Heineken's "Eurotopia" The theory behind Heineken’s idea is that a larger number of smaller member-states would be easier to govern within a single European framework than a combination of larger states competing for dominance. posted by Confess, Fletch at 6:54 PM PST - 33 comments
Grantland's Steven Hyden writes the winner's history of rock and roll, in four parts (so far), and charts the death of rock music as a major pop-cultural force in the 21st century by looking at some (not necessarily well-loved) bands that helped to transform it into a Big Business: Led Zeppelin, Kiss, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith (and coming up in the next installment, Metallica). Rock isn't dead, by any means. But for better or worse, it ain't what it used to be. posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:40 PM PST - 82 comments
HMVs across the world have been closing and losing their business to online retailers so they have been letting a lot of people go. Recently, they fired someone who had access to twitter. They live-tweeted the whole event. posted by cyml at 2:40 PM PST - 65 comments
Founded in 1999 and quickly winning over theatre critics and audiences alike, Abattoir Fermé is an avant-garde collective that was awarded the 2008 Flemish Culture Prize for its "penetrating and ominous theatre." [more inside] posted by urbanwhaleshark at 2:21 PM PST - 2 comments
Tiago Hoisel is a cool illustrator from São Paulo, Brazil. his work focus on humorous illustrations. interview with him reveal a simple and talented character. examples of his work : 1, 2, 3, 4. more can be found here and here. posted by Ahmed_Nabil at 2:20 PM PST - 3 comments
Your employer may share your salary, and Equifax might sell that data. "The Equifax credit reporting agency, with the aid of thousands of human resource departments around the country, has assembled what may be the most powerful and thorough private database of Americans’ personal information ever created, containing 190 million employment and salary records covering more than one-third of U.S. adults.
Some of the information in the little-known database, created through an Equifax-owned company called The Work Number, is sold to debt collectors, financial service companies and other entities." posted by coupdefoudre at 12:09 PM PST - 39 comments
The new Kitty (formerly Kitty Pryde) EP, D.A.I.S.Y. Rage is out today for your free streaming/download. If'n you wanna tumblrize and girlize and otherwise coyly subvert yr hip hop. ☠DEAD❤ISLAND☠ video. Previouslyseen on MetaFilter for her Okay Cupid and Orion's Belt videos which sparked heated debates. Noisey has an interview with her, and she's also taking over their twitter for the day. "If her new EP feels like the work of an artist coming into their own, that’s because it is: It’s as cohesive a body of work as the rapper has ever put out, showcasing the crooked self-assurance that it takes to cop to shit like bed-wetting and making a song with a guy who rejected you." posted by naju at 11:05 AM PST - 27 comments
"De Villiers has spent most of his life cultivating spies and diplomats, who seem to enjoy seeing themselves and their secrets transfigured into pop fiction (with their own names carefully disguised), and his books regularly contain information about terror plots, espionage and wars that has never appeared elsewhere. Other pop novelists, like John le Carré and Tom Clancy, may flavor their work with a few real-world scenarios and some spy lingo, but de Villiers’s books are ahead of the news and sometimes even ahead of events themselves." (SLNYT) posted by Rustic Etruscan at 9:33 AM PST - 26 comments
Is being cool too much work? Enter CouchCachet, which checks you in to the hottest locations on Foursquare whenever you get home (after checking to make sure your friends have never been). And that is not all: among its other features, it will "tweet lyrics by indie bands that people haven’t heard of, wax poetic about local microbrews that you just discovered at some cool speakeasy and... upload low-fi pictures of 20-somethings in skinny jeans to your Instagram.” posted by blahblahblah at 9:33 AM PST - 67 comments
Retail chains are a fundamentally implausible economic structure if there’s a viable alternative. You combine the fixed cost of real estate with inventory, and it puts every retailer in a highly leveraged position. Few can survive a decline of 20 to 30 percent in revenues. It just doesn’t make any sense for all this stuff to sit on shelves. There is fundamentally a better model.
Rebecca Solnit on how Silicon Valley corporations are transforming San Francisco:I weathered the dot-com boom of the late 1990s as an observer, but I sold my apartment to a Google engineer last year and ventured out into both the rental market (for the short term) and home buying market (for the long term) with confidence that my long standing in this city and respectable finances would open a path. That confidence got crushed fast. It turned out that the competition for any apartment in San Francisco was so intense that you had to respond to the listings – all on San Francisco-based Craigslist of course, the classifieds website that whittled away newspaper ad revenue nationally – within a few hours of their posting to receive a reply from the landlord or agency. The listings for both rentals and homes for sale often mentioned their proximity to the Google or Apple bus stops.[more inside] posted by liketitanic at 7:39 AM PST - 143 comments
Yesterday, the Nielsen Company released a report showing that same-sex partnered households in America shop about 16% more than the average US household. Broken down into categories, Nielsen observes that gay couples drink a ton, while lesbian couples eat an awful lot of cottage cheese. posted by schmod at 7:39 AM PST - 63 comments
NSFWWe like to entertain… ourselves mainly… and it’s a comedy show much of the time, with little more than white walls and floorboards for a stage.
''Old Master'' shoots with just a cell phone or ipad. His compositions are definitely outside the norm, all with a cast of volunteers, no models. This is amateur dramatics with a difference. (NSFW. BDSM, bondage, fetish).
Some of this work is included in this online book. posted by adamvasco at 7:06 AM PST - 3 comments
Got an extra wad of cash burning a hole in your pocket, but that NPR fund drive doesn't start for another two weeks? Run out of useful Kickstarter campaigns to back? It's Pledge Weak on the internet! posted by backseatpilot at 6:32 AM PST - 5 comments
Rhythm King - "Don had been hired by the Hammond organ company to demo its products on the show floor. He was using an Ace Tone rhythm box (which was distributed by Hammond at the time) as his percussion section. "I had modified my Ace Tone to death, changed all the rhythms because none of them fit my style of playing. I also wired it through the expression pedal of the Hammond, so I could get [percussion] accents, which no one was doing then. After the show this man from Japan came up and the first thing out of his mouth was ‘that looks like my rhythm unit but it doesn’t sound like my rhythm unit! How did you do that?’" It was Ikutaro Takehashi, the president of Ace." posted by marienbad at 4:31 AM PST - 22 comments
Storyboard was born of my insane desire to consume videos without actually having to watch them. Normally that would involve putting the TV on in the background and ignoring the video while listening to the audio, but what about the reverse? All visual without the audio. On my kindle.via waxy[more inside] posted by cgc373 at 4:06 AM PST - 29 comments
In a report that scaled up local surveys and pilot studies to national dimensions, scientists from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that domestic cats in the United States — both the pet Fluffies that spend part of the day outdoors and the unnamed strays and ferals that never leave it — kill a median of 2.4 billion birds and 12.3 billion mammals a year, most of them native mammals like shrews, chipmunks and voles rather than introduced pests like the Norway rat.
One point needs to be made clear. It's not that the British government dislikes Bulgarians or Romanians; somebody needs to pick up the slack now the Polish builders have become too expensive. They're just worried that people in Budapest or Sofia don't know that Britain is, well, a bit shit, that you can't find a decent goulash for love nor money and that you may just not like it there. So they're proposing an ad campaign to warn of the dangers of living in Britain. Knowning that in this, its darkest hour, their country needs them, Guardian readers have responded in their literal dozens to contribute ad ideas. It's not as if they're short on material, after all. posted by MartinWisse at 1:12 PM PST - 102 comments
On Must Read, you choose the one article you think everyone should read—right now—then share it with a note explaining why. Follow people who post great must-reads, and your timeline becomes a command center for vital reading; you see their current must-reads, and nothing else. [via mefi projects] posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 4:12 AM PST - 14 comments
Sadly, it's time to say farewell to a unique and visionary musician and musical thinker who developed and articulated an extraordinary method of directing large-ensemble improvisation with a method that he dubbed "conduction". Mr. Butch Morris has left us, but his ideas will surely reverberate in the hearts and minds of creative musicians and lovers of creative music everywhere. posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:27 PM PST - 10 comments
Jared Diamond argues that we should be more concerned about low risk events that we encounter with greater frequency. Meanwhile, Lonely Island argues that we should be more concerned about low risk events that we encounter with greater frequency. posted by dgaicun at 6:05 PM PST - 48 comments
Ryan Cordell told his kids they could have the puppy they were asking for...if their Facebook puppy request page got one million likes. You can probably guess the result (cute children + plea for cute puppy = viral gold). Cordell says that although he did expect the page would get several thousand visits over a couple of weeks, "I just thought it would kind of peter out at that point," and in a month or two, he and his wife would congratulate the kids on their project and get them a puppy anyway. He didn't anticipate that it would take only seven hours to reach one million likes. Perhaps he should have seen it coming: Cordell is an English professor at Northeastern University whose research in digital humanities includes the study of "viral media" from the 19th century. [Audio interview with Cordell on CBC Radio--starts at 1:01:00 into the episode.] Most importantly, though: photos of Millie, the shelter puppy they adopted! [more inside] posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:41 PM PST - 40 comments
It is June 2, 2010 and Mark Zuckerberg is sweating. He’s wearing his hoodie—he’s always wearing his hoodie—and he’s on stage and either the lights or the questions are too hot. … “Do you want to take off the hoodie?” asks Kara Swisher.
“I never take off the hoodie.”
Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique, which turns 50 next month, transformed the lives of women across America. ... Gail Collins, author and columnist for the New York Times, wrote the introduction to the 50th anniversary edition of The Feminine Mystique. Collins may be best known for her sharp and witty voice on the Times's Op-Ed page. In 2001, she became the first woman to serve as Editorial Page Editor for the New York Times, a post she held until 2007. Collins grew up in the kind of "typical" suburban household Friedan described. But The Feminine Mystique, released when Collins was in college, sparked the second wave of feminism and shaped the landscape Collins would enter into.
An Interview with Collins about her own experiences, childcare, the rise of female breadwinners, and what she sees for women in the future. posted by infini at 8:49 AM PST - 9 comments
From the most recent Boston Magazine. "The Boston sports media, once considered one of the country’s best and most influential press corps, is stumbling toward irrelevance. The national media not only seems to break more big Boston sports stories than the local press, but also often features more sophisticated analysis, especially when it comes to using advanced statistics. To put it bluntly, “The Lodge”—as Fred Toucher, cohost of the 98.5 The Sports Hub morning radio show, mockingly refers to the city’s clubby, self-important media establishment—is clogged with stale reporters, crotchety columnists, and shameless blowhards. "
There's even a whole blog dedicated to hating Dan Shaughnessy, Dan Shaughnessy Watch, aka the CHB. posted by Melismata at 8:42 AM PST - 17 comments
"When you were up there in a plane, you’d get shot at, and you couldn’t call field artillery to support you. You had no ambulance, no medic. There was no tank to come in and run over the enemy. All it took was one accurate aircraft shot, and a plane full of 10 guys was gone. The commanders, for the most part, understood this,” Conway continues, “So there was a little bit more leniency in that regard than there would have been with ground guys. The officers figured, ‘Well, if this guy wants to paint a naked lady on the back of the jacket, what good is it to try to stop him? He could be dead tomorrow morning.’ The main objective was winning the war, not enforcing minor regulations and rules.”
Even though you've heard of Darwin, it's quite possible that you're not familiar with Alfred Russel Wallace (previously), co-discoverer of the theory of evolution (a shame; in many respects he's the more interesting of the two!). Fortunately you can now learn more about the man through transcripts and scans of his letters with family and colleagues, which the UK Natural History Museum have just published online. [more inside] posted by barnacles at 12:15 AM PST - 15 comments
The Lady of Orda Cave Two-time world champion free diver Natalia Avseenko ventures deep into Ordynskaya Cave in Perm, Russia, one of the longest and biggest underwater gypsum caves in the world. She dressed as the mythical Lady of the Cave, a spirit who protects divers inside the “natural cathedral”. Orda Cave previously. posted by apricot at 8:50 PM PST - 13 comments
The Learners Bill of Rights, a set of “Principles for Learning in the Digital Age,” is the outcome of a twelve-person meeting held in Palo Alto last week to explore the voice of the educated in online learning discussions:
As we begin to experiment with how novel technologies might change learning and teaching, powerful forces threaten to neuter or constrain technology, propping up outdated educational practices rather than unfolding transformative ones.
All too often, during such wrenching transitions, the voice of the learner gets muffled.
For that reason, we feel compelled to articulate the opportunities for students in this brave electronic world, to assert their needs and--we dare say--rights.
We also recognize some broader hopes and aspirations for the best online learning. We include those principles as an integral addendum to the Bill of Rights below.
