and Shinichi Osawa. [more inside] posted by needled at 5:37 PM PST - 18 comments
Tom Hodgkinson, of The Idler, really hates Facebook: "We are seeing the commodification of human relationships, the extraction of capitalistic value from friendships." posted by mekanic at 4:30 PM PST - 85 comments
"it turned out the abstract compositions in the posters contained hidden letters. (The one above, for example, displays the letter A.) Hung side by side on the streets, they spelled out N-A-Z-I. A public outcry followed, and within six weeks the company was ruined."
Can a designer punish a company that helped the nazis?
Maybe. Maybe not. (via swiss miss) posted by wittgenstein at 10:30 AM PST - 28 comments
Rate your coworkers. You know that person in the cubicle who sniffs and coughs constantly? Or the one who takes the last cup of coffee and doesn't make a new pot? What about that guy who never refills the copier with paper? Or the one who brings in her daughter's Girl Scout cookie order form and expects you to buy something? Or the one who takes your ideas and passes them off as his own?
Don't get mad, rate 'em! posted by John of Michigan at 8:04 PM PST - 30 comments
"A few years ago a psychologist and a philosopher got into an argument over whether we can accurately describe our thoughts. "Yes," said the psychologist; with training and the help of my special technique, we can accurately describe our thoughts. The philosopher doubted it. To resolve their argument, they recruited a young woman who agreed tell them her thoughts, so that they could argue over whether she was credible." Eric Schwitzgebel and Russ Hurlbert debate the transparency of inner experience. See also Schwitzgebel's extremely interesting blog. posted by painquale at 7:39 PM PST - 34 comments
"In a rebellion shaking the Sicilian Mafia to its centuries-old roots, businesses are joining forces in refusing to submit to demands for protection money called 'pizzo.' And they're getting away with it, threatening to sap an already weakened crime syndicate of one of its steadiest sources of revenue." The rebellion is fueled by a Web site "where businessmen are finding safety in numbers to say no to the mob." Called Addiopizzo (Goodbye Pizzo) "it brings together businesses in the Sicilian capital that are resisting extortion." The campaign was launched in 2004 by a group of youths thinking of opening a pub. "They started off by plastering Palermo with anti-pizzo fliers, reading 'AN ENTIRE PEOPLE WHO PAYS THE PIZZO IS A PEOPLE WITHOUT DIGNITY,' and eventually brought their campaign online where it struck a profound chord with Sicilians fed up with Mafia bullying."* posted by ericb at 4:37 PM PST - 57 comments
YangTown, the Path of Masculine Power, [parts of the site NSFW] was created by a 25 year old guy in LA, who put together his ideas on dating and life advice. The site has a number of his articles on various topics that might be interesting to both men and women such as Are Any of These 5 Energy Vampires Draining Your Life? There are also informative links to Female Orgasm Mastery with explicit instructions on how to stimulate the G-Spot [NSFW], definitely [more inside] posted by nickyskye at 11:58 AM PST - 95 comments
The Overdub Tampering Comittee Manifesto.What if there was a network of musicians who got a hold of albums right as they leaked, added subtle yet very much additional overdubs all over the album, and then re-leaked it to the internet? ... We set out to make that specific bewildering, annoyance a possibility.[more inside] posted by whir at 2:49 PM PST - 42 comments
Diary Junction. "An internet resource for those interested in historical and literary diaries and diarists." Information pages on over five hundred diarists are included. posted by jayder at 1:39 PM PST - 3 comments
"The Gerald Warner Taiwan Image Collection is a photographic record of a US consul's impressions of urban and rural life in Taiwan under Japanese colonial rule. Totaling 340 photographs and postcards gathered by Warner between August 26, 1937 and March 8, 1941, these images provide a snapshot of Taiwan's hybrid culture of Chinese, Taiwanese, Austronesian, and Japanese influences." [Via] posted by Abiezer at 9:40 AM PST - 12 comments
Busted in Jena. My path crossed the Jena Six by chance. The BBC broadcast a documentary called “Race Hate in Louisiana” in May 2007. When I watched a copy of it in June, I was dumbfounded. I quit my job a week early, packed the car with my cameras, and drove to Jena. posted by chunking express at 6:48 AM PST - 47 comments
Solid Gold was a television show that ran from 1980 to 1988, on Saturdays, in the early evening, hosted by (among others) Dionne Warwick, Rick Dees, and Marilyn McCoo. It showcased snippets of the Top Ten popular songs of the week, accompanied and sometimes interpreted by the Solid Gold Dancers. This post is about them. [more inside] posted by not_on_display at 9:42 PM PST - 69 comments
Surely this must be a double, right? I mean, you've got this great and strange program, Addi's Inflatable Minute, and this incredibly strange but somewhat haunting instrument and its all in one You Tube Link? People don't actually make this sort of content in real life, do they? posted by Ogre Lawless at 9:38 PM PST - 30 comments
You probably thought all those wooden toys and Nutcrackers from your local version of the KrisKindlMarkt were made in Bavaria. But wooden toys from Germany were an economic engine that supported a large percentage of the population of the Deutsche Democratische Repulic. In fact, people in the DDR were not allowed to own these toys, they were all made for export to the west. You can still find "Unter dem Tisch" (secret, illegal) collections in towns like Dippoldiswalde in the Erzgebirge mountains on the Czech border. posted by nax at 5:51 PM PST - 14 comments
Scientists for better PCR
Just mix your template with a buffer and some primers,
Nucleotides and polymerases, too.
