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January 2010 Archives

January 31
The Pershing Chinese
After a fruitless hunt for Pancho Villa, General Pershing and his forces withdrew from northern Mexico in early 1917. But, "[w]hat to do with 300 Chinese who have associated themselves with the punitive expedition?" [more inside]
posted by SpringAquifer at 10:53 PM PST - 18 comments

The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences
The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences is a 1960 essay by Eugene Wigner. Via Steve Strogatz.
posted by jjray at 10:30 PM PST - 30 comments

50 Equal Sized States
A proposal to redraw state lines so that there are 50 states with approximately equal population.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:48 PM PST - 143 comments

"Mad Jack" Churchill
In May of 1940, "Mad Jack" Churchill became the only man in WWII to record a kill with a longbow. [more inside]
posted by Upton O'Good at 9:26 PM PST - 41 comments

The Next Big Thing(tm): Metal Foam!
Afsaneh Rabiei has created a new steel foam and this stuff is going to be everywhere within our lifetimes. In the article: "inserting two pieces of her composite metal foam behind the bumper of a car traveling 28 mph, the impact would feel the same to passengers as impact traveling at only 5 mph"...at 1/3rd the weight of solid steel.
posted by swimming naked when the tide goes out at 8:51 PM PST - 38 comments

Aaaaaaaagh!
In GNILLEY, one must yell loudly to destroy enemies and remove obstacles. "They die faster the angrier I am," states the developer, Radix.

GNILLEY is one of the products of this weekend's Global Game Jam, 48 hours of largely sleepless, non-stop gamemaking. Via TIGSource.
posted by ignignokt at 6:48 PM PST - 15 comments

Space Marines And Love Story
Remember the guy who did a massive 7 part review of Phantom Menace? Well he's done Avatar now (1, 2). (NSFW, but there's less serial killer jokes)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:43 PM PST - 76 comments

They may not have pants, but they have plenty of boyfriends.
"Miss average college girl (1941) tells the maximum and minimum size of her wardrobe." The New York Library scanned a page from the September 1941 issue of Design for Living: The Magazine for Young Moderns to compare the highest and lowest numbers of a given item in women's wardrobes by college. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 6:25 PM PST - 50 comments

Make it work.
On the 15th of every month, from noon to 6pm, ceramics artist Michael Swaine sets up a sewing machine in San Francisco's Tenderloin and repairs clothing for strangers. No charge. He's also been known to darn other peoples' socks in London. He has much of interest to say. [more inside]
posted by IndigoJones at 3:49 PM PST - 27 comments

She can move out of her car and into your home for a mere $95!
In the 1980s, American Girl dolls became an obsession for many young girls. The early options were limited, but the "family" of dolls has expanded to have Native American, New Mexican, African-American, and Jewish girls represented. Reaching across to a new un-tapped demographic: American Girl has released a homeless doll. Gwen Thompson, the homeless girl, retails for $95.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 2:45 PM PST - 109 comments

RIP Kage Baker
Science fiction writer Kage Baker has passed away after struggling with cancer. Writer of the critically acclaimed Company series and winner of the Theodore Sturgeon Award, she died this morning in the arms of her sisters.
posted by joannemerriam at 2:31 PM PST - 46 comments

Kill Them With Kindness
God Hates Signs: Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church band-of-bigots showed up in San Francisco the other day to protest at the headquarters of Twitter. (Why? "Twitter should be used to tell the punks of doomed America that God hates you!"). They were met by counter-protesters, well versed in the dark arts of snark. Hilarity ensues.
posted by fourcheesemac at 2:18 PM PST - 123 comments

Boo hoo
Funny. Touching. Intrusive. I wish I could let myself be half as vulnerable as this women. She's a great sport for allowing this site to exist.
posted by grumblebee at 12:47 PM PST - 178 comments

American declinism
The End of Influence - the latest in a long series documenting the US' relative decline (esp wrt China 1 2 3 4 5) Brad DeLong and Stephen Cohen reflect on what has brought us to our past, but now fast-fading glory: "Roosevelt's strategy [entering WW2] was to make Britain broke before American taxpayers' money was committed in any way to the fight against Hitler." Before delving into our present predicament, however, it might also be useful to briefly consider some of the lessons from Bretton Woods and what the wealth of nations is really built upon.
posted by kliuless at 12:34 PM PST - 39 comments

Tell me your Story
A student's song to her parents (SLYT)
posted by infini at 11:25 AM PST - 32 comments

20 ans
Capa TV. One for the francophones. The French television production agency Capa (no relation) is celebrating its 20th anniversary with excerpts from its best documentaries along with commentary from the reporters that made them. I particularly recommend two that have nothing in common : Vivre et Mourir à Sarajevo (1993) and Les Chouchous du Camping (1991). But be warned, navigation is annoyingly difficult.
posted by Lezzles at 9:49 AM PST - 5 comments

Are The Old Ways Better?
This development project may not be meeting its own expectations. Here is a look at a sustainable alternative to conventional development in the Gamo Highlands of Ethiopia, as shown in the film, A Thousand Suns, from the Global Oneness Project. previously
posted by Xurando at 9:35 AM PST - 5 comments

STOP THE TRAIN!!!
Many visitors and residents of New York City have long been befuddled by the emergency brake hanging in each NYC subway car. Signs indicate that one should not use the emergency brake during many emergencies- Fire, medical problem or need for police. But then, when should we use the emergency brake? (vimeo)
posted by brevator at 7:17 AM PST - 109 comments

great teaching takes true grit
What makes a great teacher? Analyzing more than twenty years of data, Teach for America has found that great teachers had trained in their subject areas rather than in education, and had high "life satisfaction." They also demonstrated five tendencies: they
"constantly reevaluate what they are doing... they avidly recruited students and their families into the process; they maintained focus, ensuring that everything they did contributed to student learning; they planned exhaustively and purposefully—for the next day or the year ahead—by working backward from the desired outcome; and they worked relentlessly, refusing to surrender to the combined menaces of poverty, bureaucracy, and budgetary shortfalls."
This last trait is measured by the Grit Scale, which has been shown to predict good outcomes in both teachers and West Point cadets. (Do you have grit?) [more inside]
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:07 AM PST - 133 comments

The Jihadist Next Door
"I hear bullets, I dodge mortars, I hear nasheeds" — Islamic songs — "and play soccer. Sometimes I live in the bush with camels, sometimes I live the five-star life. Sometimes I walk for miles in the terrible heat with no water, sometimes I ride in extremely slick cars. Sometimes I’m chased by the enemy, sometimes I chase him! I have hatred, I have love," he went on. "It’s the best life on earth!"
How did a popular kid from a small town in Alabama wind up connected to Al Qaeda? The Jihadist Next Door [SLNYT]
posted by billysumday at 6:55 AM PST - 24 comments

Now bons broaken all is well all in Love
Timothy Dexter was an 18th Century American entrepreneur from Newburyport, MA who made his money in fairly baffling ways. He successfully sold coal in Newcastle and shipped stray cats and mittens to the Caribbean at a sizable profit. Self-described as "First in the East, First in the West, and the Greatest Philosopher in the Western World," he is listed in an entry in the notably hoax-filled Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography, but NPR believes that he existed. [more inside]
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:40 AM PST - 16 comments

Change Your Mind Change Your Brain
Change your mind, change your brain - Matthieu Ricard talks about creating the inner conditions for authentic happiness, and the effects of meditation on the brain. [more inside]
posted by MetaMonkey at 3:45 AM PST - 17 comments

Minimal origami
Minimal origami is paper folding with just one fold. A single fold in a piece of paper is enough to make a swan or an interesting curve. Notably, Paul Jackson has made beautiful one crease origami structures.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:34 AM PST - 16 comments

FIRST!
Will female directors break through the glass ceiling? Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker) has just won the Director's Guild of America Award for Best Director - a first for any female director. It's a good indicator for Oscar. But can she win against a strong field? [more inside]
posted by crossoverman at 1:32 AM PST - 49 comments

Wow, I didn't know he was in Beastmaster. . .
78 year-old American actor Rip Torn got drunk and tried to rob a bank last night. [more inside]
posted by bardic at 12:45 AM PST - 107 comments

January 30
Leonardo de Carbon
Are Da Vinci and the Mona Lisa the same person! A local art historian clued me into this a couple of hours ago. Seems the biggest debate is not occurring amongst the nations of France and Italy but the scientific need to retain some tenure amongst Mona's necessity to remain an enigma.
posted by Johnny Hazard at 11:11 PM PST - 36 comments

"They're changing guard at Buckingham Palace"
In 1660, the Coldstream Regiment of Foot Guards marched from Scotland to London under the command of General Monck, and helped end Parliamentary rule and restored the monarchy under Charles II. 350 years later, to honour their former commander and to help raise funds for their injured colleagues, soldiers from the Coldstream Guards recreated the march in aid of charity. [more inside]
posted by Petrot at 6:11 PM PST - 9 comments

The Radiation Boom
As Scott Jerome-Parks lay dying, he clung to this wish: that his fatal radiation overdose — which left him deaf, struggling to see, unable to swallow, burned, with his teeth falling out, with ulcers in his mouth and throat, nauseated, in severe pain and finally unable to breathe — be studied and talked about publicly so that others might not have to live his nightmare.
From the first of a series of articles by the New York Times, putting the spotlight on what happens when radiation therapy goes wrong. [more inside]
posted by Bukvoed at 4:58 PM PST - 49 comments

Two separate studies about the children of deployed military personnel with dramatically different conclusions.
A former colonel, and lieutenant colonel team up to show that 56% of kids do well (or even VERY well) when their parents are shipped off to war (again). [more inside]
posted by hal_c_on at 4:21 PM PST - 42 comments

Mameshiba
Mameshiba They're not quite a dog, nor a bean but a hybrid of both. They love to appear out of nowhere and offer random bits of trivia whether you asked for it or not.
posted by boo_radley at 3:26 PM PST - 62 comments

The Encyclopedia of Life
The Encyclopedia of Life [previously] is E.O. Wilson's dream become reality. It has been online since February of 2008, aiming to catalog the currently known 1.9 million species on our planet. You can also add text, images, video, comments, and tags. [ FAQVideo IntroductionTutorials ]
posted by not_on_display at 3:22 PM PST - 10 comments

Top Aces of WWII
This was going to be a post about japanese fighter ace Saburo Sakai(around 60 kills) while also mentioning Hiroyoshi "the Devil" Nishizawa, Japan's top WWII ace (around 110 kills). But while comparing them to aces of other countries I encountered something your average non-war buff american probably doesn't know. That is that about the top 60 fighter aces of WWII (and all time consequently) were all german. And where does the US rank on this list. You don't want to know.
posted by jake1 at 2:32 PM PST - 52 comments

In Soviet Mushroom Kingdom, Goomba Eats You!
The true story behind Comrade Mario.
posted by Effigy2000 at 2:14 PM PST - 17 comments

A child's garden of race car crashes
A child's garden of race car crashes. [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 1:31 PM PST - 40 comments

Satan Satan Satan Satan
The devil rides out - How Dennis Wheatley sold black magic to Britain.
posted by Artw at 1:08 PM PST - 23 comments

Goodbye to a skeptical visionary
Seymour Sarason, a man considered to be one of the fathers of community psychology and one of the most influential U.S. researchers in educational psychology and educational reform, died on Thursday at the age of 91. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 12:39 PM PST - 7 comments

America: A Personal History of the United States
America: A Personal History of the United States (MLYT). Alistair Cooke's critically acclaimed series, originally released in 1972 to educational institutions in the US, but still unavailable on DVD in region 1 despite requests to the BBC. Synopsis here.
posted by Balonious Assault at 10:25 AM PST - 13 comments

Over 650 Philip K. Dick book covers
Over 650 Philip K. Dick book covers [more inside]
posted by carter at 10:19 AM PST - 39 comments

Set the controls for the heart of the sun
Hope for a fusion breakthrough this year. [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 9:51 AM PST - 65 comments

Rome's Ancient Aqueduct
Rome's Ancient Aqueduct Found. "The long-sought aqueduct that delivered fresh, clean water to Rome nearly 2,000 years ago, is found beneath a pig pasture northwest of the Italian city."
posted by homunculus at 9:22 AM PST - 29 comments

"When elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers." — Kikuyu proverb
The announcement of the iPad earlier this week has prompted a lot of discussion about ebook prices among publishers and their sales partners. That discussion took a major turn yesterday when Amazon pulled the buy buttons for Macmillan's books off their site. Many of Macmillan's titles are still available through Amazon, but only through third parties. Right now, one of the largest publishers in America is no longer available from Amazon because they can not agree on ebook prices. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan at 9:18 AM PST - 306 comments

A Darwin electro-opera
The Knife (previously) have released a studio recording of 'Tomorrow, In A Year,' an "electro-opera"{video} based upon Darwin's 'Origin of Species.' Listen to the whole thing here.
posted by ennui.bz at 8:31 AM PST - 18 comments

Eddies in the timestream! And this is his couch?
Timelines: Sources from History is a decade-by-decade visual index to the holdings of the British Library from the 1210s to the present.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:23 AM PST - 12 comments

Far Blue Horizon
Morocco by Motorbike. The perfect escape for a lazy weekend day. Just watch out for ancient tombs. [more inside]
posted by Eideteker at 5:52 AM PST - 10 comments

Quoth The Raven ... ... ... nevermore
William Shatner Reads Edgar Allan Poe (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:55 AM PST - 31 comments

January 29
Cormac McCarthy's Typewriter
In 1963, in a pawnshop in Knoxville, Tennessee, Cormac McCarthy bought an Olivetti Lettera 32 manual typewriter for $50. After typing 5 million words on it - including all his novels - he replaced it with an identical model purchased by a friend for $20. Last month, the original typewriter was auctioned for $254,000 to benefit the Santa Fe Institute. (previously)
posted by Joe Beese at 9:42 PM PST - 36 comments

The Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race
For 36 years, engineering students from colleges across North America (and beyond) have aspired to succeed at winter's most prestigious, most arduous, most ridiculous challenge - to build and ride the world's fastest sled . . . made of concrete. Tomorrow, if you're in the greater Hamilton Ontario area, you can witness the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race yourself. Expect to see A fair warning however, spectators who stand too close might become part of the action. [more inside]
posted by Popular Ethics at 9:05 PM PST - 24 comments

Monster Initial Stickers Name Generator
The Monster Initial Stickers Name Generator -- scanned from a trading card set released in 1974.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:51 PM PST - 10 comments

Dem Bones
Frank Minyard, colorful coroner of New Orleans, and a focal point for post-Katrina stories, is in a tough reelection campaign. His opponent has taken some creative liberties in putting out a commercial. [more inside]
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:51 PM PST - 33 comments

The Apple Core
Artists Johnny Kelly and Jethro Haynes used 3D printing to create this title sequence for the Dutch TV show Het Klokhuis. [via]
posted by brundlefly at 5:38 PM PST - 18 comments

Cruise Elroy
Cruise Elroy, by mefi's own danb, is a blog about games, specifically video games and music.

In the past, he has covered the music of Mother 3 and its battle system, gone over Ocarina of Time's music in six parts (plus Koji Kondo's favorite cadence and SSBB's OoT medley), described the use of irregular meter in videogames, pointed out the jazzy basslines of Sonic the Hedgehog, and even examined what the 1-up jingle says about the rest of the game.
posted by flatluigi at 5:32 PM PST - 24 comments

Possibly also the 17 most AWESOME Playmobil sets.
17 Least Appropriate Playmobil Sets For Children : Yep. A randomly numbered list on which several items are questionable. But really, whoever approved #1 for production was more than a little bit twisted.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:13 PM PST - 84 comments

Welcome to the RetroFuture
Redesigned notebooks, repurposed toys, grow-your-own breakfast, paper radios, parental pants, and more - all from the mind of design fiction enthusiast Matt Brown
posted by divabat at 5:10 PM PST - 14 comments

The Unconvincing Defense
Scott Roeder has been convicted of first degree murder after barely a half hour of jury deliberation. Apparently the jury was not even slightly swayed by the "voluntary manslaughter" defense. Here is a bit more information about Roeder.
posted by bearwife at 4:33 PM PST - 75 comments

President Obama speaks at House Republican retreat in Baltimore
President Obama spoke at length to House Republicans at their retreat in Baltimore, responding to questions after his remarks. Video (also here). Transcript. [more inside]
posted by ibmcginty at 1:18 PM PST - 222 comments

This is what the Internet is for (SLYT)
This is what the Internet is for (SLYT) A well executed virtual jam session. People from all over the world connecting in creativity. Kutiman, eat your heart out.
posted by monospace at 11:53 AM PST - 34 comments

Cat Business Trip
Cat Business Trip (SLYT)
posted by Artw at 11:53 AM PST - 71 comments

QR Code Facade
Behold the N Building, a new structure in a Tokyo shopping district that at first glance looks kind of like a giant Tetris screen until you realize that the fancy geometric design on its facade isn't merely ornamental: It's code—QR code, to be exact. What that code allows passersby to do is quite unique. [via, via] [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:35 AM PST - 21 comments

Tora Bora: America's First Major Battle Of The Twenty-First Century
That afternoon, American signals operators picked up bin Laden speaking to his followers. Fury kept a careful log of these communications in his notebook, which he would type up at the end of every day and pass up his chain of command. “The time is now,” bin Laden said. “Arm your women and children against the infidel!” Following several hours of high-intensity bombing, the Al Qaeda leader spoke again. Fury paraphrases: “Our prayers have not been answered. Times are dire. We didn’t receive support from the apostate nations who call themselves our Muslim brothers.” Bin Laden apologized to his men for having involved them in the fight and gave them permission to surrender.
posted by jason's_planet at 10:38 AM PST - 26 comments

selleckwaterfallsandwich
Tom Selleck + waterfall + sandwich [more inside]
posted by slogger at 10:28 AM PST - 78 comments

See the world in a whole new light: Infrared
See the world in a whole new light: 100 Years of Infrared Photography (BBC blogger, Phil Coomes). You too can take digital infrared photos (in a nutshell) by using an infrared filter that screws on the front of the lens (or make your own), OR you can convert your camera to take IR photos. 26 Incredible Examples of Infrared Photography with Descriptions. The Complete Color Infrared (IR) Tutorial Guide Walkthrough (although I prefer them converted to Black & White (NSFW fine art nudes included). Beginning Infrared Photography with Digital Cameras. An easy way to test to see how sensitive your camera is to infrared (using a remote control) and (a similar page). How about a massive (on-going since May, 2007 - 51 page) forum thread on Infrared Photography Methodology and Post-processing Workflows? More links at Infrared Photography Resources and see the Flickr groups devoted specially to IR: IR World and Digital Infrared.
posted by spock at 9:56 AM PST - 17 comments

Bin Laden Criticizes U.S. for Inaction on Global Warming (SLNYT)
Al Jazeera releases a new (as of yet unauthenticated) tape in which the terrorist leader accuses the US and other large nations of inaction. Osama suggests boycotting the American dollar and quotes Noam Chomsky. [more inside]
posted by ®@ at 9:54 AM PST - 74 comments

I have one in my pillow fort.
Build a treehouse
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:22 AM PST - 30 comments

seeing whale songs
Visualizing Whale Songs "Mark Fischer, an expert in marine acoustics, has come up with another way to illustrate whale song. He uses a more obscure method, known as the wavelet transform, which represents the sound in terms of components known as wavelets: short, discrete waves that are better at capturing cetacean song."
posted by dhruva at 8:50 AM PST - 12 comments

200 Motels
WTF? Achtung! Nothing here is safe for anyone ever. Ringo Starr as Frank Zappa / Centerville / Dental Hygiene Dilemma / Lonesome Cowboy Burt / Mystery Roach / Magic Fingers / Finale / Special Bonus: Penismobile / Specialer Bonus: The Making of 200 Motels 1 2 3 [more inside]
posted by Meatbomb at 8:30 AM PST - 32 comments

Many Successful Gay Marriages Share an Open Secret
New York Times: "A study to be released next month is offering a rare glimpse inside gay relationships and reveals that monogamy is not a central feature for many. Some gay men and lesbians argue that, as a result, they have stronger, longer-lasting and more honest relationships. And while that may sound counterintuitive, some experts say boundary-challenging gay relationships represent an evolution in marriage — one that might point the way for the survival of the institution."
posted by andoatnp at 7:58 AM PST - 143 comments

"A Little While"
Haitian-born Edwidge Danticat writes a devastatingly personal account of the Haiti earthquake and its victims. From The New Yorker.
posted by deticxe at 7:33 AM PST - 19 comments

January 28
Los Pepes and the Rise of the North Valley Cartel
When Pablo Escobar escaped from prison in 1992, a lot of people in Colombia began to lose sleep. Some of these people formed Los Pepes - People Persecuted by Pablo Escobar - a collection of Escobar's fiercest narco competitors, paramilitaries and columbian authorities with perhaps even american intelligence assisstance. After taking care of Escobar the victorious narcos, as the Cali Cartel, went on to rule the world of cocaine. For about three years. A younger, more ruthless crew inside the Cali Cartel quickly did away with the old guard and established what is still today considered the largest supplier of cocaine in the world, the North Valley Cartel.With many former police officers in its upper ranks and the assisstance of one of the Colombian military's top antinarcotics officers, the North Valley Cartel was more likely to run a wiretap than be caught on one.Still, as to the whole omerta thing? North Valley Cartel bigshot Andres Lopez AKA Florecita (little flower?), after turning himself in to american authorities, cooperating and serving about 2 years in prison, wrote a book. El Cartel de los Sapos (Cartel of the Snitches) was then made into the most popular telenovela ever by Colombia's Caracol and dominated just about every market its played in. Oh yeah, and telemundo is streaming them all for free with subtitles as we speak. Not quite The Wire, but still a must see.
posted by jake1 at 10:59 PM PST - 37 comments

I bet your family owns a brothel, right? If you dislike Hanzi so much, you should change your daughter’s surname.
Chinese Characters (Hanzi) Discriminate Against Women A lawyer argues for replacing vulgar sexist Chinese language characters containing the female radical with gender-neutral forms. Many say it is unnecessary. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 10:30 PM PST - 50 comments

The one and only Billy Shears ... umm, played by Peter Frampton?
Sgt. Pepper's one-and-only Lonely Hearts Club Band. The movie. Starring Peter Frampton and The Bee Gees. Aerosmith. Alice Cooper. Steve Martin, who steals the whole thing. And cameos from about 50 other quite notable artists of the day. If you've never seen this particular "why yes, it was the 1970s, how did you guess" trainwreck, you really should treat yourself. Parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. [more inside]
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:58 PM PST - 117 comments

PNSFQ (Possibly Not Safe for the Queasy)
"Putting Weird Things in Coffee" is one man's quest to find new and unusual ingredients to add to coffee instead of the cream-and-sugar staples.
posted by Taft at 8:52 PM PST - 140 comments

Moon landing = cancelled until further notice
Return to the moon? Not likely. "President Barack Obama is essentially grounding efforts to return astronauts to the moon...".
posted by deacon_blues at 7:46 PM PST - 179 comments

Gay culture: Patricidal?
Gay culture: Patricidal? A former reverend in the Church of Satan, Jack Donovan (nom de plume: Malebranche), is coauthor of an E-book on blood brotherhood and a previous book on masculinity and homosexuality. Now: Do teh Gays have a problem with manhood? Donovan thinks so. “Sexually... homosexual men venerate manliness and virility. They want their fantasy men to be uppercase MEN.... All homosexual men are aware of the fact that there will always be some straight men who, given the opportunity, would exclude them from male groups.... [T]hey love him through surrogates and kill him by rejecting what he stands for. They side with women against him to castrate him. They mock and taunt him with flamboyant, effeminate displays. They look down on his stoic, simple, grounded manliness by aligning themselves with high culture and excess. Gay culture is patricide.” Oh, snap! as they say. [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 6:56 PM PST - 109 comments

The king of 90s indie film is dead.
Miramax Films (named after founders Bob and Harvey Weinstein's parents Miriam and Max) has been closed. The company was founded in 1979, but found massive success in the 90s with films like The Piano, Pulp Fiction, Sex, Lies and Videotape, Clerks, and The English Patient, and many others. Owned by Disney, the production company still has six movies unreleased. More at The Wrap.
posted by zardoz at 6:40 PM PST - 47 comments

A frank exchange of views
Wikipedia editors debate the merits of speedy deletion of of thousands of poorly referenced BLPs (Biographies of Living Persons).
posted by ovvl at 6:14 PM PST - 71 comments

We're the ones we've been waiting for?
The Annotated State of the Union - PBS has one too (+ video responses ;) Submit your own and make it a two-way dialogue!
posted by kliuless at 5:55 PM PST - 6 comments

Mine was called the Cardinal
Another institution might be close to biting the digital dust: The high school/college yearbook. Some are looking at alternative business approaches. " Last spring was the first time since World War II that University of Virginia students did not publish their yearbook, "Corks and Curls." No one seemed to notice."
posted by Xurando at 5:49 PM PST - 67 comments

Frinds, Roomuns, coontrimun, lend me yurr eerrs.
Oy coom too berry Sayzurr, nut too preyze im. That's a reconstruction of how Brutus's famous speech from "Julius Caesar" may have sounded to Shakespeare's original audience. (Scroll down in the linked page for the rest of the speech -- or look inside this post.) If you'd like to learn more about Original Pronunciation (OP), check out www.pronouncingshakespeare.com, where you'll find several recordings by David Crystal, the scholar who probably knows most about the subject. You can also listen to this example or this NPR broadcast, first linked to in this 2005 post, here. Ben Crystal, David's son, tries some OP here. [more inside]
posted by grumblebee at 5:42 PM PST - 34 comments

Panel finds MMR scare doctor 'acted unethically'
Dr Andrew Wakefield's 1998 Lancet study caused vaccination rates to plummet, resulting in a rise in measles - but the findings were later discredited. The General Medical Council ruled he had acted "dishonestly and irresponsibly" in doing his research.
[more inside]
posted by mdpatrick at 5:30 PM PST - 25 comments

Electoral Innovation
Murray Hill Inc. for Congress in MD.
posted by pwedza at 4:18 PM PST - 41 comments

Flickr: Looking into the Past
Flickr: Looking into the Past , a photography pool featuring images where there is a single image with the past overlapping the present somehow.
posted by blue_beetle at 3:20 PM PST - 17 comments

CWAA
John Kiriakou, the former CIA operative who affirmed claims that waterboarding quickly unloosed the tongues of hard-core terrorists, says he didn't know what he was talking about.
posted by jtron at 3:03 PM PST - 49 comments

Jared Diamond on Haiti
Jared Diamond on the unique cultural and geological challenges Haiti has faced since its colonial days. Diamond shows how these reasons have caused the nation to fare considerably poorer than its neighbor, The Dominican Republic. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 3:01 PM PST - 35 comments

The Island
Hugo Chavez owns it. New Jersey controls it. Developers and environmentalists covet it. And one brazen trespasser wants us to pay homage to its forgotten king. Welcome to Petty's Island, a fin-shaped slice of strange, in the middle of the Delaware River.
posted by fixedgear at 2:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Ladies and Gentlemen, I would like to introduce the acoustic guitar.
Michael Hedges was something of a revolutionary. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 1:16 PM PST - 53 comments

So long to Mt. Washington wind speed record, 14 years ago
Mount Washington gust record gone with the wind. Mount Washington had been the home of the surface wind speed record since April 12, 1934 with a 231 miles per hour wind; but during cyclone Olivia (with only 10 minor injuries) on April 10, 1996, a wind gust of 408 km/h (253 mph) in Austrailia was only just now noticed and confirmed by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The Mount Washington Observatory has accepted the record in their offical reaction but in more personal blog posts they are a bit more skeptical. The Washington Post Capital Weather Gang posted a Farewell to Mt. Washington's wind record from two former employees of the Observatory, lovingly referring to the record wind as "Gale." (And via Capital Weather Gang.)
posted by skynxnex at 1:13 PM PST - 46 comments

To the Victor Go the Spoils
It's not uncommon for the mayors of two cities locked in sports competition to make friendly wagers. But, do the cities' art museums do too? Apparently, they do.
posted by Leezie at 11:57 AM PST - 26 comments

For JD - with Love and Squalor
Famously reclusive American author J.D. Salinger has died at 91. The author of The Catcher in the Rye, a novel alternatively banned and labeled the Great American Novel, Salinger was also among the last authors whose short stories were routinely published in magazines. Salinger's other published works include Franny and Zooey, Nine Stories & Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction. [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 10:40 AM PST - 263 comments

Meta commentary about post
SLYT news report, starting with a lackluster establishing shot of a significant location.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 9:49 AM PST - 124 comments

Egg Watchers
Egg Watchers: Egg Timer 2.0 A cute little web interface serves you a YouTube video based on how done you want your boiled egg, its size, and whether it's just out of the fridge. The length of the video is the length of the boil. No more watched pots!
posted by OmieWise at 9:21 AM PST - 25 comments

The White Death
Simo Häyhä is often revered as the deadliest sniper in history. Using nothing more than a Mosin-Nagant sniper rifle with stock iron sights, Häyhä is credited with felling 542 Soviet soldiers during the Finnish Winter War (with as many as 150 more kills by SMG). Nicknamed "The White Death", Häyhä spent weeks in snow-covered forests, enduring sub-zero temperatures while sniping Russian officers, weapons crews and snipers. The Soviets placed a bounty on Häyhä's head, utilizing counter-snipers and artillery fire in an attempt to kill him. Over the course of only three months, the 5'3" Häyhä (a farmer by trade) killed upwards of 800 of the Red Army soldiers deployed to Finland. Despite eventually being shot in the face by a Russian sharpshooter, Häyhä recovered and passed away in 2002 at the age of 96.
posted by Tenacious.Me.Tokyo at 8:50 AM PST - 244 comments

Vinnaren träder fram
Veronica Maggio shouldn't just be popular in Norway.
posted by eschatfische at 8:45 AM PST - 34 comments

Hug-a-Ho
Dallas police were skeptical at first, nicknaming the program "Hug-a-Ho." Two years later, the STAR Court ("strengthening, transition and recovery") is attracting attention from agencies and researchers nationwide, for its innovative approach to prostitute diversion. "It's absolutely apparent when you work with these women that they're struggling with incredible issues of domestic violence, substance abuse, sexual violence. We want to help these women change their lives, and if we want to change what's happening, we have to change our approach."
posted by pineapple at 8:43 AM PST - 35 comments

Breakfast destruction
Daily life of the jihadis: rants, the usual aggressive posturing, murderous threats, and dreams of paradise. Also, problems with frying eggs.
posted by four panels at 8:27 AM PST - 9 comments

Math class is hard.
Early elementary school teachers in the United States are almost exclusively female (>90%), and we provide evidence that these female teachers’ anxieties relate to girls’ math achievement via girls’ beliefs about who is good at math. A study (abstract and full-text [pdf]) by the University of Chicago Department of Psychology and Committee on Education found a link between math anxiety in elementary school teachers and their female students' math abilities. [more inside]
posted by albrecht at 8:05 AM PST - 56 comments

Frederic, Prinz von Anhalt, for Governor (warning autoplay national anthem)
Frederic, Prinz von Anhalt is running for Governor of California Zsa Zsa Gabor's 9th husband, Frederic, Prinz von Anhalt wants your vote as governor of California. Originally Hans Robert Lichtenberg, the son of a German police officer, he was adopted by the octegenarian Princess Marie von Anhalt. Now he's running for governor, promising to return the good life to California by promoting its world-class "avocados, wine, weather beaches and marijuana." [more inside]
posted by Ironmouth at 7:57 AM PST - 38 comments

Because You Can Read, And They Had A Web Site
It's time for some nostalgia. [more inside]
posted by turgid dahlia at 6:26 AM PST - 20 comments