Sylvia's mother was a 1972 single by Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show that was written by Shel Silverstein that tells the true story of Shel's girlfriend Sylvia PandolfiSilverstein admitted that there was a real Sylvia, and he did indeed call her mother to learn the shocking truth. He even thought of pulling a Mrs. Robinson and disrupting the wedding, but he came to his senses when thinking about Sylvia's last words to him: "Shel, don't spoil it." She would never become Mrs. Sylvia Silverstein. The video is a short documentary about the song with interviews from Sylvia's mother and Sylvia Pandolfi. [more inside] posted by Sailormom at 10:50 AM PST - 48 comments
Right now, though, you can google “polyamory” and get a whole lot of nearly-identical polynormative hype articles, and you can meet up with locals who’ve read the same articles you just did, and you can all get together and do polynormative poly exactly the way the media told you to. And if that’s all you ever bother to do then essentially you are selling yourself short. You are trading in the monogamous norm for polynormativity, which relatively speaking isn’t all that much of a stretch, and stopping there because you may very well think that’s all there is (and you already racked up a whole bunch of cool points anyway). You aren’t encouraged to really think about this stuff without any imposed models at all, which means you never get to figure out what actually might work best for you. As such, the most fundamental element of polyamory—that of rejecting the monogamous standard, and radically rethinking how you understand, make meaning of and practice love, sex, relationships, commitment, communication, and so forth—is lost in favour of a cookie-cutter model that’s as easy as one, two, three. The deepest and most significant benefit of polyamory has become increasingly obscured by media representation, and as a result, is getting farther and farther out of reach for anyone who’s just starting out.
A lot of once great [New York movie] theaters have been gutted and repurposed, most often into churches, pharmacies and gyms," writes The NYC Scout in today's installment of Scouting New York. "I’ve stopped in quite a few hoping to find the rare gem that’s survived, but have only been disappointed time and again." Scouting New York has been featured in the blue many times ( 123456 ), but this entry is (literally, at least in my case) jaw-dropping. Just keep scrolling down. [more inside] posted by Mothlight at 8:50 AM PST - 47 comments
Each space shuttle launch was documented by 125 cameras aimed at its engines, solid rocket boosters, orbiter, and umbilicals. The 45-minute film Ascent compiles the "best of the best": astounding 400 fps footage from three missions (STS-114, STS-117, and STS-124), produced by NASA aerospace engineer Matt Melis, and narrated by Melis and photographer Kevin Burke. posted by googly at 7:26 AM PST - 27 comments
Quantum Biology - Disappearing in one place and reappearing in another. Being in two places at once. Communicating information seemingly faster than the speed of light.
This kind of weird behaviour is commonplace in dark, still laboratories studying the branch of physics called quantum mechanics, but what might it have to do with fresh flowers, migrating birds, and the smell of rotten eggs?
More: Quantum smell' idea gains ground
Both BBC. posted by marienbad at 4:05 AM PST - 59 comments
The Desi Cow – Almost Extinct "The idea of the cow, of course, is also emotively charged because of its mythical place in Hindu iconography, religion and culture: it is quite literally worshipped as goddess Kamdhenu: the cow of plenty... Again, this veneration is founded in hard pragmatics. Traditionally, India has been home to some of the most varied stock of cows in the world: the red-skinned Sahiwal that milks through droughts, the mighty Amrit Mahal with swords for horns or the tiny Vechur that stands no taller than a dog." posted by dhruva at 11:50 AM PST - 46 comments
Quirky(previously) is a design and manufacturing website for inventors. In 2010, one of their users, Bill Ward, came up with an idea for a dustpan called the Broom Groomer with a comb-like edge for cleaning off all the dustbunnies and stuff that builds up on your broom. Turns out, gadget company OXO came out with a very similar design in 2012 called the Upright Sweep Set. Last week, the folks at Quirky staged a protest and paid for a billboard that accused OXO of ripping off their design.
OXO responds on their blog with a mini-lesson on patents and international intellectual property rights. posted by 23skidoo at 8:43 AM PST - 77 comments
A graduating member of The Animation Workshop in Denmark has produced a cool little short film that, like "Adventure Time", seems to owe a lot to Dungeons & Dragons. posted by Ipsifendus at 6:24 AM PST - 18 comments
Vinepeek shows you a continuously updating stream of uploads to vine, a recently launched video clip sharing startup that Twitter acquired last October. Fascinating, mesmerizing 6-second clips of life from all around the world. (via) posted by yourcelf at 6:56 PM PST - 65 comments
About a year after her participation in the groundbreaking Comedy Central documentary series the Comedians of Comedy, Maria Bamford was on stage at the Friars Club in LA when a heckler began shouting at her. What happened after that isn’t entirely clear, other than Bamford had a breakdown, walked off stage, and disappeared. She was found three months later selling clock radios on the sidewalks of Detroit. A fellow homeless person, who was also a Comedy Central fan, recognized Bamford and eventually her parents were contacted. They brought her back home to Deluth, Minnesota and began to get her help. Maria decided to document her recovery in a series of short videos called The Maria Bamford Show, which were first posted to the TBS networks' now abandoned Super Deluxe Web site. [more inside] posted by Toekneesan at 4:41 PM PST - 100 comments
Almost as soon as we got back to Dash-e Towp, I overheard some U.S. officers loudly complaining about the inability of Afghan soldiers to make appointments on time. Afghan soldiers do have difficulty making appointments on time, it’s true. They also don’t like to stand in straight lines or dress according to regulation or march in step or do so many of the things intrinsic to a Western notion of professional soldiering. When a lieutenant calls a formation of Afghan privates to attention, they will inevitably resemble, as my drill sergeant used to say, “a soup sandwich.” But they will also accept a much higher level of risk than any coalition force ever has. Their ranks are filled with tough and brave men who run toward the fight without body armor or helmets or armored vehicles and sleep on the frozen ground without sleeping bags and dig up I.E.D.’s with a pickax and often go hungry and seldom complain. - A week in the life of an Afghan National Army battalion, on its own in the wilderness. (NYTimes) posted by beisny at 4:04 PM PST - 13 comments
"The researchers began with the computer files from some notable cultural highlights: an audio recording of MLK Jr.’s 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech, all 154 of Shakespeare’s sonnets, and, appropriately, a copy of Watson and Crick’s original research paper describing DNA’s double helix structure. On a hard drive, these files are stored as a series of zeros and ones. The researchers worked out a system to translate the binary code into one with four characters instead: A, C, G and T. They used this genetic code to synthesize actual strands of DNA with the content embedded in its very structure.
The ouput was actually pretty unimpressive: just a smidgeon of stuff barely visible at the bottom of a test tube. The wow factor arose when they reversed the process. The researchers sequenced the genome of the data-laden DNA and translated it back into zeros and ones. The result was a re-creation of the original content without a single error, according to the results published in Nature on Wednesday." posted by SpacemanStix at 2:33 PM PST - 37 comments
Albert Dubout (1905-1976) was a highly popular and prolific French cartoonist and illustrator, whose works were ubiquitous in France from the 1930s to the 1970s: Dubout illustrated books, film posters (notably those of Marcel Pagnol), magazines, advertisements, postcards and some of his cartoons were eventually adapted as a movie. Today, Dubout is best known as the creator of the Dubout couple (movie version; figurine version), consisting of a very large, full-bosomed, dominating, angry-looking wife with a diminutive, hapless and mustachioed husband in tow. Dubout's work is often highly detailed, and images larger than the tiny ones available on the official website are shown under the fold. [more inside] posted by elgilito at 2:24 PM PST - 2 comments
"Most films of nuclear explosions are dubbed. If they do contain an actual recording of the test blast itself.........it's almost always shifted in time so that the explosion and the sound of the blast wave are simultaneous. This is, of course, quite false: the speed of light is much faster than the speed of sound....." Unearthed recently from some Russian archive, this document of a nuclear detonation is one of the few films of its kind that includes a recording of the audio. The sound is not what you might expect. posted by shackpalace at 10:31 AM PST - 46 comments
They made it from beer cans, razors, safety pins, and did I do this part already? Whatever. They loaded it with the most precious artifacts of human culture they could find in Mexican Johnny D-bag’s van. “You gotta make it faster than regular Voyager,” said Red. “So our culture gets to the aliens before the CIA’s fascist pseudo-culture.” posted by Tom-B at 3:36 AM PST - 13 comments
Anthony Wayne Smith was a first round draft pick for the Raiders in 1990. Alternately described as a "big old teddy bear" and "[like] a dog [that] is super beautiful, sweet looking, wagging its tail, and it's acting really friendly, but there's something about that dog.... You worry one day he's gonna bite your hand," he faced the usual hassles of an athlete shifting to civilian life when his career came to an end. Then came the arson and murder. Maybe. posted by Ghostride The Whip at 8:22 PM PST - 7 comments
The Longest Hunger Strike "It had been more than a year since Coleman had chewed anything. He’s not suicidal; he’s in prison for something he says he didn’t do. Like 2.2 million people incarcerated in prisons and jails in the U.S., his body is not his own. The only way for him to protest his conviction, to exercise his first amendment rights, he says, is to stop eating solid food." posted by dhruva at 6:37 PM PST - 35 comments
Recently, in a candlelit room in Tribeca, a 24-year-old named Zack made a confession. “I’m very open about this, but I’ve been in recovery for the past two years,” he said from a podium, facing a room of two dozen people who looked up at him with approval, acceptance, and even a generosity of spirit. He wore a trucker’s hat over curly blond hair and explained that he was from Florida, an actor and hip-hop dancer (“Woo hoo!” “All right!”). Then he kicked on the music and began pedaling his bike.Inside The Carefully Cultivated Soul of SoulCycle[more inside] posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:41 PM PST - 59 comments
"Japanese cinema’s preeminent taboo buster, Nagisa Oshima directed, between 1959 and 1999, more than twenty groundbreaking features. For Oshima, film was a form of activism, a way of shaking up the status quo. Uninterested in the traditional Japanese cinema of such popular filmmakers as Kurosawa, Ozu, and Naruse, Oshima focused not on classical themes of good and evil or domesticity but on outcasts, gangsters, murderers, rapists, sexual deviants, and the politically marginalized." The great Japanese director Nagisa Oshima passed away at the age of 80 last week. Appreciations from the Guardian, Slate, Fandor, Telegraph, NY Times, AV Club, and a few in-depth articles over at Senses of Cinema and Film Comment. posted by HumanComplex at 1:14 PM PST - 11 comments
In 1974, artificial intelligence researchers at Michigan State University made a giant leap forward in computer-aided communication for the handicapped: they used an early text-to-speech system to order a pizza. Spoiler: Domino's hung up on them. [more inside] posted by supercres at 12:49 PM PST - 34 comments
Peoplemovin illustrates the migration flow in and out of the countries of the world. Click on a country's name on the left to see its emigrants stream to countries on the right; click on a country on the right to see where its immigrants come from. Click in between the country lists to see information on top migration origins and destinations, and the largest migration corridors. posted by ocherdraco at 12:09 PM PST - 15 comments
The Designated Mourner (2002); a radio adaptation of Andre Gregory's 2000 revival of the Wallace Shawn play, starring Shawn, Deborah Eisenberg, and Larry Pine. posted by Iridic at 9:20 AM PST - 5 comments
A collection of color photography and film footage of Paris and the surrounding area - from the early 20th century! - has been made available on the website of the Albert-Kahn Museum. posted by jph at 8:17 AM PST - 9 comments
"Although IMDb warns that short descriptions of less than ten lines may not be adequately detailed, I believe that a longer description is probably not reasonably possible. I think I have included everything that bears mentioning."
Andy Warhol's Eat. Also Kiss. Also Sleep. posted by twoleftfeet at 3:45 AM PST - 7 comments
Years before E.L James brought BDSM to a bookstore near you, Nurse Jones wrote The List and posted it to alt.sex.bondage. Funny, touching, truthful and arousing for those so inclined The List changed lives, not the least being Nurse Jones herself. [more inside] posted by Kerasia at 11:26 PM PST - 29 comments
There are two types of subway riders in the world. Those who wonder, during an idle moment at a station, if they could beat the train to the next stop; and those who attempt to do so. Observe. posted by heyho at 4:50 PM PST - 81 comments
"Better known as the “Jane Roe” in the landmark Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, Norma McCorvey has led a conflicted life. Forty years ago, she was at the center of the court decision that famously legalized abortion. Today, she is a zealous anti-abortion advocate." Why did McCorvey turn against the cause she once championed? Tracing the life of an Accidental Activist. Via posted by zarq at 4:05 PM PST - 39 comments
"It looks all but inevitable that Twitter, who acquired Posterous last year, will be eliminating the blog platform. This means that all my blogs will vanish, which is a shame, because all my blogs are actually compendiums of very specializedcomic book material, meant to be permanent galleries, available forever." posted by misterbee at 2:08 PM PST - 41 comments
Dianne Feinstein (D, California) introduced new legislation today to ban assault weapons, and high-capacity magazines. This is the list of 157 specific firearms and firearm types that will be banned if this legislation becomes law. posted by wormwood23 at 12:36 PM PST - 395 comments
Digging up long forgotten memories for a generation who spent their formative years glued to the boob tube, Memorex is a veritable nostalgia nuke for children of the 80s. Endless beach parties, Saturday morning cartoons, claymation everything, sleek cars, sexy babes, toys you forgot existed, station idents, primitive computer animation, all your favorite sugary cereal mascots, and so much more. An ode to the hyper consumerism and sleek veneer of a simpler time. (previously) posted by eric1halfb at 9:44 AM PST - 27 comments
Scientists at the European Bioinformatics Institute successfully encoded several different file formats onto strands of synthetic DNA, which were then sent to an American lab and sequenced to extract the data. Selections included Shakespeare, audio of Dr. Martin Luther King, and photos of their lab. If the idea sounds vaguely familiar, you've probably been reading Dresden Codak. posted by BZArcher at 7:40 AM PST - 23 comments
The Geography of Abortion Access - Forty years ago Tuesday, the Supreme Court ushered in legal abortion for American women when it decided in Roe v. Wade. Today, states—particularly in the South and Midwest—are eroding that right by legislating hundreds of provisions intended to impede access with burdensome obstacles. To understand more fully the complex state of access to abortion services in America, The Daily Beast identified and confirmed the location of the country’s remaining 724 clinics and calculated the distance from every part of the country to its closest clinic. (more) posted by Artw at 7:22 AM PST - 26 comments
Twenty-five years ago, millions of Americans gathered around their sets to watch the launch of a show that would transform late-night TV. This show would fuse comedy and news, offering desk pieces, taped dispatches from correspondents, and interviews with political figures. It would instruct as well as entertain. Yes, a quarter-century ago, America got its first glimpse of a program that had many similarities to The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. It was called The Wilton North Report. The Wilton North Re-what? Exactly.