Denaturing, annealing, and extending.
Well it’s amazing what heating and cooling and heating will do. [more inside] posted by nihlton at 3:59 PM PST - 23 comments
Following up on some recent cyclist deaths in Portland where cyclists waiting in bike lanes at red lights were crushed by right-turning trucks (discussed here), the city is introducting 'bike boxes' to encourage bikes to wait out in front of stopped traffic. The city also plans to promote lower-traffic streets as 'bike boulevards' as an alternative to bike lines on high-traffic streets. posted by PercussivePaul at 1:52 PM PST - 83 comments
In what might be every blogger's dream come true, a brand has acquired an established blog devoted to that brand: in this case, cult notebook/journal manufacturer Moleskine has purchased the four-year-old fan blog Moleskinerie. But what will it mean for content - will criticalposts become a thing of the past? posted by jbickers at 1:31 PM PST - 33 comments
"But, it's a post on filmnoir!" I told her. She jerked away from me like a startled fawn might, if I had a startled fawn and it jerked away from me. I knew that caving into my desires meant I might lose her. But I didn't care. I went out to the kitchen to make coffee -- yards of coffee. Rich, strong, bitter, boiling hot, ruthless, depraved. I knew she'd be back. [more inside] posted by miss lynnster at 12:56 AM PST - 48 comments
Does Your Penis Smell Perfect?Have you ever asked yourself: "Why is it that no matter how much time and effort I put into washing my penis in the shower, I still get that awful whiff of a rancid smell throughout the day, or even right after a shower?" Nodoro has the solution. There are commercials (Are they real or parodies?) here. Via. posted by amyms at 8:10 PM PST - 122 comments
Got Questions About the News? Ask AP (Associated Press) All you have to do is "send your questions to newsquestions(at)ap.org, with "Ask AP" in the subject line. Then keep an eye out for installments of the new Q&A column, where you'll finally get some answers"... maybe... if they feel like it. Instant Analysis: No threat to Ask Metafilter. posted by wendell at 7:40 PM PST - 13 comments
Public Domain Books Reprints Service is "an experimental non-commercial project to re-print public domain books". It's the first service I have seen that allows simple affordable one-off point and click facsimile paperback replication of any book at Google Books or Internet Archive (millions of books). Curious how it works? Each book includes the technical details (Perl+Ghostscript+DJVU+XLST+etc..). The "experiment" has been running since November and is created by Yakov Shafranovich, a Russian Jewish immigrant in Baltimore of many talents. posted by stbalbach at 7:18 AM PST - 17 comments
The Hope Diamond glows red when exposed to ultraviolet light. In itself, this is an interesting way to determine the provenance of a particular gem. [more inside] posted by Araucaria at 2:50 PM PST - 55 comments
The poll tax caused massive rioting in the UK. Will the pole tax move Texans to do the same? There's an interesting class-war aspect to the story. The bill specifies that the revenue generated will support sexual assault prevention programs, though the bill's legality is being litigated. posted by aerotive at 2:35 PM PST - 51 comments
Nearly 60,000* American children (mostly girls) are abducted by strangers each year. After seeing a security video documenting a young girl's abduction, 15-year-old Dallas Jessup convinced her Filipino street fighting instructor to work with her on a school project and together they developed a method intended to teach young girls how to avoid Carla Brucia's fate. The resulting 47 minute video, Just YellFire, is viewable free of charge and teaches easy self defense moves created to help a potential victim avoid abduction or date rape. If there's a girl you love and want to protect from harm, the tips in this video may just save her life someday. [more inside] posted by miss lynnster at 10:17 PM PST - 177 comments
New Orleans after Katrina, as the world knows, is a bleak, desolate place, devoid of hope and perpetually awaiting the change that never arrives. Where better to stage Waiting for Godot? [more inside] posted by Bromius at 9:09 PM PST - 31 comments
Love thy Neighbor Photographer and author Steven Hirsh has photographed the homes of registered New York State sex offenders. A wonderful writer and photographer, this work is chilling, alarming, beautiful. I get that Quentin Tarantino feeling of beauty and disgust. Look at me, nooooo look away. The series of 24 images are on Hirsch's website. posted by doug3505 at 9:07 PM PST - 41 comments
There's a slight chance that an asteroid could impact Mars at the end of this month. Usually, collisions between heavenly bodies have vanishingly small odds (a million to one, say), but the chances on this one have been steadily improving, from 350-to-1 to 75-to-1 to 25-to-1 (link to Washington Post). Scientists say that this could be comprable to the famous Tunguska blast in Siberia a hundred years ago (not to be confused with this other Tunguska blast). [more inside] posted by math at 7:28 PM PST - 37 comments