We will miss you when you are gone.
The world is closing in on the Moken way of life. Sights and Sounds by the late Nicolas Reynard.
The Kabang serves both as home and transport. Here's how they are built.
The Moken have enhanced underwater eyesight.
However with probably fewer than 1000 people still pursuing the traditional lifesyle; It's sadly time to say goodbye.
( Further reading. Previously / related 1; 2; 3 )
posted by adamvasco at 6:18 AM PST - 10 comments

Street Art
Unurth is searching the globe for street art. A recent feature is Escif, Brick/Break, in Valencia—including an interview with Escif and his Flickr stream. [prev]
posted by netbros at 6:05 AM PST - 4 comments

Americans in the Egyptian Army
In the wake of the Civil War, fifty Americans (audio alert), Union and Confederates both, accepted commissions in the Egyptian army. One of the most notable was William Wing Loring who wrote A Confederate Soldier in Egypt about his experiences.
posted by maurice at 5:25 AM PST - 5 comments

January 27
The Downside of High
THE DOWNSIDE OF HIGH (trailer) tells the stories of three young people from British Columbia who believe – along with their doctors – that their mental illness was triggered by marijuana use. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 9:52 PM PST - 167 comments

The life of an ant colony, with a touch of poetic license
Trailhead, the life of an ant colony, as dramatized by E.O. Wilson.
posted by shivohum at 9:34 PM PST - 15 comments

I wonder if Roy has seen the President. Aunt Winifred says she does not doubt it.
About 2% of the US population died while serving in the military during the US Civil War, roughly equivalent to about six million people today. A few years after the war the best selling book at 100,000 copies was Elizabeth Stuart Phelps' The Gates Ajar, which deals mainly with heaven and what exactly happens there. Spoilers follow. [more inside]
posted by shothotbot at 8:42 PM PST - 29 comments

Ad Vocal on My Ass! WTF?
During the broadcast of the upcoming Super Bowl XLVIl (February 7th) CBS has agreed to air a $2.8 million television ad, featuring football star Tim Tebow (Heisman Trophy-winning Florida Gators quarterback) in which he advocates against abortion. The 30-second ad has been produced and paid for by James Dobson's Christian group 'Focus on the Family.' Compare/contrast. For the 2004 Super Bowl broadcast CBS rejected the U.C.C. (aka Congregational Church) advertisement that promoted inclusion for mixed race and gay/lesbian couples, etc. CBS then deemed it an "advocacy ad" not worthy of airtime. So what exactly is CBS' Super Bowl policy on "advocacy ads?" [more inside]
posted by ericb at 6:51 PM PST - 157 comments

We Have a Gang of Dinosaurs to Kill
Axe Cop! A comic written by a 5-year-old boy and illustrated by his 29-year-old brother.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 6:37 PM PST - 90 comments

You're an Idiot of the 33rd Degree
In November of 1905, an enraged Mark Twain sent this superb letter to J. H. Todd, a patent medicine salesman who had just attempted to sell bogus medicine to the author by way of a letter and leaflet delivered to his home.
posted by gman at 6:27 PM PST - 34 comments

Just keep telling yourself: "It's only a logo! It's only a logo! It's only a logo!"
The S From Hell is a new documentary/horror film about the 1964 Screen Gems logo, a company ID that struck terror in the heart of a generation. The film's premiere at Sundance sheds some light on the fascinating and bizarre subculture of Logophobics [previously | via]
posted by pxe2000 at 6:05 PM PST - 75 comments

now we're rocking
whoa baby ... you're driving me crazy
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:36 PM PST - 37 comments

A People's Historian
The Boston Globe reports that historian Howard Zinn has died of a heart attack. The pioneering radical historian is best known for A People's History of the United States.
posted by box at 3:40 PM PST - 278 comments

That Ain't The Way To Behave
Oil City Confidential is a new film from director Julien Temple, previously responsible for The Filth and the Fury, about the Sex Pistols, and Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten, focusing on Strummer and The Clash. This time round, in a kind of prequel to both those films, he tackles the life and turbulent times of Dr. Feelgood. Finding fame on the same Pub rock circuit (as remembered by writer and Kursaal Flyers drummer Will Birch) that also supported Ian Dury's Kilburn and the High Roads (not to mention Eddie and the Hot Rods and Joe Strummer's pre-Clash band The 101ers), Dr. Feelgood played stripped-down, taut and aggressive R&B. Hailing from the wildlands of Essex's Canvey Island – the "Oil City" of the film's title – Dr Feelgood were punk before punk really hit, a whirlwind of raucous energy, with a fierce work ethic. In Wilko Johnson, they had a guitarist with a scorching, slash and burn technique, while their singer, Lee Brilleaux (1989 interview), who died of cancer in 1994, aged just 41, oozed cheap-suited menace, and, into the bargain, helped found Stiff Records. [more inside]
posted by Len at 3:26 PM PST - 9 comments

Your browser fingerprint appears to be unique.
In another of their many efforts in the field of digital rights and laws surrounding them, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has released Panopticlick, a tool to analyze the information your browser shares, revealing how personally identifiable your browser's footprint is. [more inside]
posted by flatluigi at 2:10 PM PST - 50 comments

WORK HARD PLAY HARD
WORK HARD PLAY HARD - Vice Magazine presents a mens fashion photo shoot where all models are sporting erections. [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 2:08 PM PST - 165 comments

corroborating evidence: cats! cats! cats!
A compelling hypothesis: the internet is made of cats. [more inside]
posted by Wavelet at 2:08 PM PST - 42 comments

A Crime of Shadows
A Crime of Shadows: Mark Bowden shows both sides of a police sting of Internet child predators. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 1:52 PM PST - 76 comments

One step closer to the mile-high club...
Forget cosmetic upgrades—Air New Zealand has been working on improving the actual flight experience, first introducing In-Flight Concierge Service, and now, the Skycouch - a row of seats that convert to a bedin Economy Class.
via mathowie's delicious
posted by joshwa at 1:12 PM PST - 39 comments

Truly Inspirational
Seven-year-old Charlie Simpson of west London set out to raise money for earthquake victims in Haiti. His efforts were wildly successful, and he has been heralded as a "shining example" of Britain's compassion for Haiti. His goal? £500. The amount he's raised so far? Over £170,000.
posted by xedrik at 12:59 PM PST - 16 comments

Paying Zero for Public Services
Protesting corruption with the zero-rupee note. Indian NGO 5th Pillar has a come up with a unique project to help India's poor fight against institutionalized bribery.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:31 PM PST - 21 comments

The Apple iPad
Apple announces something: The iPad, which all signs say is a tablet computer. Various people, from the Ceo of textbook and magazine publisher McGraw-Hill and Weblogs. Inc founder Jason Calacanis have talked about their experiences using and testing the device. But the most interesting aspect of the computer may not be the technology, but rather its potential for use in creating and participating in content creation which could revolutionize digital magazines and newspapers
posted by mpbx at 11:03 AM PST - 1255 comments

Saying goodbye to a newspaper's driver in Iraq
A farewell to Yasser. The Times of London's driver of seven years in Baghdad was killed in a bombing this week. This was his story. [more inside]
posted by huskerdont at 10:34 AM PST - 14 comments

"it is an unusual shark in that it has a spiral dentition."
Meet Edestus Giganteus and Helicoprion. The Edestidae family of sharks had a single row of teeth in the upper and lower jaws, creating, in effect, a scissors. Helicoprion's teeth grew in a buzz-saw shaped whorl in the lower jaw! Both sharks are known only from their fossil teeth, leading to mystery and detective work. [more inside]
posted by peachfuzz at 10:20 AM PST - 10 comments

The Tobolowsky Files
The Tobolowsky Files is a series of podcasts by character actor Stephen Tobolowsky - one of Those Guys, a recognizable face that has popped up in a multitude of productions but stayed mostly in the background. Following the style of Stephen Tobolowsky's Birthday Party, where he shares many stories from his experiences, the podcasts bring a fascinating, sometimes humor-filled and sometimes tragic, look on the life of this almost jack-of-all-trades actor. It is hard not to be pulled in as he speaks of the death of his mother, his wild journey through Paris as a young student with his girlfriend, and many other tales from acting jobs to the random people he's encountered throughout his years. [more inside]
posted by Tequila Mockingbird at 10:03 AM PST - 16 comments

The rise of the Growler
As craft beer brewers and brewpubs in the US grow in popularity among the population of discerning beer consumers, a new (to the US, anyway) container has emerged for the take-home beer buyer. Growlers, reusable half-gallon glass jugs, have become popular recently for the take-home crowd. [more inside]
posted by dammitjim at 9:15 AM PST - 115 comments

Dr. Tiller: The lost tapes
Dr. Tiller: The lost tapes. In never-before-seen footage, the slain abortion provider explains his career choice. Physicians for Reproductive Choice has released two "never-before-seen" video clips of the slain abortion provider talking about why he chose his line of work. [more inside]
posted by severiina at 9:04 AM PST - 80 comments

It's lonely in the modern world.
It's lonely in the modern world. Pictures from Dwell magazine, with Edward Gorey-like captions. [more inside]
posted by yeti at 8:07 AM PST - 66 comments

We are gonna have ourselves a time
Not one to shy away from ambition, Joanna Newsom went from writing sparse harp tunes to releasing a lengthy orchestral album in two years' time. Four years later, her new album's on the way — and it's a triple. Yesterday her label Drag City released its first song, '81. [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 8:00 AM PST - 69 comments

"Advertising without posters is like fishing without worms."
"Hatch Show Print: We Print and Sell Posters." And the Nashville landmark, just down the street from the Ryman Auditorium, has been doing exactly that, with wood type and a gigantic Vandercook press, since 1879. Take a video and photo tour through the press, and read about how they do their work (with videos of the printmaking process). Manager Jim Sherraden's motto is “preservation through production”: all the equipment, all the wood type, everything, is still used regularly, even if it’s for a run as small as one print. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 7:45 AM PST - 14 comments

Bill Mazeroski statue to be built at PNC Park.
Bill Mazeroski, Hall of Fame second baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates, will join Willie Stargell, Roberto Clemente, and Honus Wagner as players with bronze statues outside of PNC Park, where the Pirates play. [more inside]
posted by elder18 at 7:33 AM PST - 17 comments

Well since you don't want it any more, here you go.
"You have to put two and two together, and hopefully you come up with a high-speed rail project."
The St. Petersburg Times announced today that the state of Florida will receive funding for a high speed rail project, to be announced today by President Barack Obama in his Tampa visit. [more inside]
posted by toodleydoodley at 7:13 AM PST - 86 comments

Because Sloppy Joes are *such* a culinary challenge.
Ellie Krieger is a well-known registered dietician and author of The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life. Her bio says she was "director of nutritional services at the prestigious La Palestra Center for Preventative Medicine for several years where she worked with a team of physicians, psychologists and fitness specialists to create a multi-faceted obesity treatment program." She's also the host of "Healthy Appetite with Ellie Krieger" on the Food Network. With this kind of pedigree, you'd assume her recipes would be the paragon of nutritious, healthy eating, right? Wrong. [more inside]
posted by shiu mai baby at 5:26 AM PST - 98 comments

January 26
Exploring Monochrome
Exploring monochrome. Paco Pomet -|- Devin Leonardi. Some of my favorites include Internacional, and Gatun Lake. Pomet uses primarily oil on canvas, and Leonardi acrylic on paper.
posted by netbros at 9:01 PM PST - 6 comments

Trusting the FOX
Fox News is the most trusted news network in the United States, according to a new poll [.pdf] of 1,151 Americans conducted by Public Policy Polling (a polling firm with a mostly Democratic and progressive list of clients), the most trusted news network among Americans is FOX News, which was trusted by 49% of respondents (beating out CNN, MS-NBC, CBS, NBC, and ABC (though PBS was not included in the survey)). The pollsters conclude: “A generation ago you would have expected Americans to place their trust in the most neutral and unbiased conveyors of news,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. “But the media landscape has really changed and now they’re turning more toward the outlets that tell them what they want to hear.”
posted by washburn at 8:10 PM PST - 126 comments

Guy Fawkes, meet Robin Hood
Debt collectors call him a credit terrorist. “Cunningham beats the debt collectors at their own game. He turns their money-making practice into a financial liability. He is a regular guy who has become a radical enemy of the banking system.” [more inside]
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:30 PM PST - 113 comments

On the rapid proliferation of powerful chess software
"It was my luck (perhaps my bad luck) to be the world chess champion during the critical years in which computers challenged, then surpassed, human chess players. [...] What if instead of human versus machine we played as partners? My brainchild saw the light of day in a match in 1998 in León, Spain, and we called it "Advanced Chess." Each player had a PC at hand running the chess software of his choice during the game. The idea was to create the highest level of chess ever played, a synthesis of the best of man and machine." The Chess Master and the Computer: A article/book review on computer chess and the state of the top-level chess world by Garry Kasparov. [more inside]
posted by painquale at 5:35 PM PST - 43 comments

YouTube Is The New iTunes
YouTube has launched Disco. From TestTube - the GoogleLabs of YouTube - it's like Pandora lite with videos. Create and share playlists (linked playlist via TechCrunch), or just search for an artist and see what it comes up with. [more inside]
posted by battlebison at 4:39 PM PST - 47 comments

For Kids Who Want to Draw Anatomy Good And Wanna Learn To Draw Other Stuff Good Too
How to draw, by Rad Sechrist, storyboard artist at Dreamworks animation
posted by Artw at 3:43 PM PST - 23 comments

Free books, textbooks... but free
From the newly launched OpenSource.com comes a pointer to the Open College Textbook Act of 2009. This bill, currently stuck in committee, calls for the adoption of openly licensed and freely distributed electronic textbooks. It is hoped that this will lower costs, level the playing field and even help restore overseas confidence in the U.S. educational system. [more inside]
posted by cedar at 3:35 PM PST - 26 comments

Three Days Before the Shooting...
Ralph Ellison's unfinished second novel, Three Days Before the Shooting... was published today by The Modern Library. The 1,101-page book is the result of an extensive editing process. Something of a review is here. (Previously.)
posted by Prospero at 3:10 PM PST - 11 comments

And when the Lamb had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour
Is a pie in the face a terrorist act? [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 2:50 PM PST - 85 comments

Gotcha
The FBI has arrested James O'Keefe, one of the filmmakers behind the ACORN "pimp" video, and three others over an alleged plot to tap the phones in the office of Senator Mary Landrieu, D-La., according to a report in the New Orleans Times-Picayune. (Previously: 1,2,3)
posted by ekroh at 2:05 PM PST - 263 comments

Pay Wall Fail
In late October, New York Newsday put their website content behind a pay wall. How many subscribers signed up since then? 35. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 1:04 PM PST - 65 comments

Confessions of a Book Pirate
Confessions of a Book Pirate [more inside]
posted by brundlefly at 12:44 PM PST - 114 comments

SAAB not dead
SAAB lives. Today GM reached a deal to sell (previously doomed) Swedish car manufacturer SAAB, not to Koenigsegg, maker of exclusive sports cars, but to Spyker, maker of exclusive sports cars. The fans are rejoicing.
posted by mr.marx at 12:08 PM PST - 58 comments

I gadda push dis button every hunredunate minnits!
The Antonucci family of Long Island recaps all five seasons of Lost.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:46 AM PST - 76 comments

I have a good feeling.
'Kafka was a slightly strange man.' A profile of Alice Herz-Sommer, lifelong friend of Kafka.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:40 AM PST - 9 comments

The Music. The Memories. The Magic.
It started with, 'How do we give the visitor a big hug in each room?' Ladies and Gentlemen, AbbaWorld is now open for business. [more inside]
posted by mudpuppie at 11:27 AM PST - 17 comments

Class Warfare?
Today, Oregon voters will decide whether or not to increase taxes on businesses and the rich. Ballots for Measures 66 and 67 are due today at 8pm, polling is extremely tight, and at this point the election will be decided by turnout. With the opposing sides having collected a combined $10.1 million in donations, Oregonians have spent the last month deluged by political ads, canvassers, and phone calls. Whatever the outcome, this election has at least had the effect of making "spadea" into a household word. [more inside]
posted by OverlappingElvis at 11:06 AM PST - 169 comments

Future of Manufacturing
Wired magazine has a long and detailed article about the future of manufacturing. Short version: the same kind of democratization that technology has effected in publishing, music, video, etc., is opening up design and manufacturing to anyone who wants to participate. [more inside]
posted by yesster at 10:59 AM PST - 41 comments

Bondsmen vs. Pretrial Release
Pretrial release is an alternative to a cash or surety bond that allows some criminal defendants to avoid jail while awaiting trial; allowing defendants to continue to work or care for children. [more inside]
posted by electroboy at 10:22 AM PST - 27 comments

Is indie dead?
"What we’ve called it has never been stable—it’s been known alternately as “punk” for its early attitude, “underground” for where it happened, “alternative” when the mainstream held it up as an antidote to its own poison—each of these picked up then sloughed off when the semantic baggage grew too unwieldy. Most recently, “indie”—long thrown around as a signifier of how it got done (i.e. independently)—has become the nom du jour." Is indie dead?
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 8:40 AM PST - 127 comments

Wisconsin inmate loses battle to play Dungeons and Dragons in jail
Wisconsin inmate loses battle to play Dungeons and Dragons in jail. News article and 7th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion.
posted by seliopou at 8:33 AM PST - 182 comments

radio radio
Antique radio tuning dials [flash] from Michael Feldt's collection. [via]
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 7:56 AM PST - 20 comments

The Annotated White House Flickr Feed
The Annotated White House Flickr Feed
posted by minifigs at 7:49 AM PST - 16 comments

Hey! Keep your eyes ON my chest, buddy!
On the one hand, it ensures slow dancin' teens keep a safe distance apart. On the other, well, there's the sightline issue. Will it give geeks the nerve to dance with a partner? Covert Athletics presents Pong Prom. Can literally gettin' it on like Donkey Kong be next?
posted by GhostintheMachine at 7:40 AM PST - 12 comments

Questo of The Roots
"THE MOST HILLLLLARIOUS of them all (and yeah ill mention the rate cause that is ridiculous) has to be chuck berry who i believe has the highest rate charge for "johnny b good" in which i think in between chokes and laughter i was told he wanted $1.75 million." ?uestlove explains the economics of walk-on music, public performance fees and the music industry as a whole. [more inside]
posted by geoff. at 7:29 AM PST - 46 comments

UK Government bans export of "explosives dowser"
The UK Government has banned the export of the ADE651 to Afghanistan and Iraq. [more inside]
posted by jonesor at 7:20 AM PST - 54 comments

The Polygamists - National Geographic Explores the FLDS
"A highly respected member of the FLDS, Joe is also the patriarch of a family of 46 children and—at last count—239 grandchildren." The Polygamists (photos)- National Geographic wanders through a section of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), the mormon splinter group that proudly continues this marital tradition.
posted by shivohum at 7:06 AM PST - 80 comments

Candide, ou l'Optimisme
Few books written in the 18th Century are better known or more read today than Candide, Voltaire's great satire of optimism. The New York Public Library's Candide exhibition has many delights, including Rockwell Kent's famous illustrations. Many other artists have illustrated Candide, and many of those images can be seen in the University Library of Trier's Candide image database. If your eyes are tired, you can also download an audiobook of Candide for free from LibriVox, or you can listen to a lecture on Candide [iTunes] by Stanford professor Martin Evans. Adam Gopnik explains how Candide fits in Voltaire's life and what it can teach us today. And don't miss this old post about Leonard Bernstein's Candide operetta.
posted by Kattullus at 6:59 AM PST - 10 comments

You can also dive off a bridge or blow your brains out.
Magician, actor & Scientologist Larry Anderson wants his money back. Although he had modest success in Hollywood, he was known to millions as the narrator of Scientology's introductory film Orientation; certainly his most famous line was said for that movie:
"If you leave this room after seeing this film and walk out and never mention Scientology again, you are perfectly free to do so. It would be stupid. But you can do it. You can also dive off a bridge or blow your brains out. That is your choice."
Listen in as Larry negotiates with Church officials to recover $120,000 he deposited with the church in anticipation of receiving services from it.

In related news, Adams County, CO DA is charging Scientology OT7 Rev. Rex Fowler, owner of Scientology-run Fowler Software with murder and attempted murder for shooting ex-partner Tommy Ciancio three times in the head as he attempted to collect his severance pay, then turning the gun on himself, firing one shot up through his chin. Authorities initially believed Fowler was the victim based on witness testimony, but forensics showed that Ciancio could not have fired the three shots that killed him.
posted by scalefree at 6:18 AM PST - 59 comments

Kiki Does Windows.
American artist Kiki Smith, a life long Catholic, has taken on an unlikely project: a stained glass window for the Eldridge Street Synagogue Museum on New York City's Lower East Side.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:23 AM PST - 49 comments

Citizen (Crowdsourced) Journalism
Is there something you wish would be reported comprehensively by mainstream news media, even though they won't likely touch the topic? Try open-source reporting. From the 2006 experiment NewAssignment, professional journalists, non-profits seeking crowdfunding, and the Internet public have collaborated to do in-depth investigation and reportage of whatever people were interested in. Jay Rosen, founder of ExplainThis, the newest site in crowdsourced journalism, wants a way to answer questions that are too complicated for a Google search. Will these things deliver well-researched thoughtful analysis, or will they be no match for the Green?
posted by divabat at 4:01 AM PST - 8 comments

Waxy Music
Karin from Fever Ray's bizarre acceptance speech to an award ceremony in Gothenburg
posted by ashaw at 3:29 AM PST - 47 comments

Simon Swears
What happens when you have an old 80's toy, and too much time on your hands. [Audio NSFW]
posted by pjern at 1:16 AM PST - 9 comments

January 25
Mateusz Skutnik's beautiful games
Mateusz Skutnik makes beautiful point-and-click adventure games. [more inside]
posted by lalex at 10:13 PM PST - 7 comments

Misery, meet company...grad school style
Is grad school driving you insane? Bask in the shared misery of more than two years' worth of comments from fellow burnouts at the end of this blog post. [more inside]
posted by hiteleven at 9:50 PM PST - 126 comments

Bodyrock the Casbah.
Iranian breakdancers circa 1991. (SLYT)
posted by loquacious at 7:14 PM PST - 34 comments

The Ultimate Battle
Ultimate Battle: The Snuggie vs. Slanket vs. Freedom Blanket vs. Blankoat Ever wonder which one you truly need to blow your money on? Such a tough choice but this article will make it easier.
posted by bluehermit at 6:22 PM PST - 89 comments

World Government Data
Governments around the globe are opening up their data vaults allowing us to check out the numbers for ourselves. This is the Guardian’s gateway to that information. Search for government data here from the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand — and look out for new countries and places as they are added. Read more about this on the Datablog. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 4:42 PM PST - 13 comments

The Antlers, a band
Two free EPs from the cerebral, Neutral Milk Hotel inspired band The Antlers: (links go to .zip files, sorry) Cold War and New York Hospitals. For the uninitiated, here is the video of the song Two from the band's break out album Hospice. [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 4:36 PM PST - 18 comments

Health starts here?
On the heels of Whole Foods’ CEO John Mackey’s op-ed about health care reform (previously, previously) comes the Team Member Healthy Discount Incentive Program, in which the employee discount will be increased from 20% to 30% for those who meet criteria for body mass index (BMI), nicotine use, blood pressure, and cholesterol. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 4:12 PM PST - 122 comments

Bankrupt on Selling
Tishman Speyer Properties is defaulting on its $5.4 billion, high profile acquisition of the enormous Stuyvesant Town apartment complex in Manhattan, resulting in million in losses for investors and possibly "signaling the beginning of what is expected to be a wave of commercial-property failures". The failure is the result of an aggressive business model designed to "push moderate income tenants out and replace them with well-heeled renters willing to pay rents at a much higher price" a practice referred to as Predatory Equity. [more inside]
posted by freshundz at 3:54 PM PST - 57 comments

Take Me Back to Constantinople by Edward Luttwak
Economic crisis, mounting national debt, excessive foreign commitments -- this is no way to run an empire. America needs serious strategic counseling. And fast. It has never been Rome, and to adopt its strategies no -- its ruthless expansion of empire, domination of foreign peoples, and bone-crushing brand of total war -- would only hasten America's decline. Better instead to look to the empire's eastern incarnation: Byzantium, which outlasted its Roman predecessor by eight centuries. It is the lessons of Byzantine grand strategy that America must rediscover today.
posted by jason's_planet at 3:43 PM PST - 38 comments

There's fascism and then there's fascism
The New York Times magazine in depth look at the rise and fall of Charles Johnson as an icon of the right wing blogosphere. (SLNYT) Previously on Metafilter.
posted by bearwife at 2:51 PM PST - 84 comments

Sleepwalking into Oblivion
Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger on paywalls and the future of journalism.
posted by Artw at 2:24 PM PST - 14 comments

A Guide to Using Semicolons Properly; Also, Further Links to Semicolon Related Material on the Inside.
;) [more inside]
posted by Effigy2000 at 1:23 PM PST - 71 comments

Just the picture of health
This is an unoffical home for public domain photographs from the National Museum of Health & Medicine. View the stream, or visit its well-structuresd category catalog. [possibly NSFW in places] [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 12:43 PM PST - 3 comments

Shhhhh!
10 Best Songs about Libraries and Librarians
posted by donajo at 12:35 PM PST - 35 comments

Dolphins doing donuts on the front lawn
Dolphins are so smart that they can convince fish to leap out of the water and into their mouths. (slyt)
posted by ardgedee at 11:53 AM PST - 50 comments

It's gotta be better than Charlie's Angels
Movie made by chimpanzees to be broadcast on television. [more inside]
posted by billysumday at 11:53 AM PST - 37 comments

Cracking the PS3
George Hotz started a blog chronicling his journey to a software-only PS3 crack. Despite tackling a platform that has held strong for three years, Hotz claimed to have gained read/write access to all system memory after five weeks. Although the PS3 actually ships with Linux support, these cracks circumvent the hypervisor that place strict restrictions on low-level hardware access. You may know Hotz as the geohot who released first hardware iPhone jailbreak, added a software-only jailbreak for all iPhones and iPod Touches, and won multiple awards (pdf) at ISEF 2007 for building a working holographic display system while a senior in high school.
posted by d. z. wang at 11:13 AM PST - 45 comments

The Art of the Famewhore
Performance artist goes on VH1 realty show Frank the Entertainer intending to maintain her character (warning: sound plays upon loading), but finds that having cameras in your face 24/7 isn't so easy. [more inside]
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 11:01 AM PST - 42 comments

Don't drink the (extremely diluted) Kool-Aid!
Next Saturday, more than 300 people will each swallow an entire bottle of homoeopathic pills in protest at the continued marketing of homoeopathic medicines. The group planning the event is specifically targeting health care in the UK.
posted by Taft at 10:34 AM PST - 377 comments

The tunnel musicians of Chicago
The tunnel musicians of Chicago can be heard amid the roar of trains.... I recently spent three nights walking through the tunnels for a closer listen. These are the sounds, and the people I heard. [more inside]
posted by shakespeherian at 10:18 AM PST - 14 comments

Business Should Mind Its Own Business
Alan Grayson (D - FL) has introduced a bill to tax corporate political campaign donations at 500% (via). The bill is called the "Business Should Mind Its Own Business Act."
posted by lohmannn at 9:38 AM PST - 93 comments

Well, that's all right then
Rejoice, parents of Southern California! Your classrooms are now free of...dictionaries.
posted by anigbrowl at 9:07 AM PST - 143 comments

"Tastes as good as it sounds"
Americans, rejoice! Haggis is coming to our fair land. [more inside]
posted by backseatpilot at 8:28 AM PST - 48 comments

What did they ever do to you?
No Kicking Penguins - How a 7-year-old autistic boy created an internet meme that found its way to Antarctica.
posted by Brodiggitty at 6:44 AM PST - 49 comments

¡Viva México, Cabrones!
As a recent New York Times article notes: "Mexicans, despite their reputation in Latin America for ultrapoliteness and formality, curse like sailors, a recent survey found. They use profanity when speaking with their friends, with their co-workers, with their spouses and even with their bosses and parents."