When a lorry transporting 27 tonnes of Norwegian cheese caught fire in the Brattli Tunnel at Tysfjord, it kept burning for five days, with the tunnel still closed down for traffic. The cheese in question, Brunost, is made by slowly boiling (goats) milk, cream and whey together until the water evaporates and the milk sugar caramalises, which gives the cheese its brown colour. As the Norwegian fire services found out the hard way, its high fat and sugar contents also means it burns well. Something that might have come in useful during the Dutch cheese wars between Edam and Woerden, as immortalised in this commercial; Edammer cheese just couldn't get hot enough. posted by MartinWisse at 11:02 PM PST - 44 comments
We are delighted to present Scrabble enthusiasts everywhere with The Scrabble Player's Handbook, a definitive and free ebook on how to play Scrabble, written by a dozen of the best tournament players in the world. All twelve authors have competed in past World Scrabble Championships and have spent over a year combining their knowledge into this one free Scrabble resource. Definitive. Accessible. Free. What more do you need to know? [Website links to a 6.6 Mb PDF.] posted by not_on_display at 8:55 PM PST - 25 comments
'I'm a White Girl': Why 'Girls' Won't Ever Overcome Its Racial Problem-an article from The Atlantic with several interesting links on the larger issue of including (or not) black characters into American television. posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:48 AM PST - 189 comments
Papercraft animation "The latest stop motion music video from animation duo Katarzyna Kijek and Przemysław Adamski for Japanese singer-songwriter Shugo Tokumaru." [via] posted by dhruva at 9:49 AM PST - 10 comments
The practice of lying to one's children to encourage behavioral compliance was investigated among parents in the US (N = 114) and China (N = 85). The vast majority of parents (84% in the US and 98% in China) reported having lied to their children for this purpose. Within each country, the practice most frequently took the form of falsely threatening to leave a child alone in public if he or she refused to follow the parent. Crosscultural differences were seen: A larger proportion of the parents in China reported that they employed instrumental lie-telling to promote behavioral compliance, and a larger proportion approved of this practice, as compared to the parents in the US. This difference was not seen on measures relating to the practice of lying to promote positive feelings, or on measures relating to statements about fantasy characters such as the tooth fairy. Findings are discussed with reference to sociocultural values and certain parenting-related challenges that extend across cultures. [HTML] -- [PDF][more inside] posted by Blasdelb at 8:16 AM PST - 82 comments
Mina Caputo began her career as Keith Caputo, founder of the heavy metal band Life of Agony. In the early 1990s the band became huge in Europe, and the teenage Caputo found herself trapped in the life of a macho metal superstar when what she really wanted was to be a nice young lady attending Julliard. She performed as Keith for over 20 years, then in 2010 Niko Bikialo's quietly devastating music video for Caputo's song Got Monsters [brief nudity] put the viewer inside the mind of a transwoman as she struggles to find her place in the world and make a friend of the stranger she sees in the mirror. A year later, Caputo shocked metal fans when she officially announced she was transitioning. [more inside] posted by Ursula Hitler at 3:24 AM PST - 15 comments
Nicole Ryan, a Nova Scotia teacher, offered a hit man $25,000 to bump off her husband because the police would not protect her from his abuse (longer, audio only). In her first 2010 trial, where she raised the defense of duress, she was aquitted; the Crown's 2011 appeal of that acquittal was dismissed, and her third 2013 trial resulted in a stay. But the victim didn't go on the stand to tell his side of the story. [more inside] posted by saucysault at 6:14 PM PST - 75 comments
Dungeons and Dragons Classics -- First Edition. Second Edition. Third and Fourth Editions. Even Basic and Expert sets. Psionics, Magics, Ninja and Samurai, Are you looking for modules? Come on down to DnD Classics! Wizards of the Coast has decided to release D&D sourcebooks as PDFs for your enjoyment and reminiscence. posted by boo_radley at 2:42 PM PST - 118 comments
This iconic photo of the first Aboriginal woman to enlist in the Canadian Women’s Army Corps was used as a recruitment tool, and "appeared all over the British Empire [in 1942] to show the power of the colonies fighting for King and country." Its original caption in the Canadian War Museum read, "Unidentified Indian princess getting blessing from her chief and father to go fight in the war." Its current caption in The Library and Archives of Canada reads: "Mary Greyeyes being blessed by her native Chief prior to leaving for service in the CWAC, 1942." But as it turns out, the two people in the photo had never met before that day. They weren't from the same tribe or even related and Private Mary Greyeyes was not an "Indian Princess." 70 years after the photo was taken, her daughter-in-law Melanie made sure the official record was corrected.Via[more inside] posted by zarq at 12:00 PM PST - 13 comments
The Timeline of the Far Future is a Wikipedia article which serves as a gateway to a ton of fascinating scientific topics on the far edge of human understanding: ~50,000 years from now the Earth will enter a new Glacial period; ~100,000 years from now the Earth will likely have experienced a supervolcanic eruption; ~10,000,000 years from now the East African Rift divides the continent of Africa in to two land masses; ~20,000,000,000 years from now the Universe effectively dies due to The Big Rip. posted by codacorolla at 10:42 AM PST - 93 comments
"This week, we discovered an utterly charming card used by Isaac Asimov ('natural resource' is right) and, inspired, began hunting for more famous peoples' business cards, whether boilerplate or highly designed, staid or comical." posted by gilrain at 9:53 AM PST - 92 comments
Every year, Edge.org asks a question. This year's is:"What *Should* We Be Worried About?" The responses are things like "Chinese Eugenics," "We Are In Denial About Catastrophic Risks," "Worry About Internet Drivel," "The Patience Deficit," "The Power Of Bad Incentives," "The Complex, Consequential, Not-So-Easy Decisions About Our Water Resources," and "The Cultural And Cognitive Consequences Of Electronics." They are from people like Nassim Nicholas Taleb, David Rowan, Evgeny Morozov, Kate Jeffery, Vernor Vinge, Bruce Schneier, Alison Gopnik, Steven Pinker, Virginia Heffernan and Simon Baron-Cohen.
There are 154 answers. [more inside] posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:13 AM PST - 97 comments
For non-anglophones, the English names of worldwide brands, music bands and other cultural items are both ubiquitous and slightly mysterious.
Here what the English (plus some German, Spanish and Japanese) names of 52 brands/logotypes and 30 musicians/records look like when very loosely and somewhat lazily translated in French. Some extras can be found in the comments (note: annoying pop-up at the start). posted by elgilito at 1:04 AM PST - 72 comments
"Of the top 100 Swiss companies, 49 give shareholders a consulting vote on the pay of executives. A few other countries, including the United States and Germany, have introduced advisory "say on pay" votes in response to the anger over inequality and corporate excess that drove the Occupy Wall Street movement. Britain is also planning to implement rules in late 2013 that will give shareholders a binding vote on pay and "exit payments" at least every three years. Minder's initiative goes further, forcing all listed companies to have binding votes on compensation for company managers and directors, and ban golden handshakes and parachutes. It would also ban bonus payments to managers if their companies are taken over, and impose severe penalties — including possible jail sentences and fines — for breaches of these new rules." posted by vidur at 7:45 PM PST - 32 comments
"Men across all cultures reported higher sex drives and less restricted sexual attitudes than women, but women were consistently more variable than men in their sex drives. Another important, if not entirely surprising pattern, suggests that these differences are not entirely biological, and are due in some part to social and cultural ideologies." An io9 article looks at the results from a number of sex surveys. posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:03 PM PST - 92 comments
"Moving is what nomads do. For the Kyrgyz of Afghanistan, it’s from two to four times a year, depending on the weather and the availability of grass for the animals. They call their homeland Bam-e Dunya, which means “roof of the world.” This might sound poetic and beautiful—it is undeniably beautiful—but it’s also an environment at the very cusp of human survivability. Their land consists of two long, glacier-carved valleys, called pamirs, stashed deep within the great mountains of Central Asia. Much of it is above 14,000 feet. The wind is furious; crops are impossible to grow. The temperature can drop below freezing 340 days a year. Many Kyrgyz have never seen a tree." Welcome to life at the upper altitudes of the Wakhan Corridor, above the tree line and on the roof of the world. [more inside] posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:39 PM PST - 28 comments
In on attempted murder . . . According to evidence cited by Diane McWhorter in today's NYT:
Bull Connor, eased out but still active, organized a police assassination plot against Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth. The conspiracy failed, but it was known to the Birmingham News beforehand. (The News was & is owned by the Newhouse family -- Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, etc). According to McWhorter, the paper also funded and collaborated in police spying on civil rights activists.
McWhorter won a Pulitzer for Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama, the Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution. Her point in today's piece is to recall how wide and deep the Jim Crow violence machine operated.
Good And Evil In Birmingham posted by LonnieK at 1:38 PM PST - 11 comments
The Beat Hotel and neighbourhood as seen through the lens of Harold Chapman.
Another interview with Chapman.
Amongst the photos Gregory Corso, Allen Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky, William Burroughs, Brion Gysin and Mirtaud the cat.
The Beat Hotel (wiki) was probably the last Parisian 'Vie de Boheme'. posted by adamvasco at 11:57 AM PST - 9 comments
That said, Hitchens’ later years and the enormous celebrity he enjoyed during that period are a case study of just how handsome the rewards are for those willing and able to serve as attack dogs for the dominant powers of their place and time. Hitchens’ main service to the American elite was to employ a combination of innuendo and character assassination to cast aspersion on virtually every high-profile figure critical of American foreign policy after 9/11—a roster that includes Julian Assange, Noam Chomsky, George Galloway, Michael Moore, Harold Pinter, Edward Said, Cindy Sheehan, Oliver Stone and Gore Vidal.
Perhaps you've seen this youtube video of Hunter Davis's Sir Ian McKellen imitation (if Sir Ian were to perform Baby Got Back).
Hunter Davis came to a radio station to do an interview, and then the real Sir Ian called in - but turned out to be fake. And then the real Sir Ian actually called in - or was he a fake too? [more inside] posted by insectosaurus at 7:43 PM PST - 10 comments
"The Reconstructionists, a collaboration between illustrator Lisa Congdon and writer Maria Popova, is a yearlong celebration of remarkable women — beloved artists, writers, and scientists, as well as notable unsung heroes — who have changed the way we define ourselves as a culture and live our lives as individuals of any gender.