The Manners Manifesto For example: "(11) Talk to people at the check-out. You don't have to say much. God, even something inane like, "Busy in here, today, isn't it?" or "Not as busy as usual in here, today, is it?" might put us on the road to peace in the Middle East. Carrying on grumping around and spreading those grump vibes certainly isn't going to help." posted by feelinglistless at 3:21 PM PST - 143 comments
DDR-Modell Autos.info meticulously catalogs radio controlled and flywheel powered cars made by East German (DDR) toy makers such as Presu, Elmes, MSW, Anker, Piko, Gevo, Plasticart and Sommermeyer. posted by riffola at 3:00 PM PST - 5 comments
Trial by Transplant. "Most transplant recipients are grateful beyond measure. Amy Silverstein's view, after nearly two decades with a donated heart, is more conflicted and often bleak. Much of her life, as described in Sick Girl, has revolved around nauseating drugs, ongoing fatigue, painful tests, ER visits and hospitalizations without end—and the constant fear that the next heartbeat could be her last. At low ebb, she has teetered on the edge of giving up." posted by homunculus at 1:05 PM PST - 35 comments
She has made at least one indie music lover reconsider his antipathy for her music. She may be partially responsible for Obama's recent electoral successes. She is an international force for good. (For certain values of the word "good"). What else can you say? Céline Dion is amazing!. (That last YouTube link has a bit of NSFW language. I can't tell you whether or not Céline herself is NSF anything around you. Your call.) posted by maudlin at 10:59 AM PST - 87 comments
Teff, a native Ethiopian grain, has been cultivated there for at least 4,000 years. Its seeds are smaller than pinheads, and can be easily scattered. Many Ethiopians eat it two to three times a day in injera bread, porridge or, of course, alcohol (pages 3-4). The grain is gluten-free and is full of essential amino acids, calcium, and other vitamins and minerals. It has a short growing season and tolerance for marginal soils and drought or flood conditions, but its low comparative yield optimal sunlight conditions, and labor intensive harvest may limit the spread of the grain. posted by Pants! at 7:31 PM PST - 28 comments
The scholarly literature forms a vast network of academic papers connected to one another by citations in bibliographies and footnotes. The structure of this network reflects millions of decisions by individual scholars about which papers are important and relevant to their own work. Therefore within the structure of this network is a wealth of information about the relative influence of individual journals, and also about the patterns of relations among academic disciplines. Our aim at eigenfactor.org is develop ways of extracting this information.[more inside] posted by zennie at 7:25 PM PST - 22 comments
Into the Night Films through the ages. "What’s an into-the-night movie? It’s essentially about one anxious character (or group of characters) embarking on an illicit adventure and emerging transformed. Most often, the stories take place at night, but not always. Sometimes they happen over a whole summer, in the blazing light of day. Sometimes they’re comedies, and sometimes mysteries. But what they have in common is an acknowledgment that somewhere, lurking in the shadows of polite society, there are people getting ridiculously freaky." With much... [more inside] posted by Navelgazer at 5:59 PM PST - 44 comments
Dying Speeches & Bloody Murders digitizes over five hundred broadsides owned by the Harvard Law Library, all of them devoted to "last dying speeches"--that is, sensational accounts of crime, punishment, and (fictional) confession, intended to be sold at public executions. The New York State Historical Association has an online exhibition devoted to nineteenth-century American murder pamphlets. You can find a couple of seventeenth-century examples at the Early Modern Web and the Folger Library. Old Bailey Online briefly puts this literature into context. (Main link via C18-L.) posted by thomas j wise at 5:20 PM PST - 11 comments
Spider-Man and Mary Jane are no more. But what broke up their 20 year long marriage? The stress of being a superhero? An illicit tryst with Ben Riley coming to light? Nope. The Devil made them do it in order to save Aunt May's life. Comic Book Resources has been running a series of interviews with Marvel Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada (1, 2, 3, 4, 5pending) who wrote and penned the issue as its normal writer, J. Michael Straczynski (his take here) refused to do so. So that distant howl you've been hearing all week is actually the sound of a thousand comic fans gnashing their teeth and rending their Spidey Underoos. [more inside] posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:50 AM PST - 136 comments