This then: Effective Swearing in D.F.: Towards a Manual of Communication for English Speakers visiting Mexico City
Because, remember: Hablar español sin caló es de hueva.
posted by vacapinta at 4:57 AM PST - 49 comments

Amidst the Hall Of that infernal Court
Solium Infernum, the most recent release from indie game designer Vic Davies (and one of Eurogamer's Games of 2009), is a turn-based wargame in which the players, as members of Hell's aristocracy, vie for control of Satan's recently vacated throne employing diplomatic measures and demonic armies. Over the last couple of weeks the boys at Rock, Paper, Shotgun have posted epic turn by turn battle reports of a month-long play-by-email game undertaken by two of their own and four acquaintances, two of whom have written up their own reports. Without fail the accounts are full of twists and turns, blunders and screwups, conniving, back-stabbing and all sorts of bastardry that make them fine examples of game writing as well as gripping page-turners. [more inside]
posted by aldurtregi at 3:31 AM PST - 45 comments

Contact is the secret, is the moment, when everything happens. Contact....
From 1980 - 1988, a science education series called 3-2-1 Contact ran on PBS. Produced by Children's Television Workshop, the series was geared toward an older audience than other popular CTW offerings Sesame Street and The Electric Company, and focused on teaching kids about science, math and the world around them. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:14 AM PST - 79 comments

January 24
Novos Baianos F.C., a samba-rock commune documentary
Os Novos Baianos (The New Bahians) played psychedelic rock blended with regional Brazilian folk styles, heavily influenced by bossa nova maestro João Gilberto. In 1972, after recording Acabou Chorare (which went on to top Rolling Stone Brazil's list of best Brazilian albums ), the band moved to a far suburb of Rio de Janiero to live communally, play soccer, and work on the album Novos Baianos F.C. (New Bahians Football Club). In 1973, German television sent music producer Solano Ribeiro to capture their daily life on film. It's around 45 minutes, broken up in six youtube videos: 1 2 3 4 5 6. No subtitles, but you won't need them too much. The audio is spotty, but it gets better. [more inside]
posted by hydrophonic at 10:16 PM PST - 11 comments

A trip down memory lane?
Welcome (back) to Windows 3.1. "Michaelv.org is coded in JavaScript and strict XHTML 1.0, with AJAX functionality provided through PHP. It has been tested for compatibility in Firefox and IE. Firefox 2 or 3 is highly recommended, but the site is almost entirely functional in IE 6, 7, or 8. Media Player does not work in IE as IE lacks the ability to dynamically instantiate ."
posted by Phire at 10:12 PM PST - 49 comments

with an Apple Macintosh you can’t run Radio Shack programs
16-bit Intel 8088 chip by Charles Bukowski. [more inside]
posted by ennui.bz at 9:43 PM PST - 35 comments

Frances Gabe and the Self-Cleaning House
Everyone has fantasized about it, usually while scrubbing a floor or cleaning a toilet. Well, Frances Gabe did something about it: she invented the self-cleaning house, the one the future has been promising us for years. (This 2007 Weird America Interview/Tour mocks her, but it's the only video of the house I could find.) Just imagine: You put your dirty dishes back in the cabinets which double as dishwashers; the closets are laundry machines. Every room has wash, rinse, and dry buttons. [more inside]
posted by julen at 8:42 PM PST - 28 comments

The Scout
Scouting occupies a strange niche in book publishing, itself a rather inscrutable business from the outside, and after a time most scouts resign themselves to working—very hard—at an occupation not even their closest family members will ever fully understand. [more inside]
posted by smoke at 7:38 PM PST - 16 comments

Erotic fan-fiction found a way!
The International Jurassic Park Erotic Fan-Fiction Writer's Association [more inside]
posted by (bb|[^b]{2}) at 6:32 PM PST - 54 comments

Illinoize
Illinoize - "a free remix tape put together by Montreal-based producer Tor, sampling songs from multi-instrumentalist and indie hero, Sufjan Stevens. Tracks are sampled from his 2005 LP Illinoise, as well as 3 of his other albums, 'A Sun Came', 'Seven Swans' and 'Songs for Christmas', blending Sufjan Steven's acoustic guitar, piano and horns with MC's Aesop Rock, Big Daddy Kane, Gift of Gab (Blackalicious), C.L. Smooth, Outkast, Brother Ali, and Grand Puba."
posted by Paragon at 5:42 PM PST - 26 comments

There Is
Sean Freeman is a UK-based illustrator and designer specializing in typography. For example, this piece, collaborated with fellow illustrator Pomme Chan. Don't miss the archive, including a little fish.
posted by netbros at 4:33 PM PST - 4 comments

[spoiler] it'd be 238857 miles, actually.
The Shining: it's an autobiography. [more inside]
posted by _dario at 3:53 PM PST - 105 comments

Nontransitive dice
Nontransitive dice are sets of dice (A, B, C, etc.) with counterintuitive properties: die A beats die B and die B beats die C, but die C beats die A. [more inside]
posted by Upton O'Good at 2:04 PM PST - 54 comments

The Heretical Two
heretical.com and its discontents. The US and the UK have incompatible perspectives concerning the ownership and distribution of web pages and comic books. The "Heretical Two" are a case in point. [more inside]
posted by eccnineten at 1:01 PM PST - 73 comments

I love you too Coco.
A rap song that mentions Chomsky! Coco Love Alcorn steals the hearts of nerds, geeks, and Mensa members everywhere by ditching all those muscle-bound playas in favor of brainiacs. Thought this would play well on Metafilter.
posted by crazylegs at 11:44 AM PST - 74 comments

The Disease Commonly Called The Sweate
In the mood for a good epidemic? Try the English Sweating Sickness. To get a full picture of the horror and uproar a fast spreading disease with frighteningly sudden onset caused in Tudor England, here is an amazingly complete account by a contemporary physician. The exact etiology of the disease is still a mystery - perhaps a viral pulmonary disease (PDF in link).
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:02 AM PST - 30 comments

Demons and Devotion
Visitors to the Morgan Library in New York will have a rare opportunity to view one of the great masterworks of medieval illumination, the Hours of Catherine of Cleves. But if you don't have a chance to visit, all 157 miniatures have been digitized.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:51 AM PST - 24 comments

The Death of David Kelly
Lord Hutton made a request for the records provided to the inquiry, not produced in evidence, to be closed for 30 years, and that medical (including post-mortem) reports and photographs be closed for 70 years: evidence relating to the death of Government weapons inspector David Kelly is to be kept secret for 70 years, it has been reported (more here and here). Kelly was the UK weapons inspector whose suspiciously timed death in 2003, ruled a suicide, has remained a point of controversy ever since.
posted by HP LaserJet P10006 at 8:24 AM PST - 63 comments

January 23
Sky burials in Tibet
Sky burials are often practiced in the mountains of Tibet, both for religious and practical reasons. Basically, the corpse is placed on a mountain top and sliced open in various places, to attract the birds of prey circling above. They’d probably feast on it anyway, but an invitation like that doesn’t hurt.
posted by Mr_Zero at 11:56 PM PST - 107 comments

Read my lips
As is well known by now, the opening spectacle of the 2008 Olympics in Beijing featured a young girl's performance of Ode to the Motherland which was later revealed to be a lip-synch. The talented original singer Yang Peiyi was considered not "cute" enough. As is perhaps not so well known, however, the resultant flap resulted in the creation of a strict anti-lip-synch law in China, and now two Chinese pop stars face a $12,000 lip-synching fine. Some Chinese rockers have eagerly supported the creation of the ban on lip-synch, and, interestingly, the practice of lip-synching in Chinese musical entertainment had been under discussion in Chinese government circles since at least 2005.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:06 PM PST - 40 comments

For the Emperor!
Dan Abnett, writer for 2000ad, DC Comics and some of the more well regarded Warhammer 40k novels, has been guest blogging this week at the Borders Sci-Fi blog Babel Clash. Topics have include working with other peoples characters and writing within the Warhammer 40k universe. Fellow Black Library writer Graham McNeill is now taking up the reigns.
posted by Artw at 4:02 PM PST - 44 comments

Pioneers of Love
Pioneers of Love - a three part documentary about relations between the Ngadjonji people of Far North Queensland, Australia & early white settlers. More about the Ngadjonji people can be found here, including early photos, language, traditional stories, ancient history & more. [previously]
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:34 PM PST - 6 comments

The Russian anti-ship missile we have no defense against?
SS-N-22 Sunburn is the NATO designation for a Russian-made anti-ship missile that the US Navy (it seems) currently has no defense against. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 3:26 PM PST - 82 comments

Plane For Sale; Hero Not Included.
New time lapse video [04:48] of the salvage of U.S. Airways Flight 1549 (aka 'Miracle on the Hudson'). The A320 is up for sale. It was put "on the online auction block by the insurance company Chartis...The sale attracted widespread attention within hours on Friday, and Chartis was apparently so inundated by curiosity or online bids that it removed the information from its Web site. Chartis identified the plane only by its registration number and its family name, A320, and yet it was instantly recognizable." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 2:43 PM PST - 28 comments

Timeless Music
"I put every dollar I have into this. I’ve spent over $1 million, almost $2 million, on this album [...] I think within the first week we will definitely make our money back. The songs will make an impact in pop history." Reality television star Heidi Montag released her debut album, entitled Superficial, this month, to record-breaking lows: The LP sold just 658 copies in the first week of its release. [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 2:28 PM PST - 165 comments

The Vice Guide to Liberia
The Vice Guide to Liberia (trailer & parts 1-4 of 8). [more inside]
posted by gman at 2:23 PM PST - 56 comments

You will never vanquish the Lizard People, Monsieur Debonaire! Mwahahaha!
Maybe D&D has disappointed you. Too complicated*, too slow, too restrictive? Spirit of the Century (free version, blurbs/store) is a Fate game designed for fast-paced, pulpy adventures. And we should thank Fudge, too. [more inside]
posted by ersatz at 1:39 PM PST - 57 comments

21st century executions.
10 executions that defined the 2000s. Ten executions that most palpably captured the decade’s Zeitgeist. Some clips may be NSFW.
posted by stinkycheese at 12:54 PM PST - 30 comments

Formosan aborigines
Formosa – photographed by Torii Ryuzo.
posted by tellurian at 10:34 AM PST - 22 comments

No, really, that's what it's about.
How to make vaginas love a penis (SLYT). Apparently.
posted by Hartham's Hugging Robots at 2:42 AM PST - 104 comments

The rise and fall of a late night TV talk show host
The show is loaded with intramural cracks, tedium, desperate looking guests reaching for laughs, mechanical dolls that wave their arms and drop their pants, additional tedium, and the apparent illusion that several million people want to watch 120 minutes of the scriptless life of a semi-educated, egocentric boor. The rise and fall of a late night TV talk show host. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:18 AM PST - 31 comments

January 22
Music Is the Weapon of the Future.
Acoustic Levitation. (wiki) [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski at 11:35 PM PST - 9 comments

"Get out of Farmville!"
At long last, Dr. Phil takes on FarmVille (previously). [more inside]
posted by joedan at 8:17 PM PST - 65 comments

2009 Hungarian Press Photography Awards
The 2009 Hungarian Press Photography Awards have been announced. The overall winner is a stunning series of Roma (Gypsy) grieving by the Hungarian photographer Béla Szandelszky. My favorite is the one of three woman grieving. The site is in Hungarian but Google translate does a reasonable job (to English anyway). And of course there is the inevitable Flash navigation to come to grips with. All the photos demonstrate that the rich tradition of Hungarian photography that includes André Kertész, Robert Capa, László Moholy Nagy and Marton Munkascsi to name but a few of the greatest photographers of last century, is very much alive and well.
posted by vac2003 at 7:51 PM PST - 11 comments

The Crispian Crisp and the Hurtian Crisp
Mr. Quentin Crisp and Mr. John Hurt. Mark Simpson conducts a kind of comparative iconography of John Hurt as Quentin Crisp in the intertitle-replete Naked Civil Servant and, 33 years later, as Crisp again in An Englishman in New York. “[A]s an effeminate homosexual, he was imprisoned inside an exquisite paradox, like some kind of ancient insect trapped in amber: Attracted to masculine males – the famous Great Dark Man – he cannot himself be attracted to a man who finds him, another male, attractive because then they cannot be the Great Dark Man any more.”
posted by joeclark at 6:07 PM PST - 28 comments

From over here on this side of the wall, you all have made many of us feel human once again. Thank you so much for that.
"There are general feelings of hostility and hopelessness in prisons today and it is getting worse with overcrowding. . . Art workshops and similar programs help take us out of this atmosphere and we become like any other free person expressing our talents. Being in prison is the final ride downhill unless one can resist the things around him and learn to function in a society which he no longer has any contact with. Arts programs for many of us may be the final salvation of our minds from prison insanity. It's contact with the best of the human race. It is something that says that we, too, are still valuable." [more inside]
posted by Dojie at 5:54 PM PST - 23 comments

Digital Revolution
This is the introduction to The Virtual Revolution , an open source documentary, due for transmission on BBC Two next week, that will take stock of 20 years of change brought about by the World Wide Web. Only about 25% of the world population uses the Web today, however more than 70% of people have access to mobile or fixed communication devices capable of displaying Web content. The World Wide Web Foundation [prev] exists to bridge the 'digital divide' in Internet usage.
posted by netbros at 4:11 PM PST - 7 comments

Some Still Think He's A Rat
Frank Serpico testified before the Knapp Commission in October 1971, becoming the first police officer in the United States to voluntarily give evidence against a fellow policeman. You probably have seen the movie. Frank Serpico returns. “I still have nightmares,” he said. “I open a door a little bit and it just explodes in my face. Or I’m in a jam and I call the police, and guess who shows up? My old cop buddies who hated me.”
posted by Xurando at 3:04 PM PST - 41 comments

Got literacy?
As of last week, Barnes and Noble closed the B.Dalton outlet in Laredo's Mall del Norte. This leaves the city of 250,000 the largest city in the USA without a bookstore. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit at 2:55 PM PST - 116 comments

Every boy band has a creepy older guy with weird facial hair
Joe Mande of Look At This Fucking Hipster (previously) made an audition tape for Perez Hilton's new boy band.
posted by minifigs at 2:48 PM PST - 45 comments

Morals Authority
"What I want to do now is help both sides understand the other, so that policies can be made based on something more than misguided fear of what the other side is up to." Jonathan Haidt proposes a more civil form of politics based on his work in moral psychology. [more inside]
posted by jquinby at 2:43 PM PST - 30 comments

Shock and $$$
US Mercenaries Set Sights on Haiti. The Shock Doctrine [previously] at work: Jeremy Scahill writes about disaster-profiteering in Haiti. [more inside]
posted by Saxon Kane at 2:23 PM PST - 38 comments

The 4 Big Myths of Profile Pictures
"In looking closely at the astonishingly wide variety of ways our users have chosen to represent themselves, we discovered much of the collective wisdom about profile pictures was wrong."
posted by Groovytimes at 2:11 PM PST - 51 comments

(Tommy reference goes here)
11 things you didn't know about pinball. Worth it for the picture on #3 alone.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:11 PM PST - 83 comments

Jurors have a power so secret even they may not know about it.
Jury nullification, a situation in which jurors acquit in a criminal trial even if the facts favor conviction (often because the jurors disagree with the law), is of ancient provenance in the Anglo-American legal tradition. Courts are ambivalent towards it, regarding it both as quasi-illegal (they'll remove jurors if they catch them during the attempt) and as something that they cannot overturn once it happens. Nullification has furthered many causes, from anti-death-penalty to pro-southern-lynchings. Lawyers can't mention it in court on pain of contempt, but some hope to educate people in other ways.
posted by shivohum at 2:00 PM PST - 79 comments

Your facebook is an open book.
Think your Facebook profile's private? A complaint brought to the Federal Trade Commission urges you to think again. While you think on it, here's a concise primer on how to make sure your Facebook profile (should you have one) is as private as you think it is.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:43 PM PST - 45 comments

A Russian army recruit's scrap book
Selections from a handmade military discharge scrap book and comic made by a USSR army recruit, 1984-1986.
posted by Rumple at 1:08 PM PST - 5 comments

Voice of America on Fear
Doug Stanhope talks about fear. [YT]
posted by bobbyelliott at 12:35 PM PST - 21 comments

Lost: 24 Edition
The Lost Crash in Real Time (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by azarbayejani at 12:32 PM PST - 85 comments

Skycraper Index
V, Double dip (W) or L recession? Things look bad for the EURO is the skyscraper index is right. We have heard recently about problems in the Eurozone. Is the worst over or is the worst still to come? The skyscraper index indicates: Trouble ahead. [more inside]
posted by yoyo_nyc at 11:48 AM PST - 45 comments

Volcker Wins over Geithner (and Why This Might Be a Very Good Thing)
Obama Breaks with Geithner to support "Volcker Rule" in sweeping new financial sector reform proposal. Following the counsel of highly-respected former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker in a move that would significantly weaken the role of current Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, Obama's tough new proposals are being received by recent administration critic Robert Reich as a welcome, if overdue, policy correction. Among other things, the new proposals would effectively restore previous restrictions separating deposit and investment banks (as originally imposed by the depression-era Glass-Steagall Act), as well as imposing stiff new capital requirements, and restrictions designed to prevent banks from becoming too big to fail.
posted by saulgoodman at 7:59 AM PST - 287 comments

"He’d gone down into the well of infinite sadness, beyond the reach of story, and he didn’t make it out."
Tributes to David Foster Wallace [pdf]. With contributions from his sister Amy, his agent Bonnie Nadell, authors Don DeLillo, Zadie Smith, Jonathan Franzen and others, Five Dials magazine celebrates the life of a fine author and MetaFilter favourite (previously). [more inside]
posted by him at 6:33 AM PST - 27 comments

I cast Magic Missile at the darkness!
"I guess it's the stereotype of playing it - [the players] are usually fat, sweaty, hairy dorky men who are socially inept who happen to live in their mom's basement."

Dungeons & Dragons, the 1974 published fantasy role-playing game that once delivered your child to Satan, is still associated with self-deprecating nerds, played in secret (along with embarrassed "comings out") and scorned by jocks/Salon writers and their cheerleader girlfriends everywhere.

But what better way to break, or affirm, the stereotypes, than by listening to a 4th Edition D&D game being played, featuring not just by some scrubs off the street, oh no, but the creators of Penny Arcade, Tycho and Gabe? Still not tempted? How about if we throw loved/hated Star Trek actor, prodigious blogger and all round nice guy Wil Wheaton into the mix?

All files available as Podcasts and/or embedded in page. Warning: audio links feature some strong language. [more inside]
posted by Rei Toei at 6:12 AM PST - 240 comments

Heaven Holds a Place For Those Who Pray
Iris Robinson [wiki] is, at the time of writing, under acute psychiatric care in a Belfast hospital, after a BBC Northern Ireland documentary revealed that she had, at the age of 59, solicited £50,000 from two property developers to help fund a business run by her 19-year-old lover, Kirk McCambley.
posted by billysumday at 4:56 AM PST - 55 comments

January 21
It took the day 'n night to believe
Sunn O))) vs. Kid Cudi "Day 'n Night" crossed with "Aghartha". [more inside]
posted by kenko at 10:20 PM PST - 34 comments

"It's funny, 'cause its a joke...right?"
TSA plants white powder on someone as a "joke." via Consumerist
posted by plaidrabbit at 8:24 PM PST - 132 comments

legal neepery of interest only to copyright holders and their publishers
The Amended Settlement filed in Authors Guild v. Google creates a non-profit Book Rights Registry governed by authors and publishers to oversee the settlement on their behalf. A Fairness Hearing has been scheduled for February 18, 2010; authors have until January 28, 2010 to opt out of the agreement. The SFWA is objecting to (among other things) Google's potential monopoly, to the opt-out clause, and to leaving the fair use dispute (pdf) unresolved. The ALA, ARL and ACRL have some similar concerns (pdf) and have released a Guide for the Perplexed (pdf). The NWU opposes it; so does the ASJA. (previously, previously).
posted by joannemerriam at 8:13 PM PST - 49 comments

Matt Cheddar
I just can't stop thinking about ninjas. Urban Ninjas and last but not least Ninjas on roller skates
posted by nola at 7:59 PM PST - 15 comments

Salmon at the Food Bank
Salmon, Trout Populations Surge in Oregon Rivers
Steelhead, along with Coho and Chinook salmon, have made a spectacular return to local streams in the past year, leaving sportsmen exultant and putting food on the tables of struggling Oregonians.
posted by kliuless at 7:52 PM PST - 32 comments

Cafeteria Foodies with Flair
Twins Annie and Connie Wu wanted to liven up their meals at Brown University's cafeteria, affectionately known as the Ratty. So the two foodies made their own blog, Ratty Gourmet, about how to do cafeteria dining in style, including recipes for Nutella S'mores or Pasta and Spinach Salad Medley with Egg.
posted by jonp72 at 7:45 PM PST - 26 comments

Patches?!? Did you need some steenking patches?!?
Still clocking the old Boy Scout-style uniform? Perhaps you, like many others feel you could be more rewarded than you are today? Never fear, the "Boy Scout Store" has got your back! Develop your own program for: aging, blogging, bungee jumping, cat herding, coffeecraft, sexual revolution, Facebooking, Global Warming. smoking cessation, alcoholism and recovery, pranksterism, neighbor relations, robot building, incendiary devices, antisocial activities, street hooking, and, of course underwater basketweaving. Display your training in instigation and agitation. Maybe you feel you speak the language. Remember -- Scouting is for all.
posted by Ogre Lawless at 7:24 PM PST - 38 comments

"I am interested in the moments where things don’t quite line up."
A Tool to Deceive and Slaughter is a sculpture that, in creator Caleb Larsen's own words, "perpetually attempts to sell itself on eBay." [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 6:39 PM PST - 54 comments

"Ahhh!" "No, not 'Ahhh!'"
Stewart Lee's Special Parable, The Story of The Prodigal Son, and more irreligious fun from the Sunday Heroes: Woman of sinful life, Ian, The Last Supper, Judas, Thomas.
posted by Artw at 2:46 PM PST - 25 comments

RIP Air America
Air America files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:26 PM PST - 84 comments

:—
The Secret History of Typography in the Oxford English Dictionary. Although sadly not about font design or kerning, Nick Martens' exploration in the OED is still pretty interesting. [more inside]
posted by shakespeherian at 2:03 PM PST - 28 comments

Should Obese, Smoking and Alcohol Consuming Women Receive Assisted Reproduction Treatment?
The European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) has published a position statement on the impact of the life style factors obesity, smoking and alcohol consumption on natural and medically assisted reproduction. Rationing health care is a complicated subject easily politicized. ESHRE has published five recommendations. While smoking and alcohol consumption can have a clearly negative impact on the fetus, so can apparently obesity. Is this part of a slippery slope or needed restraints on medical services? [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 1:31 PM PST - 63 comments

Fifty things
Fifty matchbooks, from when smoking was cool. Fifty Halloween masks. Fifty birds. Fifty personals. Fifty other things.
posted by mudpuppie at 1:28 PM PST - 11 comments

I bet you look good on the dancefloor
Peter Lovatt is a psychologist at the University of Hertfordshire (UK) and a former professional dancer. No wonder, he knows the secrets of looking good on the dance floor.
posted by jfricke at 1:27 PM PST - 10 comments

Flying R2-D2, you are doing it wrong
"Using these values, the mass of R2 is 0.1 kg. Yes, 100 grams. How do I know I am correct? I know because Wookieepedia doesn't list R2's mass or weight. They know it is silly, so they left it off." A physicist explains why R2D2 must weigh less than styrofoam. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 12:54 PM PST - 83 comments

Cats for missiles.
Titus Awakes, a fourth Gormenghast novel written by Maeve Gilmore from notes and fragments left by her husband Mervyn Peake, has been discovered hidden in an attic. [more inside]
posted by permafrost at 12:00 PM PST - 34 comments

Enjoy A Dr. Nut and a Hot Dog From Paradise
Let's discover New Orleans of fictional favorite son Ignatius J. Reilly through the kind help of the blog "Ignatius' Ghost". [more inside]
posted by willmize at 11:53 AM PST - 49 comments

Raw vs. the Law
Michael Schmidt has been found not guilty of selling raw milk in the province of Ontario. Schmidt owns a dairy co-op where consumers can purchase shares in a dairy herd and receive a portion of the raw milk those cows produce in return. His farm was raided and his equipment seized at gun point back in 2006. Experts are predicting this decision could have wide ranging effects on the rights of consumers to choose what they purchase and eat.
posted by talkingmuffin at 11:52 AM PST - 57 comments

Is it safe?
Is it safe? While it looks that the banking system is in better shape than before, some companies still seem to want to hedge their bet. A German insurance company is suing the German central bank to force them open a checking account for them. "As an insurer, it’s our very own task to manage risks and regulators demand that from us,” Mallinckrodt said. “The Bundesbank is the only lender in Germany with no risk to become insolvent, so only an account there is risk free." [more inside]
posted by yoyo_nyc at 11:21 AM PST - 11 comments

"Commercial art is forced homework for painting."
In 1994, artist/cartoonist/art director Gary Panter designed a cartoon for MTV's Liquid Television. Step By Step Graphics visited him in his studio. [more inside]
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:43 AM PST - 9 comments

Stately plump Buck Mulligan
Ulysses "Seen" is an ambitious, ongoing project to create a webcomic adaptation of James Joyce's Ulysses. Each page of the comic offers an accompanying reader's guide, and there's a blog about the progress of the project.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:02 AM PST - 41 comments

REQUEST FOR URGENT BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP FROM DR CLEMENT OKON
Arms dealers affiliated with 22 companies, including one with a former Joint Chief of Staff on its board of directors, have been indicted for soliciting kickbacks on multimillion dollar deals to supply munitions to representatives of a fictitious African government. [more inside]
posted by minimii at 9:00 AM PST - 41 comments

Place Hacking
Virtual hacking is cool but place hacking makes it core again, brachiating across scaffolding to get the shot on your Digital SLR that maximizes your flickr stats, raking in the google adsense cash and conforming to a zerowork ethos if we get pro at it. Sleep in ruins, sell your photos of disgusting shit to tourists. Rinse off in a petrol station sink and repeat. We are the nerds that finally walked away from their computers and we are behind that scaffolding covering the building you ignore everyday when you walk by it going to work, we just loved on that place like no one has in 20 years. We are psychotopological terrorists and we will shove that masterlock up your ass.
A "reformed archaeologist" talks about exploration of urban ruins. Modern urban ruins.
posted by Rumple at 8:49 AM PST - 72 comments

RIP Paul Quarrington 1953-2010
Canadian author Paul Quarrington - best known for his 1989 novel Whale Music, about a reclusive Brian Wilson figure holed up in a beach house writing songs to play for cetaceans - has died of lung cancer this morning at the age of 56. [more inside]
posted by gompa at 8:30 AM PST - 19 comments

Obzoks are what computers are for.
Every year, Golan Levin creates an animated, interactive greeting card. The most recent features a family of his old obzok creations, and is easily among the most nuanced computer programs I've ever seen. [more inside]
posted by e.e. coli at 8:21 AM PST - 11 comments

"A giraffe, refusing to condescend to all the fuss, stood calmly in the rising water and later died of pneumonia."
Around the time of the flooding in Troyes a plant in the south-east of Paris which supplied compressed air to the owners of ‘pneumatique’ equipment – lifts, ventilation, industrial machinery – was submerged. Parisians were fond of compressed-air technology. It was how the postal service delivered mail from one office to another in small brass shuttles propelled along a network of tubes. It was also used to keep the clocks ticking on the streets of the city and, by subscription, in private apartments. When the plant went underwater during the night, pneumatic time stopped dead.
Pavements Like Jelly is an article by Jeremy Harding describing the 1910 Great Flood of Paris which started 100 years ago today. Photo exhibition with 1300 photographs focusing on Paris. Even more photos, taking in the entire Seine. Both sites are Flash heavy, for a smaller selection of non-Flash pictures go here and here. [1910 Paris Flood previously on MetaFilter]
posted by Kattullus at 8:04 AM PST - 14 comments

Ten years of wonderful things
Happy 10th birthday to Boing Boing!
posted by digaman at 7:51 AM PST - 120 comments

Eye of Providence
The Business Plot of 1933 has reached a logical conclusion: the Supreme Court has ruled that corporations may spend freely (pdf) to support or oppose candidates for president and Congress.
posted by four panels at 7:36 AM PST - 332 comments

Devil's Swimming Pool
Atlas Obscura was previously mentioned here, but at that time had only been up and running for a week or so. It has since filled out a lot. Start your tour (if you dare) by taking a plunge into the Devil's Swimming Pool - a natural pool on the lip of Victoria Falls, inches from the 100-meter precipice. [more inside]
posted by woodblock100 at 7:13 AM PST - 12 comments

Do you kind of wish Pokemon cards had REAL creatures not FAKE creatures?
Do you kind of wish Pokemon cards had REAL creatures not FAKE creatures? [more inside]
posted by jonesor at 7:00 AM PST - 34 comments

it was then when the hurdy gurdy man came playing songs of влюбленность
Andrey Vinogradov has got the Russian hurdy gurdy you want. . 4,091 views. 2,635 views. 853 views. 5 views.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:19 AM PST - 16 comments

Does Fairey have a posse?
Shepard Fairey's Fight for Appropriation, Fair Use and Free Culture Evelyn McDonnell ponders his career and quotes Fairey's reasoning about the Obama "Hope" poster that got AP angry.
posted by dabitch at 6:19 AM PST - 7 comments

New Species Photos: Slug-Sucking Snake, Mini-Gecko, More
A see-through frog and a gecko the size of a pencil eraser are among rare and new species spotted in Ecuador.
posted by h0p3y at 4:02 AM PST - 39 comments

January 20
JunkStoreCameras.com
JunkStoreCameras : A piece of work, in more ways than one.
posted by spock at 10:45 PM PST - 22 comments

Reaching for the Sublime
Aleksandra Rdest's art uses a language drawn from weather patterns; inspired by sound waves, clouds, particles and cells on a microscopic level. The point of departure for these works is growth and decay; cellular division and multiplication, weather patterns biological colonization. Rdest’s love affair with colour gives rise to these paintings which are created by richly layering veils of paint to form a deep surface.
posted by netbros at 9:46 PM PST - 5 comments

Because sometimes you have to wonder if advertising copywriters have ever even met a woman
Ever made fun of a commercial, a TV show, or a romantic comedy? Of course you have. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel. But even shooting fish in a barrel can be done with style. Check out Info Mania’s Sarah Haskins’ Target Women spots in which Haskins dissects how the media types depicts we women types, especially when it comes to those matters so dear to the lady brain, like Botox, birth control, chick flicks, female political candidates, number two, cleaning, jewelry, diets, aging, skin care, the Oscars, Disney Princesses, vampires, The View, Michelle Obama’s arms, Lifetime programming, chocolate, lady parts, laundry, security, weddings, and of course that official food of women, yogurt. You can find a complete listing of Target Women spots here.
posted by orange swan at 9:35 PM PST - 72 comments

Fragments of La Traviata
Fragments of La Traviata in a Spanish fruit market
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:12 PM PST - 24 comments

Mom's First Nude Shoot
This isn't one of those stories about how empowering it was to pose naked for a magazine.
posted by Joe Beese at 6:01 PM PST - 57 comments

Twilight of the Giants
Last chance to see: Video of Mexico's Naica Cave of Crystals (Previously, and previously.) [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 5:36 PM PST - 20 comments

Not quite labour
Make your own David Campbell poster. Like so. Or just read a post about the posters.
posted by kenko at 4:02 PM PST - 139 comments

The 46 Dumpling Picture, and other photography from Damon Winter
Damon Winter is a photojournalist who has worked for The Dallas Morning News, The Los Angeles Times and now works for The New York Times. His work on a more sports-focused beat in Dallas lead to his update on athletes from the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics as part of the 2008 Olympics coverage. As a photographer with The New York Times, he won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for feature photography, for his first time out on the road, covering campaigns (narrated slideshow, 3min 19sec). Currently, he is sharing his photos and writing from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, which are included in NY Times Lens Blog (prev. Lens Blog features: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). If that's a bit heavy, check his photographers journal (narrated slide show, 2min 34sec) and his article on creating double-exposure juxtapositions from days or weeks of shooting large-form film. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:55 PM PST - 6 comments

This youth, it bulges?
More than 15 years again Robert Kaplan wrote in his occasionally prescient essay, "Though Islam is spreading in West Africa, it is being hobbled by syncretization with animism: this makes new converts less apt to become anti-Western extremists...." Glossing over the omission that Islam has been in West Africa for centuries, the recent exploding underpants incident has cemented the idea that a form of violent religious extremism has found root in West Africa, leaving many to wonder why and how. Some argue it's the inevitable result of dangerous demographics.
posted by Panjandrum at 3:13 PM PST - 17 comments

Well, it's sort of real, isn't it?
The 2009 winner of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition (also covered here in 2007 and 2008) has been stripped of his title after it emerged that his winning photo was not what it seemed. The judges decided that it was highly likely the picture was not of a wild Iberian wolf, but rather that it was of Ossian, a tame animal kept at Cañada Real Open Center near Madrid. [more inside]
posted by ZsigE at 2:29 PM PST - 40 comments

Canadians are supposed to put on their Made in China red mitts and are told to "believe."
A Shameful Track Record. The Olympic movement plays fast and loose with basic democratic values. [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 2:22 PM PST - 58 comments

it from bit
Emergent Gravity - Erik Verlinde has a theory that "gravitational attraction could be the result of the way information about material objects is organised in space..." Here's some related weblog discussions and follow along on twitter! (via /. & bruces ;)
posted by kliuless at 2:11 PM PST - 34 comments

Ladies and gentlemen.
So, Nathan has left the tape recorder on, and he says if I want to say fascinating things while he’s gone, I can. Well guess what I’m gonna do. While he’s gone, I’m taking his glass of beer and I’m putting it under the table and I’m gonna stick my fuckin’ dick in it. I’m gonna open up my zipper, and I’m gonna rub the tip of my fuckin’ cock around the mouth of his glass. Now I’m putting it back there. He’s gonna be drinkin’, but he ain’t gonna know until he plays this back the trick I pulled on him. The AV Club interviews Tony Clifton.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:34 PM PST - 58 comments

Two videos of helarity
Werner Herzog Reads Curious George and William Shatner and Henry Winkler have a complicated gay relationship. Are these videos related? Watch them and find out!
posted by The Devil Tesla at 1:33 PM PST - 21 comments

Enemy at the Gates
The Gates Notes is Bill Gate's new website containing his writings and ideas. Featuring such things as hist thoughts on why 0% emissions should be our real goal, why the Teaching Company is so great, and our progress on an AIDS vaccine.
posted by blue_beetle at 1:23 PM PST - 56 comments

Infernal beasties
The art of monsters with Guy Davis.
posted by Artw at 12:56 PM PST - 14 comments

Gunsights' biblical references concern US and UK forces
Coded references to biblical passages are inscribed on gunsights widely used by the US and British military in Iraq and Afghanistan, it has emerged. The markings include "2COR4:6" and "JN8:12", relating to verses in the books of II Corinthians and John. Trijicon, the US-based manufacturer, was founded by a devout Christian, and says it runs to "Biblical standards". But military officials in the US and UK have expressed concern over the way the markings will be perceived. The company had been adding the references to its sights for many years, but the issue surfaced only recently when soldiers complained to an advocacy group, an ABC News investigation found. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 12:44 PM PST - 234 comments

Posters
Reimagined movie posters from Claudia Varosio. (Eg., Fight Club, The Shining, The Man Who Fell to Earth) Also, Ross Berens's nine posters of the planets.
posted by OmieWise at 10:50 AM PST - 33 comments