Every Monday in 2013, we'll be publishing an illustrated portrait of one such trailblazing woman, along with a hand-lettered quote that captures her spirit and a short micro-essay about her life and legacy." posted by cheerwine at 2:00 PM PST - 8 comments
"I certainly believe that the White House would like nothing more than to see an end to mass gun murders in America's elementary schools. But the fact remains that gun violence takes place every day, all across this country, at a rate of dozens of deaths a day, and as the leading cause of death among African-American youth. But when the vice president establishes a task force on gun control and violence that includes the media industries that the NRA has once again chosen as their patsies after a particularly heinous and public example of gun violence, all it can do is shift attention away from guns." -- How the video game industry has lost out in the gun control debate. posted by MartinWisse at 12:54 PM PST - 255 comments
The ballad of Red Buckets."Richard Mason was a high school kid in Boston when he formed his band Insteps and recorded his first songs sounding much like the early Cure. ... Red Buckets began at University of Pennsylvania around 1982, and eventually brought Richard and the band into the context of Crazy Rhythms-era Feelies, the Hoboken music scene at Maxwell’s, Dream Syndicate passing through, and the proto-Yo La Tengo record machine." posted by mykescipark at 11:50 AM PST - 2 comments
The Bronx Zoo is managed by the Wildlife Conservation Society, which boasts of running more than 500 projects in sixty-five countries through global field offices whose employees work to advance sustainable development; address issues of global climate change, health and well-being, and natural-resource use; and pursue other noble-sounding objectives that attest to the totality of man’s dominion over the lesser beasts.[more inside] posted by latkes at 11:05 AM PST - 30 comments
Take a copy of Monopoly, cover it in lye for a few days, boil from off the bones whatever flesh remains, and give the clean white skeleton a tasteful, minimalist paintjob, and you end up with ONOPO, an extreme reduction of the original boardgame by Metafilter's own Matthew Hollett, aka oulipian. Via mefi projects, hat tip to fastcodesign c/o Rock Paper Shotgun's always-lovely Sunday Papers feature. posted by cortex at 10:40 AM PST - 56 comments
If you've never done the Wingate-cycle test, let me try to explain what it feels like: It feels like your legs are giving birth. It feels like you've got an eight-martini hangover in your calves. Your face contorts like a porn star in an AVN-award-winning threesome scene. You emit noises that resemble feedback at a thrash-metal concert. Maybe your eyes are closed and you're rocking your head back and forth. The upside: It's over in 30 seconds. ... I rode the Wingate cycle as part of my research on a surprising and potentially life-altering theory called high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Think of it as the Evelyn Wood of exercise. The idea is that lightning-quick intense workouts might be as good for you as — if not better than — longer medium-intensity workouts.
People have the misconception that a gay person comes out once. It's not true. If you're gay and you're authentic, you're coming out constantly. You're on a business trip, for example. A cab driver asks if you have kids, and you say that you do. Then he asks about your wife. Even though you may be exhausted, you find yourself summoning the energy to have a transformative conversation with a total stranger on whom you are depending to get to the airport and whose reaction you have no way of predicting. It takes a few tablespoons of courage. Every time. But you do it. Because it's who you are, and you've learned long ago not to deny who you are or who your partner is. Because to deny who you are is a betrayal of yourself and the man you love and the children you have together. So you never, ever skirt the issue, no matter how tired or busy you are. You become a Jedi with your truth. Not just the truth, but your truth. Dan Pallotta writes "Never Lie about Who You Really Are" in the Harvard Business Review blog. posted by infini at 11:52 PM PST - 54 comments
In November 2007, a new board game called Yavalath was invented. The rules of Yavalath are simple: Players take turns adding a piece of their colour to a hexagonal board and win by making four-in-a-row of their colour – but lose by making three-in-a-row beforehand. Yavalath has proven reasonably popular as its simple rules allow interesting and surprising situations to develop due to its innovative win with four but lose with three winning condition. But Yavalath is really set apart from the many other board games invented in 2007 by one remarkable fact: Yavalath was designed by a computer programme.[more inside] posted by rollick at 10:47 PM PST - 20 comments
If you missed this story, you missed one of the All Time Great stories on This American Life:
A while ago, a farmer walked through a pork processing plant in Oklahoma with a friend who managed it. He came across boxes stacked on the floor with labels that said "artificial calamari." So he asked his friend "What’s artificial calamari?" "Bung," his friend replied. "Hog rectum." Have you or I eaten bung dressed up as seafood? Ben investigated. (26 minutes)Dead Ringer. Educational and hilarious. If you prefer, the entire episode. posted by spock at 6:26 PM PST - 118 comments
Today it is an economic and even geopolitical necessity for oil companies, in order to maintain pipelines and offshore rigs, to send divers routinely to depths of a thousand feet, and keep them at that level of compression for as long as a month at a time. The divers who do this work are almost entirely male, and tend to be between the ages of twenty-five and forty. Were they any younger, they would not have enough experience or seniority to perform such demanding tasks. Any older, and their bodies could not be trusted to withstand the trauma. The term for these extended-length descents is “saturation diving,” which refers to the fact that the diver’s tissues have absorbed the maximum amount of inert gas possible. posted by jason's_planet at 1:54 PM PST - 19 comments
Cascada (single link vimeo) Tangled vines. Endless rain. Dodgy hotel rooms. Mud. Biting flies. Aggressive viruses...Perfection.
Is this a vacation? Erik Boomer, Tyler Bradt, Galen Volckhausen, Tim Kemple, Anson Fogel, Blake Hendrix and Skip Armstrong hunt the remote Mexican jungle for the perfect waterfall...and the perfect shot. Paddler and cinematographer alike explore a world beyond the expected.
(Music by HECQ and Anson Fogel) posted by DreamerFi at 11:58 AM PST - 4 comments
How can we get CO2 out of the atmosphere? Get it out of the sea first. Making jet fuel from seawater is a pretty cool -- albeit energy intensive -- trick. But applying the same science to scrub CO2 out of seawater, where it is more densely concentrated than in the atmosphere -- and, by doing so, to reduce atmospheric levels of CO2 back to acceptable levels -- that's a game saver.
"what would it take to draw atmospheric carbon down to 350 ppm with just this technology? . . . we would require the power of about 700 AP-1000 nuclear reactors. At the Chinese cost of $1.3b apiece and an 80 year lifetime this would cost a bit over $1 trillion dollars. That sounds like a lot of money. But its only about the cost of America’s 2003 Iraq War spread over the century, so I guess it’s a question of priorities." posted by markkraft at 4:03 AM PST - 68 comments
Does having sex with you entail becoming married, whether legally, magically, physiologically, or some other de facto permanent relationship? Y/N If Yes, please describe our new life together.
It's an unpredictable dating world out there when you're a fanfiction protagonist. With the proliferation of anonymous kink memes populated by imaginative, trope-savvyslashers and other fan-writers (usually women), you can never be quite sure when your next amorous encounter in fic may veer into the dubiously probable or physically impossible. Luckily for sexually-active fic-heroes everywhere, fan-writers Coruscera and Linbot have created a helpful meta-fandom survey to ensure your future romantic interludes run smoothly for all partners involved:
"Special Circumstances Questionnaire for Sexual Partners (Male): Long Form."
[NSFW for explicit sexual language. Possible trigger warnings for discussion of sexual consent and very unusual sexual practices.] posted by nicebookrack at 10:46 PM PST - 19 comments
The basic history is that back around 1999/2000, Jon Brion shot a pilot with VH1 for a variety show that would feature music & comedy of the various performers hanging around LA club Largo at the time (Aimee Mann, Fiona Apple, etc.) but the network turned it down. So PTA decided to step in and shot his own version of "The Jon Brion Show" via 3 test episodes which he shot and paid for himself, but as far as we know never presented it to the network (or any network) for possibility to air.[more inside] posted by Red Loop at 5:06 PM PST - 9 comments
To some, Canada's greatest guilty pleasure is Poutine (here are 38 variations, all on one page, THANK you Foodbeast) or William Shatner (who is bringing his one-man show to MY town tomorrow evening). But there are things most of us don't know about the Nice Folk to the North. Therefore, a new site for CANADIAN SEX ACTS, kind of a Kanada Sutra. NSFW and age restricted, this new site may have performance problems (insert snarky comment here); if so, just enjoy the list of names of great white north positions (Reverse Rick Moranis, Montreal Meatpie, Five-Legged Caribou...) posted by oneswellfoop at 3:32 PM PST - 66 comments
In 1992, Lynn Brooks founded the non-profit Big Apple Greeter program, to help make a visit to New York City seem less intimidating and dangerous to first-time visitors: Pick a date, time and neighborhood, and the organization will match you up with a local who will spend several hours with you, helping you find your way around, teaching you the ins and outs of subways and buses, the cool shops, the great places to eat. (Their site also has some outstanding neighborhood profiles and cultural attraction guides that should be of just as much interest to local residents.) The idea spread, leading to the formation of the Global Greeter Network, which now has greeter programs in cities all over the world. posted by jbickers at 1:44 PM PST - 13 comments
After a few weeks of well-reported rumors that Lance Armstrong was going to confess, he publicly admitted to years of doping in the first of a two-part interview with Oprah Winfrey. [more inside] posted by entropone at 8:24 AM PST - 209 comments
Last summer, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church approved a measure affirming the right of transgendered members to be eligible for both lay and ordained ministry. Before the vote, pioneering Episcopal LGBT group Integrity USA distributed copies of "Voices of Witness: Out of the Box" to Convention delegates. The short video profiles several transgender Episcopalians, including clergy, as well as cisgender supporters.
In other Episcopal LGBT news, the Dean of the National Cathedral in Washington DC announced last week that the Cathedral would begin celebrating same-sex weddings effective immediately. posted by Biblio at 5:28 AM PST - 55 comments
Philip Pilkington writes for naked capitalism: The Origins of Neoliberalism
Part I: Hayek's Delusion
Hayek’s entire ideology and career had begun to come apart in the 1930s. His theories were shown to be inconsistent in the academic journals of the time and the practical implications of those theories had shown themselves to be both discredited and dangerous. A man in such a position only has two choices: he can either completely re-evaluate his ideas which, if they were held with unshakeable conviction and constituted a core component of his emotional make-up, as seems to have been the case with Hayek, would have likely resulted in a mental collapse; or, alternatively, he can engage in a massive repression, shut out reality and construct around himself a fantasy world.
"Even drum and bass works best when it's a constant, steady assault, those subtle changes that mark one track from the next being the bits that make Bermondsey boys on bail take their shirts off and twist their own jaws into "Z" shapes". Tongue-in-cheek Vice article on the new rave culture in the US posted by fatfrank at 12:45 AM PST - 95 comments
"When the National Football League locked out its referees’ union this year, it seemed to delight in exploiting the perceived “women vs. labor” split, putting a woman on the field for the first time as one of the replacement refs. Feminists cheered, labor folks groaned, and those of us who are both buried our heads in our hands, angered by the cynical move, wanting to cheer new ground broken for women but having learned the hard lesson that not all first steps by women are progressive. Whether it’s City Council speaker Christine Quinn in New York City blocking paid sick days or Marissa Mayer taking the helm at Yahoo or Shannon Eastin taking the job of a locked-out worker for less money, we have to recognize that some first steps are taken on the backs of workers, many of whom are also women." -- Sara Jaffe writing about mainstream feminism's obsession with the glass ceiling and corresponding lack of attention for working women's issues: trickle down feminism. posted by MartinWisse at 10:43 PM PST - 21 comments
"TVGuide.com talked to stars John Noble (Dr. Walter Bishop), Joshua Jackson (Peter Bishop), Anna Torv (Olivia Dunham), Jasika Nicole (Astrid Farnsworth), Lance Reddick (Phillip Broyles), Blair Brown (Nina Sharp), Mark Valley (John Scott), series co-creator Abrams, executive producers J.H Wyman, Jeff Pinkner and Bryan Burk, Warner Bros. President Peter Roth and Fox's Chairman of Entertainment Kevin Reilly about the bumpy road to the series finale, starting with the conception of the show. This is the first in a four-part series. Check out Part 2 and Part 3." (Part 4 is pending.) posted by hippybear at 6:19 PM PST - 155 comments
The aging of Obama. "Photos of Barack Obama on Election Night 2008 look like they were taken much longer ago. Now his face has deeper creases and crow’s feet, while his hair has turned white." Maybe damaged cell tips are to blame. posted by Xurando at 12:37 PM PST - 89 comments
On January 8th, 2013, the 14th and final book in the Wheel of Time series, A Memory of Light, was released and concluded the the adventure that began nearly 23 years ago (for readers) of Rand, Egwene, Perrin, Nynaeve and Mat. [more inside] posted by Atreides at 9:32 AM PST - 161 comments
Bertrand Russell in Bollywood: The Old Philosopher’s Improbable Appearance in a Hindi Film, 1967 [SLYT] "The year was 1967. Russell was by then a very frail 95-year-old man. Besides finishing work on his three-volume autobiography, Russell was devoting much of his remaining time to the struggle for peace and nuclear disarmament. To that end, he sometimes made himself available to people he thought could help the cause. (See our March 2012 post, “How Bertrand Russell Turned the Beatles Against the Vietnam War.”) So when he was asked to appear in a movie called Aman, about a young Indian man who has just received his medical degree in London and wants to go to Japan to help victims of the atomic bombings at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Russell said yes." [via: openculture.com] posted by Fizz at 9:19 AM PST - 14 comments
The costs of importing non-native foodstuffs: Despite the call to vegans in the headline, this is an issue that effects all eaters as international lands are stripped to feed the appetites of more wealthy nations. The appetite of countries such as ours for this grain has pushed up prices to such an extent that poorer people in Peru and Bolivia, for whom it was once a nourishing staple food, can no longer afford to eat it. Imported junk food is cheaper. In Lima, quinoa now costs more than chicken. posted by weeyin at 8:58 AM PST - 77 comments
"We board in northwest London on a regular bus, with the intention of heading into the heart of the capital, where there is a much greater choice of night buses when it gets later and colder. By now the group seem to have fully accepted my presence and are keen to tell me about their lives. The most pressing question I have is: why? Why would you eschew safety and warmth and comfort for this? It turns out that while a couple of kids might be along for the ride, for most this is their only option.