"I'm dead. That sucks, at least for me and my family and friends. But all the tears in the world aren't going to bring me back, so I would prefer that people remember the good things about me rather than mourning my loss. (If it turns out a specific number of tears will, in fact, bring me back to life, then by all means, break out the onions.)" Blogger Andrew Olmsted was killed in Iraq yesterday. He had been guest-posting at Obsidian Wings as G'Kar. hilzoy of ObWi has cross-posted his final message there as well. [more inside] posted by maudlin at 11:15 AM PST - 56 comments
Making your own transistor is probably beyond the abilities of a dedicated hobbyist. However, making simple triode vacuum tubes is practical. Many hobbyists have done so over the years. In this video, French ham-radio operator Claude Paillard shows you how. HIs model is the WWI-era type TM of 1915. (and btw, 2007 was the 100th anniversary of electronics, since de Forest made his first vacuum tube in 1907.) posted by metasonix at 11:11 AM PST - 22 comments
Voice of the Hive is a collection of informative and well-written stories about honeybees. Half of the tales are told from a human beekeeper's perspective, and are filled with valuable knowledge for potential hobbyists. The other half are compelling vignettes of a single bee's life -- widely diverse and compelling, told from each individual bee's perspective. The two elements come together to paint a fascinating picture of this noble insect's existence. posted by illuminatus at 11:09 AM PST - 17 comments
FillCell is a sort of graffiti wall of mini-posters drawn with very simple tools (to impressive effect, in some cases). Flash - drag the background to see more of the wall. posted by Wolfdog at 7:05 AM PST - 1 comments
Many freeware games were released in 2007. How to seperate the crap from the good stuff? It can be a little hard admittedly but this thread on the Tigsource forums might help you. With around 30 categories (and a winner announced for each) ranging from 'Best Shooter' to 'Best Bosses,' there's probably something there to please just about anyone. posted by pancreas at 4:43 AM PST - 20 comments
Online communities to become more 'all-encompassing.' If you join the SHC community on Sears.com, all web traffic to and from your computer thereafter will be copied and sent to a third party marketing research firm - including, for example, your secure sessions with your bank! The Sears.com proxy will send your logins and passwords along with a cleartext copy of all the supposedly secure data. But wait, it gets better: you can only view the true TOS once the proxy has already been installed. [more inside] posted by ikkyu2 at 6:52 PM PST - 70 comments
Dreams: Night School Revonsuo puts it, "The primary function of negative dreams is rehearsal for similar real events, so that threat recognition and avoidance happens faster and more automatically in comparable real situations." posted by drea at 3:02 AM PST - 57 comments
Questioning the banality of evil. "There is a widespread consensus amongst psychologists that tyranny triumphs either because ordinary people blindly follow orders or else because they mindlessly conform to powerful roles. However, recent evidence concerning historical events challenges these views. In particular, studies of the Nazi regime reveal that its functionaries engaged actively and creatively with their tasks. Re-examination of classic social psychological studies points to the same dynamics at work. This article summarises these developments and lays out the case for an updated social psychology of tyranny that explains both the influence of tyrannical leaders and the active contributions of their followers." [Via Mind Hacks.] posted by homunculus at 9:50 PM PST - 107 comments
"GET LAMP is a documentary about Text Adventures (later Interactive Fiction), the storytellers who created them, and their unique place in the history of computer games." Although not completed yet (it will be soon, as filming was completed in October), this documentary will contain 76 interviews with people involved in the industry at the time, including Scott Adams (not the cartoonist), Marc Blanc and Tim Anderson (who both worked on Zork, one of the best known examples of the medium) . Here's a teaser trailer. And here are some fun representatives of the genre to play online. posted by SpacemanStix at 4:42 PM PST - 55 comments
"In 2003 the total size of the world economy was $49,000,000,000,000. The total size of the derivatives being traded was $85,000,000,000,000. In other words, derivatives today are worth far, far more than the total economic activity of the planet. More than $1,000,000,000,000 of derivatives are bought and sold every day. Every single thing that can be traded through derivatives, is."
The Checklist - "If a new drug were as effective at saving lives as Peter Pronovost’s checklist, there would be a nationwide marketing campaign urging doctors to use it" [single page] posted by Gyan at 6:14 AM PST - 65 comments
Who Speaks for Earth? "After decades of searching, scientists have found no trace of extraterrestrial intelligence. Now, some of them hope to make contact by broadcasting messages to the stars. Are we prepared for an answer?" posted by homunculus at 9:36 PM PST - 63 comments