Kinder, Küche, Kirche
In Germany, a Tradition Falls, and Women Rise. The half-day school system survived feudalism, the rise and demise of Hitler’s mother cult, the women’s movement of the 1970s and reunification with East Germany. Now, in the face of economic necessity, it is crumbling: one of the lowest birthrates in the world, the specter of labor shortages and slipping education standards have prompted a rethink.
posted by msalt at 10:08 AM PST - 94 comments

Gödel, Escher, Bach, blogged
Gödel, Escher, Bach, Tumblr Gödel, Escher, Bach, Tumblr is an online book group. We're reading one chapter a week of Douglas Hofstadter’s 1979 masterpiece book about artificial intelligence, mathematics, consciousness, puzzles, music, and language. They've been reading since the start of the month, so start in the archive. [Previously, More Previously, Event more previously, Previously in the future]
posted by Deathalicious at 9:57 AM PST - 33 comments

They aren't all addicts or slaves, trapped by circumstance and bad choices.
Sex Worker Literati is a monthly storytelling series that features sex workers, former sex workers, and people with stories about the sex industry who read, monologue, perform, and shimmy their ways into your hearts, minds, and naughty bits. (NSFW video feed) [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:52 AM PST - 46 comments

SING TO ME MUSE, OF VELOUR AND THE MAN
No relation to the Damon Dash reality TV show, the Ultimate Hustler is master of the dozens, leaping through time and space to slam weak bustas. At the very height of his powers, he joined the battle in book XX of the Iliad.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 9:26 AM PST - 30 comments

The other exit strategy
With quantitative easing on everyone's minds, pundits of all sorts talk about Central Bank exit strategies. But in The Treaty of Lisbon, which came into force across the EU on December 1st, 2009, it turns out European member states have put forward an exit strategy of a completely different kind [.pdf] . [more inside]
posted by Mutant at 7:01 AM PST - 31 comments

The United States of Whatever
Christopher Hitchens analyses the use of "like" as a filler word (single link Vanity Fair). Short version: "Clueless" started it, and the general Californication of the American spoken language. African American kids say "nome sane" instead of "like". Hitchens compares the use of "like" to intoning declarative sentences as questions, also called uptalk. Like, "I go to Columbia? The University?" [more inside]
posted by NekulturnY at 1:12 AM PST - 320 comments

January 19
More humans are alive today than had ever lived before 10,000 BC
The human population of Earth has almost always been about 50,000. [more inside]
posted by grobstein at 11:50 PM PST - 85 comments

NBC美國深夜脫口秀大風吹!!!
The Taiwanese have once again distilled one of the most important issues of the day into an easy to understand video
posted by delmoi at 11:15 PM PST - 22 comments

John Sayles' Baryo
John Sayles, writer and director of critically acclaimed and socially conscious films like Passion Fish and Lone Star, writer of trashier fare including Piranha and Battle Beyond the Stars, director of a couple music videos you might remember, and award-winning short-story writer and novelist, is working on a new project about the beginnings of the Philippine-American War. His long-time partner and producer Maggie Renzie and other crew are blogging the project as it is in progress.
posted by serazin at 10:10 PM PST - 27 comments

Open Earth
One of the great things about Google Earth is how extensible it is using KML. You can use it to show off placemarks, build 3D structures, track wildfires or hurricanes, and much more. Google Earth can be used as a scientific visualization platform. OpenEarth is an open source initiative that archives, hosts and disseminates Data, Models and Tools for marine and coastal scientists and engineers. Their KML data visualizations using Google Earth display some of the possibilities. [via] [more inside]
posted by netbros at 7:19 PM PST - 14 comments

Kiss U.S. Healthcare Reform Goodbye
Republican Scott Brown has defeated Democrat Martha Coakley in the special election to fill Ted Kennedy's former senate seat. [more inside]
posted by notswedish at 7:14 PM PST - 622 comments

Uniting American Families Act
LGBT Immigration Some countries such as Australia and Canada already allow same sex couples to immigrate. In the United States Senator Chuck Schumer of New York has said he will introduce a comprehensive immigration reform bill early this year. A window is opening to pass the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA)....
posted by ginky at 5:53 PM PST - 26 comments

Little windows into the past
If you live in a sufficiently old city in the U.S.,Canada, or the UK you've probably seen these set into concrete sidewalks or the panels of cast iron steps. Termed vault lights in the U.S., pavement lights in the UK, and sidewalk prisms in Canada, the glass insets were originally clear and intended to produce daylighting in subterranean spaces. The ethereal purple color results from the glass's manganese content being exposed to ultraviolet light over time. Many vault lights or sidewalk prisms are in poor condition, but some are being repaired.
posted by bad grammar at 5:18 PM PST - 46 comments

Whoa!Whoa!Whoa!
That's Why I chose Appalachian State Yale! Only 5 years after the original, an Ivy League school discovers the "brilliant" internet meme and decides to go for it no holds barred!
posted by zany pita at 4:30 PM PST - 57 comments

The True Genius Shudders at Incompleteness
Every year since 1949, an unidentified man has visited the grave of Edgar Allan Poe on the 19th of January (Poe's birthday) and presented cognac and three red roses in the writer's honor. This year, for no known reason, the "Poe Toaster" did not make an appearance. One possible explanation for his absence has already emerged. (Previously and previouslier.) [more inside]
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:23 PM PST - 55 comments

Best Fried Chicken Ever
Interested in making the Best Fried Chicken Ever? You'd start with a brine, perhaps the one Thomas Keller uses, which has lemon, honey, herbs and peppercorns. Harlem's master chicken fryer Charles Gabriel prefers a dry brine and the legendary Edna Lewis would have you brine the chicken a second time in buttermilk. [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 3:38 PM PST - 47 comments

H. G. Wells' review of Metropolis
A review of Fritz Lang's film Metropolis by H. G. Wells, published in the April 17, 1927 issue of the New York Times and reprinted in his essay collection The Way the World is Going.
posted by Prospero at 3:15 PM PST - 39 comments

Alaska to Tierra Del Fuego in 3.5 Years
In July 2006, they began in Alaska and have since pedaled over 34,000 kilometers, passed through 14 countries, and arrived in Ushuaia after 3.5 years of travel. [more inside]
posted by nestor_makhno at 3:07 PM PST - 11 comments

Mmmm...diamonds
Oceans of liquid diamond, filled with solid diamond icebergs, could be floating on Neptune and Uranus, according to a recent article in the journal Nature Physics. The research, based on the first detailed measurements of the melting point of diamond, found diamond behaves like water during freezing and melting, with solid forms floating atop liquid forms.
posted by billysumday at 1:16 PM PST - 96 comments

Under an 1805 "Crimes Against Nature" law
Prostitutes in New Orleans are being categorized as “sex offenders.” [via]
posted by Caduceus at 12:16 PM PST - 147 comments

Trans-Siberian Railway
Trans-Siberian Rail Journeys ...follows the route of the Trans-Siberian Railroad which connects the newly opened regions of Russia, China and Mongolia. The seven-day train trip begins in Moscow and ends in Bejing. Also includes Russian archival footage that traces the 25 years (1891-1916) that it took to build the railroad. (PBS, 1996, 2 hours)
posted by vronsky at 12:00 PM PST - 12 comments

Bobby Charles, Singer, Songwriter, National Treasure 1938-2010
Bobby Charles 1938-2010. Songwriter, musician's musician and cultural treasure, he died on last Thursday in Abbeville,Lousiana. In the 1950s, he wrote Fats Domino's Walking to New Orleans, Bill Haley and the Comet's See You Later, Alligator and recorded for Chess records. His eponymous Bearsville album recorded in Woodstock in 1972 has been described as the best Band album released under another name.(Check out Small Town Talk there.) He appeared as well in the Band's farewell concert filmed as The Last Waltz. He made an enormous contribution to American popular music. [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 11:43 AM PST - 25 comments

off the beaten path
Passport photos of famous artists, 1915-1925. Collection gleaned from passport applications files of writers actors, poets, artists, photographers. Also, Hollywood stars and other notables of the era.
posted by madamjujujive at 11:38 AM PST - 23 comments

Help the homeless, go to jail!
Dan du Vaul turned his family ranch into a homeless shelter and started making a difference. For this he ran afoul of the county and ended up in jail. [more inside]
posted by empty vessel at 11:36 AM PST - 78 comments

The widening gyre
Robert B. Parker, prolific crime-novel author, creator of Spenser, Sunny Randall, and Virgil Cole, among others, has died with his boots on.
posted by PsychoTherapist at 11:30 AM PST - 44 comments

America Bowl: U.S. Presidents vs. Super Bowls
America Bowl: U.S. Presidents vs. Super Bowls. "44 Presidents. 44 Super Bowls. Finally they battle head-to-head." For example, Abraham Lincoln vs. Super Bowl XVI: "Super Bowl XVI was pretty good. President 16 was pretty great. With malice toward none -- and in this we include the Bengals -- it's Abraham Lincoln in a walkover."
posted by kirkaracha at 11:07 AM PST - 28 comments

FBI broke law for years in phone record searches.
The FBI illegally collected more than 2,000 U.S. telephone call records between 2002 and 2006 by invoking terrorism emergencies that did not exist or simply persuading phone companies to provide records, according to internal bureau memos and interviews. FBI officials issued approvals after the fact to justify their actions. E-mails obtained by The Washington Post detail how counterterrorism officials inside FBI headquarters did not follow their own procedures that were put in place to protect civil liberties. The stream of urgent requests for phone records also overwhelmed the FBI communications analysis unit with work that ultimately was not connected to imminent threats. A Justice Department inspector general's report due out this month is expected to conclude that the FBI frequently violated the law with its emergency requests, bureau officials confirmed. Among those whose phone records were searched improperly were journalists for The Washington Post and the New York Times, according to interviews with government officials. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 9:42 AM PST - 93 comments

Folks Singer Kate McGarrigle Dead at 63
Folk singer Kate McGarrigle succumbs to cancer. Perhaps best known for her work with sister Anna, Kate was also the mother of performers Martha Wainwright and Rufus Wainwright. Kate and Anna's music was covered by more popular (in the US) performers, such as Linda Ronstadt, Bonnie Raitt, and others. My favorite thing they did is "The Log Drivers Waltz", available as a video from the National Film Board of Canada. It always takes me back to my mother's house in the Canada. The McGarrigle website has lots of news, information, and links on the performers.
posted by paddbear at 5:48 AM PST - 82 comments

OK, why can't I embed this music video?
Damian from OK Go, explains why their music videos cannot be embedded. Specifically their new music video for This Too Shall Pass.
posted by zerobyproxy at 5:43 AM PST - 199 comments

The inadvertent poetry of the coroner's report
Coroner's reports 1896-1935 Monroe County, Indiana. Strange, spare and haunting. The economy of description here makes each death a condensed, mysterious story; it's an addictive glimpse into an America with different expectations of life and death reminiscent, to me, of Wisconsin Death Trip as seen on a previous thread.
posted by fullofragerie at 5:26 AM PST - 110 comments

Microlight pilot dies on very first leg of charity flight to Australia
Martin Bromage, 49, took off yesterday morning but contact with him was lost over the Channel. His body was found by a French patrol boat at 10pm last night, two miles from Boulogne. His website remains up and his GPS location tracker is still working...
posted by A189Nut at 4:59 AM PST - 51 comments

Hey Ladies!
Meet The Lady : A tumblr blog of ladies you may want to meet. No captions. No explanations. Possibly NSFW..[via mefi projects]
posted by The Whelk at 4:51 AM PST - 33 comments

Charting the Beatles
Exploration of Beatles music through infographics.
posted by chillmost at 3:14 AM PST - 92 comments

'John Barleycorn' by Carol Ann Duffy
'John Barleycorn' by Carol Ann Duffy From BBC2's 'The Culture Show', aired 26th November 2009. A lament for, and a celebration of, the Great British Pub.
posted by srboisvert at 2:23 AM PST - 26 comments

January 18
Will It Waffle?
Waffleizer: 30 answers to the question "Will it waffle?" [via mefi projects]
posted by Effigy2000 at 9:48 PM PST - 31 comments

Wooden Bones
New research suggests that treated wood may serve as an ideal bone replacement. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 9:20 PM PST - 40 comments

Puppies!
Back with a new litter of puppies, the live Shiba Inu puppy cam. [more inside]
posted by MaryDellamorte at 8:42 PM PST - 36 comments

Anthemic
Karachi pharmaceutical chemist zzahier's youtube channel "Our World" collects over 2,000 anthems, speeches, and patriotic songs. [more inside]
posted by ormondsacker at 8:36 PM PST - 10 comments

Dictatorship in Newfoundland
In 1933 Newfoundland was a responsible, that is self governing, dominion on a par with Canada and Australia. To avoid a debt default the government suspended its constitution in favor of rule from the colonial office in London. After the second world war and a close referendum the the governments of the United Kingdom and Canada negotiated Newfoundland's ascension to Canada. The story boils down to a people losing their sovereignty due to a debt crisis. The Newfoundland Royal Commission report of 1933, the basis for the article and the actions it recounts is here. (The report is seeded with great-if-too-small pictures of Newfoundland from the 1930s and cool maps). [more inside]
posted by shothotbot at 7:44 PM PST - 46 comments

It's a great day for America, everybody
After David Letterman signs off and the Worldwide Pants production logo fades, viewing audiences are oftentimes treated to a cold open of an empty talk show set... one that quickly becomes the impromptu dance floor for a shameless Scot making an absolute giddy fool of himself while lip-syncing pop songs alongside a menagerie of puppets (and a couple of scantily-costumed stagehands). Now on YouTube for your viewing pleasure, the complete collection of Craig Ferguson's Late Late Show musical numbers: "Say Hey (I Love You)" by Michael Franti and Spearhead - "White Lines" by Duran Duran - "Wonderful Night" by Fatboy Slim - "Istanbul" by They Might Be Giants - "Oops!...I Did It Again" by Britney Spears - "MMMBop" by Hanson - "In the Navy" by Village People - "Fireball" by Don Spencer - "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz - "The Lonely Goatherd" from The Sound of Music - "She Taught Me How To Yodel" by Frank Ifield - "Fire" by The Prodigy - "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head" [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 4:51 PM PST - 128 comments

ASCII Art, flashing.
ASCIImeo, Videos in text.
posted by Substrata at 4:10 PM PST - 27 comments

You can "Derelicte" my balls.
Vivienne Westwood unveils homeless chic at Milan Fashion Week in a Zoolander joke brought to life. Fashion blog Project Rungay says, "Darlings, you just can't make this shit up." From The Times Online: "Some carried bedrolls. Another emerged from his cardboard box with a sleeping bag, slung it around his neck and quickly walked away." And there were shopping carts...
posted by artychoke at 4:06 PM PST - 86 comments

If You Could: Collaborate
If You Could: Collaborate is the fourth annual If You Could exhibition. Aiming to provide a platform for creatives from all over the world to question their conventional working methods and outcomes. The contributors have been challenged to produce something a little unexpected, by working with a partner of their choosing from any discipline, profession or background. These are the 33 collaborations. Previously, the Print Series 2008. [on display at the A Foundation Gallery until January 23rd]
posted by netbros at 4:02 PM PST - 2 comments

Panique au Village
A Town Called Panic. (MLYT)
posted by gamera at 3:37 PM PST - 10 comments

Words still fail me
Hanamushi has been mentioned previously, but the artist's site has been redone as part portfolio - part surreal point-n-click adventure.
posted by Sparx at 3:20 PM PST - 8 comments

Dr. King: "...if I had sneezed, I would have died."
MLK Jr: The First Attempt : Nearly 10 years before he was assassinated, as Dr. King signed copies of his book Stride Toward Freedom, Izola Ware Curry, a part-time maid from Georgia, stabbed him in the chest with a letter opener, nearly puncturing his aorta. Though she was eventually indicted for attempted murder, Ms. Curry was found incompetent to stand trial and committed to Matteawan State Hospital for the criminally insane. Characteristically, Dr. King forgave her and requested that she be rehabilitated as a productive member of society. [more inside]
posted by Alison at 2:53 PM PST - 7 comments

Make Your Own Star Trek Phaser, just In Case the Romulans Attack.
Make Your Own Star Trek Phaser [more inside]
posted by Olive Oil at 2:47 PM PST - 37 comments

The giant bear flies a fighter plane and destroys the earth.
A giant polar bear is awakened by an icebreaker and jumps into a fighter jet and destroys the earth. The Big Dipper explodes and turns into a bear which then destroys the moon and Anchorage and then goes to Fairbanks. A Grizzly bear is awakened by a cheering crowd and smashes the town and throws a rocket football. A space bear is awakened by the Nanook signal, destroys a Red Hawk, turns into a giant bear and destroys the roof. [more inside]
posted by Lord_Pall at 2:12 PM PST - 53 comments

EVIL little cameras
Should you ditch your dSLR? Wired thinks so. The recent introduction of EVIL cameras (Electronic Viewfinder, Interchangeable Lenses) is a revolution in camera design that has eliminated the original bane of photography, parallax error, without the use of a mirror (greatly reducing camera size). Canon, Nikon, and Sony are expected to introduce EVIL-type cameras within the year. [more inside]
posted by lattiboy at 12:58 PM PST - 143 comments

Perceptual Segregation
Perceptual Segregation [pdf]. A Columbia Law Review article by Russell K. Robinson: . . . While many whites view race-consciousness as an evil that must be strenuously avoided, blacks tend to see race-consciousness as critical to their survival in white-dominated realms. . . . [more inside]
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 12:52 PM PST - 163 comments

Civil Rights Superheroes
Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story: "People were told to read it, memorize it, and destroy it because if they were caught with it, they could be killed." The story of this influential comic book, which helped inspire the 1960 Woolworth's sit-in, is the subject of a new exhibition at Pittsburgh's Toonseum.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 12:31 PM PST - 8 comments

Lexicon BD-30
The Lexicon BD-30 is a THX-certified Blu-ray player with "Anchor Bay's award-winning Video Reference Series technology" that retails for $3,500. However, reviewers at Audioholics recently discovered that the BD-30 is nothing more than a non-THX-certified $500 Oppo BDP-83, placed in a new exterior, chassis and all, and marked up by $3000. At least one review forum stands by its assessment claiming that the Lexicon is superior to the Oppo. [via]
posted by Prospero at 12:04 PM PST - 75 comments

Editorial Cartoons by Winsor McCay
A selection of editorial cartoons by Winsor McCay [more inside]
posted by BitterOldPunk at 11:41 AM PST - 38 comments

A Single House
George Falconer is a creation of Christopher Isherwood. George's house, as selected by Dan Bishop, is a creation of John Lautner. The house is for sale.
posted by xod at 10:39 AM PST - 10 comments

Portraits from the hollers
Shelby Lee Adams has spent decades photographing the holler families of rural Kentucky and the mountain folk of Appalachia. More B&W images from the Edelman gallery. Interview With An Artist: Shelby Lee Adams (alternate B&W PDF version); Essays by Adams: All of Us and The Napier's Living Room, 1989; Interview with 92-year old Scotty Stidham.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:30 AM PST - 15 comments

Writing Good English
Writing English as a Second Language: A talk by William Zinsser to foreign students at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism | The American Scholar [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 10:29 AM PST - 12 comments

Deep Space Nein
Hitler Vs Khan Noonien Singh - Single Link Downfall Video, that is strangely awesome.
posted by Artw at 10:22 AM PST - 27 comments

Follow the money. I'll keep you in the right direction if I can, but that's all. Just... follow the money.
It's time to find out who owns your democracy, and how they bought it. Do you feel like US campaign finance is hopelessly shrouded in mystery? Fear not citizen, there's a website for that: The Center for Responsive Politics has made available a well-organized, highly detailed database of their analysis of US campaign finance to shine a bright nonpartisan light on the green underbelly of US democracy. [more inside]
posted by Salvor Hardin at 9:32 AM PST - 25 comments

This music is for the birds.
The Finches: some of the best angular, atonal, postpunk, improvisational guitar I've heard in a while. [more inside]
posted by googly at 8:47 AM PST - 55 comments

A series of tubes? Jumpsuits and shoes?
"Back when I was a boy, I bought a children's book at my town's library book sale called "2010: Living in the Future" by Geoffrey Hoyle. Written in 1972, it had been withdrawn from the library's collection by the mid-80s, when I picked it up. I've somehow managed to hang onto it for 25 years and now, suddenly, here we are: 2010. I'm reproducing this long out-of-print book here to see how we're doing. Are we really living in the future?"
posted by joshwa at 8:39 AM PST - 93 comments

It's a livin' thing... It's a terrible thing to lose...
Back before refrigeration, humanity turned to fermentation for much of our food preservation. With the help of some friendly bacteria and/or yeasts, home cooks can transmute tea into kombucha, and milk into yogurt, creme fraiche and buttermilk. [more inside]
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:10 AM PST - 66 comments

Welcome to Camp America
The Guantánamo “Suicides”: A Camp Delta sergeant blows the whistle. Harper's have made the full text of Scott Horton's investigation, which appears in this week's issue, available online. It alleges that the three 'suicides' were killed during interrogation at a secret facility, and the suicides faked to cover it up. Some comment here, but the article speaks for itself.
posted by unSane at 6:42 AM PST - 91 comments

Compra Original
The Book Pirates of Peru. A slideshow in which Peruvian author Daniel Alarcón describes the vibrant literary scene in his home country, where the informal publishing industry is the same size as its legitimate counterpart. There's no library system to speak of, the National Library's acquisitions budget is nil, but a culture of reading and writing is booming, with book sales and attendance at literary festivals up, up, up.
posted by WPW at 5:50 AM PST - 16 comments

January 17
Braitenberg vehicles: How to build a brain
Valentino Braitenberg's 1984 book, Vehicles: Experiments in Synthetic Psychology was a seminal work for its discussion of how one might design a system (biological or otherwise) in order to generate behavior like that seen in beings with brains. He embarks on a series of thought experiments in which he creates thirteen "vehicles" through simple components that (arguably) display intelligent behavior, evolving in a Darwinian fashion to demonstrate what appears to be high-level cognition. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 9:10 PM PST - 16 comments

Enter The Magical Mystery Chambers
Wu Tang Vs. The Beatles. You know you want it.
posted by milarepa at 8:19 PM PST - 100 comments

anti-piracy font piracy fail
French anti-piracy organisation uses pirated font in own logo.
posted by signal at 7:43 PM PST - 78 comments

Didn't Know About Propylene Glycol
Hummer Ices-up, Crashes, Recovers (SLCCTP)
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:34 PM PST - 24 comments

January 17, 1893
Today marks the 116th anniversary of the American-backed coup d'état of Queen Liliuokalani's constitutional monarchy of Hawaii. Led by a group of American politicians, businessmen and sugar planters, the coup resulted in Hawaii's annexation five years later, to a formal apology 100 years later, and to continued controversy about Hawaii's status as a state.
posted by HP LaserJet P10006 at 6:35 PM PST - 73 comments

Toussaint Louverture Strikes Back
Wyclef Jean's charity is coming under heavy fire for being unaccountable and ill-prepared to actually distribute emergency aid, despite aggressive fundraising. By contrast, CARE had a staff of 133 in Haiti even before the earthquake hit, has a long track record of providing disaster relief around the globe for decades, and the highest rating from CharityNavigator.org, an independent site that evaluates nonprofits' efficiency and capacity. CARE staff are blogging from the field and you can follow their Haiti updates on Twitter. [more inside]
posted by ilovemytoaster at 4:42 PM PST - 77 comments

666 t3h # of the beast
A brilliant farce (or is it) The Antichrist Conspiracy, Get ready to dig deep into the world wide web of conspiracy. Learn about the Luciferians, the Freemasons, and the Metafilter-moderator-cabal who together with the dark lord of hell and Yonkers is trying to harvest your organs for Satan. [more inside]
posted by nola at 3:42 PM PST - 52 comments

New York Times to charge online readers
New York Times Chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. appears close to announcing that the paper will begin charging for access to its website, according to people familiar with internal deliberations. After a year of sometimes fraught debate inside the paper, the choice for some time has been between a Wall Street Journal-type pay wall and the metered system adopted by the Financial Times, in which readers can sample a certain number of free articles before being asked to subscribe. The Times seems to have settled on the metered system. Will this be a success? A Harris poll released earlier this month found that 77 percent said they wouldn't pay anything to read a newspaper's stories on the Web. Of those who indicated they were willing to be charged for access to content, 19 percent would pay between $1 and $10 a month.
posted by VikingSword at 3:25 PM PST - 146 comments

The Minotaur Is Janitor
This year, ubiquitous yellow binge-eating sphere Pac-Man turns 30. At last, his traumatic origin story can be told: The Three Stigmata Of Pac-Man. [more inside]
posted by RokkitNite at 3:16 PM PST - 15 comments

Back issues available online...
"Title Magazine is a bimonthly online publication which collaborates with writers and artists to bring readers a collection of works that focuses on leading individuals and appealing topics in the art/design, music, and fashion culture." Interviewees include Fennesz, Richard Skelton, Aaron Ruell, Nosaj Thing, The XX, Amiina, and others.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 2:42 PM PST - 3 comments

Bad Movies
Vulture’s Critics’ Poll of the worst movies of 2009.
posted by vronsky at 1:39 PM PST - 133 comments

WE ARE VR
WE ARE VR. When the show VR Troopers was canceled, the cast and crew got drunk, dubbed over part of an episode and threw in some outtakes. Via the Something Awful Forums.
posted by clockworkjoe at 1:11 PM PST - 28 comments

"You're a dog!" "I'm a cop!"
Poochinski is a failed 1990 pilot that cast Peter Boyle as a cop killed in the line of duty who is then reincarnated as a talking bulldog muppet. A promo is here, and the full pilot has also been uploaded (parts 2 and 3).
posted by The Devil Tesla at 11:16 AM PST - 50 comments

Jack Kirby's William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar
"In 1969, Sheldon Feldner contacted Marvel Comics, asking if one of Marvel's artists would be interested in designing costumes for a production of William Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar by the University Theatre Company at Santa Cruz. As luck would have it, the Kirby family had recently moved to California..." Jack Kirby's designs for the production.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 10:29 AM PST - 31 comments

Ambient
On gospel, Abba and the death of the record: an audience with Brian Eno
posted by Artw at 9:14 AM PST - 134 comments

Take those losing concepts out of the wastebasket and recycle them.
Competition Competition 2010, at Architizer is an entirely new kind of architectural award that chooses its winner from the un-rewarded competition entries of 2009.
posted by R. Mutt at 8:16 AM PST - 2 comments

Martin Luther King was not a king but he was a great man
How do you explain the struggle for civil rights to a kindergartner? Pictures? Songs? Crafts? Puzzles? Construction paper in rainbow colors?
posted by twoleftfeet at 7:09 AM PST - 24 comments

Well, what do *you* do?
What do you do when you run out of gancha?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:09 AM PST - 62 comments

The Royal Nightmare
The Royal Nightmare, an interesting animated short. [more inside]
posted by Minus215Cee at 4:42 AM PST - 6 comments

silent listening: Ice Recordings
Andreas Bick's blog post about "dispersion of sound waves in ice sheets" made the rounds a few days ago. Now he has taken the opportunity "to draw the attention to some other very interesting webpages concerning the sound of ice".
posted by soundofsuburbia at 4:21 AM PST - 19 comments

Lovetown
Queens of Poland Long review/essay at the DRB on Michał Witkowski's Lubiewo (forthcoming in English translation as Lovetown; extract here), a book about gay life in Poland both in the days of communism and the subsequent Third Republic.
posted by Abiezer at 3:42 AM PST - 7 comments

Naughty Cathy
The Imperial Palaces of Tsarskoye Selo (nowadays Pushkin), near St. Petersburg, contained many invaluable cultural treasures that were plundered or destroyed during the Second World War. Most famous among them was the fabled Amber Room, whose disappearance has soured diplomatic relations between Germany and Russia ever since (the Germans can't find it back). Some claim that another, much more secret room of the Catherine Palace was also plundered. However, in this case, the Russian authorities deny that it ever existed. [more inside]
posted by Skeptic at 3:36 AM PST - 26 comments

The Lady Vanishes
"No one guessed the truth, which was simpler, and therefore stranger, than their wildest theories: that the scared young woman so hotly pursued by South Carolina police, the Secret Service, federal marshals and even the U.S. Army was actually on a bizarre and misguided journey of self-discovery." Rolling Stone reports on the strange case of Esther Reed: The Girl Who Conned The Ivy League. (via Metachat)
posted by The Whelk at 1:41 AM PST - 46 comments

January 16
Fighting on arrival, Fighting for survival
Following the end of the Civil War, Congress enacted “An Act to Increase and Fix the Military Peace Establishment of the United States”, which … included the establishment of two regiments of cavalry and four regiments of infantry to be composed of “colored men”. For the first time in the United States history black men had a place in the regular army. [more inside]
posted by serazin at 11:30 PM PST - 11 comments

Wooden Textiles
Future textile design by Elisa Strozyk.
posted by netbros at 8:41 PM PST - 6 comments

Han to h5, check Darth Vader
We've seen Lego and Star Wars combined many times. We've even seen a basic Lego chess set. But you may not yet have seen the Star Wars: A New Hope Lego Chess Set. Fanboys and chess enthusiasts may proceed to drool. [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:30 PM PST - 37 comments

“You Were, you Are, or you Will Be a danger to national security”… not eh.
Adil Charkaoui (born 1974) is a Morocco-born permanent resident of Canada who was arrested by the Canadian government under a security certificate in May 2003. When he admitted practicing Karate, two government ministers announced it was their "opinion" that he would also "have been trained in such areas as: operating rocket-propelled grenade-launchers, sabotage, urban combat and assassination", and sought to have him detained. The ministers also noted in their accusation that "[i]t was noteworthy that one of those who participated in the hijacking of [the September 11th attacks] had taken martial arts training in preparation..." and suggested that Charkaoui represented a sleeper agent. Charkaoui was arrested under a security certificate in May 2003, which was co-signed by Solicitor General Wayne Easter, and Immigration Minister Denis Coderre. He was detained without charge or trial in Rivière des prairies Detention Centre. He was released from prison on $50,000 bail on 18 February 2005. His bail conditions include a curfew, electronic monitoring, designated chaperones for leaving his home, restriction to the island of Montreal, 24-hour police access to his home without warrant, and a prohibition on access to the internet, on the use of cell phones and on the use of any telephone except the one in his home. - In October 2009, Montrealer Adil Charkaoui was declared a free man… [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 12:44 PM PST - 47 comments

Mitsuko Uchida
Three-time Gramophone Award winner, Dame of the Empire, and, by consensus, the world's greatest living performer of Mozart's keyboard works, Mitsuko Uchida also gives great piano face. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 9:22 AM PST - 13 comments

Not enough women have what it takes to behave like arrogant self-aggrandizing jerks.
A great Rant About Women by Clay Shirky: (Women) "are bad at behaving like self-promoting narcissists, anti-social obsessives, or pompous blowhards, even a little bit, even temporarily, even when it would be in their best interests to do so." [more inside]
posted by bru at 9:02 AM PST - 167 comments

Acoustic Guitar Solos
Brazilian guitarist Naudo has a nice command of his instrument and a relaxed presentation. He plays acoustic guitar standards like Stairway to Heaven and House of the Rising Sun. He plays other popular tunes like Hotel California and While My Guitar Gently Weeps. I especially like his Santana covers: Samba Pa Ti, Black Magic Woman. There's lots more Naudo videos at YouTube, at Naudo's blog, and at Naudo's page on sevenload.
posted by RussHy at 7:46 AM PST - 14 comments

Dogs of Moscow
Dogs of Moscow [more inside]
posted by IndigoJones at 7:25 AM PST - 38 comments

I ain't seen nothin'.
The Dirtiest Player. Was it only last season that Marvin Harrison was still catching TD passes for Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts? Now, in the wake of a brazen but mysterious Philadelphia gunfight - many details of which are reported here for the first time - the man who holds the NFL record for most receptions in a season may yet find himself with a permanent record of a different sort. (SLGQ) [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 6:32 AM PST - 37 comments

So much for the drought.
California's calm before the storm. It's just rain, right? Well, the meteorologists are publicly talking about a potentially epic storm that could trigger major flooding and mudslides, especially in areas effected by the state's widespread fires of the past few years. More ominously, though, is this internal email from CAL FIRE Division Chief Bob Wallen, which talks of the potential for "multiple large and powerful storm systems" with "a tremendous amount of precipitation . . . Much of NorCal is likely to see 5-10 inches in the lowlands, with 10-20 inches in orographically-favored areas. Most of SoCal will see 3-6 inches at lower elevations, with perhaps triple that amount in favored areas", with the potential for a massive snowfall, gusts in the 100-200 mph range in the high Sierras, possibly followed by plentiful warm rains that could melt the snow and cause massive flooding statewide. "The next 2-3 weeks (at least) are likely to be more active across California than any other 2-3 week period in recent memory."
posted by markkraft at 4:49 AM PST - 176 comments

Melty, crunchy, spicy, grilled post-modern nothingness.
Breaking news, Taco Bell will make you skinny! Not unknown for low-brow branding, Toxic Bell is following it's hedonistic Fourthmeal campaign with an appeal to "sensible choices". [more inside]
posted by Juicy Avenger at 2:09 AM PST - 139 comments

Cooking the books
Looking for a new project? Wish you were a better cook? Why not try cooking every recipe in a cookbook? Originally started by Julie Powell of Julie & Julia fame, people now register domain names for anticipated cookbooks in advance of the release date. As daunting as it seems to tackle the entirety of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, that challenge seems to pale in comparison to the epic quest of cooking all 1000+ recipes in the Gourmet cookbook. For the chef who wants a different sort of challenge, there are the particular demands of Heston Blumenthal's $250, 11.6 pound molecular gastronomy bible, The Big Fat Duck Cookbook. While the bloggers cooking through Alinea are working with isomalt and sorghum flour, the daring souls blogging Nose to Tail are wrestling with noses, tails, and all the offal parts in between. If this seems like a lonely road, maybe you'd like to join one of the group baking projects such as Tuesdays with Dorie or The Bread Baker's Apprentice.
posted by hindmost at 2:06 AM PST - 47 comments

Y Front Page Post
Indeed, at 6 million years of separation, the difference in [Y-chromosome] gene content in chimpanzee and human is more comparable to the difference in autosomal gene content in chicken and human, at 310 million years of separation.
It is commonly said that the Human and Chimpanzee genomes share 99% or more identical DNA. In a surprising development about to be published in Nature, the Y-chromosomes of these two species were found to share only 70% of their DNA, raising important questions about the mode and tempo by which speciation from a common ancestor occurred. This finding may point the finger at the evolution of different patterns of sperm-competition and mating practices within these two species.
posted by Rumple at 12:00 AM PST - 21 comments

January 15
You're gonna put somebody's eye out with that deuce.
Card Throwing. Can ordinary playing cards be used as deadly weapons? Well, no, that myth was already busted in 2004 (but it inspired some self-confessed nerds to build their own card-throwing machines and stage a contest). Even though it's not lethal, card throwing (also known as card shooting and card scaling) is still an interesting and multifaceted skill. Check out some YouTube videos of card throwing champs Ricky Jay and Rick Smith Jr., as well as other efforts.
posted by amyms at 11:26 PM PST - 17 comments

Pink Piggy Walks Free.
Alan Ellis, ex-admin of OiNK's Pink Palace, was acquitted by a Teesside Crown Court jury yesterday. [more inside]
posted by starzero at 5:30 PM PST - 45 comments

This Is Where We Live
This Is Where We Live is a stop motion short film by 4th Estate. Found at Bifurcated Rivets.
posted by snsranch at 4:10 PM PST - 10 comments

Scholar of vodou on the tragedy in Haiti
An excellent response to Pat Robertson. "This Vodou priest is not speaking about divine retribution, as has Pat Robertson. God is not punishing us for disobedience. Erol is speaking about a giant natural rebalancing act, a reaction against human dealings with the ecosystem."
posted by fullofragerie at 3:30 PM PST - 148 comments

The Secret History Of Frank Farian
Boney M were a successful German disco group of the late 70s, known for wild onstage costumes, frontman Bobby Farrell's bass voice and signature dancing style, and their hits, which included Baby Do You Wanna Bump, Daddy Cool, Ma Baker, and Belfast.