A boy with huge brown eyes, who is so small he barely looks older than 12, tells me: “I’m allowed home in early mornings to have some food and change my clothes, but I have to be gone by the time my mum wakes up.” When I ask him why, he shrugs, as if the answer is forgotten or irrelevant."
The Economic League and the Consulting Association blacklisted workers and sold the information to employers [Socialist Worker link].
"Police held regular meetings with senior members of the blacklisting operation with information flowing both ways"
"Union officials provided information about their own members that ended up on the blacklist files. Ian Davidson MP described this as "the union putting the kybosh on someones employment""
"Kerr and other blacklist spies were sent undercover into union meetings" [more inside] posted by marienbad at 8:02 AM PST - 4 comments
Homemade American Music, a movie by Carrie and Yasha Aginsky: A history of rural southeastern traditional American music, as told and played by Mike Seeger and Alice Gerrard. Mike and Alice recount their own involvment with this music, and briefly trace its history as we meet their mentors: the late Tommy Jarrell, Lily May Ledford, Roscoe Holcomb, Elizabeth Cotten and many other musicians. Mike Seeger interviewed (mp3 link) by an inexperienced but eager young Oberlin student in 2003. Mike also plays gourd banjo and jew's harp on air. He talks about Dock Boggs toward the end.
Mike Seeger playing (mp3 link) at the Oberlin Folk Festival in 2003. About minute 18 he gives a lesson on playing jew's harp. posted by OmieWise at 5:44 AM PST - 4 comments
Cello Fortress is a unique combination of a game and a live music performance. A cellist defends a fortress by improvising on his cello. Melodies control the guns, dissonant notes activate the flamethrowers. Players from the audience use game controllers to steer their tanks and attack the fortress. The cellist plays live music, while at the same time controlling the game to be a fun challenge for the players. Cello Fortress is an innovative experiment that blends concert and game. posted by boo_radley at 10:55 PM PST - 5 comments
DNA analysis has confirmed the death, by poaching, of the last Javan rhino in Vietnam. This marks the official extinction of the Vietnamese subspecies of Javan rhinoceros. The entire species is now represented by just 35 individuals from the Indonesian subspecies, all of whom reside in Ujung Kulon National Park in Indonesia. posted by Scientist at 8:47 PM PST - 52 comments
Policymic has compiled a list of the 6 greatest guest star appearances of all time on the t.v. shoe The Simpsons.
Trying to pick the best cameos from a pool of 500+ episodes is a daunting task, so for the purpose of the following list, one criteria is that the cameo needs to be more than just a celebrity drop-in to the Simpsons' world. Instead the cameo role needs to be central to the episode's storyline; the other criteria is that the appearance has to be funny.[more inside] posted by Sailormom at 5:40 PM PST - 68 comments
"The models we discuss belong to the class of two-variable systems with one delay for which appropriate delay stabilizes an unstable steady state. We formulate a theorem and prove that stabilization takes place in our case. We conclude that considerable (meaning large enough, but not too large) values of time delay involved in the model can stabilize love affairs dynamics." [more inside] posted by bluefly at 11:02 AM PST - 12 comments
The You Can Play project was created by GForce sports, former Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke, and his son Patrick Burke to ensure that LGBT athletes have equal opportunity in professional hockey. [more inside] posted by jessamyn at 8:27 AM PST - 11 comments
But the golden age was destined to be a very short one. Walter Day told writer Tristan Donovan, author of the book Replay: The History of Video Games, that the industry was "off the rails by" 1981, opening more arcades and ordering more machines than its players could ever support. By early 1982, cracks were already starting to show in the newly flourishing industry: that $400 a day machine, Time Magazine reported, was often "sucker bait, dangled to obscure the dreary truths that markets are becoming saturated and that dud games... bring in no money at all." posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:03 AM PST - 42 comments
In the English-speaking world , punning is viewed as more of a tic than a trick, a pathological condition whose sufferers are classed as "compulsive", "inveterate" and "unable to help themselves".
The BBC on Punning. posted by marienbad at 4:23 AM PST - 99 comments
I confess I am disgusted by a great many things about people (and about myself, but let's put that aside). I do not believe it is particularly urgent for me to overcome my disgust, even if I recognize that this emotion must remain entirely separate from my thinking about which laws would be most just. I am disgusted by other people's dandruff, facial moles, food stuck in their beards, yet I do not accept that in feeling this way I am judging those people to be subhuman. I take it rather that humanity, while endearing, is also capable of appearing disgusting.
The American Assembly has released their much-anticipated and well-presented study on Copy Culture. The random phone survey of 2303 Americans and 1000 Germans answers many questions about the demographics and public perception of file sharing and piracy. TorrentFreak pulls out some highlights. posted by gilrain at 5:08 PM PST - 17 comments
It’s 20 or 30 years ago. You’re working on a videogame. You don’t get any credit for your work, blogs don’t exist, there’s no internet and no fanboys. It’s just you, a crusty old terminal, and got a few spare bytes left in the ROM. What now? posted by Chrysostom at 3:13 PM PST - 28 comments
A Family Affair by celebrated Dutch makeup artist Ellis Faas. Her brother is the model and her daughter created the music. Faas says, "As a late teenager, I visited the Tate Gallery in London and was blown away by a Francis Bacon triptych. It made a great impression on me because of the use of colour - it was unnerving and stunningly beautiful at the same time. Bacon inspired many experiments I did over the years." (via The FaceCulturalist) posted by madamjujujive at 3:07 PM PST - 7 comments
When people talk about “the whole nine yards,” just what are they talking about? For decades the answer to that question has been the Bigfoot of word origins...But now two researchers using high-powered database search tools have delivered a confident “none of the above,” supported by a surprise twist:
Before we were going the whole nine yards, it turns out, we were only going six.
Iquitos is the largest city with no roads connecting to the outside world. Wiki says it is a city of just under half a million.
Here is a photo set of what is often referred to as the known as the Venice of the Amazon.
If want to know more about some of the indigenous peoples of the area the Iquitos Times has that for you.
In fact the Iquitos Times has much you wanted to know - creatures of the Amazon maybe, and perhaps a bit you didn´t want to know about Peruvian Amazonia. posted by adamvasco at 8:34 AM PST - 31 comments
The highly targeted campaign, which focuses primarily on victims in Eastern Europe and Central Asia based on existing data, is still live, harvesting documents and data from computers, smartphones and removable storage devices, such as USB sticks, according to Kaspersky Lab, the Moscow-based antivirus firm that uncovered the campaign. Kaspersky has dubbed the operation “Red October.”
In 1974, Leon Leyson was one of a group of Jews who greeted Oskar Schindler when he visited Los Angeles. It was the first time the two had seen each other since the war. He began to introduce himself, but Schindler interrupted: "I know who you are," Schindler said, grinning at the middle-aged man before him. "You're Little Leyson." On Sunday, the youngest name on Schindler's List passed away at the age of 83. "The truth is, I did not live my life in the shadow of the Holocaust," he told the Portland Oregonian in 1997. "I did not give my children a legacy of fear. I gave them a legacy of freedom." [more inside] posted by zarq at 10:15 PM PST - 35 comments
Those adventurous listeners among you who've explored some of the further musical reaches of our little planet might have heard, somewhere along the line, some of the amazing polyphony and yodeling styles of the Baka or the AkaPygmies. The bewitchingly complex rhythmic and melodic interplay we find in these traditional musics is spellbinding and utterly unique, of course, but what are, say, Baka Pygmy musicians doing these days that's a little more, well, *modern*? I thought you'd never ask! Orchéstre Baka Gbiné are doing this. [more inside] posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:36 PM PST - 22 comments
At last night's Golden Globe Awards, actress Jodie Foster was presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement award. During her speech, the notoriously private actress touched on the very notion of privacy, her sexuality, and the difficulty of being a public person with a normal life.
Reactions have been mixed. [more inside] posted by mudpuppie at 6:24 PM PST - 205 comments
"We decided to go on an adventure through the financial statements of one bank [Wells Fargo], to explore exactly what they do and do not show, and to gauge whether it is possible to make informed judgments about the risks the bank may be carrying. We chose a bank that is thought to be a conservative financial institution, and an exemplar of what a large modern bank should be." posted by vidur at 6:12 PM PST - 14 comments
If this is the wave of the future, it makes nonsense of just about all the conventional wisdom on reducing inequality. Better education won’t do much to reduce inequality if the big rewards simply go to those with the most assets....I think our eyes have been averted from the capital/labor dimension of inequality, for several reasons...But I think we’d better start paying attention to those implications.
Here's what I mean. It's quite possible that, say, 50 years from now the production of nearly all goods and services will be automated. And this might usher in a golden age...But what happens while we're busy getting there? Answer: the owners of capital will automate more and more, putting more and more people out of work...The rest of us will have no jobs, and even with all this lovely automation, our government-supplied welfare checks will be meager enough that our lives will be miserable.
While the professionals used their decades of investment knowledge and traditional stock-picking methods, the cat selected stocks by throwing his favourite toy mouse on a grid of numbers allocated to different companies. [spoiler warning: the cat wins] posted by latkes at 12:57 PM PST - 27 comments
The digital library JSTOR has announced its new Register & Read program, under which users unaffiliated with an institution can access "approximately 1,200 journals from more than 700 publishers, a subset of the content in JSTOR. This includes content from the first volume and issue published for these journals through a recent year (generally 3-5 years ago)." [more inside] posted by jedicus at 6:51 AM PST - 58 comments
Ever step into a gun rights discussion and feel bombarded by rhetoric about exactly what the "gun-show loophole" is and how it works (not to mention furious diatribes against the term "assault weapon?) This article from the Nashville City Paper explains it, and illustrates how 'private sale loophole' might be a better term. posted by jfwlucy at 6:42 AM PST - 257 comments
Today is Coming of Age Day in Japan, when everyone who has turned twenty in the past year simultaneously gains the right to smoke, drink, and vote. Wherever you are, why not celebrate with Kyary Pamyu Pamyu's (previously) latest video, furisodeshon? posted by 23 at 8:31 PM PST - 47 comments
This volume is designed to be a working hand-book for all engaged or interested in Criminal Investigation. It has, by special permission, been translated and adapted from the well-known work of Dr. Hans Gross, Professor of Criminology in the University of Prâg and special lecturer on that subject in the University of Vienna.... Few men are so well fitted, by training and experience, as Dr. Gross to compile a work like the present.... As M. Gardeil, Professor of Criminal Law at Nancy, says, in introducing the French Translation to French Criminalists, Dr. Gross is "an indefatigable observer; a far-seeing psychologist; a magistrate full of ardour to unearth the truth, whether in favour of the accused or against him; a clever craftsman; in turn, draughtsman, photographer, modeller, armourer; having acquired by long experience a profound knowledge of the practices of criminals, robbers, tramps, gipsies, cheats, he opens to us the researches and experiences of many years. His work is no dry or purely technical treatise; it is a living book, because it has been lived."
I grew up in Minnesota, home of a particular passive-aggressive communication style which is summed up nicely by this chart and subsequent comments. Of particular import is the difference between "that's different" and "that's sure different" (though there isn't mention of "that's real different," which I think means just about the same thing) and examples of Minnesota Enthusiastic Neutral.
Also worth noting is the classic book by sometime A Prairie Home Companion regular Howard Mohr, How to Talk Minnesotan. [more inside] posted by larrybob at 1:24 PM PST - 170 comments
...and the news ain't good: "Evidence for climate change abounds, from the top of the atmosphere to the depths of the oceans. This evidence has been compiled by scientists and engineers from around the world, using satellites, weather balloons, thermometers, buoys, and other observing systems. The sum total of this evidence tells an unambiguous story: the planet is warming."
Overview letter is here, Executive Summary is here, and the full download is here. [WARNING: Full download runs to 147MB). posted by BillW at 7:44 AM PST - 195 comments
You may remember an animated film from the early '90s. Set somewhere in 'Arabia,' a land of bazaars and minarets, the story featured a bored, harem-panted princess, an orphan boy, a treacherous vizier with bird sidekick, a rotund and oblivious sultan, a blue-skinned magic user, et al.
But it wasn't Aladdin - and the movie had started production in 1964 ... [more inside] posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:37 AM PST - 24 comments
"To the world of today the men of medieval Christendom already seem remote and unfamiliar. Their names and deeds are recorded in our history-books, their monuments still adorn our cities, but our kinship with them is a thing unreal, which costs an effort of imagination. How much more must this apply to the great Islamic civilization, that stood over against medieval Europe, menacing its existence and yet linked to it by a hundred ties that even war and fear could not sever. Its monuments too abide, for those who may have the fortunate to visit them, but its men and manners are to most of us utterly unknown, or dimly conceived in the romantic image of the Arabian Nights. Even for the specialist it is difficult to reconstruct their lives and see them as they were. Histories and biographies there are in quantity, but the historians for all their picturesque details, seldom show the ability to select the essential and to give their figures that touch of the intimate which makes them live again for the reader. It is in this faculty that Ibn Battuta excels."Thus begins the book, "Ibn Battuta, Travels in Asia and Africa 1325-1354" published by Routledge and Kegan Paul. Step into the world of "the first tourist" who made his mark as the world's greatest traveler before the age of steam. [more inside] posted by infini at 3:27 AM PST - 21 comments
Practical, economic development of space — treating it not as a mere borderland of Earth, but a new frontier in its own right — has not materialized. Still, the promise is as great as it ever was, and, contrary to popular opinion, is eminently achievable — but only if the current legal framework and attitude toward space can be shifted toward seeing it as a realm not just of human exploration, but also of human enterprise.