However, it was an open secret that Boney M was masterminded by producer Frank Farian. Farian wrote Boney M's songs and performed all of the male vocals (and many of the background female vocals) in the studio. Farrell and the rest of the band merely mimed Farian's heavily manipulated vocals when appearing on television. Hmm, a German dance band lipsynching someone else's vocals...sound familiar? [more inside]
posted by Ian A.T. at 3:27 PM PST - 54 comments

I often think back to that magical summer when I was 13 years old
Kid Casting is a Tumblr-full of the same movie character as a child and an adult, courtesy of Dave Shumka, co-host of Stop Podcasting Yourself.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 2:59 PM PST - 28 comments

Denis Zilber illustrations
Artwork by Denis Zilber (NSFW) which will make you want to do some drawing.
posted by snoktruix at 2:46 PM PST - 20 comments

Friday Flash Fun : Words Fail Me.
Friday Fun, this time it's.. err... REPLAYING: The Game. Including such classics as Sarah Palin: The Game, Cultural Imperialism: The Game, AIG Bailouts: The Game and Many Many More. [more inside]
posted by Lord_Pall at 1:19 PM PST - 21 comments

Hey baby can you no see you baking sadness pie?
"That Would Be Awesome" is a song written by Bigfoot, the lyrics to which were published in the illustrated Bigfoot memoir Me Write Book: It Bigfoot Memoir. It has been arranged for ukelele and harmonica and posted to YouTube. It is awesome. [more inside]
posted by gompa at 12:06 PM PST - 21 comments

Diving into the Jury Pool
On September 20, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear argument from a defendant convicted in 1993 by an all white jury in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The issue is whether the county's system of jury selection violated the defendant's Sixth Amendment right to be tried by a jury drawn from a fair cross section of the community. At the time of the 1990 census, African Americans composed 7.8% of eligible jurors in Kent County and 18.1% of eligible jurors in Grand Rapids. The defendant asserts, however, that they were routinely excused. All briefs can be reviewed here. Unless the Court chooses to decide the case on purely procedural grounds, it could set precedent with a significant impact on daily local jury selection.
posted by bearwife at 10:44 AM PST - 78 comments

Grindr: More than an iApp for instant gay trysts!
Grindr is an iPhone/iTouch app for that special kind of guy. Rather like bat sonar, Grindr pings nearby guys also using Grindr and shows your their pictures. Why, whatever for? “Turning those missed connections into real connections,” says the founder. (Keep it clean, boys! “We have censors who work 24/7 to review each profile.”) If all else fails, your augmented-gaydar app can block one of these “connections.” Enough fellas are doing so that the inevitable (Guys with iPhones–like) Tumblr has emerged: Guys I Blocked on Grindr (often NSFW; via).
posted by joeclark at 10:42 AM PST - 103 comments

Doesn't matter if you're black or white...purple on the other hand is right out.
Friday Flash Fun Puzzler: Grayscale is a puzzle game where you control a dot from one end of a route to another, manipulating wheels and other obstacles to get to the goal. Controlled by mouse.
posted by schyler523 at 10:34 AM PST - 13 comments

Open source climate data and algorithms
Do you want to personally verify climate science? You can, with open source data and algorithms. OpenTemp.org: An Open Analysis of the Historical Temperature Record. Clear Climate Code: Python reimplementation of GISTEMP, the NASA GISS surface temperature analysis. EDGCM: a research-grade Global Climate Model (GCM) with a user-friendly interface that can be run on a desktop computer.
posted by stbalbach at 10:33 AM PST - 42 comments

Suddenly My House Became a Tree of Sores.
He doesn't do metaphors. He doesn't make Postmodern references to other art. He doesn't even know what his own work 'means.' Richard Kovitch on the failure of the Tate Modern's recent symposium on David Lynch, which featured Gregory Crewdson, Louise Wilson, Chris Rodley, Parveen Adams, Simon Critchley, Roger Luckhurst, Tom McCarthy (edited remarks here), and Sarah Churchwell and Jamieson Webster (transcription here), among others. Write-up on Paris retrospective of Lynch's painting here, which was collected into the book The Air is On Fire.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:40 AM PST - 121 comments

Survival
Arctic Survival::Desert Survival::Jungle Survival::Sea Survival
posted by OmieWise at 9:30 AM PST - 27 comments

Osama Bin Commie
A Spanish newspaper has noticed that the State Department's identikit picture of Osama Bin Laden appears to have the hair and forehead of Spanish Communist leader Gaspar Llamazares.
posted by Skeptic at 9:25 AM PST - 49 comments

Igor Presnyakov plays classical guitar
Classical guitar virtuoso Igor Presnyakov won't do what you tell him (NSFW/lyrics). But he will bring his unique style to an array of well-known songs: Bad Romance, Thriller, Beat It, Poker Face, Ain't No Sunshine, Isn't She Lovely. [more inside]
posted by tomcooke at 12:00 AM PST - 66 comments

January 14
Bad: Bear eats your airplane. Rad: You fix it with duct tape and fly it home.
If a bear destroys your plane in the woods you can use duct tape to fly it home. If you're crazy. Or brave. But it's more proof that duct tape can fix anything.
posted by mattoly at 5:38 PM PST - 88 comments

Best Science Blog Posts of 2009
The Open Laboratory 2009: The 50 best science blog posts of the year. The complete list of over 700 submissions. [more inside]
posted by bobobox at 5:30 PM PST - 21 comments

What's wrong with my Internet?
ICSI Netalyzr is a java applet that performs an impressive collection of tests on your Internet connection, and reports the results back to you (and to the ICSI) in an easily readable format. [more inside]
posted by FishBike at 3:23 PM PST - 96 comments

Maybe you'll get some, maybe you won't!
Rena Smaha and her trained rhesus monkeys on Late Night with David Letterman. The year is 1987. Rena Smaha brings her two rhesus monkeys over for a tea party and a few stupid pet tricks. Unfortunately, Dave and Sandy the Monkey don't quite see eye to eye...
posted by Servo5678 at 3:08 PM PST - 49 comments

You can't begin to tell the story....
Life Before Your Eyes
posted by anastasiav at 1:48 PM PST - 21 comments

Meet America's First Legal Male Prostitute
An interview with the first male gigolo of the Shady Lady Ranch:
I think for a male, if you want to be successful in this type of venture, you're not a prostitute. You're a surrogate lover. You encompass everything that's required of you—not only emotionally, physically—but psychologically. Because women are wired differently. They're much more sensitive creatures. You actually have to enjoy what you do. You can't necessarily say, "Oh, it's just a job." You actually have to say it's a passion.
Background: Nevada has legalized male prostitution (LATimes)
posted by andoatnp at 1:46 PM PST - 213 comments

Write less, do more
January 14th marks the 4th birthday of jQuery and also the release of jQuery 1.4. To celebrate the release of the latest version of the popular JavaScript library the jQuery team has created the 14 Days of jQuery site, which will be updated each day with a new announcement or release. There’s also prizes to be had for the coolest use of jQuery.
posted by Artw at 1:02 PM PST - 44 comments

Unclean slate
An expert in Elizabethan handwriting is attempting to decipher the inscriptions on a 400-year-old slate tablet discovered by archaeologists working at Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in America. Want to take a crack at it yourself? First, you're going to want to take English Handwriting, 1500-1700: An Online Course. Then, keep your skills sharp with a daily dose of Early Modern Paleography. (This week's images will be well known to a certain MeFite.)
posted by Horace Rumpole at 12:48 PM PST - 49 comments

Ever Wonder Why NFL Apparel Is So Expensive?
Is the National Football League a single entity or 32 individual businesses? That’s the question before the Supreme Court in the case of American Needle vs. NFL. American Needle (warning: heavy Flash), a Buffalo Grove, IL sport apparel manufacturer, claims the NFL’s exclusive contract with Reebok to manufacturer all NFL apparel is an anti-trust violation. The NFL counters that they are one entity, and thus, cannot conspire against themselves to restrict competition. [more inside]
posted by The Gooch at 9:49 AM PST - 87 comments

Should you pay for the Internet? (YES)
John Tierney's thoughts on Jaron Lanier's new book asserting that John's blog, the NY Times, and all content creators must find a universal, government legislated system of monetizing the internet.
posted by The3rdMan at 8:40 AM PST - 144 comments

The politics of Avatar
James Cameron has acknowledged that Avatar implicitly criticizes America's War in Iraq and the impersonal nature of mechanized warfare in general, although it's not the films main theme. American Conservatives have blasted Avatar for depicting U.S. marines as villains. Others see it as a "race fantasy" for white people. Over in China, Communists see parallels between the movie’s plot and one of the nation’s most prominent social issues: the forced removal of Chinese citizens from their homes for government development projects. The St. Petersburg Communist Party believes the film is an American apology for Obama's Nobel Peace Prize. “It is quite funny to watch how the activists of the national liberation movement of Pandora accept a Pentagon-made mutant instead of judging him by the laws of the revolutionary time,” the communists noted.
posted by stbalbach at 8:09 AM PST - 264 comments

Teddy Pendergrass 1950 - 2010
Singer Teddy Pendergrass has passed away. [more inside]
posted by svenni at 5:39 AM PST - 69 comments

Slow and Steady
B.B. King plays to a New York prison audience on Thanksgiving Day 1972 "How Blue Can You Get." Plus, bonus SRV inside. [more inside]
posted by captain cosine at 12:32 AM PST - 25 comments

January 13
Bat Boy's Back and Ed Anger's Angry!
Two and a half years after ceasing publication, and months after its back catalog was archived by Google Books, The Weekly World News has returned to the dead-tree marketplace as a comic book in a limited 4-issue series from IDW. So what's next for Bat Boy and his Friends? A TV show? (Maybe...)
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:55 PM PST - 18 comments

When transphobia interferes with quality healthcare
"Melissa" (name changed for privacy) is a transwoman who was badly injured in a car accident and is in hospital in critical condition. While in treatment, some of the medical staff and her family decided that since she still had a "male" body, to make things "less confusing", they will erase 4 years of her female identity by referring to her as a man and taking her off her hormone therapy. (Warning: possible triggers) As little light puts it:
And if she woke up as from a deep sleep, she’d wake up into a world where her best friend was dead, where her body had been forcibly edited back to its pre-transition state and given a few more years of the influence of testosterone to boot, where her memory and self were hazy and confusing and nobody was calling her by the right name and pronouns, they were in fact pretending four years of her life, the four years she finally got to be honest and true to herself, those had never happened, and shh, she’s just confused, shhhh, calm down, let’s work on fixing your memory some more.
[more inside]
posted by divabat at 11:24 PM PST - 147 comments

First Person Tetris
Ever wondered what it's like to be a piece in tetris? Now you can know in first person tetris. (Warning, this may be disorienting/dizzying)
posted by Hactar at 10:01 PM PST - 57 comments

The Americanization of Mental Illness
"We have for many years been busily engaged in a grand project of Americanizing the world’s understanding of mental health and illness. We may indeed be far along in homogenizing the way the world goes mad." Ethan Watters examines the growing evidence that some mental illnesses are cultural phenomena that can be exported. [more inside]
posted by dubitoergosum at 7:10 PM PST - 66 comments

Anarchism or Barbarism
Who says anarcho-primitivists have no friends? Anarchist thinker John Zerzan will be the keynote speaker at January 15th's centenary meeting of the 100,000-member Spanish anarcho-syndicalist union Confederaction General del Trabajos. Zerzan, who has previously called syndicalism "self-management of alienation" will speak on the topic "Anarchism or Barbarism?". What will anarchy look like in the future?
posted by parmanparman at 5:34 PM PST - 108 comments

Another Peek Inside Facebook
Conversations About the Internet #5: Anonymous Facebook Employee. [more inside]
posted by SpringAquifer at 4:56 PM PST - 66 comments

(Adobe) Flash Gordon!
Gordon is an open-source Flash runtime -- in JavaScript! Demos here and here. It only supports version 1 so far, but with hardware acceleration for things like <canvas> and SVG gaining traction, could have real potential. It even works on the iPhone. Only for Safari/WebKit, Firefox & Chrome. [via] [more inside]
posted by SpookyFish at 4:41 PM PST - 56 comments

It's always September 13, 1999 somewhere
Space: 1999 (1975-77) is a British sci-fi series, the last production of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson who were first recognized for their work in "Supermarionation." This series saw the end of the couple, with Sylvia Anderson leaving the show at the end of the first season. She was replaced by Fred Freiberger, who brought in some Star Trek sensibilities and attempted to cater the show more to the American action-adventure audience. A third season was planned but not produced, and left the series unfinished, ending on an episode that was "like bad Shakespeare, or worse, bad Star Trek." Fans still support the show in many forms, even creating a semi-official fan-produced mini-episode entitled Message from Moonbase Alpha to bring some completion to the series, which was shown on September 13, 1999 at the Breakaway: 1999 convention. Another group of fans has recently taken to updating the whole series, to bring Space:1999 into the future. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:54 PM PST - 91 comments

In this city, we know how to get down
A rather silly music video
posted by tehloki at 3:13 PM PST - 35 comments

The sarcasm mark
A long-standing online problem has been solved: Sarcmark Inc has invented the "sarcasm" indicator. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 3:08 PM PST - 72 comments

Our pizza doesn't suck any more
Domino's would like you to know: Our pizza doesn't suck any more.
posted by Joe Beese at 3:00 PM PST - 178 comments

Jay Reatard dies.
much too young.. Prolific, awesome, sometimes hated musician Jay Reatard dies in New York. [more inside]
posted by lumpenprole at 2:32 PM PST - 50 comments

Avon Barksdale Lives Among Us
Nathan Avon "Bodie" Barksdale is a real life Baltimore gangster upon whom the character from "The Wire" was based. Now, Nathan Barksdale has a chance to tell his side of the story in this upcoming documentary. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 2:07 PM PST - 31 comments

So long, Rob. It's been Real swell
You remember Real, right? They made that media player you tried (and sometimes failed) to uninstall. They took on Microsoft and won a few years back, and Real remains propped up on that pile of cash. Last year, Real took on the motion-picture industry, and failed. A few days ago, a follow-on suit was slapped around the ears by judge Marilyn Patel, the same Patel that sent Napster packing. Yesterday, Real's COO resigned. Today, Real founder Rob Glaser stepped down as CEO.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 1:23 PM PST - 85 comments

If we can make public transit more convenient, more people will ride public transit. More people riding public transit equals less driving. Less driving equals a healthier planet.
City-Go-Round is a website that gathers reviews of transit-related mobile apps. It's also trying to shame the 670 transit authorities it knows of who don't have open data (versus a paltry 97 that do) into releasing it by listing them and asking its users to petition the head of each one. (From FrontSeat, the same folks who brought you Walk Score [previously] and the Predatory Lending Association [previously].)
posted by ocherdraco at 1:04 PM PST - 13 comments

Putting the tackle into Society of the Spectacle
"One might be tempted to say that the LFL is a startling critique of the homoerotic undertones that are rife within men’s American Football. Indeed American Football’s hyper-masculine qualities, its predilection for tight trousers, bottom patting and suggestive positional names (‘tight end’) have long made it an easy target for artists, theorists, critics, or anyone who is not American. Yet while to claim such satirical depths for the LFL would be disingenuous, what the LFL does achieve is equally subversive." Highbrow British art magazine Frieze discovers the Lingerie Football League. Warning: pictures on both links are NSFW.
posted by WPW at 12:55 PM PST - 73 comments

Flying bicycles
Kolelinia is a city fly attempt. We are born to move, this makes us alive. The transport is not only a transport, it has to be an experience! (via)
posted by mrgrimm at 12:30 PM PST - 41 comments

A man of means by no means
One hot June morning in 1953, a retired couple from western Missouri packed their Chrysler New Yorker with 11 suitcases and started driving east. A few hours later, they stopped at a diner in Hannibal, Mo., and ordered fruit plates and iced tea. “We thought we were getting by big as an unknown traveling couple until we went to the counter to pay the bill,” Harry Truman later wrote of that lunch. “Just as we arose from the table some county judges came in and the incog was off.” And thus began an excellent adventure of a type that happened once and will never happen again: The Harry and Bess Truman Ex-Presidential Road Trip. [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 11:16 AM PST - 56 comments

Rhymes with ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay.
Playground Jungle: The "folk process" in the subversive songs, rhymes, stories and jokes you told when the teacher wasn't around. Visit the whole (growing) collection via the index of first lines.
posted by nebulawindphone at 10:16 AM PST - 101 comments

The Magic Garden
"This is a garden of make believe, a magical garden of make believe where the flowers chuckle and birds play tricks and the magic tree grows lollipop sticks." - If you were a kid in New York, New Jersey or Pennsylvania from 1972 to 1984, chances are you watched The Magic Garden. [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 10:03 AM PST - 36 comments

Black flowers blooming
After publishing it's 50 Greatest TV Dramas Of All Time as picked by its television critics (but no Brooker) The Guardian launches it's TV Club to discuss those that didn't make the cut. First up: Edge Of Darkness.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:28 AM PST - 90 comments

All Gnytte Long
The Sexaholics of Truthteller Planet - yes, it's one of those rotten logic problems, one of many that can be found at Tanya Khovanova’s Math Guide to the MIT Mystery Hunt.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:16 AM PST - 21 comments

A Better Boarding Pass
Boarding Pass/Fail, "I was heading back from New York where I had met up with fellow designer Dustin Curtis. If you are not aware of Dustin's take on American Airlines, go read this. Anyway, I was inspired by Dustin and his attitude towards shittily designed things, to say the least. I was bored so I started rummaging through my stuff trying to find something to read when I grabbed my boarding pass. So I stared at it for a while. Rubbed my eyes, then stared at it some more. "
posted by geoff. at 7:41 AM PST - 252 comments

"Truth is the highest thing that man may keep." - Chaucer
"I'm needy, but I'm not greedy. It's better to be honest." A New York City cabbie returns over $21,000 left in his taxi. A similar case occurred three years ago when a Manhattan cabbie returned half a million dollars worth of diamond rings. Honest taxi drivers can be found on the West Coast, as well.
posted by Tenacious.Me.Tokyo at 7:41 AM PST - 43 comments

Penguins aren't much help with surgery.
Auto-appendectomy in the Antarctic.
posted by dmd at 7:19 AM PST - 56 comments

He drinks a whisky drink, He drinks a vodka drink, He drinks a lager drink, He pays a fortune for the privilege...
The House of Commons Health Committee recommends (report) that England should introduce a minimum price for alcohol. Unsurprisingly, the British Medical Association agrees, saying that the country needs "minimum pricing, higher taxation, reduced availability, improved regulation and better treatment for patients who have alcohol addiction problems" while the alcohol industry does not." So, what is the worth of a pint? [more inside]
posted by patricio at 7:12 AM PST - 27 comments

I must look like a vandal, a kid or an amateur...
Further to the recent FPP about the end of his time on Dr. Who, Whovians can now find out more behind the scenes information about Russell T Davies' thoughts, experience and creative process in The Writers Tale: The Final Chapter. Here, one can learn twenty or so things about the final season that you might not already know... or read Russell confronting head-on some criticisms of his work on the show... [more inside]
posted by lucien_reeve at 5:44 AM PST - 75 comments

Men's Fashion and Style
Valet — An online lifestyle publication focused on the latest and best in fashion, culture and gear for men. Includes the two-part survey The Female Perspective, A Modern Guide to Dating from the Minds of 150 Opinionated Ladies.
posted by netbros at 12:07 AM PST - 120 comments

January 12
gain face
Modigliani yourself, and other transformations.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 11:48 PM PST - 18 comments

A bodybuilder so smashing he can blow up a hot-water bottle!
“Muscles like melons – and a fantastic amount of puff!” Using vintage Blue Peter footage as your board, play the classic parlour game Gay or Foppish British Television Presenter? (SLYT. Via)
posted by joeclark at 9:47 PM PST - 14 comments

Kanehsatake
Alanis Obomsawin is a Canadian filmmaker and Officer of the Order of Canada, perhaps best known for her 1993 film Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance. During the Oka Crisis, Obomsawin spent 78 days and nights filming the armed stand-off between the Mohawks, the Quebec police and the Canadian army. Previously.
posted by acro at 9:41 PM PST - 5 comments

"We're all temps now."
The Disposable Worker - "In contrast with the past, what is good for America's global corporations is no longer necessarily good for the American people." (single-page print version) [more inside]
posted by Eideteker at 8:41 PM PST - 100 comments

Two For the Road
"Two for the road is an online editing experiment based on the aesthetic and composition of two photographs co-existing in the same space."
posted by chunking express at 8:16 PM PST - 23 comments

TED? Head(hunters)
Herbie Hancock delivers a TED Talk. Not much talking, plenty of jamming. Marcus Miller and Harvey Mason accompany Hancock. Check out the monster Watermelon Man that starts around fourteen minutes in.
posted by fixedgear at 8:02 PM PST - 11 comments

Do kids need to learn gardening or more algebra?
"The suicidal dietary choices of so many poor people are the result of a problem, not the problem itself. The solution lies in an education that will propel students into a higher economic class, where they will live better and therefore eat better." So argues Caitlin Flanagan in the pages of The Atlantic against Alice Waters' idea that school curricula ought to teach children where food comes from and how to grow it (see The Edible Schoolyard).
posted by shivohum at 7:55 PM PST - 124 comments

As someone said, "awesomeness compressed into one video."
Hoops, bellydance, circus, burlesque, fire, LEDs, staff, rainbows - what else could you fit in one performance? (SLYVF)
posted by divabat at 7:51 PM PST - 12 comments

Three Songs of Leadbelly
The only film ever made of the legendary Lead Belly. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 7:27 PM PST - 39 comments

He was no Joe Shlabotnik
In an age where baseball heroes are reviled as frauds, one player's reputation remains secure. His won-loss record and career ERA set standards that will never be matched; the same is true for the character he displayed on and off the mound. But, unbelievable as it may seem, no one has ever set down the exhaustive account of this lion of the diamond. Until now. Charlie Brown's career statistics, 1951-1960. Charlie Brown's career statistics, 1961-1970. Previously on MetaFilter: action-packed four-panel drawings of some of Charlie's greatest games, with material from his personal life as well.
posted by escabeche at 6:29 PM PST - 26 comments

Voice Throwin' Blues
Voice Throwin' Blues: On June 14, 1929 in Richmond, Indiana, Walter "Buddy Boy" Hawkins recorded the first, best and possibly only ventriloquist blues song.
posted by neroli at 5:24 PM PST - 7 comments

On What There Is
"Ontologiam seu scientiam de Aliquo et Nihilo, Ente et Non ente, Re et modo rei, Substantia et Accidente." - Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716). [more inside]
posted by ageispolis at 4:30 PM PST - 18 comments

Multitrackstar
Multitrack a cappella (mostly) videos feature the same person layering multiple harmonies to sing a song. The results can be incredible: "Thriller" in 64 voices, "You Rock My World" in 38 voices, "Baby on Board" from the barbershop quartet episode of The Simpsons, "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot", falsetto-tastic "Amazing Grace", "Poker Face", ... [more inside]
posted by spiderskull at 4:23 PM PST - 43 comments

Haitian Earthquake
A 7.0 magnitude earthquake centered near Port-au-Prince, Haiti has caused major devastation. (CNN link). [more inside]
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:21 PM PST - 294 comments

Primitive North America
"When the car would stop and the engine would cease, the player would also die away. The tape of the cassette motionless. [...] Stationary and in silence, we saw black. The world as it was. Nothing." A collection of early American black metal, including Haxan, Akitsa, and Ancestors. Compiled from tapes, hiss and all. [more inside]
posted by thedaniel at 4:14 PM PST - 16 comments

A New Approach To China
Official Google Blog: In mid-December, we detected a highly sophisticated and targeted attack on our corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of intellectual property from Google. However, it soon became clear that what at first appeared to be solely a security incident--albeit a significant one--was something quite different ... ... we have evidence to suggest that a primary goal of the attackers was accessing the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists ... ... We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on Google.cn, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all.
posted by memebake at 3:39 PM PST - 227 comments

Nakatomi Space
Nakatomi Space: On Die Hard, walking through walls, and the Israeli Army.
posted by vronsky at 3:37 PM PST - 31 comments

How to eat sushi
An illustrated primer
posted by pollex at 2:35 PM PST - 64 comments

The human race is doomed. DOOMED, I TELL YOU!!!!
Inspiration for the sex robot sprang from the September 11, 2001 attacks.
posted by minimii at 2:24 PM PST - 130 comments

From idea to company to ... timecube?
"Pile is a new, radically relationist approach to data, structures and computing" invented by Erez Elul and supported by Peter Krieg (obit, much more in German here) promised much. In 2000, a company was founded (pilesys on archive.org), later a book was published ("The paranoid machine", by Peter Krieg.) [more inside]
posted by Glow Bucket at 2:14 PM PST - 24 comments

Stay awhile, and listen.
The Deckard Cain Rap (ytmnd), performed by voice actor Michael Gough.
posted by Prospero at 1:46 PM PST - 15 comments

La Grande Confrérie du Cassoulet de Castelnaudary
"Our sole purpose is to defend the glory and the quality of our cassoulet."
posted by Joe Beese at 1:26 PM PST - 33 comments

Plow Monday, Historic and Updated
On January 11, 2010, Canon David Parrott blessed laptop computers and mobile phones during the Plow Monday service at St Lawrence Jewry Church in the City of London. Plough Monday is the traditional start of the English agricultural year, and the Church was involved with blessing of tools for the coming year. Before it was involved with church services, Plough Monday was a time for folk plays and dancing (associated with other Mummers plays), with regional variations. Some new Molly Dancers have revived the traditions, complete with plow. There were also races to see who would start their work the earliest, to show their readiness to commence the labors of the year. So sing out now and walk your plough (or play a ring tone on your mobile phone). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:12 PM PST - 12 comments

Gosh, you've... really got some nice toys here.
Blade Runner will prove invincible My life and creative work are justified and completed by BLADE RUNNER. Thank you..and it is going to be one hell of a commercial success. It will prove invincible. (via Letters of Note) [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 1:10 PM PST - 52 comments

Overgrowth Design Blog
Wolfire Games (Lugaru, Black Shades) is blogging the creation of their next game, Overgrowth. Every aspect of the design process, from the technical to the creative, is thoroughly detailed and illustrated, with new articles appearing every few days. In addition, every preorder grants access to the alpha version and editing tools, which are updated on a weekly basis. A great source of information if you're interested in contemporary game design! (Bonus: Wolfire and Unknown Worlds are currently selling a bundled preorder for Overgrowth and Natural Selection 2 for $40 [70% off], but only for 20 more hours!) [more inside]
posted by archagon at 12:52 PM PST - 7 comments

Another dose of Martian awesome
The Forests of Mars featuring an avalanche on another planet. From the Bad Astronomy Blog. [more inside]
posted by blue_beetle at 12:41 PM PST - 20 comments

Consollection!
Consollection! Also available in a beautiful hardbound edition.
posted by slogger at 12:27 PM PST - 5 comments

Calculus Lifesaver
The Calculus Lifesaver lectures -- videos available here in streaming (Real Player), mp4 and wmv formats -- were originally given as "review sessions for the Princeton introductory calculus courses MAT103 and MAT104 during the 2006/7 academic year". Each lecture is about 2 hours.
posted by AceRock at 12:23 PM PST - 8 comments

No Department of Agriculture blood subsidies?
Simulated U.S. Government Agency Responses to Vampire-Americans "Every spring, [the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce] runs a policy simulation designed to illustrate the difficulty of operating an organization in the context of asymmetric and limited information. Every fall, I run a two hour mini-simulation designed to give students a sense of how the larger simulation will play out. ... Since vampires seem to be in the news lately, this year I chose a vampire oriented scenario."
posted by amber_dale at 11:49 AM PST - 23 comments

Death Comes to CBC
The Kids in The Hall are returning to CBC tonight with an 8-part murder mystery miniseries, "Death Comes To Town." Trailer. Death hops off a bus in the small town of Shuckton, Ontario, wearing a codpiece and a vest once worn by The Friendly Giant. Murder, mayhem, and hilarity are sure to ensue. Excellent interview with Scott Thompson on the history of the group, Buddy Cole (Previously on Mefi), and dealing with his own mortality while undergoing chemotherapy during the writing and production of the series. Sorry, non-Canadians, although negotiations are said to be underway, there are no known plans to broadcast the series outside the country.
posted by yellowbinder at 11:47 AM PST - 66 comments

Military Contractor Insurance: Great business, if you can get it. AIG gets 85% of it.
"Early in the Iraq War, it cost taxpayers $100,000 per year to insure a civilian contractor who was paid $100,000 per year. So the insurance was the same amount as the salary." "Another very peculiar part of this particular story is that because of another law, the U.S. actually reimburses the insurance companies for any civilians who are injured in a combat situation. So at the very end, the insurance company will ultimately submit the bill to the U.S. government, and they will get paid back for any injury involving a combat wound." "Let me ask a stupid question: What is the point of the insurance company if taxpayers are paying for the premium and then also paying for the medical bill?" [more inside]
posted by webhund at 11:21 AM PST - 51 comments

Renaming The Beaver
The Beaver: Canada's History Magazine Canada's second-oldest magazine, published since 1920, will be changing its name because in this age of electronic communications its emails keep getting removed by spam filters.
posted by GuyZero at 11:16 AM PST - 37 comments

Baffler's Back!
The Baffler, storied zine of cultural and political analysis and criticism, is back, and excerpts of the latest issue are now online, including a review of Rod Blagojevich's memoir by Matt Taibbi, as well as articles by Christian Parenti and Walter Benn Michaels. [more inside]
posted by carrienation at 10:48 AM PST - 13 comments

“Sometimes. I. Doubt. Your. Commitment. To. Sparkle. Motion.”
Astonishingly frank conversations with Illeana Douglas, Bronson Pinchot, Alan Thicke, and today's post starring Sparkle Motion's own Beth Grant, courtesy of Random Roles. The regular A.V.Club feature invites actors to expound on some of their memorable (or memorably obscure) parts, becoming a treasure trove of commentary from Hollywood's fringe players. [more inside]
posted by hermitosis at 10:42 AM PST - 37 comments

William Burroughs Stuff
Photographs of some of William Burroughs things by Peter Ross. A short interview with Ross about photographing the stuff. (The other picture collections on Ross's site, are worth looking at, too. (Eg., brains)
posted by OmieWise at 10:40 AM PST - 8 comments

Arachnophobes may wanna skip this one....
A new and previously unknown species of spider, Cerbalus Aravensis, (photo) has been discovered in the dune of the Sands of Samar (map) in Israel's southern Arava region along the Israel-Jordan border by a team of scientists from the University of Haifa-Oranim. Cerbalus is the largest arachnid of its type in the Middle East, with a leg-span that can reach up to 5.5" (14 cm). Unfortunately, its habitat is endangered thanks for rezoning for agriculture and sand quarries. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:07 AM PST - 81 comments

Cod Liver Oil Surprise!
Random recipe generator. Exactly what it says on the tin.
posted by kmz at 10:04 AM PST - 64 comments

[citation needed]
[citation needed] - bad prose culled from Wikipedia and other wikis by the Comics Curmudgeon and Rifftrax's Conor Lastowka
posted by minifigs at 7:36 AM PST - 28 comments

You have been: poked by your ex-gaoler
"I was pretty new to Facebook and decided to type in their names to see if their profiles popped up and I came across Shafiq's Facebook page. I decided to send him a little e-mail," says Mr Neely.

How one Guantanamo guard got in touch with his former captives
posted by Hartster at 7:24 AM PST - 45 comments

CLASSIFICATION SAPPHIRE VORPAL JULIET POTUS EYES ONLY
Inspired by Charles Stross' A Colder War and Atrocity Archives stories, noder The Custodian has written a series of fictional, Lovecraftian intelligence briefings entitled "The Benthic Wars": SPECWEAPS, DEEP BLACK, PRIOR TENANT, BENTHIC OUTREACH, PORTAL/ALEPH, VIOLET CAIN, SAKNUSSEM THUNDER and INDRA NEPTUNE. Meanwhile, others ponder the question: What if HP Lovecraft had co-invented C?
posted by Zarkonnen at 4:14 AM PST - 107 comments

This little piggy went to market
PIG 05049 (TED 11.5min) - Christien Meindertsma explores the processing of raw materials - in this case, anonymous Dutch pig.
posted by hypersloth at 2:33 AM PST - 6 comments

January 11
All we hear is radio ga ga.
Audiophoolery: Pseudoscience in Consumer Audio. You might think that a science-based field like audio engineering would be immune to the kind of magical thinking we see in other fields. Unfortunately, you would be wrong [...] As a consumerist, it galls me to see people pay thousands of dollars for fancy-looking wire that’s no better than the heavy lamp cord they can buy at any hardware store. Or magic isolation pads and little discs made from exotic hardwood that purport to “improve clarity and reduce listening fatigue,” among other surprising claims. The number of scams based on ignorance of basic audio science grows every day. Via.
posted by amyms at 11:13 PM PST - 209 comments

Steroidera
Retired MLB star Mark McGwire admits taking steroids. In an interview with ESPN, McGwire admits he used injectable steroids*, but for injuries. He claimed he could hit home runs without them. [more inside]
posted by uaudio at 9:10 PM PST - 142 comments

Joe Rollino, last of the Strongmen
At 104, fit & spry Joe Rollino was the last classic strongman -- the sport of strength athletics, which evolved into modern bodybuilding. Standing 5'10" and weighing a mere 145 pounds, he was a fixture on Coney Island, known for feats of strength like 450 pound teeth lifts, or bending quarters with his fingers. Rollino also boxed in the 1920's as "Kid Dundee", and returned from World War II decorated with the Silver Star, Bronze Star, and three Purple Hearts. Joe Rollino never drank, never smoked, was a lifetime vegetarian and a confirmed bachelor. He died today after being struck by a minivan.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 7:47 PM PST - 34 comments

Magazines on Google
The full text of several years of various magazines are available on google for your browsing pleasure. The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (1940-1998) Popular Mechanics (1900-2005), Weekly World News (1984-2007, Hitler's Secret UFO Plans), Life (1936-1972), Ebony (1960-2008) and many more. [more inside]
posted by shothotbot at 7:39 PM PST - 16 comments

A font of self-knowledge awaits.
What type are you? (password: character) Step into Pentagram's psychoanalyst's office, and let him diagnose your type. 'Researched over seven years with a team of 23 academics across Eastern Europe, ‘What Type Are You’ asks the four key character questions of our day, analyses your responses in exceptional detail and recommends one of 16 typefaces as a result. The recommendation is sometimes controversial but always unerringly true. Said one respondent, “At first I felt angry when I was told my type is Pistilli Roman but two weeks later, I was completely reconciled to it. Now I wonder why I ever thought I was a Gill Sans.”'
posted by heatherann at 7:05 PM PST - 126 comments

Eric Rohmer, French filmmaker, dies at 89
"In many films, people never discuss ideas, whether moral ideas or political ideas. And if those kinds of discussions are in fact introduced, they always ring false. But I think I've managed -- and this is what I'm happiest about with my films as a whole -- I've managed to show people discussing morality, whatever that morality might be, in a completely natural way." Eric Rohmer, French filmmaker and editor of Cahiers du Cinema, has died at 89. [more inside]
posted by tractorfeed at 5:43 PM PST - 40 comments

Guardian of the Secret Annex passes away
“I am not a hero...I stand at the end of the long, long line of good Dutch people who did what I did and more — much more — during those dark and terrible times years ago, but always like yesterday in the heart of those of us who bear witness.”
Miep Gies, protector of Anne Frank and her family, passes away at age 100.
posted by dnash at 5:31 PM PST - 142 comments

The Unauthorized Biographies
Rapper Shaun Boothe is now midway through his 12 part series of "unauthorized biographies", which showcase short history lessons about some of the major black figures of our time. Thus far, he's covered James Brown, Bob Marley (my favorite), Muhammed Ali, Martin Luther King (and briefly, Barack Obama), Jimi Hendrix, and Sean "Puffy" Combs. He's gotten some play and good press from major underground hip-hop media, due next in the series is a biography of Oprah Winfrey.
posted by rollbiz at 5:21 PM PST - 13 comments

Moomin Valley
Moomin Valley - Interior design project, inspired by the works of Tove Jansson (via)
posted by Artw at 4:25 PM PST - 27 comments

I want to read "Curious George and the Ebola Virus"
Curious Pages bills itself as "recommended inappropriate books for kids." Perhaps you want to know what to do with a Dead Bird. Or find A Head for Happy. And did you know that Andy Warhol wrote a children's book? via
posted by chihiro at 3:51 PM PST - 20 comments

Light Writing Proposal
I knew I wanted to find a very special way to propose to a very special woman. This long exposure, and the making of footage, were shot over three nights in Raleigh, North Carolina as a marriage proposal to Emily. [more about light writing]
posted by netbros at 3:36 PM PST - 57 comments

Visions of Space
In Visions of Space, Robert Hughes tackles the work and lives of three remarkable 20th-century architects: Antonio Gaudi, Albert Speer and Mies van der Rohe - whose work did so much to shape the modern world. Hughes looks at how each one used space in different ways to express our response, respectively, to the power of religion (Gaudi), the power of the State (Speer), and the power of the corporation (Mies van der Rohe). Antoni Gaudi: God's Architect 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Mies van der Rohe: Less is More 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Albert Speer: Size Matters 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
posted by vronsky at 3:29 PM PST - 15 comments

Craigslist Sexual Assault
James Stipe, a Marine, allegedly posed as his ex-girlfriend to post an ad on Craigslist seeking an “aggressive man with no concern for women.” The woman was later raped in her home. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 3:05 PM PST - 168 comments

This Lousy World
"'I am going to get rid of everything, including mosquitoes, that bothers me, anywhere in the world, and then I will be a very happy, content person.' We're laughing, but it's what we all do." SLYT: A wry two-minute teaching about avoiding pain by Buddhist nun Pema Chodron, based on these writings of the 8th century scholar Shantideva. For those who don't like video, here's a transcript (scroll down.) For those who really like video, here's 55 minutes of Chodron with Bill Moyers. (This too has a partial transcript.)
posted by escabeche at 2:24 PM PST - 81 comments

He's also a Manowar fan, apparently.
Christopher Lee has recorded a symphonic metal album telling the story of his own ancestor, the Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne. Samples here (and also on Myspace). Lee's video message to his fans announcing the project here.
posted by permafrost at 2:05 PM PST - 40 comments

Your pal, John K.
"In 1998, aged just 14, aspiring young cartoonist Amir Avni decided to get in touch with the creator of Ren & Stimpy, John Kricfalusi ...To call Kricfalusi's response 'generous' would be an understatement."
posted by aldurtregi at 1:35 PM PST - 37 comments

A Communist Space Shooter
Kosmosis is based on the idea that the modern shooter is rooted in the capitalist military-industrial complex. Created by Molleindustria (behind Oligarchy and much more) it reinvents the idea of the shooter along Communist lines. The game play is based on three principles: Thesis I: The task of the vanguard is to instill revolutionary class consciousness in the intergalatic proletariat. Thesis II: The people united will never be defeated. Thesis III: The role of the vanguard will diminish as the educated masses gain autonomy. All with little glowing dots. [more inside]
posted by blahblahblah at 1:06 PM PST - 16 comments

The hell with your unbreakable phone.
The hell with your unbreakable phone. BBC Reporter Dan Simmons destroys "the world's most rugged phone" in about three seconds.
posted by boo_radley at 12:17 PM PST - 87 comments

a real reality show
The Web Is Not A TV Channel is the latest in a series of admonitions for musical and marketing industry types from music blogger, record company founder and bass player Dave Allen. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:59 AM PST - 9 comments

Chicago House Music: History in Interviews and Recordings
Gridface has an on-going series of interviews as part of its Chicago House music history section. The first interview was with Stacey Collins, aka VERB, who started working security at The Music Box in 1983. Others interviewed include producers Merwin Sanders (discog) and Jamal Moss (aka Hieroglyphic Being, IAMTHATIAM, The Sun God) and Frank Youngwerth (discog), and DJ Leonard "Remix" Rroy. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 11:33 AM PST - 15 comments

The problem is Big Brother Inc
"2044 starts where George Orwell’s 1984 left off. The problem isn’t Big Brother and the leviathan government. The problem is Big Brother, Inc., and the all-powerful marketplace." [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 11:29 AM PST - 91 comments

Bioprospecting or biopiracy?
Although banned in 1997, the last several years, Bioprospecting at Yellowstone National Park has become more and more privatized. Research at nearby Montana State University has been underway, using virus cages for next generation flash drives, using fungus to turn straw into olive oil, and algae to turn garbage into hydrogen.
posted by agent of bad karma at 11:08 AM PST - 9 comments

Manslaughter does not mean what he thinks it does.
The man on trial for the murder of Dr. George Tiller can be convicted of manslaughter. A judge in Wichita, Kansas ruled on January 8, 2010, that the jury in the trial of Scott Roeder can choose to convict him on the lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter, rather than first-degree murder. [more inside]
posted by honeybee413 at 10:00 AM PST - 116 comments

Finding Dolly Freed
Finding Dolly Freed by Paige Williams. "In 1978, at age eighteen, she wrote Possum Living, a frugal-living book that made her briefly famous amid an infamous economy. Then she went off the grid in the most unexpected of ways—she went mainstream. Now Dolly—and her book—are back." [more inside]
posted by chunking express at 9:58 AM PST - 15 comments

Top 5 Reasons Porn-for-Profit Is Dying
Top 5 Reasons Porn-for-Profit Is Dying. (SFW)
posted by Joe Beese at 9:58 AM PST - 133 comments

Stones, loans, and groans
Zahi Hawass, bombastic if nothing else, is proving successful in his ongoing push to repatriate Egyptian artifacts that may or may not have been illegally removed from the country. The Tetiky friezes were returned from France; next on the agenda are the iconic Nefertiti bust [MP3 audio], which is currently housed in Berlin’s Neues Museum, and the Rosetta Stone, which has lived at the British Museum for over two centuries.
posted by oinopaponton at 9:51 AM PST - 26 comments

"They could not be forgotten, she thought, because now is now. It can never be a long time ago."
Beyond Little House A blog dedicated to information about the life and work of Laura Ingalls Wilder. It includes information about the newly formed Laura Ingalls Wilder Legacy and Research Association and the first LauraPalooza conference coming up in July 2010.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:50 AM PST - 17 comments

"Anyone who has been to one will remember it for the rest of their lives.
to be held for the first time in 30 years, the 'Grand Match' has been canceled due to safety fears. [more inside]
posted by horsemuth at 9:33 AM PST - 9 comments

10 years later: the AOL-Time Warner merger
How the AOL-Time Warner Merger Went So Wrong Interviews with the key players involved with the AOL-Time Warner merger about its euphoric rise and pitiful fall. [more inside]
posted by zooropa at 9:27 AM PST - 21 comments

Grapes of Wrath, Fruit of Philanthropy
My grandparents, who lived through the Great Depression, hung an image of Millet's "The Gleaners" on their living room wall. I never made the connection between those two things until I started reading about the modern gleaning movement. [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 9:25 AM PST - 21 comments

What Do They Keep?
"I found him, this little dog in a dumpster down in the projects in the South Side while I was pickin’ up cans. The reason I picked it up is because whenever I see a little child I give it to him." [more inside]
posted by AzraelBrown at 8:23 AM PST - 10 comments

Vintage CG.
So, it's 1987 and you want to make some rad CG? If only you could travel 23 years into the future and watch Vintage CG's You Tube Channel for some inspiration. [more inside]
posted by sp160n at 7:54 AM PST - 17 comments

Audio Darwinism
DarwinTunes is an experiment in using genetic algorithms to create music. [more inside]
posted by mkb at 7:51 AM PST - 13 comments

Logged off!
retired postal worker & struggling songwriter bingo gazingo, is dead. [more inside]
posted by msconduct at 7:13 AM PST - 8 comments

And how he has a patrol car...
Attack of the demon squirrel.
posted by valkyryn at 5:48 AM PST - 54 comments

VVVVVV
Terry Cavanagh's (Don't Look Back, Judith, Pathways) much-awaited gravity-flipping platformer VVVVVV is out for Windows and Mac, with a Linux version forthcoming! The full game costs $15, but you can try the demo on Kongregate. Here's a gameplay video. [more inside]
posted by archagon at 4:51 AM PST - 21 comments

You Can't Beat The Inexperience
The exotic blend of international travel, the authority of commanding the ever larger and faster airliners, and those dashing uniforms turned heads, drew autograph hunters and attracted groupies. Pilots also made a lot of money. Today it is different. Captain Dave Ryter earned so little when he was a co-pilot for a major airline that he lived in a gang area of Los Angeles, commuted for hours to work and made less money than a bus driver. A pilot's life: exhausting hours for meagre wages
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:41 AM PST - 39 comments

A break with tradition: trial without jury in England
The first criminal trial without a jury to take place in England and Wales in more than 400 years begins tomorrow. [more inside]
posted by jonesor at 3:58 AM PST - 52 comments

Even better without special effects?
In a very unusual move, 20th Century Fox has decided to release James Cameron’s entire screenplay for AVATAR online. Read the script as a PDF.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:22 AM PST - 230 comments

January 10
You will not be forgotten as long as I'm in this White House
"Indian country begins where the serene prairie of Custer county gives way to the formidable rock spires marking out South Dakota's rugged Badlands. The road runs straight until the indistinguishable, clapboard American homesteads fade from view and the path climbs into a landscape sharpened by an eternity of wind and water. At this time of year, the temperature slides to tens of degrees below freezing and a relentless gale sets the snow dancing on the road, a whirligig of white blotting out the black of the asphalt."

A sobering look at one Native American community and their hopes during the Obama years, by The Guardian's Chris McGreal.
posted by saturnine at 10:01 PM PST - 18 comments

Manufacturing Concern
Consumer products and especially those marketed for children continue to be the subject of massive recalls even after what was called a '100-year flood' level of health and safety problems in 2007-2008. The list of recent recall issues include: burn and fire hazards in game console battery chargers, gas grill hoses, dehumidifiers and notebook computers; lead in toy military figures, certain cloth books and trucks; as well as various safety risks in baby play yards, cribs and car seats.  Even the decades-old issue of strangulation in drape cords continues to be a problem. [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 9:24 PM PST - 36 comments

Malaysian churches attacked over "Allah"
Malaysian Catholic newspaper Herald was recently involved in a major lawsuit against the Malaysian government, stating that their constitutional rights were violated when they were stripped of their license to publish in East Malaysian indigenous language Kadazandusun. The ruling was overturned, amidst support by state ministers and protests by the Government, the Islamic Opposition party, and Muslim activists - some of whom have spent the past week attacking churches and convents through firebombs, Molotov cocktails, paint, and bricks thrown at glass. [more inside]
posted by divabat at 9:20 PM PST - 25 comments

Pterosaur.net
Conceived at the 2007 Flugsaurier pterosaur research meeting in Munich, pterosaur.net is devoted to the titular prehistoric reptiles. [more inside]
posted by brundlefly at 7:24 PM PST - 6 comments

Cock Rock, Indeed
Death Metal Rooster (SLYT)
posted by e.e. coli at 7:08 PM PST - 25 comments

Penal theory
The threat of a mild punishment imposed reliably and immediately has a much greater deterrent effect than the threat of a severe punishment that is delayed and uncertain. A state trial judge in Hawaii, was frustrated with the cases on his docket. Nearly half of the people appearing before him were convicted offenders with drug problems who had been sentenced to probation rather than prison and then repeatedly violated the terms of that probation by missing appointments or testing positive for drugs. Whether out of neglect or leniency, probation officers would tend to overlook a probationer’s first 5 or 10 violations, giving the offender the impression that he could ignore the rules. But eventually, the officers would get fed up and recommend that Alm revoke probation and send the offender to jail to serve out his sentence. That struck Alm as too harsh, but the alternative — winking at probation violations — struck him as too soft. “I thought, This is crazy, this is a crazy way to change people’s behavior,” he told me recently. So Alm decided to try something different. [more inside]
posted by caddis at 6:54 PM PST - 33 comments

Badder Romance
If, like me, you found Lady Gaga's Bad Romance video strangely addictive, you'll appreciate her fans' Badder Romance. Which is exactly the same, only... badder.
posted by justkevin at 6:13 PM PST - 56 comments

"I have worked like a dog all my life, honey."
In the vein of Gwen Verdon's "Walk It Out", please consider the heat of Ann Miller's "Womanizer". [more inside]
posted by hermitosis at 4:39 PM PST - 9 comments

Sesame Street News(filter)
This is Kermit the Frog of Sesame Street News, with another fast breaking news story. [more inside]
posted by Effigy2000 at 4:19 PM PST - 39 comments

1971 U.S. Geologic Map of the Moon
A colorful vintage geological survey of the moon, from the U.S. Department of the Interior. This image has a key to the colors.
posted by jjray at 3:36 PM PST - 17 comments

She Blinded Me with Science!!!!!!!
Randy Moller is the radio announcer for the Florida Panthers. In the tradition of Jack Brickhouse's "Hey Hey", and Harry Caray's "Holy Cow", Moller, tends to get exuberant. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 3:16 PM PST - 18 comments

"Leading bankers destroy £7 of value for every pound they generate."
The New Economics Foundation, also responsible for the Happy Planet Index and Jubilee 2000 campaign, has released a study (full text here) about the values and costs of different professions to society.
posted by emjaybee at 3:08 PM PST - 16 comments

Slashing...prices?
In a story broken by the New York Times, unsold clothes were found in trash bags outside of H&M and Wal-Mart, apparently cut up so as to be unwearable, in a city with 16,000 homeless people currently in the midst of a recession and a very cold winter. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 3:00 PM PST - 284 comments

Take off your pants!
Try not to notice the other pantsless people, unless someone points them out to you. If asked, pretend you have no idea why everyone else has no pants.
posted by ohyouknow at 2:47 PM PST - 51 comments

Fly the Friendly Skies
Fighter jets escorted a plane after a passenger allegedly made threats and refused to stash his carry-on bag. Lesson learned? Don't mention Gilligan's Island on your comment card. The passenger now faces Federal charges. [more inside]
posted by misha at 1:34 PM PST - 155 comments

Georges Bataille
Literature And Evil
posted by vronsky at 1:12 PM PST - 33 comments

China Overtakes Germany as the worlds greatest exporter, but China is not a superpower and won't be anytime soon.
China's Not a Superpower, and won't be anytime soon. Or is it closer to that status than ever, having just overtaken Germany as the world's number one exporter? [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 12:19 PM PST - 36 comments

Al Gore, Font Designer
Is there anything Al Gore doesn't do? Enjoy the charming tale of a font and a Nobel Prize winner.
posted by ivey at 11:30 AM PST - 40 comments

PaleoHipsters of New York
The New Age Cavemen and the City: "The caveman lifestyle in New York was once a solitary pursuit. But Mr. Durant, who looks like a cheerful Jim Morrison, with shoulder-length curly hair, has emerged over the last year as a chieftain of sorts among 10 or so other cavemen." - Joseph Goldstein, writing in The New York Times. [more inside]
posted by fourcheesemac at 9:41 AM PST - 127 comments

Who's angry about finance?
NYTimes Editorial about the need for financial regulation, and the current lack of productive outrage at Wall Street. Huffington Post attempts to create a "social media" movement to move money out of the big banks.
posted by ®@ at 9:19 AM PST - 34 comments

We Think The Body Electric
Edge.org's 2010 Question: how is the Internet changing the way you think?
posted by grumblebee at 8:47 AM PST - 53 comments

Race Riots in Calabria
Italians cheer as police move African immigrants out of a small town in Calabria, following clashes in which immigrant farmworkers were shot at, severely beaten and run over. Rosarno is said to be a hotbed of the 'Ndrangheta, which controls the labour market of illegalized seasonal day labourers living in inhuman and desperate conditions. While the Pope urges Italy to respect migrants, leftist newspaper 'il manifesto' put this on the front page.
posted by ts;dr at 6:54 AM PST - 51 comments

KISS.
Here are those KISS video clips you requested: KISS and Tom Snyder (part 1 part 2), KISS and Casey Kasem, KISS and Mike Douglas. [more inside]
posted by Meatbomb at 5:52 AM PST - 26 comments

FlashPunk AS3 Library
Howdy, Flash game developers! Remember flixel? Well, a new raster-based ActionScript 3 library has just been released: FlashPunk by Chevy Ray Johnston, creator of Skullpogo and Beacon. [more inside]
posted by archagon at 12:32 AM PST - 21 comments

January 9
Out of Control: The Death of Ashley Smith
Out of Control is a 45 minute documentary that was recently broadcast on The Fifth Estate program on Canadian TV. It is the story of "Ashley Smith . . . a troubled 19-year-old [who] choked herself to death with a strip of cloth at Grand Valley Institution in Kitchener, Ontario." The documentary features video shot inside Ashley Smith’s cell. It is a sad and at times disturbing look at the difficulties of dealing with a prisoner with mental illness. [Language and some images are NSFW].
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 11:59 PM PST - 5 comments

He's right about Momus.
Questionable Content's Jeph Jacques presents Bands as Metaphors for Folks You've Dated.
posted by Schlimmbesserung at 10:32 PM PST - 97 comments

New Symphony of Science song!!!!!!
New Symphony of Science song!!!!!! SYLT (Previously and previously).
posted by Lobster Garden at 10:03 PM PST - 16 comments

Dreams are my reality
Researchers at UCSC have collected and analyzed over 20,000 dreams. Their database includes dreams of people from all walks of life and is available online. Meanwhile, Sawlogs.net offers some easy-to-grasp statistics of its user-generated dream database. Previously.
posted by wet-raspberry at 7:26 PM PST - 16 comments

If I exorcise my devils, well my angels may leave too
In my struggle to walk the straight ‘n narrow everyday, it doesn’t help things any that the salty, taunting voice of Tom Waits is in my head saying, “Hey kid…. over here.” A couple of photographic retrospectives. “The Piano Has Been Drinking…” – Tom Waits, Your Inner Drunkard | and | 1950s-1960s Icons of Entertainment.
posted by netbros at 7:04 PM PST - 19 comments

Guided By Your Counsel
Jan 7: The Federal Reserve Bank of New York, then led by Timothy Geithner, told American International Group Inc. to withhold details from the public about the bailed-out insurer’s payments to banks during the depths of the financial crisis, e-mails between the company and its regulator show.
posted by moorooka at 5:12 PM PST - 34 comments

Banished: The Lost Boys of Polygamy
Just in time for the season premiere of Big Love... Banished: The Lost Boys Of Polygamy is a 20 minute documentary exploring the plight of young men who grow up in communities where plural marriage is commonplace.
posted by hippybear at 4:42 PM PST - 29 comments

The Lawless Netherworlds of Gay Relationships
Queer female webzine Autostraddle, who interviewed media celebrity Tila Tequila shortly before the death of her fiancée, socialite Casey Johnson, uses the aftermath to discuss the complications of not having legal rights as a gay couple when the relationship becomes dysfunctional:
We don’t look at those crazy-ass toxic relationships that were so intense they carved a hole in your heart and you knew, no matter how deep the emotional connection, that at any minute your loved one could get up, walk out the door, and never speak to you again, and that it wouldn’t matter if you’d paid their bills or built a life around their demands. There is nothing tying you together besides your feelings. And that’s really frightening.
posted by divabat at 4:03 PM PST - 51 comments

Holy Purple Potion Scientist Man!
Flash Friday Saturday Fun: Paradox Embrace is a platform puzzler similar to the Shift trilogy (2 & 3) but in COLOR! You shift between three space-times to negotiate the levels collecting keys and such. In game tutorial makes learning the game pretty quick. Deceptively simple at first but gets quite difficult.
posted by schyler523 at 2:59 PM PST - 6 comments

Saint Elizabeth and the Ego Monster
New York Magazine has posted an excerpt about John Edwards' ill-fated campaign from John Heilemann and Mark Halperin's book about the 2008 presidential election Game Change. [more inside]
posted by MegoSteve at 2:58 PM PST - 84 comments

Lun-Yi Tsai
What do you get when you combine math with painting? Lun-Yi Tsai.
posted by wittgenstein at 2:28 PM PST - 13 comments

the trouble with cabinda
Cabinda is an exclave of Angola with extensive oil fields and a troubled history. Left out of the negotiations that granted Angola independence from the Portuguese, separatist movements in Cabinda have a history nearly as long as that of modern Angola itself. These movements are in the news again, thanks to an attack on the Togolese national football team ahead of the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations that has other clubs calling their players back, Cabinda losing the right to host matches, and South Africa reassuring the world that security there will be adequate ahead of this summer's World Cup.
posted by jackflaps at 2:07 PM PST - 11 comments

Scary stuff kiddies!
Saturday night, kids, and time for another Monster Chiller Horror Theatre! Hosted by Count Floyd, SCTV's late night horror film show somehow never quite managed to get a scary film...but it did have the classic Dr. Tongue 3D films! Don't forget to send away to Count Floyd for your special 3-D glasses! [more inside]
posted by never used baby shoes at 12:11 PM PST - 39 comments

Moo Moo
RNC Chairman Michael Steele has been an interesting character in the Republican party. His attempts at rebranding the GOP and their online presence has been mocked on the Blue and the web at large. He now has a new book out to his own party's surprise, and has made statements on the RNC's financial outlook and electoral future. Many conservatives are now looking down on Steele, which begs the question: Has Steele gone rogue?
posted by mccarty.tim at 12:01 PM PST - 57 comments

Top 10 Places You Can't Go
Top 10 Places You Can't Go. The world is full of secret and exclusive places that we either don’t know about, or simply couldn’t visit if we wanted to. This list takes a look at ten of the most significant places around the world that are closed to the general public or are virtually impossible for the general public to visit.
posted by jjray at 11:53 AM PST - 56 comments

Nobuyuki Tsujii: Pianist.
Nobuyuki Tsujii is a 21 year old blind Japanese pianist. Van Cliburn has this to say about Nobuyuki "Miracle is the only word to describe him. This is truly an act of God." [more inside]
posted by pwally at 11:39 AM PST - 35 comments

Perry v Schwarzenegger Will Be Broadcast...
"On [Monday] January 11th, a remarkable legal case opens in a San Francisco courtroom—on its way, it seems almost certain, to the Supreme Court. Perry v. Schwarzenegger challenges the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the California referendum that, in November, 2008, overturned a state Supreme Court decision allowing same-sex couples to marry. Its lead lawyers are unlikely allies: Theodore B. Olson, the former solicitor general under President George W. Bush, and a prominent conservative; and David Boies, the Democratic trial lawyer who was his opposing counsel in Bush v. Gore." "Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker approved court-operated cameras in his courtroom for delayed release on YouTube, but rejected a bid by media organizations to televise the proceedings themselves for live broadcast." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 11:35 AM PST - 127 comments

Who watches what where?
A peek into Netflix queues. From the New York Times.
posted by jefficator at 10:28 AM PST - 48 comments

A Yemeni memoir
From bikinis to burkas: a Yemeni memoir. Toronto theater critic Kamal Al-Solaylee (more articles) describes how his family went from cosmopolitan secularism to defeatism and traditionalism. From the Toronto Globe and Mail.
posted by russilwvong at 10:18 AM PST - 16 comments

Microsoft Office 2010: The Movie
2 Minute Ad for MS office after the travesty of the windows 7 launch party ads, MS gets it right. SLYT
posted by marienbad at 9:31 AM PST - 70 comments

We're All Simpsons Now
The Simpsons At Twenty. By Metafilter's Own gompa.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 9:22 AM PST - 33 comments

Fatwa issued against terrorists
Top Imams affiliated with the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada have issued a fatwa calling those terrorists who attack the United States and Canada “evil.” ... Extremists have been told that any attack on the U.S. or on Canada will be construed as an attack on 10 million Muslims who live in these two countries. (via) [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 9:19 AM PST - 58 comments

VT Folk Artist Stephen Huneck Dead
Despondent at having to lay off staff, Stephen Huneck took his own life Friday. Perhaps not well-known outside of Vermont, Stephen Huneck dedicated his life to celebrating the bonds between people and dogs. He credited his dogs with helping him survive and recover from a serious illness. Half of the proceeds from his art sales go to the Chittenden County Humane Society. His Dog Studio and Dog Chapel are open to dogs (as well as humans), and they are free to roam the buildings and land. Treats are always available for the dogs. [more inside]
posted by paddbear at 8:51 AM PST - 32 comments

Photographs of Korea: October 1945 to January 1946.
Photographs of Korea: October 1945 to January 1946. [more inside]
posted by chunking express at 8:45 AM PST - 8 comments

(glowing) prairie voles illuminate the human condition
Monogamouse
Prairie voles have many vasopressin receptors in the reward centres of their brains. It seems as though these are wired up in a way that causes the animal to take pleasure from monogamy. (previously 1|2)
posted by kliuless at 8:42 AM PST - 20 comments

Strange Worlds
Paprika Mars and other Strange Worlds by Matthew Albanese.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:33 AM PST - 18 comments

Si Star Wars avait été Français...
French Star Wars (SLYT), takes a different approach than the turkish adaption. (via cynical-c)
posted by ts;dr at 4:54 AM PST - 42 comments

Lady Gaga Barbies.
Lady Gaga Barbies. What it says on the label. (Single-link Flickr post.) [more inside]
posted by DecemberBoy at 4:37 AM PST - 37 comments

amateurs do it for love
Mohandas K. Gandhi’s critique of the modern identification of society with the state was devastating. He believed that it disabled citizens, subjecting mind and body to the control of professional experts when the purpose of a civilization should be to enhance its members’ sense of their own self-reliance. He proposed instead that every human being is a unique personality and participates with the rest of humanity in an encompassing whole. Between these extremes lie proliferating associations of great variety. [...] But what is most relevant to us is his existentialist project. If the world of society and nature is devoid of meaning, each of us is left feeling small, isolated and vulnerable. How do we bridge the gap between a puny self and a vast, unknowable world? The answer is to scale down the world, to scale up the self or a combination of both, so that a meaningful relationship might be established between the two. Gandhi devoted a large part of his philosophy to building up the personal resources of individuals. Our task is to bring this project up to date. ~ From The Digital Revolution and me by John Keith Hart
posted by infini at 4:34 AM PST - 15 comments

Enlightenment by trauma - soldiers speak up
Our real enemies are not those living in a distant land whose names or policies we don't understand; The real enemy is a system that wages war when it's profitable, the CEOs who lay us off our jobs when it's profitable, the Insurance Companies who deny us Health care when it's profitable, the Banks who take away our homes when it's profitable. Our enemies are not several hundred thousands away. They are right here in front of us. — Mike Prysner (YT) [more inside]
posted by knz at 3:59 AM PST - 52 comments

If you've got a heart, then Gumby's a part of you
Art Clokey, the creator of Gumby, died Friday January 8 at the age of 88. Gumby has always been one of my favorite shows, and the episode Of Clay and Critters is one of the weirdest things that has ever appeared on television. [more inside]
posted by foonly at 2:50 AM PST - 59 comments

January 8
Zombie Bite Calculator
How long would it take you to become a zombie after you were bitten? The Zombie Bite Calculator can tell you!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:59 PM PST - 18 comments

yabbadabbadoo, thankyouverymuch
For the 75th birthday of Elvis Presley (yesterday in most time zones), here is an Elvis Impersonator doing famous TV theme songs: The Flintstones, The Partridge Family, Rawhide, WKRP (opening theme, wish he'd try the end theme), Danger Man (Secret Agent Man, the full-length Johnnie Rivers version), The Brady Bunch, The Love Boat and Cheers (maybe next time Frasier's 'scrambled eggs song'?).