The Japanese shakuhachi (flute) is not a particularly complex device - not much more than a length of bamboo with 5 holes drilled in it. Might be kind of easy to make one, don't you think? Well at least if you can see what you are doing. In this 11 minute documentary video, meet Kelvin Falconer, who makes shakuhachi from bamboo growing on his property in New Zealand, but who must do so completely by touch (and ear), as he is blind. posted by woodblock100 at 11:29 PM PST - 3 comments
HERadventure -- "What would happen if the societal issues affecting women put other planets at risk? Well, of course, HER, a Black female superhero, would swoop in with a plan to save the universe. HER is central to HERadventure, a science fiction-based, multimedia platform project that interweaves virtual worlds, digital and social media to create a gaming and storytelling experience. HERadventure not only entertains but tackles social issues that permeate the daily reality of many women." [more inside] posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:58 PM PST - 5 comments
US citizens petitioned the White House to "secure resources and funding, and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016" (previously).
The White House (or, more specifically, Paul Shawcross, Chief of the Science and Space Branch at the White House Office of Management and Budget) responded. posted by capricorn at 6:21 PM PST - 66 comments
Quentin Tarantino clashed with News anchor Krishnan Guru-Murthy during a fractious interview ahead of the London premiere of his new film. Tarantino has previously defended the gore that defines his movies, saying "that's the biggest attraction. I'm a big fan of action and violence in cinema". posted by Lanark at 12:35 PM PST - 138 comments
The status of Roma in Hungary has been brought into sharp focus with a controversial article [link in Hungarian] by prominent ruling-party FIDESZ member, Zsolt Bayer, in which he says, "a significant part of the Roma are unfit for co-existence. They are not fit to live among people. These Roma are animals and they behave like animals." The Guardian reports on the growing anger at the article, The HungarianSpectrum, and well-known poet and translator of Hungarian literature George Szirtes weigh in with English translations of some of Bayer’s article. Many leading Hungarian politicians condemn the article. [more inside] posted by vac2003 at 11:34 AM PST - 59 comments
"The screenplay keeps so many balls in the air that everything feels lively and inventive and fun, even when the plot isn’t being forwarded, or especially when the plot isn’t being forwarded. "
Todd Alcott, director, actor and screenwriter, is known for his exhaustive analysis of screenplays (previously, previously) turns his eye to the modern Superhero Genre with a complete break down of Marvel's The Avengers Part 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 15 / 16 / 17 posted by The Whelk at 9:06 AM PST - 60 comments
Bertrand Goldberg is widely known as the architect who builds round buildings, but little is known about his innovative theories of space and his utopian ideas that have generated these sculptural forms. His work speaks with a vocabulary that is still unfamiliar to some and unappreciated by many. Goldberg’s often repeated statement, "for the first time in the history of the world we can build whatever we can think," seems to have been the beacon guiding his career. While many projects have been fully realized, some others have been only partially implemented, but all have grown out of Goldberg’s unique philosophical, aesthetic, and technological thinking.
Romance novelist Alisa Valdes' recent memoir The Cowboy and the Feminist describes how she found true love by forsaking her feminist opinions in favor of an assertive, independent cowboy (a staunchly traditional ranch manager) who to her embodied the best masculine qualities. Unfortunately, it turns out that the cowboy's masculine dominance turned into abuse, which Valdes described in a post-breakup blog post. Feminist writer Hannah Rosin, among others, was not surprised.
According to Salon's Tracy Clark-Flory, Valdes said she took her post, which tends to contradict her book's message, down at the request of her publisher or agent. (via Lawyers, Guns and Money; warning: possible abuse and rape triggers) posted by Gelatin at 8:23 AM PST - 106 comments
If you take your knitting everywhere and you're getting tired of stuffing the back of an adult-sized sweater and a 100g skein of worsted into your already bulging shoulder bag or backpack, you might try scaling down your knitting projects, as Althea Crome has done. Crome is a miniature knitter, and her projects are so tiny they'd fit into your pocket and still leave room for your cellphone. Her work is not only miniature but amazingly complex and detailed. She makes replicas of historical costumes such as a Queen Elizabeth I sweater, recreates famous paintings or other works of art, or depicts entire scenes, such as an underwater seascape, or Santa and all his eight tiny reindeer flying over a house. You can visit Crome's website, Bug Knits, to see galleries of her work. Crome also knitted some items for the 2009 3D stop-motion movie Coraline, including a sweater for the title character, and she talks about her work and demonstrates her "extreme knitting" in this promotional video for Coraline. If you want to give miniature knitting a shot yourself, you can buy some of Crome's patterns to help you get started, and I wish you the best. All I can think of when I see Crome in action is the time I decided to make ten Barbie outfits as part of a Christmas present for one of my nieces. I got four items done before I cracked and COULDN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE. Crome's patience and self-control are astounding, and I bet her children have the most exquisitely dressed Barbies ever. posted by orange swan at 8:14 AM PST - 13 comments
On the flat top of a steep hill in a distant corner of northern Japan lies the tomb of an itinerant shepherd who, two millennia ago, settled down there to grow garlic. He fell in love with a farmer’s daughter named Miyuko, fathered three kids and died at the ripe old age of 106. In the mountain hamlet of Shingo, he’s remembered by the name Daitenku Taro Jurai. The rest of the world knows him as Jesus Christ. (previously) posted by Chrysostom at 7:23 AM PST - 62 comments
"Finland long ago decided to professionalize its teaching force to the point where teaching is now viewed on a par with other highly respected, learned professions like medicine and law. Today, only the best and brightest can and do become teachers: Just one in every 10 applicants are accepted to teacher preparation programs, which culminate in both an undergraduate degree and subject-specific Master's degree." Joel Klein argues that the US should follow Finland's lead and create, essentially, a bar exam for teachers, which would serve to professionalize them in the eyes of society and raise their societal value. posted by barnacles at 7:07 AM PST - 82 comments
"After the blast the entire building came down. As the rescue teams and journalists rushed to the scene, a second explosion took place."
Hazaras are a religious minority who fled from Afghanistan. They are called infidels by Sunni extremist groups operating in Pakistan, and as an ethnic minority, are easily recognized and targeted. The Pakistani government has done nothing to stop these attacks. Last night, more than 83 people from my community lost their lives. For nothing. [more inside] posted by legospaceman at 1:34 AM PST - 17 comments
The Kellers are caught up in a little-known horror of the U.S. housing bust: the zombie title. Six years in, thousands of homeowners are finding themselves legally liable for houses they didn't know they still owned after banks decided it wasn't worth their while to complete foreclosures on them. With impunity, banks have been walking away from foreclosures much the way some homeowners walked away from their mortgages when the housing market first crashed.
Comet Apophis flew to within 9 million miles of the Earth yesterday.
In 2029 it will come around again and get within 20,000 miles (closer than geosynchronous satellites). Then in 2036 it will approach again. At one time it was thought that it had a 3.5% chance flying through a specific keyhole of space in 2029, which would indicate that it would hit the Earth in 2036. But now the odds are calculated to be infinitesimal.
Let's hope the astronomer assumptions are correct about that pesky Yarkovsky Effect. [more inside] posted by eye of newt at 11:22 PM PST - 32 comments
The Monopoly game has used the same 8 "base tokens" (car, thimble, boot, scotty dog, battleship, top hat, iron, wheelbarrow) since the 1950s (with a few extras added to "Deluxe Editions"), and since it's been 15 minutes since Parker Brothers' last promotion, they're doing internet voting at their Facebook page to "SAVE YOUR TOKEN". In "American Idol" style, the one with the fewest votes will be replaced by the top-vote-getter among 5 "New Tokens" (robot with mustache, big-ass diamond ring, cat, helicopter, awkwardly-balanced guitar). So far, Scottie Dog has a third of the votes (take THAT, cat people), while Whellbarrow and Absurdly-Oldfashioned-Iron are bringing up the rear. VOTE DAILY to support your favorite "chocking hazard for under 3 yrs. old" posted by oneswellfoop at 5:43 PM PST - 179 comments
Jason Schron loves VIA Rail trains so much that he built a full-size replica of one of their cars in his basement. "His first memory is being lost, at age 2, crying on a Toronto-to-Montreal VIA Rail passenger train. That’s when the obsession began. 'For me, being on the train is … this wonderful cozy comfy space, especially when the weather is terrible outside; it’s sort of this microcosm of comfort,' he says." P.S. It's worth checking out Schron's YouTube video tour embedded in the first link: The Guy With a Train in His Basement. posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:36 PM PST - 65 comments
How profitable has it been for Anthony? He, like many of the other contributors, was coy about the exact amount: “Let me answer this as indirectly as possible. I am sure that Valve has a new Lamborghini in the staff car park.”
Amazon just announced AutoRip, a service to provide MP3 versions of any song you buy on CD from their store. That's all well and good, but the kicker is that "Amazon is retroactively giving free MP3s to any customer who has purchased an AutoRip compatible CD since its Music Store first opened in 1998". Looks like I'll be knee deep in Blink 182, Cake, and The Spin Doctors again. posted by mathowie at 8:14 AM PST - 137 comments
Are you an enemy of liberal principles if you question the fact that, when local electrical engineers dig up the roads in London, they’re working for East Asia’s richest man, the Hong Kong-based Li Ka-shing? In north-east England, they work for Warren Buffett; in Birmingham, Cardiff and Plymouth, the Pennsylvania Power and Light Company; in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Liverpool, Iberdrola; in Manchester, a consortium of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and a J.P. Morgan investment fund.
"Outcasts are my kind, they try harder. From strip joints to Burlesque theaters, I went on a quest and met the 'Legends', these dominating characters of the quintessential American art of strip tease. Hours of confidence on tapes, intimate photo sessions, they peel off and reveal the hidden layers of their life with throaty emotion. Their memories reflecting the memories of the land. Vietnam vets and bikers are their loyal patrons..." The Living Art Of Risqué, a photo essay from Marie Baronnet, features portraits of former strippers aged 60 to 95, accompanied by short bio-vignettes in their own words. [NSFW; nudity] [more inside] posted by taz at 3:04 AM PST - 4 comments
The sport of zorbing (previously) originated in the 1990s in New Zealand and is now done around the world. In Russia, zorbs have been adopted as a symbol of the 2014 Winter Olympics, which is being held in Sochi, Caucasus Mountains. However this video of a recent zorb run in Sochi shows it's not always fun and games. [Caution: Shows events leading to a fatality but not actual fatality.] For background and the rest of the story. posted by stbalbach at 10:34 PM PST - 37 comments
Buffy vs Edward: Twilight Remixed (previously), a textbook example of fair use, has been removed from YouTube after Lionsgate's attempts to monetize with ads it were met with resistance by the video's creator. "This is what a broken copyright enforcement system looks like." [more inside] posted by ODiV at 7:59 PM PST - 37 comments
"The Mirage Tavern was a drinking establishment at 731 N. Wells St. in Chicago purchased by the Chicago Sun-Times in 1977 to investigate widespread allegations of official corruption and shakedowns visited on small businesses by city officials. The journalists used hidden cameras to help ensure that city inspectors caught accepting payoffs for ignoring safety hazards were all properly documented."
Thirty-five years ago this week, the Sun-Times began a 25-part series, which documented its work with government watchdog organization Better Government Association and venerated TV news program 60 Minutes* to capture the shakedowns, shoddy inspections, and graft galore. And now Sun-Times digital editor Marcus Gilmer is reposting every story on the day it ran in 1977 here along with additional reporting and details. [more inside] posted by MCMikeNamara at 3:14 PM PST - 12 comments
"You know why we did [that]? So a DJ could take a lunch break. When you have all three-minute records, you don't even have time to go to the bathroom. Or you just want to stop for a minute. So that's 19-and-a-half minutes of 'I don't have to worry about a thing.' But I didn't do it to create this thing. I just did it to help the DJs out." posted by .kobayashi. at 2:59 PM PST - 19 comments
"Rumours have been swirling for years about a possible sequel to Black Isle’s legendary and powerful roleplaying game Planescape: Torment, but the closure of the original studio and the jealous guarding of the Planescape rights by owners Wizards of the Coast seemed to have put paid to any comeback. But with original Interplay boss Brian Fargo very much back in the RPG business with current studio inXile’s wildly successful Wasteland 2 crowdfunding, everything changes. He and his team have come up with a way to make a new Torment game: this is really happening." [more inside] posted by Paragon at 2:55 PM PST - 17 comments
"Dear god why, after only a few months of occupying Zuccotti Park, did Occupiers feel they needed to launch their own journal of academic theory? A journal that then proceeded to fill its pages with impenetrable essays seemingly written to demonstrate, one more time, the Arctic futility of theory-speak? Is this how you build a mass movement? By persistently choosing the opposite of plain speech?"