Other wacky musical repurposing from the same silly singer includes David Bowie (celebrating his 62nd birthday on the 8th) doing Elvis' Viva Las Vegas.
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:27 PM PST - 13 comments

The Legend of Koizumi
You’ve read about the best friggin’ manga ever on Mutantfrog and Wikipedia. Now watch it in Anime form (via Japan Probe) [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 9:08 PM PST - 13 comments

Welcome to the Desert of the Real
The Third & The Seventh (a gorgeous, entirely 3D short film) [more inside]
posted by empath at 8:54 PM PST - 32 comments

Fridays Music
The late night comedy show Fridays only lasted from 1980 to 1982. The show provided many bands with their first wide exposure to U.S. audiences with some of them making their television debuts. Here's some of the up and comers (and a few established acts) from Fridays: The Clash, King Crimson, The Jam, Rockpile, The Boomtown Rats, The Pretenders, Devo, The Cars, The Plasmatics, Graham Parker and the Rumour, and The Stray Cats. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 8:35 PM PST - 46 comments

Executing Justice
A new study of death penalty deterrence by researchers from Sam Houston State University and Duke University suggests that there is a decline in murders in the month of or after executions. Meanwhile, Kenneth Mosley became the 448th inmate executed in Texas since 1982 on January 7th, 2010. (Last link: previously, previously and previously)
posted by mrducts at 8:04 PM PST - 50 comments

Won't Get Fooled Again
Won't Get Fooled Again
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:35 PM PST - 89 comments

Songs your grandmother danced to...
Mult-link Youtube: victrolaman
posted by grumblebee at 7:28 PM PST - 7 comments

The Real Good Chair Experiment
The Real Good Chair Experiment - What happens if you leave 25 chairs around New York and watch to see where they go? The short film then continues with an interview with a few of the people who brought them home.
posted by flatluigi at 6:08 PM PST - 27 comments

What Calvin's snowmen would look like in real life.
38 Snowman nightmares If Calvin were a real kid and made his snowmen on a real lawn, it would look something like this.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:22 PM PST - 38 comments

How the Scientist Got His Ideas
In defense of Just So Stories
posted by AceRock at 4:21 PM PST - 27 comments

Elephant Parts
Lucy and Ramona, cruisin' through the jungles of L.A. • How to achieve Neighborhood Nuclear SuperiorityName That Drug!Joanne RodanneMarketing Strategies of Detroit Car Makers • In 1981, Michael Nesmith (well-known for being the heir to the Liquid Paper empire, inventing MTV, and other things) released Elephant Parts, which went on to win the first Grammy Award for Video of the Year. Here's more from Elephant Parts.
posted by not_on_display at 2:34 PM PST - 29 comments

A year with a lovable robot.
Wall-E 365. In case you were wondering what Wall-E's been up to lately. (single link flickr set)
posted by Caduceus at 2:11 PM PST - 14 comments

Dr. Mayme A. Clayton: a Champion of Black History
Dr. Mayme Agnew Clayton was a librarian and collector in Los Angeles who left behind a collection of remarkable value. Over the course of more than 40 years, she had collected the largest privately held collection of African-American materials, with over 30,000 rare and out-of-print books, 1,700 films dating back to 1916, as well as more than 75,000 photographs and scores of movie posters, playbills, programs, documents and manuscripts. Her collection, which has been compared to the Schomburg Collection in the New York City Public Library, was opened to the public in 2007. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:13 PM PST - 6 comments

Whence Nutrition
Where does the food in your bodega — or the corner grocer, the local minimart — come from? [...] How come it's easier to find fresh fruits and vegetables in Brooklyn Heights than in the South Bronx? What's the connection between the incidence of diabetes and the food market supply chain?
The Center for Urban Pedagogy and Designer Observer's 30-minute video Bodega Down Bronx looks into the urban grocery gap, and is freely available to stream. [more inside]
posted by spiderskull at 1:09 PM PST - 17 comments

A Lesson
"If my incident shows anything it's that confrontation leads to an escalation of hostilities"

On July 4, 2008, Dr. Christopher Thompson slammed the brakes on his red Infiniti, injuring two cyclists in the process. Today he was sentenced to five years in jail. [more inside]
posted by PBR at 12:47 PM PST - 212 comments

Poor Grendel's done some performance art... So may you all.
Beowulf, the opera. Hrothgar (YT video, 3:55). The Battle (YT video, 4:13). Grendel and Mother (YT video, 3:43). Zip file (93.7 MB) of the entire show's audio, courtesy of Dave Malloy, the composer who plays King Hrothgar. [more inside]
posted by Greg Nog at 12:22 PM PST - 14 comments

Animated Parkour
parkour motion reel — illustrated with technical pen, frame by frame. [slv]
posted by netbros at 12:10 PM PST - 15 comments

The Politics of Disease
In the name of awareness (via)
[more inside]
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:41 AM PST - 81 comments

All of these could be included on a list of things that don't exist.
A complete list of fictional restaurants. Though as with any "complete list" on the blue, I have complete faith that MeFites can think of some that were neglectfully omitted.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:37 AM PST - 110 comments

What if the green revolution stopped?
China produces 95% of the rare earth minerals needed for modern high-tech devices. "What would happen if the production of laptops, cellphones, and MP3 players suddenly halted? Oh, and no more hybrid electric vehicles and MRI machines?" Because China may soon stop exporting these minerals. [more inside]
posted by GuyZero at 10:36 AM PST - 115 comments

Notown
China is the new Detroit. New car sales in the United States plunged more than 20 percent in 2009 to a 27-year low 10 million vehicles, less than the 12.23 million sold in China during January-November, making the Asian giant the world's largest car market for the first time. That marked a turning point in the global auto industry, which had been led by the Big Three Detroit companies since Ford Motor Co. began mass production in 1913, introducing the world's first conveyor belt system.
posted by four panels at 10:23 AM PST - 20 comments

Led Zeppelin
So Mote It Be: excerpt from the new Led Zeppelin biography When Giants Walked The Earth by Mick Wall
posted by vronsky at 9:59 AM PST - 41 comments

go fall in love with something new
The 50 Most Blogged About [musical] Artists of 2009, with awesome accompanying original artwork. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 9:50 AM PST - 19 comments

There's a BigApp for that
Voting has now closed in the NYC BigApps Challenge, a $20,000 contest to produce amusing, interesting, or even useful apps using the information in the NYC DataMine. Browse the eligible submissions here. Some highlights: Taxihack: collects e-mailed and tweeted comments on NYC cabs, by medallion or license number. Clean.ly: Did the restaurant across the street pass its last health inspection? Walkshed: You tell Walkshed what kind of amenities you'd like to be within walking distance of, and the app makes you a heat map showing your most walkable neighborhoods. SmartPark: Locates nearby garages and collects social information about available street parking. Buzzes you when it's time to move your car. Trees Near You: Does what it says on the box. (via Indirect Collaboration.)
posted by escabeche at 9:32 AM PST - 13 comments

Fuck This Weather
Fuck This Weather via projects
posted by serazin at 9:27 AM PST - 49 comments

More fun than you can shake a robotic pack animal at.
We've talked about M.U.L.E before, but playing options were limited. Not anymore. Now available for Windows, Mac and Linux, Planet M.U.L.E. [more inside]
posted by eriko at 8:32 AM PST - 24 comments

Somniloquy is hilarious.
Somniloquy is hilarious
posted by lemonfridge at 8:24 AM PST - 34 comments

The Tonight Show with?
The Late Shift was a 1996 HBO movie exploring the highly political world of how Jay Leno and secures the Tonight Show hosting job over David Letterman (played by a young John Michael Higgens) after Johnny Carson retires. Jay Leno stepped down for Conan O'Brian in 2009, for a new business model of a 10 pm talk show five times a week for NBC which some called the future of television. Leno's ratings have been abysmal, leading to major concerns among affiliates. It now seems the man who managed to beat out David Letterman may have done it yet again, as it is being rumored that Leno will get his old timeslot back after the Winter Olympics, leaving Conan's future uncertain.
posted by dig_duggler at 8:14 AM PST - 206 comments

Once-lost Hubbard writings now available for purchase
More than 1,000 unreleased recordings of lectures by L. Ron Hubbard and reams of corresponding writings have been unveiled in the culmination of a 25-year project to locate, restore and transcribe lost pieces of the Scientology founder's work. ... "It would be like discovering that Buddha, unbeknownst to anybody, had sat down and wrote down the entirety of his discoveries and it could be verified that he wrote it," said Tommy Davis, the church's top spokesman. ... They're also available for sale to members for about $7,500...
posted by Joe Beese at 7:21 AM PST - 84 comments

Calculus of Averages
Calculus of Averages - Newton and Archimedes did not possess this knowledge. No mathematics professor today can provide this knowledge and depth of understanding. Author John Gabriel maintains a blog, Friend of Wisdom, and contributes articles such as Are real numbers uncountable? to Google's Knol project.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:52 AM PST - 78 comments

A website devoted to jazz and American civilization
Jerry Jazz Musician is "a website devoted to jazz and American civilization." Individual pages have been linked a few times on MeFi, but it's high time this terrific site got its own post. Anyone interested in jazz (or blues, or any of the related topics they frequently cover, like Ralph Ellison or Romare Bearden) should bookmark it pronto. A sample, more or less at random: the life and photography of Milt Hinton. (Via The Daily Growler, itself an excellent source for informed and passionate discussion of music, NYC, and life in general; the linked post finishes with a tribute to that fine pianist Terry Pollard.)
posted by languagehat at 6:40 AM PST - 5 comments

No Longer Sexiled: Universities Grapple with Sex in Dorms
Tufts University officially banned students from having sex in residence hall room when a roommate is present.
posted by RussHy at 6:37 AM PST - 89 comments

Disgusting/Beautiful
Disgusting/Beautiful [more inside]
posted by OmieWise at 5:28 AM PST - 40 comments

John Storm Roberts, 1936-2009
John Storm Roberts, 1936-2009. A magnificent scholar and record producer, and the author of great classics including The Latin Tinge and Black Music of Two Worlds,, and the founder of Original Music, John Storm Roberts passed away at the age of 73 back on Nov. 29. Few figures have had such a profoundly intertwined influence on both musical scholarship and popular musical culture. [more inside]
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:23 AM PST - 4 comments

The Caravanserai of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm
The Seljuk Han in Anatolia has tons of information about and pictures of the caravanserai, inns for caravans, built by the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm in what is now Turkey. The Seljuk caravanserai, called hans, were a vital resource for trade from the middle ages to recent times. The website, by Katherine Branning, explains what a han is, their origins, their function in trade, what life there was like and much more. The site also features 39 individual hans, such as the Kadin Han, now a furniture store, Dibi Delik Han, which is undergoing restoration, Zazadin Han, which has been restored already, and the spectacular Sultan Han Kayseri. For an academic survey of Seljuk hans, here's Ayşıl Tükel Yavuz' The concepts that shape Anatolian Seljuq caravanserais [pdf, automatic download].
posted by Kattullus at 4:04 AM PST - 13 comments

Finger Lickin' Awkward
KFC are in trouble after an Australian ad hit YouTube. Some say it's racist. KFC themselves say it was a light-hearted look at cricket rivalry intended to play on stereotypes. (Previously)
posted by mippy at 2:47 AM PST - 168 comments

January 7
Good Evening, I am the main Dish of the Day. May I interest you in parts of my body?
"The History of every major Galactic Civilization tends to pass through three distinct and recognizable phases, those of Survival, Inquiry and Sophistication, otherwise known as the How, Why and Where phases." [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 11:44 PM PST - 16 comments

Best and Worst Jobs
Wall Street Journals 200 Best and Worst Jobs
posted by Confess, Fletch at 9:19 PM PST - 112 comments

Sic Transit Gloria VML
Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) - a sort of image format which records shapes and lines instead of pixels - is partially supported in most web browsers but not in Internet Explorer. Javascript libraries such as dojo.gfx and Raphaël have tried to bridge the gap programmatically with impressive results but it remains difficult to simply draw something in one of the available illustration tools and display it on the web (without converting to a raster graphic as Wikipedia does.) But hope for compatibility may be on the horizon: Microsoft has just joined the W3C SVG Working Group. (previously)
posted by XMLicious at 8:41 PM PST - 51 comments

RIP, Lhasa
From the official press release: The singer Lhasa de Sela passed away in her Montreal home on the night of January 1st 2010, just before midnight. She succumbed to breast cancer after a twenty-one month long struggle, which she faced with courage and determination. For those unfamiliar with this wonderful trilingual singer: Love Came Here, Anywhere On this Road, La Confession, and That Leaving Feeling, with Tindersticks' Stuart Staples. [more inside]
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 8:30 PM PST - 20 comments

Edmund McMillen & friends strike again
Friday windows-only fun: Cryptic Sea, developers of the hits Gish and Bridge Builder, are back with combat/economy/flight simulator game A New Zero (gameplay) [more inside]
posted by anthill at 7:46 PM PST - 8 comments

Images from the History of Medicine
Images from the History of Medicine (IHM) provides access to nearly 70,000 images in the collections of the History of Medicine Division (HMD) of the U.S National Library of Medicine (NLM). Their collection includes thousands of really fascinating images from warnings about winter driving to instructions about how to keep your privy clean. [more inside]
posted by misanthropicsarah at 7:41 PM PST - 12 comments

Knut Magne Haugland - a real life adventure story
Knut Haugland, the last surviving member of the Kon Tiki expedition, and possibly the quietest hero you’ve never heard of, died on Christmas Day. [more inside]
posted by girlgenius at 7:30 PM PST - 21 comments

If it takes one to know one, where does that leave us?
Are we still relevant if we can no longer reliably grade the Turing Test? [more inside]
posted by minimii at 5:16 PM PST - 106 comments

google street view as photography
The Nine Eyes of Google Street View "It was tempting to see the images as a neutral and privileged representation of reality—as though the Street Views, wrenched from any social context other than geospatial contiguity, were able to perform true docu-photography, capturing fragments of reality stripped of all cultural intentions."
posted by dhruva at 5:15 PM PST - 35 comments

Life without eathing
Nil by Mouth is Roger Ebert's article about what life is like now that he doesn't eat or drink anymore, but is nourished by tube. And interesting reflection on what life can be like after thyroid cancer, and not as sad as you might think.
posted by kaszeta at 4:04 PM PST - 50 comments

Pa... pa... papa... papa...razzi
Polaroid, the struggling instant film camera company, has hired a new creative director in hopes of returning the brand to its former glory. That hire just happens to be pop (and previously) sensation Lady Gaga. Polaroid Previously [more inside]
posted by mccarty.tim at 2:39 PM PST - 65 comments

Rising incomes and prosperity can actually increase child sacrifice rituals.
A former witch-doctor who now campaigns to end child sacrifice confessed for the first time to having murdered about 70 people, including his own son. Human sacrifice is on the increase in Uganda, and according to the head of the country's Anti-Human Sacrifice Taskforce the crime is directly linked to rising levels of development and prosperity, and an increasing belief that witchcraft can help people get rich quickly. Uganda's Minister of Ethics and Integrity James Nsaba Buturo believes that "to punish retrospectively would cause a problem... if we can persuade Ugandans to change, that is much better than going back into the past." [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 2:02 PM PST - 91 comments

Black Lung Crayola
My name is Jacob. I have been a smoker for about 14 years. I decided this year to knock that shit off. I'd tried and tried before to no avail. But this year my youngest brother suggested something I found to be quite a good idea. Why not replace my trusty pack of Camel's with a pack of Crayolas. That way, every time I wanted a cigarette, I would just draw pictures.
posted by Panjandrum at 2:02 PM PST - 48 comments

A World of Hits
A World of Hits "Ever-increasing choice was supposed to mean the end of the blockbuster. It has had the opposite effect." [more inside]
posted by chunking express at 1:57 PM PST - 22 comments

I Will Alarm Islamic Owls, and other works of Anagram Poetry
From the dusty depths of Modern Humorist comes Anagram Poetry: If Poets Wrote Poems Whose Titles Were Anagrams of Their Names. Volume 1 contains Toilets, Skinny Domicile, and I Will Alarm Islamic Owls. Volume 2 consists of Likable Wilma, Hen Gonads and nice smug me. And there are three more volumes, for your distraction. [via]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:49 PM PST - 24 comments

Look at this f**king MetaFilter thread
Not content to sit by and watch other single-topic blogs ink book deals, Look At This F**king Idea For A Blog-To-Book Deal goes wide where others have gone narrow. (Actual site and URL not censored. Adjust your NetNanny expectations accordingly)
posted by mkultra at 12:02 PM PST - 42 comments

Open Source Cocktails
The Violet Hour, a speakeasy styled lounge in Chicago with no sign, has been pushing the envelope in creative drink mixing since it opened in 2005. Toby Maloney, the Violet Hour's "Head Intoxocologist", had no problem posting on a Chicago food forum and sharing some of the drink recipes that have made his bar one of the most exciting in the country. [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 12:00 PM PST - 35 comments

Justice bites the hand that feeds it
Blow the whistle on the rich and powerful, go to jail, while they avoid jail. Tax Notes, the weekly publication on federal taxation, announced its "2009 Tax Person of the Year" - a whistleblower from Swiss banking giant UBS whom it called "the Benedict Arnold of the private banking industry." Bradley Birkenfeld came forward and exposed the tax fraud dealings of UBS which led thousands of millionaire tax cheats to come forward and pay billions in back taxes. His reward? Tomorrow he goes to jail. The Government Accountability Project (GAP), a Washington watchdog organization that has extensive whistle-blower experience, says a chilling effect is already apparent: a senior executive at a European bank that offers similar U.S. tax shelters is having second thoughts about going public because of the Birkenfeld case.
posted by caddis at 10:28 AM PST - 42 comments

"A silly mistake" with explosives on a plane.
Last weekend, Slovakian border police placed explosive in the bags of a passenger, Stefan Gonda, as he departed for his home in Ireland. The aim was to train dogs to detect explosives but an undetected and unretrieved package of RDX (the base for a number of military explosives) flew with the unaware Mr. Gonda, who was later arrested by police in Dublin under the Offences Against the State Act. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:24 AM PST - 49 comments

The Big Chill
What Britain looks like without the Gulf Stream.
posted by Artw at 10:15 AM PST - 134 comments

Clock Tower
The Most Expensive Property in Brooklyn, New York
posted by vronsky at 9:43 AM PST - 97 comments

Two Gentlemen of Lebowski
The Big Lebowski as written by Shakespeare.
posted by Eideteker at 9:40 AM PST - 105 comments

Armed with SCIENCE!
Armed with Science: Research and Applications for the Modern Military is a podcast put out by the US Department of Defense. Each week, they interview scientists and other personnel about R & D in the military. Topics include nutrition, portable fuel cells, virtual online worlds, substance abuse, and the effects of sounds on whale behavior. [more inside]
posted by bluefly at 9:35 AM PST - 5 comments

Surprising images in the "Where's Waldo?" books
For those with enough time and attention to detail, the Where's Waldo puzzles hold some strange and lurid images. In fact, the book has made banned lists in the past despite the fact that it doesn't contain the word scrotum once (previously on MeFi).
posted by bizwiz2 at 9:20 AM PST - 15 comments

Here are some suggested things to say if you want to sound like an idiot when you talk about social media:
How to say stupid things about social media Arguing for the banality of user-created content vis-a-vis social networks.
posted by namewithoutwords at 7:13 AM PST - 144 comments

Up In The Blue Air
Lost In The Air: The Jason Reitman Press Tour Simulator (SLvimeo)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:32 AM PST - 17 comments

January 6
Victoria's secret, uncovered by science
Body by Victoria. It started with an invisible handbag. Photoshop Disasters mocked Victoria's Secret for running a shot of a dress model clutching the straps of a digitally wiped-out purse. Then Neal Krawetz at Hacker Factor got into the act, analyzing the image to show that the photo editors had not only swiped the model's purse, they'd toned her arms, enlarged her breasts, and lightened her skin. In the comments, and in this follow-up post, tons of excellent nerdery about how to tell the photofaked from the real, by science.
posted by escabeche at 8:51 PM PST - 97 comments

The Obama Jacket
Barack Obama as celebrity spokeperson.
posted by mrducts at 7:58 PM PST - 46 comments

Bruce Sterling's 2010 State of the World
Acclaimed writer Bruce Sterling is back for his annual State of the World interview in The WELL's inkwell conference. It's a must-read. The first question comes from Cory Doctorow who asks him to help him plan for the future now that Cory has a kid, etc. Sterling's answer is hilarious, biting, and brilliant all at the same time. And that's only the beginning...
posted by brianstorms at 6:16 PM PST - 130 comments

Snow Sculptures
Winter is here in the northern hemisphere and there is snow in many places, including China. In Beijing, heavy snows can stop the city but can’t stop the fun, as this snowman and snow sculpture collection shows.
posted by netbros at 5:52 PM PST - 20 comments

Willie Mitchell, RIP
The man behind the classic sound of Al Green, Memphis producer and soulmeister supreme Willie Mitchell has passed on. Many of the Al Green sides are legendary, of course, and very well known (as is the fantastic "I Can't Stand the Rain, by Ann Peebles), but be sure and head over to the excellent Funky 16 Corners where you can hear three of his lesser-known but deeply grooving productions. Fat stuff. So long, Willie Mitchell, and thanks for the wonderful music.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:14 PM PST - 24 comments

De Facto Pedophile
In Illinois, a political ad is airing on the radio. In it, former Republican Party candidate Andy Martin says current Illinois congressman Mark Kirk is a homosexual. Another ad claims Kirk is a "de facto pedophile." Jack Roeser, an Illinois businessman, is quoted in one ad as saying there is a "solid rumor" regarding Mark's sexuality. What says Roeser about Martin? "I have nothing to do with that SOB."
posted by d1rge at 4:46 PM PST - 77 comments

100 varieties of awesome
100 Cupcakes. 100 Games. How many have you played?
posted by jacquilynne at 4:25 PM PST - 36 comments

A decaying Biosphere 2
Photographer Noah Sheldon documents the collapsing biosphere 2. In case you don't remember it, Biosphere 2 was a terrible disaster - or not. Here's one of the former residents. First link via BLDG BLOG.
posted by serazin at 2:59 PM PST - 37 comments

Full Plectrum Domination
Harpsichords sound pretty. Look pretty too. You can build your own. Even from Lego. (previously) But don't make it your trade.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:57 PM PST - 17 comments

The Axe is Falling
Loran C will cease operation in 2010. Loran C is "a terrestrial radio navigation system using low frequency radio transmitters that uses multiple transmitters (multilateration) to determine the location and speed of the receiver." It is currently used as a backup to GPS for navigational and timing purposes.
posted by vansly at 1:53 PM PST - 54 comments

Goodnight Sticks. And Goodnight Sick
Goodnight Keith Moon
posted by Rumple at 1:10 PM PST - 39 comments

"I am a former child,'' she said, ''and I haven't forgotten a thing.''
Ursula Nordstrom—the "Maxwell Perkins of the Tot Department"—was, from 1940 to 1973, head of the Department of Books for Boys and Girls at the New York publisher Harper & Row, and until 1979 had her own imprint there, Ursula Nordstrom Books. A legendary editor known to her authors as UN, she published the books of Laura Ingalls Wilder, Margaret Wise Brown, Shel Silverstein, Maurice Sendak (whom she is credited with discovering) and, to not a little controversy, E. B. White (previously). One of "the last generation of devoted letter writers," she wrote nearly 100,000 during her five decade career at Harper, of which 300 of the most amusing, acerbic, and illuminating are collected in Dear Genius by Leonard S. Marcus, the first hundred pages of which can be read at the Harper website. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 12:35 PM PST - 8 comments

From Bass to Brother
A poster on Talk Bass wanted to get a cool, old, down-on-his luck bassist a bass to play again. And in the course of doing so, reunited him with his long lost brother. [more inside]
posted by zizzle at 12:16 PM PST - 21 comments

"Pick any suit. Armani? What size?"
Lennart Green is an exceptional magician. [31 mins - but worth every one]
posted by Acey at 12:01 PM PST - 23 comments

Calvin & Hobbes on a Stamp
Calvin & Hobbes will be put on a U.S. postage stamp, honoring "Sunday Funnies," along with Garfield, Beetle Bailey, Dennis the Menace, and Archie. Although there has been no end to the homages and unlicensed materials regarding his beloved characters, creator Bill Watterson, "the only cartoonist who resented the popularity of his own strip," has expressed his disapproval of third-party appropriation in detail:
A wordy, multiple-panel strip with extended conversation and developed personalities does not condense to a coffee mug illustration without great violation to the strip's spirit. The subtleties of a multi-dimensional strip are sacrificed for the one-dimensional needs of the product.
Even if Watterson hasn't approved, nothing in the USPS committee's selection criteria requires artist approval. [more inside]
posted by jabberjaw at 11:59 AM PST - 99 comments

a very long article
How America Can Rise Again by James Fallows
Is America going to hell? After a year of economic calamity that many fear has sent us into irreversible decline, the author finds reassurance in the peculiarly American cycle of crisis and renewal, and in the continuing strength of the forces that have made the country great: our university system, our receptiveness to immigration, our culture of innovation. In most significant ways, the U.S. remains the envy of the world. But here's the alarming problem: our governing system is old and broken and dysfunctional. Fixing it—without resorting to a constitutional convention or a coup—is the key to securing the nation's future. (via|previously)
posted by kliuless at 11:42 AM PST - 61 comments

Keith and The Girl!
Keith and the Girl is a free comedy podcast hosted by stand-up comedian Keith Malley and singer-songwriter Chemda Khalili. (please assume all links in this post to be NSFW) [more inside]
posted by EatTheWeak at 11:37 AM PST - 7 comments

Nude hockey player cast in bronze for Vancouver Winter Olympics
Hot nude bronze gay hockey action. Do you associate the Winter Olympics with middle-aged curlers in warm-up jackets, Lycra-clad former linebackers sardined into a bobsled, and sparkly figure skaters’ outfits (and whatever the girls are wearing)? Oh, you’re so last century! For Vancouver 2010, the Olympics’ first-ever Pride House for gay athletes will feature a bronze sculpture (by Edmund Haakonson) of a hockey player. It’s a dude, and he’s naked save for skates, helmet, and gloves. Of course he’s carrying a big stick.
posted by joeclark at 11:35 AM PST - 44 comments

Tsutomu Yamaguchi dies at age 93.
Japan's only officially known survivor of both Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings dies. In his later years, Yamaguchi gave talks about his experiences as an atomic bomb survivor and often expressed his hope that such weapons would be abolished.
posted by Lobster Garden at 11:28 AM PST - 49 comments

Movies with Grandma Joy
Movies With Grandma Joy: Dawn and her grandma review and re-enact the movies they see together. SPOILER: She wasn't a fan of "There Will Be Blood".
posted by hermitosis at 11:13 AM PST - 8 comments

Pappy's Golden Age Comics Blog
Let me introduce you to Pappy's Golden Age Comics Blog. To start,, I recommend some Ghost Patrol stories from Flash Comics. Or, perhaps some Spacehawk or Powerhouse Pepper by Basil Wolverton is more to your liking. No? How about some Stuntman by Jack Kirby? Maybe Golden Age Flash stories? Maybe some John Stanley? or Fletcher Hanks? Well, look around, I'm sure you will find something you'll like. [more inside]
posted by wittgenstein at 10:08 AM PST - 5 comments

Streakers
From late January through late May 1974, a wave of "streaking"—roughly defined as running naked in public—occurred in the United States, primarily on college and university campuses; the brief phenomenon eventually spread around the world. Although the exact number of streaks during this time is unknown, one group of researchers gathered data on over 1000 incidents on U.S. college campuses alone (Aguirre et al. 569). Streaking generated significant press coverage and spawned a plethora of streaker-related consumer items including coffee mugs, t-shirts, necklace pendants, "Keep On Streaking" patches, "Streak Freak" buttons, a "Nixon Streaking" wristwatch, pink underwear embroidered with "Too shy to streak," and two dozen novelty singles (one of which, Ray Stevens’ The Streak, became a major hit). ... The important point is that the campus politics that were being contained in the spring of 1974 were precisely the ones that most threatened to consolidate and advance the gains of the previous decade in terms of opportunities for women and people of color. While many Americans were longing for the Age of Innocence of the (white, patriarchal) 1950s, the university continued to lead the way in altering the gendered and racialized relations of power on campus and in American society at large. And it was at precisely this socio-historical juncture that young white men began stripping off their clothes and running in public. << Perhaps the best academic paper you'll ever read about streaking.
posted by billysumday at 9:48 AM PST - 64 comments

'I don't want to do high-budget films'
Neill Blomkamp talks to the LA Times Hero Complex blog about what's next after District 9, making science fiction films and why he is turning down big budgets to make better movies: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
posted by Artw at 9:45 AM PST - 41 comments

Everybody wins!
It all started innocently enough with yet another decade retrospective, this time from AfterElton.com, about the gay and bisexual male celebs of the 2000s. At the end was a poll to pick your own favorite. Things start out quietly, but after it's noted that John Barrowman and Neil Patrick Harris were neck and neck in the voting, both NPH and Barrowman made appeals on their Twitters for votes. Soon, celebrity associates of both were putting in their own two cents. Things snowball from there. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 9:41 AM PST - 84 comments

Can I get a standard pleasure model?
Google's new phone has raised the ire of Philip K. Dick's Estate. [more inside]
posted by dortmunder at 8:39 AM PST - 165 comments

I used to be the future, and now I'm the past
Notice some best of the year or best of the decade lists? I guess you could do that, if you are into the retro thing. Forward thinking websites bring you the best of the year to come. From The Millions we have books and from io9 science fiction books. (Io9 is also worried about a few things in the coming year.) From The Onion AV culb we have media, broadly defined. Rotten Tomatoes lists the most anticipated Sundance films. You want games? We got games from BoingBoing, MTVu and Kotaku. [more inside]
posted by shothotbot at 8:09 AM PST - 15 comments

January 5
Should Have Stuck to Fishing
Iceland blocks repayment deal, sparks global outrage. "The Icelandic people are effectively saying that Iceland does not want to be part of the international financial system," Britain's Financial Services Minister Paul Myners said. But the bill equates to £40,000 per family. Britain threatens to freeze Iceland out of EU as loan payback vetoed. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 8:50 PM PST - 109 comments

Not so stealthy as we'd first imagined...
Sea Shepherd's new 50-knot biodiesel-powered 'stealth boat' the Ady Gil (formerly the Earthrace, and holder of the speed record for circumnavigation) has been cut in half and sunk after a collision with the Shonan Maru 2, in the annual round of conflict (previously) between conservationists and, erm, 'cetacean researchers'. The crew of six have been rescued and are reportedly uninjured.
posted by pompomtom at 8:35 PM PST - 155 comments

Christmas Busk 2009
If you were doing some last-minute shopping on Grafton Street in Dublin on Christmas Eve 2009, you may have stumbled upon some musicians busking to raise money for a local charity. Look closely and you'll notice among the buskers are an Oscar winner and a Grammy winner. In just under two hours, more than €2000 had been raised. [more inside]
posted by shannonm at 8:02 PM PST - 22 comments

Eddie probably wouldn't go but so what
Last month, extreme weather conditions in the Pacific brought us The Eddie. Right now in Scotland, a serious cold snap means there's an even rarer sporting event on the verge of occurring: The Grand Match. [more inside]
posted by grounded at 7:09 PM PST - 23 comments

2009 Weblog Awards
The 2009 Weblog Awards are off. It's become too popular, and they can't afford the bandwidth needed to properly support it.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 6:25 PM PST - 37 comments

Macaroni and Boom
Kraft Macaroni & Cheese will be the official sponsor of A Cheddar Explosion: The Demolition of Texas Stadium.
posted by GatorDavid at 5:59 PM PST - 44 comments

Inspiring Cooks and Nourishing Homes
Hey, how about some food blogs to help you blow that New Year's resolution? Let's start with The Kitchn where you can find 25 Vegetarian and Vegan Meals, then let's visit Eater where you can watch Tony Bourdain torch six tons of cocaine. (wait, what?) [more inside]
posted by netbros at 5:21 PM PST - 48 comments

Cut-ups, op art and book design
The Art of Fontana Modern Masters James Pardey, the mind behind The Art of Penguin Science Fiction, has just put up another site telling the story of the cover art on the Frank Kermode-edited "Modern Masters" Fontana Books series, inspired by the Op Art of Victor Vasarely and the cut-ups of Brion Gysin and William Burroughs. [via, via] [more inside]
posted by mediareport at 4:42 PM PST - 1 comments

Vere You Vant To Go?
It's the bane of travelers everywhere, the Taxi scam.
posted by Xurando at 2:41 PM PST - 111 comments

A Politics Straight Out of French Lick, Indiana
Clothes Make the Man: Jonathan Valania writes on the political conversion of Urban Outfitters founder Richard Hayne, whose disenchanted co-founder and ex-wife is a "diehard liberal activist" and restaurant owner while he runs a bi-continental hipster clothing chain which has supported controversial former US Senator Rick Santorum (h/t the Phawker).
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 2:38 PM PST - 63 comments

Artifact of Early Antarctic Aviation Found
Early in the days of exploration of Antarctica, Australian geologist Douglas Mawson turned down an invitation to join Robert Falcon Scott's Terra Nova Expedition in 1910 (Cool Antarctica previously). Instead, Mawson lead his own expedition, the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (December 1911 to December 1913), an expedition to chart the 2000-mile coastline directly south of Australia, one of the least-visited parts of the continent throughout the early years of Antarctic exploration. The group's efforts and activities are well documented, and many remnants of the expedition remain on Antarctica. The conservation of Mawson's Huts is now an ongoing effort from Association of Australasian Palaeontologists (AAP) Mawson's Huts Foundation. While most efforts were focused on the recovery and treatment of artifacts inside the main hut, the group also searched for the Vickers (Aviation) monoplane that was modified to become an "air tractor", or motorized sledge. The remains of the plane were last seen in 1975. Now the plane has been found, thanks to an exceptionally low tide and a bit of luck. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:32 PM PST - 11 comments

Essays about Pixar.
Essays about Pixar. I particularly liked Focus on the Family: Pixar's Small-c Conservatism by Tom Elrod.
posted by chunking express at 11:23 AM PST - 209 comments

Illuminating studies on illumination studies
A series of studies conducted at GE's Hawthorne Works in Cicero, Illinois in the 1920s remain some of the most important in social science, with a lasting impact on the working lives of almost everybody. Before the Hawthorne Experiments, the approach to work was to treat humans like machines, optimizing their movements and time. But the researchers in Cicero discovered that any change in the workplace, even dimming the lights, increased productivity, because the plant workers reacted to being studied. The "Hawthorne Effect" launched a management revolution, suggesting that worker's feelings and attitudes might actually be important. Except, according a new paper by the author of Freakonomics, the results of the Hawthorne studies "proved to be entirely fictional."
posted by blahblahblah at 11:19 AM PST - 26 comments

Want to buy a Fishbowl? Here, have a brochure
“Popular New Look passenger appeal... with some practical refinements.” Want to buy the quintessential city bus, the GM New Look, popularly known as the Fishbowl? Step back to 1963 to read a pastel-hued brochure. [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 11:15 AM PST - 24 comments

Big Honkin' Brains
Boskops. A race of South African Hominids with great big brains. Were they super smart? Or not. [more inside]
posted by Trochanter at 9:06 AM PST - 32 comments

She did not bear the shame
Freya von Moltke died on New Year’s Day at age 98. She and her husband led the Kreisau Circle, an intellectual salon which became an important part of the German resistance in WWII. They planned a coup, one of over forty-two separate plots to kill Hitler and overthrow the Nazi regime. Freya von Molte was not portrayed in Valkyrie, the 2008 film that depicted the assassination attempt, but she, along with the other members of the resistance (Deutscher Widerstand), "did not bear the shame."
posted by tizzie at 8:39 AM PST - 20 comments

Strongly worded letter to follow
Letterheady, adjective. 1. Overcome by a strong emotion due to a letterhead design. 2. A new blog from Shaun Usher, creator of Letters of Note. (previously)
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:28 AM PST - 10 comments

The women of Afghanistan
87 percent are illiterate. 44 years is their average life expectancy. 70 to 80 percent face forced marriages.
posted by Joe Beese at 8:11 AM PST - 72 comments

"Television demands activity."
Is television holding back the evolution of football? What is rarely considered is that television could be shaping the way the game is played, and not necessarily for the better. It sounds, admittedly, a touch far-fetched, but two of football's most respected thinkers believe it to be true, and when Jorge Valdano and Arrigo Sacchi are in agreement, it is usually worth listening. Sports journalist Jonathan Wilson investigates the effect televised football/soccer might be having on the tactics of the game. [more inside]
posted by dng at 7:00 AM PST - 64 comments

See Spot Run
A new study from the Journal of Sexual Medicine claims that "the g-spot does not appear to exist". While the study has attracted media attention from numerous sources (just like 2008's study, which appeared to prove the g-spot exists), Dr. Petra takes a closer look at this new study, and questions the methodology, the media response, and the research team's previous undertakings. (via)
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:06 AM PST - 136 comments

Gallagher
Leo Gallagher is an American comedian of some renown. Hugely popular in the 80s, Gallagher gained fame through stand-up routines in which he used many props. Here is Gallagher delighting the crowd by jumping on a large couch. Of course, Gallagher's most popular act, dubbed the Sledge-o-Matic, involved smashing watermelons and other fruit with a huge wooden mallet. Twenty years later, Gallagher is still wowing his fans by destroying foodstuffs. Black Gallagher messed up his watermelons using a different method. Maybe you went to go see Gallagher a few years ago, only to have mistakenly seen Gallagher's brother, Gallagher Too? Gallagher and his brother are now estranged. These days, Gallagher seems like a pretty angry guy.
posted by billysumday at 4:53 AM PST - 188 comments

January 4
The Belly-Slitter's Knife: More Alpine Holiday Fun!
In alpine Europe, Perchta the Belly-Slitter (a.k.a Berta/Berchta/Frau Percht) roams during the Twelve Days of Christmas, and if you piss her off, she'll cut out your entrails and stuff you full of straw and garbage. And you thought Krampus was all you had to dodge to get through the holidays! [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 10:52 PM PST - 24 comments

Choosing Central Asia for a bride
Fascinated by the Orient An exhibition of the letters, photographs and maps bequeathed to the Hungarian Academy of Sciences by the great explorer, archaeologist, geographer and Sanskritist Sir Marc Aurel Stein. Journeyer in the footsteps of Alexander, explorer of Central Asia and West China, surveyor of the antiquities of India and Iran; after a long life of journeying through and studying central Asia, Aurel Stein found his final rest in Kabul. He is also remembered for rediscovering the oldest dated printed book still in existence, a copy of the Diamond Sutra in the caves at Mogao. That the latter and many thousands of other manuscripts collected by Stein now reside in the British Library is of course, like his other 'treasure hunting', not without controversy.
posted by Abiezer at 8:45 PM PST - 4 comments

Ants in the Squarepants: $3
"N.B.--In telling a ladies fortune, omit reading from cards that are intended to apply exclusively to men and vice versa" Instructions for over 7200 games from Hasbro (and Parker Brothers and Milton Bradley and Playskool, etc.) ranging from Venetian Fortune Teller [1909, pdf] and Hop in the Tub [1920, pdf] to the "how could I forget?" Don't Wake Daddy [1992, pdf] and Harry Potter Motion Activated Hedwig [pdf]. And don't forget Ouija [pdf]! [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 8:17 PM PST - 37 comments

The beauty of roots
The beauty of roots. From Dan Christensen and Sam Derbyshire via John Baez. If you like algebra: these are plots of the density in the complex plane of roots of polynomials with small integral coefficients. If you don't: these are extravagantly beautiful images produced from the simplest of mathematical procedures. Explore the image interactively here.
posted by escabeche at 6:18 PM PST - 29 comments

Chess Boxing (Or, How Kasparov Met Tyson)
Chess Boxing, a hybrid sport which combines boxing with chess in alternating rounds, is growing in popularity. Inspired by fictional depictions of the sport in French comic book artist Enki Bilal's graphic novel, Froid Équateur, Dutch artist Iepe Rubingh brought the concept to life in 2001. Governed by the World Chess Boxing Organisation, whose motto is "Fighting is done in the ring and wars are waged on the board", matches consist of up to eleven alternating rounds of boxing and chess with a one minute break between rounds. A photographic account of the sport. Further reading. Further viewing. Previously.
posted by Effigy2000 at 2:52 PM PST - 54 comments

"The constant undertone of the singing formed the theme that bound her mind together, no matter how many different things she might do at one time."
"The Gentle Seduction," by Marc Stiegler. A non-techie lives before, through, and after the Singularity. (via Reddit) [more inside]
posted by MikeHarris at 2:18 PM PST - 93 comments

Head hunters
The Naga, from North-East India and Burma, were headhunters. [more inside]
posted by stonepharisee at 2:01 PM PST - 14 comments

"Then I see how they treat Ronald Reagan—he needs to get credit for saving the world from communism and for the good economy over the last twenty years because he lowered taxes."
Revisionaries: How a group of Texas conservatives is rewriting your kids’ textbooks.
posted by defenestration at 1:49 PM PST - 258 comments

They stylin' on you...
Seamless rap in 5 Languages (SLYT)
posted by cuban link flooded jesus at 12:39 PM PST - 27 comments

I shared my flesh with thinking cancer
The Things - The Thing from the point of view of the thing, by Peter Watts (previously, previously, previously)
posted by Artw at 12:27 PM PST - 49 comments

Operation Mincemeat
Historian claims to have finally identified wartime 'Man Who Never Was'.
posted by veedubya at 12:12 PM PST - 29 comments

R.I.P. Mary Daly
Self-described Radical Elemental Feminist Mary Daly has died. [more inside]
posted by lunit at 12:04 PM PST - 68 comments

Now that we're in the future, let's look back at the past.
The Vintage Ad Browser "aims to collect vintage ads from a variety of sources, including comic books, CD-Roms, websites, APIs, your submissions, book, magazine & comic book scans, and more." [more inside]
posted by tractorfeed at 11:30 AM PST - 15 comments

The Revolution Will Be Mapped
The Revolution Will Be Mapped. "GIS mapping technology is helping underprivileged communities get better services — from education and transportation to health care and law enforcement — by showing exactly what discrimination looks like."
posted by chunking express at 8:36 AM PST - 40 comments

One million years of isolation
An interview with Abraham Van Luik, US DoE geoscientist working on the nuclear waste repository under construction in Yucca Mountain. [more inside]
posted by Dr Dracator at 8:09 AM PST - 32 comments

January 3
Hail and victory and sink 'em all!
The San Francisco Maritime National Park operates the USS Pampanito (SS-383), a World War II Balao class Fleet submarine museum and memorial that is open for visitors daily at San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf. The Park website also hosts "The Fleet Type Submarine, Navpers 16160", the first in a series of submarine training manuals that was completed just after WW II. The series describes the peak of WW II US submarine technology. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 10:52 PM PST - 14 comments

Are you happy to see me or is that just a dictionary in your pocket?
In search of the world’s hardest language
posted by Gyan at 10:16 PM PST - 148 comments

Seventeen,
Seventeen (Youtube), a music video by Matt Kresling, makes use of his yearbooks from high school, the music collaboration site Kompoz, a green screen, and a mean ukelele. [more inside]
posted by zabuni at 9:33 PM PST - 17 comments

The black forest game series
The Black Forest is a series of four minimalist flash games by Pixelate: Finding Friends, Unlearn, Harmony, and Companion. [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 8:38 PM PST - 10 comments

Great Dad? Or Greatest Dad?
In 1940s New York, Harry Dubin and his teenage son went out every weekend to take color pictures of people doing different jobs in the city. Well, not people...Harry Dubin, switching places with people and pretending to do their jobs. [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:01 PM PST - 34 comments

Nicolas Cage's Many Faces
Now starring: Nicolas Cage as everybody.
posted by Chan at 6:44 PM PST - 93 comments

A Rescue In Milwaukee And What Followed
On March 12, 1854 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a fugitive slave named Joshua Glover, apprehended by a federal marshal and held in the city jail pursuant to the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, was freed by a mob roused by noted local abolitionist and newspaper editor by day Sherman Booth. The freed fugitive was quickly spirited to Canada and freedom, but Booth's road to absolution had several more twists and turns. [more inside]
posted by The Confessor at 5:19 PM PST - 15 comments

eavesdropping on jazz giants
The Jazz Loft Project - From 1957 to 1965, celebrated photojournalist W. Eugene Smith made 4,000 hours of surreptitious recordings and took 40,000 photographs in a loft in Manhattan's wholesale flower district where Roland Kirk, Thelonius Monk, Hall Overton, Charles Mingus and other jazz greats jammed until dawn. Archived in the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, the project is now accessible via a book, a traveling exhibit, a 10-part Jazz Loft series on WNYC, NPR's Jazz Loft Project Sights & Sounds, and an interview with JLP author Sam Stephenson, which includes some images from the book. Via a Grain Edit post, which also has some great images. [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive at 4:31 PM PST - 21 comments

Zoltar Segue
Zoltar breakdancing! Everybody rumba, rumba rumba. Zoltar, that fortune-telling guy you thought was stuck in his booth, went mobile and won the Motorized Float prize in the 2009 Coney Island Mermaid Parade last summer. [more inside]
posted by christopherious at 4:15 PM PST - 15 comments

The 'G' Word.
MTV's Jersey Shore, a Real World-style reality program centered around eight young Italian-Americans living together in a beach house, is garnering charges of racism following their use of the allegedly pejorative terms guido and the feminine counterpart guidette in advertisements. But what exactly is a guido? [more inside]
posted by joechip at 3:53 PM PST - 232 comments

Out of the Past, Off of His VRML Lawn.
Jaron Lanier's new book, You Are Not a Gadget -- a cri de coeur on the commercialized, despoiled, fallen Eden of the modern Web-- is reviewed here . MetaFilter name-checked by reviewer, though with the aid of a shoehorn. The Mondo 2000-era dreadster explains himself here. Lanier, previously discussed on MeFi.
posted by darth_tedious at 3:05 PM PST - 43 comments

Chisenbop
Chisenbop - a tool for doing simple math on your fingers, invented by Sung Jin Pai in the '40s, it uses the same principles as the abacus. Tutorial 1 and 2, and a cute kid.
posted by serazin at 3:02 PM PST - 34 comments

1942 maps of the invasion of the United States
Metafilter's own JF Ptak has an interesting post on the Life magazine issue of March 2nd, 1942, readers of which were confronted by some startling maps detailing possible Axis invasion strategies for North America. There was invasion down the St. Lawrence valley, there was invasion via Trinidad, via Bermuda, full frontal west coast, and down the west coast as well - note the mapping of the large "fifth columns". As Ptak notes, maps such as these with huge arrows pointed menancingly at the American homeland were very much not the norm of the day. [more inside]
posted by Rumple at 12:11 PM PST - 44 comments

B-Movie TV
"Bikinis! Monsters! Motorcycles! Welcome to BMC, your new go-to site for B-movies by the likes of John Carpenter (Dark Star) and Roger Corman (Saga of the Viking Women). Now online and in full screen, watch unsung classics like Asylum by Psycho screenwriter Robert Block or Corridors of Blood with the inimitable Christopher Lee. Want to see international icons before they made it big? How about The Ruthless Four, a spaghetti Western starring Klaus Kinski."
posted by billysumday at 9:32 AM PST - 28 comments

Robert Park
On Christmas day, Robert Park walked over the frozen Tumen river from China and into North Korea. He did an interview that was to be released when he had crossed over.
posted by paladin at 1:07 AM PST - 148 comments

Losing the War
Losing the War "From the beginning, the actual circumstances of World War II were smothered in countless lies...People all along have preferred the movie version: the tense border crossing where the flint-eyed SS guards check the forged papers; the despondent high-level briefing where the junior staff officer pipes up with the crazy plan that just might work...The truth behind these cliches was never forgotten -- because nobody except the soldiers ever learned it in the first place."
posted by deern the headlice at 12:35 AM PST - 151 comments

January 2
2009 John H. Glenn Lecture
On the eve of the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, the Annual John H. Glenn Lecture took place at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Tickets were in high demand for the event, which featured the Apollo 11 astronauts - among others - discussing the past, present, and future of manned spaceflight. [more inside]
posted by futureisunwritten at 11:55 PM PST - 17 comments

Simple rules for good typography
Most of what a non-expert needs to know about typography, all in one easy to digest page. (via)
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:51 PM PST - 89 comments

“I'm not against the police; I'm just afraid of them.”
Executive Order 12425 grants INTERPOL "full immunity." Not dipolmatic immunity, but the immunities granted in the The International Organizations Immunities Act. It's causing some alarm.
posted by bigmusic at 7:11 PM PST - 70 comments

Wanna buy an SU-27?
For the man who has everything: how about getting him his very own pair of SU-27's?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 6:48 PM PST - 45 comments

A-trickling down the rocks
Big Rock Candy Mountain is just a wonderful little song. I don't know many hobo tunes, but this one gets stuck in my head from time to time. It has been covered by Burl Ives, a drunken Tom Waits, and then was reworked as the theme song to the amazingly awesome animated TV show that is The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack.
posted by GavinR at 5:59 PM PST - 61 comments

Welcoming 2010.
Welcoming 2010 from the always fantastic The Big Picture. Includes not just fireworks, but heaps of trash, workplace pranks, and small children dressed up as trees.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:44 PM PST - 27 comments

Visionary Engineer
Visionary Engineer : the Harold 'Doc' Edgerton digital collection consolidates the large body of work by the pioneer of stroboscopic high-speed photography. Iconic pictures, for instance. [via Slice of MIT] [more inside]
posted by peacay at 3:34 PM PST - 10 comments

Low-Tech Magazine and No-Tech Magazine
Low-Tech Magazine and No-Tech Magazine have some fairly well written/illustrated articles about old and low technologies. The concept being, in a sustainable future due to environmental constraints, carbon taxes, Peak Oil, etc.. these old-school technologies might be used - in some places, in some form - instead of more energy intensive modern high technology. Trolly Canal Boats, Timbrel Vaulting (vs. steel and concrete), Bring Back the Horses (and the bicycle), Tile Stoves, Wind Powered Factories, Sneakernet, more.
posted by stbalbach at 3:14 PM PST - 23 comments

Darfuristan
How the world's campaign to stop a genocide created a quagmire. (Print version.)
posted by andoatnp at 2:26 PM PST - 10 comments

Solidarity Economics.
Solidarity Economics. (pdf) Strategies for Building New Economies From the Bottom-Up and the Inside-Out. [more inside]
posted by lunit at 2:23 PM PST - 11 comments

Top Ten Conservative Movies of the last ten years
This is a list of the ten best films of the last decade that have advanced a conservative message, ranging from strong support for the military and love for country to the defence of capitalism and the free market. These are all brilliant movies that conservatives can be inspired by, and which are guaranteed to offend left-wing sensibilities in one way or another. [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 12:51 PM PST - 167 comments

The Naked and the Conflicted
In her essay, The Naked and the Conflicted, Katie Roiphe compares the directly sexual writing of Roth, Mailer, and Updike with the more timid approach adopted by America's new batch of male novelists. "We denounce the Great Male Novelists of the last century for their sexism. But something has been lost now that innocence is more fashionable than virility, the cuddle preferable to sex." [SLNYT]
posted by billysumday at 9:21 AM PST - 123 comments

Worst decade in generations.
Aughts were a lost decade for U.S. economy and workers. For most of the past 70 years, the U.S. economy has grown at a steady clip, generating perpetually higher incomes and wealth for American households. But since 2000, the story is starkly different. The past decade was the worst for the U.S. economy in modern times, a sharp reversal from a long period of prosperity that is leading economists and policymakers to fundamentally rethink the underpinnings of the nation's growth. Meanwhile, some of the administration's remedies might be making things worse: U.S. Loan Effort Is Seen as Adding to Housing Woes. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 9:11 AM PST - 69 comments

Watch out for Glinda, she's sneaky!
How the Wizard of Oz Should Have Ended (SLYT) via
posted by bove at 8:11 AM PST - 37 comments

Carbon Trading means more woods
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has ordered his staff to revise a computerized forecasting model that showed that climate legislation supported by President Obama would make planting trees more lucrative than producing food. Planting trees puts the land in a lower tax rate in many states. And as the fossil fuels that drive the economy becomes harder to get to market unless the Matt Simmons Ammonia Fuel idea becomes widespread a common fertilizer may just not be an option. [more inside]
posted by rough ashlar at 7:49 AM PST - 28 comments

A decade of digital music
A decade of digital music Vaguely styled as a timeline, this end-of-the-decade blog post (from UK digital music news source Music Ally) could prove valuable to anyone studying the music business or the intersection between entertainment and technology. The piece links to ten years of stories on digital music - from Napster through to Spotify - allowing us to look back on the issues without the 20/20 vision of hindsight. Gems include the Bluematter scheme from Universal Records in 2000, which comprised 60 non-transferrable, non-burnable tracks for $1.99 each.
posted by skylar at 5:30 AM PST - 4 comments

Play out 2009, B. B. Bunny...
We already had video dating... but here's The Found Footage Festival's Top Ten VHS Finds of 2009
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:55 AM PST - 17 comments

World's largest spherical panorama?
Potentially the world's largest spherical panorama, a seamless, 18-gigapixel-sized 360° view of Prague. Zooms in to a mind-blowing level of detail. Also, a treasure hunt. [more inside]
posted by zadermatermorts at 4:17 AM PST - 30 comments

Love, sayang, pyaar, bhalo bashi, amore...
All you need is love - from 156 countries, all at the same time. Join in the chorus; each video leads to a 5-cent donation from Starbucks to the RED Global Fund for AIDS in Africa.
posted by divabat at 3:54 AM PST - 44 comments

January 1
Detroit 2009, The Movie
There isn't a single decent candidate running for office, the homeless guy struck by a car was more fortunate than the auto workers and if you want a grilled raccoon they sure have a deal for you: it's Detroit 2009, The Movie, the chronicle of a rough year from The Detroit News.
posted by krautland at 9:50 PM PST - 40 comments

David Levine, R.I.P.
David Levine, beloved caricaturist for several publications, but most notably for the New York Review of Books, died last Tuesday at age 83 due to complications of prostate cancer. Since 1963, he contributed over 3,800 caricatures for the magazine, which prominently featured his drawings in promotional material. You can look at over 2,500 of his drawings here, review his website featuring his painting here, and see him interviewed here. Toward the end of his life, his vision failed due to macular degeneration and his relationship with the magazine became somewhat strained. Upon his death, the magazine noted that he was, simply, "the greatest caricaturist of his time." [more inside]
posted by pasici at 9:08 PM PST - 24 comments

It's what's for dinner
Ammonia-injected centerfuged fatty trimmings = pink slime + E. Coli. Eight years ago, federal officials were struggling to remove potentially deadly E. coli from hamburgers when an entrepreneurial company from South Dakota came up with a novel idea: injecting beef with ammonia.
posted by cytherea at 9:01 PM PST - 90 comments

Everything is fake.
Stargate Studios opened in 1989, and has been doing visual effects for some the most successful tv shows of the past few years such as Heroes, Ugly Betty, Grey's Anatomy and 24. Green screens allow them to artificially blend and create scenes that you wouldn't expect. Their official website has more on their Virtual Backlot and other Tech Demos.
posted by OrangeSoda at 8:50 PM PST - 26 comments

But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin. Mark3:29 God in hell I never thought I would ever use a bible reference!
Blasphmey! It's vogue, ancient and modern. Just don't paint yourself into a box you can't shoot out of.
posted by Balisong at 7:31 PM PST - 32 comments

A House Divided Against Itself
Planned demolition in Liuzhou goes dangerously wrong.
posted by hermitosis at 6:08 PM PST - 28 comments

The new Islamic revolution
Six days ago, Seyed Ali Mousavi, nephew of Iranian opposition leader and figurehead of the Green Movement Mir Hossein Mousavi [wikipedia | facebook] was shot dead during the latest round of protests in Tehran; Seyed Ali had apparently been threatened by the police, and had recently lost his position at the Iran Academy of Arts and Sciences. After burying his nephew amidst government-sponsored protests on Wednesday, Mir Hossein Mousavi showed renewed resolve in a statement on his website which read in part: "I’m not afraid to be one of the people’s martyrs in their struggle for their just demands... My blood is no redder than theirs," and quoted the words of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the republic: "Kill us; we will only become stronger." [New York Times | Times Onlines (UK) | Al-Jazeera | Payvan Iran | Iran Focus News | Reuters | BBC] [more inside]
posted by koeselitz at 4:28 PM PST - 74 comments

The Irony of Loneliness
The Economist reports on a study published in The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (abstract) about how loneliness moves through a community. [more inside]
posted by djfiander at 2:25 PM PST - 30 comments

"Perhaps I can find new ways to motivate them."
Darth Vader and an entourage of Storm Troopers rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange on December 22nd. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 1:07 PM PST - 42 comments

Namahage (生剥)
Namahage (生剥) is a Japanese ritual which is observed throughout Oga Peninsula, Akita Prefecture in northern Honshū, Japan. It is saidto have originated as a ritual for cleansing people's souls, and for blessing the new year. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 9:44 AM PST - 35 comments

Existance is futile
Let's start the year off right with The Most Useless Machine Ever!. AKA The BEST Machine Ever! via [more inside]
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 8:41 AM PST - 49 comments

Killer bisexuals, pregnant lesbians, predatory gay men.
On Writing Gay Characters : Megan Rose Gedris.at Squidoo talks about common mistakes and preceptions to avoid when writing LGBT characters.
posted by The Whelk at 8:36 AM PST - 130 comments

Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle
The largest Herbarium in the world.
posted by hadjiboy at 8:34 AM PST - 4 comments

Human Relations in the new millenium
If you're going to kill off an entire section of a newspaper and fire all of the staffers who work there, it's probably a good idea to get the Twitter password first. [more inside]
posted by minimii at 8:20 AM PST - 25 comments

"White Death moving down the mountainside"
"It... picked up cars and equipment as though they were so many snow-draped toys, and swallowing them up, disappeared like a white, broad monster into the ravine below." Nearly 100 years ago, on March 1, 1910, the deadliest avalanche in United States history struck the small town of Wellington, Washington. Ninety-six people died as a massive wall of snow struck two Great Northern trains stopped at Wellington to wait for the tracks to be cleared, rolling them nearly 1000 feet into Tye Creek and burying the victims under huge piles of snow, trees, and debris. [more inside]
posted by litlnemo at 6:36 AM PST - 13 comments

Heloise on the high seas
Offshore drilling/container ship catering crews know some really cool kitchen tricks. (equipment cleaning/maintenance/repair tips, not cooking tips.) [more inside]
posted by magdalenstreetladies at 6:02 AM PST - 37 comments

In words of one syl-la-ble
Time was, folks wrote books with just small words, for kids, or for folks who could not read well. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:25 AM PST - 22 comments

Selling placebos
Placebo pills for sale. You've seen some of the many spoofs, and they've been discussed before, but now you can pay real money for real pills. So multi-powerful, they're the go-to pill of choice when conducting double blind studies for medicines treating every disease and disorder. It's SCIENCE!
posted by birdsquared at 1:16 AM PST - 40 comments