He also approvingly cites Slavoj Žižek's essay on the dangers and opportunities of the carnival here. posted by anotherpanacea at 1:48 PM PST - 49 comments
Journalism and Revolution is a review from Dissent Magazine about the biography of Ryszard Kapuściński.
This was Neal Ascherson in LRB.
Both of which are very different from Jack Shafer´s take down obituary piece in Slate. posted by adamvasco at 11:36 AM PST - 13 comments
“I’d had a career as a professional musician and what I started to see is that once we made information free, it wasn’t that we consigned all the big stars to the bread lines.” (They still had mega-concert tour profits.) “It was the middle-class people who were consigned to the bread lines. And that was a very large body of people. And all of a sudden there was this weekly ritual, sometimes even daily: ‘Oh, we need to organize a benefit because so and so who’d been a manager of this big studio that closed its doors has cancer and doesn’t have insurance. We need to raise money so he can have his operation.’ And I realized this was a hopeless, stupid design of society and that it was our fault. It really hit on a personal level—this isn’t working. And I think you can draw an analogy to what happened with communism, where at some point you just have to say there’s too much wrong with these experiments.”[more inside] posted by philip-random at 10:40 AM PST - 105 comments
"The Big Bang Theory is the worst kind of bully – the one that pretends to be your friend and then takes the piss out of you behind your back. It will take your viewership, it will take your money and it will laugh in your face as it systematically puts you down." The Problem with The Big Bang Theory. posted by mippy at 3:38 AM PST - 262 comments
Garmin, the well-known navigation company also makes bike computers. Today they unveiled a GPS-enabled bike computer that adds bluetooth to pair with your phone (and piggyback on your network connection). The resulting product video featuring Garmin's pro team riders is a little Hollywood and a little silly showing riders competing virtually against each other but paints a pretty impressive picture for real-time stats, weather, maps, and data sharing among cyclist friends. More at Wired's Gadget blog and a complete review at the DC rainmaker cycling site. posted by mathowie at 7:54 PM PST - 39 comments
Bing bong! This is your captain speaking. This week sees the return of the BBC Radio 4 comedy Cabin Pressure, which follows the trials and triumphs (okay, mostly trials) of MJN Air, a tiny, one-plane, four-person charter airline. It was created and written by John Finnemore, a comedian and writer with credits including Mitchell and Webb, David Mitchell’s Soapbox, and his own sketch comedy radio show, John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme. [more inside] posted by That's Numberwang! at 7:42 PM PST - 39 comments
It's so hot in Australia they've added a new color to the weather map, a Tasmania-sized deep purple blob 50 degrees or more (123 F). In the USA 2012 was the hottest yearever recorded, smashing through previous records by a healthy margin. 2012 was also the second-worst on a measure called the Climate Extremes Index, surpassed only by 1998. Globally, 2012 is expected to be ranked as the eighth-warmest year on record, with that announcement coming later in the month. "Climate change has had a role in this,” said Jake Crouch, a climate scientist at NOAA. posted by stbalbach at 12:04 PM PST - 128 comments
The Charles Addams Mother Goose Three blind mice, see how they run!
They all ran after the farmer’s wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife.
Did you ever see such a sight in your life
As three blind mice?
Charles Addams, longtime New Yorker cartoonist illustrates the nursery rhymes of Mother Goose. posted by caddis at 11:54 AM PST - 16 comments
Duane Michals: An unofficial celebration. From portraitist and pioneer of the photographic narrative [Warning: sidescrolling] to metaphysician and poet, Michals' work has done much to promote the idea of photography as an inventive art form. As a gay artist, an oft repeated factoid about Michals is that he has not been involved in gay civil rights; Michals' response to this claim is simple: "I think anybody who does any piece of art or work on a political subject is an activist. A person has to be what he wants the world to be." [NSFW: Nudity] posted by Lorin at 11:47 AM PST - 2 comments
The U.S. Senate has declined to promote Captain Timothy W. Dorsey to the rank of rear admiral (lower half). Dorsey, currently serving as Navy Reserve inspector general, was involved in one of the more bizarre friendly fire incidents in U.S. Military History, intentionally shooting down a U.S. Air Force jet during military exercises some 25 years ago. [more inside] posted by kjars at 9:36 AM PST - 75 comments
Daguerreotype portraits were made by the model posing (often with head fixed in place with a clamp to keep it still the few minutes required) before an exposed light-sensitive silvered copper plate, which was then developed by mercury fumes and fixed with salts. This fixing however was far from permanent – like the people they captured the images too were subject to change and decay. They were extremely sensitive to scratches, dust, hair, etc, and particularly the rubbing of the glass cover if the glue holding it in place deteriorated. As well as rubbing, the glass itself can also deteriorate and bubbles of solvent explode upon the image. posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:21 AM PST - 17 comments
Reportero (alternate link) - follows a veteran reporter and his colleagues at Zeta, a Tijuana-based independent newsweekly, as they stubbornly ply their trade in one of the deadliest places in the world for members of the media. In Mexico, more than 50 journalists have been slain or have vanished since December 2006, when President Felipe Calderón came to power and launched a government offensive against the country's powerful drug cartels and organized crime. As the drug war intensifies and the risks to journalists become greater, will the free press be silenced? [more inside] posted by IvoShandor at 7:17 AM PST - 3 comments
BBC News article: to document the year, Kuriyama filmed one second of video every day.
"After just six weeks, I realised I was going to be doing that for the rest of my life," he says. posted by devnull at 3:41 AM PST - 19 comments
In fact, we have long entrusted the task of representing our ideas of value to members of two professions that might seem to have little in common: banking and art. And, in the last seven hundred years or so, it has happened more than once that visual and financial inventors have come up with strikingly similar representations. There is more than a shadow of resemblance between the purchase of the Hirst skull in 2007 and the mortgage-backed-securities debacle that made of Lehman Brothers in the following year one of the great public pictures of vanitas we’ve had. And, when you look further into these intersections, you often find that what is really at stake is a change in the way we feel and understand time.
New letter and word frequency counts Peter Norvig has used Google books data to generate new lists of letter frequency, the most common English words and their frequencies, and lots of other fun stuff (though I don't know if forschungsgemeinschaft is really an English word, unless it means forcing a mine shaft). [more inside] posted by hexatron at 6:20 PM PST - 42 comments
Wolf Smoke is a small original animation making studio now in Shanghai, China. We have only a few ppl but we trying our best to make great animtion. Kung Fu Cooking Grils is a short story, we made it for testing new cartoon style and methoud of the way of making movies. We did key frames on paper first then used vector software to do the between frames and color painting. This is the first time that we use this way to do stuffs. Over 4000 key frames hand drawing and over 10,000 betweens in this movie. Any suggestion and comment is welcome!
"The lofty vision of a stateless, marketless world faces obstacles that are not moral but technical, and it’s important to grasp exactly what they are."Seth Ackerman for Jacobin Magazine on "thinking concretely and practically about how we can free ourselves from social institutions that place such confining limits on the kind of society we are able to have. Because of one thing we can be certain: the present system will either be replaced or it will go on forever." posted by davidjmcgee at 12:42 PM PST - 30 comments
The five scholars explored the question, “What is the meaning of food?” and debated its role in ethnic and religious tensions. They also examined the possibility that “food, which is something that all of us share, albeit in different ways, can be used to bring people together instead of differentiating between us.” According to Goldstein, one of the most important ideas to come out of the group was that food is a social process rather than a commodity and thus is central to multicultural understanding: “[Food] has to do with how we live and it’s not just an object that we ingest.”Food: History & Culture in the West [PDF], was a 2010 UC Berkley Symposium exploring multiple links between food and culture: [more inside] posted by byanyothername at 12:14 PM PST - 14 comments
Starting in the early 1700s and exploding in popularity throughout the 1800s, Japanese woodblock prints depicted the fantastic world of Kabuki actors, courtesans, warriors, and nature. Ever since then keeping track of all of the incredible artwork has been a pain, traipsing between dealer and museum websites, awkwardly shuffling through academic library 'websites', wandering aimlessly through GIS, not to mention all the trouble a patron had to go through to see these before the Internets. Well, The Japanese Woodblock Print Database aggregates prints from a number of museums, dealers, and auction houses into a single resource, searchable by keyword and by image, and thereby provides a shining example of web-accessible art database interface. Enjoy! [via mefi projects] [more inside] posted by carsonb at 12:08 PM PST - 20 comments
null_sets is a new body of artwork aimed at exploring the gap between data and information. Consisting of a set of images, this project stems from our interest in glitches, code-breaking, and translation. our custom script encodes text files as images, making it possible to visualize both the size and architecture of large-scale data sets through an aesthetic lens. So if you ever wanted to see hamlet as a jpeg and find artistic merit hiding within its code, here's your chance. [more inside] posted by legweak at 9:18 AM PST - 10 comments
> examine mourning dress
A black vintage gown trimmed with much lace and dripping with jet beads.
> wave U-remover at mourning dress
There is a flash of psychedelic colors, and the mourning dress turns into a morning dress. An outfit of striped trousers and fancy coat, such as men sometimes wear to fancy weddings in the morning...
"Defacement of currency is a violation of Title 18, Section 333 of the United States Code. Under this provision, currency defacement is generally defined as follows: Whoever mutilates, cuts, disfigures, perforates, unites or cements together, or does any other thing to any bank bill, draft, note, or other evidence of debt issued by any national banking association, Federal Reserve Bank, or Federal Reserve System, with intent to render such item(s) unfit to be reissued, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both. Defacement of currency in such a way that it is made unfit for circulation comes under the jurisdiction of the United States Secret Service." - source
State of America from Julian Montague:I was recently commissioned to create a series of prints for Print Collection.com. The series
depicts the surprisingly diverse and slightly strange official insignia of the American states.
There are 50 (18x24 inch) prints in the series (titled State of America), including birds, mammals,
grains, fossils, minerals, insects and more. posted by OmieWise at 6:34 AM PST - 12 comments
Working up material for the project, Cleese and Chapman took another pass at the car-salesman idea. It had possibilities, Cleese felt, that they had failed to exploit. What if they shifted the action to a pet shop? What if the malfunctioning car became a dead animal? A dog, say. Or a parrot. posted by Chrysostom at 6:12 AM PST - 77 comments
21 emotions English has no word for . Some things "light us up". Some things "leave us cold". Such dim metaphors only hint at the unspoken universe of feeling, dimensions we can only guess that we share. A new infographic explores "untranslatable" feeling-words from other languages. posted by Twang at 4:17 PM PST - 132 comments
The British and their bizarre view of American. "So, while from afar America may seem, to the Briton, a bewildering and Brobdingnagian phenomenon, close up and personal, the Americans themselves take on the more familiar Lilliputian lineaments of his own countrymen and women." Will Self takes a look at the ambivalent relationship the British has with the USA. posted by zoo at 3:08 PM PST - 125 comments
Commuting Canadian style. Snowboarder Seb Toots (Sebastien Toutant) took advantage of the late December blizzard in Montréal by taking his board to a good launch spot on Mont Royal (Kondiaronk Lookout, according to one Vimeo commenter) and working his way down. Elegant, fluid, hypnotic. Note: Some wildlife may have been briefly bemused or alarmed during the making of this film. No wildlife attempted to eat him. posted by maudlin at 2:44 PM PST - 30 comments
Men with below-average looks were 15 per cent less likely than normal to be employed and were typically employed for a 9 per cent lower wage. They were also less likely to be married and less likely to married to a woman of high income.
An Unknown Alien Being acquires a child's forgotten book and mistakenly believes that it depicts proper protocol for interaction with the human world. The book is a collection of Peanuts comics.
Woodsnoopy 45 stares into your open heart. Her yellow head squirms and pukes up feathers.
It makes you uncomfortable when she looks at you. She makes a demand.
Her demands come often and always create uncomfortably simultaneous feelings of resentment and obedience.
That is the territory of the Lucy faction. They are the ones who gather nickels. Woodsnoopy 45 is overstepping her boundaries.
Being a mere Woodsnoopy 799, however, you can do naught but obey."
Why You Won’t Be the Person You Expect to Be (NYT): "When we remember our past selves, they seem quite different. We know how much our personalities and tastes have changed over the years. But when we look ahead, somehow we expect ourselves to stay the same... They called this phenomenon the “end of history illusion,” in which people tend to “underestimate how much they will change in the future.”" (via exp.lore) [more inside] posted by flex at 11:48 AM PST - 34 comments
"The fact that photographs — they’re mute, they don’t have any narrative ability at all. You know what something looks like, but you don’t know what’s happening, you don’t know whether the hat’s being held or is it being put on her head or taken off her head. From the photograph, you don’t know that. A piece of time and space is well described. But not what is happening."
"Jenni Greenwald, please commit suicide." In 1986, John Cook and some fellow eighth grade boys wrote an underground newspaper filled with bullying and racism, targeting other students and teachers in their school. He reflects on this, getting in touch with both his co-authors and victims, in Confessions of a Teenage Word Bully. posted by Chanther at 8:30 AM PST - 84 comments
You wouldn't think so from its trendy shops and restaurants today, but Seven Dials was once one of the worst slums in London. Intended as a smart residential area when its construction was completed in 1710, this cartwheel of streets between Charing Cross Road and Covent Garden quickly declined to become an over-crowded refuge for the city's thieves. It was here that London's thriving trade in gallows ballads made its home.
"In May 2013, "Asperger's Syndrome" will be removed as a diagnosis from the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V), leaving "high functioning autism" in its place. I agree with this change. Given the importance of the manual, however, it's caused a lot of consternation and caused me to reflect upon my experiences."—Anonymous Pedagogy of the Depressed: my experiences as a special ed student in the 1990s, an anonymous Boing Boing article posted by Toekneesan at 6:10 PM PST - 40 comments
The Top Ten Hottest Female Sonic [the Hedgehog] Characters: You might not have realized this but the Sonic universe might also be classified as "Hot Chick Heaven". Hotties include Cream the Rabbit, who is "attractive and the size of an average human mother"; Princess Sally Acorn, who not only didn't wear clothes in the comic but also "grew very long hair and married Sonic in the future"; and not one, but two echidnas: "What's better than having a female with cascading quills? How about a female with cascading quills and hair?" Curiously, the list ignores the beautiful Fiona Fox, who readers will remember was Tails' first (robotic) love, and whose rusting prompted the legendary 1995 Tails Miniseries. posted by Rory Marinich at 4:28 PM PST - 92 comments
Review RajaReview Raja doesn’t share his real name with anyone, but he is happy to share the unlikely story of how a white guy who was born in Tweed and grew up in Belleville became Review Raja, a connoisseur of Tamil films, or Kollywood, and a celebrity in the Tamil community in Canada and abroad. posted by modernnomad at 3:22 PM PST - 8 comments
Archie's Recipes - When my grandparents passed away my family rediscovered an old family recipe book that my great grandfather wrote by hand in an old ledger. [via mefi projects] posted by item at 11:01 AM PST - 17 comments
Happy Thomas Pynchon rumor day! [LAtimes.com] "What's that, you say? America's most reclusive author, Thomas Pynchon, appeared in the news Friday -- not once but twice? Why, yes, yes, he has, surfacing in two unconnected rumours. Conspiracy? Pynchonian? Maybe we should henceforth designate Jan. 4 as Thomas Pynchon Rumor Day." [more inside] posted by Fizz at 8:39 AM PST - 40 comments
I went skiing today and looked down and the snow was coveredwith snowfleas. Research at Queen's University (Canada) have sequenced and synthesised the anti-freeze-like protein that allows snow fleas to operate in sub-zero environments. posted by Xurando at 2:42 PM PST - 26 comments
The first thing we learned about war re-enactment is that it's fucking terrifying having guns fired at you, even ones loaded with blanks. The second thing we learned is a common re-enactor's dilemma called "The G.I. Effect", which is basically that people playing Americans don't like to die. So sometimes they just don't.
Downton Abbey returns to American TV screens this Sunday. Since many Americans have become fascinated with the intricate social dances featured in the English drama/soap, Grantland feels there's an opportunity to provide them a lesson about the equally intricate plot machinations associated with the English Premier League. I give you the "English Premier League to Downton Abbey plot converter."[more inside] posted by modernnomad at 2:06 PM PST - 29 comments
Europe has a long-standing comic tradition, at least equal to that of America. Beyond Tintin and Asterix, there are hundreds of fantastic titles with astonishing art, most of which never see the shores of the USA. However, when a lucky title does get the nod, something bizarre happens when European sensibilities face American censors. [more inside] posted by themadthinker at 11:15 AM PST - 39 comments
Quantum gas goes below absolute zero. "It may sound less likely than hell freezing over, but physicists have created an atomic gas with a sub-absolute-zero temperature for the first time. Their technique opens the door to generating negative-Kelvin materials and new quantum devices, and it could even help to solve a cosmological mystery." posted by moonmilk at 9:57 AM PST - 72 comments
"As America teeters on a cliff, Tom Wolfe draws up a sterling indictment of our unscrupulous financial culture. Twenty-five years after Bonfire of the Vanities, the author returns to Wall Street to see what happened to the Masters of the Universe."
Mark Lynas, author of several books on climate change and once a leading figurehead of the anti-GMO movement, has made an about turn on his opinions regarding GM crops. In an address to the Oxford Farming Conference, he stated:
"For the record, here and upfront, I apologise for having spent several years ripping up GM crops. I am also sorry that I helped to start the anti-GM movement back in the mid 1990s, and that I thereby assisted in demonising an important technological option which can be used to benefit the environment. As an environmentalist, and someone who believes that everyone in this world has a right to a healthy and nutritious diet of their choosing, I could not have chosen a more counter-productive path. I now regret it completely. So I guess you’ll be wondering—what happened between 1995 and now that made me not only change my mind but come here and admit it? Well, the answer is fairly simple: I discovered science, and in the process I hope I became a better environmentalist."[more inside] posted by rattleandhum at 4:41 AM PST - 82 comments
Jake Fried creates animation. In this particular case he utilizes only coffee, whiteout, and ink, layering the drawing in successive images to create a retro/psychedelic trip. I give you "The Deep End"
Ever heard the other-worldly sound of the Ethiopian lyre known as the begena? It's sometimes referred to as the "Harp of David", since legend has it that it's the same instrument that soothed the Biblical king. Whether that's true or not, there is little doubt that the low pitched, buzzing sound the instrument produces is one of the most unusual to be found just about anywhere. Used to accompany meditation and prayer, Biblical passages and so forth, check out the amazing sound (along with accompanying male or female vocal) here, here, here and here. posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:35 AM PST - 14 comments
The football team might be harmed! The Steubenville, Ohio football team, parents, and law enforcement and legal staff are not very pleased with Anonymous right now. They've just released extensive details on a terrible case involving team players and other associated personnel... [warning: triggers / rape] [more inside] posted by bitter-girl.com at 4:11 PM PST - 272 comments
The Norovirus: A Study in Puked Perfection, "Each norovirus carries just nine protein-coding genes (you have about 20,000). Even with that skimpy genetic toolkit, noroviruses can break the locks on our cells, slip in, and hack our own DNA to make new noroviruses. The details of this invasion are sketchy, alas, because scientists haven’t figured out a good way to rear noroviruses in human cells in their labs. It’s not even clear exactly which type of cell they invade once they reach the gut. Regardless of the type, they clearly know how to exploit their hosts. Noroviruses come roaring out of the infected cells in vast numbers. And then they come roaring out of the body. Within a day of infection, noroviruses have rewired our digestive system so that stuff comes flying out from both ends." [more inside] posted by Blasdelb at 12:32 PM PST - 120 comments
Jennie Linn McCormack "isn’t the only woman in recent years to be prosecuted for ending her own pregnancy. But her case could change the trajectory of abortion law in the United States": The Rise of DIY Abortions. [more inside] posted by zarq at 10:31 AM PST - 66 comments
Boateng walks off: Kevin-Prince Boateng, the former Tottenham and Portsmouth midfielder left the field after AC Milan players were abused in a friendly against Pro Patria.
On his way from the pitch, Boateng applauded sections of the crowd, who then reacted angrily towards the corner of the ground from which the chants came.
It was quickly established that play would not restart and AC Milan's official website said other black players in the Milan side - M'Baye Niang, Urby Emanuelson and Sulley Muntari - suffered abuse.
[Video on Daily Mirror Website]
BBC report. posted by marienbad at 10:24 AM PST - 38 comments
"We cannot help but see animals from a human vantage point, and therefore in some sense all the works in the present exhibition are actually about us."Garden Fresh is a photo series featuring animals exploring a grocery store. posted by quin at 8:09 AM PST - 34 comments
Experts often suggest that crime resembles an epidemic. But what kind? Karl Smith, a professor of public economics and government at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, has a good rule of thumb for categorizing epidemics: If it spreads along lines of communication, he says, the cause is information. Think Bieber Fever. If it travels along major transportation routes, the cause is microbial. Think influenza. If it spreads out like a fan, the cause is an insect. Think malaria. But if it's everywhere, all at once—as both the rise of crime in the '60s and '70s and the fall of crime in the '90s seemed to be—the cause is a molecule.
“So when I was pregnant and about to give birth, I was expecting kindness, understanding, love. But, by god, was I wrong. They were torturers. They didn’t care. I was a thing. An experiment.” [more inside] posted by Catseye at 2:43 AM PST - 56 comments
Google is challenging Facebook by using a controversial tactic: requiring people to use the Google+ social network. The result is that people who create an account to use Gmail, YouTube and other Google services—including the Zagat restaurant-review website—are also being set up with public Google+ pages that can be viewed by anyone online. ... The impetus comes from the top. Google Chief Executive Larry Page has sought more aggressive measures to get people to use Google+, two people familiar with the matter say. ... Some users of Google's services are startled to learn how far the integration can reach.
Al Jazeera has purchased Al Gore's Current TV, giving them a much wider American audience. However, the deal suffered an immediate casualty when Time Warner Cable Inc., the nation's second-largest cable TV operator, announced it is dropping Current TV due to the deal. "Our agreement with Current has been terminated and we will no longer be carrying the service. We are removing the service as quickly as possible," the company said in a statement. posted by dejah420 at 7:51 PM PST - 76 comments
"Las Vegas bookmakers make their money by balancing their risk, but sometimes they simply come out on the wrong side of too many bets." With the regular 2012 NFL season now over and the playoffs about to begin, please take a moment and shed a tear -- or more likely, raise your beer -- as you consider the terrible beating Las Vegas sports books absorbed in 2012. (LAT link, so potentially behind a paywall depending on your number of previous visits in last 30 days.) [more inside] posted by mosk at 3:06 PM PST - 30 comments
To commemorate the Mayan Apocalypse, video game tycoon Richard Garriott de Cayeux threw a lavish soiree at his 65-acre spread along Lake Austin, complete with various scenes of imagined end-of-the-world scenarios. - Sonia Smith in Texas Monthly posted by jim in austin at 9:08 AM PST - 71 comments
"On a good day, the street maintenance team tasked by the New York City Department of Transportation with roadway repair might fill 4,000 potholes in eight hours. In an average week, they could resurface 100,000 square yards of road. After Hurricane Sandy, their crews removed 2,500 tons of debris. And every day, on a Tumblr called The Daily Pothole, New Yorkers can take a peek inside the workings of a city system few have likely thought about." Storyboard: A Day with New York City’s Pothole Repair Crew.[more inside] posted by zarq at 8:20 AM PST - 8 comments
A boat blazes on a remote summer-scorched lake shoreline. Onlookers are helpless to save the boat or prevent the imminent explosion of full gas tanks starting a grass fire. Or not. (SLYT - *Warning Bad Kiwi Language*) posted by Catch at 8:28 PM PST - 45 comments
10 Raspberry Pi creations that show how amazing the tiny PC can be "The Raspberry Pi, the $35 credit card-sized computer, has lived an interesting life despite being less than a year old. It has been used to teach programming and host servers, but above all it has provided a near-perfect platform for some of the most fun and interesting hobbyist projects in the computing world. Arcade cabinets, computing clusters housed in LEGOs, musical instruments, robots, and wearable computers are just some of the uses Pi owners have found. It turns out you can do a lot with an ARM processor, GPU, a few ports and GPIO pins, and an operating system (typically Linux-based) loaded onto an SD card. Here are 10 of the coolest Raspberry Pi creations we've been able to find." posted by bookman117 at 6:39 PM PST - 73 comments
Need some inspiration for the new year? Beautiful Moments is a short video compilation of people and animals doing interesting things at some of the most lovely locations on earth. [slyt] posted by quin at 8:04 AM PST - 6 comments
Pill Could Join Arsenal Against BedbugsYou take the pill and go to bed — perchance even to sleep, if you can sleep knowing how patiently bedbugs wait in your walls or mattress, sniffing for the sweet stream of your exhaled carbon dioxide and for your warm skin to grow still. You let them bite you. And then — in a few days — they die. posted by R. Mutt at 7:46 AM PST - 99 comments
A trip like this may seem strange to you. You could reasonably accuse us of a kind of exoticism. But people travel for lots of reasons. There’s beach tourism, sex tourism, wine tourism. This trip, for me, offered something a lot more interesting: a chance to feed our long fascination with the idea of pre-agrarian society. For 40,000 years, from the rise of behaviorally modern humans until the development of agriculture 9,000 years ago, all of our ancestors had lived somewhat like the Mbuti do today. More than anything, Dan and Chris and I just wanted a glimpse of what that past might have looked like.
Prescription overdoses kill more people than heroin and cocaine.
An L.A. Times review of coroners’ records finds that drugs prescribed by a
small number of doctors caused or contributed to a disproportionate number of deaths.